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Morning After Report: 90210 Episode 21 'The Dionysian Debacle'

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The sky's the limit, kiddies!


The sky's the limit, kiddies!
So, uh... Yawn. Yeah. While none of the eps of the new 90210 are prize-worthy, this week's was kind of a bad fit. You know, like something your Mom sewed for you and then made you wear to school. Awkward! The dream sequence is a cheap trick to play on your audience, so this is where we begin, with Navid and Adrianna playing out their "Happy Family" fantasy--you know, Navid pureeing organic veggies for the baby (that isn't actually his) while his teenage bride beams on. The fantasy is intercut with real-life Navid and Ade chillin' on the steps of West Bev (the more I think about it, that school sure had one hell of a makeover in the past decade) arguing about typical stuff: What to name the baby, if it's a boy or a girl, yadda yadda yadda. Silly kids.

Navid also wants to name the boy Habib and believes that his parents, after a minor hissy fit, will agree to have the newlywed teen parents live in the guest house and provide complimentary familial babysitting services. Yeah, uh huh, sure, right. We know this bubble is going to burst sooner or later. My guess is sooner. This show is really good at setting 'em up and paying 'em off within a tidy 44 minute span.

It's also tops at cramming in way more story than one needs to digest ahead of the intro sequence. So what do we learn over the next eight minutes before we can rock out to the re-tooled theme music?

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Well, we learn that Naomi is not only into douchey guys who use her for booty calls, but that she is also a mighty lousy houseguest. As in the kind who unfolds all your folded laundry, uses swear words in front of your mom, and generally acts ungrateful for the gratis accommodations. Also, she is prone to wig out beyond belief when her booty call cancels their first real date. She is scary.

Silver is also prone to be scary, and now she gets to rock her scary self out in a Catholic schoolgirl uniform. Dixon is not impressed. He thinks Silver changing schools is baloney, and a step too far from facing her problems. Silver is pretty committed to the idea though, because if she went back to West Bev she'd be known as "Crazy Bipolar Girl Who Made a Sex Tape." I never thought there could be a nickname for Erin Silver more absurd than just calling her Silver, but there you have it. Just rolls off the tongue, no?

At the root of Dixon's objection is that Silver won't be around as much. You know, she won't "hang out" with him at the Peach Dr Pepper Pit anymore, etc. I feel Dixon's pain. I mean, Los Angeles is a tiny town, and wherever you go, you see people you know. There's only one place where kids can work (Dr Pepper Pit) and so few places to go hang with your significant other. Tiny. So small. Crazytown.

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She's just an old soul in a young girl's uniform.
In addition to the endless stream of nifty aerial shots (ooh, day to night, neat!) we get to see Silver on her first day at St. Claire's. This storyline has one big bonus for me: Erin Silver gets to be Erin Silver. "Hi, I'm Erin. Erin Silver." Ahhhh... nice. Unfortunately though, she also gives an awkward speech about why she's made the move to Catholic school because she likes their morals. And then things get really awkward when she's assigned to get help from the super nerdy pious girl, and they all bow their heads and pray. Still loving the idea, Erin? Or Silver? Or Crazy Bipolar Girl Who Made a Sex Tape?

Meanwhile, at West Bev, Ade is stressing because dahlias are out of season. An odd thing to stress about, but she wants to bring them to Navid's mother when the couple have dinner with his parents. Sweet gesture. Naomi, annoying as she is, she's the only person who is poised with a big old stickpin to jab Adrianna's bubble. "I don't understand why you have to get married to keep the baby. Or why you even want to keep the baby," she says. She also reminds Adrianna that Navid probably won't be too keen on raising Ty's baby. (Hilarious admission: I totally forgot that Ty was the baby-daddy. I think there was a whole episode about it, wasn't there? Oopsies.) Anyhow, this could be a problem, since Navid might not like the fact that it's Ty's baby. Why he'd like it anymore or less because it's not the baby of some dude from drug rehab like he thinks I don't know, but...

Theme song. Finally. 9 minutes in.

After school at the Wilson House: Naomi is sick of eating salmon for dinner and isn't shy about telling Mom Wilson about it. She also isn't shy about the fact that she's going to get a Pap smear, nor does she mind discussing HPV and Annie's virginity in front of Mom and Dixon (whom she now calls Dixie). Like Dixie, this makes me lose my appetite.

