PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE

PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE. If your diet requires you to dine on television spoiler-free ... good luck with that.

REVIEW ARCHIVES

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

All Around Righteous Dude

Episode 1.6: Return of the Kane. Original Airdate 11.2.04



"The tension between the 09ers and non-09ers comes to a head when the school elections appear to be rigged. Veronica helps Wanda, the underdog, campaign to beat Duncan, despite her feelings for him. Meanwhile, Logan clashes with his father, movie star Aaron Echolls, when he is caught in the press engaging in unruly behavior."



Zelda's Thoughts:

  • Wow Logan rode a freaking scooter down to get the newspaper. What even.
  • Oh look you guys it's HARRY HAMLIN. I love Harry Hamlin but boy do I hate Aaron Echolls.
  • Ah we've been told Wallace's dad is dead. But we live in the future.
  • The Marses doing Marlowe 40s jargon, I love it all. "Didja put the screws to him?" // "He sang like a canary."
  • Keith: "Shouldn't we try something at the base of the food pyramid, you know, fruits or vegetables?" Veronica: 


  • "Why would he have wanted to kill you?" // "Honestly! I was awesome, right?"
  • Ugh I just. Duncan is such a bad actor and Logan is such a good actor, their scenes hurts sometimes.
  • And just when I was liking - well, I wasn't liking Logan, not yet - look, it's the episode where he's running a hobo boxing match. Fuck you, Logan.
  • Omg Aaron Echolls is Duncan Kane's celebrity endorsement, what GARBAGE. What self-aggrandizing garbage. They're succeeding in making me feel bad for Duncan.
  • Gasp! Lilly's shoes - the ones used to incriminate Abel Koontz - were photographed in her bedroom on the night of the murder. What does it meeeeeean.
  • Jane Lynch! Hi Jane Lynch! We like your game show. And you.
  • "And for what possible reason would you have my student ID memorized?" Oh Wallace, it's like you don't know Veronica at all!
  • "Please?" // "How hard was that?" YEAH VERONICA IF YOU WANT TO ADD TO THE STATS, YOU GOTTA ASK NICELY.
  • OOOH DRAMATIC IRONY I SEE YOU. Flashback Veronica drew Duncan's name in a heart on Lilly's shoe. Lilly: "Oh yeah, now that's just creepy." Because incest, get it? Get it? INCEST AND DUNCAN. IT'S HIS FAVORITE PLOT.
  • Gasp they're calling Wanda a narc! What could it meeeeeeean?
  • Also, this rewatch was when I finally figured out why Logan stammers Wanda's name.
  • "Say it, Veronica. What's my usual way?" // "You. Stand. Idly. By."
  • Hint number two to Lilly/Weevil, courtesy of Wanda.
  • Aaron Echolls sits in the dark next to a framed photograph of himself, then walks in front of a framed magazine cover of him and Lynn. The entire house is a monument to his vanity.
  • It's horrific to see how small and young Logan instantly becomes when his father so much as touches him. More hints to Aaron's violent tendencies.
  • And then. And then. He volunteers his dad to donate half a million dollars to the food bank, in order to call him out on his hypocrisy of signing on for movies he thinks are shit because they pay well.
  • And then we see Logan picking out the belt for his dad to beat him with. While Lynn sits and drinks. This show. 


  • "There's a couple of suckers ... in the bag, if you want them." Oh Veronica snark.
  • And Duncan won the election. And Wanda's a narc. And Veronica didn't vote for her.
  • And Duncan gets some credit - pirate points, even - for expanding the qualifications for Pirate Points to include more than the preppy clique stuff.
  • Whoops Keith changed the combination on the safe. No more sneaky access to Lilly's file for Veronica.
  • But here we get to what I love about the Marses. Veronica realizing Keith is onto her makes her come clean - to end their "own game of spy vs spy" - and now the two of them are - finally - working together on the case.

Daniel's Thoughts:


  • Love meeting Logan’s parents. Lisa Rinna and Harry Hamlin are married in real life.
  • Pirate points. The whole idea is so dumb.
  • Where is Back-Up and why is he not begging for ice cream the way all dogs do.
  • Lily Kane is so cool. I would have loved to see a prequel about Lilly kinda like Fire Walk with Me was to Twin Peaks. (Also, Amanda Seyfried was just in the Twin Peaks revival)
  • Wanda Varner’s fashion choices, tho. Amazing.



  • Ugh, the things Logan does is so repulsive.
  • “All around Righteous Dude.” Omg.
  • Veronica votes for Wanda…as I would have. TBH, I don’t remember my school elections at all.
  • Man this show did class warfare so well.
  • Hey, it’s Jane Lynch! And she hasn’t changed in like twenty years.
  • She’s so good at being the mean teacher.
  • I love that Veronica has Wallace’s student ID number. Even though Wallace is a little freaked by it.
  • It’s actually pretty smart what the 09ers did. I definitely enjoyed my more artsy classes because of students who were in them.
  • Madison Sinclair looks a lot like Paris Hilton.
  • Duncan’s “usual way” as per Veronica: “Standing idly by”. He doesn’t initiation things, etc, but he stands by. That causes a lot of shit – people who just stand by and do nothing while evil is at large. A lot of that is happening now.
  • I think there’s exactly one hallway at Neptune High.
  • It’s nice, though, that Veronica has a flashback of Duncan not standing idly by. That at one point, he did make an effort to be a good person instead of just standing on the sidelines.
  • Aaron Echolls pumping his own gas? Golly. Love his car though.
  • “Dad told me on the way over that he’s donating half a million dollars to the Neptune food bank.” – Pretty underhanded, sure. But I mean, from a guy who just said he’s making 8 figures on his next film, half a mil isn’t terrible.
  • Yet watching Logan choose a belt for his father to beat him with…man, that’s hard to watch.
  • I mean the idea that Pirate points was only for sports, is kinda a problem with the faculty staff too.
  • Love seeing Mr. Kane looking at Duncan all proud.
  • But solving the case, Keith, is not just about you and your daughter and your respective happiness – it’s about getting justice for Lilly – who is the victim here. It’s about getting Abel Koontz off for a crime he didn’t commit.





