Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Office

This post has been updated to include information from my upcoming book, the Horror Crossover Encyclopedia.  Really.  For this post, Horror Universe and Television Crossover Universe are synonymous.  

On to the post....



It all started here....

Then it came to America...

Why is it so good?  Well...

For one thing, Pam and Jim...

Then there's...

Of course there is also the pranks...

And then they added Ed Helms...

and then...

So let's get started on the crossovers.

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November 1, 1925--Alleged birth of Creed Bratton.  For more on this joker, click here.  And check out Creed's faux website here.

December 1950--BEWITCHED--"My Friend Ben"--Aunt Clara pulls Ben Franklin from the past.  Ben Franklin also appears on I DREAM OF JEANNIE, VOYAGERS, SIMON & SIMON, FUTURAMA, THE OFFICE, THE COLBERT REPORT, and AS THE WORLD TURNS.

November 1987--POWERKID # 63--"Possessed"--Bob's sister Michelle is possessed by Satan, and since that's not his area, he turns to the Monster Club, a team of teenagers that consist of a vampire, witch, werewolf, and ghost. They live in Hadenville, Ohio, which is also the location for the headquarters of the new Heroes of Earth introduced in Heroes. It's also the setting for Dark Knight over Hadenville, a 1989 story in which a troubled teen creates his own Batman costume and become a vigilante. That story concludes with the real Batman and Joker appearing, in their post-crisis versions, which for the TVCU would be Bruce Wayne Junior and Jack Napier. (There's some that feel that this Joker might actually be an immortal who was the original Joker. Others might argue that the clown prince here is Creed Bratton of the Grassroots and the Office.) The werewolf teen of the Monster Club is named Gary Talbot, and yes, he is related to Larry Talbot, the Wolf Man. Satan is a villain from...well, you know. 


May 1996--BOY MEETS WORLD--"The Happiest Show on Earth"--First, I should mention that a half hour before this show first aired, the family from STEP BY STEP were visiting Disney World. Now, cut to this episode, and Topanga goes to Disney World, and as a perfectly fine stalker, Cory follows her there. While there, Cory runs into Dana from STEP BY STEP, because, as we saw a half hour earlier, she was already there. Dana doesn't figure into the main plot so much. It just happens that they are both there at the same time. Disney had just bought ABC thus this cool crossover that also serves to promote Disney. But as Thom Holbrook, the master of crossover groupings has pointed out on his Poobala website, this minor crossover is actually huge to us crossoverists, as it links together two generations of TGIF: the original tied together mostly by Urkel appearances and the next generation, tied together by events, particularly Salem running through everyone's shows. BOY MEETS WORLD has also been zonked on other shows, including: MAYBE THIS TIME, SABRINA THE ANIMATED SERIES, VERONICA MARS, THE SIMPSONS, FAMILY GUY, THE VENTURE BROS., THE NOSTALGIA CRITIC, PORTLANDIA, and THE OFFICE. Note also that a lot of shows like to make a nod towards this series by mentioning having a teacher named Mr. Feeny, but it's really unlikely it's the same one, unless before and after this series the guy was actually really poor at holding a job and had to keep moving around, since not all these mentions are in shows with the same setting.

Release Date:  April 11, 2000
Animated Series Crosses:  Schoolhouse Rock
Other Crosses:  In Living Color; Bones; Married… With Children; Malcolm in the Middle; That ‘70s Show; Scrubs; Kyle XY; X-Files; seaQuest DSV; Millennium; Friends; Lost; NCIS; Rules of Engagement; CSI; Eastbound & Down; Fantasy Island; Everybody Hates Chris; The Office; Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction; Freaks and Geeks; 3rd Rock From the Sun; Supernatural; Partridge Family; Tour of Duty; That Girl; Robocop
Cutaway Crosses:  Six Million Dollar Man
The Story:  Peter and Lois compete when both decide to run for the school board.  
Notes:  Animated Series Crosses:  After winning the election, he has the Schoolhouse Rock characters teaching sex education at Chris’ school.  Other Crosses: Peter gives Chris a stack of Playpen Magazines, a dirty magazine take off of Playboy and Penthouse.  Playpen Magazine is used often within television shows, in order to avoid infringement issues.  Because it is a fictional company, it can be used as a crossover connector.  The list above is probably not a complete list of appearances of the faux magazine. It is presumed That Girl is the first appearance of this magazine, but since the above list may not be complete, that series cannot be confirmed as the debut of the brand.  Note that Family Guy is the only animated show to use the magazine.  The cross brings all of those live action shows into the Cartoon Universe.  Peter replaces the school hall monitors with the XLK robot from Robocop.  Either Peter somehow got engineers to create a real working duplicate of the fictional robot from the futuristic film, somehow obtained the robot from the near future, or perhaps in the Cartoon Universe, the events of Robocop happened in the 1980s.  Any of those could be plausible, given the nature of how time works in the Cartoon Universe, and how live action events are reinterpreted in their Cartoon Universe counterparts.  Cutaway Crosses:  After Peter references the Six Million Dollar Man, a cutaway shows Peter as Steve Austin, if Oscar Goldman had chosen to create a bionic cyborg on a tighter budget.  

