So everybody should be very happy. I received Veronica Mars Season 1 on DVD this past weekend, and I plan on doing a marathon viewing session during the holiday weekend. By this time next week, I’ll be well on my way to making all of the proper references and gaining all of the important insights into the characters and their complexities like only the truly obsessed fan can comprehend. Until then, we are left with dealing with the mystery of this season, which is the big bus crash that killed all of those students from Neptune High, and their hot teacher. The only problem with the search for the truth is that whenever we think we have solved one mystery, three more rise from its ashes. And if all of that wasn’t enough for the folks of Neptune, a new witness came forward in the murder of Felix Toombs, meaning there was new pressure on Logan. And Wallace is nowhere to be found.When they started the episode in Duncan’s apartment with The Big Lebowski playing, I decided that maybe I had been judging Duncan and Logan the wrong way. Sure they may have a limited scope when it comes to their compassion, but how can I fault somebody who clearly loves The Big Lebowski that much? Well, for starters, it wasn’t Logan and Duncan who were watching the movie but Duncan and Veronica, and it was Veronica who was quoting the movie and laughing her ass off, while Duncan just wanted to make out. Now I can’t fault him for wanting to make out with Veronica, but come on! The Big Lebowski? Just coast your way to the Kenny Rogers dream sequence and you are assured of sex and laughs!
Just as things are about to get hot and heavy, Logan walks in. He is not embarrassed that he walked in on his two friends at the beginning of their throes of ecstasy; in fact he rather enjoys interrupting their little session. I still think it would be smarter if he got his own hotel room, but he kind of enjoys the way Veronica gets agitated at the mere mention of his name, and Duncan still feels too little guilty about his relationship with Veronica to say anything about it. In fact, there are some ways that Duncan is jealous of Logan. Sure Logan has that whole murder trial thing he has to worry about, but in the meantime he gets to boff Kendall Casablancas, who arrives at Duncan’s a few moments after Logan.
Veronica is actually really upset that Duncan seems not the least bit upset that Logan is having sex with another person’s mom, especially when that person is also a good friend of his. Duncan explains that Kendall is not really anybody’s mom, and he is not going to make fun of one of his friends just because he has hot sex on a platter. He would even ask her to buy them beer if she wasn’t always so busy having sex with Logan. I think Logan is an idiot, but it’s hard to argue against him because Kendall is a willing participant in the whole affair.
When Keith Mars lost out in the sheriff’s race last week, he was disappointed for a number of reasons. For one, he generally believes that he is better at law enforcement than Sheriff Lamb, and in particular, he believes that he could be doing more for the bus crash. When he heard Veronica found herself involved, he was double anxious about the outcome of the investigation. Lamb has been stalling on him, but Keith is still good friends with County Supervisor Woodrow Goodman. I know that everybody calls him Woody, but seriously, how often do I get to write down Woodrow?
Ketih asks Woody if he has heard any news about the investigation, but Woody is not really interested. Now that he has power, he wants to use that power to help out the people by incorporating Neptune into a city, bringing in bundles of revenues. He had visions of being the next Carmel, which I am sure would be fine with Keith Mars if the plan was going to benefit more people. All of the revenues Woody was talking about would only benefit the parts of town that are incorporated, and Woody’s plan included only the most affluent parts of the city, and he wanted Keith Mars to be the sheriff. Lamb would still be working for the county, but Keith wouldn’t have to answer to him, at least within the confines of the new and better Neptune Woody Goodman envisioned.
Her father was getting nowhere with his investigation, but Veronica was going to be plunged into two of her own. She and Logan may be trying their best to show each other how much they don’t need the other. We are pretty sure that Veronica is doing just fine with her new significant other, but when talking about Logan, it’s hard to know if he is satisfied. Yes, he’s having the hottest sex he may ever have, but it is just another one of his emotionally unfulfilling relationships. When he needs real help and is serious about it, he goes back to one person he knows won’t judge him in his time of need – Veronica Mars. Veronica finds him in the in the girl’s bathroom waiting for her, and he asks her to help him with his case. At first, Veronica tried to laugh him off, but when she saw he was serious, she decided to help out. Logan was worried that he was being set up by the witness to the murder case, and he wanted Veronica to help him found out who it was.
