It’s been nine years since lovely the Ms. Mars fled Hearst College and her troubled life in Neptune, CA. Now a law school graduate living in New York, we find the former sarcastic sleuth in a solid relationship with her college beau, Stosh "Piz" Piznarski, and ready to embark on a high-powered corporate career. In the opening sequence, Veronica assures the audience that she is no longer the thrill-seeking trouble magnet that she once was. Enter Logan Echolls. Logan, Veronica’s one time nemesis-turned-lover, then embittered ex, calls her back home when he is accused of murder, and return to the siren call of mayhem she does. She's unable to deny her drive to play rescuer to Logan and/or threaten the truth out of people, but she also goes home in order to reconcile herself to her past and the girl she once was. Thomas does an admirable job of placing the viewer, essentially, right back where they left off.
As for the uninitiated, the base premise isn’t actually that far off from any given rom-com. That is to say, it's accessible. To be clear, Veronica Mars is not a romantic comedy, it is what it's always been, an odd mix of a screwball comedy, a noir thriller, and a coming-of-age tale. The film centers on a case that likely would have played out over a season if the show was still on the air: the death of Logan’s pop-star girlfriend (their former classmate, Carrie Bishop). Thomas takes all of the key elements that defined the series and heightens them: Logan and Veronica’s epic, "lives-destroying" love story; the economic tensions that often erupt in the town of Neptune, as those struggling for sustainability must confront blatant excess and corruption on a daily basis, little mini-cases in the midst of the larger mystery. Finally, and most importantly, the film, like the show, is about Veronica embracing all of who she is.
It’s interesting, because at the end of the day, Logan is far more changed than Veronica, and really, we wouldn’t want it any other way. This isn't about Mars becoming a respectable adult, it's about her returning to the best of who she was as a teen. Veronica likens the allure of the dark side to an addiction, but in truth, any other path would be an abuse of her nature. This is not a woman who walks the straight and narrow; she is a warrior who spits in the face of convention. Veronica is simply incapable of playing it safe. The wish fulfillment is still present in that Veronica and her misfit childhood friends return to their reunion triumphant in their success and have the pleasure of facing their adolescent enemies in one final battle. The true adult-brand fantasy here, though, is the idea of relinquishing the shackles of corporate America, or any ill-fitting career, in favor of living a life as the bad-ass, idealistic, rebel you once were – and always thought you would be.
- +Hits all the notes that fans will want.
- +Perfect marriage of character and actress.
- +Ties up loose ends, but leaves room for more.
- +Same quick wit.
- –Not sure how well the uninitiated willconnect with it.