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The Office: Branch Closing

Michael tries to ease his employees' fears when Jan informs him that the Scranton branch will have to shut down. Everyone on the staff considers how this will change their lives, for better or worse.

Episode Info
Episode number: 3x7
Production Number: 307
Airdate: Thursday November 09th, 2006

Director: Tucker Gates
Writer: Michael Schur

Guest Stars
Charles EstenCharles Esten
As Josh Porter
Craig RobinsonCraig Robinson
As Darryl Philbin
Creed BrattonCreed Bratton
As Creed Bratton
Ed HelmsEd Helms
As Andy Bernard
Rashida JonesRashida Jones
As Karen Filippelli
Main Cast
Steve CarellSteve Carell
As Michael Scott
Rainn WilsonRainn Wilson
As Dwight Schrute
John KrasinskiJohn Krasinski
As Jim Halpert
Jenna FischerJenna Fischer
As Pam Beesly
B.J. NovakB.J. Novak
As Ryan Howard
Episode Notes
This marks the final appearance of Charles Esten as Josh Porter.

This episode was the first of the series to have a "Producer's Cut" posted on NBC.com.

There is only one Sal's pizza in Scranton and their order menu is posted in the office kitchen, which would indicate the office is (somewhat) close to 505 Linden St.

Episode Quotes
Michael: Listen up, everybody, I have some news. We are screwed. Dunder Mifflin Scranton is being shut down.
Toby: Michael, uh, we shouldn’t be talking about this until all the decisions have been made.
Michael: You knew about this all along, didn’t you?
Toby: Jan told me just a few minutes before she told you.
Michael: (Pointing) Traitor. You are a traitor.

Michael: It is an outrage. That’s all. It’s... they’re making a huge, huge mistake. Let’s see Josh replace these people. Let’s see Josh find another Stanley. You think Stanleys grow on trees? Well, they don’t. There is no Stanley tree. You think the world is crawling with Phyllises? Show me that farm, with Phyllises and Kevins sprouting up all over the place, ripe for the plucking. Show me that farm.

Jim: I don't have a ton of contact with the Scranton branch, but, before I left, I took a box of Dwight's stationery. So, from time to time, I send Dwight faxes... from himself... from the future. (Reads fax) Dwight, at eight a.m. today, somebody poisons the coffee. DO NOT drink the coffee. More instructions will follow. Cordially, Future Dwight.
(Dwight picks up the letter from the fax machine, looks to the break room and sees Stanley with a cup of coffee. Dwight runs to Stanley)
Dwight: NOOOOO! (Dwight knocks the cup out of Stanley's hand) You'll thank me later.

Dwight: When you become close with someone, you develop a kind of sixth sense. You can read their moods like a book. And right now, the title of Michael's book is, 'Something Weird Is Going On... colon... What Did Jan Say? The Michael Scott Story... by Michael Scott. With Dwight Schrute.'

Jan: Our CFO believes that Josh is going to play an important role in our company’s future.
Michael: Oh really, what role is that? King of the stupid universe?

Episode Goofs
It seems as if Dwight would check the sending fax number to be sure this wasn't a prank from Jim.

When Michael and Dwight are outside David's house during the day, there are no lights on anywhere on the property, not even the porch lights. But at night, the house is lit up as if someone was home, even though no one has come back to the house.

When Kevin tells Pam that they are going to Poor Richard's, he mentions that Creed will be buying shots. This is most likely because Creed had just made $1200 selling electronics from the office; however, the original cut of the episode does not show that plot line and causes the statement to be slightly out of context.

On their way to New York to see the CFO, you can see on the dashboard of the car they are headed south and it is currently 87 degrees. This episode is supposed to be taking place in the fall in the Northeast and they are supposed to be heading north to New York, you can tell that they are actually filming in L.A. heading south.

Cultural References
Roy: You know that Cinderella song, 'Don't Know What You've Got 'til it's Gone?'

Roy is referring to the 1980s band Cinderella and their hit from the album "Long Cold Winter."

Jim: I mean I always knew that the branch would shut down someday, I just figured it would be because Michael sold the building for some magic beans.

Jim makes a reference to the children's fable Jack & The Beanstalk.

Kelly: If I get to stay and Ryan gets laid off, I will kill myself! Like Romeo and Juliet. The Claire Danes one.

Kelly makes reference to the 1996 film adaptation of William Shakespeare's play, Romeo + Juliet, which stars actress Claire Danes.

Michael: (singing) Just call me Levinson of the morning, baby.

Michael is singing the song "Angel of the Morning" by Merrilee Rush.

Audio: Michael's ringtone

His phone still plays the Black Eyed Peas' hit, "My Humps."

Michael: I can’t say I was a big fan of Bowling for Columbine. Because I thought it was going to be a bowling movie. Like Kingpin. And it wasn’t. It was something else.

Michael is talking about Michael Moore's documentary, Bowling for Columbine, and the 1996 Woody Harrelson film, Kingpin.

Episode References
Character: David Wallace

Michael and Dwight are headed out to see David Wallace, the CFO of Dunder-Mifflin Inc. We first met David when he took over the CFO job in the Season Two episode "Valentine's Day."

Michael: Favorite moments in Dunder Mifflin history. Go.
Dwight: My first day when you hazed me by spraying me with a fire extinguisher.
Michael: That was hilarious. The foam...
Dwight: My first sale, my promotion to assistant regional manager, our basketball game, when you took me to the hospital, and told me that you cared about me.

Dwight makes reference to events from the Season One episode "Basketball" and the Season Two episode "The Injury."

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