‘The Office’: Steve Carell Improvised Most Awkward Michael Scott Scene, Delivering Genuine Shocked Responses From Cast

The Office is a show known for it’s shocking and cringe-worthy moments. It definitely liked to push the envelope. It is also pretty well known that most of the actors on the show come from an improvisation background.

John Krasinski, who plays salesman Jim Halpert, has once said that fans love to ask him how much the show was improvised. Jenna Fischer, who portrayed receptionist Pam Beesly, and Angela Kinsey, who played stuck up accountant Angela Martin, have a podcast, The Office Ladies.

Recently, they revealed that Michael Scott, the office manager, kissing Oscar Martinez, an accountant, was an improvised moment. Screen Rant then went on to list the 10 things listeners learned about the scene from The Office.

What is ‘The Office’ about?

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The Office is an American adaptation of a British show by the same name. The British version of The Office was so successful that most were skeptical about having an American version.

The first few seasons of The Office did not do well in the ratings. However, it eventually gained momentum and is now widely loved by many and is seen as a classic.

It is a fictional documentary with a film crew taping the office workers’ everyday lives of Dunder Mifflin, a mid-level and struggling paper company. There are always shenanigans going on. Mostly from the office manager, Michael Scott, a bumbling fool, or salesman, Jim Halpert, pulling pranks on Dwight Schrute, another salesman, and Jim’s desk mate.

‘The Gay Witch Hunt’ episode

This episode is the third season premiere, after Jim transfers to the Stamford branch. At the beginning of the episode, Toby, the HR rep, tells Michael that Oscar has complained about Michael’s offensive language.

Michael doesn’t understand, and Toby proceeds to tell him that Oscar is gay. Michael tries to understand but ends up making things worse because he’s immature, and his boss, Jan, warns him that the company could be sued.

Word slowly makes its way around the office that Oscar is gay, and some employees start to treat him differently. Michael then holds a meeting with all the employees and officially outs Oscar.

As the meeting goes on, Michael continues to come off as ignorant. Oscar becomes fed up and yells at Michael about how offensive and ignorant he is about the situation.

Michael becomes upset and goes to leave the meeting, but Oscar stops him. However, Michael takes the opportunity to make a point about how he is not homophobic. He hugs Oscar and then proceeds to kiss him on the mouth.

The Michael/Oscar kiss was improvised

Steve Carell
THE OFFICE — “Performance Review” Episode 8 — Aired 11/15/2005 — Pictured: Steve Carell as Michael Scott — Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBCU Photo Bank

On the podcast, The Office Ladies, Jenna Fischer, and Angela Kinsey discuss the episode of how Steve Carell improvised kissing Oscar. As a result of the improvisation, the characters’ reactions were authentic.

Fischer said she has the original script. Before recording the podcast, she looked over the script to see if the moment was, in fact, improvised. She found out that Michael was supposed to lean in for a kiss, but then chicken out and kiss Oscar on the forehead.

During the scene, Oscar also breaks character a little. During this podcast episode, the ladies had Oscar Nunez on as a guest. Kinsey and Nunez knew each other before starring on The Office from improv groups. So Kinsey was aware of when Nunez broke character.

Nunez said: “A laugh came from my stomach, but I stopped it.” If you re-watch the episode, you can hear what sounds like a small grunt from Oscar.

In addition to this, Nunez also said that Oscar thanking Michael afterward was improvised, and he was not sure why he said that, but it felt right for the moment.