2001 to 2003--THE OFFICE (U.K.)--A reality show is filmed in England about a paper company.  It is short lived but successful for a while.  Office manager David Brent let's the fame go to his head.

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2002--LOST--"Homecoming"--Charlie's girlfriend tells him that her father is out purchasing a paper company in Slough, England.  This is meant to be Wernham Hogg.  If this purchase actually happened, it is not indicated on the reality film which was still filming at the time.

2004--MICROSOFT UK--David Brent appears on some Microsoft commercials.

November 2004--ALIAS--Season 4--"The Awful Truth"--aired January 12, 2005--A song is playing at a party by the band Driveshaft, which is a fictional band of which one of the stranded castaways from LOST was a member.  Charlie Pace was that band member.  In addition to being a rock star, he had once tried to settle down to a normal job, applying for a job with Wertham-Hogg, the paper company featured in the British reality show called THE OFFICE.

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c. February 22, 2005--HEX AND THE CITY (NOVEL BY SIMON R. GREEN)--Series: Nightside. Crosses: Frankenstein (all of them); The Picture of Dorian Gray; Carnacki Ghost Finder; Evil Dead; Phantom of the Opera; Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos; The Mummy (Universal); Alice in Wonderland; Maltese Falcon; Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; Casablanca; The Tempest; The Office; Shadows Fall; The Wasteland; Isaac Asimov Universe; Doctor Who; Eaters of the Dead; Moonchild; Allan Quatermain; League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. John Taylor is hired to investigate the origins of the Nightside. Taylor and his secretary dine at a restaurant that serves exotic animals including some to be from Wonderland. Wonderland of course is one of the magical realms of the Television Crossover Multiverse. The Nightside is a nexus of time and space. There is a club that caters to all the various creatures that have been created by the Frankenstein family over the years. An auction is selling Dorian Gray’s mirror. A later Nightside tale reveals it has the power to kill immortals. Taylor reveals that his mentor was Thomas Carnacki. Taylor says his phone was once possessed by Kandarian demons, which originate from Evil Dead. Below the city, a boat guide is Erik the Opera Ghost. As usual, there is Cthulhu cult graffiti on the walls of the Nightside. The Nightside uses tanna leaves as a drug. Tanna leaves were important in the Universal Mummy series. Three allegedly authentic Maltese Falcons are sold. It appears that Willy Wonka and Rick Blaine have opened establishments in the Nightside. There is a Prospero and Michael Scott Memorial Library. Prospero is from Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Michael Scott is from the American version of The Office. Michael Scott is not dead by the way. Shadows Fall is mentioned as the possible new home of a god. Nightside’s homeless live in Rat’s Alley, a reference to T.S. Elliot's The Wasteland. Also living in Rat’s Alley are robots with positronic brains, a concept first proposed in the works of Isaac Asimov. Taylor says that he learned about fighting poisons with broccoli from the travelling doctor. He’s actually referring to the fifth Doctor. Later, a flashback to the 1960s features the second Doctor and his companions. Taylor is warned about the Eaters of the Dead, a reference to a Michael Crichton novel about a Muslim abducted by Vikings. Taylor is called a Moonchild, a reference to an Aleister Crowley novel about a wizard war. Another drug of the Nightside is taduki, a favorite of Allan Quatermain. In the 1960s flashback, Orlando (of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen) is seen.

Release Date: March 24, 2005 - May 16, 2013 (Contemporary Setting)
Series: The Office (U.S.)
The Story: A documentary crew follows the exploits of the Scranton branch of the paper supply company Dunder-Mifflin.
Notes: No, I haven’t accidentally included this in the wrong book. See below.