Favorite Lines:
Zelda: 


Daniel: Veronica: Why would he have wanted to kill you? Lilly: Honestly. I was awesome, right?




Arc/Continuity:

Neptune Roll Call:
Logan, Duncan, Wallace, Mallory Dent, Weevil
First Appearance: Lynn Echolls, Aaron Echolls, Madison Sinclair
Recurring: Jake Kane, Vice Principal Van Clemmons, Felix Toombs, Abel Koontz, Sheriff Don Lamb, Lilly Kane, Corny, Dick Casablancas, Deputy Jerry Sacks
Future Famous Person: Harry Hamlin (past), Lisa Rinna (past), Jane Lynch



Stats:

Dead Humans - 0
Backup Sighting - 0
Veronica Breaks In - 0
Veronica Tases Someone - 0
Mac Hacks - 0
Who's Your Daddy? - 0
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 1
Veronica Wants a Pony - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 0
Logan Hires Someone to Punch Someone Else - 1
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 1 (the election was fixed)
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 1 (Logan didn't start the narc rumor)


Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Dude, Where's Your Car?

Episode 1.5: You Think You Know Somebody. Original Airdate 10.26.04

"After a night in Tijuana, Troy finds himself in a tough situation when his car is stolen and turns to Veronica for help. But what she finds changes her relationship with him. Meanwhile, Keith and Rebecca begin dating against Veronica's wishes, and Veronica makes another shocking discovery about her mother."

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • Tijuana! Where in American TV, nothing good can happen. Kinda shitty, that.
  • Hey! Dude from Being Human! I know all three of these actors, so I can tell them apart, but they’re definitely a ‘type’. They all look similar. They all have that 90s/early 2000s hair.
  • Hey, Troy just came back from the bathroom looking very suspicious…. It’s something you might not notice on the first viewing.
  • “Dude where’s your car?” Awww, 2000s reference!
  • But I mean, Logan has no friends that he could have called? Veronica was their only hope?
LOOK IT'S THE FUTURE

  • Man, the banter between Veronica and Logan – so good; so flirty.
  • Wallace calls Veronica Velma, but Veronica prefers to be Daphne. I kinda agree with Wallace on this one. She’s definitely a Velma.
  • Back-Up! You know on TV when people come home and their dog doesn’t have to go outside immediately and pee? Yeah, so not realistic.
  • Miss James = Jenny Calendar light?
  •  I love that there’s just a random safety deposit box key in the one box of her mom’s things. How convenient...  And how did Keith not catch that when he was filling the box with things?  So I'm calling my first Shenanigan of the series.  Now it's possible that Keith just didn't want to use it since he's said in the past that he doesn't want to investigate Lianne - but he certainly would have hidden it from Veronica, because he doesn't want her to investigate either.
  • Hey, contract character Ms. Dent has one line in this episode….(she has more later)
  • Oh crap. I forgot about this part of the mystery – photos of Veronica with bullseyes on them. That’s freaking scary.
  • I’m wondering how Veronica can afford this car….but I’m sure she has her wily ways.
  • The things guys will do for a pretty girl – I’m kinda glad Veronica takes advantage of this. It’s only fair.
  • Luke doing the Ferris Bueller run through the backyards.
  • It’s nice when Veronica looks happy. It won’t last.
  • Oh right, this is the first clue to the part of the mystery where Veronica and Duncan might or might not be siblings. They’re really good at laying down these subtle clues.
  • I love when we see Keith doing his under cover thing. Because you can see where Veronica gets it from.
  • Oh HS, where ending a three week relationship is the scariest thing.
  • “Poor Miss Dent” – Agreed, Veronica. Such a pointless character.
  • I don’t like when the Mars’ fight,  but I’m glad they do since it makes it more realistic.
  • 2003 – GPS at its earliest.
  • Troy is so lying but at this point, we want to believe him. He’s one of those guys are too good to be true.
  • I love that she took Back-Up to her meeting with the bodybuilder.
  • “Remember this moment. Because you’re gonna regret it!” – Love you, VM.

  • All that investigating and she still has time to make a cake for her dad. Awww.
  • OK, so Troy kinda planned this the whole time, and I guess that kinda makes sense in regards to how this episode is structured. He used Veronica for her PI skills – but did he seek her out from the very beginning for that purpose? That part is unclear.
  • But Veronica of course got the jump on him…and that’s why we love this show.


Zelda's Thoughts:

  • I remember watching this episode for the first time and realizing how much I couldn't tell the boys apart. When Luke (aka Josh the werewolf from Being Human!) showed up in the opening Tijuana scene, I thought it was Duncan or Logan. Ah, youth. (basically, it wasn't clear to me that this was a new character)
  • Ah but there's Logan and there's Troy. So then I thought it was Duncan. Which is how unmemorable Duncan's face is, I guess? Sorry Teddy.
  • Okay so back to the episode. Here we are at border control.
  • Maybe the source of my confusion was also knowing that Troy was more friends with Duncan than with Logan.
  • Logan, making a musical reference (Brigadoon). I love me some musical references.
  • Topical reference no longer topical! "Dude, where's your car?"
  • "Does this mean you're gonna play nice now?" // "Walk in front of the car. We'll see. *revs engine*"

  • Mars banter is my favorite banter. "And now, your birthday will be spent skydiving. Alone."
  • Keith wants to put Lianne's stuff in storage. CUZ HE'S DATING VERONICA'S GUIDANCE COUNSELOR
  • Gasp! V found a mysterious safety deposit box key in her mom's things!
  • "I don't help dealers find their lost products." Yeah, werewolf, even a junior PI has standards.
  • Man, I'd forgotten about the stalker photos with V in the crosshairs. That had to have been so scary for Lianne.
  • Man, why does Luke play baseball? He should clearly be on the track team, doing vaulting. This chase scene is quite impressive.
Cue: The English Beat - March Of the Swivel Heads

