Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Deep Thoughts on Veronica Mars, Part III

As we near the end of Mystery Arc #1 in Veronica Mars Season 3, I figured I should make some comments...

- The “Will Veronica dump Logan for Piz?” plotline that I predicted 10 minutes into the opening episode has gone down such a predictable line that “LoVe / Piz = ?” has been in the advertisements recently. And Piz hasn’t even made his move yet. Note to Rob Thomas (VM writer, not Matchbox Twenty singer): if it’s this predictable, and has been for a while, go ahead and move along with the storyline.

- Get it? LoVe = Logan & Veronica? How clever. Did the Aerie girls think of that? And speaking of which, why must they still clutter up the CW on Tuesday nights? Must we listen to 15-year olds talking with attempted wisdom about love and loss? And must I be reminded that I’m in love with a show whose designed audience is 10-15 years younger than me and female?

- I agree with EW’s “TV Watch” writer, who said that last week’s discovery that many of the rapes were faked in a way to get the Greek system shut down, was a huge letdown. I mean...Veronica getting drugged and almost getting her head shaven bumped the intensity up tenfold...and then it was brought back down with that discovery. But...not to worry!! Someone will die this week!! That’s what the ads told me!! Seriously, CW...please do not start using NBC’s advertising techniques of “DO NOT MISS THE LAST FIVE MINUTES BECAUSE SOMEBODY WILL DIE AND YOU WILL BE SHOCKED.” It kills any sort of shock that loyal viewers of the show (and that’s the only kind of viewers that VM has) have come to love, and it’s just tacky. Besides, when it ends up being some third-tier character that dies (not saying this is definite, but it’s still the most likely possibility), it looks like the writers chickened out by not killing off a main character (which is unfair to the writers since they most likely didn’t ask you to advertise the show in that way).

But back to the disappointing plotline...things dragged for a couple formulaic episodes, but I was actually looking forward to the payoff after Veronica got drugged. That created some interesting possibilities. All I can say is, tonight’s episode better be phenomenal...if the major players behind the rape scandal are a bunch of females who hate Greeks, then this will have been a severe letdown.

- Where in the hell has Mac been? She’s not my favorite character by any means, but this was supposed to be the season in which she emerged as a major player...and instead she hasn’t made an appearance, I believe, since the second episode. How long was this supposed “family funeral” supposed to last? Two months? The Butterfly’s theory is that she was deemed to hefty for TV, and I scoffed at that notion...though she did look a bit skinnier in the previews for this episode. Man...that will piss me off if true. Seriously, she was the same weight at the beginning of the season as she had been for the last two seasons. Why, if true, did she have to lose weight now? And since when was her weight deemed “too hefty”? I just refuse to believe that this is true...please don’t prove me wrong, CW.

- Meanwhile, I read that Rob Thomas will likely be focusing a good portion of Mystery Arc #3 of the season around Wallace and, I guess, Mac. Good thing, because there is nothing being made of Wallace’s character. He got caught cheating in mechanical engineering, refused to drop the class because he’s always wanted to pursue that subject, then dropped basketball to buckle down and pull off a C in the class. Still...the writers are smart enough to figure out how to get him on the screen more.

- While I am complaining a lot here, I will take the time to compliment the plotline surrounding Keith Mars, not to mention the inspired casting of Laura San Giacomo (his love interest when he was That Guy in Just Shoot Me) as his married love interest. His involvement with Charisma Carpenter and the Fitzpatricks at the beginning of the season was convoluted and confusing, and while the plot will obviously circulate back to that soon enough (I assume that will be Mystery Arc #2), things have simplified for him a bit as he found love in a married woman and decided he needed to stick to being Veronica’s hero and not let her down by being The Guy Who Ruined the Marriage.

- Meanwhile, Veronica’s disappointment in the two men of her life has once again allowed Kristen Bell to show off a different set of acting chops. It’s to the point where I would watch her in anything (even with bad hair). At times, Veronica seems to mature, and the anger and slight immaturity she’s shown toward Keith and Logan have served to remind everybody that she’s still supposed to be 19 or 20 years old. She has also revealed (and admitted to) major trust issues, particularly with Logan, and that is apparently going to be the major cause for their inevitable breakup.

- I mentioned in my last update a while back that Jason Dohring seemed bored with Logan Echolls’ plotlines...well not anymore. He’s great when he’s mixing the bad boy/sad puppy dog personas, the scene in last week’s episode in which he called Veronica from the other end of the food court and watched her see his name on the caller ID and put the phone back in her pocket was his best scene of the season...which is impressive since he didn’t even say a word.

- Speaking of being complimentary, the guest appearances (with one exception) in this season have been both phenomenal and hilarious. No other show could get away with featuring Laura San Giacomo, Ed Begley Jr., Patty Hearst (who was awful and completely devoid of personality in last week’s episode), and The Guy from The Nanny, in addition to Rory's Boyfriend from Gilmore Girls, The Most Well-Known of the Geeks from Freaks and Geeks, the Best Friend from Boy Meets World, etc.

- One more memo to Rob Thomas: Heroes has now passed VM as The Butterfly’s favorite show. Just so you know. You gonna let that happen? Get to crackin’.

UPDATE: Apparently Tina Majorino, who plays Mac, has also been filming the next season of HBO's Big Love, and that's the major reason why she hasn't been on the show recently. Good. Don't tell The Butterfly, but for once I'm glad she was wrong.

Seriously, don't tell her.