Lost in the Movies: THE ARCHIVE Chapter 34: Neptune's Orbit (June - September 2019)

THE ARCHIVE Chapter 34: Neptune's Orbit (June - September 2019)

The summer of 2019 on this site became, thanks to Hulu, the summer of Veronica Mars. After learning that the series would return for a new online streaming season, I launched a marathon day-by-day follow-up to my first season viewing diary of the year before. The second and third seasons from UPN and the CW, the crowdfunded feature film, and eventually the brand new eight-episode miniseries itself formed the material for my study of the young detective in the economically divided town who solves mysteries big and small through high school, college, her late twenties, and her early thirties.

In my rare excursions from the Californian seaside, subjects include a half-dozen viewing diary directories compiled in anticipation of the site's radical re-design, a round-up of favorite Euroclassics reviewed nearly a decade ago (for the same purpose), another madcap Twin Peaks Unwrapped ranking session - this time of Peaks episodes rather than Lynch films, and a new "Twin Peaks Cinema" approach on my podcast: comparing two melancholy small towns across a century and comparing an alien abduction in the forest to Twin Peaks' more terrestrial woodland encounters.

I'm highlighting Freedom from Formula: discussing David Lynch & Auteur TV with Martha Nochimson, author of Television Rewired, a nearly two-hour audio back-and-forth with one of the liveliest and most original commentators on Twin Peaks and - in this case- the medium it influenced.


Veronica Mars every day, leading up to the Hulu premiere on July 26
With new episodes looming in late July, I decided to resume my coverage of the teen mystery show and shared over a hundred screenshots to kick off

The Veronica Mars viewing diary
Every one of my Veronica Mars episode reviews gathered into a directory that would continue to grow through the early summer

Veronica Mars - "Normal is the Watchword" (season 2, episode 1)
Everything has calmed down for Veronica, if not so much Neptune as a whole...until a bus ride back from a school trip

Veronica Mars - "Driver Ed" (season 2, episode 2)
Veronica is surrounded by memories of a recent disaster, even as she begins to suspect the official stories and wonder if anything in Neptune really happens by accident

Veronica Mars - "Cheatty Cheatty Bang Bang" (season 2, episode 3)
Spying on a stepmom for a classmate, Veronica uncovers a much more sprawling mystery

Veronica Mars - "Green-Eyed Monster" (season 2, episode 4)
A light episode finds Veronica working for a jealous fiancee, forcing her to confront her own trust issues

Veronica Mars - "Blast from the Past" (season 2, episode 5)
Veronica visits a local TV psychic to help a friend and reveal (she thinks) a fraud

Veronica Mars - "Rat Saw God" (season 2, episode 6)
Dumping a couple major threads of the season, the episode veers in a radically new direction by resurrecting (sort of) an old character

Veronica Mars - "Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner" (season 2, episode 7)
A small mystery expands into a major revelation as Veronica becomes an undercover babysitter

Veronica Mars - "Ahoy, Mateys!" (season 2, episode 8)
An episode featuring a pirate radio mystery and a shocking kidnapping may be most memorable for introducing the Fitzpatrick gang, Neptune’s Irish hoodlums seemingly transplanted from another time and place

Veronica Mars - "My Mother, the Fiend" (season 2, episode 9)
Mothers and babies abound as Veronica looks into her own family's past and discovers a friend's future

Veronica Mars - "One Angry Veronica" (season 2, episode 10)
Christmas in Neptune brings jury duty, missing tapes, and a tragic loss before 2005 gives way to 2006

Veronica Mars - "Donut Run" (season 2, episode 11)
Exactly halfway through the season, the series springs a high-stakes kidnapping plot that dramatically changes the lives of several characters

Veronica Mars - "Rashard and Wallace Go to White Castle" (season 2, episode 12)
Veronica bugs both a church and a nightclub to help her friends Wallace and Weevil

Veronica Mars - "Ain't No Magic Mountain High Enough" (season 2, episode 13)
The school carnival takes over an episode as Veronica traces stolen cash through a series of suspects

June 2019 Patreon podcasts: LOST IN TWIN PEAKS #5 - Season 1 Episode 5 and LOST IN THE MOVIES #56 - Introducing "Twin Peaks Cinema" & new "Twin Peaks Reflections" approach (+ listener feedback - Cooper's reflections/nonlinear time in Twin Peaks & favorite films archive #45 - #35: Chinatown, Out 1, Rosemary's Baby, The Mother and the Whore, Through a Glass Darkly, Daisies, Hyperballad, Scarface, Snow White, The Gold Rush, The Man With a Movie Camera)
How I’ll cover Twin Peaks on my main podcast: comparing it to various films and connecting a particular chapter to different locations, characters, story threads, and a related season 3 episode/Lynch film/Peaks spin-off month to month

Veronica Mars - "Versatile Toppings" (season 2, episode 14)
While Veronica navigates pizza robberies and high school blackmail, Keith defends a celebrity suspect

Veronica Mars - "The Quick and the Wed" (season 2, episode 15)
As Veronica chases a runaway bride, Logan finds the most ruthless way to intimidate a fake witness

