Episode 1: Gay Witch Hunt ((NEW))
After the opening credits, the episode begins with Dunder Mifflin branch manager Michael Scott pacing around his office, refusing to comprehend that the Human Resources representative is chastising him. We eventually discover that Michael is being reprimanded for his rude behavior towards one of the office workers, Oscar Martinez, who is a closeted gay man.
Episode 1: Gay Witch Hunt
Based on the above image and his actions throughout the episode, it not too much of a stretch to say that Michael Scott is narrowminded and prejudiced. He equates being accepting of the LGBTQ+ community as thinking both straight pornography and gay pornography are alright, but there is so much more to being an ally of the community than that small decision.
This is Jim's first episode at Stamford after leaving Scranton due to being in love with Pam. Before this episode, it is mentioned that he eats a ham and cheese sandwich everyday. Jim states that at his first day at Stanford he ate a tuna sandwich, resulting in Andy nick naming him "Big Tuna". This is significant because changing his sandwich is a metaphor for his new life in Stamford.
Dwight seems to have misplaced his desk. But, before he can whine to Michael (Steve Carell), Jim begins a game of Hot or Cold, which Dwight (a natural-born hunter, seeker, and ping-pong enthusiast) cannot resist. Dwight's miffed when he finally locates his desk in the men's restroom, but doesn't confront Jim about his new office space. What can you expect from a man who cried at the end of Armageddon?*
Our first entry comes from the very first episode of The Office, and the introduction to Dwight Schrute. As Michael gives the new temp a tour around the office and introduces him to Dwight. As Dwight explains the details of his car to Ryan, he reaches inside his desk to find his stapler incased in Jell-O. Simply just the beginning of what is to come. I am interested in knowing what else Jim has put in Jell-O, or the entire process of it.
On Aug. 25, news surfaced that an early episode of The Office would be pulled from network television, a decision many say was prompted by cancel culture. So, which episode of this beloved show was removed from Comedy Central?
Newsweek, for instance, wrote an article entitled "Comedy Central Caves to Cancel Culture, Removes Episode from 'The Office' Line-up" that stated: "NBC's long-running show The Office is the latest comedy series to join the list of those to become casualties of cancel culture. That's as viewers familiar with one of America's favorite mockumentaries watching a recent Sunday marathon on Comedy Central noticed that the show's "Diversity Day" episode was omitted from the rotation."
On Aug. 22, 2021, a writer for Barstool Sports noticed that Comedy Central was playing a series of old episodes from the first season of "The Office" and that one episode, "Diversity Day," was missing.
These screenshots are genuine, and it's true that this episode was skipped during an airing of "The Office." But was it because of cancel culture? Has this episode actually been cancelled? Is there any other explanation here?
We looked at archived versions of Comedy Central's line-up and found that "Diversity Day" was not the only episode that was skipped during this airing of "The Office." While Comedy Central has been playing sequential episodes of "The Office," it has been skipping over holiday episodes.
The day after Comedy Central seemingly skipped "Diversity Day," the network played a string of episodes from season 2. After "The Fire" (season 2, episode 4), the network should have played "The Halloween" episode. However, this episode was skipped and the network played season 2, episode 6, "The Fight."
The next day, as more season 2 episodes played, Comedy Central went straight from season 2, episode 9, "Email Surveillance," to season 2 episode 11, "Booze Cruise," skipping over "Christmas Party." A few episodes later, Comedy Central skipped over "Valentine's Day." It's possible that "Diversity Day" was mistaken for a holiday episode when Comedy Central programmed the syndication of these episodes.
While the holiday mix-up theory is a bit of a stretch (the United Nations lists a World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, but this is not a widely celebrated holiday in the United States like Christmas or Halloween) it's also unclear why "Diversity Day," of all episodes of "The Office," would fall victim to "cancel culture." When Screenrant published an article about 10 "Office" episodes that aged poorly, "Diversity Day" came in at number 8, behind episodes like "Sexual Harassment" and "Gay Witch Hunt," an episode that centers around (and uses) a slur.
While this controversy was exacerbated in August 2021, fans of "The Office" noticed the absence of "Diversity Day" months ago. Again, many people claimed that this episode was cancelled or pulled because it was politically incorrect. However, this is merely an assumption.
What we know is that Comedy Central often skips airings of "Diversity Day" when streaming sequential episodes of "The Office" on cable. The specific reason for this is unknown, despite the insistence of numerous opinionated news articles. But there are two reasons to be suspicious of this claim: First, the network often skips several other episodes during its airings of "The Office." And second, there were no campaigns to get this episode removed. How could Comedy Central "cave" to cancel culture if it was never pressured in the first place?
Episode 4 - AbergavennyEvalaution of a workshop exploring a welsh gay Witch hunt.In 1942, the Welsh town of Abergavenny was scandalised by disclosures after the arrest of over twenty youths and men on charges relating to homosexual activity and corrupting boys. George Rowe, the 40-year-old manager of Abergavenny's Coliseum cinema was at the centre of a Police enquiry after one of the page-boys complained about being molested. The boy's complaint turned into a witch-hunt of 'queers' across Britain revealing a oddball mix of abused and abusers; a farmer, a clerk, two chefs, a fireman, several serving soldiers, a hairdresser, an actor and others were arrested and brought back to Abergavenny, where almost all the offences were committed.Presented by Tom Marshman and Jeanie Sinclair with additional readings by Bernie HodgesStay informed viafacebook: -Marshman/165333760210768Newsletter sign-up: ://www.tommarshman.com/
An earlier novel by Thomas Mallon, "Fellow Travelers," is about two gay men working for the State Department during the lavender scare, when the anti-communist witch hunt of the 1950s was also a witch hunt for gay people, who were driven out of their jobs. The novel has been adapted into a Showtime series scheduled to premiere later this year. Mallon has also written novels about Watergate, Nixon and the couple who shared Lincoln's box seats at the Ford Theater the night he was assassinated.
GROSS: Of course, you often write about unsafe parts of the past - you know, writing about having to be closeted if you're an actor in the '50s and '60s - well, having to be closeted kind of if you were anybody (laughter) back then. In "Fellow Travelers," you were writing about the anti-gay witch hunts of the '50s during the whole McCarthy period, when there were the anti-communist witch hunts. And in a way, like, the past is repeating again in terms of LGBTQ issues. I mean, you've got a lot of people in the Republican Party who want to overturn the legality of gay marriage. You've got these, like, new anti-drag laws. So do you feel like the - that the past is repeating itself in terms of gay rights?
GROSS: Thomas Mallon's new novel is called "Up With The Sun." Excerpts of his AIDS diaries were published in The New Yorker in December. If you'd like to catch up on FRESH AIR interviews you missed, like this week's interviews about why police violence and misconduct so often go unpunished or our episode collecting excerpts of our interviews with Jimmy Carter, check out our podcast. You'll find lots of FRESH AIR interviews. And just a reminder that you can subscribe to our weekly newsletter for free on our website, freshair.npr.org. You'll find behind-the-scenes stories from our producers, links to the week's interviews and reviews and staff recommendations. I'm always delighted to see it in my email Saturday mornings.
I would like to stand up and be counted among the many (I am sure) sensitive readers who were put off by the homophobic treatment of gay people in the article. . . . There is a serious public health concern aroused by the increasing incidents of AIDS, but this is no excuse to launch a witch hunt against gays. I found this article offensive.
The number of episodes of receptive anal intercourse per year was the variable most highly associated with [AIDS viral agent] HTLV/LAV seropositivity. . . . After adjustment for this variable, no other variable was statistically significant.6 041b061a72