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Recap / Veronica Mars S 01 E 14 Mars Vs Mars

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We pick up where we left off in the previous episode, as Logan asks Veronica to help him find his mother. She invites him in and gently asks why he thinks Lynn is still alive. Getting defensive, he wonders why everyone assumes she's dead, and when Veronica points out the witness, he retorts, "If she's on the TV, she must be telling the truth." Calming down, he points out Lynn's credit cards are missing, and he thinks she faked her death (despite the note on her Blackberry) because if she wanted to kill herself, it'd be by pills, not by jumping. Veronica promises to look into it.


In contrast to the darkness of this scene, the next scene is more upbeat, as Mr. Rooks (Adam Scott) is leading his history students, including Veronica, Wallace and Carrie Bishop (Leighton Meester) in a Family Feud-type contest about the fall of the Roman Empire. The students are all enthusiastically into it (especially Veronica), except for Carrie. When Mr. Rooks calls on her, Carrie snaps she's not pregnant, she doesn't need his money, and she gives him his key back. Mr. Rooks and the rest of the class gapes into the opening credits.

After class, Veronica approaches Mr. Rooks, who admits he's been better, and claims to have never touched "that girl." Veronica says she believes him, and when Mr. Rooks sighs his career is over, she responds, "Not if I can help it."

Later, at lunch, Carrie is sitting alone while a few girls behind her start singing The Police song, "Don't Stand So Close To Me". Wallace notices and is sympathetic, but Veronica calls Carrie the "gossip queen" of Neptune High, and is glad to see her get payback. Before Veronica even finishes asking, Wallace guesses she wants Carrie's school file, and Veronica good-naturedly admits she does. She sees Duncan and, running up to him, asks for the name of his physician, as hers retired. Duncan complies - Dr. Levine - but warns he's expensive; Veronica says she's got insurance, and Duncan, bemused, walks off. Veronica, of course, wants to find out Duncan's mystery illness.


A little later, Veronica is walking through the courtyard of the school when Wallace gives her the file. She and Wallace joke about the measures she'll take if she's caught, and he leaves. She starts to look through the file when Logan shows up. He asks if Veronica has any news, and she tells him she's put a notice on Lynn's credit cards and ATM card and will be notified if any of them are used. Veronica also mentions the witness to Lynn's suicide will be at the sheriff's department the next day; over Veronica's protests, Logan insists on accompanying her. Veronica then sees Carrie and catches up to her. She tells Carrie to recant her statement, and Carrie tells her she's being naive. Veronica then points out Carrie and her parents had a parent-teacher conference with Mr. Rooks, which wouldn't have happened if he was sleeping with her, but Carrie blows Veronica off by telling her, "Believe what you like."


Later, at Mars Investigations, Veronica greets Keith, who tells her Carrie's parents have hired him to look into Carrie's accusations of sexual harassment against Mr. Rooks. Veronica is dumbfounded. She tells Keith Mr. Rooks' class is one of the few things she looks forward to at school, and that Carrie is a liar and manipulator. Keith is sorry, but tells Veronica he can't just go on her feeling, and he's been hired to take a case. Veronica says she not only won't help him, but that Keith can answer his own phone. Hurt, Keith goes into his office...

...and we go into a Flashback with Carrie and Susan Knight (Christine Lakin) in the girl's bathroom, applying make-up and gossiping about Veronica and Duncan, unaware Veronica is in one of the stalls and can hear them. Carrie mentions Duncan had been taken to the hospital foaming at the mouth and screaming Veronica's name. Veronica comes out of the stall just then, and while Susan looks slightly guilty, Carrie is defiant. Back in the present, Veronica looks hurt.

