Image Credit: Mitchell Haaseth/NBCReason No. 2,137 to love The Office: It’s the most egalitarian show on television. According to Variety, B.J. Novak has re-signed to play conniving Ryan for two more years. Simultaneously, the 30-year-old actor, who’s written and directed Office episodes, will be promoted to executive producer. Novak’s not alone in his status as a renaissance talent: Mindy Kaling (Kelly) and Paul Lieberstein (Toby), for example, also play a significant role in the creative direction of the sitcom.
More than any other show, The Office crew seems like a troupe, in the old-fashioned theatrical sense. (Not unlike Second City, where Steve Carell, Kate Flannery, Craig Robinson once sharpened their skills.) A funny idea is a funny idea, no matter where it comes from, and the typical firewalls between producer, writer, and actor seem much more permeable in Scranton. No wonder no one flinched when Ryan the one-time intern was made a corporate boss at the end of season 3. That’s how this show rolls.
Do you think the show’s commitment to Novak promises more screen-time for Ryan, especially now that Carell has announced his intention to leave the show? Could Ryan possibly compete with Dwight for the right to fill Michael’s chair? More importantly, as a hot-shot exec producer, do you think Novak will dabble in drugs, get $200 haircuts and insist that the rest of the cast file their expense reports online?