It’s widely considered one of the most influential comedies of the modern era and catapulted a raft of writing, comedy and acting talent to international stardom.
It’s not just creators Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant who’ve benefited from being associated with Wernham Hogg – almost everyone who appeared on screen in the BBC2 comedy in its two series run have gone on to bigger things… not least the man who played everyman Tim Canterbury (Chaucer… and Shakespeare?) who you might recognise from a little detective show and a tiny fantasy film franchise shot in New Zealand.
But the question we ask today, 14 years after The Office was broadcast on BBC2, is simple… which is the best of the 14 brilliant episodes? Is it the training day, the quiz or the Comic Relief fundraiser (with that dance) – or maybe you’re a true romantic and nothing can beat the Christmas finale for you?
It’s a tough decision, but for no real reason, we’re asking you to make it here, now and on Her Majesty’s Internet.
So, here’s a quick reminder of each episode… then you must vote.
Episode 1 – Downsize
Could this be the end of the Slough branch as we know it? As rumours spread like wildfire across the office that redundancies could be on the cards, David keeps his cool and hires some more new staff… then plays a “hilarious” joke on Dawn with new temp Ricky.
Episode 2 – Work Experience
David introduces new employee Donna to the Slough branch – but grows uncomfortable by the attention she’s getting from her male colleagues. And who’s responsible for the pornographic image with his face on it making the rounds? Time for a visit to the warehouse staff…
Episode 3 – The Quiz
Tim turns 30 just in time for the office pub quiz, which David and Finchy assume they have sewn up as for the last six years. But they might have some real competition in the form of temp Ricky, who once appeared on Blockbusters – AND went to university.
Episode 4 – Training
It’s staff training day, with outside facilitator Rowan coming in to put the staff through their paces – but David is pretty sure he could do a better job. Meanwhile, Dawn and Lee go through a rough patch, and Tim decides to finally take his chance. But has he jumped the gun?
Episode 5 – New Girl
Despite redundancies looming, David decides to hire a new secretary – and he knows just the sort of person he wants for the job. But with Tim determined to leave Wernham Hogg for good, can David and the lads persuade him to stay? Only one way to find out – a night out at Chaser’s!
Episode 6 – Judgement
Things come to a head as David is made to choose between his branch and his personal goals, Tim weighs up the pros and cons of staying and a dismal staff party gets underway. But even as things seem to be looking up for the Slough branch, all is not as it seems.