It’s been a less-than-stellar Steve Carell-less season of The Office, and so the plans for its future continue to be a mystery– not just to audiences, but to most of those involved with the show. There have been many major changes and rumors swirling in the past six months. So let’s recap:
1. There will be a Dwight K. Shrute spin-off about life on the oft-mentioned beet farm.
2. Mindy Kaling will probably leave her writing, producing and co-starring duties for her own show on Fox.
3. James Spader is leaving at the end of the current season.
4. Contract negotiations for lead cast members are not yet complete.
5. NBC has yet to renew the show for a ninth season.
The newest rumor to add to the pile is the possibility of an Office reboot apparently being pitched to the head honchos at NBC by Executive Producer Greg Daniels. To quote Liz Lemon, “What the what?!”
While current show runner Paul Lieberstein (he also plays the meek Toby Flenderson) is confident the program will be given a ninth and likely final season, Executive Producer Greg Daniels seems to be preparing for what happens next. His latest idea apparently would allow the show to continue in a similar format but will feature a combination of new and current cast members. Not much else is known about the idea beyond that. Similar attempts have been made in the past — remember the Scrubs reboot? No? Neither do most people — but never with much success. Plus, isn’t it a bit redundant to reboot a show that was already a reboot of a British program?
Listen, I love The Office. I have been a loyal viewer since the beginning and will always consider it a favorite show of mine. But let’s be honest, the show just is not what is used to be. I don’t fully blame the departure of Steve Carell either, though I miss him every Thursday. The show hasn’t been at the top of its game for at least the past two seasons and despite the gem of an episode here and there, it’s time. It’s time to let go and move on and allow fans to remember The Office as a show they adore.
The spin-off and reboot ideas are just going to continue to mar the brilliance that The Office once had. Despite his growth over the years, Dwight is just not a likeable or strong enough character to carry a show on his own. Kaling continues to write some of the best episodes each season. And The Office would never be the same without the current cast as been proven with the addition of Spader.
Let it die, NBC! And quickly. Daniels has a keen eye and access to great talent to create excellent television as shown by his involvement in The Office as well as serving as a co-creator for Parks and Recreation. Developing something new for audiences to enjoy would be in everyone’s best interest. We’d be more grateful for that– than if we were to continue to watch our longtime friend die a slow, awkward death.