2005 to Present--WIKIPEDIA--The city of Scranton, long known mainly for its industrial past as a coal mining and rail center,[27] has eagerly embraced, and ultimately has been redefined by the show. "We're really hip now," says the mayor's assistant.[26] The Dunder Mifflin logo is on a lamppost banner in front of Scranton City Hall, as well as the pedestrian bridge to the Mall at Steamtown. The Pennsylvania Paper & Supply Company, whose tower is shown in the opening credits, plans to add it to the tower as well.[99] Newspapers in other Northeastern cities have published travel guides to Scranton locations for tourists interested in visiting places mentioned in the show.[27][99][100]


November 2006--LAS VEGAS--"The Story of Owe"--This show centers on the Monticito Hotel and Casino.  In one episode, the casino is host to a Dunder-Mifflin convention.

February 2007--THE OFFICE--"Cocktails"--While Michael and Jan go to their first Dunder Mifflin outing as an official couple, the office workers left behind go out for happy hour. During happy hour, Roy finds out that Jim and Pam kissed at Casino Night.

2007--ALL ALONG--Richard works for a branch of Dunder-Miflin

October 2007--WIKIPEDIA--The inaugural The Office convention was held downtown in October 2007. Notable landmarks, some of which have been settings for the show, that served as venues include the University of Scranton, the Radisson Lackawanna Station Hoteland Steamtown Mall. 

March 17, 2008--WIKIPEDIA--Scranton has become identified with the show outside the United States as well. In a 2008 St. Patrick's Day speech in its suburb of Dickson City, formerTaoiseach (Irish prime minister) Bertie Ahern identified the city as the home of Dunder Mifflin.[101]

May 7, 2008--DAILY SHOW--Republican presidential candidate John McCain, reportedly a devoted fan of the show, jokingly told Jon Stewart he might take Dwight Schrute as his running mate.[103] 

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2008--DIARY OF THE DEAD--A zombie outbreak occurs in Scranton, PA.  Both Crazy Ivan Ronald Schablotski and Dwight Schrute are involved in the incident.  See this link for the evidence.

2008--THE OFFICE:  KEVIN'S LOAN--Webisodes

2008 to Present--THE OFFICE:  THE OUTBURST--Webisodes.

May 2008--BONES--Dr. Zack Addy mentions vising his cousins' beet farm.  I know some will call this a stretch, but honestly, how often are beet farms mentioned in TV shows for them to be common?

July 30, 2008--TONIGHT SHOW--Rainn Wilson later accepted on Dwight's behalf

September 2008--AMERICAN DAD!--"In Country...Club"--Steve says his a Capella group is called "Here Comes Treble". This is the name of the group that Andy Bernard was in (at Cornell) on The Office.

Release Date: May 29, 2009 (Contemporary Setting)
Series: Drag Me to Hell
Horror Crosses: Casting the Runes/Night of the Demon
The Story: A loan officer finds herself cursed when she denies an old woman an extension on her loan. (Don’t screw with the elderly. They all are masters of the occult.)
Notes: Sam Raimi commented that the supernatural evils of this film are the same as in the 1957 film, Night of the Demon. Night of the Demon (1957) is based on the story Casting the Runes. Both the film and the story are already brought into the Horror Universe and I presume both to be the same events from different perspectives, despite the different dates. The 1980s film Night of the Demon is unrelated to the 1957 film or the short story, and the 21st century Night of the Demon is a remake of the 1980s film. This film has been referenced as fictional on such shows as the Office and Supernatural.


2009--THE OFFICE:  BLACKMAIL--Webisodes.

2010--THE OFFICE:  THE 3RD FLOOR--Webisodes.

October 2010--FAMILY GUY--"Excellence in Broadcasting"--Dwight Schrute appears.  The character is voiced by Raine Wilson, thus why I list this while usually ignoring most "crosses" on Family Guy. Family Guy takes place in a time affected by a weird anomaly that keeps the town in an eternal time stop while existing in both the TVCU and Looniverse at the same time.

October 31, 2010--THE OFFICE--"Costume Contest"--Pam dresses up as Olive Oyl, and Dwight is offended that Pam has dressed up as his mother (!!!). The TVCU does have it's own version of Popeye separate from that of the Looniverse version. Crazy Ivan Ronald Schablotski, who has met Dwight, adds:  It's possible that one of Olive's nieces, Diesel Oyl & Violet Oyl might, have married Popeye and Olive's adopted son Swee'Pea (real name: Scooner Seawell Georgia Washenting Christiffer Columbia Daniel Boom). The Oyl sisters resembled their aunt, and Scooner did not look a thing like his adopted parents, so Dwight's claim that the Olive Oyl look beloned to his mother would be legit.  Of course, Diesel or Violet could also have married someone entirely different, someone who might be more inclined to move to Scranton and work the family beet farm, someone with the last name of Schrute.

