Even after ending about 6 years ago, the most well-written situation comedy series of all time, The Office, is still the most binge-watched series on Netflix. Season One, which premiered in 2005 and with only six episodes, tried to replicate the British series of the same name. Although it didn’t gain that much popularity because of the new concept that was introduced in the form of a mockumentary, Michael Scott’s charm played its part and everything went uphill after the second season. The Office was nominated for 42 Emmy Awards, winning five times. It won once for its directing, once for writing, two awards for editing, and once for the best series.
FRIENDS might be more popular but it is behind The Office in terms of views.
So what makes it the greatest sitcom ever?
1. No Laugh Track
This is one of the biggest reasons why The Office has a lot of fans who actually have a great sense of humor. Laugh tracks mostly eat a lot of time in the sitcoms and are used by series with poor content and which are about to die to just lengthen the show. Michael’s jokes weren’t funny because a laugh track was added at the end but because the viewers actually took time to generate a connection with the character and when they felt comfortable, they understood why his character was one of the best characters in the entire TV history. Even after having only 4-5 dialogues in every alternate episode, fans still worship Creed because his delivery was one of a kind. Jim’s pranks, Dwight’s weird reactions to every little thing, Kevin’s weird obsession of eating and Stanley’s ignoring nature; everything about every character was inspired by real-life situations and ordinary people which is the reason why people could relate to the content.
2. Camera Work
The constant zooming in and out on characters’ expressions and most intimate situations on details that may have gone unnoticed otherwise make for some very funny scenes. One of the most prominent examples of the fantastic camera work is when Michael Scott’s cabin is smelling of shit and Michael is answering the questions. When the camera zooms out, we realize that the smell was so worse that even the cameraman had to zoom through the small window because he couldn’t be in that space. Such minute details are the reason why this series had the best camera work compared to other series.
3. The Best Love Story Of All Time
No, I am not talking about Romeo and Juliet. It’s about Jim and Pam. The beginning of the series showcased a salesman who had a crush on a receptionist who was engaged to a guy who worked just below them. In the beginning, the series showed how some relationships are just not meant to be. No matter how much we try, there are some stories of our life that just remain unfinished. But we have to move on. This was shown by the relationship between Pam and Roy. The other side of relationships was shown by all the love affairs of Jim. Jim dated about 2 women and each of them failed because of his love for Pam. The writers wonderfully explained how sometimes, no matter how hard you try to move on, destiny brings you back to the exact same position you were supposed to be. One thing led to another and at the end, Jim and Pam turned out to be the most lovable couples of all times.
4. Steve Carell
Steve Carell perfectly pulls off the awkwardness of Michael Scott, who calls himself the best boss in the world since season one and at the end, it turns out, he actually was. Michael has certain traits which make it difficult for him to develop friendships with others. But our favorite manager still hopes for the best, covering up the awkwardness and manages to bring a smile on each and every viewer. Also, this character’s inability to find love teaches how patience is the most important feature to have. There are a million other reasons why Michael Scott is loved by the audiences which you know very well if you have seen the sitcom.
5. Keeping It Simple
This show didn’t have any characters with extraordinary abilities like an eidetic memory or unnecessary sarcastic replies. With the help of amazing writing skills, the writers took ordinary characters living in a boring environment and maximized the humor and storytelling of every frame with a well-timed reaction shot. It lasted for nine seasons at NBC with the entire cast taking turns as writers. They had a very deep understanding of their characters and knew how to write them in a way while bringing out the maximum amount of comedy from each line.
Although the last seasons didn’t live up to its high expectations of contemporary work culture, The Office left us with a lot of memories and punchlines, including “that’s what she said!”. It will hopefully remain in the top list of most viewed shows of all times.