Nicole is helping her sister recover from an ear infection tonight and I’m home alone drinking Woodford Reserve and Island Fruit 7-up, watching Tivo shows she doesn’t care if she misses. Right now, I’m watching a 2-week-old episode of Veronica Mars. I’ve heard and noticed enough clever aspects of this this show that I feel the need to comment on it.
First of all, I started watching the show after the first season was already finished. CBS did something very un-CBS of them and played an underrated shows from their sister network (UPN) during the summer. I watched one episode and the the show immediately jump up fairly high on the Tivo To Do list. But since I missed most of the first season, I purchased it on DVD (the first TV show I’ve ever purchased on DVD). At first, I felt like a pathetic loser for watching a show about a high school girl. But, I’ve come to grips with my inner high school girl, so I guess I can write about it in public now. Besides, if you’re caught-up by the age of characters, you’d be missing the most important aspects of the show: extremely clever writing, casting, and character development (isn’t that part of writing?).
Anyway, I’m several episodes into season 3 and I’m once again taken aback by how clever and entertaining this show is. To give a sampling of just a few of the reasons, here is a short list based entirely on one episode:
- The premise of the entire show changed dramatically for this season (Veronica goes to college vs. being in high school) and the show still manages to maintain the same unique atmosphere.
- The show is brave enough to permanently eliminate or temporally ignore major characters and there is still so much substance it is barely noticeable
- It is extremely clever and humorous, with witty inside joke and ironic plot points occurring constantly. If you like feeling that you are smarter than everyone else, this is the show for you.
- Keith Mars, (Enrico Colantoni who played Elliot on Just Shoot Me) is about to make a love connection with a client, who happens to be Elliot’s characters flame Maya from Just Shoot Me. It’s a tie-in that many viewer wouldn’t catch, but when you do, it just makes the show that much more enjoyable. Kinda like the Joss Whedon cameo.
- I hate it when a show changes the theme song. This season is a new network, a new setting, and I was shocked to hear a new song during the opening credits. But I soon realized that this was actually a remix of the same theme song. Tonight I realized that it was an even better version, which is near impossible to do, but it sets the mood of the show in a why the previous version did not. I listened to it twice. Who rewinds to listen to the song of the opening credits? Well, I did, and this is not the first time. A bold move and well done.
- Veronica just interviewed someone name “Charleston Chew”. This is funny on so many different levels. First of all, that is obviously a candy bar as well as an unfortunate combination of Asian and English names. But I personally find this even more entertaining because that is what my first name should have been and it is my wife’s favorite city in the world. But beyond the comedy, the show is thoughtful enough to include characters of multiple racial backgrounds, which gives it a much more worldly, considerate, metropolitan feel.
- They just poked fun at Junior League and pants suits all at once. If weren’t married to someone who told me what Junior League was, the joke would have been lost on me. But it wasn’t and I feel as if I’m the “elite few” who get it.
- Quote: “Quarterbacks run in the Manning family.” I haven’t heard a more clever transition to making a point about genetic predisposition. And then the episode goes into an unexpected exploration of like-father-like-son predisposition.
- Clues for the “ongoing mystery” and the “mystery of the episode” and the “other mystery of the episode” are woven throughout. I can’t figure them out. I think it is impossible to do so. We’re supposed to be impressed when the main character does so. But it almost always leads to an ingenious culmination of events.
- Unlike most Disney movies, Veronica Mars has a great relationship with her dad. Just like my wife does with her dad. However, she is ni a single-parent home, but the first season explained why in a painful way, giving more depth to the relationship. This was reinforced at the end of the episode with the Veronica s dad / Logan’s dad comparison.
- It was just revealed that Logan’s half-brother is — Logan — from Gilmore Girls — my wife’s favorite show. A little cross-programming action to help the ratings, perhaps? But wait! He is not Logan’s half brother! What is going on here??
- Interesting and witty dialog: Statement: “A monkey with a friend who’s a bank representative can do it.” Response: “So, Bubbles, feel like doing me a solid? Hmm?”
- Veronica Mars is the perpetual outsider. This was and is a perpetual definition of her character. She is disliked by both sides of every plot point, which puts her in the middle of them all with no one but herself and her few close friend to rely upon. Who hasn’t felt like this at least a few times in their life?
- Made fun of Olive Garden by flopping around a white bread sandwich and saying “When you’re here, you’re family.” (Cliff the crappy attorney)
What the heck are Aerie Tuesdays? I wish I didn’t know. The best explanation is have is that it is the number one reason I shouldn’t be watching the CW on Tuesday nights. Aerie Tuesdays are short commercials for the website Aerie.com that feature girls that feature high school-age girls giving junior high-level opinions. It makes me think “should I really be watching this show?” Thank goodness Tivo can skip through these as fast a possible. Out of curiosity, I visited aerie.com just so I could make fun of the teenage girl discussion forum. I was surprised to find out that it had nothing to do with teenage discussions at all. It is a front for ordering clothes from American Eagle. I’m not sure if this is better or worse than what I thought it would be. As a person with an marketing MBA, I guess I have to respect the fact that they got me to visit their site, although I don’ imagine I’ll be placing an order anytime soon.
But,I must say, I much prefer these spots to any politically-themed election week nonsense.