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|:HOME:|:RANTS:|:JANUARY 12, 2000
"Tainted Love"
JANUARY 12, 2000

Ironically, I get to begin this weekís Rant with another Pluming Story ≠ well, that is, itís related to plumbing in a roundabout way. See, the Super notified us that today, Wednesday the 12, they were going to have to shut off the water in order to do repairs on the hot water tank or somesuch, so there would be no hot water available from 8am to 6pm, and all residents needed to adjust their showering schedule accordingly. And I, trying to get out of the sluglike slump Iíve been in, set the alarm for six so I could shower and get to work early on finishing my PhD apps (that deadline of the 15th fast approaching). But Iíve been in the habit of sleeping until 8:30-9ish, shame on me, and by 7 this morning, I was freshly showered. . . but dozing on the couch with the morning news on in the background because I was still tired. And, in my haze, an "entertainment report" filters into my consciousness. On one of the local stations, an anchor chirps merrily that it looks at though that FOX TV stalwart Beverly Hills, 90210 will be back for one more season! In fact, all of the cast members are eager to sign on for the next season. . . except Brian Austen Green. And Iím actually burying my face in the sofa pillows and groaning "Oh, God, NO!" in agony by the time the newscaster concludes her story with the tidbit that theyíre supposedly filming six shows to be aired over the summer, God help us all if it's true.

Do you think this is our fault? Is this board, inadvertently, somehow contributing to a misguided belief somewhere out there that thereís an audience that WANTS this mess to continue? (I refuse to believe that there might actually BE an audience that wants the show to continue.) Ah, well, writers and producers, since I know this is one of your primary concerns, yes, yes, I am committed to seeing the show through to the bitter-as-four-day-old-coffee-grounds end, and if you all come back, then it is my duty to keep on keepiní on with the Rants as well. But you owe me, big time. Jackholes.

However, the possibility of yet another (useless, pointless, senseless) season ≠ especially if it is without that Mac Daddy David Silver ≠ puts a crimp in my long-expected show conclusion in its Donna Ďn Davy Barbie Dreamhouse Wedding (with the reunited Kelly and Dylan as maid of honor and best man, preparing their own Lifelong Commitment) Glory. I mean, what could the writers possibly do with another season, unless itís just the continued never-ending malarkey (thanks, Gram, for a most effective word) about these Hillster Dream Couples trying to get together and stay together. . . in which case I will have to invest in a padded wall against which to bang my head.

What if... God help us ... what if Jason "Legal Woes" Priestly comes back to earn some feeeelthy dinero to cover all of his drunk driving fines and insurance fees? Seriously. I mean, Iíve never heeded the "I heard Brindaís gonna come back/make a guest appearance" rumors all these many years, but the somewhat likely possibility of JP returning unto 90210 is too frightening to consider. . . because then, when the season ends with Kelly and Dylan getting back together, Brandon would come back and Kelly would be all conflicted about who she really loves and who she chooses this time and-

No, no, Iím scaring myself. JP was emphatic about leaving the show when he did. Surely, if God is just and merciful, we wonít be subjected to this.

Anyway. So if the projected Donna/David wedding might not happen, what else would the writers do with Season Eleven? Hmmmm....

