The Fridge
You don't call them "collard" people. That's offensive.

"The Fridge"

 

 

mckenna/insana

 

_______________________

 

FADE IN

 

INT—OFFICE—DAY

 

MICHAEL is seated sprawled on JIM’S desk, enthusiastically shaking a magic 8 ball. 

 

MICHAEL: (reading the ball)

Yes.

 

DWIGHT pumps his fists in the air in jubilation. ANDY copies.

 

CUT TO—PAM IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD

 

PAM:

Every now and then Michael will become totally obsessed with an object, usually a toy or something.  The first one I can remember was the yo-yo. 

 

QUICK CUT TO—A YEAR OR SO EARLIER

 

MICHAEL is shown swinging a yo-yo around like a madman, knocking over every phone, pencil cup, or in TOBY’S case, person, that gets in its way.

 

CUT TO—PAM IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD (CONT.)

 

PAM: (with hindsight)

That was pretty bad.  But it wasn’t HALF as bad as his Bop-It craze.  (pauses, to let her previous statement sink in) And now he’s discovered the Magic 8 Ball.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL IN HIS OFFICE—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL: (sincerely)

It’s amazing!  I ask it a simple question, and it gives me an answer!  Have you ever seen anything like it?

 

CUT TO—OFFICE

 

Back to the previous scene.  MICHAEL continues showing off his new toy, but only DWIGHT looks on with any semblance of interest.  JIM, although right near MICHAEL, couldn’t be paying less attention. 

 

MICHAEL:

Magic 8 Ball, am I not the funniest person in this room?

HE shakes it.  HE waits for a reply, but remains silent after he reads it.

 

DWIGHT: (worried)

What? 

 

MICHAEL: (covering)

Nothing. It’s nothing.

 

HE shakes it again, this time more fervently.  He still does not read the answer aloud.

 

JIM:

What does it say, Michael?  You asked it a question, you have to read the answer.

 

MICHAEL: (getting frustrated)

Umm…

 

MICHAEL shakes it violently one more time.  Then, he retreats back to his office and closes the door shut, defeated.  The sound of the 8 ball clanging in the bottom of his trash bin is heard.

 

 

CUT TO—OPENING CREDITS

 

 

EASE IN

 

INT—RYAN’S DESK—DAY

 

MICHAEL walks over to RYAN, who is at work at his desk.  MICHAEL gives HIM a playful shove to the shoulder.  In his right hand is a shopping bag.

 

MICHAEL:

You excited?

 

RYAN:

Uh, what?

 

MICHAEL:

How’s your big day going so far?

 

RYAN:

Oh, uh, fine, thanks.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL’S OFFICE—TALKING HEAD

  

MICHAEL:

Today is...a very special day here at Dunder/Mifflin.  It was exactly two years ago today that Ryan came to work with us!  And you know what...I have no doubt he's having the time of his life!

 

CUT TO—RYAN IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD

 

RYAN:

How do I feel?  Put it this way: When I was eight, I wanted to be a baseball player.  When I was 16, I thought about becoming a doctor.  Two years ago, I imagined myself running my own business in New York, and married to the girl of my dreams (looks directly at camera) So yeah, I would say some pieces haven't exactly fallen into place yet.

 

CUT TO—RYAN’S DESK

 

MICHAEL: (out loud)

Alright, everybody, can I have all of your attention?  As you know, today we are celebrating Ryan’s two years of service here. 

 

RYAN: (uncomfortable)

This isn’t necessary, Michael.

 

MICHAEL:

(to RYAN) Oh, please. (to everybody) ANNND, to commemorate this huge occasion, I even brought a nice little cake for us all. 

 

MICHAEL holds up the bag.

 

RYAN:

You didn’t have to do that, honestly.

 

MICHAEL: (ignoring him)

So I’m going to put this in our fridge, and all of you can help yourselves whenever you’re ready.

