- Actors: Ricky Gervais, Mackenzie Crook, Martin Freeman
- Writers: Stephen Merchant
- Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC
- Language: English
- Subtitles: English
- Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Number of discs: 2
- Canadian Home Video Rating : Ages 14 and over
- MPAA Rating:
- Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
- Release Date: Oct. 7 2003
- Run Time: 210 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 145 customer reviews
- ASIN: B00009ZY9E
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #17,665 in Movies & TV Shows (See Top 100 in Movies & TV Shows)
The Office: The Complete First Series
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Office, The: The Complete First Series (DVD)
It feels both inaccurate and inadequate to describe The Office as a comedy. On a superficial level, it disdains all the conventions of television sitcoms: there are no punch lines, no jokes, no laugh tracks, and no cute happy endings. More profoundly, it's not what we're used to thinking of as funny. Most of the fervently devoted fan base watched with a discomfortingly thrilling combination of identification and mortification. The paradox is that its best moments are almost physically unwatchable.
Set in the offices of a fictional British paper merchant, The Office is filmed in the style of a reality television show. The writing is subtle and deft, the acting wonderful, and the characters beautifully drawn: the cadaverous team leader Gareth (Mackenzie Crook); the monstrous sales rep, Chris Finch (Ralph Ineson); and the decent but long-suffering everyman Tim (Martin Freeman), whose ambition and imagination have been crushed out of him by the banality of the life he dreams uselessly of escaping. The show is stolen, as it was intended to be, by insufferable office manager David Brent, played by codirector-cowriter Ricky Gervais. Brent will become a name as emblematic for a particular kind of British grotesque as Basil Fawlty, but he is a deeper character. Fawlty is an exaggeration of reality, and therefore a safely comic figure. Brent is as appalling as only reality can be. --Andrew Mueller
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Top Customer Reviews
The only downside to the 2-disc DVD is the lack of episodes (there are only 6) but its still worth buying since The Office is a comedy series of unusually high quality and wit. Every episiode is a gem, and I can't wait for the season 2 DVD.
People are people regardless where they work, however, being trapped with the same people every day for 8 hours can really get to you....
The cast is led by Ricky Gervais (who also co-writes) as regional manager David Brent, an ultimately sleazy boss who spends more time trying to be witty than he does managing his staff. His battles with political correctness are hilarious, as he is very aware that a camera is following him. His right hand man is Gareth (Mackenzie Crook), a former army lieutenant who believes he has more company power than his assistant regional manager (I mean, assistant TO the regional manager) position truly entitles. Gareth spends most of his day pestering Tim (Martin Freeman), an obviously bored sales associate who always has a witty comment to add to any conversation. Dawn (Lucy Davis), a receptionist engaged to marry a warehouse worker, is the object of Tim's affection and the victim of one of Mr. Brent's cruelest practical jokes in the pilot.
Each cast member is some sort of caricature of a person you might see in your own workplace. The situations they come across could happen to anyone (lay-offs, sexual harassment, jokes via company e-mail, romances, et cetera). This show is kind of like "Spinal Tap": it fools you for a second to believe that this office could exist. And there's no whining, no drama for the camera's sake, no huge mansions for seven people to argue in. It's just these people, going about their days, doing their jobs. And it couldn't be more brilliant or side-splittingly funny.
This DVD features every episode from the first series, which is great if you only get to sporadically catch episodes or moments on BBC America. There are also funny deleted scenes, with explanations from the writers as to why they were cut, and a 30-minute featurette.
If you have not yet discover this delightful British import, I strongly recommend you check it out. If you loved the movie "Office Space" (or at least sort of identified with it), you will laugh at loud at "The Office." Enjoy it now before some American television writers enlist their own sub-par remake.
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