Billie Eilish has revealed that up until last year, she believed U2 were from Scranton, Pennsylvania – and not their actual stomping grounds of Dublin, Ireland – due to a joke on The Office.
U2 formed in 1976 in Dublin, while Eilish was born in 2001. “Starting to watch The Office at a really young age, I almost didn’t understand any reference whatsoever,” she explained on a recent episode of the Office Ladies podcast, which is hosted by stars Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey.
Eilish explained that because Steve Carell’s Michael Scott said so many things wrong over the course of The Office, she got them wrong too “because I learned them from Michael Scott.”
The “worst” one came courtesy of season four episode ‘Goodbye Toby Part One‘, which sees Scott ask Jim Halpert (John Krasinski): “Hey, what’s the group that was from Scranton that made it big? Was that U2?” with Halpert replying, “Yes”.
“There’s no pause, there’s no laugh,” Eilish said (via Consequence). “Honestly, in my head, I thought Jim thought, ‘Oh, that’s a stupid question’ because obviously, they’re the band that made it big from Scranton… I thought that was the vibe.”
Eilish went on to reveal that she only found out that U2 were Irish when Bono sent her flowers.
“This last June, we were in Ireland. I’m in my hotel and I get flowers delivered to my room. It has a little letter on it and it’s this really, really sweet letter and it says ‘From Bono,’” Eilish said before revealing that the note said, “Welcome to my hometown”.
“I was like, ‘Why would he send me something in Ireland? What does this have to do with him?’ [because] U2 is from Scranton,” she added. “I kept asking everyone, ‘What is Bono doing sending me flowers all the way across the world? Why would he do that?’ They were like, ‘Billie, what are you talking about? They’re Irish.’ I blame John for this.”
Billie Eilish is a self-confessed superfan of The Office. In 2020, she featured in a 12-part documentary, An Oral History Of The Office, alongside several of the show’s stars. In 2019, it was revealed that the cast of the show had personally cleared samples used in ‘My Strange Addiction’ from Eilish’s debut album, ‘When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?’. The track features dialogue from the episode ‘Threat Level Midnight’.
Meanwhile, to celebrate his 60th birthday, U2 vocalist Bono shared a playlist of songs that “saved” his life, including Eilish’s ‘Everything I Wanted’.