Phyllis Vance is probably one of the most underrated characters on The Office. Working at Dunder Mifflin Scranton for the show's entirety, she's a saleswoman who actually cares about her job. She may be softspoken and knits in her free time, but she shows real initiative throughout the series when it comes to leads and her paycheck.
Often overlooked by everyone in the office (especially Michael and Angela), Phyllis has had a lot of negative things happen to her while working for Dunder Mifflin. With zero acknowledgment and respect coming from upper management, it makes us wonder why Phyllis stayed at Dunder Mifflin. The only logical reason is that she was good at her job and actually liked watching her co-workers from afar. Although Phyllis didn't have as many lines as characters like Pam or Dwight, we did see her in some awfully gloomy moments. From the Party Planning Committee to being treated like a horse by Dwight, here are 10 of the worst things Phyllis has dealt with.
10 DWIGHT MADE HER WALK HOME TO LOSE WEIGHT
The fifth season of The Office has two corresponding episodes: Weight Loss Pars 1 and 2. In these episodes, Dunder Mifflin was awarding the branch who lost the most weight. While Kelly decided to starve herself, Dwight decided drastic measures had to be taken.
Coercing Phyllis into thinking he wanted to split the commission on a sales call with her, Phyllis and Dwight are seen leaving the office together. A couple of hours later, Phyllis is seen drenched in sweat and tired, claiming Dwight left her in the middle of nowhere so she had no choice but to walk over five miles back to work. The poor thing was exhausted and distraught so she called David Wallace to complain.
9 NOT BEING CHOSEN AS SANTA CLAUS FOR YEARS
In the sixth season, we find the Scranton branch planning their Christmas party. In the spirit of Christmas, Jim tells Phyllis she can come to the party dressed as Santa Claus. Outraged by Jim's decision, Michael also comes to the party dressed as Santa as well to try and undermind Phyllis.
To the cameras, Phyllis begins tearing up as she talks about the "long journey" she's been on to become Santa Claus because no one ever gives her the chance. Seeing her eyes water at the pure joy of being Santa made viewers feel awful she's been denied something so special to her for all these years.
8 CONSTANTLY BEING TOLD SHE'S MATRONLY BY MICHAEL
I'm not saying that Phyllis is perfect but Michael, Angela, and Dwight seem to gun at Phyllis for no apparent reason. She's either smelling too strong, dressing too old, or farting, according to her co-workers. However, just because she dresses in a respectful manner and is soft-spoken does not mean she's matronly.
Todd Packer has made rude jokes about her size, Michael has made comments about her being the office's grandmother — even though they're the same age, and bets have been made about the 'old' things she says. Justice for Phyllis!
7 WHEN SHE WAS FLASHED ON OFFICE PROPERTY
There was nothing more horrific when Phyllis stumbled into work one day distressed. After being asked what was wrong, Phyllis explains she was flashed by a man in the parking lot who was asking for directions. To make matters worse, after Jim called the cops reporting the incident, Michael made fun of it all. He thought it was weird that the man flashed Phyllis instead of someone more attractive like Pam or Karen. Michael even went as far as to pretend that he was the flasher! Something as serious as this shouldn't have ever been made into a joke, by her boss especially.
6 BEING SPOKEN DOWN TO BY ANGELA IN THE PARTY PLANNING COMMITTEE
Phyllis has mentioned in more than one occasion that she loves girl talk, which is why I think she saw the office's Party Planning Committee as a good use of time. The sad thing is that Angela was the head of the committee for years and gave Phyllis no credit.
Angela downplayed Phyllis's ideas and was demeaning anytime Phyllis was actually excited about something. Angela was the one person in the office who really sucked the happiness out of Phyllis. Luckily, justice was served after Phyllis found out about Angela and Dwight's affair. Angela gave her title as Head of the Party Planning Committee over to Phyllis in exchange for her discrepancy.
5 WHEN MICHAEL DIDN'T CHOOSE HER FOR HIS BASKETBALL TEAM
In the fifth episode of the first season, we were given the greatness of a Dunder Mifflin Scranton basketball game between the office workers and the warehouse workers. The office was quickly brought back in time as Michael played favorites to create his basketball team. And although Phyllis used to play basketball and was really good at it, Michael dismissed her and told her she could watch from the sideline. He didn't even want her cheerleading, which was another blow to poor Phyllis's heart.
4 NO ONE WANTED HER HANDMADE CHRISTMAS GIFT
In another Christmas episode, the office decides to do a Secret Santa. (Luckily for us viewers, Jim got Pam and created her the most touching Secret Santa gift, but that's for another article.)
The office had a $20 spending limit but Michael chose to ignore the rule and gift his secret Santa an iPod instead... Since he spent a couple of hundred dollars on his gift, he was upset when he received a hand-knitted oven mitt from Phyllis. He was actually so disappointed in her heartfelt gift that he changed up the game so that he could get rid of it. Phyllis ends up being so upset that she leaves early.
3 MICHAEL SINGLE-HANDEDLY RUINED HER WEDDING
It was a special day when we got to see Phyllis walk down the aisle to Bob Vance. The two were dating for a long time and it was about time something went right for her. (Honestly, it helped viewers sleep at night knowing she had a fulfilling life outside of the office.) In a moment of desperation, Phyllis asks Michael if he could wheel her father down the aisle next to her. The job title went to his head and he made her wedding all about him. From making a fuss about her father's wheelchair to introducing them as man and wife too early to joining them in their 'cutting the cake' ceremony to making an embarrassing speech... the list goes on and on.
2 WHEN DWIGHT TREATED HER LIKE A HORSE
Now that Michael, Pam, and Ryan are working for Dunder Mifflin again (after leaving to work for Michael Scott Paper Company), Michael misses the fun he had while working for himself. He ends up turning the Michael Scott Paper Company "office" (it was a closet) into Cafe Disco; a place to dance and drink coffee.
Phyllis joins Michael for a dance when she pulls her back out. Dwight then mentions he deals with injured horses all the time and he could do the same treatment on Phyllis due to her similar size... He then feeds her carrots by hand and massages her back with beaver oil to lock in the heat...
1 SHE'S CONSTANTLY OVERLOOKED AT WORK
Phyllis wouldn't be working at Dunder Mifflin if she wasn't a real asset to the team. Dunder Mifflin closed a few branches and tried to downsize Scranton before. Michael never mentioned Phyllis's name once. So why is it that she gets minimal credit for her dedication?
Phyllis's computer has been on the fritz for years and yet Pam ignored her request and bought reception a new computer instead. She also gets upset when Jim gets promoted in season six and then characterizes her and the other workers by beans. Phyllis may look one way but no one should underestimate her.