Gabe Lewis

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Gabe Lewis
The Office character
Gabe profile picture.jpg
Zach Woods as Gabe Lewis
First appearance "Sabre"
Last appearance "Moving On"
Created by Jennifer Celotta
Portrayed by Zach Woods
Information
Nickname(s) "Gabewad"
"Crazy stalker psycho"
"Freak"
"Skeleton man"
"The Bird Man"
Occupation Coordinating Director of Emerging Regions for Dunder Mifflin/Sabre (former)
Management Consultant (former)
A token Caucasian at an unnamed Chinese corporation
Family Unnamed stepfather
Significant other(s) Erin Hannon (ex-girlfriend)
Religion Atheist [1]

Gabriel Susan "Gabe" Lewis (born in 1982[2]) is a fictional character on the U.S. comedy television series The Office portrayed by Zach Woods. He is an original character and has no counterpart in the British version of the series.

He first appears in the sixth season, where he is the Coordinating Director of Emerging Regions for the Sabre Corporate headquarters in Florida.[3] Towards the end of Season 6, he is assigned to overlook the recently acquired Dunder Mifflin Scranton branch (the most profitable of all the branches). At the end of the seventh season, CEO Jo Bennett decides to reassign him back to Florida, due to his personal issues within the office, over his breakup with receptionist Erin Hannon.[4] However, in the eighth season, Gabe is back in the Scranton office without any on-screen explanation.[5] A deleted scene in the Season 8 premiere had Gabe outlining that Corporate made a bafflingly illogical deal with the Scranton office, which would have Gabe be in Tallahassee three days a week and in Scranton for two, resulting in having to fly every night of the work week between the locations; in the episode "Trivia", Gabe repeats this information in a scene that was included in the NBC broadcast.[6] As revealed in "Moving On", he was terminated from Sabre following the company's liquidation, but is hired back at the Scranton branch as the new Management Consultant by Regional Manager Andy Bernard in a gambit to make Erin uncomfortable after she broke up with him in order to be with customer service representative Pete Miller.[7]

Overview[edit]

Gabe Lewis is the Coordinating Director of Emerging Regions for Sabre, initially acting as a liaison between Corporate and the Scranton branch. A quietly insecure person, he was often resigned to being forced to work inhuman hours and have no social life as a consequence of former Sabre CEO Jo Bennett's unpredictable management style. Throughout his appearances, it is clear that he suffers from a rocky relationship with his co-workers. During his first year and a half at the Scranton branch, his attempts to be respected by the rest of the office workers ended in awkward failure, as he does not have any power to control the branch as some of the previous higher-ups did (such as Jan Levenson and David Wallace). And while the staff, at first, simply seemed to pay him no attention, he soon became little more than a joke to them, many times being insulted or mocked despite his corporate status. His former workspace was a desk in the Annex, next to HR Toby Flenderson, facing the Break Room; in his comeback episode, he was shown setting up a diminutive desk by reception, though this is shown to have been removed in subsequent episodes.

The producer's cut of "Search Committee" on the seventh season DVD details how Gabe came to work at Sabre; after Jo purchased Dunder Mifflin, she was in need of a "ghost", i.e. someone to "flitter around, spooking people, keeping them on their toes, and then disappear". A friend of hers then told her about a man she knew who resembled one, and went to business school, to boot, thus beginning his two and a half year tenure at the company.[8]

Biography[edit]

Gabe was born in 1982, presumably somewhere in the state of Florida. According to Erin, he was the "Longest baby in the hospital".[2] He may have been born on May 10, as he made an attempt to celebrate his birthday on an episode that fell on that date.[9] In "Turf War", he describes himself as an "180 pound man with no fat".[10] He is a self-proclaimed atheist, as he does not believe in Christmas or God.[11] During his senior year of college, he studied in Japan, which he describes as the "Best year of [his] life".[2] He has mentioned having a stepfather, who seems to be somewhat verbally abusive towards him (as Gabe comments that he tells him that his voice "Sounds like Truman Capote but gayer").[12]

Gabe has been shown to have a number of affinities with morbid subjects. He has a fascination with horror movies, owning over 200 of them,[13] and is a fan of the growing "Cinema of the unsettling" film movement, which features unpleasant footage edited together without any storyline (because "even narrative is comforting"), in hopes of disturbing audiences.[14] In "Jury Duty", he tells the camera crew that he loves maternity wards, because, in his opinion, they are "the perfect blend of love and horror" because "things can go so wrong, or so right".[14]

As revealed in "Gettysburg", young children have the tendency to mistake him for former President Abraham Lincoln, which makes it difficult for him to attend places such as museums, historical monuments and elementary schools.[15]

He is disgusted by cockroaches, as seen when he once ran off looking nauseous after Dwight placed a gigantic roach billboard over the windows of the office.[16] He is able to play the keyboard, and enjoys playing soundscapes.[2] He is a fan of Korean soap operas, and also indicates that he has an Asian fetish, as he states that the soap operas would be upsetting if the viewer does not have one.[10] In a deleted scene from "Christening", it is revealed that he sponsors children in poverty stricken countries.[17] In "PDA", he admits that he has used ecstasy.[18] It seems that he does not follow basketball, as he once incorrectly referred to Michael Jordan as "Magic Jordan".[19] He has also admitted that he has a fear of air travel, which he must endure due to his obligation to fly back and forth from the Dunder Mifflin office building in Scranton to Sabre headquarters in Florida during week days.[6] Except for Erin, whom he dated for the majority of season seven, he has never had a romantic relationship with anyone else; he was bound to Jo's erratic and demanding schedule until Robert California took over as CEO. In "St. Patrick's Day", it is revealed that he "has to" go to Amsterdam seven times a year, presumably for the legalized prostitution.[20] Gabe is also firmly against the saying "Bros Before Hoes", stating that he would "throw any brother under the bus for any whore".[21]

Relationships[edit]

Jo Bennett[edit]

While she was CEO of Sabre, Jo treated Gabe in an undignified and demanding manner, sometimes tasking him to carry her items or walk her dogs. Her intimidation of Gabe and his reverence for her meant he did not object to such duties.

