Home > #3, Media grammar > The Office

The Office

The show, The Office is about a mid-size paper company called Dunder Mifflin that has a dysfunctional group of workers that have to deal with comedic conflict throughout the story. The characters of the show are relatable personalities, each having their own distinctive quirks and tendencies. Some of the problems the workers at Dunder Mifflin have to endure are an incompetent boss, downsizing, and romantic troubles in the office. The subtext of the show is that there is always a brighter side to conflicts as long as you look for them. Another subtext is the integration of completely different characteristics and each person’s efforts to have good group dynamics in the office.

The show is commonly displayed in the print media in magazines since some of their cast are big-time stars, such as Steve Carrell, Jenna Fisher and John Krasinski.

The music in the show usually depends on the mood of the scene. The music usually only plays though, when it is a particularly happy or cheerful moment. There is no one specific genre of music either. The theme song to the show is one that is recognized by many people. It has no lyrics, but it is a very upbeat and catchy. The song is very fitting for the show and anyone who hears it will know that The Office  will soon be on.

The genre of the show is a “mockumentary” since it is a fake documentary capturing the entertaining and amusing moments of an everyday office. The point-of-view is an outsiders one, since it is through the eyes of a camera crew that follow the workers going about their business. The characters are able to talk and tell their thoughts directly to the viewer. The show is different from a normal sitcom because it brings the audience deeper into the show. The expectation of the audience it to be able to relate to the characters in the show. The makers of the show want the viewers to be able to say, “I work with someone just like that!”  or “the same thing happened at my office the other day!” The show tries to mimic the life of working at an office, but with funnier scenes and events.

The show borrows from the online environment by being able to be watched for free on websites such as Hulu. They also post mini-episodes on the internet called webisodes that goes deeper into the characters themselves than the normal episodes.

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  1. tessdoez
    January 15, 2011 at 12:17 am

    The fact that the show is shot in a mocumentary style is a particlarly relevant point for the analysis of television grammar. What does the grammar of this production style convey to the audience? How does it change the show from a more traditionally produced sitcom? You make some good points but your analysis here could be a little bit more in depth!

  2. tessdoez
    January 17, 2011 at 2:10 am

    There are also some sentence structure and grammar errors–please proof read, develop your analysis in response to the questions posed above, and repost for credit.

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