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"Niagara" is a two-part episode of the sixth season of the U.S. comedy series The Office. Because of its extended hour-long runtime, it was considered to be the fourth and fifth episodes in the season's episode count. It was the 104th (and 105th) episode overall. It was written by Greg Daniels and Mindy Kaling and it was directed by Paul Feig. It originally aired on October 8, 2009.

The highly-anticipated episode revolved around the wedding of Jim and Pam at Niagara Falls.

Synopsis

Part One

In the cold open, Pam tells the office not to eat pungent foods, to which Dwight refuses. When he is eating an egg, Pam throws up. Andy, Angela, Erin and then everyone else throw up, except for Creed who for some reason eats at a faster rate while watching the staff throw up, after which Pam gives a look to Dwight.

After giving strict directions not to tell her family about Pam being pregnant, Jim and Pam head up to Niagara Falls for their wedding and the rest of the office follows them. After setting up his car to say "Going to a Wedding," Michael and Dwight seek women to hook up with while Andy pursues Erin . Kevin and Oscar meet Pam's sister Penny, who accidentally offends Oscar by thinking Kevin was his boyfriend Gil. Pam's mother Helene is visibly disturbed at the fact that Pam's father, and Helene's ex-husband, William has come to the wedding with his new girlfriend who is half his own age.

Everyone except Pam's grandmother, "Memaw" is aware of Pam's pregnancy, so they are told not to mention it. At the rehearsal dinner, Jim gives a moving and romantic toast to his soon-to-be wife. However, closing the toast, Jim accidentally alludes to Pam's pregnancy. Both Jim and Michael try to cover up the fact, but only embarrass themselves further. In a final bid to end the embarrassment, Michael privately tells Mema that this kind of behavior should be encouraged nowadays and gives her false hope that the baby will be named after her.

Andy hosts a dance party in his room later that night, with the office staff attending. Andy punctures his scrotum trying to do a split. The guests rouse Pam, the only sober person, to take him to the hospital. Pam reluctantly agrees.

Part Two

MaidoftheMist

Pam and Jim on the Maid of the Mist

Michael and Dwight try their luck with women at the bar. Dwight, despite embarrassing both of them, is successful in getting Pam's friend Isabel Poreba to spend the night with him. Michael spends the night alone in the ice machine room as he had failed to make a reservation in advance.

Prior to the ceremony, Pam accidentally tears her veil and tearfully phones Jim. They meet in private, where Pam expresses her regret over their choice to invite their families and the office staff. Pam is visibly uplifted when Jim cuts off his tie in an effort to console her. They are then seen running away from the church together.

While everyone in the church wonders where they went, Michael and Helene begin to bond over their failed relationships. Dwight callously rebuffs Isabel's attempts at further contact. The rest of the office staff grow impatient, bickering about their right to take their gifts back.

Niagara1

Jim and Pam finally return to the church after an hour with no explanation of their absence, and the ceremony begins. Meemaw is seen at the church, indicating Michael's attempts at getting her to stay were successful.

NiagaraWeddingDance

The wedding montage based on the JK Wedding Dance

Michael, Dwight, and others close to Jim and Pam interrupt the ceremony by recreating the dance routines as featured in the JK Wedding Entrance Dance. Despite having asked their guests specifically not to re-enact the video, Jim and Pam react with good humor.

During the dance sequence, a flashback reveals Jim and Pam's adventure during their absence: They are shown boarding a Maid of the Mist ferry boat and being married by the ship's captain below the falls. Jim explains to the camera that he had prepared the ferry marriage in advance after seeing the video, in anticipation of the likely chaos at the ceremony. The camera then cuts back to Jim holding Pam close to him and with her head on his shoulder, as they look out into the distance at Niagara Falls. Jim looks at the camera and smiles warmly.

The very end of the episode shows Kevin soothing his feet in the ice machine, while Pam's mother lustfully pulls Michael into her hotel room.