Erin Hannon[edit]

During Gabe's debut season, he and Erin were shown to have little to no interaction. However, the seventh season premiere reveals that he asked her out during the summer, and she said yes. In a talking-head interview, she confesses that she only accepted his offer because he is her boss, but she actually had a wonderful time with him, and the two continue to date.[22] While their relationship is presented as mild and uninteresting, Erin appears to be content with it. However, in "Michael's Last Dundies", it is revealed that she has now grown jaded of him and has begun to resent his company. After some advice from Pam, Erin decides to tell Gabe about how she truly feels. She then publicly breaks up with him and unintentionally insults him with her brutal honesty. She says that she no longer finds him attractive and "cringes when [he] talks", leaving him humiliated and hurt.[23] In the next episode, Gabe is still upset over their breakup and later attempts to convince Erin to come back to him to no avail.[13] He attempts to win her back once again, in "Dwight K. Schrute, (Acting) Manager", by delivering a passionate speech to her about how he believes in their love. While Erin appears flattered, she tells the camera crew that she is "taking a break from dating", stating that Gabe "was a great guy with so many wonderful qualities, but it was a challenge being touched by him".[11] After this episode, Gabe made no more attempts to revive their relationship, and while he still blamed Andy for its demise, it appeared that he was finally over her. This is later proven not to be the case when he returns to the office in the season 9's "Moving On". He is shown to be just as, if not even more obsessed with Erin. The episode also provides the audience with some more insight into how dysfunctional and one-sided his relationship with her was; among other things, she would refuse to tell him that she loved him or even allow him to say it to her, plugging her ears whenever he tried.

Andy Bernard[edit]

While initially having a neutral relationship with former Salesman Andy Bernard, after Gabe began dating Erin in "Nepotism", Andy developed a vehement dislike of him.[22] In "Sex Ed", after Gabe realizes that Andy still has feelings for Erin, he tells him point blank that he had asked for his permission before pursuing her and that he needs to accept the situation and move on.[24] In "Goodbye, Michael", as a reaction to getting dumped in the previous episode, Gabe starts to harass Andy and threatens him not to make any sexual advances on Erin.[13] In "Dwight K. Schrute, (Acting) Manager", desperate to win her back, he privately begs Andy not to pursue her, to which he agrees simply out of pity. Throughout the episode, Gabe is anxious about Andy and Erin's friendliness with each other. After witnessing the two share a joke, he attempts to manipulate Erin by telling her about Andy's previous promise and make it appear that he is not interested in her. However, Andy then turns the tables on Gabe, telling Erin about her ex-boyfriend’s earlier crying and begging.[11] In "Search Committee", Gabe claims that his personal and professional relationship with Andy does not overlap, but he soon proves this to be false. He displays a biased opinion of Andy during his interview for the Regional Manager position, intentionally sabotaging him, and later fails to convince Jo not to choose Andy for the position.[4] Beginning in the eighth season, the two acted like rivals, with barbs flying between the two on a regular basis. When Gabe returns half a season later in "Moving On", he shows no malice towards Andy. This is possibly because he is grateful for the work and/or unaware that he's being used to discomfort Erin rather than being given the chance to reunite with her.

Michael Scott[edit]

Much like Toby, Gabe was abhorred by former branch Manager Michael Scott, and was a frequent target for his insults—most of which were about his physical appearance, as Michael considered Gabe to be immensely unattractive. On Gabe's first day at the office, Michael seemed to be impressed with him and had hoped that they would get along. But when Gabe announced the changes that Sabre would be making to Dunder Mifflin, his opinion of him spiraled downward.[3] He admitted during a private conversation with Erin in "Viewing Party" that he considered Gabe to be nothing more than a "weird little skeevy guy with no waist".[2] Most of Michael's skewed judgments stemmed from a disagreement in their professional life, much like with Toby. Despite all this, during Michael's final conversation with him, it appears that he may have held at least some vague affection for him.[13]

Pete Miller[edit]

While the two had only minimal interaction, Gabe was shown to treat Erin's new boyfriend in a very similar fashion as he did to Andy post-breakup. Unlike Andy, however, Pete appears to only be mildly irked by Gabe. At one point, when Gabe mentions that he lacks the lung capacity to blow a whistle, Pete even appears to pity him.[7]

Other co-workers[edit]

