Mark Watches ‘Veronica Mars’: S01E12 – Clash of the Tritons

In the twelfth episode of the first season of Veronica Mars, Veronica is smacked with a bogus charge of distributing fake IDs to the Neptune population, only to discover that the reason for her framing is a lot more complicated than she expected. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Veronica Mars.


  • I think the ultimate handling of the Tritons is kind of weird, but otherwise, HOLY CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT, this is one intense episode of television.
  • The main framing device here – Veronica’s framing – is certainly engaging and entertaining, and what Veronica’s spying reveals is HUGE for the ongoing story of Lilly Kane’s murder. Like I said, the amount of character development here is unreal, and it’s kind of awesome that Rebecca was able to get these people to open up about how Lilly Kane affected their life. In a way, each person defines their character through their session with Rebecca.
  • Think about it! Veronica starts off by using her unwillingness to discuss Lilly with Rebecca as a way to plant a bug in the office, but she then segues to her mission statement (of sorts): She is turning her grief into something positive and empowering. Lilly’s murder informs so much of what Veronica does in the present, not just in her pursuit of the real murderer. Veronica is a force for moral goodness, and she tries to bring closure to other people’s lives. Through that, she hopes to bring closure to her own life. (Oh god, so much of what I wrote yesterday is eerily relevant to this conversation, isn’t it?)
  • Then we’ve got Weevil, who demonstrates his character’s main behavioral qualities through his interview. Note that he quickly brings up his own background and neighborhood early in his talk. Weevil is incredibly loyal to the people in his life, and that goes for the forgotten and undesirable people in Neptune. In this case, he refers to the disappearance and murder of a young woman of color in his neighborhood that didn’t get any of the same attention Lilly did. Yeah, that one hit a little too close to home for me. That’s not a work of fiction in the slightest, and it’s despairing to think that racism and classism play a part in which people get the most attention and effort when they disappear or when they’re murdered.
  • And I love that this isn’t meant as an insult to Lilly, either. No, Weevil desperately cares about her, and we finally get confirmation that they had some sort of relationship, though the details are slim at this point. Lilly broke things off prior to her death, and Weevil may have also pursued her to the point of making her uncomfortable. Whatever happened, can I add Francis Capra to the list of actors who are not allowed to cry on camera because their faces are too much? That list includes Sarah Michelle Gellar, Kristen Bell, Jorge Garcia, and Connie Britton, thank you very much.
  • Logan’s the next guest in Rebecca’s office, AND LET’S TALK ABOUT NOT OKAY FOREVER. I have to admit that I’m intrigued by the writers continuing to pull back the curtains on Logan. He’s been such an angry character beneath that mask of wit, sarcasm, and attitude, but we’ve now seen multiple glimpses of something really sad and scary that he’s hiding from everyone. Y’all, I didn’t expect him to reveal the real reason he treats Veronica so poorly. It’s important to note that his reasoning – that Veronica’s “sleuthing” meant that Lilly was alone on the night of her death instead of with Logan – is later mirrored in Rick’s justification for framing Veronica. Now, from our perspective, it’s easy to see that Lilly’s death is clearly not Veronica’s fault, and I don’t think the show is saying it is at all. No, this is about how Logan has internalized his grief and found someone to blame. It’s easier for him to process his loss by blaming Veronica and by blaming himself. God, the delivery on that line – “What’s so great about living?” – is UNREAL.
  • But oh my god, y’all. DUNCAN. DUNCAN. I have a theory about his behavior that is really, really disturbing. See, I was bothered by the idea that he was put onto medication so quickly after his sister’s death. Well, that’s what suggested here, though I could have misinterpreted this. While Rebecca is talking about how the medication may have blocked the grieving process, Duncan reveals that he doesn’t remember the days around Lilly’s murder. Wait, WHAT THE FUCK. Oh my god, that certainly explains his bizarre behavior outside his house when Veronica ran up to him. But… how? How could he forget that period of time? I mean, I suppose that post-traumatic stress disorder could play a part in it, but the fact that he was on another medication prior to that… oh god. What if someone purposely wanted him to forget those days?
  • I just need y’all to know that predicting things terrifies me because I have to do them so publicly, but I FEEL PRETTY GOOD ABOUT THIS ONE.
  • So, let’s talk about the Tritons. I loved the way the writers combined the more dangerous aspects of frat pledging with the fucked-up weirdness of secret societies. I actually misread the final scene of the cold open because Veronica didn’t seem that shocked by all the fake IDs in her locker, so I got really worried that she was totally guilty. SOMETIMES I GET THINGS HORRIBLY WRONG.
  • Yay, another appearance of Deputy Lamb! Guess who’s happy about that? NOT ME. AT ALL.
  • For the most part, I really love the Triton plot line. I love the idea of Veronica going up against a generational society by herself and sticking’ it to them. The threat is a lot bigger here, too, since Tim’s parents are threatening a massive lawsuit against the parties who may have been partially responsible for their son’s alcohol poisoning.
  • That’s one of the reasons why I’m confused by the ending. The Tritons did have a 12-part drink-a-thon, which is disturbing as hell for a high school group. And they LOCKED VERONICA IN HER OWN TRUNK! That’s… that is really messed up and super illegal? I mean, I understand that Rick and Tim’s behavior wasn’t actually due to the Tritons in the end, but them getting a free pass from Veronica seemed strange.
  • Honorary mention to: every one of Wallace’s scenes in this episode. I love how he’s at a point in his relationship with Veronica that he’s just game for anything. God, how could you dislike this character? He’s so adorable and charming!!!
  • There’s one other plot that runs through “Clash of the Tritons,” and it concerns the aftermath of “An Echolls Family Christmas.” (And for the record, I now know the Christmas episode aired BEFORE “Silence of the Lamb,” so it explains why there is an episode between these two.) Aaron surprisingly goes to Keith for help discovering who has been leaking personal information to tabloids. Which… I didn’t care about. The dude was revealed to have been cheating on his wife with plenty of women, so he made his own bed. Who cares?
  • I was far more interested in Logan lashing out at people being SUPER FUCKING AWFUL about his mother, especially since this episode shows us that he’s gotten rather protective of his mother. It’s a new side to him, one created in the wake of his father’s indiscretions being made public. Of course, that made me worry about how Aaron Echolls would lash out, too, because we know that Aaron cares more about his image than anything else. He tells Keith that he doesn’t want these stories to hurt his family, but I didn’t believe that for a second.
  • It makes sense, then, that Lynn had finally found a way to hurt Aaron back: by ruining his career. WHICH GOOD. IT SHOULD BE. So I was terrified by Aaron’s reaction, which was to threaten to take everything from Lynn if she tried to get divorced. That takes some nerve, y’all, given that HE was the one who cheated. Of course, the big shocker comes from Logan, who threatens to KILL his father if he doesn’t leave his mother alone.
  • Logan. Logan.
  • I’m crushed by this ending, y’all. It’s just… it’s so upsetting and unfair, and I am desperate to find out that this is a misdirect, that Lynn is still alive.
  • PLEASE???

The video commission for “Clash of the Tritons” can be downloaded right here for just $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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