The Office: Vandalism Season 9 Episode 14 Review

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After the disappointing first episode of the night, The Office came bouncing back with another jarring episode that didn’t forget about the show’s heart.

Where the last entry handled Brian’s introduction to the series too obviously, Vandalism brought it back and included him in events rather than hinting at him. The best example being when he playfully bumps Pam in the head with the mic while off screen during an interview.

But before the bigger event towards the end, Pam’s little story must be discussed because it was probably the best way the character has been handled in years. This is not the little Pam Beesly who wouldn’t dare confront anyone on the matter we met nine years ago. I love that she’s doing art again. I love that she’s proud enough of it to fight for it. I love that she stormed into the office and yelled “Conference room now!” just as Michael would have. I love that Dwight recognized this and immediately offered to help. Remarkable work from the writers to do so much in so little time.

Dwight and Nellie both try to help Pam out in opposite ways. Nellie goes the nice route, which fails. Dwight goes for the throat, and the results were a bit crazy. The warehouse worker who defaced her mural came after her in the parking lot, but Brian came to her rescue. Sure, the scene was a bit too over-dramatic, but then we got a full on dialogue with Pam and Brian, the latter of whom is in danger of losing his job. It’s all happening so fast! Certainly is exciting though.

In Philadelphia, Jim and Darryl are roommates. Was the story cliche? Of course, but we’ve known these characters for so long that you have to admit it was kind of adorable. The two of them now have this great career opportunity, but at home they are just a couple of kids. The shot of them playing video games together in what might as well be a college dorm room was precious.

The smallest story of the night also had some touching moments as the accountants, Angela, Oscar, and Kevin attended the senator and Angela’s baby’s first birthday. What a complicated backstory for this one. But the senator was just using Angela and Oscar for politics, and Kevin was the only one to say something to him. The accountants will always have a special place in my heart on this show. Seeing them band together like this was just so cute.

Vandalism seriously made up for the last episode with two fun little plots and one big one. The Office is better than it’s been in years and that is something worth celebrating. Grade: A-

By Matt Dougherty

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