Open Forum Friday: Should NBC Continue The Office After Steve Carell Leaves?

With Steve Carell hitting the talk show circuit over the past week or so to promote Dinner for Schmucks, there is one topic that almost never fails to crop up: the fact that he is only doing one more season of The Office. Carell recently confirmed rumours that he would give up his role as Michael Scott once his contract expires in 2011, stating that he would prefer to spend more time with his family instead. Perhaps he wants to go out on a high note, as the show still seems to be consistently funny after six seasons. Unfortunately, the show is also at the height of its popularity now, having just recently started syndication last year. Can NBC continue the show without this iconic character, and more importantly, should they?

Currently they do seem committed to keeping the show going without Carell, stating that it will remain in the coveted 9 pm Thursday slot. While it’s true that Carell is not the sole reason for the success of the show, his character is the driving force behind most of the story lines. Greg Daniels has already proven that he can create a successful spin-off with Parks and Recreation, so perhaps that is another alternative? All I know is there are a lot of people who will be sad to see Steve Carell go (not that we won’t be seeing plenty of him on the big screen still). What do you think? Is The Office no longer The Office if Michael Scott leaves? Could they find another actor to replace him in the same role? Would you still be interested in seeing the rest of the cast continue on without him, or should they just end it now before it goes downhill? Give us your thoughts here on Open Forum Friday.

  • Jason_Miami

    Personally, I think they should have stopped after season 3. Gervais had the good grace to call it quits and move on at the most logical end point for the series but NBC is too money-hungry to just let it die if people are still watching. The creator, Greg Daniels, left the show at that point to start Parks and Recreation and I saw a clear change in the show. Season 4 was pretty bad, season 5 was pretty good, and season 6 was extremely hit or miss. But I think NBC will do a season after he leaves to test the waters and if it bombs then they’ll kill it. I can’t see them killing it just because he’s leaving. As long as people are watching, it’ll continue.

  • Matt

    They should just call it quits after season 6.

  • I think a more important question is why you weren’t invited to the BEST OF THE WEB forum at Comic Con? I mean, come on, that is ridiculous – after seeing the people there, Sean, I couldn’t believe it. It is more interesting that John C ran it, considering he doesn’t even know how to spell most of the time.

  • Justice

    Yeah, I think it may be time to throw in the towel. After the Pam and Jim relationship arc finished, they haven’t found anything to replace it with and it has just kind of jumped from idea to idea. It had a great run, there’s no shame in calling it quits when the time is right. Plus doing it without Steve Carell is like doing 30 Rock without Tracy Morgan.

  • Ian

    My first impression is that it won’t work. Then I think of all the episodes in the last season or two where Michael Scott was hardly in the story and think that it could work pretty well. I think they will have to make a big deal of him leaving but if they do it in such a way that they almost slowly phase him out (sort of how they have been) then the rest of the characters are interesting enough to keep it going until it’s just Creed alone with a knife wound wondering through the office until he finds his desk sits down and passes.

  • Reeds gone. Greg never shows up. Jay is flirting with stardom…and your worried about Carell!? Dude, your house is ON FIRE and you’re looking for MARSHMALLOWS!!!!

  • Steve

    The Office without Carell is like 30 Rock without Tina Fey. I’m not sure it would work. The reason why break-out characters like Dwight are loved so much is because they have people like Michael Scott to bounce off/enable their antics. I’m afraid Carell’s departure will gut the show.

  • David: Most of the people at the Masters of the Web panel have been doing this a lot longer than us, and actually do it for a living. So I’m sure they’re a lot more qualified to talk about whatever it is they talk about at that panel. Plus, we weren’t at Comic-Con anyway.

    Rus: Film Junk won’t last forever!

  • Snorfle

    no no no. you must continue filmjunk until at least 500 episodes.

  • They should quit while they’re ahead. The last couple of seasons have not been that great.