 

MICHAEL makes his way to the break room.  PAM, calls to him from her desk.

 

PAM:

I wouldn’t open that fridge just yet, Michael.

 

MICHAEL does not hear her.  HE enters the kitchen.  However, when he opens the refrigerator he involuntarily drops the bag of cake.  He lets out a howl of abject disgust.  HE bursts full speed out of the break room.

 

MICHAEL:

Oh my god.  What in the world happened to our refrigerator?

 

PAM:

I meant to tell you about that this morning.

 

MICHAEL:

And?

 

PAM:

Well, we think that it broke down on Friday. 

 

MICHAEL:

On Friday?

 

PAM:

Yes.

 

MICHAEL:

So all that food,

 

PAM:

Uh, huh.

 

MICHAEL:

Has been sitting in there all weekend?  In this heat?

 

PAM:

Afraid so.

 

MICHAEL: (3 beats)

Gross.

 

CUT TO—KAREN IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD

 

KAREN:

It’s not that big a deal.  I don’t think anybody has really used that thing for weeks. Not since I’ve been here anyway.

 

RYAN:

No, I never use it. I go out for lunch…….I try to get out as much as I can. 

 

KEVIN:

I used the fridge sometimes.  But I’m not gonna miss it.  I miss the copy machine a lot more.  (childish laugh)

 

CUT TO—OFFICE

 

DWIGHT is seated as his desk, on the phone.

 

DWIGHT:

Question: How many years is the lease for? Good. And the APR financing? Excellent.

 

JIM looks up at DWIGHT and then at the CAMERA.

 

CUT TO-DWIGHT IN CONFERENCE ROOM-TALKING HEAD

 

DWIGHT:

Yes, I am looking into purchasing a new car. A German model, in fact. Why? Because the one with the faster car always wins.  Always. Example: I once saw the group of teenagers drag racing with this much older man, and they left him and his pathetic excuse for an automobile in the dust. (then, nervously) Please don’t tell Michael that I told you about that.

 

CUT TO-JIM’S DESK

 

DWIGHT walks over to JIM and leans over to whisper to HIM.

 

DWIGHT:

Can you meet me in the conference room?

 

JIM: (sitting back in his chair doing nothing)

Absolutely.

 

CUT TO-JIM IN CONFERENCE ROOM-TALKING HEAD

 

JIM:

I love how Dwight makes MY job of making HIS life harder SO much easier.

 

CUT TO-CONFERENCE ROOM

 

DWIGHT:

I am sure you are wondering why it is that I have asked you here.

 

JIM:

You mean this isn’t to talk about our true feelings for each other?

 

DWIGHT: (seriously)

Halpert, this is no time for games. I wish to enlist your help on an important mission.

 

JIM glances at the camera curiously.

 

DWIGHT:

Today during lunch I will be heading down to the car dealership to test-drive a Volkswagen Beetle.

 

JIM:

Wow.

 

CUT TO-CONFERENCE ROOM-TALKING HEAD

 

JIM: This day could not be any better. Putting Dwight in a Beetle is like completing the last step of his transformation into Steve Urkel. I wonder if he has an attractive alter ego…

 

CUT TO—KITCHRN

 

MICHAEL, wearing a gas mask on his face, laboriously sifts through the remaining “food” in the refrigerator, all of them long since edible.  When HE is finished, he makes his way back to the main room of the office.

 

MICHAEL:

I don’t know how all of you can just SIT at your desks and WORK and PRETEND like nothings happened.

 

Angela:

What are we supposed to do?  Mourn?

 

MICHAEL:

Yes!  EXACTLY!  Don’t you see? That was our fridge!  How can you not FEEL anything?

 

TOBY tries to act as the voice of reason.

  

TOBY:

Michael, I think it’s okay to go back to work.  We can try to get ourselves a new refrigerator tomorrow.   

