Ah, now that was fun. “Ruskie Business” isn’t quite the melding of episodic and serialized plots I’ve been hoping for, but the case-of-the-week did nicely dovetail into the season arc and was a nice ride to boot. Or, should I say “rides?” This episode saw Veronica juggling three separate cases: Whatshername, Veronica’s female friend from a few episodes back wants to know who her secret admirer is, Logan is closing in on his apparently missing mother, and a mail order bride is looking for her lost love.
Logan’s story is easily the most compelling and was a nice payoff to the mini-arc. He and Veronica track her down to a hotel and, after a failed attempt to get up to her room, he stakes out the lobby to wait. It’s a fine line between tenacity and obsession and, when Veronica returns 1-2 days later, he’s clearly crossed it. She smokes the room’s occupant out by cancelling her credit card and – holy crap! It’s Willow –er, Logan’s half sister. Allyson Hannigan is fine here, but I found it distracting to have such a recognizable actress in the role. She’s pretty callous about her step mother’s death and makes light of Logan’s child abuse, unwilling to admit it was real. It’s all too much for Logan and he breaks down before they get out of the hotel. This character’s come a long way from the “jackass jock” of the first episode and I’ve really appreciated the journey.
The other Neptune High story was the weaker one, with Veronica trying to discover a girl’s secret admirer. Fortunately, it parallels the investigation for the Russian Bride. She left her frumpy American fiancé and now realizes she’s made a mistake. Unfortunately, “Tom Cruz” has moved to California to pursue his acting career and changed his name for obvious reasons. She gets more than she bargained for with both cases as Duncan turns out to be one loverboy and the other is actually in the witness protection program to hide from, bum-bum-bum, the Russian mob. Keith’s the one who figures that the “bride” isn’t what she claims as he discovers some mobsters tailing him. He gets the cops involved and saves the day.
The real kicker of the case is that Keith realizes he’s being used to lead someone to their victim while Veronica doesn’t – twice. She traces the “breather” phone calls to some remote bar and realizes it’s her mother that’s been calling and hanging up. Of course, she races there, not realizing the head of Kane security is right behind her. It’s a little disappointing that Veronica didn’t find her mother through some clever detective work, but I’m glad this plot’s moving forward. She catches site of Weidman on his way out of the bar and we’re left wondering exactly how much danger Veronica’s recklessness has caused.
This is never going to be the show I want it to be, but episodes like this prove it can still be fun in itself.
I really did appreciate Logan’s character this week. His drunken shenanigans are less the act of an idiot and more those of a truly messed up kid. Allyson’s there to haul his ass back home, I’m guessing this is more than just a cameo?
Eighties fashions = awesome.
Keith’s continued ability to outclass Veronica is a bit of a mixed bag. Yes, it’s nice to see where she comes by her brilliance and get proof that she’s not infallible, but this is in danger of seeming like “daddy knows best.”
In other distracting cameos, that non-JTT kid from Home Improvement was a dumb jock. I guess Logan’s got too much depth for that stereotype now.
The series needs to start making better use of Wallace. He can be pretty funny, but he needs to more than be Veronica’s sounding board.