July 20, 2014

BH90210 7.32, Graduation Day, Part 2: CU Later

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , at 3:56 pm by Jenn

After all that build-up...

After all that build-up…

Summary: It’s graduation time! Brandon’s late, having run off to save Valerie. Clare’s graduating summa cum laude, and is also 45 minutes away from being out of our lives forever. Donna wants to get David on board with not staying out too late that night (since she plans to have sex with him). Clare warns Steve not to do anything that will embarrass her father, and Steve’s like, “Why are you still here?” The Walshes may be missing, but all Taylors and Martins are in attendance.

Brandon goes to the Shangri-La and learns that Valerie has already checked out (possibly in more than one sense of the phrase). Meanwhile, the graduation ceremony starts, and Kelly blames Valerie for Brandon’s absence. Valerie’s still standing on a bluff, so Brandon gets to be her white knight. He talks her out of jumping and promises to deal with the Kelly situation after graduation.

They arrive at the ceremony as Chancellor Arnold is quoting Robert Frost and telling the graduates to take risks. Brandon gets a symbolic diploma for being awesome, though if he’s graduating, why is his diploma symbolic? The graduates turn their tassels, everyone applauds, and Steve sets off the confetti cannons.

Despite being asked by Valerie not to say anything, Brandon tells Kelly what happened when they get home. She thinks Val faked being suicidal to get attention. Brandon can’t be sure, so he’s decided to let Valerie stay in the house. Downstairs, Steve and Valerie discuss Clare, who plans to spend the evening with her father since he’s heading to Paris the next day. Steve admits that he thinks Clare believes the chancellor’s leaving the country because Samantha dumped him.

Over at the beach apartment, Clare tells Donna that she’s having trouble with all the changes in her life. Donna promises that Chancellor Arnold and Steve will love her no matter what happens. David’s tired and wants to skip the party Bill’s throwing, but Donna talks him into going. Clare also wants to stay home, telling Steve that she’s also going to Paris, so her dad doesn’t have to be alone. Steve interprets this as, “I’m going so I don’t have to be with you anymore.”

David is nice to Valerie, telling her he was worried about her earlier. Clare chases after Steve to tell him that her father needs her more than Steve does. Steve reminds her that her father is her past; he’s supposed to be her future. Clare invites him to come to Paris, too, but Steve knows he belongs in Beverly Hills. He also knows he won’t handle a long-distance relationship well, so they’ll need to break up. YES! FINALLY! Ahem. I mean, so sad. I really wish those two had been able to make it work.

Everyone else dresses up in ’20s clothes and goes to Bill’s party. David plans to talk to the Cardigans’ manager after the party, which means Donna has to delay sex. Ryan and Austin try to talk their way into the party, getting an assist from Joy. David and Brandon talk about Valerie, agreeing not to let others in on what happened. Brandon laments that his good deed has gotten him in trouble.

Kelly tries to calm Donna’s sex-related nerves, then acts like a killjoy when Bill tries to get her to be enthusiastic about the party in front of everyone. The Cardigans perform “Love Fool” (of course – no one knows any of their other songs). Steve drowns his sorrows, telling Brandon that if he thought there was any chance he could convince Clare to stay, he’d be off trying to convince her. Later, Valerie joins Steve at the bar.

David wants to leave the party early, saying again that he’s sorry; apparently he’s not meeting with the Cardigans’ manager after all. Donna’s on the verge of losing her nerve about sex, but when David assures her that he loves her, she knows she’s making the right choice. Brandon encourages Kelly to spend some time with Bill while he’s in town, so she goes to talk to him. He tells her he wants to be back in her life. She still doesn’t trust him and won’t be won over with just a party.

Kelly storms out and tells Brandon that some things can’t be fixed. She’s mad that he’s been on Bill’s side so much. Brandon says that if she’s that mad, she shouldn’t move in with him. Well, I guess that solves that problem! While Donna and David head home for sex (though he doesn’t know that’s what she has planned), Austin hits on Joy. Ryan gets him to leave by telling him Steve has another girl picked out for him.

Kelly wants to leave, but passive-aggressively tells Brandon she doesn’t know where to go, since Donna’s reserved the beach apartment for sex. Brandon doesn’t give in, so Kelly apologizes for being a jerk. He tells her to let her father love her. Austin goes looking for Steve, who hasn’t picked out a girl for his brother – he’s picked out Valerie for himself, and they’re secretly having sex in some room.

Donna tries to get David to leave her alone for a little while so she can get herself all prettied up. Back at the party, Joy and Bill say goodbye to each other. Kelly makes up with her father, but they don’t have much time to celebrate: Bill has to leave with some federal marshals. Tomorrow, he’s going to jail for fraud and embezzlement. So…that’s probably not going to be good for their relationship.

Kelly must be in a benevolent mood, because she’s willing to let Valerie stay at the house. She’ll probably change her mind the next day. At the beach apartment, David falls asleep, then has to go hunting for Donna. He’s surprised enough to see her in lingerie, with candles everywhere, that he thinks that’s his only surprise. She tells him there’s much more, and she’s very sure that this is the right time. She’s ready for the next chapter in her life. David waited, so now David gets lucky. (And don’t worry, there’s a condom.)

Thoughts: I love that me reward for finishing season 7 is no more Clare.

I’ve linked to this before, but it needs repeating: Vulture’s oral history of this episode.

Chancellor Arnold is Mr. World Traveller, Mr. International, yet he quotes Robert Frost. Thanks for the clichés!

Also, shortest ceremony ever. They didn’t even read people’s names.

I’m impressed that Steve wore a suit under his gown and not, like, swim trunks and a cowboy shirt.

Brandon: “What are you pointing at?” Muntz (dressed as Babe Ruth): “The bar. I promised I’d drink a bottle of scotch for some sick little kid.” Heh.

Also heh to Brandon, dressed as a ’20s gangster, carrying a glass and Johnnie Walker in a violin case.

Continuity alert! David thinks Donna got a pet, and he says he doesn’t want to have to deal with “a dog or some damn bird.” Speaking of which, whatever happened to the dog and the bird?

July 13, 2014

BH90210 7.31, Graduation Day, Part 1: Val Shall Not Be Moved

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , at 3:06 pm by Jenn

One big happy...something

One big happy…something

Summary: Valerie has just told Brandon how Derrick took all her money. She swears that she didn’t invest with Bill just to mess with Kelly – not that it matters anyway, since Val’s the one who lost in the end. She’s eager for Jim and Cindy to come for the kids’ graduation so she can talk to some real adults about her problems. Unfortunately, they’re not coming. But Val’s mom is, so that’s…something. Kelly thinks Brandon has spent the past few minutes kicking Valerie out, but she’s wrong. Valerie hears her yelling at Brandon to get rid of her so Kelly can move in.

The college kids aren’t the only ones graduating this weekend – Erin’s graduating from kindergarten. (She’s still super-cute, by the way.) Jackie, Mel, Kelly, David, and Donna are all there for the ceremony. Kelly’s happy that David and Donna are so happy. The college kids were all invited to some big party where the Cardigans are playing; the party host is unknown, but David thinks it’s Rush. Jackie assures Kelly that Bill and Joy will be at her graduation.

Donna picks up her grandmother from the airport, sharing that she and David plan to move in together. Mrs. Martin laughs because Felice is going to flip out. She knows that Donna and David will know when the time is right for them to…you know. Valerie’s mother isn’t coming to graduation after all, and Val decides to tell her off. Brandon’s like, “I guess this isn’t a good time to make you move out, huh?” Val lays it on thick, thanking him for being such a great guy and always supporting her.

At the Peach Pit, Steve invites David to help him plan a major senior prank. He and Muntz want to set off confetti cannons, and they need a hand with the electronics side of things. Inside, Valerie packs up her office, getting no sympathy from David about her money problems or living situation. She asks him to talk to Kelly about letting her stay in the house. David tells her to solve her own problems.

Despite Kelly’s skepticism, Bill does arrive for the weekend, bringing Joy along. Kelly’s pleasant to one of them but not the other. Guess which! Go on, guess! Donna tells Kelly that she’s considering having sex with David; she wants to surprise him on graduation night. Kelly says that if she feels the time is right, then it’s right.

The honors grads, led by Brandon, give Chancellor Arnold a going-away present before he leaves for Paris. Steve crashes the end of the honors-grad luncheon, Chancellor Arnold asks about Samantha, Clare gets mad that Steve’s talking about her, and I roll my eyes so hard they pop out of my head. Steve confides in Brandon that he feels like Clare blames him for her father leaving. That makes no sense, but that’s Clare for you.

Brandon and Steve reminisce about various college experiences, then talk about the senior prank. Brandon is actually sad that Steve hasn’t asked for his help. At the Peach Pit, Valerie whines to Nat about Kelly, but Nat thinks she needs to suck it up and move on. Kelly herself shows up, and Valerie tries to convince her that Brandon said she could stay in the house. She threatens to call Jim and Cindy and fill them in – after all, they invited her to live in the house. Val refuses to move.

