The New 90210: Three Strikes You're Out

As our President says, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, something something. Fool me three times, we won't be fooled again! In other words: Episode 3 of the new 90210 better bring it, or I'm out.

Okay, okay, I'll probably continue to record it. But only so I can fast-forward until I see a be-wrinkled, long-sideburned original cast member and watch his or her five minutes of pandering attempts at career resuscitation. Because so far this show has managed to combine the dreary humorlessness of The O.C.'s interminable third season with the bland casting choices of ... well, pretty much every show on The CW, ever, except for Everybody Hates Chris, which is a lot better than you might expect. Why don't you people watch Everybody Hates Chris? Because you're all a bunch of racists, that's why. Crackers!

Anyway, on with the show.

9:02: Mrs. Bluth volunteers to direct the school musical, then she makes a joke about being a whore. Things are looking up!

9:05: Apparently Rob Estes and Aunt Becky are having trouble selling their house in Kansas, and might be strapped for cash, despite the fact they're living for free in Lucille Bluth's giant mansion. But, you know, bad housing market, etc., so ... topical! Also, this means the writers of 90210 officially have a fuller, more nuanced understanding of our nation's economy than at least one of the people running for president.

9:06: Kelly Taylor and Brenda Walsh just made a joke incorporating the phrase "Donna Martin graduates." Which should be an awesome pop culture touchstone moment, but instead, like the rest of this show, just seems forced and awkward. Also, apparently Donna has a baby who, according to Brenda, is "so cute," which I assume means her baby is adopted, since anything coming from Donna Martin's womb would look like a tiny Aaron Spelling/Mr. Potato Head with all the facial features mis-arranged.

9:14: Lucille Bluth just said "You have to sing like your privates are on fire." Could they please put her in every scene?

9:16: Dixon (the show's one black kid) is going to get a job at The Peach Pit. Because, well, of course, since he's the new Brandon Walsh. Also, The Peach Pit has been remade to look like pretty much any generic hip sidewalk cafe in Los Angeles, and according to the posted menu they sell at least eight things under the category of "Tonics," whatever that might mean. Is Nat mixing up magical elixirs? Are there high colonics in the back room?

9:35: I have to confess -- the plot of this week's show is actually less ridiculous, and slightly more interesting, if still pretty predictable. Annie (the new girl, daughter of Rob Estes) has a big crush on the somewhat doofy dude (I think his name is Ethan?) who recently broke up with the Hot Girl, but is maybe not completely broken up with the Hot Girl, and so she turned down a date with the Rich Hot Guy to see Vampire Weekend (apparently some band the kids are listening to these days) but now Ethan has stood her up, so she's just sitting at The Peach Pit by herself looking sad, while her brother, who now works at The Peach Pit, tries to console her. Granted, it's not Checkhov. It's not even questionably conceived undergraduate fiction. But it's maybe the first time any character has approached actual human status, which is a start.

9:40: The Poor Man's Jake Gyllenhaal plays the guitar, since he's, like, all sensitive and shit. Also, Brenda is probably gonna try to fuck him, even though he's dating Kelly, because that's what Brenda does.

9:45: The Black Kid just gave this little speech to Silver Silver about what it's like to be a black kid living with a white family and, you know, maybe it wasn't the most interesting thing I've ever heard, but it was a lot less lame and pandery than I would've expected. Also, the Black Kid and Silver Silver have a small amount of actual human chemistry between them, unlike the other characters on this show, all of whom seem to have been shipped in from the Planet of the Blank-Eyed Stares. Damn you, new 90210, with your trying to make me care.

9:50: Oh, very clever, new 90210, with your playing of The New Pornographers. This show is like a terrible girlfriend who knows exactly what to do just at the moment you've worked up the courage to leave.

9:55: Dylan is the father of Kelly's child! Well, shit. You win this round, new 90210. I guess I'll be watching this crap again next week. And I'm sure it will be 80% terrible, but then Tiffani Amber Thiessen will come back as a porn starlet or something and I'll be forced to keep up this weekly time suck.

No comments: