Veronica Mars Reviews: Season 1, Episode 15

Veronica Mars S01 titleEpisode 15: Ruskie Business

Last episode, Logan hired Veronica to find out if his mom was really dead, or if she faked her suicide to get away from all the craziness in their lives. Evidence seemed to confirm her death, but Veronica got an alert that someone had used one of Lynn’s credit cards. She shows Logan the info: someone used a Platinum card (the only one still under Lynn’s maiden name) to rent a red Mercedes convertible, which givesDuncan and Veronica talk about the dance Logan hope again. Veronica says she’ll look into it and Logan actually seems grateful, instead of his usual asshole self. Even Duncan notices, and he teases Veronica about Logan asking her to the big 80s dance (with the totally awesome title of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” dance). Veronica reflects on her past with Duncan and how what she thought was true love turned out kinda sour. Meg comes in to ask her for help.

Meg has a secret admirer who sent her a text on the way back from their last away game. She noticed a couple guys on their cells right when she got the text: Caz, a jock who’d probably flirt with a trash can if it had tits, and Meg asks for helpMartin, who Meg says is kinda sweet, but also a bit moony. We find out Veronica has been getting hang-up calls all week from someone, so she’s a bit skeptical about Meg’s “admirer”. Meg is a romantic though, and says this could turn out to be her soul-mate. At the office, Keith asks Veronica to help a new client named Katerina, a good-looking Russian blonde. Veronica’s cynicism kicks in and she assumes Katerina is a spurned wife, but she’s actually looking for a guy named Tom, who she says is her soul-mate.

Katerina met Tom online and came over to marry him. (Does that mean some of those Russian women online are real? I could’ve sworn they were all fakes.) She ended up dumping Tom, then realized he was the best thing that ever happened to her, so now she wants to find him again. Trouble is,Katerina tells her sad story Tom’s an actor who came to Hollywood to get work and had to change his name (since his last name is Cruz). So now she can’t find him and all she has is a photo of Tom with his dog and a postcard from when he first moved to California. Veronica says they should be able to track him down in a few days. But the usual computer search gets her nothing, which frustrates her. Later she asks Wallace (who’s on the basketball team) to check out Caz and Martin’s cell phones to see if they were texting Meg.

At school, Meg gets a big bouquet of flowers and an invitation to the dance. Veronica takes a photo of the flowers and notes the florist’s name. Outside, Caz invites Meg to a party while Wallace tries to go through Caz’s gym bag to look for his phone, but Caz comes in and catches him … right when Wallace gets busted with the evidence in handWallace is holding Caz’s jock strap. Wallace notices the dog in the photo with Tom is pretty freaky-looking and Veronica figures she might be able to track Tom that way. At the office, Veronica tells Katerina that a quick search got nowhere, so Katerina offers to hire Keith full time. She gives Veronica some more details on Tom’s hobbies, which Veronica uses to call casting companies with a description of Tom, saying she needs a specific type for a movie she’s doing. That night, she examines numerous head shots her lie has brought her, but none of them is Tom. Wallace tells her about his misadventure and says she can do her own snooping from now on. Veronica gets another flag on Lynn’s credit card, this time from a fancy hotel, so she calls Logan to meet her there.

Veronica brings a fake wedding scrapbook and pretends she and Logan are looking for a honeymoon suite. She finds out which suite is the one occupied by the user of Lynn’s credit card, but the concierge won’t let themVeronica's wedding wish book go look at it. Logan decides to just wait in the lobby until his mother comes out of the elevator. Veronica thinks that’s a pretty low-concept plan, but she does have other cases to take care of, so she leaves Logan to his stakeout. She goes to the florist who sent the bouquet to Meg, but the guy’s kind of a dimwit, so all he can give her is that the person who sent the flowers had “that look … you know, that high school kid kinda look”.

Later, Keith (who’s away on an insurance fraud case) phones to ask why she’s still on Katerina’s case. She says she wants to bring people together for once instead of pulling them apart. She’s blown up the photo so she can Wallace finds the right dog breedmake out the dog’s tag, which says Steve. (Keith: “Who the hell names a dog Steve?”) Wallace figures out the freaky-looking dog is a breed called a Catahoula Leopard dog. As Keith goes to follow his fraud case, we see a couple of hard-asses watching him from a car. Veronica calls all the local veterinary hospitals about a Catahoula Leopard Dog named Steve and finally gets a hit. She spins a story about wanting to breed her Leopard Dog and asks them to call Steve’s owner about it. They call back right away to say the owner wasn’t interested, but Veronica’s not too bothered.

