The One Show That Unites Millennials and Gen Z (When They're Not Arguing About Side Parts)
Millennials and Gen Z can’t seem to agree on much. The former, who lived through TV antennas, CDs and low-cut denim, feels like they are (and will always be) totally fetch and the epitome of kool. While Gen Z says all those early 2000s aesthetics are so cheugy and are ushering in their own trends—mom or dad jeans anyone? Though it seems the two generations are always battling it out, one popular sitcom has them finally on the same page…
So, what is the one show that both Millennials and Gen Z will happily binge?
According to TikTok user Vijay, aka @PixelPlayhouse, millennials and Gen Z will never agree on generation-defining pop culture moments such as Harry Potter, Buzzfeed Quizzes, Billie Eilish or the validity of TikTok dances. But one thing they can both agree on is that The Office is a well-worthy watch.
Sure, the show was a hit when it debuted back in the early 2000s, but the Washington Post says its tenure on Netflix is what turned The Office into the “pop culture behemoth” that it is today. The theory makes sense considering the fact that millennials and Gen Zers were the primary generations to latch onto the binge-watching model. And it seems Michael Scott and the gang at Dunder Mifflin had them marathoning the mockumentary relentlessly because The Office was the most-watched show on Netflix in its last few years on the platform.
Safe to say the catchy theme song, the “will they or won’t they” beginnings of Jim and Pam as well as the endless pranks, always left both gens satisfied and smiling. (That’s what she said!)
But what makes this unwitting office sitcom so special?
The question has been pondered many times and so I turned to some Office afficionados on the PureWow team for their take on why this simple show, which debuted back in 2005, is a mega-hit across the two generations to this day.
1. It’s therapeutic. The Office is the ideal show to put on to help you unwind after a long day of work or school. The plot lines are easy to follow, the jokes are right there and the overall premise is not that complicated. Said VP of News and Entertainment Phil Mutz in his analysis of why the show is so addictive, “I’ve learned that watching reruns of The Office is my form of self-care. Some people need a bubble bath and a little Kenny G. I need Oscar secretly having an affair with Angela’s husband and Michael setting off the sprinklers during his candle-filled proposal to Holly.”
2. It’s relatable AF. “Anyone who has ever worked in an office setting can relate to at least one part of what happens there,” Rachel Gulmi, Managing Editor, Branded Content states. “The relationships, the office dynamic in general, the mundane tasks, drama etc.” She has a point. How many times, like Stanley, have you found yourself in a meeting that could have been an email? Or on the wrong side of someone who takes their Christmas-party hosting duties a wee bit too seriously a la Angela Martin? And OMG, there’s always that one guy whose title is too obscure to figure out what he really does, but he shows up to work every day and seems pivotal enough to the company that no one digs any further.
3. It’s just so well-written. Outside of the clear parallels to everyday office life, The Office is an astutely well-written show, thanks to the talents of BJ Novak (Ryan), Mindy Kaling (Kelly), Paul Lieberstein (Toby) and Michael Schur (Mose). The flawlessly executed character development is also one contributing factor as to why people love this show so much. “Michael Scott is flawed and sometimes foolish, but he really has a heart of gold,” says Nakeisha Campbell, Assistant Editor of News and Entertainment. “It's amazing to see how he grows. I feel like any fan can relate to his character on some level.” The same can even be said for Dwight Schrute, who grew into his coveted position of regional manager at the series’ end.