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Jim and Dwight's rivalry is one the biggest hallmarks for the show The Office, with both attempting to prank the other (mostly Jim) at any opportunity given.

But does Jim pull these pranks because of a strong dislike for Dwight, or were these pranks friendly fire after all?

We all know that Jim and Dwight's rivalry comes to an end towards the end of the show itself, but what if Jim saw Dwight as a friend to begin with? enter image description here

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Jim doesn't consider Dwight a friend from the start. But that doesn't mean Jim hates Dwight.

From as early as S01E02 Diversity Day, we see that Jim has a big sales call lined up, as every year, which covers 20% of his commission. So every year he buys a bottle of champagne to celebrate. But during Diversity Day, Michael keeps Jim occupied with the office meeting. Dwight rings up Jim'a client and steals his sale and commission. Dwight doesn't do it out of malice though, he's just pranking Jim back. Jim, instead of flipping out and accusing him of stealing his biggest client, just places that bottle of champagne on Dwight's desk as a "well played" gesture.

Jim and Dwight become friends during that staircase scene where Dwight is heartbroken over Angela and Andy. Jim consoles him by sharing his emotional distress during Pam and Roy's relationship. This shared emotional moment solidifies their friendship for viewers as well as themselves. They both know, irrespective of the pranks, at the end of the day they care about each other as friends.

  • Other cases of Jim and Dwight being (sort of) friends are (1) when Jim sleeps in Dwight's room when the girl is trying to flirt with (married) Jim, they are clearly enjoying their night watching TV (2) When Dwight cancels Belshnickel Christmas after Jim leaves; but reinstates Belshnickel Christmas (and is visibly joyous) when Jim returns. – Flater Jul 3 '18 at 12:28
  • Should of used "dislike" instead of "hate" when making the title – OP_rah Jul 3 '18 at 18:19
  • Didn't Dwight save Jim from an attack by Roy at one point? Though I think it was after denying he was Jim's "ally" (in a pretend reality show he had created in his own mind). – Barry Carter Jul 6 '18 at 15:59
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    @BarryCarter yes, but it was more out of volunteer sheriff instincts of Dwight I think – KharoBangdo Jul 6 '18 at 16:02
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"Hate" is a big word. Especially in earlier seasons, you can argue that Dwight "hates" Jim more than the other way around, since Dwight is often the instigator.

Dwight plays the role of "office police" when he in fact does not have the authority to do so. Dwight antagonizes people while he's busy trying to "win" the game (in Dwights mind, he is competing for a position of authority).

Dwight consistently behaves as a superior to others, and often introduces (verbal) hostility towards others for no reason other than Dwight wanting to be in charge.

Jim subverts Dwight's alleged authority. This has two consequences:

  • Dwight is knocked down a few pegs.
  • The people who suffer from Dwight's competitive nature (including Jim himself) get a reprieve by seeing Dwigth knocked down a few pegs.
    • As she sits behind him and is therefore usually in shot whenever Dwight is, the most common instance of this is Phyllis smiling whenever Dwight is ridiculed. Dwight is rarely kind to her, and while she's not the type of person to fight back (she's too meek), she appreciates seeing Jim put Dwight down.

So, to answer your question, it would be more accurate to say that Jim hates Dwight's self-aggrandizing behavior more than he hates Dwight himself. However, the two can in some cases overlap, especially in cases where Dwight is constantly antagonistic.

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