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Lisin

S01.E21: A Trip to the Dentist

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From IMDB: "After obtaining a shocking new piece of information, Veronica is determined to get to the bottom of what happened the night she was drugged and raped, even if it means piecing together the fuzzy stories of every 09er at Neptune High. Meanwhile, Aaron throws a party for Logan, but inadvertently throws a wrench into Logan and Veronica's secret relationship."

I feel like this one is everyone's go to episode for how this show is so great when everything is clicking and I don't think they're wrong. I love watching everything come together. Veronica going through her cast of usual suspects who we met throughout the season. Breaking Dick's surfboard is a high watermark for me. Logan feeling so so guilty about his culpability in everything and standing up for her at his "birthday" party. Veronica being ok with figuring out that she had "consensual" sex with Duncan (though don't even get me started on the fact that since she was drugged she couldn't really GIVE consent but whatever, she's ok with it so I've let it go). The cliffhanger reveal at the end is so heart wrenching! I love that Weevil is her "get me the eff out of here" call! I love everything!

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I don't have much to add here, because I think you summed up the episode beautifully, @Lisin.  

Playing with timelines and multiple character perspectives is done really, really well here.  I love this episode for that.  I love how fast-paced this one is, and how details from this episode come into play later.

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Thanks @clemmyb! I really do love this episode. The show is really running on all cylinders here.

In my prior rant I forgot to mention that during the "consensual" sex DUNCAN THOUGHT HE WAS SLEEPING WITH HIS SISTER! Soooooo yeah, maybe they don't want to call it rape, but at least in the realm of intentions Duncan was knowingly committing incest. Even though that wasn't really true, he thought it was! UGH why are we supposed to like him again?

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Thanks @clemmyb! I really do love this episode. The show is really running on all cylinders here.

In my prior rant I forgot to mention that during the "consensual" sex DUNCAN THOUGHT HE WAS SLEEPING WITH HIS SISTER! Soooooo yeah, maybe they don't want to call it rape, but at least in the realm of intentions Duncan was knowingly committing incest. Even though that wasn't really true, he thought it was! UGH why are we supposed to like him again?

I have a hard time with the whole "consensual" thing, too.  I don't know--I feel like the addition of Duncan having been drugged is supposed to make us feel better about what happened between them.  Also, Duncan might have thought Veronica was his sister because of what his mother had told him, but he didn't feel like she was his sister.  They weren't raised together, so it didn't feel as squicky?  I don't know.  It wasn't actually incest, but it's definitely in that gray area where I'm not sure how I'm supposed to feel.

Sometimes I wonder if I would have felt differently if a stronger actor had been in the role of Duncan.  Probably not, though.

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Yeah, I don't really like how it's brushed aside like, "Oh, what a relief! It was consensual sex that I don't remember at all! With my ex-boyfriend/possible brother!" I mean, Duncan was clearly more aware of what was going on than Veronica was, since he remembers everything, so that just grosses me out. But by the letter of the law, if both parties are drugged like that, it's not rape if neither is really capable of consent. I think that's what we're supposed to think: that Duncan was so drugged he basically forgot about the sister thing and just saw this girl he loved. And then left her afterwards because he was still really drugged and not thinking clearly.

I'm not a Duncan fan either--I really tried in the beginning, but he's just too selfish by nature, and too quickly shifts the blame to Veronica or any other easy target when things get tough. (Like, I truly HATE that dream he has of Meg as an angel and Veronica as some sort of evil temptress in Season 2. Kinda his true feelings coming through there, and no one looks at my Veronica that way.)

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Agree that this one is great; not a lot to add. And obviously it's still megagross, but I'm down with Duncan's druggedness relieving most of his culpability there.

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Yeah, I don't really like how it's brushed aside like, "Oh, what a relief! It was consensual sex that I don't remember at all! With my ex-boyfriend/possible brother!" I mean, Duncan was clearly more aware of what was going on than Veronica was, since he remembers everything, so that just grosses me out. But by the letter of the law, if both parties are drugged like that, it's not rape if neither is really capable of consent. I think that's what we're supposed to think: that Duncan was so drugged he basically forgot about the sister thing and just saw this girl he loved. And then left her afterwards because he was still really drugged and not thinking clearly.

