We Used to Be Friends

Kristen Bell as Veronica Mars Robert Voets—2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment

We met in the fall of 2004. She was still in high school, but she had a world-weary outlook and a laundry list of tragedies that had aged her beyond her 17 years.

I liked her from the start. She was quick-witted and immediately jumped to the aid of the bullied and disadvantaged, with a bit of stylish sass and a sack full of street smarts. I admit it, she had better writers than me.

She lived in the noir-blackened seaside town of Neptune, California. Her name is Mars. Veronica Mars.

For a too-short three years, we’d check-in once a week, she’d fight the corruption of the police, the disparities of race and class, all while whistling a jaunty tune, and making life-changing coffee at Java the Hutt. Granted,  I’m sure she’s a great whistler, but,the whistling thing is me just trying to make an easy joke. And, my specific form of television-trivia OCD is not letting me leave well enough alone, so I must clarify that she was a hostess at the Hutt, not a barista. I just wanted to trot out the cleverly named coffee shop, and make you think I’d come up with it myself.

I’ve missed seeing her and her gang over the years, and when there was an opportunity to return her to life on the big screen, well, I was one of those with a reel and a hook, pulling her back.

I know, most of you are completely lost. You’ve never heard of Veronica Mars. And you wonder what I’ve been talking about, because you knew there was no such place as Neptune, CA.

Yes, you’re very smart.

Except, to me, Neptune is a very real place, (Unless you’re trying to find out if I’m suffering from mental illness, and then I’ll be sure to tell you that I am aware that it’s all fiction.) and I’ve missed it, warts and all.

I thought by now it’d be out of my system, but, I just can’t quit Neptune. I’ve been basking in the glow of the movie for over a week, and I find myself thinking about it all the time, knowing that it’s not likely to be in theaters much longer, and that, while the movie is completely watchable to those that haven’t seen the television series, it’s not going to pull crowds of people. There’s unlikely to be a movie sequel. It’s mostly a movie for those of us that love Veronica best, and for today, I guess that’s enough. There are few happy endings in Neptune, as everyone knows, and so, I’ll just be happy with what there is.