Season 2 Episode 7

Bill's Autobiography

Aired Tuesday 8:30 PM Nov 21, 1995 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
322 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Bill tries to write his autobiography but gets depressed when he realizes he has done nothing with his life. Dave tries to get the rest of the office to cheer Bill up.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
No results found.
No results found.
  • Watching this really makes me miss Phil Hartman.

    Every episode makes me laugh so hard that my side hurts and this one is no exception. Bill is writing an autobiography and he has to get it cleared by Dave. Of course since we all know that people in relationships tell the significant other everything Dave tells Lisa about the impending book deal and she mentions something to the rest of the staff. This causes quite a commotion and tons of laughs to follow. Since the whole office knows about the book it makes it hard for Bill to write anything. Some of the funniest parts are when Matthew tries to remember something that was just said. His short term memory must be pretty bad. Jimmy also has a really funny part when he gets rid of a life size poster of Bill by breaking it in half over his knee so Bill doesn’t see it and get depressed again but Bill was standing there the whole time. You would think that Bill would have a lot to write about but it turns out all he did in the earlier years of his life was drink and his “big break” into radio was really just his aunt getting him a job at her radio station. This is a really wonderful episode, full of great jokes and plenty of laughs.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (13)

    • Bill: (about his book) I think I've got a title.
      Dave: What is it?
      Bill: "I Suck: The Bill McNeal Story"!

    • Bill: (into a tape recorder) Chicago, 1968, the Democratic Convention. Hippies and yippies alike fill the streets, waging a war of peace against Mayor Daley's thugs. There I was...watching it on TV in my dorm and drinking.

    • Matthew: Bill. Guess what? I keep a diary.
      Bill: Do you now?
      Matthew: Yeah. So I guess in a way me and you are doing something very similar.
      Bill: Sort of... Except my book will sold in bookstores and airports nationwide, while your diary will be tucked alone under its mattress with other baubles and trinkets.

    • Dave: Hey, Bill. Look, I'm really sorry, but Lisa had no idea you wanted to keep this thing a- (secret)
      Bill: It's okay. I'm glad you told them. The excitement and the enthusiasm I felt out there just now, well it was just the shot in the arm that I needed.
      Dave: Really?
      Bill: No. I'm being incredibly sarcastic.

    • Lisa: Listen Bill, this book is obviously causing you a great deal of pain and I think I have a solution.
      Bill: Does it involve a gun with a built in mouthpiece?

    • Lisa: [Bill's] strutting around out there like he's Norman Mailer.
      Dave: He hasn't punched anyone out has he?
      Lisa: No, not yet. But he's totally out of control.

    • Bill: Did you know that when Dan Rather was 19 he was the youngest photographer for the Associated Press?
      Dave: Okay. Well what were you doing at 19?
      Bill: Drinking.
      Dave: How about talking about how hard it was to break into the industry? You know all the struggles.
      Bill: My aunt owned a radio station. She hired me to try and get me to stop drinking.

    • Dave: How much have you written Bill?
      Bill: Just the outline.
      Dave: Okay well how long is it?
      Bill: Two words, the outline.

    • Dave: Bill has a deal to write a book.
      Lisa: What kind of book?
      Dave: An autobiography, sort of like the Howard Stern thing I guess.
      Lisa: Ah you mean about the ins and outs of lesbianism in sports banking.
      Dave: I certainly hope so.
      Lisa: I'm sure you do.
      Dave: I'm just hungry for knowledge.

    • Bill: Knock, knock.
      Dave: What do you want Bill?
      Bill: No, Dave. Knock, knock.
      Dave: Oh okay, who's there?
      Bill: Bill McNeal.
      Dave: Bill McNeal who?
      Bill: That's really all I have so far.
      Dave: Dynamite there Bill.

    • Bill: I envy you people. There's something distinct and individual about each one of you. Beth: The redheaded firebrand with a lust for life despite her go-nowhere job. Joe: a two bit hood manque with a can-do attitude that borders on delusional psychosis. Matthew... (long pause) I don't know exactly what you are, but there aren't many like you.

    • Bill: What's interesting about radio?
      Dave: Well, I happen to think it's a fascinating medium.
      Bill: You're from Wisconsin. Artificial light is fascinating to you.

    • Bill McNeal: Shhh! I'm almost to the part where I get so depressed, I swerve into oncomming traffic.

  • NOTES (1)


    • Bill: Et tu, Jimmy?

      Bill paraphrases the last words of the title character from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. The phrase Et tu, Brute has become the standard quote when identifying betrayal.

    • Lisa: He's strutting around out there like he's Norman Mailer.

      Dave: Would you tell Mr. Hemingway, I'd like to see him here for a moment?

      Beth Hey, Ernie. F. Scott and Zelda would like to speak with you.

      There are many allusions to American writers in this episode. Norman Mailer is one of the most famous living American writers, although he is considered somewhat of a low brow and has a reputation for being belligerent. Ernest Hemingway is arguably considered to be the greatest novelist of the 20th Century (writer of The Sun Also Rises, The Old Man and the Sea, For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Snows of Kilimanjero). F.Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald were one of the most celebrated literary couples in history. Famous for their wild parties and extravagrant life styles, their lives eventually spiralled into madness and failure. F. Scott wrote The Great Gatsby, generally celebrated as one of the greatest American novels ever written.

    • Dave: I didn't realize this was like "The Pentagon Papers".

      The Pentagon Papers is the popular name for a top secret military study that was leaked by Defense Department employee Daniel Ellsberg to The New York Times which published them in 1971. The document outlined American military involvement and escalation in Vietnam during a period that President Johnson had promised a reduction in the conflict. Huge controversy as well as elements of dark secrecy and danger have become associated with term ever since.

    • Song: A Horse With No Name

      This is the song, by 70s folk-rock group America, that Dave is singing on the tape recorder.