57 Best Car-Related Moments from The Office
It’s been over two years (831 days to be exact) since The Office aired its final episode here in the US, and each day since then, I have been filled with an intense emptiness that nothing can fill—but kudos to you for trying, Parks and Rec. The Office is a sick obsession for me; I can quote episodes word-for-word and usually watch an episode or two before bed each night. As an auto journalist, I’ve got a fair share of car paraphernalia scattered about my desk at work, but The Office is even more on display, with posters, post-it notes, a Dwight bobblehead, a Dundie, and even mouse pad covers.
For a show billed as being about life inside an office, quite a bit actually takes place in or around cars. I had been toying with the idea of reviewing my favorite car-related moments from The Office for more than a month, but it wasn’t until a couple days ago, when I sat down to review them, that I realized I had so many. I thought about narrowing it down to a smaller list, but in the end, I figured 57 was a good size for this list (because I am crazy). I could have even handled a bigger one. That’s what she said.
So now, without further ado, I bring you the 57 best car-related moments from The Office. (Or just jump over to the top five.)
Money – Season 4, Episode 4 – Jan’s Car Keys
This is actually a touching moment; it’s one of the few times that you can really believe that Jan cares about Michael. When Michael hops on a train to outrun his money troubles, Jan rushes to the office, hops out of her car, and throws her keys at Oscar before heading out in search of her boyfriend.
Christening – Season 7, Episode 7 – The Bus
After Michael and Andy thoughtlessly join a youth mission trip to Mexico during Cece’s Christening, they realize that they can’t go through with it. Immediately, while on the bus, they begin to freak out and demand the bus be stopped, totally disheartening all the kids excited to go and build a school for a poor village.
Work Bus – Season 9, Episode 4 – The Other Bus
Speaking of buses, I can’t really talk about vehicles on The Office without mentioning the work bus from the farewell season. After Jim manages to close down the office for a few days, Dwight rents a work bus for Dunder Mifflin to utilize. Ultimately, the employees abandon their work and instead drive several hours to buy some pie.
Vandalism – Season 9, Episode 14 – Truck
Also from the farewell season, “Vandalism” sees a nice moment of Pam and Dwight teaming up to take revenge on an asshat warehouse worker. The duo ultimately decides to draw inappropriate pictures (including some number twos) with washable paint all over the worker’s prized truck. Poop jokes are always funny.
Shareholder Meeting – Season 6, Episode 11 – The Limo
This moment, in which Michael, Andy, Dwight, and Oscar ride in a limo to New York City, is priceless for several reasons, but the best line comes from Michael while inside the limo: “I wish the windows weren’t tinted so people could see us in here.”
The Search – Season 7, Episode 15 – Jim and the Car
The car-related moment in this episode is both funny and important to Michael’s story arc. When Jim finds out that his mother-in-law has somehow accidentally locked Cece in her car, he immediately peels out of a gas station with Michael’s wallet and phone inside his SUV. Michael, of course, is in the gas station bathroom and—even more predictably for Michael—cannot call for help because his numbers are memorized by speed dial, not him. However, this whole fiasco leads to Holly finally realizing that she loves Michael.
Prince Family Paper – Season 5, Episode 13 – Hitting the Curb
The awkwardness of this moment is among the most cringe-worthy on the show. After successfully tricking a small business into giving him its client list, Michael wrecks his car on a curb during the getaway. And who is there to help Michael fix it? The caring, gullible, old small business owner who served in Vietnam.
Lecture Circuit: Part One – Season 5, Episode 16 – Music
As Pam drives Michael throughout the Northeast on a lecture circuit, she must play music in her head because Michael won’t let her listen to the radio. It leads to a cute moment between the two.
Grief Counseling – Season 3, Episode 4 – Ed Truck
In this episode, Michael finds out that his old boss, Ed Truck, was killed when his car drove under a semi and he, well, lost his head. Sad, I know, but somehow not when Michael describes it.
“He was working. He was on his way home. Wham—his capa is detated from his head!”
