VEEP has been one of the top comedies on TV for the past five years. Last season was arguably it’s best, so I was under the impression that the creators wanted to go out on top by wrapping it up sooner than they could have. Given our current political situation, and the fact that there’s a very prominent woman who just lost a presidential election, you’d think this would be the time when a show known for outrageous and hilarious takes on politicians lives would really hit it’s stride and finish strong…
And what’s worse, it looks like it’s not even going to try.
The writing was on the wall after the Season 5 finale, which would have been the PERFECT way to end the series. Having Selina lose the presidency in that absurd yet surprisingly possible manner (see below), and then jump on Marine 1 to fly away from the inauguration only to have it break down and put her back on the ground?… that is VEEP in a nutshell. They should have ended it there and immediately began fielding rumors about a possible movie deal.
Here’s a quick and easy summary of the major flaws in our country’s Presidential election process that VEEP exposed to the ignorant public (like me!)
Episode 1 notes: SPOILERS
- Right away I want to address and debunk a popular theory: That the creators decided they couldn’t satirize politics like they used to because the current state of our government is already doing a great job of that. Just wrong. You can always make a joke of something, it’s actually much easier now because it’s grounded in reality. Last season’s finale which set the direction for this season’s story aired almost 5 months prior to Trump’s victory. The writers already knew they were moving away from politics.
- The episode picks up exactly 1 year from where they left off and we gradually get an idea of where everyone has landed in the post-presidency life. I hate that they went this route. It’s going to be one of those “lets get the band back together for one last show” type deal. They’re better than that. Hate it. But I’ll keep watching religiously.
- The whole tone of the show has changed. It’s gone from being focused around a constant power struggle while maintaining an upbeat locker-room vibe, to just being defeated while avoiding admitting it’s depression.
- Will Gary ever get credit for being more than a bag man? I love laughing at the guy but this past episode made me feel bad for him. Screw the writers for making me feel feelings.
- The duo of Gary and Richard being the last remaining members of Selina’s advisers by her side is a great representation of how far she’s fallen. Only compounded by the fact that she’s stuck in a crappy Bronx office doing something she clearly doesn’t give a shit about and getting an allowance from her daughter…
- Amy being her fiance’s gubernatorial campaign manager in the shit-kicker state of Montana was the most depressing story line to develop over the break. I have nothing more to add.
- Wait, no. Mike McClintock is the most depressing one. His life is horrible and its like he actively tries to make it worse every day. He has just handed over the ONE THING which could earn him money, his journal that Selina needs to write her memoirs, in the bullshit hope that he’ll get paid for it after the book is done. Idiot.
- Dan ending up becoming a CBS news anchor is actually pretty fitting. Remember last season when he slept with Amy’s sister because he thought she worked at CBS when in reality he misunderstood when she said CVS? It’s nice to have one happy ending… even though it will most definitely blow up in his face. He got some PR points with the Jonah freak-out interview, but his co-host will ruin his career before it gets started.
- Jonah is the highlight. Shaving his head to maintain his cancer chemo look despite it already growing back just for the pity vote is laugh out loud funny. He’s the story line that needs to be exploited and abused to fill the void of political relations and banter. He has Kent and Ben at his side which bodes well for him. Kent is great but his character needs Ben to play off of in order to really shine. I’m glad they fired Ben from Uber to make that happen.
- Speaking of Ben, I’m pretty sure the writers only placed him in the Uber office for one reason, which was to make that “Millennials don’t want to learn how to drive drunk anymore” joke. You know what? it was totally worth it. Best line of the episode.
Obligatory Jonah gif: