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‘The Office’ Review: “Suit Warehouse”

The Office "Suit Warehouse"
NBC/Universal

Tonight sees the return of new series regular Clark Duke to “The Office” after a couple episode absence (likely he was filming ‘Kick Ass 2‘). We’re hoping they do some interesting things with him because they introduced his character Clark and Jake Lacy’s Pete early on, but other than Lacy’s tension with Elle Kemper’s Erin, they’ve mostly served as replacement characters for the busy main cast.

Will something more interesting happen this week? It would be nice after last week’s episode “Lice,” that’s for sure.

The episode starts with Dwight finding out that suit warehouse store Stone and Son lost their paper provider, and Dwight talks about how he and Jim would often go to stores like this posing as brothers to get their work. That’s Dwight’s plan here but Jim is too busy. Darryl is heading to Philly to interview with Jim’s company, and since Andy is out of the office, Pam decides to tag along. She leaves Erin with the responsibility of signing for a shipment of pens, which freaks Eric out. Clark then shows up, returning from his time with Jan Levinson. He describes her sexual ferocity as similar to “a swarm of bees that finds something wrong with every hotel room.” He also gives the office an espresso maker. Dwight then gets Clark to go with him to the suit warehouse and pretend to be his son. Erin brushes off Pete because she’s worried about the pens, while — on the road — Pam suggests to Darryl that he think of his interviewers as a room full of Jims.

Dwight and Clark go to the suit warehouse where the father Stone is played by 70′s character actor icon Ed Lauter (yay!) who doesn’t totally buy the act. When Clark goes to get a brochure, Stone reveals that he and his son don’t get along, so Dwight tries to suggest that he and Clark don’t either, which plays terribly. Back at the office, everyone plans on trying each of the different flavors of the espresso, and are already showing the signs of a caffeine high. Pam and Darryl show up at Jim’s office where it’s hopping and Jim is very busy.

Erin got the pen delivery, but with the espresso rattling around in her system, she can’t decide whether to unpack the pens or not. Everyone else in the office is also feeling the caffeine. Dwight and Clark’s presentation is falling apart as they try to attack each other, with Dwight suggesting that Clark dated a transvestite, and Clark says Dwight killed kids on prom night. Then Stone’s son shows up and Dwight insults him, only for Stone to reveal that his son runs the business and Clark takes over. Darryl goes in for his interview and blows it to start with, but they understand his nerves and he gets a do-over. This goes much better but Darryl may have blown it by trying to take a jump shot that ends up knocking over a lamp that electrocutes some fish. Pam sits outside, and is made aware that everyone in Philly hopes the she and Jim move there.

Darryl awaits his fate, and tries to find the bad about the job, but Jim comes out and offers him a job, which accepts Darryl immediately. Clark takes over the sales pitch, and gets Dwight to buy him a suit, to which Dwight uses as a chance to turn it around, and asks to get one as well. Everyone back at the office wants to move stuff around until and rip up the carpet until they start crashing and the workday ends. Dwight drives home filled with energy as Pam quietly stews, and for the capper the two come back to the office to see the wreckage and Erin blames it on being put in charge of the pens.

One of the running story lines of this season has been if Darryl would get a job at Jim’s company, and now that’s finally resolved. Yay. Whether that means that Darryl will then be out of much of the last few episodes is unknown, but this was a solid episode with almost everyone given something to do. This was also good in that it shows Jim as competent in the Philly environment and the conflict between him and Pam could be great as the series enters the home stretch. I’m still waiting for the show to hit the gravitational pull of wrapping up – which hasn’t happened yet – but you can feel that it’s coming. For a series that probably should have ended three years ago, this was a good episode.

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