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Season 3, Episode 2
"My Big Fat Greek Rush Week"

Aired October 10, 2006 on The CW
Recap/Review by Yellowqueen22

Episode Regular Cast: Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars), Jason Dohring (Logan Echolls), Percy Daggs III (Wallace Fennel), Ryan Hansen (Dick Casablancas), Enrico Colantoni (Keith Mars), Tina Majorino (Mac), Chris Lowell (Piz), Julie Gonzalo (Parker), Michael Muhney (Sheriff Don Lamb)

Guest Stars: Rider Strong, Samm Levine

CW Episode Description

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Yellowqueen22, moderator of the Neptunesite Forums (swing by there if you haven't already!), is now gracing us with weekly recaps and reviews WARNING: If you have not seen the episode, spoilers definitely follow.

Short Summary:

Veronica, feeling responsible for Parker’s rape, goes undercover at a sorority house in her attempt to “catch the rapist and see him crucified!” Parker considers leaving Neptune after her rape, while Mac tries to console her. Meanwhile, Keith tries to escape the desert and deal with the contents of Kendall’s briefcase. Also on campus, Logan and Wallace engage in a sociology experiment with a special little side bet.

Recap:

“Turning my unbearable guilt into steely resolve! I think it’s working… I’m gonna catch the rapist and see him crucified!”

The episode picks up where last week left off, with Parker waking up the victim of the Hearst serial rapist. Parker tells the police, including Sheriff Lamb, that the last thing she remembers before waking up naked with a shaved head is attending a sorority party. Both Veronica and Mac suffer extreme guilt over their failure to prevent the rape. Veronica steps forward with information about the rape and Parker blames Veronica for letting the rape happen. As a result of her unbearable guilt, Veronica decides to catch the Hearst rapist. Wallace’s frak-loving Resident Advisor stops by to drop off the new safety rules implemented after Parker’s rape.

The campus newspaper hires Veronica to work for the paper. Her first job - going under cover at the local sorority house to write a piece about what goes on behind the greek curtain and determine if the rapes are connected to the sorority house. Floral dresses are only one of the many things Veronica has to endure at the initial social function – other things include singing, bubbly blond girls, heart shaped name tags, dermatology discussion, and sisterhood silliness. Later that night, Veronica is forced to pretend to be a skanky drunk sorority girl, flirt with Dick, get along with Chip, and engage in the faux lesbian dance.

However, Veronica’s plan backfires when she is sent home with the safe ride for being “too drunk”. As a result, Veronica realizes that Wallace’s RA, Moe, drove Parker home as a safe ride the night of Parker’s rape. But Moe is able to prove that Parker got home safe when he dropped her off. Veronica, back undercover at the sorority house, discovers a marijuana crop in the sorority house. However, Veronica is unable to stop publication of the article about the sorority house, making her feel guilty for exposing the den mother, who is using the pot to endure her cancer.

Back in the dorm, Mac tries to support Parker in her decision to move home with her parents after the rape. However, Mac stays silent while Parker’s mom forces a really ugly wig on Parker and mocks her abilities to live independently. Finally, Mac steps up to the plate and asks Parker to stay, offering to “have her back from now on.”

Out in the desert, Keith is still wandering around in an attempt to escape Cormac Fitzpatrick. While Cormac is hot on Keith’s trail, he is caught in a trap by his brother Liam, who is looking for vengeance and Kendall’s money. Cormac, unable to divulge the whereabouts of the money, is shot by his brother. Keith finally manages to escape the desert and get to the police. After Keith returns to Neptune, he sells an expensive painting (we finally learn the contents of Kendall’s briefcase) with the rewards going to the Neptune Food Bank.

Elsewhere on the Hearst Campus, the sociology class is engaging in experiments to determine the effects of torture and imprisonment, as well as the relationship between prisoners and guards. Wallace is made a guard, while Logan is made a prisoner. To sweeten the game, Wallace and Logan make a side bet requiring the loser to streak across campus naked.