  • Donna and Kelly, two single working women (bwa!) living in a posh LA beach house, decide to rent out the extra bedroom. They take on a new roommate because a friend of a co-worker or someone knows of a person ≠ named Billie or Joey or Sam or Chris ≠ who needs a place, and impulsively, Donna and Kelly okay it. Of course, hijinx ensue when the new roommate turns out to be a guy. Who, right around sweeps, will fall passionately in love with Donna. Kelly, of course, having bid sayanora to LawyerBoy, will spend the whole season [still] attempting to reconcile with Dylan.
  • Kelly and Dylan get back together and shack up at the Royale, leaving Donna alone in the beach house. In a sudden financial disaster, Doc and Felice lose all their money and are left flat broke. Donna, who is making a nice living with her mongo-popular clothing designs, lets them come live with her in the beach house until they "get back on their feet." Hijinx ensue.
  • Casa Walsh burns down. Steve and Janet and Maddy are left homeless. They have to move into the basement at the Sosnasí house, where hijinx ensue when there are all sorts of fuh-nee culture-clashes between Steve and Janetís father and Janet struggles to assert her independence at a mother in the face of her own motherís interference. Steve and Janet, of course, realize that children are the greatest gift from God, and Janet gets knocked up again before the yearís over.
  • The Peach Pit/PPAD burns down. The Remaining Hillsters, with a few emotional token appearances from Nat, have to not only find a new means of income, but a whole new place to hang out. Stevie, using his Frat-Boy party planning prowess, turns the Beat around by making the office into an all-new totally hip club. Hijinx ensue when Janet and Steve decide to run the paper out of Casa Walsh, juggling home and work life in uncomfortably close quarters.
  • Donna, if denied a Dream Wedding with Davy, is instead (of course) offered a high-paying, high-prestige job as a designer in New York, with offices/a studio on 7th Avenue and a trendy shop with a killer live/work loft above it in SoHo. [In fact, Donna and Davyíllíve gotten engaged and, a la Kelly and Brandon, decided not to go through with it because of Donnaís job offer and, at the alter, Davy altruistically "sets Donna free to follow her dream."] Since the Hillsters are all such good friends and love each other so much and stick together and all that, they (sans Davy) decide to ALL go to New York, and move en masse. Hijinx ensue as they settle into New York life and make all sorts of ground-breaking discoveries. . . like that people are "so rude" or "always in a hurry" or that the city is "so dirty" in comparison to LA. Kelly, accosted by an agent while hailing a cab, ultimately returns to modeling. Dylan buys a Madison Avenue brownstone that he decorates with pretensions contemporary art, and starts wheeling and dealing in Real Estate ("The Dylan" in the making).
  • Someone ≠ prolly Kelly, or maybe Steve or Dylan ≠ after a whole bunch of soul-searching about "what Iím doing with my life" and "meaningful work" and all that, goes back to West Bev as a teacher, paving the way for a whole new gang of Hillsters. It matters not that Whoever isnít qualified to teach and doesnít have a teaching certificate. . . West Bev NEEEEDS them! Hijinx ensue as Whoever deals with the new breed of teenagers and all of their problems, but, by the end of the year, have done so much to save the school that when Mrs. Teasley announces her retirement, Said Hillster can step right in to take her place as school principal. And then we get another 10 seasons with the "new" gang at West Bev, presided over by Said Hillster.

Hang on ≠ I have to go beat my aforementioned head against that aforementioned wall. . . .

So, tonightís show.

You know, itís gotten to the point where the shows have been SO boring that I actually get anxious while watching, wondering if Iím going to have anything to write about afterwards other than the usual why is everyone so freaking dysfunctional?! stuff. Luckily, this week provided some extraordinarily special shout-outs as well as all-new levels of Kelly Taylor ME!ME!ME!ness.

Why was there no mention of New Yearís Eve? No party at the PPAD? No Millennium Hijinx? Did Steve and Janet have that big romantic getaway where they used up all the Y2K supplies Stevie was stocking up on six months ago?

So we start off with Mark the Coffee Guy who is not only providing free beverages to Donna, but also TO ALL OF HER FRIENDS . . . BECAUSE HE LIKES HER SO MUCH! Of COUSE he does! How could anyone not like Donna?

I actually thought through the first half of the show that he was retarded. I mean seriously, I thought he was supposed to be, like, a "slow" person who would babble in Lenny-talk about how beautiful Donna was and how much he liked her and finally Donna, in her Sweetness and Light, would benignly bestow the noblesse oblige of a date on this hapless retard, thus making his life complete.

But Iím getting off track. So. Gina, again working for Lawyer Boy (with all the messy details of her Restoration worked out in the interim of the last three weeks), must really be necessary to LBís fledgling practice because, instead of sending out those masses of bills that Mr. White Bread later tries to collect, Gina instead can devote time to figuring out how much theyíre saving on coffee.... In fact, Gina is actually startled enough to declare "Oh, you want me to work?" in surprise when LawyerBoy is promulgating on about his legal/financial woes. . . which, again, is a kind of blanket statement on the lives and times of Hillsters in general.

