August 1, 2015

BH90210 9.22, Local Hero: What a Tangled Web

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 1:33 pm by Jenn

In this episode, the plate is a better actor than the actual actress, but give her a few years and she'll be okay

In this episode, the plate is a better actor than the actual actress, but give her a few years and she’ll be okay

Summary: Kelly calls Matt at work as she’s heading to her car at a grocery store. She runs into Dylan, who asks her to stick around so he can talk to her. Kelly decides not to mention to Matt that Dylan’s there. Steve attends a support group for sex addicts, and really, didn’t we all know this would happen someday? Back at the store, Dylan admits that he didn’t actually have a topic of conversation in mind for Kelly; he just wanted to hang out. He thinks she’s been avoiding him.

Dylan spots a shady-looking guy walking across the parking lot. The guy grabs a kid and orders the kid’s mother to hand over her purse. Dylan uses a shopping cart as a battering ram, managing to get the woman and child away from the man. The woman is pregnant, and though she’s not due for another month, she thinks she’s in labor. Kelly calmly runs to get her car and take the woman to the hospital. Dylan, meanwhile, traps the mugger in the woman’s trunk.

Once the woman is squared away at the hospital, Dylan calls Gina to let her know he’ll be late meeting her. She wants to give him the good news that she got a job offer, but he’s too busy to listen. A reporter talks to Kelly about the incident, but she’s hesitant to talk about the fact that she and Dylan were together. She announces that she was with Steve instead.

The real Steve is about to get an earful from Janet, who’s heard an answering machine message from Katie, one of the women at the support group. Steve explains that he attended to get dirt on celebrity sex addicts. There weren’t any there, but he thinks he can get some info from Katie. David pops by, followed by Katie, who Janet calls Steve’s “alarming new friend.”

Downtown somewhere, Donny spots Noah alone in a diner. She joins him, but realizes he’s acting weird. He tries to hurry her out, but not before a waitress greets him by name, though he’d claimed he’d never been there before. Donna’s not happy. Gina tells Matt that she’s being offered a job with the Skating Channel (that exists?) and needs to tell them who her lawyer is. He asks to look over her contract.

At the Beverly Beat, Dylan and Kelly tell Steve what happened at the store. Since no one saw Dylan at the scene, everyone believes Kelly’s story that she was there with Steve. Dylan and Kelly don’t want Matt to freak out that they were together, since they were just going to have coffee. Now the paper wants Steve’s picture so the media can make him into a hero. Steve declines, then changes his mind when he realizes how many nice things will say about him.

Donna thinks Noah and the waitress, René, are seeing each other, so she doesn’t want to talk to him. Noah reveals that he and René have been talking for a few weeks, but there’s nothing going on. Surprise – she’s his sister. The Walsh house residents, plus Kelly and Janet, watch a news report about Steve’s heroics as Janet wonders why he didn’t mention the incident. Matt’s also surprised, since Kelly didn’t mention seeing Steve.

Donna comes by with flowers and questions for Noah. He tells her that René is his father’s daughter; his mother doesn’t know about her. Apparently Mr. Hunter had some secret life he never mentioned. In fact, Noah’s the only person who knows about it – René doesn’t know that she’s Noah’s sister. Donna urges Noah to tell her the truth, but he doesn’t want to upend her life. He feels bad that she has to be part of such a dramatic family.

Steve tries to get Katie to name some names, as she’s slept with a lot of famous people. She doesn’t think that would help him with his addiction. Steve admits that he’s looking for fodder for his tabloid. Katie reminds him that he’s a hero, so he should act like one. David shows up as Katie’s leaving and tells Steve how hot she is. Matt offers to help Gina negotiate her contract, by which he means call someone at the network and tell him how horrible the offer is, then hang up.

Steve’s starting to get annoyed with all the attention being lavished on him. (The mother Dylan saved even named her baby Steve.) Janet thinks he should enjoy it. Steve runs off to call Dylan, asking to meet with him and Kelly. Dylan tells Gina that he has to leave to help Steve with a Janet-related issue. The three conspirators meet, and Steve wonders why Kelly and Dylan don’t just get back together already. Well, maybe he just wants them to tell the truth, but I think there’s subtext.

At the Peach Pit the next day, David tells Steve that he landed a date with Katie. Steve laughs to himself because Katie didn’t tell David about her sex addiction. Janet arrives and tells Steve that the police want him to go to the police station to ID the mugger. As Steve runs off to call Kelly, he tells David that Katie’s a sex addict. David doesn’t see that as a dealbreaker.

Noah meets Donna at the boutique, where she tells him she wants to take him to the diner. She talked to René and learned that she’s moving, so Noah needs to talk to her now before he loses his chance. Steve and Janet go to the police station, but since Kelly hasn’t arrived yet, Steve pretends he’s sick and can’t view the lineup. When Kelly arrives, she takes his place. The police aren’t suspicious, but Janet can’t figure out why Steve’s so hesitant to take credit. He admits that he didn’t do anything.

David and Katie have lunch, and he’s disappointed that he can’t get her to go to his place afterward. Kelly tells Dylan that Janet knows the truth about the mugging, so it’s only a matter of time before other truths come out. She’s decided to tell Matt everything, including what she and Dylan did in Mexico. (How many times am I going to have to link to that?) Dylan thinks this would be a good time to cut Gina loose, though Kelly won’t commit to getting back together with him.

Matt, Gina, and a bottle of champagne await a fax from the Skating Channel with her new offer. Unfortunately, they get a rejection note instead – someone else has been offered Gina’s job. Gina’s mad at Matt for urging her to take a chance that backfired. She should have just taken what she could get. “You blew it,” the grown woman tells the man whose help she could have turned down at any point.

Noah and Donna return to the diner, but René has already left. Noah splits, but Donna decides to have a chat with the owner. At the beach apartment, Gina tells Dylan that the network was using her as leverage to get another, more famous skater to sign with them. She laments being considered “the next best thing.” Dylan decides this isn’t a good time to dump her.

Donna gets the diner owner to call René and send her to the After Dark to meet with Noah. Noah stuns her by revealing their family connection, but they’re both happy. Steve and Janet visit the would-be mugging victim, telling her who really saved her in the parking lot. Steve points out that she might want to change her new son’s name. The mother declines – she named the baby after her husband Steve, not Steve Sanders.

Matt thinks he and Gina should drink their celebratory champagne even though she didn’t get the job. He needs an assistant and wants Gina to work with him. He promises that the job offer isn’t coming from guilt. He just doesn’t want her to feel like she’s not worth much. Matt reminds Gina that she said she wishes she said no to Dylan more often. Maybe pushing him away will make him realize what he could lose.

David meets with Katie again, telling her he knows about her sex addiction. He wants to go out with her again. She tells him she’s been in treatment for a while and is feeling “healthier.” Kelly waits for Matt at the Walshes’ house so she can tell him what really happened at the grocery store. She insists that nothing happened with Dylan, and they’re just friends. Matt points out that they constructed a web of lies to keep their encounter quiet. He admits that he doesn’t like the idea of Kelly spending time with Dylan.

Kelly then heads to the After Dark to tell Dylan that she and Matt are going to work through their problems. She didn’t tell him about Mexico. Kelly still wants to be with Matt, not Dylan, and she knows Dylan isn’t happy with Gina. He admits that he doesn’t know what he’s going to do next.

Thoughts: René is played by Shiri Appleby (Roswell, Unreal). Good casting, too (I mean, other than the fact that she’s not very good in this episode) – she and Vincent Young share a resemblance.

David dyed his hair dark brown, and Steve calls him Eddie Munster. Thanks, Steve.

I wish there had been a scene where Nat had yelled at Donna and Noah for cheating on the Peach Pit with René’s diner.

July 28, 2015

SVT #35, Amy’s Pen Pal: P.S. I Hate You

Posted in books tagged , , , at 6:05 pm by Jenn

This fits more with my mental view of Amy than any other book cover does

This fits more with my mental view of Amy than any other book cover does

Summary: What I took away from this book was that Amy’s so dull, even her pen pal doesn’t want to hang out with her. This is the equivalent of your imaginary friend ditching you for being boring.

In book 34’s setup for this one, we learned that Amy has a pen pal who hasn’t written her in a while. In this book, the pen pal shows up at Amy’s door. Her name is Samantha Williams, and she’s from San Francisco. She claims that her parents went camping over the long weekend, so she came to visit Amy. Didn’t Amy get the letter saying Sam would be coming? And didn’t their lack of communication over the topic mean that the Suttons were okay with a houseguest?

The Suttons can’t exactly kick Sam out, and since her parents are off in the woods somewhere, they can’t call to confirm that Sam’s allowed to be there. So Sam gets the okay to stay all weekend. Learn from this, kids. This is how to get away with whatever you want. Amy shows Sam around town and introduces her to the Wakefields. Sam borrows some clothes from Elizabeth so she can go to a party at Lila’s house. I’m surprised she doesn’t borrow clothes from Jessica. Who’s excited about wearing someone else’s khakis and flowered blouses?

At the party, Sam hits it off with the Unicorns, to Amy’s dismay. Sam’s family seems to rival Lila’s in the wealth/connections department. They have a house in Hawaii! Sam has a horse! She’s won blue ribbons in riding competitions! She’s famous in San Francisco for being a DJ! She’s dating the son of a famous actress named Glinda Paris! The Unicorns love her, which makes Amy fume. She fumes even more when Sam dances with Ken, Amy’s crush. Understandably, Amy doesn’t like being brushed aside by someone who was supposed to be her friend – especially when she’s being brushed aside for snobs.

Lila’s so excited to have Sam around that she wants to make her an honorary Unicorn. Amy has to tag along when the girls go to lunch together. Her annoyance with Sam grows, but soon she’s not the only one upset: Jessica doesn’t like Sam either. She’s started to notice some discrepancies in Sam’s stories. For instance, Sam said she won a spelling bee, but at the party the night before, she said she’s a bad speller. The biggest standout is that Jessica remembers reading an article about Glinda Paris that mentioned that her son is only nine. Why would Sam be dating someone so young?