Customer Loyalty – Season 9, Episode 12 – Drive-Through
In an effort to show Darryl that working at a paper company can be fun, Dwight takes him to a drive-through, orders a milkshake, and then throws it back at the cashier, shouting “Fire in the hole!” Darryl tells Dwight to go inside and clean it up. As he is doing so, another car goes through the drive-through and does the same thing—only this time Dwight gets hit.
Double Date – Season 6, Episode 9 – The Drive Back
After Michael dumps Pam’s mother, Helene, at her birthday lunch, Michael, Helene, Jim, and Pam must all awkwardly drive back to the office together. While in the car, Helene says, “I’m 58. What am I supposed to do now?” Before Jim can stop him, Michael offers up, “Well, hobbies.”
Health Care – Season 1, Episode 3 – Industrial Coal
When Michael promises his staff a surprise by the end of the day, he panics. Hiding out in his car, he calls up a “friend,” who is presumably someone Michael met once at the coal site in Scranton. The conversation is priceless:
Michael: Calling you to ask you a little favoroonie, my friend. Um, trying to give the troops around here a little bit of a boost. And I was thinking that maybe we could take them down to take a spin on your big ride.
Man on the Phone: You mean the elevator that takes you down into the mineshaft? It’s not really a ride.
Michael: It says here that it’s a 300-foot drop.
Man on Phone: It goes 300 feet into the earth, but it moves really slowly.
Michael: So it’s not a free fall?
Man on Phone: It’s an industrial coal elevator.
Michael: Uh, all right. Well, once you get down into the mine, what, you got laser tag or something?
Dinner Party – Season 4, Episode 9 – Ice Cream
Aside from “Scott’s Tots,” “Dinner Party” has got to be the most painful episode to watch in terms of cringe factor—and I love every minute of it. But the funny car moment is actually after all the cringing business is done and away with. Angela, who is dating Andy at the time, is sitting in the passenger seat, eating an ice cream cone. But when Andy steals a kiss, she—with a deadpan glare—rolls down the window and shoves the ice cream onto the side of the car.
Deposition – Season 4, Episode 8 – Jan’s Hair
While the “Deposition” is the episode immediately before “Dinner Party,” the two aired five months apart because of the 2007 – 2008 Writers Guild of America strike. In this episode, Michael and Jan are driving to New York in Michael’s Chrysler Sebring to sue Dunder Mifflin. Of course, Jan wants to look good for the meeting, but Michael insists on taking the top off his convertible. Jan protests, but Michael does it anyway. The scene cuts immediately to Michael and Jan walking into corporate, as Jan tries to tame her hair, to no avail.
Tallahassee – Season 8, Episode 15 – Florida Stanley
I’ll never say a bad word about The Office, so I’ll put this delicately: in a season that struggled to resonate with viewers so much, the whole Florida plot was actually at times very, very good. I particularly enjoyed seeing “Florida Stanley” interact with his surroundings. In one scene, Stanley pulls up to his coworkers in a red Chevy Camaro and tells Jim to hop in. “You can work the iPod.”
Safety Training – Season 3, Episode 19 – Watermelon
If you held a gun to my head and told me to pick my favorite episode of The Office, I probably couldn’t answer. I hold them all in high regard, but there are an elite five that I could never rank over one another: “The Injury,” “Product Recall,” “Christmas Party,” “Murder,” and, of course, “Safety Training.” “Safety Training” features the famous watermelon drop, in which Dwight tests out a trampoline by dropping a watermelon from the roof onto it. Unfortunately, it bounces up and smashes the windshield of a car. Michael freaks out and tells Dwight to figure out if the car belongs to Stanley, and, if it does, to contact his lawyer and see if he covers hate crimes.
The big payoff is at the end, when we discover that it is, indeed, Stanley’s car.
The Alliance – Season 1, Episode 4 – Kicking Tires
What was so great about the first few seasons was the use of subtle humor. When Dwight kicks a car in frustration, the alarm begins to sound. Jim casually pulls out the key fob, presses a button to turn it off, and continues their conversation like nothing has happened—and I still find it hysterical.
