Mark Watches ‘Veronica Mars’: S04E04 – Heads You Lose

In the fourth episode of the fourth season of Veronica Mars, Veronica and Keith pursue their new theory, but it has disastrous results. Also, the title of this episode is EVIL. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Veronica Mars. 

Trigger Warning: For discussion of rape.

Can I just say that the pacing of this season is incredible? There is not a slow moment this season, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t introspective scenes that are also quieter. It’s just that the show is always moving in one direction, and I imagine only having eight episodes helps that. It’s a delight to experience.

Blast from the Past

I am still reeling from how many characters from past seasons showed up in just ONE episode. Max! Mercer! Tim! LEO. But the show doesn’t trot these people out just to wink and nudge the fandom. Each of them contribute to the story in a meaningful way, even if it’s just to push forward confirmation of a particular theory.

Let’s start with Veronica’s visit to Chino, part of her attempt to paint the truth of the portrait of Big Dick and Clyde. TIM FOYLE. Holy shit, Dean O’Dell’s murderer!!! I didn’t expect that, but I did expect him to still be gross, and guess what? He was!!! How are you gonna try and dunk on Veronica WHEN YOU ARE IN PRISON. I feel like she won that contest, dude! I was even more disgusted by Mercer, the rapist at Hearst from season three. Lord, I’d forgotten about how twisted his relationship with Moe was, so it was not exactly thrilling to hear him try and point a finger at all the other rapists who had been given lesser sentences. Yes, you’ve correctly identified a terrible misdeed of justice. THIS DOES NOT MEAN YOU SHOULD NOT BE IN PRISON. He’s so horrible!!!! I hope Veronica ruins his parole!!!! 

Anyway, the point of all of this is that Veronica does emerge from Chino prison with a better idea of who Clyde was and what his relationship with Big Dick looked like. That info seems to be what we saw in flashbacks, too: Clyde saw Big Dick as a means to extract a huge payday for himself. Once you combine that with the circumstantial evidence of the PCHers? Well, this is starting to feel damning. The Weevil/Veronica reunion was just about as thorny as I expected it to be, given how they ended things in the film. One thing I’m still glad that the show is willing to do is to check Veronica through Weevil’s character. His last line stings, and it should. Especially at this part in her life! She should know by know that the world is full of grays, that her outlook isn’t exactly helping the situation. But this is also Weevil we’re talking about; he could have just been using the moment to criticize her and he has no idea what she’s talking about. Maybe someone else in the gang is responsible for working with the Casablancas?

And then LEO SHOWS UP!!! Oh my god, thank you, friends, for not spoiling me for all these great appearances. He’s the past character who gets the most screentime here, and it’s interesting how he’s a glimpse of a life Veronica could have had. He’s in the FBI now, but he’s also been divorced, a fate that Veronica is absolutely worried about. The two still have chemistry after all these years, but I don’t feel like her relationship with Logan is threatened by this. Oh, Leo challenges her on it, and I do wonder how much truth there is in what he says. What if Logan really just loved her so much that he proposed? What if it isn’t part of some mental game? She seems dead-set on accepting this narrative, but I’m not sure I buy it yet. Plus, how will Leo’s presence in Neptune further push Veronica? I don’t expect that this is the last time his story will intersect with hers in such a personal way. AH, I’M SO EXCITED.

I’ve also kinda accepted that we won’t see Mac, despite that there have been a number of references to her. But Max!!! Holy shit, that was also a surprise. AS WAS VINNIE, who I suspect is only going to make everything worse.

Keith

I do believe that Keith is trying to do his job by being friendly with Clyde, but… oh, I just don’t trust Clyde! For even a single second! I made that comment on video when Keith pulled out that bottle. Were they both trying to manipulate one another? Surely Keith wasn’t that naïve, you know? He had to know that Clyde trying to be friends with him wasn’t a genuine thing. So, I’m hoping that’s the case, but I’m putting this here less because I think it’s possible, and more because I DON’T TRUST CLYDE and I think he’s working a long con. GET HIM AWAY FROM MY KEITH. 

Third

Hi, that third bombing was fucked up? Lord. But now I’m confused about the bomber’s motivation. I mean… is it possible that it’s unrelated to the first two? Why only target one person? Was it retaliation for his attempted date rapes? Was it meant as a larger commentary? Is this all a plan to sow terror on the Boardwalk and get as many people to leave and sell, as Keith and Veronica believe it is?

Daniel Maloof

THIS IS GOING IN AN INCREASINGLY CHAOTIC AND DARK PLACE, Y’ALL. One thing I didn’t comment on—but is incredibly apparent here—is that Daniel Maloof does not seem like the kind of man who would order the murder of anyone else. But the show has given us a convincing portrait of a man whose world is closing in him. There’s his nicotine addiction and the cravings that are leaving him jittery and anxious; there are the blackmailing emails, urging him to put himself in the public spotlight again. Then, the Carrs tormented him and very believably could have killed him. So I understood why, in the moment, he asked Alonso to murder the Carrs. But I also get why he has such guilt over it and asks Vinnie to track them down. 

I didn’t anticipate Alonzo filming the execution and also name-checking Daniel in it, which makes the twist at the end so horrible. ONE OF THEM SURVIVED. He will most certainly bring about a whole new layer of chaos to this story. How is that gonna look for Daniel?

Penn

OH MY GOD. What have you done??? See, this is what Penn doesn’t understand: there’s a process to all of this. If Keith and Veronica’s working theory is correct, Penn just tipped off Big Dick and Clyde in public!!! Do you know how easy it will be for someone with that much money to make any evidence disappear? But Penn didn’t view the investigation as a slow, methodical process. His growing fame has gotten to his head, and now, he just wants to be the one spreading information, even if that information hurts others or even ends up being wrong. He’s so self-righteous, and he may have ruined the case that the Mars family was building. UGGGGGH.

The video for “Heads You Lose” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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