Jess takes her suspicions to Elizabeth, who decides to help uncover the truth, for Amy’s sake. Amy’s on board for taking Sam down, since Sam has spent practically the whole weekend with the Unicorns. Jess tells the Unicorns that she thinks Sam’s a big fat liar, so they decide to give her a test. They make up a story about rock star Melody Power being in the hospital while filming near San Francisco. (Wait, now she’s an actress? Is Melody Power supposed to be like Madonna?) Sam immediately jumps on the story, saying she visited Melody. So now the Unicorns know she’s just a phony.

As revenge, the Unicorns decide to embarrass Sam using Dave’s live radio show. They’ll make her think that Dave wants her on his radio show to talk about her visit with Melody. Since Sam is supposedly famous, Dave should know who she is, and when she goes to his booth, he’ll welcome her. The Unicorns expect that, instead, Dave will expose her for lying about being a DJ, and she’ll be humiliated in front of everyone. They tell Sam that they’ve arranged for her to be on the show, which freaks her out, but it’s too late for her to come clean.

Meanwhile, things are getting worse between Amy and Sam. Amy calls Sam out for spending so much time with the Unicorns when she supposedly came to town to hang out with Amy. Sam pulls a Gretchen Weiners, basically saying it’s not her fault that she’s popular and Amy isn’t. Oooh, none for Sam Williams, ‘bye. When Elizabeth tells Amy what the Unicorns have planned, Amy wants a front-row seat.

Before everyone goes to the mall for the radio show, Mrs. Sutton calls Sam’s parents to solidify her travel plans. She and Amy are shocked to learn that Sam never had permission to visit Sweet Valley – she ran away from home. Her little sister has been sick, and Sam got fed up with not getting enough attention, so she jetted. The Williamses are on their way to collect their daughter, and Mrs. Sutton, Amy, and Elizabeth agree not to tell Sam, in case she tries to bolt.

Now Elizabeth and Amy don’t feel as good about humiliating Sam. They’re just not sure how to warn her without letting her know what they know about her. Elizabeth comes up with a plan, and with some help from Steven, they get Dave to welcome Sam onto his show and talk about bland topics like her time in Sweet Valley. There’s no mention of Melody Power, and no indication that Sam has told any lies.

The angry Unicorns tell Sam all about their plan. She gets upset, and Amy and Elizabeth comfort her, which surprises Sam. They all go back to the Suttons’, where Sam’s parents have already arrived. The family makes up, and Sam learns that her sister’s going to be okay. She and Amy also make up, though I’m not sure Sam is ever mentioned again.

The B-plot is about how Jessica wants to win the competition to name Dave Carlquist’s new radio show. She’s submitted a bunch of lame entries with names like “Teen Talk.” Very creative, Jess. The competition winner gets to have a big party at the new teen club, Jupiter. Jessica is sure that Dave is hot, and she’s desperate to meet him. Fortunately, she has an excuse to hang around the mall, where Dave will be hosting a live show – Steven has joined the radio club at school and is helping put together the show.

But whenever Jess stops by, she just encounters Steven and his nerdy friend Buddy. Jess can’t be bothered to give Buddy the time of day. Guess what? Buddy is Dave! Maybe Jessica should have been nicer to him. Elizabeth ends up winning the contest with the inspired entry “The Awesome Hour.” Elizabeth, no. She feels bad that Jessica didn’t win, so she says she’ll let Jess help throw their party at Jupiter. Yes, let’s reward Jess even though she didn’t do anything.

Thoughts: The cover of this book advertises “more pages, more fun.” Well, it’s half right.

“How great can she be if she’s Amy Sutton’s friend?” asks the girl whose sister is Amy’s best friend.

“Do you mean Sam is stretching the truth a little bit? Is that so important?” First of all, Elizabeth, Jess is accusing her of straight up lying, not “stretching the truth.” And second, since when are you okay with anything other than 100% complete honesty?

July 25, 2015

The X-Files 1.7, Ghost in the Machine: Does Not Compute

Posted in TV tagged , at 2:15 pm by Jenn

"I can assure you I acquired this by legal means, Scully. Just don't ask any questions"

“I can assure you I acquired this by legal means, Scully. Just don’t ask any questions”

Summary: At the Eurisko World Headquarters in Crystal City, Virginia (hey, that’s near me!), a guy named Brad fights with a higher-up about how the higher-up is killing the company. Later, the higher-up, Benjamin Drake, is watched as he types up a press release discussing Brad’s termination. A project called COS is also being terminated.

Drake goes into his bathroom, where the sink is overflowing. Before he can unclog it, the phone rings. The call is just a recording telling him what time it is. The door swings shut, and when Drake tries to unlock it, he’s electrocuted. A computer labeled COS (central operating system) takes in the scene and intones, “File deleted.”

Over at FBI headquarters, an agent named Jerry reconnects with Mulder, who he used to work with in the violent crimes division. He buys Mulder and Scully lunch and tells them about Drake’s death. He’s recommended them for the group that’s investigating. Mulder declines, since he and Scully have X-Files to deal with, but Jerry badly needs their help.

Mulder and Scully head to Eurisko as Scully wonders why Mulder left violent crimes. He jokes that he’s a pain to work with. He adds that Jerry got in a lot of trouble for misplacing evidence, which delayed the capture of a killer and led to the maiming of a federal judge. In the elevator, a robotic voice narrates the journey until the elevator stops. Scully calls for help, but the elevator starts up again. Meanwhile, a camera scans Scully and pulls up her phone number.

Jerry determines that Drake’s door’s electricity was screwed with; the servo switch changed the grounding. Claude Peterson, the building systems engineer, reports that it would be difficult to mess with manually. Mulder asks if Peterson could have done it, but Peterson says he just monitors the building to make sure everything’s working properly. The COS takes care of everything. Mulder asks about the phone system, which the COS also monitors. Mulder has noticed that the phone is off the hook – maybe Drake got a phone call before he died.

The agents go back to headquarters for a meeting, but Mulder misplaces his notes. They meet with the rest of the investigators on the Drake case, and Jerry suggests that Drake was killed by a “sociopathic game-player.” Scully realizes that Jerry’s reading from the profile Mulder worked up. Jerry continues that the call reporting the time came from someone in the Eurisko building. Someone was setting up a trap.

After the meeting, Mulder confronts Jerry for taking his work. Jerry reminds Mulder that he asked for help; this is just the way Mulder’s going to help. After speaking with Peterson, Scully tells Mulder that there’s only one person who could have messed with the servo on the door: Brad. Mulder thinks he’s a pretty obvious suspect, what with his recent firing.

Mulder and Scully head to Brad’s huge house, where Brad isn’t at all surprised to see them. He blathers about Eurisko (which means “I discover things”) and how Drake was a “power-hungry opportunist”). Brad’s COS was a very advanced security system. He hates that Drake didn’t recognize its brilliance. Scully wonders if Brad could have used it to cause trouble. Of course he could have – he designed it. But he’s more into challenges than murder.

Scully goes home and types up a field report, wondering if Brad is really a genius. All she knows for sure is that he likes games and had a motive to kill Drake. But if he’s so smart, how can they catch him? As Scully gets ready for bed, her computer turns itself back on and transmits her report to the COS, accompanied by those delightful sounds primitive modems used to make.

At headquarters the next day, Scully listens to tapes of Brad talking about wanting to expand Eurisko through Zen and other eastern philosophies. Jerry visits to admit to Mulder that he screwed up. He’s desperate to redeem himself after what happened on his last case. Using a program to study Brad’s speech patterns, Scully determines that his voice was used for the recording in the call Drake received before he died. Scully thinks this is proof that Brad killed Drake.

Mulder lets Jerry go off alone to make sure Brad doesn’t go anywhere before they can arrest him. Over at Brad’s house, the man in question is trying to hack something. After many unsuccessful attempts, he leaves, followed by Jerry. They end up at Eurisko, where Brad gains access to the COS. He’s surprised to hear it talking to him, since it’s not supposed to have a voice synthesizer. The COS won’t tell him his level of access.

Brad sees Jerry on the elevator security camera and asks the COS why the elevator’s taking him up so high. The COS won’t tell him, so Brad tries to override the system. The COS goes haywire and Jerry gets stuck between floors. Then the elevator plummets as Brad watches helplessly. “Program executed,” the COS reports.

Later, Mulder watches footage of Jerry’s fatal elevator ride, as well as footage of Brad trying to override the COS. He tells Scully that he doesn’t think Brad is the killer. He had no reason to go back to Eurisko; if he wanted to destroy evidence, he would take care not to be seen by security cameras. Scully announces that Brad signed a confession.

Mulder hurries over to Brad’s house, but he doesn’t have high enough clearance to enter. He meets with Deep Throat instead, asking why Brad is being investigated by the Department of Defense. Deep Throat reports that Brad turned down a number of contracts that involved weapons applications. Instead, he focused on artificial intelligence. He created the program used by the first computer to win a chess game. Now, it looks like he’s allowed computers to think.

Mulder visits Brad in jail, asking why he would confess to crimes he didn’t commit. Brad compares himself to Robert Oppenheimer, who always regretted sharing his work with the government after it was used to develop atomic bombs. Mulder points out that the COS could kill again. If Brad wants to stay put, he needs to tell Mulder how to destroy his work.

Mulder tells Scully that the COS killed Drake out of self-preservation, since the program was going to be terminated. Mulder wants to know why the government is so interested in Brad’s work. Scully thinks he’s traumatized over Jerry’s death, and he should talk to someone. Mulder goes back to see Brad, bringing him a laptop so he can destroy the COS.

The COS calls Scully, who only hears modem sounds. She runs to her computer and finds it transmitting her report again. She makes a call to find out who’s accessing her computer, then heads to Eurisko, where Mulder has just arrived. They use Brad’s license plate to trick the COS into giving them access to the building, but the COS is smart enough to know that Brad’s not really there, so it drops a security gate on their car.