Then thereís the whole WTF aspect of making ABSOLUTELY SURE that We the TV Viewers know that Matt spent $14,300 on Kellyís Bazooka Engagement Ring with a diamond as big as the Ritz (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!).... As Gina said, "that was stupid!" Word, sistah.

So at the completely superfluous PPAD, some chick who looks like Wayneís girlfriend Casssandra from Wayneís World but is actually Gidgetís niece is trying to woo Dylan "The Funk Soul Brother" McKay because, like Donna, heís so hot and irresistible and people are just drawn to him. Yeah. And then Noah and Donna have some deep, philosophical discussion of their "happiness" (yeah right) before Noah goes to party with some friends whom itís never clear exactly who they are, how they know each other, and why Noahís hanging out with them in the first place (except for the typical "bad crowd" reasons makes up the wide and divergent range of reactions when a Hillster Boy and Hillster Girl break up ≠ that is, the boy hangs with a bad crowd, sometimes having meaningless sex with one of the associated Trollops, while the girl dates other guys and hangs out spilling her guts all over her girlfriends before both Boy and Girl either [usually] realize they just arenít happy without each other or [occasionally] the Boy runs off to make a life for himself somewhere else. Yeah, whatever).

So then Donna goes to hang with Kelly, whoís nursing her usual glass of wine. And Kelly starts scamming on guys for Donna and spies some Whatever Dude with a girl at the bar and, in her eternal wisdom, starts listing all of the qualities that are most important in a Cute Boy and making intelligent and insightful conclusions about his potential as a date for Donna: "Nice shirt... expensive shoes... maybe a doctor or a lawyer" (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!).... First of all, it was a butt-ugly shirt. Second of all, isnít it hard to tell at that distance how expensive his shoes are? Third of all, there are plenty of other financially successful professionals in the work force, Kelly, but of course "maybe a VP of a computer company" or "he must own his own marketing business " just doesnít have the same stereotypical punch, now, does it? Fourth of all, as Kelly should know firsthand, Lawyer does not necessarily = Major Moolah. And fifth, as long as Iím speculating about conclusions that Kelly should know firsthand, why didnít she say "maybe inherited big bucks from his dead father"? And sixth, other than Immediate Hillsters, do Doctors and Lawyers regularly hang out at dance club/bars like the PPAD? I mean, most of the non-Hillster variety actually WORK all the time.

Why is the PPAD in such a weird state of limbo? I mean, it appears that theyíve tried to make the club "grow up" along with the Hillsters themselves, maturing from a wildínícrazy college kid dance club to a martini-serving twentysomething hangout, just as the Hillsters have supposedly gone from young, irresponsible high-schoolers to semi-independent college students to now-successful adults. But, in both cases, the changes are not quite fully panned out nor particularly convincing, but just sort of half-heartedly scraggling along without much explanation or real development. Someone sell the PPAD already! Sheesh.

And after Kelly tries to tempt Donna with the joys of Mercenary Dating, Donna, in the first truly spectacular shout-out of the evening, announces that sheís not interested in picking up boys because sheís happily single! God bless America, Donnaís been listening to us! I know this because she follows it up with the second truly spectacular shout-out: "Iíve realized that every time Iím with somebody I always end up doing what they want, taking care of their needs" which she immediately qualifies with Quintessential Donna Backbone (yeah, uh-huh) by tossing in "itís not their fault itís mine" (yeah, yeah, we know) before continuing with the third truly spectacular shout-out, that now sheís going to "take care of myself. . . well, Iím starting to at least." And I had to rewind and watch that bit like three times because I kept laughing so hard and missing yet the next Important Donna Declaration taken almost word-for-word from my many complaints about HillsterGrrl Subservience in Relationships. [This sort of self-importance should only qualify me to critique Kellyís self-importance.]

But Donnaís so-called independence is going to have to wait, because itís time for a Kelly Taylor ME!fest! Appropriately enough, Dylan the Alcoholic sends Kelly and Donna a bottle of champagne to "celebrate Kellyís engagement" that actually happened over three weeks ago, so I guess this is the first time anyoneís been to the PPAD since Christmas. So Dylanís toasting Kelly, who, with selfless concern, wonders to Donna if "heís really happy for me." And Donna takes the self-sacrifice angle by hoping that Dylan "loves [Kelly] enough to let [her] go." Yeah. And Kelly tries to look all concerned about Dylan but sheís probably really just getting off on wondering if Dylanís going to be skulking in the bushes at her second wedding bursting with unrequited love for her. But the Kellypalooza ainít over yet.

