Mark Watches ‘Veronica Mars’: S01E22 – Leave It to Beaver

In the twenty-second and final episode of the first season of Veronica Mars, THAT WAS ONE OF THE BEST SEASON FINALES IN THE HISTORY OF TELEVISION. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Veronica Mars.


  • TOO MUCH TO COVER. Let’s get to it.
  • It’s not lost on me that throughout season one, Keith and Veronica have put their own reputation and well-being on the line in order to pursue what they believe in, and I think the opening scene of “Leave It to Beaver” exemplifies that. The reporter that Keith speaks to is completely unwilling to risk anything to help him, but Keith persists. How many people helped to hide the truth because they were unwilling to take a risk?
  • It was, frankly, very surreal to see Lianne Mars in that house, and I think it’s a testament to a few things: how well Alicia and Keith are as a couple, how well Lianne’s disappearance was written over this season, and how well established the dynamic is between Keith and Veronica. Seeing her joyously making dinner with Lianne is just so… different? Plus, we’ve only ever seen Keith or Veronica in this role, and now Veronica’s mother is back, and we have to begin to fold her into the picture.
  • Unfortunately, that means that Alicia has to exit the picture, and by gods, that scene is so painful to watch. There really wasn’t an easy answer to this any way you look at it. Keith didn’t know his wife was still around, and suddenly, she’s at his house. Veronica was so happy to have Lianne back, so what was Keith supposed to do? It’s just heartbreaking because Alicia was going to be hurt regardless.
  • Having seen this whole thing, it’s so weird to go back and analyze the earlier scenes. For example, I suspected there was more to Lilly Kane’s murder than Duncan being the one who killed her, but STILL. Oh god, now that I know what happened, I also know that THE KANES WEREN’T LYING. AT ALL. THEY LITERALLY BELIEVED DUNCAN WAS RESPONSIBLE. Oh my god, they are going to burn Aaron Echolls alive. Anyway, I’m glad that this wasn’t Duncan’s fault, obviously, but I’m also very satisfied with how well thought out this mystery was. Now we know why Abel Koontz was paid to be a patsy; we know why Clarence went after Veronica with so much veracity; we know why the Kanes were washing Duncan’s uniform; and we know why they kept all of this a secret. I’m interested to see if there are going to be legal ramifications for their actions, since they clearly obstructed justice by covering up for their son.
  • Y’all, the titles of the episodes of this show are so good. I GET IT NOW. “LEAVE IT TO BEAVER” TO BE THE ONE TO TELL VERONICA THE TRUTH ABOUT WHERE LOGAN WAS THE DAY LILLY DIED. Oh god, everything looks so awful for Logan here, but it harkens back to what I’ve written about in the past two reviews: trust. Logan is not making it easy for Veronica to trust him because he’s so frequently lying to her, which is truly ironic when you think about his conversation with her by his locker. I believe that he wants to protect and support Veronica, but he can’t see how his behavior contradicts that at times. Of course, that conversation is a lot more layered than he thinks because she’s keeping the whole secret camera thing from him.
  • (ahaha a;sdf j; a;dskfj aladfj oh my god oh my god.)
  • Casual reminder that Weevil decries the fact that rich white boys seem to get away with everything and IT TURNS OUT HE WAS STILL RIGHT, even if he had the wrong rich white dude. c r y i n g.
  • CAN WE JUST SIT HERE AND ACKNOWLEDGE THE GREATNESS OF THE PATERNITY SCENE? THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS HERE THAT ARE BEAUTIFUL AND WONDERFUL. Veronica does not even hesitate to sign away any claim to the Kane estate in order to make sure her father gets the reward money. Given what Keith knows, it’s such an amazing gesture because he recognizes that she cares more about him and the family than any future fortune she might be able to lay claim to.
  • WHICH SHE CAN’T ANYWAY BECAUSE HE IS HER FATHER AND CRYING AGAIN BECAUSE IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL. They are the best father-daughter relationship ever, I swear, and I’m so thankful that I get to experience this.
