As I’ve always said, one of the things that I love about Veronica Mars is that the show is able to juggle so many story lines with a lot of skill. As you dig deeper into the mystery, it only gets more complicated. While this makes it very difficult to turn somebody onto the show this late into the season, watching how everything comes together gives those of us who have hung around since the beginning of the year a wonderful sense of accomplishment. If you thought things were going to get less complicated once Weevil got his revenge on Thumper, you don’t know the writers very well. We know that when she was solving Lily Kane’s murder, Veronica would see visions of her best friend, who would often give her advice on how things were going. This year, it looks like Veronica is once again playing medium as kids killed in the bus crash started visiting her dreams in order to provide some clarity, and that’s a good thing After all, we only have five episodes left to get to the bottom of this thing.Like I said, Veronica has been having dreams of her dead classmates. It has been bothering her enough that it is really starting to affect her schoolwork. Her teachers have noticed, and Veronica is sent to the counselor’s office of Miss James to get straightened out. We know Veronica is consumed by the crash, but she tore down a poster that another student had put up while trying to raise money for a yearbook memorial of those who have died. Veronica is not above getting revenge on students, but usually she waits for people to do something a little more nefarious before putting the hammer down.
Veronica’s bad dreams started a few days earlier after she received some more pictures from the bus. Her father had been inside just long enough to find the rat, but what he didn’t notice was that there was some graffiti on the bus. Somebody wrote “I Am God” on the back of one of the seats along with nine tombstones. Eight people died on the bus, but Veronica was supposed to be number nine. She was sure that whoever drew that picture had to be involved with the bus crash.
With this new information, Veronica decided she needed to dig deeper into the lives of the people who died. Marcos Olivares was one of the DJs for Ahoy Mateys, so she is listening to all of his old radio shows. Another kid, Peter, was gay and so made a lot of postings to the message board we heard about a few weeks back. She has all of Meg’s e-mails, so she obviously has some insight into what that girl was thinking.
A lot of Meg’s thoughts centered on a janitor named lucky. He used to be a rich kid, but his parents filed for bankruptcy and he had to leave school. Lucky joined the army, got shot in the ass, and boy buys beer for people like Logan and Dick in order to relive his glory days vicariously through them. He does, however, keep himself on a tight schedule of smoking pot and playing Halo. But really, would Meg have caused the accident considering she was pregnant? She was worried the baby would be sent away, but was she THAT worried?
The only real reason for mentioning Lucky was so we could have a nice flashback of Veronica sucking face with Logan. By the way, any spark we thought we saw from that dance last week is all but gone, and these two were trading barbs once again.
Veronica’s next clue to follow was the sound of Dick Casablancas’ voice. One of the girls who died, Rhonda, left a message on another student’s phone. While Veronica had heard the message on that student, Michelle Thompson’s, cell phone, Rhonda had left a message earlier on Michelle home answering machine. In the background, you can hear Dicky Casablancas using his charming moves on another crash victim, Betina(not Petina, thanks leenie). Obviously Dick wasn’t on the bus at the time, so there had to be something more to all of this.
When Veronica asks Dick about Betina, Dick says that it was a moment of weakness. He got too drunk at a party and decided to dabble with some of the meat a few rungs down on the food chain. Maybe she wasn’t the prettiest horse in the stable, but she was one that let him ride bareback. When Veronica cringes at the thought of Dick having unprotected sex, he laughs and says she was on the pill. Apparently, he figured that he was the first guy Betina let through unsheathed, and so she couldn’t have picked up anything from all of the other guys out there who didn’t need a pretty horse. While it would be great if Dick contracted some horrible painful disease, he probably is safe since he hasn’t complained of any burning, and it’s been six months now since the accident.