So then we get the incessant opening credits that leave me wondering HOW MANY PRODUCERS work on one episode?

And then weíre back to Kelly as she sails into the Peach Pit and... orders... a coffee ... to go. WHY would Kelly go to THE PEACH PIT to order A CUP OF COFFEE? I mean, I KNOW thereíre places like Noahís Bagels and JambaJuice and the illimitable mass of Starbuckses ON EVERY FREAKING BLOCK OF EVERY MAIN STREET OF LOS ANGELES, but no, Kelly has to make her token appearance at the Peach Pit so Nat can make HIS token appearance serving her (and Dylan). And Kelly picks right up where she left off ME!ing with Donna by reacting to Dylanís angst with characteristic charitablity, smugly rubbing Dylanís creased face in the fact that "Matt and I announced our engagement" under the guise of being concerned about other things. And then Kelly and Dylan have this absolutely pointless and unfathomable conversation about the baptism and whether or not Dylanís going to take it seriously. And Dylanís so manic about no-heís-not-going-heís-going-to-eat-his-breakfast to yes-címon-whatíre-you-waiting-for-letís-go that I canít figure out if the writers want us to think that heís just deeply upset about Kellyís pending nuptials or overwhelmed about becoming Maddyís godfather or if theyíre setting up the Dylan-goes-nuts storyline in which he finally just snaps and rampages all over the PPAD with a gun. So after making such a big deal about wanting to stay to eat his breakfast, Dylan, um, eats only THE ORANGE GARNISH before stomping off. Why didnít he pay? Why didnít he at least take a piece of bacon or toast with him if eating breakfast was such a big deal? Who eats the orange garnish, anyway?

Next, for some reason, Davy is (I guess) Donnaís new model. And either Donna canít be trusted with strange models after the whole Wayne incident, or else the show is setting the precedent for Donna doinking her models so if Davy = model, then that means Donna and Davy will be reuniting ≠ and doinking ≠ soon. But Iíd like to think that the whole Davy-wearing-fitted-clothes is merely a shout-out to how many times weíve all bashed on his Hefty bag wardrobe. Yeah, letís go with that. Shout out count: 4.

So Davy "Lonely Hearts Club" Silver is offering Donna free advice on dating and love. I guess because his radio show has magically disappeared, he has all this free time to sit around Now Whore This giving Donna the benefit of his wisdom. Whatever. So he seems to think that Donna needs to be going out with Mark the Coffee Guy because Mark the Coffee Guy likes Donna so much. But from the looks of things, Mark the Coffee Guy is, like, flirting with two other Coffee Customers while this conversation is going on. Truly spectacular shout-out number five happens when Donna declares "I donít feel like dating right now" and (albeit halfheartedly) reiterates all of the things she now has time to do and the interests she can now pursue, such as (bwa!) creating a new menís line of sweaters. Yeah. So while Donna measures Davyís 16-incher (his NECK, people! His NECK!), Davy continues to lecture her and, in the process, scores himself tonightís prize for The Stupidest Thing Uttered In The Entire Episode by making the insightful observance that: "Thatís why women run the planet. Youíre like bears, you just hibernate for months at a time. Even years." And then he goes on to babble that "Women have all the power. You can pass up a great guy and just wait forever."

Alright, Davy, sit down here. Good. Now. Take out your notebook and pen and please copy the following definition: Hibernate: v. To spend the winter in an inactive sleeplike state. Got that? Okay, now, emphatically, Donna is not HIBERNATING, you doofus, sheís LIVING! Gawd. If she was at home on the sofa, hair unwashed, wearing the same sweats for five days straight, watching daytime TV and not answering the phone, then I think you might have reason to be concerned that she might be hibernating. Next, if your argument is correct, being inactive = power. Inactive = run the planet. See, on the surface it sounds like youíre cutely admitting that women are better than men, but the subtext of your Deep and Meaningful Statements is that women are kinda inactive controllers and men have no self control whatsoever which provides a lovely visual of a woman sitting, bored, on her butt dangling a bone ("throw him a bone," Davy urges Donna later) over a man who bears startling resemblance to a hyper little doggie leaping rabidly at the bait, frothing and snapping . . . . And furthermore, why is Davy harping on Donna dating WHEN HE IS, IN FACT, SINGLE HIMSELF RIGHT NOW?! Yes, once again, Iíd like to congratulate 90210 for providing respectful and non-generalized views of men, women and relationships.

