3.14 "Mars, Bars"

Aired Feb 20, 2007

Roundtable Reviews

chris: I thought it was a great episode. Again too little Wallace, but having Mac in it helps a little. I also like Logan/Parker.

funky-donut: Hey, chris, at least Wallace was in TWO scenes instead of just one. And he finally got to tell off Lamb — just in time, too. I liked the episode, in general, although there was little too much bait-and-switch with the Barrys for me that doesn't hold up on rewatch. I did like the callback of Veronica helping Josh escape to Mexico and Keith being hella pissed at her for it. The main thing I was worried about was someone letting Mrs. Barry know that Josh didn't do it and that he's safe. Five years is a long time to hide out.

vix: Good ep! Loved all the secondaries in this. These are always my favorites, when there's Cliff AND Wallace AND Vinnie AND Lamb! Not to mention Weevil and Mac.

BepperGirl: Amazing ep! I loved the colours a lot. They were so pretty. I guess my film class is having an influence here.

misskiwi: I noticed that, too. The blue tint of the interrogation scene with Mindy and Sheriff Mars (!) at the end strongly reminded me of the flashback interrogation scenes from season one.

Did anyone else notice that there were a lot of shots at an angle in this episode? I swear, in half the frames the walls behind the characters are at a 75 degree angle instead of 90.

topanga: Uh, not really. I liked this ep. It didn't quite live up to the high expectations that last week's episode created, but I still enjoyed it.

funky-donut: Oh my god, they killed Lamb! Those bastards!

misskiwi: Alas, poor Lamb. He died as he lived: foiled by his own incompetency.

alliterator: ...Oh my. I did not see that coming.

misskiwi: I didn't expect it purely because the injury didn't look severe enough. I mean, I know head injuries can be bad, but he...got whacked with a bat. Though I didn't notice the blood pooling under his head the first time.

alliterator: Seriously, in any other TV show, if someone was hit by a baseball bat, they would recover in five minutes flat (I'm talking about you, 24), but here? Holy shit. I foresaw something bad happening, but Lamb dying? Damn.

Now that Keith's sheriff again, there doesn't seem to be any reason why he would still be an outsider (which is a key tenent of noir). I'm hoping that next episode, they bring in a sexy new female sheriff to replace Lamb and that Keith's appointment was just temporary.

misskiwi: Yeah, would they really replace a sheriff without having an emergency election, or promoting somebody else in the department? I have no idea how that would work.

maribella: It seems unrealistic to me, as well, that Keith became the new sheriff like that. I don't really know how that sort of thing works, though, so I suppose the method of replacement would be left up to the individual county. Balboa County could very well have a clause saying that, in the event of a sheriff's death, the county commissioner gets to appoint a replacement. Still, I'm not sure Keith-as-sheriff is a good direction for the show. In real life, I'd like him to be in charge, but from a storytelling point of view, I like him as a PI.

vix: I loved how subtle Lamb's death was. Not like Heroes, where every week is a new plot twist of extreme importance.

misskiwi: But saving the cheerleader did save the wor...okay, bad example. But are you on the list? And no one is safe!

vix: VM didn't do that pandering "GUESS WHO DIES ON VERONICA MARS!" nonsense, good for them.

alliterator: I loved how subtle Lamb's death was, too. In almost every other show, the death of a main character is preceded by endless promos about "Who will die?" (Heroes) or the excessive use of slow motion (Prison Break, which kills off a cast member per episode, I believe). I like that VM didn't fall into that cliché.

misskiwi: That...would require actually being promoted by the network, no? So kind of a moot point.

BepperGirl: But they kinda promoted "And one of these people will die" for the "Spit & Eggs" promo.

topanga: Veronica's reaction to Lamb's death surprised me in a way. She was close to tears when Keith broke the news. No, she didn't like Lamb, but he was a person, and Veronica does care about people, believe it or not. She's a marshmallow, after all.

alliterator: I'm insanely curious about if we're going to see a funeral for Lamb. It would be awesome if they provided a backstory for him post-mortem, maybe introduced his mom or dad (even better if he is played by R. Lee Ermey).

starxdsparrow: Yes! Yes! And more yes!

I'll miss Lamb dearly...but wasn't this sort of a good way to shake people up and get them talking again? I mean...it certainly caused a mini-explosion on LJ...I can only imagine what the other message boards look like. I know...call me Ms. Brightside.

grim squeaker: Randomly killing off characters to get people to talk is never a good idea. It smells like someone ran out of ideas (not that I am saying that is the case here) and if you pull that stunt more often, your cast thins out pretty quickly. (Not to mention that people tend to get pissed off after a while, if Lost is any indication.)

misskiwi: Unfair example: the cast of VM does not appear to have the same tendency to get arrested as the actors who have coincidentally been killed off on Lost.

funky-donut: I don't really understand the point of killing Lamb off. They didn't give him any character development this season since he was made a series regular. Hell, we've gotten even less than we had in season two, when he revealed...something about his father.