Cultural references

  • Michael asks to give his toast third, "sorta bat cleanup." The cleanup hitter in baseball is the team's strongest hitter. However, the cleanup hitter bats fourth, not third, as Michael believes.
  • Sylvia was watching Brüno, a mockumentary comedy film about a gay Austrian fashion journalist.
  • Dwight wears the Three Wolf Moon t-shirt, made famous by humorous reviews on Amazon, before going out to the hotel bar with Michael to pick up women, commenting on its "powerful forces of attraction" on them. He also comments they are moaning at the moon "to imitate howling during sex".
  • The dance down the church aisle to Chris Brown's "Forever" is a "remake" of the popular 2009 YouTube viral video, "JK Wedding Entrance Dance", in which a young couple (JK standing for "Jill and Kevin") dance down the aisle to the song along with their wedding party. Pam mentions that the song was specifically put on a "Do Not Play List", but was choreographed by the wedding guests and office workers regardless.
  • Toy Story, Finding Nemo, and Up are animated movies by Pixar Animation Studios. The movies are kid-friendly.

Amusing details

  • Penny mistakes Kevin for Gil, even though Oscar and Gil had been broken up for over two years.
  • Mindy Kaling explained that she writes less romance-y stuff than show-runner Greg Daniels. [1]
  • While everyone throws up in the office, Creed is seen calmly eating noodles.
  • Jim's dad wore a kilt, marking the second person to have Scottish roots. (Michael said he was Scottish and 2/15 Native American in "Diversity Day")
  • On a sign to the reception dinner, it says "Halpret" instead of "Halpert." (see List of Signs.) The same error is made on the daily events sign in the hotel lobby.
  • When talking to Jim's parents, Michael ask if he can give his toast third, "sorta bat clean-up". Clean-up is a term used in baseball to signify the fourth batter in the lineup, not the third.

Trivia

  • Robert Pine (Mr. Halpert) is the father of Chris Pine, who starred as James T. Kirk in the 2009 Star Trek film, directed and co-produced by J.J. Abrams - which originally featured Spencer Daniels (Greg Daniels' son, and Jake Palmer in "Take Your Daughter to Work Day") as Kirk's older brother, though much of his part was cut, and for the one sequence that did make the film, he was made into a different character.
  • The flower girl is played by Greg Daniels' daughter Charlotte.
  • Mindy Kaling likes to write Dwight being able to easily get girls. In another Mindy Kaling written episode, Dwight makes out with a tall women's basketball player, but later leaves her. [2]

Goofs

  • In a deleted scene, Jim talks in front of the Statler Falls Hotel. The awning of the Red Coach Inn was redressed to read "Statler Falls Hotel", but two signs for the Red Coach Inn were left intact (one to the left of the awning and another in front of it).

Behind the scenes

  • The hotel in Niagara is the Red Coach Inn. The hotel interiors were shot at the Sportsmen's Lodge Hotel in Los Angeles. The hotel lobby scenes were shot in the hotel's auxiliary lobby. The rehearsal dinner was shot at The Smokehouse in Burbank. In the show, the hotel's name is the Statler Falls Hotel.
  • Many of the tourists on the Maid of the Mist were real tourists. The Maid of the Mist management did not want to shut down the entire boat for filming.[3] The production crew had exclusive access only to the bow of the boat. Anybody else who happened to be on the boat got to watch the scene being filmed.
  • Relatives of crew members were enlisted as extras for the Maid of the Mist scenes. In particular, the couple directly behind Pam and Jim in the ticket line are Brian Baumgartner's parents, who happened to be in the area on vacation.

Connections to Previous Episodes

  • Since early on, Kevin has had smelly feet. It was mentioned in Diwali when Angela is disgusted that Kevin took off his shoes at the Diwali festival.
  • This is the second episode where Pam is seen wearing glasses. The first instance was in Did I Stutter?.
  • Pam's mother was last seen in Sexual Harrasment, but was played by Shannon Cochran. She is now played by Linda Purl in both this episode and Double Date.
  • Stanley asks if anyone has room for a toaster. In Gay Witch Hunt, Stanley says in a talking head that he bought a toaster as a wedding gift for Pam and Roy, and couldn't return it when the wedding was called off. He also gets a toaster for Phyllis in Phyllis' Wedding, and is peeved when he finds out Jim and Karen brought the same gift.

Quotes

For quotes, see: Niagara Quotes.

Cast

Main Cast

Supporting Cast

Guest Cast

References

  1. http://www.officetally.com/niagara-qa-with-mindy-kaling
  2. http://www.officetally.com/niagara-qa-with-mindy-kaling/3
  3. http://www.officetally.com/niagara-qa-with-mindy-kaling/4
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