As Veronica is leaving the bathroom, she bumps into Duncan, who sees Logan leaving right after her. She is a little worried that Duncan saw her and Logan exit the bathroom, seemingly timed so nobody would think they were in there together, but before she can explain Duncan tells her that there are more important things that he is worried about. If you remember, Veronica helped him get a hold of Meg’s laptop and remove all of the personal files on there. Meg’s parents are ultra religious, and her sister was worried that they would go through some of her e-mail, be upset at what they saw, and do something drastic. Considering that her sister was still in a coma, I am not sure what punishment her parents could hand out that would dampen the mood of “Hey! I just got out of a coma!”, because even “You are grounded for a year!” isn’t that bad considering. Then again, maybe they would just put her back into a coma when she woke up. Who knows, but better to be safe than sorry.
Back on topic, Duncan finally got around to looking at some of Meg’s e-mails, and she found that Meg had been in contact with Child Protective Services. One of the kids she babysits was being abused, not sexual or physical, but more like mental torture. Meg wanted to know if there was anything she could do without any proof. The only thing she had was that the parents of the child made this child write in a journal over and over again when they did something bad. There was no information as to who it was, so Veronica decided that she would babysit some of the kids that Meg took care of, try and get a writing sample from each from their homework or something, and then go from there.
You know, if you could stand being one of the dumbest people alive, the life of Dick Casablancas would not be so bad, would it? As long as you can read, you are probably going to be able to find a way to make money at your dad’s company, and even thought the federal government wants to indict your father on larceny and fraud charges, you can still be secure because you have that bitching trust fund. And perhaps the best thing about it all is that you just discovered your stepmom is interested in younger guys and is having an affair on your father. Suddenly, you are looking at her differently. You may have always sort of pretended you didn’t notice when she walked around in her bikini all day, but now you are trying to get a peak at her gash as she crosses her legs, even when you should be paying attention to what is going on.
What is going on that is so important? Well, now that Big Dick Casablancas is somewhere in the tropics living off of some off-shore bank accounts, something must be done about the people he left behind. His sons each have trust funds, but Kendall got nothing. She wasn’t married long enough to Dick to have anything legally transferred over to her name. Her income is zero, and she can’t even siphon off from Dick and Beaver’s trust, because only their biological mother has the power to do anything with that money now that they are incognito. The ex-Mrs. Casablancas comes by, and she lets it be known that she is not going to risk her sons’ future by letting them touch too much of the money before they turn 21 and it is handed over to them.
In truth, you probably don’t have to worry too much about Beaver. Although it isn’t real money, he is managing it wisely in the Future Business Leaders of America group after school. His brother, on the other hand, is a moron and was left broke. Their mom eventually decides to let them stay and opens up their trusts, and Dick shows that he is going to spend his money wisely by buying Kendall a skimpy maid’s outfit. He wants her to wear it around the house, and lets her know that he wants to get to know her better. Kendall likes screwing Logan, but she does have a least a sliver of self-respect left, and so the thought of her having sex with her stepson is still revolting.
Although it seems like most of the kids in Neptune don’t need Sex Ed, all of the kids get their share through the tutelage of crazy Mrs. Hauser. I remember during the sexual education portion of my health class in high school. When the teacher wasn’t busy telling us how much she loved her showerhead and bath tub, we got to do fun activities such as discussing slang terms for genitalia. Man, I don’t know what I would have done if I went through life and had to wait for adulthood to learn terms like panty hamster and spitting trouser snake. Anyway, like most divorced women her age who are afraid they will lose their sex drive because their ex-husband is humping his secretary, Mrs. Hauser makes sure that there is plenty of talk about STDs to convince sex is baaad, mmmkay? She tells the kid to break up into groups and explain to their partner that they have an STD.
Veronica ends up partnering up with Gia [not Gina, thanks I Love Beer] Goodman. Gia has always been nice to Veronica, but they aren’t the best of friends. When Veronica heard her talk lovingly about Dick Casablancas, I think her senses were telling her to stay away, but since her younger brother was one of the kids Meg looked after, she had to find an excuse to get into her house. She finds that excuse while Gia is talking about how hard it is to adjust to a new school. Gia complains that she doesn’t have any guy friends, and so Veronica convinces her that they should have a girls’ night out, and Gia agrees. Mission accomplished.
