Celebrate the 15 year anniversary of The Office with these sketches from Saturday Night Live.
It’s hard to believe that The Office premiered on NBC 15 years ago. The sitcom has lived on thanks to syndication and streaming services, making it just as current and popular as any other comedy on television. A few parodies on Saturday Night Live haven’t hurt the show’s legacy, either.
The Office made an undeniable impact on pop culture when it arrived in the U.S. from Britain in 2005. It turned Scranton, Pennsylvania into a tourist destination, catapulted the career of star Steve Carell, and made household names out of John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, and Rainn Wilson among others.
As Last Night On has looked at before, any show, celebrity, or event that becomes a cultural phenomenon always ends up as material for Saturday Night Live. The Office was a no-brainer given its popularity, both shows airing on NBC, and writers like Greg Daniels and Michael Schur working on both projects.
So take a break from streaming The Office or debating if “Scott’s Tots” or “Dinner Party” is the more uncomfortable episode. Enjoy these sketches from Saturday Night Live featuring familiar faces from Dunder Mifflin and more.
Rainn Wilson, AKA Dwight Schrute, hosted Saturday Night Live in 2007 during season 32. It came just as The Office was taking off due in no small part to the popularity of Wilson’s character.
His monologue was SNL’s first crack at a parody of The Office. Backstage at the SNL show has frequently been used as the setting for monologue bits. Here we see Kristen Wiig as Pam, Jason Sudeikis as Jim, a Rashida Jones cameo, Kenan Thomas as Stanley, Amy Poehler as Angela, and Lorne Michaels as Michael Scott. A parody of The Office was inevitable with Wilson hosting and SNL executed it perfectly.
Steve Carell hosted on Nov. 17, 2018, his third time headlining Saturday Night Live. At this point, The Office had been over for five years with Carell’s tenure ending even before that. Still, it is impossible for anyone from the show, let alone its biggest star, to go anywhere without being asked about The Office.
Saturday Night Live had some fun with that during Carell’s monologue. With an assist from Jenna Fischer, Ed Helms, Ellie Kemper, and Nancy Walls, Carell is grilled about a possible Office reunion/reboot. Carell may not be on board, but that hasn’t stopped rumors from circulating with the upcoming release of NBC’s Peacock streaming service. Stay tuned.
Like any popular television show, The Office has been translated around the world. As Ricky Gervais reminds viewers in the start of this sketch, it started with the “far-superior” original version in England.
With that in mind Gervais shows off the Japanese “inspiration” for his original version of the sitcom in this classic Saturday Night Live “Digital Short.” A lot of The Office‘s comedy was unspoken and that clearly comes through in this interpretation.
SNL cast members Kristen Wiig, Jason Sudeikis, and Kenan Thompson reprise their roles from Rainn Wilson’s monologue the season prior. Bill Hader makes for a nice addition as Dwight. Doing this sketch now would definitely result in some backlash. Even Gervais closes it out by admitting it’s racist. But neither he nor SNL have been shy about pushing the envelope.
Speaking of Ricky Gervais, he was parodied in this mash-up of The Office and The Hobbit in season 40. With Martin Freeman as the common link between the sitcom and the movie, it was only natural for Saturday Night Live to see what life at Middle Earth’s paper company would be like.
Bobby Moynihan does an excellent job portraying Gervais’ David Brent character. The real standout is Taran Killam as the Golem-meets-Gareth character and nemesis of Freeman’s Bilbo. Fans of the British Office certainly recognized the theme song and some of the comedy beats in this version.
Which Saturday Night Live moment celebrating The Office was your favorite? Be sure to let us know in the comment section. Keep checking Last Night On for more from SNL and the rest of late night television.