‘The Office’: Greg Daniels Explained Why the Writers Created ‘Anxiety’ About Jim and Pam in Season 9
The Office fans couldn’t get enough of Jim and Pam’s love story but many agreed that their relationship started to get stale near the end. In order to spice things up in season 9, the writers introduced worry about the couple being on shaky ground. Creator Greg Daniels shared why it was important to introduce that anxiety, even though there was never a plan to break Jim and Pam up.
Jim and Pam faced some trouble in season 9
Fans had watched Jim and Pam’s early chemistry eventually blossom into a romance when they finally got their timing right. They were flirty co-workers at first but when Jim expressed his feelings for Pam, she rejected him because she was engaged to Roy. He left Scranton for the Stamford branch and started dating his co-worker Karen.
Eventually, things lined up for them, they dated, got engaged, married, and had kids. But in the final season of the series, they also hit a rocky patch.
The writers created some extra Jim and Pam drama
While the couple was on solid ground in their relationship, the show’s creator and executive producer, Greg Daniels, explained in a 2013 interview with Fast Company why the possibility of a love triangle came into play.
“There are people who in season eight were like, ‘They’re so boring. They just hang out together and there’s no angst. We used to love the angst with their relationship,’” Daniels said.
Jim then worked part-time in Philadelphia, leaving Pam to take care of the kids and the couple faced some tension in their relationship. After getting into a fight on the phone, Pam broke down crying and the documentary crew boom operator comforted her.
“What if that character had been secretly there the entire time and predated the relationship with Jim and had been a shoulder that she cried on for years?,” Daniels explained.
Ultimately, the Pam and the boom guy story didn’t go anywhere, as Daniels explained, “It was just to introduce worry in the audience, which I think happened.”
Jim and Pam were always going to have a happy ending
During an interview with Collider, while Daniels chatted about The Office moving to the Peacock streaming service, he shed a little more light on why things developed the way they did for Jim and Pam in the final season.
“The plan was never to split them up,” he shared. “The plan was just to introduce a little worry into the audience so that they’d stand up and pay attention and that there would be a little feeling of like the Act 2 break in a movie.”
He added, “But no there was never gonna be a split-up for them. There was always a happy ending planned.”
Daniels acknowledged, “It was not a happy thing for people, but I feel like the ending of the series was good and maybe it wouldn’t have been so satisfying if there hadn’t have been a little bit of anxiety beforehand.”