Nerdy Pious Girl is helping Erin with her catechism. Nerdy Pious Girl agrees with Erin's choice to leave West Bev because it's Sodom and Gomorrah over there. All those bad morals. Like getting free refills of sodas at the movies. (What movie theatre offers free refills?) Also, NPG is clearly in her 30s playing a highschooler. A page from the Gabrielle Carteris book of casting. She offers Erin her take on faith: "Think of religion as the best extracurricular activity ever." She bugs. (And obviously, Erin is rethinking her choice to forgo her old extracurricular activities for Bible Study.)

Naomi spends her extracurricular time shopping--well, after she gets her cooter examined by a licensed professional--and comes home bearing presents for Annie: a sexy dress and shoes. Once Annie has them on, she cons her into joining Naomi on her "date" with Liam. No, not a threesome--it's a foursome with Liam, his cousin, and Naomi and...Annie.

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Despite the fact that it's dark out, and Naomi has had time to leave school, annoy the Wilsons, go to the gyno and go shopping, Erin and the Catholics are just leaving St Claire's. Dixon is there to pick up Erin, and Erin wigs out. She wants to keep a low profile, and Dixon--her black boyfriend from West Bev (and her sex video!)--isn't part of a low profile.

Adrianna and Navid arrive for dinner. Odd, because Navid lives there...did he need to pick her up or something? What's so awesome about this is that Navid's mom is played by the Italian actress who played the sexy Italian exchange student in the brilliant 1987 film Summer School starring Mark Harmon. Adrianna has gotten mom a vase full of peonies. She hands them over, takes off her coat and flaunts her belly. Mom drops the vase. Surprise! (And really, are we surprised?)

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Not exactly a prime family moment
After the obligatory cliff-hanging commercial break, we return to where we left off. Mom wails, Dad gets stern when Navid explains their plans to get married and live in the guest house and raise the baby. It shifts to play out just like Navid's fantasy scenario, until he mentions that the baby isn't technically "family." Okay, it's not entirely family at all, whatsoever. This is a deal-breaker for Navid's parents. Nope, no way, no how, not gonna happen.

Meanwhile, Naomi and Annie are meeting up with Liam and his cousin. Following some curious "nightlife" montage shots (the Seventh Veil, anyone?) the girls arrive at the dive bar/pool hall where the boys are. Gee, don't these two 16-year-old rich girls look out of place? No one bats an eye. What world is this?

Liam's cousin is the kind of gem who adds "Dogg" to every name, and also barks and howls. Liam compounds the discomfort by being the world's worst and meanest conversationalist by not letting Naomi start a pleasant line of chit chat. He does, however, name-drop Nancy Sutley, in the context of Naomi buying a new hybrid car (and not a bike as Liam so wittily suggested). In fact, Naomi apparently has a "Nancy Sutley story." Don't we all?

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While Naomi's in the girl's room, Annie and Liam have a heart to heart. She does that clever thing of calling his bluff for his douchey behavior, which clearly Liam finds appealing. His smarmy reaction makes Annie hate him more, and Liam like Annie. This can only lead to bad things. First, though, it leads to Liam being nicer to Naomi. This still looks like an outing more painful than the dentist. When it's time to go, in a private moment Liam asks Annie out. Hello, douchebag! Whatever will Annie do?

Navid's parents continue to drive the point home that they will not permit him to marry Adrianna and let the couple raise the baby in the guesthouse. Back in Annie's room, Naomi is rehashing the night's events. Annie decides to confess right away that Liam hit on her. Naomi takes it pretty well, but she also kicks Annie out of her own bed because she wants some alone time. Amazing how in this giant mansion Naomi and Annie are sleeping in the same bedroom. We know there's at least one guest room, because the drifter con-man posing as Principal Dad's son stayed there when he came to town, but for some reason Naomi kicking Annie out means Annie has to go sleep in Grandma's bed.

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Hotel Wilson has rougher accommodations than expected
But first a pit stop in the kitchen, where the Wilson parents mention to Annie that Naomi can't hang there for much longer. She's a pain in the ass.The next day at school, Naomi thinks she's got Liam's number. She confronts him about asking out Annie, and when he gives her his tough guy "I'm not into being a boyfriend" speech (usually mastered by dudes 23-40, not 17-year-olds, but, hey, okay, this is Sodom and Gomorrah, after all) Naomi tells him she knows he's just saying that because he's scared and she's not falling for it...she's actually into douchebags, so ha, ha, take that! She WILL be his girlfriend, dammit. Why is Naomi such a magnet for tools, anyhow? Her last boyfriend was Ethan, who--despite being the kind of fella who enjoys being fellated in the school parking lot (Episode 1, and, well, I guess what dude doesn't, right?)--is actually a pretty decent, dorky, mellow guy.

