Last night saw the two-episode series finale of Veronica Mars, a very, very good show that recently took some very, very annoying plot turns (many of which, alas, wound up going unresolved). But one thing remained consistent throughout Mars‘ three-season run: Even when the show made for frustrating TV, it was always a good listen.
In the post-O.C. era, of course, every youth-skewing show seems to have a savvy soundtrack supervisor. What made Mars‘ musical choices so memorable was that instead of planting twenty seconds of Death Cab into a make-out sequence, its creators never strived to be tastemakers; you were just as likely to hear some obscure singer-songwriter or power-pop band as you were the latest KCRW hit. And it never shied away from pop, even if much of its Top 40 selections (Olivia Newton-John, 10cc) were from the archives.
And, thanks in no small part to creator Rob Thomas–not that Rob Thomas, but a former musician nonetheless–Mars worked in some none-too-embarrassing sub-plots: Paul Rudd’s recent turn as a washed-up ’90s rocker comes to mind, as does Britt Daniel’s karaoke cameo. Granted, the “Piz as indie heartthrob” bit was a misfire, but it was still less awkward to watch than the Bait Shop.
So we bid adieu to Mars Investigations, and hope that the fall TV season introduces a new show to answer our “Hey, what song was that?” questions. This much we know: It won’t be season two of the CW’s Fetch Me A Skank.