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The Deposition

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"The Deposition" is the twelfth episode of the fourth season of The Office and the 65th overall. It was written by Lester Lewis and directed by Julian Farino. It first aired November 15, 2007. It was viewed by 8.86 million people.


Michael shows us how he impresses people by having Pam give him fake messages telling him there's a call for him so he can say he'll call back later no matter how important the call or caller may be. On one occasion, Ryan is visiting, and Pam brings the usual fake message. Michael initially passes it up, but Ryan insists that customer service is first priority and has Michael take the call, which requires Michael to do a surprise bit of improv.

Jan and Michael drive to the corporate office in New York City to do a deposition for Jan's lawsuit over her dismissal. They rehearse Michael's testimony in the car, and he makes up absurd mnemonic devices so he won't forget what to say. He has also memorized Jan's answers and planning to through in some "errs" and "ahhs" for the deposition to appear not so scripted.

Meanwhile, back at the warehouse, Darryl is wiping Jim out in a ping pong game while Pam and Kelly watch. Kelly goes all trash talk on Pam, about how Pam's boyfriend "sucks" at ping pong, but Kelly calls it "talking smack." Pam gets ticked off and sets up a practice ping pong table in the conference room so she can get back at Kelly by way of Jim and Darryl. She gets Kevin and then Dwight as "sparring partners" for Jim, but Dwight easily defeats Jim. Dwight reveals for the first time that he is a huge lifelong table tennis fan, and he reels off the names of immortals of the sport whom he idolizes.

At corporate, Michael is (maybe) all set to support Jan during the deposition hearing, but Ryan then takes him aside and urges him to do the right thing and not hurt Dunder-Mifflin. Michael agrees and then is left with a terrible conflict. Michael's testimony starts well when he mentions the inappropriate way corporate handled Jan's situation, but his comments about her drinking and about apparent conflicts in statements he made about the nature of their relationship and when it started do cause problems.


  • The Hiya buddy! drawing was sketched freehand by producer Greg Daniels. The crew then had to try several times to reproduce the drawing on a Post-It note.[1] The original drawing can be seen in the introductory video to the Writer's Block on the Season 4 DVD: Look on the whiteboard behind Mindy Kaling when she throws the football. Greg Daniels' artistic talent also appeared in the episode The Client.
  • Jan and Michael drive to NYC in a PT Cruiser.
  • The Robert Mifflin memorial conference room is just the Corporate reception area set with different wall paneling and furniture.[1]
  • For the final scene, Rainn Wilson and Michael Schur merely mimed playing ping pong, and the ball and sound effects were added later. In some takes, they dove wildly for the ball.[2]
  • This is the first time Mose has left Schrute Farm, assuming Michael's description in Office Olympics is correct and Mose hasn't left the farm in the interim.
  • This episode marks a change in Kelly's style. She is seen wearing a brightly colored wrap dress here and in several subsequent episodes, which is a bit of a stylistic change from her earlier outfits.
  • In the scene where Dwight is listing off professional table tennis players, a white square is visible in the reflection of his glasses. It is possible that the names were memorized but it is possible that the reflection is that of a piece of paper from which he is reading the names.

Amusing detailsEdit

  • The talking head interviews are conducted in the annex because the conference room is being used for ping pong.


Main CastEdit

Supporting CastEdit

Recurring CastEdit

Guest CastEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 Season 4 DVD commentary for The Deposition.
  2. The Scrum, Podcast XIX: Michael Schur

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