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An "Office" Whodunit

If NBC's lackluster summer reality entry Treasure Hunters isn't exciting enough of a hunt for you during these warm summer months, why not do a little sleuthing with the accounting department of Dunder-Mifflin's Scranton branch office?

Fortunately, your solution is here as yesterday brought the launch of the first two webisode installments of NBC's The Office: The Accountants. A sum of three thousand dollars has gone missing from the coffers of Dunder-Mifflin Scranton and it's up to the crack detective team of Angela (Angela Kinsey), Kevin (Brian Baumgartner), and Oscar (Oscar Nunez) to unmask the thief and recover the missing cash. Ten webisodes, appearing every Thursday on NBC's Office website, will follow this dynamic, um, trio as they question the paper manufacturer's employees. (One caveat, however: don't hold your breath for appearances from Michael, Jim, or Pam.)

While each installment may only be three minutes in length, much of the fun comes from those unexpected moments of silence, such as the way Kevin reaches out to a bereft Oscar in episode 1 or the way Phyllis scoots herself out of frame in episode 2. (Can I just say how bloody much I love Phyllis?) And of course, it wouldn't be The Office if Angela weren't abrasive, Oscar secretive, Kevin oblivious (though apparently he likes it that way), Jan shifty at the mere mention of Michael, or Phyllis name-dropping her boyfriend's company, Vance Refrigeration.

So far the finger of suspicion has pointed towards Michael, especially as he's been known to take some creative license with his expense report, such as when he claimed he took a client to lunch and then turned in a receipt for J. Crew. While Michael may be the obvious suspect, this branch of Dunder-Mifflin seems to be filled with shady characters:

Social pariah Creed is a known thief, stealing everything from office supplies to poker chips.

Chatterbox Kelly has a penchant for fashion way in excess of her paycheck.

Insensitive Roy is planning an elaborate summer wedding with fiancee Pam.

No-nonsense Stanley is saving money to put his kids through college.

Alcoholic Meredith may have upped her poison to heard drugs and could be stealing to finance her next fix. (Okay, probably not.)

As for the rest... could it really be Dwight? I somehow doubt the Boy Scout and (former) volunteer deputy sheriff would stoop so low as to break the law. Fortunately, episode 2 has eliminated Phyllis from the line of inquiry, though she did admit to charging $14 to the Dunder-Mifflin corporate card when her heel broke at a sales conference. (Naughty, Phyllis, naughty!)

What this team of amateur accounting sleuths needs (other than maybe Mathnet) is to bring in a shrewd detective with cunning insight into the criminal mind. Who else would love to see Gareth Keenan launch a full-scale "invetigation" to get to the bottom of this theft? Then again, even Gareth botched his probe, pinning the blame for David's humiliation on poor, innocent Tim. Perhaps then, we'll just leave the sleuthing to the much more low-key interrogations of the Scranton Troika.

So, which Office worker do YOU think is behind the theft?

New episodes of "The Office: The Accountants" will appear each Thursday on NBC.com.

What's On Tonight

8 pm: NCIS (CBS); Dateline (NBC); What I Like About You/Twins (WB); America's Funniest Home Videos (ABC); 24 (FOX); WWE Friday Night Smackdown (UPN)

9 pm: The Unit (CBS); Las Vegas (NBC); Reba/Living with Fran (WB); Kyle XY (ABC) , 24 (FOX)

10 pm: NUMB3RS (CBS); Law & Order (NBC); 20/20 (ABC)

What I'll Be Watching

8 pm: Spaced on BBC America. (11 pm ET)

It's another episode of my new favorite British comedy, Spaced, a wacky 1999 Britcom starring Shaun of the Dead's Simon Pegg and Jessica Stevenson. On tonight's episode ("Chaos"), Tim takes Daisy's new dog Colin out for a walk and promptly loses him, causing Daisy to accuse Tim of deliberately losing the dog. However, when they learn that the dog was, er, dognapped, they launch a rescue mission.

8:30 pm: Peep Show on BBC America. (11:30 pm ET)

One of my favorite single-camera British comedies returns Stateside for a second season of twisted and bizarre episodes. On tonight's episode, Mark, convinced that they'll sleep together, attempts to stop his nemesis Jeff from taking a business trip with Sophie. Meanwhile, Jeremy becomes uncontrollably possessive over his new girlfriend Nancy.

9 pm: Black Books on BBC America. (Midnight ET)

BBC America continues its reairing of the second season of the brilliant Britcom Black Books, which stars Dylan Moran and Bill Bailey. In tonight's episode ("Blood"), Fran discovers the limits of familial bonds when she meets her distant cousins, while Bernard and Manny transform the bookshop into a restaurant.

11:20 pm: The Catherine Tate Show on BBC America. (10:20 pm ET)

Later on BBC America, it's another episode of the new season of The Catherine Tate Show. Who's Catherine Tate? Why, she might just be the heir to Tracy Ullman's sketch comedy throne.

Comments

Anonymous said…
Phyllis scooting her chair out of frame was priceless. And I loved Angela's "I knew it" and then when Kevin said, "I knew it wasn't you" the look over to Angela. Fantastic.

I think a stray dog came in and grabbed it and walked away w/it. Hey - it could happen!
ticknart said…
My favorite moment, so far, was Kevin saying, "They never tell me anything." Then grinning and saying, "I like it that way."

Although the scoot was brilliant. It's something that I see (and do) every day in my office.

My vote for who did it was Angela. I think she made a mistake in her math and doesn't realize it. Wouldn't the moment her error is discovered be even more satisfying if Kevin found it?
Anonymous said…
OMG! They're showing SPACED again? Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I had no idea. I'm going to put it on Season Pass right now!

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