A precocious teenager outwits her father, the police, and the high school bullies to solve crimes. Why didn't someone just say it's a modern Nancy Drew?
And by "modern", I mean "dark". The first episode alludes to a variety of sad truths that CSI fans may classify as entertaining, but it's hardly escapism. Before I watched Veronica Mars, I never consciously observed this trait of my viewing habits: I like shows that are fun. (Go fig.) Sure, a show's characters should be real people who face real situations — but I prefer metaphorical representations that employ vampires, aliens, and cowboys. We have enough problems in our real world that I don't need our own environment and social ailments repackaged as entertainment. Give me something I can't get on the evening news.