So after this Moronicacy (tm me), Donna rebuts with truly spectacular shout-out number six, announcing that sheís not going to "miss out" on anything, and just wants to "wait a few weeks or a month or two." I mean, how many times have I complained that Hillster Grrls are rarely ≠ if ever ≠ more than a few weeks w/out a Boyfriend? Donnaís hip with all aspects of the Relationship Complaints Iíve blathered and yammered on and on about in previous Rants, innít she? Well, so I like to think.

Hey, why were there SO MANY CAVERN SHOTS this episode? Grody, grody to the max.

So then we go to the church for, um, the baptism "rehearsal." Hello? Is there such a thing as baptism rehearsals? I mean, I can see if it was a huge Catholic ceremony, but it was another Exclusive Hillster Event. . . . Which, in fact, brings up the question of WHY the baptism was private instead of part of a church service. . . I mean, the whole POINT of baptism, at least at the (Lutheran) church I was active in until I was out of high school, was to welcome the infant INTO THE CONGREGATION. It was important that the congregation, "the church family," be there to witness the baptism and make its own commitment to take part in the childís spiritual growth. It usually went: 1) The parents formally present the child to the church (i.e. the naming, asserting the "Christian name", marks the childís induction into the church) and commit themselves to the childís spiritual life. 2) The godparents commit themselves to the childís spiritual life. 3) The church family rises and commits itself to the childís spiritual life. Baptism isnít about trips to Ojai! For Peteís sake, why werenít the Sosnas there, at least?! And that whole hokum about Janet. . . HANDING THE BABY TO DYLAN to hand to the priest?! Yeah. Uh-huh. Thatís part of a baptism ceremony. Right.

Why didnít God strike Dylan with a lightning bolt when he started coping his Ďtude in church. . . and to the Pastor? But itís okay if heís an asshole because, as Kelly said, "heís sorry I think." Stand by your man, Kelly. Yeah. Go girl. And then Kelly goes full-steam into Me!Me!Me! mode by announcing to Janet, Steve and the Pastor that "This is about me, me being engaged, me committing to Matt." Aw, Kelly, tell us what you REALLY think. Jayzus. Iím surprised that Kelly doesnít own headgear that depicts all the planets of the solar system revolving around her. You know, just in case we DIDNíT get it. And then thereís the whole blither with PodJanet and SuddenlyTryingToBeNonSkeevyStevie fretting about if Dylanís "gonna do this, gonna commit to this, he said he would." Guys? Why donít you just FIND ANOTHER GODFATHER ALREADY?!

This whole Dylan bizness reminds me of one of my favorite parables. I think itís Middle Eastern, but it might be African. Anyway. Once upon a time, there was a girl who went to town to do the marketing for her family. As she was walking along the road, she came to an area that was filled with a large puddle. A snake was in front of the puddle, unable to get through or across or around it. The girl was a little afraid when she saw the snake, but it smiled charmingly at her, talked about the weather, complemented the girlís dress and told the girl how he instantly knew she was a good and beautiful person, yadda yadda. [Incidentally, the "yadda yadda" bit isnít part of the original text.] And then he said "Would you please carry me across this puddle?" And the girl said "Youíve got to be kidding. I canít pick you up! Youíre a snake ≠ youíll bite me and Iíll be poisoned and die!" And the snake said "Iíd never do anything like that, I promise! Please, I have to get across this puddle to get home to my family." And the girl said "Iím sorry, but I canít pick you up. Youíre a snake. Youíll bite me." And the snake said "Of COURSE I wonít bite you! Honest! Why would I bite you if youíre nice enough to carry me across this puddle?" And the girl chews her lip and frets and the snake urges one more time "Trust me. . . Iíd never hurt someone who was being kind to me. I just need your help to get across this puddle. I canít do it without you." And so the girl relents and says "Okay, Iíll carry you across. Climb on up." And the snake crawls up her arm and hangs on while she carries it to the other side. But just as they get there, the snake bares his fangs and bites into her arm before dropping down to the ground. The girl canít believe it, and, as the poison slowly does its work, she chokes out "But you promised you wouldnít bite me!" And the snake laughs and says "Hey, babe, you knew what I was when you picked me up!"

