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Did The Office's Kate Flannery Really Do That Bat Stunt Herself?

"The Office" is still as beloved as it was when it first debuted in 2005. The workplace mockumentary is considered one of the funniest sitcoms of all time and how could it not be? Like "Friends" and "Seinfeld," the series continues to have a cultural hold, inspiring several memes, fan pages, and parodies. Nearly a decade after its finale, how is "The Office" still so popular? Vox suggests that it's because the relationships of the workers seen on screen are immature and jovial, which feels universal in nature.

While speaking with Vox, a middle schooler opened up about how she and her classmates can relate to the series, despite never having worked in an office. "Whenever they're having an argument or the way that they figure out a situation or a problem, they kind of do act like kids in a way, because they're all kind of immature, which reminds me of school sometimes," the middle schooler told the outlet.

The student is right in suggesting that the characters in "The Office" behave like children. In each episode, characters find themselves in situations ranging from mundane to eccentric, yet the responses always default to immaturity. One of the most memorable situations on the show is when Dwight (Rainn Wilson) attempts to capture a rogue bat in the office, leading to a hilarious scene in which it attacks Meredith (Kate Flannery). In this situation, each character behaves like a kid. As childlike as the chaotic capture looks, it's important to remember that the bat scene involved real bats, resulting in a very serious production. 

Kate Flannery did the stunt herself with the help of a motorized bat

One of the most memorable occasions to plague the staff is in Season 3, Episode 16 ("Business School") – one of the best episodes of "The Office" — in which the workers find a live bat in their office. While they manage to trap the bat in an office until animal control arrives, Dwight (Rainn Wilson) takes it upon himself to capture the flying mammal. With the animal cornered in a separate room, Dwight rushes in with a full arsenal of tools, including a black garbage bag, hoping to nab it. As the hunt begins, Meredith (Kate Flannery) stumbles into the room terrified, with the bat landing on her hair. Dwight places the bag on Meredith's head and finally captures it after a chuckle-worthy struggle that leaves Flannery's character in a disheveled state.

While speaking with the "Office Ladies" podcast, producer Kent Zbornak discussed how real bats were used on set, in addition to mechanical and computer-generated creations. When audiences see a bat flying on screen, it's a CG creation. When it came to Flannery's scene, no CG was involved. A motorized bat was used and while a stunt double was on set, Flannery was the one under the bag. 

"I did all of it. The motorized thing on the head. It was like, sort of like this fluttery thing, something like a headband with a motor," Flannery revealed on the podcast. "And yes, I could breathe with a bag over my head. We figured it out. It was fine ... It was one of the most fun scenes I got to do with Rainn."