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Whatever Happened To Gabe From The Office?

When Gabe Lewis was first introduced in "The Office's" sixth season as a Sabre representative, he seemed like a boring guy. As Andy (Ed Helms) and Erin (Ellie Kemper) struggled through a painful remix of Miley Cryus' "Party in the U.S.A.," it looked as though Gabe was going to be a regular fish-out-of-water among the cartoon characters Dunder Mifflin had become. Subsequent episodes would prove such assumptions terribly, terribly wrong.

Gabe was ultimately one of the strangest, creepiest characters "The Office" had ever seen, whose most significant achievements were watching 200 horror movies and going to Japan once. When he wasn't abusing his power, harassing Erin, or being an annoying stickler for corporate rules, he loomed in the margins like a depressing ghost. All of this is a testament to the talent of comedian Zach Woods, who so excellently nailed Gabe's uncomfortable persona that he never wants to play the character ever again.

Woods initially left "The Office" after Season 8, once David Wallace (Andy Buckley) bought Sabre out of Dunder Mifflin entirely, thus dissolving Gabe's position. Since departing, however, Woods's career has taken several twists and turns, leading far away from the cringe-comedy of "The Office" while furthering a creative relationship with one of TV's most brilliant creators — a relationship that began with Woods' first ever professional acting job.

He entered a whole new League

"The League" was a relatively successful sitcom that ran on FX (and later FXX) from 2009 to 2015. It followed a group of guys religiously dedicated to their fantasy football league. In addition to introducing Mark Duplass's and Nick Kroll's talents to a broader audience, the series also provided Zach Woods with his first recurring credit after being amicably let go from "The Office."

Beginning with Season 4, Episode 8, Woods would appear as Lane, Pete Eckhart's (Duplass) friend, whom he finds annoying and impossible to get rid of. Unlike many of Woods's other characters, Lane is confident and vaguely charismatic in casual social situations — under pressure; however, his actual, manic colors are revealed. Pete and most of his friends seemingly disliked Lane due to his pretentious conversation starters. Woods returned for the show's final season in 2015 for the episode "The Last Temptation of Andre."

He returned to The Office one last time

Though Zach Woods' "The Office" contract was not renewed after Season 8, showrunner Greg Daniels confirmed relatively quickly that Gabe would get one last bow (via EW). Describing the comeback as part of a "neat story turn," Daniels declined to comment further, as it would spoil one of Season 9's most subversive twists.

As a result of Andy's three-month sail boating trip (aka Ed Helms' shooting schedule for "The Hangover — Part III) as well Andy being ... well, Andy, Erin Hannon dumps him for "The Office" newcomer Pete ("The White Lotus'" Jake Lacy). In the Season 9 episode "Moving On," Andy abuses his regained power to torment Erin and Pete by bringing their exes in to work for Dunder Mifflin — which means Gabe was back to creepily pine over Erin one last time.

Even by "The Office's" standards, "Moving On" is an incredibly uncomfortable hour of television (for whatever reason, whether it was the presence of "Breaking Bad" breakout star Bob Odenkirk in the B-story or having "Iron Man's" Jon Favreau in the director's chair, the episode is double the length of an average "The Office" episode). As a swan song for Gabe, however, it's kind of perfectly awful.

He went into politics on Veep

Between stealing entire "Seinfeld" episodes as Elaine Benes and before becoming the Marvel Cinematic Universe's ultimate puppet master, sitcom queen Julia Louis-Dreyfus added another impressive performance to her resume in HBO's satirical political series "VEEP." Louis-Dreyfus played Selina Meyer, a petty Vice President with career aspirations far outweighing her personal relationships or moral compass.

Zach Woods guest starred in a handful of episodes as Ed Webster, a fundraiser and PAC (Political Action Committee) frontman supportive of Meyer's administration. The show reunited Woods with creator Armando Iannucci and actor Anna Chlumsky, both of whom worked on Wood's first ever acting job — 2009's "In the Loop." Chlumsky, a "VEEP" series regular, played the high-strung and downtrodden staffer Amy Brookheimer, to whom Woods' Ed Webster was attracted.

In an interview with The TV Addict, Woods praised the show's writing and the creative team's ability to work improv into the script. "It's interesting," he began, "'VEEP' is like a show where the writing is better than many other shows but also the least precious [thing] about it. So it's a really nice combination; on 'VEEP,' they have these artfully constructed jokes, and they are like, 'Oh, you should put in your voice, do what you want.' So they are pretty remarkable; the writers on that show are really geniuses." Woods' final appearance on "VEEP" was in Season 3, Episode 5, "Fishing," which aired in 2014.

He entered the tech world in Silicon Valley

Having worked at a tech start-up in Silicon Valley during the late 1980s, Mike Judge developed a comedy series loosely based on his experiences (via Wired). He partnered with frequent collaborators John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky to create "Silicon Valley," which would go on to run for six seasons on HBO.

In what is arguably a career-defining role, Zach Woods played Jared Dunn, the Chief Operating Officer of the show's fictional start-up Pied Piper. Like Gabe, Jared is awkward, vaguely disliked, and under-appreciated by his coworkers and moves through scenes like a ghoul. Woods delivers some of the series' most bizarre and memorable moments as Jared, such as his character's manic, Adderall-fueled guerilla survey of whether or not the Pied Piper app should pivot to attracting rodents or tracking children ("Which one? Which one? Which one?").

"I really love Jared," Woods told Variety in 2020. "In the sixth [and final] season, when you know you're saying good-bye to him, and you've loved him for a long time, it's not hard, even if you're in a scene that's funny, to feel things on his behalf."

He fled the country in The Good Wife

In a sea of procedurals on CBS, the legal drama "The Good Wife" broke new ground by melding case-of-the-week stories with overarching seasonal narratives (per the LA Times). It starred Julianna Margulies as a former lawyer returning to her craft after her husband ("Sex and the City's" Chris Noth) is caught in an embarrassingly public scandal of corruption and sexual misconduct (in a depressing instance of life allegedly imitating art, Noth was accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct in 2021, per PageSix).

Starting with Season 5's "The Bit Bucket," Zach Woods began a recurring stint as former NSA agent and independent contractor Jeff Dellinger. In a stroke of absolutely terrible luck, Jeff accidentally brings a confidential flash drive home from work, which leads to his legal team transforming him into a pseudo-Edward Snowden — complete with a hasty escape from the country he once called home. Woods made his final appearance as Jeff Dellinger in the show's seventh and last season.

He had a memorable cameo in Ghostbusters: Answer the Call

Primarily remembered for the ugly slew of sexist vitriol its trailers brought out online, 2016's "Ghostbusters" (retroactively known as "Ghostbusters: Answer the Call") was a well-intentioned but ultimately ill-fated attempt to revive a franchise that has arguably been dead since its first installment. Led by a decidedly all-female cast consisting of powerhouse comedians Leslie Jones, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Kristen Wiig, the film was a full-on reboot that reimagined the origin of the titular Ghostbusters.

The film was overloaded with comedic talent, featuring "VEEP" alums Matt Walsh and Sam Richardson, three of the four original Ghostbusters, and a then-surprising comedic turn from Chris Hemsworth. Early in the film, Zach Woods steals the whole movie as Garret, an unscrupulous haunted house tour guide who almost becomes the film's first victim.

On the red carpet of the film's premiere at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California, Woods briefly talked about his fear of ghosts with HeyUGuys. "I think I'm more scared of being [a ghost] than being haunted by one," he said. "Like, the idea of aimlessly loitering on a planet where you no longer exist seems unspeakably depressing. So, I'm scared of that..." The film was met with a lukewarm critical reception and was soon regarded as a box office bomb that ultimately struck a massive financial blow to Columbia Pictures and its distributors at Sony Pictures Releasing (per The Wall Street Journal).

He voiced a popular toy in The Lego Ninjago Movie

After the critical and commercial success of 2014's "The Lego Movie," Warner Bros. was eager to continue capitalizing on their exclusive licensing deal with the massive toy company. Imagining a universe of LEGO-inspired entertainment projects, they immediately started production on "The Lego Batman Movie" and "The Lego Ninjago Movie."

While the "Batman" brand is pretty much as ubiquitous as brands come, the name Ninjago was really only known to avid LEGO fans and younger audiences who watched the long-running "Ninjago" series on Cartoon Network. To keep a surprisingly complex storyline very simple, "Ninjago" is an original concept created by LEGO about teenagers who become elementally-gifted ninjas.

In "The Lego Ninjago Movie," Zach Woods voiced Zane, a robot who can control ice. During an "on-set" interview, Woods explained that he feels LEGO is popular because it can connect with a wide variety of children. "If you're sort of a tightly wound little child, you can make things exactly as they appear on the box," he said. "Or if you're free-floating creative type, you can make whatever palace exists in your mind. ... I think it appeals to the full spectrum of children." The film opened in 2017 to a disappointing critical and commercial reception.

He went orbital in Avenue 5

Shortly after the ending of "VEEP," HBO ordered a pilot for Armando Iannucci's newest project — a black science-fiction comedy called "Avenue 5." Set in a not-so-distant future in which space travel is far more accessible, the series follows the aftermath of a momentary mishap that ultimately causes the interplanetary cruiser Avenue 5 to veer off course — dangerously low on supplies and three years from their home planet, the crew and passengers must work together to prevent a total societal meltdown on board.

Iannucci enlisted the help of a few "VEEP" alums, including "House" star Hugh Laurie and Andy Buckley. The creator also brought in Zach Woods, this time as part of the series' core cast. Woods plays Matt Spencer, a customer relations liaison on the Avenue 5.

The first season was met with generally positive, if slightly polarizing, reviews from critics. However, the second season was seemingly regarded as a giant leap forward in the series' creative path (via Rotten Tomatoes). Speaking to Collider about the show's unique, chaotic tone, Woods questioned how long the show could last heading in such a daring direction. "We might not get away with [our creative choices]," Woods joked. "The public may turn on us, and we all may be relegated to the Halls of the Canceled. ... We don't know. We may be canceled imminently."

As of writing, the series' future remains in limbo, without an official cancellation or an order for a third season — though, given its distinct lack of buzz and HBO's recent slew of cancellations, the Avenue 5 crew may be stranded for good.

He is set to join the cast of AppleTV+'s The Afterparty

In 2022, Christopher Miller — half of the creative duo behind "The Lego Movie," "21 Jumpstreet," and "Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse" — created a new comedy series for AppleTV+ called "The Afterparty." In the same vein as HBO's "Search Party," "The Afterparty" is a dark comedy-murder mystery that mines humor from the uniquely lost and occasionally vapid lives of the millennial generation (as pointed out by critic Olivia Rutigliano in her analysis of a new genre she calls "The Millennial Whodunnit").

The series was renewed for a second season in 2022, bringing back Season 1 cast members Sam Richardson, Zoë Chao, and Tiffany Haddish. Several new cast members, including Zach Woods, were added to the season (set to take place during a wedding, as opposed to the class reunion from the first season). Woods is credited as Edgar and will be a core cast member for the upcoming season.