The Veronica Mars Season 3 Dossier: Episodes 5-8

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Guys, I'm so tired of the rape plotline. So tired. I am rape-xhausted. Sorry that I don't have anything more productive to say in this, my precious introductory paragraph, but I'm just really tired of this rape plotline. Oh, and those terrible, terrible bald caps the victims have to wear. Their heads look like giant, fuzzy pink tennis balls! To be fair, maybe this whole Season 3 story would be more palatable if I were mainlining this season over a day or so and could just quickly move past the rape stuff and onto whatever the next big case is (I'm aware that Season 3 has at least three big serialized mysteries), but I've been watching this round in smaller chunks and it seems like every time I come back to it, I remember how not-entertaining this rape plotline is? Oh and now it turns out apparently some of the rapes were faked by a group of feminists? That's not only unsatisfying storytelling but it's pretty much offensive? This show! But then again it's always been this way, so I guess maybe now is not the time to start complaining about questionable messages on Veronica Mars.

Anyway, hey guys! Sorry I've been slacking on my Veronica Mars recaps, but here is a new one! I hadn't forgotten! I just get tired of all the rape, okay? I am only human! On a more positive note, I think I like Piz so much, like so much, that I don't care about Logan anymore? SORRY FORGET I SAID IT PLS DON'T BE MAD. Okay, let's talk about Episodes 5 thru 8!



Season 3, Episode 5: "President Evil"


Case of the week: Neptune was already a full-time nightmare town, but even nightmare towns celebrate Halloween! While Veronica was chillin' with Logan in that weird dorm casino (dressed as Meg and Jack White because 2006), a couple of dudes in rubber president masks like in Point Break robbed all the patrons at gunpoint and even went so far as to take Veronica's necklace (a gift from Lilly Kane). Presumably because of how frequently Weevil groused about the spoiled rich kids at this college, Veronica immediately assumed he'd been behind the robbery, but it turned out some shady campus security guards were behind it. Also at one point Veronica got randomly told off by a little girl (stand your ground, V!), but at least the girl's purple bubblegum helped lead Veronica to the culprit. Or something. To be honest I'm not sure, I just could not believe the 'tude on that 9-year-old sassbomb.

Then in another weird case-of-the-week situation, Dean O'Dell and his wife hired Keith to find the biological father of the wife's son, who was gravely ill and in need of a bone marrow transplant. But after the bio dad was tricked into arriving at Keith's office thinking it was an audition, he declined to donate marrow and a few days later disappeared altogether. At first Keith was suspected of having kidnapped the selfish dude, but it turned out Dean O'Dell had knocked him out and taken him to the hospital for an unauthorized donation. Dang, Dean O'Dell!

Oh, and Wallace cheated on a test. Knock it off, Wallace.

The plot thickens: This episode was not too heavy on the recurring storyline stuff, but there WAS a brief tidbit: Using ATM security camera footage, Veronica identified an Asian man standing behind the most recent rape victim shortly before her alleged assault. Even though the victim claimed she'd never seen the man before, it turned out he was actually in a well-known frat AND ALSO her boyfriend. So, um. Busted?

Don't I know you from somewhere?

Hey look, it's Glee's Dianna Agron as some random smarty-pants.

The sick kid's dad was played by Richard Grieco from 21 Jump Street and If Looks Could Kill, obviously.

I will jump at any opportunity to talk about Tower Prep now and forever, so here we go: A helpful pizza shop employee was played by Ryan Pinkston! (Miss U Tower Prep.)

Wallace's ne'er-do-well teammate was played by Robert Ri'chard, who has been in EVERYTHING, most recently as a background actor on The Vampire Diaries.

Episode verdict: This episode was not the best! Not terrible by any means, but it felt lacking in certain ways, particularly when it came to the total lack of Piz and Dick. Where were they? Also this episode made it clear that Logan didn't have all that much to do on this show anymore? Lately he'd just been a doting boyfriend or a sounding board for Veronica or also just some weightlifting bro who disappeared for long stretches of time. I'm definitely starting to get deja vu from Season 2, since Duncan suddenly had nothing to do and then got written off. Stay in the game, L! But as for Weevil, I know this show constantly wants us to believe that he's capable of bad things, but come on. Would Veronica honestly pin a crime on this guy right away like that? Nine of out of ten times he'd been a hero to her; did their history count for nothing? Get real, girl.



