Made it halfway through season seven (the final season).
Obviously, yes, the show has been funny enough that I’ve continued watching it. But every time I take time off to watch an episode of “The Office” – even in its weaker post-season four seasons – I’m reminded of how much worse it really is. Yes, it can be very funny. Yes, Ron is by far the best.
But HOLY SHIT is its political commentary bad – and it is stuffed to the gills with political commentary. Leslie does battle ONLY with strawman politicos – not even once, on the show’s entire run, does she ever fact an opponent who is even remotely reasonable.
The portrayal of Ron v. Leslie is quite telling. Ron is a libertarian parody. Is whole shtick is decrying the government for wastefulness while himself embodying that very wastefulness in his total lack of desire to do his job. Ron’s political positions are almost to a “t” presented as jokes, things nobody should take seriously.
Contrast Leslie. Leslie herself is a big government parody, what with her hyperactive activism and intense belief in using government for the greater good, but unlike Ron, Leslie is almost always portrayed as correct. Want to tax soda drinking sizes? Well, THESE sodas are literally the size of small children! The whole thing is strawmanned to such an absurd extent that not agreeing with her would mark you as basically insane.
Is the town next to you bankrupt? Obviously the ONLY moral thing to do is merge towns. Anybody who opposes MUST be selfish and evil, without exception.
Government shutdown? Not if we were more like Leslie. Against all logic Leslie manages to come up with a plan that shuts down NO branches of government and saves the necessary amount of money, as is always possible in the real world. The message is clear: We all must be like Leslie, or the world will always be a worse place. Want a more limited government? Then you’re a parody like Ron or evil.
Oppose teaching senior citizens how to use condoms? Well clearly you’re a horrible conservative parody who is also in favor of censorship and probably witch-burnings.
And I could go on. And on. And on. There are NO exceptions to this. None.
So, I will finish it out, because it makes me laugh. But “The Office” is much, much better, both smarter and significantly less smug and obnoxious. If you have limited time, pick “The Office” and don’t look back.