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I guess I just like liking things

“The future is a cake which may never come.” – Veronica

I didn't make this, but I wish I had.

I didn’t make this, but I wish I had.

The show has already tackled racism and sexual harassment, so why not take on death? And, really, aside from the Empire in Star Wars, does any company have their employees’ interests less at heart? At least Veridian supplies handrails here and there. Still, it’s no surprise that Veridian would eventually work someone to death. If they were able to make clones as easily as the Empire, I bet you’d see a lot more employees dying cakeless in their offices.

Gordon’s death (and I’m going to call him Gordon because that possessive apostrophe is so much easier to read on Gordon than it is on Jenkins) ties everything together this week. Everybody’s working on this sleep machine and that’s really the groundwork for this episode, but all of the main plots have more to do with Gordon dying: it causes a rift between Phil and Lem, it makes Linda worry about not being “in the moment,” it shows us how easily Veronica can rally a mob, and it causes Ted to worry about the 14-hour days never ending. People are using Gordon’s end for their own ends and it ends up biting most of them in the end. End!

I don’t think I have a favorite storyline here, as they are all a lot of fun. I mean, my relationship with death storylines changes as I get older, to the point where I felt a little uneasy at points, but overall there’s a lot of humor here and it is, as usual, done well. It’s interesting to watch how shows do this, though. Gordon was an older, seemingly crabby fellow, with no immediate family. Those characteristics take out a lot of factors that would have made the show more uncomfortable than funny. Having a wife or child show up at that memorial service would have really been a buzzkill, you know?

Lem wanting to be popular is a theme I feel we’ve seen before, but there’s something about those co-opted Phil stories. He really is pouring his heart into those stories! And Phil has every right to be hurt by those, but if he were to take a look at the undertones, I think he’d notice that Lem’s stories about them and those are his favorite stories, even if he is using them for the wrong reasons. As usual, by episode’s end they’ve made up and are buds again.

Linda’s “in the moment” , er, moments are kind of goofy but there’s no denying the fun of seeing Veronica sweep her leg (an action that would get her fired anywhere other than Veridian) and then see Linda try to do the same thing to Ted and fail. And, really, Linda has had focus problems the whole series (that “some times I just want to run away” thing still defines her this late in the series’ run, I think), so her realizing this is an issue is a realistic view of the character. Look at the way she says “Boy, I really need to learn to live in the moment. Maybe I’ll do that this summer. Well, except for all these other things I was planning to do…” To paraphrase: That’s So Linda.

Ted, as usual, wants what’s best for his employees, but is more concerned about Rose. Good character development makes for good comedy, people. Learn it!


Bits and pieces:

  • “That sound means it’s working.” – Lem
  • “Relaxxxacon! The extra X is for more Zs!” – This quote by Ted is one of my most-said quotes from the show. Whenever I need to adopt “announcer voice,” this is the thing I say.
  • “Veronica in the Key of Love” – If you’re honest with yourself, you’d admit that you want to hear this whole album.
  • “Fine, the workers pushed the button and lit up the light. They can have their monkey chow.” – Veronica
  • How did Gordon’s feet get on his desk?
  • “The company feels that if we ease up just because someone died, it will only encourage other people to die.” – Veronica
  • “This cartoon resonates with my own experience with office life but through a comical lens.” – Veronica, on Dilbert
  • Veronica eye-pokes Linda to help her live in the moment, and this, too, would get her fired anywhere but Veridian
  • “You know what I remember about Jenkins? He used to be alive.” – Ted
  • Phil and Lem chest bump for good luck at Gordon’s memorial
  • “Now I know what a beard of fingers would feel like.” – Phil
  • “Goodbye, Jenkins. I hope you’re throwing coffee at God right now.” – Lem
  • Veronica making Jenkins’ death a motivational speech – who understands a mob better than Veronica?
  • “The company said that Jenkins said that some people would say that.” – Sheila
  • Perry, one of the cool accountants, reminds me of Tom Cruise
  • “Sweep the leg!” – Veronica
  • Veronica RickRolls all y’all
  • “I like Rose. I wasn’t entirely sold the first six months, but now I’m way into her.” – Ted
  • Phil’s wife was in Mossad
  • Broasting?
  • Linda considers going back to Wisconsin and getting her Master’s in Cheese Sciences. This show has some weird ideas about Wisconsin.
  • “What was I supposed to do, leave him in the car? It’s a hot day.” – Lem
    “He’s already ashes.” – Phil
  • “You two are jerks.” – Phil, to Lem and Gordon’s ashes
  • “Shaba-daba-dee-do-da” – Closed Captioning takes a stab at Veronica’s version of “Never Gonna Give You Up”
  • Ted dancing in the elevator is pretty much how I dance
  • Johnny running with the package throughout the rest of Ted’s speech is a beautiful touch
  • Triumphant walkout music, pause for bathroom break, resume triumphant walkout music: this is how you get things done
  • “Together we’re like Ghandi. I’m skinny and you’re tan.” – Veronica


Will there never again be a commercial?

Ideas/Inventions mentioned in this episode:

  • Veridian Sleep System – if you can stand the noise for three minutes, you’ll sleep like a baby
  • Reindeer potpies
  • Trap door in the lobby

Coworkers named/seen:

  • Bob [not seen], who stole Amy’s Danish
  • Amy [not seen], who stapled Bob’s lip to his cubicle for stealing her Danish
  • Gordon Jenkins, an inspiration to us all
  • Sheila, still an oddball
  • Perry, Todd, and Beaver: the cool accountants
  • Johnny [IMDb-named, but not episode-named], the package-running guy

Next week: S02E07 – Change We Can’t Believe In

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