It’s criminal that Steve Carrell never won an Emmy for playing the cringe-worthy but lovable Michael Scott on The Office, but at least Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak‘s secondary characters will always be remembered as the hottest, craziest non-couple in sitcom history. The relationship between potential sociopaths Ryan and Kelly was hilariously unhealthy– and it’s even funnier to hear that their characters were kind of based on the writers’ IRL selves.
During his recent appearance on Watch What Happens Live, Novak opened up about the nature of his relationship with his best friend– and soft-of ex-girlfriend– Kaling:
I would say it was a great and terrible chemistry, and it reflected what we were like in real life. No one ever knew if we were together or not, including us. We weren’t always on the same page on a given day or a given hour. We fought a lot. We were each other’s best friends. We were inseparable and not talking to each other, often on the same day. And people didn’t know, if she was gone, they would ask me where she was, and vice versa. We were like E.T. and Elliott a little bit. But it was hard to define, and I think very funny to people witnessing it, and that’s what actually gave them the idea to write Ryan and Kelly that way.
Thank you, universe, for this gift.
While I definitely don’t wish a tumultuous and confusing relationship on anyone, both Novak and Kaling seem to have good heads on their shoulders, and they’re obviously cool with each other… so I’m going to go ahead and enjoy this. It’s like that part in the first third of the romantic comedy where they still hate each other on the surface but they’re starting to notice the sexual tension. And he calls it “a great and terrible chemistry,” which is pretty much a movie poster tagline begging to happen. You guys are writers! Let’s get this screenplay going!
“I think you have to be very careful when you have an explosive connection with somebody,” Novak went on to tell Andy Cohen. “We might be better as best friends.”
That’s probably reasonable… but why can’t you be best friends who happen to write and star in a movie about your former relationship? You kind of owe us, considering that miserable last Office season. Ehh?
Via E! / Photos: Getty, The Office (NBC)