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"The Alliance"
The Office episode
Dwight hiding in a box in "The Alliance"
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 4
Written by Michael Schur
Directed by Bryan Gordon
Production no. R1103
Original airdate April 12, 2005
Guest stars

Craig Robinson

Episode chronology
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List of The Office (U.S. TV series) episodes

"The Alliance" is the fourth episode of the first season of The Office (U.S. version). It was written by Michael Schur and directed by Bryan Gordon. It first aired on April 12, 2005.



Although time has dragged on, the downsizing rumors at Dunder Mifflin have not ceased. Dwight feels particularly threatened by the impending crisis, and, in an act of desperation, forms an alliance with his office nemesis Jim. Jim sees the alliance as an opportunity with great potential and agrees as a lark. He immediately enlists Pam's help in the situation.

Meanwhile, Michael tries to boost morale in the office by having an office birthday party for Meredith, even though her birthday is a month away. Michael agonizes over writing the perfect greeting in her birthday card. In the end his joke (and subsequent rejected ones) falls flat, severely ruining the party. At the same time Oscar also gets him to donate money to his nephew's cerebral palsy walk-a-thon, which Michael accidentally overcontributes to in an effort to look like a good boss.

At the end of the day, after a breakthrough in his pranks on Dwight, Jim giddily grabs Pam's hand in an attempt to explain what has just happened. However, Pam's fiancé Roy catches this and sees it as an attempt by Jim to make a move on Pam. Roy is visibly angry, although nothing ensues.

Deleted scenes

The Season One DVD contains a number of deleted scenes from this episode. Notable cut scenes include:

  • Dwight brags to Jim how secure his computer is.
  • Michael critiques Pam's phone-answering delivery.
  • Dwight throws old food out of the office fridge, including Jim's lunch.
  • Oscar asks Angela to contribute to the walk-a-thon.
  • Extension of Jim and Dwight's conversation in the parking lot.
  • Toby signs Meredith's card in Michael's office, but Michael prevents him from writing any jokes.
  • Jim hopes to get Dwight to say "immunity" (a la Survivor).
  • Extension of Dwight trying to help Michael with Meredith's card. When Dwight asks Michael for immunity from downsizing, Jim quietly celebrates.
  • Michael asks Meredith to recall recent funny moments.
  • Michael chides Oscar for deceiving him about the walk-a-thon.
  • Michael presents alternate card jokes.
  • Dwight questions Ryan about his alliances.


  • The Dundie awards are first mentioned by Dwight in this episode. We finally get to see the Dundies in the first episode of the second season "The Dundies".
  • When Michael reads out what Jim wrote on Meredith's birthday card, Jim calls her an accountant, however Meredith is in charge of supplier relations.
  • The first cut of the episode ran 37 minutes long. Producers considered making the episode a two-parter, one focusing on the Alliance and another focusing on Meredith's birthday party.[1]
  • The car that Dwight kicks actually belongs to actress Phyllis Smith, who plays Phyllis on the show. Rainn Wilson stated that after every take she would tell him, "Please don't kick the hubcap too hard."[2]
  • There were over a dozen takes of the scene where Michael wolfs down cake. Steve Carell ate so much (at 7:30 in the morning) that he got sick.[3]
  • Not much of the footage made the final cut, but during the party, Ryan talks to a different woman in the background of each scene. The producers thought this was a nice character touch for the new employee.[4]
  • A sign seen in this episode gives Dunder Mifflin's address as 1725 Slough Avenue, a reference to the UK The Office locale in Slough, Berkshire, England.
  • On the Season One DVD, the synopsis for this episode mistakenly refers to Jim as John, the name of the actor portraying him (John Krasinski).
  • When Dwight asks Jim if he would like to form an alliance, Jim responds by saying "Absolutely, I do". This is later referenced in The Job, in which Pam says that Jim told her that if Dwight ever asks you to be in something secret, you respond with "Absolutely, I do".
  • This episode marks the first appearance of the staff newsletter. The text of the staff newsletter is the same each time it appears (since it is merely a prop); only the picture and headline change.
Top Salesman Award
Welcome to yet another exciting edition of the Dunder Mifflin Employee Newsletter. Thanks to all of the staff and new contributing writers for putting this together for all of you, and also many thanks to the folks at Designtown for printing this up for us. Hopefully you will find a lot of useless information contained herein that will help you do your job better, faster and quicker and cheaper and happier.
As anybody can easily tell, this newsletter doesn't really have a lot to say. It's really just a prop to fill some space and sort of look like a newsletter without really being much of a newsletter at all. By typing a lot of words in two columns on the front of this page, we can achieve the look of a newsletter without really reporting much news or provide any real information to the reader at all. In fact, at times we can probably get away with not using real english words, such as kjgowbiwiwpo, ovcviqvck, or the much beloved dfbiouvsulegphaelk. These words can also be strung together to form a sentence, paragraph or even a whole prop book, magazine or newspaper.
  • In the fourth season episode Survivor Man, it is revealed that Kelly's, Creed's, and Oscar's birthdays are all in the same month as Meredith's.
  • There is also a part where Jim is convincing Dwight to get in the box in the warehouse and you can see a toy mouse wiggling in a trap, the scene cuts to Dwight, then back to the warehouse & the mousetrap is gone.


  1. ^ Daniels, Greg (Producer). 2005. "The Alliance" [Commentary track], The Office Season One (U.S./NBC Version) [DVD], Los Angeles, CA: Universal.
  2. ^ Wilson, Rainn (Actor). 2005. "The Alliance" [Commentary track], The Office Season One (U.S./NBC Version) [DVD], Los Angeles, CA: Universal.
  3. ^ Fischer, Jenna (Actor), Krasinski, John (Actor), and Daniels, Greg (Producer). 2005. "The Alliance" [Commentary track], The Office Season One (U.S./NBC Version) [DVD], Los Angeles, CA: Universal.
  4. ^ Novak, B. J. (Actor/Writer). 2005. "The Alliance" [Commentary track], The Office Season One (U.S./NBC Version) [DVD], Los Angeles, CA: Universal.

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