Donna goes shopping with Clare to find a going-away present for Chancellor Arnold, but Donna gets distracted at a lingerie store. Kelly and Joy are also at the mall, looking for something to wear to the big graduation party. Joy reveals that Bill is the person behind the party, and it’s all for Kelly. They run into Ryan and Austin (ugh), and Ryan instantly develops a crush on Joy. Joy thinks he’s cute. Kelly, quick, get her out of there.

Nat’s hosting a pre-grad party, and as Valerie and Steve get ready, Val tries to get him on her side about staying in the house. She asks him to appeal to Brandon on her behalf. At the beach apartment, Donna tries to hide all her lingerie and condoms from David. He wants her opinion on whether he’s an idiot for helping Steve and Muntz with the prank. He wanted to make sure he wasn’t completely missing out on something school-related, since he never joined a frat or went to a pep rally or anything like that. Donna seems to think it’s cute.

Just before they leave for the pre-grad party, Brandon finally tells Valerie that she needs to move out. Val whines that no one’s looking out for her. She threatens again to tattle to Jim and Cindy, but Brandon already did, and they told him he could make the final call. Valerie begs to be allowed to stay through the summer, but Brandon won’t budge.

The gang and their families have their get-together at the Peach Pit, though Valerie leaves early to go mope alone. Rush thanks Brandon for being so awesome and letting some of that awesomeness rub off on Steve. He wonders why he hasn’t heard anything about a senior prank yet. Steve and David are all, “Oh, I guess no one cares enough about the school to do anything.” They plan to slip out in a little while to meet up with Muntz.

Kelly’s in a great mood now, since Valerie’s leaving the Walshes’. Meanwhile, Val leaves a note on Brandon’s pillow. That night, Steve, David, and Muntz sneak around campus to set up the confetti cannons. They’re hilariously excited about the whole thing. Kelly, Donna, and Clare spend what might be their last night together at the beach apartment. They definitely won’t all be there the next night – Donna wants the apartment to herself so she and David can do it. Clare and Kelly secretly agree that she won’t go through with it.

Valerie checks into the Shangri-La Hotel, saying she’ll be gone the next day. At the house, Brandon finds her note, which says that she won’t be at graduation. She’ll be having her “own private ceremony,” doing something she should have done when she was with David a year ago. Brandon tries to call David to figure out what Val means, but he has to leave a message. Valerie tries to call her mother as she stands on the bluff where she and David discussed suicide. “I’m going to take care of everything tomorrow,” Valerie promises.

The next morning, David finally calls Brandon back, confirming Brandon’s suspicions that Valerie has talked about killing herself. David remembers that she used to stay at the Shangri-La across the street from the bluffs. The guys lament how hard they’ve been on her recently. Kelly arrives to meet up with Brandon before graduation, but he runs off to find Valerie. And for some reason, the episode ends here.

Thoughts: Jim and Cindy are skipping Brandon’s graduation? I thought they were good parents.

How weird would it be to graduate college while your little sister is just finishing kindergarten?

Do college students do senior pranks? I thought that was just a high school thing.

“We’ll be adults soon enough.” I’ve got news for you, Steve: You’re already an adult. You’ve been an adult for four years. Scary, right?

Part of me feels bad for Valerie, because she has no money so how is she supposed to find a place to live? But the rest of me remembers that she was gullible enough to fall for Derrick’s act, and burned her bridges with everyone she’s ever met, and manipulated David into buying her out, which is why she has no job. And then I remember that she’s fictional, so whatever.

June 22, 2014

BH90210 7.28, All That Jazz: Let the Good Times Roll…Then Fizzle Out and Die

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 2:54 pm by Jenn

Five seconds later: "Never mind!"

Five seconds later: “Never mind!”

Summary: Donna’s just finished her final project for her hated fashion class, and David wants to take her to a club to celebrate. The club just happens to be in New Orleans. Donna has to be back the next day to present her project, and David promises that she will be. He’s going to New Orleans to chat with singer Monica’s people before she comes to perform at the After Dark, and he wants to share the trip with Donna. After she says yes, David packs some condoms.

Kelly’s in Brandon’s bed, but there’s nothing sexy going on over there – she’s sick. Brandon thinks she has the Hawaiian flu. She wants to go home, but he wants her to stay so he can tend to her. Steve reminds Brandon that his mom is coming to town for some TV institute’s tribute to her former sitcom. He considers staying at the KEG house so he doesn’t catch what Kelly has. Valerie happens to have the same illness, and she blames Kelly for giving it to her.

Donna’s hated professor isn’t happy with the quality of projects her students have presented so far, and she warns Donna not to slack. This makes Donna worry that she hasn’t put in enough work, since Professor Langley is especially tough on her. David’s like, “Yeah, yeah, that’s rough – let’s get on the plane already.” Steve and Clare prepare to spend time with their parents again; Clare says her father’s very excited to see Samantha. Steve realizes that Samantha hasn’t talked about Chancellor Arnold in a while.

Brandon tends to his patients, who aren’t very sympathetic. The girls are all, “I hope you don’t die. No, seriously.” Steve and Clare find themselves alone at the beach apartment, since one roommate is in New Orleans and the other is at the Walshes’. Clare thinks David and Donna’s trip is romantic and asks Steve why they never do anything like that. He replies that they don’t need to since they have sex.

Chancellor Arnold arrives and reports that Samantha left for the tribute before he could pick her up. He admits to Clare that he read about a hot new star in a soap opera magazine and thinks Samantha might be interested in him. Clare’s more curious about his sudden interest in soap opera magazines. Chancellor Arnold continues that Samantha always seems distance when they talk on the phone. Clare tells Steve that she doesn’t like how his mom is treating her father.

In New Orleans, David reveals that he and Donna will be sharing a bed. She’s totally fine with it. Kelly and Valerie fight as Brandon leaves for the tribute. While Donna and David do typical New Orleans stuff, Samantha speaks at the tribute. Steve tells Brandon that Clare’s giving him a hard time about Samantha’s treatment of Chancellor Arnold, which Brandon points out isn’t Steve’s problem. Steve notes that it could be the chancellor’s fault.

Samantha ditches Chancellor Arnold in favor of networking, and when Clare complains, Steve tells her to grow up. After all, it’s an industry function. Clare can’t believe that he of all people is telling her to grow up. Valerie picks a fight with Kelly, saying she hates her because Kelly kept her from hooking up with Brandon. Flashback! According to Val, Kelly came over to get back together with Brandon, who told her that he was in love with Valerie. Brandon only stopped things with Valerie because Kelly threatened to hurt herself.

Kelly tells Valerie what really happened: She told Brandon she loved him, but that she was willing to let him go so he could be happy, even if it was with Valerie. Val doesn’t believe this version of events, so Kelly tells her to ask Brandon. Chancellor Arnold mopes alone at the tribute while Samantha hangs out with other industry people. Brandon wants to stay there since it keeps him from having to play referee for Kelly and Valerie. But when Clare and Steve start bickering, Brandon changes his mind.

Samantha wants to go to another party, but Chancellor Arnold has finally realized that she doesn’t want to hang out with him, so he tells her to go without him. They bicker about how they live in different worlds and Samantha is kind of horrible and Chancellor Arnold is supposedly embarrassing her. Clare tells Steve to do something, like, shut up already, Clare.

Kelly asks Valerie what happened between her and Brandon after she left the house on the night they were talking about. He said he would call Kelly, but he never did. She imagines that Valerie convinced Brandon that Kelly was going to see Dylan, and he said he was fine with it, since it left him free to hook up with Val. Valerie confirms that Kelly’s imagination is spot-on. Kelly notes that Val said Kelly ruined her big chance with Brandon, so her story can’t be accurate.

Valerie admits that nothing happened, but she’s mad that Kelly keeps rubbing it in. After Kelly left, Val tried desperately to get Brandon into bed, but he resisted. She knows it’s because he sees her as a sister, and because he still loved Kelly. She insists that Brandon’s the love of her life. Kelly points out that she’s said that about a bunch of guys. Valerie accuses Kelly of trying to take away the only family she has left. Kelly thinks it’s weird that Valerie thinks of Brandon as family but also wants to sleep with him – “those two things don’t go together.” This strikes a nerve with Valerie.

In New Orleans, Donna babbles something about the homeowners keeping the outside of their houses looking plain while making everything inside beautiful. Whatever, she’s drunk. In Beverly Hills, Kelly’s either feeling better or just wants to have sex with Brandon because she can. Steve tries to make up with Clare, who’s still mad. He points out that he didn’t do anything. That doesn’t help. How many more episodes until Clare gets out of my life forever?

