Title: Veronica Mars S1.E08 “Like a Virgin”
Veronica Mars S1.E09 “Drinking the Kool-Aid”
Veronica Mars S1.E10 “An Echolls Family Christmas”
Released: 2004
Series:  Veronica Mars

Trips to the Dentist: 26
Most Marshmallow’s Valuable Player: Keith, ?, and Weevil

Previously, on Veronica Mars

Lots to get to today, Marshmallows! Although it may just feel that way because your recapper likes to leave things to the last minute, due to taking breaks for 1) Shark Week, 2) WWII marathons, 3) Gilmore Girls marathons, 4) painting nails, and 5) naps.

ANYWAY. Let’s do it to it!

The Official FYA Veronica Mars Season 1 Drinking Game

Take a drink every time:

  • Someone says “Veronica Mars”, even when they know full well who she is and there’s no other Veronica in all of Neptune
  • Veronica uses her camera
  • Mars family members hug (Backup counts!)
  • Backup appears
  • Someone mentions the 90909 zip code or ’09ers
  • Someone uses a disguise/alias/fake voice
  • A character, initially introduced as good, turns out to be a baddie (or vice versa)
  • Fisticuffs occur
  • Veronica has a meeting in a bathroom
  • Logan’s voicemail greeting is heard
  • A Taser is used
  • Veronica mentions ponies or unicorns
  • Lilly appears in a flashback
    • Pour one out when it’s her corpse

Onto the episodes!


A purity test has gone viral at Neptune High. It’s all fun and games, until someone starts selling results for ten dollars a pop. Chaos and Mean Girls-esque catfights ensue; caught in the fray is renowned virgin, Meg Manning (or not so renowned anymore). Someone filled out the test as her, and now everyone thinks she’s a big ol’ Veronica slut. Never fear, Meg — our girl detective is on the case!

Lizzie the bad sheep sister has plenty of reason to resent Meg, but she ultimately loves her sister too much for such malice. Boyfriend Cole’s been using Meg’s new sordid status to his advantage, but he’s just all talk. Jerk Pam didn’t post Meg’s results, though Veronica’s are another matter (along with some STD confessions to Duncan).

With the help of her boyfriend the Neptune High IT guy, Meg’s jealous frienemy Kimmy posted the test results. And with Veronica’s help, the whole school watched her admit it (along with Duncan-obsessed Pam’s scheme of defaming V.).

How many Trips to the Dentist did I take? (drink count) 9

A Long Time Ago, We Used to Be Friends

No flashbacks! Amanda Seyfried must have been busy that week.

File Under Lilly Kane’s Murder

HOLY EFFING SHIZZ. So many things. All the things.

Convicted Lilly killer Abel Koontz had his pick of defense lawyers for his high-profile case, and yet he chose public defender Cliff McCormack. Lucky for Veronica (and us, since who doesn’t love Cliff?!), that gives her an in to see Koontz.

Posing as a college student from his hometown, Veronica pays Koontz a visit. He seems to be buying her story, until Veronica brings forth evidence that could get him a retrial.

Because Koontz sees right through her act. He knows exactly who she is. And he verbalizes a possibility that Veronica has been too afraid to consider: Jake Kane may be her father.

GIF-form may not be the most appropriate for it, but the car scene gets me every time.

Life on Mars

I do believe this is the first time that Dick gets a name! And Veronica manages to achieve an easy friendliness with Duncan — y’know, before she realizes that she could be his sister.

Veronica also makes a new friends — most notably: MAC! But most episode-prominent: Meg, who V. believes to be the last good person at Neptune High. HOLD UP, VERONICA. You cannot honestly think that with Wallace as your BFF!

Speaking of Wallace, his mom is NOT loving all the Mars-associatin’. Those Kane Software coworkers of hers have really turned her against Father and Daughter Mars. As much as Veronica tries to not let what people say bother her, she can’t help but care when she sees who’s listening.

MVP (Most Marshmallow’s Valuable Player): Keith

As much as I’d love to give this to Mac in her debut, the moral ambiguity of stickin’ it to the ’09ers couldn’t beat Keith sticking up for Wallace’s family (including Wallace’s little brother, who OMG SO CUTE I LUF HIM).

The Fennels who have a loser tenant who’s taking advantage of renting from a single mom with two kids. Despite mom Alicia being quite cold towards his offer to help out, Keith dons his Superman cape (or more like Mad Hatter Hat) to evict the dirtbag asshole. Way to go, Sheriff Mars!