 

MICHAEL: (harshly)

How dare you?  Who do you think you are?  And on Ryan’s big day, too.  REPLACE that fridge?!!?  I bought that fridge during my first week as Regional Manager of Dunder/Mifflin Scranton.  You replace that refrigerator, and you’re going to have to replace me.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL’S OFFICE—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL:

I can’t understand how they all could be so cold. That machine is just as much a part of this company as any of them.  (leans in) It’s a proven fact that machines bring stability.  Think of it this way: every great family has a robot.  The Jetsons had Rosie.  Without Rosie, the Jetsons would be……the Flintstones.  And if we’re the Flintstones, then..……Phyllis is Dino.

 

CUT TO-OFFICE

 

JIM is standing at PAM’S desk, talking.

 

PAM:

Oh my God! A Beetle!  That’s sad.  That’s really sad.

 

JIM:

I know. And he wants me to go down to the dealership with him.

 

PAM: (laughing)

Are you going?

 

JIM:

YES! How can I pass this up? C’mon Beesly, get your head in the game.

 

PAM laughs. MICHAEL emerges from his office, putting his jacket on. 

 

MICHAEL:

Attention everybody.  Since all of you obviously don’t care about the tragic situation in the break room, I have taken it upon myself to find us a new refrigerator.

 

ANGELA:

You’re making this harder than it should be.

 

MICHAEL:

That’s what she said.  And no, Angela, it is not me that made this hard.  It is YOU and your HEARTLESSNESS that did.  So now I am going to fix the mess that YOU made.

 

STANLEY:

Does mean we can have the rest of the day off?

 

MICHAEL:

No, Stanley, you cannot.  In fact, because you were all so callous, you all have to stay here and do WORK.  Consider it your punishment. (starts walking toward the door; to Dwight) You coming?

 

DWIGHT:

I am sorry, Michael, but I have business of my own to attend to.

 

MICHAEL:

Even you, Dwight? 

 

MICHAEL storms out.  Seconds later, JIM and DWIGHT begin walking out the door. Angela is standing at the printer.

 

Angela:

I hope that you are able to find what you’re looking for, Dwight.

 

DWIGHT: (intentionally distantly)

Why, thank you, Angela.

 

ANDY is seen glaring at DWIGHT.

 

CUT TO-CONFERENCE ROOM-TALKING HEAD

 

ANDY: Am I threatened by Dwight? Um, I think not. Was Butch Cassidy threatened by…Lassie?

 

CUT TO-OFFICE

 

JIM and Dwight are in the elevator.

 

DWIGHT:

Oh and by the way, we need to stop for lunch.

 

JIM:

Why?

 

DWIGHT:

Because I was planning on eating the swordfish and feta cheese sandwich that I had leftover from Friday.

 

JIM: (opens eyes sarcastically)

Ouch.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL PARKING HIS CAR

 

MICHAEL steps out of his car and begins walking toward a Target store.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL IN PARKING LOT—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL:

This is big right here.  Because if don’t bring us back the perfect fridge, who knows how much morale will suffer. I can do this.  No sweat.  I live for this.  (to the camera man,) You don’t happen to know a lot about refrigerators, would you?

 

CUT TO—OFFICE

 

The Break room.  The defunct refrigerator is still there, but it is unplugged.  Also, it has been pulled to the middle of the room (so it can be more easily removed).  CREED walks right to the fridge and opens it. 

 

CREED: (angrily)

Who ate my lunch?

 

CUT TO-DWIGHT’S CAR EN ROUTE TO DEALERSHIP

 

Burger King bags are seen in the car. JIM is seen eating some fries and DWIGHT has a burger in his hand.

 

DWIGHT: (chewing)

Ugh…I don’t know how you can stomach this poor excuse for food. This is obviously not pure beef.

 

JIM: (uninterestedly)

And how would you know?

 

DWIGHT:

Please. I have a superb sense of taste. My taste buds can isolate and identify the tastes of any additives to this burger.

