We marathoned the last two discs of Veronica Mars, Season 2 on Monday night. I had sort of been dreading the finale, though up until we got to the final disc, I hadn’t really understood why.
Here is the deal -- it’s really hard to write a show, or write a book, where you manage to reveal EVERYTHING in the last episode. I think this is the weakest thing about the writing in Veronica Mars.lostacanthus
and I were discussing Bryan Fuller’s work last week. She pointed out that he was working on Hannibal
now and was hoping it lasted longer than most of his other shows. Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls, Pushing Daisies
were all fun shows with cool premises but, they lacked vision to take them beyond the first season. The shows were not character driven or even plot driven but more...quirk driven? Yes, the ACTORS were wonderful - I love Mandy Patinkin as Rube, giving Georgia advice about being a Reaper. I loved the Anti-Joan-of-Arcadia that was Jaye Tyler, played by Caroline Dhavernas. And how could you not fall instantly in love with Lee Pace as Ned the Pie Maker in Pushing Daisies? But while these actors, and the rest of the cast, were fantastic, the show and the characters were relatively stagnant and is probably the reason that, while I ADORED the shows when they were on, my love for them has not grown.
Veronica Mars is, at it’s core, a one-mystery series. It’s like stretching a Hercule Poirot novel out over 24 short stories. Hercule NEVER solves the crime until the last few pages, or at least never reveals it. And usually the reader is pretty unsure of exactly what the hell happened too. With both Season 1 and Season 2, the last two episodes are the big REVEAL of the entire mystery that has hung over the season (I can’t remember if this is an issue in Season 3 as much, I will get back to you after that rewatch). With Season 1, we just had the one mystery - who killed Lily Kane? Season 2, I guess the writers or the network felt that the stakes needed to be much higher or more complicated for us to enjoy it - so we get a very convoluted year long mystery about the bus crash, Logan’s murder trial, the Casablancas debacle, and, on top of all that, the leftovers from the Season 1 mystery. It was too much to try to wrap up in two episodes and, while the rest of the season felt like it had some fun mystery-of-the-week episodes, when it came time to “solve” the mystery, it felt like a train wreck. ( Season 1 and 2 spoilers )
So why do I keep watching? Why do I love this show so much? Because of the ACTORS. Again, I feel like the character growth in this show is minimal. The focus of the show is the mysteries and the big Mystery of the season. It’s not about having anyone really grow or evolve, just sleuth. Heck, Keith and Veronica almost have the EXACT SAME argument at the end of Season 2 as they do in Season 1 about Veronica lying to him. BUT let me tell you - I freaking LOVE Kristen Bell. I adore her. And I adore Enrico. And Percy. And for some reason, Ryan Hansen. Even when the episode was weak, the interaction between the actors and their characters was fun to watch. I think this was why the Kickstarter was able to be such a HUGE success. Veronica Mars fans LOVE the actors, we want to see them on the big screen. Even though Season 2 and 3 were nowhere NEAR as good as Season 1, we all stuck with it because how can we resist the charm of Kristen Bell?
So on to Season 3! I really have NO memory of this season, apart from Piz being adorable. We will see if I still feel that way after the rewatch.