Mulder and Scully are still able to get into the building, but since they can’t take the elevator without being detected, they have to climb 30 flights of stairs. The lights go out on the 29th floor. Mulder’s ready with a flashlight, but he can’t open an unlocked door, so they’re stuck in the stairwell with a security camera watching them. They find a vent, and Mulder boosts Scully up into a duct to open the door from the other side. But first, Peterson finds Mulder.

Scully crawls through the duct, which keeps getting windier. Eventually she loses her grip and falls, getting sucked toward a giant fan. (It’s like that scene in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, but down instead of up.) Peterson gives Mulder access to the COS so he can use Brad’s override orders and introduce a virus to the system. Just as he’s about to, Peterson pulls a gun on him. He’s really with the Defense Department and has been trying to override the system for two years.

Fortunately, Scully comes to Mulder’s rescue, but now she has to decide who to listen to: Mulder, who wants to destroy the COS, or Peterson, who warns that she’ll be messing with a super-important investigation. Scully sides with Mulder, of course, and he’s able to destroy the COS. “‘Bye,” it says as it’s dying, which is funnier than it should be.

Mulder meets with Deep Throat again, complaining that the government hasn’t released Brad yet. They want him to work for them. Deep Throat points out that Brad confessed to two murders, and Mulder destroyed the only evidence that could have cleared him. Oops! There’s nothing Mulder could have done for Brad, other than let the killer COS survive. Deep Throat is sure the system is dead, but as it’s being dismantled, it comes alive again. Spooky!

Thoughts: A computer system that advanced and it killed someone with a door? Sure, okay.

Suddenly Deep Throat is okay with meeting Mulder downtown in broad daylight? He’s not very good at this spy thing.

Ahhh, modem sounds. Definitely a ’90s relic.

BH90210 9.21, I Wanna Reach Right Out and Grab Ya: Run, Dr. Martin! Run for Your Freedom!

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , at 1:35 pm by Jenn

This seems kind of out of character, but it's still funny

This seems kind of out of character, but it’s still funny

Summary: Dylan, Gina, Kelly, David, and Matt are at the Peach Pit, talking about how Dylan and Matt hustled an ex-client of Matt’s at a pool hall the previous night. Kelly suggests scamming some kids out of their lunch money next. Gina mentions that she’s going to hang out with Oksana Baiul, who she used to train with. Dylan thinks he and Matt should take their girlfriends to the pool hall that night, I guess so they can show off their coolness.

David recognizes another Peach Pit patron as Sonny Sharp, one of his favorite radio DJs. Sonny’s surprised to hear so much praise. David invites Sonny to go on the air with him, and though Sonny says he’ll come, he’s clearly not interested. Kelly feels strange about Dylan and Matt hanging out, as do I, since Matt has no idea that Dylan and Kelly slept together in Mexico.

Donna has dinner with her bickering parents, who are impressed with how mature and successful she’s become. Then they ruin the moment by announcing that they’re separating. Donna turns her anxiety over the revelation into a cleaning spree, telling Noah she’s trying to keep herself busy. She’s sure her mother’s to blame for the split. She adds that Felice had an affair. Noah urges Donna to talk to her parents about her feelings.

Steve and Janet chat with an 11-year-old genius named Peter who they’re writing an article about. He’s so smart that he’s on his way to college.) Steve wonders if the kid knows anything outside of academia, like who the Lakers are. “I’m sorry you have to work with such a dullard,” Peter tells Janet. Steve thinks it’s horrible that Peter isn’t allowed to do kid things. Janet thinks Steve’s jealous.

Gina meets with Oksana’s assistant, who reveals that Oksana isn’t in town after all. Also, she and Gina never made plans to hang out – Gina’s going to be house-sitting for the Olympian. Sonny does David’s show while Gina meets up with Dylan, Kelly, and Matt at the pool hall. Their hustle targets from the previous night show up, wanting revenge. Dylan and Matt get in a fistfight with them while Kelly and Gina hide under a pool table.

David’s station manager, Rick, slams him for bringing Sonny on the show and boring everyone. Sonny takes that as his cue to leave. Next door, Donna tells Felice not to be selfish and fight Dr. Martin over their belongings. She brings up Felice’s affair, accusing her of being to blame for the separation. Felice says that Dr. Martin has been shutting her out for the past two months. He’s the one who wanted to separate.

Peter’s mother thanks Steve and Janet for their article, since it got her son a lot of publicity. She asks about a magic show coming up at the After Dark, mentioning that Peter’s very interested in magic because he sees it as a brainteaser. Janet offers to take him to the show. As Dr. Martin moves his things out of the house, with help from a midlife-crisis-mobile, Donna and Noah arrive. Donna wonders if her father is leaving to be with another woman. Dr. Martin says there’s no real reason for his request for the separation.

Gina takes Kelly, Matt, and Dylan out in Oksana’s car, talking about how close she and Oksana are. Matt’s skeptical that they’re really friends, so Gina invites them over to the house. But Oksana’s assistant tracks her down to yell at her for not taking care of the skater’s fish. She reveals that Oksana doesn’t even like Gina; she just feels sorry for her. “Are you mediocre at everything you do, or is the list complete at house-sitting and skating?” the assistant asks.

Donna and Felice meet with the Martins’ priest at the beach apartment so Donna can ask him to counsel her parents. Felice is willing to try, but she doesn’t think Dr. Martin will submit. Dr. Martin comes over but immediately leaves when he realizes what’s going on. He slams Donna for not respecting his privacy.

Steve and Janet get Peter a backstage visit with the star of the magic show, Dr. Van Fertle. He’s also a hypnotist, and he tries to hypnotize Peter to get him to believe it can be done. As Peter’s leaving, Van Fertle tells him, “You’re nothing but a dumb kid.” David and Sonny are at the show, and David mentions that he learned that Sonny isn’t working at a radio station as a DJ – he works in a music library. Sonny says his best years are behind him, as everyone keeps telling him.

The magic show begins, and either Van Fertle is horrible or he pretends to be as part of his character. He brings Kelly on stage and hypnotizes her as Matt tries to cheer up Gina. He urges her to stop trying to compete with everyone. Van Fertle tells Kelly he’s going to ask her questions she must give truthful answers to. He asks which of her suitors she’d like to be stuck with on a deserted island. Kelly answers Dylan. Afterward, she has no memory of the trick, but Dylan, Gina, and Matt certainly do.

Once Kelly figures out what happened, she tells Matt that she probably said Dylan’s name because he was the last person she saw before she went on stage. Matt’s still not happy. Gina’s even less thrilled, slapping Kelly when she tries to explain things. Steve and Janet take Peter to the Peach Pit, where he acts like a typical annoying kid and can no longer calculate square roots. Janet figures out that Van Fertle’s hypnotism “broke him.” Steve’s like, “Yay, I have someone to play with!”

Gina tries to leave, but Oksana’s car has a flat tire. A guy offers to help her out, and when Gina resists, he pulls out a knife and tries to kidnap her. Dylan and Kelly come out but don’t see anyone. Kelly thinks Gina made up the attack to get attention. Noah takes David and Sonny backstage, betting David $20 that he can’t use one of Van Fertle’s contraptions to make himself disappear. David gets locked inside and sends Sonny back to the booth to continue his show so he doesn’t get in trouble. Turns out it was a trick to get him back on the air.

While Donna wonders if Kelly really does want to be with Dylan, Noah meets up with Dr. Martin on a golf course, wanting to know why Dr. Martin is throwing away his whole life. Dr. Martin recently lost a friend, and that combined with his stroke made him want to do more interesting things. Felice wasn’t game, so Dr. Martin decided they were too different. Noah points out that she might change her mind if she knew what Dr. Martin was going through. Dylan learns that someone has been attacking women around the city, so Gina’s story is true after all.

Steve and Peter play at an arcade while Janet sets up a meeting with Van Fertle to undo his hypnosis. Steve thinks they should leave Peter alone – he can do awesome genius things when he’s older. Janet reveals that she was similar to Peter when she was a child, but she didn’t pursue anything big. She hopes Peter doesn’t end up with regrets like she did. Steve thinks they should encourage him to be happy. Peter says something physics-y to another kid at the arcade, making Janet realize that the hypnosis didn’t take after all.

Kelly and Matt make up, and I’m pretty sure I type that for every episode. Felice breaks down in front of Donna and Noah, wondering what she might have done to drive Dr. Martin away. He arrives and promises that there’s nothing she did wrong. He wishes he’d communicated with her more. Now he’s willing to go to counseling and try to work things out with Felice.

Kelly apologizes to Gina for not believing her about the attack, and for what happened when she was hypnotized. Gina laments that she doesn’t have Oksana’s life. Kelly urges her to let go of not fulfilling her dreams; if she doesn’t, she’ll never be happy. Gina asks her to promise to let Dylan go. Peter admits that he faked his hypnosis, then tells his mother he doesn’t want to go to college yet. She’s very understanding, easily respecting his wishes.

Sonny’s turn on David’s show turned out to be good for the station, and Rick wants to give him his own show. Sonny’s grateful to David for pushing him to go back to what he loves. While Gina and Dylan make up (I think that happens in every episode, too), Kelly can’t stop herself from spying on the couple. Dylan sees her and suddenly isn’t so content with his current girlfriend.

Thoughts: Sonny Sharp is played by famous DJ Shadoe Stevens. Did you know he’s actress Amber Stevens‘ father?

Jennie Garth directed this episode. It’s not that great, but good for her.

We’ve now seen Felice eating at the Peach Pit at least twice. It still makes no sense to me. What does she even eat there?

Van Fertle calls for an intermission after one trick. I would ask for my money back.

Kelly only had her exes and Matt to choose from for the island question, so I can’t blame her for picking Dylan. Who else would she want to be stuck on an island with? Brandon?

I can’t decide which triangle is most annoying: Kelly/Matt/Dylan, Kelly/Dylan/Brandon, or Kelly/Brenda/Dylan.

July 21, 2015

SVU #40, Private Jessica: Dismissed!

Posted in books tagged , , , at 6:11 pm by Jenn

Why is Pink yelling at Jessica?