David starts things up with Donna in their hotel room, but they get no farther than usual. Donna still doesn’t think she’s ready for sex yet. She admits that she’s scared. David is as understanding as usual, though he feels like he needs to prove something to Donna to convince her to go through with it.

The next morning, the two accidentally oversleep, which means Donna might miss her class presentation. Steve tries again to make up with Clare, who still NEEDS TO SHUT UP SO BADLY I CAN’T HANDLE IT ANYMORE. He finally sort of gets her to realize that as much as she feels defensive of her father, he also feels defensive of his mother. Clare whines about not having any other family, which makes Steve wonder who he is to her.

Valerie assures Brandon that she told Kelly that the two of them never hooked up. Then she announces that Kelly applied to grad school at Columbia, so she’ll be going to New York next year. This is news to Brandon. Donna makes it to class, but she’s too late to present. Her professor has no compassion.

At the After Dark, Valerie meets Derrick Driscoll, who wants to follow up on her interest in Kelly’s father’s company. He suggests that she invest in some foreign business ventures that totally don’t sound shady at all. Brandon confronts Kelly about not mentioning Columbia, but she isn’t planning on actually going. She guesses that Valerie read about this in her journal. She can’t live under the same roof as Val, and she wants Brandon to kick her out.

Thoughts: Apparently this was originally going to be the episode where Donna and David had sex, but Aaron Spelling vetoed it on the last rewrite.

People talking about Hurricanes (the drink) in New York makes me feel itchy.

David, sweetie, it’s not about you. Donna’s celibate for Donna, not because you’re inadequate.

Valerie, you’re about to graduate from college and you’re still acting like a 12-year-old. Work on that.

Nothing against Corin Nemec (Derrick), but they probably should have cast someone who doesn’t look like a 15-year-old dressing up in his father’s suit.

March 30, 2014

BH90210 7.18, We Interrupt This Program: Anything Can Happen On Live TV

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , at 2:41 pm by Jenn

If you say there's rain in the forecast one more time, I swear to God...

If you say there’s rain in the forecast one more time, I swear to God…

Summary: With Garrett out of the picture, Donna’s going back to her weather segment at CUTV. Evan suggests that they act like she never left. Vile Rusty arrives and blasts Brandon for getting the police on his case. He wants everyone at the station to be knocked down a peg: “I hope you and Donna rot in Hell.” Tracy wonders if they should take his anger as a threat.

Donna moves back into the beach apartment as Kelly and Tom make date plans. Donna thinks Kelly’s just trying to date Tom to make Valerie mad, but Kelly says she really likes him. Making Val jealous is just a side benefit. Chloe practices at the After Dark, and David tells her she’s going to be a big success. She appreciates the support since her parents don’t like that she dropped out of school to become a singer. He offers the use of his home recording studio so she can make a demo.

Steve, Clare, Chancellor Arnold, and Samantha go to a retreat together, though the younger couple isn’t thrilled with the older couple’s romance. Clare breaks the news to Steve that the room arrangements will be based on gender, not relationships. At the After Dark, Valerie is short with Tom, so Kelly’s plans are definitely working out the way she’d hoped. Val tells Tom that Kelly’s only using him for revenge. If he doesn’t dump her, he’s fired. Tom tells her he quits.

Samantha is a fan of Clare’s, though Clare wonders if some of her praise comes from trying to get Clare to like her. Samantha tells her that Chancellor Arnold is proud of her, promising that they won’t do anything Clare wouldn’t approve of. That doesn’t explain the black lingerie she brought with her. Donna calls David and Chloe answers the phone, telling her how great David is. Donna tries to make plans with him, but he’s busy with Chloe.

As someone loads a gun and grumbles about Donna, the retreaters have dinner together. Clare’s overly concerned with her father’s eating habits, trying to turn Samantha off. Steve calls her on it and she asks him to help her drive them apart. Steve, however, likes seeing his mom happy. Clare complains that Samantha’s taking Chancellor Arnold away from her. After a date, Tom asks Kelly if she’s using him to get back at Valerie. Kelly kisses him to let him know she really likes him. Tom tells her he quit when Valerie threatened to fire him.

Donna goes back to CUTV, where Rusty insults her even after she says she’s sorry that the police questioned him. Evan tells him to back off, but Rusty’s already on his way out, since he’s quit. Steve and Clare scheme, because they’re 12, then spot their parents kissing. Chancellor Arnold tells Samantha that he doesn’t think they should be together because their kids aren’t on board. Now Clare feels bad, as she should.

Evan tells Donna how awesome she is, then picks out lipstick for her to wear. She’s getting a little uncomfortable with his closeness. He kisses her on the cheek, which makes her pull away, and tells her he knows she likes the attention she got from his flowers and phone calls. Yes, boys and girls, Evan is Donna’s stalker. He wants them to be together and only put the rat in her bed and tried to run her down because she made him mad.

As Brandon and Tracy arrive, Donna runs to them and tells them Evan’s the stalker. Brandon starts to call campus security, but Evan pulls out his gun and takes control of the studio. He wants to say something on the air, and if he doesn’t get to say it, Donna will pay the price. Evan sends Brandon to the control room, then puts Donna behind the news desk for a very special broadcast.

While Evan assigns Tracy to run the camera, Brandon calls 911 from the control room. Evan notices that the phone is off the hook, but Brandon plays dumb, saying it must have gotten knocked out of its cradle. Evan doesn’t seem to be concerned that he might have made a phone call. The broadcast starts, and Evan holds his gun on Donna while he orders her to talk. At the Condor’s Nest, Kelly sees the broadcast on TV.

Evan makes Donna declare his love for him, then gets her to read entries from his journal. They’re about her and how he thinks she’s going to end up with him. Outside, a SWAT team gathers and a detective named Rendell calls Brandon to give him instructions. Evan makes Donna say she loves him again, yelling at her to say it like she means it. No matter how she says it, he doesn’t believe her.

Brandon announces that the police are on the phone and want to talk to Evan. Evan refuses to get on the phone. Brandon asks him to release the hostages, adding that since he hasn’t hurt anyone yet, he might not be in too much trouble. Evan makes him hang up. Back on the air, he accuses Donna of leading him on. Kelly calls David and leaves him a message telling him to turn on CUTV. Evan gets Donna to say how horrible she is, then tells everyone that the broadcast is far from over.

At the retreat, Clare tells Chancellor Arnold that she doesn’t want him and Samantha to break up. He promises that Clare will always be his first priority. Meanwhile, Steve tells Samantha that he only went along with Clare’s plan because she asked him to. However, he’s also a bit jealous of all the time Samantha spends with Chancellor Arnold.

The police turn up the heat in the TV studio, then offer to send drinks in. Evan lets Brandon get them, and while he’s distracted, a woman in the studio grabs the phone and begs the police for help. Evan waves his gun around but doesn’t shoot anyone. Rendell asks Evan to let the hostages go, since the police did him a favor. Donna agrees to stay since she’s the one Evan really wants. Evan gives in and sends everyone out except Donna, Brandon, and Tracy.

Rendell tries to negotiate with Evan, who wants a car, and for everyone to know what a liar Donna is. He tells Rendell that Donna agreed to stay, so she’s not a hostage. Rendell says he’ll have to prove that by putting his gun down. He starts to, then spots SWAT guys lurking in the control room. He sends them out and demands a car again, threatening to kill Donna if it doesn’t arrive within an hour.

The standoff lasts into the night, with Evan brainstorming places to flee with Donna. She tells him she’s not going anywhere with him – if he liked her, he should have just asked her out. Evan says that without the gun, he’s a nobody. Donna basically snaps, telling him that if he wants to shoot her, he should do it already. If he wants her, he’ll need to act like a man, not a stalker, and put the gun down.

It almost works, but then Evan catches Tracy staring and snaps at her. He tells her to leave, and she tries to get Brandon to go, too, but he wants to stay with Donna. Rendell praises Evan for letting Tracy go, then tries to negotiate some more, but Evan makes Brandon hang up the phone again. Evan cries and asks Donna not to hate him. Outside, the SWAT team prepares to use a flash grenade to get control of him.

Donna does what I call steering into the crazy, by pretending she wants to be with Evan and will leave the country with him. She and Brandon tell him that David means nothing to her. Brandon goes a step farther, saying that Donna told him she has a crush on Evan. Donna asks Evan to kiss her, getting him to put the gun down. Then she kicks the gun away and grabs it while Brandon tackles Evan. The SWAT team bursts in and arrests Evan. “You said you wouldn’t leave me,” he says. “I lied,” Donna replies.

Thoughts: Good job by Trevor Edmund (Evan), who hit all the notes in sweet, creepy, and crazed. That can’t be easy, especially all in one episode.

Clare, shut up. I put up with you for a long time, but now you’re bugging me again.

I wish Chancellor Arnold and Samantha had only fake broken up to teach Clare a lesson.

David hanging out with Chloe while Donna was a hostage is like Brandon making out with Emily while Kelly was trapped by a fire, yes?

