NBC is bringing back "The Office" for a ninth season, and it looks like it will consist of 22 episodes. This news ends a lot of speculation over the future of the show. There was talk of a major cast upheaval, as well as talk of a shortened season. Instead, "The Office" will be returning for a full season, and it might not be the last. Fans are no doubt happy that the show is returning, but is a full season the right call? Here are a few reasons why it was indeed.
It gives the writers more flexibility.
The contract situations with stars like Ed Helms and John Krasinski are still somewhat unsettled. There is a real chance that they will not agree to appear in every episode. With that in mind, having a full order allows the writers to spread their absences out more. If there are one or two episodes without Jim or Andy, it might not feel as big over the course of 22 episodes as it would have felt over a shorter season.
The show can go out on its own terms.
There is nothing official about the ninth season being the last for "The Office," but many assume it will be. If that is the case, a full season means that the show can go out on its own terms. The writers can plan out a fitting end for the show and build toward it for the entire season. Without the fear of cancellation or the prospect of a limited season, everything is in their hands. There is no reason to think that the show can't end on a strong note.
It gives them flexibility for the future
There has been a lot of talk about new actors joining the cast. There has also been speculation about Dwight leaving for a new comedy in the middle of the season. All of these things are still possible, so fans can't ignore them. However, the writers will now have enough time to adjust for those changes without ignoring the original cast. If they want to groom new characters for the future, they can do that without shortchanging the characters we have grown to love over the years. If Dwight does get that new show, the writers will have more time to prepare for his fitting departure from the show. No one knows what the future will hold for this show, but at least there will be time to prepare.