  • Listen, Veronica, I totally get your being upset that your dad is dating. However, it is fairly shitty to be passive aggressive and surly to Rebecca James after you said - to both your dad's face and to Rebecca's - that this was fine. Use your words, stop punishing. I likes the Marses better when they communicate.
  • God this is heartbreaking. Veronica mailing out burner phones to everyone she can think of, in hopes that her mom will call her. "It's my version of a message in a bottle."
  • "I'll be nice to your boyfriend if you'll be nice to my girlfriend." Touche, Keith Mars.
  • Oh come ON, Miss Dent. Veronica gets in trouble for her rude question, but Ashley doesn't? Her question was just as cruel.
  • Veronica, who can't help herself: doing a background check on Miss James and bringing it to her dad. "Did you know she was still married?" // "I did. I'm still married, Veronica."
  • "Protect me? I'm an ADULT, Veronica." I love Enrico Colantoni.
  • "You can find anybody. If [Lianne] were a criminal, you'd make a couple grand tracking her down and you'd have her back in a week!" I also love Kristen Bell. Her fragility breaking through the tough exterior.
  • This show is just so well done.
  • And Keith's got an envelope on Troy for Veronica. "You can open it, you can throw it out. It's your choice."
  • Fuck, and then he breaks up with Rebecca. Because Veronica is the most important thing to him.
  • gasp Troy is the bad guy! He stole the 'roids and faked his car theft.
  • Luckily, our Veronica is a smart cookie and replaced his stolen drugs with taffy.
  • AND she gave Zigman's name and photo to border patrol, so he gets his too.
  • AND Lianne called Veronica and she missed the call WHY IS THIS SHOW SO CRUEL.



Favorite Lines:

Daniel: The best way to dull the pain of your best friend's murder is to have your mother abandon you as soon as possible. It's like hitting your thumb with a hammer, then when it's throbbing so badly you don't think you'll survive, you cut the damn thing off.
Zelda:



Arc/Continuity:

Neptune Roll Call: Logan, Wallace, Mallory Dent, Weevil (Absent: Duncan)
First Appearance: Luke Halderman
Recurring: Troy Vandergraff, Rebecca James, Lianne Mars, Veronica's "Office"
Future Famous Person: Sam Huntington
Veronica's Alias: personal assistant to Lawrence Vandergraff
Keith's Alias: James Anderson, head of security to L.T. Vandegraff


Stats:

Dead Humans - 0
Backup Sighting - 1
Veronica Breaks In - 0
Veronica Tases Someone - 0
Mac Hacks - 0
Who's Your Daddy? - 0
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 0
Veronica Wants a Pony - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 0
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 1
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 0
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 0

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

I Don't Feel So Good, Papa Bear

Episode 1.4: The Wrath of Con. Original Airdate 10.19.04

"In an attempt to help out Wallace win over a potential girlfriend, Veronica takes on the case of tracking down an Internet fraud ring, which leads her to an underground gaming community. Meanwhile, Logan agrees to assemble a video of Lilly to mark the one-year anniversary of her death, and Troy becomes closer to Veronica."






Zelda's Thoughts:

  • God I love the Marses. Veronica comes inside after making out with Troy. "So what did you think of him?" Keith, sitting and reading by the lamp, "Oh hey, honey, you're home early."
  • "He's taking up a lot of Daddy-Daughter Time." snort 
  • Aw Wallace has a crush. You can tell because he doesn't even seem bothered that she just undid all his Office Aide work.
  • Troy: "I give good parent." CUE SONG FROM CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND 
  • Props to them giving Celeste Kane her hair from the Pilot for the flashbackaw, they're so innocent and sweet (except Lilly, who has never projected innocence) in their Homecoming flashback
  • I feel like Jimmy/Karl was a reject from the Leo auditions, but maybe it's just his poor man's Max Greenfield vibe.
  • Aw she looks so cute in her Gamergirl disguise! Though I have to say, I'm getting flashbacks of another petite blonde in a black pageboy wig. 

Men!  With your sales!
  • This is the second time (first time was the Pilot) that Logan's brought up his dad and his punitiveness. Planting them seeds early  ...
  • "What part of my ignoring you makes you think you're welcome?" props for Logan's use of proper grammar while sassing.
  • The Homecoming flashbacks are pretty incredible, really. It's the highest concentration we've gotten of Lilly so far, and it makes it clear not only how undeniably charismatic she was, but also how much she held everyone together - look at the three survivors of that friendship now, and they can barely hold a conversation. But when she's there, everything's more fun, everything's more memorable, everything's worth holding onto.
  • Troy's face when Keith says he cancelled Troy's hotel reservation - he's realizing just how formidable it is to date the daughter of a Private Detective slash former Sheriff. 



  • And I like that those memories are what begins the rebridging between Veronica and Logan - remembering what they loved about Lilly, and what it was like to have her around. So she shares with Logan the video footage she has, so he's not just stuck with the Celeste-approved videos.
  • I notice Logan's parents aren't there when the limo crew gets busted by the parents Kane and Sheriff Mars (no Leanne either).
  • Another A+ performance from Kyle Secor, watching the montage Logan put together.
  • OH LOOK LOGAN AND VERONICA SHARING A MEANINGFUL LOOK OH LOOK MY SHIP HAS BEGUN 



  • (also, I see you show, showing that Weevil is crying at the video of Lilly. I SEE YOU PLANTING THINGS)



Daniel's Thoughts:


  • The Veronica/Keith banter. I love it so much.  They have such a good relationship….except for all the secrets.
  • Aww, she has a little ceramic Back-Up.  But where is Back-Up?