I kind of feel bad for the actors in this episode who didn’t get to be part of the hostage storyline. They only got to do boring stuff.

February 23, 2014

BH90210 7.13, Gift Wrapped: Secret Sister is the New Secret Santa

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 12:58 pm by Jenn

"Here's a journal so you can write down all your evil schemes." "Here's a journal so you can write 'Mrs. Brandon Walsh' over and over"

“Here’s a journal so you can write down all your evil schemes.” “Here’s a journal so you can write ‘Mrs. Brandon Walsh’ over and over”

Summary: Yay, it’s Christmas! Steve, David, Donna, Clare, Brandon, and Tracy discuss gifts at the Peach Pit. As Kelly arrives, Donna comes up with the idea of the gang drawing names and only giving one gift. They have a $50 cap, and donate the money they would have spent on their other friends. Steve and Nat have each other, Clare and Donna have each other, Brandon and Tracy have each other, and David and Joan have each other. This means Kelly and Valerie are stuck with each other.

Valerie and Tracy go to the mall together to buy gifts for the exchange. (Tracy has Brandon.) Valerie thinks she should just get kitty litter for Kelly. (Huh?) They give money to the Holiday Help Fund and chat with a volunteer playing the xylophone. David asks Mel to meet him at the After Dark so he can ask for advice on dealing with Donna’s mother. Mel suggests that the Martins come to dinner the next night, since David and Donna are already coming over. The Holiday Help Fund woman advises Valerie to sideline her grudge for the holidays.

David and Donna are pleased with their plans to get Felice to warm up to David. Donna tells him not to take it personally, and that her mother’s feelings toward David don’t affect how Donna feels about him. Brandon and Steve are also at the mall, and Steve thinks the gift exchange is a good way for Brandon to “make a move” on Tracy. In other words, he should get her lingerie and then sleep with her.

Kelly’s had no luck finding a present for Valerie, so her Christmas isn’t going so well. Donna has more bad news: Her father called and said he’s coming to L.A. for Christmas. Kelly’s actually happy about that because it’ll give her a chance to yell at him. Steve tells Clare that he got Nat a Wolfgang Puck cookbook, which she thinks might offend him. Chancellor Arnold invites Steve and his mother to a Christmas party, and he’s definitely interested in meeting the famous Samantha Sanders.

Kelly goes to a restaurant to meet her father, but instead is seated with a woman named Joy. Kelly thinks Joy is Bill’s girlfriend, but she’s way off: Joy is also Bill’s daughter. That’s right, Kelly has a half-sister she didn’t know about. The next morning, Kelly shares this news with Donna, lamenting that her father has a whole new family she never knew about. She didn’t stick around to talk to Joy. Donna points out that Kelly and Joy could find common ground, and Joy could give some insight into Bill. Kelly realizes that she’ll have to tell Jackie about Bill’s secret life.

At the Peach Pit, Valerie tells Clare that she got Kelly a really nice present. Clare tries to avoid telling her that Kelly probably isn’t going to do the same for her. Brandon thinks it would be easier to bring peace to the Middle East than to Kelly and Valerie. Val tries to return the sweater; when the store won’t take it back, she donates it to the Holiday Help Fund. Chancellor Arnold is anxious to meet Samantha, but when she shows up at the party, he doesn’t know what to say to her.

Kelly goes to see Jackie, telling her first that Bill’s coming to L.A., then that she has a sister close to her age. Jackie admits that she knew. Apparently she never wanted Kelly to know. Kelly thinks it’s because Jackie wanted her to hate Bill for leaving them; she didn’t want Kelly to know that he had a reason to leave. Jackie tells her that she doesn’t have to have anything to do with Joy. Now, though, Kelly doesn’t want anyone telling her she can’t hang out with her sister.

Clare tries to get her father to warm up to Steve’s mother by inviting Samantha to lead the party in singing carols. Kelly meets with Joy again, learning that Bill told Joy all about Kelly. He was around when Joy was a kid, but now his presence in her life is more like his presence in Kelly’s. The last time Bill ditched Kelly, he was going to be with Joy’s mother while she recovered from surgery, but that was the last time Joy saw him. The sisters don’t expect him to actually join them for Christmas.

Clare’s carol scheme is a success, though Steve and Clare think it might have been too successful. Now there seems to be a physical attraction between Chancellor Arnold and Samantha. As the party winds down, the parents head off to get dinner together. Steve and Clare are grossed out. This is why you don’t Parent Trap people, kids.

The Martins and Silvers get together for dinner, but it starts off badly when Felice makes a remark about Mel serving the kids champagne before prom. Further snide comments involve Jackie’s “quaint” decorating taste and the fact that Mel is Jewish. When Felice mentions how glad she is that Jackie and Mel worked out their marriage problems, they tell her that they’re divorced but living together. Donna and David realize that this wasn’t a good idea after all.

Kelly and Joy go shopping, but Kelly still hasn’t found anything for Valerie. The sisters learn that their father has been giving them the same presents for years. Joy admits that she was always jealous of Kelly; she thought Bill was never around because he was always with her. Kelly says that she was jealous of Joy when they first met, for the same reason. They wonder if he has a bunch of other families he visits whenever he disappears.

At the Walshes’ house, Brandon tells Valerie that Kelly called and was talking really fast about sisters and sisterhood. He thinks this means that she found something really nice for Valerie. Valerie realizes that she’s going to look bad if she doesn’t get something nice for Kelly, too. She returns to the mall to buy another sweater, but they’re all sold out. The Holiday Help Fund woman still has the one Val donated; she was going to take it in to the real donation spot tonight, even though it’s Christmas Eve. (Her husband always works that night.) Val decides not to take the sweater back, and the woman gives her an already-wrapped gift in exchange.

Brandon drives Tracy to her dorm, and the two of them admit that they had trouble buying presents for each other. Felice goes to the beach apartment to see Donna, who skipped Christmas Eve dinner with her parents. Felice apologizes for what happened at the other dinner, and Donna tells her to apologize to Jackie and Mel instead. She suggests that Felice try to win David over with money, like she did with Ray. Felice says that David’s mental-health problems mean he’s not good for Donna. Donna thinks Felice has a bigger problem with David’s religion.

On Christmas morning, the gang gathers at the Walshes’ house to open presents (though Donna gets more than the others since it’s also her birthday). Steve gives Nat the Puck cookbook, and Nat gives Steve a thesaurus. (Ha!) David gives Joan handkerchiefs, and she gives him Monkees reunion tickets. Brandon gives Tracy earrings, then gets the most cop-out gift you can give someone: a pen. Clare gets tickets to an art exhibit from Donna, and gives her a fashion book.

That leaves Kelly and Valerie. Valerie gets a journal, and Kelly says that if she’d found a second one, she would have gotten it for herself. She’s in luck, because Valerie’s gift is the same journal. The gang is amazed that the two of them are getting along for once. They all go to the After Dark, where Valerie’s hosting a Christmas brunch with a performance by Clarence Fountain and the Blind Boys of Alabama. Chancellor Arnold and Samantha show up, which means she’s delayed her trip home to hang out with her new buddy. Clare and Steve realize that they could end up step-siblings.

Felice apologizes to David, asking him to help her smooth things over with Donna. He agrees to talk to Donna about sitting with her parents during brunch. Donna reminds him that it’s her birthday, so she can do whatever she wants. David plays the “do it for me” card. Bill is a no-show, as expected, but Kelly and Joy have each other to hang out with. Joy might also move to L.A. for school in the fall. Jackie goes over to meet her daughter’s sister, and though Kelly’s cold at first, Joy is polite. Kelly decides to let go of her hostility.

Thoughts: Of course her name is Joy. It’s Christmas.

The gang spends $50 on each other? I’m friends with the wrong people.

The way the show reminds us that Chancellor Arnold hangs out with dignitaries is to have his party be full of extras in various cultural outfits.

Clare’s tinsel-draping technique makes me cringe. Don’t clump it all together like that! It’s not a garland!

I hope Erin enjoyed Christmas without her family. I don’t know where she is, but she doesn’t show up in this episode at all.

February 16, 2014

BH90210 7.12, Judgment Day: California University vs. Brandon Walsh

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , at 5:08 pm by Jenn

How is Steve still in school? I mean...17%!

How is Steve still in school? I mean…17%!

Summary: Steve and Brandon meet with Chancellor Arnold to discuss the trouble Steve’s facing over stealing Brandon’s paper. They’ll next have to go before a tribunal to get Steve’s verdict and punishment, which could be expulsion. The chancellor notes that if Steve pled guilty, he would only face punishment from the chancellor, and it could be as minor as academic probation. Steve’s smart enough to opt for that. Brandon, however, wants to prove that he didn’t give Steve the paper, so he’ll have to attend a hearing with the student conduct committee.