At the sheriff's department the next day, Veronica and Logan are sitting on a bench. A woman leaves one of the offices, and Logan points her out and starts to follow her until Veronica calms him down. She whispers into her sleeve and gives Logan an earpiece. As the woman, Ms. Stanton, starts towards the exit, Cliff approaches her; pretending to be from a tabloid, he offers her an exclusive if she can give details on how Lynn looked. When Ms. Stanton acts as if she'll say anything for the right price, Logan snaps and starts yelling at her. Ms. Stanton storms off and Logan makes to follow, but Veronica stops him. She thanks Cliff, who tells her she owes him one. Veronica points out how this is good news and they're about to leave when she spots Leo. Leo doesn't want to talk to her, but Veronica tells him all the evidence she's found about Lily's murder. She admits she used Leo, but also that she fell for him. Leo is happy to hear the last part.

Sometime later, Veronica drops by Mr. Rooks' house, and finds him with his young daughter. Veronica mentions the parent/teacher conference; Mr. Rooks tells her not to bother helping, but Veronica points out Keith is working for Carrie's parents (without mentioning Keith by name). Mr. Rooks admits he gave Carrie a 'C' on her paper, and it would possibly keep her from getting into Cornell, which made her angry. Veronica asks who's representing Mr. Rooks at the school board hearing, and he says as the union rep, he's representing himself.

At Mars Investigations, Keith asks if he received any calls, but Veronica is still refusing to help. Keith tells Veronica while he admires her for standing up for her convictions, he has a diary that proves Carrie's story, along with credit card charges that match all the places she says she met Mr. Rooks. Veronica still thinks Carrie is lying, though.

A little later,Logan drops by the office as Veronica makes an appointment with Dr. Levine. He has a tabloid with an article about a woman who claims she saw Lynn alive. Veronica tells Logan not to get his hopes up, but Logan says he's not paying her for that. Veronica calls the woman up, pretending to be a tabloid performer, and arranges to meet her later that day.

At a coffee bar, the woman, named Sondra, enthusiastically tells Veronica Lynn is still alive. However, as Veronica questions her, it's clear Sondra is only remembering Lynn from better days. Logan, who is listening from another table, leaves, and when Veronica catches up to him (after Sondra has left), she tells Logan she would have let herself believe the story if she was in Logan's shoes. Logan storms out, running into Weevil. Weevil is irritated, but becomes more understanding when Veronica tells him about Logan's dead mother.

At the Mars apartment, Keith is making lasagne, which Veronica correctly guesses is to make up for the fact he has bad news. Keith admits Mr. Rooks was fired from his last job teaching at a private school, and it was because the parents of two girls complained. Veronica takes this in, but asks once again to see Carrie's journal, which Keith once again refuses to do.

That night, at Mars Investigations, Veronica tries to open Keith's safe, but he's changed the combination. Veronica notes Keith is always smart enough to change the combination to meaningless numbers...except she notices a group of numbers written on Keith's day calendar. Sure enough, Veronica is able to open the safe, and finds a metal box labelled "Bishop". She opens the box, and is immediately covered by the blue paint bomb Keith left for her.

Later, back at the apartment, Veronica is trying to scrub the paint off of her face when Keith greets her. Veronica, in no mood, demands the diary; failing that, she'll settle for the dates and times Keith mentioned, and asks if he can relate to the prospect of taking a good man down. Keith thinks this is a low blow, but agrees to tell Veronica the dates and times.

At school the next day, Veronica is leaving the administrative office when she notices a trophy case, and sees Carrie's picture in it. Weevil approaches her and tells her he's heard about a kid who claims to have proof of Lynn's suicide, and he volunteers to find the kid for Veronica.

Later, as Mr. Rooks' class lets out, Veronica asks him about being fired from his previous school. He's surprised, but tells her the school, an all-girls school, was conservative, and the complaining parents didn't appreciate the views he shared in their daughters' history class.

Later, in the hallway, Veronica corners Carrie, and tells her once more to drop the complaint. Carrie bitterly notes she's become the outcast of the school while Mr. Rooks is more popular than ever, and describes his seduction routine, which involves black silk sheets, sob stories about his ex-wife leaving him, and side two of Tattoo You by The Rolling Stones. Veronica still doesn't believe Carrie, and mentions Carrie was in Sacramento at a track meet the same night she claimed to have been with Mr. Rooks at a hotel.