  • Aww, Wallace’s friend fell for a scam email.   It’s 2004 where all of this is relatively new.
  • I love when Veronica does her little aliases.  “Amber” is totally the best.
  • Whenever I watch VM, the theme song gets stuck in my head for days.  Now that we’re doing the recaps, it’s going to be in my head for years.
  • Wow, Celeste Kane with long hair.
  • Veronica’s flashback homecoming dress is so plain.
  • Wow, Veronica curled her hair just for one afternoon.
  • Omg, this actor is so stupid, I love it. (The actor who’s a character, not the actor himself).  “Duped!” 
  • LOL, Backstage West.  Nice plug for that awful rag.
  • Omg, Gamer Girl Veronica. I want to see the closet/wardrobe she has full of extensive wigs and disguises.
  • Aww, when we had actual physical pictures instead of just everything on our phones.  I mean it’s only been 13 years since this aired.  Things change fast.
  • “I don’t feel so good, papa bear!”
  • Man, Veronica’s hair has changed so much in this episode.   
  • I absolutely love they used a clip of Amanda Seyfried as a child singing, and you can tell it’s her because of those huge Disney eyes that she’s apparently always had.
Those Disney Princess Eyes


  • Yay! Back-up!  (Recast!)
  • That’s a pretty sweet dorm room – they have an extra room.
  • I’m not 100 percent confident in calling a shenanigan, but knowing a keycode based on sound isn’t feasible. I’m pretty sure all ten numbers don’t have a different tone…or at least not discernable to the human ear.  Of course, I don’t have anything to test it with.
  • Keith using his detective skills to be a protective dad is both cool and a little bit scary.  I mean, trust your daughter, Keith.
  • Oh man, her delivery is just so good.
  • Wallace has a girlfriend!   ….And that’s the last we’ll see of her.
  • Lilly Kane is so cool.
  • Oh no, Neptune High’s instrumental version of “Wind Beneath my Wings”  Oy.
  • All the teenage boys in this show have the same hairdo.
  • Lilly Kane, a recurring dead character is in more episodes than some of the regulars.  But there’s a reason for that. Amanda is so captivating.
  • Uh oh…what’s Weevil’s connection to Lilly??



Favorite Lines:
Zelda: "Wow. I can't believe there's no party. I feel so duped." - Wallace, snarking the con artists
Daniel: "Oh, hey, I forgot to tell ya.  If he's gonna be kissing my daughter on my porch for eight and a half minutes, I'll need to meet him.  Sweet dreams, honey!" - Keith Mars 

Arc/Continuity:
Neptune Roll Call: Wallace, Logan, Duncan, Weevil (but he skipped most of the day) (Absent: Mallory Dent)
First Appearance: Lilly's fountain
Recurring: Troy Vandergraff, Lilly Kane, Veronica's "Office," Celeste Kane, Jake Kane, Felix Toombs
Future Famous Person: Adam Wylie (ish? he's at least a Hey! It's That Guy)
Veronica's Alias: Amber, Gamergirl, prospective freshman/"nerd hag" (with Wallace)
Gamergirl 
Keith's Alias: DEA Agent, Bill Smith (Admissions)



Stats:
Dead Humans - 0
Backup Sighting - 1
Veronica Breaks In - 3
Veronica Tases Someone - 0
Mac Hacks - 0
Who's Your Daddy? - 0
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 0
Veronica Wants a Pony - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 0
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 0
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 0

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

That's Actually Old Testament

Episode 1.3: Meet John Smith. Original Airdate 10.12.04


"Veronica tries to help a classmate track down his long lost father, but with very little to go on, she finds the task more daunting than she thought. Meanwhile, Keith meets with school guidance counselor Rebecca James to discuss Veronica's feelings about Lilly's murder."

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • So we start with a group of nerds.
  • Even though Troy turns out to be an (evil reveal), I kinda dig him at this point.  Anyone who can match wits with Veronica is ok with me.
  • “I’m gonna go to the library.”  - Really?  Neptune’s library is open this late?  I know it’s an excuse, but it’s not a viable one.
  • Mrs. Kane chopped her hair off. I like it.
  • Hey Melissa Leo!
  • “I hate it when they talk.”  Wow, Logan. 
  • Aww, Keith meets Wallace.
  • “Wallace is a friend of mine.  Take that, high school Guidance Counselor.”
  • Veronica’s administrative file.  I’d love to see this. 
  • Oh man, burning CDs.  Wallace, “He brought you a mix tape!”  I love it.
  • Veronica totally regrets not kissing the Ashmore.
  • Hey what a coincidence that Justin would get this letter at the same time Veronica is confronting him about lying. 
  • “The hero is the one that stays.  And the Villain is the one that splits."  So wise. I love that sentiment. And I love how pointedly she says it.
  • OMG, all the cool boys are sitting on the bleachers. Last episode was West Side Story; this episode is Grease.
  • HAha, Duncan feels it, singing, “Summer Lovin’” ….badly.
  • I really like the casting of  Kyle Secor as Jake Kane.  He doesn’t look like your typical rich guy – but weirdly enough, he does look like an aged rich teenager….if that makes any sense at all. Like Logan with Grey hair?

  • Veronica!  Get  Bluetooth!  Stop driving while on your cell!
  • Lilly hallucination (dream)! Amanda Seyfried is so good in this

  • I mean kudos to Veronica Mars for having a trans character and not treating it as a joke…Of course they could have gotten a real trans actress.  But again, 2003.  It’s pretty awesome for that time.
  • Aww, Keith flirting is adorable.  Even though he totally used his detective skills to find out what coffee shop she goes to.
  • Veronica is so damn vulnerable when it comes to her mom.  But I mean, again, I hate to hammer this point – but that’s what makes this show so enjoyable.  Veronica is such a well rounded character.