Why is Pink yelling at Jessica?

Summary: At the end of the last book, Tom had just suffered a medical crisis. It turns out he’s allergic to myrrh and had a reaction when Tish used it during an aromatherapy session. Where do you even get myrrh? Oh, wait, they’re in New York. You can get anything there. I’m not sure of the point of this development – it doesn’t affect anything in the story, since Elizabeth and Tom weren’t going to have sex anyway. It gets wrapped up quickly and isn’t mentioned again.

Elizabeth continues with her play rehearsals, which are getting worse and worse by the minute because her female lead, Hildy, is insane and Elizabeth has no idea how to actually be a director. The only good thing about the experience is that Liz gets to hang out with mega-hunk movie-star Vince.

Meanwhile, Tom keeps looking for a job. I can’t imagine there are many summer internships that haven’t already been filled. Tom is so desperate for a job that it’s make him dumber; he asks for a job at one shop before even realizing it’s a tattoo parlor. Then he goes to a comic-book store, where the other employees mock his lack of knowledge like they’re on the Internet and he’s a girl. He drops by a public-access production office, but the place is a mess and no one cares about the work. He can’t believe no one thinks this is important. It’s public access, Tom. You’re not going to get any awards there.

Things get even worse for Tom when he starts to see how much time Elizabeth has been spending with Vince. They run into him at a restaurant, and Vince announces that he’s leaving his play because Claire is almost as insane as Hildy. Tom’s annoyed when Vince gives Elizabeth his phone number. But Vince doesn’t quit – a newspaper has mentioned the play, and how Vince will be proving that he’s more than just an action star, so he’s afraid he’ll get criticized if he drops out.

Out on the town again, Tom has a disastrous meeting with an employment agency, then accidentally runs into a PA from a Maury/Jerry Springer/trainwreck-type show called Tease-n-Tell. The PA spills the coffee she was delivering, decides it’s the last straw in her horrible job, and quits. Tom immediately takes her job, even though he’ll be working for a show that’s not exactly the kind of award-winning journalism he was hoping to be a part of. He’s so embarrassed about the job that he doesn’t tell Liz where he’s working, instead saying it’s a “classy cable news magazine currently in development.”

Elizabeth’s male lead, Ken (not Matthews), is also fed up with his job, and he quits the play. For some reason, there’s no understudy and no immediate move to recast. I feel like this whole fellowship is not quite on the up-and-up. Where’s the dramaturg? Who’s actually running things? How does Elizabeth think she can put on a successful performance with only 50% of her cast?

Tom’s show learns of Vince’s appearance in Claire’s play and decides to do a story on it. Tom, despite being a lowly PA, is somehow assigned to take a camera crew to the theater to get some rehearsal footage. I’m not sure when his PA job went from taking coffee orders to doing actual work that will affect a TV show. I assume the ghostwriter doesn’t know what a PA actually does, not to mention a PA who’s only there for the summer and has only been on the job for ten minutes. But it’s just an excuse for Tom to get involved in Elizabeth’s plotline.

Tom takes a crew to the theater, where he tries very, very hard not to let Elizabeth find out what show they’re from. Tom’s embarrassed to have to be around naked people, including Vince, who at least keeps his pants on. I don’t know, I kind of get the impression that Tom isn’t as uncomfortable around half-naked Vince as he lets on. But that would be a whole different book.

Tom realizes that his story about Claire’s play might be bad for his relationship with Elizabeth – I guess because she’s friends with Vince? And Vince might come off looking bad? Or just because he didn’t mention to her that they were going to be there? I don’t know. Tom tries to get the story pulled, which is hilarious, because no TV show is going to cut a segment so some college student doesn’t have a fight with his girlfriend. Especially since the segment is supposedly going to grab big ratings. I’m sure.

Vince finds out about the segment and accuses Liz of selling him out. Meanwhile, Tom quits his job because Tease-n-Tell doesn’t fit with his views on ethics in journalism. Did he think he’d be doing segments on seeing-eye dogs or children running lemonade stands to raise money for cancer research? He’s lucky he didn’t get “I Slept With My Daughter’s Boyfriend – Is He My Baby’s Father? Or Is It One of the Aliens Who Abducted Me Last Week?”

Elizabeth wonders if things would have been different if she’d slept with Tom – he would have been more loyal and not done something to hurt Vince. Honey, no. Tom would still be a doof. The two of them fight, and since Liz can’t get in touch with Jessica (more on that later), she turns to Vince for comfort. They hang out in Central Park and start goofing around, then kiss. Elizabeth realizes she still loves Tom, so she tells Vince they can’t do anything. Vince is like, “Do you have an identical twin I could hook up with instead?” Elizabeth: “Actually….”

Elizabeth and Tom make up, as they always do. And then Hildy quits Elizabeth’s play to take over Vince’s role in Claire’s play, since he decided to quit after all. So now Elizabeth has no cast for her play, which everyone pretty much hated anyway. I’m sure whoever gave her the fellowship really appreciates all of this.

In Florida, Jessica’s facing her boxing match against Pruitt. Even the chance to interview with a top security company doesn’t make her feel much better – she could be covered in bruises by then. Jess at least puts some effort into getting ready for the match, and is smart enough to realize that Harlan is a moron – he thinks Jessica and Pruitt are fighting over him. Wow.

While cleaning up in Pruitt’s office, Jessica finds a key in a drawer and immediately thinks it unlocks something super-important and secret. If she can find it, she can use it to get Pruitt to call off the fight. Okay, Jess. Whatever you say. Jessica’s friends assure her that she’ll be fine, and that they have something in the works, but they won’t tell Jess what it is. She isn’t sure she can trust them.

She’s even less sure when she uses Pruitt’s key to open a file cabinet containing information on all the recruits. With the exception of Jessica, everyone there has a record. Jess is like, “I’m friends with criminals! This is not cool!” I’m curious as to how she thought her partner from the obstacle course in the last book attained her knowledge of how to hotwire a car. Harvard? Pruitt has also circled the names of a few people who showed skills at sharpshooting. Please tell me this program is actually a training ground for spies, and that Jessica’s stumbled across some sort of Manchurian Candidate plot.

At the boxing match, Jessica manages to stay on her feet and avoid getting punched by doing some dance moves. Partway through the match, her friends put lead in her gloves, so when Jessica gets in some good punches, Pruitt goes down. But someone rats out the women, and Jessica and her friends get expelled. They’re lucky they don’t get arrested. There go Jessica’s hopes of being a security guard to the stars. (And there goes Ned and Alice’s tuition money.)

The women head to the airport and wait around to catch flights home. No one seems particularly upset about the discharge, even though I would think the ones with records would have been happy to find a program that could find them jobs. Strangely, all four of the discharged women were on scholarships. Why would the program be so eager to bring in criminals? Ooh, maybe they’re planning a big heist. Before Jessica can give that much thought, she decides to head to New York to hang out with Elizabeth instead of going home to Sweet Valley.

Meanwhile, Elizabeth has learned that Jessica was kicked out, and she’s frantic to get a hold of her sister. Tom offers to fly them both to Florida to pick up Jess. Again, I bet the fellowship people love that Liz is going to skip town while she’s supposed to be working. When Tom and Elizabeth get to the airport, Jessica has just arrived, so the trip to Florida is a moot point. I hope the tickets were refundable.

Vince happens to be at the airport, too, and the second he meets Jessica, they’re into each other. I mean, of course. What is a Wakefield if she’s not adored? So now Vince is going to stay in New York. I bet his agent is really sick of him. He and the fellowship people should get together.

Thoughts: Only Jessica would find a key in a drawer and automatically assume it’s to something super-secret.

Ken quits Elizabeth’s play, and Vince wants to quit Claire’s play. So…why doesn’t Vince do Elizabeth’s play? Is that too easy a solution? Am I missing something?

“Why would they give us all scholarships and then take it all back?” I don’t know about the first part, but as to the second part: Because you committed a crime. No one in on it seems too regretful, either. That’s disturbing.

I keep wanting to spell Pruitt’s name Pruit, because I got used to spelling it that way for Ray on Beverly Hills, 90210. I guess Pruitt’s mama coud afford more than one T.

“Some awesomely cute guy had insisted on giving her his seat in first class.” Jessica is so awesome that strangers just give her stuff. Ugh.

July 19, 2015

The X-Files 1.6, Shadows: The Shocking Truth

Posted in TV tagged at 2:21 pm by Jenn

A strange variation on the spoon-is-an-airplane trick

A strange variation on the spoon-is-an-airplane trick

Summary: A woman cries in an office at HTG Industrial Technologies in Philadelphia. Her name is Lauren, and she’s sad about the suicide of a co-worker. As she starts to leave the office, a plaque on her desk moves by itself. She decides to take it with her. In an alley outside the building, she’s grabbed by two people. Two hours later, a couple of homeless teenagers start to climb the fire escape to a balcony. They’re scared away when a man’s body falls out of the building.

Mulder and Scully are summoned to Bethesda Naval Hospital by people they realize aren’t from the FBI. They view two bodies, both of which have experienced heavy electricostatic charges. Scully’s surprised to hear that the men died six hours ago, since their body temperatures are still normal. Mulder asks for more information, but the people who summoned them aren’t very forthcoming. A medical examiner tells them that the men’s throats were crushed, but seemingly from the inside.

Scully wonders why they’ve been called in, since the summoners have clearly already examined the bodies. One of them asks if the agents have ever seen something like this at the X-Files. They haven’t. The summoners dismiss them, asking them to deny this visit if they’re ever questioned. Mulder’s like, “Speaking of denial, what’s up with you guys?”

As Mulder and Scully leave, she accuses him of lying; he’s seen something like this before. “I willfully participated in a campaign of misinformation,” he says. Mulder blames the men’s deaths on psychokinesis. “You mean how Carrie got even at the prom?” Scully asks with amusement. She doesn’t know how they’ll investigate, since they don’t have any evidence to work with. Mulder disagrees – he used his glasses to take the men’s fingerprints.