January 2011--THE OFFICE (U.S.)--"The Seminar"--Michael Scott, office manager of the Scranton branch of the Dunder-Mifflin Paper Company, runs into David Brent, the office manager of the British Office, and producer of the current series.

March 2011--WIKIPEDIA--After the airing of "Garage Sale", Colorado governor John Hickenlooper issued a press release appointing Michael Scott to the position of Director of Paper Distribution in the Department of Natural Resources.[104]

May 2011-THE OFFICE--"Search Committee"--David Brent interviews for the job of office manager at Dunder-Mifflin Scranton.  He does not get the job.  Robert California, CEO of Saber/Dunder Mifflin claims to be the Lizard King. It's not very likely that Robert is Jim Morrison reincarnated because of his age. However, Robert precedes by telling Andy that Andy doesn't even know Robert's real name. Could Robert be Jim Morrison, who faked his death and took a new, very fake sounding identity? Especially in a world where plastic surgery can dramatically alter one's face, height, body type, voice, and age. (See any given soap opera for evidence.)   Later in the episode he introduces himself with another name, revealing that he does indeed have more than one identity.

Dunder Mifflin banner in front of Scranton City Hall

Atrium of the Mall at Steamtown during convention

Release Date: November 3, 2011 (Contemporary Setting)
Horror Crosses: Island of Doctor Moreau; Frankenstein (novel); Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde
The Story: As an incentive to optimize efficiency in the office, Dwight Schrute creates a program so that many items of incriminating information about everyone in the office will go to the CEO if too many mistakes are made.
Notes: After being compared to a Bond villain, Dwight argues that he feels he is more like a great scientist trying to save the world, like Moreau, Frankenstein, and Jekyll.

December 2011--LEVERAGE--"The Office Job"--The same production company responsible for the Office UK and the Office US attempts a pilot for a third series.  Note this isn't any less realistic than other reality shows like the Real Housewives franchise that just uses the same formula over and over in different locations with different casts.

Mid to Late February 2012--HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER--"NO Pressure"--Your Uncle Toby assures me that it was his cousin Conan, the talk show host, who visited MaClaren's bar. He talks about it at his book called Inner Toob, where he makes the connection between HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER and 'Lateline', 'Eaglehart', 'Arli$$', 'Web Therapy', 'Sesame Street', 'The Office', '30 Rock', 'Veronica's Closet', "The Rutles 2: Can't Buy Me Lunch", 'Primetime Glick', "Elmopalooza!", 'DAG', the Emmy Awards, 'The Simpsons', 'Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist', 'Space Ghost, Coast To Coast', and 'Futurama'.

February 2013--THE OFFICE--A recent episode of the Office has several of the staff referring to Spider-Man as a real person.I should also mention this episode is a pilot of sorts for The Farm, the spin-off of the Office coming next year. This episode spotlights Dwight and several past characters who were all friends or family of Dwight, who it seems are likely to be the supporting cast. They are all so odd, they make Dwight seem like the straight man.  Also, not crossover related, but relevant to the episode, the latest romantic plot twist involves one of the documentary crew members who have been filming the Dunder Mifflin staff for the past nine years. I think that's a pretty cool twist.

March 2013--THE OFFICE--"The Farm"--This episode of the Office is the official pilot for the Farm, with an episode entitled "the Farm" and an official episode synopsis identifying it as such.   Creed may carry over.

April 2013--THE OFFICE--Within the world of the TVCU, the Office is finally airing on PBS.   Though plenty of footage has already been leaked onto the internet.  Well, with the sneak preview having been written on by some critics, now all the secrets of the past ten years are out.

2013 to Present--THE FARM--Another reality show focusing on Dwight's beet farm and bed and breakfast.


TVCU-29-Skitlandia and non-canon commercials:  Dwight Schrute and Jim Halpert of Dunder-Mifflin appear on THE STEVE AND KATHY SHOW.  The Office has also been parodied on MAD.

TVCU-44-Whoniverse/DOCTOR WHO UNIVERSE:  It was once proposed that we should just consider all British television to be part of the same shared reality.  And indeed, my Doctor Who Universe blog does connect the dots to many other British Shows.  But there are still shows from across the pond that are in the TVCU, such as Luther and the Office.

Goodbye, Michael, We'll miss you.

1 comment:

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