The question is--how do Jim and Pam avoid what happened to the Vances happening to them?
Everyone--including the notoriously dense Kristin dos Santos--is speculating that a casting notice for a 50-year-old male relative of Pam's is, in fact, Pam's dad, hired to walk her down the aisle at a wedding to that one guy with the floppy hair.
While I would love to see Jim and Pam's wedding during February sweeps, I kind of doubt it'll happen quite so soon. I mean, yes, Jim says he's aware that Pam didn't want a long engagement ("something about a guy who used to work here"), but do we really foresee them getting married in, like, six episodes time? There haven't been any storylines about wedding planning yet--and that's something you'd think the writers would want to milk, right?
There are a few ways of looking at this.
1. It's The Office and I haven't been able to accurately predict anything correctly since I guessed Jan would get pregnant last season. Jim and Pam's brilliantly traditional-for-real-life/untraditional-for-television relationship has had me flummoxed since the moment Jim said "It's a date."
2. A significant amount of the relationship focus--and the entire amount of the "wedding" focus--this season has been on Andy and Angela. It could be funny if Jim and Pam have been taking advantage of having the spotlight on Andy and Angela to plan a quiet wedding--maybe even one that doesn't involve Michael Scott (gasp!).
3. I feel more comfortable speculating that Pam's dad is arriving not to walk her down the aisle but to have a few pre-wedding words with Mr. Halpert. I mean, fanon (and common sense) says that Mrs. Beesly is whoa charmed by Jim. (Canonically, we know that Mrs. Beesly was interested to meet Jim, as evidenced by her "Which one is Jim?" comment in "Sexual Harassment.") But what if Mr. Beesly is not quite so keen on his daughter's fiance? The casting notice stipulates that he might look similar to Roy, meaning perhaps Mr. B and Roy were likethis, making Jim really not the kind of guy he anticipated Pam ending up with.
And, you know, Jim joked about planning a future for him and Pam that he wants Pam's parents to "be psyched about," but I'm sure their approval does mean a great deal to our favorite Big Tuna.
So my hunch is that maybe Pam's dad is not so stoked about Jim, whom I imagine a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy would consider a smartass. And then, hopefully, it could all end with Mr. B offering a big ol' guy hug and a "Welcome to the family" to his new son-in-law.
Or I'm totally overthinking this again and Pam's parents will just be head-over-heels for Jim.