I hate how it's brushed aside that Logan is the one that supplied the GHB, and drugged his best friend.  That wasn't what caused Veronica to leave, nope it was the cameras.  Hell after Logan told her he drugged Duncan because "He just wanted Duncan to have some fun", she acts like there's nothing wrong with it, and continues to make out with him.  That whole thing is the moment Logan goes to the point of no return for me.  The guy supplied date rape drugs to people, and drugged his best friend.

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I think it's because Logan gave a genuine apology.  He was the only character involved who did.  A genuine apology goes a long way with a lot of people, so I easily buy Veronica's forgiveness.  Had he not apologized, or made it clear that he only did it to get back in her good graces, I don't think Veronica would have been so willing to maintain their relationship.

 

When I first saw the episode, I thought the cameras reminded her of something that would get the ball rolling on catching Lilly's killer, but I guess they just freaked her out too much after such a crazy emotional couple of days.  

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I feel like this one is everyone's go to episode for how this show is so great when everything is clicking

Definitely. And one thing I really appreciate about this episode now, on a more conscious level when I first saw it as a teenager, is how accurately it portrays rape culture. Actually, the entire show did that really well. But that line from Dick (that was this episode, right?) along the lines of "don't blame me because you got all drunk and slutty" is just chilling. 

 

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Veronica being ok with figuring out that she had "consensual" sex with Duncan (though don't even get me started on the fact that since she was drugged she couldn't really GIVE consent but whatever, she's ok with it so I've let it go).

I haven't rewatched the show in a while but I have often wondered whether part of the reason that she ended up back in a relationship with Duncan was to make herself OK with what happened at Shelley's party. She couldn't give consent, but then she finds out she was unintentionally raped (god knows there's no term for what happened) by the guy she had been in love with -- how the hell do you deal with that? 

 

One thing I find deplorable (well, there's no shortage of such things in this episode) is that Duncan left her there to wake up alone the next morning. Fair enough, he was freaked out at the thought of her being his sister. But drugged or not (and like Carrie Ann said, he was clearly more aware than she was), he left her, semi-conscious or asleep, in a strange bed, at a party full of people who hated her. He knew how rapey his friends were, he knew that no one else would look out for her. 

 

Spoiler

And finally: I can never figure out how I feel about the reveal in season 2 that Beaver actually did rape Veronica. 

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One thing I find deplorable (well, there's no shortage of such things in this episode) is that Duncan left her there to wake up alone the next morning. Fair enough, he was freaked out at the thought of her being his sister. But drugged or not (and like Carrie Ann said, he was clearly more aware than she was), he left her, semi-conscious or asleep, in a strange bed, at a party full of people who hated her. He knew how rapey his friends were, he knew that no one else would look out for her.

Yeah, again, Duncan also being drugged makes the whole situation hard to judge or evaluate. I know we missed a lot of scenes between the two of them between S1 and S2, and that's fine, I guess. But it is ridiculous that I have to fanwank a scene in which Duncan apologizes profusely for leaving Veronica at that party (possibly only partially clothed) and for continuing to avoid her like the plague afterward, all the while knowing that she had no clue they might be related. I mean, that was her first time, and he said not a word to her for months afterward. What a fucking prince.

 

I have to assume he did apologize, because any human being with a conscience would feel like shit about that, even if it wasn't technically his fault. And I would hope that Veronica would expect that apology as well, especially from someone she loved once and we're supposed to believe loves again. But I can see your previous point about Veronica dating him again to "make it OK" in her mind--I've had the same thought, and in that case, I think she might have been fine without an apology because then she doesn't have to think too hard about the weirdness of what happened, or how Duncan continued to shun her for some pretty flimsy reasons.

 

Instead, in the only conversation we ever got to see between them about it, Duncan's reaction to Veronica sobbing that he'd raped her was anger that she was acting like she "wasn't there too." Like he thought she was faking a rape by pretending not to remember? I've never understood how to interpret that moment. But at best, he just seems to blow off what should have been a shocking thing to hear, like he puts no stock in her experience or her own words, because he's mad that she thinks he might have killed Lilly. So his own feelings are more important, and he can just ignore her feelings. It's actually pretty consistent characterization, when you think about it that way.

 

Compare to Logan's reaction in the very same episode: "Just tell me what I can do, Veronica," when she first raises the possibility that it was him. Then later when she tells him she knows it wasn't, and he asks if she wants to tell him what happened: "You don't have to tell me anything. I'm just here for whatever you need." He also takes full responsibility for dosing Duncan, and feels like shit about it. 

