‘The Office’: This Touching Pam and Michael Moment Was a Writers’ Room Favorite; ‘It’s So Meaningful’
The writers of The Office delivered a lot of fan-favorite moments over the course of the series, but which is their favorite moment? An episode of An Oral History of the Office podcast revealed that this sweet moment between Pam and Michael was one they were especially proud of.
Pam’s art show was a sweet scene
In season 3 episode 17 “Business School,” Pam invites her co-workers to an art show where some of her art is on display. The only person who comes initially is Oscar, who she overhears calling her display “motel art.”
Pam is deflated by the lack of support, though her boyfriend Roy did come and gave her the compliment, “Your art was the prettiest art of all art.” As she’s taking her pieces down, Michael Scott comes to see her work and asks the price of her drawing of their office building.
Pam is surprised by his offer to buy it. “Well, yeah. Yeah, we have to have it for the office,” he tells her. “I mean, there’s my window. And there’s my car! Is that your car? That is our building. And we sell paper. I am really proud of you.”
Pam’s eyes fill up with tears and she hugs Michael and thanks him. Of course, the sweet moment has a bit of comedy, as Pam asks, “Do you have something in your pocket?”
“Chunky,” he says, removing a candy bar from his pocket. “Do you want half?”
Michael explains the significance of the drawing as he hangs it on the wall. “It is a message. It is an inspiration. It is a source of beauty. And without paper, it could not have happened. Unless you had a camera.”
Michael Scott is always searching for family
During the July 28 An Oral History of The Office podcast, writer Mike Schur spoke about how Michael was always searching for a family and it was important that the character was single, had never been married or had kids.
Schur explained, “His entire emotional self-worth was tied up in the office even though there was very little evidence that they thought of him as a family member. He thought of them as his best friends and family members. That’s the essence of the show.”
The Michael Scott character became softer in the second season and “his search for family and the employees of Dunder Mifflin being that family, was a big part of that,” host Brian Baumgartner explained.
“I think Michael’s a decent dude with a lot of heart,” Steve Carell shared. “But he’s so… based on his childhood, based on all sorts of things, and things that he had lacked growing up… I felt he was deprived of, he was so hungry for acceptance.”
“I don’t think he had the strongest templates in the world to go by, but I think he also learned and evolved and became a better person along the way,” Carell added.
The art show scene was a writers’ room favorite
While the writers of The Office have plenty to be proud of, the moment at the art show between Pam and Michael is one of their favorites. “It’s true. This moment in ‘Business School’ became a writers’ room favorite,” Baumgartner explained.
Schur explained why it was so loved. “Maybe the best episode that we ever did was Pam’s art show,” he said. “The ending of that episode is… no one comes to her art show because no one likes her at that moment in the show. And at the end of it, Michael shows up and one of the things that she drew was the office and he is just like so blown away by it. It’s so meaningful that he’s there for her because no one else showed up.”
“The moment where he shows up, I think is maybe the best moment that we ever did,” Schur added.