Posts Tagged ‘The Office’

I grew up in a household that appreciated classic TV, and it’s sad to see a lot of my favorite shows losing steam with my own generation just because my peers never have the chance to watch them; how can you when The Jersey Shore is TWO HOURS LONG?  So here’s my attempt to bring them back, by comparing them with today’s hit shows that you may already be into:

If you like Sex and the City, watch Golden Girls.  It’s the original foursome, and frankly a lot funnier.  Sure, you may not get a glimpse of a penis, but you’ll get 50 jokes from Sophia about how much Blanche loves ‘em.  It’s the sex of Sex and the City mixed with Medicare.  And Betty White!

If you like Saturday Night Live, watch Soap.  It’s a soap opera. Sort of.  It’s a four season-long sketch parodying daytime soaps, and it’s genius.  Evil twins, fake deaths, alien abductions; pretty much any corny soap opera plot is thrown in here, accompanied by a young Billy Crystal as the openly gay son of the rich family.

If you like The Office (specifically Michael Scott), then watch Get Smart.  You might remember Steve Carell playing the main character in a (poor) big screen adaptation of this spy comedy.  It’s about Maxwell Smart, a dense and often moronic secret agent who manages to catch the bad guy, unaware of how many times he foiled his own plan along the way (Get it? Get Smart. Like, “Go get that Smart guy he’s ruining my evil plan!” and “You’re an idiot, get smart!” Ahh, chuckles).  If Mel Brooks directed a James Bond film, this would be it.

If you like Modern Family, and specifically what the show does for all types of blended families in America, then watch All in the Family.  It’s a 1970’s sitcom centered around Archie Bunker, a politically conservative, prejudice, stubborn, outspoken bigot; and his quirky family.  What made All in the Family the highest rated show of the decade is that it pushed boundaries.  While Archie may be stubborn in his views, his character tries to adapt to the changing world and it turns out he’s a decent man.  Really moving, really controversial, and really funny.

– Taylor Kowalski

In 1977, the American favorite Happy Days was at 8 seasons and quickly losing steam after Richie left to go make the DaVinci Code and other cool stuff.  Our generation may not recognize the term “jumping the shark”, but it stems from when Happy Days’ Fonzi ACTUALLY jumped over a shark that appeared while the gang was water skiing.  The phrase refers to any show’s last-ditch attempt to keep things interesting (we’re looking at you, LOST).

Here’s how these once-great shows could have avoided jumping the shark, as well as the shrugs and indifferent looks people give when asked if they watched the new episodes/if they even knew the show was over.

The Office:  I’m an avid Office watcher.  It’s my dream life (I love paper).  The first time I ever cried from being happy in my life was Jim and Pam’s wedding.  And no I don’t think that’s pathetic, it was a beautiful ceremony.  Unfortunately it seems that the people behind The Office, despite Carrell’s warning of his departure, seemed to have an “Oh shit, that’s tomorrow!” moment and just threw a season together with a confusing throng of guest stars.

What They Should Have Done:  Hired, literally as well as fictionally, a boss from outside the office, preferably a comedian who’s own hit show wrapped awhile ago and is looking for a “hey I’m bored” kind of gig (cough* Ray Romano *uncough).  Also, end every episode with a close up of Jim’s face.

Heroes:  Though it’s been over for a while, I include it because it was a possible juggernaut show gone awry.  What initially attracted me to Heroes was their notion that out of the 6 billion people in the world, only random few have special abilities.  As far as the supernatural goes, it’s realistic.  By the second season, however, it appeared that I was the only one who DIDN’T have a power!  The problem with Heroes was that there were TOO MANY HEROES!

What They Should Have Done: Fewer heroes (we can’t ALL be special), less politics, and a lot more Sylar.  He’s one of the better villains that’s come around for some time, and one of my better desktop backgrounds.

Two and a Half Men:  With the departure of Charlie Sheen, ‘Men’ was faced with the challenge of keeping a hit show a hit despite losing its star character.  Their mistake, though, was bringing in Ashton as a character who essentially is completely random.

What They Should Have Done:  Bring Ashton in, but instead he’s the result of one of Charlie’s past one nightstands.  This way Charlie is still in the spotlight a little bit.  Now Walden has to get to know his quirky family! I’m already sensing the laughs and hijinks!

Grey’s Anatomy:  You’d think all the patients would be admitted with gaping bite wounds from all the sharks this show has been jumping.   Two hospital shootings, killing off the basically incestuous cast, and the most recent leap over a Great White: a plane crash!  Remember how cute it was when George fumbled around and Christina was just a bitch? Neither do I, it was too long ago.

What They Should Have Done: Cancelled it.

— Taylor Kowalski

The Office” ended season seven with one big lingering question on everyone’s mind–who would take Michael Scott’s position and, more importantly, who is going to hate on Toby? Some were probably a little disappointed to find that is was “Boston Legal” actor, James Spader, but the episode was still great nonetheless. While the show probably won’t ever have the same dynamic as it did with Carell, it still works. In fact, Spader’s role is almost the exact opposite of Carell’s.

The episode starts with Robert California (Spader) driving down to Florida and receiving an instant promotion–meanwhile, leaving Ed Helms, better known as Andy Bernard, in charge at Dunder Mifflin. The office goes into uproar when the staff finds a mysterious list dividing the employees between the categories of winners and losers. The ‘losers’ are upset because the ‘winners’ are invited to a nice lunch as Andy desperately tries to lead the losers out of their misery, especially pregnant Pam. (Angela too, is pregnant with her gay senator husband’s child).