 

JIM:

And what’s in that burger?

 

DWIGT:

Simple. Food additives.

 

JIM looks at the camera in the back seat.

 

CUT TO—INSIDE TARGET

 

MICHAEL has made his way into the electronics wing of the store.  HE is walking up and down the aisles, surrounded by CDs, Video Games, and television sets.  HE obviously has no idea what he’s doing.  A young Target employee approaches him.

 

EMPLOYEE:

Hello.  Can I help you?

 

MICHAEL:

Uh, yes, yes you can.  I am looking for a refrigerator.

 

EMPLOYEE:

Okay.  But you’re not going to find one here, sir.  This is the electronics department.

 

MICHAEL: (looks at camera; condescendingly)

Well, the last time I checked, my refrigerator plugged into a wall…

 

The camera catches the EMPLOYEE’S face.

 

CUT TO-CAR DEALERSHIP

 

A DEALER is walking DWIGHT and JIM over to a parked yellow Volkswagen New Beetle in a garage.

 

DEALER:

And here, Mr. Schrute, is the model that seems to fit all of your requirements.

 

JIM:

Wait a second. This is a yellow model.

 

DEALER:

Yes, Mr. Schrute specifically asked for this color.

 

DWIGHT: (nervously)

Yellow happens to be Ange—I mean Anastasia’s favorite color…from Battlestar Galactica.

 

DEALER:

So does this particular model interest you? Or if you’d like to take a look at any of our other New Beetles…

 

DWIGHT:

That won’t be necessary. If you don’t mind, I’d like to take a look at the car itself.

 

DEALER: (happily)

Be my guest.

 

DWIGHT opens the car door and seats himself in the driver’s seat. HE grips the wheel and puts his foot on the peddle. HE checks the glove compartment. HE gets out of the car.

 

DWIGHT:

Excellent. I have decided that I wish to purchase this car.

 

DEALER: (shocked)

Already…I mean, fantastic. I just have to run into my office and print out some paperwork that requires your signature. I’ll be back in no more than five or ten minutes.

 

The DEALER walks away.

 

CUT TO-DEALER IN DEALERSHIP-TALKING HEAD


DEALER:

It doesn’t happen much, but every so often we get some idiot who’ll just buy the first car he sees. No browsing, no test drives, nothing. It really is a salesman’s dream.

 

CUT TO-GARAGE

 

JIM:

Wow. Dwight, I have never seen anyone make a decision so quickly.

 

DWIGHT:

Don’t make me laugh. I need to give this car a full inspection. I can’t do that with that measly little dealer breathing down my neck.

 

JIM: (quietly)

Oh, God.

 

DWIGHT walks over to the back of the car and opens the trunk. HE gets in.

 

JIM:

 What are you doing?

 

DWIGHT:

I’m making sure I can fit in the trunk. In case I’m ever running from the law, I need to make sure that hide safely and comfortably in the back of my car.

 

CUT TO-DWIGHT IN GARAGE-TALKING HEAD

 

DWIGHT:

Do I ever intend to commit a major crime? No. But you never know. I could be like Al Pacino in the Godfather. What if I’m dragged into my father’s life of organized crime?...Except my father isn’t Italian…and he’s a tailor.

 

CUT TO—INSIDE TARGET

 

MICHAEL is pacing through the women’s clothing department.  HE passes a mannequin clad only in underwear.  HE stops and stares at it for a good five seconds. 

 

MICHAEL: (to himself; in awe)

Wow.  If it looks that good on a dummy, imagine how hot it’ll look on Jan.  (notices the camera)  Ahem.  Um, and by looks good I mean, um, oh dear.   

 

CUT TO—THE OFFICE

 

RYAN is walking out of the break room.  He has a small sandwich in his hand.  MEREDITH exits from the ladies room. 

 

MEREDITH:

Hey Ryan, I heard to day is some sort of an anniversary for you.

 

RYAN:

Yeah, not really.