Season 3, Episode 6: "Hi, Infidelity"


Case of the week: The big case this week centered on Veronica herself: After her paper scored the best grade in the entire class, her professor took her aside to offer his support/sponsorship for a summer program or whatever that may or may not lead directly to a job at the FBI. But then the creepy T.A. in the weird wig (because that was totally a wig, right? Have we talked about how that T.A. was definitely wearing a wig yet?) accused Veronica of having plagiarized the paper, so the whole episode became about Veronica clearing her name. After doing some cyber-sleuthing to prove that her paper predated a copy that had been posted online, Veronica followed the uploader's trail to the Neptune Grand where she discovered her professor having an affair with Dean O'Dell's wife. As it turned out, the T.A. had faked the entire thing just so that Veronica would discover this tryst for herself. Um, okay, thanks, T.A. Everybody's cheating on each other, what's your point?

The plot thickens: The closing tidbit of that T.A. plotline was the reveal that he had ALSO been investigating the serial rape case (per his Carrie Mathison-style wall collage of evidence), which I think was supposed to make him look suspicious, but his weird wig had that angle covered already, don't worry.

Speaking of the rape case, Veronica fully debunked the most recent victim's rape allegation (yay?). But apparently not ALL of the rapes were faked, so the case was still open! For example, when Mac's roommate Parker (hypothetically Mac's roommate Parker because WHERE WAS MAC ANYMORE?) smelled a cologne on Mercer (the casino mogul) that smelled like one her rapist was wearing during her rape (Axe? I'm going with Axe), Veronica snooped in Mercer's dorm room and found electric clippers in his underwear drawer. Meanwhile Sheriff Lamb found Mercer's empty lockbox (from the robbery in the previous episode) and it contained empty containers of GHB. So, bingo! Mercer's the rapist. Let's pack it up and go home because finally this plotline is concluded.

Except, nope! Logan was like, "Mercer's innocent, Veronica you gotta do something." So ugh. Back to square one there. The problem was that Logan claimed he and Mercer had a rock-solid alibi for when the verified rapes happened except he refused to divulge it to Veronica. That's not the best way to treat your girlfriend, particularly when her entire lifeblood is secrets and the exposing of them. So yeah, rocky waters ahead for the LoVe ship. (I think I prefer "Vegan" for the ship name but it wasn't up to me.)

Here's Piz sitting on a couch! Hi, Piz! Okay, the thing was, I'm not gonna lie, he was sorta creepy in this episode. He was trying to arrange a kinda date with Veronica despite knowing full well she had a boyfriend, and he used that old tactic of getting her agree to a group hang-out and then didn't invite a group. But Veronica did bring Parker and Parker got a crush on Piz (fair enough) but he didn't like her back and then after that it became very clear to Veronica what was going on, and that made things awkward. Okay maybe he wasn't that creepy, he was just following his heart, you know? Lay off Piz, everybody!

Meanwhile Keith and Harmony started boning a ton even though Harmony had a husband but Keith only agreed to be her male mistress after he crashed his car into some dude and decided he wanted to live while he's young like One Direction says to.

Also Wallace quit the basketball team so that he can study more.

Episode verdict: I liked this episode more than the last one. Everybody except Wallace had an interesting plotline (Wallace will never have an interesting plotline, so no worries there) and I love whenever Veronica has to do self-serving casework. Raises the stakes! And while I'm not tired of Logan exactly, I appreciated that Piz's appeals skyrocketed just as Logan took another turn for the shady. This show is really good at telling us who we should sympathize with and when. At this point my sympathies are aligned with the best haircut 2006 had to offer.



Season 3, Episode 7: "Of Vice and Men"


Case of the week: In a classic Veronica moment, she got tired of all the haters and went into hiding. Okay, maybe not "haters" but she did get super disillusioned with Logan and her dad not being honest with her anymore, and she decided to secretly crash in Wallace's dorm room while he was gone. That's basically going off the grid for a college student. Fortunately for us, Piz came back early so they shared a room together and he was in his bathrobe a lot, but that's all beside the point: The case of the week involved a visiting teenage girl who aimed to crash with her boyfriend only to discover that he'd gone missing. While popular consensus was that the dude was just breaking up with the girl in the most awful, passive-aggressive way imaginable, Veronica felt bad and pressed onward with trying to locate him. As it turned out, he'd suffered a head injury while surfing and wandered into that one bar with all the awful Irish thugs. Mystery solved!

As for that bar scene, boy was it unsettling to me when the one brother picked up Veronica and carried her around the bar! I know Kristen Bell is tiny, but I don't like seeing her get overpowered like that! I like it when she's a tiny stick of dynamite, but that's me. Oh, last thing about this scene: Vinnie Van Lowe saved the day! That was great. Also he did it by holding up a broken flip phone and pretended to film even though it didn't have a camera. 2006!