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • Is he Scott Bakula's son?

it's the eyebrows

  • Aw Troy is kind of charming. Too bad he turns out to be a toxic dumpster fire
  • "I'm old school. An eye for an eye." // "I think that's actually Old Testament." I love the Marses (although google tells me it's actually that kooky Babylonian, Hammurabi)
  • So Duncan's life sucks. Veronica and her Dad may not be seeing eye to eye, but at least they both know how much they love each other. There's no evidence of any kind of love in what's left of the Kane family.
Kanes at supper. Very American Beauty.

  • Also wow Celeste got a haircut since the Pilot.
  • Duncan's flushing his antidepressants down the sink. I wonder if the writers were trying to explain the actor's lack of emoting with the antidepressants. I mean, it is also completely sense-making that he'd be on them, with everything that's happened.
  • Wow though, Veronica kicking a doorstop under the door to keep girls out of the bathroom is colllllld.
  • gasp! Justin's dad is dead! he's hoodwinking Veronica! (except we know the future and he's wrong)
  • "Wallace is a friend of mine. Take that, high school guidance counselor."

  • "Part of me is proud, and ... let's just leave it at that."
  • Wallace's face, figuring out the kid has a crush on Veronica. Delightful
  • lotta Duncan/Veronica fantasizing about each other this episode. Very Bangel, much "Amends."
  • welp, this Justin kid is an even worse actor than Duncan. "It's from my father," but with less inflection than my typing indicates.
  • man, Keith's face when Veronica's saying the kid is better off without knowing the parent who abandoned him. I see what you're doing, show.
  • "The hero is the one that stays, and the villain is the one that splits." // "I don't think that's a healthy perspective."
  • Oh Duncan, you poor broken child, stop jumping off bleachers because your ex-girlfriend slash maybe spoiler is kissing someone.
  • I actually think Kyle Secor, who plays Jake Kane, is pretty terrific at getting the nuances of the character, the conflict, the things he can't say. The man is full of subtext.
  • I like that the show isn't making light of going off meds, while also not condemning taking or not taking meds.
  • Veronica: "Try not to look conspicuous." // Justin: *leaves car, crosses traffic and confronts his maybe-dad*
  • Many props to the show for bucking the toxic Hollywood trend, by actually casting a woman to play a trans woman, instead of a cis man in drag. It's not quite as good as casting a trans actress, but it's significantly better than casting a man in the role.
  • "Ninety miles." // "What's ninety miles?" // "It's the distance your dad travels every week to see you for a few seconds."
  • And Duncan chooses the "haze" of taking his antidepressants over the anguish of feeling his grief at losing Veronica, at losing Lilly. And you know what? That's fair. He's not ready yet.


Favorite Lines:
Daniel: The hero is the one that stays.  And the Villain is the one that splits. - Veronica
Zelda: Keith: So how did she rope you into this? // Wallace: She promised me all the answer keys to - she's promised to be my friend.


Arc/Continuity:

  • Neptune Roll Call: Duncan, Logan, Wallace (Absent: Weevil, Mallory Dent)
  • First Appearance: Rebecca James
  • Recurring: Troy Vandergraff, Jake Kane, Celeste Kane, Veronica's "Office," Dick Casablancas, Lilly Kane
  • Future Famous Person: Melissa Leo
  • Logan's Nicknames: Nowhere Man/Fool on the Hill (both Duncan)

Stats:

Dead Humans - 0
Backup Sighting - 0
Veronica Breaks In - 0
"Hey, would you do me a favor?"
Veronica Tases Someone -  0
Mac Hacks - 0
Who's Your Daddy? - 0
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 2
Veronica Wants a Pony - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 0
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 0
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 0

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Sometimes I'm Even Persnickety-er

Episode 1.2: Credit Where Credit's Due. Original Airdate 9.28.04



"When Weevil's grandmother is arrested for credit card fraud, Veronica and Wallace reluctantly help the investigation to clear her name. Meanwhile, Logan's new girlfriend, Caitlin Ford, joins the 09ers in making Veronica's life difficult, while a new arrival in town, Troy Vandergraff, tries to get to know her better."

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • hey it's an Ashmore!
  • ew it's a Paris Hilton.
  • yay it's a Weevil!
  • must be a busted up 09er party
  • ugh I forgot how completely racist Logan was. dammit
  • I like that Veronica is sticking up for Weevil (especially because we know the future and he didn't do it) when her father and McCormack are just assuming he did it
  • "You think you're this big outsider, but push comes to shove, you're still one of them. You still think like one of them. Take off, I don't want you around here."
  • It is interesting, her approach. She defends Weevil, but then gently accuses him to his face. She trusts no one to their face, even if she'll give them the benefit of the doubt when they're not there to defend themselves.
  • Wallace is an Office Aide. Veronica: "That's great." // "Yeah, for who?" // "For me!" The first of many favors.
  • Oh look, the show noticed that they had only one regular female in the cast, and they hired Sidney Poitier's daughter, Sydney Tamiia Poitier. I wish she were actually good.
  • Wallace is so sweet with his favor for Veronica, not realizing the pandora's box he's opened.
  • Just as Veronica finds alibis for Weevil, he confesses. A classic VM curve.
  • "No one cares what you think, Veronica Mars." Someone show Paris Hilton a mirror, because I'm pretty sure Veronica's rubber and she's glue.
  • oh look Logan was a dick and flattened Veronica's wheels
  • haha wow Duncan offers Veronica a ride and it's only partly because he's jealous she's getting attention from Troy.
  • and there Veronica is, appearing to fulfill the condemnation from Weevil - driving by in Duncan's car, as Weevil cleans up highway trash in a prison jumpsuit.
  • Keith sassing Don Lamb - never not fun
  • aw man flip phones you guys. so cute. remember when flipping them closed was enough to hang up?
  • cute detail that one of the stalls is out of order in Veronica's "Office" slash bathroom



