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3.18 The Negotiation
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Apr 6th 2007

I don't think people are giving the writers of this show enough credit. They've found a way to keep the Jim/Pam storyline fresh for three years, which is more than anyone can say about Ross/Rachel. They know what is going to be effective, and I am basing that on the fact that they have kept the show interesting and non-repetitive by changing the dynamic of Jim and Pam. People may want the 'classic' shows of seasons 1 and 2 where Jim and Pam were a team, but we're way past that now. The show has made hooked us because it is so true to what I and many others have exprienced during a crush, and though it might not be as entertaining, this is a very real thing that can happen. I trust Greg Daniels and co. will steer the ship in the right direction, even if it is to previously unknown waters.

That being said, if Pam and Roy get together again, I might have to switch to Ugly Betty on Thursday nights. From 'Phyllis' Wedding' to 'Cocktails' was the most unpleasant stretch of shows yet with regards to Jim and Pam.

Apr 7th 2007

They've found a way to keep the Jim/Pam storyline fresh for three years,

No they haven't. This episode was pretty good, but it went stale a long time ago as far as I'm concerned. I now watch this show in spite of Jim & Pam, and not because of it, which is a damn shame.

this is a very real thing that can happen.

My feeling is that we have left any kind of reality and ventured into the land of soap opera, and that's a large part of what bugs me about recent developments.

even if it is to previously unknown waters.

The problem, as far as I can tell, is that they're scared to do this. They have to keep us in the same old, "will-they-or-won't-they" territory. We haven't even ventured near unknown waters since Season 2, at least as far as Jim & Pam are concerned.

That being said, if Pam and Roy get together again

This, I'm fairly sure, will never happen, but if it does, I'm right there with you on giving Ugly Betty a shot.

Apr 7th 2007

A lot of time seems to be invested in this thread in assigning blame to either Jim or Pam for the lack of momentum in their relationship, or the devolution of their former status as "best friends" into "people who barely talk to one another". I don't know that I would say one party or the other is more to blame for said developments, if only because of a few things:

1.) While Jim did declare his feelings, he did so under the gun of moving to a new city and cutting off all ties to Scranton. Sure, it may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but Pam clearly needed his presence around.

2.) Pam decided to stay with Roy up until the moment she cancelled the wedding, then didn't bother to tell Jim because they obviously weren't talking anymore. Probably because when you tell someone of your feelings and they don't respond in the manner that you know (or would like that) they would under better circumstances, they become the last person in the world you want to see in a workplace situation or talk to over the phone.

3.) When Jim hooked up with Karen initially, it was purely rebound. And it may very well still be that, but does a rebound relationship last that long? Jim's found himself stuck now with Karen, and while she's great and all the love of his life is sitting behind him (interesting arguments could be made on the "symbolism" of Jim's vantage point being changed this season, though I think most people who look for symbolism are full of it).

4.) Pam went back to Roy, which fueled Jim's taunts in this episode. Who hasn't seen a friend or loved one in a relationship that is clearly bad for them, but they can't seem to break out of it? You get frustrated and angry and you end up taking it out on the person involved, whether they did anything to "earn" it or not (and I use "earn" loosely, because it's never as simple as that).

Both Jim and Pam have had to do some growing this season, and I think they're both miles removed from the playful, flirty couple that we all know and love from the first two seasons. Jim is going down the path to the "Dark side" (clearly being groomed by Karen and management for more responsibility and thus the dreaded "train-throwing-in-front-of career" season one comment. Maybe, whereas last year Jim tried to "save" Pam, the writers are turning it around: Pam saves Jim.

Because then she'd be a real hero, with her cape and what not ;-)

Apr 7th 2007

Romantic as it may seem, neither Jim nor Pam need saving by the other. Both have been anchored by their own respective cement boots, so to speak, at one time or another, but the difference to me is that Jim made a conscious decision to break free and do what he he had to do. Feelings aren't facts. It couldn't have been easy, and he did it anyway. Neither Pam nor Jim are "stuck" in any situation. They could do whatever they want to do. Easy, no. Possible, certainly. Just because a task is difficult doesn't mean it shouldn't be attempted.

