The Office: Season 4, Episode 14

Goodbye, Toby (15 May 2008)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy
9.2
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Michael throws an extravagant going-away party for Toby, and falls in love with the woman who is replacing him. Jim plans to propose to Pam at the party, but gets out-staged. Back at corporate, Ryan is arrested for fraud.

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Title: Goodbye, Toby (15 May 2008)

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Storyline

The day has come, it is Toby's last day at the office as he leaves to go to Costa Rica. Michael is super excited that Toby is leaving and makes the party extra special. But Toby's replacement Holly Flax, is now the new crush of Michael, which means Michael has to act nice towards Toby, and Michael finds out some interesting news. While Jim uses this night to propose to Pam, someone else proposes. Back at corporate, Ryan gets arrested for Fraud because he was recording sales twice from the website and offices to deceive Dunder Mifflins shareholders. Written by James Hake

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Comedy

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Release Date:

15 May 2008 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the Season 4 finale, when the office workers are watching the YouTube video of Ryan's arrest, you can see the the video was added on April 15, 2008; giving a clue to when the finale was filmed, and also slightly upsetting continuity (the episode was set in May instead of April). See more »

Goofs

In the beginning of the episode Michael sets his watch alarm to go off when Toby leaves. He later gives the watch to Toby as a gift. Toby then continues to change it to Costa Rican time, yet the alarm still goes off at the scheduled time of Toby's departure at the end of the episode. See more »

Quotes

[as Toby introduces his replacement]
Toby Flenderson: Michael Scott, this is Holly.
Holly Flax: Hi.
Michael Scott: Hi. Yeah, right. Okay, well, they hired a female Toby. Good for the world. Thank you, God, for creating two of you. Here's how things work here: My job is to make the office fun. Your job is to make the office lame, and we have an eternal struggle, you and I, and only one of us can be the winner. Spoiler alert, I'm going to win.
Holly Flax: Man, someone doesn't like HR.
Michael Scott: Yeah.
Holly Flax: What did you do to him?
Toby Flenderson: Nothing.
Michael Scott: No, he tortured me with his ...
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Features Solitaire (1981) See more »

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Don't Know Why
Performed by Craig Robinson
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User Reviews

Season 4: Not as good as seasons 2 and 3 but, for its faults, it is still very good
6 June 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

As I'm late to the party I am only hitting season 4 of The Office now and of course this means, as it did with 30 Rock, that I am now at the period that was affected by the writers' strike – which means that this season is a lot shorter than it should have been, even if it does have quite a few extended episodes in there to make it a bit longer than the 14 episode list would suggest. I'm not sure if this effected the show negatively but certainly something doesn't appear to be clicking in the early stages. Where season 3 had moved on from season 2 with a jump in time that worked, the action between 3 and 4 doesn't seem to transition that well and it hurts the show that does rely on a narrative structure and characters in a way that the quicker hitting 30 Rock does not. Happily it does settle in quite quickly and the majority of the episodes are pretty good with solid laughs and engaging enough events.

Some of the episodes and threads of the show are excellent as they capture the awkward (but not painful like the UK version) comedy of this workplace but it is some of the narrative that don't work as well as they did in seasons 2 and 3. Jim and Pam's relationship is the most obvious one. The writers appear to have gone from being able to perfectly nail the detail of their back and forwards to suddenly deciding to move things rapidly forward while assuming the viewers will just go with it because that is what we want to see. However in doing this they move things way too fast so that not only does it not quite convince but we also don't get to enjoy them being a dating couple the way that we enjoyed them being flirty for so long. Not so much of a big deal is Ryan's new role. Again perhaps the short season is to blame but this seems to move too fast without enough done with it beyond the obvious. Michael and Jan provides good laughs but Andy and Angela didn't convince me as it just seemed written for the sake of having events and it was only Dwight's part in it that made me enjoy it (I find him funny).

The cast continue to be good though and most do well with a bit of added pathos to their roles. Carell wears his character really well and while his terrible judgement is endearing, he avoids making it so painful that we cannot find it funny – which we do. Fischer continues to be one of my favourite parts of the show and it is not her fault that the material rushes her along – she is best when shocked by Michael. Krasinski is still a necessary evil in my opinion. His comedy is mostly responding to other people and this puts him more on the spot in regards the relationship plot – which, not his fault, is not as good this season. Wilson has great lines while Kaling's valley-girl personae makes for wonderful little moments – as do Flannery, Bratton, Baumgartner, Baker and so on. I'm not sure about Novak though – he doesn't seem to fit in that well and is not used that well as a character – perhaps too close to the material as a person? Although I have specified a lot of negative things, I must say that I enjoyed season 4. OK it is not as engaging nor as funny as seasons 2 and 3 but it is still good enough to make The Office stand up as a great sitcom with comedy and situations working well enough. Hopefully this does not represent a "slide" towards diminishing returns and I do look forward to season 5 (as soon as I can work out who is going to get it for me since ITV is about 4 years away from showing it if at all!).


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