Gabe has a strained relationship with Salesman Dwight Schrute, who displays a very flippant attitude toward him and gradually takes Gabe's job title less seriously. He also has an unequal relationship with both Jim and Pam Halpert, as the couple would often poke fun at him, prank him, or manipulate him to achieve their own ends.[25][26][27] However, in "Search Committee", Jim expresses excitement over spending more time with the members of the eponymous bureau, Gabe being one of them, and when Gabe later informs the staff of his reassignment to Sabre headquarters, Pam is one of the few who bids him a sincere farewell.[4] This, however, did not stop the two from occasionally messing with him.[10] In "Costume Contest", it appeared that he and Kevin had developed a rapport, but after seeing the two shoot the breeze, Michael erroneously believes that Kevin is going over his head to Gabe as Darryl had previously done. Michael launches into a tirade against the accountant, leaving Kevin in tears before he then becomes livid with Gabe, crying "Fuck you!" as he storms out of the annex.[28] Similarly, Gabe's relationship with Kelly was relatively good before turning sour. He submitted her into the Sabre minority management training program,[29] but dismisses her as not being a serious candidate for the Regional Manager position in the seventh season finale. Kelly vengefully informs Jo of his recently erratic behavior which leads Jo to reassign him back to Sabre headquarters.[4] Gabe developed a competitive relationship with co-worker Ryan Howard, and competed with to make a good impression on Robert California in the episodes "Garden Party" and "Pool Party".[30][31]

Despite these negative interactions, it appeared that Gabe made some friendships within the office over time. In the episode "Doomsday", he and Toby seem to have bonded, possibly because they work in such close proximity to one another in the annex.[32] In The Podcast webisode, "The Debut", Gabe fails in his attempt to create a podcast for the Sabre website, and Oscar kindly offers him the chance to interview him for it. He goes on to offer him the job of proofreading his blog.[12]

Season 6[edit]

Gabe is first introduced in "Sabre", representing Jo and the company. He is greeted by the Dunder Mifflin employees with a standing ovation and a song sung by Andy and Erin. Shortly after arriving, he organizes a conference meeting, where he shows a video of Florida-based printer sales company Sabre, starring Christian Slater, and then shares some of the company's new policies, including the use of metallic drink containers, fewer vacation weeks, and site blocking of time-wasting sites like YouTube and Twitter, which is met with poor reception by the staff.[3]

In "St. Patrick's Day", he can be seen constantly walking Jo's dogs around the office and carrying her handbags. When Jo offers Darryl a workspace in the office, Gabe informs her that the workspace she offered the warehouse worker is the one he is working in, but, intimidated of her, awkwardly adds in seconds later that it is alright and that he will immediately clean it out. In a deleted scene, he also has the unpleasant job of trying to keep Michael from disturbing Jo while she is working in the Conference Room.[33] Later, Michael asks him how long they are expected to work for, and Gabe tells him that the hours vary with Jo. It is revealed that he has never dated or done anything he has wanted to because Jo expects him to work the long hours that she does.[20]

In "New Leads", Gabe arranges for Michael to hand out expensively-procured leads to the sales staff as part of Sabre's new "Sales is King' policy". He is not sympathetic to Michael's legitimate complaint that the policy is making the salespeople act arrogant and disrespectful to the other staff, but he also cannot stop Michael from deliberately hiding the leads from the sales staff until they change their attitudes.[34]

In "Secretary's Day", when Oscar circulates a video he made which compares Kevin's voice to Cookie Monster's, Kevin complains to Gabe about the video. In an effort to assert his fledgling and weak authority, Gabe bans the office from talking about the video and about Cookie Monster. However, this doesn't stop Pam and Jim from privately mocking Kevin at the party, while he is at Erin's desk. In retaliation, Gabe suspends Pam without pay for contradicting his orders, then Jim for defending her, and then Dwight for applauding Gabe's prior punishments. Gabe later calls corporate and discovers he lacks the power to suspend workers or even reprimand them. He returns to the office in a crafty attempt to make everyone forget about the incident, but Toby tips off Pam to the mistake. Pam and Jim team up and reverse the situation, getting a 'two day paid vacation', while Dwight apologizes and kisses Gabe's hand instead. After Jim and Pam leave, Gabe decides to save face and mock Kevin as well, but does a poor impression. Kevin finally retaliates by doing an impression of Gabe, and the rest of the office joins his mockery.[25]

In "Body Language", he submits Kelly to the Sabre minority management training program, "Print in All Colors". He is pleased that he is submitting an ethnic Indian into the program, because "the program is too black" (though he quickly regrets this characterization).[29] In a deleted scene, Dwight, attempting to bolster Kelly's chances for the executive training program, challenges Gabe to name an Indian CEO. He names several, including Indra Nooyi. Dwight then challenges him to name one female Indian CEO. Gabe points out that Indra Nooyi is a woman. Dwight then asks him to name a female Indian CEO of a paper company, after which he will cease pestering him. Gabe names one, but Dwight then challenges him to name two.[35]

In "The Cover-Up", Andy reports to him about one of his customers complaining about a Sabre printer catching on fire during a routine operation. While Gabe does not seem to take the complaint seriously, he does talk to corporate about it. He later tells Andy that there have been 12 reports of faulty printers, but out of 400,000. He informs him corporate investigated the issue, and every time it was a user error. He then thanks Andy for bringing it to Sabre's attention, and rewards him with a $5 gift card for Dunkin' Donuts.[36]

In "The Chump", Gabe catches sleep deprivation-suffering Jim and Pam snoozing at their desks, and privately addresses the issue with them. He then segues the conversation into advice on how one should handle the rumors of the printers' pyromania penchant, but both nearly fall victim to their lassitude and as such are unable to provide a substantial response.[37]

In "Whistleblower", Gabe, along with Jo, interviews everyone in the office to find the potential person who leaked to the press that Sabre's printers catch on fire.[38]

Season 7[edit]

In "Nepotism", we learn that Gabe asked Erin out during the summer. In a talking-head interview, she admits that she only accepted his offer because he is her boss, but she had a surprisingly wonderful time and the two have continued to see each other, much to the frustration of Andy.[22]

