|Yes, Kristen...I will call you...once you cancel the restraining|
1) A lot happens in this episode--but what is arguably the most important thing is the furthering of Logan Echolls' character arc. The script by Phil Klemmer and Aury Wallington uses the events of 'An Echolls Family Christmas' to give Logan some echoes of the problems Veronica has faced after Lily's death...thus positioning himself a little more to the point where he becomes an ally (and a bit more) in the season's third act.
2) And Logan isn't the only one who gets some character advancement--Francis Capra rises to the challenge of giving some more dimensions to Weevil when he reveals his affair with Lily to Paula Marshall's Rebecca...his acting here proves that the real secret weapon of this series was some truly smart casting.
3) The funny thing is that The Tritons, the secret society that is the subject of the episodes' A plot, are built up to be Really Bad Guys, that facade is torn down...and then they literally disappear. We hear nothing more about them until a surprise reappearance at the end of Season Three, where they once again are Really Bad Guys.
|The funny thing is, two of the people in this photo are going|
to get reaaaaaal close soon...
4) I know we haven't brought up the soundtrack in a while...but I really, really love how at key moments a riff from 'Army Of Me' comes lumbering out of the speakers as a counterpoint to the intrigue on the screen.
5) Okay...I'll admit it...even though the sequence gets a lil' too public access music video, the sight of Kristen Bell (who has a background in musical theater) swinging that ponytail while belting out 'One Way Or Another'....win.
6) This is the last appearance Marshall has as Rebecca James this season--she does pop up for an episode in Season Two--and here she's used very effectively, as a stand-in for Veronica, interrogating characters who will end up being suspects in Lily's murder. Of course, perhaps the most effective moment is when Logan reveals to her exactly why he hates Veronica so much....
7) And speaking of the Echolls family...we get some major movement in defining this group of characters (Hell, there's a blink-and-you-miss-it mention of Trina, who will show up soon in the person of Buffy's Alyson Hannigan)...and it's hard to place which moment is the best--Logan threatening his dad when Aaron vows to ruin Lynn...or Lynn's rather ignoble but subtle exit from the series, leading to the episode's last haunting image. I've said it before--I don't care for Lisa Rinna as an actress, but on this series she did some great work.
|Funny...they don't look like evil masterminds...|
8) You know...this episode really drives home how much I missed Percy Daggs' Wallace--for the first time in a while he takes his position as Veronica's Watson, and makes it work something fierce.
9) Conversely, having almost no Keith and Veronica Mars moments--while it does allow other characters who have been underused, like Cliff and Vice Principal Clemmons, room to strut--drives home how much that relationship is vital to the show. I missed seeing Bell and Colantoni interact, and I think the episode suffers a bit for it.
10) I appreciate how Thomas and crew seem to find different ways for Veronica to have her final reveal for each episode...this episode's rather fun scene in Sheriff Lamb's office is particularly amusing.
Overall...some really choice bits throughout make this an above average episode...and I'm not saying that just because we get to see Bell getting her go-go on.....