Dick said that he treated Betina like shit, but he found a premium ticket package that Peter, the gay kid, had thrown away in the trash and gave it to her. He figured she would be thankful and let him have it as raw as he wanted. It’s amazing this kid is even still alive. Anyway, Veronica asked one of Betina’s friends about Dick, and besides telling the obvious, like saying Dick is the bastard child of Satan, she says that Betina had an entirely different plan than just lying there and letting Dick treat her like she was nothing. Betina’s whole plan was to get knocked up by Dick and then shout it from the rooftops. Hmm, if Betina wanted to get knocked up, she wouldn’t have killed herself and her classmates beforehand, so we are going to have to look at another source.
Perhaps part of the reason Veronica wasn’t sleeping so well was that she was waiting for some acceptance letters of her own. When she got home that evening, she wanted to ask her father if he was getting back together with Miss James. The thing with Wallace’s mom has fizzled out and he was wearing his dating outfit. In order to deflect the question a little bit, Keith shows Veronica a letter from Stanford. Although she was worried that it wasn’t bulky enough to have any good news, it was indeed an acceptance letter. If she could afford Stanford, maybe she would prove my theory that she would go to Hearst wrong by a mile.
Since she used up all of her savings to send her mom to rehab only to have her mom not only leave rehab, but come home and steal some of the reward money Keith got for finding Duncan Kane last year, Veronica’s hopes rest with winning the Kane scholarship at her school. You would think that after her dad’s book was a best seller for awhile, he would have enough money to send Veronica to Stanford, and even if he didn’t have enough money from that, he could always sell the rights to his story to make some TV movie. Sure he would be a sell-out, but isn’t that the exact type of sacrifice people make for their children?
Yay Palo Alto!
Anyway, Veronica has some bad news about the Kane scholarship. She was tied with Angie Dahl, but Clemmons brought them in to say that Angie should have received a 5 point A for a semester at sea course that she took, therefore giving Angie the lead. Angie was able to take the summer at sea course because she had no problem paying for it. Poor Veronica, literally, never even had the possibility to buy her grade. I understand why Veronica is upset, because it does suck that Angie got college credit for something so easy, but let’s be honest here. Veronica could have received a college level grade for a course or two if she had like gone to Neptune Community College or whatever. Just because she was too busy wasting her summer away with Logan Echolls doesn’t mean she should start blaming other people about it. Besides, if she can’t go to Stanford, there is always the Ivy League, and all of those schools are at least 2500 miles away, so maybe losing the Kane scholarship is a blessing in disguise.
Veronica tells her tale to Wallace, who gives her a few words of encouragement before noticing the poster of the dead kids and mentioning how Rhonda might have the sweetest face, but she might have been the biggest troublemaker of them all. Wallace, who works in the principal’s office, used to see Rhonda and her sister Natalie all of the time. If Rhonda was a troublemaker, maybe she was involved in the crash, so Wallace says he will point out Natalie after school so Veronica can do her investigating thing.
Wallace, meanwhile, head to physics class. The teacher, Mr. Wu, had assigned a class project, to build a container to protect an egg falling from a certain height that would be thirty percent of the grade. Dick and Logan were making the normal racially offensive comments about the assignment, and sensing the kids weren’t taking things seriously, Mr. Wu decided that he would choose the partners, and he did it alphabetically. Logan was paired with Wallace, making for one of the more uncomfortable twosome in history.
Although you would think there would be some conflict between these Logan and Wallace, they actually worked together well. You know that Logan had to realize that Wallace knows a lot more about him than he cared to think about. Ladies, I don’t know why you insist on telling your guy friends so many intimate details about your relationships. Sure we don’t mind listening and giving advice, but you have to realize that we also have needs. Foremost among them is to have at least several hours a week to play Madden without being interrupted, and as nice it is to have you around the apartment chatting, it tends to chase away girls who might actually let us see them naked.
The point of the paragraph? Things would be awkward between Logan and Wallace. The last time they actually spoke was when Logan was bashing Veronica’s headlights with a crowbar. Still, Wallace needs a good grade so his scholarship to Hearst isn’t pulled, and Logan? Well, I guess he needs at least one friend not named Dick Casablancas, so they get together for each other’s mutual benefit.
