Veronica Mars is back, this time on Hulu, and in honor of the return of our pixie-sized, snark-filled Nancy Drew returning to television, we’re digging up the best nods to this former teenage detective’s most memorable moments over three seasons (and a movie). That’s right, we went Easter Egg hunting just for you Marshmallows.
From ponies to 09er jokes, voicemails, and the ultimate LoVe tribute, here are the biggest callbacks in season four.
Keen-eyed Marshmallows might recognize Veronica’s pup Pony from the second novel in the mystery series, Mr. Kiss and Tell, but even if you didn’t read the book, fans of the original series should perk up at the mention of the dog’s name. It was a running joke between Veronica and her dad Keith — who both share the same dry wit and sarcastic sense of humor — that Veronica wanted a pony. Anytime she’d crack a case or do something to earn Keith’s praise, Veronica would quip back with the request, “Can I have a pony?” Of course, no one, not even Veronica expected Keith Mars to get his daughter an equine pet, but it’s nice to see our spunk sleuth realizing her dreams and gifting herself her own version of a pony — a slobbering, four-legged mutt who’s always ready to go for a walk.
Season four features a slew of cameos from fan-favorites of the original series, but there’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it interaction between Veronica and her best friend, Wallace Fennel that harks back to the show’s high-school roots. V pays Wallace a visit as she joins Logan and Wallace’s wife Shae for dinner at their surprisingly fancy home. Wallace is a teacher/coach but his wife is a lawyer, which explains the digs. As Veronica walks up to the front door, she jokingly refers to Wallace as “o9er scum” a reference to the fictional 90909 zip code Neptune’s wealthy elite called home on the show. The 09ers were also the nickname of the popular kids in school, led by Logan and Dick Casablancas.
Trouble in Tijuana
The choice getaway for Neptune’s angst-ridden rich kids, Tijuana has popped up numerous times over the course of the show as the shoddy alibi Logan and his buddies used to get out of police questioning. It’s where he allegedly was when Lilly Kane was murdered and where Duncan Kane escaped to with his baby in tow. The show references the vacation spot for would-be criminals again in season four when Veronica visits Mercer, the guy responsible for a series of rapes at Hearst College, in prison to grill him about Big Dick Casablancas’ time served.
Marshmallows should be happy to see Cho’s Pizza is still up-and-running all these years later. The restaurant was first referenced in season one when Veronica was investigating the harassment of an 09er up for class valedictorian. Her friend Hamilton, a working-class kid whose dad owned Cho’s Pizza, was also in the running for the top spot and a scholarship, but he withdrew from consideration when Veronica discovered his dad was the one terrorizing the young girl.
Veronica’s relationship with Deputy Leo D’Amato has always been a bit cringe-worthy. She was a high school student, he was a rookie cop. She manipulated him into giving her classified information about cases in Neptune, he spent most of his screen-time gazing at her with those puppy-dog eyes. Now that the age difference is decidedly less creepy though, we can all appreciate this callback to the pair’s romantic beginnings. In season four, Leo (now working for the FBI) shows up on Veronica’s doorstep with a pizza in hand. It’s a seemingly innocent gesture — you should never show up uninvited without a gift — unless you know the history of these two and how V would always preface her favor-asking of Leo with food. Well played, sir.