Season 4 Episode 12

The Office Job

Aired Tuesday 10:00 PM Dec 04, 2011 on TNT

Episode Recap

At the Good Cheer Greeting Card Co. in Montvalle, MA, Felicia, the head of HR, calls in Hal and tells him that something has come up and that he's being fired. Hal notes that Fred Bartley is destroying the company he helped build and goes to his office to call him out. Security grabs Hal and takes him out while Bartley works on his fantasy football.

Hal meets with Nate and tells him that Bartley is embezzling from the company. When Hal found discrepancies in the books, he reported it to Bartley and was fired a week later. Nate figures that he wants to be part of a payday when another company, Heartfelt, buys out Good Cheer. Hal wonders if Nate gets it and explains that it's about the company and the town, not him. If Bartley ruins the company, Montvalle will be a ghost town in a year. After a moment, Nate assures him that he's come to the right place.

The team gathers and Hardison tells them that Good Cheer was already in financial trouble before Bartley started embezzling. As they talk, Eliot steals Hardison's orange pop and Hardison asks if that makes them even. Nate focusses on the job and explains that Montvalle is a company town and Good Cheer is the company, and Heartfelt is planning a buyout in the next week. Bartley is a washed-up football player and grandson of the company's founder. When Sophie makes a suggestion, Nate goes with something else and notices Sophie making checkmarks in a notebook under "putdowns." Eliot points out that Bartley keeps buying expensive supplies but they never show up or costs less, and they figure that Bartley is pocketing the difference. Nate plans to expose Bartley before the buyout, allowing Heartfelt to go ahead with the buyout without ruining their public image. As they finish up, Hardison grabs his orange soda back.

The team goes in as efficiency experts with Parker and Sophie running distraction while Eliot and Hardison get the evidence on Bartley. Bartley greets them and points out that they had a much lower bid than any other efficiency company. Nate runs off a lot of jargon and Bartley pretends to understand it. He shows them around and run into Felicia, and she starts to panic. She calls Bartley to the side and complains that he's bringing in consultants without checking with her. When Bartley doesn't see what the problem is, Felicia reminds him that they have a documentary crew on site.

Nate goes over to talk to the director, Gunter Hanzig, who is making a documentary about American small businesses. Gunter rambles on before going off, and Nate notifies the others they might have a problem. Sophie says that they have to delay but Nate says they can't and she makes another mark in her book. Hardison confirms that Heartfelt will be there in less than three days and they have to expose Bartley before the buyout. Nate says that there's only one thing they can do... and the team becomes part of the documentary.

Bartley introduces the team to his staff while Gunter gets everything on tape, and the CEO gives a pep talk in football terms. Nate jumps in and makes the introductions, and then has Sophie do creative exercises. She starts by having people stick fingers into their partners' ears. Parker observes the card writers and complains that they're stuck in a rut, overusing positive messages.

Sophie continues her trust exercises and Nate convinces Bartley to participate. She organizes them as a pack and has everyone get down on all fours, put on blindfolds, and hop like monkeys. Once Bartley is clear, Eliot and Hardison go into Bartley's office and start searching, while the camera crew observes. Sophie leads everyone out into the office, ignoring Nate's objections, and later meets with the documentary crew and reports about how Nate keeps disrespecting her contributions.

As Eliot searches the office, Hardison starts riding him and Eliot complains back. When Hardison takes Bartley's chocolate bar out of the refrigerator, Eliot tells him to put it back and Hardison figures it's about the sandwich that Eliot thinks he stole earlier that week.

Parker continues to go over cards with the head writer and wants to do cards with dinosaurs attacking animals. Gunter is so intrigued that he orders his team to follow her. When Parker discovers that the copier is broken when she needs it, she attacks the cameraman and then runs off.

The team meets and Hardison tells them that he found nothing on the computers and all of the purchases were legit. As the cameras roll, the team tries to avoid being specific about what they're there to do. Nate notices that Bartley has been purchasing color-shifting ink and 100% cotton paper, and tries to tell the team that Bartley is making counterfeit money without giving it away to the documentary crew. Eventually even Parker figures out what he's talking about.

With 24 hours remaining, the team tries to meet privately in the break room and figure out how to take Bartley down. Nate sends Parker to find the paper and Eliot and Hardison to find the ink and the printer. Parker goes to the women's rest room to avoid Gunter, only to find him waiting for her.

Felicia approaches Nate and explains that she wants to make sure the romantic relationship he's pursuing with Sophie is a healthy one. She's already talked to Sophie after realizing that Nate is showing reverse favoritism toward her, and Sophie was glad to have her talk it out with Nate.

Eliot searches the warehouse and argues with Hardison. They find the warehouse workers who send them on their way, and Eliot figures that they're the muscle for Bartley's operation. As they go, Hardison figures that Eliot is imagining things and tells him that he probably forgot eating the sandwich himself. Eliot doesn't believe it.

Gunter goes over the security footage and finds everything he can on Parker, insisting she has a "nuclear winter" inside of her.