Hot Girl – Season 1, Episode 6 – Cleaning Out the Car
As Michael prepares to drive Katie home after work, he enlists Ryan’s help to clean out his car, which leads to a couple gems from both of them. Among them:
Ryan: Wow. How many Filet-O-Fishes did you eat?
Michael: That’s over several months, Ryan.
Ryan: What about this bottle of power drink?
Michael: Uh, what flavor?
Michael: Blue’s not a flavor.
Ryan: It says, “Flavor: Blue Blast.”
The Injury – Season 2, Episode 12 – Dwight’s Crash
In this episode, Dwight freaks out about Michael’s burnt foot, and, in his hurry to get to his house, he crashes into a pole, giving him a concussion. His bumper falls off, but Dwight just throws up on his car and then keeps driving. Jim has the winning line here: “Dwight, you forgot your bumper.”
Finale – Season 9, Episode 23 – The Trunk
Who didn’t love The Office finale? Everything about it was brilliant. And one of the best moments? Angela spent much of the evening of the day before her wedding locked in Mose’s trunk, after he abducts her as part of a Schrute tradition.
Andy’s Ancestry – Season 9, Episode 3 – Driving Lessons
Say what you will about Nellie Bertram, but I rather enjoy Catherine Tate and thought she was a welcome addition to the show. Case in point—her learning to drive Stateside with Pam was a standout moment in season 9.
Whistleblower – Season 6, Episode 26 – Kelly in the Van
“Whistleblower,” while still brilliant, is probably the weakest season finale for The Office. As a huge Mindy Kaling fan, however, I can always count on her character Kelly to crack me up. At one point in this episode, Michael is gathering potential whistleblowers Pam and Darryl in Meredith’s van. Kelly unexpectedly shows up and hops in the van, clueless as ever.
Kelly: Hey guys, sorry I’m late.
Pam: We’re not going for yogurt.
Michael: It’s okay, she’s cool. She also whistle-blew.
Kelly: Guys, I couldn’t help it. It is so boring where we work. I mean, it’s as interesting as a morgue. It might be less interesting than a morgue.
Michael: Hey, hey, it’s as interesting as a morgue!
The Chair Model – Season 4, Episode 10 – Death of a Chair Model
When Michael is looking for a dream woman, he uses a model in a chair catalogue as an example to his staff, so that they can recommend women like her for him to date. Dwight makes it his mission to instead find that very model, only to discover she died in a car accident. When Michael hears the news, he is devastated, and he even visits her grave for closure.
Initiation – Season 3, Episode 5 – Ryan’s Bad Day
The “Initiation” is one of the episodes that make the third season so great. (Okay, all episodes in season 3 make the third season so great, good point.) In this episode, Dwight takes Ryan out for “training” before a sales call. Of course, Dwight’s idea of training Ryan is much different from Ryan’s. The scenario gives us this gem from Dwight: “Just as you have planted your seed in the ground, I am going to plant my seed in you.”
Eventually, Dwight says he must get something from his car, leaving Ryan in a field in the middle of nowhere. But instead of returning, Dwight just peels out and disappears, because apparently this will teach Ryan something about selling paper.
Fun Run – Season 4, Episode 1 – Running a Race
“Fun Run” is associated with an incredibly memorable car-related moment in The Office, but that one is much further down the list, of course. There is a second moment, however, that is also, as Michael Scott would say, “very comedically humorous.” At the beginning of Michael Scott’s Dunder Mifflin Scranton Meredith Palmer Memorial Celebrity Rabies Awareness Pro-Am Fun Run Race for the Cure, Michael takes off at a sprint. Just as he is saying that he is not an idiot, Oscar, Stanley, and Creed sneak into a taxi behind his back, and head off to drink beers instead of completing the race.
Survivor Man – Season 4, Episode 7 – Shoe
As Dwight drives Michael into the wilderness to survive on his own, he unexpectedly removes his shoe and beats Michael’s head with it.
Michael: Ow! What are you doing?
Dwight: It would be better if you were unconscious.
