Website tracking every cultural reference in The Office can go all millennium

Website tracking every cultural reference in The Office can go all millennium

That’s what she said. 

And that’s what Sun Tzu said. And that’s what Emeril Lagasse said, and then Michael Scott said it. And then some guy named Joe Sabia ripped Michael Scott saying it from The Office: Season Two DVD set, and combined it with every other Office reference that originated in 1997 in the most insanely comprehensive piece of copyright-reform advocacy you’ll watch all day. At The Office Time Machine, Sabia details the painstaking process of tracking down all 1,300-plus cultural and historical allusions within The Office’s nine seasons, tidbits of dialogue, momentary visuals, and soundtrack excerprts that have since been edited into dozens of year-by-year (and, once you get earlier than 1880, decade-by-decade and century-by-century) montages.

As with any project of such magnitude, it’s understandably incomplete: There are a number of musical cues Sabia was unable to identify, and the date of establishment for a few obscure Pennsylvania institutions also eluded him. In the spirit of community, collaboration, fair use, and people pointing out mistakes on the Internet, Sabia is also fielding corrections at the site. So you can now go tell him that Robert De Niro says “You talkin’ to me” in Taxi Driver, not Raging Bull—unless that’s an intentional, Michael Scott-esque misattribution. Given the breadth of The Office Time Machine, such mistakes are forgivable, and Sabia deserves kudos for going after something so big. 

Because, c’mon guys—it looks really hard. 

Has anyone checked to see if he dated the first-ever “That’s what she said?”   

More Great Job, Internet!