Destroying Veronica Mars: Gentrification, Gendered Intersectionality, and the Coming of Age of Los Angeles


  • Susan Ingram York University


"The Veronica Mars franchise ... follows the eponymous young blonde hard-boiled PI as she solves crimes in Neptune, a seaside town in Southern California in the fictional spirit of Chandler’s Bay City. The changes that Neptune undergoes from the first season in 2004 to the fourth in 2019 are substantial, and parallel Veronica’s own coming of age .... What I am interested in in this article is how the changes that Veronica and Neptune undergo over the course of a pivotal decade and a half reflect the development of both feminism and urbanization. Comparing Veronica’s coming of age with the city’s along the parallel vectors of gentrification and generation allows me to explore what it means for Los Angeles that it has gentrified to the point that the makers of Veronica Mars no longer felt it was the right place for her. After detailing the points in the series along which Neptune and Veronica are shown to mature, I explore what these parallel transformations mean for the figure of the female private detective as well as for the city in which she lives and works."