Charles Gramlich has graciously interviewed me on his blog Razored Zen.
A year or two ago, BIG BANG THEORY took a gamble in introducing two new females to the largely male cast. The gamble paid off. The women enriched the show, humanizing the scientists, adding a little sexuality (okay, very little), but broadening its appeal. Girls' night out can challenge the men in its biting humor.
The show was not forced to do this in the way THE OFFICE has been asked to make changes due to the departure of Steve Carrell. It was a well-conceived choice.
THE OFFICE, on the other hand, perhaps fearful of introducing a new Michael Scott, elevated a minor play to his position. Unfortunately Ed Helms (Andy) is one of the show's most one-dimensional characters, and the series has hit the skids (IMHO).
Even the sporadic addition of James Spader as CEO has been too tepid to elicit much interest. Andy is the world's most boring boss and charater, and I assumed he would only be in that position for a few episodes but alas he's still there and I can barely bring myself to tune in.
Perhaps none of the supporting players have the moxie to steer this ship. But why not the addition of some brassy, man-hating woman, or OCD- sexual predator male to add some spice? Have the writers tired of the show? I can't think of an episode this year to rival any from previous years. Are they throwing up their hands?
What shows have been successful in replacing a lead character? Which ones have not? Has any show ever improved with a new face in a primary role?
What additions or changes destroyed the dynamics of a TV show?