Niagara: Part Two – Season 6, Episode 5 – Driving Ms. Andy
In the beloved wedding episode, all eyes should be on Jim and Pam as they tie the knot. However, as expected, the employees of the office steal the spotlight—whether it’s Dwight sleeping with a bridesmaid, Kevin wearing tissue boxes as shoes, or Andy tearing open his scrotum while dancing. The final situation results in Pam having to drive Andy to the hospital the night before her wedding. We get this wonderful line from Andy: “Well, at least slow down a little bit because every little bump in the road is major pain on my scrotum.”
Broke – Season 5, Episode 25 – Ryan and the Van
Michael’s juvenile tendencies are perhaps never clearer than when Ryan is trying to climb inside his van early in the morning.
Garden Party – Season 8, Episode 4 – Mose Knieval
Mose Schrute is one of my favorite non-employee characters. Dwight’s cousin is not what you would call normal, which is evident in all of his cameos, but his minor subplot in “Garden Party” makes this most evident. He serves as a valet for the event at Schrute Farms, taking everyone’s cars into the middle of a field and then lining them up as if he is going to jump over them like Evil Knieval.
Free Family Portrait Studio – Season 8, Episode 24 – Car Chase
The plot of “Free Family Portrait Studio” is a little over the top, I’ll give you that—though it has nothing on “The Target” from season 9. Still, it gives us this beautiful car chase scene, wherein Dwight has stolen Angela’s baby’s dirty diaper and Angela is chasing him all over town. At some point, Angela accidentally begins to follow Mose instead of Dwight; that’s how elaborate this ruse to get Angela’s baby’s DNA is—that Dwight would host a free family portrait studio at work so that he could get close to the baby, then have his cousin drive the exact same type of car as Dwight to confuse Angela. Ridiculous? Yes. But hilarious? Even more so.
Broke – Season 5, Episode 25 – Not for the Church
The same van from number 30 on this list was purchased by the Michael Scott Paper Company to make deliveries. However, the van has Korean writing on the side of it. Pam, Ryan, and Michael think it says “Alleluia Church of Scranton” on the side, and when a Korean-American woman tries to board the van, Pam tries in vain to communicate that the van is “not for the church.” By the end of the episode, when the trio realizes they are broke, they don’t even budge when the Korean-American boards the bus and takes a seat.
Andy’s Play – Season 7, Episode 3 – Irish Cream
This is a cute moment between Pam and Jim, post-baby. After a failed night out at Andy’s play, they get home only to find out that their daughter, Cece, is asleep in the back of the car. Afraid that moving her will wake her, they instead enjoy a moment to themselves, sipping Irish cream and juice in the car.
Traveling Salesmen – Season 3, Episode 12 – The Amazing Race
By no means is it a stretch to say that Michael probably wishes he were the star of a reality show. “Traveling Salesman” makes this apparent when, after the sales staff has broken up into teams of two, he decides to turn it into the Amazing Race.
Michael: All right, everybody, circle up. Here we go. You know what this is? This is the Amazing Race. And you guys are the retired marines, and you guys are the mother and daughter, and you guys are the gay couple. And we are the firefighter heroes.
Karen: Wait, Amazing Race like, the biggest sale wins?
Michael: No, we’re just going to rush out, do the sales thing, and come back.
Ryan: Is there a prize?
Michael: Just bragging rights.
Phyllis: Then how is this Amazing Race?
Michael: It’s just, buhhh, it’s Amazing Race, Phyllis, okay? We’re in teams of two, and we are on a mission. All right, so, on your mark, get set, go. Let’s do it.
Then, of course, Michael proceeds to take Phyllis’ keys out of her hands, while smirking, and throws them under her car.
Goodbye, Toby – Season 4, Episode 14 – Raccoon
In a scene from “Goodbye, Toby,” Michael catches and berates Meredith, Dwight, and Mose for sneaking a raccoon into Holly’s car, as a form of hazing. What makes this so amusing is, one, Michael was the one who first suggested hazing Holly before he realized he had a crush on her, and, two, Michael is berating them for a childish prank while he himself is hosting an elaborate party complete with a Ferris wheel to celebrate the fact that his HR representative, Toby, is leaving. Such is the enigma of Michael Scott.