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Spoiler

And finally: I can never figure out how I feel about the reveal in season 2 that Beaver actually did rape Veronica.

 

Personally

Spoiler

, I hated it.

 

Spoiler

Okay, they're doing everything they can to make sure that we know how twisted Cassidy is.  I can accept that, but despite all of the death and destruction, he was still worth at least a small measure of sympathy for the monstrous thing Woody did to him.  But they have to go for a coup de grace and just obliterate that by making him someone who directly violated our heroine and lead to her being publicly slut-shamed.

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I agree that Duncan is still pretty crappy for how he's treated Veronica all this time after what happened.  Even if he thought they were related (heh, she should have done the dna test with him), he saw everyone else slut shaming her and he should have stood up for her.  And it was definitely crappy for him leaving her alone, even if he thought she knew what was going on.  It seemed pretty clear she didn't and why would he have any reason to think she thought they were related and thus would keep quiet?

 

I don't quite understand why Veronica bailed on Logan again though. He seems to have been pretty upright with her (and glad that he at least didn't intend for anything bad to happen with Veronica).  Why would she think he installed the cameras?  It could have been either of Logan's father or mother. In fact, my first thought was Logan's mother had them installed to catch Aaron with another woman.

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On ‎1‎/‎27‎/‎2014 at 6:35 PM, Lisin said:

Thanks @clemmyb! I really do love this episode. The show is really running on all cylinders here.

In my prior rant I forgot to mention that during the "consensual" sex DUNCAN THOUGHT HE WAS SLEEPING WITH HIS SISTER! Soooooo yeah, maybe they don't want to call it rape, but at least in the realm of intentions Duncan was knowingly committing incest. Even though that wasn't really true, he thought it was! UGH why are we supposed to like him again?

Well, late to the party, still. I think Duncan and Lilly both really don't trust a thing Celeste says. He's been drugged. He actually, I think, loves Veronica. It is easy for me to think the distinctions could be blurred.

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On ‎11‎/‎29‎/‎2014 at 10:40 PM, Hanahope said:

 

 

I don't quite understand why Veronica bailed on Logan again though. He seems to have been pretty upright with her (and glad that he at least didn't intend for anything bad to happen with Veronica).  Why would she think he installed the cameras?  It could have been either of Logan's father or mother. In fact, my first thought was Logan's mother had them installed to catch Aaron with another woman.

The oldest bullying trick in the book is some popular guy asks you out, maybe to a dance (think Carrie) and then at the dance something humiliating happens (pigs blood, you make out and the whole group comes in and mocks you) and everyone makes fun of you and then they share the video, if they can get one. I don't think she thought he'd installed the cameras, at least on reflection, but it was a pretty reasonable bet he was using the cameras. Logan was an idiot for doing it, he has poor social instincts, and we know he was completely sincere.  I'm not sure if he ever understands it.

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Actually, I doubt Logan even knew the cameras were there, otherwise surely he would've used them during "An Echolls Family Christmas" to figure out who stole the poker money.

Veronica maybe should've figured that out, but  I don't blame her for freaking out and bailing in that moment. That set-up was super-creepy. I felt for Logan, but Veronica did the smart thing there. Get out of the potentially dangerous situation first, consider the implications later.

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Veronica isn’t very woke. For someone who’s been raped and slut shamed herself, she sure is quick to forgive the guys she likes and blame the girls she doesn’t like (here and in the episode with Carrie and the teacher). If Meg had passed her that drink I’m sure Veronica would have reacted by seeing her as a fellow victim. But she blames Madison, who had no intent, and forgives/tolerates Dick, who did have intent to commit rape (twice at one party). Did anyone ever confront Dick about that, ever in the whole series? Did he ever give even a hand assed apology? In this episode Logan is ready to disown Dick for being rude to Veronica - did she even tell Logan what Dick did? Seems like he would have been in the mood to punch Dick for it right around then.

Still one of her best episodes, only marred by keeping Dick around as comic relief afterwards. 

Edited by LeGrandElephant
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Does she tell Wallace in this episode or the one before? I forget since I watched them back to back, but that was nice. Presumably she told him about the rape and everything, and she cries, and he was there for her. Important scene even though they cut away from the details. 

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