In "Counseling", Gabe figures out that Pam's claim of being the Office Administrator, and request for a $41,500/yr. salary based on her having had this position pre-Sabre, is fraudulent. However, when Pam challenges him to say what he thinks, he freezes and she is able to officially obtain her "former position".[26]

In a deleted scene from "Andy's Play", he boasts to the camera crew about his previous acting experiences, recalling how, in his elementary days, he was continually cast as Ichabod Crane (presumably because of his asthenic build) in his school's numerous productions of Sleepy Hollow (a role he also portrayed in College), as well as once portraying Abraham Lincoln in the eleventh grade.[39]

In "Sex Ed", Gabe becomes irritated because Andy's titular work meeting is a thinly veiled attempt to learn whether Erin is having sex or not (the answer is "yes"). He bluntly tells Andy that he asked for Andy's permission before pursuing Erin (Andy sputters that he only gave it because Gabe asked him very politely), and says that Andy needs to accept the situation and move on.[24]

In "Costume Contest", he dresses up as Lady Gaga, and is also harassed by Todd Packer (who questions him if any of the staff have started calling him "Gabewad", a play on the playground insult 'gay wad' meaning homosexual). Gabe reveals that he gave the green-light for Darryl's idea about having the warehouse workers make on-site sales after Michael rejected it, and, while Michael and Darryl start a mediation he's leading by fighting with each other, they eventually agree to simply bypass Gabe when needed and talk directly, and jointly, to Jo.[28]

In "Christening", he attends the christening of Pam and Jim's baby, Cecelia. He is also among the employees that try to talk Michael out of getting on the bus that is headed to Mexico, to help build a school for underprivileged children.[40]

In "Viewing Party", he and Erin host a Glee viewing party at his apartment. Throughout the episode, he is the subject of hatred by Michael, due to the fact that the office staff refer to him as their boss. Several items of Asian origin, that increase sexual potency, can be seen in his bedroom. Later, after Andy uses a medically unsafe amount of Gabe's Japanese enhancement products, out of pain over losing Erin, he helps Andy cope with his nausea through ambient keyboard music, which Andy describes as "Beautiful".[2]

In "WUPHF.com", Gabe is not sympathetic when Jim complains about a sudden "commissions cap" policy that ensures Jim's earning power for the remainder of 2010 is at zero, first asking Jim if he's in his job for the money, then saying Jim should ignore the policy, just as he ignores the elderly, nude men at his gym; Jim responds by setting up a prank where Gabe is forced to listen to Jo's autobiography.[27]

In "Classy Christmas", he and Kelly pass out Christmas gifts from Sabre. When the staff shows disdain that they received Hello Kitty laptop sleeves, he asks Kelly why the gifts were not fleece blankets, which he thought they had agreed on. He then mentions that he and Erin made great use of theirs. In a talking-head interview, he confirms that he and Erin are still dating, before questioning the Documentary film crew why they ask him that so often.[41]

In "Ultimatum", he is in the Conference Room and tries to "intercept" the Sabre frisbee Pam throws to Erin, only to clumsily knock it to the floor.[42]

In "The Seminar", Gabe and Erin play Scrabble, via texting. Erin proves to not be very skilled, and the winner of their Scrabble games picks the movie the two watch, together. Since Gabe has already subjected her to numerous horror movies, such as The Shining, Rosemary's Baby and The Ring, Erin desperately needs to win. With help from Oscar and Pam, she almost beats Gabe, but loses on the last turn, because she does not realize Oscar is trying to feed her a winning word ("apoplexy"), instead putting in the word "ape". At the end of the day, Gabe tells her that since she wanted to watch WALL-E, he will "compromise", by putting on Hardware, as it too includes a robot in the plot.[43]

In "The Search", when Pam notices that her drawing of a Sabre printer, stuck on the Kitchen refrigerator, has humorous captions written on it that insult Sabre, she convinces her co-workers to participate in a caption contest, involving her cartoon of two dogs stranded on a desert island. Gabe, however, finds the captions offensive, and implements a list of rules: they can not insult Sabre, they can not use pop culture references (since they "tend to alienate those who don't get the reference"), and, they must use new Sabre "sticky quips". The office instead decides to use an instant messenger to share quips. Gabe catches them and prints out the list of quips and reads them to the office, which start off insulting Sabre, before they attack him personally. The staff finds the jokes that insult him the most amusing, especially one by an anonymous line, where one of the dogs decides to urinate on Gabe. A talking-head interview reveals the surprising identity of this joke's author: Angela.[44]

In "PDA", Gabe creates a romantic treasure hunt for Erin. Erin urges Andy to accompany her, despite the fact they are both seeing other people. Andy is at first reluctant, but soon relents. The hunt starts with a puzzle picture, which leads to Gabe's stereo in Darryl's office, which leads to glow in the dark stars in Ryan's closet, leading to sparkling cider with Hank Tate, the security guard, and finally to a Valentine's cookie in the Break Room. When the cookie tells her to enjoy her Valentine's kiss, Erin erroneously thinks she is supposed to kiss Andy. Andy points out Gabe blowing a kiss through the window, and awkwardly leaves.[18]

In "Todd Packer", Erin and Gabe arrive at the office late. Erin apologizes, saying Gabe slipped, and subsequently got stuck in the shower. He attempts to laugh it off, claiming that he is "such a klutz". Erin then breezily mentions that the fire department had to come and remove him.[45] In a deleted scene, Michael tries to convince Holly that the rest of the office staff is simply indifferent to Packer, while Holly points out that Gabe is the one they are indifferent to (we see a close zoom in of him, from the break room window, eating Chinese food and staring into space).[46]

