The Office – Season 9, Episode 22 “A.A.R.M.” Review

Rating: 9.4

SO. MANY. EMOTIONS. This week’s episode of The Office was phenomenal. I’ll get my one complaint out of the way now, which was that the Andy plotline (where he auditions for a singing show) was not that strong or compelling. I thought maybe the girl he stands on line with would be a potential love interest or that maybe he would get his big break with acapella but, alas, neither of those things happened. Anyway, onto the rest of the episode, which was damn near perfect.

The episode began with Jim up to his old pranks again. Jim, the newly appointed Assistant to the Regional Manager, convinces Dwight to hold tryouts to find someone to act as Assistant to the Assistant to the Regional Manager. Boy, that’s a mouthful (and probably why the creators chose to abbreviate the name of the episode to A.A.R.M.). Eventually, after some hilarious bits, Dwight decides to give himself the title. The tryouts have the feel of an early-Office Jim/Dwight prank, but it is clear now that Jim is pranking Dwight playfully rather than vindictively. Jim and Dwight’s relationship now has this adorable, underlying affection that is sweet to watch on screen. They genuinely care about each other.

Meanwhile, Darryl returns to Dunder Mifflin after quietly quitting the week before and is berated by his co-workers for doing so. Though they were never all that close, everyone has become sentimental because of the documentary’s premiere rapidly approaching. In order to appease them, Darryl agrees to do one last activity with everyone, which ends up being a group dance towards the end of the episode. I find it amazing whenever the entire ensemble cast engages in an activity like this, like when they all sang on the bus to Michael’s Beach Games or when they all participated in a lib dub video.

Also in the episode, we have some relationship drama. Pam is insecure about her relationship with Jim and worries that she is not enough for him. To prove how much he truly loves her, Jim has the documentary crew cut together a video of some adorable moments in their relationship over the years, culminating with the Christmas party in Season 2 where Jim gives Pam the teapot. If y’all remember, Jim takes out a letter he was going to give to Pam and puts it in his pocket. Well, after a teary-eyed Pam finishes this video, Jim finally gives her the note that expresses how she is everything to him. This scene had me bawling because of the skill this was executed with and the pure nostalgia from seeing all of the clips. We never get to see what the note said, but some things are better left to the imagination. It was a bit disappointing, but the scene still resonated with me. It’s amazing how the writers have managed to keep me interested in the Jim and Pam relationship for years. Just a few weeks ago we were all concerned about their relationship and now look at them. Aww.

The last big event of the episode was Dwight finally realizing his feelings for Angela. Dwight has suspicions that Phillip (Angela’s son who was in the office for the day after being kicked out of day care) might be his child. Dwight tells Angela if Phillip was his son, he could marry Angela and raise Phillip on the farm. She, yet again, denies that Phillip is his son and leaves. Later in the episode, after consulting with Jim, Dwight realizes that he doesn’t care if Phillip is his son; he just wants to be with Angela. Dwight ends up pulling Angela over in her car and confessing his love through a megaphone. He proposes and Angela finally admits that Phillip is his son and she only kept it from him because he wanted him to be with her for her, not because they have a child together. This scene surprisingly made me teary eyed as well. I never was a big fan of Dwangela until this season, but it was lovely to see these characters we’ve all grown to love find love and happiness in each other. And Esther is finally gone, yay! She really annoyed me for some reason; maybe it was because I knew that Angela was always the only one for Dwight.

After an episode full of beautiful relationship moments and some nice ensemble cast action, the crew get together to watch the documentary at Poor Richard’s- Andy even joins them! The documentary begins, and the episode ends with audio of Michael Scott and Jim from the pilot. And then more tears came. I know I’ve said this each week, but The Office has just been so fantastic lately. Every episode is a step up from the next and it breaks my heart that there is only ONE EPISODE LEFT. Ever. Wow, I can’t imagine how much I’ll cry watching that.

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  1. I agree so much on Dwight and Angela moments. I didn’t like them together much until last episode, and this episode with Dwight proposing to Angela was so great. It brought a little tear to my eye. Hopefully the finale is a 10.0 worthy!

  2. If not for the horrible Andy material, this was a pretty much perfect hour of The Office. Bringing back Jim’s letter-in-a-teacup from season 2 was genius, and the Dwight/Angela stuff was really sweet. It may or may not have gotten a little dusty in my room for those last 10 minutes.

  3. Wow, I’m no doubt in the minority on this one but I thought that Jim/Pam drama was a stretch and completely unnecessary but I was always entertained by Dwight and Angela. Those two creeping in the back used to amuse me so much. Glad Jim and Pam got back on the same page, but it just seemed like, “Ooooh, the show is ending. Let’s put a twist in here…for no reason at all.” I loved that dance-off with Darryl though. Everybody danced as inappropriate as their characters and Darryl just went along with it. I wondered why he even bothered to have a girlfriend for those few episodes only to lose interest in her before I could really even remember her name.

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