 

HE takes a bite of a homemade sandwich.

 

MEREDITH: (nostalgically)

You know, it was actually during my second year here that my uterus first started hemorrhaging.  That’s why I had to get the hysterectomy in the first place.

 

SHE smiles at RYAN, whose eyes widen, and leaves for her desk.  RYAN slowly places his sandwich in the trash can.

 

CUT TO-GARAGE

 

DWIGHT gets out of the trunk.

 

DWIGHT:

Hold this.

 

DWIGHT takes off his jacket and shirt and hands them to JIM. JIM gives the camera a puzzled but entertained look. DWIGHT gets into the back of the car and begins rubbing his bare chest all over the seat.

 

JIM:

What the hell are you doing?

 

DWIGHT:

Seeing how the seat feels. I cannot buy a car unless the backseat is incredibly comfortable against my bare skin.

 

JIM’S eyes widen. DWIGHT gets out of the car. HE takes his shirt and jacket back from JIM and puts them on.

 

DWIGHT:

So far this is passing my inspection. I may just buy this after all.

 

JIM:

It looks there’s some dirt on the mirror.

 

DWIGHT goes to brush the dirt off the mirror, which snaps off in his hand. DWIGHT and JIM look at each other.

 

DWIGHT: Run! 

 

CUT TO—FOOD COURT—TARGET

 

MICHAEL is seated at a table, stuffing his face with a churro. 

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL:

I’ll be honest. Things aren’t going exactly as I’ve planned.  But I’m not going to let that get me.  (confidently) I’m a warrior.  I have ice running through my veins.  I even know exactly what refrigerator I’m getting.  (then, quietly) That is, if I can ever find the refrigerators.

 

CUT TO—PAM’S DESK

 

ANDY is leaning on it.

 

ANDY:

Listen, Pamela: since Tuna and Jar-Jar are out on their date, do you think you can ——

 

PAM: (dryly)

I told you Andy, I want no part of your rivalry with Dwight.

 

ANDY: (to himself)

Dammit.

 

HE walks away.  PAM is seen smiling.

 

CUT TO-DWIGHT AND JIM IN DWIGHT’S CAR

 

The two drive on in silence for about 20 seconds.

 

JIM:

Dwight—

 

DWIGHT:

I don’t want to talk about it.

 

CUT TO—TARGET

 

MICHAEL, totally lost (and in a bit over his head), is sprawled across the floor in the middle of Target. HIS cell phone rings.

 

MICHAEL:

Hello?  Hey Pam.  Oh yeah, everything’s going fine.  Totally.  Yup, no sweat. (defensively) Yes I’m telling you the truth.  (sits up) Yes, I know that Jan needs those files by tonight.  No, paperwork is not more important than this.

 

HE hangs up his phone and falls back onto the floor.  A Target Employee passes.  SHE does not even stop to look at HIM.

 

CUT TO—RYAN’S DESK

 

KEVIN approaches.

 

KEVIN:

Congratulations on your big day, Ryan.

 

RYAN:

What?  Oh, it’s really not a big deal.

 

KEVIN:

How are you celebrating?

 

RYAN:

I don’t really see any need to celebrate…

 

KEVIN:

You should get drunk and go to Hooters.

 

RYAN: (looks at camera uncomfortably)

Um, maybe.  I’ll think about it.

 

CUT TO—KELLY IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD

 

KELLY:

OMIGOD!  I am SOOOOOO glad for Ryan.  These two years have just flown by.  I can’t wait to spend twenty more years with him, get married, have babies, buy a house…

 

CUT TO—RYAN IN CONFERENCE ROOM—TALKING HEAD

 

RYAN:

Next question.

 

CUT TO—TARGET

 

Tracking Shot of MICHAEL as he walks directly toward the camera.  HE stops.  The camera pans to his POV. HE has finally found the “Kitchen Appliance” Department.