So, Wallace gets to physics class, and Angie is taken out because her mother got her a special “You got into Stanford” gift. Wallace breaks the mood by saying that Veronica also got into Stanford, to which Angie replies “I guess somebody has to do the football team”. For once, I agree with Dick Casablancas, who told Angie when she sat back down that he would love to see her and Veronica catfight. This gets Angie to complain to Mr. Wu that Dick didn’t help out in the project and when Dick can’t even pick which egg thing is his, Mr. Wu disqualifies Dick, which probably means Mr. Casablancas will be spending summer school taking physics. Personally, I thought Angie played a great trick on Dick, and Logan said she would easily fill the Stanford bitch quotient when she got there.
Logan and Wallace did get a passing grade by surviving a four-foot drop, and if they could beat out everybody else the next day, they would even get a chance to skip the final. They meet later that night and we are once again made to feel bad about Logan because the Tinseltown Diaries about his family is playing. The day before Wallace laughed at how easy Logan’s life was, ordering in buffalo burgers, and having a hot maid come in to do his bed. He had to be having sex with the maid, because if she is changing sheets at 8PM or whatever, she should be fired.
Anyway, Wallace sees that Logan has all this scrutiny and maybe he isn’t such a bad guy. Whatever. There is only so far that “my family life sucks” can take you for an excuse. We have already seen that Logan has the capacity to be a good person, but those moments are few and far between. Eventually you have to consider the way he treats people evidence that he is not so much a tortured soul as just another asshole 909er. Am I being harsh? Perhaps, and I readily admit that I have never liked Logan. I am just sick and tired of these stupid scenes where he is played out to be martyr. Use some of your money and buy some therapy. If Tony Soprano could do it, so can Logan. Sure, he may end up screwing his therapist, but you have to think he has a better chance at improving himself that way than to keep on bopping Rosalita from housekeeping.
After school, Wallace pointed Natalie out to Veronica. Although she was sniffing paint and offering to kiss people for cigarette money last year, it appears that she is over the monetary problems. Seeing Natalie’s new Corvette got Veronica thinking that if she wants to solve the mystery, she should just follow the money. Although the parents of the kids who died barely got enough money to pay for funerals, Natalie’s family settled with Woody Goodman and his burger company to the tune of $2 million dollars. It’s an interesting detail, but does that make Rhonda the artist?
Veronica decides to see if Rhonda has anything in her public record, so she sneaks into the principal’s office, but is interrupted when Clemmons comes back. She hides in the closet, but hears a familiar voice. It’s her father. Clemmons hired him to investigate why so many kids are getting diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. These section 11-23 kids are allowed things like extensions on projects and papers and more time on tests, all at the discretion of the student. The teachers are starting to get upset, but Keith says that he is close. Ah, I guess we now know why he has been seen in school, and it wasn’t because he was seeing Miss James.
Although she didn’t get much information about Rhonda, Veronica did learn that Peter had an incident with Mr. Wu. Peter had bragged on the gay website that he was going to make the outing of all outings, but when she asks Mr. Wu about it, he says that not all well-dressed, articulate, detail-oriented men are gay; some of them are just Asian. I have to say, I nearly lost, and probably would have if Mr. Wu had added “or British” to it. Peter confronted Mr. Wu at a local gay bar, where Mr. Wu was attending a friend’s birthday party.
Sorry Mr. Wu, the pastel sweater vest tells no lies.
Striking out with Mr. Wu, Veronica’s next target is Cervando Luna, the one PCHer to die on the bus. Last summer, he got into a little bit of a tussle with Cassidy Casablancas after Dick had ruined a pair of Cervando’s $200 jeans. I am actually surprised Beaver even wanted to talk to Veronica considering he knows Mac talked to Veronica about their relationship. We did get some good information, however, and that’s that Cervando paid for his jeans by fleecing Liam Fitzpatrick at a game of pool. He was bragging about it to all of his friends, and you know how much Liam hates bragging. But would Cervando have drawn the picture on the bus?
