Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Interview: Kate Flannery Talks the Legacy of ‘The Office’ and More!

On January 1, 2021, the beloved NBC sitcom The Office moved from its longtime streaming home on Netflix to NBC’s streaming platform Peacock. Along with every episode from the series, Peacock also added – and will continue to add – brand new special features, including: superfan episodes with never-before-seen footage, behind the scenes footage such as bloopers, interviews, and more, themed episode collections, and other special clip playlists.

To celebrate The Office’s move, Nerds and Beyond was able to chat with the rabies-free Meredith Palmer herself, Kate Flannery, about the move to Peacock, the impact of the show, and more! Read on for our interview.

Note: This interview has been edited for clarity.

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Nerds and Beyond: Since The Office moved from Netflix to Peacock recently, what are you most excited about with that move?

Kate Flannery: I’m mostly excited about the superfan episodes, because they include deleted scenes that even I’ve never seen before. I remember shooting them, but I don’t know how they fit into the episodes. It’s gonna feel like this thing you’ve seen a million times and then some things are gonna be longer, and it’s gonna feel like a dream. In a good way.

Nerds and Beyond: Is there anything about the deleted scenes or special features that you can tell us a little bit more about?

Kate Flannery: There’s been so many storylines. There’s certain characters that I’m told have more deleted scenes than others, and I’m told that it’s Pam, and Toby, and Meredith. I think we’re the top three characters with deleted scenes. I’m excited, for selfish reasons, but I’m also excited for the Pam stuff … I’m excited for all of it. I’m excited for Toby, too.

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Nerds and Beyond: So moving away from Peacock, The Office has become sort of this pop-culture staple. What has it been like seeing this show have such a huge impact on pop culture and create the legacy that it has?

Kate Flannery: It’s a wonderful gift. I feel like if I’m only mostly known as Meredith, the drunk from The Office, I’m super happy with that. I feel like the affection for this show just grows and grows, and I feel like there’s so many smart kids that really get all the subtleties. I mean, I feel like this show — The Office really treats the audience like they’re smart. You can watch the same episode five times and find something new to laugh at or to notice. And it’s just so cool. It’s really a dream come true, and, you know, it’s crazy. It’s fantastic.

Nerds and Beyond: What, personally, do you think makes The Office such a special and timeless show?

Kate Flannery: Well, I think there’s something about being in a workplace and being an ordinary person. I think it’s kinda like Pam’s speech in the finale – there’s beauty in ordinary things, and there’s beauty in a paper company. [laughs] And all the awkward, ridiculous personality traits of Michael Scott and the way that he affects everyone that he deals with on a regular basis. And just the way we interact. You kinda get stuck with people you don’t pick in life, but somehow, you’re a weird family out of it, no matter whether you want to be or not. That’s just how it is.

Nerds and Beyond: What is one trait you have in common with Meredith, and what is one trait you have that’s different but has [created] a life lesson you still use today?

Kate Flannery: I … well, my dad owned a bar for years, so I come by playing an alcoholic very honestly. And I bartended and waited tables up and through the first season of The Office, so I waited on many Merediths. I’ve seen a [lot of] personality traits, but I’ve seen like the one female that’s still drinking with the guys. [Different], I think Meredith is one of the most unapologetic, confident people at Dunder Mifflin. And actually, she just doesn’t have any shame, and I wish I was as confident and unapologetic as Meredith. I do tend to overapologize, but I feel like it’s less so. The more Meredith I can channel, the less I apologize.

Thank you to Kate for taking the time to chat with us! You can stream all seasons of The Office now on Peacock.

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Julia
Julia is a writer/editor/content assistant for Nerds. She joined the team in 2019 but has always enjoyed talking about her favorite fandoms. When she isn't writing or working, you can find her reading, watching her favorite shows and movies, and building her repertoire of Dad jokes.

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