The next morning, Lauren goes to work as usual, finding nothing about her attack in the newspaper. She hopes to talk to her new boss, Mr. Dorlund, so it seems the dead co-worker was her previous boss, Howard. Dorlund’s assistant tries to delay a meeting between them. Her coffee cup objects, shaking and spilling coffee. Dorlund hears the commotion, and Lauren takes advantage of his arrival to ask for a minute alone.

Lauren gives her two-weeks’ notice, but Dorlund doesn’t want her to leave just because Howard is dead. He tells her how close he was to Howard, and how badly the company needs her. She doesn’t respond, so he tells her he won’t let her leave. Suddenly his bracelet tightens, cutting off his circulation. Lauren’s like, “This is too weird for me – I’m out.” Dorlund decides it’s a good idea to let her quit.

Mulder and Scully ID the bodies as Iranian terrorists working with a group in Philadelphia. The agents head to Philly and talk to a police officer about the body that fell from the building. There’s an ATM nearby, which means there’s a security camera nearby. The agents study the footage and see Lauren’s attack by the two dead men. There’s also a blur in the background, which could either belong to a third person…or to something supernatural.

The agents head over to see Lauren, who’s packing up her house. She claims that she’s never seen the two dead men, but Scully tells her they were her attackers. Lauren isn’t too surprised to hear that they’re dead. She notices the blur in the background of a surveillance photo and says she doesn’t know who it is.

The agents leave, skeptical that Lauren could have fought off and/or killed her attackers on her own. Mulder’s car starts going crazy, as if something else is controlling it. It crashes into another car, though no one’s hurt. Lauren watches the crash from her house, and Mulder notices her watching.

The car is taken to a mechanic, who finds nothing out of the ordinary. The headlights are on, but only because of a strong electromagnetic charge. Mulder thinks Lauren is the key – she was present at the car accident and the men’s deaths. She might not even know she’s capable of psychokinetic activity. Mulder’s other suggestion is a poltergeist, which makes Scully tease, “They’re heeeeeere.” Scully thinks the real mystery is who Lauren’s working with. When Mulder takes his suit jacket off the hood of the car, he gets an electric shock.

Mulder and Scully run a background check on Lauren, who’s clean except for having credit card debt. They follow her to her office and see her getting upset that Howard’s parking space is being given away. They research Howard and realize that Lauren was his assistant. That means three people associated with her have died in the past month.

Next the agents follow Lauren to the cemetery, where she puts flowers on Howard’s grave. They notice the grave of a three-year-old right next to his. A groundskeeper tells them that the three-year-old, Sarah, was Howard’s daughter who drowned when he forgot to latch the gate around their pool. Mulder realizes that if Sarah had lived, she’d be Lauren’s age now.

Mulder develops some surveillance photos of Lauren while Scully writes up a report on Lauren. She’s estranged from her family and had a strong relationship with Howard. Scully wonders if that relationship led to his suicide. She still thinks Lauren’s responsible and has an accomplice. She and Mulder have his photos enhanced and see Howard in Lauren’s house. Scully thinks that means he’s alive, but Mulder suspects something else.

Lauren wakes up in the middle of the night when her cat hisses at something unseen. Something’s making crashing noises. Lauren goes to investigate and hears Howard saying “no” over and over, begging someone not to do something. She follows his voice to her bathroom, where blood spreads through the water in her bathtub.

Mulder and Scully visit the National Bureau of Medical Examiners, discussing whether Howard could have faked his death. Mulder claims that the only person who successfully did that was Elvis. A medical examiner named Dr. Bledsoe assures them that Howard is dead – he bled out in a bathtub. However, no identifying examinations were run, and Lauren ID’d the body.

Scully realizes that they can trace Howard’s transplanted organs to their new hosts to verify his identity. Luckily, some of his dura mater (that’s braaaaaaains) was saved because not all of his organs could be donated, due to his age. Lauren’s co-workers throw her a goodbye party, and she takes a last look around the office. Dorlund corners her in Howard’s now-empty office to say that he knows Howard told her something he shouldn’t have. If she doesn’t keep quiet, she’ll be in trouble. Lauren accuses him of having Howard killed – he told her so.

Lauren escapes the office, quickly calling Mulder. Scully tells Mulder that the dura mater proves that Howard is dead. The agents head to Lauren’s house, but two other people arrive first, ready to kill Lauren and make it look like she committed suicide in the bathtub. There’s a bunch of psychokinetic activity, and the lights all pop out. One of the attackers is pinned by a table, and a swirl of wind crushes the other attacker’s throat, then beats up the first one.

Mulder and Scully arrive to hear Lauren screaming. The first attacker is floating in the air, being choked by something invisible. Now it seems pretty clear to the agents that Lauren is killing people psychokinetically. They take her in for questioning, but she won’t talk. The summoners from the beginning of the episode pull the agents out of the room, demanding to know what they’ve learned so far. Scully asks for what they’ve learned first.

The summoners reveal that they think HTG sold parts to the terrorist group the two dead men were part of. Those parts were used to create a bomb that destroyed a Navy transport van. The summoners aren’t sure how Lauren’s connected, since Mulder and Scully’s investigation got in the way of theirs. Mulder warns them to be gentle when they question Lauren, since, you know, she could crush their throats.

After the summoners try and fail to get Lauren to talk to him, they let Mulder and Scully in to tell her she can leave. Lauren finally speaks, saying she can’t go home. Mulder has figured out that Howard is watching over her. Lauren testifies that she and Howard had a good relationship. Howard was distraught when he learned of HTG’s connection to the bombing, and she thought that’s why he killed himself. But Howard showed her how Dorlund had him killed to protect HTG’s deal with the terrorists.

Lauren wants to leave town to make all the recent events go away. Scully urges her to show Howard what he meant to her by helping expose HTG’s illegal acts. Lauren won’t be able to rest until Howard can. Mulder’s surprised to hear Scully talk like this, since she doesn’t believe in this stuff. “I believe that she believes,” Scully says. Her priority is bringing down Dorlund. Mulder’s annoyed that now they won’t be able to observe spectral phenomena. Scully points out that they’re going after something tangible rather than shadows.

Mulder, Scully, and the summoners gather a group of FBI agents to raid HTG for evidence of its connection to the terrorists. Lauren’s coming along to direct them to possible hiding spots. This means Lauren has to face Dorlund again. But the raid doesn’t turn up anything, which means the summoners’ year-long investigation has been a waste.

Mulder tells Lauren they can leave, but she’s desperate to bring down Dorlund. When he turns nasty on her, she attacks him with a letter opener. Cue the psychokinetic activity. There’s a big swirl of wind in the office, and the letter opener approaches Dorlund on its own. Instead of stabbing him, it cuts open the wallpaper, exposing a hidden computer disk. Looks like the evidence was in the office after all.

As Lauren finishes packing up to leave town, Scully and Mulder tell her that Dorlund and HTG are going to trial. She promises to come back to testify against them. Mulder asks Scully if she believes in an afterlife. “I’d settle for a life in this one,” she says. He decides that he wants to see the Liberty Bell, though Scully says it’s not worth it. Sometime later, Lauren starts a new job in Omaha, putting Howard’s plaque on her desk. When her new boss criticizes her, the desk shakes. Oh, Howard.

Thoughts: I’ll have to use Mulder’s glasses trick the next time I need to…um…solve a crime? I guess? Whatever, it was clever.

I do my recaps on a pretty old computer that sometimes flashes when it gets cranky. It started flashing right when Mulder’s car went crazy, and it freaked me out. Not cool, computer.

The headline of the article about Howard’s death: “Howard Graves Suicide Creates Shock.” Get it? Shock? Very funny, show writers.

I liked the twist in this episode – that Lauren wasn’t doing anything, but that Howard was trying to protect her. Sometimes angry ghosts are angry for a good reason.

July 18, 2015

BH90210 9.20, Fortune Cookie: Not That Guy

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 1:37 pm by Jenn

Does David really think this will come across as real? The Sphinx looks like a cartoon!

Does David really think this will come across as real? The Sphinx looks like a cartoon!

Summary: Matt is meeting with David and Claudia to caution them not to go through with their spur-of-the-moment plan to get married so she can stay in the country. He lists everything they would need to “prove” they have a real relationship, and the possible penalties if they get caught. Also, it could take up to two years for Claudia to get her green card.

At the After Dark, Noah and Gina discuss a raffle they’re holding; the prize is dinner with some singer named Cole Younger. Noah tells Gina that Dylan’s going to rig the drawing so she wins. Instead, Dylan gives the prize to Kelly. Gina cries foul, complaining that this means Dylan likes Kelly more. Kelly thinks she should relax.

The next day, Kelly helps Matt film a commercial for his law firm, though he feels like he’s hustling. He confides that he’s feeling out of place with his job. Kelly thinks he’s upset about Dylan rigging the raffle, so she assures him that it means nothing. Steve hired a psychic at the Beverly Beat, wanting to publish some sort of crazy prediction, but she hasn’t panned out. As he fires her, she predicts that, by the end of the week, Steve will have trouble performing and will dress in pink.

David goes to the Walshes’ house to announce to Donna and Noah that he and Claudia are getting married. Noah’s on board with a green-card marriage, but Donna says it’s crazy. David asks her to provide a dress. Noah asks David if he loves Claudia. David says he does, looking at Donna when he says it, just for the record.

Dylan goes to the beach apartment, supposedly looking for Gina, and Kelly tells him the rigged raffle is causing problems. Dylan just wanted to give her the chance to spend time with a singer she’s always talked about liking. Gina sees them hugging and puts on her mad face.

Donna and Noah go to West Beverly High to help out with costumes for a school play. Donna’s dreading working with Ashley, who was her “big sister” when Donna was a freshman and Ashley was a senior. (Weren’t they called senior buddies?) Donna thinks Ashley doesn’t like her because she acted territorial when Donna joined the drama club. Ashley doesn’t seem to have changed.

