The Office (2001–2003)
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David is doing staff appraisals which most of the staff approach with their usual level of enthusiasm. Part of the process is for them to to give feedback on David's performance and this ... See full summary »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Joel Beckett ...
Keith (as Ewen Macintosh)
Howard Saddler ...
Ben Bradshaw ...
Jamie Deeks ...
Patrick Driver ...
Jane Lucas ...

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David is doing staff appraisals which most of the staff approach with their usual level of enthusiasm. Part of the process is for them to to give feedback on David's performance and this seems to get most of his attention. Dawn is surprised - and seemingly a bit jealous - when one of the newcomers asks if Tim has a girlfriend. David's offhand remarks sets Neil off and he lets David know exactly who is boss. Written by garykmcd

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Comedy | Drama


TV-14 | See all certifications »




Release Date:

7 October 2002 (UK)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


The scene where Brent gives Tim the appraisal took 74 takes. See more »


David Brent: [Tim Canterbury is sitting down in David Brent's office to receive his appraisal] Tim Canterbury. The Canterbury Tales. By Chaucer. And Shakespeare.
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References The Muppet Show (1976) See more »

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User Reviews

The Canterbury Tales...
11 January 2009 | by (Italy) – See all my reviews

Life at the office can be hard: demanding bosses, uncooperative colleagues, yada yada yada. It gets even worse at The Office, with none other than David Brent calling the shots.

His latest "achievement"? It's time for appraisals, and he's desperately hoping someone mentions him as a role model. Naturally, that doesn't happen, but other things emerge, more specifically hidden dreams: Tim would like to study Psychology at the local University, while Dawn originally became a receptionist just so she could have a day job while striving for a career as an illustrator. With that out of the way, David focuses on his attempts to make friends with the new people (of course, telling the one of African descent your favorite actor is Sidney Poitier isn't a very subtle move) but fails admirably and gets in bigger trouble when he carelessly insults Neil in front of everyone.

With hindsight, the seeds of what will become the season's major turning point (more on that when the right time comes) are planted as early as in this episode. How it all evolves remains to be seen, but the sheer attention to detail is staggering (then again, since Gervais wrote and directed every episode alongside Stephen Merchant, it's likely they planed those smaller things in advance). The second-to-last scene is one of the bleakest in the show's run, but it's also preceded by one of the funniest: Brent giving Tim his appraisal. According to on-set reports, the four-minute conversation required 74 takes, all because of Gervais inability to stick to the script from time to time (as pointed out in a behind-the-scenes featurette regarding another scene). It was worth the hard work: the result is even better than the Muppets joke from the previous episode (which gets a follow-up here, by the way).

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