The Office Special
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Three years after the cameras stopped rolling, the BBC returns to Wernham Hogg to catch up with the staff, past and present, of the most famous paper merchants in Slough. Gareth is now office manager and Tim, last seen asking Dawn out (again), appears to be nearing the point of despair. David Brent has blown his redundancy money on releasing a single, and now makes his living selling cleaning products door-to-door and making z-list celebrity appearances. Meanwhile, Dawn and her fiance Lee have relocated to Florida, but are being flown over specially by the documentary makers for the end-of-year office party. This two-part special of The Office finally brings the story to a close, as we find out whether anyone in this life ever gets what they really want.]]>
Top Customer Reviews
Now, three years later the BBC documentary crew have come to film a follow-up show and see where their previous stars have ended up. Gareth is on a power trip as the new management boss of the office, though he wields about as much respect as David did in his day. Tim is miserable, unsuccessfully trying to bond with the new secretary who is utterly baffled at his jokes and seated next to Anne, a woman with appalling manners and long-winded stories. Dawn is tanned in Florida, but without a real job permit she's forced to babysit full-time for the mean-spirited Lee's sister's baby.
And David. Oh boy. Reduced to a cleaning-produce salesman, he's attempting in his evenings to break into show business by guest appearances at pubs and nightclubs. However, the general public at large despise him, and he's beginning to realise what the rest of the world has always known: he's a pathetic schmuck. And here is where the show takes its most astonishing turn - in the first two seasons, we alternatively cringe and laugh at David's behaviour, but now we are made to feel profound pity for him. One scene in particular, in which David eats alone in an empty food court, actually brought tears of pity to my eyes. No one deserves to be this lonely.
But the Christmas party is looming.Read more ›
For starters, I never thought of this series as a comedy. Yes, it has some very funny moments. (OK, it has some hilarious moments.) But they're not what define this series.
At its core, I think it's about David Brent and Tim Canterbury, two people who are really two sides of a single coin. Superficially, they couldn't be more different. One demands attention, the other shuns it. One is a juvenile and utterly self-deluded egomaniac, while the other is principled and sensitive. But both are finding it impossible to get what they want out of life. They're insecure and frightened, and they wear their dysfunctional personalities like suits of armor. Unfortunately, this comes at a high price. They are being dishonest with themselves and with the other people in their lives. In retaliation, life periodically dishes out humiliation, sort of like the shock the rat gets when he takes the wrong turn in the maze. We're on the wrong path, and Zap, we're not going to be allowed to get away with it.
The other (wonderful) characters in the series exist mainly to put David and Tim in situations that reveal who they are. We find out that neither Tim nor David seem to respect themselves. Tim sells out his dream to return to college by staying on the job for a paltry promotion. He eventually refuses a high position, allowing his bizarre desk mate Garreth to get the job instead.Read more ›
You will laugh with pain for the characters, and sit in awkward silence not knowing whether to laugh or cry for David/Tim/Dawn. It will fill all the gaps in your heart that the two season left! It contains all the painful David Brentisms only much more intensified as he is a despraite man at the end of his pitiful rope. Tim is at his all time low, while Gareth is at his all time high. And Dawn, well, you will see!
I definatly recommend this to anyone with a brain who has seen and loved The Office. It is simply The Best!
"Nobody who has seen the BBC series "The Office" has anything bad to say about it, and there's a reason for that: it's perfect."
I couldn't agree more with her on that count; the first two seasons constitute the best sitcom ever made. However, proceeds to damn "The Special" through faint praise, calling it "less satisfying" and saying that Gervais and Merchant "bowed under the pressure" to give fans a happy ending. She concludes the review by saying,
"Still, one can't help wishing that Gervais and Merchant had left well enough...alone. We needed a sequel to "The Office" as much as we need a sequel to "Pride and Prejudice."
Franklin is completely wrong in her analysis here, and here's why. "The Office Special" can't be viewed as a "sequel" to the original series; it's more of a corollary.
The half-hour episodes of the original series were so compelling because no other work (sidebar: I believe the lofty word "work" applies to this stuff) has captured the awful, crushing, dingy mundanity of our lives like "The Office." Enough has been written on that count which doesn't need to be rehashed here.
"The Special," on the other hand, accepts those facts, but appends them with this: our real triumps in life come in the face of that very mundanity, and they are the very few, very small moments of joy we manage wrench away from Our Office every now and again. That sounds sappy in print, but I think it's important to keep in mind as you view (and invariably re-view) "The Special."
So what we have here is NOT a sequel, and don't feel guilty about the happy endings.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Wrong region. Bought from USA without realising. Couldn't play on dvd- player.Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
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Like another American reviewer, I was in England when the specials aired (lucky... Read more
I absolutely love this show. My wifew came across the British Office by accident, when it was on BBC and thought I would like it. She was wrong....I LOVE it. Read morePublished on November 3, 2011 by Michael L. Sweet
As a fan of the version here in the U.S. I was curious to compare. Honestly, I ended up liking the U.K. version a little better. Read morePublished on August 26, 2008 by Jellybellymomma
Three years after the conclusion of the second series, the BBC film crew returns to follow up on the lives of the office workers they chronicled for a hilarious pseudo-documentary. Read morePublished on April 13, 2008 by David Bonesteel
I can only echo all the positive comments thus far..if you're an Office fan you need this "closure" eh? Read morePublished on January 20, 2008 by Music lover
This final chapter of the Office saga is tightly written, extremely funny, and surprisingly moving. The writers are almost sadistic in their treatment of David Brent, as they throw... Read morePublished on September 16, 2007 by J. Michael