‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’: Jenni ‘JWoww’ Farley Explains the Connection the MTV Show Shares With ‘The Office’

The Office and Jersey Shore might not seem like they share much in common. But in reality, both shows are more similar than you would think. Showbiz Cheat Sheet spoke with reality star Jenni “JWoww” Farley over the phone about the comedy series. She revealed a similarity The Office and Jersey Shore: Family Vacation share some fans might not have noticed.

Jenni 'JWoww' Farley from 'Jersey Shore: Family Vacation' on the red carpet; she watches 'The Office' occasionally
Jenni ‘JWoww’ Farley |Matt Winkelmeyer/2021 MTV Movie and TV Awards/Getty Images for MTV/ViacomCBS

‘The Office’ and ‘Jersey Shore’ have been compared before

Office star Brian Baumgartner has two podcasts that examine why the show is so popular with today’s young people. In both The Office Deep Dive and An Oral History of The Office, Baumgartner speaks at length with his former cast and crew about the phenomenon that is The Office

“[Something is happening] right now where everybody is so fragmented and so divided,” editor Jen Celotta explained on An Oral History of The Office. “It sounds crazy, but there is a comfort [in watching The Office] that is like, ‘I know these people! They’re like me, [and] I’m safe here.'” 

Fans who rewatch old episodes of Jersey Shore find that same level of comfort. “Jersey Shore was my show as a teen,” a fan shared on Reddit. “It was something I looked forward to when I had a rough week in high school.” Watching the show allows them to “forget about everything,” much like The Office does for others.  

Jenni’ JWoww’ Farley points out how both shows break the fourth wall 

During a phone conversation with Showbiz Cheat Sheet, we asked Farley is she was a fan of the NBC comedy series. “I never really watched it, but when I do, it’s amazing,” she revealed. “I just find their dry, schticky humor incredible.” 

Despite never sticking with any of the seasons, Farley still finds The Office humorous and oddly similar to Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. “I love the fact that they always break the fourth wall,” the reality star added. “They always look at the camera, and that’s what Jersey Shore started doing years later.”

During the early days of the MTV reality show, the roommates were asked to pretend like there weren’t several cameras in their faces at all times. Now, many roommates look directly into the camera to give their version of the Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) face.

Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino has perfected breaking the fourth wall. But several other roommates have looked directly into the camera at one time or another on Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. 

‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’ cast and ‘The Office’ cast are both a family

In addition to breaking the fourth wall and brining comfort to fans, Jersey Shore: Family Vacation and The Office are about the same thing. One might be a reality show and the other a scripted comedy, but they’re both about family. 

Rainn Wilson, who plays Dwight Schrute on The Office, believes The Office was so successful — and continues to be — because it is about “unlikely families.” That’s what the cast of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation is — an unlikely family. 

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“[The Office] is the most unlikely family, and you love to be with that family,” Wilson told Baumgartner on the podcast. The presence of that unlikely family, whether it’s the reality stars from Jersey Shore or the employees of Dunder Mifflin, is what so many viewers find comforting.