December 27, 2011
BH90210 2.25, Meeting Mr. Pony: Ponies Make Everything Better
Summary: Brenda and Dylan are studying at the Walshes’, though Dylan’s mind is on a different kind of chemistry than what Brenda’s working on. He thinks she’s obsessed since she studies so much. Brenda decides they need to go someplace public so he’ll stop getting romantic ideas. Everyone else is at the Peach Pit, where Nat’s the only person happy about midterms because it means a lot of hungry kids come by between study sessions.
Dylan and Brenda join everyone, and the two of them and Brandon are the last people left after hours. The guys leave Brenda alone in the diner while they take out the recycling (and juggle it). She’s a little jumpy, so it doesn’t help when a guy comes in and points a giant gun at her. He orders her to open the register and put all the money in a bag. The guy tells Brenda she’s cute, points the gun at her chest, and tells her to thank him for the compliment. Then he yells for her to get on the ground. He tells her to start counting so he can have a head start.
Behind the diner, Dylan thinks he hears something but doesn’t think anything of it. When he and Brandon go back inside, they see broken glass and find Brenda cowering under the counter. When the police arrive, a detective questions Brenda, who can’t remember what the man looked like. Nat wishes he’d put in a video camera. The detective compliments Brenda for handling the situation well and not losing her cool. The Walshes arrive to take the twins home and Dylan realizes that Brenda’s purse is missing.
At home, the Walshes discuss the fact that the robber now has Brenda’s keys and address. They think she’s handling the trauma very well. Cindy thinks it’s because of a childhood horse-riding accident she got over with a stuffed animal named Mr. Pony. Later, Cindy finds said animal, which Brenda decides to sleep with. She wakes up in the middle of the night, goes into the bathroom, and sees the robber there with his gun. (It’s a dream, of course.)
In the morning, Jim and Cindy discuss a brochure the detective gave them for a women’s crisis hotline. Jim thinks they should keep it to themselves unless Brenda mentions wanting help. At school, Steve and Donna are concerned about Brenda, but she seems completely fine. She even tells Dylan to let it go because it’s over. But when he kisses her, she has a flashback to the moments in the diner just before Dylan went outside.
In class, Brenda keeps hearing the bell over the Peach Pit door and the voice of the robber. Andrea thinks she might have seen him, since she was leaving just as the robber was arriving, but Brenda doesn’t want to talk about him. She thinks everyone’s making a bigger deal out of the situation than they should. Donna wonders how Brandon can go back to work at the Peach Pit after what happened the night before. Brenda says again that it’s no big deal, but she makes excuses not to go.
Andrea tells Brandon that Brenda seems fine but doesn’t want to talk about what happened. He replies that she might just not want to talk about it with Andrea. (Ouch!) At home, Brandon tells Brenda that everyone’s impressed by how she’s handling the hold-up, though Andrea’s concerned. Again, she blows it off. That night, she dreams about being back in the Peach Pit and asking Dylan not to leave. He does, and this time when the robber confronts her, she screams.
In the morning, Brenda goes on a cleaning spree in her bedroom, saying she can’t go to school until she finds something to wear. The other Walshes finally see that something’s not right. Brenda’s first midterm starts off badly when her teacher rings a bell to indicate the beginning and it makes her think of the robbery. This time she daydreams about the robber shooting her when she can’t get the cash register open. She screams herself back to reality and breaks down, telling Dylan she’s sorry she couldn’t get it open.
At home, Brenda’s now depressed and in bed; she thinks her parents are disappointed in her. Jim tells her they don’t want her to pretend things are okay when they aren’t. She admits that she feels stupid for not being able to stop thinking about the hold-up. Cindy thinks she’s making things worse by fighting her feelings. Jim brings up the idea of counseling, which he and Cindy didn’t think Brenda needed because they thought their support would be enough. Brenda doesn’t think a shrink will help her, but Jim tells her to sleep on it.
Dylan calls Brandon at the Peach Pit to tell him what happened. Brandon says he wanted to go right back to work so he couldn’t talk himself out of it. He reminds Dylan that he thought he heard something during the hold-up. Dylan tells him not to think about what-ifs. Brenda goes to see a psychiatrist, who tells her all her reactions have been normal, and she has post-traumatic stress disorder. The doctor has her think back to a happy time, so Brenda remembers riding her horse, Sylvester. The doctor tells her to use that memory when she needs a “safe place.”
The rest of the gang waits for Brenda at the Walshes’, wanting to support her when she comes home. They try to look inconspicuous by playing Scrabble. (No one makes an actual word, so Steve says it’s “reverse Scrabble.”) Brenda tells her friends she’s feeling better, though it’s strange going to see a psychiatrist. David, Kelly, and Steve admit to going to counseling as well. Brenda thinks she’s ready to deal with the hold-up and put it behind her. Just then the police call: They’ve picked up a suspect and want Brenda to look at a line-up. She refuses.
Jim and Dylan try to change Brenda’s mind, reminding her that if she doesn’t help put the robber behind bars, he’ll be able to commit more crimes. Brenda replies that they weren’t in her situation and don’t know what it’s like. She wants to go do the line-up, but she’s too scared. She also rails at Dylan over the fact that he and Brandon left her alone in the diner and are now putting her on a pedestal. After a couple more moments of fuming, Brenda says she’ll go to the police station.
Brenda looks at the line-up, with the disclaimer that she only remembers the robber’s gun. As she studies each suspect, she remembers the hold-up and is able to pick out the robber. Afterward, she asks the detective who the guy is. He won’t give the robber’s name, but he’ll reveal that he’s only 17, the same age as Brenda.
Dylan takes Brenda to the Peach Pit, where all their friends are waiting. She admits that she thought she would be scared to return, but it’s okay. She still has midterms to face, but David assures her they’ll be easy compared to what she’s been through. (Steve might prefer a gun in the face.) Back at home, Brenda tells Brandon that she thinks she’ll finally get a good night’s sleep. She’s still going to share her bed with Mr. Pony, though.
Thoughts: Can you imagine if this had been a Brandon plot instead of a Brenda plot? We would have gotten endless speeches about crime and a protest about how the police aren’t doing their jobs, and we all would have prayed for the robber to come back and finish Brandon off.
Shannen Doherty actually does pretty well with the subject. I mean, it wasn’t completely Emmy-worthy, but it worked.
I bet they’ll never mention this storyline again, though.
Maybe next the psychiatrist can help all of the characters with their plaid addictions.