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Characters: Veronica Mars
Beware of spoilers.

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     Mars Investigations 

Veronica Mars (Kristen Bell)

"You know what they say: 'Veronica Mars: she's a marshmallow."
1x01 Pilot

Veronica Mars had it all - her dad was sheriff, her parents were in love, she had a loving boyfriend, a fabulous best friend, and lived the fairytale life. Then it all fell apart with her boyfriend dumping her, best friend's murder, her father accusing a town hero of the crime and losing his job, Veronica being ostracized, her mother leaving, and Veronica being drugged and raped at an 09er party. Who knows what really happened? Well, she will. Soon.

  • Action Girl: While she's not as handy in a fight as most of the other characters, she can definitely hold her own. Helps that she has a taser.
  • All Girls Like Ponies: As part of a Running Gag, she insists that Keith buy her a pony.
  • Alone with the Psycho: With Aaron Echolls in the season one finale, Beaver/Cassidy in the Season 2 Finale and with Mercer and Moe in the conclusion of the first season 3 storyline. She once again ends up in this situation in the movie, this time with Lou Cobbler.
  • Character Tics: She tilts her head to the side when asking for a favor. Weevil humorously lampshades it, noting that as soon as she walked into the room, obviously to ask him for information, she "did that head tilt thing" and added a demure "hey".
  • Damsel in Distress: Not often, but occassionally she gets in over her head and needs saving, particularly during finales/resolutions. However, she doesn't much care for it, and each time she's a little less helpless, culminating in the Hearst Rape resolution, where despite being drugged, she manages to fight off the rapists.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Her wit is the stuff of legends.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: in the pilot she's balks at the idea of letting anyone (Wallace, in this case) get close to her. Her friendship chops get better over the following seasons.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: hacks off her long hair after her ostracization and rape. Over the course of the series it grows out again, possibly signifying her overcoming the trauma.
  • Hypocrite: She has her moments, like when she criticizes Logan for carrying a gun, despite caring one herself in the season finale.
  • Intrepid Reporter: she's on the school newspaper, and one episode features a plot where she runs a sensational story against the sschool administration's wishes.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Veronica is manipulative, unpleasant, condescending, judgmental, constantly mistakes revenge for justice, and at times, very prideful. However, she genuinely wants to help people, uses her skills for good most of the time, and is extremely loyal to those close to her.
  • Meaningful Name: 'Veronica' means "true image", thus tying into her seeking the full picture
  • Petite Pride: although apparently she was quite insecure about her small breasts as a freshman.
  • Stepford Snarker: Veronica much prefers to snark than show her feelings, though it isn't the only reason she snarks.
  • 10-Minute Retirement: in the summer between seasons 1 and 2 Veronica gives up on sleuthing. She can't keep it up for long. As the movie reveals, she takes a much longer one - lasting 9 years - after the events of season 3.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Subverted. She loses her good qualities during the 3rd season, which is a major reason why the season was criticized. Thankfully, she reverts back to the Heart Of Gold side in the film.
  • Underestimating Badassery: The kids at Neptune High really have no excuse. The FBI does, but they still shouldn't. Sheriff Lamb, despite being a general moron, never underestimates her.

Keith Mars (Enrico Colantoni)

"Who's your daddy?"
1x01 Pilot/1x22 Leave It To Beaver

The former sheriff and Veronica's father, who lost his job and the town's respect after accusing Jake Kane, the most loved man in Neptune, of murdering his daughter Lilly. While the Lilly Kane murder case is officially closed, Keith, like Veronica, is dedicated to finding out the truth... and protecting his own daughter.

  • Back in the Saddle: Gets hired as a consultant for one episode to help Sheriff Lamb investigate a series of murders.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: he's a soft-spoken, genuinely nice guy - unless matters of justice or Veronica's well-being are concerned.
  • Big Damn Heroes: From time to time, Veronica will get in over her head, and he has ended up saving her life more than once.
  • Cassandra Truth: No-one will believe Abel Koontz didn't kill Lilly.
  • Fallen Hero: As far as the population of Neptune are concerned.
  • Papa Wolf: Threaten Veronica's well being at your own peril.

