A Veronica Mars revival is in the works at Hulu, Entertainment Weekly reports. The deal hasn’t been finalized yet, but it’s apparently close.
None of the details have yet been confirmed, but EW is reporting that Kristen Bell, who starred in the show’s original run as the titular teen detective, will reprise the role despite her commitments to NBC’s The Good Place, which she stars in. That suggests that the Veronica Mars revival will be a limited-run series, perhaps along the lines of the Gilmore Girls Netflix revival, but at this point we don’t know for sure. According to TVLine, the revival would likely run for eight episodes. Series creator and showrunner Rob Thomas would also be on board.
For fans, the news comes as a mixed blessing. On the one hand: new Veronica Mars material! Hooray! On the other hand: A big part of the Veronica Mars appeal was that she was a hard-boiled neo-noir private eye who was also a teenage girl, and now that she’s no longer a teenager, the balance of the show will have to shift.
Plus, we’ve already had a glimpse of what a Veronica Mars revival with an adult Veronica might look like before, and the results were just okay.
In some ways, Veronica Mars kicked off our current trend of beloved old properties getting nostalgic revivals. But it did so the old-fashioned way, powered by pure fan passion. After its original three-season run finished in 2007, fans were so determined to see more of their favorite detective that they funded a Kickstarter campaign for a movie, raising $5.7 million that ultimately served as the production budget for the 2014 Veronica Mars film. That total is even more impressive when you consider that the original fundraising goal was just $2 million: The fans were so passionate that they just kept donating even after the movie was guaranteed. (Full disclosure: I pitched in 10 bucks. I got a sticker!)
The resulting movie got mixed reviews, with most critics agreeing that it was more of a fun but disposable exercise in nostalgia than a compelling standalone film. In interviews, Thomas said he felt a certain responsibility to give the fans what they were paying for and do a greatest hits parade of fan favorite characters and storylines. “Look, it was a fan-funded movie,” he told Rolling Stone at the time, “and I felt the need to bring back old characters, cross-reference the old show and throw in some Easter eggs.”
Presumably, a Hulu revival won’t come with the same pressures that the fan-funded movie did, which might allow Thomas to spend less time being nostalgic and more time developing Veronica Mars’ signature noir moodiness. The question of how he will recreate the balance between teen soap and neo-noir that made the original Veronica Mars so compelling remains open — but if this deal pulls through, it will be exciting to see what he has in mind. As long as it’s epic.
Correction: An earlier version of this story said that The Good Place airs on CBS. It airs on NBC.