Season 2 of HBO’s blisteringly funny political satire Veep ended with Vice President Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) deciding to run for president. But don’t assume Veep’s official Season 3 poster — which pays homage to Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze’s “Washington Crossing the Delaware” — means her campaign is destined for greatness.
While the imagery is iconic, Veep creator Armando Iannucci told BuzzFeed that the season’s tagline — “Boldly Running For President. Proudly Standing For Everything.” — is actually what spoiler-hounds should pay attention to. “Season 3 is where we say, ‘OK, if you’re actually going to run for president, you have to make friends with all of America and you have to come up with a set of policies that you stand behind because you can’t hide behind the president any longer.’ This is the season where Selina has to start defining who she is.”
A task that’s easier said than done, considering the character has spent the last two seasons trying to be everything to everyone. “Season 1 was all about Selina coming to terms with the limitations she faced in her job and with her staff,” said Iannucci. “Season 2 was all about her trying to get closer to power. Season 3 shows how politics work outside of D.C.”
That means Veep is hitting the road, both on screen and in real life, and will feature episodes set in Detroit, London, and Silicon Valley, each of which has the potential to be this year’s version of Helsinki (the sensational Season 2 episode that was a startling culture clash for Vice President Meyer — and her left breast). “I’m excited about the trip to Silicon Valley in particular,” Iannucci said. “We take you into the whole Google/Facebook culture, and that air of how highly they regard themselves since they’re much more influential than, say, the vice president.”
Per usual, however, the biggest threat to the veep’s success comes from her staff, who adopt a take-no-prisoners attitude this season as Meyer inches closer and closer to the Oval Office.
“Because the stakes are higher, there will be a fight for survival — maybe at the expense of others in the group,” Iannucci teased. “Dan (Reid Scott) and Amy (Anna Chlumsky) in particular are both quite keen to become Selena’s chosen one, so you’ll see a lot of campaigning within the team.”
But every character — Selina Meyer especially — will have a moment of weakness this season and will question whether or not they’re actually qualified to occupy their dream job. That’s why Iannucci feels Veep’s Season 3 poster perfectly represents the next stretch of episodes.
“There’s something so wonderful about looking dignified despite the truth,” he said, laughing. “If that painting were a stop-frame animation, what would happen next?”