YouTubers Select the 10 Most Important Episodes of ‘The Office’
Ten years after NBC aired the final episode of The Office, the online following of the genre-defining mockumentary sitcom is still as avid and rabid as it’s always been — so much so that the official The Office YouTube channel still uploads multiple videos each week that reliably crack six figure view counts. Fandom of The Office is almost academic at this point, with iconic lines and landmark story arcs already engraved in TV history for continued examination and appraisal as each new generation discovers the iconic series and devotes countless hours of their lives to binging it.
The official online arbiters on all things Office recently held a fan poll to determine which episodes are the “most important” of the show’s nine-season canon, conveniently assembling clips of the top 10 finishers in a montage of Dunder Mifflin history. Though no “new” Office content has come out in the last decade, the YouTube channel is still following one of the oldest and most sacred rules in sitcoms — when in doubt, run a clip show.
The list has some quirky-to-questionable entries and omissions — for instance, “Niagara” taking the top spot when it wasn’t even the best wedding episode in the series (see “Phyllis’ Wedding”) is a head-scratcher, but “most important” doesn’t necessarily mean “best” in this context. The complete absence of the fifth season smash hit “Stress Relief,” which was the most-viewed episode of the entire series and was even named by Time magazine as the best episode in all of television history, is an unconscionable misstep on the part of the poll-takers.
“Important” is such an indefinable and subjective quality to measure that it’s inevitable for there to be disagreement when the aggregate of fan opinions is assembled. However, there is one point on which all Office fans can agree — we’re all glad that not a single episode post-Michael made it into the top 10.