Steve doesn’t get why Brandon doesn’t accept the same deal he did. Professor Randall is going to be gunning for him. Brandon doesn’t care to hear Steve’s opinions right now. Steve reminds him that they’re best friends, but Brandon disagrees. David and Donna go for a bike ride, since they’re all happy and back together. He wants to take her to see the Goo Goo Dolls that night. Donna’s having dinner with her parents, so she invites him to come along before they go to the concert. They give exposition that the gang is throwing a surprise birthday party for Mark.

This is too bad, because Mark is currently telling Kelly that he doesn’t want to do anything for his birthday. Brandon joins them, telling them that his hearing is the next day. Kelly wishes him luck, kissing him on the cheek, and Mark wonders what that’s all about. Steve talks things over with Clare, telling her that Brandon doesn’t want him to testify on his behalf. Unfortunately, this means that Professor Randall can call Steve to testify against Brandon.

I guess David never actually gave Valerie the money to help her keep the After Dark afloat, because she’s still having money problems. Donna intercepts a phone call from Valerie and tells David that she doesn’t think he should invest in the club. David hasn’t made up his mind yet. Brandon meets with Tracy to go over CUTV stuff, but she wants details on his hearing. She doesn’t get why Professor Randall won’t drop the charges now that Steve’s pleading guilty. Brandon declines to tell her about the whole Lucinda thing.

Professor Randall encounters Brandon at the student union and mocks him for studying since he’s just going to get expelled. Brandon doesn’t want to engage in childish banter, which disappoints Professor Randall. Brandon swears that he didn’t sleep with Lucinda while she and Randall were married. Randall advises him to mention that at the hearing. David meets the Martins for dinner; as is typical of them, Felice is critical while Dr. Martin is friendly and supportive. Also, Felice doesn’t know that Donna and David are back together. She doesn’t take the news well, so Donna storms out.

The next day, Brandon’s hearing convenes, and Steve is the first witness called to testify. He unsuccessfully tries to plead illness to be excused. Randall thinks that Brandon gave Steve his paper to bail him out of trouble, since Brandon has a history of helping Steve out. Steve says he stole the paper, and now the guys’ friendship is in trouble. He thinks that should make it clear that Brandon wasn’t involved in the plagiarism.

Donna goes to see Dr. Martin, asking for his advice about getting back together with David. He thinks that since David’s doing well, there’s no reason for them to keep their distance from each other. In fact, Donna’s relationship with him might be the reason he’s doing so well. Donna worries that they’ll stay together, get married, and have children with David’s problems. Dr. Martin tries to ease her fears, adding that she’s old enough not to worry about what Felice thinks.

Valerie visits David to see where he stands on their business deal. David hedges, and Valerie guesses that Donna’s trying to influence his decision. She tells him they’re alike (eh?), and he should go after what he wants. He replies that things have changed; he wasn’t stable when he made the offer, and now he’s thinking about it more clearly. Valerie says that if he’s going to back out of the deal, he needs to say so now. Kelly makes plans with Mark for his birthday, though of course none of that stuff is going to happen.

Randall calls Brandon to the stand, and though Chancellor Arnold says that Brandon’s allowed to decline, he wants to testify. Randall asks if this is the first time Brandon and Steve have cheated. Brandon uses the old “when did you stop beating your wife?” response, mostly to rub it in that Randall and Lucinda are divorced. Randall calls out Brandon and Steve for passing a test (dubbed the Columbus Day Massacre) that everyone else in the class failed. Steve had failed the previous few quizzes, so it looks suspicious.

Brandon sticks to his assertion that he never gave Steve permission to cheat off of him. He wonders why Randall didn’t bring this issue up years ago. Randall says that he wasn’t aware then that Brandon and Steve were close. Brandon accuses him of doctoring his ledger to make it look like he and Steve cheated in the past. This only makes him look bad to the chancellor.

Everyone else gathers at Mark and David’s house to wait for Mark to show up for his surprise party. Donna asks David if he talked to Valerie, and he tells her that “she was pretty understanding.” Before he can elaborate, Mark and Kelly arrive. She’s pretending she left their concert tickets there. When everyone surprises him, Mark pretends to be happy. After the hearing, Brandon fills Nat in on the details at the Peach Pit. Nat thinks he should go to Mark’s party and delay moping until he has something to mope over.

Donna sees David and Valerie talking and complains to Kelly that Val keeps bugging David. Then she overhears Valerie calling David her partner. David says that he still hasn’t made up his mind. Kelly declares it time for presents, though Mark doesn’t want any attention. Brandon shows up and Kelly hurries over to find out what happened at the hearing. Valerie comments to Mark that Kelly should be paying more attention to him.

Brandon tells his friends what happened at the hearing just as Steve and Clare arrive. Steve decides not to bother suffering through the evening with his ex-best friend. Also suffering: Mark, who just wants to watch kung-fu movies. He complains to Kelly that everyone would rather hang out with Brandon than him. He hates surprise parties, and this one is especially bad. He also thinks Brandon’s the reason he and Kelly haven’t had sex yet. Apparently Mark’s hatred of birthdays stems from his parents always throwing him huge parties, but I’m not sure what the problem is here.

Clare pulls Brandon aside to tell him to work things out with Steve. She thinks he should cut Steve some slack since he stood up for him at the hearing. Brandon points out that Steve got him into this mess in the first place. After Brandon leaves, Donna informs Clare that Randall proved that this isn’t the first time Steve has cheated off of Brandon. Clare rushes home to confront Steve, who claimed that this was the first instance of cheating. Steve tells her that Randall’s wrong – he failed all the quizzes AND the Columbus Day Massacre.

Brandon takes Tracy home, telling her about his relationship with Lucinda. He thinks the trouble he’s in will affect the fellowship he applied for. Tracy tries to cheer him up, since lots of successful people failed before they took off. Felice visits Donna at the beach apartment to sort of apologize, though really she just wants her daughter to rethink a relationship where she’s taking care of someone who’s wounded. She needs to think more about relationships that will last. Donna says that’s exactly what she’s thinking about.

Brandon addresses the tribunal, announcing that he has no defense, but he doesn’t think Randall has proven anything. He challenges Randall to admit to his personal vendetta, revealing that he did have an affair with Lucinda. He swears that he had no involvement in what Steve did, but if the tribunal thinks otherwise, he’s ready to accept his punishment. Randall decides he has everything sewn up and waives his closing statement.

Steve and Clare arrive, and Chancellor Arnold allows Steve to add on to his previous testimony. Steve announces that he failed the Columbus Day Massacre, and in fact has a copy of the test. (He got a 17%. You suck, Steve.) He also has copies of his previous failed quizzes. Chancellor Arnold immediately dismisses the charges against Brandon and warns that Randall will have to face a hearing of his own for manufacturing evidence.

The gang (plus Tracy and Mark, minus Valerie) gathers at the Peach Pit to celebrate Brandon’s awesomeness, or whatever. Brandon apologizes for making Mark’s birthday kind of crappy, then thanks Steve for helping him out. The girls laugh over the fact that the guys just hug and eat together, and everything’s okay. Brandon wonders why Randall didn’t think that Steve might come forward with his grades. Steve points out that he probably didn’t think someone with grades that low would admit to them, but “Steve Sanders has no shame.”

David disappears, and Donna finds him over at the After Dark. She knows he wants to invest in the club, and that it could lead him back to his own music career. He doesn’t want to do it if it comes with a high price, meaning losing her. Donna admits that she doesn’t like the idea of David and Valerie working together. David promises that he only wants Donna, so there’s nothing for her to worry about. She gives him her blessing to invest in the club.

Thoughts: How is Chancellor Arnold “punishing” Steve not a conflict of interest? Steve’s sleeping with his daughter!

Trivia: Muntz’s first name is Morton. No wonder he goes by his last name.

I like the way Mark thinks. What else can we blame on Brandon? Global warming? My dry skin this whole winter? The near-death of that deer a few episodes ago?

February 9, 2014

BH90210 7.11, If I Had a Hammer: Who Cares If You’re in Trouble? I’M in Trouble!

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 2:52 pm by Jenn

Nice sweatpants, David

Nice sweatpants, David

Summary: There are people dressed as bears in CU’s student union. Weird. Donna checks in on David, who’s still acting a little strangely after what happened in Vegas. He picks a fight with her, telling her that he can’t live up to her standards. As she leaves, he yells that he doesn’t need her or his father. Then he breaks a glass, cutting his hand and bringing a lot of attention to himself. Another student offers help but David just snaps at her.

Thanksgiving is approaching, and Brandon wants to host dinner at the Walshes’ for the whole gang. Valerie reminds him that he’ll have to invite Mark. Tracy, however, will be home with her family. Nat tells them that Willie the cook has been offered a house from Habitat for Humanity, but he and his niece and nephew need to do a lot of the work to build it. He’d like the gang to help out. Brandon and Valerie quickly agree.