Veronica sees Logan in the hallway. He is upset about his egg carrier not surviving the 12 foot drop, leaving Angie as the winner, and so he makes fun of Veronica a little bit. Earlier, he had joked that she was staying awake thinking of him, and so he made another joke along the same lines. Veronica shoots back that he is such a catch; she wonders how Hannah has been able to stay away. SLAM! Game, set, and match, Veronica Mars. With insults like that, she should try out for Wilmer Valderrama’s new show. Surprisingly Wallace comes to Logan’s defense, saying that Veronica should cut him some slack, which confuses Veronica, but who cares? Not even a jerk store comeback could bring her down now.
Angie was happy to win the egg drop, because she would receive an A in her class, but she stayed up late and wasn’t able to study for another midterm. Luckily, she had generalized anxiety disorder, so she could put off her test if she wanted to. Or so she thought. Keith had found out why so many kids were under section 11-23. He had gone on a bunch of dates, most of them awful, searching for any woman who would have a clue. One of the women was an office manager for Dr. Burns, and was handing out section 11-23 excuses to anybody who could come up with $1000. Keith got her on tape, which was enough for Clemmons to end all special exemptions. If Angie does poorly enough on her test, maybe Veronica does have a chance at that scholarship after all.
In Mr. Wu’s class, Veronica is listening to Ahoy Mateys, until the teacher interrupts her and has her solve an equation on the board. While throwing around some sine and cosines, Veronica’s mind wanders off back to thoughts of the bus. Cervando is talking to her and is explaining a few things, like how he survived the crash but died drowning. As creepy as that sounds, he used his brains to help Veronica with the bus crash problem.
The explosion probably only killed the driver, but if they wanted to kill the driver, they could have done it at any point along the route home. To kill the kids, the explosion would have to go off at a specific point, which means that somebody must have been close enough to see where the bus was before detonating the trigger. Cervando fingered Weevil, which is very interesting. Did Weevil pick up Veronica as an alibi? Perhaps, and we would still need a motive, but what about the tombstones?
Veronica is shocked back into reality by laughter. While she was dreaming of Cervando, her equation turned to “I AM GOD” in big letters on the blackboard. As it turns out, she was just having one of those dreams within another dream, and “I Am God” was playing on her iPod. It was at the end of an Ahoy Mateys show. It was Marcos that drew the Tombstones, but it had nothing to do with the crash and everything to do with the album cover of a song he really liked.
So, there it is. All of that searching for another dead end. Well, not quite. We got another Woody Goodman tie-in to the crash with Rhonda and the money. Peter was talking about the outing of all outings, which we thought could have been Mr. Wu, but what if it was just Marcos? Marcos’ parents sent him to gay re-education camp, but I don’t think that would be a reason to kill everybody on the bus.
The outing of all outings may have been Peter coming forward about Woody Goodman? In her dream, Peter told Veronica to think about why he would even have been at the baseball stadium. He did win that ticket package, was that Woody Goodman trying to pay him hush money? Is the reason Peter threw it away not because he hates baseball, but because he hates Woody? It would fit into a lot of the speculation we have about Woody, and Keith found another piece of evidence to make things even more interesting. Richard Casablancas took an insurance policy out on his two songs right after he married Kendall. In other words, they are worth more dead than alive.
Although my head was spinning by the end of this episode, I thought it was a good one. I am sure there is a little misdirection with some of the leads Veronica has. We know Weevil is capable of killing people, but there isn’t much to link him to the explosion. Besides, Woody has still got to be the frontrunner, although I think the Fitzpatricks play into this whole thing as well. Like I said, there was a lot of things to think about in this episode, so if I missed anything, or you have a theory of your own, don’t hesitate to add to the discussion.
What did you think of this episode? Will Veronica go to Stanford? Did somebody crash the bus to get rid of Veronica, or some other kid that happened to be riding at the time?