The news of The Office’s impending sort-of-reboot and its countless losses, both behind the scenes and in front, have left me incredibly wary of anything and everything that comes out about the show’s ninth season. The latest change coming to Season 9 is the potential addition of funnyman Clark Duke, known for his work on Greek and Sex Drive. This is exactly the type of casting decision that I’m doing my best to tiptoe around and not judge too quickly before I see it in action. Duke is wonderful comedic actor, and in all likelihood he could fit in quite well in the world of The Office.
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It all comes down to how he is implemented, what kind of character the writers create for him, and just how Duke interprets that character. At one point, every character on The Office was superbly constructed and believable, but over the years they have become caricatures of their former selves. Even the newer characters introduced have had less depth to them. They would need to know exactly what kind of person Duke will be playing, especially if he is going to be a series regular as TVLine reported, so they can avoid having another Gabe or Erin. That’s the last thing we need.
Of course, all of this will amount to nothing if Duke doesn’t take the part. He’s still negotiating a deal, though it’s rare for a deal not to be struck once the process is started. It stands to reason Duke would be replacing Mindy Kaling, who has left to pursue her own show, though Paul Lieberstein has also left. Rainn Wilson could potentially be exiting the show to man an Office spinoff, and B.J. Novak won’t be appearing as a regular anymore. It could turn out Duke will be a welcome presence of the once great Office, but it’s hard to imagine anything could help pull this plane from its nosedive.