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The Office is hard to watch in an era where workplace abuse is in the spotlight

  • GQ

    The iconic NBC sitcom was “about a deeply toxic workplace, where the humor comes from the painful truth that this is what it’s like,” says Jaya Saxena. “But it’s maybe worth it to sit with the show at face value for a second. In light of all the upheaval over workplace harassment, with people (in some industries, sometimes) finally having the courage to come forward and name abusers, I have to say The Office is hard to watch. Whereas it was once seen as exaggeration, it’s now run up against Poe’s Law: too close to be satire.” Saxena adds: “The problem is that the victims of these shenanigans in The Office, whether it’s Michael forwarding joke e-mails about child molestation to his employees or Dwight saying whatever sexist and homophobic things he believes, never get their day. Complaints to HR or professional-conduct trainings are ignored or handled ineffectively, in an attempt to skewer the ineptitude of HR bureaucracy that tends to ignore how necessary those trainings are.”

    TOPICS: NBC, The Office (US), Retro TV, Sexual Misconduct