David Brent leads his Slough branch in bad times for Wernham-Hogg as the company can't justify both a Slough and Swindon branch. A meeting with his boss, Jennifer Taylor Clarke, confirms that one of the branches will have to be downsized and there will be redundancies. After the meeting, David shows off his first flaw by thinking in the short term when he holds a meeting saying that there will be no redundancies and that even though there are talks about downsizing, he will have complete control over the situation.
Despite the problems to be, David takes on two new members of staff (albeit only temporary). The first is Ricky who is a genius, appearing on BlockBuster and becomes a semi-rival later in the series to David regarding knowlege. David would show that he hates being beaten and even goes as far to read books about certain things and then show off his new found knowellege, only to be taken back by Ricky's off by heart knowellege. The second member of temporary is Donna, who is daughter of David's good friends, Ron and Elaine. Donna is even less impressed with David's humour.
Chris Finch is David's best mate and pulls off an office prank where he distributes an image of David's head photoshopped ontop of two blokes 'jizzing' on a large women. David is highly offended by this, although he plays this down to sexisum. David gets Gareth to investigate and find the culprit which turns out to be Tim. To prove him self to Jennifer, David goes to discipline Tim but gets caught off guard when Tim reveals it was Chris behind the picture. Jennifer orders David to fire Chris but avoids it by calling the talking clock.
Despite the orders to cut back on staff, David decides to hire a secretary. He has two interviewees, a man and a woman. Despite bonding with the male interviewee, David goes for the woman because he finds her attractive. He instantaneously makes a bad impression by playing indoor football and headbutting her.
In the series finale, Jennifer tells Brent that the board has voted that he be promoted and his branch downsized. Not seeing a problem with this, Brent gleefully accepts the promotion and tells his staff the news. They all berate him for selling them out. Later, at a farewell party, Brent appears and tells them that he selflessly turned down his promotion so that they could keep their jobs. Its implied he actually lost his promotion because he failed a medical test, but he makes it seem like he somehow faked it.
Series 2EditDavid hosts a welcoming party for the Swindon employees. They take an instant dislike to him. David's one-sided rivalry with Neil Godwin is formed when he sees the employess laugh at his jokes, along with his seemingly effortless ability to gain their respect. This is exacerbated by his frienship with Chris Finch, who laughs with Neil instead of at him. After seeing Neil reenact the dance moves from Saturday Night Fever for charity, Brent brags about his own dancing prowess. The staff coax him into showing off his moves and he winds up looking like a fool as he blends conflicting dance moves together to create the most famously awkward sight in television history.
Brent takes some of the Swindon employees to the pub so that they can relax around him. He immediately brings down the mood by mentioning an alcoholic friend. When Brent walks in on Neil playing indoor cricket with Tim and Gareth, he snaps at Neil and accuses him of being a try-hard. Neil takes Brent aside and sternly tells him that he does not tolerate his bratty behaviour. Brent uses the isolation to his advantage and later tells the others that Neil was slagging them off behind their backs. Tim obviously doesn't buy it.
David is approached by some management-training employers who ask him to give motivational speeches. His ego inflates heavily from this and he tries to act hip in order to make an impression, not realising that these events are supposed to be fairly dignified.
After a series of increasingly poor performances, Neil threatens Brent with a verbal warning: if he doesn't change his tune, he'll lose his job. David just laughs it off, assuming that he's far too popular to be kicked out. Later that day, Neil and Jennifer both sit down with Brent and tell him he's been laid off. Brent is then left in a gloomy mood, which is unfortunate since he's wearing an emu costume at the time for a photoshoot. During said photoshoot, he can't even muster up the energy to smile for the camera.
On his last day, David manages to maintain a cheerful facade, knowing that his motivational speaking gig should keep him on his feet. When he founds out that his employers weren't going to use him again, he loses it. When Neil and Jennifer arrive to finalise his redundancy, David pushes his pride away and begs them to give him another chance. Unfortunately, its far too late and the series ends on a heavy note.
Two years later, David is a travelling salesman and wannabe celebrity who makes appearances at nightclubs as a feeble attempt to capitalise on his 15 minutes of fame. He even went as far as to make a music video of himself covering If You Don't Know Me By Now. He still visits the office, hoping to keep in touch with his former staff. After finding out that Neil was engaged, David resolves to find a date for the Christmas party. His attempt at a celebrity blind date is a disaster, as he makes an ass of himself by coming dressed as Austin Powers and makes several humourless comments.
After signing onto a dating website, he manages to find four women that he matches up with. The first date goes as smoothly as a cactus as Brent finds himself talking about breasts and doggy-style sex. He calls the second match and tells her he was on The Office documentary. She instantly assumes he's "that awful boss" and Brent awkwardly hangs up. When he arrives for his next blind date, he's greatly annoyed by the fact that she's obese and dull (he proclaimed "Oh, for fuck's sake!" upon seeing her).
After showing off his new dog to the Slough employees, Neil chastises Brent for interrupting their working days. He penalises Brent by not allowing him to come the the pre-party dinner. Brent then retreats to a roadside motel, heavily drinks some scotch and then rants at the cameras that he's better at his job than Neil and someday everyone will see that. There are also several moments highlighting Brent's solitude, revealing that underneath his cocky exterior is a very lonely man.
At the Christmas party, Brent waits outside for his last blind date. His patience is rewarded with Karen, a beautiful, kindhearted and easy-going woman. When Brent shows her off to Neil and Finch, they are left gobsmacked. The two start talking and its revealed that the documentary crew only broadcast his embarrassing moments and left out the times when he manages to be a good boss. David tells the cameras that he feels like Karen is the best thing that could've happened to him. Karen also seems to like Brent, as she kissed him goodbye and told Brent to call her sometime.
Brent returns to the party, hoping to hang out with Finch. Neil and Finch then joke about Karen, which prompts Brent to say "Chris, why don't you fuck off" and glare at Neil. In the final scene, Brent poses for a picture with his old team and manages to make everyone laugh by impersonating Frank Spencer.