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In the U.S. series The Office episode entitled Here Comes Treble Stephen Colbert plays the role of "Broccoli Rob", a Cornell alum and a Capella who competes with Andy for the lime light.

However, Colbert's entire portrayal is done via web cam. Why?

Was this an artistic choice, or was it brought on by extenuating circumstances? Was Colbert unable to attend a physical taping of the show due to scheduling conflicts?

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This article from Hollywood contends that it was probably scheduling conflicts (Colbert films his show in NY while The Office originates in Van Nuys, CA). Reporter Michael Arbeiter suggests it is a sure sign your show is running dry when the guest stars don't even show up in person!

If you think about it, though, if you wanted to contact someone you knew in college in NY years ago, would you fly to Scranton, PA to see them or would you Skype? This is a real-world plot solution. If Broccoli Rob had turned up in person, it may have seemed contrived - there really wasn't a reason for him to be in town.

  • It also indirectly supports Andy's character, which revolves around him seeing Cornell as the best time of his life and still being caught up on it instead of moving on with adult life (it suggests that Rob feels the same way). The fact that Broccoli Rob is open to video chatting for relatively minor events suggests that Andy and Rob are quite actively in contact. – Flater Feb 23 '18 at 13:48

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