2.18 "I Am God"

Aired Apr 11, 2006

Cultural References

The Golden Bowl (Literature)

"She's reading The Golden Bowl...aloud, with a fake English accent."

No wonder Veronica decides to boycott her English teacher's antiquated educational methods by listening to Neptune's pirate radio station via headphones — which sane person would ever decide to read a 500 plus pages literary classic out loud to 18-year-olds? Never mind the entertainment value a Henry James novel about marriage and adultery might have for teenagers, who'd rather read something much closer to their own lives — Burroughs for instance. Right, Jackie?

Jennifer Love Hewitt (People)

"Something you want to talk about?"
"Yeah, but Jennifer Love Hewitt might be more qualified."

Jennifer Love Hewitt, singer, actress, and star of the TV shows Party of Five and Ghost Whisperer, might indeed be better equipped to interpret Veronica's dreams of the kids killed in the bus crash, but apparently, Jennifer was never on a Rob Thomas show, which is why our heroine has to rely on Rebecca James's spectral profiling skills.

Who's Who bio: Jennifer Love Hewitt
Ghost Whisperer (TV)

"I'm being haunted. And she's the Ghost Whisperer."

When Veronica starts dreaming of the dead kids on the bus, she thinks that someone who can communicate with dead people like Jennifer Love Hewitt's Ghost Whisperer character might be of greater help than her school counselor. Apparently neither a fan of girly TV horror nor of girly snarkiness, Rebecca needs Veronica to translate her quips into normal English, which kind of takes the steam out of them. At least Veronica's resistance to mock her counselor's obvious uncoolness proves that the relationship between them has much improved. Too bad Keith isn't interested anymore.

Margot Kidder (People)

"Michelle Thompson set up this booth in the hallway. She's trying to raise money to buy a yearbook spread for every kid who died in the bus crash. She's the one you should be talking to. She has that wide-eyed, Margot-Kidder-in-a-bush look. Total nut job."

Poor Margot Kidder. Lois Lane to Christopher Reeve's Superman, she suffers from bipolar disorder and is sadly better known for an incident that occurred in the throes of that than for her work. Fueled by paranoia in 1996, she was found by police living rough, having hacked off her hair and pulled out teeth to avoid recognition. Veronica is being a little unkind in suggesting to the school counselor that Michelle is quite that demented, Michelle's desire to have a musical yearbook page notwithstanding.

Who's Who bio: Margot Kidder
Bow-chicka-bow-wow (Words, Sayings, and Slogans)

"Betina. Hey, Betina! Ready for a little bow-chicka-bow-wow."

Dick leaves his booty-buddy Betina a message on her phone, not very subtly asking her to meet up for sex. Or perhaps it qualifies as romantic in Dick Casablancas's warped mind. The phrase originated as an imitation of music in porn films and is used to show sexual innuendo of some kind, which is something we don't even want to imagine in context of Dick.

House of Wax (Movies)
Paris Hilton (People)

"Did you watch House of Wax again? You know that Hilton girl gives you nightmares."

When Veronica has a nightmare, Keith asks her if she's been watching House of Wax; a 2005 remake of a 1950s film set in a waxworks museum. But is it the horror movie that scares Veronica or one of the stars of the movie – Paris Hilton? The socialite, reality show star, and owner of unfortunate show dogs once guest-starred on Veronica Mars and possibly didn't make herself too popular with the cast and crew. This is the second dig at the heiress the show has given us since in return.

Who's Who bio: Paris Hilton
Halo (Sports, Games and Toys)

"Okay, Lover-Boy, that's enough face-sucking for now. We got things to do."
"And you're on a tight schedule of smoking pot and playing Halo. I can't wait to graduate."

Halo, the more legal of Lucky's alleged pastimes, is a three-part first-person shooter videogame series that is about...fighting. In the future. With aliens. Really, it's that awesome. For a much more detailed and loving picture of this masterpiece of digital entertainment I refer you to the relevant wikipedia pages — and now quit bothering me, I've got to win a tournament.

Brokeback Mountain (Movies)

"God, I don't know how I'm gonna quit you."

This is paraphrased by Dick from the 2005 movie Brokeback Mountain about two cowboys who meet up and fall in love on a shepherding job (and seriously, who are the writer's kidding about Dick's taste in movies: first Ghost World, now this?). Because of the time in which it's set, the two men can't stay together and have to marry "proper" partners of the opposing sex, leading to unhappy lives for everyone involved. Less tragically, Mr. Wu tells Dick and Logan they can no longer work together on a science project, and Dick sarcastically (or otherwise?) uses the quote to show his devastation.

I Know What You Did Last Summer (Movies)

I Know What You Did Last Summer, here cutely referenced by Veronica to lure the boorish Dick into a confessional talk for two, was one of the multitude of 1990s teen slasher movies that flooded cinemas after the success of Scream. It featured Sarah Michelle Gellar and Jennifer Love Hewitt in starring roles, thus being an early example of hip young TV actors trying to expand their acting horizons through horror movie roles. Yeah, that generally works well.

See all references about I Know What You Did Last Summer
Queer Eye for the Straight Guy (TV)

"Straight? 'Queer Eye for the Dead Guy' has Petey wearing a rhinestone fricking rainbow! Seriously, ever heard of butch?"

