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The Office: Branch Wars

When Karen tells Michael that she's luring Stanley to the Utica branch, Michael isn't going to let Stanley go without a fight. Unable to offer him the same salary that Karen can, Michael and Dwight instead declare war on Utica, dragging Jim along for the ride. Back at the office, the exclusive "Finer Things Club" stirs up some friction.


Episode Info


Episode number: 4x10
Production Number: 410
Airdate: Thursday November 01st, 2007

Director: Joss Whedon
Writer: Mindy Kaling


  • Currently 8.9/10
8.9/10 (9 Votes cast)
Guest Stars
Rashida JonesRashida Jones
As Karen Filippelli
Recurring

Co-Guest Stars
Adam Jamal CraigAdam Jamal Craig
As Rolando
Recurring
Lester LewisLester Lewis
voiced Ben Nugent
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
Episode Notes
The first act premiered during "The Office Convention" on October 28th, during the "Writer's Block" in Scranton.

It was revealed on a "Summer Racap" video on The Office's webpage at NBC.com that Jim broke up with Karen and left her crying by a fountain in New York. We now learn that she asked for a transfer and became Regional Manager of the Utica branch.

Even though he is credited, this is the first episode in which B.J. Novak does not appear.

The name tag on Jim's warehouse uniform reads "Madge," showing that Michael and Dwight simply stole the warehouse uniforms from their own staff. It also shows the warehouse has had many people come and go as Michael's shirt says "Kent" and Dwight's shirt says "Joe."

We learn in this episode that Jim has a brother who just had a new baby, which makes Jim an uncle.



Episode Quotes
Michael: Here's what we brought. We brought uniforms from the warehouse. I brought Silly String, Dwight brought gasoline and chunks of rubber to make stink bombs.
Dwight: Or real bombs.
Michael: No, no. Not real bombs.
Dwight: Yeah come on, it would be so bad ass.
Michael: Mmm maybe. I dunno. I dunno. Would be bad ass.
Jim: No.
Dwight: Yeah! It will.
Jim: Absolutely we're not doing this.
Dwight: Come on I already filled the bottles with the gas, it's gonna be so bad ass!!
Jim: Are you kidding me? We've been driving around with this in the trunk the whole time?

Oscar: What are you microwaving?
Phyllis: Popcorn.
Pam: Why don't you use the microwave in the kitchen, Phyllis?
Phyllis: Someone needs to clean it, it smells like popcorn.

Michael: I'm going to cut right to the chase here. Do you like magic? Because I am a genie in a bottle and I am going to grant you three wishes. To move to Scranton, to have a great job, and to be my best friend.

Jim: So, the deal was, Dwight doesn't blow anything up and I wear a costume. And a mustache.

Oscar: Besides having sex with men, I would say the Finer Things Club is the gayest thing about me.

Karen: If you wanted to see me you could've just called me like an adult.
Jim: Oh no I didn't want to see you. Not that I'm not, happy to be seeing you, right now. I'm just saying, ultimately I was here for the copier. Equal. I'd say it was equal. So, good to see you.
Karen: (Scoffs)
Jim: I mean it's just that, you know Pam and I are still dating so, and I just mean that things are going really well so I didn't want to see, you.
Karen: Oh things are going really well. Are they? They are? That's great that's so great. I wanna hear more about how happy you are, with Pam. Can you tell me more about that? Thank you so much for coming to Utica and breaking my copier and telling me how well things are going in your relationship, really. Thank you.
Jim: Ah. All right. You are welcome. I'm going to go, because of, um... traffic.

Andy: The Finer Things Club is the most exclusive club in this office. Naturally it's where I need to be. The Party Planning Committee is my backup. And Kevin's band is my safety.

Michael: Dwight are you peeing?
Dwight: I'm peeing in this empty can.
Jim: Oh my God.
Michael: That is disgusting Dwight!
Dwight: You said we couldn't make any more stops and I really had to go!

Michael: You and I are going to sneak inside, pretend that we are warehouse workers and we will Silly String the bejesus out of the place.
Dwight: And if we have to defend ourselves, I will stab the security guard in the eye, with the jumbo chalk.
Jim: No! No you won't do that. Nope.
Dwight: Then I'll grind up the jumbo chalk and blow it in his eyes.
Jim: Dwight, nothing with the eyes. Please?
Dwight: Okay Jim.

Karen: I cried for weeks over that guy, so yeah. Seeing him climb out of a PT Cruiser in a ladies warehouse uniform... it felt pretty good.

Ben Nugent: Everyone says Scranton branch is worse than Camden. Didn't everyone from Stamford quit like, immediately?
Michael: No, I fired them. And you're next. (pause) So whaddya say?
Ben Nugent: Seriously?



Episode Goofs
When Toby first brings in the cups and Michael sees him, he's wearing a bow-tie. But later on when they're talking about the book, he's now wearing a normal tie.

When Jim is avoiding being seen by Karen, he lowers the passenger side seat. But in the next scene, he's switched to the driver's side and is sitting upright.



Cultural References
Jim: (speaking in an Irish accent) Angela's Ashes, top o' the morning to us. Frankie's prose is funnier than a pot of gold, say I.

The book being discussed by the Finer Things Club at the end of the episode is Angela’s Ashes, a memoir by author Frank McCourt.

Michael: This is a dummy, a la Ferris Bueller's Day Off. We have tied a string to the wrist, which goes to the door. When somebody opens the door, the hand goes down, hits the remote, turns on the tape recorder, which is me snoring. Now nobody knows whether I am here, or whether I am gone.

Ferris Bueller's Day Off is a 1986 film, that starred Matthew Broderick in the title role.

Michael: Mo money mo problems, Stanley.

"Mo Money Mo Problems" is the name of a song by Notorious B.I.G.

Michael: What is that guy talking about? Scranton is not lame. Scranton is the cool, fun branch. We're like Animal House.

Animal House is a fictional fraternity house, known for booze and parties, from the 1978 film of the same name. It starred John Belushi, and was directed by John Landis.

Andy: I'm gonna miss you man, you've been like an uncle to me. Like a kind old uncle Remus. I wanna stay in touch.

Uncle Remus was a fictional elderly slave who told stories to children. He is a character in a series of folktales published by Joel Chandler Harris in 1881.

Andy: Just came to discuss my favorite E.M. Forester novel.

E.M. Forester was an English novelist best known for his books Howard's End, and Room With a View.



Episode References
Visual: the teapot

The teapot Pam uses in the Finer Things Club was given to her by Jim in the Season Two episode "Christmas Party."

Michael: Jim, if this is it for me promise me something... host The Dundies.

This is a reference to the office awards given out every year, like in the Season Two episode "The Dundies."

Ben: Aren't you the guy that hit the woman with your car?

Ben is referring to Michael hitting Meredith with his car, which occurred in the Season Four episode "Fun Run."



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