    Neptune High 

Wallace Fennel (Percy Daggs III)

Veronica: Can you do me a weird favor without asking any questions?
Wallace: Is that not the bedrock upon which our friendship was founded?
1x16 Betty and Veronica

Veronica's living best friend, the new kid who she cut down from the flagpole after he was duct taped there by the PCHers. He's steadfastly loyal, and always doing Veronica favours.

  • Clear My Name: when accused of a hit-and-run that he failed to report.
  • Cool Loser: although, to be fair, he gets quite popular once he's in on the basketball team.

Duncan Kane (Teddy Dunn)

Veronica: One day, he just dumped me, with no warning...
1x01 Pilot

Veronica's aloof ex-boyfriend, Logan's best friend, and Lilly's (slightly younger) brother. Stays distant from Veronica, yet is more civil to her than most 09ers. It is clearly shown he's hiding things from everyone... but what?

  • Brother-Sister Incest: Zig-zagged. He's led to believe that Veronica is his half-sister, which is why he broke up with her. They're not siblings, though.
  • Bystander Syndrome: as Veronica angrily told him once, what he does best is "stand idly by". Character Development makes sure that this isn't really the case anymore by the time season 2 rolls around.
  • Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: he becomes a "zombie" after Lilly's death.
  • Insane Equals Violent: he has type 4 epilepsy, which often manifests itself in rage fits, which makes him a suspect in Lilly's murder. Ultimately partially subverted - he didnd't kill Lilly, but he's still more prone to violence than he lets on.
  • Noble Male, Roguish Male: he's Noble (polite, well-spoken, a gentleman, a by-the-book boyfriend and a good student) to Logan's Roguish (hot-headed, snarky, prone to fighting and sleeping around).
  • Papa Wolf: to save his daughter from her abusive grandparents, he kidnaps her and flees to Australia - abandoning his friends, relatives, and status in the process.
  • Parental Favoritism: Jake and Celeste Kane preferred him over Lilly.
  • Princely Young Man: heir to the wealthiest family in Neptune, and very popular at school.
  • Put on a Bus: The last we see of him, he's in Australia with his kid.

Logan Echolls (Jason Dohring)

Veronica: Every school has an obligatory psychotic jackass. He's ours.
1x01 Pilot

Lilly's boyfriend when she died, Duncan's best friend, and ringleader of the "Treat Veronica Like Crap" brigade, whom he blames for Lilly's death. Suffers under the thumb of his famous, abusive father, gains respect and love for Veronica over the course of the series.

  • Abusive Parents: Daddy beats him.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: gets his share of lady-attention.
  • Alpha Brat: a well-connected bully who flashes his wealth every which way. Moreover, while he's fond of a good fight, he generally prefers snide putdowns and messing with people's heads to acts of physical aggression.
  • Clear My Name: winds up as a murder suspect frequently.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Probably more than Veronica. You never know if he's going to be nice or mean to her, but you do know that he's going to say something funny.
  • Death Seeker: Veronica even calls him out on it.
  • Desperately Craves Affection: his sucky home life means he finds comfort in friends and romantic relationships instead - which is why Lilly's murder and Veronica's "betrayal" came as a double blow to him.
  • Drowning His Sorrows: his relationship with alcohol definitely goes beyond "getting drunk at a party for fun". He even carries a flask to school for a Quick Nip.
  • Et Tu, Brute?:
    • Hearing that Veronica had caught him cheating by telling Lilly about his affair (true) and assuming that she was the one who murdered Lilly (not true) leads to him kicking Veronica out of his teen crowd.
    • A worse example occurs in the season 1 finale: Logan, held up at the police station as a suspect in Lilly's murder, calls Veronica for help. Cue Sheriff Lamb telling him Veronica was the one who accused him of murder in the first place.
  • Femme Fatale: a very rare male example (uses sex as a weapon, has shady motives, serves as a Love Interest / antagonist / client / suspect to the PI protagonist).
  • Freudian Excuse: He's not exactly a villain, but the trope fits.
  • Hot-Blooded: hoo boy. He's seen a lot of injustice firsthand and rarely hesitates to punch it in the face.
  • Interrupted Suicide: In the season 1 finale, although it could be argued he was just being his usual manic self and wasn't actually planning to jump off the bridge.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: at his best, he's deeply protective of those he cares about. This is actually part of why he and Veronica are incompatible: she (claims she) doesn't need someone looking over her shoulder.
  • Ladykiller in Love: first with Lilly, then with Veronica.
  • Love Hungry: one of his key traits. With a neglectful father who clearly favors his adopted daughter, and a Stepford Smiler for a mother...
  • Manly Tears: more so than any other character on the show.
  • Undying Loyalty: one of his central qualities. If he believes you care about him, he will walk through fire for you.
  • The Unfavourite: his father Aaron dotes on adopted daughter Trina, while his attitude towards Logan fluctuates between indifferece and beatings / threats.
  • Wild Card: whose side he's on in any given case is up for debate.
  • Will They or Won't They?: with Veronica, throughout basically the entire show.

