Movies & TV Shows

10 Quotes That Perfectly Sum Up Michael As A Character

Exciting times are ahead for fans of The Office as John Krasinski and Steve Carrell are set to reunite on screen once again in the upcoming movie If. The pair each brought a unique element to the mockumentary series, always making for an enjoyable watch, whether emotional or side-splittingly funny.

As the manager at Dunder Mifflin, Michael’s character became very well defined, with seven seasons worth of appearances under his belt. As audiences grew to know him, there became an abundance of quotes that perfectly summed up Michael Scott and his hilarious ways.


10 “I Knew What To Do, But … I had No Idea What To Do.”

Season 5, Episode 14 – “Stress Relief”

There’s no shame in not understanding something or needing to be educated on a certain subject… for most people, that is. However, Michael Scott can’t simply admit to whatever he doesn’t know.

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After Stanley suffers a heart-attack, it’s decided the office should have first-aid training. When talking to the camera and relaying the story, Michael refuses to just hold his hands up and say, “I had no idea what to do.” Instead, he beats about the bush by first telling a lie. It’s not the first time Michael does such a thing and certainly wasn’t the last, but it’s a brilliantly clear example of his refusal to tell the truth, which is a common occurrence for him for fear of being judged or seeming stupid.

9 “Is There Something Besides ‘Mexican’ You Prefer To Be Called?”

Season 3, Episode 14 – “The Return”

Michael Scott may seem like a simple person, but it takes a long time to understand what the regional manager is trying to say beneath the words that actually come out of his mouth.

This quote proves why and perfectly sums up Michael. There are times when he’s so adamant that he doesn’t want to offend anyone that he ends up being incredibly offensive. It’s a quote where people that know him well enough will understand that he’s not actually meaning to be rude, but his foot-in-mouth personality just won’t let up.

8 “You Cheated On Me? When I Specifically Asked You Not To?”

Season 4, Episode 19 – “Goodbye, Toby”

It ended up being one of the worst relationships in The Office, but Jan and Michael were a great hook for audiences. Unfortunately, it was very toxic between the two, and Michael’s quote is a perfect summing up of how he deals with relationships.

Instead of walking away from Jan, he announces his specific request from her that she failed to meet. A person not cheating should be a given, and it’s never something that should have to be specifically forbidden. Michael isn’t clued up on what love should look like, a part of his persona which is reflected in this quote. Also, most people would want to keep this fact under wraps, but Michael’s typical way of dealing with something tough is to blurt it out.

7 “I Hate So Much About The Things That You Choose To Be.”

Season 2, Episode 28 – “Casino Night”

The dislike Michael has for Toby is somewhat perplexing, as the HR representative keeps himself to himself, not really causing any issues for the rest of the company. But because of Michael’s ‘playful’ work ethic, he thinks Toby is simply against him due to his job role in HR.

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In this one instance, Michael expresses his dismay, and it absolutely sums up his feelings towards Toby. There is nothing Michael manages to find amiable in his colleague, and it’s a continuous through-line throughout the series.

6 “Jim And I Are Great Friends. We Hang Out A Ton, Mostly At Work.”

Season 2,  Episode 19 – “The Secret”

Although part of the humor, Michael’s desperation to find friends and force relationships is quite a sad element of the show to watch, especially nearer the start of the series before he’s shown to have some healthier relationships.

Sad or not, it’s a big part of his personality, and expressing how he hangs out with Jim, but mostly at work succinctly describes his relationships. As the boss of Dunder Mifflin’s Scranton branch, Michael doesn’t understand the need to be a boss first, letting friendships perhaps form naturally.

5 “If You Stretched The Heart Out, It Would Cover … The Entire Body.”

Season 2, Episode 19 – “Michael’s Birthday”

Michael is a clever man, but he doesn’t know his limits and tries to seem more intelligent in subjects that he truly knows nothing about, often leaving himself open to saying supposed facts that are plain ridiculous.

Trying his hand at delivering something science-based was a complete mistake because he has no idea what he’s talking about. It’s a classic example of Michael’s persona. Instead of just sticking with the stuff he knows, he tries to venture out into topics that aren’t his strength, but it makes for some of the best Michael Scott quotes.

4 “That Has Sort Of An Oaky Afterbirth.”

Season 4, Episode 13 – “Dinner Party”

Not only does Michael aim to impress his friends or colleagues by attempting to be the joker of the office, but he also has a go at using fancy words to impress them. Unfortunately, the opposite always ensues.

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Having a few of the other employees over for dinner, he gives a description of the wine he sips, using completely the wrong word. His efforts at seeming sophisticated were unsuccessful, much like most of his attempts. Still, it always makes for a good laugh when he uses the incorrect word.

3 “I Love Inside Jokes. I Hope To Be A Part Of One Someday.”

Season 3, Episode 2 – “The Convention”

Michael’s forceful nature to be involved in whatever is going on, can often be the exact reason he isn’t included. It’s a shame to see someone who wants to fit in, but he really can be his own worst enemy.

This quote really sums him up by proving his desperation to be liked and focusing on fitting in with others and their jokes, rather than concentrating on the more important aspects of life, like showing how he is one of the most competent managers in The Office. It’s a pitiful part of Michael, but thankfully, his colleagues do warm to him and show him a lot of love.

2 “I’m So Proud Of You.”

Season 3, Episode 17 – “Business School”

There’s an abundance of quotes which show Michael to speak before he thinks and constantly saying things to impress others, which he seemingly fails to do. However, moments of the truly kind and warm man appear, often when audiences are least expecting it.

After Pam invited all her work colleagues to her art show, Michael was one of the only ones to turn up. Hearing negative comments from Oscar and receiving little encouragement from Roy, her optimism had dwindled. But Michael turned the whole evening around for Pam by looking straight at her to say how proud he was. There was no hesitation in his words, and he had no idea the impact that short sentence had. So whilst this quote may not sum up the Michael that can be overbearing, it does sum up the person he is deep down, proving him to be one of the best characters in The Office.

1 “That’s What She Said.”

Various Episodes

Sketch shows are renowned for having catchphrases that audiences quickly pick up on. Whilst The Office is a mockumentary, Michael was one of the few characters who had a phrase that was repeatedly used and it is typical of Michael.

“That’s what she said” is Michael’s way of being funny and also being a little rude to try and add a shock factor to his comedy. It usually makes people roll their eyes and turn away, but the quote is a perfect summing up of Michael’s personality.

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