Employee Transfer – Season 5, Episode 6 – Singing the Blues
Michael quickly falls in love with Holly after “Goodbye, Toby,” but that ultimately leads to her being transferred to Nashua, New Hampshire. When Michael and Darryl drive Holly up to Nashua, the couple realizes they can’t continue their relationship. On the way back home, Darryl tries to get Michael to sing the blues, but it goes just how you imagine Michael singing the blues would go.
The Duel – Season 5, Episode 12 – The Prius
This marks the first of three entries from “The Duel,” which makes the season 5 episode the most popular episode on this list. This first entry is also likely the most apparent: during the duel in the parking lot between Dwight and Andy, Andy lures Dwight to a fence with a note, which reads, “From the desk of Andrew Bernard. Dear Dwight, by now you have received my note. How are you? I am well. You are no doubt wondering why I have left this note. It has come to my attention that in any physical match with you, I would surely be bested. The soft underbelly of my refined upbringing is my soft underbelly…”
As this point, Andy, in his Prius (which, as Oscar points out, is silent under five miles per hour), sneaks up on Dwight and uses the car to pin Dwight to the fence, leading to a hilarious exchange between the two, culminating in the wonderful line, “Sasquatches are the strongest animal on the planet! So fine, call me a Sasquatch!”
Scott’s Tots – Season 6, Episode 12 – Singing
“Scott’s Tots” is the wonderfully cringe-worthy episode in which we find out that Michael, once upon a time, pledged to pay college tuition for a bunch of kids, assuming they graduate high school. Of course, now that the time has come, Michael cannot make good on his promise. Before they find out that Michael will not be paying for their education, they invite him to their high school and have a pep rally-type event honoring him, including this song, called “Hey, Mr. Scott.”
The car-related moment comes afterward, on the drive back to the office. Erin, who is still finding her place in the office, both as a workplace and as a TV show, cheers Michael up and begins to sing the song. It’s a cute moment—and one of the first times that I remember truly thinking that someone else could take on Pam’s receptionist role. In essence, I think this is an important moment because it marks Erin’s place in the story.
Michael Scott Paper Company – Season 5, Episode 23 – Parallel Parking
The cold open of this episode is absolutely brilliant. It features Michael rolling up to work with Lady Gaga blaring from his PT Cruiser convertible. He looks to the camera, says, “It’s Britney, bitch,” and then tries to parallel park in a gaping spot, but accidentally hits one of the cars before driving away.
The Delivery: Part One – Season 6, Episode 17 – “I Just Did”
For some reason, when Pam is going to the hospital to deliver her first baby, Michael drives Jim and Pam (and they are escorted by Dwight). Michael drops the two off at the door and then proceeds to park in an ambulance lane. He tells a hospital employee, “Dunder Mifflin, it’s okay,” as the employee yells at him, “Sir, you can’t park here!”
Michael then gives him a look, turns, throws his keys far away, and says, “I just did.”
The Fire – Season 2, Episode 4 – Uncomfortable Ryan
Michael’s obsession with Ryan really manifests itself in the first episode of the second season, “The Dundies,” in which Michal gives Ryan the Hottest in the Office award. Three episodes later, and Ryan, who accidentally started a fire and caused the whole building to be evacuated, is trapped in the backseat of a car, talking to Michael.
Ryan: Maybe we should get some air.
Michael: Nah, I’m okay.
Ryan: I’m really uncomfortable.
Livin’ the Dream – Season 9, Episode 21 – Toilet Humor
Andy certainly doesn’t think his actions through very well when he is upset—punching the same spot on the same wall twice, years apart, for instance. But his decision to pull down his pants and take a dump on the hood of David Wallace’s car is actually very clearly thought out, as he looks to sever ties with Dunder Mifflin to pursue his passion for singing. While the bit is ridiculous, I can’t help but laugh every time I see him hold himself up to relieve himself atop the car.
Mafia – Season 6, Episode 6 – The Mechanic
Another shining Andy moment comes in “Mafia,” when Andy dresses like a mechanic so he has an excuse to carry around a wrench when he, Michael, and Dwight meet up for lunch with an insurance salesman who they suspect is in the mafia. A woman approaches Andy, saying she is having car troubles. Andy, who appears to be a mechanic, must agree to help out or have his cover blown. Of course, Andy knows nothing about cars and ends up doing more damage under the hood than there was to begin with.
