Over its nine-season run, “The Office,” a workplace comedy about the employees of a Pennsylvania office supply company, transformed the landscape of sitcoms — and television at large. An adaption for American television of a British sitcom by the same title, it popularized the now-commonplace “mockumentary” format, heralding shows like “Parks and Recreation,” or the more recent “What We Do in the Shadows.” It’s hard to find a comedy show these days which doesn’t owe some measure of stylistic debt to “The Office.”
Greatness, as the saying goes, inspires greatness, and that’s true of “The Office” according to one of its stars and writers, B.J. Novak. With a list of credits that spans the gamut from oddball comedy to gritty action dramas, Novak has a unique perspective on the duality of performance. So when he finally dished out on what he considers to be the biggest influence on the office, it’s no surprise that his choice is not what you’d expect.