  • Chardo looks 40 (imdb tells he was 29 when filming this episode)
  • Weevil's grandmother hates Paris Hilton as much as I do! (I know, I know, so say we all)
  • awwww Veronica and Weevil hugged. THEY'RE BEST FRIENDS NOW.
  • Dick had his first line, and it wasn't even a dirty joke! Someone's character hasn't been built yet.
  • omg theyre not even making contact as they "beat up" Chardo in the background. what kind of low budget combat choreography is this
  • Veronica sassing Don Lamb - also never not fun
  • I wonder if that little scene of Caitlin being ostracized would actually mean something if Paris Hilton could communicate any emotion beyond bored irritation

#Emoting


Daniel's Thoughts:


  • The thing about Duncan.  He’s supposed to be stoic – he’s supposed to be guarded and shut down – but that doesn’t mean he can’t have anything going on behind the eyes.  They could have cast someone who could go beyond that…but they cast someone who’s the surface of what they’re looking for. People make the same excuses about January Jones in Mad Men - and it's a lame and terrible excuse.  Having a character that's stoic and closed off is no excuse for not acting. On the plus side, I heard he's given up acting and gone into Law.  I hope he's more successful there.
  • Troy Vandergraff!  One of those Ashmore twins who are in everything separately!  But which twin is he? (This one.)  He's the one that tends to do more TV than his brother.
"Hey good-lookin'"


  • Fucking Paris Hilton.
  • Oh dude.  I forgot how racist Logan is.
  • I mean I love Francis Capra but he is NOT in High School.  Remarkably, he was only in his early 20s this first season, but he always looks so much older.  Kristen Bell is actually older than him.
  • Weevil’s got some knowledge.  And that’s something I like about Veronica.  She’s fantastic, but she’s not without flaws.  Her white privilege is probably her biggest flaw.  And I’m glad Weevil points it out.
  • One of my favorite things is Keith outsmarting Lamb every time.
  • I love how Veronica revels in the fact that Wallace works in the school office so she can use him for information. (Thusly adding to our stats!)
  • I really hate that Paris Hilton is in this.  She’s so bad.
  • Man, Poitier just doesn’t have the talent of her father.  It’s such a weird casting decision – or…..not casting…..making a character decision?  I mean she’s such a non-character.  I feel like the producers told Rob Thomas that he needed an extra female character and he just shoved her in.  Frankly, I think Thomas would have been fine with just having Keith & Veronica as regular contract roles and having everyone else be recurring.  Supernatural did it with Sam & Dean.
  • I like these flashbacks with Lilly.  It shows how different Veronica was.  But it also shows how much love these friends had for each other.
  • Something this show did well was exposing socio-economic inequality; how you can  get away with anything if you’re rich.  Something we’re re-learning right now….
  • Z pointed out that the actress playing the hotel clerk looks like Emma Caulfield in season 3/4 of Buffy 
She definitely has the Anya/Anyanka look here


  • I love the list of numbers that Veronica is looking at.  They’re all 555 numbers!
  • Oh busy signals.  Remember those?
  • And those cell phones, man.  Flip phones were so simple.
  • Chardo is not 18. He’s like 30. (IMDB backs me up - he was 29 when this aired.)
  • And this is the beginning of Veronica and Weevil’s friendship.
  • I mean, this is what Veronica does.  She saves someone and makes a friend….and then they spend the rest of their lives doing favors for her J
  • Logan’s friends vs. Weevil’s gang is like the Jets vs. the Sharks.  But I mean, all this over Paris Hilton?  I kinda wanna call shenanigans over that…but…

Favorite Lines:
Zelda: "Way to stand up on your own two feet, Lamb, and say 'hey, the buck stops ... there.'" - Keith
Daniel: Troy: "Flat?" / Veronica: "Just as god made me"

Arc/Continuity:
Neptune Roll Call: Wallace, Duncan, Logan, Weevil, Mallory Dent
First Appearance - Troy Vandergraff, the bathroom as Veronica's Office, Dick Casablancas
Recurring - Felix Toombs, Sheriff Don Lamb, Deputy Jerry Sacks, Cliff McCormack, Lilly Kane, Jake Kane, Inga
Future Famous Person: Aaron Ashmore, Paris Hilton (past famous person)
Veronica's Alias: distressed pregnant girl (with Keith as angry dad), Lilly Kane paying off a traffic ticket

Stats:
Dead Humans - 0
Backup Sighting - 0 (mention, no sighting)
Veronica Breaks In - 0
Veronica Tases Someone - 0
Mac Hacks - 0
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 1
Veronica Wants a Pony - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 1
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 1 (Weevil didn't do it)
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 1 (neither did Logan)

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

She's a Marshmallow

Episode 1.1: Pilot. Original Airdate 9.22.04


"Meet Veronica Mars. Your typical high school student and private eye. A year ago, Veronica's best friend Lilly was murdered. Her father, Keith, then the town sheriff, accused Lilly's billionaire father of the murder. When another man confessed, Keith was booted from office. All of Veronica's friends stopped talking to her, and her mother left town. But as Veronica starts her junior year of high school, it becomes clear that nothing about her life is what it seems."

Daniel's Thoughts:

  • OMG! I’m so excited to start this!
  • I love that Veronica narrates this.  She’s so good.  It’s very film noir.
  • This will be a bit different than recapping Buffy since we're not as obsessed with this show, we don't know it inside and out.
  • Kristen Bell is so young!
  • Hey, it’s Weevil! 
  • Ooh, they’re doing a "20 hours earlier" thing.
  • Kristen Bell’s hair is so short. It looks cute.
  • BTW, if you want the true brilliance of Kristen Bell, check out The Good Place.  Start with season one.  It’s seriously good. [I second this recommendation. - Z]
  • Aww, Wallace.  He’s like the Xander of this show. (But much more likable)
  • I love how smart Veronica is. 
  • She’s like book smart AND street smart!
  • I know it’s the 2000s but, man the fashions are so 90s grunge
  • I used to own ALL OF those flannels.
  • Hey Veronica is making a friend: Wallace!
  • Did Lamb just smell Wallace? He did.
  • There’s a lot of flashbacks in this episode. Actually, I guess most episodes this season.
  • They’re taking more time with this pilot than I remember.  I like that.  It’s something that iZombie, Rob Thomas’ newest,  didn’t do as well.
  • Darran Norris, as Cliff is in iZombie as a lecherous news anchor
  • I love Veronica’s patter with her dad.  It’s one of my favorite things about the show.
  • I mean, all the patter is pretty good.  Great writing.
  • Lilly Kane!  Our first dead human.