Best Reminder That It’s 2004 (That Hasn’t Been Replaced by Something a Smartphone Can Do)

How about Mac, the actual mastermind (and beneficiary) of the purity test, using her earnings to buy a Volkswagen Beetle aka THE CAR OF MY TEENAGE DREAMS? (Prior to The Italian Job remake, that is.) She and FYA Goddess Mandy Moore gave me serious car envy.

And the Snark Award Goes To…: Veronica

To Keith, who doesn’t want to overstep with the Fennels’ situation:

Veronica: “Overstepping is your main form of transportation.”

Neptune Cameos

  • Tina Majorino as Mac. As you may have surmised by this week’s title: MAC IS HERE! MAC IS HERE!

  • Alona Tal as Meg. As is Meg, who warrants neither exclamation marks nor capital letters (esp. in retrospect, but even upon first viewing). Though Alona Tal kind of gets to show off her pipes with an unfortunate song selection for Meg.

Song for a Spy’s Soundtrack: “Don’t Let It Get You Down” by Spoon

Aww, because V. definitely needs a pick-me-up.

MARS INVESTIGATIONS, CASE 1.9 “Drinking the Kool-Aid”

Notable ’09er jackhole Casey Gant has given up his materialistic life and joined the Mooncalf Collective. Since he’s eighteen, his parents have hired Mars Investigations to get the compound shut down.

Since she’s under strict orders not to do so, Veronica totally infiltrates the Mooncalf Collective. Despite all the pings on the cult radar, the Mooncalves are exactly as they appear, fireside share circle and all. It’s all kind of sweet, if somewhat (OK, totally) cheesy.

But when Casey’s ailing grandma, aka source of the family moneys who is leaving her wealth to her grandson instead of his freeloading parents, is on her deathbed, Ma and Pa Gant take drastic measures in hiring a “de”programmer.

Casey totally gets abducted by his parents’ lackeys (and at grandma’s funeral, no less — how tacky. And they made me rhyme and I couldn’t even enjoy it!), and he reverts back to his douchey self. Which is a total shame, because I pretty much ship Veronica with anyone she’s ever with. Except Piz.

How many Trips to the Dentist did I take? (drink count) 11

A Long Time Ago, We Used to Be Friends

Nothing too exciting (i.e. related to muuuuuurder!). But there was that one time when Casey called Weevil out for trying to pass off a Social Distortion song as his own poem.

File Under Lilly Kane’s Murder

No news on this front, either.

Life on Mars

After connecting the dots of “Jake Kane is possibly my father” with “I was madly in love with Dud Duncan Kane”, Veronica needs to frow up because EWW GROSS WHAT BLEHHHH.

When she regains her composure, she tracks down the photographer of those photos with her framed in a gun sight. Her stalker turns out to be Clarence Wiedman, head of security for Kane Software — what a coinkydink!

All this paternity uncertainty motivates Veronica to find out the truth, going as far as sending for a DNA test. She ends up shredding the results without ever reading them, because biology won’t tell her what she already knows: Keith Mars is her father. No matter what.

MVP (Most Marshmallow’s Valuable Player): ?

No one really had a standout episode, although it was pretty cool of Keith not to turn the Mooncalves in for looking after abused runaways (even if reading it in text seems like a no-brainer). But there were multiple sightings of Backup (drink!).

Best Reminder That It’s 2004 (That Hasn’t Been Replaced by Something a Smartphone Can Do)

I was going to pick Veronica referencing The Jerry Springer Show, but then I discovered that shit is still on?! I thought we had TLC shows for that now.

And the Snark Award Goes To…: Veronica

On the art of crap teen poetry:

Veronica: “Must be written in a funky color of ink. Must include dominant themes of alienation, sexual ambivalence, self-loathing, death, et cetera.”

And then upon meeting touchy-feely Mooncalf leader Josh:

Veronica: “I knew I should have included a few discreet lesbian overtones in that poem.”

Neptune Cameo

  • Aaron Samuels Jonathan Bennett as Casey. He’s, like, really pretty.

Song for a Spy’s Soundtrack: “Famous Lover” by The Fire Marshals of Bethlehem

Because I like to bum y’all out.

MARS INVESTIGATIONS, CASE 1.10 “An Echolls Family Christmas”

Poker night at Logan’s. He’s joined by bromance partner Duncan, should-be bromance partner Weevil, movie star Connor, and Richie Rich Sean. When Weevil wins but the $5K pot is missing, he makes the rest of them strip. So thanks for that, Weevil.

