2013 SNL Japanese parody of “The Office” with Ricky Gervais and Steve Carell

Having never really watched The Office I can say that this looks kind of ridiculous and once I started watching it I don’t stand corrected. Steve Carell and Ricky Gervais doing a Japanese version of The Office is, to me, something right out of the mind of someone that has a very dry and confusing sense of humor. But keep in mind this is my opinion and not much else. Also keep in mind that without watching this show I’m basing it upon clips and what few minutes I’ve ever watched.

On their own or in other productions these men are insanely funny. Even as a bit player at times Steve Carell is hilarious. But in this show I have to say that he’s kind of just, there. His humor is off, the dryness of the jokes are evident even when I can’t understand the language. No, I do not speak or understand Japanese. But the inflections and the facial expressions tell a tale that’s easily translatable at times.

Something about this show just doesn’t translate well to some people and I am one of them. Its humor is just a little too off and somehow stops right in the middle when you think something funny is about to develop. If I understood Japanese I get the feeling that it would be the same way. The false starting humor in The Office is something that’s hard to get behind, but regardless of this it did amass a great fan base in its time. Why I don’t know but the fans saw something in that others did not so there’s no need to bash the show so much, just give out honest interpretations.

Everyone on this show has the propensity to be funny. There’s not a single person that doesn’t have what it takes to contribute to a very funny and very engaging sitcom, but for some reason The Office just doesn’t seem to be it. Maybe those of us that don’t get it have grown used to the type of comedy that Steve Carell delivered in the 40-Year Old Virgin and even Evan Almighty. It’s easily understood that any actor has to stretch out and see what else they can do in their career, but somehow it seems like Steve Carell just calmed down and mailed in a performance for each episode.

The cast definitely meshes, there doesn’t seem to be any miscommunication on their part and the story line in each episode plays out like it should. It’s just not all that funny to some people and for those that can’t understand why it’s largely because the humor is as dry as a calcified bone in the Sahara desert after a dry spell. That kind of humor is hard to get behind but to those that get, to each their own.

The Japanese version might be considered somewhat racist for the cultural stereotypes and yet Ricky Gervais seems to have no problem running it. Of course a lot of people see racism at least ten times a day when they wake up I suppose it’s unfair to think it can’t happen on The Office.


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