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Arts and Entertainment

Morning After Report: 90210 Episode 6 'Model Behavior'

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First, are you caught up? The adult son of an aging actress moves home to Beverly Hills from planet Kansas with his wife and two kids and they realize life here is, like, totally different. Bowling goes from uncool to cool, the Peach Pit serves Dr. Pepper by the case, and while drugs are generally bad, sex happens to be generally good.


Look, Mom-robot (Lori Laughlin) walks and talks and takes pictures! | Photo by Michael Desmond/The CW

Okay, so now you're ready for some "Model Behavior" in which the family matriarch gets to speak several lines in a row and move her arms and legs like a real person, the fashion victim with Shirley Temple curls plays a losing round of The Parent Trap, the world's holiest man calls from Wyoming, and we find out new places to score us some Dr. Pepper and some hard drugs. Pick your poison, pull up a seat, and let's hit the runway.

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The staff of WBHHS call in drug addict Adrianna--kicked out of the school play before curtain to be replaced by Annie Wilson, whose farts smell like roses, one might imagine--and try to go all intervention on her, but it's the most passive aggressive meeting between a student, her parent, and people who are allegedly employed to be authority figures, since Adrianna's showbiz mom clearly calls the shots and nothing is really accomplished.

After the meeting, Principal Wilson, aka Annie and Dixon's dad, pulls his daughter aside and asks her to be nice to Adrianna, you know, "be the bigger person," which is a strange request of someone who is the size and weight of a business-sized envelope. Cue snotty teen-aged ohmygoddddd face and resigned sigh, and looks like we have a deal. Can Annie forgive Adrianna for cock-blocking her after the school play in the Roosevelt Hotel? Oh, the suspense!

What this episode needs is some sort of event or happening or activity that will bring everyone together all at once, but, like, not at school. Bowling? No, not that again! Uh, the Peach Pit? Nope, we seem to have forgotten that was the hottest place in town. Oh, okay, let's somehow get everyone to go to some big fashion show. But how?

This is where Mom comes in. Remember, she doesn't sit in that mansion all day writing letters home to Kansas and eating bon bons while watching her "stories" on the flat screen. No, she has a job! She is a photographer. Now, she's not good enough to have her own business, and she doesn't seem to have a portfolio, but she does sell her boss on her taking the place of the conveniently absent shutterbug due to shoot the big Pacific Coast Fashion Show that's coming up. She can do it...despite "all those angles!" So she ropes her kids into helping her, and without asking if it's okay with the Wilsons, the semi-hot teacher who has the ever-cooling hots for Kelly Taylor and the increasingly heating hots for Brenda Walsh cons Adrianna into helping Annie's mom out, too. You know, for her homework assignment. Obviously.


Of course, while all this is happening there's another storyline happening. Poor Naomi--not only does she dress like she and the rest of the Spice Girls are going to play tennis in 1986, but she also has nothing better to do than to pout and plot over her parents' marital bust-up and pull a solo Hayley Mills (or Lindsay Lohan for the younger generation) on them and try to get them back together. (High five to Naomi's bf Ethan for the Parent Trap quip. I felt like I, too, could write for a CW teen drama at that moment.)

Now, why a 16-year-old has an 11-year-old's mentality about her mommy and daddy is beyond me, and why she wants these two obviously unhappy people to stay together I don't quite understand, but bless her conniving heart, for she does indeed ruin dinner with dad and his new plaything, and convince her mom and dad to show up to the big fashion show, all the while sporting a wide variety of hairstyles that, frankly, make my head spin.


Naomi's mom clearly thinks that life is one big episode of The Hills; she's channeled Heidi Montag's eerie bug eyes and talks like a rich twenty-something air head all the time. Obviously, this isn't going to end well for Naomi, who is under the impression that "sex always means something," because her parents so totally don't want to be together, and she and Ethan break up (again.) Rough times, Naomi. Maybe you can get a real storyline now.

