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"Cocktails" is the 18th episode of the third season of The Office and the 46th overall. It was written by Paul Lieberstein and directed by J.J. Abrams. It first aired on February 22, 2007. It was viewed by 8.3 million people.


Before heading to the cocktail party, Michael decides to show off some trickery he learned at Magic Camp. His straitjacket escape as "Michael the Magic" goes awry when he drops the key and Jim hides it, resulting in Michael on the floor of his office, squirming in an attempt to get free.

Jan and Michael decide to reveal their relationship and go to the party as a couple. Jan reveals her lust for Michael over the phone, unaware that she is being heard by Dwight over the speakerphone. She makes Michael sign a "love contract" to keep their relationship from causing legal problems, and a very awkward night ensues. Jim, Karen, and Dwight also attend the party and Dwight spends the evening searching for flaws in the CFO's colonial house.

The other office members go to Poor Richard's for happy hour. Roy tells Pam that he can't go because he is getting hammered with his brother, who is upset over money lost selling their old Jet Skis. Pam explains that they're going to a bar, and he must do more "boyfriend" things if he wants their relationship to last. He shows up at the bar to Pam's delight.

At the party, Karen points out her ex-boyfriend to Jim. Dwight continues his inspection of the house checking for studs, testing smoke alarms, and questioning the CFO's son about a wooden chair.

After becoming upset with Michael, Jan pulls him into a bathroom to "satisfy her cravings," but Michael says she is behaving inappropriately. Jan gives up and storms out. Meanwhile, Karen points out a few more old boyfriends to Jim who is becoming concerned about Karen's past.

At the bar, Pam shows off her new assertiveness when she tells the bartender about a mistake in the order. After being greeted warmly by five guests who look awfully young to be at a bar (which Oscar clearly notices), Creed explains his side job as a fake ID dealer, using a laminating machine stolen from the Sheriff's Department.

Jim, who is becoming exceedingly bored, is finally saved by CFO David Wallace who asks him to come outside and shoot hoops. When Karen explains her past relationship with David, Jim finally becomes upset. Karen starts to giggle and reveals her prank to Jim who finds it amusing.

At Poor Richard's Pam decides she needs to come clean with Roy if they are going to "make it." When she starts to tell him about the casino night kiss with Jim he gets extremely angry and throws his glass against the wall. Pam leaves after telling Roy that the relationship is over, and Roy proceeds to trash the bar with his brother in an uncontrolled rage.

On the ride back, Michael becomes upset when Jan reveals her reservations about their public relationship. When Michael begins to cry, Jan calms him by saying that she didn't mean it. Dwight pops up from the back seat to show his support for the couple.

Roy and his brother sit glumly in the parking lot after his brother uses the jet ski money to pay for the damages. The episode ends on a tense note when Roy tells his brother, "I'm going to kill Jim Halpert."

Deleted scenes

The Season Three DVD contains a number of deleted scenes:

  • Karen explains how it is important for Jim to go to the party so the New York executives don't think everyone in Scranton is like Michael.
  • Roy tells Pam to sign her painting of the office because it's important to know "who paints what."
  • Ryan asks Toby if he's going to Poor Richard's, Toby indicates he is not, and Ryan has not yet decided. Kelly pops her head over the partition and tells them that they are all going. After she returns to her desk, Ryan quietly asks Toby to confirm that there is a rule against dating coworkers. Toby says, "I'm not doing your dirty work for you." Kelly shouts that she hears whispering.
  • Jim advises Pam to wait until the managers have left before going to the bar. Pam mockingly replies, "Yes, boss." Jim takes her response poorly.
  • Oscar and Angela's appearance at Poor Richard's surprises Kevin, partially because Angela is a teetotaler. Oscar comments on the fatty chicken wings, and Angela agrees that "this place is disgusting."
  • The bartender greets "Mer" and names all the other people from the office, presumably based on Meredith's stories.
  • While Toby attempts to win the stuffed duck, Stanley's daughter Melissa ("Take Your Daughter to Work Day") comes into the pub and strikes up a conversation with Ryan, who doesn't recognize her. Stanley notices and begins yelling at Ryan.
  • Extensions of Michael's attempt to get Jim to carpool, the talking head interview with Jan, Dwight's upstairs house inspection, and his conversation with the CFO's son.
  • In a talking head interview, Michael summarizes the day and shows his framed "love contract."

