Lindsey Broad, the woman behind The Office’s Cathy Simms, laughs off the hatred

By | March 1, 2012 at 1:26 pm | 20 comments | feature slider, Interviews, TV/Movies | Tags: , , ,

If you’ve been watching The Office lately, you’ve undoubtedly become acquainted with Cathy Simms, the newest addition to the Dundler Mifflin team in Scranton. Played by Lindsey Broad, Cathy first appears in the current season’s seventh episode. The office admin Pam Halpert – about to give birth to her second child — begins training Cathy to temporarily replace her while she’s on maternity leave. Her presence in the workplace seems benign at first, although Dwight, Gabe and Ryan are taken by her looks.

But Cathy’s intentions toward Jim (Pam’s husband) seemingly become clear (it could be a bait and switch***) during the last seconds of the “Special Project” episode three weeks ago. She’s heading to Tallahassee with a handful of other employees for said special project, and is seen talking into her phone: “Yeah, Jim’s gonna be there. That marriage is not good. No one knows better than me. Definitely, we will. It’s three weeks in Tallahassee, what else is there to do?”

On last week’s episode, Cathy (pictured to the right) finally makes her move. Pretending that hotel maintenance is working on her room, she ends up in Jim’s room in boxer shorts and eventually attempts to cuddle with him, dressed only in a bathrobe. Jim didn’t take the bait and remained faithful to his pregnant wife.

But since the Cathy story line was such a strong one last week, I wanted to find out more about Broad, the woman behind the character; I get the feeling we’ll be seeing a lot more of her. I especially wanted to know what Office fans thought of her character, seeing as Jim and Pam are one of the most beloved sitcom couples in television history.

“The people who send messages directly to me have been really nice and really positive,” Broad told me this week. “But there’s other people who hate Cathy. People really hate her. And people hated her before she even did anything. I think it was just the threat of her. People were intensely angry. Hopefully it doesn’t come back to bite me in the face.”

A quick search on Tumblr, notably here and here, yields an unhealthy amount of anti-Cathy sentiment. One woman calls Cathy a “fucking whore” while another fan says “I wanna shoot her.” Still, another viewer promises: “Cathy, I’m going to end you.”

“There’s a lot of vitriol and a lot of people taking out their aggression on Cathy,” Broad says. “I think, that, in itself is fun. I think people like to have someone to hate. Or I hope they do.”

Maybe it’s because I’m a guy and I’m sick in the head and maybe I’m in the minority here, but I don’t hate the character and I kind of wanted Jim and Cathy to hook up. I know. I’m a horrible person. “The first time I heard about Cathy’s intentions I got really freaked out,” Broad tells me, adding that as a fan of the show she was hesitant to play someone who might possibly come between Jim and Pam. “But then [producer, writer, co-star] Mindy [Kaling] said to me, “Don’t worry, I promise we’re going to make it really funny.” And indeed, Kaling and co., made it incredibly funny, in my humble opinion.

***I’m also not entirely convinced that phone call three episodes ago was what it sounded like. Maybe Cathy is a budding shrink or marriage counselor and her assertion that “no one knows better than me” about Pam and Jim’s struggling relationship is a reference to her sharp analytic skills? You never know. And we’ll just have to watch to see how it pans out.

Before she landed her recurring role on The Office, Broad actually auditioned last season for the part of Jordan Garfield (Cody Horn), the attractive gal Deangelo Vickers (Will Ferrell) hires to prove he wasn’t sexist. And before The Office Broad co-starred alongside Brad Garrett and Joely Fisher on Fox’s Til Death. You’ll also be able to see Broad playing high school student Lisa (kinda slutty, by Broad’s description) in 21 Jump Street (watch the trailer above, to the right) with Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum when it hits theaters March 16.

A new episode of The Office airs tonight at 9 pm ET on NBC.

UPDATE: March 2

A deleted scene from last night’s episode hints that Cathy is not yet done with Jim. Check it out.

About the Author

Dylan P. Gadino

Dylan is the founder and editor in chief of Laughspin. He launched Punchline Magazine in 2005 (which became Laughspin in the summer of 2011) with childhood friend Bill Bergmann. Dylan lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and two sons. He hopes the Shire is real.

  • doogansquest

    I personally like(d) this character. It represents something that happens in real life, especially to the good guys. Marriage and children shows faithfulness, dependability, a guy who’s not afraid of commitment. All attractive qualities in a guy. That, and Jim has no problems in most social situations, he’s confident, witty, etc. Again, all attractive qualities.

    Cathy is young, slightly naive, but like many her age, they think they’ve been through it all. Women like her are also constantly comparing themselves to other women, and the situation with Pam was pretty much like blood in the water for her. Normally it’s money involved when the “gold digger/home wrecker” intrusion takes place, but I watched guys all around me succumb to such situations.

