The Office (S04E18): “Goodbye, Toby”

Grade: B+

Pregnant chicks, engagements, and office trysts, oh my! With security on the set of The Office tighter than girl jeans on an emo guy, I was expecting this episode to be chocked full of surprises, and I was right. But even with all that was going on, this was still just a pretty good episode, and it didn’t quite live up to season finales of the past.

The episode jumps right into Michael acting suspiciously giddy over the revelation that Toby will be leaving the office. Michael’s mostly unfounded level of animosity toward Toby has always been amusing, how he essentially treats him like he’s the devil in human form, and in this episode he is well prepared to give Toby a fittingly nasty send-off. However, a wrench is thrown into his plans when the new HR, Holly Flax (Amy Ryan) makes a dazzling first impression on Michael, who instantly begins crushing on her and trying to impress her in every way possible.

Dwight misses the memo that Michael is twitterpated over Holly and decides a good old fashioned office hazing is in order. He tells her that Kevin is a special needs hire, and she finds it very admirable of Michael to hire someone like that. She also treats Kevin like a five-year-old child for the rest of the day, speaking to him slowly, helping him get food from the vending machine and to buckle his seat belt in the car and so on. Kevin, however, thinks she’s into him and wants to bone her. This was the funniest running gag of the episode to me, especially since Kevin really DOES seem a little slow.

Toby shows at several points that he’s far from over his infatuation with Pam, from trying to find a camera to get a picture with her to insisting she sit in and takes notes on his exit interview. You gotta feel bad for the guy, with his dopey puppy face, and I hope he finds some hot, exotic chick in Costa Rica or wherever it is he’s off to.

Phyllis ends up snatching the party planning duties away from Angela for Toby’s goodbye celebration and decides to show everyone she can throw the best party Dunder Mifflin has ever had. Michael requests an anti gravity machine, but since those don’t exist she ends up getting a ferris wheel and fireworks. The fireworks were bought with money that Jim slipped to Phyllis because he was planning to propose to Pam during the festivities. Jim’s kept teasing Pam as to when he’s going to propose, but she begins to suspect that he is going to really do it that night.

Special Needs Kevin calls Michael to come to the supermarket at one point during the party for some “help” (Holly seemed very touched when Micahel left to go help him), but when he gets there he finds he’s been set up. Jan’s there, and she’s pregnant. Kevin isn’t so slow after all. Michael is shocked by her baby bump and even more shocked by the news that the kid aint his, but was conceived while they were still together. She didn’t cheat on him though–she just went to a sperm bank for her perfect seed, rather than have one with Michael. Wow, what a blow to a guy’s ego. “I’m sorry honey, I don’t want your genes. I’m too old to have this baby come out messed up.” Michael then admits that he knew he loved two things in life from a very early age: sex and kids. He thought the two went hand-in-hand, but apparently not. Kind of sad, but he’s still got the potentially steamy hot sex he could have with the new HR, who seems to be as much into him as he is to her.

Back at la fiesta, fireworks are exploding in the sky and Jim is fidgeting with the engagement ring in his pocket. Right as he pulls it out, idiot Andy rushes the stage and announces that he wants to marry Angela. Jim pockets the ring again and people around the world scream at their television sets. Well Angela says yes (though in a very unenthusiastic way–almost like she only wanted to agree to it for appearances sake) and the party begins to wind down. Pam looks disappointed as she says she really thought Jim was going to propose. But, heck, I wouldn’t either if my moment was stolen by some asshole with the brain the size of half a peanut. Those were Jim’s fireworks, Andy, not yours! Argh!

We leave off with Michael calling Jan to say that, essentially, he wants to be part of her and the baby’s life and Phyllis walking into a darkened office to find Dwight and the very recently engaged Angela sans clothing, going at it like two feral cats in an alley. It’s as much the opposite of attractive as it sounds.

Oh and apparently Pam got into some design school in New York City (2 hours away from Scranton). The classes only last 3 months, but will that time and distance apart harm their relationship? Surely not, but this episode sure didn’t leave the happy couple in the best of places. I have faith in Jam, though.

The summer drought is upon us again, made worse by the writer’s strike we had to endure, so that’s it for The Office until Fall.

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3 Responses to “The Office (S04E18): “Goodbye, Toby””

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