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Most. Cringe-worthy. Cold. Open. Ever.

"Baby Shower" opens up (no pun intended) with Dwight being pregnant and giving birth to a watermelon. Actually, a buttery watermelon ("newborns are slippery!"). Physical humor will get me every time. (And this is the second time with a watermelon! Remember "Safety Training"?)

So, the second thought that crosses my mind when the episode starts is, how cold is Jan? She walks in with baby in tow (and not in her belly). There is Astrid (not Astird as Michael first thought) in the stroller....being all...born and stuff. Apparently Jan didn't fill anyone in on the fact that she had the baby. Poor Michael. No, it's not his baby, but you know he wants to feel as attached to it as the umbilical cord did.

The office continues to have a normal baby shower as normal, full with "name that baby" games, food, gifts and a singing Jan. Yep--Jan singing to the baby (and the rest of the office) was hilarious. Melora Hardin has a voice on her! When Michael wants to pick up Astrid, he does so....while she is in the carseat. Boy, Jan isn't upping the "warmness" at all.

Since Jan got a second stroller at the shower, Dwight sets out to prove that her first stroller IS destructible. And he does so by throwing it, destroying it, tying it to his car and driving over it, etc. Once again, Dwight + physical comedy = gold.

Meanwhile, Angela steals baby Astrid for a personal photoshoot similar to that on her wall of the babies playing saxophone. Except this time, the baby is covered in vegetables. Anne Geddes will be so proud.

It ends with a beautiful and sudden maturation of Michael, who asks Holly on a date. When he hugs her--she hugs back with tears of happiness in her eyes. (After all, he had told her he was going to be mean to her all day since Jan would be there as to not make her jealous. and this act of decency more than made up for it.) Michael then says that holding her made him feel more than when he held Astrid. That kind of "communication" speaks volumes for the future of him and Holly AND him and Jan.
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The one-hour premiere has passed and we are back to the sitcom formula of a 22-minute show. This week's episode, "Business Ethics" had a tough opening act to beat, as "Weight Loss" was arguably one of the best season openers the show has seen. However, I think Business Ethics stood up, took a swing and got a hit. Maybe he didn't make it all the way home, but he did well for his team. Ok, even I can't make baseball analogies without rolling my eyes. So, onto the show.

I would think that once Jim announced his engagement to Pam to Dunder-Mifflin Scranton, the bubbly would break out (from Meredith's drawer no doubt) and the streamers (orange and green whorish shades) would be strung up. However the reception wasn't that warm. (Including Creed's “The tall guy got engaged”) The only good reaction was from Michael, who mauled Jim upon hearing the news. You know, if you have followed Michael's character, that he is probably just has happy (if not happier) for Jim as Jim is himself.

Unfortunately, celebration or not, Pam was not there to share. She is off at Pratt Art School, where for three months she will be dabbling in paint and possibly a new man. (well, at least that's the vibe I get from guest star Rich Sommer (Harry on Mad Men).) Her absence is quite obvious, as stares from behind the reception desk and someone to keep Michael in line were both missing. Hopefully she is at her computer at Pratt setting up a page on theknot.com.

As for the A-plot tonight, Michael and Holly are in charge of teaches a little business ethics. They do so, of course, by changing lyrics to a popular song. "Let's get Physical" turns into "Lets get Ethical" and it works pretty well. Michael and Holly dressed as Olivia Newton-John brings laughs in itself, and funny lyrics on top of that brings a smile within the first 5 minutes of the show.

In the conference room setting, ethics conversation turns to time wasting, in which Dwight confesses to never wasting time. This sets up a perfect B story with Jim and Dwight, in which Jim times, with a stopwatch, every time Dwight does something non-work-related. This includes yawning and peeing. Then, just to stick the sword in a little harder, Jim strikes up a conversation with Andy about Battlestar Galactica--getting every possible fact wrong. Causing Dwight to cringe at not being able to correct him, we get classic Jim prank #244.

"Jim: Hey Andy
Andy: Yo
Jim: By any chance did you see Battlestar Galactica last night?
Andy: No I did not. Is that any good?
Jim: Actually not, it’s really so-so.
Jim: I don’t like all the crazy monsters and stuff, like Klingons and Wookies and all that.
Jim (looking at Dwight): Sorry, is there something you wanted to add Dwight?
Andy: Is that like the original Battlestar Galactica?
Jim: You know what’s weird, it’s practically a shot-for-shot remake
(Dwight crumbles paper in frustration)
Jim: The story is kinda bland, it’s about this guy called “Dumbledore Calrissian” who needs to return the ring to back to Mordor
Andy: That doesn’t sound right …"

Dwight gets a bit of revenge when he takes out some time for a trip to the warehouse with Angela. I think this "personal wasted time" is well worth it in the mind of a Schrute.

In the latter part of the A story, we find Holly between a rock and a hard place as she finds Meredith broke some company rules. Apparently sleeping with the Hammermill paper guy in exchange for paper isn't on the Dunder Mifflin agenda.

Memorable lines:
"Holly-luia" and "Mike-raculous."
"What would you consider a waste of time?" "This meeting." "Hey-o!"
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The Office is back--and without a hitch. Last night's episode, "Weight Loss" brought back the familiar faces of Scranton that we've been missing for months. The Dunder-Mifflinites are seen participating in a company-wide weight loss challenge. Whichever branch loses the most weight in a matter of weeks wins more vacation days. This is a brilliant idea from the writers to show the audience what happened over the summer in a matter of minutes.

