Maurice Moss (born c. 1972 ) is a worker in the IT Department of Reynholm Industries. He is the most hard working of the staff in the IT Department, and is also the most experienced and the most capable of doing his job well. He puts a lot of effort into his job, however, he does not get the credit which he deserves. Like most of the department, he is ignored and disrespected by the employees who rank above him on the upper floors.
Moss was born between 1972 and 1973 to Mr. and Mrs. Moss. His skin tone suggests that he is of both white and black heritage, however, he doesn’t speak with an accent and so it is likely he was brought up in Britain. From an early age, Moss showed a strong academic talent at school and was bullied by his other classmates .
Between 1983 and 1984, Moss broke the patio window and was sued by his mother. Although it was only a show trial held in the kitchen and judged by the cat, Moss lost his case and was still paying costs right into his adulthood .
Work for Denholm Reynholm
Sometime during his adult life, Moss was hired to work in the IT Department of Reynholm Industries by Denholm Reynholm. There, he met Roy Trenneman, who would later become his best friend. At one stage, a fire broke out in the office after Moss left a soldering iron on, resulting in a near fatality, however, Roy and Moss were left unharmed . Later on, Roy and Moss visited Amsterdam where they got so drunk that they hired prostitutes. Not knowing what to do, they brought them to a funfair, where they played various fairground games .
In 2001, the former second-in-command of Reynholm Industries, Richmond Avenal, was demoted to work in the IT Department after he became a goth. After a while, both Moss and Roy got so tired of Richmond’s depressing atmosphere that they told him to stay locked in a hidden room behind the department to look after some abandoned machinery. Richmond had very little contact with the other members of the IT Department for the next four years .
In late 2005, Jen Barber became the Head of the IT Department and was given the title Relationships Manager. However, Jen had really sneaked her way into the job after she had falsely claimed to have had several years of experience with computers. Moss and Jen got on relatively well, and Moss once tried to teach Jen the basics of computer construction, to ill effect.
Work for Douglas Reynholm
In 2007, Denholm Reynholm commited suicide after irregularities were found in his pension fund, leaving his unexperienced, sexually-frustrated son, Douglas, as his successor. At first, Moss and Roy didn’t respect their new boss, giving him a phone which violently vibrates whenever rung, but both learn to treat him with respect eventually.
In 2008, Moss suffered a severe head injury after running into a door, and completely forgot his knowledge of computers. Later, he was asked to fix Douglas’ electric pants, from which he recieved an electric shock. Despite this, Moss managed to recover relatively unharmed.
In 2010, Moss was arrested and subsequently used by the police in a program for teaching young people about the dangers of crime after shoplifting some DVD’s of Grand Designs during a session of bunking.
Moss is very hard-working, and is the driving force of the IT Department. He enjoys working with computers and puts the maximum amount of effort into his job. Despite this, he has little social interaction with any one other than Roy and Jen, and is often bullied and mocked by other people. He is easily hurt and is extremely emotionally weak, and instantly bursts into tears whenever he is even mildly insulted. Although Roy is his only true friend, Roy’s social skills seem to far exceed that of Moss. He has been described as a ‘standard nerd’ and a ‘social pariah’.
Moss is extremely intelligent and is most experienced in chemistry, physics, technology, computing, mathematics and Despite his intelligence, Moss can be quite childish at times, having a children’s astronaut-themed duvet, and can be especially in social situation, where he may make socially ignorant comments and not respect another person’s feelings. Despite this, he seems to be willing to talk to strangers without much hesitation.
Moss, along with Roy, were briefly affected by Jen’s menstrual cycle and became overly feminine for a time, throwing his computer monitor at the wall when he was angered, however, after having a ‘big girl’s night out’, he swiftly recovered.
He suffers from many ailments and phobias, including arachnophobia (fear of spiders), virgivitiphobia (fear of being sexually assaulted) and policophobia (fear of authorical figures), and suffers from asthma, myopia (short-sightedness) and a ‘hot ear’, which he cools down by spraying water onto it. He has an extreme fear of going to prison, as he fears that the prisoners will ‘rape the flip out of [him]’.
On his personalised page on LonelyFaces.co.uk, he lists his likes as computers, Masters of the Universe, Tek Wars, Magic the Darkening, Ferris Beuller’s Day Off and his dislikes as football, most telly, non-computer things, the countryside.
Moss is heterosexual, but has not had as many relationships as Roy or Jen. In all, he has had three relationships, one with Jen herself, one with Dr. Mendall, the building’s psychiatrist, and
one with Margaret, a drunk. His brief relationship with Jen happened at the ‘Thank-You Party’ for Project Icarus. Both got so drunk that they went to bed together, but, although Moss seemed to be quite pleased with himself the night afterwards, Jen did not seem as keen and the relationship ended.
His relationship with Dr. Mendall, however, was somewhat more successful. Although Dr. Mendall being considerably older than him, Moss seemed to get on with her well and the relationship looked hopeful until Dr. Mendall slept with Roy. It is unknown what happened afterwards, however, Dr. Mendall was never seen again.
His relationship with Margaret was on and off, the pair met at a dinner party hosted by Jen and her new boyfriend, Peter File. Margaret got extremely drunk and started squeezing Moss’ knee under the table. Moss didn’t seem to like Margaret very much, however, he was seen bringing her home after the party ended. In season 4, episode 2 he is revealed to have slept with a groupie at a countdown party.
Although Moss has little romantic interaction with women, he does claim to ‘do all right’ with the opposite sex and claims to have met a woman on holiday. He was also seduced by a female worker on the seventh floor, although he was unaware that she was attracted to him.
