B.J. Novak TV Guide blog: Sexual Harassment

From B.J. Novak’s TV Guide blog, dated September 27, 2005:

The Boss Man and “Packman”
by B.J. Novak aka “Ryan”

Previously, on B.J. Novak’s blog…

— “Have you ever seen that show The Office on NBC? The place where I work is just like that.”
— “I work on the NBC show The Office. I play Ryan the temp, and I’m also one of nine writers who come up with ideas for the show and then take turns turning them into scripts.”
— “Like many people who work in offices, I am going to start keeping a blog — in my case, for TVGuide.com.”
— “Don’t open the hatch!”

This week’s episode of The Office is entitled “Sexual Harassment.” First, let me say that I like it when things have very straightforward titles, so that the audience knows exactly what they’re going to get. The 40 Year Old Virgin was about a 40-year-old virgin; Wedding Crashers was about wedding crashers; The Constant Gardener was excruciatingly boring.

This our first episode in which viewer discretion is advised. So if you view this show, please be discreet about it. I imagine TV-MA ratings are pretty rare for network comedies. But it’s good for NBC — the more comedies reflect the way people actually talk, the more refreshing they are, in my opinion. I’m glad they’re airing it.

Another “first” of this episode is that we meet a new character who is very entertaining in his own right: Todd Packer. “Packman” is the larger-than-life friend/idol/bully of the boss, Michael Scott. Todd Packer is a bad influence on Michael who sweeps into the office and unleashes a torrent of inappropriate behavior and language.

To cast the part, we needed to find a comic actor who could really go head-to-head with Steve Carell. Our first choice was David Koechner, a great comic actor who was also one of the stars of Anchorman. We had to delay production of the episode so that he could carve out time in his schedule, but there are few people who are talented enough to make Steve Carell break up on set, and we figured it was worth it.

I feel like this blog isn’t that funny. I hope the episode tonight makes up for that. In the future, I will try to divide my mental energy so that the balance is more 50-50.

Until next week…

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