Donna and Mel take David to the hospital, where Mel tells Donna that he saw David’s behavior years ago in Sheila. The doctor who took care of David’s hand calls in a psychiatrist to address his frantic manner. David tries to make excuses for his behavior, then uses the old “this is just how I am” story. The psychiatrist, Dr. Tate, isn’t buying that.

At CU, Steve appears before some sort of disciplinary board to address the fact that he recently turned in a paper very much like one Brandon once wrote. Steve not only plagiarized, but he did it for Professor Randall, AKA Lucinda’s ex-husband, AKA the professor who hates Brandon. Oops! Steve will be allowed to appear before a committee next week, but he’s facing expulsion.

Brandon reminds Kelly about Thanksgiving at his place, but she and Mark have plans to spend the weekend in Montecito. They spot Randall, who comes over to pretend to talk nice with Brandon. Even though he left CU, he’s been doing advisory stuff like reviewing term papers. He mentions that Brandon was always a really good writer.

Dr. Tate asks Mel and Donna if David has a family history of psychiatric problems. Mel names Sheila’s bipolar disorder. Dr. Tate wants to admit him to the psychiatric ward for 72 hours so he can be evaluated and diagnosed. Mel gives consent. He has to leave to see patients, so Donna offers to stay.

Steve goes to the beach apartment to tell Clare about his academic problems. Clare’s like, “How did I choose you over Dick and Prince Carl? Also, way to go, doing this just months before you were supposed to graduate.” She advises him to tell Brandon what happened. Steve wants to talk to Chancellor Arnold instead and try to get some sort of clemency. Clare orders him to tell Brandon before the dean does.

Brandon, Valerie, Mark, Nat, and Willie are first to the building site, followed by Clare and Steve. Steve confesses to Brandon that he took his paper and Randall caught him. Brandon quickly figures out that Randall knows he wrote the paper. That means he’s going to be gunning for Brandon. David is understandably annoyed about having to stay at the hospital, and he refuses to take his prescribed sedative. He also doesn’t want to talk to his psychiatrist about his recent behavior.

Dr. Tate chats with Donna instead; she tells him about when she and David went looking for Sheila in Portland. She thinks David’s trying to run away from himself. Dr. Tate tells her that David’s lucky to have her in his life. Kelly and Mark head to Montecito, learning on the way that their hotel reservation has been misplaced. She’s not optimistic that they’ll be able to find another place to stay on a holiday weekend. Mark’s fine with thinking of this as an adventure.

Brandon learns that he’s going to be charged with collusion for helping Steve plagiarize. Clare worries that she’s following in her mother’s footsteps, since she always considered Chancellor Arnold a project to work on. Speaking of the chancellor, Steve’s meeting with him right now. It’s not going to do any good, though, since Chancellor Arnold doesn’t get involved in disciplinary matters. Steve doesn’t get immunity just because of whose daughter he’s dating. He begs for the chance to make up for his plagiarism, regretting that he ever copied the paper. Chancellor Arnold says that he should have copied Brandon’s behavior instead.

David meets with Dr. Tate, and though he tells him a little about his life, he won’t talk about his feelings. Dr. Tate wants to discuss Sheila’s bipolar disorder. David denies that he’s like her, but Dr. Tate points out that he’s genetically predisposed to have what she has. David blah blahs about having a bad day, not having control, wanting to let off steam, etc. Dr. Tate tells him that those are the lows, and he’s been self-medicating with all his drinking. He adds that David has Mel and Donna, so he’s not alone.

Kelly and Mark scramble to get a hotel room anywhere in Montecito. They can’t, but Mark does manage to get them dinner reservations in a four-star restaurant in Lake Tahoe. (He told them it was for Ronald Reagan.) Brandon pleads innocent to collusion, then tells Professor Randall that he had nothing to do with Steve’s plagiarism. Randall won’t drop the charges. Brandon accuses him of making things personal, which, of course, Randall denies.

Back at the work site, Valerie proves to know a lot about construction. She tells Clare that her father was a contractor and she used to work with him on houses. She adds that just before she moved to Beverly Hills, her father committed suicide. Clare is able to empathize with her over losing a parent. Valerie admits that she doesn’t have a lot of happy memories of her father.

While Mark and Kelly eat fancy food at the four-star restaurant, David has a dream about looking for Sheila among homeless people in Portland. When he finds her, she turns into him. Well, it doesn’t take Freud to figure that out! David’s finally ready to talk to Dr. Tate. Sheila arrives in Beverly Hills and meets up with Donna at the hospital. She feels guilty for passing her bipolar disorder on to David. Donna says that David will just be happy to have her support.

At the Walshes’ house, Brandon yells at Steve for being an idiot and dragging Brandon into his antics. No more computer for Steve! Kelly and Mark manage to get a hotel room somewhere, but now she’s sick. Mark thinks she has the flu, but then he gets sick himself. Apparently you can get food poisoning at a four-star restaurant. So much for a romantic weekend. In the morning, they debate going back to Beverly Hills for Thanksgiving with the gang, but decide to stay put.

David’s very happy to see Sheila, who tells him she’s repaying him for the times he was there for her. She wants to talk about their similar behavior, but he still doesn’t think they should be compared. He has, however, been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Sheila knows that David likes his highs, but she cautions that he needs to stop drinking or he’ll have to face the lows, too. If he takes care of himself, he won’t need medication.

The members of the gang who’ve been working on the house gather with Willie and his niece and nephew for Thanksgiving dinner. Valerie and Clare ask Brandon and Steve to call a truce for the holiday. David shows up in time for the meal and asks Donna why she stuck around to help him. She reminds him that he was her first love. They exchange “I love you”s and kiss. So they’re…back together?

Thoughts: They keep showing the people dressed as bears throughout the episode, but no one ever mentions them or explains why they’re there. I’m starting to wonder if I just imagined them. Paging Dr. Tate!

“Hey, Steve, I know you’re in a jam, but can we make this about me?” Sure thing, Brandon!

Kelly can’t get a hotel clerk to help her over the phone, so she has Mark deal with him, saying that the guy must hate women. Mark doesn’t get anywhere either, so he tells Kelly, “He hates men, too.” For some reason, that cracked me up.

Kelly’s never had caviar? I find that hard to believe.

December 29, 2013

BH90210 7.5, Pledging My Love: Sorry You Have to Think About Steve Naked

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , at 1:05 pm by Jenn

Again, I'm sorry

Again, I’m sorry

Summary: Kenny drives Valerie home from a meeting with investors, traveling through the section of Beverly Hills where there are apparently still milkmen. (No, seriously, I think I saw a milkman.) He takes her to an apartment that he tells her he’s rented for their trysts. It’s Spirit Day at CU, whatever that means, and Tracy is disappointed to have to cover a speech Chancellor Arnold is giving. While everyone’s out on the quad, Steve leads a group of KEG pledges covered in shaving cream in a semi-naked run through the crowd. The sprinklers come on and make them even more naked.

Donna’s the head of Alpha’s rush, and she doesn’t see any qualified pledges in this year’s group. Kelly recognizes a transfer student at the café from a Condor article about a basketball player named Dani appearing in a campus play. Donna thinks she should pledge Alpha. Dani would love to, but she didn’t think Alpha took jocks. At the CU TV studio, Brandon, Mark, and Tracy watch footage of the streakers; Mark thinks they should air it, but Brandon has to be convinced.

David can’t get the classes he wanted because he’s registering late. Valerie gets “life credit” for working at the club, so I guess she’s a business major. David wonders if you have to win a gold medal to get a class you want. Gold medalist Kerri Strug isn’t sure. Either I just took some of Colin’s drugs or Kerri Strug goes to CU. What follows is the most random, pointless scene in…well, in this episode, at least.

Kelly visits Magical, Lesson-Giving AIDS Patient Jimmy at the hospice and invites him to services that weekend for Rosh Hashanah. Jimmy isn’t very in touch with his religion but agrees to go. He laments that he doesn’t have any friends. Dani meets with the pledge…deciders (I don’t know the lingo) but has to leave for work. Alpha sister Ellen doesn’t think she should pledge since she’s so athletic and has no style. Donna would prefer some diversity, which I guess means different shades of white skin.

The footage of the streakers airs on CU’s TV station, surprising Chancellor Arnold, who didn’t know it was captured on tape. As Clare’s leaving, Steve shows up to meet her and her father for dinner, and Clare blasts him for humiliating them. Steve’s proud of himself, which shouldn’t surprise anyone. The chancellor reveals that the dean wants to charge the intra-fraternity council charged with sexual harassment. He’s happy that Brandon got the streakers on tape because it means the administration can find out who they are. Steve’s not so proud of himself anymore.

Kenny’s supposed to meet Valerie for some romance, but he doesn’t show. She calls him while he’s in the car with his wife and son, and he pretends his mom is calling. Donna complains to Kelly about the Alpha sisters’ attitudes toward Dani, which she wants to change. Good luck, Donna. Steve gives Brandon the news about his possible punishment, but Brandon’s too amused to be concerned. He notes that this is actually the third stupid stunt Steve has pulled, after taking Professor Randall’s baseball and the mess with the legacy key.

