The Office Series Finale: 5 Key Moments From Dunder Mifflin's Last Goodbye
We'll always have Scranton. After eight years, nine seasons, a lot of laughs, and countless "That's what she said" jokes, The Office closed its doors for good on Thursday, May 16, with a moving series finale that saw the beloved Dunder Mifflin staff get the happy endings they all deserved. (Spoilers ahead!) The 75-minute episode was jam-packed with one-liners, tributes, and surprises -- too many to list here -- so to recap, here's a look at five key moments from the NBC comedy's last outing. And to Steve Carell, John Krasinski, Rainn Wilson, Jenna Fischer, Ed Helms, and the rest of the Dunder Mifflinites: Thanks for the memories.
5. A panel discussion reunites Erin with her birth parents. Early on, it's revealed that some of the staff have left the Scranton office -- or, in some cases, the city of Scranton -- during the yearlong time lapse between the May 9 episode and the May 16 finale. Kevin and Toby were fired, Darryl moved to Austin for Athlead (now called Athleap), Stanley retired to Florida, and Andy got a job at Cornell. But they and the rest of the Dunder Mifflin crew come together again to appear as guests of honor at a special Q&A about the PBS documentary.
The panel discussion draws quite a few fans, who alternately fawn over Jim and wonder out loud whether Pam is worthy of him. The best question, though, comes from a woman (guest star Joan Cusack) who turns out to be Erin's birth mother. Their happy reunion is made even happier when a man (Ed Begley Jr.) steps up to the mic and announces that he's Erin's birth father.
4. The Dunder Mifflin crew gathers for one last drink at the Scranton office. After a party in the warehouse -- where Pam unveils her finished mural, a lovingly painted portrait of the entire staff -- the coworkers retire to their upstairs workplace for a more private celebration. As Creed (who faked his own death) serenades the group on a guitar, they toast to one another and reflect on all the time they spent together as employees and, later, as friends.
"I wish there was a way to know you were in the good old days before you've actually left them," Andy says wistfully, as scenes from past seasons flash across the screen.
Adds Jim: "Even if I didn't love every minute of it, everything I have I owe to this job. This stupid, wonderful, boring, amazing job."
3. Pam surprises Jim with a grand romantic gesture. Moved by Jim's willingness to give up his sports marketing career to be by her side in Scranton, Pam decides to secretly sell their house so the family can move to Austin, where Athlead/Athleap is now based. "I never want you to give up anything," she explains to him.
2. Dwight and Angela get married. In keeping with Schrute family tradition, the recently reunited twosome say their "I dos" while standing in their own graves. Afterward, everyone grabs a bale of hay and heads to the reception, where the real fun starts. Dwight twirls his new bride around the dance floor, former desk mates Stanley and Phyllis share a sweet moment together, and Kelly runs off into the sunset with Ryan, leaving her boyfriend, Ravi, with Ryan's infant son. (Nellie decides to adopt him.)
1. Steve Carell returns as Michael Scott. In Jim's words: "Best. Prank. Ever." After months of denials that Carell would return in the series finale to reprise his role as Dunder Mifflin's bumbling but lovable boss, the star's cameo was a welcome surprise.
Just before Dwight and Angela's wedding ceremony, "bestest mensch" Jim plays one final joke on Dwight, telling him that tradition states the bestest mensch must be older than the groom. He then steps down from his post, leaving Dwight without a best man -- until Michael suddenly appears to take his place. "I can't believe you came," Dwight says. To which his former boss replies: "That's what she said."
Later, looking at happy couples Dwight and Angela and Jim and Pam, Michael (now married with children, whose pictures fill two smartphones) reflects on how far they've all come. "I feel like all my kids grew up and then they married each other," he says, his voice breaking. "It's every parent's dream."
That's a wrap! Tell Us: What did you think of the series finale of The Office?
This article originally appeared on Usmagazine.com: The Office Series Finale: 5 Key Moments From Dunder Mifflin's Last Goodbye
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