‘The Office: Garden Party’ Review
This is probably the first episode this season where I didn’t miss or even think of Michael Scott. Andy is boss now and the show is moving on in surprisingly great fashion. Every episode this season has been great at building Andy as boss while introducing Robert California in a way that isn’t overbearing but you know his presence.
Garden Party was a very fun episode and made me believe that this show can still be better than just good. I love this show but losing Steve Carell was a major blow. Garden Party is the first great post-Michael episode and I hope to see many more.
The title resembles a party Andy wants to throw for himself to impress his family. Oh, and it takes place at Schrute farms, the best location for family gatherings. The hilarity starts when Dwight’s brother Mose insists on taking Toby’s car and then drives it straight into the corn fields. We haven’t seen Mose in a awhile and he is a great character when used on moderation. I was happy to see him here again, being perhaps the weirdest person on this show, and that is saying something.
Andy’s family proved to be a bit disappointing. We got nothing from his mother and his brother was a very simple architecture of a classic sibling rivalry. The most came characterization from his father, who favored his brother over Andy. The scenes between the two of them were incredibly awkward and made me feel consistently terrible for Andy.
But, as with every episode this season so far, the ending was cute and showed why Andy is a great choice for the boss.
A lot of other smaller characters had some great moments this episode. Jim’s book that he sold to Dwight was hysterical. One of the best pranks we’ve seen in awhile. I also loved that Erin wanted to give Andy a toast.
However, one of the smaller moments I really liked was Kelly claiming she was cold and Ryan coldly declaring “you should have brought a jacket”. As hip as Ryan tries to be, toasting to troops from both sides of the war, he is still stuck in a fairly normal, boring relationship. Ryan and Kelly sound like an older couple now and it is something the writers so subtly did that was genius.
Garden Party was the best episode of the season thus far and I really hope to see many more of this quality. I will say that the writers are starting to overdo the cute moments with Andy at the end of every episode. I wouldn’t mind a more cynical mindset now that his role as boss has been established. Otherwise, this was a great episode of The Office in a season that continues to surprise. (8.5/10)