"The Word 'Coma' Bugs The Hell Out Of Me"
CB: So, on the subject of fanbases. When we talked two years ago, the relationship between Logan and Veronica was just starting to thaw, but nothing romantic had happened yet. Now, they've been all over the place -- sometimes torrid, sometimes hateful, sometimes even functional. But wherever their relationship happens to be, they have a very vocal fanbase. Does that affect anything you do?
RT: Not a thing. I have no idea what the fans think of the Logan/Veronica journey this season. I mean, I kind of have it vaguely mapped out in my head. The thing that I've said is that it's going to be a rocky ride -- I want it to feel like the real world. I want it to feel like...[with] somebody you're incredibly drawn to, there are ups and downs and peaks and valleys, particularly with two characters that are so tough on themselves and tough on each other, they're kindred in so many ways, but are also volatile. I mean, I'm enjoying it. It will continue to be bumpy -- I think it would be a boring show and hard to believe if we played a fairy-tale romance, and yet I think it would cheat people who see the attraction, the chemistry between the two, if we didn't pay it off at times. So that's kind of my theory going into it, at least.
CB: Sure, but going at that question from a slightly different angle, just knowing how popular they are, are there certain dramatic lines you wouldn't cross? I mean, obviously, just from a character standpoint, Logan wouldn't turn around and rape Veronica -- it wouldn't be believable.
RT: Right. Are there lines I wouldn't cross? I suppose. The problem, and I think I have this problem a lot, is that I'm willing to not protect characters in the way that other shows are so careful to do. I feel like it lands in predictable drama -- as an example, [in] one of the episodes I wrote for Dawson's Creek, the story is that a football player at the high school is telling people that he nailed Joey. And when it was first conceived, the story I was arguing for was to have Joey rip him to shreds, and my bosses at that point said, "Oh, no no no, that's so unlikable. You can't do that -- people won't forgive Joey." And I remember I hated that at the time, because the idea felt real to me, it felt honest, it felt possible, and yet...what I'm suggesting is that maybe these people are right -- that heroes on television have to be less flawed than the rest of us. But it's a depressing thought if that's the case, and it's not the sort of television that I gravitate to. I suppose, at the end of the day, I feel like I'm more forgiving of the characters' flaws and errors than the fanbase. They hold them up to a higher ideal. Now Veronica, in my mind, can't win; every week, she pours herself into helping someone out, devotes all of her energy, and people complain about her meanness.