Eli "Weevil" Navarro (Francis Capra)

Weevil: So, who owes who now?
Veronica: I'm not quite sure.
3x19 Weevils Wobble But They Don't Fall Down

The leader of the PCH bike club, starts off as an antagonist (duct-taping Wallace to a flagpole), but quickly becomes close with Veronica. More affected by the Lilly Kane murder case than he lets on.

  • Double Entendre: He's really good at making them.
  • Enemy Mine: He teams up with Logan, whom he strongly dislikes, in season 2 to find the real killer of Felix Toombs within his own gang.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Underneath all the criminal behavior and the bad attitude, he's actually a pretty good guy. He has a soft spot for his grandmother, he's torn up over the fact that one of his fellow biker gang members was killed, and he even offers Veronica ride back home when she gets stranded on a school field trip, even though the two were fighting at the time.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname - At first. Towards the end of the 2nd season and predominately during the third season, he starts going more and more by Eli or Navarro, representing him walking away from his old life of crime.
  • Reformed Criminal: By the time the film rolls around, he's no longer involved in crime and he has a wife and kid.
  • The Rival: To Logan, for Lilly's affections (among other things). The two are often seen engaging in fights or Snark-to-Snark Combat.
  • Straight Edge Evil: he's nowhere near evil, but he is a gang leader - who doesn't condone any of his gang members doing (or, heavens forbid, selling) drugs.

Cindy "Mac" Mackenzie (Tina Majorino)

"Crime pays. Technologically assisted mystery-solving? Costs."
2x08 Ahoy, Mateys!

Veronica's quirky, highly-skilled hacker friend, who she met trying to find out who posted false results on an internet "Purity Test" - a test Mac herself had designed. She has tendencies toward being slightly amoral, but cutely so.

  • High School Hustler: She earns quite a bit of cash doing odd tech-related favors for the student body.
  • In the Blood: She is very similar in appearance and interests to her biological mother and younger sister.
  • Lovable Rogue: her Establishing Character Moment is helping Veronica quell the chaos started by the purity test - a test which Mac herself created in order to earn some cash.

Dick Casablancas (Ryan Hansen)

Logan: You're not real complicated, are you Dick?
Dick: Try not to be.
2x11 Donut Run

One of Logan's rich "friends", Dick's life revolves around sex, alcohol, food and surfing, likely in that order. And he is stupid. Very. Stupid.

  • Only Friend: By season three, he and Logan are this for each other. Because no one else wants to hang out at Casa de Killer.
  • Ship Tease: With Mac in the final episode.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Dick is boisterous, dumb and a bully, while his younger brother Beaver is quiet, very clever and often victimized.
  • Sour Supporter: Of Veronica; he'll help her with an investigation, but not without trading insults the whole time.

Cassidy "Beaver" Casablancas (Kyle Gallner)

"My name is Cassidy!"
2x22 Not Pictured

Dick's quiet, nervous, secretive younger brother, domineered by his brother and neglected by his father - but what else is he hiding?

