Veronica Mars Recap: Just a Momentary Thing?

Veronica Mars Season 1 RecapIn advance of Veronica Mars’ forthcoming big-screen adaptation, TVLine is offering occasional recaps of key episodes from the series’ three-season run. Go Pirates!

We’ve arrived at that Veronica Mars episode, Marshmallows. The one with the balcony and the Jonathan Taylor Thomas and the kissing and the what the hell just happened?

I can distinctly remember sitting on the futon couch in my post-college apartment, losing my stuff when the plucky P.I. and the sulky (former) psycho first locked lips. It was hot. It came out of nowhere. It was – to paraphrase Veronica herself from a later episode – so wrong, it was right. And it kicked off a pairing that strapped me and every other LoVe enthusiast into a yellow Nissan Xterra headed straight to heartbreak. (Hands in the air if you’ve got this GIF from the upcoming movie bookmarked.)

I could just squee through this whole recap, but I will make an effort to channel my inner Backup and be cool – after all, the hour does feature a mystery plot, a Sons of Anarchy star in the making and a dad back on the dating scene, and those elements deserve their due.

Since we’re not recapping every episode, let’s go over a few points revealed in the lead-up to the hour. Logan became aware that Veronica was keeping a file on Duncan. Keith let Veronica know that he believed Jake and Celeste Kane were somehow involved in the cover-up of Lilly’s death – perhaps because Duncan had a hand in it. And Veronica’s mom Lianne went to rehab to curtail her drinking.

Now that you’re caught up, let’s revisit “Weapons of Class Destruction.”

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WE LOVE THE ’90s | We open on Veronica and Leo making out outside her apartment door. He’s jockeying for an invite inside; she teasingly asks what’s so important to see in there. “I wanted to get a really good, long look at your bedroom ceiling,” he responds with a grin. Deputy dawg! Veronica mentions that Keith is cool with his daughter dating a 29-month-older man, but that he’s probably not going to be down with a school-night sleepover.

When they part and Veronica goes inside, Keith wants to have a little talk. V assumes it’s about her new beau, so she’s rather surprised when Keith confesses that he’s been dating too – and his lady is Wallace’s mom, Alicia. Neither kid is psyched about the revelation, though the next day at school, Veronica jokes, “I’ve always wanted a little brother I could dress up like a little doll.” Wallace is unamused.

Soon, though, they have the case o’ the week to distract them from their parents’ canoodling: A journalism class assignment leads Veronica to discover that someone’s been making bomb threats at school, and graffiti reading “” is popping up throughout campus. The sleuth quickly latches onto two suspects: Norris, a big lug with a past as a bully (hi, future Juice Theo Rossi!), and Ben, the fatalistic new kid who tags along with him. (Side note: Between Joey Lauren Adams as journalism teacher Ms. Stafford and JTT as Ben, it’s 1997 up in here.)

LOGAN TO THE RESCUE! | Wallace procures Norris’ file for Veronica, but only after they make up following a little spat about their folks dating. I’m with Wallace; Veronica’s assurance that Alicia won’t be around for long because Lianne will be back from rehab soon is callous, especially when you’re talking about your close friend’s mom. But the fact that Wallace and Veronica establish their status as besties is very sweet – remember, this is a girl who has walled herself off from pretty much everyone else.

The weird thing, Wallace notes, is that Ben doesn’t have a file in the administrative office. And another student saw him and Norris throwing explosives at cats after school. So when Veronica sees the two miscreants fighting from a distance, she decides to tail the new kid. She follows him to the Camelot Motel, which is odd, and then to a garden store, where he buys lots of bags of fertilizer. Veronica is distracted from her P.I. duties by a call from Logan, and that’s when Ben hops into her car and tells her to start driving. She can see he’s wearing a handgun in a shoulder holster, so she complies… but drops the phone with Logan still on the other end, and makes sure to mention that they’re heading back to the Camelot.

Ben calls Veronica “pesky” and tells her a lot of people could die because of her; based on that and the way he strong-arms her up the stair to his second floor room at the motel, I can’t blame her for freaking. But have no fear! Logan is there with a ready fist and years of pent-up victimhood, and he whales on Ben like there’s nothing he’d rather do. But Veronica stops the carnage when she finds Ben’s ID and realizes he’s a federal agent.

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LoVe IS IN THE AIR | Logan is still unimpressed, and tells Ben so when he asks for a moment with Veronica. “Dream on, Jump Street. I’m not leaving you alone with her,” he cracks (heh), but eventually complies when after V agrees to leave the door open. Ben tells her he’s the (babyfaced) head of an Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms investigation into the bomb threats at the school, and that he needs her to infiltrate Norris’ bedroom and garage to see if he’s got weapons stockpiled there. And how’s she supposed to gain access? “Easy,” Ben says, smiling. “He likes you.”

She leaves and finds Logan waiting like a smoldering guard dog, wanting to know if she’s OK. She says yes, then impulsively plants one on him. Just like that! Both of them look shocked that she did it, and Veronica even shakes her head as though she’s thinking better of it. She starts to walk away, skinny scarf flapping behind her. But then (oh goodness) Logan reaches out and grabs her arm (ohgoodnessohgoodness), spins her back toward him (why is the spin-and-kiss always 40 percent hotter than a regular old kiss?) and goes for it.

What got me – and still gets me – about this kiss is how much fire it has. This isn’t a drunken, convenient hook-up. This isn’t a let’s-see-how-this-goes peck. This is two people acting on years of something unacknowledged between them. We get a long moment of LoVe in action before they break apart and realize what just happened. V can’t deal, so she drives off while Logan watches from the balcony.

