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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
on 11 September 2013
Don't get me wrong. The Office itself is superb: perhaps the finest British sitcom of the century so far.
But this version - the 10th Anniversary box set - is best avoided.
Why? Well, imagine you want to watch Episode 1. Or Episode 5. Or any episode. As you surely will.
Press Episode 1 on the menu screen and you don't get the programme but instead lots of chat about the series from Gervais and Merchant and assorted other celebrities. The show comes on eventually but it's not easy to "skip".
These extras are fine in themself. But there is no opportunity to avoid them and just get straight to the show. You even get Mackenzie Crook talking half way through the opening titles.
A great series then. But the failure to seperate the extras from the show itself is a disaster.
Avoid the 10th anniversary edition! Buy any other version of this great series instead.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on 21 November 2013
The 10th anniversary edition of The Office comes with 4 or 5 minutes of commentary before each and every episode (or at least all the first six episodes, which I have seen in a row today...). These commentary sections cannot be turned off, and there is no way to know when exactly the commentary ends and the episode starts.

What is the problem with these commentaries, made by Ricky Gervais, the actors, and others? They are essentially spoilers. For someone who has never seen The Office, they spoil the whole experience, by revealing too much, and by giving too much interpretation right from the authors. This basically destroys any possibility of creating your own opinions and interpretation. And people who enjoy something like The Office certainly has no need to have the characters, the themes, everything explained.

I would have nothing against these commentaries had they been optional. But they are not, and their content spoils the whole experience of anyone who is still knew to the series.

Actually, the amount of self-celebration in the commentaries is so big, that one may get sick of The Office even before seing the first episode.

I suggest buying the older set of dvds, which also comes with the complete series and Christams specials, and spares the viewer from explanation, self-celebration, spoilers, and "authentic interpretation" of this great piece of art.

Enjoy The Office, but buy any other edition but this one.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 24 August 2013
The extras have been interspersed with the episodes rather than being together and it is irritating if you just want to watch an episode as you have to fast forward through them. Apart from that it is very good value.
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28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on 7 December 2011
When the product arrived I was very happy. The quality of the actual box is great and looks really smart. Then when I started to play the first episode I hit the major fault. I clicked play and the first thing that appears is Steven Merchant and Ricky Jervais. I thought that it seemed reasonable for them to do a small introduction as its the anniversary edition but for some reason it was actually all of the extra content. Each episode contains the extra content at the beginning of the episode so you either watch it and ruin the episode or skip the chapter and have to come back to it afterwards which is a bit of a fuss.

However, once the annoyance of Ricky Jervais' face popping up at the beginning of every episode wears of you start to appreciate the excellent humour they have created and a truly excellent couple of series. So, my advice would be, unless you want to listen to Ricky Jervais talking about himself, choose a bog standard version.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on 11 April 2012
The hugely popular US Office series is funny, granted. But the UK version is in an office of its own. Not only does Gervais give a very funny, if totally awkward performance, but Freeman is the most outstanding of them all. I think, (correct me if I'm wrong,) this was his first big break, and he certainly hit the ground running. It is commonly thought that The Office is simply funny, but in my experience of the UK Office, there is huge passion throughout. There is love, loss, realism and a strange development of character. The character of David Brent is an interesting one- Gervais pulls him off incredibly well. And the psychological breakdown of Brent is one of the most sad and moving things I have seen on screen.

This is the most worthwhile thing I have ever seen- funny, awkward, realistic yet sad and emotive. I would not recommend this to the lighthearted slapstick comedy lover of something like "The US Office."

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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on 28 February 2012
Being initially aired before I was old enough to be interested in The Office, I bought this set with high hopes and a fresh perspective. I won't elaborate on the quality of the series itself, but safe to say that it is good comedy. The first episode is shaky, not as funny as I was expecting at all, but from the second episode onwards the series really hits its stride and provides some proper laugh-out-loud moments, and there's no shortage of cringeworthy "must hide face in hands" moments courtesy of Ricky Gervais as David Brent. I don't think it lives up to the hype, though. There are other shows which are funnier and more interesting plot-wise, I think (Gervais and Merchants' "Extras" being one of these, in my opinion). It's definitely worth a watch though, and I'll watch it again without a doubt.

