As you may have heard or observed for yourself, the fifth season of BoJack Horseman is unsurprisingly excellent. Unsurprisingly is the right word there, yes? At this point, we’re all aware that the cartoon show about the talking horse is very good, particularly on lots of fraught, emotionally dense issues, yes? That’s a given? Good. Moving on.
Part of the fifth season’s excellence comes from its relevance. Creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg has been making the rounds to confirm that yes, you’re not crazy, there’s a lot of Mel Gibson and Harvey Weinstein in this season. In conversations with Mashable, Huffington Post, and Vulture, Bob-Waksberg talked about the inspiration behind Vance Waggoner and Philbert, what it felt like to learn that Weinstein is a BoJack fan, and a bunch of other really interesting stuff.
All three pieces are worth reading in full, but the anecdote that really pops that a major influence on the season was CAA’s signing of Mel Gibson, which is addressed in all three interviews (CAA also reps Bob-Waksberg). From Vulture:
It’s not like he was an old client and they kept him on. They just signed him a year ago. And I was outraged! I couldn’t believe it… At the time I complained to my agent and I had a couple of meetings with some people there and I said, “I have a real problem with this,” and they very respectfully listened to me and that’s the last I heard of it. [Laughs.] He’s still represented there as far as I know! I definitely got the vibe of, “You should feel like you’ve been heard at this meeting,” which I understand was all they were going to do for me, so I can’t be too frustrated by it. They asked, “Would you like to meet Mel?” and I said, “No, I don’t want to hear from him directly…”
What’s he going to say to me? The work he needs to do is public. Maybe it’s my job to take that meeting and tell him that directly, but I don’t want to be in a room with him. I think he’s gross. Maybe that’s me shirking my responsibility as a good white man. Maybe I should talk to him and talk to “my people” and tell them what to do. I don’t believe he would listen to me.
In summation, BoJack is good, and these interviews are good, and yes, you were right, that’s Mel Gibson.