The first child she looks after is a boy named Edwin. His life is very regimented and his parents are very strict, including with what Veronica can do in the house, which is basically “no boys,” a not wholly unusual request among parents. The parents leave, and Veronica’s job is almost too easy. Edwin doesn’t even pretend to want to do anything besides reading, and even when it’s time for him to color, he is almost a little too robotic, but that works in favor for Veronica. She was set to meet Logan that night about some of the information she received about the informant in his case. When he gets there, we learn the name of the man is Dr. Tom Griffith, a plastic surgeon. When Logan sees a picture, he is adamant that the man on the bridge was not the same man. Veronica wonders how he knows, since he testified that he didn’t remember the entire night. It turns out Logan lied because he didn’t want to the cops to think he remembered another person, because they might start wondering where that person was.
Before they can get any more into the discussion, Edwin’s parents come home and Logan has to leave. Veronica was able to get a writing sample like she had wanted, and from the early returns, it didn’t look like Edwin was being abused. That is not to say that strange stuff didn’t happen in the house. When she is leaving, Veronica gets paid, and the father casually mentions that he might need her more often and that, among other things, if she ever wants to fool around, or smoke a j on a boat, she is more than welcome. Veronica is kind of used to being hit on, even though this guy was older than usual, but the really disturbing part came from Edwin. He had drawn Veronica a picture, and it was a loving description of Veronica with her head chopped off. This kid might be well behaved, but you just know that he spends his weekends putting M-80s in frog mouths and watching them explode.
A few days later, Veronica babysits for Mrs. Hauser. At first, the teacher wasn’t that receptive to the whole idea of having Veronica babysit, but when she saw the flyer for the Police Officer’s benefit and bachelor auction, she realizes it’s an easy way for her to meet guys, and since there were going to be a lot of people asking for money, they would have to pay attention to her. Mrs. Hauser comes to Veronica’s house and drops off her son Albert. Nobody can be stranger than Edwin, but Albert comes close. His mom was very strict about him not eating junk food or watching television, but unlike Edwin, as soon as his mom left, he became Problem Child. He started screaming, and demanded ice cream or he wouldn’t stop.
Veronica was able to get him to shut up by turning on the television and having Duncan make an ice cream run for her. By the time Mrs. Hauser returns, Albert is fast asleep. Veronica is pretty sure nothing too damaging is going on with Albert, and the only person suffering psychological damage was her. After Mrs. Hauser got back home, she talked lovingly about the benefit and mentioned that she even had a date with a deputy by the name of Sacks. If Veronica could have charged Hazard pay on a job like this one, the psychological damage alone for these two babysitting gigs could have put her through her first year of Stanford.
When Veronica learned that she would have to investigate a plastic surgeon, she might have been a little excited. She is not the type to worry too much about her boobs, but she is in high school, and is at least a little bit self conscious. Although her bust size might not bother her now, it bothered her enough when she was younger that she bought some breast enhancement pills. After seeing Dr. Griffith, explaining that she wants some implants (not clown boobs, that would be gross) she is more than happy to hear him say that he wouldn’t do anything to her, and that the only thing she needs to alter is her body image. Brochure in hand, Veronica calls Logan and tells him there is nothing wrong with the doctor. She probably should have told Logan that he was a genius, but she noticed that the Dr. was leaving and decided to follow, but the search turned up nothing more than a cigar store.
Later that night was the evening Veronica had been waiting for! Sleep over at Gia’s! It was not something she was looking forward to, but it was necessary to figure out this Meg thing, so she did it. I must say, Veronica did look cute in her pajamas, and I would cuddle up with her in that Ninja Turtle sleeping bag any day. When Veronica met her at the door, Veronica learned that Edwin’s parents weren’t the only people running a tight ship in their houses. It looks like Mrs. Goodman took the prize for most anal retentive parent. Not only did Veronica have to take off her shoes (a not unusual request, sure), but she saw that, quite literally, there was a place for everything, and EVERYTHING better be in it’s place. There was a spot labeled for the guests shoes, and when Veronica saw that there were more than her own pair of shoes being stored away by the Goodman’s she hoped that Mrs. Goodman didn’t kill the people who messed up her house. What Veronica learned that the reason why there were so many shoes there was because Gia had invited a bunch of girls over, Veronica looked like she was going to die.