To catch up on how the season ended last, we had Andy and Angela engaged. Jim and Pam at a strong point in their relationship but not yet engaged. Michael still longing after a pregnant (not with his baby) Jan, and a new HR lady Holly--a seemingly female form of Michael Scott.

Not participating in the weight loss challenge is Pam, who has shipped off to Art School in NYC. She has retrograded a few years--living in a dorm and taking classes with gossipy 20-somethings. But we can see in her eyes that this decision has been one she has dreamed of since the Roy days, and she is living it.

In Scranton, another person living his dream is Dwight, who is back to knocking boots with Angela (on the down-low of course). 20-minute meetings in the warehouse (is Darryl deaf?) leaves Dwangela sweaty and happy. Seemingly, the rest of the office is unaware. Well, besides Phyllis, who caught them at the tail end of last season. She now has power over Angela, and has taken over as the new kickass leader of the party planning committee. I love seeing Phyllis step up her game. The actress--who was originally just the casting director for the show--takes her character to familiar heights as she reminds us all of the "mother goose" we all know and love.

In a twist, (after temporary Ronnie left for unknown reasons--maybe Michael calling her weird?) Ryan is back as the temp, or as Kevin now calls him, "FIRE-D GUY!"

Holly is also still with the company, and has done nothing but fit right in with Michael's antics. She seems to show interest in Michael, but not enough to make a move. Perhaps the whole "his ex is carrying a mystery spawn baby that intrigues Michael" thing is holding her back. But one thing is for sure--Michael and Holly's chemistry is undeniable. Hopefully the writers see that too and not make us wait long for some action!

And then, for the most undeniable action of them all, Jim and Pam. In what might be the most romantic proposal in television history (Chandler and Monica a close second?) Jim proposes to Pam at a roadstop off the highway (which Pam claims is closer to Scranton than NYC). The entire thing was unexpected (even to me, who can see these things coming), and perfect. We see the pureness of their love, and how the engagement is basically just a technicality at this point--they already knew they were going to spend the rest of their lives together.

Favorite lines:
"I want washboard abs for the first time Angela sees me naked."
"We call her Rice-a-Ronnie."
"I'm gonna look amazing..."
"Pam, will you marry me?"

And the best line:
"These people have no self control. I once went 28 years without having sex. and then another six after that." - Michael
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So You Think You Can Dance picked up 4 Emmy Nominations this morning!

Outstanding Choreography:
So You Think You Can Dance • Routine: Hummingbird and Flower / 'The Chairman's Waltz' • Wade Robson, Choreographer

So You Think You Can Dance • Routine: Transformers / 'Fuego' • Shane Sparks, Choreographer

So You Think You Can Dance • Routine: Table / 'Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)' • FOX • Mandy Moore, Choreographer

Outstanding Makeup For A Multi-camera Series Or A Special (non-prosthetic)
So You Think You Can Dance

I knew Wade's routine would probably get one--good to see Shane and Mandy get some credit too! They all deserve it :)
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I did some research and found out where the man is. Here is a link to a news article about him from May of this year. But I've included the most important sentence:

“I actually left 'So You Think You Can Dance' to go to the United Kingdom and do the reality show "Grease is the Word." [The producers] were finding the West End cast of Danny and Sandy. It was a few weeks after judging "Grease is the Word" that Simon Cowell asked me to do 'The X-Factor.'” As creative director, he explains, he “oversees the aesthetic departments, hair, makeup, wardrobe and set design for example.

Boo to him.

Oh, and another thing? Here's something else he recently did with Mia--and it's not dancing: ...go here and click on "celebrity moments"....

mmm minty
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From TVGuide:

Question: Have you spoken to Darlton about having Kristen Bell on Lost? If you pull this off, I swear (and you have this in writing, with AA witnesses) that I will send you one case of Diet Raspberry Snapple for every episode of Lost that Kristen appears on. Hope you're up for the challenge!— Erin

Ausiello: You better get busy clipping them there Snapple coupons, Erin. And while you're at it, slap on a pair of Depends, 'cause this is the kind of exclusive casting prattle that causes mass piddling: I can tell you for a fact that Kristen's name has been brought up with regard to the new role of Charlotte, the hot twentysomething who is said to be "precocious, loquacious and funny... a very successful academic who also knows how to handle herself in the real world." Yep, sounds like our Kristen! The only question now is whether my in-demand BFF is ready to jump back into another series. And, if so, will the financial toll wrought by all those Snapple purchases force Erin to declare bankruptcy? Please, God, let the answer be "Yes!" to all of the above!
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ABC's buzz-challenged new drama Big Shots just got tossed a life preserver.

Sources confirm that Rob Thomas — he of all things wonderful and Veronica Marsy — has landed at one of my least favorite fall offerings, Big Shots, as a consulting producer. The news comes a week after Thomas vacated his post as show-runner of the Alphabet net's midseason comedy Miss/Guided due to creative differences.

Thomas will be in familiar company at Big Shots: Former Mars producers Danielle Stokdyk and Jennifer Gwartz were recently named exec producers.

Bottom line: If anything can make this series start sucking less, it's these three.

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Rob Thomas has ankled his position as show-runner/executive producer for Miss/Guided — ABC's new comedy starring Judy Greer as a guidance counselor at her high-school alma mater — due to creative differences, sources tell the Hollywood Reporter. Thomas upped with the show upon the definitive cancellation of his Veronica Mars, but when the direction veered toward making M/G a broader sitcom, he bid it adieu and segued into a development deal with ABC Studios.

Replacing Thomas is writer-producer Mark Hudis, who has a certain something in common with M/G exec producer Ashton Kutcher. No, not trucker hats: That '70s Show.

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