The Office: Season 3, Episode 1

Christmas Special: Part 1 (26 Dec. 2003)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy | Drama
9.0
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It's been three years since the BBC documentary crew first arrived at the office. Back for one last visit, they find Gareth Keenan now in charge and is running the office with a military ... See full summary »

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Title: Christmas Special: Part 1 (26 Dec 2003)

Christmas Special: Part 1 (26 Dec 2003) on IMDb 9/10

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Anne
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Lee
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Steve Brody ...
Agent
Howard Brown ...
Himself
Greg Burns
Paul 'Bubble' Ferguson ...
Himself (as Paul Ferguson)
Mike McClean
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Storyline

It's been three years since the BBC documentary crew first arrived at the office. Back for one last visit, they find Gareth Keenan now in charge and is running the office with a military precision. Since we last saw David Brent he has become a sales rep for a cleaning products company, released his own pop single and has acquired an agent to look after his celebrity appearances. He visits his old workplace regularly, despite him successfully suing Wernham Hogg for unfair dismissal. The big news for Tim is the imminent arrival of Dawn. The documentary crew has kindly offered to fly Dawn and boyfriend Lee from Florida back to Slough for the office Christmas party. Written by Anonymous

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Comedy | Drama

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26 December 2003 (UK)  »

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1.78 : 1
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[Brent is drunk in his motel room]
David Brent: But, you know, Neil will make one too many mistakes. Head Office will see what I already knew, and they go in there, they will march in there. They go, Right, yeah, David was right. You've pissed off him and you've pissed off him. You're not the manager you thought you were. Okay. So get out, we made the mistake. Then they drag him out by his hair and that's when the begging starts. They'll come to me and say, Ooh, David you were right all along, you were the ...
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References Popstars (2001) See more »

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Performed by David Johansen
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User Reviews

 
If you don't know'em by now...
15 January 2009 | by (Italy) – See all my reviews

Most of the time, reunion episodes, or similar, are interpreted as cynical cash-ins on the original series. The two-part Christmas Special of The Office, originally broadcast on Christmas Day 2003, could have been just that - after all, Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant wrapped up the story rather satisfyingly in the twelfth (and last) regular episode. And then the miracle happened: an afterthought it may have been, but the Special is actually the best episode of the series.

It's been three years since the BBC camera crew visited the Wernham Hogg office in Slough and showed the documentary series on TV. Now they're back for one final visit, the occasion being the office's Christmas party. Gareth (MacKenzie Crook) is now the regional manager, working under Neil Godwin's strict supervision and running the building with his typical military insanity. Nonetheless, Tim (Martin Freeman) keeps pulling pranks on him, although it's not the same since Dawn (Lucy Davis) moved to Florida with Lee. Imagine his reaction, then, when he learns the BBC is actually arranging for her and Lee to come back to Slough for the party.

And what of good old David Brent (Gervais), who was last seen begging Neil to let him keep his job? Well, he advertises cleaning products now, and uses his free time to visit the old workplace, despite filing a successful lawsuit for his unfair firing. Because of the success of the (fictional) Office series, he's also a minor celebrity, making various appearances on TV shows. And finally, he recorded his own pop single, an awful cover of "If You Don't Know Me By Now", a brief glimpse of which features in the episode as a music video (the full version, should anyone be brave enough to watch it, is available on the DVD). How wrong could things still get? Since it's Brent, the answer has to be: very, very wrong.

Besides the usual cold, cruel realism, the Christmas Special is noteworthy for adding a certain postmodern playfulness. Specifically, several characters comment on the fact that they are now well known to the general public thanks to the show, which is exactly what we (the real audience) got to enjoy for two years. The best remark is of course the one that comes from Brent, who claims the BBC edited out his good moments and only showed his bad side (go figure...). As usual, Gervais' performance is the most enjoyable, and the new stages his role is going through suggest things will get really interesting when the real end finally comes around.


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