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3.18 The Negotiation
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Apr 9th 2007

Oscar jumps up and rather protectively inserts himself between Roy and Angela. It's very cool the way he does that.

I guess Michael was right to expect him to be good in a boxing match.

Apr 9th 2007

Also, I just saw that wikipedia was still in my address bar and they have indeed locked down the entry to "negotation." No more hip tips for upper managment.

Apr 9th 2007

I agree with griefbone about the analysis of Jim/Pam. I also would like to point out that alot of the Jim/Pam talk is actually in the context of character analysis of Jim or Pam, and not necessarily talk about their relationship...except that alot of their character traits are irrevocably intertwined with how they interact with each other. To stop talking about the Jim/Pam storyline would mean we'd have to censor ourselves from talking about Jim or Pam individually as well (for the most part).

Also, I think alot of the discussions regarding the Jim/Pam relationship OR Jim and Pam as separate characters are very insightful and well thought out, and alot of effort is put into the debates and discussions that go on here. I think it's great that the show can inspire that kind of effort, particularly when it's regarding a storyline that, I agree, is NOT a representation of what the entire show is about.

Apr 9th 2007

First, I have to say that one thing Jim did made me love him even more. I'm not sure if anyone else has talked about it. When Roy went to attack Jim, Jim moved Karen out of the way. That showed to me that he cares more about someone elses safety than his own. I absolutely adore him for that. Second, I think the way he reacted in the break room was a combonation of frustration of the situation between him and Pam, and him still being a little shaken from the near attack.

I'm not suprised that Pam didn't tell Jim how she felt, (and for a minute there i thought she would, I wanted her to, but after thinking about it )I'm glad she didn't. Don't get me wrong, I am a JAMMER. But, after she found out how upset he was, if she would have told him, he wouldn't have taken it the right was or thought she was serious. People can take a statement many different depending on what mood they are in. Then, if she tried to tell him again at a later time, he still might think she didnt mean it or might not be sincere. Though it frustrates me that they cant just get together already, it needs to be at the oppritune(sp?) moment, when everything is settled and it is easier to be open and honest. (have i been watching to much pirates of the carribbean?)

Apr 9th 2007

When Roy went to attack Jim, Jim moved Karen out of the way.

My initial reaction was that he shoved her aside, and that that was a metaphor for what he was going to do to her relationship-wise pretty soon. Your interpretation's definitely nicer.

On a broader subject, I think it might be better if people stopped criticizing the negativity of the conversation and instead just brought a little positivity to the board. Or if you don't like the topic, bring up a new one. It's a pretty democratic process, and it has functioned well for a while now. I will shut up now.

Apr 9th 2007

On a broader subject, I think it might be better if people stopped criticizing the negativity of the conversation and instead just brought a little positivity to the board.

I positively thought Pam's apology sucked.

Apr 9th 2007

I positively thought Pam's apology sucked.

Negative on that.

Apr 9th 2007

I positively agree with Brian. Sorry Jinx. But, if you had said "Jim's reaction was crappy," I'd have positively been on your side.

Apr 9th 2007

You mean, "Jim's reaction was positively negative."

Apr 9th 2007

Now you've negated my positiveness. :-(

Apr 9th 2007

I liked Jim's reaction. I don't know if you'd call it justified, but it's almost certainly how I would react.

Apr 9th 2007

I might be abrupt, and have his general attitude, but I don't think I'd mention, "Oh, you'll probably be back together again." That seemed really, kind of harsh.

Apr 9th 2007

Well, just because it's a negative reaction doesn't mean it's not realistic. In real life, people are often slightly more jerky than they need to be if they're staving off some truly negative feelings about something.

Apr 9th 2007

That seemed really, kind of harsh.

Well, she screwed up pretty badly. Like I said, I don't know that I'd call it justified. But I don't think Jim's behavior was completely out of line, either.

Apr 9th 2007

Well the thing that is stiking me most about this discussion...people dont like this or that. but the truth is is that if jim had stayed and none of this stuff we dont like didnt happen we'd probably be completely bored of the show by now because it would just be the same exact as S2 with different shows but the same JAM stories. I think that the complete weirdness..anger, or whatever is getting a little stale but i think it is hard for writers to keep such a relationship original.

Apr 9th 2007

I liked Jim's reaction. I don't know if you'd call it justified, but it's almost certainly how I would react.

