BoJack Horseman spoilers follow – including its ending.
BoJack Horseman is narcissistic, self-loathing and destructive – and yet, he’ll probably go down as one of the best TV characters of all time.
Fundamentally flawed, the disgraced star of ’90s sitcom Horsin’ Around was the central focus of the self-titled Netflix series. For a show about a talking horse/human hybrid, BoJack Horseman was wildly existential and, through the themes it tackled, reached and touched so many people.
Through Todd Chavez’s coming-out storyline, Diane Nguyen’s experience of antidepressants and one of the most devastatingly honest depictions of dementia we’ve ever seen on telly, BoJack Horseman proved that animation can be just as powerful as a prestige live action drama.
In an exclusive interview with Digital Spy, the voice behind BoJack Horseman,Will Arnett, talked about the show’s ongoing legacy, its divisive finale episode and what the future might hold for the anti-hero.
How does it feel to be a part of something that’s so beloved, and still has such a huge fan base?
“I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was gratifying, we always made the show – you never make it so that it lives in a vacuum, you want people to like it and enjoy it. In the same way that we did, making it.
“Our last season I guess premiered, like, a year ago… It feels like we’re constantly getting new fans and new people watching it. I like that it still strikes a chord with people, especially the people who watch it all the way through and really follow along and get what we were going for. It’s really gratifying.”
How did you feel about where the show ended? What was your initial reaction when reading the finale’s script?
“I said to Raphael Bob-Waksberg, who is the creator and the writer – I felt like it was a very BoJack ending. There were people who felt like the penultimate episode could have been the finale, but I think that we had to get through that and then air it out a little bit and leave it where we did…
“Yeah, I felt good, you know. It’s always a tricky thing, there are people who want more, which is always a good feeling too, but at the end of the day it was Raphael’s call, on how he wanted it to end, because it was his show really. I felt really good about it.”
I loved it. I thought the simplicity of that scene between BoJack and Diane on the roof – I absolutely loved that.
“I think that sometimes it’s tempting to kind of leave on a – make a huge statement or huge fantastical ending that, you know, ends with a bang. But that’s not often the reflection of what life is like.
“I think the show was actually a really good – it was often a very good reflection of the ups and downs of life, and how sometimes things weren’t as big or sometimes things were bigger than they seem…
“I like, like you said, that it ended quite simply, because that’s just sometimes life isn’t it?”
There were many storylines throughout the seasons that spoke to so many people – are there any moments or themes in particular that stood out to you?
“Gosh, that’s a tough one. It is a question I have been asked, and I think that it’s very tough for me to kind of pick one thing out. Because it is such a total picture…
“There was an episode where BoJack is eulogising his mother and, to me, that was an episode that really felt like a – it was a culmination of a lot of things, and you really got to experience him eulogise his mother, you really started to understand BoJack. I thought it was a real window into what made him who he had become. And I thought that that was an important episode for the series.”
Would you ever reprise your role as BoJack, if there were to be another series or perhaps another special?
“I’d never say never… Yeah, I think that I have such faith in Raphael, I think that he’s such a unique, talented voice, that were he to say ‘hey, I’ve got another story that I want to tell in this world’, I would fall right in line behind him. Because I think his vision on this is always really right on. So I’d be a fool not to join him on anything that he wanted to do.”
Do you have any thoughts on where you’d like BoJack to be, to pick up that story?
“[laughs] No, I don’t think so. To be honest, it really wouldn’t matter what I thought in that sense because – I mean, that’s not entirely true but I think that Raphael, again, I would just always defer to…
“Any time where we had conversations about various things that BoJack was going through, or where he was going, all I had to do was kind of have a conversation with Raphael and he would realise that he always had a really clear vision of where, of what, BoJack’s journey was. And I would never want to throw onto that any ideas, preconceived notions that I have, because I would never want him to feel like he had to adhere to that or kind of shoehorn that in.”
BoJack Horseman is available on Netflix.