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''Veronica'': How Far Is Too Far?

By RD Heldenfels Published: December 1, 2005

I wish that either ''Lost'' or ''Veronica Mars'' would get out of that 9 p.m. Wednesday time slot. There must be a plot-twist limit for any time period, and one of those shows by itself uses up the quota every week. With both there, well, all the obsessing over the twists makes me too tired to start the day on Thursday.

In fact, I waited until this morning to watch ''Veronica,'' mainly because I wanted to see the alternate ending posted on AOL in close conjunction with the actual telecast. So I watched ''Veronica'' and dug it as always. If I wanted to push the Dashiell Hammett parallel from my ''Lost'' posting, I would let ''Veronica'' be ''The Thin Man,'' with almost all the good characters on the show playing Nick to Veronica's Nora. (Of course, some Nicks are better than others: Keith and Logan are much better at the banter than the increasingly woebegone Duncan, and once again I miss Wallace.) OK, so we all knew that the vice principal wouldn't put a snoop like Veronica in charge of documents unless he had something in mind. It still led down such fun trails. And I like that they're making more and more room for Tina Majorino.

The twist at the end of the telecast was quite satisfying, a good way to keep me hooked for another week. As if I needed another hook. Then I went to the alternate ending, which took the original hook and attached a couple of more hooks to it. If I hadn't seen the original ending, I might have found that engaging, or at least bold. As it was, the original hook seemed plenty to fret about without piling on the extra material. We'll see what viewing voters decide, and which way my obsessing will have to go. At least ''Lost'' is a rerun next week. I need the rest.

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