Kenny shows up at the Walshes’ house to see Valerie, pretending it’s all business so Brandon and Steve don’t get suspicious. As if anyone can get anything over on Brandon. Val refuses to see her boyfriend, which doesn’t make Brandon any less suspicious. Donna tracks down Dani to tell her that she has another chance to impress Alpha in an interview. Dani thinks it’s hopeless, though she would have liked to be known as a pretty girl instead of a jock. Donna offers to give her some beauty tips.

Brandon refuses to hand over the streaking tape to Chancellor Arnold, telling him that he should take the situation less seriously. Mark wants to cooperate with the administration, but Brandon has consulted an ACLU lawyer and wants to stand behind journalistic integrity. Mark’s in charge, though, so he agrees to hand it over. Brandon “offers” to “look” for the tape. The chancellor gives him 24 hours, threatening to shut down the station if he doesn’t come through. After he leaves, Brandon tells Mark that he needs to keep the tape to protect a friend. Mark blasts him for risking the station.

Kelly, David, and Jimmy leave Rosh Hashanah services together, discussing how the holiday is about absolution and forgiveness. By Yom Kippur, names are written in the Book of Life determining who will live and who will die. Yes, yes, Jimmy’s dying – we get it. On campus, Steve assures the pledges that Brandon will take care of everything. Cue Brandon arriving to tell him that he failed. Of course, Steve’s mad at him, but Brandon notes that it was his mess to clean up in the first place, not Brandon’s.

Valerie ambushes Kenny at his office to blast him for skipping their date the night before. He’ll be making up for that right now, thank you. Kelly and Donna give Dani a makeover, even as they recognize that it’s a little anti-feminist. (Though Donna notes that Oprah does this a lot.) They want to show that athletes can be glamorous. Clare meets Steve at the Peach Pit so he can…whine, I guess. I’m not sure why he wanted to see her. She tells him to apologize to her father. Steve’s worried that the streaking will bring down all the Greeks on campus.

Tracy praises Brandon for standing up to Mark, even though Mark’s right that he shouldn’t sacrifice the station for a friend. She offers to use a magnet to damage the tape. Brandon’s resigned to handing the tape over to the administration the next day. Kelly goes to the hospice to see Jimmy, who’s gotten very sick overnight. One of the hospice workers admits that he’s probably not going to make it through the rest of the day. Jimmy tells Kelly that someone must have written his name in the Book of Life in disappearing ink. He knows that his death was set in motion a long time ago, so he doesn’t seem scared. He’s also grateful to have someone with him so he won’t die alone.

Steve goes to Chancellor Arnold to turn himself in, but a secretary tells him he’ll have to wait: “He’s punishing someone else right now.” Brandon and Mark are in with him, so the chancellor tells the dean that those horrible male oppressors are about to get what’s coming to them. He plays the tape, but it just shows static. The chancellor says he’ll just have to tell the dean that the case can’t go forward – after all, everyone cooperated, so there’s nothing left to do. Brandon gives Steve the news that he can keep his mouth shut (though he should really tell him to keep his clothes on).

Donna takes the new, improved Dani back to the pledge deciders (just humor me); she’s all prettified and calling herself Danielle. This time, Ellen and the other snobs think she would make a great addition. If she’d just looked and acted like this the first time around, she wouldn’t have needed a second interview. Dani announces that another sorority already offered her a bid, and she’s accepting. Donna resigns as rush chair because she’s sick of working with people who only judge based on outward appearances.

At the café, Steve continues celebrating his lack of punishment with Brandon, Clare, and Tracy. “I almost told the truth for nothing!” he exclaims. Even Clare doesn’t seem to care anymore. After she and Steve leave, Tracy confirms to Brandon that she used a magnet on the tape after all. The two of them start flirting, so I guess Tracy is Brandon’s girlfriend this season. Poor girl. David visits Kelly at the beach apartment, where she’s mourning Jimmy’s death. He gives her a candle to light for him. Kelly admits that she’s mad at Jimmy for leaving her, but she knows she needs to forgive him. They light the candle together and pray for peace and comfort.

Thoughts: Kenny must be great in bed, because otherwise, I don’t get the appeal.

Ack, Kelly caught Donna’s navel-bearing-shirt disease!

Clare and Steve, BREAK UP! You fight more than you get along!

September 8, 2013

BH90210 6.19, Nancy’s Choice: Abortions for Some, Miniature American Flags for Others

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , at 2:24 pm by Jenn

I don't like that this makes Steve uncomfortable, but I do like that he's uncomfortable

I don’t like that this makes Steve uncomfortable, but I do like that he’s uncomfortable

Summary: A piece Susan wrote about a woman who has an abortion has been nominated for some award, and Brandon thinks she’s going to win. Jonathan is back in town for the award dinner, having been invited by the award committee as opposed to Susan, not that that makes Brandon any happier. (Whatever, Brandon – you hang out with your ex all the time.) Thanks to her new drug addiction, Kelly’s missed a bunch of classes, so her grades are in trouble. Clare wants to find a woman for her father and encourages him to find a date for the award dinner.

Susan asks Jonathan why he came back to Beverly Hills, as if she doesn’t know that it’s because he’s still in love with her. Brandon sees them together, so of course he’s ticked. Susan explains that Jonathan is pro-life and didn’t want her to write her abortion piece, “Nancy’s Choice.” He also thinks the story was an invasion of Nancy’s privacy. She admits that when Jonathan was the Condor editor, she had trouble trying to live up to his approval. Brandon thinks she still does.

Clare makes Steve go shopping with her, so he spends his time checking out other women. One of them happens to be Elle. Clare meets her, but Steve doesn’t tell her the details of their last encounter. Donna and Joe are planning a weekend trip to Santa Barbara, so I guess he didn’t die after running the steps in the last episode. Kelly apologizes to Donna for her recent behavior, complaining that everyone’s on her case. Donna doesn’t think she should be so annoyed at having people care about her.

At the Walshes’, Clare tells Brandon that she and Steve ran into Elle, admitting that she’s worried that Steve will ditch her for the other woman. Brandon laughs that she has nothing to worry about. He teases Steve, then tells Clare that there was a “misunderstanding.” Steve finally tells Clare the truth, but she thinks he’s lying. He decides not to tell her the truth ever again. Valerie goes to Colin’s to talk about a collector who wants his artwork, and also to lecture him about his drug use. Kelly tells Valerie to stop trying to take care of her boyfriend.

Kelly spends the night studying for a test, and in the morning, when Colin offers her some cocaine to help her wake up, she tells him she’s decided to stop using. Colin’s all, “Fine, more for me.” She asks him to stop as well. At the Condor, Brandon confronts Susan over bumping one of his articles. Of course, he takes it personally and retaliates by telling her he’s not going to the award dinner. Colin shows his work to the collector, telling Valerie that he’s done with the coke. She thinks he should keep developing his artistic talent because he could have a great career.

Chancellor Arnold arrives at the award dinner without a date, but there’s someone there who catches his interest: Elle. Steve reluctantly introduces them, and the chancellor invites Elle to join them for dinner. Clare thinks they’re cute together. Brandon mopes at the Peach Pit, wearing a suit even though he’s supposedly not going to the dinner. He doesn’t get why Jonathan’s in town for the dinner when the article Susan’s nominated for led to their breakup. Nat tells him to stop being a whiny baby and go to the dinner. Okay, maybe not that whiny baby part, but he was probably thinking it.

Clare thinks Steve’s jealous of Arnold because he gets to spend the evening with Elle. Brandon arrives and immediately realizes that he made the right decision to come, since he gets to see what happens with this pair. David and his completely lack of plot run into Kelly at the Peach Pit; she assures him that she’s done with drugs, so he doesn’t have to worry anymore. She swears that she only used as a response to her issues with her father. David notes that crying is a reasonable reaction to her situation, not using illegal substances. He doesn’t think her willpower will keep her sober for very long.

Colin’s art has sold for $10,000, which surprises him, since he only sold two pieces and they weren’t worth that much. He plans to use the money for more drugs. Good work, Val! At the award dinner, the women at the table get to discussing pregnancy, which Susan thinks sounds horrible but Elle thinks sounds nice. Arnold asks if Elle has ever been pregnant, and Steve and Brandon lean in for the answer, then smirk when she says she can’t have children. Brandon asks for Jonathan’s side of the story about his and Susan’s breakup, but before Jonathan can answer, Susan wins her category.

In her acceptance speech, she talks about how women who have abortions live with their decisions for the rest of their lives. She thinks her award honors both choice and courage. Colin makes dinner for Kelly to celebrate his sale; she’s mostly pleased that he’s not celebrating with cocaine. Steve sneaks into the women’s bathroom to tell Elle to leave before Arnold finds out that she’s transsexual. Clare eavesdrops as Steve tells Elle that he’s in love with Clare. Now he’s a great guy again, I guess.

