Archive for Thursday, October 21, 2004

Don’t call in sick to this ‘Office’

October 21, 2004

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The world's most painfully funny comedy returns to tie up loose ends. "The Office Special" (8 p.m., BBC America) continues the "mockumentary" coverage of delusional middle manager David Brent (series creator Ricky Gervais) and his former white-collar colleagues.

Set three years after the conclusion of "The Office," a two-season comedy honored with a Golden Globe and too many British honors to mention, "Special" finds David reduced to selling office-cleaning supplies out of his car. He blew his sizable severance package by producing a music single and excruciating accompanying video, seen and heard here at painful length.

But not all of the agony belongs to David. Tim (Martin Freeman) continues to suffer day-to-day indignities and still holds a torch for Dawn (Lucy Davis), the former receptionist now living in Florida as an illegal alien and undocumented baby sitter.

The two-hour "Special" concludes as the entire gang reassembles for yet another memorable Christmas party. Gervais and his cohorts deserve credit for wrapping up this wonderful series while it was on top. Too many comedies plod on for years after they've peaked.

Tonight's other highlights

  • One more eviction on "Survivor" (7 p.m., CBS).
  • St. Louis and Houston meet in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series (7 p.m., Fox).
  • A bookstore in need on "Will & Grace" (7:30 p.m., NBC).
  • Plastic surgery can be a killer on "CSI" (8 p.m., CBS).
  • Revamped teams take the competition to the streets on "The Apprentice" (8 p.m., NBC).
  • A missing domestic may have been kidnapped on "Without a Trace" (9 p.m., CBS).
  • Scheduled on "PrimeTime" (9 p.m., ABC): the results of a survey on Americans and their sex lives.
  • Stars of the TV superhero comedy reprise their roles in the 1966 big-screen version of "Batman!" (7 p.m., Fox Movie Channel).

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