Season One Summary
So gentle readers, for you we've done
A whistle-stop tour of Season One.
(From the Reduced Thomas Company)
Veronica Mars's life sucks with Shakespearean grandeur after her best friend Lilly is murdered, her boyfriend Duncan dumps her, her father loses his job and reputation, her mother leaves her, and she is drugged and raped at a party. Oh, and everybody hates her. Rather than get to a nunnery, she deals the best way she can — by searching for and finding the truth.
She survives the taunts and slights of high school by facing life with a quick wit and street smarts that would make Philip Marlowe proud. She helps with her father's fledging P.I. business as he rebuilds his reputation. She enhances her own reputation at school as a badass, takes-no-prisoners investigator of the problems of the kids at school, most from the wrong side of the deep economic chasm that separates the residents of Neptune. She deals with fraudulent credit cards, missing persons, email scams, lost cars and piñatas, corrupt elections, faked test results, cults, theft, and harassment.
All the while, Veronica works hard to solve the big mysteries. At the center of those is the Kane family: billionaire Jake; his glacial wife, Celeste; his son, Duncan; and his effervescent daughter, Lilly. The deeper Veronica delves, the clearer the facts become until she knows the truth. Jake and Lianne Mars, Veronica's mother, were high school sweethearts. Their relationship continued after they married other people, and Lianne never knew which man was Veronica's biological father. Celeste Kane hated Lianne for it and hated Veronica as the representation of her husband's infidelity. Whether it was this or the thought of losing her beloved son to someone she considered so unworthy, Celeste acted to split them up irrevocably by telling Duncan that Veronica was Jake's daughter. Duncan, suffering from a form of epilepsy that made him prone to blackouts and violent outbursts, attacked his father, but nonetheless dropped Veronica without explanation. Shortly thereafter, Lilly was murdered. Her body was found by the side of the Kane pool by Duncan, who went into shock and suffered a three-day blackout. Jake and Celeste found them and believed that Duncan had killed Lilly in a fit. They worked quickly to cover it up. With the help of Kane Software's security chief, Clarence Wiedman, they manipulated the temperature of Lilly's body to indicate that she died earlier in the day, at a time when Duncan had an alibi. Their own alibis were still suspect, and Lianne could contradict them. This, plus her hatred for Lianne, led Celeste to run Lianne out of town, with the help of Wiedman, by threatening Veronica's life. Despite their attempts to protect Duncan, Sheriff Keith Mars wasn't fooled and he pressed his suspicions of the Kane family. The Kanes, with money and power their tools, paid a patsy, Abel Koontz, to take the fall on the promise of three million dollars to be paid to his estranged daughter. Keith was voted out of office.
Veronica's decision to stand by her father lost her the rich friends her position as Duncan's girlfriend and Lilly's best friend had garnered. Wanting to stand up to her ostracism, she attended one of their parties and, through a series of mishaps, drank from a glass that had been intended for another. The drink was spiked with GHB and gave her the appearance of being very drunk. She was abused by Duncan's best friend Logan Echolls, who organized body shots as she lay unresponsive, and by Dick Casablancas and Sean Friedrich, who fed her alcohol and laid her on a bed so Dick's brother, Beaver, could lose his virginity. Beaver chickened out and left her alone on the bed where Duncan, whose own drink had been spiked by Logan, found her. They were both semi-conscious and uninhibited, and they consummated the love they still shared. When Duncan woke up in the morning and realized that he had slept with his half-sister, he panicked and ran, leaving Veronica to wake up alone, with her panties on the floor and with no memory of events.
For all their actions to protect their son, the Kanes instead unintentionally protected the real killer, until he was unmasked by Veronica. Logan's father, Aaron Echolls, a vain and philandering movie star with a violent streak, was having an affair with Lilly, the girlfriend of his son and a minor. He taped them having sex for his own pleasure, an act that proved foolish when Lilly discovered and stole the tapes. He demanded them back, but Lilly taunted him, a fatal mistake on her part. Aaron struck her with an ashtray and killed her. When Veronica found the tapes, Aaron went after her to get them back, nearly killing her and Keith in the process. His escape attempt was ended when he was struck by a passing truck. He lives and awaits trial.
The mysteries are solved, but the real heart of the story of Veronica Mars is the relationships she forges as she makes her way through the maze. In Wallace Fennel, she finds a real friend, one who is there when she needs him. In Logan Echolls, she unexpectedly finds a new but dangerous love, one that struggles to survive her determination to find Lilly's killer when she suspects him. In Weevil, head of the local biker gang, she finds an unexpected ally and protector. In Duncan, she finds that love hasn't died, and is ready to re-ignite on the news that Veronica is in truth Keith's daughter. In Lianne, she finds that not every hope can be realized, as her alcoholic mother abandons and betrays her again. But it is her beautiful and realistic relationship with her father Keith that is the true heart of the tale.