As a warning, this review has slight spoilers for season three of Bojack Horseman and bigger spoilers for past seasons one and two.
Firstly, where did the last season end and did it leave an appropriate pick up point? Certainly, Bojack was slowly falling back into hope as he pushed onward through his days. This was essentially how the second season ended, Bojack himself feeling surprised at the possible potential for hope within himself, the hope that he always inevitability runs away from. Present day Bojack is trying to be thankful for those in his life. As is the usual, Bojack nonchalantly insults Todd, and then immediately takes it back to apologize (but to be expected this Bojack does not last).
Things almost seem too good to be true, as if the viewer is now waiting for Bojack to mess everything up and he will, but the real questions are when and how bad will it get. This is partially why the flashbacks become so important now, because they let the viewer in on the details that foreshadow future complications. The way that this show is written, the pacing of the story arcs is so focused yet still manage to cover so many topics so well simultaneously, if it did not have top-notch voice actors, Bojack Horseman could stand to be a great graphic novel.
Now then, the show has created a set of patterns in Bojack’s life that ultimately end in him giving up on himself/success and running away. Each time it happens he burns another bridge. In season two it was with his oldest friend Charlotte. In season three it was Sarah Lynn.
The thing that Bojack is missing is that one thing that continues to give him hope; in himself, in the world, in others. The last moments of this season clearly illustrate what that is, for the sake of spoilers it won’t be said, but it makes perfect sense for the character. The reveal comes so suddenly and unexpectedly that it almost feels like the perfect missing puzzle piece in the jigsaw life of Bojack Horseman.
Does the season feel like “Bojack,” absolutely. The majority of common elements from past seasons continue to shine in season three. Flashback sequences get the same treatment as previous seasons, meaning characters and songs directly remark on the time and date. The common examples are the atmosphere of living in their anthropomorphic world, the jokes that silently take place in the background such as the slug valet, or when princess Caroline tries to remark on how many ways there are for a cat to have his/her skin.
Season three shows an interesting side of Todd, the comic relief character. Todd has remained cautious of Bojack after the events of season one. Most of the cast have issues with Bojack, but they get over it and continue on as before, but Todd protects himself from aligning with Bojack, this is incredibly evident when Mr. Peanutbutter and Todd attempt to make up the Oscar Nominations and Todd votes to not include Bojack.
Aside from that, Todd gets an adequate amount of screen time for him to pull his silly jokes just like the good-ol-days. Surprisingly, Todd almost sees another large character development as one of his old romantic flings appears randomly. After a serious of events where she tries to get Todd into a bedroom, it becomes apparent that Todd and sexuality do not mix. This is finally addressed out loud as Todd proclaims that he is not sure what his deal is, as he stares uncertainty in the face and is told that that is okay and just like that a small weight feels like it has been lifted.
In the end, season three of Bojack Horseman felt great! (Minus the weird and quiet episode that takes place underwater). Many elements that made the show stand out in the beginning have returned with pizzazz along with some new characters and excellent writing as always. Now the year-long wait for season four begins. And although it seems very unlikely to ever actually see the first episode of The Bojack Horseman Show, it would make a great addition to Netflix (just like the Christmas episode of Horsin’ Around.
In a nutshell, Bojack is going just as strong now as it did upon its debut. Season three created the setup necessary to get fans excited to see what will happen next and proves that the show has no signs of slowing down or stopping anytime soon.