maribella: I agree with you, funky-donut. There doesn't seem to be any reason to get rid of Lamb, a fan favorite and a staple to the noir universe of Veronica Mars. I'm guessing that, as sheriff, Keith will have access to something important to figure out the Dean's killer, but they've never needed to do that before.

funky-donut: And it was a rather ignominious demise. I mean, "I smell bread"? I've read since that saying something like that is indicative of brain damage, but in the moment, I was just like...am I supposed to laugh at that? Is that supposed to be funny? I would rather he have not said anything at all.

tallow: I thought he deserved a better death than that. It seemed a very Storm Trooper death, while I would have thought he deserved at least a Lando Calrissian send-off. Not that we know what that is, since he didn't die, but you know what I mean.

BepperGirl: It's a shame Lamb's dead, but I guess that's what happens in this business called show. I remember reading on ROL about Michael's accident on set, but I didn't think he would actually die. Not now anyway.

alliterator: I guessed Coach Barry killed himself when it was revealed he had a brain thing.

topanga: For once in my life, I actually solved a complicated mystery on my own — before the reveal. I figured the Coach had been responsible for his own death when we learned he gave Josh his N.I.T. Championship ring.

alliterator: But I loved the suspense of Mrs. Barry with the gun, although if she was just going to show it to him, why pull it back like that?

funky-donut: Yeah, that really bothered me. She claimed she didn't even know how to use a gun, so why was she handling it like that? And why pull it out of her pocket when she was going after Keith? It was all to create suspense, which it did effectively, but the whole sequence doesn't really hold up for me.

maribella: I'm not entirely convinced that she was just going to show it to him. Keith didn't really see her handling it, just the audience, so she could have been lying once she realized Keith was too smart for her. The handling was just too threatening to be innocent; if it was just for suspense, it's ridiculous.

misskiwi: I was cheesed that they used Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease since I was under the impression that it's extremely rare under the age of, like, 70, but it turns out it's actually just extremely rare under the age of 30 and does occur (though infrequently) in people 45 or older. And I did have to give a geeky microbiologist squeal when they used something I recognized. (Fun fact: rabbits, unlike cows, sheep, deer, and humans, are immune to developing prion disorders like Mad Cow and CJD.)

I'm still a bit confused, though. The coach leaving his ring for Josh was a clever clue in hindsight (good call, topanga!) but I don't get why the car was pushed over the cliff...wouldn't they have tried to make it look like a carjacking? The car being dumped helped move suspicion onto Josh — and for that matter, why didn't Coach Barry and the Assistant Coach put off their plan after Josh quit the team? Not only did that put suspicion onto Josh, which I'm sure wasn't Coach Barry's intent, but...would you really carry out your planned assisted suicide if the last thing you'd said to your son was "Man up?"

maribella: The timing thing occurred to me also. I would have thought Josh's dad would have made sure to have a nice goodbye before. But perhaps the coaches set the date, saying that nothing would let them postpone it, thinking they'd chicken out at the last minute. And maybe he didn't want Josh to think something was up, that is wasn't a carjacking, by indicating that he knew about it with a drawn out good-bye. He did leave the video, after all, so eventually, Josh would know his dad was proud.

funky-donut: ...after five years, which seems kind of cruel. Really, their plan probably would have worked if a) Mason hadn't driven by and seen the assistant coach, who looked like Josh, and B) Josh hadn't gone out there to talk to his dad and found his dad dead, getting covered in his dad's blood. We all know how quickly Lamb likes to rule cases, so without those two things, he probably would have chalked it up to unsolved carjacking, they would have gotten the insurance money, and that would have been that. I think they pushed the car off the cliff so that it would look like a carjacking. If they had moved the car to be found elsewhere, Coach Yeager might have ended up implicated, and it certainly wasn't Coach Barry's intent to get his assistant coach charged with murder.

alliterator: I actually found Logan/Parker really, really cute. So sue me. Larker? Pogan?

BepperGirl: 'lit, I agree with you on Logan/Parker. I think this is my first Logan het ship.

misskiwi: I'm all for it, because Logan + Parker = Veronica + Piz. (You heard it here first.)

tallow: I like Parker and Logan together, but I just can't imagine Parker going out with him. I mean, aren't she and Veronica buds now? You don't do that. Even Dick knows that.

misskiwi: I know! Damn, woman. Your friend's recent, messy ex? Have you no Girl Etiquette?

starxdsparrow: I'm behind Logan and Parker one hundred percent. I just like to see Logan looking happy instead of crushed or afraid of being crushed at any moment. And, let's face it, Parker deserves some happy, too, Girl Etiquette be damned.

topanga: Neptune is kinda incestuous, isn't it? On one hand, you've got Veronica breaking up with Duncan (well, he broke up with her), and a year later she starts dating his best friend, Logan. Then she's back to Duncan then hooks up with Logan again. Logan is with Lily, the love of his life, but later, he hooks up with Lily's best friend, Veronica. And now that he and Veronica have broken up, it looks like he's warming up to Veronica's friend, Parker. Really weird.

funky-donut: The whole Valentine's Day Scavenger Hunt was adorable and looked like so much fun. The Kama Sutra bit made me laugh out loud; especially when Logan just went straight into a pose, although he ended up being wrong. That was awesome. I have mixed feelings about Logan/Parker in general, though. I mean, there's the Girl Etiquette thing, although I can't blame Parker for being attracted to Logan, and they haven't actually DONE anything other than flirt.

tallow: Would Parker's hair have grown back by now? It seems like it wouldn't be that long yet and, if so, she would still be wearing a wig. Not ideal for jumping in the Pacific...and then tying it back.