  • Abusive Parents: the two Dicks - Sr and Jr - used to compete as to who could make Beaver cry first.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Veronica. They were both raped and went through a lot of shit, but unlike him, she didn't take it out on other people. Also in intelligence. Cassidy is one of the few other characters to really outsmart Veronica. It's shown several times in "Cheatty Cheatty Bang Bang" when he hires her to tail Kendall, Cassidy takes one look at the photos she brings him and notices that the bags have switched and declares that it's not enough to prove she's cheating - then later, beats her in the fake stocks competition - minor things but good clues to later events.
  • Face Death with Dignity: After Logan and Veronica get the upper hand over him, he calmly jumps to his death.
  • Teen Genius: his business acumen is quite remarkable. As is his capacity for masterminding mass murder.
  • Troubled Abuser: both a victim of molestation and a perpetrator of rape.

Jackie Cook (Tessa Thompson)

"That was pretty fatherly. Almost like you've been saying my name in exasperation for years."
2x02 Driver Ed

Wallace's Rich Bitch Love Interest, daughter of famous baseball star Terrence Cook. When her father is accused of the bus crash, she grows ostracized, yet she and her father grow closer... for a time.

  • Clingy Jealous Girl: She's jealous of Wallace's friendship with Veronica and thinks that the latter is trying to stake a claim on the former.
  • Fallen Princess: Once her dad is accused on murder, she becomes ostracized by the Neptune High student body.
  • Family Relationship Switcheroo: her "little brother" is actually her son.
  • Honey Trap: She pulls this stunt to clear Wallace's name.
  • Rags to Riches: she's Terrence's daughter from a one-night stand with a waitress, who gets the opportunity to live the perfect life for a while.

Meg Manning (Alona Tal)

"You have friends, Veronica."
1x08 Like A Virgin

An 09er girl who actually remained friendly to Veronica after the Lilly Kane case, and needs her help occasionally. Meg's kindness earns Veronica's hard-to-win trust, to the extent Veronica would believe cartoon birds braided Meg's hair.

  • Clear My Name: In a mild example, she has to clear a reputation of "The School Slut" in her first episode.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: in the first episode of season 2. At first it seems like she's jealous of Duncan getting back with Veronica, but later episodes reveal that she's pregnant with Duncan's baby and the ensuing stress really gets to her.

Lilly Kane (Amanda Seyfried)

"My soul is doomed to walk the Earth until justice has been served... and as kind of a side project, I dispense fashion advice."
1x06 Return Of The Kane

Veronica's dead best friend and Duncan's older sister, whose murder starts the circumstances that start the show. Despite being dead, she often appears from Veronica's subconscious to offer advice on her murder.

  • Bi the Way: Or would have been in Vassar with her boyfriend's ex if she weren't murdered.
  • Expy: Of Laura Palmer. She's a teenage girl whose mysterious murder sparks off the plot of the series.
  • Missing White Woman Syndrome: Weevil mentions that shortly after her murder, a little girl from his neighborhood named Marisol Reyes disappeared, but she didn't warrant the same amount of media coverage or therapy sessions for the students. (The issue, of course, runs somewhat deeper - Lilly was the daughter of a local celebrity, and brutally murdered whereas Reyes simply disappeared).
  • Posthumous Character: She's dead before the series starts, and is only seen in flashbacks or present-day visions of the living characters.

Van Clemmons (Duane Daniels)

"Veronica, why does trouble follow you around?"
Vice-Principal, later Principal, of Neptune High.

  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Though he does have to deal with Veronica more than he would like, most of the time he is portrayed as this.
    Clemmons: I can't tell if my job will be easier or harder with you gone. Any advice in case I get another student like you?
    Veronica: Don't keep all your passwords taped to the bottom of your stapler. [Beat] And stay cool, Mr. C.

Madison Sinclair (Amanda Noret)

"Regular soda? Why don't you just fill the cup with lard?"
1x21 A Trip to the Dentist

A Neptune High student, and one of Veronica's main rivals.

  • Switched at Birth: With Mac. And unlike Mac, her birth parents don't seem to have any interest in her.
  • Tempting Fate: In the movie, she dares Veronica to tase her. Note that this would kill her, as she's soaking wet. Veronica compromises by punching her in the face.