  • This is the first moment where we see Logan’s depth.  From the loss of Lilly.  Of course he’s a dick for blaming Veronica and Keith.
  • Veronica can take care of herself. I love Back-up & the taser
  • Weevil: “And your little dog, too.”  That’s the 2nd Wizard of Oz reference this episode.
  •  Kristen Bell does a lot of comedy now and she’s so damn good at it.  But she’s really good at drama too.  I’d love to see her in some more serious movies.  She’s a really talented actor.
  • I wonder whose football team would win The Pirates vs. the Razorbacks.
  • Aww, Wallace is s a good guy.  I wish they explored his character more than they did.
  • I’m kinda impressed that a lot of the recurring characters came from the pilot – though Z and I are having trouble tracking them all and remembering their names.  Good thing we have the interwebs.
  • Tonight we eat like the lower-middle class to which we aspire.”
  • Clue: Keith recognizes the license plate of the woman Jake Kane was visiting.  Ooh.
  • I love Veronica’s intricate plans.
  • And this is why we hate Sheriff Lamb.  His incompetence is one thing, but even more horrible is his vile, inhumane lack of compassion.  The way he acts when Veronica is raped is beyond reprehensible.
  • Third Wizard of Oz reference.
  • Aww, Wallace calls Veronica a Marshmallow.  And the fan name is born!
  • OMG, Logan’s surfer necklace.  These were so popular with guys back then.  I had one….well my then-boyfriend had one that I used to wear.
All The Cool Kids in 2004 Wore These

  • Z and I had our fights about who Buffy should be with – but we won’t be having any here.  There’s one person for Veronica: Logan Freaking Echolls.
  • As much of an asshole  as he is now…
  • “I rented the South Park movie.” “My favorite”  Heh.
  • But also, remember rental stores?

Zelda's Thoughts:

  • you guys I'm so excited to start a new show!
  • hmmm apparently the only option we have is the extended version of the pilot, which includes a different opening (Veronica on stakeout with a flashback frame vs. starting in the school with Wallace taped up)
  • "I'm never getting married." Me neither, Veronica. Well, probably not.
  • I kinda forgot how noir this show is
  • Veronica's taking calculus as a Junior! She's just like me! I wonder if present Veronica remembers any calculus but I super don't.
  • aw man I'm getting nostalgia for a motorcycle gang because WEEVIL
  • hi Weevil
  • "If you go here, your parents are either millionaires or your parents work for millionaires." I think this was kind of the situation at the school I went to for the two years I lived in LA, but I was too young to really clock it. You were either rich or your parents worked at UCLA (I was the second one)
  • aw Veronica. bitter, party of one
  • "Random locker searches ... I know when they're gonna happen before Vice Principal Clemmons does." haha I love her
  • omg when she shushes Buster, the drug search dog
  • haha and then her locker is completely empty except for a picture of VP Clemmons in the shape of a heart
  • man, I wonder how different the trajectory of this show would have been if they'd hired an interesting actor to play Duncan
  • and the fact that they weren't intending to give Logan the growth that the actor ended up kind of earning
  • VM is already doing better than Buffy on diversity, with Weevil and Wallace among its regular cast
  • aw, even Wallace gets his voiceover flashbacks. It's not just for our protagonist!
  • Wallace is so cute with his remote control plane. Be his friend, Veronica!
  • Cliff McCormack! yesssssssssssss I love this guy! and I like his character here way more than his character on iZombie
  • KEITH MARS HI KEITH MARS
  • this post will consist entirely of me flailing excitedly to see all our players
  • "When you go after Jake Kane" - I love that Keith knows that even though he told Veronica to not touch the Kane case, and she agreed, they both know she will anyway
  • and we get the beginnings of the Lilly Kane mystery
innocent flashback Veronica hair: so long, so not-yet-bitter

  • Jason Dohring already acting circles around Duncan 
  • "And your little dog, too!" did someone tell Weevil that this is the episode where Don Lamb tells everyone to go see the wizard?
  • man, poor Veronica. to wake up not knowing what happened, but that something happened
  • "I'm no longer that girl."
  • "Well, I figure I've got a choice. I can either go hang out with the punks who laughed at me, took pictures of me while I was taped to that flagpole, or I can hang out with the chick who cut me down." yay the beginning of Wallace/Veronica friendship!
  • I have to give major props to the society-building going on. Nearly every character who has a line in the pilot is a recurring character - it's a massive network of people the show is putting in place for the series, and it makes things seem realer. We've got deputies and classmates from different social castes, various authority figures, and our flashback gang.
  • "Tonight we eat like the lower middle class to which we aspire!" man, I love Enrico Colantoni. He is a pure hammy delight
  • weird, a song I recognize! Don't fear the reaper, Marses!
  • man, I love Veronica's convoluted fix - frame Logan with a bong, set said bong off in evidence holding, arrange a video switch, and get Weevil's gang off Wallace's back
  • oof, I hate when the Marses aren't honest with each other. You can see how much it hurts both of them.
  • fuck you, Don Lamb. not even going to order a rape kit for the girl who was raped. Just mock her and refuse to go after anyone at the party because they're all rich.
  • hey guys remember videotapes?
  • "But underneath that angry young woman shell, there's a slightly less angry young woman who's just dying to bake me something. You're a marshmallow, Veronica Mars. A twinkie."
  • hey Logan, FUCK YOU. smashing up the lights on a car when you know she probably can't afford to fix it
  • Weevil to the rescue! I love that now that she saved two of Weevil's boys, he's here to help defend her against Logan and his goons. Aw man, he's even going to make sure her car gets fixed.
  • THIS IS SUCH A GOOD PILOT
  • I do love that neither Keith nor Veronica have given up on the Lilly Kane murder. They both know it's not as simple as the Kanes paid to make it look.

