"Mrs. California" is the ninth episode of the eighth season of the American television comedy series The Office and is the show's 161st overall. It was directed by Charlie Grandy and written by Dan Greaney. It originally aired on NBC December 1, 2011. It was viewed by 5.71 million people.
The episode begins with Dwight trying out a standing desk. Oscar mentions how he tried one but could never find the sweet spot. Jim sees that Dwight is starting to struggle with the desk and makes a statement of how much better Dwight is than everyone else in the office and how Dwight will never sit again. Later, Dwight makes a contraption that allows him to sit at his desk without it being obvious that he is sitting, however, it is clear he is balancing on it. Jim notices this, takes Dwight's wallet out of his pocket, then proceeds to take the cash out of his wallet and throw it on the ground. Dwight mentions how uninspired the prank is and Jim agrees and says Dwight could just easily bend down and pick it up. They then have a brief argument about if Dwight is sitting or standing. Jim states, "You know I have to do this." Dwight responds by saying, "I know." Jim then pushes Dwight causing him to fall.
Robert California tells Andy, with Jim present, that his wife Susan is looking for a job in the office, but he adamantly tells Andy not to give her one. When Susan comes in and looks at the different departments, she decides on accounting. Andy claims the office is already fully staffed, but Robert insists that he gives her a job, in contrast to his previous request, forcing Andy to relent and give her a job. Robert later calls Andy on the phone to order him to get Susan out. Andy asks that everyone in the office treat her poorly to drive her out, which makes everyone uncomfortable as they like her, but end up doing so nevertheless.
When Susan notices their behavior, she talks to Robert, who asks Andy to discuss the issues with Susan in the conference room and leaves. Susan eventually realizes it was Robert's idea to drive her away. When they call Robert out, he vehemently denies it. Andy claims that Jim also heard him say he didn't want her working at the office, which Jim overhears, prompting him to escape quickly. Being blocked by the security gate, Jim runs all over the building, but Andy and Robert catch up to him, forcing him to come clean. He does not come clean but says that he enjoys working with his wife Pam. Andy and Jim leave the conference room and after a short while, Robert and Susan leave. In the parking lot, Andy apologizes to Susan and after a brief bit of small talk, Susan asks Andy out on a date, leaving him surprised.
Meanwhile, Dwight opens a gym in the building, which intrigues Darryl, who's been looking to lose weight to impress the new female warehouse worker Val. When Darryl first sees the gym, it is only filled with farming equipment as exercising equipment. Darryl says he needs actual equipment, which Dwight finally gets, but sees that Darryl is barely using it. Dwight asks more employees to join to help motivate Darryl to exercise harder. During a bench-press, Dwight refuses to spot Darryl unless he says his motivation for working out. Darryl finally says it's to impress Val, though Dwight confuses her with male actor Val Kilmer.
- Ryan mentions his desire to found the "Dream for a Wish Foundation," a play on the actual Make-A-Wish Foundation.
- Dwight attempts to get Darryl to stretch his pelvic bowl by telling him that The Fonz did it to become cool.
- Darryl sardonically corrects Dwight by telling him that the pronunciation for LeBron James is actually "LeJon Brames."
- Near the end of the episode, Darryl admits that he is attempting to impress Val from the warehouse, but Dwight believes he is talking about male actor Val Kilmer.
- Erin makes a reference to the 2006 film The Devil Wears Prada.
- Darryl comments that Dwight's gym looks like "a scene out of Saw V."
Connections to previous episodes
- Creed says Dwight is "way off" about suicide cults; he previously mentioned having been a leader and follower in many different cults in the episode Fun Run.
- Andy says that they have a surplus of accountants. This was first mentioned in Halloween.
- Back in the episode Spooked, Andy gets mad and vetoes Kevin's costume after he spoiled a movie for him. Here, Andy mentions that he "was watching a movie, and a bunch of apes took over San Francisco.".
- In the office webisode "Pay Day" Creed tells the cameras that he plans to use his blackmail money to buy a toy helicopter. When Jim is hiding from Robert California in the episode, he runs past Creed on the roof playing with a toy helicopter, possibly the same one he bought from the webisode.
- Robert and Susan both wear black blazers and teal shirts.
- Mrs. California is hired as an accountant even though the fact that the accounting department is severely overstaffed is mentioned several times throughout the series.
- Rainn Wilson as Dwight Schrute
- John Krasinski as Jim Halpert
- B.J. Novak as Ryan Howard
- Ed Helms as Andy Bernard
- James Spader as Robert California
- Leslie David Baker as Stanley Hudson
- Brian Baumgartner as Kevin Malone
- Creed Bratton (actor) as Creed Bratton
- Kate Flannery as Meredith Palmer
- Mindy Kaling as Kelly Kapoor
- Ellie Kemper as Erin Hannon
- Angela Kinsey as Angela Martin-Lipton
- Paul Lieberstein as Toby Flenderson
- Oscar Nunez as Oscar Martinez
- Craig Robinson as Darryl Philbin
- Phyllis Smith as Phyllis Vance
- Zach Woods as Gabe Lewis
|Season 7||The Office - Season 8||Season 9|
|#01||The List||#07||Pam's Replacement||#13||Jury Duty||#19||Get the Girl|
|#02||The Incentive||#08||Gettysburg||#14||Special Project||#20||Welcome Party|
|#03||Lotto||#09||Mrs. California||#15||Tallahassee||#21||Angry Andy|
|#04||Garden Party||#10||Christmas Wishes||#16||After Hours||#22||Fundraiser|
|#05||Spooked||#11||Trivia||#17||Test the Store||#23||Turf War|
|#06||Doomsday||#12||Pool Party||#18||Last Day in Florida||#24||Free Family Portrait Studio|