Wow, a LOT happened this week, and a lot of people's images completely changed as a result. Okay. As it seemed, Claire totally made up the rape, although the reason why is left inferential, and she summarily and unceremoniously gets expelled. Also, Dean Ed cans Nish as the editor of the FreePress due to her bias in failing to report the story. Wallace is next into Dean Ed's office, and he did in fact cheat on the Mech E exam. His punishment is...he gets to drop the class. Er. Even more unbelievably, Wallace isn't sure he wants to drop it, because it would mean the end of his major, and I know I wasn't in college this century, but I'm pretty sure people have started majors later than that and still managed to get all their credits. But Wallace sticks the class out. Also, he beats out his friend who encouraged him to cheat for a starting position, but his increased studying eventually gets in the way of his basketball, and he eventually decides to take the semester off basketball, although it doesn't cost him his scholarship. In other cheating news, Horshack and Rider Strong from "My Big Fat Greek Rush Week" are caught cheating off-camera. Also, Harmony calls Keith and basically starts the slippery slope to an affair. It takes a few more steps than that, but it's the essentials of the situation. Veronica has to point out to Keith that what he's doing might not be the best thing for anyone, and it's not something you want to hear from your kid, but she's got a point here. When Harmony invites him to bed, he declines, but then gets hit by a car. I'm not sure exactly what the message is here, but Keith knows, as he goes back and rips Harmony's clothes off. In more important news, Veronica is the only one to get an A on one of Landry's assignments, and he invites her to lunch and offers his services as her faculty adviser. Lucky Tim, however, tells Veronica she's been accused of plagiarism, despite her insistence that someone is setting her up, because her paper showed a positive after being checked for cheating by some computer program. Veronica asks her accuser to identify himself, and surprisingly, some random guy does. Veronica tries to backtrack and find out how her paper ended up in the Hearst database. Her search drives her to break into Dean Ed's office after hours, only Dean Ed is working late. Whoops! Except not, because Dean Ed is too immersed in boxing to care what illicit activities she's up to. Veronica runs into her accuser when he delivers food to Logan at the Neptune Grand. But the real news is that Professor Landry is sleeping with Dean Ed's wife, and Lucky Tim pointed Veronica in his direction, so she could see what he's really like, he claims. Tim also is keeping his own record of the rapes. Elsewhere, Piz invites Veronica bowling, but hedges when she sort of asks him if it's a date, so Veronica invites Logan and Parker along. Wallace bags to study, so it looks like it's going to be a mÃ©nage a awkward, but Parker shows up, and has some fun, unlike Piz, who looks like he's going to chew off both his lips at once. Parker takes a shine to Piz, so Veronica asks him if she might like her, but the answer is no. Of course, that's because he's hung up on Veronica, but she doesn't realize that. Parker and a reluctant Veronica go to visit Piz at his radio station, and learn that Mercer has a show as well. Parker freaks, because she recognizes Mercer's cologne from the night she was raped, so Veronica breaks into his room and finds clippers. She goes to Lamb with the info, who tells her when they recovered Mercer's cashbox, they found GHB. Lamb arrests Mercer, but at the end, Logan begs Veronica for help because he was with Mercer the night of one of the rapes -- he just can't tell her where. DUN!
Before I start, I'd just like to congratulate everyone involved with the show on airing the fiftieth episode of Veronica Mars. Remember those days when we used to sweat every little bit of ratings news that came over the wire? Days like "yesterday" and "last Thursday"? Good thing that's a thing of the past. Also, I'm happy to give this episode the first "A" grade I've handed out in quite some time. Maybe I'm just in a good mood this week. Can't imagine why.
We fade in on the exterior of Dean Ed's office as he's steamrolling Claire's feeble attempts to explain why she faked her rape. Waiting on a bench in the anteroom, Nish glumly asks Veronica if this is what she wanted. Veronica can't believe the question, but if I were her, I'd ask why the hell Claire even exposed herself to the photo or left any kind of trail at all. If she wanted to implicate the Pi Sigs, why didn't she just disappear after the rat-trap incident instead of parading around in front of an ATM camera? Her whole plan seems kind of murky to me. Maybe she didn't expect that she'd be photographed, and maybe she wanted people to see her acting like she'd been roofied, but...the potential costs far outweigh the benefits, it seems to me. I mean, she runs into one person who knows her and isn't in on the plan, he or she insists on taking her home, and the game's up, right? I hope the plan is made clearer at some point. However, given that Dean Ed punts Claire out of Hearst so high and hard that I'm surprised he's not the football team's current placekicker, I'm not holding my breath.
Nish and Veronica have entered the office for this part, and Dean Ed, holding a copy of Veronica's "story" (it seems she typed up her findings and submitted them to Nish, which, for revenge's sake, I could certainly see her doing) rounds on Nish, asking why the story didn't appear in the paper. Nish says that she felt she had a responsibility to tread lightly around the rape issue, because"it [was] a powder keg out there." I guess she was worried that forever was gonna start tonight. Dean Ed acidly points out that Nish wasn't so worried about caution when she implicated the Pi Sigs: "You're supposed to at least pretend to be objective." In fairness to Nish, Dean Ed, that's not always as easy as it sounds. Dean Ed summarily informs Nish that she's no longer the editor of the paper. Nish thinks since it's a student publication, such a decision is outside his purview, but he's basically like, "Purview this, sweetheart." Nish tells him that he'll regret his actions, and on her way out, intones to Veronica, "And so will you." Veronica somehow refrains from suggesting that Nish write a nasty piece about her in the local supermarket shopper's guide.