Maybe I'm being too nitpicky. I don't even usually notice stuff like that.

funky-donut: That was the main thing that bothered me: Parker going into the water would have been a perfect time for her to dramatically take off her wig and show her five months of hair growth off. Instead, they didn't even acknowledge that it must have been a wig. Hello, she was roofied and raped, just like Veronica was.

vix: Yeah, my friend mentioned that as we were watching. It went from wig to back to normal in about 2 weeks. And I agree re: Parker's apparently ignoring Girl Etiquette. It's just not cool.

chris: It's been 5 months, could be extensions now.

Inigo: I hadn't picked this up on first watching, but there's a juxtaposition between Logan, Parker, Mac, and Bronson all having a blast, and Veronica alone, settling down to watch TV, and then picking up on the time clue for the O'Dell case. It has a poignancy — Veronica is very alone.

misskiwi: Anyone want to lay money on Veronica getting an eyeful of those pictures Logan & co. emailed back to the scavenger hunt people? They spent a lot of focus on the pictures being sent, which makes me think it'll come up again later.

alliterator: I also saw that the guy they were sending them to was in the radio station, so I thought Piz was going to see them and show them to Veronica. But I don't see why Veronica should care, she's already broken up with Logan and the pictures don't show anything bad.

misskiwi: True, I just thought there was a lot of odd focus on the emailing of the pictures.

starxdsparrow: And on the guy with bad teeth laughing at them. He seemed especially maniacal. Am I becoming too suspicious?

Oh... and speaking of suspicious, why the big deal over Weevil taking Sacks into the storage room? It wasn't like there was some shortage of scenes in the episodes...it just seemed a little unnecessary (except for the obvious Magnum P.I. joke). Maybe it was a contractual thing? Or maybe...Sacks is the murderer and he's framing Batando!

Maybe I need to go to bed.

topanga: Hee. I like seeing you punchy, sparrow.

alliterator: I love how many more clues there were for the Dean O'Dell mystery. At first, when the murder time was set back, I think that was an indication that the Dean killed himself because of a conversation Mindy had with him (that's why Mindy drove over to Hearst from the Grand). But then they found the bloody clothes and whoa again.

misskiwi: There are too many unconnected clues pointing fingers at too many people. I'm beginning to come around to the theory that Tim has planted random clues to finger everyone and anyone but himself. And for the record, I still disagree with Inigo's original theory that the murder was originally disguised as a suicide but still intended to set someone up to take the fall. I think Tim either covered his bases originally just in case it wasn't ruled a suicide, or is running around now retroactively planting clues, but didn't murder the Dean as a means to setting somebody up for the murder.

topanga: I don't think the writers would reveal two suicides that closely. At least, I hope they wouldn't.

misskiwi: If Bronson turns out to be guilty of anything now that he and Mac are so cute together, Rob Thomas is going to feel my foot up his ass. Girl deserves a break.

funky-donut: Word, misskiwi. God, they were adorable in bed. I was totally overcome by the cuteness!

chris: Bronson won't be guilty of anything, he will just turn up dead. That's noir or something...

tallow: Mac = adorable. I thought she and Bronson were so cute. I sound like I'm 15, don't I? I wonder if she told him about Beaver Cassidy.

misskiwi: The only thing that could make for more awkward pillow talk would be "By the way, I have VD."

tallow: "From a mass murderer."

topanga: Wait, when did Mac and Beav Cassidy have sex? He never raped her in the hotel room, right?

misskiwi: No, they never had sex. I'm not saying Mac has VD, I'm saying that's about the only topic of conversation, in general, that would be more awkward than telling Bronson about her psychotic, mass-murdering ex-boyfriend. Who eats puppies.

BepperGirl: Yay for Mac. I'm so proud of my girl even if it seems a bit sudden. I mean we met the guy not too long ago (although it has been a month and four episodes later, heh). I will beat him up so hard if he hurts her. Noir always fucks with my (conventional) ships.

topanga: Clutch the pearls! BepperGirl, you used the f-word? I never would have imagined it coming from your lips. Uh, I mean, your keyboard.

BepperGirl: Oh now t, you know I can cuss. Not quite the innocent you once thought, eh? (Wow, I'm sounding quite Canadian in this RTR, heh.)

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