Veronica Mars - "The Rapes of Graff" (season 2, episode 16)
Veronica tours a college and encounters a surprise returning character and a couple very 00s surprise guest stars

Veronica Mars - "Plan B" (season 2, episode 17)
Weaving together several down-to-earth stories as it builds to one of the biggest moments in a season that balances personal drama with sprawling social intrigue

Veronica Mars - "I am God" (season 2, episode 18)
In a dark visual twist on the Magic School Bus, Veronica revisits her dead classmates in dreams

Veronica Mars - "Nevermind the Buttocks" (season 2, episode 19)
A simple search for the hit-and-run killer of a dog exposes gang warfare, a multimillion dollar heist, and possibly the perpetrator of a shocking mass murder


Veronica Mars - "Look Who's Stalking" (season 2, episode 20)
Approaching the end of her high school years, Veronica is kept busy by the janitor's violent breakdown and an unexpected reconciliation at her "alterna-prom"

Veronica Mars - "Happy Go Lucky" (season 2, episode 21)
With a shocking expose of a public official and the verdict for Lilly’s killer, season 2 races toward its conclusion

Veronica Mars - "Not Pictured" (season 2, episode 22)
Graduating from high school in the season finale, Veronica dreams of a pleasant, mild alternate reality before being plunged into the darkest mystery resolution of the whole show

Veronica Mars - "Welcome Wagon" (season 3, episode 1)
Veronica heads off to college while her father gets embroiled in a noir-ish double cross

Veronica Mars - "My Big Fat Greek Rush Week" (season 3, episode 2)
Veronica investigates a sorority, her father treks through the desert, and her friends re-enact the infamous Prisoner sociology experiment

Veronica Mars - "Wichita Linebacker" (season 3, episode 3)
Weevil tries his hand at Mars Investigstions while Veronica helps a football star (played by Armie Hammer as a proto-Winklevoss)

Veronica Mars - "Charlie Don't Surf" (season 3, episode 4)
While Veronica is unexpectedly hired to exculpate a fraternity, Logan runs into trouble with a long-lost brother

Veronica Mars - "President Evil" (season 3, episode 5)
Robbed at a Halloween party, Veronica must decide if she trusts Weevil - even while helping him to clear his name

Veronica Mars - "Hi, Infidelity" (season 3, episode 6)
The Neptune Grand hosts several romantic liaisons that don't involve but do affect Veronica - both personally and professionally

Veronica Mars - "Of Vice and Men" (season 3, episode 7)
Veronica feels betrayed by her father, boyfriend, and mentor while trying to find a girl's suspiciously missing partner and provide an alibi for a fellow student in police custody

Veronica Mars - "Lord of the Pi's" (season 3, episode 8)
The series gets its second celebrity heiress stunt casting; guess who plays the kidnapped Hearst College namesake heiress with a notorious seventies history?

Veronica Mars - "Spit & Eggs" (season 3, episode 9)
On the night of a big party, Veronica discovers and confronts Hearst College's serial rapist

Veronica Mars - "Show Me the Monkey" (season 3, episode 10)
An animal-rights subplot distracts Veronica while a recent high-profile death at the school reveals itself as the new ongoing murder mystery

Veronica Mars - "Poughkeepsie, Tramps and Thieves" (season 3, episode 11)
As Veronica helps a classmate reconnect with a lost love, the show both toys with and subverts tropes about sex work

Veronica Mars - "There's Got to Be a Morning After Pill" (season 3, episode 12)
Veronica plunges into the abortion debate with a new case; meanwhile, long before Frozen, a Kristen Bell character is haunted by a winter wonderland that damages her relationships

Veronica Mars - "Postgame Mortem" (season 3, episode 13)
With one killer still at large, Veronica has to investigate the death of another school official; meanwhile Logan is forced to make a pint-size friend

Veronica Mars - "Mars, Bars" (season 3, episode 14)
A two-episode arc ends as one death is resolved, before one of the original characters departs in a sudden, shocking manner

Veronica Mars - "Papa's Cabin" (season 3, episode 15)
Veronica solves her last ongoing investigation of the original series...and then she solves it again

Veronica Mars - "Un-American Graffiti" (season 3, episode 16)
The show tackles prowar jingoism and Islamophobia in one of its most awkward attempts at political commentary

Veronica Mars - "Debasement Tapes" (season 3, episode 17)
Paul Rudd guest stars as a washed-up indie musician from the nineties, whom Veronica and Piz must team up to help

Veronica Mars - "I Know What You'll Do Next Summer" (season 3, episode 18)
Veronica is asked to reunite a father and his former child soldier son, separated by war in Uganda

Veronica Mars - "Weevils Wobble But They Don't Go Down" (season 3, episode 19)
While trying to vindicate Weevil after unfair accusations, Veronica finds herself exposed in a scandalous viral video

Veronica Mars - "The Bitch is Back" (season 3, episode 20)
Thrust by personal humiliation back into the Kane household, a secret society, and her father's political scandal, Veronica reaches the end of the original series - and I step back to see the big picture of the show

Veronica Mars (the film)
Years after fleeing Neptune, Veronica returns to help a friend, attend a reunion, and - of course - solve a murder

Veronica Mars - "Spring Break Forever" (season 4, episode 1)
Now in her thirties and a full-time private eye, Veronica is drawn into the aftermath of a bombing by a girl who reminds her of herself

Veronica Mars - "Chino and the Man" (season 4, episode 2)
Several investigations into the Sea Sprite bomb are launched simultaneously, with a variety of motives

Veronica Mars - "Keep Calm and Party On" (season 3, episode 3)
The episode begins with a simple mugging and ends with a massive explosion; Veronica nabs the bomber earlier than expected...or does she?

