When the word came down on Friday that the brilliant Graham Linehan comedy, IT Crowd, was coming to an end after four seasons, my first thought was to take the sage advice of either Roy Trenneman (Chris O’Dowd) or Maurice Moss (Richard Ayoade) and try turning it off and on again.
Unfortunately, the message was still there. My next option, unfortunately, of going through a series of network diagnostic procedures rendered the same result. Finally, I tried a control-alt-delete forced shut down. Sadly, upon powering the Mac back up, the message was still there….The IT Crowd was, indeed, shutting down.
Even though an intended fifth, and final, season was announced last Spring, Linehan, who co-created Father Ted and Black Books, made the decision to shut down the IT Department of Reynholm Industries in favor of a series concluding special to air in 2012.
Linehan explained his decision recently to the BBC saying: “I felt that the last series was a nice strong point to go out on, and anything further might just be running on the spot. You don’t do your best work when you’re running on the spot. I did three series of Father Ted, one of Black Books, one of Big Train, so I feel a personal sense of achievement that IT Crowd made it to series four.”
Linehan, discussing the possible series ending special said: “The good news is the special, which is a big, juicy story with great storylines for all the characters (I think), and maybe a film.” Given the growing careers on both sides of the camera of Chris O’Dowd starring in Bridesmaids and Gulliver’s Travels, Richard Ayoade received acclaim for directing the British film, Submarine, and Katherine Parkinson (Doc Martin, Old Guys, Whites), might be tough to get the band back together. If anyone can do it, Linehan can.