Realizing that she is going to have to find another rich person to marry her, or at least take care of her, Kendall suggests to Logan that their relationship progress a little more. I think Logan is an idiot, but he isn’t completely naive, and sees right through Kendall’s plans, especially since he knew from Dick that Kendall now had no money. He says that he doesn’t care about the cow if the milk isn’t free, and the only thing he owes her for the sex is perhaps a goat. Kendall tries to convince him that he won’t be able to go back to the high school girls who are lucky to know more than one sexual position. Not to be a complete jerk, he suggests that he go after the richest guy in the suite if she needs a sugar daddy. That would be Duncan, and Kendall takes his advice and asks Duncan to scratch that three month itch that Logan doesn’t seem interested in anymore now that there is a fee.
Back at Gia’s house, Veronica is just barely hanging on. Even if she hadn’t just seen a plastic surgeon who told her she was perfect, she wouldn’t really have been into things like butt comparisons. Veronica pounces on the first chance she sees to get out of there, even for a moment, and she notices that Mrs. Goodman came back. Earlier, Gia’s brother spilled some water on the rug, and even though Woody pretends to be an adult, he actually tattles on his own son. He’s so scared of his wife that he doesn’t want to face her anger. She gets back, scolds Rodney, but other than seeing the Goodmans make their way to different bedrooms, there was really nothing to report.
Just when Veronica thought it couldn’t get any worse, she decided that she would at least have fun with the other girls, mentioning to one of them that Gia was seeing Dick Casablancas. When this other girl finds out, it is enough for them to divert their attention for picking on Veronica about her boobs, and her aversion to calling hookers heroes. Veronica probably could have lasted all night like that, passive aggressively stirring up shit between the rest of the girls there, but when Dick and Beaver show up for a panty raid, she isn’t waiting around to hear Dick talk about the shocker.
Now that she has visited all of the kids Meg babysat, the only thing left is to check the writing samples Veronica was able to get with the sample of one of those self-hate books the kid was forced to write and which Meg said she had in her room. Duncan knew that the Manning’s would be out of the house for a church group, and they used this chance to get inside Meg’s room. Duncan knew that there was an extra key outside for when Meg forgot hers, which was a lot. You know, during the course of this investigation, Veronica learned a little bit more about just how close Duncan [not Logan, thanks Nicole] and Meg were. He knew a lot about her, and if that wasn’t enough, Logan called out Duncan because he knew Kendall had been paying him visits. If they weren’t trying to help out this kid, it all might have been enough for Veronica to dump Duncan, but she was focused on more important things.
Once inside Meg’s house, they find the journal with all of the punishment writing, but it doesn’t look like it’s the writing of any of the boys she took care of. Veronica has a hunch, and the two of them go to check Grace’s room. Grace is the youngest of the Manning daughters and they find dozens of these journals filled with punishments stacked in her closet. Meg wasn’t talking about kids being abused in other houses, she was talking about her own, but was being vague because it was happening to her sister and it was her parents who were doing it.
They notice a door in the back of the closet, and there is Grace. Duncan tries to coax her out, but she is too scared. Suddenly, they see that the Mannings are back home early. Mr. Manning sees that they have found Grace, and he tells them to get on the ground. From the previews last week, we believed this guy with the bat was a stranger and he was going to beat Duncan and Veronica senseless. I have to say that Duncan was kind of a pussy. Mr. Manning is an old man, but if your girlfriend is right there, don’t you try and jump him? Maybe you can distract him so she can get out alive? But since it was Mr. Manning, he simply told them to get down on the ground while he called Sheriff Lamb. Once Lamb got there, he handcuffed Duncan and Veronica, put them in the squad car, but ended leaving them off just a few blocks away, and parking his car outside the Manning house where Mr. Manning could see them and know he was being watched.
I thought this was an OK episode. I’m still chomping at the bit for more clues regarding the bus crash and Logan’s witness. It was interesting to see what is perhaps the first chink in the Duncan and Veronica armor, at least for this year. If Duncan really is giving it to Kendall, he has to be an idiot to think that Veronica wouldn’t find out. I would be interested to hear everybody’s conspiracy theories as to who is setting up Logan and if it has anything to do with the crash. There’s a new episode this week, and like I said before, I am going to work on Season 1 on DVD. Wish me luck!