The Office: The Deposition

Filed under: Recaps & Reviews

The meat of this episode involves Michael's deposition in Jan's lawsuit against Dunder Mifflin. Jan's lawsuit in which she is suing Dunder Mufflin for four million dollars. Uh... wow. That feels a little ambitious to me, but I suppose it's possible I'm not really that well informed when it comes to suing for wrongful termination.

I don't know; maybe I've just been really grumpy on Thursdays lately, but the last couple of episodes have done nothing for me, and this one is no exception. But perhaps together, we can find something to enjoy in here. Let us try.

In the teaser, Pam tells us about how this one time, she interrupted Michael in a meeting with a sticky note telling him who was on the phone for him, and he loved it so much that he makes her do it every ten minutes in meetings all the time now, so he can act all busy and important and tell her he doesn't have time for these imaginary people and their imaginary phone calls. Most of the sticky notes have happy faces drawn on them. Wow, hilarious.

As they drive to New York, Jan and Michael go over Michael's rehearsed statement. He's using all kinds of pneumonic devices to remember what he's supposed to say, like "My friend Pat took a turn" and "My friend Diz-ray got new specs" to remember "a pattern of disrespect." It is so unbelievably awful and painful to watch, in the sense that sometimes the show seems to forget that Michael is not a handicapped six-year-old.

Back in Scranton, Jim and Darryl have some kind of ping pong challenge going on in the warehouse, which in and of itself is not annoying. What is annoying is Kelly's insistence upon being an absolute bitch to Pam with her trash-talking – excuse me, smack-talking. As Kelly explains to us, the two are completely different: trash talk is hypothetical, and smack talk is happening, like, right now. The enlightened example she provides for us? "You're ugly and I know it for a fact, 'cause I got the evidence right there," with some finger flicky things. It's so ridiculous.

Pam's as fed up as I am with Kelly's nonsense, so she builds a ping pong practice table in the conference room and hauls Jim in for some training. Allow me to provide you with a small sample of the obnoxiousness of Kelly Kapoor that's led to this: "Your boyfriend is so weak, he needs steroids just to watch baseball." "Jim couldn't hit a ping pong ball if it were the size of the moon." "Were Jim's parents first cousins that were also bad at ping pong?" Yeah. And she does it all with a fake ghetto accent.

Meanwhile, in New York, Michael's pissed that Toby's also there, even though Toby is there to support Michael and is on his side. Poor, poor Toby. At any rate, they begin the deposition and Michael starts out rather well (Jan, in an interview, is impressed and tells us that he is much better than people give him credit for at many things, such as ice skating, and... well, just ice skating) until he pulls out a "that's what she said" and confuses the hell out of everyone until Jan convinces them he was just telling a joke.

Dunder Mifflin Scranton: Kelly's still trying Pam's, and my, patience. Jim's practicing with various coworkers in the conference room.

Dunder Mifflin Corporate: Things are falling apart when Michael starts talking about Jan's boobs and throwing big words around without a license. Things go from bad to worse when it's discovered that Michael and Jan started dating much earlier than what they officially stated. (The Jamaica photo totally gets dragged out here.) Michael becomes completely flummoxed and asks for his next line. I mean, he actually says, "Line," like he's in a play. Oh, Michael. It's all downhill from here, and before we know it, Jan's lawyer has pulled out Michael's diary and is reading entries that indicate that Jan and Michael's "relationship" was extremely one-sided up until the actual signing of the "Love Contract."

Next we have a horrible scene in which everyone at DM Corporate is reading a copy of Michael's diary over lunch, and Michael fines himself with nowhere to sit. He spies Toby sitting alone (also reading the diary) and asks if he can join him. Toby agrees and tells Michael he thinks he knows how he's feeling: when he was a kid and his parents were getting divorced, he was forced to testify in court. He gets all heartbreaking with the "I loved them both so much" and the "I didn't want them to get divorced in the first place," and then Michael proves just how terrible he can be and completely loses any sympathy he was receiving from the viewing audience by shoving Toby's entire tray over until it falls right on the floor. What a bully. Michael, that is so gross.

Michael is pissed that Jan stole his diary, but she declares they're even now, what with the emailing of the Jamaica picture to the entire company. They stomp off, telling each other "I love you" as they do. Back in the deposition room, DM's lawyer is asking about this "other woman" Michael talks about in his diary, "Ryan." BWAH! Toby is giggling uncontrollably in the corner.

The deposition starts to gather steam and takes a turn for the nasty when the DM lawyer makes Michael read some of his performance reviews aloud and then Jan's lawyer reads David Wallace's deposition (which is not unkind except it reveals to Michael that he was never being seriously considered for Jan's job). Jan's lawyer tries to get Michael to turn on the company, but he won't do it, and when he's asked whether he wouldn't agree that the company exhibits a pattern of disrespect toward its employees, he replies, "Absolutely not."

In Scranton, Darryl's kicking Jim's ass in the rematch, and Kelly is butchering up Avril Lavigne's "Girlfriend" more than it already is with a little "Hey hey, you you, I don't like your boyfriend, 'cause 'cause, 'cause 'cause, 'cause he sucks at ping pong." Wow, that's clever, Kapoor. Pam loses it and challenges Kelly to a game, but they can't even get their volley for serve off the ground and Jim and Darryl lose interest pretty quickly and bail for the table in the conference room. Now with fewer irritating girlfriends, bonus!

Michael tells us in an interview why he did what he did, sort of: "You expect to get screwed by your company, but you never expect to get screwed by your girlfriend." Ha!

Tags: The Office

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