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The Office Episode That Sent A Cast Member To The Hospital

Aside from some of the pranks, stakes on The Office don't usually involve physical danger; it's a mockumentary sitcom, not an action thriller. Conflict most often revolves around what you'd expect it to revolve around in any real-life office: relationships (platonic or otherwise), choosing whether or not to bow to corporate whims, salaries and promotions — that sort of thing. None of that sounds exciting on paper, but The Office wouldn't have become the pop-culture sensation that it did were these low-key conflicts not excellently done.

Considering the white-collar stakes, it makes sense that most of the show takes place in the titular office's confines, featuring the occasional rendezvous to the warehouse or to someone's house for a party. Every once in a while, though, The Office goes out on a limb and writes the cast into a more "exotic" location. Such is the case in "Beach Games," filmed at the Hansen Dam Recreational Center in Los Angeles — though it, of course, represents a lake beach close to The Office's home of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

On the November 4, 2020 episode of their podcast Office Ladies, Angela Kinsey and Jenna Fischer, who play Angela and Pam, respectively, spoke about "Beach Games" and the challenges it posed the cast. Characters and actors both were outside of their "natural environment," so to speak, making for a memorable time on set. According to Kinsey and Fischer, one of their cast mates even had to be sent to the hospital during filming.

One hospitalization, two injuries

In "Beach Games," Michael Scott (Steve Carell) brings his Dunder Mifflin employees to the beach because he might be taking on a new job soon and wants to ensure he chooses the right replacement. His method: Stage the contenders against one another like they're on Survivor and survey their leadership skills from the sidelines, unbeknownst to them. It's an extremely silly and immature way of going about it — which is to say that it's an extremely Michael Scott way of going about it. Eventually, he reveals his secret to everyone, which only amps up the sense of competition.

One of the events of the day is mock sumo wrestling, pitting Dwight (Rainn Wilson) against Andy (Ed Helms) and Jim (John Krasinski) against Stanley (Leslie David Baker). On Office Ladies, Kinsey and Fischer note that the hospitalization was a result of a Dwight-versus-Stanley sumo match — a deleted scene. Wilson wrestled Baker to the ground and kicked up a victorious patch of sand in the midst of his triumphant exhilaration, getting some of it in Baker's eye. The sand scratched Baker's cornea, leaving him unable to stay on set. He left for the hospital, got fixed up as best he could, and returned to set to finish filming. A "trooper" indeed, as Kinsey calls him.

The former Office actresses mentioned another on-set injury that luckily didn't result in a second hospitalization. There's a scene in which Dwight and Andy go at it outside the sumo ring, still in their blow-up suits, and the latter flails his arms around a bit too wildly. Helms ended up not just chipping a nail, but breaking one off entirely. When he called for a stop, everyone made fun of him for complaining about a broken nail, not realizing the seriousness of the injury. Things eventually settled down and Helms' finger was bandaged up, allowing filming to continue.

As they say, "The show must go on." Baker and Helms likely had the mantra in mind at the times of their respective injuries. Thankfully, neither case was serious enough to really imperil the actors, and both were good sports about it in the end.