Later that day, Veronica is in Dr. Levine's office, and he tells her she just has light allergies. She thanks him, and then sneaks into the bathroom, hiding in the cabinet under the sink. After everyone has left, Veronica sneaks back into the main office. Looking in the filing cabinet, she finds Duncan's file, and photocopies it. As she puts the file back, she notices Abel Koontz's file is there as well. Before she can photocopy it, a janitor enters. Veronica rushes back into Levine's office and pretends to be a patient still waiting.

The next day, in an auditorium, the school board, led by Mrs. Fuller (Lisa Long), is hearing Carrie's complaint, with Mr. Rooks, Veronica and Vice-Principal Clemmons, among others, in attendance. Mr. Rooks testifies at how his career has been ruined, and repeats the story of Carrie's low grade. When Carrie testifies, she mentions how her life had fallen apart after her parents had been divorced, and Mr. Rooks would give her rides and share stories at how they'd both been abandoned by people they loved. She says they got involved, but when she became pregnant, Mr. Rooks blew her off, and when she saw him flirting with other girls, she decided he needed to be punished. When Mrs. Fuller asks Carrie for proof, Carrie doesn't bring up the diary, but does mention Mr. Rooks would text her all the time. Mrs. Fuller notes the messages are addressed to "S.K.", and Carrie hurriedly says Mr. Rooks would call her "sweet knees". Mrs. Fuller hits the call-back button and Mr. Rooks' phone rings. However, Veronica gets an idea; she borrows Clemmons' mobile phone, and while Clemmons is testifying - he mentions Mr. Rooks is very popular with the students - texts Mrs. Fuller with various lewd messages from it. Mr. Rooks calls attention to that fact, proving anyone can create false text messages. Sure enough, when Mrs. Fuller and the rest of the school board reconvenes, they find Carrie doesn't have enough evidence to back up her claim. Veronica is happy, while Carrie looks heartbroken.

That evening, Veronica drops by Mr. Rooks' house to return his cell phone, which is now password protected. He thanks her again, and offers her pizza. She agrees to one slice, as she has to go to journalism class that night, and asks to use the bathroom. As she walks down the hall, she hears "Waiting About You" and notices the black silk sheets in the bedroom. Thinking quickly, she tells Mr. Rooks she really needs to get to class, and offers a rain check, which he agrees to.

In journalism class, Veronica researches the drug Duncan is taking, which turns out to treat epilepsy a type of epilepsy whose symptoms include uncontrollable emotional fits, blackouts and loss of memory. Just then, Duncan approaches her, and Veronica covers by saying she's Googling herself. Duncan notices the picture of Carrie, and Veronica asks him where they keep the previous year's newspapers; he mentions they're in the filing cabinet. When he asks why, Veronica only says she wants to know if the winner of district Extemporaneous Speaking Competition had "sweet knees", to which Duncan laughs. Outside the class, Veronica asks for a phone number.

Later that night, Veronica rings the doorbell at an apartment, and Susan Knight, who's pregnant, answers. Veronica tells her she figured out Carrie was covering for her. Susan tells her when she got pregnant, her parents disowned her (she didn't want Mr. Rooks prosecuted for statutory rape, so she didn't say who the father was), and all Mr. Rooks would do was give her money for an abortion; when Carrie found out, she was furious at Mr. Rooks, and resolved to make him pay. Susan also says she's not so brave, but Veronica tells her the hell Carrie went through - Carrie had lied to Susan, telling her everyone was supporting her - and gives Susan Mrs. Fuller's phone number.

