Most of us are probably happy that spring is fast approaching, but there’s one dark cloud on the metaphorical horizon, at least for TV fans: Spring means no more Steve Carell on The Office, as he announced he’d be leaving the show a few episodes shy of the season 7 finale.

With the return of Amy Ryan as Michael’s lady-love Holly, and many of the office workers coming into their own in various ways, this season of The Office has been about building up to a worthy and fitting send-off for Michael Scott. Yesterday, NBC announced another way they plan to ease viewers into the idea that The Office can survive without Michael, or at least distract from the idea: Will Ferrell is coming to Scranton!

Ferrell will reportedly guest on a four-episode arc as a branch manager who visits Michael’s branch and is “just as inappropriate as Steve Carell’s Michael Scott character.” Ferrell’s arc will reportedly span Carell’s departure, and he’s committed to appearing in one episode after Michael leaves Dunder-Mifflin.

Executive producer Paul Lieberstein (you know him as Toby Flenderson) joked with Deadline that nabbing Ferrell is just part of The Office‘s charitable tradition of helping out A-list actors: “We found Steve Carell when he was nothing but a movie star and we turned him into a television star. We are proud to continue ‘The Office’s’ tradition of discovering famous talent, and we hope that once America gets a good look at Will, they’ll see what we see. Tremendous raw sexuality.”

Beyond his “raw sexuality,” Lieberstein and his crew hope Ferrell will bring a “bridge” between a Carell-full and Carell-less Office. How? Sorry, that’s a “wait and see” question.

Of course, this won’t be the first workplace comedy to put Carell and Ferrell together. You may remember a little 2004 film called ANCHORMAN that continues to be the favorite quoting material among college-age boys to this day:

Anchorman – Afternoon Delight from Ron Burgundy

How do you think Ferrell will get along at Dunder-Mifflin as a temp? I can already picture him butting heads with Dwight and annoying the bejeezus out of Jim. As a Ferrell fan, but also an Office fan who fears change, I’d gauge my excitement level at “warily stoked.” How about you?

(Image courtesy of WENN)

Meghan Carlson

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

Meghan hails from Walla Walla, WA, the proud home of the world’s best sweet onions and Adam West, the original Batman. An avid grammarian and over-analyzer, you can usually find her thinking too hard about plot devices in favorites like The OfficeIt’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and How I Met Your Mother. In her spare time, Meghan enjoys drawing, shopping, trying to be funny (and often failing), and not understanding the whole Twilight thing. She’s got a BA in English and Studio Art from Whitman College, which makes her a professional arguer, daydreamer, and doodler.