In "Garage Sale", when Michael takes Holly on a walk and shows her the significant spots in the office that pertained to their courtship, he later takes her through the Kitchen, where Gabe, alongside his co-workers, stand at opposite ends of the room, holding candles. Various members of the office, including Gabe, ask Holly if they will marry them (which is all a part of Michael's plan) and she politely declines; Michael insults Gabe by saying that Holly's response to him was an "Easy no". When Michael eventually finishes his proposal and Holly accepts, Gabe cheers and is soon shocked with the rest of the staff, when Michael announces that he and Holly are moving to Colorado.[47] In a deleted scene that takes place earlier in the episode, Gabe is seen temporarily taking over for Erin at the receptionist's desk, while she sells some of her goods at the warehouse garage sale.[48]

In "Training Day", Dwight comes to Gabe asking about becoming manager to Sabre; he thanks Dwight for coming to him directly, adding that corporate would have told Dwight to come to him anyway. Dwight then slightly humiliates him by saying that he left a message for corporate before coming to him. Dwight is then furious to learn that Michael did not give a recommendation for him to become branch manager, as he had previously led him to believe. Gabe then utters that he does not respond well in awkward situations such as this, and he is unable to comfort the distraught salesman.[49]

In "Michael's Last Dundies", Erin starts avoiding Gabe at work because she no longer enjoys his company and feels no attraction to him anymore. Erin reveals how she feels to Pam and Jim, with Pam saying she should not lead Gabe on if she is not in love with him. She then breaks off her relationship with him, while accepting her Dundie award in front of the staff, as well as a very populated restaurant. Gabe states that he is upset with Erin, but tries to joke it off as his "quarter-life crisis", only to reveal he is genuinely upset before leaving the award show. Darryl feels some remorse for him, and mutters to a confused Erin "Damn, that was cold", as she walks past his table.[23]

In "Goodbye, Michael", Gabe is shown to be distraught after Erin's public break-up with him, and he makes several threats against Andy, who showed chemistry with Erin before she dated Gabe. He eventually follows Erin into the women's bathroom to make his case. In his and Michael's final conversation, Michael tells him to not be afraid of dying alone, since it will all work out, eventually. He tells Michael that he will either quit his job, or stay to ensure Andy's career is destroyed. Michael tells him not to quit just because Erin broke up with him, because everyone has had their heart broken once. However, Michael ruins the moment by advising him to minimize his Adam's apple, as, in his opinion, it will make Gabe look less like a transvestite.[13]

In "The Inner Circle", Gabe is one of Deangelo's favorites among the staff, and a part of his "inner circle" of office workers. When Jim tells Deangelo that some of the female staff members believe him to be sexist, Gabe is the first one to assume that Pam brought it up. Later, when Deangelo attempts to return from the hospital, after his warehouse basketball hoop injury, Gabe, along with Jim, leads him back out.[19]

In "Dwight K. Schrute, (Acting) Manager", Gabe is still upset and depressed by Erin's break-up with him, and he continues his resentment towards Andy. He pulls Andy into the Conference Room for a private conversation, where he breaks down in front of him and begs him to promise that he will not make any sexual advances towards her. He then later tries to embarrass him in front of her, by revealing Andy's previous promise, only for Andy to reverse the situation by telling Erin about her ex-boyfriend's crying and begging that occurred earlier. After Jo demotes Dwight upon learning of his gun accident, she appoints Gabe as one of the search committee members, who will be in charge of interviewing candidates for the manager position.[11]

In "Search Committee", he, along with Jim and Toby, interviews several candidates for the manager position. However, he purposefully sabotages Andy's interview, yells at him in anger and, later, tries to convince Jo that he is unqualified to be hired. During an interview with Kelly, Gabe remains openly dismissive of her as not being a serious candidate for the Manager position, before he ends it abruptly. Kelly, in response, tells Jo about Gabe's relationship with Erin, and his behavior for the past few weeks because of their break-up. Jo is frustrated with him, having wanted him not to get involved with any of the Scranton employees, and decides to reassign him to the Sabre headquarters, in Florida. Before he leaves, he reminds the staff that he will still be in touch with them, from time to time, because he is the Corporate liaison. After being insulted about women not wanting to touch him, he makes a remark about how he has been with a number of women, where all they have wanted to do was hug him.[4]

Season 8[edit]

In "The List", Gabe is shown to be back working in the Scranton office. It is revealed through a deleted scene that Corporate worked out a bafflingly illogical deal where he would be in Scranton Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and in Florida Tuesdays and Thursdays, forcing Gabe to fly between the locations every night of the work week. He is glad to be back, but irritably acknowledges that he is not getting paid any extra.[50] He is also on the "Losers" side of Robert California's list, and is the only person on that list whom Andy tells the new CEO was properly placed there (while Andy defended Stanley, Pam, Erin, and Meredith from the fact that Robert did not list them as "Winners").[5]