What really lets this set down, though, is the obligatory watching of the special features during the first series. When I watch something for the first time, I want to just watch it, unspoiled and not be bogged down by a bunch of (often random) talking heads extolling the virtues of a programme I haven't seen yet. I was disappointed, then, on pressing play to find out that this is exactly what happens - the first five minutes of each episode go through an analysis of some aspect or other of the show's greatness by people in the show, and randomers who, as far as I'm aware, have nothing to do with it (Hugh Jackman being one of these). There is absolutely no need for this at all - special features should not be forced on the viewer, that is what the second disc is for, and in my opinion all this added to the series was the impression that Gervais blatantly agrees with all the hype associated with it. It really soured the first viewing from what would have otherwise been a pleasant experience. Additionally, it means that in order to go and watch those features in future (should I even want to), I'd have to go to each episode and watch only the first five minutes. Not a huge task, but irritatingly unnecessary. This only happens with the first series - the second series and the Christmas specials both play as they should, with special features left exactly where they should be. However, it's definitely a weak point in an otherwise good box set. Buy with the confidence that you're getting the series in its entirety, and if you love The Office then you'll love this set. However if you're like me and just a casual or new fan, be prepared to do a bit of scene skipping to get to the goods that you paid for!
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VINE VOICEon 17 September 2015
David Brent is the well meaning but clueless and incompetent manager of a small paper company in Slough and has allowed a BBC film crew into his office to film a documentary. While not quite up there with the all time great British comedies, it is still one of the best British comedies of the 21st century so far. Excellent performances from Ricky Gervais as the likeable but hopeless Brent who thinks he is the world's best boss and undiscovered comic talent. We've all worked for somebody like Brent at one time or another which is what makes this series so relatable and likeable. There is also excellent performances from Mackenzie Crook as Gareth, Brent's loyal and eager assistant and jobsworth who nobody takes seriously, Martin Freeman as Tim, one of the salesman who loves to wind up Gareth for fun and is in love with receptionist Dawn, another excellent performance from Lucy Davis in a rather sweet relationship plus various supporting characters. My personal favourite being the unnamed male cleaner who never says a word but stops what he's doing and just stares cluelessly at the cameras. It is funny and painful to watch at the same time mainly thanks to Brent who thinks he has to be politically correct all the time yet still manages somehow to offend everyone yet you can't tear yourself away from it. Every first series episode is introduced by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant who wrote and directed every episode with interviews from the cast and celebrity fans of the show which can be interesting to watch but annoying if you want to skip and just watch the episodes giving you insight into how the series was made plus lots of other extras including a pre pilot like a tryout of the series that was never broadcast on TV.
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on 28 December 2014
(4 Stars for The Office and 1 Star for The Box Set).
Whatever job we do, 'The Workplace' - The Workplace arena - 'is' an Office.
The Office is a BBC TV comedy series by Ricky Gervais.
The documentary style of filming is part of its key features, meaning that its a Docu-soap - a documentary style soap-opera.
What's real, what's not real? Who knows? Who cares? This is British humour at its best. This is British humour in an office setting and a brilliant piece of acting by Ricky Gervais or is it?

The Office is central to our lives.
The Workplace is the focal point where we can act-up or act out the emotions of who we are.
The Office of The Workplace Arena is the HR Dept (The Human Resource {Human Resources} Department.

There are two storylines that run concurrently:
1. The regional manager David Brent (Ricky Gervais) frequently makes attempts to win favour with his employees and peers, and his attempts to find love with embarrassing or disastrous results. Brent's character flaws are verbal gaffes, racism, sexism and other social innuendo's that are politically incorrect. His assistant (to the) regional manager, Gareth Keenan (Mackenzie Crook), is also a lieutenant in the Territorial Army.
2. The blooming of an Office romance and the development of the relationship between Tim Canterbury (Martin Freeman) and bored receptionist Dawn Tinsley (Lucy Davis) - even though she is already engaged to Lee (Joel Beckett).

Whilst many of us may think that the manager's job is easy and is a route to an easy life or that we could manage The Office better, the reality is quite different. As a Docu-soap, we want it to be real and hope that it is real, but towards the end of the series - which The Box set confirms - you get a sense that this was no act for Ricky Gervais. This is the portrayal of Ricky Gervais working for the BBC, and that this is the real life drama of Ricky Gervais being himself.

Ricky Gervais was unheard of before the UK BBC TV launch of The Office. Many of the cast were stage actors/actresses which may/may not have have played a few small parts in UK TV drama, but they were still relatively unknown. The initial Docu-soap idea seemed real and more believable. Out-of-work or resting actors/actresses have to do something between jobs - and maybe - just maybe they might have worked in an Office, so the UK BBC TV Docu-soap of The Office really worked. There just wasn't enough of the series.

The Negatives
The Box Set is crap!
There's a lot of chat and a lot of waffle to pack out a 4-disc DVD set, when really 2 discs would have been sufficient.
The special features are co-edited and mixed up with various episodes.
The individual episodes are not titled but are just labelled as Episode 1, Episode 2 etc.
The DVD disks and Box Set contain very little Contents or Index information, which means you have to play the disc to get any real information.
The Christmas Specials are not very christmassy. f it wasn't for the background music that plays Christmas songs and a brief mention of a 'secret santa', you wouldn't know its The Office Christmas Party.

Thank You!
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on 16 December 2011
People seem to be slating this because of what has NOT been included within the long list of special features. However, unless you're an obsessive who must have every pilot, training vid or whatever - even if the makers themselves didn't see fit to include them - this is still a damn good box set by any measure.

At least one reviewer has also bemoaned the inclusion of introductions to each of the episodes in series one. Personally speaking, I probably would've preferred not to have these, but it's not something I'm overly bothered by, and perhaps it must be remembered that this is an anniversary edition rather than just a reissue of the original box set.

'The Office' is, of course, a brilliant sitcom, and this collection includes all of the special features that were on the original box set, plus a whole host of new ones. It's also very nicely packaged, and for £9.99 you can't go wrong.

The only thing I don't like about it (though it's only a miniscule gripe) is the image on the front of Brent doing 'the dance'. Although this was undoubtedly a funny and cringeworthy moment, as with 'Only Fools and Horses' and Del falling through the bar, or with 'Father Ted' and Mrs Doyle saying 'ah go on', there is infinitely more to this comedic masterpiece than 'the dance'.
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on 21 April 2013
This is a simple idea executed brilliantly. A mock fly-on-the-wall documentary about a group of workers in an office environment. Ricky Gervais', (David Brent) performance is outstanding, delivering subtitle humour that if you get it, is extremely funny. Gervais does faux pas exceptionally well and this is a an underlying theme in most of his projects.

David Brent simply wants to be liked and to fit in with everybody he meets; if someone has done something better than him, then he will try and do something or say something that one-ups them. This often leads to embarrassing and awkward situations.

Along with the humour there are also emotional moments throughout the series, such as with Tim (played by Martin Freeman) and Dawn, (played by Lucy Davis) unspoken affections. There are even emotional moments with Brent himself, where he beings to realise that you can't get everybody to like you in life.

Highly recommended viewing for people wanting to enjoy an excellent British sitcom, with great writing and acting.
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