At St. Clair's, the Nerdy Pious Girl sure knows how to kick off a conversation with Erin: "I figured it out! You're the whore from the video!" Hey, Erin, that's another nickname for you! It seems someone sent Nerdy Pious Girl the video last month, and after seeing Dixon, she realized that was Erin's masterpiece. And she wants Erin to repent and save her soul, so the solution is for her to fast and Erin to tell everyone who she is.

Erin blames Dixon for this, because if he hadn't shown up at school no one would know who she was. Uh huh, sure it's his fault. Dixon isn't letting Erin get away with passing the blame. He thinks it's absurd that Nerdy Pious Girl is fasting for Erin's sins, but that it's not such a bad idea for Erin to tell her new school chums that she made a whorey viral video because she has a mental illness. Dixon's chapter of "How to win friends and influence people" sure is interesting. Last week he told her to tell everyone she spent her month off school reading Jane Austen and gardening.

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It's hard to make an honest woman out of Adrianna, Navid is learning
Navid shows up at Adrianna's with some duffel bags and a diamond ring. He still wants to make an honest woman out of her, despite his parents' objections. Speaking of being an honest woman, Adrianna decides that post-proposal redux is the best time to tell Navid that Ty is the baby daddy. Navid doesn't take this well. He leaves and slams the door, then bursts back in the room to yell at her, like four times. And the last time--just when we think he's gone for good--he bursts back in to shove the ring on her finger and make her promise to never lie to him again. Oh, they're so in love...they want to be together forever. PS, I don't even think they've gone all the way. Kids!"Oh, Liam doesn't like you, by the way," Naomi tells Annie. She explains her "douchebag-on-purpose" theory as she and Annie stroll through the halls of the Wilson manse--the manse with the disappearing guest room. They head into Annie's room, where this random chick is hooting and hollering and pouring champagne. Despite the obvious question of WHO LET THIS GIRL IN? we learn she is Naomi's older sister Jen, who winged in on a private jet and is coming to take Naomi off the Wilson's hands. How conveeeeeeeenient!

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Gratuitous Party Girl Jen, elder sibling of Naomi. Yikes, there's two of them.
The only thing more awesome than a gratuitous Party Girl character is a Verizon commercial filmed at Fosselman's ice cream parlor in Alhambra. SGV represent! Anyhow, the Wilsons are saying a not-too-tearful goodbye to Naomi, who happens to have overheard the Wilsons bitching about her while they were in the kitchen the other night. Put in a call to Party Girl Jen, and voila, problem solved. She will rescue Naomi from this Bougie hell and help her deal with their father's "Dionysian Debacle." Ohhhh, the title of the episode! Wow...this was a rough week, no?File this under Good to Know: Santa Monica High School has a teen parenting program. Free daycare for teen moms who go to school there. (Is this true?) Adrianna is jazzed because this is where she plans to go when she has the kid. And because Navid needs a job to pay rent to live at Ade's house with Ade's mom, he's thinking of working at...Can you guess? C'mom. Think hard. Okay, fine: The Peach Pit! Because, remember, it's the ONLY place in town where a kid can get a job. Also: I'm just putting it out there again to see if it sticks, but didn't a certain Ms. Brenda Walsh want a baby but can't have one? Will this be how Ade's problem is solved. We'll see...

Erin wraps things up this week by having nightmares about St. Claire's, and then deciding to send a mass email to her new schoolmates about her being, well, basically the "Crazy Bipolar Girl Who Made a Sex Video." Popularity basically ran the other way.

And Naomi's school day begins with her being dropped off by Party Girl Jen, who in the last remaining moments of this week's ep manages to hit on Semi-Hot Teacher (shudder) and reveal that she is the one who claimed Ethan's virginity by whispering "I won't tell Naomi I was your first" in his ear as he arrives on campus. Oh lord.

Only three episodes left this season!

90210 airs Tuesdays at 9 (new time!) on the CW

Get caught up: Episodes 1 & 2; Episode 3; Episode 4; Episode 5; Episode 6; Episode 7; Episode 8; Episode 9; Episode 10; Episode 11; Episode 12; Episode 13; Episode 14; Episode 15; Episode 16; Episode 17; Episode 18; Episode 19; Episode 20; or go retro.