“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” fans were hit with drama of Rebecca Bunch-sized proportions this week when Rachel Bloom confirmed season 4 of The CW comedy would be its last. But the news of its end didn’t come as a shock to the network, the cast or its creators.
“Just turned on my wifi on our flight to Chicago and found out that #CrazyExGirlfriend has been renewed for a final season,” tweeted Bloom, who plays lawyer Rebecca Bunch who moved from New York City to West Covina to chase crush Josh Chan some three years ago.
The actress tweeted a photo of the cast on a plane together, currently traveling for their “Crazy Ex” musical tour across the country, stopping at Town Hall Sunday. The crew was holding out for news that the series would be picked up for its fourth season, but they always knew their characters’ stories would end there.
Donna Lynne Champlin, who plays Rebecca’s BFF Paula Proctor, explained that the tour itself was put together as a last hurrah of sorts for the bunch.
“At the end of the fourth season, which would be our last, everyone’s just going to scatter to the four winds,” she said ahead of Monday’s renewal announcement. “So, [Bloom] was like this is the hiatus to do it, in between three and hopefully four because we’re all still tied together.”
The fact that the upcoming season of “Crazy Ex” would be its last wasn’t widely reported, but it wasn’t kept under wraps either. Champlin says the show was never expected to run longer than a four-season stretch.
“The show itself, when it was even first shopped to Showtime, it was shopped as a four-season show. Every season has been planned out, every season is very different and that never changed when we moved over to The CW,” she said. “They merely had more time to expand within a season of what they wanted to do. But they pitched this show at four seasons early on to everyone. So, it’s no great secret in the business. It was like that before it even got picked up.”
“Crazy Ex” took on the goal of combating mental health stigmas early on, with its leading character struggling to find stability through her work life, friendships and romantic woes. It told its story in a format unique to the network, with cameo musical interludes giving fans hundreds of quotable tracks like “Friendtopia,” “Let’s Generalize About Men,” “Where’s The Bathroom” and “The Math of Love Triangles.”
Created by Bloom and screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna, Champlin explained that the entire script was mapped out from the very beginning. So, yes, they already know where that season three finale prison-sentence cliffhanger will lead. As far as what’s to come for Paula, the actress says she’s learned not to hope or fantasize what’s to come because she fully trusts the writers will do her working mom character justice.
“At this point, I’ve learned to just not think about it. I figure whatever they’ll come up with is gonna be better than anything I come up with,” she said. “Which is not at all like I don’t care, I care very deeply. I just realized the character of Paula is in such magnificent hands with that writer’s room my mind doesn’t go there.”
A specific return date for the “Crazy Ex” farewell has not yet been announced by the network.
IF YOU GO: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Live comes to Town Hall at 8 p.m. on Sunday, 123 W. 43rd St., thetownhall.org, sold out