Second Life Office

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Who among us hasn't, at one low point in time, searched for a lighthearted escape from reality?

Dwight from The Office sure has. Remember in the Season 4 episode 'Local Ad' when Andy and Angela were embarking on their romantic whatever that was and Dwight took refuge in the online virtual world, Second Life? Then Jim, who was worried about Dwight, made his own Second Life profile to check up on him? What memories.

If you need a refresher, or are just plain curious about how Dwight ended up on Second Life, Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey chatted all about the storyline on the latest episode of the .

What is Second Life?

For those who aren't familiar with Second Life, it was a real program launched in 2003 by San Francisco-based firm, Linden Lab, and gave users the ability to craft a digital 3D world all their own. The technology still exists today — along with Dwight's profile — and Fischer got the inside scoop on how Second Life appeared on the show.

'So Second Life, it predated Twitter and Instagram and social media and it was almost like a virtual online chat room. You created an avatar of yourself and then you could go in and interact with other people's avatars,' Fischer explained to Kinsey. 'But you can build things. You could build a little hotel and run it, and then other avatars could come to your hotel... You can go to a concert. There were college classes, press conferences that you could attend as your avatar, and you could even buy land, shop for clothes and gadgets, visit with friends.'


'It wasn't a game. You didn't win anything, but you could earn money in the game that you would then spend on these different experiences,' she continued.

So who created Dwight's profile?

Several fans of the podcast wondered how Dwight's Second Life persona came to be, so of course, Fischer reached out to producer Kent Zbornak (aka Kent-a-pedia) for the details.

'Kent reached out to the developers of Second Life, Clear Inc., and Linden Labs, and we entered into a license agreement with them,' Fischer explained. 'They ended up creating all of the avatars and animation for us. Kent had to send pictures of John and Rainn over to those guys, and they drew out little avatars of them based on Jason and Greg's direction. And that's how they made it.'

Fans of Second Life were likely pumped to see the virtual world appear on the show, but Second Life employees were thrilled as well.

'We got a letter, Angela, from Cyn Skyberg,' Fischer said. 'And listen to this: 'I worked at Second Life when this episode came out and we were so excited. I was the head of customer service at the time and I got all our team together virtually to watch the episode. Second Life was and is a crazy place and so much really nutzo stuff happened in there. This was a big highlight for all of us.'

What made Dwight and Jim's virtual worlds turn

If you're curious what Dwight's Second Life profile was like, Fischer explained his interests include muscle cars, pop culture, and sci-fi, along with Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, 24, Alias, Smallville, The Apprentice,Lost, and of course, Battlestar Galactica.

Dwight's Second Life talents included 'avid cornhusk dollmaker, beet sculptor, and knot-tying champion,' and Fischer said, 'he had to list a goal for his Second Life, and he wrote: 'To calculate the exchange between Schrute Bucks and Linden dollars,' which is the currency in Second Life.

Later in the episode Jim shares his own Second Life profile with Pam, which once again prompts the question, 'Does this man know how to play the guitar or not?'

Second Life Office

'Jim's avatar has a guitar slung on his back,' Fischer notes. 'Remember, the only indication we've ever seen of Jim and guitar is that lone guitar in his room during 'Email Surveillance.' But we never see him play guitar. Clearly Jim wishes he had learned to play that guitar. It's part of his Second Life avatar.'

'Yeah, I guess it just sits in the corner of his room and is collecting dust. And even Pam is like, 'What? I didn't know you play guitar?' Kinsey replied.

Another huge takeaway from Jim's Second Life avatar is that he was a sportswriter in Philadelphia. When fans asked if Jim's Second Life persona inspired his Season 9 job switch, here's what Fischer and Kinsey had to say.

SEE ALSO: The story behind 'The Office' characters playing 'Call of Duty'

'I mean, no. Right Jenna? Is it just by chance?' Kinsey asked.

'Here's what I think. I think this moment happened in this episode and it went into the show bible,' Fischer said. (The show bible is a running book of facts about the series and its characters that's used to ensure continuity throughout seasons.) 'And then later, when it came time to write Season nine, you know, that's when I got my copy of the show Bible and so did John,' she said.

'That's right. Because you guys were producers. And now I remember you were part of, like pitching like story ideas and stuff,' Kinsey reflected.

According to Fischer, John Krasinski is the person who pitched the idea that Jim would go off to Philly later in the series and have a sports-related job.

'It was not connected in this moment when we shot it. But that's how I think it might have happened,' she said.

Superfans who watched the series all the way through might have also picked up on the fact that when Jim moves to Philly he has an electric guitar in his apartment.

Second Life Office Episode

Can he play it? Unclear! But we love when things come full circle on The Office.

Be sure to listen to the full podcast episode for more behind-the-scenes stories about filming 'Local Ad.'

You can stream episodes of and follow along with the podcast every week on , , or .