A popular reality TV show that has five gay guys give a makeover to a straight one. The show recently changed its name to just Queer Eye as they began to makeover women and gay people as well. Peter isn't too happy with Veronica when he appears in Veronica's dreams in very stereotypical "gay" clothing, which gives the reassuring impression that she is subconsciously more aware of her sometimes narrow vision than the casual viewer might think.

Mazel Tov (Words, Sayings, and Slogans)

"At four feet it survives, we pass."
"Here's goes nothing."
"Mazel Tov."

A Hebrew phrase meaning "congratulations." Wallace and Logan collaborate on a class project which starts out as an attempt to drop an egg from a great height unharmed, and soon turns into a vain attempt to save Veronica's claim to the Kane scholarship. Unfortunately, Wallace's decency cancels Logan's more devious tendencies out, so they stand no chance against schemer Angie. Tough luck, that.

See all references about Jewish slang
Fluffer (People)

"Wallace, have you met my fluffer?"

A fluffer is a person that has the job of keeping male porn stars excited between takes, and Logan obviously uses this expression to rattle both Wallace and — hey, where are you going?! Come back here! Jason doesn't need anyone to "excite" him between takes!

Nightmare on Elm Street (Movies)

"So how was last night? Any bad dreams?"
"If I say no, do I have to keep coming back here? I'm still non-stop Nightmare on Elm Street."

Nightmare on Elm Street was one of the multitude of teen slasher movies that flooded cinemas in the 1980s, sort of the very creepy grandfather of films like I Know What You Did Last Summer — you know, the one you'd rather keep in the basement and never let close to the neighbour's pets. It featured Johnny Depp in his very first starring role, thus being an early example of hip young TV actors trying to expand their acting horizons through horror movie roles. Which in his case worked surprisingly well, actually.

Mexican Standoff (Things)
Sandman (Religion, Folklore, and Urban Legends)

"I'm having a Mexican standoff with the Sandman. He's winning."

Mexican Standoff refers to a cinematic situation where two or more characters have their guns pointed at each other, effectively having reached a stalemate. This can evolve into a very tricky fight sequence, a terse discussion, or romantic banter, depending on which genre is covered. The Sandman, meanwhile, is a popular folklore figure who sprinkles magical sand onto children to make them fall asleep and dream — somewhat more creepy than the brooding, intense comic version by Neil Gaiman, if you ask us.

Who's Who bio: The Sandman
Seinfeld (TV)
George Louis Contanza (Characters)

"You know who you remind me of? That guy on Seinfeld, George."

Despite supposedly being a television show about nothing, Seinfeld was certainly popular. It ran on American TV from 1989 until 1998 and featured the wacky hijinks of Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer. When Keith's date tells him he reminds her of George, it isn't a very flattering comparison. With George's receding hairline and various psychological problems, including narcissism, compulsive lying, low self-esteem, and fits of anger, we don't think Keith has made a very good impression. Not that there's anything wrong with that. He's certainly the master of his domain.

See all references about Seinfeld
Who's Who bio: George Costanza
I gotta see a man about a horse (Words, Sayings, and Slogans)

"Why don't you chill while the glue dries? I gotta see a man about a horse."

The phrase originated from a play called Flying Scud by Irish playwright Dion Boucicault, with the phrase, "I've got to see a man about a dog." It was used as an excuse to get away from a tricky situation, but became a euphemism for going to the bathroom. The use of horse is a more modern update, with the horse suspecting to be a slang name for heroin. When Logan uses the phrase with Wallace, we suspect he is just going to use the bathroom.

Yellow fever (Things)

"Peter, as I have learned from his postings, had, in his words, 'yellow fever,' and was extremely hot for a certain teacher."

Peter's decidedly un-politically correct way of describing his crush on popular teacher Mr. Wu leaves some questions: Is it a clever subversion of the most common definition of the term, describing a straight white man's sexual desire for women of Asian appearance, or could it be a reference to Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, where one character is constantly using it? And most importantly: why do the hottest and most complex characters on this show often end up being dead from the start, and why are they played by such gorgeous actors? Life just isn't fair on Veronica Mars...

Steve Buscemi (People)

"You look like Steve Buscemi."

When Veronica bumps into Logan after one too many sleepless nights, he compares her to this well-known actor, who does not only appear in countless Coen brothers films, but also has a prominent role in Ghost World, a movie that Dick constantly — and for all that know him, somewhat disconcertingly — references. While his acting is surely impressive, Buscemi's looks could be favourably described as quirky, which renders Logan's claim somewhat less of a compliment.

Who's Who bio: Steve Buscemi
Citizen Kane (Movies)

"So that's it? The tombstone art work was just an album cover?"
"And Rosebud was just a sled. I didn't just ruin Citizen Kane for you, did I?"

Citizen Kane, Orson Welles' famous 1941 film about a conservative media tycoon who is emotionally crippled, employed many revolutionary visual and narrative techniques that later would become movie standards. It is also a detective story which would have a surprising punchline, if it weren't for countless homages and parodies, ranging from Raiders of the Lost Arc to Tiny Toons, who have spoiled the ending for anyone who is remotely acquainted to American television.

See all references about Citizen Kane

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