Veronica Mars Season 4 Is Another Unfortunate Example of Disappointing Tropes
We were all excited about Veronica Mars season 4… but then the finale happened. I can understand the frustration certain fans feel about some TV shows continuing to take the predictable route by using problematic tropes.
This article includes spoilers for the Veronica Mars season 4 finale. You’ve been warned.
The fourth season of Veronica Mars is currently airing on Hulu. If you head on over to social media, you can see fans sharing their disappointment. As far as my opinion goes, I feel the same. The finale was so bad, so predictable, and frankly, it came across as disrespectful to viewers. The justification show creator Rob Thomas gave made it even worse.
So basically, the new episodes decided to kill Logan after he tied the knot with Veronica. Of course, such a decision came as frustrating for fans who have invested years in the pairing and had to wait through more ‘will-they-or-won’t-they’ scenarios during the course of the fourth season.
Then came the interview Rob Thomas gave. Apparently, Thomas couldn’t think of how to continue the show (if there are any future seasons) without killing Logan.
I mean, seriously?
Sigh! Here’s what he had to say:
“Kristen [Bell] and I really want to keep doing more of these [limited, self-contained seasons], like the Sherlock and even Fargo templates. Something where, when we both have windows of availability, we can come back and do it. The thinking is that we need to survive as a noir detective show. And if we kept doing a show that was half teenage soap and half mystery show, the fear is it would start feeling like nostalgia. Going full mystery show gives us our best chance to survive. I think there’s a reason you don’t see many hard-boiled detective shows where the lead detective has a boyfriend or a girlfriend; it kind of limits your options. It was like we were cutting off a limb to save a life… I love Jason Dohring. And I love the character of Logan. But I feel as though we are going to have a better shot of doing more and more Veronica Mars if our heroine does not have a boyfriend or a husband back home.”
Does Thomas know his fan base? The relationships Veronica Mars had are what attracted viewers. People fell in love with the characters and the dynamics between them, not whatever mysterious that Veronica had to solve.
I get that Veronica’s life doesn’t need to be easy, but the decision made during the finale just to give her more pain came across as wrong to me. It kind of felt misogynistic, as if saying fictional women can’t remain interesting or continue telling their story if they’re involved in a supportive romantic relationship. It’s a TV trope I’m not a fan of (regardless of gender).
Also, a “wounded creature” is how Thomas likes to think of Veronica. In a way, I can understand the criticism certain fans have of Thomas using a fictional woman for man-centric wish fulfillment where the woman is beautiful yet wounded and needs to remain romantically available for the male-gaze.
If TV writers can’t figure out how to tell compelling narratives once the leads get together, then maybe those writers aren’t really greatly talented to begin with?
There’s a reason shows like Schitt’s Creek and Brooklyn Nine-Nine are adored by fans. They feature loving relationships between the leads. They exhibit the type of talent that respects fans; something different than taking the easy route by opening the ‘Tropes’ book.
Let’s see if the live-action Veronica Mars franchise is able to come back from such a blow.
What did you think of the Veronica Mars season 4 finale? Let us know.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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