‘The Office’ actress recounts time she asked producer to scratch a joke maligning Christians

A conversation on faith led to an actress on”The Office” recounting a “pivotal moment” when she confronted a producer over a joke maligning Christians.

(Video: Soul Boom)

Little more than one year after actor Rainn Wilson called out the “anti-Christian bias in Hollywood,” the author of “Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution,” invited former co-star Angela Kinsey on to his podcast of the same name to “go deep!”

Well into their discussion, the host brought up Kinsey’s portrayal of the “uptight Christian cat lady” Angela Martin in contrast to her real-life experience growing up with a “very warm, meaningful relationship with your faith and your family.”

The topic steered into the question, “Did that ever bump up against you in any way?”

“Yeah, actually,” Kinsey admitted, “there were one or two times where there would be a joke written for her that I thought was just really stereotypical, maybe one note.”

“And I like to think of her as a full, well-rounded person. I do remember there was a particular storyline between Angela and Oscar (a gay accountant portrayed by Oscar Nunez), where Angela was being super judge-y. I never went up to Greg about any joke,” she said mentioning producer and showrunner Greg Daniels, “but there was a joke at Oscar’s expense, and I went up to Greg and I was like, you know, ‘I can’t.'”

“I just was like, ‘I don’t feel good about it. I don’t feel good about that. I don’t feel like that’s what Jesus represented to me,” explained the actress. “And he was like, ‘okay.’ And he heard me, and he took the joke out. And the episode, it was ‘Gay Witch Hunt,’ had so many already. But that’s the one pivotal moment I remember being like, okay, this is feeling like a stereotype and very one note. And I feel like she has more depth than that.”

The duo’s conversation on faith led back to Kinsey’s upbringing by parents who read scripture daily and gave thanks before meals. Himself a member of the Bahá’í Faith, Wilson asked his guest to join him in saying grace that moment as he expressed his gratitude for everything that made the podcast and the conversation with his former co-star possible.

In March 2023, ahead of the release of his “Soul Boom” book, the actor openly criticized Hollywood’s treatment of Christians after watching an episode of the HBO series “The Last of Us.”

Posting to social media, he wrote, “I do think there is an anti-Christian bias in Hollywood. As soon as the David character in ‘The Last of Us’ started reading from the Bible I knew that he was going to be a horrific villain. Could there be a Bible-reading preacher on a show who is actually loving and kind?”

Their conversation came amidst what many saw as the makings of a spiritual revival across the entertainment industry as, days later, comedian and commentator Russell Brand announced after his own soul-searching that he would soon be getting baptized as a Christian.

“I know a lot of people are so cynical about the increasing interest in Christianity and the return to God, but to me, it’s obvious,” the actor explained. “As meaning deteriorates in the modern world, as our value systems and institutions crumble, all of us become increasingly aware that there is this eerily familiar awakening and beckoning figure that we’ve all known all of our lives, within us and around us. And to me, it’s very exciting.”

Kevin Haggerty

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