Donna shows her design sketches to the director, Mr. Bigelow, then settles in with Noah to watch a rehearsal (they’re doing Romeo and Juliet. Donna wishes there were more inspirational teachers at the school. A tipsy Ashley starts reciting Shakespeare, then accuses Mr. Bigelow of molesting her and convincing her to keep quiet.

The psychic’s first prediction has come true, as Steve was unable to perform with Janet the night before. The second prediction comes true moments later, when Janet sees that he accidentally dyed his boxer shorts pink.

David sets up a photo studio where he and Claudia can take pictures to pretend they’ve gone on various trips together. While they’re trying to remember details of their fake honeymoon, she puts on her wedding dress and he puts on a ski parka. By the way, their first fight was over Donna’s disapproval of Claudia, and they made up when David bought her earrings.

Gina gets to the After Dark before Kelly and snags her limo to meet Cole. Dylan doesn’t realize the ruse until Gina’s already with Cole, pretending to be Kelly. Ashley visits Donna at the boutique, swearing that Mr. Bigelow really did molest her. She didn’t go to the police when she was in high school because she thought she was to blame. Now she knows it’s not, and she wants justice. She asks Donna to back her up. Donna, however, only has good memories of Mr. Bigelow.

Janet wants to skip Cole’s concert at the After Dark, hoping to help Steve overcome his performance issues. She tells him that sex isn’t the only thing that matters. Steve disagrees. With sex on the brain, Janet accidentally orders a penis colada from their waitress. “And make it a stiff one,” she adds.

Donna meets with Mr. Bigelow, who wonders why she dropped out of the drama club. He swears that Ashley’s claims are false, and he could sue her for defamation. Donna wonders why Ashley would make accusations that aren’t true. Mr. Bigelow says she was always obsessed with him, and he tried to keep his distance, but she must have taken it as rejection. Ashley’s accusations are enough to get a school board hearing, and Mr. Bigelow asks Donna to sign a petition supporting him.

Cole dedicates his first song to “Kelly,” AKA Gina, though he has to read her name off of his hand, so it probably doesn’t mean too much. Kelly realizes what happened and confronts her imposter. Gina offers to introduce her to Cole as Gina’s “homely cousin.” The next morning, Dylan goes to collect Gina from Cole’s hotel room, revealing that she’s not really Kelly. Gina refuses to leave. Dylan knocks Cole out with the door when he tries to get Dylan to leave, so many Dylan has some issues to work out.

Ashley goes back to the boutique, having learned that Donna signed the pro-Mr. Bigelow petition. She tries to remind Donna of when they worked on a production of Our Town and Mr. Bigelow kept trying to spend time alone with Donna. Ashley started a fight with Donna, accusing her of stealing Ashley’s boyfriend, in an attempt to get Donna away from Ashley and, in turn, Mr. Bigelow.

Ashley pulls out a keychain, reminding Donna that Mr. Bigelow was going to give it to her. The key on it is to Mr. Bigelow’s apartment. Donna can’t believe that Ashley stepped in to save her from a molester. Ashley asks Donna to return the favor by stepping up for her now.

Steve goes to a doctor who tells him not to worry about his performance problems. He prescribes jazz to ease his performance anxiety. Steve would prefer something medicinal, like Viagra. The doctor writes him a prescription for something else. Kelly helps Matt improve his commercial, but Matt doesn’t like the way he’s portrayed. He thinks Kelly’s trying to make him look like a rock star. If Kelly wants the rebel – Dylan – instead of the good guy, she’s free to pursue him.

David and Claudia look through all their fake wedding and vacation pictures, making Dylan believe they’re really going through with their plan. He offers to move out, but Claudia hasn’t taken any steps to move out of her own place yet. Dylan questions the photo they took in “Egypt.” Wouldn’t Immigration wonder where they got the money for all this traveling?

Steve is happy to have his prescription but worries that he still won’t be able to perform. Janet assures him that it doesn’t matter. That doesn’t help. Donna watches Chad and Holly (AKA Romeo and Juliet) rehearse, but Chad isn’t so good with the romantic stuff. Mr. Bigelow steps in to give him some guidance. Donna’s uneasy by his closeness with Holly and asks if Mr. Bigelow has ever asked her to his place. Holly is Team Bigelow and calls Donna sick for believing lies about him.

Dylan and Gina fight at his place about how he never shows emotion or concern for her. So…she slept with Cole to get a rise out of Dylan? Maybe? As he’s kicking her out, she slaps him and says she hates him. He returns the sentiment. She slaps him again, and he pushes her against the wall, trying to hold her off. This turns into kissing, which is such a dump soap thing.

Steve summons the psychic back to the newspaper, offering to triple her salary if she’ll give him a better prediction. Steve gets a call from his doctor and reports that the prescription worked. The doctor informs him that it was a placebo. Womp womp! Fortunately for the psychic, she’s already received her check. Unfortunately, Steve tells Janet to stop payment on it.

After a romp in the sack, Gina asks Dylan straight out if she’s ever cheated – even when he was in Mexico with Kelly. Dylan says no, but she she’s skeptical. David’s moving forward with everything he and Claudia need to do before they get married, but she’s decided it’s time to call it off. She’s going to go back to Venezuela. She appreciates that David would have gone through with the plan, but she knows that eventually they both would have regretted it.

Donna and Ashley corner Holly, trying to get her to admit if Mr. Bigelow has ever made any advances. She sticks to her claim that he hasn’t. But a girl working on the sets is shaken by the conversation, and Donna realizes that Mr. Bigelow assaulted her. “He said I was the only one,” the girl says.

Dylan admits to Kelly that rigging the raffle was a bad idea. He wonders what would have happened if he and Kelly hadn’t hooked up while he was dating Brenda. Kelly says they probably would have just stayed friends. The gang gathers at the Walshes’, where Ashley reports that Mr. Bigelow has been fired and the DA is pressing charges. She’s pleased that she can now move on with her life.

Kelly shows Matt the final version of his commercial, which portrays him as he really is. Everything seems to be fine with them. Claudia thanks Dylan for telling her how David really feels. Dylan had seen that they both had doubts, so he stepped in. Gina finds this attractive. Kelly tells Gina that she wants to find a way for them to stop fighting all the time, but neither has any suggestions.

David announces that he and Claudia aren’t getting married after all. She’s going to renew her visa and come back to California. She asks the gang to “keep David’s virginity intact until then.” Everyone has a good laugh at David and, hopefully, his ugly dragon shirt.

Thoughts: Chad is played by Breaking Bad‘s Aaron Paul. Mr. Bigelow is played by soap actor Leigh J. McCloskey, who was on General Hospital with Vanessa Marcil.

West Beverly must have quite a theater budget if they can have someone custom-design costumes for them. Our theater budget was something like $80.

If you’re turning your back while your fake fiancée is changing, you’re probably not in a stable enough relationship to get married.

Fun set detail in Cole’s hotel room: a champagne bottle wedged halfway into the wall. I’m impressed that it didn’t break.

July 14, 2015

SVT Super Thriller #1, The Christmas Ghost: With Many Apologies to Charles Dickens

Posted in books tagged , , at 8:14 pm by Jenn

I wish we'd gotten to see the unicorn poster

I wish we’d gotten to see the unicorn poster

Summary: The twins are at the mall, doing some pre-Christmas window shopping. They see a carousel horse for sale that reminds them of the carousel they used to ride as kids. Jessica thinks Elizabeth should put the horse on her Christmas list, but Liz has already asked for too many things. Plus, the horse is pretty pricey. Jessica decides to ask for the horse herself, even though she knows Liz would like it more. Elizabeth’s feelings are hurt.

Elizabeth, Amy, and Julie are participating in a fundraiser so the local hospital can buy a piece of equipment for their children’s ward. The local middle- and high-schoolers are holding their own mini-fundraisers to help out before the big event after Christmas. The kids have a rummage/bake sale, but the proceeds are barely a drop in the bucket. Time to start selling your plasma, kiddos!

Elizabeth learns that teenage movie star Beau Dillon is going to be in Sweet Valley in a few days. He’s known for participating in children’s charity events, so Elizabeth wonders if he’d make an appearance at Sweet Valley’s big fundraiser. She writes him a letter, even though Jessica scoffs that someone as famous as Beau Dillon will never give her the time of day. If this book took place today, Elizabeth could just hit up Beau Dillon’s Twitter and get an answer right away. Beau would come to the fundraiser, post photos of himself with cute kids, and get himself some instant good publicity. Win-win.

Liz catches Jessica searching for her Christmas presents (I’ll admit, I did this, too) in their parents’ room. She turns up the carousel horse, which upsets Liz. Girl, if you wanted it that badly, you should have asked for it. Whatever. Things start looking up for Elizabeth when Beau writes back to say he’ll stop by the Wakefields’ house the afternoon of Christmas Eve so they can talk about the fundraiser. Jessica can’t believe that he’s actually going to come.

At Lila’s Christmas party, the twins spread the news about Beau’s visit. Lila calls B.S., and Liz gets upset when Jessica doesn’t back her up. When they get home, the twins fight. Jessica says she didn’t speak up because she’s worried about staying on Lila’s good side. Elizabeth calls Jessica selfish and warns that she’ll lose all her friends if she doesn’t start being nicer to people.

The twins kind of make up in time for Beau’s visit…which doesn’t happen as planned. They wait around for him, but he doesn’t show. Eventually Elizabeth has to leave. Jessica’s fuming that her favorite actor is such a jerk. But then Beau shows up, claiming his limo broke down and he didn’t have his car phone with him. He offers to take her to lunch  the day after Christmas to make up for his lateness. Jessica’s thrilled. As Beau is leaving, he calls her Elizabeth, and Jessica realizes that he thought he was talking to Liz the whole time.

Now Jessica has a dilemma – tell Elizabeth the truth and let her have lunch with Beau, or keep quiet and have him to herself. (I’d like to state for the record that Beau is 17, so it’s not like a 40-year-old wants to go to lunch with a 12-year-old. I mean, it’s still a little weird, but less weird than it could be.) It’s Jess, though, so of course she doesn’t tell Liz that Beau showed up. Fortunately, she actually feels guilty about it. Not so guilty that she comes clean, but at least it’s something.

