NBC's The Office introduced a lot of characters over nine seasons, with some becoming popular enough to join the workplace comedy full time. The Office, even though it was based on the BBC series of the same name, was truly full of unique characters who showcased the best and the worst of humanity.
Michael Scott is a great example of a character who is both wholesome in that he generally cares about his employees, but evil in the sense that he can also be selfish, offensive, and insensitive when it comes to other people. Not everyone toes the line quite as well as Michael Scott, so today we'll explore a few employees from The Office who represent both sides of the morality coin.
10 EVIL: RYAN
Ryan Howard (played by B.J. Novak) may have been Michael Scott's golden boy when he first started working for Dunder Mifflin as a temp, but everybody in the office could see that Ryan was no good. Whether it was from his toxic relationship with Kelly or manipulation of Michael's admiration of him, Ryan was only out for himself.
Things got even worse when Ryan was promoted to an executive position with the company in New York, and his problems escalated along with his bad attitude. He really showed his character when he abandoned his child at Dwight and Angela's wedding to run off with Kelly. Thankfully(?) Nellie was there to
steal care for the child.
9 WHOLESOME: ERIN
Following the foundation of the Michael Scott Paper Company, Dunder Mifflin was left without its long-time receptionist Pam, and the position was filled by interim manager Charles Miner. Erin Hannon (played by Ellie Kemper) quickly found her place among the rest of the employees of Dunder Mifflin, and her sweet wholesome naïvetés was a breath of fresh air on The Office.
Unfortunately, Erin is almost too wholesome, which often allows her to be taken advantage of by her fellow employees. The best example of this is that Erin's real first name is Kelly, but she started going by Erin when she started the job to avoid confusion with Kelly Kapoor.
8 EVIL: PACKER
Todd Packer (played by David Koechner) was not a series regular, but he certainly made his presence known to the staff across his various appearances. Packer was one of Dunder Mifflin's traveling salesmen, and one of Michael Scott's only actual friends. His license plate is WLHUNG, which pretty much says it all.
Of course, Packer isn't really anyone's friend and is instead the guy that no one invited to the party but he's still there ruining it. It's almost possible to draw a direct line of influence from Packer's behavior to Michael Scott's in the early seasons, which might be what makes his character actually begin to grow once Packer is removed from his life.
7 WHOLESOME: HOLLY
A lot of Michael's focus on the show was in regard to his dating life, as he wanted nothing more than to settle down and have a family and write his book, "Somehow I Manage." Somehow he actually managed to have a few relationships on the show, despite the cringe-inducing antics of Date Mike.
When Holly Flax (played by Amy Ryan) replaced former HR rep Toby Flenderson, her similarities to Michael were immediately apparent, however, she also exuded a sweetness that we hadn't seen from his former flames. And while she often participates in Michael's shenanigans, it's clear that she's a bit more aware of the acceptable line of comedy that he constantly crosses.
6 EVIL: JAN
Jan, Jan, Jan. We've spoken before about Michael and Jan's toxic relationship and some of the awful things they did to each other, but while Michael occasionally toed the line of good/evil, Jan Levinson (played by Melora Hardin) was very comfortable on the dark side.
Whether it was as Michael's boss or as his lover, Jan's less than ethical business decisions, her inappropriate relationships with the younger men under her employ, and the extreme "pageant mom" attitude she has with her daughter
Astird Astrid still makes us uncomfortable.
5 WHOLESOME: JIM
Jim, Jim, Jim. It's pretty easy to slide Jim Halpert (played by John Krasinski) into a wholesome slot, as he has exhibited many selfless and caring acts over the years, both with Pam and his fellow employees. Even at his worst, when he didn't care about his job and he was unhappy over Pam's relationship with Roy, he resorted to light pranks on Dwight to cope.
Even when he's been in the "wrong" like when Darryl expected to go to Philadelphia with Jim but was forgotten, he quickly makes up for it and fulfills his promises. Jim helped make Dunder Mifflin better and showed he really cared about Michael, Dwight, and everyone at the company he spent so much time trying to get away from.
4 EVIL: GABE
Gabe Lewis (played by Zach Woods) first appeared in the sixth season following the sale of Dunder Mifflin to Sabre. Gabe was basically Toby x 10, with a steadfast observance of Sabre's policies that didn't make him a friend to many of his fellow employees.
Gabe would continue to showcase his selfishness and inappropriate behavior when he started dating Erin, though when that (and other) relationships deteriorated, Gabe quickly went from annoying to creepily dangerous. Packer may have been evil as well, but he did one good thing when he coined the best nickname on the show, Gabewad.
3 WHOLESOME: DARRYL
We speak about fan-favorite characters a lot, but Darryl Philbin (played by Craig Robertson) is a great example of this, as his popularity among fans and his fellow stars on The Office saw Darryl move from occasional appearances in the warehouse to a series regular position upstairs with his own office.
Darryl may prank Michael a bit harder than some of the other staff members, but he also has a huge heart that we really get to see more of as he made the scary move from Dunder Mifflin to Jim's new company Athlead. He might not have been the best when it came to break-ups, but we still found his actions to be consistently wholesome.
2 EVIL: DWIGHT
Dwight K. Shrute (played by Rainn Wilson) is a tricky character to fit completely into these categorizations, as he experienced tremendous growth over nine seasons. However, we can't ignore his villain status from the early seasons as he fought with Jim for Michael's favor and his eventual dream of becoming the manager of Dunder Mifflin.
From using snowballs as a form of psychological torture against Jim to killing Angela's cat, tricking her into marrying him, or even almost burning everyone at Dunder Mifflin alive for a safety demonstration, Dwight is responsible for some of the worst moments in the series.
1 WHOLESOME: DWIGHT
However, Dwight is also one of the best and most loyal friends on the show, and a lot of his terrible deeds can be interpreted as a genuine love for his colleagues. Yes, he may hide weapons all around the office, but he's doing that in order to protect the staff from danger, which actually does occur more than a few times.
Dwight's fiercely protective of Pam, who he considers to be one of his best friends, and he even fixed up the Halpert house when they had their first child. He bid for Phyllis' hug to make her feel better, and he even "fired" Jim and Pam with full severance to help them begin their new life with Athlead. Dwight's a weird guy, but he's a good guy. Mostly.