Time to tackle the final season of The Office to celebrate their status as one of the best shows on Netflix which came to an end on January 1, 2021. Instead, you can now enjoy the tales of Dunder Mifflin through Peacock (which is where I watch some Premier League games as well). The final part of the rewatch of one of my favorite shows prior to its removal from Netflix took longer than expected, but it is now complete. Not only was deciding the top 10 moments a challenge but trying not to overload the top 10 with moments from the final few episodes was even tougher. The Office has a large cast of characters and so many plot points that it seemed impossible to tie up all the loose ends. But I think they managed to do it.
10 Brian Protects Pam from Frank (Episode 14: Vandalism)
It’s down at 10 because of how controversial Brian is as a character and with his storyline. That being said, this sets up for the rollercoaster of a finish The Office. Pam finally got around to painting the mural in the warehouse, only to get vandalized soon after. It turned out to be Frank, a minor character who I’m pretty sure didn’t appear (or at least speak) prior to this episode. Pam got revenge by painting his car, and Frank charged her only to be taken out by Brian’s boom mic. This was a memorable moment as the crew were no longer hidden in the shadows. Note: this moment’s inclusion on the list is not my approval of some of Brian’s later actions alleged or otherwise.
9 Kevin the Pie Math Wiz (Episode 4: Work Bus)
The beauty and irony of Kevin is how bad he is at math despite being an accountant. However, when Jim convinces Dwight to rent a Work Bus while the office building’s renovations are taking place and they set course for a pie shop, Kevin’s math skills were unlocked. An underappreciated part of this exchange is how the answer is 314, a nod to the beginning of Pi’s value of 3.14. As it turns out, Kevin is only a human calculator for queries involving pies. Ask him about salads, and he’ll be as clueless as usual.
8 Asian Jim Prank (Episode 3: Andy’s Ancestry)
This moment falls into a category that was more prevalent in earlier seasons of The Office: scenes that would probably have gotten the show cancelled if it aired this decade. Even in that context, this scene still has some merit. It’s one of the last great Jim Pranks of the series prior to his Guten Prank for Dwight’s wedding. Take a moment to appreciate the level of preparation this prank required. From the studying Randall Park’s character had to do about Jim’s life to the printing of this fake family photo, this had Dwight perplexed.
7 Andy Burns his Bridges with Dunder Mifflin (Episode 20: Paper Airplane)
Andy’s character development (some would argue derailment) particularly toward the end of this series is both fitting but still forced and disappointing. To this day I still don’t know how to feel about it. While we do get some funny moments like Andy becoming an Internet meme, it just seems like he makes unnecessary changes to his life and throws himself under the bus repeatedly. That being said, him flipping off David Wallace was a memorable moment and he eventually makes his return and finishes his character off on a good note.
6 Dwight’s Staged Radio Interview (Episode 6: The Boat)
Dwight was excited to be invited for a radio interview, but when it was cancelled, Jim saw an opportunity (as he so often does). Jim recruits Nellie into manipulating him into embarrassing himself. They send Dwight into a panic by informing him about the toxic properties of Dunder Mifflin’s paper, that the company’s stock is plummeting, and that David Wallace has taken a mailman hostage. Dwight acts on this information and gets David involved, but it all worked out in good fun in the end. Seeing the self-proclaimed smartest person in the office get outsmarted and make a fool of themselves never gets old.
5 Dwight Tries to Hire his Friends and Fails (Episode 13: Junior Salesman)
Just as good friends don’t always make good roommates, Dwight learned the hard way that they don’t make good coworkers either. When given the opportunity to pick Jim’s temporary replacement while his friendly rival is working part-time in Philadelphia, Dwight takes advantage of this and tries to hire one of his friends. I love this episode because throughout the series we are introduced with so many zany characters through their connection with Dwight, and to see them all in one place is a sight to behold. His plan ultimately backfires as none of them are good enough for the job, and they get their revenge by going paintballing without him.
4 Andy Brings Erin and Pete’s Exes to the Office for Revenge (Episode 16: Moving On)
Possibly the pettiest moment in the entire series, Andy has largely himself to blame for the demise of his relationship with Erin (which sucks because I was rooting for them to stay together on my first watch of The Office). While Erin did technically cheat on him with Pete, Andy abandoned Erin with little contact prior to his return from his boat voyage. After discovering their relationship, Andy contacts Pete’s ex-girlfriend and Gabe, Erin’s ex-boyfriend, for an awkward reunion. A minor moment of revenge, but it made for surprisingly good TV.
