Exclusive! Veronica Mars Creator Reveals New Plan, Answers You!

By Kristin Veitch Nov 30, 2006 12:40 AMTags
Veronica Mars, Jason Dohring, Kristen BellScott Humbert/The CW

It should be criminal  to make an hour of television like last night’s Veronica Mars. Seriously, someone, please, arrest VM boss Rob Thomas and throw away the key.

Why? I’ll tell you why. ‘Cause it was so fanfreakingtastic  it makes every other show on TV look like it was put together by glue-sniffing monkeys! Can I get an amen, my Veronica-lovin’ brethren?! (I thought I could!)

Not only was last night’s episode thoroughly rocking in every way, but the ratings reflected it, scoring 3.5 million viewers—the biggest audience ever in the CW's coveted 18-34 demo. Yeeeeeay!

To celebrate, I just spent a little time chatting with Rob himself. (Yes, miraculously, he has not yet been arrested or abducted by jealous producers of other shows.) And lucky for us, Rob was in an especially good mood (did I mention biggest audience ever?) and willing to spill. So, I had him tackle the most popular questions sent in by you fans. I’ll lead off with the big news…

What’s the plan for the rest of the season?
Well, you’ll be the first person to hear this. There has been talk—more than talk—about dropping the whole big mystery idea after this middle mystery and to do all stand-alone episodes and sort of a combination of a few things. The network is behind it, and I am interested in heading in that direction.

Really? Why the change?
One feeling is that the big mysteries keep away the casual TV viewers, and the other is that the thing that has been least  successful since season one—meaning the things we get the most complaints about—are the big mysteries. My design in season one was that Veronica’s best friend was dead, and every season regular had an integral role in the mystery. And unless they wanted every year to kill Veronica’s friends, it’s hard to have the same emotional connective that’s worth spending seven, eight, nine episodes on a mystery. It’s one of the things we are deciding on right now.

Is this change something you are interested in or the network is interested in?
Both. Honestly, I brought it up to the network, and they jumped at the idea. But what I think we might do is the final mystery we were going to run instead of running it as our final five is just to play those as stand-alone episodes and maybe contract that big mystery into a two-episode thing with a cliffhanger as just a trial balloon. And hopefully before season four, we’ll see how it works. It seems like a good time to do it—a good fun test balloon. Try it over five and see how fans and non-fans react.

Will there still be some continuing story arcs?
Yes. I mean, we will still have ongoing personal life stories from Veronica, so there will be romantic relationships and the normal travails. We just wouldn’t have a mystery at the core.

Well, whatever your plan, I’m in. Honestly, last night was incredible. And the ratings show it. Congrats.
Thank you. It’s so nice to hear, because we have had some glum weeks. It has been a combination of ratings going down a little lower and that horrible [Entertainment Weekly] review. And, well, it’s just really good to have some good news. We got our best ever numbers and really good response to the episode, and we’re all really happy today.

I wish we LoVe fans could say the same.

I must admit, I do like it better when those two are snarky and tortured, but you gotta give us fans a glimmer of hope. Was that the end of Logan and Veronica?
Here's what I'm willing to say: They are not over. But it will be a rocky road.

And the next arc is who killed the dean?

And are we to believe the dean is the only who is dead?
I will answer that, because I didn’t mean to mislead anyone. He is the only one who is dead. He did not kill his wife and her lover.

I was so happy to see Mac back. I know that she was doing Big Love. Was it hard to let her go for those episodes?
It’s a little tricky, but the Big Love people were great with us. We love, love, love Tina in the show, and I wish I had her for more than what used to be 12 but is now 11 episodes.

So, where do things stand on a fourth season? Is there anything we fans can do to help?
I honestly don’t know much. I got an email from a Friday Night Lights viewer who said lets get Friday Night Lights viewers to watch Veronica Mars and Veronica Mars viewers to watch Friday Night Lights—and improve both their ratings, because they say it’s the best teen night on television, to watch them back to back on Tuesdays. I know the more the network feels it would outrage fans, the better the chance of getting back. But if the fans write them or contact them, they should always do it sweetly. Also, promotion equals bigger ratings, so we won’t miss a step when we come back in January.

Last question. And it's an important one. Where can I buy an "Ask Me About My STD" shirt?
[Laughs.] It’s funny, I actually made that up, and I now have one, too. And by the way, we liked that kid so much—the guy who offered Mac the whiskey—that he actually makes another appearance. We find out he was stumbling home drunk from the party and hears the gunshot. So, he’s the only witness who can put a time of death.

So, how do you all feel about the idea of dropping the longer mysteries in favor of episodes that stand alone? Good idea? Totally cracked out? Let your voice be heard by commenting below, or voting in the new poll on the main page!