A Veronica Mars revival may be in the cards for television fans sometime in the future. TVLine is reporting that creator Rob Thomas and Veronica Mars herself, Kristen Bell, are both invested in bringing the show back as a limited series.
The report comes from the 2017 Television Critics Association winter press tour last week, where Thomas was on-hand to promote the third season of the critically acclaimed The CW series iZombie. He was optimistic about the chances of doing a six-hour revival, though the specifics would have to be worked out with NBC (where Kristen Bell’s current series The Good Place is airing) and, potentially, Netflix, which is but one avenue Thomas names as a space for the new series.
The Good Place, iZombie, and Thomas’s newest development for The CW, a remake of Lost Boys, also complicate the filming schedules.
If a revival does happen, this time it would be without crowdfunding — a change from the 2014 Veronica Mars film, which raised an astounding $5,702,153 through Kickstarter.
“We want to make sure that the audience wants it, and this time around we’re not going to ask the audience to pony up for anything,” Bell told TVLine in an interview last summer.
These comments concur with what Thomas said at San Diego Comic-Con 2015, again while promoting iZombie. At that con, Thomas said he and Bell think a “short-run” Veronica Mars revival would hew closer to HBO’s True Detective, and that they both find the idea of a Veronica Mars miniseries appealing.
iZombie is not set to return with its third season until April, but it is a consistent performer for The CW and could easily gain a fourth season, making it the first series Rob Thomas has created to break past three seasons. (Rest in peace, Cupid and Party Down.)
Another major scheduling conflict for piecing together a Veronica Mars revival currently revolves around NBC’s The Good Place. There’s no Veronica Mars without Veronica Mars, and Kristen Bell is currently committed as the lead of the NBC comedy.
According to Deadline, The Good Place is “a modest Live+SD performer,” meaning it draws a decent audience from people who watch live or view recordings of the episodes within the first 24 hours of the episode’s premiere. Factoring in three-day time-shifted recordings, The Good Place is doing well enough for NBC that a renewal seems likely.
Veronica’s prime love interest is also a must for any new Veronica Mars episodes, and Jason Dohring is now pulling double duty on two The CW series (iZombie and the Vampire Diaries spinoff series, The Originals) as Inquisitr reported late last year.
However, as TVLine reports, The Good Place showrunner Michael Schur insists that a second season of the series probably would not air until September, 2017, at the earliest, which could provide a window for Bell and Dohring to shoot new Veronica Mars episodes during the summer.
So what would a Veronica Mars revival miniseries look like? One of the biggest assets of the film continuation is that, though it still mostly takes place in the class-divided town of Neptune, California, it was not shackled by the need to have Veronica in school. The film uses the Neptune High School 10-year reunion party as a way for Veronica to return to her old stomping grounds and deal with a high-profile murder case involving Logan.
Six episodes is an ideal number of episodes for Veronica Mars as well. Though the ill-fated third season received lower ratings and has some underlying creative and representational issues, one of its biggest successes was transitioning from the season-long mysteries into shorter, interconnected mysteries. The case of the murder of Hearst College’s dean is, in fact, six episodes long, and manages to be thoroughly interesting from start to finish.
True Detective is not the only model available for the Veronica Mars revival, either. Recent true-crime series such as the This American Life spinoff podcast Serial, and the Netflix original series Making a Murderer, as well as British series like The Hour and Broadchurch, have all had success with limited episodes.
Veronica Mars may never craft an elegant and lengthy mystery like the murder of Lily Kane again, but the setting of the show, with its biting commentary on socioeconomic status and familial relations, is still ripe for new content 10 years later.
[Featured Image by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP]