This week, Wilfred learns that being an office dog isn’t all belly rubs and affection as he heads to work with Ryan. Ryan also gets his first date with Amanda and he learns to stand up for himself a little more—you know the usual Ryan problems that Wilfred has to do something horrible to help him solve. And we get the return of Bear in the latest episode, “Dignity”.
It seems we’re really sticking to seeing the professional side of Ryan this season as things open up at his new office. He has a thick legal brief to get through—a patent for the company’s cancer drug that needs to be filed before the competition can get there first. Ryan’s boss Jeremy, the always fantastic Steven Weber who’s a very welcome addition to the show, has an unreasonable demand for the patent’s deadline. In typical Ryan fashion he quickly agrees even though the looming deadline means he has to cancel another date opportunity with his charming co-worker Amanda.
Back at home, Wilfred is at Ryan’s place tearing it to pieces out of doggy boredom while Ryan’s away. A line of exposition informs us that Wilfred is staying with Ryan while Jenna and Drew are on a trip together . After Ryan finds the mess and first demands that Wilfred stay in a cage all day while he’s away, Wilfred convinces Ryan to bring him to the office with him. Of course, Wilfred had no intention to actually stay hidden away when he can attract so much attention by being the adorable ‘office dog’ instead. This actually winds up being Ryan’s first secret weapon against his boss when Jeremy walks into the office and falls to pieces over the adorable Wilfred—muttering about how the deadline of the patent is no longer important and Ryan can get it to him whenever. I think we all knew that Ryan was going to decide to use Wilfred’s presence at work to make life easier for him.
Soon the novelty of the office dog wears off and Wilfred’s bag of tricks annoys rather than amuses Ryan’s co-workers. So Wilfred takes it upon himself like a washed-up comedian to try to reinvent his act. But really it’s less he needs the attention from everyone and more he needs to find something to do that he can drag Ryan into until the man snaps and starts standing up for himself at work and elsewhere. Early on in the episode we see Ryan holding an invitation and an RSVP card from his father for some event honoring him that he wants Ryan to attend to. Father issues have always lingered with Ryan ever since season one, but this year it seems we’re going to finally get to meet the man whose lifelong pushing of Ryan led him to his fateful suicide attempt that brought Wilfred into his world.
When Ryan falls behind at work he falls out of Jeremy’s good graces. Wilfred comes up with the perfect bit to re-energize his act, but finds his spotlight stolen by Ricky a young janitor we see pop up multiple times in the episode. Enraged, Wilfred corners Ricky in the men’s room and attacks. What’s so great about this scene is how even though Ricky is presented as mentally challenged it doesn’t mean that he’s a saint. He knows an opportunity to get out of cleaning the toilets just like anyone else and has no problem making Ryan do so in order not to tell about what Wilfred did.
All of this serves to finally push Ryan over the edge to declare that he is a good son and a good employee so he’s going to march into Jeremy’s office to get an extension so he can take Amanda out on a real date. It’s all another brilliant ploy by Wilfred to be so obnoxious on top of everything else that Ryan has no choice but to stop being a human doormat. When he storms into the room, Ryan finds that Jeremy is immediately agreeable to the extension before he can even give his full spiel. Feeling very confident he calls Amanda and checks ‘No’ on the RSVP note for his father’s soiree. Wilfred decides to give Jeremy a piece of his mind too for his awful petting technique and he leads Ryan into quite the lucky circumstance as Ryan catches Jeremy indisposed with Ricky under the desk. Suddenly life around the office is looking up for Ryan as with a bit of luck and a bit of blackmail he finally gets some control back over his life.
What do you think about Ryan and Amanda dating?
Are you looking forward to a real confrontation with Ryan’s father this season?
Who’s your favorite new cast member for season 2?
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