Me, too. And he was pointing out something that has, in fact, already happened - she did get back together with Roy against all logic before - so it didn't seem that harsh to me. (I'll be honest, too - for the first few seconds of that conversation, I didn't catch Jim's sarcasm toward Pam at all. I thought he was genuinely trying to reassure her - "Don't worry, I'm sure you'll be back together again soon" - although I know now that was obviously not the case. I just thought Jim was trying to be positive).

Apr 9th 2007

Anyone wonder if the camera crew of the documentary thought about warning Jim that Roy was going to "kill" him? Obviously not for plot, but food for thought. Haha, that rhymed... twice.

Apr 9th 2007

she did get back together with Roy against all logic before

It wasn't against all logic. She saw that Jim was gone forever into Karen's arms, she was very lonely, Roy was being very caring and sensitive. There were reasons.

When Jim made that "I'm sure you'll find your way back to Roy" comment in the break room scene, I thought (like others) it was unnecessarily harsh, even mean. I was encouraged that Pam kept her cool and went through with her apology in spite of his bitterness and indifference.

I agree that this season is about Pam finding her voice.

Apr 9th 2007

to be honest, I think Jim knew deep down what she was trying to say, there is some figure that says body language does 90% of the communication that you do, and I think he was purposefully ignoring her by focusing straight at the vending machine the entire converstaion and then making a beeline to the door leaving her with a zinger to try and avoid the situation.

I think both parties know there is a very deep talk needed between the two of them, love aside, they are and were friends, but there is a white elephant sitting at the breakroom table with them and until they admit that to themselves, they are stuck in this awkward funk pretending they don't know.

I think personally that Jim knew what she was about to say and did it because he CAN'T deal with it right now. I actually disagree with most here, I believe Jim and Karen are getting stronger with each episode, I don't really see the faults with their 'interactions' in the past few episodes, if anything thier candor was very playful, I didn't see the 'get back to work' as a sign of creepy girlfriend nag, but more as playful joking with her boyfriend.

and given that, I think jim honestly is finding himself right where pam was with Roy at the wedding, deep into a committment that seems overwhelming hard to back out of, but questions whether or not maybe it really is for the best. The problem being, karen is no roy, karen really isn't that bad of a mate for him. She's no Pam, but she's also not a destructive influence for Jim, maybe not the playful lovable Jim, but Jim is also growing as a person and has always expressed interest in trying to mature (especially when he left scranton and was recapping his pranking in a TH)

To me, I think Jim was intentionally delaying it so he didn't have to deal with what was happening, I mean how can he NOT know how she feels if what she told Roy caused him to rage on him. I don't think it's him protecting his feelings from getting hurt again, I think it's him putting off the inevitable till he is mentally ready to make that same move (calling off the wedding as it were in Pam's case)

Apr 9th 2007

By "against all logic" I meant that there seemed to be more reasons for Pam not to reconcile with Roy than to do so, the biggest factor being that she's in love with Jim, so why be with Roy, even if she was lonely? I know loneliness makes people act in ways they might not otherwise act, so I can see that, although I know you can be with someone and still be lonely (which is how I believe her brief post-engagement reconciliation relationship with Roy was). I haven't seen anything about Jim and Karen that says "forever," although maybe Pam sees it that way. But if she knows Jim - and I think she does - I have to believe she sees that his relationship with Karen is precarious, at best.

Apr 9th 2007

Also, it's not like Pam was free and choosing between two suitors and was stupid and thoughtless enough to choose Roy. She was practically married to Roy already when she became acquainted with Jim, who presented himself to her as a comrade, not a suitor, until the very last minute.

I have to disagree on this. Pam absolutely was free to choose, and to change her mind about, who she was with. She was not entering into an arranged marriage, and she was not yet in the commitment of a marriage, so she certainly had the freedom to end her engagement, difficult as that would have been. Her hands were not tied.

This goes back a couple pages, so I hesitate to bring it back up given the limited scope of what I have to say, but there's a difference between "free" and "free to choose". The point of the original statement was simply to point out that Roy and Jim weren't on equal footing; Roy had the built-in advantage of a pre-existing long-term relationship, so his pull was stronger for reasons beyond the relative merits of the two men. Of course Pam still had the freedom to do what she wanted; the OP (I think) was highlighting the fact that that choice was not being made in a vacuum, but in a set of circumstances favorable to Roy.

Apr 9th 2007

This goes back a couple pages, so I hesitate to bring it back up given the limited scope of what I have to say, but there's a difference between "free" and "free to choose". The point of the original statement was simply to point out that Roy and Jim weren't on equal footing; Roy had the built-in advantage of a pre-existing long-term relationship, so his pull was stronger for reasons beyond the relative merits of the two men. Of course Pam still had the freedom to do what she wanted; the OP (I think) was highlighting the fact that that choice was not being made in a vacuum, but in a set of circumstances favorable to Roy.