Because he’s Weevil and it’s What Gang Members Do, he starts collecting ‘insurance’ from each of the participants — including Duncan’s laptop with his allegedly prolific journal, in which Veronica is a prominent player. Naturally, V. is having none of that, so she’s determined to find out whodunnit.

Duncan may have been guilty of acting drunk, but he only did it for the other players to underestimate him. (Don’t worry, Duncan. You don’t need any more help with that.) Logan ransacked his own room to find the missing money, so he didn’t do it, either. And it wasn’t Connor, so it could only be the other guest star, Sean! He may live in the most expensive house in the 90909, but as the butler’s son and not one who is butled.

Meanwhile! In grownup land, Lynn has hired Keith to figure out who’s been swimfanning Aaron. Aaron’s totally nonchalant about all of it, until a pumpkin carved with his face and a knife sticking through shows up on the Echolls doorstep.

Aaron, who had previously vehemently denied allegiations of infidelity, hilariously outs himself with can’t-keep-it-in-his-pants syndrome. Further investigation reveals that Aaron had a Party Down catering server fired at a Halloween party — for walking in on him during coitus.

During the Echolls’ Christmas party, that same server shivs Aaron! Because she’s a lady and of course he was sleeping with her, too. Less obvi is why the carolers don’t wise up sooner to the BLOODY PANDEMONIUM in front of them, but maybe they’re having heat sweats from wearing all those layers.

How many Trips to the Dentist did I take? (drink count) 6

A Long Time Ago, We Used to Be Friends

Technically, there were flashbacks, but they only went back to the poker game. Or Aaron philandering.

File Under Lilly Kane’s Murder

All quiet on the homicide front!

Life on Mars

Even though money’s tight at Casa de Mars, Veronica’s eyeing a Padres fantasy camp for Keith’s Christmas gift, because she’s the best daughter ever. (When she’s not flagrantly disregarding his warnings, I mean.) She also insists that she’d be the best rich person. (ME TOO, VERONICA. One of the items on my wish list: THE LONG-AWAITED FYA YACHT.)

On the night of the Christmas party, Veronica talks her way into the poker game to replace sticky-fingered Sean*, and she totally hustles the boys. During a game break snack attack at the party, she confronts party guest Jake Kane about scaring Lianne away with the Clarence Wiedman photos. He claims innocence, which she totes doesn’t buy, but then she spots an enraged Jake demanding to know what Celeste did…

*That sounds terribly gross. But this episode had no Dick, so it stays.

MVP (Most Marshmallow’s Valuable Player): Weevil

I love how Weevil cuts through the bullshizz with V., especially with her head tilt thing. And it’s also thanks to him that we know Logan and Duncan have matching underoos.

Best Reminder That It’s 2004 (That Hasn’t Been Replaced by Something a Smartphone Can Do)

Hmm, maybe Duncan keeping a e-journal, as opposed to an emo blog? And also, I find it implausible that the son of a software giant would own the same laptop for three years.

And the Snark Award Goes To…: Logan

In response to Veronica asking him about the poker game:

Logan: “I’ve been meaning to ask you something. Did your super-sleuth kit come with a decoder ring? Do you have a pen that writes with invisible ink?”

Neptune Cameos

  • Travis Schuldt as Connor. HELLO, ABS. And also hello, Original Ethan on Passions.

  • Emmanuelle Vaugier as Monica. This lady specializes in vixen-y types. So OF COURSE her character was banging Aaron.

Song for a Spy’s Soundtrack: ?

Omg, y’all — there are seriously way too many songs for me to find the name of the one I liked. So just pick  your fave Christmas song so I can finally go the fuck to sleep.

We’ve reached the midseason break of Season 1, y’all! So riddle me this, detectives — without being too spoiler-y, did any of you correctly guess the real killer behind Lilly’s murder? Upon rewatch, it seems like I should have been way more suspicious of [Killer McKillerson]. But then I remember that I’m a terrible detective, so mystery solved there.

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Mandy (she/her) lives in Edmonton, AB. When she’s not raiding the library for YA books, she enjoys eating ice cream (esp. in cold weather), learning fancy pole dance tricks, and stanning BTS. Mandy has been writing for FYA since 2012, and she oversaw all things FYA Book Club from 2013 to 2023.