Sexual Harassment – Season 2, Episode 2 – William Hung
In the beloved “Sexual Harassment” episode, we meet Todd Packer in the flesh. He has a DUI, however, and thus needs someone to drive him around. Michael, who idolizes Packer, volunteers his protégé Ryan. As Ryan approaches Todd’s car to drive him, he notes Todd’s license plate: WLHUNG.
Ryan: You a big William Hung fan?
Todd: Why does everybody ask me that? Who the hell is that?
Get the Girl – Season 8, Episode 19 – Wrong Prius
The plotline that sends Andy down to Tallahassee to “rescue” and win back Erin is far-fetched, but it does lead to a rewarding moment. As Andy begins to drive home, forlorn, Erin chases after him, realizing she still loves him. She runs up to what she thinks is his Prius and shouts, “Andy, wait! Don’t go. Andy, I love you. Stop!” Then it dawns on her that she has approached the wrong Prius. She quickly says to the driver, “Oh, this is the wrong Prius. I don’t love you. I’m sorry.”
Women’s Appreciation – Season 3, Episode 21 – Changing a Tire
“Women’s Appreciation” is a great episode for so many reasons, but perhaps the greatest is the character growth we see in Pam, as she gains confidence in herself as a newly single woman, even as she watches the man she is in love with continue in a relationship with another coworker, Karen. The big moment marking her growth is when Meredith’s van gets a flat tire. Michael, as the only man, pretends to know how to change a tire, trying to use a jack to loosen lug nuts and asking for a “crescent Allen.” Pam then takes over while Michael “directs traffic.”
Seeing Pam change the tire is such a rewarding moment for anyone invested in her character. Hearing the pride in her voice as she says, “You know, I changed a tire today, all by myself,” is enough to make anyone just squee.
The Duel – Season 5, Episode 12 – Speed Radar
Here we have the second entry from “The Duel,” the cold open. We learn that Angela has complained to police about speeding down Slough Avenue (the street on which Scranton Business Park is located, as a tribute to the UK version of The Office), so police added a speed radar to slow drivers down. However, as Pam says, it’s actually causing more of a problem.
The gang decides to go outside and track how fast they can run by sprinting toward the radar. But when a car comes up behind Michael and the radar displays 31, Michael refuses to accept that he himself was not running 31 mph.
Beach Games – Season 3, Episode 22 – Flintstones
This is another heartwarming moment, and I’m too much of a sap not to rank it so high. At the end of “Beach Games,” we see a clip of the entire office singing the Flintstones theme song, with Michael, of course, shouting “WILMA!” at the end. It’s just a very nice moment for the cast—and was probably unscripted.
Baby Shower – Season 5, Episode 4 – Stroller
Number ten on my list comes to us from the fifth season. Watching Dwight try to destroy a baby stroller by backing over it and then driving it around dangling from his car is hilarious every time I watch it.
Niagara: Part One – Season 6, Episode 4 – Cans
For Jim’s and Pam’s wedding, Michael has decked out his car for the drive up to Niagara. He writes “Going to a Wedding” on his back window and even ties cans to his back bumper. Pam starts to ask him, “But aren’t you supposed to do that to our…” but decides to drop it, saying, “No, it’s great.”
Michael then heads out, but we learn that he did not drain the cans, and they explode all over the street as he drags them along.
Turf War – Season 8, Episode 23 – Jim’s Prank
I love this moment in “Turf War” because it gives us Jim, who is usually so masterful with his pranks, totally blanking when it comes to thwarting the efforts of an opposing salesman, Harry Jannerone, who is racing Jim and Dwight to a potential client. Ultimately, when Harry pulls up next to Jim and Dwight at a red light, Jim just hops out of his car, opens Harry’s passenger door, and then hops back in his car, to Dwight’s dismay.
“That’s it? Oh, that’s great. That’s like a five second delay.”