The plot thickens: Mostly Veronica just agreed to exonerate Mercer from being the school rapist, but she did it with a big chip on her shoulder toward Logan for his refusal to explicitly explain what their alibi was. As we came to learn, Mercer was doing his radio show during some of the rapes, and then later he and Logan were in Mexico burning down a motel room for another one of them. Yeah, it was the Mexican motel fire that Logan was trying to cover up, but after all he and his family had done/been through was that seriously even a big deal? I don't know. Logan's shadiness seemed kind of unwarranted in my opinion. But yeah, Mercer was set free.

The biggest and scariest turn of events was that Veronica suddenly found herself directly in harm's way when the school rapist drugged her hamburger, followed her to the parking lot, and then shaved off a lock of hair as a warning. I don't know, it might've been more serious if Logan hadn't realized something was wrong and came looking for her. Phew!

Also Keith and Harmony broke up because Keith Mars ain't no runaround skeezer and also Vinnie Van Lowe blackmailed him. [sadface emoji]

Episode verdict: This was good! I liked all of the scenes of Piz sleeping on the floor. And as much as it freaks me out to see Veronica in harm's way (I shouldn't be watching TV, apparently), I appreciated the forward momentum in this plotline. The rapist is now fully aware of Veronica and she's in danger now! That's progress.



Season 3, Episode 8: "Lord of the Pi's"


Case of the week: On the eve of a huge vote to determine whether the fraternities and sororities should be allowed to continue raping, shaming, and hazing the student body of Hearst College, the deciding vote and heiress to the Hearst fortune went missing. But since that heiress was played by PATTY HEARST we knew something was up. In this case she'd gone into hiding and it had something to do with a secret lesbian affair she was having with her student assistant. Other than that, though, she seemed pretty willing to get rid of the Greek system, so that was chill of her.

Meanwhile Veronica was still helping Dick with frat stuff. Specifically in this case, a frat bro put a plastic egg up his butt:

Also, here is Veronica Mars doing this:

The plot thickens: So here's where the rape plotline got really terrible: It turned out the group of campus feminists (including the former editor of the student newspaper) had faked Claire's rape (in addition to others) for the greater good of getting the Greek system shut down.

This was the worst, obviously. Writers, I'm mad at you guys now. This reveal was arguably even more offensive to me than the homophobia and pro-cult nonsense in Season 1. Sorry, I'm never letting that stuff go because these are things that will forever tarnish this show's legacy. Seriously, Veronica Mars could've been A LOT more perfect. But now it is very much not.

Anywaaaaays. Logan and Veronica's relationship also took another major hit when he phoned her in the cafeteria and watched with his own eyes as she declined his call and went about her business:

Cold! (But I was on her side; Logan needed to not be so shady after all he'd put her through. Also, if I am about to eat a hamburger, I will send the Lord Himself to voicemail.)

IMPORTANT WALLACE UPDATE: He got a nice haircut.

So yeah. Hope you weren't expecting to learn who'd drugged and nearly assaulted Veronica in the previous episode. Remember, this show was PRE-TVD so it was frequently in no hurry to give us what we wanted, story-wise. Long live TVD.

Don't I know you from somewhere?

Camp icon and national hero Patty Hearst played Selma Hearst Rose, and it was terrific seeing her do something outside of a John Waters film. Love her.

Episode verdict: Honestly, that fake-rape reveal was enough for me to flip my television the bird. By comparison, the poop-encrusted plastic egg was downright classy and thoughtful. So yeah, other than the faked rapes, this was a largely entertaining episode! So many Patty Hearst in-jokes!


To sum up: As you may have noticed from my very perfect and not hastily written opening paragraph, I'M TIRED OF THE MAIN PLOT RIGHT NOW. Can we please end this nonsense and get into a main storyline that isn't bad and offensive? I realize I'm ranting in the present tense about a show that ended years ago and all I need to do is just keep watching, and I will! But at this point it's mostly for Piz. More Piz plz.


QUESTIONS:

1. Am I wrong about this rape plotline? Did it bug you also?

2. How mad are you that I'm not shipping LoVe very much? Can we still be friends though?

3. What is your favorite Wallace plotline of Season 3 so far?



PREVIOUSLY...

The Veronica Mars Season 1 Dossier: Episodes 1-8
The Veronica Mars Season 1 Dossier: Episodes 9-16
The Veronica Mars Season 1 Dossier: Episodes 17-22
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 1-4
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 5-8
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 9-12
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 13-16
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 17-19
The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 20-22
The Veronica Mars Season 3 Dossier: Episodes 1-4

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