  • And then everything is pure pain from here on out. Good lord.
  • Y’all, when Lamb comes to search Aaron’s room, he tells the other deputy to look in the air vents because that is where kids hide things these days, AND HE HAD NO IDEA HE HAD JUST TOLD LILLY’S MURDERER PRECISELY WHERE SHE HAD HID THOSE TAPES
  • oh my god, I hope to write a mystery plot as well-conceived and executed as this one day. It’s fucking brilliant.
  • Guess who is not brilliant? LAMB. God, he is the worst cop I have ever seen just purely based on his inability to do anything right. WHY THE FUCK WOULD YOU TELL LOGAN THAT VERONICA HELPED OUT? WHY WOULD YOU TELL KEITH THAT LOGAN AND VERONICA ARE DATING? That man is the fucking worst cop, I SWEAR.
  • Complicated Logan Feelings, Version 10.01: Logan being ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE to Veronica on the beach. I’ve noticed that when he is upset and feels he’s been wronged, he lashes out in the most creatively awful way possible. Like, I just remembered I didn’t even comment on his super racist/classist comments to Weevil at the beginning of the last episode. Here, he tells Veronica that she should want to kill herself for telling the cops that his alibi doesn’t hold up. EXCUSE YOU, NO. SHUT UP.
  • We hadn’t seen Veronica in a disguise in a while, and this one is a DOOZY. Bless her heart. I love that she basically waltzes into the Kane household with no effort whatsoever.
  • Before she does so, though, heartbreak: Lianne is hiding alcohol in water bottles.
  • Which, y’all, is a thing alcoholics do. Including this once alcoholic. It hurt to see that.
  • So, we’ve now reached the point where “Leave It to Beaver” becomes another world of pain and terror. This is UNREAL, and I’m still reeling from the experience. The second we find out that someone is hiding in the closet behind Veronica, this is like a goddamn horror movie, I swear. But it’s so emotionally volatile to watch, too. I’m glad, then, that Duncan is there with Veronica to discover the truth about his sister because it’s as much his journey as it is hers, you know? Given that he’s just spent the last day or so believing that he killed his sister, it’s vital that he see what really happened.
  • My god, I didn’t see it coming at all. It’s interesting to go back and see how this was pulled off. I never suspected Aaron because he was never hinted as part of the picture. The writers had propped up so many people to be possible suspects – Logan, Duncan, Jake, Celeste, Weevil – and then misdirected our attention by just making Aaron awful all on his own. But it makes sense, doesn’t it? Aaron was always a self-absorbed creep who had his own interests in mind when it came to everything. We knew he cheated on his wife regularly, and that led her to commit suicide, amongst other things. Plus, I think you could easily consider his interest in Veronica as a way to keep tabs on her.
  • But on top of it all, Lilly was a threat. She was a threat to his image, his financial well-being, and to his career. And we all know that Aaron Echolls possessed a violence within him that always came out when he perceived himself as being threatened. It’s also not lost on me that both Lilly and Veronica were able to find the cameras in Logan’s room, which just made me think of a horrifying implication: Was Aaron always filming in Logan’s room? Did he set up those cameras or did he discover ones that Logan used? (Actually, that seems too risky, if you ask me.) Did Aaron film his son having sex? EW, AARON CONTINUES TO BE THE WORST THING IN THE UNIVERSE.
  • God, it’s such a huge moment, and the writers really do a fantastic job of conveying that. It was cathartic to finally have the answer, as disturbing as it was, and to give Duncan a moment of relief. He didn’t kill his sister, and Veronica is not related to him. SO MUCH RELIEF.
  • I got some serious slasher vibes from the scenes that followed, and I mean that as a compliment. The reveal that Aaron killed Lilly isn’t something that’s shocking because it makes no sense, so knowing how desperate he was to stop Veronica explains why he’s so vicious in the scenes where he tries to kidnap Veronica and then BURN HER ALIVE.