Pam clearly needed his presence around.

For...? Security? So she could marry Roy but still have Jim? Maybe having him move was exactly what she needed, regardless of what she thought at the time.

Apr 7th 2007

Did anyone notice that during the coffee shop scene Roy says, "..you broke off our wedding for the guy," she is saying no but nodding her head?

Apr 7th 2007

if Pam and Roy get together again

If that ever happens I'm going to find out where Greg Daniels lives and re-enact the Cocktails bar destruction scene in his living room.

Did anyone notice that during the coffee shop scene Roy says, "..you broke off our wedding for the guy," she is saying no but nodding her head?

Good catch, bse. I didn't notice that the first time. I think the breaking off the wedding was almost all because of Jim, mostly because he showed Pam the way she deserved to be treated.

Apr 7th 2007

Maybe having him move was exactly what she needed, regardless of what she thought at the time.

I completely agree. I don't think that if Jim would have left, that Pam would have broke the wedding off with Roy. Pam's decision was directly influenced because of Jim's decision. Though I doubt it was because she had any idea of immediately calling Jim and having a fairy tale love. I think she thought that boat had long gone, I can't think of any other reason why she wouldn't at least have tried to reconnect with him after she left Roy, except for the fact that she convinced herself that she lost him, and that it was too late.

Seeing Ham sandwhich Jim take a big chance at happiness, than seeing him refuse to stay somewhere that made him feel miserable, she knew she needed to do the same thing. It's not always easy to pull yourself out of a habit, and out of the familar, but Jim showed Pam it could be done. It was just what she needed to try to move on as well.

The problem, as far as I can tell, is that they're scared to do this. They have to keep us in the same old, "will-they-or-won't-they" territory. We haven't even ventured near unknown waters since Season 2, at least as far as Jim & Pam are concerned.

Exactly, and unfortunately life is alot like that. There are just so many people who are caught in the same old funk and let themselves wallow in it for far too long. Some people are in it for years, whether it's their love life or their job or anything. It's not the kind of thing I like watching in real life or on TV though, but that is just me.

Apr 7th 2007

and unfortunately life is alot like that

I disagree. All my experience tells me that in real life, we're already in "won't" territory. But I've made my feelings on this matter clear repeatedly, and it's getting be a bit of an old saw that I'm sure is boring everybody by now.

Apr 7th 2007

It really gets sad when they "will-they/won't-they" gets so old you don't care anymore. Even if they kept the strong "won't" slant, a little tidbit of hope every now & then would help. But no. Off topic, Brian B. (Kevin) just sent me a message on Myspace & I literally squealed. Dorky? Who, me?

Apr 7th 2007

It really gets sad when they "will-they/won't-they" gets so old you don't care anymore. Even if they kept the strong "won't" slant, a little tidbit of hope every now & then would help.

I agree. I don't think the entire show is centered around Jim and Pam, but usually there is one constant conflict in a show, and it isn't resolved until late in the series. Can the geniuses who write this keep the "will they/won't they" thing going for a few more season? Of course they can, but it might get tiring and turn off major fans.

Apr 7th 2007 edited

Of course they can, but it might get tiring and turn off major fans.

As I frequently say to my friend Dan, who likes to assert his rights to excuse all of his bad behavior, just because you can doesn't mean you should.

It already is tiring, to me, and another season of this kind of crap is almost guaranteed to make me tune out. I still love everything else about the show, but Jim & Pam, in addition to having been badly botched, has come to dominate the show more than I think it used to. Or am I imagining that because it bugs me so much? At any rate, it comes to the same thing: It detracts from my enjoyment of the show, and too much more of it will be, well, too much.

Apr 7th 2007

Either Toby comes with you or we don't do it.

That's what she said!

Oh my God I can't believe I wrote that.

Apr 7th 2007 edited

I think we all need a breather from this JAM (and Pam|Roy) discussion. The discussion here about Jim|Pam|Roy is worse than any of the JARM on the episodes. It is degrading into whining. If you don't like the show, watch UB and let the Office fans continue to enjoy their show.

This week had some incredible Michael moments, some very awkward (read: awesome) Michael/Jan interaction. KeRyan were also developed nicely. There has been great development of peripheral characters and relationships all year. Angela was hysterical this week and Dwight really came into his own as a hero. It's not the writers that are making JAM takeover the show, it's us and our narrow minded discussion.

For those of you who long for season one, remember there was more JAM focus then. We didn't have KeRyan or DwAngela, or Michael|Jan etc...

I am the biggest JAM fan of all but while I watch that develop, there is a whole other cast of characters with lots of great dialog and humor (and cringes) that still make the overall show very enjoyable.

Sorry, I just had to get that out... go ahead, flame on!

Apr 7th 2007

If you don't like the show, watch UB and let the Office fans continue to enjoy their show.

Yeah, don't censor me. If you don't want to read a negative opinion, well . . . I don't know what to tell you. I don't appreciate being called a whiner for expressing my opinion. This is an Office discussion board, not a an Office fanboyism central. Nowhere in the site guidelines does it say, "check your opinions at the door, because if they're negative, Up Dog won't like them and will insult you".

I have said repeatedly that the rest of the show is still great, and I have praised what I like. The Jim & Pam storyline comes up for discussion a lot. So I discuss it. And I refuse to apologize for my thoughts on the matter.

Consider yourself flamed. In the interest of cordiality, I'm not going to say some of the angrier things that occured to me as a result of your post.

Apr 7th 2007

Consider yourself flamed. In the interest of cordiality, I'm not going to say some of the angrier things that occured to me as a result of your post.

Thank you for being cordial and especially for the restraint.

Of course you can say what you want. No one here is interested in censoring you. But just because we have the right to fill this board with negative comments does not mean that it is in the best interest of the forum. I was suggesting we try to keep it more upbeat for the overall sake and health of this community. I spend less and less time here because of the frequent criticizing of S03 and I think some are completely gone for that reason.

It is a fact that a lot of negativity turns people off. I've seen it in other forums and they degrade to where no one wants to hang around. I'd hate to see that happen here. This is a great community.

I'm sorry if I stepped on toes and if James thinks it best, just kill these posts and I won't be offended.

Apr 7th 2007

I love how Creed says Dwight's name in his "re-telling." It's like Shaaa-rute.

Apr 7th 2007

One of the things that bugged me about this episode was that the first two minutes were hyped extensively. At last we get to see whether or not Roy kills (or tries to kill) Jim -- only two minutes is about all we get, and pretty soon things get back to normal astonishingly quickly and the rest of the episode focuses on Michael and Darryl's paltry salaries.

I know Jim's a laid-back guy, but jeez. We get nothing from him about the attack except insofar as it relates to Dwight (and his efforts to reward him for it).

Did anyone else notice that after Jim pushed Karen out of the way, he immediately fell backwards and away just as Roy was grabbing at him (as if, in fact, Roy had already punched him)? This smacks of a hardcore cringe on Jim's part. I think Jim is, at heart, fundamentally cowardly. He cowered before Roy on previous occasions, too; his stammering-out of an awkward pseudo-apology was just pathetic. Pam is still a woman, y'know, and no woman can maintain respect for a man who crumbles that easily. It's not like he had to swipe at the guy, but he could've at least stood his ground.

(This shouldn't be taken as criticism of the Office itself. Jim has obviously been written that way, and Krasinski plays the part perfectly. His cowardice are simply character flaws that flesh him out more deeply. It's his cowardice, after all, that's kept the Jam subplot moving along).

Apr 7th 2007 edited

I just wanted to point out some highlights from Kelly:

  • "Well the next time that you get scared that you think a murderer is in your apartment in the middle of the night, and you call me to calm you down, you can just call somebody else, cause I'm not going to do it anymore, Ryan, I'm not."

  • "I can. You would have left me to fend for myself. Like that time we were on the Ferris Wheel and that kid dropped his milkshake all over me."