With Heartfelt only a couple of hours away, Nate sends Sophie after Bartley and then tries to figure out what Eliot and Hardison are using "sandwich" to mean. They explain that they're talking about the real sandwich and start arguing again, while Nate tries to figure out where Bartley hid the counterfeiting copier. When Parker comes in and points out that the copier is always broken, they realize that no one in the office knows why it doesn't work. Hardison checks it and finds the counterfeiting ink inside. However, Sophie comes back and tells them that Bartley has no idea what's going on in the company. They have to check any camera footage, but the security tapes are erased every 12 hours. Nate sees the documentary team and realizes who else has footage, and the team approaches Gunter and his cameraman.

Sophie and Nate go over the footage and explain the counterfeiting scheme to Gunter. When Sophie complains that Hardison should check the footage, Nate tells her that she should be doing it. When she complains, Nate says that now he's showing her reverse favoritism. Meanwhile, Nate and Sophie argue back and forth using Gunter to ask the other one questions, his alcoholism versus her abandonment of the team.

Nate and Sophie finally spot two warehouse workers putting toner in the printer, not the copier. They send Eliot in with one of Hardison's cameras hidden in his tie. Gunter is impressed with Hardison's work and then borrows one and starts secretly filming Parker. She relaxes when she thinks there aren't any cameras around, and shows Gunter some of her greeting card masterpieces. However, when Parker realizes he has a camera in his belt buckle, she rips it off and storms off.

Eliot goes to the warehouse and confronts the workers, who run off. The hitter gives chase and brings one of the men down, but he insists that it was Bob, the other guy, and that Bartley told Bob to get it done. Eliot reports back and Nate figures that whoever is responsible is setting up an evidence trail that will lead back to Bartley. Hardison confirms that the printer is set for remote printing, and he's traced it back to Felicia. There's another document in the queue set to print in two hours, right when Heartfelt holds their meeting. The document is a suicide note from Bartley, and Nate explains to Gunter that they're now dealing with a murder.

As the Heartfelt team arrives, Eliot tells Nate that he can't find Bartley. The office workers panic and turn to Nate, who tells them to finish their presentation. He then goes with Sophie to stall Heartfelt while Eliot and Hardison find Bartley. Nate tells Parker to stay there and take care of things, and Eliot makes sure that Gunter comes with them rather than stay with Parker. As Gunter leaves, he's unaware that Parker has stolen his credit card.

The Heartfelt team comes in and Nate and Sophie give them a tour. A very long tour. Meanwhile, Hardison and Eliot search Bartley's office and Gunter spots a pack of cigarettes. However, the director tells them that Bartley said he quit smoking two months ago. They realize he fell off the wagon and is smoking up on the roof. They go up there just as three of the warehouse men prepare to throw Bartley off the roof, and a fight breaks out. One of the men throws Hardison off the roof and he calls to Eliot for help, while Gunter continues filming. Eliot finally rescues his teammate.

The office workers give their presentation to the Heartfelt people. When everybody runs out of ideas, Sophie suggests they send Parker up to buy more time. Parker presents her new card line of "Eskimo Kisses," which say exactly what the sender is thinking. It doesn't go well.

Eliot explains to Bartley that he has to get downstairs to save his company. He gets to the presentation as Parker finishes her show, and gives a heartfelt speech of his own. Realizing that he's alive, Felicia cancels the suicide note in the queue and prints some counterfeit money. A worker finds it and brings it in, and tells everyone that they're going to be rich. Felicia leaps in and says that Bartley is responsible and that he's been printing counterfeit money all along. Bartley points out that he can't even make greeting cards, but Felicia accuses him of ordering the ink and the paper. Heartfelt prepares to withdraw its offer, but Nate tells them that Felicia is the one responsible. When she denies it, Nate runs footage of her sending the print order, footage provided by a hidden camera that Parker planted on the woman sitting next to Felicia.

Felicia makes a run for it but Eliot trips her. She rants and raves, saying that Bartley is a fool and everyone else is a fool for following him. The office workers lock her up and Sophie explains to Bartley what happened. He still doesn't understand until Nate translates it in football terms. The Heartfelt CEO is a big football fan and bonds with Bartley, while Nate has had Hal prepare a line of football-themed credit cards.

Later at the bar, Gunter shows his completed documentary to the team. They praise it endlessly and Sophie suggests that he sell it to Hollywood. However, Gunter says his intention was to show the futility of life. He then turns to Parker, saying that she has the soul of a German, and she admits that she didn't get it. Despairing, Gunter destroys the DVD and vows it will never see the light of day. He thanks the team for their help and leaves, and Hardison assures the team that he used a virus to erase all of the footage of them except for the last show that Gunter showed them. He offers to buy Eliot dinner because he feels sorry for him because he lost his sandwich. As the others leave, Sophie approaches Nate and starts to stammer about their relationship. Nate gives her a greeting card and pours a drink. Sophie reads the card and realizes it's exactly what he needed to say, and they share a toast.

Later, Hardison enjoys a sandwich and admits that he stole Eliot's sandwich earlier.