Logan repeatedly outsmarts the guard team by ensuring that the weakest member of the prisoner team gets the wrong information and by staging a prison escape (which is nowhere near as time-consuming and labor intensive as the one in Prison Break, nor does it require a completely tattooed Logan… perhaps Michael should learn from Logan). However, Wallace outsmarts the prisoners by changing the clock while the prisoners escape and thus getting the information out of them. In the end, Wallace wins the bet with Logan, and Logan is forced to streak the class (much to the heavy pitter patter of many a heart in TV fandom).

Review:

The Return of Lamb – although his return is brief, he lives up to his jerky status by mocking both Veronica’s and Parker’s rape (“Not that I’m counting or anything, but isn’t this wolf cry number two?”). Additionally, the humorous rivalry between Lamb and Veronica continues with Veronica sniffing the air before Lamb even enters the dorm room.

War Games – is it wrong that my favorite part of the whole episode was not the main mystery, but rather the prisoner/guard sociology experiment? The best part of the war games is watching Logan and Wallace respond to the situation completely in character. On top of that, Logan and Wallace are adorable together, and I’m left feeling all content that these two characters finally get more screen time together. However, it is slightly disappointing that this sub-plot having nothing to do with the mysteries is funnier, more interesting, and contains more depth then the two major mystery plots.

Bizarro World - one of the highlights of the episode is seeing Veronica play drunken sorority girl. Not because she pretends to be drunk and slutty, although I’m sure many of the viewers will enjoy that, but because of the hilarious conversation between her and Dick, highlighted by Dick’s reference to Bizarro Dick (“Somewhere in a parallel universe Bizarro Dick is being a total kill joy.”)

Veronica’s Knowledge – additionally, the episode is filled with typical Veronica advice and witticism. Veronica says such gems as “The best way to keep a guy at least ten feet away – dry heave. Vomit is the new mace.” As well as “Thanks sunshine! Keep on keeping on” and “knowledge is power.” However, Veronica’s knowledge backfires when she exposes the secrets of the sorority house and feels guilty. This is what I love about Veronica Mars – the show is not afraid of showing us time and time again that Veronica makes mistakes and that her vengeful, outsider attitude is not always the right approach. Neptune is not a world of black and white, but rather a world of very murky grey areas.

Family Moments – once again a VM episode highlights the difference between the Mars family and all other families in Neptune (I’m seriously beginning to wonder what twisted family Rob Thomas comes from). Almost immediately after seeing Liam Fitzpatrick shoot his own brother, we witness a touching moment between Veronica and Keith, proving once again that the only truly functional family in Neptune is the Mars family. This is especially true when you look at the oppressive and suffocating parents of Parker highlighted briefly later in the episode. Or when you think of the family dynamics of some of the other characters in this episode… Dick’s brother committed suicide after murdering and raping; Dick’s father stole millions in a real estate scheme and fled the country; Dick’s step-mom is a gold-digging ex-criminal; Logan’s father is a murdering, adulterous, abusive man; Logan’s mother committed suicide; Logan’s sister is an attention seeking self-absorbed wannabe starlet … and the list could go on.

Star Crossed Lovers – while the interaction is brief and somewhat superficial, our LoVely couple is as funny as ever. However, I’m getting a little nervous by Veronica’s somewhat flippant treatment of Logan’s often endearingly sweet little loving Logan-like comments. Will Veronica ever be emotionally available enough to ever truly love Logan? Will Logan ever be the man Veronica needs him to be in order to love him?

Early Halloween – never in the history of television have I been so terrified by a wig before. Don’t laugh… I’m serious… that was one of the most frighteningly ugly wigs I’ve ever seen. Please Mac, after you convince Parker to ditch her parents and stay on campus, help her pick out a new wig!!! On a more serious note - while Julie Gonzalo (Parker) was bubbly and enjoyable to watch in the first episode of the season, and quite moving in the first scene of this episode, I found her pathetic puppy dog routine throughout the rest of this episode a little stale and painful to watch.

Overall – while the subject matter of the episode is heavy, I’m still finding the treatment to be light and fluffy. I know that Rob and the VM crew are trying to make the show more accessible to the Gilmore Girls audience, but please don’t forget about classic VM. What makes Veronica Mars such a good show is the character development of its sassy title character and the heart wrenching mysteries of each season – so far, both of those are a little lacking this season.

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