  • "What is so stupid about wanting to name a baby Usher?"

She is a force.

Apr 7th 2007

Why are Kelly and Ryan deciding on baby names anyway?

Apr 7th 2007

Having babies is the foundation of the relationship Kelly hoped to build their basis on.

"Fall in love, have babies, spend every second together..."

Apr 7th 2007

"the writers are turning it around: Pam saves Jim."

I have to say, Two Hole Punch Jim, that coming from my English major in college mind, that was the single, most poignant insight into the show yet, and now I really hope that it turns out like that. That would be in the same ironic vein as the show, and it could also serve as the final last tribute to the British version (Dawn is the one who finally instigates the relationship with Tim), which would allow the show to grow completely beyond its roots.

Apr 7th 2007 edited

Great episode for Toby. Always hilarious.

Apr 8th 2007 edited

I'm sorry if I stepped on toes and if James thinks it best, just kill these posts and I won't be offended.

No worries, Up Dog. Looks like you folks have sorted things out.

It is a fact that a lot of negativity turns people off. I've seen it in other forums and they degrade to where no one wants to hang around.

This is true. Unfortunately, it's also extremely complicated because everyone has a different idea of what constitutes negativity. On one hand you have constructive criticism, and on the other you have pure spite; comments tend to fall somewhere in between with varying interpretations of what's excessive and what isn't.

To be honest with everyone, I don't really want this to turn into a complaint board -- I find that depressing and ultimately a waste of resources. I'm not going to censor anyone for disliking the show (even strongly), but I would say to those of you who are finding it to be less and less enjoyable: consider withholding your more passionate criticisms for the sake of your fellow board members, or at the very least leave them in the Gripes thread. I trust your collective judgment. Plenty of great discussion occurs here, both in favor of the show and against, and I will continue to support the board while that remains the case.

I should say to DwightfromtheFuture: this post is in no way directed to you. You've been perfectly reasonable (at least as far as I can tell), and you are of course free to voice your assessment of the show at any time, positive or negative.

Apr 8th 2007

Sounds reasonable to me. I think I'll bump the gripes thread and maybe that will clear out some of the more vehement complaints from other parts of the board.

Apr 8th 2007

Why are Kelly and Ryan deciding on baby names anyway?

I assumed it was because Kelly has always been chomping at the bit for a long-term commitment from Ryan (or any guy, I guess), so her talk about baby names just fit in with that. And Ryan, based on his reluctance to leave a job he despises, seems to be the kind of guy who is easily railroaded into situations he despises in spite of his protests to the contrary.

Apr 8th 2007 edited

I was annoyed with Karen's talking head describing the differences between her reaction to the kiss and Roy's. C'mon, you can't even compare the two. She didn't even know Jim when he kissed Pam, but Roy was engaged to her. Not the same thing.

Apr 8th 2007

C'mon, you can't even compare the two.

That was weird. I was thinking the exact same thing.

Apr 8th 2007

I actually liked that TH, because it gave us some more insight into Karen's world. First of all, as I think I mentioned a while back in this thread, it showed some more of her insecurities about their relationship. In addition to that, did we know before whether or not Karen knew they had actually kissed? Because now she obviously does. I guess she could've been told about it after the incident with Roy, but I suspect that Jim told her about it during their infamous 5 nights of talking.

Apr 8th 2007

He sure didn't tell her about it before they got back to Scranton where they'd be sharing an Office with Pam, and that wasn't too cool of him.

Apr 8th 2007

In addition to that, did we know before whether or not Karen knew they had actually kissed? Because now she obviously does.

Karen told Pam "I know you guys kissed and it's wasn't a big deal" (paraphrased) in Ben Franklin. At that time I assumed Karen didn't know the whole story with the declaration of love and Pam a month away from being married. It's still unclear what exactly Karen knows, it will be interesting to see if that comes up again.

I would have liked to see Pam tell Jim that she told Roy about the kiss, that was a little unfair to him. But what they did on the show was pretty effective, I don't know how they could have worked Pam warning Jim into that.

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