Veronica Mars Returns and the Results Are as Sweet as a Marshmallow

The Veronica Mars movie features plenty to delight longtime fans

By Chris Harnick Mar 13, 2014 6:00 PMTags
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She's back. Veronica Mars (Kristen Bell) is back and as snarky as ever. Who thought those sweet words would ever be written after the 2007 series finale?

In the Veronica Mars movie, Rob Thomas and Diane Ruggiero (with the help of about 92,000 Kickstarter backers) return to Neptune for another go around in the seedy world of the beloved TV series about a teenage private eye. No longer a teen—or a private eye, at least at the start of the movie—Veronica Mars is older, edgier and still as sassy as hell. Viewers wouldn't have it any other way. And one thing is clear with this movie: It's for the longtime TV viewers.

Veronica Mars picks up years after the fearless TV character walked away in the rare Southern California rainstorm after becoming the laughing stock of her school because of a leaked sex tape, and her actions caused her father's law enforcement comeback to go down the drain. She's living in New York, thisclose to getting a job a big law firm and in a solid relationship with Piz (Chris Lowell), her college boyfriend who she just reconnected with about a year before the film picks up. But everything changes when Logan (Jason Dohring) needs her. Veronica's pulled back into the life she left behind, and you can tell a part of her is ready to dive down the slippery slope of seedy motels, late night stakeouts and dangerous situations. Her return to Neptune also just happens to coincide with her 10-year high school reunion. A pariah in high school, Veronica's outsider status still stands 10 years later. The setting allows for the return of many familiar Veronica Mars faces, from Gia Goodman (Krysten Ritter) to former Neptune deputy Leo (Max Greenfield). It's truly a fan's dream come true.

Like the show, the Veronica Mars movie has a certain level of…shall we say "absurdity" to it. Some of the twists are out there and a tad convenient, but the movie stays very true to the heart and soul of the beloved TV show. It's perhaps not as accessible to non-fans as it should be, but it's a thrill ride nonetheless. There are laughs, shocks and a good amount of drama to satisfy the audience.

One aspect of the film will likely be extremely satisfying, to both fans and general movie viewers, is the climax. Veronica Mars always comes to the conclusion—"I know what happened"—but in bringing perps to justice, she has almost always had a male come to her aide, including her father and Logan. This time, she doesn't rely on anybody coming to her rescue. Veronica does it all herself and it's about time. The fact that she didn't rely on a man to save her is all the more important in today's cinema that still thinks female-fronted films don't always pull in the audience. Here's the quintessential modern female hero taking care of herself. She may be a marshmallow, but Veronica Mars is no damsel.

Veronica Mars opens in select theaters on Friday, March 14 and is available for digital download same day as release.