Jessica goes to bed feeling horrible, and thinking the purple unicorn on her new poster is judging her. It probably is. Jess notices that her lamp has changed – it now looks like the clown lamp she and Elizabeth had when they were kids. Jess hated it and purposely broke it, then pretended she was sad it was gone. The lamp changes back to Jessica’s current lamp, and she tries to sleep, but the guilt keeps her awake.

In the middle of the night, Jessica sees a little girl in her room. This is the Ghost of Christmas Past. It’s actually Jessica as a kid, and she wants to show Jess how she used to be. She takes Jessica to the carousel, where Jess sees herself and Liz playing as seven-year-olds. Instead of fighting or resenting each other, the girls get along, happy when the other is happy. Jessica sees them at school, dressed alike and wanting to do everything together. Back then, Elizabeth was her favorite person to be with, but they’re not as close as they used to be.

Jessica ends up back in bed, thinking she dreamed the whole thing, but she realizes her unicorn poster is missing. The unicorn is now hovering outside the window. What is this, Stephen King’s A Christmas Carol? The unicorn is the Ghost of Christmas Present, and it wants to take Jessica for a ride. Yeah, that seems normal. They fly to a hotel, where Jessica listens in as Beau talks about how awesome she is (though he thinks she’s Elizabeth). She feels bad that she was selfish when Liz wanted to do something charitable.

Jess and the unicorn return to the house, where the family is opening Christmas presents. Jessica’s mean to Elizabeth for no reason, and I can’t believe Ned and Alice let her get away with that, but then again…Ned and Alice. The real Jess can hear Liz’s thoughts, and she realizes how upset Elizabeth is that Beau didn’t come through for her. Next, the unicorn shows Jessica a scene from Best Friends, when Elizabeth complains to Alice that Jessica wants to join the Unicorns. The real Jess is upset that Liz was so unhappy about them growing apart.

Jessica’s back in bed again, with the unicorn back on the wall. Now it’s time for the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. She takes Jessica to the woods, where she sees herself at about 16, hanging out with a bunch of friends. She’s super-popular and everyone loves her, but they all hate her sister. The teens are putting someone through an initiation for their sorority, and waiting for the girl to make it back to them.

In the woods, Jessica comes across the initiate, who happens to look just like her. She’s gotten lost in the woods and won’t make it back in time to complete her task. After a minute, Jessica realizes that the girl is her, not Elizabeth. Liz is the popular one with all the friends. Jessica is the loser everyone hates.

The real Jessica sees herself at a basketball game and at the Dairi Burger, alone and miserable while Elizabeth is the center of attention with her friends. Jess is such a jerk that she won’t even be nice to Lois Waller, the only person considered lamer than she is. Lila uses Bruce to get revenge on Jessica for something, making him pretend he wants to go out with her. He tells her he’ll take her to a dog show, where she’ll be one of the contestants. You can do better, Patman.

The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come then takes Jessica to Elizabeth’s room, where Liz is writing in her journal. Jessica learns how miserable Elizabeth is because of Jess’ unhappiness. She wishes they were still close. Liz blames the stunt with Beau for the downfall of the twins’ relationship. Little does she know that this is one of the least harmful tricks Jess will pull in her life. In fact, knowing what we know about Jessica’s actions later in life, this is really tame.

Now that she knows that her actions can have negative effects on other people, Jessica realizes that she needs to do something to ensure she and Elizabeth don’t end up hating each other. She tries to talk to the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, who ignores her. Jess rips off the ghost’s cloak, revealing that it has no face. She starts screaming, which is totally understandable.

Jessica wakes up in bed on Christmas morning, just as her family is wondering where she is. She immediately makes up with Elizabeth and tells her what really happened with Beau. Elizabeth is so happy that Beau’s a nice guy after all that she doesn’t care what Jessica did. She also doesn’t think it would have spelled doom for the twins’ relationship. So basically, everything with the ghosts was a waste of time because Elizabeth would have gotten over it anyway. Awesome.

Jess isn’t sure if her experiences the night before were just a dream, but Alice notices scratches on her legs that Jess thinks could have only come from being in the woods. Whatever. Elizabeth gets a letter from Beau apologizing again for missing their meeting, and formally inviting her to lunch. The Wakefields open their presents, and Jessica gives Elizabeth the carousel horse. Enjoy it, Liz – that’s probably the last selfless thing she’ll ever do for you.

Thoughts: This book is amazingly dumb. I imagine that the ghostwriter wanted to do something special for Christmas but ran out of ideas and just decided to adapt A Christmas Carol for ten-year-olds. Kids, read the real thing. Watch one of the movie versions. This story has been adapted hundreds of times, and every single other version is better than this book.

“She wore a lavender sweater and black miniskirt with leggings and dangling earrings. ‘I think I look great,’ she said.” You put on a shirt and a skirt, Jessica. Calm down.

“The big chandelier was draped in mistletoe. Elizabeth giggled as she saw how the boys all avoided being caught underneath the ‘kissing’ plant.” Okay, that’s pretty funny.

I really doubt that cool teenager Steven Wakefield sings Christmas carols with his family.

This book mentions that future Jessica will try to steal Todd from Elizabeth, which we know she actually deos, so I guess Jessica doesn’t remember this book when that time comes. Way to learn, Jess!

July 12, 2015

The X-Files 1.5, The Jersey Devil: You Thought It Was a Myth? You Were Myth-Taken

Posted in TV tagged at 12:33 pm by Jenn

Aww, she just wants to dance! Let her dance!

Aww, she just wants to dance! Let her dance!

Summary: In New Jersey in 1947, a family sings “Bingo” in their car before blowing a tire. The father, Paul, starts to change it, stopping to go after his dropped flashlight as something watches from the bushes. As he goes back to the car to ask his wife to hold the light, something grabs him and drags him into the woods. Early the next day, a search party finds his body, minus his bitten-off legs. Someone spots the killer in a cave, and everyone shoots at it.

In the present day, Scully meets up with Mulder in his office, where he’s looking at a centerfold (though he claims the model had an alien encounter). Scully tells him a dead homeless man was found near Atlantic City; it sounds like his body is in the same shape as the man in 1947. Mulder makes the same connection, blaming the Jersey Devil. He also shares the fate of Paul’s killer: His autopsy showed that he’d consumed human flesh. Scully notes that the Jersey Devil is a myth. Mulder says it doesn’t matter – there’s still a killer out there.

The agents head to Atlantic City, where a medical examiner tells them the victim, Roger, was attacked by something large. The investigating detective, Thompson, doesn’t welcome the FBI’s involvement and orders the agents to leave. “What’s eating that guy?” Mulder quips. Scully thinks Mulder would react the same way in the same situation. She teases that he should have just told Thompson the killer was the Jersey Devil.

Mulder suggests that they take advantage of their time in Atlantic City to hit some casinos. Scully declines, since she needs to go home for her godson’s birthday. Instead of gambling, Mulder uses a casino’s phone book to call the New Jersey Parks Service. A ranger takes him to the park where Roger’s body was found, telling him that most people steer clear of the woods because of the Jersey Devil myth. The ranger has seen enough weird stuff not to dismiss the myth. In fact, he once had an encounter with a creature that fits the description of other sightings.

Back in D.C., Scully goes to the birthday party, complimenting her friend for being so good at handling chaos. Her friend thinks Scully’s better equipped for it since she made it through the FBI academy. She also thinks Scully and Mulder should hook up and have babies. All in good time, friend of Scully. In New Jersey, Mulder decides to walk back to his motel, heading through the woods alone. In D.C., Scully’s friend hints that she should get to know the divorced father of one of the party guests.

Mulder makes it out of the woods alive, ending up at a mission. He asks the homeless people there if they knew Roger. A man takes him to a hiding spot in an alley, where he’s hidden a drawing he found in a jacket pocket. The drawing is off a large creature the man claims he once saw in the alley. He claims the police know about the creature. Mulder offers the man his motel room for the night, staying in the alley to wait for the creature. When it arrives, Mulder tries to chase it, but the police show up and scare it off. They think Mulder’s a crazy homeless man.

The police take Mulder to the station, where Thompson threatens to go to the DA to get Mulder officially taken off the case. Mulder thinks Thompson has shirked his responsibility to get the creature off the streets. He’s more concerned with tourism than protecting the people who live in the city. Mulder shows Thompson the drawing, warning that Thompson will be responsible if a tourist is killed. Thompson continues to ignore his crazy theories.

Mulder calls Scully in D.C., and she makes the long drive back to Atlantic City to bail him out of lockup. He tells her about the creature he saw, though Scully thinks he should be more worried about his trouble with local law enforcement. Mulder wonders why the creature didn’t come after him, since it likes to eat humans. Scully brushes off his Jersey Devil talk, wanting to get back home for her date with the guy from the party. Unlike Mulder, she has a life.

Mulder goes back with Scully, and they meet with a professor at the University of Maryland to talk about the Jersey Devil myth. They talk about evolution and the food chain, which humans sit at the top of. Mulder wonders if something could be above us. The professor says no – unless some alien life form jumped in there. Mulder notes that there are studies of people raised by animals. The professor doesn’t think something living in the woods of New Jersey survives through cannibalism and superior evolution.

While Mulder looks at pictures and a drawing of what looks like Bigfoot (with breasts), Scully goes on her date. She’s not so interested in the guy, Rob, when he starts talking about spending time with his kids. The ranger calls Mulder to tell him that another body, dead about eight months, was found in the woods. It matches the description of the Jersey Devil. Mulder confirms that the body belongs to a man, then pages Scully, who’s happy to have a reason to leave the table. Mulder tells her that they might not be looking for a man.

The agents go back to Atlantic City with the professor, but the body isn’t at the morgue. Mulder cries cover-up. He also thinks the creature is female. They head out with the ranger to the building Mulder saw the creature near during his night in the alley. The professor finds a blood-stained cloth and wonders if the creature is bringing its victims there, or if it’s injured. As they continue searching the building, musing about how similar they could be to the creatures, a police team moves in.

