I am not exactly the demographic for a series such as Veronica Mars, but who cares? I wish that I could say that I was a fan from day one, but… Let me explain.
I wanted to watch Veronica Mars but there was some other show on at the same time. It was probably Lost–if I only knew. To make matters worse I didn’t have a DVR.
Luckily, just after the start of 2005, UPN started airing episodes on Sunday nights at either 11 PM, or maybe Midnight, I forget. They started with the pilot episode and it ran for twenty-two straight weeks without a break. That was the best thing ever. I fell in love straight away and vowed that no matter what I was not going to miss it when it returned for season two.
One thing I loved is that there was so much that happened prior to the first episode, and that the viewers were filled in along the way. This wasn’t a series that felt like that it had to show everything, but there were some flashbacks. Thankfully there weren’t any smoke monsters. The series also used voiceover to explain things, but it was in a concise and often humorous way, so it never felt like an info dump.
Veronica Mars (Kristen Bell) resides in Neptune, California where either you are a millionaire or you work for one–there is no middle class. The tension is high, and an all out war between the classes seems almost imminent.
There is also a war on drugs, and in the first episode Vice-Principal Clemmons and Deputy Sacks are conducting a locker search, which Veronica states isn’t quite so random since she knew when they were going to happen. I thought this was funny since I always knew when they were going to happen when I was in high school as well. At the time Dawson County didn’t have a K-9 unit, so when they needed a drug sniffing dog they would bring in the one from Forsyth County. If you saw the truck drive by your house, roll through town, or parked at the Sheriff’s Department on a school day, you knew what was what.
And if you saw the Dawson County Sheriff’s car parked along side a bunch of unmarked Crown Victorias at the Mill House restaurant in Forsyth County, just off Highway 9, you knew that there was going to be a raid. But that’s another story.
For a while there Veronica was one of the cool kids; that was because she was dating Duncan Kane (Teddy Dunn), who father owns a software company. But now Veronica is considered persona non grata, to put it mildly.
The first season is mainly about the murder of Veronica’s best friend Lily (Amanda Seyfried), who just happens to be Duncan’s sister. The murder occured prior to the first episode, and it put in motion the events we see from here on out.
Veronica’s father, Keith (Enrico Colantoni) was the sheriff at the time, and he suspected that Lily’s dad was the killer, but Abel Koontz came forward and confessed. However, some people weren’t buying it.
But, this is far more than a detective show–it’s also a love story. There is a love triangle between Veronica, Duncan, and his friend Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring), and things get complicated.
This is also a story about the love between a father and his daughter. I adore the relationship Keith and Veronica have. It almost makes me wish that I had a child.
Season two is when things get darker, and that is saying something. Neptune isn’t exactly Gotham City, but it isn’t far off. Neptune sort of exists in a bubble universe where anything can, and usually does happen. One of the things I love about this show is that it’s never afraid to go dark. Things seem a bit extreme at times, but it’s not out of character. A school bus crash or an abused child are just mysteries that need solving.
I’m not saying that these are everyday occurances, or that they are treated matter of factly. Veronica knows that Neptune is a f***ed up town, but she is often the only one. Or at least the only one willing to do anything about it; not that things always go to plan. It seems as if the Mars family motto is: “No good deed goes unpunished.”
In season three Veronica has made it out of Neptune High, but not out of Neptune, California. She is attending Hearst College, and she is still trying to solve mysteries; some involve crme, some involve the men in her life.
It seems like Veronica Mars and Neptune, California are inextricably linked–you cannot have one without the other.