NBC's Web site contains additional deleted scenes:

  • Michael again attempts to be affectionate with Jan during the party.
  • Ryan tries to hide in the women's room but Stanley follows him in. (Extension of DVD deleted scene.)

Connections to other episodes

  • Jan responds with "not too good" when Karen simply says hello, echoing her "I'm great" to Pam in "Initiation".
  • Spoiler: Michael admires the smell of vanilla candles at David Wallace's house, foreshadowing Jan's candle business in "Dinner Party".
  • Spoiler: Dwight admires the rocking chair in David Wallace's son's room. In "The Farm", Dwight gives a talking head interview from his porch, sitting in that same rocking chair. He must have really liked it.
  • Spoiler: Michael's framed "love contract" reappears as evidence in "The Deposition".
  • Spoiler: Michael includes a ketchup fight (part of his idealized romance mentioned in this episode) in a flashback sequence of "Threat Level Midnight: The Movie".

Amusing details

  • Kevin giggles when Michael mentions "extreme bondage".
  • Kenny's face drops to a frown immediately when Pam says she's sorry about the Jet Skis. Roy tries to signal her to not talk about it, but was too late.
  • Jan lists the downside of dating Michael as "collapsing onto (herself) like a dying star". Spoiler: Her future appearances will portray her as gradually being more insane and erratic.
  • Michael chides Dwight for asking David about the square footage of the house as it is inappropriate. Michael then follows up by asking how much the house costs, causing Jim to choke on his drink.
  • While drinking the expensive Scotch offered by David Wallace, Michael finds it too strong and asks for ice.
  • When Roy goes on his rampage, Kevin has his fists up. This was improvised by Brian Baumgartner.[1]
  • After Jan and David go to talk, David's wife, Rachael, nearly runs into the camera.
  • You can hear David's wife sigh off camera after leaving Dwight upstairs.
  • It is assumed that Jan brought Michael to a corner to lecture him for being inappropriate, but it is revealed she was instead aroused by his actions.
  • In the blooper reel, Steve Carell actually escapes the straitjacket.


  • Phyllis Smith (Phyllis Vance) is credited but does not appear in this episode
  • David Wallace says he was gifted a 20-year-old, single-malt scotch by Lee Iacocca. Iacocca's autobiography was ghostwritten by B.J. Novak's father, William Novak.
  • First meeting of David Wallace and Jim. The two of them would remain on very good terms with each other for the remainder of the series.
  • Stanley's daughter Melissa makes her second appearance in the series appearing in a deleted scene in which she asks Ryan if she remembers him to which Ryan is scolded by Stanley once again.
  • Jan drove to the party herself, but she goes home in Michael's car. It's possible that she drank too much. We are left to speculate on how she retrieved her car.