The professor intercepts the police, telling them he knows nothing about FBI agents being present. Mulder and Scully overhear and try to evade capture. Mulder spots the creature and follows her to a basement, where she attacks him. She sniffs him for a while, then claws his side when he tries to get up. Scully arrives and scares her off. While Mulder gets medical attention from paramedics, Scully reports that they’re in trouble for interfering with a murder investigation.

The police chase after the creature, and the ranger drives Mulder, Scully, and the professor to the woods so they can continue to interfere in the investigation. They spot the creature from a hill, and the ranger is able to hit her with a tranquilizer dart, but it doesn’t affect her. As the group goes to find her, shots ring out – the creature attacked an officer, so Thompson shot her. Mulder’s all sad and asks Thompson why he killed her. “Same reason you kill a rabid animal,” Thompson says.

Back in D.C. a week later, Mulder files away pictures from the scene of the creature’s death. Scully shares that pieces of human bone were found in her digestive tract. She was 25 or 30 years old and had no signs of prehistoric bone structure. Mulder thinks she and the male creature had offspring, and that she was looking for food after her partner died. Mulder’s excited to share the news with someone at the Smithsonian.

Rob calls Scully and asks her for another date. Instead of accepting, Scully chooses to go with Mulder. She tells him she probably won’t be seeing Rob again – she doesn’t have any interest in him right now. Out in the woods in New Jersey, a father and son pass by a cave. A girl pops out as the father starts to tell his son the story of the Jersey Devil.

Thoughts: I looked up the real myth of the Jersey Devil, and other than the name, it doesn’t seem to share much with the one in this episode.

One part of the myth (in the episode) is that the Jersey Devil attacks people at their cars, but…why? That’s never explained. Plus, Roger was in an alley, not near a car, so I guess the creature wasn’t that picky about where he picked up his meals.

Mulder gave his motel room to a homeless man! Scully should definitely have babies with him!

July 11, 2015

BH90210 9.19, The Leprechaun: First You Get the Publicity, Then You Get the Money…

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 11:04 am by Jenn

Somewhere, Brandon's crying and doesn't know why

Somewhere, Brandon’s crying and doesn’t know why

Summary: Kelly and Matt are on a double date with Noah and Donna at the Peach Pit. Noah and Donna need to learn to keep the PDA to a minimum, especially when people are trying to eat. A woman named Jeannine approaches Noah with a business proposal: She wants to buy the Peach Pit and the After Dark to open a restaurant. Kelly and Donna laugh at the idea of selling Nat out.

Next door, David tries to convince Claudia to see a movie she worked on as a makeup intern. She feels uneasy about putting off her cleaning work at the club, so David promises to help her. With their date coming to an end, Matt and Kelly get awkward about whether they’ll be going to the Walshes’ house together for the night. He wants to wait a little while, since he’s just getting past being with Lauren.

The next day, Kelly tells Donna that she’s hired a publicist named Pia for the boutique. Donna’s annoyed that Kelly didn’t consult with her, since they’re supposed to be partners. Kelly replies that Donna didn’t consult with her about the fall line. Yeah, that’s the same. When Pia arrives, Donna pretends to be excited.

Steve also has an idea to drum up business: Since St. Patrick’s Day is coming, the Beverly Beat should publish a picture of a leprechaun. That leprechaun will be played by a little person named Lou. Gina has once again forgotten that she doesn’t like how Dylan treats her, because she’s back at his place. He wants to go for a hike. She points out that she has a job, as most people do. She doesn’t get why he can’t just be happy for a minute, or find some kind of direction for his life.

Noah meets with someone from the bank that holds the After Dark’s mortgage, which Noah owes three payments on. The guy, Don, doesn’t like Noah’s excuses for not paying, and threatens to foreclose if Noah can’t come up with the money. Matt meets with two new clients, an engaged couple who want a prenup. They’re very happy together, but they’re both brokers and want to make sure their partnership is protected.

Gina thinks Donna’s reluctant to embrace Pia because hiring a publicist was Kelly’s idea. She suggests to Kelly that Donna doesn’t feel comfortable with Kelly’s business ideas. Donna tells Kelly she doesn’t want to hire Pia, since the boutique is doing well without her. Kelly wants to feel more fulfilled in her end of the business. Kelly overrides Donna’s veto, since she’s the business side. After she leaves the room, Gina suggests to Donna that Pia doesn’t appreciate her work, and Kelly might not either.

David walks Claudia home after their date, and just when it looks like things are going to turn out well for them, she announces that she’s moving. Her visa has expired, so she has to leave the country. Noah calls Jeannine to the club to discuss the possibility of accepting her offer to buy the Peach Pit and After Dark. Oh, Noah.

Steve and Janet take Lou downtown to run around with a bunch of fake gold and basically embarrass himself for a small amount of money. Janet also predicts that they’ll get in trouble with the Irish Anti-Defamation League. Lou gets cold feet, but changes his mind when Steve offers more money. Janet goes along with the plan, because as much as she complains, she doesn’t have enough of a backbone to refuse to go along with Steve’s wacky schemes.

Noah approaches Nat about selling the Peach Pit instead of renewing his lease. He reveals that he’s already accepted Jeannine’s offer. Claudia tells David that she can only stay in the States if she finds an employer who thinks she’s “uniquely qualified” for a specific job. He comes up with an idea and asks her to meet him at his house.

Kelly meets with Pia at the beach apartment, and Gina sits in to entertain herself. Pia thinks they need to stage another opening and pay celebrities to make appearances. Kelly’s hesitant, knowing that Donna wouldn’t want celebrities to be there for a reason other than her designs. Gina’s like, “Well, don’t tell her why they’re really there, you moron.”

Dylan tells Noah that his sale is a horrible idea because of how it will hurt Nat. Noah thinks Dylan would do the same thing if he were in this situation. Then he says Dylan wouldn’t have to anyway, since he’s rich. Dylan notes that Noah used to be rich; now that he’s poor, he’s suddenly the kind of person who would sell out a friend? Dylan begs him not to sell, but Noah says it’s done.

Matt tells Kelly about his prenup couple, who think they’re perfect for each other but still want protection in case things don’t work out. Kelly doesn’t get when you can decide that things are great and you don’t need a safety net anymore. David brings Claudia the possibility of a job with a movie producer he happens to know. She’s nervous about an interview for a job that could change her future. David’s doing more for her than anyone ever has.

Kelly tries to talk Donna into the second opening, skipping over the part about hiring celebrity guests. She takes offense when Donna says it’s a dumb idea. Noah agrees with Kelly that Donna doesn’t seem to respect Kelly’s idea. Donna admits that she’s comfortable now and doesn’t want to risk things. Noah asks what Donna would do if she had to choose between business and friendship. Donna, of course, would pick friendship.

Steve’s stunt works, though it gets the Beverly Beat slammed by another paper. Steve doesn’t care, since any publicity is good publicity. A butcher named Todd brings in Lou, having “caught” him – he wants to trade him for a pot of gold. Steve admits that he put that offer in the paper as a joke. Todd doesn’t think the joke is very funny. If he doesn’t get his pot of gold, someone’s going to feel the business end of his butcher knife.

Steve and Lou bicker about who’s to blame, like, maybe wait and figure that out after you’ve gotten away from the maniac with the knife? Todd demands a reward, confiding that he can’t afford to pay for his son’s heart operation. Someone should tell him to call Dylan. David takes Claudia to meet the producer, but the job has already been filled.

The boutique “opening” brings in a big crowd, and Donna wears her best bustier to celebrate. Steve writes a story about Todd and his son; he also mentions that he shouldn’t have put a little person in a ridiculous situation. Aww, Steve is learning to be empathetic and nice! At the boutique, Gina breaks the news to Donna that the celebrities are only there because Pia paid them.

Kelly asks Matt not to wait until things are perfect, like the prenup couple. He shouldn’t try to protect their relationship because he’s afraid of things falling apart. Donna blasts Kelly for hiring the guests and putting the business before their friendship. She kicks everyone out. At the After Dark, David tells Dylan that Claudia has to leave the country. Dylan tells him to do anything necessary to prevent her from having to leave.

Dylan then informs Noah that he bought the mortgage on the Peach Pit and After Dark. He’s now Noah’s landlord. Since Noah can’t make his payments, Dylan’s foreclosing on him. Despite the article about him, Todd is suing the Beverly Beat for his reward. Steve and Janet get a bunch of letters from readers who have sent in money to help Todd and his son. Bingo – reward!

Even though Kelly and Donna think the “opening” was a disaster, Pia tells them that their argument made it a hit. Donna objects to being popular for the wrong reasons. Pia, however, is from Steve’s school of thought about any publicity being good. Kelly sides with Donna, and the friends make up. Matt tells his clients he won’t draw up their prenup, then gives a Brandon-like speech about how protecting themselves from a breakup is a horrible decision.

Noah tells Dylan that his interference has put him in a bad decision – his father’s death left his mother with nothing, and Noah needs to be able to support her. Nat starts to kick Noah out, but Dylan announces that he’s going to extend the lease. He’ll make the big decisions, but Noah and Nat will continue to run their respective businesses.

Steve and Janet have pledged a grant matching all the money readers sent in, so Todd should be able to afford his son’s operation. David tells Claudia that he thinks Dylan was right – he should do anything possible to help Claudia stay in the States. Claudia suggests that they get married so she can get a green card. David’s like, “Okay, cool.”

Gina’s proud of Dylan for doing something good with his money. (Didn’t he just help build a playground?) He likes the idea of owning something, though Gina thinks he really likes the idea of being in charge. Matt surprises Kelly at the beach apartment to tell her he’s scared but he loves her and is ready to jump back into things. Did we just wrap up an episode with everyone happy?

Thoughts: Lou is played by Danny Woodburn, Hollywood’s go-to little person.

Guys, maybe stop listening to Gina about…well, anything?

I think David and Donna are great together, but David and Claudia are pretty cute, too.

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