    Often the guy ends up the bastard in the story, but on television they can play it out with the details evident. It’s a realistic situation, and they thankfully didn’t glorify the affair by letting it happen, making it seem like some fabricated, psychological message about something deep-seeded in the relationship between Jim and Pam. Most shows try and make it seem like a healthy thing, or the other spouse learns from it instead of branding the cheater.

    I’m glad Jim took the high road, but at least they showed the reality of temptation. Cathy is a good character, and Lindsey Broad a decent actor. It was a cute angle. I’m going to miss this show. It was good, even when Michael moved on.

  • Hatekathy

    I hate her guts. Not only is she super annoying, but the drama is ruining the show for me. And I really think she’s a bi**h. Will not be watching this again.

  • Carlos Hernandez

    Donde esta Cathy Simms?

  • Guestr

    Where is she?! ahhhhh :/

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=651756192 Spring Blachly

    People hated her because they sensed what her character’s purpose was. Was there the same hate for Erin? Nope, and it’s because it was evident she wasn’t trying to come between Pam and Jim. People could tell Cathy’s intentions from the start and it made long time fans of this couple ill. 

    Good for Jim for remaining faithful. And good for Pam for not freaking out when he told her what happened. She’s right – it *was* pathetic. 

    • http://twitter.com/yisman No Text

      what was pathetic? when did Pam say that?

      • doogansquest

        When she discovered (via the code word “EINSTEIN”) over the phone that Cathy was trying to flirt with Jim. She said, “I’d love to see the look on her face. Pretty pathetic.”

  • Bring Cathy Simms Back

    Where is Cathy Simms?

  • Guest

    I would certainly hope for more Cathy and more creative tension.

  • More Cathy Simms

    Why is Lindsey Broad not in the current episodes?  This is irratating.  I’m being annoyed by scenes with Nellie, when they have a perfectly good character of Cathy Simms going to waste.

  • I Love Lindsey Broad

    Lindsey Broad is the best thing that has happened to The Office. She needs to be in every scene. She is so hot. Have her undermine Dwight and steal his job to prepare for his departure. The producers are insane for not using Lindsey Broad more often. More, more, give me more Lindsey Broad!

  • I Love Lindsey Broad

    Lindsey Broad is the best thing that has happened to The Office. She needs to be in every scene. She is so hot. Have her undermine Dwight and steal his job to prepare for his departure. The producers are insane for not using Lindsey Broad more often. More, more, give me more Lindsey Broad!

  • Awesome Lindsey Broad

    @pkjscotto7 Are you insane? I can’t wait to watch the office now, just to get a glimpse of her.  She is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.  “Cathy you’ll be the hot girl who talks to bloggers.” Cathy – “Ugg, kill me…it was my idea, hee, hee.” - That laugh and smile right before the cut was capturing both as an actress and a character.  I’ve decided that I’ll watch anything she’s in for the duration of her career.  You are awesome Lindsey! 

  • Awesome Lindsey Broad

    @pkjscotto7 Are you insane? I can’t wait to watch the office now, just to get a glimpse of her.  She is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.  “Cathy you’ll be the hot girl who talks to bloggers.” Cathy – “Ugg, kill me…it was my idea, hee, hee.” - That laugh and smile right before the cut was capturing both as an actress and a character.  I’ve decided that I’ll watch anything she’s in for the duration of her career.  You are awesome Lindsey! 

  • I Love Lindsey Broad

    Lindsey Broad is the best thing that has happened to The Office.  She needs to be in every scene.  She is so hot. Have her undermine Dwight and steal his job to prepare for his departure. The producers are insane for not using Lindsey Broad more often.  More, more, give me more Lindsey Broad!

  • Pkjscotto7

    I don’t hate the character Cathy- she serves her purpose to the show a moronic pawn that we want to see humiliated and ultimately destroyed. I have a problem with the actress. She is NOT funny or attractive and brings nothing to the table. She has no talent and often looks like she is brain dead or cross eyed. Give it up- you stink – acting is not for you.

  • Pkjscotto7

    I don’t hate the character Cathy- she serves her purpose to the show a moronic pawn that we want to see humiliated and ultimately destroyed. I have a problem with the actress. She is NOT funny or attractive and brings nothing to the table. She has no talent and often looks like she is brain dead or cross eyed. Give it up- you stink – acting is not for you.

  • Jason

    She seems nice as an actress. I just think there are already too many under utilized characters to keep adding more.

    We have Cathy, the folks in Tallahassee (which I’m so thankful for Packer’s return), Andy’s girlfriend, the senator… it’s getting to be a pretty massive cast.Aside from the party episode, has Meredith even had lines this season? 

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