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Is Steve Carell Really Ice Skating In The Office Season 2 Episode 19?

Let's face it: "The Office" is the show that made Steve Carell into a household name. Throughout seven seasons as Michael Scott, he had the chance to craft one of the most oblivious, earnest, dim-witted, and occasionally kind-hearted television characters in recent history.

While Michael's talents were often fleeting or caught up in a whirlwind of chaos, they were poignant, with his "that's what she said" catchphrase punctuating the series. His awkward moments had real merit, so much so that many fans seem to think Michael is a secret genius. He's a shockingly good salesman and has an almost uncanny ability to read people when it matters.

As fans of Season 2, Episode 19 will remember, he is also an excellent skater. In the episode "Michael's Birthday," he takes the whole Dunder Mifflin staff to a skating rink. Michael, decked out in full hockey gear, is seen whizzing around the ice while almost everyone else is trying not to lose their balance. There's even a moment when Michael body-checks a poor, unsuspecting Toby. Given the amount of skill and grace, some people might be asking whether it's a stunt double we're watching or if that's actually Steve Carell.

Yes, that's actually Steve Carell skating

On an April 2020 episode of the podcast "Office Ladies," Jenna Fischer (who played Pam) and Angela Kinsey (Angela) discussed "Michael's Birthday." "Steve Carell is a very, very good ice skater," said Fischer. "He played hockey growing up, and he played pickup hockey every week as an adult."

Indeed, Carell grew up in hockey-crazy Boston. According to Sportscasting.com, he was so thrilled by the Bruins' championship team in the 1970s that he started playing youth hockey and even considered trying out for the National Hockey League. Obviously, Carell chose a different path, and television comedy is all the richer for it.

Still, watching the episode, the gap between Carell's skill and everyone else's is jaw-dropping. Most other characters are functioning at the "I'm staying upright and moving slowly" level. The only exception is Oscar (Oscar Nuñez), who can be seen performing pirouettes in the background at one point while Michael gives his testimonial. According to Kinsey and Fischer, that was a stunt double; Nuñez can't skate that well.

Meanwhile, Mindy Kaling, whose Kelly Kapoor spends much of the episode trying to keep an enthusiastic Ryan (BJ Novak) upright, apparently took a fall and needed an on-site medic to provide her with an icepack. As for Fischer herself, she had, ironically, been training for her role in "Blades of Glory," which made her far more adept on the ice than Pam. "Every Saturday morning for a few months, I had to go and spend about three hours [training]," she said, "and the crazy thing is my character didn't even skate in the movie," per "Office Ladies."