Mars Attracts: ‘Veronica’ set for tv return…

Hey, Marshmallows! The stars align as Mars heads back to Neptune and Veronica investigates the case once more...

Veronica Mars was a cult hit back in the late 1990s, combining the teenage angst of many of its peers with a darker and more savvy,  sardonic tone which came to be known as ‘teen noir’. Rob Thomas created the idea of  Veronica Mars (played by Kristen Bell) as a modern-day Nancy Drew, a high-school girl who helped her father (a senior police-officer and then a private detective) on cases whether he liked it or not. They lived in the West Coastal town of Neptune and the clash between the rich socialites and the more down-to-Earth population was the cause of much of the drama.  In the first season Veronica was investigating the murder of her best friend and still dealing with the aftermath of a party in which she had been date-raped by an unknown assailant.  The show balanced Veronica’s signature snark with complex mysteries and the genuine emotions and rites of passage the young girl might face.

The show ran for three seasons on UPN/CW between 2004 and 2007 and was controversially cancelled. There had been a plan to move the story away from Neptune and feature Veronica as a trainee FBI agent and a short ‘pitch’ was filmed but the network ultimately passed. A crowd-sourced film appeared in 2014, largely ignoring the pitch’s continuity, and easily raised its financial targets – around $6 million, $4 million above its original target – though some did question whether such a project with well known names should have needed to rely on the kickstarter platform created for smaller projects or should need fan money to finance it if none of the actual profits were funneled back to the fans. However, creatively, the production was well received.

Hulu have now announced a revival with Rob Thomas writing the first episode. The new series sees Veronica drawn back to Neptune when several prominent rich locals are murdered. The description released reads:  Spring breakers are getting murdered in Neptune, thereby decimating the seaside town’s lifeblood tourist industry. After Mars Investigations is hired by the parents of one of the victims to find their son’s killer, Veronica is drawn into an epic eight-episode mystery that pits the enclave’s wealthy elites, who would rather put an end to the month-long bacchanalia, against a working class that relies on the cash influx that comes with being the West Coast’s answer to Daytona Beach.  The series is expected to run to eight episodes and be broadcast through the hulu platform, with Bell reprising her role. It is not known yet how many of the original supporting cast will be involved.

As part of the deal, hulu will have the rights to screen all the previous seasons and it is expected the existing material and new season will debut in the middle of 2019.