3 Andy’s Moment of Reflection (Episode 23: Finale)
At this point of the list, you know which episode the rest of these moments are coming from. For all of the drama Andy was involved in this season, it all comes full circle at the very end. He reflects on how much time he spent being nostalgic about his time at Cornell, even becoming their admissions director. All it did though was make him nostalgic about Dunder Mifflin. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side. Cherish the memories you make but also cherish where you are at in life right now.
2 Michael Scott Returns as Dwight’s Best Man at His and Angela’s wedding (Episode 23: Finale)
“Michael, I can’t believe you came”-Dwight
“That’s what she said”-Michael
“I feel like all my kids grew up and they married each other. It’s every parent’s dream”-Michael
While one of The Office’s biggest strengths is the cast as a whole, Michael Scott/Steve Carrell is the heart and soul of the show. While I enjoyed the episodes following his departure, it wasn’t the same. Some amends were made with his inclusion in the finale and it couldn’t have been more fitting. Jim was heavily involved in the preparations for Dwight’s wedding, only to reveal to him that he cannot be the best man since he isn’t older than Dwight (per his family’s traditions). In comes Michael Scott. In the brief time he’s in the episode, he delivers the kinds of one liners that we’ve grown to appreciate and associate with this iconic character.
1 Pam, and The Series’s, Closing Words (Episode 23: Finale)
In just two sentences, Pam captures the simple, beautiful premise of The Office. That is why it is the best moment of Season 9 and in consideration for the best moment of the show. There is nothing spectacular about Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. These characters look like average middle class employees and citizens of a small town that happens to be Scranton, Pennsylvania. Yet the writers stretched these boundaries into some incredible stories and characters that have remained in the hearts and memories of fans, and will continue to do so for years to come.
Honorable Mentions (Yes, I narrowed these down from a larger list)
Episode 1: New Guys
Kevin attempting to re-glue the shell of a turtle he ran over (Episode 1: New Guys)
“Not bad in a day of the life at a dog food company”-Creed retelling the events of that episode
Episode 3: Andy’s Ancestry
“People laughed at Klingon at first, now you can major in it”-Dwight (Episode 3: Andy’s Ancestry)
Episode 5: Here Comes Treble
“Part of being in a relationship is supporting someone even when you lose respect for them”-Erin
Episode 8: The Target
“If I’m not in your panties, I don’t go vigilantes”-Dwight
Episode 9: Dwight Christmas
“I didn’t realize how many of Angela’s opinions I agreed with. Until she nearly had my kneecaps shattered for sleeping with her husband. A lot of valid points”-Oscar
“Mini-cupcakes? As in the mini version of regular cupcakes? Which is already a mini version of cake? Honestly, where does it end with you people?”-Kevin
“Now you believe in Dwight’s traditions? When some Democrat looks it up on Wikipedia”-Dwight when Oscar verified the validity of Dwight’s unorthodox Christmas suggestion
Episode 11: Suit Warehouse
“You left me in charge of the pens, Pam. That’s what happened”-Erin
Episode 12: Customer Loyalty
Pete: Come on guys, where is this even coming from?
Kevin: Your feelings for Erin? Probably your heart… and a little bit your penis.
Episode 15: Couples Discount
Erin breaks up with Andy and mentions he was gone for 3 months while David Wallace was still on the phone
Episode 16: Moving On
“I can’t be around sad people, it makes me sad” Phyllis
“I’m the same way with horny people”-Stanley
Episode 18: Promos
Andy Reacts to YouTube Comments of the Documentary Promo
Episode 21: Living the Dream
Oscar offers Angela his place to live in
“Ironic how it’s now Angela who is living in the closet”-Oscar
“We’ve overcome our differences like Germany and Italy in World War-” Dwight (cut off)
Episode 22: A.A.R.M.
Days Since Last Nonsense Board
“When this documentary started, I was still having sex with women. As was Kevin”-Oscar
Darryl’s Goodbye Dance Party
Dwight’s Proposal to Angela
Episode 23: Finale
Kevin and Dwight Reconcile after Kevin’s Firing
Erin’s Reunion with her Parents
Creed On the Run from the Police
Thank you for reading this article. A special thank you for everyone who read all 9 entries of this series. I am excited for the future of this blog and I encourage you to read and support my other work.