Then, of course, Dwight asks if Jim’s car has turbo or nitrous and tells Jim to “hit the nos,” like from Fast and Furious. Jim humors him, counting down until nos time. But when he “hits the nos,” he really just turns on his windshield wipers.
The Delivery – Season 6, Episode 17 – Deer
The urgency of Pam’s escort to the hospital when she is in labor is definitely felt, as she and Jim have been putting off going until midnight to get an extra night at the hospital (and then because Pam is scared). But when they hop in Michael’s car and follow Dwight, their escort, out of the parking lot, Dwight almost immediately slams on his brakes and shouts out to Michael, behind him.
Dwight: This is where I saw that deer last week.
Dwight: Right over by that fence.
Michael: By the bushes?
At this point, Jim cuts in. The humor here goes even deeper than the fact that Dwight, in this urgent moment, would stop to shout at Michael, who also, in this urgent moment, has no problem stopping to chat; the scene is also subtly humorous because it indicates that Dwight and Michael discussed this deer previously and Michael was unable to understand where the deer was. The two do have a surprisingly en-deer-ing relationship (it’s too late, I already made the awful pun, and I’ll take my punishment like a man); I think my favorite glimpse into their relationship is when we discover that they spent New Year’s Eve together, watching a movie.
But I digress. Finishing out the humor from “The Delivery” car escort is when Michael is later texting on his phone while driving. When Pam and Jim start to yell at him from the backseat, Michael shouts, “I’m texting about you, okay!” as if that will make it all right.
The Duel – Season 5, Episode 12 – Tattle Tale
The final entry from “The Duel” is one that still cracks me up today and shows how truly cowardly Michael can be. Michael has taken it upon himself to tell Andy that his fiancée, Angela, is having an affair with Dwight, something the whole office knows but has been waiting for Angela to tell Andy herself. Of course, Michael decides to tell Andy right before he leaves the office for the entire day, meaning he won’t have to deal with the repercussions.
Even then, though, Michael realizes how difficult it is to tell Andy as he has Andy walk him out to his car. He drags Andy all the way out to the parking lot to say, “I don’t have much time,” only to realize that his car is way on the other side of the parking lot. He then mumbles nonsense as they approach his car, and it isn’t until he is inside his car with the window rolled up that he says to Andy, “Dwight and Angela are having an affair, so…” Only Andy can’t hear him.
Andy: I can’t hear you through the glass.
Michael: (Rolling down the window) Dwight and Angela are having an affair. They’ve been sleeping together for some time. That was the news. I wanted to let you know.
Michael: All right, see you later.
Here, Michael begins to back out.
Andy: Are you serious?
And then he drives away.
Branch Wars – Season 4, Episode 6 – Peeing in a Can
“Branch Wars” is one of the most hilarious episodes that the show has to offer. In it, Dwight and Michael trick Jim into thinking they’re all going on a sales call in Michael’s car. In reality, they are driving to the Dunder Mifflin Utica branch to “get back” at Karen, who is now the regional manager, for poaching Stanley from their office. When Jim finds out, he is furious, but he agrees to go—and wear Madge’s warehouse uniform and a false mustache—to prevent Dwight and Michael from doing real damage with some explosives.
Eventually, Michael notices a sound as they drive, and they realize that Dwight is peeing in an empty can in the backseat. Michael and Jim immediately freak out and shout, but the big payoff at the end is Dwight’s line: “I think I cut my penis on the lid.”
Weight Loss: Part Two – Season 5, Episode 2 – The Proposal
In the second part of “Weight Loss,” fans finally saw the moment they’d long been waiting for—Jim’s proposal to Pam. It was not the big, showy proposal we would have gotten in “Goodbye, Toby” at the end of the previous season, had Andy not ruined that by proposing to Angela. Instead, we got something simple and beautiful. Pam is living in New York while she goes to art school, and Jim is still in Scranton, and they agreed to postpone an engagement until Pam was back. But Jim IMs her asking her to meet at a gas station halfway. It is raining and on a busy street, and the view we get from the documentary crew is actually from across the highway.