Favorite Lines:

Daniel: "Tonight we eat like the lower middle class to which we aspire! - Keith Mars
Zelda: "You're a marshmallow, Veronica Mars." - Wallace


Arc/Continuity:

  • Neptune Roll Call: Weevil, Wallace, Logan, Duncan
  • First appearance: Vice Principal Clemmons, Deputy Jerry Sacks, Felix Toombs, Hector, Sheriff Don Lamb, Lianne Mars, Cliff McCormack, Celeste Kane, Lilly Kane, Jake Kane, Abel Koontz, Corny, Inga the receptionist
  • Veronica's Alias: Inga the receptionist


Stats:

Dead Humans - 1
Backup Sighting - 1
Veronica Breaks In - 1
Veronica Tases Someone - 1
Mac Hacks - 0
Who's Your Daddy? - 2
Wallace Does Veronica a Favor - 0
Logan Punches Someone - 0
Dick's Single Entendres - 0
Shenanigans Called - 0
VERONICA WAS RIGHT - 0
VERONICA WAS WRONG - 0

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Now Leaving Sunnydale



Series Stats:
Dead Humans - 186
Dead Undeads - 361
Dead Potentials - 11
Dead Flashbacks - 24
Giles Unconscious - 17
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 29
Buffy Breaks a Door - 30
Evil Reveal - 54
Unevil Reveal - 21
Shenanigans Called - 146
Apocalypse Called - 10


Season Seven Stats (including comparison to previous season):
Dead Humans - 31 (+22)
Dead Undeads - 80 (+20)
Dead Potentials - 11 (new stat)
Dead Flashbacks - 15 (+15)
Giles Unconscious - 0 (-3)
Giles Cleans His Glasses - 1 (-5)
Buffy Breaks a Door - 3 (-2)
Evil Reveal - 8 (+4)
Unevil Reveal - 3 (+2)
Shenanigans Called - 17 (+7)
Apocalypse Called - 2 (+1)

Top Season Stats:
Dead Humans - Season Five: 45
Dead Undeads - Season Seven: 80
Dead Potentials - Season Seven: 11
Dead Flashbacks - Season Seven: 15
Giles Unconscious - Tie: Seasons One, Two, and Three: 4 each
Giles Cleans His Glasses - Tie: Seasons Five and Six: 6 each
Buffy Breaks a Door - Season One: 6
Evil Reveal - Season Two: 17
Unevil Reveal - Tie: Seasons Two and Three: 5 each
Shenanigans Called - Season Two: 26
Apocalypse Called - Tie: Seasons One, Two, and Seven: 2 each


Season Seven certainly upped our body count, taking top place in Dead Undeads, Potentials (fine fine, a contest of one), and Flashbacks, while failing miserably at Giles statistics, since he abandoned us and moved back to pip pip land. We are pleased to see a return to our bitter skepticism, with an uptick in Shenanigans Called. And I think we can all agree that we've ended in triumph if our Dead Undeads count is nearly double that of Dead Humans. Take THAT, First Evil!

Zelda's Thoughts:

I don't know how much I have to say about Season Seven that I haven't already said, honestly. A lot of it reminds me of Season Four, in terms of being set up for one kind of conflict, then meandering around with distractions through the middle of the season, before arriving at a strong enough finish. I wish the Potentials had been either better written in order to justify their distraction from our core Scoobies, or that they, you know, hadn't been A DISTRACTION FROM OUR CORE SCOOBIES. I love that Anya got her own "Fool For Love" origin episode, and hate how much she disappeared into unimportance afterward. I hate how the show made me hate Giles (and hate the writers themselves with the fakeout about his being the First). I hate "Empty Places." I don't much care for Kennedy, though I do like seeing how much healthier Willow's gotten post-dark-and-veiny. I like that Xander actually seems to be approaching functional adulthood even if he's still a bag of tools sometimes. I love Dawn's growth???? This rewatch made me realize I've stopped hating her by the end of Season Seven. I hate Buffy's isolation from the group, though at least I understand why and how it happens. I love the beauty of Buffy finally having freedom, being able to share the weight of saving the world with others so it's not just about she alone saving the world (dying twice is quite enough, thank you). And yes, I enjoyed the Spuffiness that Season Seven gave me, even if it was at the expense of the writers just not knowing how to handle the events of "Seeing Red" or their outcome. And you know what I loved? How Season Seven, knowing it was the show's final season, threw in more shoutouts and throwbacks to earlier seasons than ever before - from invisible loners at school to calling Xander out on "kick his ass" to the Scoobies parting ways before the battle and Giles concluding the world is definitely doomed. That felt like the best kind of fan service, and I'm grateful for it.

Speaking of gratitude, for all its faults (which we've spent the past few years pointing out), I really love Buffy, you guys. I think it's a fantastic and ridiculous show that I can't quite believe exists sometimes, full of dialogue I quote freely to this day, full of characters I love, full of pain and joy and vitality, full of remarkable achievements like "The Body," "Hush," and "Once More, With Feeling." I'm grateful Joss decided to write a musical episode, without which it would have taken much longer for me to get around to watching this show and realizing how special it is. I'm grateful for the friends I've made because of it (especially Daniel!). I'm grateful to you guys for sticking around to read us talking about it. This is basically me:




Daniel's Thoughts:

Ditto.


Zelda's Rebuttal:

You dork.

We'll be back in two weeks with the pilot of Veronica Mars! Be sure to take Backup.