Behind the scenes

  • J.J. Abrams approached The Office about directing an episode. The show happily agreed.[1]
  • The layout of the office was copied from the building that had previously been used by J. J. Abrams when he worked on Felicity: The conference room was previously J. J. Abrams's office. Abrams got a feeling of deja vu when he came to the set.[2]
  • The shooting location for the CFO's house is 5133 Louise Avenue, Encino,[3] which is not the same house used in the episode "Branch Closing". Director J.J. Abrams chose the new location because its open floor plan was better for filming large party scenes.[1]
  • When Michael and Dwight exchange shirts, the garbage cans in the background have the number 1485 painted on them. That was the house number of the old CFO house.[3]
  • The shooting location for Poor Richard's is Pickwick's Pub in Woodland Hills, California.[1]
  • The parking lot scenes at the bar were shot at The Bar at Oyster House in Studio City.[1]
  • The mirror and beer bottles that are destroyed by Roy and his brother were specially made to be broken. The bottles were made of sugar glass. In one of the takes, Jenna Fischer was hit in the face by sugar glass as it bounced off the mirror. She was uninjured.[1]
  • Production created a fake chimney on top of David Wallace's house so that Jim and David could see Dwight on the roof. Rainn Wilson climbed to the roof via ladder and was secured by a safety line around his waist, running down his pant leg.[1]
  • Owen Daniels, who plays David Wallace's son, is the son of producer Greg Daniels.[4]
  • Production moved the claw toy closer to the bar entrance. This allowed Toby to be off camera for nearly every scene. This was important because Paul Lieberstein also wrote this episode and had to spent most of his time working with the director.[1]
  • This is the first of six episodes for which John Krasinski wore a wig due to his haircut for Leatherheads, which he shot on the weekends. His real haircut might be seen in "The Job".[5]

Cultural references

  • Michael misstates the adage The early bird gets the worm. (See Michael's Botched Phrases.)
  • A coming out party formally introduces a young woman to adult society.
  • Poor Richard's Pub is a real pub in Scranton.
  • Michael says "ergo de facto", an amalgam of three Latin terms: "ergo" (therefore), "de facto" (in fact) and "ipso facto" (by that fact).
  • Battlestar Galactica is a science fiction television program.
  • Lee Iacocca rescued the Chrysler motor company from bankruptcy. The De Lorean automobile was produced by the De Lorean Motor Company, not Chrysler. Michael has confused his 1980's automobile executives.
  • Splenda is a brand of artificial sweetener. Michael asks for Splenda to add to his twenty-year-old scotch after taking a large gulp. An aged scotch is intended to be sipped, so as to savor the complex flavors created by the absorption of the wood flavor from the barrel. Adding sweetener is a big no-no.
  • In a blooper, Michael says, "over the gums and through the lips, look out stomach... here we go!" This is a botched version of "over the lips, past the gums, look out stomach, here it comes."
  • The game played at the bar is called Up Jenkins. One team hides a coin under a hand, and the other team taps the hands of players they believe are not hiding the coin.
  • Sandals is a chain of Caribbean resorts which caters to couples.
  • No means please don't is a corruption of No means no, the catch phrase from a 1980s anti-rape awareness campaign.
  • A house with a white picket fence is part of the idealized American dream.
  • The movie The Naked Gun contains a parody dating montage in which Frank Drebin squirts mustard on Jane Spencer, and she playfully retaliates by spraying ketchup on him. Michael's idealized romance comes from over-the-top comedy movies.
  • When Roy and his brother go on their rampage, the bar is playing the song "Carry on Wayward Son" by the group "Kansas".
  • In a deleted scene, Dwight points to a poster of the Space Shuttle and mentions vehicles Atlantis and Discovery.


Main cast

Supporting cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast

  • Hannah Baker as Underage Kid #2
  • Dan Cole as Dan Gore
  • Owen Daniels as David Wallace's Son
  • Michael David Kaiser as Underage Kid #1
  • Stephen Mitchell as Waiter/Bartender
  • Matt Prokop as Underage Kid #3
  • Jean Villepique as Rachel Wallace
  • Gregory Graham as Upset Bar Patron (Uncredited)
  • James M. Halty as Bartender (Uncredited)
  • Jazz Raycole as Melissa Hudson (Only in Deleted Scenes)


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Kinsey, Angela and Jenna Fischer. Episode 47: Cocktails. "Office Ladies" podcast, September 30, 2020.
  2. Greene, Alan. "Setting the Stage." The Office: The Untold Story of the Great Sitcom of the 2000s: An Oral History. Dutton, 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Blake, Lindsay. David Wallace's House from The Office, Part II, I am not a stalker blog, July 29, 2010.
  4. West, Abby. Oscar Nunez of The Office, Entertainment Weekly, May 3, 2007.
  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBGilOKUVoY, Interview with Manny dela Rosa for Leatherheads