Veronica Mars - "Heads You Lose" (season 3, episode 4)
With Leo back in town for the FBI, Veronica embarks on a playful stakeout and reacquaints herself with a number of familiar faces

July 2019 Patreon podcasts: Early access to Martha Nochimson interview, LOST IN TWIN PEAKS #6 - Season 1 Episode 6, and LOST IN THE MOVIES #57 - Twin Peaks Cinema - Fire in the Sky (+ favorites films archive #34 - 24: Band of Outsiders, White Heat, Easy Rider, Singin' in the Rain, Red Hot Riding Hood, Goodfellas, Fists in the Pocket, The Searchers, The "Up" Series, Mamma Roma, Young Mr. Lincoln & Twin Peaks Reflections: Cable, Chet & Sam, Teresa, Sam's apartment, Buenos Aires hotel, Teresa Banks case/Inland Empire)
A logger is abducted by aliens in my first "Twin Peaks cinema" selection, alongside some sketches of Missing Pieces-related phenomena and preview of an author interview

Veronica Mars - "Losing Streak" (season 3, episode 5)
Two very different suspects emerge to the Mars family's discomfort; one befriends Veronica while the other befriends Keith

Veronica Mars - "Entering a World of Pain" (season 3, episode 6)
The identity of the bomber is revealed (sort of) but not yet to Veronica, who struggles with relationship issues


Veronica Mars - "Gods of War" (season 3, episode 7)
Encircling a prime suspect in the woods, Veronica and Keith become targets themselves

Veronica Mars - "Years, Continents, Bloodshed" (season 4, episode 8)
The bomb plot resolves, as does Veronica's romantic quandary, but the last half of the season finale heads in an unexpected direction

Late summer update: a makeover and progress toward Journey Through Twin Peaks
Beginning one of my big steps toward new Journey videos earlier than expected, I radically remake the site behind the scenes

Freedom from Formula: discussing David Lynch & Auteur TV with Martha Nochimson, author of Television Rewired
After our conversation five years earlier, I return to interview one of my favorite Lynch scholars in podcast form, exploring season three and other televisual topics

Twin Peaks Unwrapped - Season 1 Madness (w/ Francine the Lucid Dream and John Thorne)
The Unwrapped podcast gang continues its ranking with the first season as we judge some very close contests between great episodes

Why publish viewing diaries now?
I decide to organize all the series I've been reviewing over the past decade, as the new site premiere approaches

True Detective viewing diary
Three seasons of the neo-noir HBO sensation, ranging from Louisiana to California to Arkansas, are gathered in one spot

August 2019 Patreon podcasts: LOST IN TWIN PEAKS #7 - Season 1 Episode 7 and LOST IN THE MOVIES #58 - Twin Peaks Cinema: Our Town (+ favorites films archive #23 - 13: My Night at Maud's, The Virgin Spring, On the Waterfront, Mulholland Drive, The Godfather, Nights of Cabiria, Star Wars, Meshes of the Afternoon, The Third Man, Taxi Driver, The Mirror & Twin Peaks Reflections: Heidi, Julie, Ronette, the train car, the Packard Saw Mill, official Laura Palmer investigation/The Elephant Man)
Thorton Wilder's homey little New England village is pondered in relation to Twin Peaks, while Laura Palmer is considered alongside John Merrick

The Prisoner viewing diary
The surrealist British spy classic, which I covered in 2015, earns its illustrated directory

Breaking Bad viewing diary
Following my first season coverage of the meth melodrama in 2018, the time comes to line 'em up with room for more to come

Mad Men viewing diary
A diary I stand on the precipice of renewing, Mad Men's first season gets a page that will soon see ongoing updates

The X-Files viewing diary
The nineties Fox hit, which I obsessed with at nine but didn't begin watching until my thirties, is organized here - just a first season thus far

The Wire viewing diary
Finally, the last of my 2018 season one (so far) episode guides, to the acclaimed zeros cops-and-drug-dealers series, is linked in its own post


European New Waves in the Sunday Matinee
Plugging one last gap before I re-launch, this time for my 2010 microseries - twelve films, three each from different sixties national cinemas

Next: Dawn of a New Frontier (September 2019 - March 2020)
(in which early sixties Mad Men and late teens Unseen entries keep the site occupied while I follow my path to more Twin Peaks)

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