Arguably the show’s best season, viewers are again compelled to get the DVD in order to pick up on all of the subtle gags that might have been missed the first time around. It’s odd, but the audio both on the network run and DVD sets is sometimes muffled, causing a potentially great line to be squashed. It’s the nature of the mockumentary beast perhaps.
In season four the show made no radical jumps but merely sharpened all of the tools in its drawer. Steve Carrel is still the axis around which the comedy orbits — yet he’s at his funniest when his character looks directly at the camera and deftly explains his actions, or tries to. The rest of the cast is the opposite, save for perhaps Dwight played by Rain Wilson. The season ends with Carrel’s Michael Scott still tempted to make the wrong decisions but somehow resisting. Just when you thought The Office was about to get predicable, they go to the change-up. The annoying Michael is actually charming to the new HR person, and doesn’t manage to blow it. Of course, he has season five to do that. Grade: A-
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