  • I do love that the writers constantly acknowledge that Veronica is not a fool about what she should do in this situation while also showing us that Aaron is someone that she should fear. She calls her father before leaving the Kane house. She tries to talk to Logan. She knows she can’t go where Aaron wants her to, so she purposely crashes her car. When she realizes Aaron got out of the crashed car, she cleverly hides the tapes in three separate locations.
  • One quick gripe: Was I meant to interpret that awful fade-to-black cliffhanger part as Aaron punching Veronica through a glass door? Because I’m pretty sure the door was closed? Maybe I misinterpreted that, IT’S ENTIRELY POSSIBLE.
  • Aaron’s Joan of Arc monologue is one of the creepiest things I have ever seen, oh my god. It’s a manifestation of his misogyny, of his wish to destroy Veronica and discredit her, to make sure that he gets away unscathed. He specifically says that he “won’t let a 17-year-old ruin his life,” and it’s so telling. He despises that a young woman like Lilly or Veronica would best him. I HATE AARON ECHOLLS.
  • (It is really validating to know that my distrust of him was not unfounded, let me tell you.)
  • The fight between Keith and Aaron, as I said in the video, is one of the most raw and palpable things I’ve ever seen, and it was so eerie to watch it unfold without any background music. It felt too real, and I don’t understand how that was filmed without these actors actually trying to destroy one another. My god.
  • I’m repeating myself here, but Keith Mars literally leapt through fire to save his daughter. I can’t deal with it, this is the best father in the universe HELP ME.
  • I do feel bad for Jake Kane, for the record, because this is all so heartbreaking, but then part of me is like… dude. You and your company have been RUINING LIVES over this shit, and you have so many apologies to make. To Veronica, to Keith, and to Alicia. Y’all fucked up.
  • So did Lianne, and despite that there’s closure in the Lilly Kane murder case, Veronica’s life is not going to be wrapped up neatly with a sparkly bow. No, her mother betrayed her trust AFTER VERONICA USED HER COLLEGE MONEY TO PUT HER IN REHAB. It hurts to watch, but I’m glad Veronica stood up for herself and her father by telling Lianne to leave.
  • I was also worried that Alicia wouldn’t be back but nooooo, Keith wakes up to her and MY HEART. I’M SO HAPPY.
  • There’s just so much here that could change. How will Keith’s life be different now that the folks of Neptune know that he was right, that Abel Koontz didn’t kill Lilly Kane? Will Abel get out of jail? What about his daughter? Does she still get millions of dollars from Kane software? What about the ramifications of the Kanes covering up Lilly’s murder? Will the Mars family be ostracized anymore? What the hell happened between Logan and Weevil?
  • That’s why that vision of Lilly and Veronica, relaxing in a pool full of water lilies, is so important to the story this season. There is closure here, but that means this chapter must end, and Veronica is going to have to live her life without Lilly in it anymore. The past year, Lilly was kept alive in Veronica’s memories through the case, but what happens now? Does the memory of Lilly fade away? Closure means an ending, but it also means that a new adventure must begin.
  • A new one without Lilly Kane.
  • Goddamn this show.

I had an absolute blast watching this, and y’all, I’m so happy there are two more seasons left of this. Please check the Master Schedule to see the scheduling for season two; I have to take two weeks off from Mark Watches Double Features because I need to travel home for Christmas and to travel for New Years. The predictions for season 2 will go up on January 13th, and unless there’s some sort of emergency, there will not be another break in Mark Watches Double Features. According to calculations, if I don’t miss a day from then on, I’ll finish Veronica Mars on March 13th. THE DAY BEFORE THE MOVIE COMES OUT. It’s meant to be. DESTINY.

Thank y’all for this. You are wonderful, and this show is wonderful, and I can’t wait to see more.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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