Archive for the ‘the office’ Category

Why I Love Michael Scott

November 9, 2007

I’ve recently become an addict of The Office The Sahara-dry humor, the excruciating awkwardness, the cute pam-jim love story, Dwight…it’s a great show. Still, its main appeal lies in the character of Michael Scott (played by the great Steve Carell.) But not for the reason you might think. Michael is pretty ridiculous. He’s inadvertently sexist, racist, and homophobic. He’s terrible at his job. He is inefficient; most of his time is spent demeaning his employees, quoting movies, talking to Jan, calling everyone to the conference room, etc. He should have been fired a million times over. Still, through all his ignorance Michael Scott gets it. He understands what it means to be human. My favorite glimpse of this is in Season Three when Pam invites the office to her art show. No one shows up and it crushes Pam. After a terrible day, Michael makes it to her show at the last minute. When Michael sees Pam’s painting of their office building he is overcome with pride. In this moment we see Michael connect with Pam in such a way that transcends his ignorance and his sexism and his general stupidity. This is what Makes Michael Scott a great character and this is the foundations that gives the show’s humor a deeper sense of credibility.

Essentially this is the story of our lives. We live in ignorance, we are terrible at what we do, at who we love, at how we love them, etc. And then, perceivably out of nowhere, we show a glimpse of what it really means to be human. We offer ourselves as grace and as peace and as light. Then, of course, we return to our normal ignorance and whatever “ism” or phobia that happens to be our “M-O.” Yet aren’t those glimpses of light and of grace and of peace how Christ chose (notice I didn’t use “chooses”) to define us? I think so. What do you think?

John Baldauff