She and Meg are heading to Caz’s party, hoping to find out more about her admirer. They stop by the police station where Veronica flirts with Leo and asks him to get her the phone records from the vet hospital right around the time she called them. She notices a sketch of her hanging in the station; it’sCaz spills beer on Meg a pretty good likeness, except it has devil horns. Turns out she knows the sketch artist (Carl) from when her dad was still Sheriff. Meg notices that Leo has the hots for Veronica. (“Wow, he totally wants to protect and serve you.”) At the party (which is in a model home in a new subdivision Caz’s dad is developing), Caz is friendly to Meg, but he also seems a little oblivious, not remembering that she’s a cheerleader. He spills beer on her dress and Martin (her other potential admirer) tries to help her clean it up. Veronica borrows Martin’s cell, but it’s too low on power for her to check if he sent the text to Meg.

Duncan asks Veronica why Logan is camped out in a hotel lobby and she decides she’d better go get him out of there. He’s still being stubborn, so Veronica speeds things up by reporting the credit card lost. That gets some results and the person in the Princess Suite finally comes to check out. Trina makes a sceneLogan is excited until he finds out it’s not his mom, it’s his half-sister, Trina (played by Alyson Hannigan). Logan’s not happy that Trina’s using his mom’s credit card (and wearing her clothes), but Trina says Lynn was just her step-mother (who liked to parade through the house in a bikini whenever she had a boy over). Logan says their father could’ve used her help at the funeral and Trina mentions Logan’s talk about their father beating him and burning him with cigarettes, which she doesn’t seem to believe. Veronica is shocked to hear about the abuse but she gets Logan out of there before they really start fighting. On the way out, Logan realizes his mom really is dead and totally loses it, crying in Veronica’s arms.

On the way back from his fraud case, Keith notices the two toughs following him, so he leads them to a hotel and slips out to check their car. Back in Neptune, Veronica takes police artist Carl to the florist so he can make a sketch of the guy who sent Meg the flowers. Leo calls with the info from the vet hospital and Veronica quickly eliminates a couple of the names, leaving one (John Frampton) as the most likely candidate for Tom. She tracks himVeronica gets photos of Tom down and takes photos, and it is Tom. She goes back to the office to call Katerina, but Keith shows up and hangs up before Veronica can give her the good news. Turns out Katerina and the two guys following Keith are Russian mob and Tom was a witness against their father. He’s in Witness Protection, so they cooked up the “lost love” story to con a detective into finding him. I gotta say, Veronica’s a hell of a detective if she can track down someone in Witness Protection. Keith comes up with a plan and Veronica gives Katerina an address when she phones back.

The two mobsters go to the address, but it’s actually the model house where Caz’s party was last night. Keith and the cops are waiting for them and take them in. That night, Meg stops by and Veronica apologizes for not finding the Russians are bustedher secret admirer. Meg doesn’t care too much; she’s not really into Martin and kinda likes Caz, but he’s a bit too goofy for her. She says she’s taking Veronica to the 80s dance and gets her dressed up in quite the outfit. Veronica says she looks like “Manila whore Barbie”, but I think she looks like she’s auditioning for Belinda Carlisle’s spot in the Go-Gos. (I was a teenager in the 80s and I don’t remember any girls in my class dressing like that, although the crimped hair sure brings back memories.) Right before leaving, Veronica gets a fax of Carl’s sketch, but she doesn’t show it to Meg … because it’s Duncan.

At the dance, (which features such 80s classics as “One Thing Leads to Another” by the Fixx, “Time After Time” by Cyndi Lauper, and of course “True” by Spandau Ballet) Veronica relents and makes sure Meg and Duncan get together. Meg says she arranged a surprise for Veronica, butLeo and Veronica dance between the Russian bride and her ex having the hots for Meg, Veronica’s kinda over surprises and decides to leave. She’s crying in the parking lot when Leo shows up (in his best Miami Vice suit) and gives her flowers. Obviously, this was Meg’s surprise; she called and told him to meet them at the dance. Duncan actually looks a bit bothered by Veronica and Leo dancing, which is strange since he’s got his arms wrapped around Meg.

The dance is interrupted by a drunk Logan (dressed like Tom Cruise in Risky Business, no pants and all), telling everyone to “Wang Chung tonight or I’ll kick your ass!” Veronica tries to get his car keys away from him and calls Trina to take him home, which she says is just like old times. (When Trina looks into the dance she says, “Is that Kajagoogoo?” That’s hilarious if you’re my age.)

Logan wasted
Yup, that’s pretty much what the 80s looked like.

In a scene straight out of a John Hughes movie, Veronica and Leo smooch in the hallway. They’re interrupted by another anonymous call and this time *69 gets results: it’s from a payphone at a cantina in Barstow and the guy says a blonde woman was just on the phone. Veronica heads right out there (don’t worry, she changed into normal clothes first) and finds just who she expected … her mom. But Lianne isn’t happy to see her daughter (and she’s hammered), saying she’s in a lot of danger. Veronica says she knows who’s been screwing with them, then notices Clarence Wiedman (yup, the guy who’s been screwing with them) watching them near the door.

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