The writers easily reversed food after the an adverse reaction to the "Brian the eight guy" storyline.




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Truly one of the many iconic relationships in TV background is Jim and Pam native The Office, but an alternative plan because that the show’s final season would have actually seen the pair completely separation up.


pan of The Office delighted when John Krasinski’s Jim and Jenna Fischer’s Pam finally got together in Season 3 after 3 years the flirting and also longing native afar, and also as the present progressed points were pretty lot peachy because that this #relationshipgoals couple all the time. Until Season 9, the is.

Quite probably the most stressful season in The Office’s history, the ninth and final season saw Jim and Pam’s connection strained in a really far-ranging way together Jim take it a project in Philly and Pam struggled to take care of their youngsters alone. In one of the many unforgettable moments in TV history, a particularly testy call call between the 2 ends v Pam in tears, v Fischer’s character turning to someone turn off camera named “Brian” for advice. And also thus The Office finally damaged the fourth wall.


the-office-season-9-brian image via NBC
Indeed, the Brian storyline was insanely divisive. The idea to be to present the camera crew for the an initial time in the show’s final season, yet an included twist below was that Brian (played through Chris Diamantopoulos) was actually secretly in love v Pam, and their connection threatened to drive a wedge even further in between Jim and Pam.


and also if you think you hate the Brian storyline now, just wait till you hear about how the present was supposed to actually separation Jim and also Pam up entirely, only for the two to reconcile during the series finale.

as recounted in Andy Greene’s new book The Office: The Untold Story the the biggest Sitcom the the 2000s, the idea of shaking increase Jim and Pam’s partnership came from creator Greg Daniels, who resumed his function as showrunner in Season 9 for the an initial time due to the fact that Season 5, as soon as he stopped working full time on The Office to co-create Parks and also Recreation with fellow Office writer Michael Schur. Daniels sat down through all the gibbs before beginning Season 9 to comment on where their personalities would go, and Krasinski lobbied to placed Jim and also Pam’s connection on shaky ground. Krasinski said:


“My whole pitch to Greg was the we’ve done so much with Jim and Pam, and also now, after ~ marriage and also kids, there to be a bit of a lull there, i think, for them around what they wanted to do… for me that was, ‘Can you have actually this perfect connection go v a split and keep that the same?’ which of food you can’t. And also I claimed to Greg, ‘It would be really interesting to see just how that separation will affect two world that you understand so well.’”


the-office-dinner-party photo via NBC
Writer Brent Forrester reveals the they set out to actually have Jim and Pam break up in the center of the season, v the idea being that in the collection finale’s reunion episode, they would certainly rekindle their relationship:

“Greg really wanted to execute something incredibly risky and high-stakes, which was the documentary airs and we see what effect it has had actually on these characters. And there to be going to be a reunion episode whereby you see that Jim and also Pam have separation up through this time, and they will have their reunion in the reunion episode.”

Warren Lieberstein, who was a writer top top the series, remembers the this idea “wasn’t universally loved” in the authors room but Greg had actually the final say, for this reason they began enacting this plan. A arrangement that Daniels said had been in the offing because Season 5:


was something that come up in season five, ns think. It to be a pitch. Ns think Mindy <Kaling> was the first or among the an initial champions of it. The idea to be to present some romantic triangle with Jim once they to be such soul mates the you had actually to say, ‘How might she probably be interested in someone else?’ you think come yourself, ‘Well, ns wouldn’t believe it if I just was introduced to the character.’ You had to check out it happening from scratch. What if the character had been secretly there the whole time and also predated the partnership with Jim and also had to be a shoulder that she cry on because that years?’ It just seemed an extremely intriguing. But we likewise were like, ‘If we break the fourth wall surface in season five, it feels favor that can be the last season for the show.’ So us kept placing that off.”


the-office-brian image via NBC
Writer Owen Ellickson states there was also some talk of Pam and also Brian “maybe hooking increase a little bit,” yet Daniels says he never ever intended for their relationship to gain that far:


“Ultimately, ns didn’t think that was around actually walk there. They never ever did anything. It was just to introduce concern in the audience, which ns think happened. I median there are human being who in season eight to be like, ‘They’re for this reason boring. They simply hang the end together and there’s no angst. We supplied to love the angst v their relationship.’”

yet fan an answer to the Brian twist was extreme to to speak the least, and also the plotline no play out the way the writers and producers were hoping. Together a result, they had actually to rework the whole storyline in the middle of the season. Forester recalls just how Krasinski concerned him and also implored that to get Jim and also Pam ago together ASAP:

“We had to pull the ripcord ~ above it because it to be so painful come the pan of the show. Man Krasinski said to me, ‘Brent, this last season is for the ultra fans of the show. They’re the only ones yes, really still left watching, right? This is because that them. Jim and Pam separating up is as well painful because that them to sustain every the method to the reunion. We have to get them back together immediately.’ i was like, ‘Wow, we can’t enable this beautiful couple to be really like on the verge the divorce. It’s too dreadful for them.”


the-office-jim-pam-season-9 image via NBC
Ellickson reveals the they reversed-course therefore quickly, they had to re-edit episodes that had already been shot to nix the idea the Jim and Pam dividing up completely:


“The episode that yes, really spun human being on a dime is one that I created <“Vandalism”> wherein Brian the boom man heroically conserves Pam from an strike from a warehouse guy. People just absolutely go not like that. They to be bothered that there might be part triangle the Pam and also Jim would certainly be associated in and also even much more insulted that we assumed they might think that. That’s how it felt come me. Greg absolutely rotate on a dime after that and also we pivoted away, i think pretty skillfully provided how quickly we had to execute that. It affiliated decently size edits to the next two episodes, if ns recall.”

and also pivot castle did. Jim and Pam do end up together, with that iconic keep in mind from Season 2 make an emotionally return, however if you felt significant anxiety the the two can not make it, the was a remnant from a cancelled storyline. And also I think they make the right contact here—some strife in the connection did make things interesting, yet bringing Brian in as a third wheel was a bridge as well far.




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For more on The Office be certain to pick up Greene’s book, which additionally reveals the real reason why Steve Carell left the show.


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