Mark Watches ‘Veronica Mars’: S03E06 – Hi, Infidelity

In the sixth episode of the third season of Veronica Mars, Veronica is accused of plagiarizing while Wallace deals with his own cheating episode. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Veronica Mars.

Trigger Warning: Talk of rape and victim blaming. Lots of it! The beginning part of this review will be fairly difficult to read, so heads up.

  • So, let’s talk about my least favorite thing here and my least favorite part of this season so far.
  • Yeah, I absolutely hate that the writers chose to have Claire fake her rape. Let’s talk logistics first. Because this doesn’t make any sense. Are you telling me that Claire used her own boyfriend to fake her rape for…. for what??? That’s barely addressed! I assume we’re meant to believe that she did it so that more attention would be paid to the other rapes? Except even that seems so absurd that I don’t understand how it’s something she would try to pull off. You’re telling me that Clare was willing to shave her own head but didn’t think not to take her own boyfriend with her when she was pulling off the “fake” ATM robbery? Also, was she pretending to be drunk in the convenience store? Y’all, I need so much more information than I’m getting! And while I hate this twist for other reasons, I also dislike it because it’s lazy. It doesn’t make sense. It’s a red herring that’s used for dramatic effect, but you’re using something so volatile and personal to other people in order to do it.
  • Because let’s be real here: One of the most common retorts you hear from rapists and MRA assholes and anti-feminists jerks is that people who are raped are lying about being raped. Both times I was raped, I was immediately told by multiple people that it was impossible that this could have happened. I was a big man, they said, and I should have pushed the other guy off me. I was gay, so surely I could not have been a victim of rape at the hands of a woman. (I was most likely drugged during the rape, so yeah, shut the fuck up.) I know what it feels like to be told that you are lying about being raped. I know what it feels like to take nearly ten years to come to terms with what happened to you. I know what it feels like to have a horribly messed-up sense of sexual desire and attractiveness because of this. So when a plot is resolved in this show like this, I can’t help but hate it. Beyond it being lazy writing, it feels irresponsible. It feels like they’re relying on the stereotype that feminists inflate rape statistics in order to bring attention to their cause.
  • You should read two things, and both of these come with huge trigger warnings, especially the first link, which is extremely graphic and violent. You should read about someone being an actual false rape statistic, which made me cry the first time I read it last year. I did not report my rapes to the police for a lot of reasons. When I was raped by a man, I was quickly slut-shamed by the first few people who I told; they said I deserved it for sleeping around. (He was my third sexual partner ever, so yeah. Shut up.) So I internalized it and kept it to myself. And the second time it happened, I was living with my rapist, and I just needed to get away from her as soon as possible. I ran from her, and in the process, I ran from holding her accountable. I knew I had no evidence against her aside from what she’d said, so I believed there was nothing I could do. False rape statistics absolutely include people who were actually raped.
  • You should also read what actually happened last year concerning false rape reports made – not by radical feminists – by online men’s rights activists.
  • And you should do your research on false rape statistics, the systemic issues at hand that skewer the results towards higher numbers than what’s actual reality, and you should consider who is often the victim of rape more than other marginalized groups.
  • I don’t like this at all, and I hate how, yet AGAIN, the feminists at Hearst are a clear antagonistic force. Seriously??? There are LITERAL RAPISTS ON CAMPUS. There’s a frat full of fuckhead misogynists who have demonstrated time and time again that they are REVOLTING PEOPLE. Why the fuck are you doing this?
  • Here’s what I’m thankful for: the opening scene of “Hi, Infidelity” was short enough and had few implications for what followed that I actually enjoyed the rest of the episode. I did! I don’t need to compartmentalize my feelings in order to do so, and I think this is a good piece of evidence that we can enjoy problematic shit by acknowledging the shit that is bad. I imagine that there are people who saw that cold open and said FUCK IT, I’M DONE WITH THIS SHOW. I’m still mystified myself that I wasn’t triggered into a terrible place by it, but I think the brevity of the scene helped that.
  • Anyway, let’s move on to discuss “Hi, Infidelity,” which has one of the best bits of wordplay in the title. This whole episode revolves around the idea of cheating. Wallace must own up to his own cheating; Veronica is accused of plagiarizing, and in the process of exonerating herself, discovers a lot of cheating that others are committing; and Keith struggles with his own desires that conflict with his moral core.
