[This post is steeped in Veep Season 5 finale spoilers]
Now that all of our favorite characters look to be out of a job, it seems that a moment in the political series has come that we’ve all (and by that I obviously mean “I have”) been waiting for: when the series’ heightened acrimony, sleaziness, smarminess, duplicity suddenly lack a political outlet, and characters presumably displace it onto their personal lives.
If the earlier seasons of Veep — in which Selina actually was the Veep — mined humor from stakes that were disproportionately low compared the way they were being frantically and self-importantly handled by Selina and her staff, now the stakes have a chance to become even lower, with each character potentially desperately searching for a new outlet to for energy they’ve become accustomed to in politics. It wouldn’t have worked if they’d fallen from Vice Presidential staffers to un-or-differently employed, but now that they’re going from Presidential staffers to nothing definitive in particular, there seems to be a wealth of comedic potential to be eked from their having to catch up with the wildly dramatic shift in their lives — and from going from thinking they’re the most relevant, pivotal people in world to likely still thinking that, but with no substantiation whatsoever. (Presumably some will soon return to politics in a different manner, I just hope they take long enough breaks for a whole season to decontextualize them.)
Below are some ideas (in case you’re reading, David Mandel) for what might become of these characters professionally, following the season finale’s decision to eviscerate their political dreams:
After having spent years carrying around the Leviathan — the name Gary’s appointed to his handy assistants’ murse — for Selina, and after years of shoulder damage, Gary suddenly finds himself feeling at once altruistic and entrepreneurial. Knowing what he knows about the mercilessness of murses past, he innovates a murse with a helium-filled infrastructure, that actually makes you lighter while wearing it. Because someone once told him that fashion is French, he names it Pouch par Géri. And, after having appeared — albeit accidentally — on the D.C. Hot List while assisting Selina in the White House, Gary’s newfangled confidence had led him to believe in the commodifiable value of his Hot Face; alas, the Visage de Géri appears on the lower left corner of ever Pouch par Géri. But the Pouch par Géri becomes a viral Regretsy phenomenon after people find that anytime they remove the murse, it begins to float away with their belongings. Because it’s water resistant, people find it makes a more effective scarecrow, and you may see it dotting assorted D.C. and Belgian lawns.
Though Catherine’s mother prohibited her documentary from ever being released, all of Washington, D.C. was abuzz about the very fact that it had been made, and interest in its contents regarding the disgraced momentary-president grew to such heights that Catherine — suddenly blindly regarded as the sharpest commentator on D.C. corruption — was inevitably offered the best thing awarded to trenchant directorial minds in the U.S.: a blockbuster sequel. After the critical panning of Independence Day: Resurgence, the studio saw it fit to bring a younger, more woke director than Roland Emmerich on to make the next film. Catherine is excited, but overwhelmed. The studio, meanwhile, is regretting their decision, now that her vision for the film — in which the only characters who survive the next alien apocalypse (enacted by nudist interpretive dancers) happen to be the only raw vegans in the film — has such a clear and narrow political agenda.
After spending so much time in Nevada for the recounts re: Selina’s tie with O’Brien, Amy finds herself suddenly suffering pangs of nostalgia for the state where there’s always a Britney Spears concert, a steak buffet, a contortionist twisting to the Sounds of the World, and a gondola, all within a couple of miles from one another. Amy may not have, in the past, known how much these things meant to her, but that was because she never had time to think about them. She goes to do some soul-searching in Vegas, and in order to make a bit of money to treat herself to those nightly Britney Spears concerts at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino (okay, Amy may be having a nervous breakdown), she becomes a gondolier at the Venetian, whose Yelp reviews have since inexplicably plummeted.
Selina Meyer may already have a book — Some New Beginnings: Our Next American Journey — but that was more promotional than anything else. Now that she’s lost the presidency, it’s time for a confessional. Now, Selina is trying to correct all of the wrongs she’s done everyone with her upcoming memoir, Meyer Lemons. She’ll be doing a full book tour of the novel, during which, in order to get back in touch with the populist Selina, she’ll stay in the homes of residents of the small, economically devastated, rural towns towns whose libraries she’ll be reading in. However, she only makes it to the first two tour dates (Bethesda and Greenwich, CT), after which she receives a call from a high up Goldman Sachs staffer, asking her to take a detour and give a reading there.
After Mike’s wife Wendy notices that her unemployed former Secretary of the Press husband seems to be using his two twin babies and fake-toddler-six-year-old as outlets for his performative needs — giving vague, bumbling and jargon-filled speeches about how what Swiper is doing to Dora is more pragmatic than immoral — she for the selfish good of her own children decides it might be best for him to mess other children up instead. She suggests that the perfect job that’d combine his paternal prowess and ability to work an audience would be becoming a part-time party clown. Mike has difficulty learning many of the necessary tricks, but finds personal empowerment in the anonymity granted by the large red nose.