But there's two more storylines to follow here, so don't get lost in the hair spray and chunky jewelry. First, there's Silver and Dixon, who treat us to a prelude to soft porn during lunch hour, then argue about the pros and cons of the modeling industry. It ends in a draw, but Silver will indeed deign to attend the "big show" with her new man, and she never once mentions the whole episode that modeling runs in her veins, thanks to her mom, Jackie the absent drunk, and her sister, Kelly "I don't talk about modeling since the fire that burned my face and made a lesbian fall in love with me" the school counselor. She does, however, mention that she will blog about her lunch break, because, you know, that's what bloggers do. They blog. And they talk about it. Just like that. I'm a blogger, so I'm going to blog. Bloggity blog blog blogger.

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Of course, once she's at the fashion show, Silver attracts attention. Would she like to be a model? The question comes from a smarmy showbiz type, who, of course, eventually shows his true colors by inviting Silver to talk over her career options in his jacuzzi. Other career moves are made at the fashion show, when a talent scout notices Annie--star of the school musical!!!!!--and invites her to try out for a slasher movie. Here comes a whole post-bean and cheese burrito onslaught of rose-smelling farts: Annie talks up Adrianna to the agent and gets her an audition, too. Because now the atmosphere is warm and fuzzy and rose-scented, Adrianna fesses up--big mistake, dummy--that she didn't really cock block Annie at the after-party, she just followed the voices in her drugged-out head that told her to put on a towel and run the empty shower and use her very finely honed acting skills to let Annie think that's what happened.

And fight!

No, just kidding. I wish! The brawl doesn't take place until a little later, when Silver turns down the sleazy agent's offer to press her skin-and-bones to his bone, and Dixon goes all Chino on his ass. The agent fires Mom Wilson's boss, and...well, nothing really happens. No one says "Dixon, you tool, why did you do that?" and the boss says to Mom Wilson "Oh, no worries, you're too talented to get fired by me," and everyone goes back to their glasses of chardonnay. Nice!


"Look, you're a really nice guy, but..." says Kelly (Jennie Garth) | Photo: Michael Desmond/The CW

The last thread of the tangled web of plot fabric comes from the old school Beverly Hills, 90210 spool. Do people who never saw the old show follow all the loaded hints and vague references to people from a time gone by? When Dylan McKay, the holiest man on earth, calls Brenda's cellphone, all the way from Wyoming, and Kelly wigs out in a series of weird spasmatic and semi-epileptic bursts from scene to scene, do people understand what this "ancient history" Ms. Walsh, moderately successful actress, refers to?

Bottom line: Brenda + Kelly + Dylan=Love triangle, 1992-93, with hints in the late 1990s from afar. Has Brenda changed? Well, she gave Dylan the ultimate 21st century dis by deleting him from her T-Mobile phone, but she isn't above moving in on semi-hot teacher when he learns from Kelly that he just doesn't have the appeal of someone who knocks her up and treats her like an old chewed up wad of gum. By the end of the ep, Brenda hints she might take off and go visit "Brandon and his family" (!!!) and Kelly has her bag packed for Wyoming, where she and Sammy are going to meet up with the almighty Dylan for a break up and/or make up. Either way, Luke Perry isn't coming to this zip code (he's too busy being a creepy serial rapist on Law & Order: SVU).

We close with a heartwarming scene between sisters Kelly and (Erin) Silver. Who will Silver stay with while Kelly is gone on her spur of the moment two week vacation to a ranch in Wyoming that the WBHHS district granted her leave for? Not with drunk Jackie who is probably passed out in a pool of her own vomit now for all those two broads care. Not with their brother David, because he has vanished into the abyss and doesn't merit mention at all. Not with Mel, because, well...(whine, whine) Silver doesn't wanna. So she'll keep house alone at Kelly's, like all teenagers should be allowed to without any parental consent, and like all guidance counselors should advise them to do.

The show ends with the two of them singing "We go together, like rama lama lama ke ding a de dinga a dong."

Just kidding. (Although how fun would that be!)

It actually ends with Adrianna and her spooked out sunken eye sockets waiting for a bus on a busy Los Angeles street. Oh, no, wait. She's not waiting for a bus, she's waiting for her dealer. And, little girl, "welcome to the big leagues." Her drugs don't come disguised in a textbook anymore...they're in a baggie delivered in a town car.

90210 airs Tuesdays at 8 on the CW (it repeats Wednesdays at 9 in case you missed it...)

Get caught up: Episodes 1 & 2, Episode 3, Episode 4; or go retro.

All photos are by Michael Desmond/The CW