Steve Carell shocked fans of The Office on Thursday after telling
the BBC that next season "will
probably be" his last. The quirky NBC "mockumentary
" attracts a loyal following
largely thanks to Carell's role as Michael Scott, the ego-inflated boss
of Dunder Mifflin. It's too early to say if Carell is actually leaving
(this could just be a negotiating tactic) but entertainment critics have
already begun surmising what The Office might be like without Carell.
Brace yourselves, fans: these critics think Carell's exit is a godsend.
- The Office Could Be So Much Better, writes Darren Franich at Entertainment
Weekly: "Carell's departure could be the best thing to happen to The
Office. It could give next season an added emotional heft, not to
mention the sure-to-be-hysterical turf war that could ensue over who
gets to take over as head honcho of the Scranton branch. And most of
this season has been spent on building up the minor characters (as in
the Erin-Andy romance). It's always hard for a show to survive without
its star, but talent runs deep in the Office bench."
- Dwight Would Take Center Stage, writes Drew Magary at NBC Miami: "I could
actually see a scenario where a Carell-free 'Office' actually gives the
show a boost. Let's face it. The show, as it stands right now, centers
on Michael Scott being unrealistically stupid and yet somehow keeping a
job he would have never have been hired for to begin with. It gets a
little old to see him make faux pas after faux pas. Getting rid of his
character means we could make Dwight the show's main focus (he remains
the funniest part of the show) and add new, fresh characters. It's an
office. There's turnover. Or, at least, there should be."
- The Show Needs a Plot Shakeup, writes Dan Hopper at Best Week Ever: "I would
be intrigued to see where the plot would go without Michael Scott, and
to see the plot leading up to him leaving. I've been calling for a major
Office plot shakeup for a while (any time something major
happens, it dissipates back to normal within a few episodes), and this
would give the writers and producers that chance."
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