  • Let’s start with Keith. Oh god, THE PAIN. So, I wasn’t wrong about his attraction to Harmony, but I was absolutely wrong about Harmony not appearing on the show again. For what it’s worth, Keith tries his hardest to keep his attraction at bay, to have a mature friendship with Harmony while enjoying her company. HE TRIES SO HARD. But it was a shaky foundation from the start, wasn’t it? I mean, Veronica recognizes that the whole thing was a problem without even knowing Harmony all that well. This was either going to end in disappointment or in bad behavior one way or another. I couldn’t really see a third option.
  • And the conversation the two had at the Neptune Grand seemed to point to the former option as the end to this. Keith couldn’t pursue Harmony, and he certainly couldn’t stay with her with the temptation placed before him. So he left, choosing to regret his decision not to have sex with her over his own conscience.
  • Of course, now I understand the whole “deathbed” conversation a lot better because IT WAS FORESHADOWING. Oh my god, I was a nervous wreck for like five minutes after that car crash. My heart was pounding! Goddamn this show, I swear to y’all. It’s startled me more than perhaps anything else I’ve watched.
  • After going through an experience that jolting, Keith decides to throw caution to the wind. By furiously making out with Harmony. They’ll be happy, but I really don’t think this will end well.
  • Wallace, on the other hand, comes from his experiencing with cheating and decides to act like a mature adult. I am so in love with what we see here because Wallace owns his actions. He accepts responsibility for cheating and instead of blaming anyone other than himself, he commits himself to his studies. Yeah, he’s initially discouraged by how difficult Winkler’s course is. Mechanical Engineering is his dream. I remember how hard it was for me to drop English as my major after I found out I hated the coursework. It was my dream to write for a living! (Excuse me as I shed one manly Dean Winchester tear while thinking about what I’m doing right now.) So I admire that Wallace chooses to pursue his academic dream over his sports dream. It’s a difficult choice, but he commits to it.
  • The main plot in this episode, though, is one HELL of a mystery, especially since it reveals something I never would have suspected IN A MILLION YEARS.
  • Along the way, though, we get more of Parker and Piz and cuteness forever. I’m enjoying these new characters and I’m interested to see where this goes. Obviously, Piz is struggling with his attraction for Veronica, but unlike any of the other couples in this episode, she’s not interested in infidelity. So it’s just AWKWARD, especially since Parker is interested in Piz. Oh, god, please don’t let this end badly.
  • Anyway, Veronica’s plagiarism debacle genuinely confused me because it seemed so absurd. How did someone get a hold of her paper and post it online with enough time to accuse her of plagiarism? The obvious suspect seemed to be Landry’s TA, Tim. CLEARLY HE RESENTED HER SUCCESS. So yeah, every turn in this episode made me more confused than the last one. Some random guy in her class, Jeff Ratner, is responsible for turning her in, and he’s got this creepy grudge on her because apparently she’s met him a ton of times? WHATEVER, YOU’RE GOING TO REGRET DOING THIS, SIR.
  • AHHHHH HOLY SHIT, THE SCENE WHERE VERONICA BREAKS INTO DEAN O’DELL’S OFFICE HAS A TOTALLY DIFFERENT MEANING NOW. Oh god, his office is like a Den of Man, and I figured that this was all just a way for the writers to explain how O’Dell was distracted enough to realize that Veronica was snooping just FEET away from him. But oh my god, it was a hint that his marriage was not at all as lovely as it seemed. H E L P
  • Ew, Mercer is on my screen. GO AWAY, I HATE YOUR FACE.
  • Apparently, I might have an even better reason to hate his face. Y’all, holy shit, that scene in the radio studio is FRIGHTENING. Like, if Mercer is indeed the Hearst rapist, that means he introduced himself to Parker as if he didn’t know her.
  • I swear, I will turn into a dying sun and tear that man apart if that was the truth. However, the ending of this episode makes this a little more confusing, since Logan swears that it’s impossible for Mercer to have been the rapist. Logan, first of all, get better friends. Secondly, I’m kind of scared to find out what you were doing with Mercer.
  • Anyway, I was certain that Jeff was responsible for Veronica’s framing. It made perfect sense! He resented that she was ruining the grading curve for everyone else, you know?
  • But then Rory Finch checks in.
  • oh
  • oh.
  • But wait… what the fuck would he have to gain from framing Veronica???
  • Seriously, I still missed the most glaring fact: Only one person had access to Veronica’s paper after she turned it in. It was Tim. Tim had to have posted the paper online.
  • It figures that a criminology major would set up an elaborate goose chase just to get Veronica to realize that Professor Landry is awful. I mean, it does make sense for his character! Oh, and it turns out that Jeff Ratner was still awful regardless, since he was stealing hotel toiletries by the trunkload. For what? I’m actually not sure. Is there a resell market for that???
  • So… shit. Is Veronica going to tell Dean O’Dell what she found??? THE PLOT THICKENS.

The video commission for “Hi, Infidelity” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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