In "Garden Party", Gabe believes that Andy throwing a garden party to impress Robert California is a "Classic Gabe move", and vents his frustration to the Documentary film crew, claiming that Andy is stealing his business strategies. At Schrute Farms, Gabe expresses more frustration to the film crew, since he did not think of toasting Robert first. When he does attempt to toast Robert, Andy cuts him short, claiming that "You can't triple-toast someone". After Robert gives a speech to the other guests, Gabe tries to give another toast in Robert's honor, but is once again interrupted by Andy, causing him more anguish. However, he manages to make a bit of an impression on Robert, as he wraps his jacket around him when he is cold (despite that Ryan had already given Robert his jacket). Nonetheless, Robert is still grateful towards Gabe as well. Gabe also stays for the barbecue after the party, with his co-workers.[30]

In "Spooked", Gabe dresses up as a skeleton, like Toby and Kelly, after he overheard them planning to wear matching costumes. Later, he is approached by Erin and asked for his assistance to make her Halloween party less childish, and more "Scary and sexy". He tells her that he will make it "Sexier than [she] could ever imagine", but she asks him to primarily work to make it scary. He succeeds in making the party notably spookier, and the staff appears to enjoy it. However, he ruins it when he has Erin put on a tape of a bizarre, black-and-white horror movie of his own creation, entitled "Do Yes Disturb: Meditations of Horror". The film unsettles the office, as all it does is play intense music while showing different scenes of random, disturbing things (such as a person cutting into a birthday cake that bleeds blood, and even a shot of Oscar's grandmother eating, as well as secret back-seat footage of Stanley entering his car). After the movie is turned off, Gabe quietly sneaks out of the Conference room, leaving Erin to take the heat from it. However, he is present for Robert's ghost story, which he is disturbed by, along with his co-workers. Later, when Dwight has Robert's son, Bert, fake-fire Toby for revenge, Gabe displays more cowardice, as when Toby asks if Bert can really terminate him, he just shrugs.[14]

In "Doomsday", he develops an attraction to Val, the new Warehouse Worker. Believing that he and her have a connection, Gabe attempts to get the paperwork for an office romance from Toby. Toby is shown to be happy for him, but once Gabe admits that he is not actually dating Val yet, Toby gently informs him that the paperwork is not necessary until he is actually in a relationship with her. Gabe then spends the day at the Warehouse, making several attempts to try to impress her. Darryl tries to imply to Gabe that Val does not feel the same way about him, but to no avail. Later, Gabe asks her out on a date, but she turns him down. She claims that it is not personal, but she does not date co-workers. Gabe goes as far as to offer to quit, but Val strongly tells him not to, implying she would not date him even if they did not work together.[32]

In "Pam's Replacement", when Ryan announces to the other staffers that Pam's temporary replacement, Cathy, has a boyfriend (which may or may not be true, as Jim only told Ryan that to discourage him from asking Cathy out), Gabe suggests that her boyfriend is a drug dealer, since, according to him, the best way to obtain an attractive woman is to "Get her hooked on blow". He also subtly attempts to comfort the self-conscious Pam, by mentioning that the most common fetish in the world is the pregnancy fetish.[51]

In the beginning of "Gettysburg", Gabe is reading the Sabre "Code of Conduct" to the staff, during a meeting in the Conference room. His co-workers appear uninterested and miserable, causing Andy to make a thinly-veiled insult that, even though that they all "Want to die", they must listen to what Gabe has to say, before giving Gabe permission to continue. Gabe then snidely reminds Andy that he does not need his permission, since he is his superior. Later, Gabe chooses to go on Andy's field trip to Gettysburg, and while standing in line for the bus, he is hit in the face with one of Andy's company baseball hats, after Andy attempted to toss it to Phyllis, who ducked out of the way. At Gettysburg, Gabe is mistaken for Abraham Lincoln by a young girl. After the girl's mother has her daughter put her stove pipe hat on Gabe, so she can take a picture of the two of them, other tourists believe Gabe to be a historical impersonator. While at first, he attempts to clear up the misunderstanding, after getting some laughs from the tourists, he decides to play along with it, explaining the history of Lincoln. He manages to deliver a satisfactory performance, but temporarily ruins it by telling a joke about Lincoln, saying that he needs his wife, like he needs "A hole in the head", which the tourists find offensive. He then hastily re-enacts Lincoln getting shot, earning him an applause and getting back on their good side, before he runs back to rejoin Andy and the rest of the group.[15]

In a deleted scene of "Mrs. California", he signs up for the gym Dwight has opened in the building, commenting in a talking-head interview that he has heard that if he strengthens his core, it will improve his sexual performance. He then tells the film crew that they will find him on the "Ab Blaster", and that they will later find him "Blasting... um... a very nice, young woman". Later, in the clip, he is seen listening to Steve Martin on his iPod, while lifting a barbell. He then laughs, but this causes him to break his stride and collapse under the barbell's weight.[52]

In "Christmas Wishes", Gabe is seen socializing with numerous people at the Christmas party, as well as drinking with Oscar and Meredith. He is also seen "playing" an air Guitar, along with other air instrument "players" Dwight, Creed and Nate while "Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24" by Savatage plays on a boom box.[53]

In "Trivia", Dwight heads down to Florida to meet with Robert California at the Sabre headquarters, to discuss a possible manager position. While he is in the waiting room, he encounters Gabe, whose workspace is located there. Gabe describes himself to Dwight as the "Toilet of the company", who "Flushes away annoying problems, so others can keep their hands clean". Robert then informs Dwight that he cannot meet with him, but will have him meet with Bill, another executive, much to Dwight's frustration. However, Robert manipulates the situation by secretly calling Gabe and instructing him to not have Dwight speak with Bill either, but to have Gabe listen to Dwight's pitch and then reject him. After delivering his pitch, Gabe mockingly rejects Dwight, leading Dwight to physically apprehends him, twisting his arm and forcing him to take him to Robert's Florida condo.[6]