Gia Goodman (Krysten Ritter)

" I didn't know if you guys were doing, like, relaxed beachy, or the West Coast wannabe East Coast urban, so, F.Y.I., itís not a statement. I'm just doing the new-school blend-in thing."
2x01 Normal is the New Watchword

The ditzy daughter of influential Neptune citizen and professional baseball team owner Woody Goodman.

  • New Transfer Student: at the start of season 2, per her father's wish for her to attend a public high school.

Troy Vandergraff (Aaron Ashmore)

Duncan's childhood friend - the New Transfer Student in the series' second episode. Also, Veronica's first boyfriend in the series proper - an easygoing 09'er unfazed by her bad reputation.

  • Your Cheating Heart: he dated Veronica despite already having a girlfriend - possibly with the latter's knowledge.

Felix Toombs (Brad Bufanda)

Weevil's right-hand man in the PCH gang. Investigation into his murder is one of the main storylines of season 2.

  • Star-Crossed Lovers: he dated Molly Fitzpatrick, of the "Fighting Fitzpatricks" who were the main enemies of the PCHers.

    Neptune Sheriff's Department 

Sheriff Don Lamb (Michael Muhney)

"Why don't you go see the Wizard? Ask him for a little backbone."
1x01 Pilot

Keith Mars' incompetent, cruel successor, famous for "catching" Lilly Kane's murderer. Quickly won Veronica's anger and distrust, given how he laughed her off when she tried to report her rape. He spends most of the series acting like a slimy bastard, and getting in the way of Keith and Veronica's investigations.

  • Ignored Epiphany: There are moments when it looks like he'll become a better sheriff... but he doesn't.
  • Inspector Javert: He's quite gleeful about his occasional (wrongful) arrests of Veronica.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He can be a real dick. But at his core, he really does try to be a good cop.
  • Police Are Useless: In the Back Story, he laughs at Veronica when she reports that she's been raped. Even when he's not an antagnoist, he is generally incompetent and more than a few of his men are corrupt.
  • Promotion to Opening Titles: In season 3.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog: Lamb is killed while chasing a suspect that turns out has no connection to the investigation at all.

Leonardo "Leo" D'Amato (Max Greenfield)

Veronica: I used you, then fell for you, not the other way around.
1x14 Mars vs. Mars

A very competent (and very young) Deputy at the Sheriff's department, and Veronica's main tie to organized crime fighting - often involved in the plot when she needs a favor from the police.

  • Fair Cop: not only is he handsome - he's very young, too.
  • Friend on the Force: to Veronica, even after she ends their relationship.
  • Finding Judas: he's the one who stole the Aaron Echolls sex tapes and sold them to Logan.
  • Meaningful Name: his Zodiac sign is Leo, as he tells Veronica when she jokes about his name.

    Other Neptune Residents 

Cliff Mccormack (Daran Norris)

"Okay, my name is Cliff, I'll be your if-you-cannot-afford-an-attorney attorney. So. What are you trying to prove?"
2x06 Rat Saw God

Keith's friend - a local public defender known to help (and request help from) the Mars family out on many an occasion.

  • Dismotivation: let's just say he's not very interested in - or good at - his job. (Reportedly, he failed criminal law, among other things).

Kendall Casablancas (Charisma Carpenter)

Logan: You ever think about just getting a job?
Kendall: This is my job.
2x07 Nobody Puts Baby In A Corner

Dick and Beaver's gold-digging stepmother, who spends time by seducing teenage boys such as Logan. She's smarter than she lets on though, and has mysterious ties to the "Fighting Fitzpatricks" - this girl's got a massive secret identity.

  • Dead Person Impersonation: her real name is Priscilla Banks; she assumed the identity of a younger girl from her school who died in a car crash.
  • Wicked Stepmother: Subverted. This was theorized as a motive for the bus crash that nearly killed her stepsons Dick and Cassidy as well, but it was disproven.