Skills and abilities
- Olfactory expert: Moss has an incredibly accute and detailed sense of smell, capable of smelling and naming all of the ingredients in a muffin and was able to smelling the rohypnol concealed in Jen’s cup of tea.
- Mathematician: Moss is very capable at mathematics, cable of calculating the amount of cigarettes Jen smokes per year in a matter of seconds with minimal information.
- Computer expertise: Moss is incredibly experienced in computers, and is capable of hacking into Bill Crouse’s personal accounts in a matter of seconds. He is able to overcome viruses and repair firewalls on a vast scale, and considers an amatueristic constuction of a circuit board humourous.
- Machinery construction: Moss is quite skilled with machinery and technology in general, capable of constructing a ‘stress machine’ which could measure someone’s stress level and once helped Roy construct a telephone-answering machine.
- ‘Five-Finger-Fillet’: Moss is surprisingly talented at the ‘five-finger-fillet’, a game where the player spreads their hand on a flat surface and, using a knife, stabs in between the gaps, trying not to stab their fingers. Moss performed this trick in order to test a new stress machine he had just construced, and performed at a considerable speed without stabbing himself once.
- Genius-level intellect: Moss is a genius who possesses superior intellect, with a diverse knowledge of technology, computers and mathematics. He was also capable of memorising and reciting a 15-digit number seconds after hearing it for the first time. His field of expertise is science, technology and computer programming, however, he is also experted in other areas.
- Inventor and entrepreneur: Moss is an accomplished inventor, creating a revultionary bra using a clever powder which doesn’t allow the bra to remain in any one place. He pitched this idea on Dragons’ Den alongside Roy and Jen, however, did not secure investment due to an overheating problem which caused the bra to burst into flames. Despite this break-through, he has also invented very useless products, including tiny ladders which moths use in case they get stuck in the bath.
Moss is Roy‘s best friend, and they often meet up together and socialise. They both have a close relationship and Moss is one of the few people Roy can confide in. Despite this, Roy has been known to exploit Moss, and sometimes insults him, and the pair occasionally get into physical fights. Moss is under the impression that they spend so much time together that he and Roy are like a married couple, however, Roy disagrees.
Roy is always willing to help Moss, and once prepared him for facing a gang of bullies. Both have a love of technology and machinery and often play video games and watch movies together.
Jen and Moss got on relatively well when they first met. Moss taught Jen some basic computer skills, but to ill-effect. Jen was quite violent towards Moss after she discovered that he had told the whole office that she was dead. However, when she discovered that Bill Crouse had been spreading rumors that he had been the last person to have slept with her, she transferred her aggresion onto him.
Jen and Moss had a very brief sexual relationship. The night after the ‘Thank-You’ Party for Project Icarus, Jen woke up to see Moss standing over her in a pink dressing gown. It is unknown what happened next, but it is probable that Jen was drunk at the time and the relationship did not continue.
Despite this, Jen only saw Moss as a work colleague, and never as a friend, until she went to an interview for another job. There she realised that Roy and Moss need her, and that she couldn’t possibly leave them. This indicates a genuine liking for both Roy and Moss, who she had originally seen as just work associates.
Jen later admitted that Moss and Roy are her friends, and on one occasion stood up for them when Douglas began insulting them.
Douglas Reynholm is the manager of Reynholm Industries and hence is Moss’ boss. At first, Roy and Moss had little respect for Douglas, giving him a phone which vibrates violently when rung. Despite this, Moss learns to respect Douglas, to the extent that he was willing to ring the emergency services for him when Douglas accidently shot himself in the leg.
Despite this, Douglas has called Moss an ‘idiot’ in the past and has been known to insult both him and Roy. In 2007, Moss was assaulted by Douglas after Douglas had accidently consumed rohypnol concealed in a cup of tea. Moss sued Douglas to the value of £560, although Douglas had only kissed Moss and chased him around a table.
Moss and Richmond had a difficult relationship at first, so he and Roy made an unanimous decision to banish Richmond beyond the red door, where he was told to look after mainframes with no briefing to what he was meant to do. However, when Jen joined the office, she campaigned for Richmond to return to his original job. After Richmond came out of isolation, Moss’ relationship with him somewhat improved slightly.
Moss and Roy share the idea that Richmond does nothing but ‘bring the mood down’. Moss and Richmond have discussed commiting suicide together. It is unknown if Moss tried to trick Richmond into killing himself, or if he genuinely had suicidal thoughts.
Moss is nearly always seen wearing classical ‘geek’ attire, a short-sleeve checkered shirt and tie, wearing cordoroy trousers very high. He wears large glasses, and may change the size of his spectacles if he gets too excited. He keeps his many glasses, of all shapes and sizes, beneath his desk.
He is of both white and black heritage, and so has a slightly dark skin tone. He has brown eyes and he wears his black hair in an afro-style, which gives an exaggerated look to its right-side part.
Behind the scenes
- Moss is portryed by comedian and actor, Richard Ayoade in both the British and the American versons of The IT Crowd. In the German adaption, Moss is renamed Gabriel and portrayed by German actor Stefan Puntigam.
- As of June 2010, Moss is the most popular character in the show according to a poll conducted by Channel 4, recieving 49%.
- Moss has said that he finds it very difficult to lie after a childhood experience, however, he seems to have no problem lying on his webpage on the dating site LonelyFaces.co.uk, on which he claims to be 22 years old when he is actually 32.
- The death predicition website HowLongHaveYouGot.com predicted that Moss will live to be 107 years old.