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17th Mar 2021

Ricky Gervais’ brilliant response to claims US Office is better than British version

In an interview on The Office Deep Dive podcast, Ricky Gervais brilliantly responded to claims that The US Office is better than the British version

Alex Roberts

A typically quick-witted response from Gervais

Ricky Gervais has brilliantly responded to claims that The US Office is better than the British version.

With both its British and American versions gaining widespread critical acclaim upon release, The Office is truly unique – and in a category of its own.

While sitcoms such as Peep Show and The Inbetweeners miserably failed to crack the US market, both British and American versions of The Office can truly be described as seminal comedies amongst the best of their generation.

Despite this, many people insist on trying to drive a wedge between the two. So much so, that identifying with one version over the other is seen by some as a distinct personality trait.

There are some obvious stylistic differences between the two shows. The Office (UK) is more deadpan and downbeat, relying on the mundanities of life in a dead-end company as a genuine comedic device.

The American version is much more dramatic and improvisational – with the actors who played Toby, Oscar and Angela all coming from an improv background.

Naturally, the question of ‘Which is better?’ was always going to find its way back to Ricky Gervais – creator and star of The Office in his role David Brent.

Gervais was appearing as a guest on The Office Deep Dive podcast. This is presented by Brian Baumgartner, aka Kevin Malone, the dreadful but hilarious accountant from the American version.

Responding to claims that The US Office is “bigger and better” than its Slough-based counterpart, Gervais said:

“I remember once, after syndication, someone on Twitter sent me a tweet that said ‘The American version of The Office is so much bigger and better than yours. How does that make you feel?'”

Gervais responded: “F***ing rich.”

Aside from how abundantly popular both versions are, it’s a pretty silly question to put to Ricky Gervais. After all, Gervais and his co-creator Stephen Merchant both served as Executive Producers on the American version.

The fortunes of Dunder-Mifflin were always well within his interests – even if replacing Michael Scott was a step too far for David Brent.