As they both get out of their cars, Pam runs to Jim, totally unawares, saying, “This is not halfway! I did the math. I had to drive way longer than you. Montclair would have been closer, so you have to buy lunch.” But then Jim just drops to his knee, and Pam asks, “What are you doing?”
“I just…couldn’t wait,” Jim says, and everyone who was watching across the whole country during the premiere collectively jumped off their couches and started doing a happy dance.
Cocktails – Season 3, Episode 17 – Backseat Driver
Taking the number three spot is a car-related moment from “Cocktails.” After a night of awkwardness at a party at David Wallace’s house, newly dating Michael and Jan drive home, bickering.
Michael: Our first fight. If this is about what happened in the bathroom, there was no place to cuddle…
Jan: I feel sick.
Michael: You didn’t have any of the potato salad, did you?
Jan: No. We were good when we were just running around, you know, in secret. It was wrong, and it was exciting. Maybe it was a mistake to take it public.
Michael: Well, if that’s the way you feel, my lady, then you have hurt me greatly.
Jan: Please don’t cry.
Michael: I’m not going to cry. I feel like it, but I am not going to. Why don’t you just take your stupid love contract and tear it up into a million little pieces?
Jan: It was never a love contract, Michael, and besides, I’ve already given a copy to David, and it would be just as embarrassing to get it back as it was handing it to him.
Michael: I want the house, Jan. I want the picket fence. I want the ketchup fights and the tickling and the giggling.
Jan: I didn’t mean it. I was…
Jan: …tired. I’m tired, and I didn’t eat enough. And, and, that’s all. That was it.
Michael: That’s all, you didn’t mean it?
Jan: That’s all. I didn’t mean it. That’s all. I’m just saying I didn’t mean it.
Michael: I love you, Jan.
And then, from the darkness of the backseat, an unexpected Dwight leans forward to say, “Don’t break up, you guys. You’re great together.”
I always know Dwight is back there, every time I watch it, but it still kills me when he suddenly appears, having witnessed that entire awkward dispute.
Incidentally, Michael references “ketchup fights” as if that’s a normal couple thing, and then in “Threat Level Midnight,” the episode about the movie he wrote and starred in, we get to see his character, Agent Michael Scarn, actually having ketchup fights with his wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones.
Fun Run – Season 4, Episode 1 – Meredith
But of course, you knew this one would be on here. You probably came to this list expecting to read all about it—and maybe see it take first place.
“Fun Run” was the season 4 opener, and I still bust a gut at the cold open, when Michael mows down Meredith with his car in the parking lot. But writing about it doesn’t do it justice; you just have to watch.
The joke continues when we see a talking head from Michael: “Guess what? I have flaws. What are they? Oh, I don’t know. I sing in the shower. Sometimes I spend too much time volunteering. Occasionally I’ll hit somebody with my car. So sue me…no, don’t sue me. That is the opposite of the point that I’m trying to make.”
Dunder Mifflin Infinity – Season 4, Episode 2 – The Lake
And at last, we’ve arrived at the top of our list, brought to us by “Dunder Mifflin Infinity,” the episode in which Michael tries to fight technological advancements (like a new website for the company) by proving that gift baskets are the best way to get, retain, and win back clients. But after his gift basket strategy fails him, he becomes so jaded that he decides to let technology dictate everything for him.
So when his GPS tells him to drive into a lake? Just watch.
And I’ll just leave you with this clip from later in the episode when his staff finds out what happened:
Thanks for reading! Dinkin’ flicka.
- Timothy MooreManaging Editor
Timothy Moore hails from Dayton, Ohio, and tries to bring that Midwestern flavor to his writing. (But as it turns out, no one really likes the Midwestern flavor.) He has been covering the auto industry for years, with several national auto shows under his belt, but he’s been writing about lots of other things (like dragons and Mickey Mouse and cows drowning in milk) since he was just a tot. Outside of the land of cars, Timothy enjoys watching The Office and consuming excessive amounts of peanut butter and beer, and is on the board of an up-and-coming Dayton theatre company called The Playground. And when he’s not on stage (or three jars into a peanut butter binge), Timothy spends time with his mischievous dog, Greyson. See more articles by Timothy.