In "Pool Party", he attends Robert California's titular event. At the party, he flirts with Cathy, causing her some discomfort. Soon after, he follows Robert, along with Ryan, Oscar, Toby and a reluctant Jim, on a tour of the CEO's home. Throughout the night, Gabe competes with Ryan to make a good impression on Robert. After Ryan remarks how Robert's home theater is "Clearly meant for watching erotic cinema", Gabe then suggests that they could all view an erotic Korean film he has on his iPod, if Robert has the correct cables to hook it up to his television. Later, upon returning to the pool area and surveying his guests, Robert erroneously believes the atmosphere is that of an orgy, at which point he undresses and jumps into the pool, completely nude. Gabe and Ryan, each still wanting to make an impression, soon follow, with Gabe getting his pants caught around his ankles and tripping in. At the end of the episode, Gabe and Ryan are shown to have stayed far long after the other guests have left, dancing to erotic music, with Robert, in his home theater room. After Robert falls asleep, Ryan informs Gabe that they can now leave, only for Gabe to remark "So, leave", before returning to dancing.[31]

In "Jury Duty", after being notified by e-mail that Angela has given birth to her child, Gabe enters from the Annex to inform everyone of the news, only for Oscar to stop him, stating that Erin has received an e-mail herself, and has already announced it. Upon learning that some of the staff will be visiting Angela at the hospital, Gabe excitedly states that he will accompany them as well, expressing his affinity for maternity wards in a talking-head interview.[54]

In "After Hours", Gabe is in Tallahassee, working at Sabre headquarters. After work, he accompanies Jim, Cathy, Dwight, Todd Packer, and Nellie Bertram to the bar in the hotel where the special projects team members are staying. When Dwight has to leave, due to Jim falsely claiming that he saw a bedbug in his room, he tasks Gabe with making sure that Packer and Nellie do not have sex. At first, Gabe is not interested in helping someone who calls him "Freak" and would not be helpful to himself if he had power, but he accepts the request when Dwight points out that if he does not, Packer (who Gabe dislikes) could become their boss. Later, He manages to secretly spray some of his asthma inhaler medication into Packer's drink. While this succeeds in getting him ill, Gabe suffers as Packer vomits on him, leading Gabe to whine "They don't make these cords in boot-cut anymore!".[55]

In "Last Day in Florida", Gabe, along with Packer and Cathy, acts as an audience for Dwight and Nellie's presentation, in order to give them early feedback. Once they are finished, tells them that their presentation was the "Best thing [he] has ever seen". Shortly afterwards, Gabe is also shown laughing at Jim, when Dwight repeatedly insults him (however, it is plausible that he was only doing this to suck up to Dwight, who was Vice President to Bertram at the time).[56]

In the beginning "Welcome Party", he eagerly assists the debate of whether Stanley has a moustache, by using his hands to block Stanley's upper lip from view of the rest of staff, as the employees shout out their final guesses.[57]

In "Angry Andy", when Dwight is acting as Nellie's office snitch, he tells her that Gabe was boasting about having an extra ticket to the Air Show, but when Meredith said she would be interested in attending, Gabe made up the excuse that one of his friends might accompany him, after all. Later, during Nellie's meeting about impotence, when it is revealed that Andy was unable to sexually perform with Erin the previous night, Gabe is confused, as he believes that Erin does not even like sex, recalling how she described having intercourse with him as being "Tackled by a skeleton". Gabe also mentions that prostate stimulation could help with Andy's problem, although he insists that he does not know this from personal experience.[58]

In "Fundraiser", Gabe attends State Senator Robert Lipton's fundraiser for a local animal shelter.[59]

In the beginning of "Turf War", Gabe and Dwight argue over who is more fit. Dwight displays his biceps, while Gabe brags about his strengthened core. Jim sees an opportunity to prank them, and tells them that they must settle their boasting with a leg curl contest. While they compete in Dwight's gym, Pam takes pictures of them, which she and Jim eventually decorate and share with the caption "Sleep Over Party! We Gossiped All Night!". Later, Gabe overhears Angela requesting some "girl talk" with Pam and Nellie, and happily joins the conversation, stating in an interview "Sometimes I wonder if I have ovaries in my scrotum, because I am great at girl talk". He then talks at length about a Korean soap opera that he likes, but confirms to Nellie that it would be disturbing to anyone who does not have an asian fetish.[10]

In "Free Family Portrait Studio", when a dishelved-looking and whimpering Andy enters the office, Gabe snidely comments "Oh, how the mediocre have fallen". Later, in a Conference room meeting, when Andy says he would like to introduce a special guest (David Wallace), an excited Gabe, wearing a party hat and carrying a cupcake with a candle in it, enters instead, wishing himself a happy birthday, only for Nellie to yell "Oh, get out, skeleton man!".[9]

Season 9[edit]

