OK I've watched VM all the way through a couple times, but I'm still not sure exactly what Beaver does to Mac in 'Not Pictured'? Does he just take her clothes while she's in the shower or is there something worse??
It’s not that he “just” takes her clothes while she’s in the shower. It’s not so much what he did but the impact this supposedly minor action has on her considering what happened before between the two of them, and the situation he left her in…
1) Season 2 isn’t a perfect season by any means. It was a bit scattered and difficult to follow because there were two - sometimes three - season arcs to follow. The bus crash didn’t hold the same emotional resonance as Lilly’s murder, and Veronica only started investigating the case because she initially thought she was supposed to be the target. She barely knew some of the victims, she only “knew” some of them post-mortem. We couldn’t really connect with the bus crash victims, and most of the times I was more involved in the character plots than in the season-long mystery. I get it, season 1 was nearly perfect, and it was a difficult act to follow. That being said, Not Pictured makes up for the lack of emotional resonance in the rest of the season in spades. It’s a testament to how good this episode is that after all these years, I’m still moved and shocked and overwhelmed by it. It fucking delivers. It hits all the right notes, and it reminds us why this show is so great and what’s at its core: Veronica, Keith, and Logan, and their relationships with each other and others.
2) The episode opens with one of my favorite voiceovers in the show:
So this is how it is. The innocent suffer. The guilty go free. And truth and fiction are pretty much interchangeable. There is neither a Santa Claus nor an Easter Bunny, and there are no angels watching over us.
Things just happen for no reason.
And nothing makes any sense.
It’s noir, it’s Neptune in a nutshell, and it’s Veronica at her most jaded. And it’s because she keeps fighting against all odds that I love her.
3) Wallace is moping because Jackie has left without saying goodbye, and Veronica can’t do nothing much but offer him some free cake. The alternative is breaking the news that Jackie hadn’t been 100% honest about her past and about where she was going, and I honestly appreciate that for once Veronica kept her mouth shut because it wasn’t her place to say anything. Eventually, she meddled, but only because things would’ve escalated and Wallace would’ve ended getting way more hurt.
4) Keith’s face when he gets a call from Vinnie, though…
5) And Veronica’s face when she learns that Woody had chlamydia…
She’s doing the math, and she’s damn right.
6) Veronica’s dream. I’m going to break this down, but first, some general comments. This is a dream, obviously, and as much as we want to, we can’t control what happens in our dreams. Dreams might be the representation of our most fervent (conscious or unconscious) wishes or of our greatest fears. Or, you know, neither. So there’s a case to be made about this dream not being the embodiment of an ideal world in Veronica’s mind. Nevertheless, dreams in the Marsverse have always had deeper significance. And this dream is not an exception. At the very least, Veronica’s dream explores a “Butterfly Effect” scenario. The occurrence of one event in this universe (Lilly’s death) had set in motion a series of events that irrevocably altered the lives of everyone around her - mostly but not only Veronica’s. Lilly’s death was the one variable that altered all the events that followed. And this dream explores the notion of how everything would’ve turned out to be had Lilly not been murdered. Now, some events follow logically from Lilly never dying - Veronica having a memorable highschool experience, Lianne and Duncan not leaving, Veronica staying friends with the 09er crowd, Veronica not meeting Wallace, Keith keeping her job as the sheriff. Others, however, seem to be the result of Veronica’s wishful thinking - the way she pictured things might have turned out to be more so than the real way they would’ve turned out to be - her parents staying happily together, Veronica dating Logan and not creating any kind of drama with Duncan and Lilly, Lianne overcoming her alcoholism.
“Rewatching Season 2 it makes me sad how Veronica starts off calling Cassidy, “Cassidy”, then slowly transitions to “Beaver-I mean Cassidy, sorry” until the finale where she only calls him “Beaver”. It makes his line “MY NAME IS CASSIDY!” even more heartbreaking.”
…I really, really liked Cassidy Casablancas as a character, and this is why.
Aside from being hot, you can’t help but be in awe of his scheme. I did not see any of that coming. Intelligence and cunning were admirable qualities of his. His actions are disgusting, wrong and can’t be excused at all. But this is why I enjoyed his character so much - he was so damaged; there clearly was physical, mental and emotional trauma lingering inside him; and he did terrible things. There’s something refreshing and very fascinating about a severely imperfect, tortured character, especially one who is hiding under the guise of a sweet, decent young boy. A marvel. Mysterious, too - I wish we could know more about him, such as what exactly was going through his mind throughout all this. What was he thinking? His twisted actions were enough to make me a bit queasy, yes, but we all love to indulge in a villainous character here and there. Perhaps even feel sympathy towards them for what wrongs were committed against them, first, that helped make them what they are. (Even though it doesn’t necessarily justify the wrongs they commit, as demonstrated with our complex Cassidy.) And in the end, his last few moments were heartbreaking - when he screamed that his name was Cassidy, something everyone so easily forgot, someone everyone so easily disregarded; and Logan could not come up with a reason for him to not jump. Fitting conclusion for the character. I found him more compelling than Aaron Echolls as a main villain.
He is easily one of my favourite characters of the series, if not my most favourite.
Cassidy Casablancas is a perfect character. You think hes just this cute, innocent and naive boy that you should pity but in the end he turns out to be this fucking smart, sassy, bad boy who smirks meanly and will do anything to get what he wants.