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VINDICATION | Veronica’s trip to Norris’ house yields nothing except the knowledge that his family has wi-fi (such a novelty back then!) and that his neighbor is the same student that tipped Veronica off about the kitten bombs. Turns out, that kid was also terrorized by Norris in middle school… and he’s gotten his revenge by creating red-flag Web content and making it look like it’s coming from Norris’ home computer.

Veronica is about to warn Norris that he could be in trouble when the ATF, headed up by a black-and-blue Ben wearing a suit, finds fertilizer and guns in the trunk of Norris’ car. He claims they’re not his, and Veronica soon realizes he’s right: Ben, wanting a quick and definite win, planted the evidence. So with Ms. Stafford’s encouragement, Veronica writes a cover story for the Neptune Navigator which exonerates Norris… and gets Ms. Stafford fired. But as she walks away from the classroom for the last time, the teacher hears the class continuing on in grand journalistic tradition, and she smiles. Yay, I guess?

¿DÓNDE ESTÁ DUNCAN? | But what of Duncan in this episode, you ask? Don’t worry, I saved him for last. After acting like a complete jerk to Veronica when she and Meg chat during lunch, he finally confesses that Logan told him Veronica has been conducting her own investigation of Lilly’s death. It gets ugly, especially after she says she knows his Type IV epilepsy makes him prone to violent mood swings and that the Kanes likely paid Abel Koontz to confess to their daughter’s murder. “You think I killed Lilly?” he shouts, suddenly seeming like someone very capable of that act, and leaves the room.

Later, Meg is distraught: Duncan withdrew $10,000 from the bank and went missing… exactly the way Veronica described earlier in the episode when discussing someone who wanted never to be found again. Oops!

Now it’s your turn. New to the series? Old-school Veronica aficionado? What did you think of the episode – did it turn you into a LoVer, too? Sound off in the comments! 

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Elyse says:

    Loved this episode! JTT played such a good bad guy!

  2. AD says:

    Reliving this episode + the EW cover…. This has to be the best day ever!! LoVe Logan+Veronica!!!

  3. Erin says:

    Loving your recaps of Veronica Mars! I’m new to the series, and I’m completely obsessed!!

  4. Kms says:

    Her name is Lilly.

  5. A says:

    One of my favorite episodes of any TV show

  6. I have become a new fan of this series, I think Kickstarter was a genius idea because not only does Veronica Mars come back, but also gained new fans like me. I love this ep and I love the recaps, I hope more people get into this show so the movie can be released in a lot of theatres. I love LoVe, great scene when they first kiss. I like how the relationship between Logan/Veronica wasn’t rushed and it was slowly built.

  7. LaPiquante says:

    “40 percent hotter”–Yes! See also: New Girl.

  8. lulu says:

    best tv kiss ever..epic !

  9. Lecholls says:

    I still freak out when I watch this one.

  10. Ginger says:

    love LoVe!!!!!!

  11. CourtTV says:

    I think this recap captures the kiss perfectly. It’s like I’m watching it as I read it, all of the antsy goodness.

    • jane says:

      Hot damn, that kiss was perfect! Yes, this recap definitely captures that scene wonderfully. I’ve been re-watching the series in preparation for the movie and still squeal when I see that kiss!

  12. MD says:

    This is one of my favorite episodes after Alterna-Prom.

  13. MM9 says:

    I realised after watching this episode about a week back, Ben is an FBI agent masquerading as a High School Student. Which was Rob Thomas’ original idea for Season 4 of Veronica Mars – Veronica as an FBI Agent in training, masquerading as a student to bust crime in High School/College/University.

  14. Jen says:

    I saw the trailer for the movie yesterday at a theatre (Cineplex) n Montreal. Hopefully that means it will be playing in many theatres in Canada.

  15. K. says:

    LoVe this episode!

  16. anonymous says:

    I totally agree about that kiss! It was so intense and passionate and unexpected. Unlike others shows where I’m shipping a couple for years before anything happens, I was just beginning to like Logan. And then that kiss happened and I was gone. That moment turned me into a loyal LoVe shipper for life.

  17. Janina says:

    best. kiss. ever!!! totally made me fall in love with logan in this episode!
    great recap – keep them coming! can’t wait for the movie!! :)

  18. SonOfCoul says:

    I love how if you go to now it redirects you to a generic CBS site. There’s a funny joke in there somewhere, I just can’t find it.

  19. Mary says:

    Such an amazing episode! I can’t help it that even though Logan was a grade A jackass, their chemistry was undeniable! I’m embarrassed to admit that I stopped watching VM when she went to college. I will definitely watch the movie and I’m tempted to rewatch the whole series. I don’t understand why Jason Dohring (sp?) isn’t a bigger star!

    • Tina B. says:

      Oh my goodness, say it isn’t so?! The third season (in my opinion) was the best season! LoVe was together for half the season and so cute together. So candid and sarcastic, until Veronica was Veronica and shut Logan out, GRRRR! He was always there for her though and did I mention all the SEX!

      One line from Veronica was panting and “Whoo, you should really consider going pro in that! LOL Best!

  20. Tina B. says:

    Best TV kiss hands down! And I am obsessed with LoVe! I have slow motioned the whole kiss, their looks, the WAY they kiss, Logan doesn’t slobber, he is gentle but passionate (sigh) and the touching, oh my GOD the touching! I am getting a lot of my friends VM obsessed too! HAHAHA!

  21. Mikael says:

    The spin & kiss is definitely much hotter than a regular kiss.

  22. Cheryl says:

    I’m still shaking my head over the absence of LoVe on the 19 best ever TV kisses that TVLine just posted. What’s with the no LoVe???