Kevin Smith is a big fan of this show, as he was of Battlestar Galactica and Law and Order, other shows that I've come to love – so I’m a big believer in Smith’s taste. This is everything a teen drama should be: funny, clever, extremely well put together. It also has genuine dramatic gravitas: there are big emotional stakes, Veronica is a genuine outcast in her community, her father has been hounded out of his job, bullies and villains pervade every aspect of society, she was raped, her best friend was killed, there’s a killer running free, etc. All these things stop the show from drifting into Famous Five territory (although what it reminds me of are the Encyclopedia Brown books).
Kirsten Bell has the role of a life time as Veronica; she does get on the nerves occasionally but she’s so smart and has such large obstacles to overcome, that doesn’t really matter. Best support comes from Jason Dohring as her rich kid nemesis – he has so many brilliant lines, and has a great arrogant cockhead face.