Scranton, Pennsylvania and the offices of Dunder-Mifflin are about to get a lot less cool. EW has word that James Spader, who has been playing the perplexing and intimidating Robert California, will be leaving The Office after becoming a series regular for just one season. Spader himself decided to leave the show, and I can’t say that I blame him. This season has been wholly unremarkable despite Spader’s best efforts and mostly entertaining appearances, but the NBC comedy series just doesn’t have the heart or comedy that Steve Carell brought every week. Of course, even in the later seasons with Carell still on board, the show was beginning to lose its flare. More after the jump.
Executive producer Paul Lieberstein, or Toby as fans will know him, says, “James came to The Office to play a role that was two scenes long in the season 7 finale. He instantly brought so much life and intrigue to the part that those two scenes became a season. James always wanted this to be a one year arc, and he now leaves us having created one of the most enigmatic and dynamic characters in television. He’s been a great friend to me and the show, helping us successfully transition into the post-Michael Scott years, and I’m grateful for that. I’m already looking for ways to work with him again.”
Honestly, it’s about time for The Office to go out of business. If House M.D. knows it’s time to call it quits after losing an integral series regular in Lisa Edelstein and only one season without her, maybe the writers and NBC need to start thinking about closing down Dunder-Mifflin. After all, the series seems to be suffering the same pains as the paper industry with other comedies like Parks & Recreation, Community and Modern Family seemingly bringing the laughs much harder and better.