Season 2 Episode 5
Air Date: October 18, 2005
Summary: While the office celebrates Halloween, Michael tries to avoid the reality that he has to fire someone by the end of the day (and has no idea who!). Jim and Pam secretly post Dwight’s resume online.
It’s Halloween, and Michael is in a good mood until he’s reminded that it’s the end of the month, and Jan wanted him to let someone go. It’s quickly apparent that he has no idea who to fire, and wants to do everything he hand to not look like the “bad guy”.
Michael’s first action is to try to get Pam to “guess” who he’s going to fire. Pam manages to weasel out of the uncomfortable conversation by complimenting Michael’s costume (a head made out of paper mache that sits on his shoulder).
Michael’s second action is to avoid a lay-off altogether by asking the accountants to try to find $50k (aka an employee’s salary) in the budget. They do manage to find one department with three people doing the work of two: the accounting department.
Michael then asks Dwight who he should fire. Dwight is little help as he simply rattles of a laundry list of employees. Michael teases Dwight by pretending to talk about firing Dwight to his paper mache head, and Dwight yells at “the head” to be quiet.
After Dwight teases him about his costume, Jim enlists Pam’s help to type up a resume for Dwight so they can post it online. Jim will do just about anything to help Dwight get a different job, including passing himself off as Michael and giving a glowing recommendation to an interested employer.
Michael’s next attempt to fire someone is to have Dwight do it for him. But Dwight’s attempt to fire Stanley is only met with laughter from Stanley, and Michael retreats back to his office.
Dwight gets a call from Cumberland Mills in Maryland, and is flattered by their interest, but is concerned that they don’t have his full resume. It goes south for Dwight, however, when he gets angry at the caller for not seeing the relevance of having martial arts training on a resume. Dwight still tries to use the Cumberland Mills offer to leverage a promotion from Michael, but Michael is only upset at Dwight for not taking the other job since it would have meant he didn’t have to fire anyone.
Pam encourages Jim to go for the Cumberland Mills job, citing that it pays much better and would be a challenge. Jim is upset, however, at Pam’s suggestion to apply for a job that would take him out of state (and away from her) and pretty much avoids her for the rest of the day.
Michael then calls in Jim. Jim is concerned his job is one on the line for teasing Michael in a talking head, but Michael called him in to help him “role play” firing someone. Jim is little help to Michael, and he dismisses Jim then called Creed into his office.
Michael meekly tries to fire Creed, but Creed talks him to firing Devon. Michael then calls Devon in, and Devon similarly tries to talking Michael into fire Creed. Michael is out of options, though, and sticks with firing Devon. He tries to soften the blow by offering a gift certificate to Chili’s, but Devon tears it up and invites everyone except Angela, Dwight, Creed and Michael to have drinks with him at Poor Richard’s. His final act as a Dunder Mifflin employee is throwing a pumpkin on Michael’s car.
As everyone leaves, Pam pulls Jim aside and apologizes for “pushing him” towards the other job. She then jokingly tell him if he left she would “blow her brains out.” Jim smiles, and a talking head talks about how that was just a figure of speech meaning that they’re friends. He admits, though, that if Pam left, he would likely go for another job.
Michael tries to sound upbeat in his final talking head, talking about controversial people he’s been for Halloween, but the cameras show footage of him looking melancholy and returning alone to his condo. His mood is lifted, though, when some trick or treaters come to his door.
Michael: Um, Pam, I have to let somebody go today. This is, uh, the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do.
Pam: Why did you put it off until Halloween?
Michael: Because it’s very scary stuff.
Pam: I think it’s gonna put a damper on the party a little.
Michael: You’re worried about the party? There’s a man’s life at stake here.
Pam: So it’s a man?
Michael: No. Or a woman. A human life.
Jim: I’m a three hole punch version of Jim. ‘Cause you can have me either way. Plain White Jim, or Three-hole Punch.
Michael: Mmm-hm-hmm. Interesting take on Dorothy. I love it. Hey, you know what would even be better? Soccer ball and cleats.
Kelly: Why is that?
Michael: “Bend It Like Beckham.”
Kelly: Oh, like … the movie about the Indian girl who plays soccer?
Michael: [laughs] Yeah. That would be perfect.
Kelly: Yeah, I mean, I guess I could do that. I don’t really play soccer or anything.
Michael: Well, I don’t really have two heads. So…
Jim: We’re really interested most in jobs that take Dwight out of state. Um, preferably Alaska… or India.
Pam: I’m guessing Angela’s the one in the neighborhood who gives the trick-or-treaters some toothbrushes. Pennies. Walnuts.
Jim: Michael Scott here. Yes, I am regional manager of this orifice. Dwight Schrute is amazing. Yeah. No, he is actually the single greatest employee of his generation. You know what? I’m gonna tell you what. You hire Dwight K. Schrute, and if he does not meet, nay, exceed every one of your wildest expectations, well then, you can hold me, Michael Gary Scott, personally and financially responsible. Okay. Okay. Okay-kay-kay-kay-kay. Okay.
Dwight: I’m just not sure that it’s my official resume or if it’s something that maybe a satisfied customer posted online. What does it say under martial arts training? Oh. Okay, I’m gonna have to supplement that.
Dwight: What do you mean? Of course martial arts training is relevant. Oh, excuse me! I know about a billion Asians that would beg to differ.
Creed: Let’s fight it.
Creed: Let’s call Jan and fight this thing together like the old days.
Michael: What old days? What are you talking about?
- One of the producers posted a resume for Dwight Schrute on Monster.com a month before the episode aired.
- Jan’s assistant answers the phone “Jan Levinson” implying she is already divorced from “Gould.”
- Michael’s middle name is revealed to be “Gary”
- According to commentaries and various interviews, this episode was intended to air after The Client and Performance Review.
- possible continuity error: in “The Alliance” it’s mentioned Meredith is an accountant, but in this episode it’s stated there’s only three accountants: Angela, Kevin and Oscar.
- The characters Halloween costumes were:
Michael: Two-Headed Man
Dwight: Sith Lord
Jim: Three-Hole-Punch Jim
Pam: Black Cat
Kevin: Dunder Mifflin Superhero (Mr. Incredible style)
Toby: Hugh Hefner
Angela: White Cat
Meredith: Person With Bloody Head
Creed: Count Dracula
Ryan and Stanley did not wear costumes
- foreshadowing to future episodes: Michael’s comments about Oscar “showing his true colors” by dressing as a woman could be considered the first reference to Oscar being gay.
- foreshadowing to future episodes: Michael’s paper mache head is seen again in Diwali (since Michael thought the Indian holiday was like Halloween).
- foreshadowing to future episodes: In Fun Run, Angela shows the camera a picture of her and her cat, Sprinkles, on Halloween with Angela wearing the white cat costume she wore in this episode.