First off, Pam is no longer just the receptionist. Jenna Fischer is a dynamic actress (Blades of Glory and Walk Hard) and she deserves some great material. I like the gumption Pam showed when she left Dunder Mifflin to work for Michael and I like that she insisted on being a saleswoman, rather than the receptionist. She has really come into her own when you compare her to the woman from Season Two.
I also like Michael in the past four episodes. Although, for the most part, he has no clue how an office should be run, he does have some shining moments. I am glad that he recognized that David Wallace was mistreating him by not allowing him to have a party for his Dunder Mifflin anniversary. His attempt to start a new company was genius because it gave the audience a glimpse as to why he is a Regional Manager. Michael knows how to woo his clients; he knows how to relate to them, to make them feel special. I particularly enjoyed how he color-coded his contact cards to know what topics to not talk about. Michael is a smart man, despite some evidence to the contrary.
Although I am enjoying some of these aspects, this season leaves me wondering “how much time does The Office have left?” Jim and Pam are on the verge of marriage; Michael will always be Regional Manager of Scranton; Dwight will always have his beet farm; and Toby will always be an HR representative…so how many stories can the writers produce before there is nothing left to laugh at?
This past week’s episode irritated me. The possible mutiny was not funny. Dwight’s plans are no longer ‘out there’, they’re just juvenile. The show has taken a much more serious route this season indicating that it is either time for a hiatus or a series finale. I’d much rather a series finale before the characters lose everything that I love about them.