After the dinner, Brandon encourages Susan to call Nancy and let her know about the award. Susan confesses that she’s Nancy. Brandon gets now that she and Jonathan really broke up because she had an abortion, not because of the story. Susan asks if knowing she had an abortion makes Brandon feel differently about her, but he assures her that it doesn’t. Jonathan breaks up the conversation, I guess wanting to lecture Susan again about having an abortion. She blasts him for being pro-choice until he was in a situation where he didn’t get to make a choice. He forgives her, kind of apologizes, and congratulates her on her award.

Arnold asks Elle out for a drink, and though she wants to accept, she remembers Steve’s pleas and begs off. Arnold isn’t that disappointed, since at least he got to spend the evening with a woman who was interested in him. Valerie worries about what Colin will end up doing with his money, and David tells her that Kelly might be able to get him to stop doing drugs. Susan tells Brandon that Jonathan forgave her, and then I fall asleep because they’re boring. At Colin’s, Kelly’s first day of sobriety ends with coke, so I guess her willpower is just as wimpy as David thought.

Thoughts: It’s funny to see Nicholas Pryor so sweet here when he was a jerk in the Party of Five episode I just watched yesterday.

If this episode aired today, LGBT groups would rip the show apart.

For once in his life, Brandon doesn’t have a judgmental lecture for someone. I’ll try to enjoy the one-episode break, because I’m sure it’ll last as long as Kelly’s sobriety.

April 29, 2013

BH90210 5.25, Double Jeopardy: I’ll Take This Episode Is Full of Hostility for 200, Alex

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 10:02 pm by Jenn

Clare's dream would be my nightmare

Clare’s dream would be my nightmare

Summary: Kelly watches Jeopardy with the Walshes, and Jim shows off how smart he is. He thinks Brandon should try out for the upcoming college tournament. Brandon reveals that he’s already planning to but doesn’t think he’ll make the cut. He starts to call Andrea and find out if she’s trying out, too, but Kelly tells him it’s not a good time. Word has spread to Kelly about Andrea’s affair with Peter (but apparently not the word that Jesse also had an affair).

Speaking of the Cheatersons, they’ve gone to a therapy session, but Jesse isn’t very invested in trying to work things out. He tells Andrea she’s not the person he fell in love with. She notes that she got pregnant and had to turn herself into a wife and mother practically overnight. I’m not sure what that has to do with Peter, but okay.

Steve helps Brandon study for Jeopardy, telling him to make sure he hits the buzzer faster than the other contestants. Brandon notes that he’s not even a contestant yet. Clare and Donna show up, and Clare reveals that she’s also trying out. The guys don’t think she’ll be a threat, but Donna tells them that Clare plays every night on her computer…and answers the questions in French.

Kelly and David show up at Jackie’s place to find her, Mel, and Erin all happy and cuddly together. Kelly thinks it’s gross, but she’s glad Erin gets to have her parents back together. David’s surprised that Jackie forgave Mel. He’d like to get some of that forgiveness from Donna. Donna tries to get in touch with Ray, who’s still on the road but hasn’t called recently. Clare assures her that he’s not up to anything. But even if Ray and Donna break up, she still has the option of reconciling with David….

Clare’s father calls her while Brandon’s in his office and pretends that Clare is trash-talking him. Jesse goes to the Peach Pit to mope and ends up unloading his problems on Dylan. Andrea told him that Dylan saw her at the motel. He wants to move out, and when Dylan starts to offer some help, Jesse jumps on the idea of moving in. Dylan actually wants to loan him some money to get a hotel. Jesse guilts him into agreeing to let him stay at Casa McKay.

Brandon’s on Jeopardy, but Alex Trebek calls a stop to the contestant interviews when he learns that Brandon’s GPA is only 3.2. He wishes they’d chosen Clare instead. Then Brandon turns into a clown, because it’s a dream. In the real world the next day, Brandon and Clare go to take the written test with Steve and Donna there for moral support.

Dylan is annoyed at having a houseguest, and even more annoyed when Jesse asks for details of Andrea’s rendezvous with Peter. Jesse says he’s just thinking like a lawyer, trying to collect all the evidence. Clare tries to make nice with Brandon, pretending they’re not really competing with each other. (Mostly because she thinks she has it all sewn up.) The test starts and Clare accuses Brandon of cheating off of her on the first question. The second one stumps her, but he knows the answer.

Cindy and Valerie hang out at CU, talking about how Cindy and Jim want to stop by the After Dark sometime, since they just love to dance. Andrea needs a babysitter, and since Cindy isn’t available, Valerie offers to help. (Apparently she helped raise her little sister, and Cindy claims she’s good with kids.) Andrea is desperate enough to let her take Hannah.

Brandon and Clare leave the test arguing over her accusations about him cheating and his complaints that she’s pretentious for answering questions in French. He challenges her to a one-on-one competition. Valerie takes Hannah to Dylan’s, and Jesse freaks out, thinking Andrea left the baby with her so she could run off to have sex with Peter. When Dylan and Valerie tell him to chill, he complains because they’re Andrea’s friends, not his. He takes Hannah and goes to his parents’.

Steve emcees Brandon and Clare’s faceoff at the After Dark (even though Kelly’s the only person in the audience, so it’s not like they need all that space). Andrea shows up and tells Kelly that she applied to try out, too. Kelly points out that there are usually three contestants, and challenges Brandon and Clare to test their skills against Andrea. Andrea crushes it. Clare and Brandon are all embarrassed because Andrea’s a housewife, and I guess housewives are supposed to be dumb? Shut up, Brandon and Clare.

Valerie arrives and tells Andrea that Jesse has Hannah and might be thinking about filing for divorce. Andrea goes to meet him and promises that she wasn’t with Peter; that’s over. She admits that she went to see a lawyer because she knew Jesse would be working on a case to get custody. Jesse thinks he was reasonable for asking Valerie where Andrea was. She tells him she wants Hannah back the next day, then kicks him out.

Donna’s still waiting for a call from Ray and jumps every time the phone rings. Clare does the opposite, not wanting another pep talk from her father. She admits to Donna that she’s feeling a lot of pressure. She has a dream that she’s on Jeopardy and all the categories are about Brandon. She wins $52,000 and Brandon himself. Then Chancellor Arnold interrupts to take Brandon away for college business. He says Clare likes guys who speak French anyway, so Alex subs in a guy named Gaston.

Brandon visits Andrea to thank her for schooling him and Clare. He thinks she should represent CU on Jeopardy, but she points out that it’s not the best timing. She tells him that her affair was serious enough that she was willing to leave Jesse; Peter just didn’t feel the same way. Andrea married Jesse because she thought it was right, not just because she was pregnant, and now it’s a year later and they’ve both cheated. She’s worried that there’s something wrong with her.

Brandon tells her that she hasn’t seemed happy since they graduated high school. Andrea says that she keeps backing off of things like Yale and working on the Condor. She feels like a failure. He assures her that she’s a great daughter and a great mother, not to mention incredibly smart. They hug, and I can’t believe Jesse didn’t walk in and get jealous.

David goes to the beach apartment looking for Kelly but finds Clare instead. He asks about Donna, and Clare jumps on him, thinking he’s there to see Donna and only lied about Kelly. Ray finally calls, but it’s David who answers the phone. The poor guy has to stand there and listen while Donna and Ray make plans to meet up in Portland over spring break. Donna tells David that she feels bad about his breakup with Clare, especially since Clare has no reason to be jealous. Amazingly, David’s also going to Portland for spring break, since his mother lives there.

Brandon and Clare make Andrea take the Jeopardy test after both of them drop out of the process. Jesse asks Dylan again for information on Andrea’s affair, saying that he could get subpoenaed in the custody case anyway. Dylan isn’t sure Andrea wants a divorce at all. He encourages the two of them to work things out for Hannah’s sake.

Before taking her test, Andrea remembers watching Jeopardy with her grandmother, who told her to always remember that she can do anything she wants. Jesse meets her afterward and asks if he can come home. She agrees. Then we fast-forward a month, and the whole gang and Chancellor Arnold gather at the Peach Pit to watch Andrea on Jeopardy. The final question is a variation of the one asked in her memory, so she has this one in the bag.

Thoughts: Steve’s right about the importance of the buzzer. For more, read Bob Harris’ awesome book Prisoner of Trebekistan.

Good news, everyone: Erin is still adorable!

Chancellor Arnold to Brandon: “[Clare] says the only way you’ll win is if the category is funny haircuts.” HA!

Please shave, Dylan. No, more than that.

Johnny Gilbert in Brandon’s dream: “I’ll have the contestant coordinators taken out and shot, Alex.” HA again!

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