The Office

Episode 5.09 : The Surplus

  • The Office
    • Episode Premiere : December 04, 2008
    • Distributor : NBC
    • Genre : Comedy, Drama
    • Seasons : 5
    • Show Period : 2005 - 2013
    • Production Company: Reveille, Deedle-Dee, NBC Universal
    • Official Site :

Cast and Crew

The Story

Oscar explains to Michael that the branch's year-end budget numbers are in and that they're looking at a $4,300 surplus -- but that they must spend the $4,300 by the end of the day or they'll lose it altogether. Michael announces the windfall to the office, which immediately sets off a debate about how the money should be spent: abating the asbestos in the ceiling (Toby), new chairs (Pam and Stanley), or a new copier (Oscar and Jim).

Andy and Angela meet with Dwight to review the arrangements for their wedding at Schrute Farms. Angela's concerned that there's only one bathroom; Dwight offers to dig a trench. When Andy complains of the manure smell at the farm, Dwight explains that it helps mask the smell of the slaughterhouse. The tour is filled with tense discussions about difficult decisions: whether the animals for the entrees should be slaughtered the day before or the day of the wedding, whether the butter sculpture should be made from goat, sheep, or cow's milk.

Oscar, Jim, and Michael head out for a boys-only lunch -- further incensing Pam. When they return, Pam snubs Jim's peace offering of leftover tiramisu and then heads into Michael's office to try to charm him into buying the chairs. She compliments him on his clothes; he proudly explains that his tie was only four dollars at T.J. Maxx -- and that his pants were only nine dollars ("Don't they make my ass look great?") and he found them in the boys department. The lobbying intensifies as co-workers compliment and cajole Michael for their causes.

Dwight takes Angela and Andy to another barn, all decked out with chairs, an altar and a German-speaking Mennonite minister. Dwight suggests that they run through the ceremony -- with himself playing the part of the groom, ostensibly so that Andy can get a better sense of how the ceremony will look for guests. As the minister speaks in German, Dwight puts a temporary twine ring on Angela's finger, as she looks on longingly.

Michael makes an urgent call to Hank, the security guard. He announces that the office "is at a crossroads" and that whatever Hank decides will resolve the issue of how to spend the surplus. Hank does a thorough examination and agrees there's merit to both arguments; Michael dismisses him.

Outside the barn, Angela pulls Dwight aside and confesses that the mock ceremony made her realize that she picked the wrong man to marry. Dwight explains that he knows and has "taken care of everything." He explains that the minister was real, that they exchanged binding vows, and that he tricked Andy into signing the marriage license as a witness. Angela is furious: "It doesn't count!" Dwight assures "Mrs. Schrute" that it's all legal in the state of Pennsylvania. She throws the twine ring at him and storms off.

Still unable to choose, Michael calls David Wallace and begs him to make the decision, so he can announce that it came from elsewhere. Wallace suggests that Michael return the surplus -- and get a manager's bonus of of the amount returned. With visions of a shopping spree at the Burlington Coat Factory in his head, Michael's mind is made up.

Michael announces to the office that the copier is working perfectly and that the chairs are fine. He invokes the poor children of Africa. "We're spoiled, because we don't appreciate the things we have." Oscar figures out what's behind Michael's decision and announces the manager's bonus to the entire office. Busted, Michael retreats to his office to reconsider. The gang confronts him and Michaels tells them to fight it out amongst themselves. The group quickly decides to go with new chairs.

Reflecting, Michael says he's learned to never buy a new fur coat on a credit card until you know you have the money and that sometimes people will smear you with fake blood when you buy a fur at Burlington Coat Factory.






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