Is it bad when you want your favorite show to end?

Every episode of Veronica Mars disappoints me more than the last. Not because they are bad episodes, but because then could be great episodes. Mistakes were made in season one, but regardless it was amazing and excellent television, brilliant executed, emotionally engaging and well-plotted, a neatly wrapped up novel-like story with all the trimmings. And every disjointed episode thereafter has made me like the show just a bit less.

I would love, love for Mars to turn itself around, but season three is nearing a close and while there have been signs of greatness poking through, none of them have stuck, and the consensus on the boards I read is that most people don’t really expect the show to be around for another season. I can’t point to any one thing that makes us all so unhappy — except perhaps a showrunner who seems to be at least a bit out of touch — but continue to pile on minor disappointments one after another and you’ll slowly wear a man down. At best, on balance, I think Mars has hit neutral buoyancy — its good enough that I want to watch each week, but its problematic enough that each week I finish the episode, sit down for a few minutes to think about it, and invariable start picking it all apart.

In a sad way I’m almost glad that the CW may be putting this show out of is misery. Because there are plenty of people making plenty of average television shows, and, for my money, if you’re not going to strive to be great in what you do each and every day, you might as well not even bother to show up.

3 replies on “Is it bad when you want your favorite show to end?”

  1. I’ll add two things out of the post:

    1. I wonder if my impressions might change once I get around to re-watching on DVD. Watching season 2 straight through over a couple weeks might make it work better for me, and the same could possible be true for the season 3 mysteries.

    2.My personal idea for how to make VM new and fresh is to up and move it again, like they did with the college. I want to see Veronica take the FBI internship and end up in a field office, and they can get something like _Life on Mars_ going — Veronica teaches the stale agents lessons about non-traditional investigative techniques, they teach her how you do things by the rules and the consequences when things go bad. The show would change dramatically and we’d lose a lot of characters, but it would be bold and potentially really cool, and really holds true to the title of the show — its about Veronica’s growth and transformation, not Neptune.

  2. I’m, unshockingly, feeling the same way. And unfortunately I don’t know how much #1 in your added comment will make a difference, since that’s how I experienced the whole show apart from the last few eps of S3. I found the last few eps of S2, in particular, hurried and confusingly overkilled and just odd, though there were a few really great moments (Haaron in the elevator, for one). In the end I didn’t buy the big reveal on an emotional level, though. And the twist on the revisited history of the S1 rape arc still bugs me, even though I accepted it as necessary to give Veronica credibility in the S3 rape arc. And I have so many issues with the Dean O’Dell arc in S3 that I don’t where to start. No matter how much fun it was so see Veronica pull an Hercule Poirot-style parlor game reveal at the end, it was just flat overall in a way that VM simply shouldn’t be.

    At core, I think the decisions made at the end of S1 about how S2 would play were emotionally tonedeaf in ways that I still actually have a hard time even believing, given how emotionally on S1 was. I guess the genius there wasn’t Rob Thomas after all. Who was it, and what show are they working on now?

    I agree they’d need to do a serious revamp if they want to keep even their core audience engaged. Like, I used to adore Logan, and now I just want him off the show because his character’s been written as an emotional cutout who sucks screen energy. I was struck by just how much I missed Lamb in Papa’s Cabin, and how he’d become one of the few people whose screentime I was really looking forward to. And not just cos he was pretty! :D. There’s no chemistry between Logan and Veronica anymore, so I wish they’d let that die for a while. And I wish they’d juggled the budget to there be more Mac and Wallace, who don’t have enough airtime anymore to stay true to their former roles in Veronica’s life.

    Everything’s become too Mary Sue perfect. Veronica isn’t the most popular girl in school but she’s a golden child in a way she never was, and the show doesn’t deal with her handling that change. It would be good to see her at the FBI and being forced to deal with often being out of her league – but still being capable of rising to the challenge. Even Keith has lost his edge, and his outsider status, without taking a look at how that would actually change things for him.

    It’d be interesting to see VM pull a Buffy and create a crisis that would take Veronica out of school and back into the real world. I want to see her solving crimes that don’t involve a college microcosm, and I want to see her facing authority figures with more power behind them than a college professor or dean. Heck, at this point I’d be willing to watch a VM where Keith and Veronica screw up with breaking the rules around use of sheriff’s privileges and have to go on the run – as long as there’s no Mexico and no Duncan! And especially if for unexplained reasons they need to bring Mac and Cliff along with them. Bonus if a surprise Lamb happens to be kicking around, breathing, after all, and pops up sometime along the way.

    I guess it’s a sign of something that I care enough, still, to rant about it for paragraphs. But it’s sad, given what VM was, what Veronica as a character meant, and how totally amazing and fun it could maybe still be.

  3. I don’t mind the college setting but they could do a lot more to make it more like college is. I watch it to see her encounter situations that we encountered (maybe a bit worse for the dramatic element) and handle them. Seeing alternative outcomes to similar situations we encountered would be cool (though I doubt she would have figured out who hung the Diversity flyers :))

Comments are closed.