While the show did not pick up Woods' contract option to return for the ninth and final season as a regular cast member, showrunner Greg Daniels did confirm that Gabe would return to Scranton at some point in the future,[60] which came to pass in the episode "Moving On", after a heartbroken Andy discovers that his recently ex-girlfriend left him for another man, and he decides to take vengeance against the new couple by tracking down their exes and hiring them to work at the office. Gabe, whose life had been in a downward spiral ever since Wallace bought back Dunder Mifflin (he was fired from Sabre, forced to live on the streets, and became dangerously underweight for a while, having lost 50 pounds), soon arrives, where he wastes no time sexually harassing Erin and trying to lure her back into his arms with professions of love and attempts to defame her boyfriend, all of which fail.[7] After this episode, he is never seen again (along with Pete's ex) and no mention is ever given to his return. Early spoiler reports said that Lewis would return for the series finale, grouped with reports that B.J. Novak and Mindy Kaling would make appearances as well,[61][62][63] but these later proved false. However, closure - and an explanation for his absence - was given to the character via a photo album epilogue released by NBC.com, which reads that he "enrolled in a Chinese corporate program which 'rents' white people to appear more impressive to clients. His only job there is to be seen and not heard."[64]

Webisodes[edit]

The 3rd Floor[edit]

Gabe appears in an episode of The Office webisode series, The 3rd Floor, scolding Ryan for bringing weapons into the workplace for the filming of his horror movie. As he is doing so, Erin and Kelly suddenly appear and startle him, so that Kevin may capture his reaction on his camcorder. Gabe then angrily orders Ryan to shut down the film's production, but he is able to coax him into letting him continue by offering him a job as the narrator of the movie. Flattered by this, he accepts, and narrates the movie when it is completed.[65]

The Podcast[edit]

In The Podcast, Gabe becomes jealous of Oscar when he learns that his blog is linked to the Sabre website, and attempts to impress corporate by launching a podcast. He manages to get Kevin, Kelly, Erin, Creed, Meredith and Angela - via cajoling - to participate in it, however, when they find out that it is an audio podcast, they insist that it be filmed (which they are able to do with Meredith's recording equipment). Unfortunately, a number of things go awry when Gabe attempts to interview them about the subject of "having it all", which eventually leads to him frustratedly calling their performance a "freakshow", resulting in their exodus from the production. Oscar, having stayed late so he could work on his blog, walks in, and offers to do Gabe's podcast. Gabe is moved by Oscar's kindness, but just as they begin, Meredith returns and takes her cameras with her. In the end, Gabe takes Oscar's job offer of proofreading his blog for him.[12]

Behind the Scenes[edit]

Portrayer Zach Woods has called Gabe "earnest", and states that his character "wants to be liked and wants to be respected, but he just doesn't have the tools to achieve either of those ends. I think he earnestly wants to be part of the gang and also wants to be sort of a dignified and powerful boss, but he falls badly short of both of those things".[66] In another interview, Woods summarized that Gabe's presence in the office is "to make people uncomfortable and make sure that everyone is behaving". In the same interview, he also pejoratively called his dramatis personae an "office pariah" and an "occasional narc", concluding that he is a "corporate stooge" to some extent.[67]

Reception[edit]

The Gabe Lewis character has received mixed reviews from both critics and fans of the show alike. On the website Nerve.com, he is listed as the twelfth least funniest character on The Office,[68] and was ranked at number two on ChaCha.com's Allison Weaver's list of 15 TV Characters That Should Be Killed Off, with her writing "I'm pretty sure there isn't a single person on the planet who enjoys Gabe's character in any way. He's not funny, he's really a malicious jerk, and he's 100% pointless. He's the worst addition to the cast since the series began, and he just gets less and less appealing with every episode".[69]

When referring to the Andy-Erin-Gabe love triangle, in her review of "Dwight K. Schrute, (Acting) Manager", Cindy White, of IGN, commented that "It's only been made worse by the way they've turned Gabe from meek, bumbling burocrat [sic] into unhinged stalker guy".[70] This issue was also touched upon by Jesse Schmitt, of Yahoo! TV, who expressed a dislike for Gabe's recently eccentric personality, writing "Gabe needs to tone things down a little bit".[71] In his recap of "Search Committee", Sam Morgan, of Hollywood.com, was pleased that Gabe was reassigned to Sabre headquarters, writing "[Gabe] is finally leaving! Hooray!".[72] In his review of "Search Committee", Alan Sepinwall, of Hitfix, wrote that "With Gabe going back to Florida, the branch's overpopulation eases a little bit".[73]

However, not all reactions to the character have been negative. When it was announced that Woods would be promoted to a series regular, beginning in the seventh season, CJ Simonson, of Collider.com, cited Gabe as an "Interesting" cast addition, writing that "Some of the best episodes of The Office last year (and there were few) came from more Gabe central episodes".[74] In his recap of "Garden Party", Brett Harrison Davinger, of the California Literary Review, wrote that Gabe's "Brief moments also make you realize that he might have potential as a Ryan/Creed "quick hit" type character".[75] In Chris Plante's recap of "Gettysburg", he praised Gabe's subplot story in the episode, as well as Woods' acting, writing "Come on, NBC. Just give Zach Woods a pilot".[76] In Davinger's recap of "After Hours", he wrote "I’ve grown to like Gabe a bit more this season, after the show decided to creep him up. Between Trivia and tonight’s episode, I think the Dwight/Gabe relationship definitely has potential - with Gabe in the lackey role".[77] Nick Campbell, of TV.com, also lauded the unhinged side of Gabe's personality, writing in his review of "Moving On", that Gabe as an "insane almost-stalker" was possibly "the best version of Gabe [he's] seen".[78]

In his recap of the aforementioned episode, Vulture's Michael Tedder, while considering the character to be a "one-joke cartoon weirdo", wrote positively of Woods' portrayal of him, writing "[Woods] capably played Gabe as so oblivious to his horrendousness it almost made him as innocent as Erin, and hating a character designed to be hatable is, I guess, the ultimate compliment".[79]

References[edit]

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