Aaron Echolls (Harry Hamlin)

Aaron: We told your mom that we were all gonna get dressed up in costume as our favourite animal. You remember her animal?
Logan: Yeah, it was a mermaid.
Aaron: When she realized we played a trick on her, no one else had gotten dressed upÖ [fondly] she wore that costume around for the rest of the day anyway.
Logan: Yeah, I remember that day. On the way home I spilled a milkshake in the Beamer and you gave me a nosebleed.
1x13 Lord of The Bling

Logan's father, a famous actor, with an image as a wonderful family man - hiding the man who beats his son and cheats on his wife. Shows love for his family, but his extreme violence and cruelty overpowers it.

  • Abusive Parents: He routinely abuses his son - a trait that seems to run in the Echolls family, seeing that Aaron's father, too, used to beat him.
  • Karma Houdini: subverted - he gets acquitted at the trial, only to be assassinated by Clarence Weidman on Duncan's orders.
  • Narcissist: He watched his own movies, all the while commenting how attractive he is in them.
  • Nice Character, Mean Actor: He's known for playing action heroes and family men, in real life he's an abusive, cheating bastard.
  • Papa Wolf: He beats up his daughter's abusive boyfriend.

Trina Echolls (Alyson Hannigan)

"The play is my master and I am its whore!"
2x09 My Mother The Fiend

Aaron's adopted daughter, a somewhat vapid aspiring actress with a serious case of Daddy-worship, whose main goal is to further her career without actually working.

  • Cool Big Sis: When she's not being a Jerkass, she does try and help her brother out.
  • Daddy's Girl: she has no love for her stepmother, but adores Aaron who is nothing but gentle and supportive towards her - which is why she disbelieves Logan's stories of their father's abusive ways until she sees first-hand what he's capable of.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She's still no match for her younger brother, though.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold - evidenced in "My Mother The Fiend."
  • Parental Favoritism: Aaron adores her and tolerates Logan.
  • Prom Baby: actually referred to as such, word for word.
  • Stepford Smiler: The "empty inside" version.

Vinnie Van Lowe (Ken Marino)

Veronica: Know what's most disturbing about you? Apart from... everything? You're actually a half-decent Private Investigator.
2x15 The Quick and the Wed

Keith's rival PI, rather corrupt and inferior to both Veronica and Keith in detective skills, yet can be crafty and dangerous when needed.

Clarence Wiedman (Christopher B. Duncan)

The Head of Security at Kane Software, whose job duties include a number of things not classified as legal.

  • Enemy Mine: He teams up with Veronica to investigate a murder in a season 2 episode.
  • Scary Black Man: Unusually for this trope, he's not powerfully built, but that desn't make him any less scary.
  • Vigilante Execution: He murders Lily Kane's killer Aaron Echolls (on Duncan's orders). He's also implied to have murdered the killer of Abel Koontz's daughter after tracking him down to Las Vegas.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: he murdered Aaron but left Kendall, who was showering in the next room, unharmed, there was an implication he murdered the man who killed Abel's daughter, and at the end of the series, he managed to get an order to kill Veronica overturned, though he did so without actually refusing the order. On the other hand, he did stalk Veronica, threaten her mother, and was willing to cover up for Duncan when it was thought he was Lilly's killer.

Woodrow "Woody" Goodman (Steve Guttenberg)

A powerful citizen of Neptune - owner of a burger joint and a professional baseball team, The Neptune Sharks. Becomes Mayor of Neptune in season 2.

  • Your Cheating Heart: He hooks up with his campaign manager. And molests young boys for a hobby.

    Hearst College 

Stosh "Piz" Piznarski (Chris Lowell)

"I think that's half of life, just knowing the difference."
3x10 Show Me The Monkey

Wallace's new roommate at Hearst, deeply into music, and has a blatant crush on Veronica - which she takes forever to notice.

  • Informed Ability: In the first episode of season 3, he walks into his dorm with a lacrosse stick, gloves, and helmet. This is never mentioned again.

Parker Lee (Julie Gonzalo)

"Oh my god! Are you one of Mac's friends? Well come on in, sister! Mac's friends are my friends!"
3x01 Welcome Wagon

Mac's beaming bubbly blonde roommate, whose perk quickly turns to fury after being drugged and raped in the season premiere.

Vegas (2012)Characters/Live-Action TVThe Vicar of Dibley

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