The third season of ABC’s ‘Happy Endings’ ended very much where the pilot of the series started, but rather than feel repetitive, the show has instead come full circle while still introducing new complications for the relationships to go on from here. The question is whether or not the viewing audience will get to watch these relationships go on on TV, let alone ABC. The network has not yet announced plans for a fourth season of Happy Endings, but when LA TV Insider Examiner had a chance to chat with series executive producer Jonathan Groff, he was, of course, hoping the show would get to continue and do so at the network that had been its “home” for the past three seasons. So what’s the pitch, we asked him, for the network and fans alike to know why they absolutely need a fourth season– they may just not know it yet.
“I think ultimately for us the takeaway from the [season three] finale is the shift in the group dynamics again to see how the group reacts to this [news],” Groff said.
“Dave and Alex had never been in a relationship that the audience had seen. They started the pilot breaking up and potentially ripping apart the group, and then they went off on their own for a little while. They didn’t really have closure. The end of the second season, they had a moment of ‘What if we try again?’ So it was really important that they have that this season, [but also] they had to have a kind of natural break-up that they never had.”
Ultimately what Dave and Alex learned from watching the eldest Kerkovich sister finally marry the man of her dreams was that they still really weren’t sure if they were right for each other because they hadn’t really seen what else was out there. Sure, they each dated randomly in seasons one and two, but in many ways, those were dates and relationships they weren’t really emotionally ready for because they hadn’t closed the door on each other yet. After trying to make it work in season three and realizing it just wasn’t right, season four, Groff said, would be about them each “out there” again, dating.
And since Penny (Casey Wilson), too, is now single again, there would finally be a chance to further explore the possibility of her and Dave.
“Dave and Penny, that could never happen until Dave and Alex sorted itself out,” Groff said.
“Until that happened, the Dave and Penny thing was always going to feel weird. I think what we set up is that we could explore that next season. Not that it won’t be complicated; not that Alex won’t be like ‘Wait a second!’; and that will be an issue between Penny and Alex. But that’s what happens in these shows…that’s what happens in groups of friends!”
Season three saw Max (Adam Pally) as the single guy, mostly, Groff noted, because the other characters were paired off in relationships. So should the series return for season four, Groff is hoping to put Max in another relationship and see how that would play out.
And Groff pointed out that it doesn’t even have to be a new relationship:
“I would love for Grant to be back in town! He has a pilot, and he’s on Mad Men [but] he was all for the possibility of returning. I think he had a lot of fun playing with us, and even though he was only on for a few episodes, [the fans] were like ‘You can’t break them up!'” Groff said.
Groff wasn’t stopping with Grant, though. When asked what other callbacks or familiar faces he’d want to revisit in a fourth season, he pointed to Mark-Paul Gosselaar and even Bo the roller-blader!
Groff was adamant that he believed ABC was behind the show and really loved it (“They could have cancelled us already,” he said), so he was hopeful for a season four renewal. But if ABC decided to pass, Groff was also confident that the show could find a home elsewhere, as both Sony Studios and ABC Studios have experience in moving their properties to extend their lives. Groff was open to that idea as a distant second to staying with ABC because he, like us, just wants to get to see how things play out for Dave, Alex, Penny, Max, Brad (Damon Wayans Jr.), and Jane (Eliza Coupe) for years to come.
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