Veronicas Are Having A Moment (Take That, Betty!)
March is shaping out to be a big month for famous Veronicas: Veronica Mars, the pint-size former high school P.I., has been resurrected from the ashes of her TV show for a fan-funded movie in theaters on March 14. The following week, Veronica Roth, author of the blockbuster Divergent novels, will see her first novel on the big-screen.
Both ladies should make Veronicas everywhere proud. Which seems like a good development, because anyone who ever read comics as a kid couldn't be blamed for picturing a rich, snooty brunette who wants to steal your boyfriend whenever they hear the name. (Oh, summer I spent reading Archie Comics, I knew you would one day be useful!) Speaking of Archie and his complicated love life, we also got news last week that Girls creator Lena Dunham will be writing a new four-part story about those iconic kids of Riverdale High in 2015. So maybe Veronica Lodge will become more relatable once she gets a few tattoos and gets dumped by a performance artist? Or maybe, for some people, Veronica was always preferable that goodie-goodie perfect blonde Betty. Is that why Winona Ryder's character in Heathers was named Veronica too?
We wonder if the comic character, who made her first appearance in 1942, had something to do with the peak of Veronicas in the 1960s and '70s, and also with its steady decline ever since. The name is at its lowest popularity since the 1930s right now. But we're ready for a return.
Where do these musical three syllables come from, anyway? There are two possibilities: It's either derived from the Greek Berenikē, which means "bringer of victory"; or it's from the Latin term "veraiconica" (true image) referring to a piece of cloth with a representation of Christ on it. In Catholicism, St. Veronica was a woman from Jerusalem who gave Jesus her veil on which to wipe his face, which miraculously left an imprint on it that she later took to Rome. Victory or compassion? Veronica Mars or Veronica Lodge? We like the idea of being able to choose the meaning and the character that suits you best.