Thanks, Nathan, you explained my original point (is that what OP stands for?) really well.

Apr 9th 2007

and given that, I think jim honestly is finding himself right where pam was with Roy at the wedding, deep into a committment that seems overwhelming hard to back out of, but questions whether or not maybe it really is for the best.

I have to agree with this point, bag of nickels. But it makes me really sad. Also, it makes me feel really disappointed in Jim.

Apr 9th 2007

original point (is that what OP stands for?)

OP stands for original poster, but it's the same concept really.

Apr 9th 2007

In the break room, I don't know that Jim was so much mad at Roy as at Pam for apologizing to Jim for something that was in no way her fault. Simply taking responsibility in that way instead of directly and vehemently blaming Roy is probably what set him off. In a sad, sorry way she was taking Roy's side (most likely out of habit) instead of Jim's. That's when he snapped at her and predicted (sarcastically) their reunion. Even if she had worded what was supposed to be sympathy in as weak a way as "I am so sorry that you were attacked" or the stronger "I can't believe Roy attacked you! He had no right to be angry," Jim would have been a lot nicer. Pam would have been with him against Roy instead of seemingly covering up for Roy.

Apr 10th 2007

Simply taking responsibility in that way instead of directly and vehemently blaming Roy is probably what set him off. In a sad, sorry way she was taking Roy's side (most likely out of habit) instead of Jim's.

Interesting idea, KarenM. That break room encounter is loaded with possibilites for interpretation. I'm also wondering if Pam's apology could have been irritating to Jim because it was too sympathetic, in a way, adding to the idea that he was a victim and couldn't stand his own ground. The whole episode showed Jim looking pretty weak (falling back on his desk before Roy even reached him, spending so much time in gratitude-to-Dwight mode -- not to mention the scenes with Karen in control of their relationship) and Pam's wording "I'm sorry I almost got you killed" might have been another nail in the wimpy coffin.

Apr 10th 2007

I'm also wondering if Pam's apology could have been irritating to Jim because it was too sympathetic, in a way, adding to the idea that he was a victim and couldn't stand his own ground. The whole episode showed Jim looking pretty weak (falling back on his desk before Roy even reached him, spending so much time in gratitude-to-Dwight mode -- not to mention the scenes with Karen in control of their relationship) and Pam's wording "I'm sorry I almost got you killed" might have been another nail in the wimpy coffin.

Yeah I thought this too. She treats him like there was no chance he could have stood up to Roy, like he was the nerd getting beat up by the jock.

Apr 10th 2007 edited

She treats him like there was no chance he could have stood up to Roy

Pam added insult to injury, and Roy added injury to insult.

Apr 10th 2007

I think Jim's reaction was the result of a huge buildup of things, and that everyone who's presented a theory here is pretty much correct. I think he's hurt, embarrassed, frustrated, angry and the only way to rise above all this (for now) is to be condescending to Pam. AND he doesn't feel bad about doing it at this point, because he feels his whole situation is Pam's fault.

I think that at this point, Jim really has convinced himself that he's done with Pam. It's all over everything he does (or doesn't do). He clearly views her (at least in my opinion) as not worth his time and effort, because nothing he's done has come to any fruition (in his view, and at least in how he is benefited). Right now, she looks weak, stupid and pathetic. Easy to decide that you don't love someone like that anymore. This isn't to say that he doesn't love her - there are many layers here. Sometimes it's easier to push out of your mind than at others...which is why, after having fun with her in The Return, he had that moment of weakness where he was overcome by his feelings again.

By the way - Karen and Jim are doing fine. Just because they're doing fine doesn't mean they're planning their wedding, or that she's replaced Pam in Jim's heart. I think people sometimes stretch to see negativity in that relationship because it makes them feel better...myself included. ;)

Apr 10th 2007

Interesting take on the breakroom scene, I think it's definitely one that I hadn't considered before. This episode really highlights how much Jim has changed and (I think) how miserable he is with it. He's settling for Karen, he's content but not happy. Same thing with his job status. And Pam unintentionally setting off Roy (and then he not being able to handle it without some assistance) really shows the degree to which the lovable prankster is changing into something that he (and we in the audience) barely recognize.

Yes, this season has been all about Pam's growth, but it's also about Jim's lack of growth or even devolution into something he'd rather not be. Remember in "Health Care" when he talked about throwing himself in front of a train if D-M became his career? I'd say that train has already do a number on his pride.

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