In the courtyard at school the next day, Veronica finds Carrie and apologies. Carrie replies that it doesn't do any good, but before Veronica can respond, Weevil calls for her and says he's has the kid, named Hart, who shot the footage of Lynn's suicide. In journalism class later, Logan joins them. Hart tells them he and his friends were making a war movie, and when they were editing it together, they noticed something. He puts a DVD into the computer, and magnifies the image of a woman jumping from a bridge in the background of the movie Hart and his friends were shooting; he also says the time corresponds to when Lynn supposedly jumped. Logan is in shock, as is Weevil, and Veronica can't look. Veronica and Weevil both warn Hart about the footage going public, and Weevil drags Hart out of the class, but not before glancing sympathetically at Logan. Logan, still in shock, leaves after Veronica apologies, but brightens when Veronica runs out and tells him one of Lynn's credit cards was just used.

A little later, in history class, Clemmons comes in and tells the class he'll be teaching until they find a replacement for Mr. Rooks, as he's just resigned. Just then, Mr. Rooks walks in to get his things. He glares at Veronica and Carrie as he walks out; when he leaves, Carrie gives Veronica a small smile.

At Mars Investigations later, Veronica tells Keith about Mr. Rooks resigning, and the two of them make up. She tells Keith she'll be home for dinner, and she's left his messages on his desk.

Veronica is visiting Koontz again in prison. Koontz once again is defiant, until Veronica reveals she knows he's dying of cancer, which is the only reason why he confessed to Lily's murder. She leaves, and Koontz looks stunned.


  • Artistic Licence Medicine: Duncan's "Type IV epilepsy", which is fake, but whose symptoms make him a plausible suspect in Lilly's murder.
  • Call-Back: Obviously, from last episode, Logan asking Veronica to find his mother, but also Duncan's medical condition and Koontz's "confession".
  • Cool Teacher: Veronica thinks Mr. Rooks is first.
  • Foreshadowing: Duncan's medical condition, particularly his fits and blackouts, and Koontz's medical condition. Also, Lynn's credit cards.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: The first clear indication the UPN censors were out to lunch:
    Weevil: (as Veronica is looking at the sports trophy case) If you're looking for my trophy, it's back by auto shop.
    Veronica: A lube job? Or can you medal in stealing hubcaps?
    Weevil: Is this 1970? Rims, baby.
    Veronica: So, you got a trophy for a rim job?
    Weevil: Forget it. Look, I got some information for you.
    Veronica: Finally, a Deep Throat to call my own.
    Weevil: I'm not going to touch that one.
  • Hidden Depths: Carrie.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: As Veronica is cleaning the blue paint off and yelling at Keith for taking Carrie's side, Keith replies, "Honey, you don't have to get all blue in the face."
  • Oh, Crap!: Veronica, when she hears the Rolling Stones and sees Rooks' bedsheets, realising that Carrie's story was (partially) true.
  • The Password Is Always "Swordfish": Beautifully subverted by Keith.
  • Punny Name: Carrie Bishop, Susan Knight, and Charles Rooks.
  • Shout-Out:
    • In addition to the ones listed above (The Police, The Rolling Stones), when Logan bumps into Weevil at the coffee bar, Weevil says, "Hey, manners, Opie!"
    • When his class is playing the game at the beginning, Mr. Rooks says, "Who will be the weakest link?", and when he calls on Carrie, says, "Sock it to me, baby!". Which, in hindsight...
    • When Wallace hands over Carrie's file to Veronica, they parody dialogue from Mission: Impossible:
      Wallace: If you are caught with this, I will disavow any knowledge of you or your mission. You'll be on your own.
      Veronica: Don't worry. I've got a cyanide capsule in a false tooth. If I'm caught, I'll do the honourable thing.
      Wallace: It's been a privilege knowing you, Mars.
    • When Carrie is telling Veronica about Mr. Rooks' method of seducing his students, Veronica snarks that she has that same Sweet Valley High book.
  • Spiritual Successor: Many viewers saw this episode as a companion piece to "Drinking the Kool-Aid"; both episodes involved one of the Mars family letting their emotions cloud their view of the respective case. In the earlier episode, it was Keith, while in this episode it was Veronica.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Just not the one everyone thinks it is.
  • Theme Naming: Three central characters are named "Rooks", "Bishop", and "Knight". All three are Chess pieces.


Example of: