Let’s shift gears. The change in blogging style shouldn’t be too surprising, as this is the same blogger who referenced Tom Hanks in her exploratory Mystory project so many times that it became the focal point of a small joke between the other participating members.
So, Veronica Mars. Rob Thomas and crew take to the silver screen in a delightful Kickstarter-backed cinematic debut that (I hope) by now every single one of you has experienced for yourself. If you haven’t, kindly do so… and probably stop reading this blog post until you do. This is my subtle way of saying there are spoilers ahead!
As a fan of the television series, and subsequent backer for the film, I have to say I was thrilled with the outcome. I had a few small questions when I left the theater, but every good narrative leaves the audience with some sense of incompleteness. If the audience is so enthralled in the world presented within a two hour movie that they leave with a handful of questions about where the characters go from there, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
I brushed my first question away almost as immediately as I thought it. “Why did Veronica get back with Logan so quickly after ending things with Piz?” I mean, the distance between Piz breaking up with Veronica over the phone and Veronica falling into Logan’s arms is literally one scene. It’s a pretty pivotal scene: Keith Mars is able to uncover the tip of the iceberg concerning Neptune’s corrupt police force before he becomes the victim of a clearly targeted car crash. I had an issue with the pacing at first, but there are a lot of reasons why I can see it was done the way it was. First of all, they obviously only had so many minutes they could dedicate to balancing out the Piz/Veronica breakup and Logan/Veronica reunion. I appreciate that there wasn’t anything going on between Veronica and Logan while she was still dating Piz (aside from the easy banter and occasional lingering glances) almost as much as I appreciate the fact that Piz was the one to end the relationship.
I don’t believe for a second that anyone truly considered Stosh to be the endgame option for Veronica.The fact remains that Piz and Veronica’s relationship was inevitably going to deteriorate. Thomas does an excellent job of presenting Veronica’s life in New York as stable and comfortable. Job hunting and gearing up to meet parents, Veronica clearly has cut out a neat little existence for herself. Due to this, almost by default, Piz becomes a representative of what is safe, stable, and comfortable to the New York Veronica. Alternatively, Logan represents the unpredictable- in all forms. For this reason, I believe the way Veronica initially reunites with Logan is perfect. Witnessing your father nearly die is a pretty understandable reason for wanting someone to stay the night. A brief look at the LoVe track record will show just how dysfunctional and reckless their relationship was in the past- and Veronica’s decision to channel her worry and stress into sex with Logan isn’t exactly out of character. For either of them.
It does bother me that some critics would assert that Veronica “picked the wrong guy”. The assertion makes me question whether or not I watched the same movie as these critics. Logan and Piz are vastly different characters, and I do not believe they were meant to be pitted against each other to such a degree. Despite some definite (and progressive) signs of change in Logan’s demeanor, the film highlights a great deal of his worst qualities. Meanwhile, as I stated before, Piz represents something in Veronica’s life that she has only recently seemed to grasp onto: stability. Throughout the film, he is shown as supportive and understanding until the very end. His decision to walk away isn’t out of malice so much as a defeated tiredness. But from the start (I’m talking season three, Enter Stosh Piznarski) Piz was doomed to exit in such a way. On the other hand, in the VM series, Logan was consistently shown as recklessly impulsive, the typical angry rich kid with a chip on his shoulder. The film continues with this theme, as he instigates and participates in a good deal of physical as well as verbal altercations throughout. However, in the past nine to ten years, Logan has definitely grown as a person, and I have a hard time trusting the opinions of critics who fail to acknowledge his growth. As an audience we were able to see the level of responsibility Logan assumed both in his decision to join the Navy and in the relationship he had with Bonnie towards the end, (in Logan’s words- acting as more of a “sponsor” than a boyfriend). These are just two examples drawn from the film- there are absolutely more.
Rob Thomas cleanly highlights the characteristics and flaws that defined his characters in the show’s three season run while simultaneously featuring their character growth. We see no-nonsense, adult Veronica expertly navigate her way through a job interview, and we see how easy it is for her to fall into a habit she managed to quit and stay away from for a good ten years. I don’t think it was ever Thomas’s intention to present characters that were perfect in any way, shape, or form. Veronica Mars may be an ideal woman to some, but she is far from perfect. In fact, Veronica’s flaws are what draw her back to Neptune.
Perhaps the largest reason I take issue with these critics claiming that Veronica made the wrong choice is the implications that follow. There is a certain level of doubt in Veronica with the statements these critics are making. It’s almost as if they are saying she is basing her choices off of an irrational emotion, some kind of high-school nostalgia for fast cars and the boy wearing a leather jacket. Is Veronica not a grown ass woman who can make her own decisions? I realize that some measure of critique is required, and I also realize that Veronica is fully fictional, but the implications behind any questioning of her choice to be with Logan are too much for me to ignore. So what if Piz is a constant example of the “right” guy? Does that automatically mean he is the right guy for Veronica? I don’t think so. If Veronica Mars taught us anything, it’s that spending nearly a decade attempting to distance herself from the life she had in Neptune left Veronica so bored that she began to associate her mother’s alcoholism to her own “addiction”: solving cases. At the very start of the film, Veronica gives herself a mild diagnosis as a compulsive possible adrenaline junkie with an addictive personality. Based on that description, it isn’t any wonder she chose the less stable man.