Veronica Mars
The Second Rob Thomas Interview

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"The Word 'Coma' Bugs The Hell Out Of Me"
CB: Now, I think it's pretty well known that because of budget and, at least in Tina Majorino's case, scheduling considerations, you don't get to use the regulars as much as you'd like. How much of the old recurring characters are we going to see through the rest of the season? RT: Actually...the original last mystery was supposed to be Mac-centric. And so we saved a lot of her episodes. And we had a gap where Piz wasn't seen for a while, so we have a lot of them for the final episodes -- in fact, Tina's in all of the last five episodes. Parker is somebody we've used more, so she's only in two, but I think we've got Piz and Wallace in all of our final ones. So we did a pretty good job of spacing those out -- I think we've got Dick for all of them as well. CB: Let's talk about Keith for a minute. It feels like his plotlines haven't really been integrated into what everyone else is doing. However, since he and the Dean had become friends, are we going to see him pulled in? RT: Yeah, I'll say that Keith, in this middle mystery, is going to feel much more involved. The rape mystery was a Veronica mystery, and Keith didn't have a part in that. Who killed Dean O'Dell is intentionally a Veronica/Keith mystery -- in every episode, you see both of them working on that case. CB: Speaking of Keith's earlier storylines, I have to ask -- is Kendall supposed to be dead? RT: She's dead until she's not dead. I mean yes, in my mind, she's dead, but if a writer came in and pitched an amazing reason she might be alive, I'd consider it. The other thing I will say is that the final mystery was going to have a bit more of a tie-back to that initial mystery, but I won't be able to execute that now, with dropping the big mystery and losing an episode. But yeah, in my mind, she's in a shallow grave in the desert. But until you see the body on this show...who knows. CB: So let's talk about the fact that the last five episodes are going to be stand-alones. RT: Yes. But I will say this -- we didn't find out about [the episode order being only twenty as opposed to twenty-two] until we had only three episodes left in the Dean O'Dell mystery, and it forced us to do all that storytelling in two. We had to drop some Dean O'Dell beats that I wanted to play. There's this one scene that, certainly, I can explain away, but I try to be good about paying off things that are brought up. Well, I should rephrase that -- I don't pay off red herrings, but I try to pay off the things that actually do lead to the end result. We'll shine a spotlight on a character's situation and raise the possibility that he did it, but if he didn't, I don't go back and tell the rest of his story. We did set up this one thing in the middle mystery that I wasn't able to pay off, because I lost an episode. So I'm a little bummed about that, and I think fans will notice. At the end of the day, I can explain it, but I feel bad about doing a setup with no payoff.

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Veronica Mars

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