Rat Saw God
|"Rat Saw God"|
|Veronica Mars episode|
|Episode no.||Season 2
|Directed by||Kevin Bray|
|Written by||John Enbom
|Original air date||November 9, 2005|
"Rat Saw God" is the sixth episode of the second season of the American mystery television series Veronica Mars, and the twenty-eighth episode overall. Written by Phil Klemmer and John Enbom and directed by Kevin Bray, the episode premiered on UPN on November 9, 2005.
The series depicts the adventures of Veronica Mars (Kristen Bell) as she deals with life as a high school student while moonlighting as a private detective. In this episode, Abel Koontz (Christian Clemenson) returns and requests Veronica's help in finding his daughter. Meanwhile, Logan (Jason Dohring) is arrested for his supposed stabbing of a biker gang member, and Keith (Enrico Colantoni) loses the Sheriff's election.
Veronica waits with Keith at an election party, where tensions are high due to the election being extremely close. Sheriff Lamb (Michael Muhney) is nosing ahead before a man walks up to Lamb and says that he made the anonymous call from the bridge where Felix Toombs was stabbed. Keith loses the election by a margin of 51% to 49%. After we learn that Woody Goodman (Steve Guttenberg) has been elected mayor, Dick Casablancas (Ryan Hansen) hits on Gia Goodman (Krysten Ritter). Officers come in and arrest Logan for the murder of Felix Toombs before Veronica goes home and finds Abel Koontz, who is in the latter stages of stomach cancer. He asks her to help him find his daughter, Amelia, who has disappeared, and Veronica agrees. Veronica talks to Amelia's old boyfriend, who has not seen her for a while; Amelia ditched the boyfriend in Europe. Cliff McCormack (Daran Norris) is appointed to be Logan's lawyer before Veronica asks Cliff to call the numbers on the phone cards that Amelia stole under an alias. Cliff tells Logan that he should get a different lawyer. Veronica finds out that Amelia called from Neptune (Veronica's town) the previous week. Logan is placed in a cell with his father, Aaron (Harry Hamlin), who is temporarily being held there before his trial for the murder of Lilly Kane. Logan receives bail, but Weevil and his friends are angry about this fact. Veronica breaks into Clarence Wiedman's (Christopher B. Duncan) office, but he denies any knowledge of the situation.
Veronica tracks down Amelia's cousin, Margot Schnell. On the way back to the Echolls estate, Don Lamb and Logan see that Logan's house is burning. Veronica fakes being a distressed businesswoman in order to track the car that Amelia rented, which was in California about two days prior. Sheriff Lamb tells Keith about Veronica being taken in for questioning. Veronica tracks Amelia's previous location, which is in a small hotel. Keith confronts Veronica and Veronica tells him about David "Curly" Moran. Veronica notices that the signal from one of Amelia's devices is close to hers before finding Amelia dead in an ice box. Clarence Wiedman suddenly appears and says that Amelia showed up again before disappearing later. The man up front at the hotel tells Clarence and Veronica that she came in with a man, and Veronica says she knows who it is.
Keith interrogates Aaron and threatens him. Veronica and Clarence go into Amelia's boyfriend's room and Clarence dangles him off a window ledge, but he knows nothing. Weevil and Logan get into a fight at school, partly because of Logan's bail and partly because Logan has just bought Weevil's grandmother's house and kicked her out. Veronica is contacted by Amelia's friend, who says that the killer is actually a man named Carlos. Clarence decides to track down Carlos, despite the fact that he is a diplomat's son. Veronica lies to Abel Koontz about Amelia's fate to spare his feelings before his death. Keith goes inside the police station evidence room to examine the remains of the bus that mysteriously went off a cliff and finds the remains of a rat.
The episode was written by John Enbom and Phil Klemmer and directed by Kevin Bray. "Rat Saw God" marks the fifth writing credit for Enbom, Klemmer's seventh writing credit, and Bray's first and only directing credit for the series. This was one of Klemmer's favorite episode's of the show that he wrote, writing that "I think that scene with Clarence and Veronica getting together is just funny and cool." Both writers wanted the main plot to involve Amelia DeLongpre, and Klemmer wrote the subplots. The episode also features several notable guest appearances. Many recurring characters from the first season reappear in the episode, including Abel Koontz (Christian Clemenson), Clarence Wiedman (Christopher B. Duncan), and antagonist Aaron Echolls (Harry Hamlin). In addition, "Rat Saw God" features the second appearance by Gia (Krysten Ritter), who had been absent since "Normal Is the Watchword". The episode also features a cameo appearance by model Kim Stolz. Stolz was awarded the role for winning a small contest while competing on the fifth cycle of America's Next Top Model.
Perhaps most notably, "Rat Saw God" features a short appearance by television director Joss Whedon. Veronica Mars has often been compared to Whedon's series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with some even calling it the successor to the latter. Whedon had previously praised the first season on his weblog Whedonesque, saying that Veronica Mars was the "Best. Show. Ever." and that "[he'd] never gotten more wrapped up in a show [he] wasn't making, and maybe even more than those." Whedon also gave a glowing review of the first season for Entertainment Weekly, writing that "Season 1 works as mystery, comedy, and romantic drama, often simultaneously. But what elevates it is that in a TV-scape creepily obsessed with crime-solving, VM actually asks why." Upon being asked about Whedon's praise, Jason Dohring, who plays Logan, said in an interview:
It was the buzz of the set: 'Did you hear what he said about us?,’ Stuff like that. [Director] Kevin Smith also did a nice write-up, and what was cool was that they really know their stuff;, their attention to detail [regarding 'Veronica Mars’] was so cool. You never know if your work will be seen, so to have it seen by someone great, someone you really respect, that’s so cool. Though if I’d known they were watching, I would have been a lot more nervous!
Series creator Rob Thomas contacted Whedon over the previous summer, and Whedon agreed to do a cameo. The episode's title refers to Rats Saw God, a novel by series creator Rob Thomas. Despite being credited, Wallace (Percy Daggs III), Jackie (Tessa Thompson), and Cassidy "Beaver" Casablancas (Kyle Gallner) do not appear.
Rowan Kaiser of The A.V. Club gave a positive review, praising the intersecting storylines and the references to the previous season. "More generally, [the plot lines] show that Veronica Mars has created a strong enough world that it can support much higher levels. I have been, and still somewhat am, dubious about the pace at which this season is moving. But this was a great episode, even with all its density and the fact that it was essentially all setup. And it was great because it was attached to the history of the show so far." Television Without Pity gave the episode an "A".
Price Peterson, writing for TV.com, wrote in his episode verdict that "This episode was great, if way more grim than usual. Between Abel's offscreen cancer death to Amelia's icy resting place…there was a real whiff of death in this episode." Complex ranked Kim Stolz's cameo on its list of "the 25 worst cameos in TV history." BuzzFeed ranked the episode forty-fifth on its list of the best Veronica Mars episodes, criticizing the Clarence Wiedman plot while writing that "we get to see some prime banter between Logan and Cliff, two of the show’s funniest characters."
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- Gallagher, Brenden (August 25, 2013). "The 25 Worst Cameos in TV History". Complex. Retrieved March 18, 2015.
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- Kaiser, Rowan (December 2, 2011). "Review: Veronica Mars: "Rat Saw God" / "Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner"". The A.V. Club. Retrieved March 19, 2015.
- Peterson, Price (June 30, 2012). "The Veronica Mars Season 2 Dossier: Episodes 5-8". TV.com. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
- Bordages, Anais (March 13, 2014). "The Definitive Ranking of All "Veronica Mars" Episodes". BuzzFeed. Retrieved June 18, 2015.
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