 

MICHAEL: (exhales; elated)

Sanctuary. 

 

However, HIS initial phase of euphoria has quickly disappeared, as he comes to the stunning realization that he has no idea what he is doing.  He walks up to the closest one.  He pokes it.  Then, he slowly opens the door and peeks inside.  MICHAEL turns to the camera.

 

MICHAEL:

Where is the food?

 

CUT TO-OFFICE

 

DWIGHT and JIM walk in.

 

PAM: (to JIM)

Hey, how’d it go?

 

JIM: Oh, the usual. Dwight broke the car and we ran from dealership, fearing for our lives.

 

PAM: (laughs, thinking Jim is kidding)

I take it he didn’t get the car?

 

CUT TO—TARGET

 

MICHAEL is standing on the check out line.  He deliberately avoids making eye contact with the camera.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL AT THE EXIT—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL: (trying to make an excuse)

No, I didn’t end up getting a fridge. The…freezing propulsion just wasn’t up to par.  You never want to settle for second rate products.  Buuut, I did get a copy of Tommy Boy on DVD.  (he holds it up to the camera; his fake smile has turned upside down) What am I gonna do?

 

CUT TO-BREAK ROOM

 

ANGELA is seated at a table. DWIGHT enters.

 

ANGELA: So, Dwight, did everything go well? Did they have the color you wanted?

 

DWIGHT: Actually, Angela, it appears that their quality has decreased in recent years.

 

ANGELA: I see.

 

CUT TO-DWIGHT IN CONFERENCE ROOM-TALKING HEAD

 

DWIGHT: Why did I decide not to buy the car? Very simple. If that mirror broke off so easily, there’s not way that car can handle my dangerous lifestyle…After all, who knows when I’ll be involved in a car chase or have to jump and opening drawbridge?

 

CUT TO—OFFICE

 

RYAN is putting his coat.

 

RYAN: (TALKING HEAD; Voiceover)

"All I can say is, I hope you'll never be asking me this question about my 3 year anniversary."

 

CUT TO—OFFICE

 

MICHAEL emerges through entrance.  He is solemn, and his suit jacket is disheveled.  Everybody turns to look at him.  OSCAR hangs up his phone.  STANLEY even puts his crossword puzzle away. 

 

KAREN:

How did it go?

 

MICHAEL: (miserably)

Ahem.  Um, as you all know, Dunder/Mifflin lost a very important member this morning.  And I wish I could say this loss did not go in vain…but I have failed.  I am sorry.  But I have failed you all.

 

PHYLLIS:

Michael, it’s okay.  I called Bob right after you left.  He’s installing a new one for free.

 

The camera zooms in to the break room.  Bob Vance of Vance Refrigeration is in there, installing a brand new refrigerator.

 

PAM: (nicely)

Thanks anyway, Michael.

 

MICHAEL:

Uh…

 

MICHAEL looks at the camera.  He is too surprised to smile.

 

CUT TO—MICHAEL’S OFFICE—TALKING HEAD

 

MICHAEL:

Wow.  I was wrong about these guys.  I should never have doubted them.  They understand.  That refrigerator was a part of this family.  And now its memory will live on in a different refrigerator, thanks to Bob Vance.  (with delight) If Dunder/Mifflin was Mystery Inc., Bob Vance would definitely be Scooby.  Pam would be Daphne. (then, with disdain) And Toby would be the Yeti. 

 

CUT TO-DEALERSHIP

 

The DEALER reenters the garage.  He s buried in his contract papers.

 

DEALER:

All right Mr Shrute, if you will just sign here, and we'll have you on your way...

 

JIM and DWIGHT are gone.

 

DEALER:

...Mr Shrute?

 

ZOOM IN on the DEALER'S expression as HE notices the damaged Beetle.

 

 

 

~END~

 

 

 Did you like The Fridge?  Do you have any suggestions on how to improve it? Contact us at CAI5000@AOL.com