BLOGS

Veronica Mars: The Pros and Cons of the Movie Kickstarter

Upon hearing that there was a real possibility of a Veronica Mars movie, if creator Rob Thomas could raise enough money through his Kickstarter campaign, the first reaction of any self-respecting fan of the show was to reach for their wallet and hand over all of their money. But the bigger question is: if they do meet their $2 million goal [Update: accomplished in a mere ten hours], is a Veronica Mars movie actually a good idea? We weigh the pros and cons.

Con: More Isn't Always Better
Veronica Mars is one of our all-time favorite television characters; her sarcastic wit had us at hello, and we were crushed that her show ended when it did. But as evidenced by the attempts to do more Battlestar Galactica, in the form of extended TV movies and direct-to-DVDs like Razor and The Plan (and that's completely leaving aside the spin-offs/prequels), new doesn't mean necessary, or even good. These return visits felt pointless and failed to recapture what was so compelling about the series, even though it had the original cast involved. We're already afraid of what the newly reformed Arrested Development might look like all these years after the show's original run, and worrying about Veronica Mars: The Movie might give us an ulcer.

Pro: Maybe They Can Recapture the Magic
Still, we're secretly hopeful that if anyone can revive these characters in a way that feels vital and compelling, it would be Rob Thomas. If he can pull off a story that feels like we stepped right back into the show without missing a beat, we'd be suitably impressed and beyond thrilled. After all, it did work for Serenity, even though that movie had the difficult task of trying to appeal to people outside of the existing Firefly fandom. Hopefully, by having a fan-funded movie, Thomas and Co. will have the luxury of making a movie aimed that just needs to satisfy the hardcore audience without worrying about converting new viewers.

Con: The FBI Thing Wasn't What You'd Call Great
We watched the Season 4 mini-pilot on the Season 3 DVD to get an idea for what a post-college Veronica Mars would look like, and we weren't exactly won over. It had some potential, but it lacked the show's specialness. We loved her relationship with her father and her interactions with the Neptune community and its class system. Taking her out of that world made us think that a post-Neptune Veronica Mars would be more like slightly darker version of a show like Covert Affairs, and that isn't what we'd want to shell out hard-earned cash for.

Pro: Bringing Veronica Back Home
That said, Rob Thomas mentioned in his Kickstarter message that it is time for Veronica's ten-year high school reunion, which would give her a reason to return to Neptune. That actually sounds a lot more promising than watching her off on her own fighting crime the FBI way.

Con: Hard to Make Her an Outsider When She'd Be Awesome Now
One of the great things about Veronica as a character was her outsider status, and the fact that she didn't quite fit in with any faction of high school or college students, and just had her little gang to support her. But now that she's post-grad, wouldn't people in the real world have come to appreciate her awesomeness? We presume that she'd have grown into an even more kick-ass adult who had a large circle of friends who appreciated her brilliance and would have loved that she'd run background checks on all their significant others and/or take a tire iron to their car. And if this movie is set at her high school reunion, wouldn't her former classmates be impressed by her FBI credentials and successes, like Sandy Frink in Romy & Michele's High School Reunion?

Pro: Getting the Gang Back Together
While Kristen Bell has starred in a bunch of movies and is currently on Showtime's House of Lies (and, of course, voiced Gossip Girl) and Amanda Seyfried is a bona fide movie star, most of the rest of the cast hasn't had such promising career opportunities post-Mars. And seeing everyone reunited would be fun and thrilling, though we worry that people like Mac (Tina Majorino, who is currently on Grey's Anatomy) and Deputy Leo (Max Greenfield, who is Schmidt on New Girl) may be swamped with their current gigs and not able to make an appearance, but we're hopeful. The mere idea of Logan, Weevil, Wallace, Keith, Dick Casablancas and Veronica all in the same room together again makes us smile. But though we feel bad for Chris Lowell, we could live without a Piz sighting (especially since he knew Veronica in college, not high school).

Con: Would High School Relationships Still Matter?
Presumably, in the years since she's been out of Neptune, Veronica's moved on with her life. Would she still be hung up on Logan? We know, they are epic and all of that, spanning years and continents, but realistically a great deal of high school relationships don't work out. So would she still want to be with him? Would the fans donating to this Kickstarter understand if she no longer cared? What if she no longer kept in touch with Weevil? Or Wallace? Would Weevil even still be alive?

Con: Condensing the Mystery Is a Problem
As evidenced by the way that Season 3 did the mini-mysteries, getting rid of the long-drawn out season-long arcs isn't a good thing for this show all. The series played best when Veronica really got to dig her heels into something dark and twisty and convoluted, and if devoting only a few episodes to one crime wasn't enough, how can they possibly squeeze a big mystery into a two-hour movie and make that compare to Seasons 1 and 2?

Pro: It Could Start a Trend for Other Brilliant But Cancelled Shows
More Kickstarter campaigns might be started for either reunion episodes or full-on movies featuring characters from the many gone-too-soon series that didn't get the proper resolution. Be it the likes of Pushing Daisies or the long-buzzed about Deadwood movie or the silly Spike movie (though that one would need some kind of time machine app, as James Marsters is not exactly looking youthful these days). Not that we'd really be anxious to see how those play out, but by making fans responsible for the start-up costs, it would really put the onus on the people protesting the cancellation of their favorite under-watched show to keep the fires alive. It's an interesting proposition given the different mediums available (On Demand, Netflix, etc.) that are available now, and it would separate the real supporters from the social media gadflies.

Con: It May Not Live Up to Fan Expectations
Now that the collective fanbase is directly contributing money (more so than just buying DVDs or investing hours watching the show) to the campaign, they are going to have even loftier expectations of what this movie will look like, and more importantly, how it will end. On the Kickstarter page, Rob jokes about the fans wanting Logan and Veronica together, and we're sure that if that doesn't happen, there will be a large part of the fanbase that will outright revolt. And we're concerned that with these investments and the fact that people have waited so long for this to happen, there's no way the movie could possibly satisfy everyone. Either the hardcore noir fans who love the darkness of the series will be upset, or the shippers will be disappointed.

Pro: We'll No Longer Have to Hear People Gripe/Wonder About a Movie
Since the show ended, we've heard people lament the fact that it was cancelled, and that the much-talked about movie hadn't happened. Every time two VM cast members were in the same room, it stirred up hope anew, and then the subsequent silence made people complain that there still wasn't a movie being made. Then again, people still complain about Firefly's cancellation and that got a widely released big-screen sequel, so we're sure fans will just find another thing to bitch about. "Why aren't there two movies? Why can't Netflix make it into a series again?" Sigh.

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