The Office may occupy some of our hearts forever, but admittedly, some of its humor doesn’t age particularly well. Now that the series is streaming on Netflix, creating a resurgence of love for it after five years off the air, there have been rumors of a possible reboot floating around — but series star Steve Carell, who played the problematic character Michael Scott, doesn’t think that’s a good idea.
In an interview with Esquire, Carell said that, first and foremost, he doesn’t think rebooting The Office is a good idea. Beyond that, “[I]t might be impossible to do that show today and have people accept it the way it was accepted ten years ago. The climate’s different,” he said.
Carell continued, “I mean, the whole idea of that character, Michael Scott, so much of it was predicated on inappropriate behavior. I mean, he’s certainly not a model boss. A lot of what is depicted on that show is completely wrong-minded. That’s the point, you know? But I just don’t know how that would fly now.”
He acknowledged that in the current climate, “inappropriate behavior” doesn’t get the same laughs it once did, which a character like Michael Scott relies on to keep the content flowing. “There’s a very high awareness of offensive things today — which is good, for sure,” Carell said. “But at the same time, when you take a character like that too literally, it doesn’t really work.”
Rumors of a possible reboot have been swirling since at least 2017, with many members of the cast, including John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer, saying they’d be open to the idea. Carell just isn’t that into it. “I’ve never thought of it as a good idea,” Carell told Time magazine. “I think it existed in that time and with those people and it felt right. There was something so special about it, and I guess it’s an odd way to put it, but I love it too much to ever want to do it again. It’s too special to me in my heart in that period of time.”
So, if an Office reboot does make its way past headlines and into the writing room anytime soon, Michael Scott won’t be making a return. In a post-#MeToo era, that might be for the best.