Last night, the season finale of The Office trotted out a celebrity lineup worthy of The Marriage Ref, with Will Arnett, Ray Romano, Jim Carrey, James Spader, and even mega-billionaire Warren Buffett waltzing through the doors of Dunder Mifflin. The episode also featured a cameo by Ricky Gervais, Hollywood’s favorite irascible scamp/leering supervillain. Gervais, of course, co-created the original British version of The Office, which only ran for 14 episodes. Gervais just posted a reaction to the season finale over on his blog, in which he expresses something like exasperation with the American version. Noting that the season finale reminded him of the Chris Martin episode of Extras (in which a celebrity cameo is awkwardly wedged into a sitcom), Gervais laughs, “If you’re going to jump a shark, jump a big one!”
But Gervais isn’t just poking fun. He continues: “I assume most people know I didn’t do the US remake for the art. I did my version for the art. That’s why I stopped it after a few hours of telly.” While he notes that he’s “very proud of the US version,” you can’t help but read between the lines a little bit: It seems like Gervais is drawing a decisive line between the UK version (short, sweet, artistically pure) and the US version (commercial, overstretched, artistically compromised). Gervais also clears up any confusion regarding rumors that he might step in as the new Office boss: “You don’t start a company to work on reception.” Oh, that rude British wit!
Gervais finishes his post by noting that the original Office is almost ten years old now. And what better way to celebrate a milestone than to stir the pot a little bit! Viewers, do you agree with Gervais’ extremely measured negativity regarding the Office finale? Or do you think he’s overstepping a little bit?
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