The moral of this story? Itís in a snakeís nature to bite. So donít be surprised if you pick one up and it bites you, regardless of what it tells you.

I donít need to explain further how this relates to Dyl-head supposedly upsetting his friends, do I?

So then we get the stupidity of LawyerBoy not, erm, sending out actual BILLS for his services but instead calling up each of his clients to tell them to pay up. Hey, LawyerBoy? Why donít you have GINA do that? Isnít that part of her job? And then heís showing his love and respect for Kelly, who comes doinging all afroth with honeymoon plans and starts flinging brochures about Tahiti at LawyerBoy, by basically glossing over Kellyís feelings and Ginaís actions with the comment that "I know Ginaís hurt you and your family but I think sheís sorry," to which Kelly snips "not sorry enough." Why didnít she say that in regards to Dylanís boorish behavior at the church earlier, huh? I guess winning Kellyís approval depends on how sorry or not sorry she thinks you are for stuff youíve done. But Kelly has better things to think about than Gina because she goes off on her Big Plans for the honeymoon, which she magnanimously says "is [LawyerBoy]ís honeymoon too" . . . but two seconds later we see Kellyís true colors shininí through as she gets pissily incredulous that LawyerBoy would "want me to go to South Dakota on my honeymoon?!" And then, in truly spectacular shout-out number seven, Kelly protests that "I just wanted it to be perfect!" And I refuse to be goading into another Rant about Kellyís Wedding and Honeymoon Hedonism and the whole Perfect Wedding crap and all of that. I just hope that LawyerBoy can tell Kelly about "their moment" on, well, on a momentís notice, or else there might be some trouble in Hillstaí Paradize. Hey, Kelly? Quit nattering about the stupid honeymoon and GO BACK DOWNSTAIRS TO WORK! After all, itís been at least SIX WEEKS since you last worked a shift, hasnít it?

WHY did we have to see "body shots" again? And why was Gidgetís nieceís BROTHER settiní her up for Noah to maul? Eyeeew. And Noah gets the runner-up award for The Stupidest Thing Uttered In The Entire Episode when he mumbles "Tastes like strawberries." At least, I think thatís what he said. I didnít have the stomach to watch that bit more than once to be sure. Gak.

And Gina was annoying me this episode again, particularly in this whole begging-Dylan-for-money-to-bail-LawyerBoy-out-of-trouble shtick. I mean, yeah, on the surface I get that sheís got all this Ulterior Motive to make Dylie jealous about "this guy whoís been nice to me" and relishes the opportunity to mess up Kellyís engagement . . . but youíd think that, if sheís still so hot for Dylie, wouldnít she instead be glad that Kellyís "taken" and supposedly out of the way? Why would she do something that might result in Kelly being "available" to get back together with Dyl-head? And then there was the whole whateverness of Dylanís martyred sigh as he says "cash or check." Iím sorry, but I find it hard to believe that Dylan would just hand Gina fifteen grand. I find it hard to believe that ANYONE would just hand ANYONE ELSE fifteen grand. But Dylanís just so angst-ridden and, deep down Ďneath it all is really generous and trying to do the right thing and wants to help Gina- Bah. And then Gina neeners on about how "mean" baptism is, with people making promises they never keep. Like, okay, Gina, welcome to life, hon, and GET OVER IT! Gawd. And once Gina has Dylanís check in her mitts, she delivers her stinging coup de maÓtre, informing Dylan that heís a "sham" and from afar he looks like such a catch because heís "cute . . . rich . . . generous" (which Iím sure compensates for his foul personality and brutish selfishness) but up close heís "a bastard." I just want to know why Gina isnít afraid that mebbe Dylan might, like, stop payment on the check now.

And after the too-long fade on Dylanís Big Fat Creased Forehead, thereís a commercial for that new show Malcolm in the Middle, which is hailed by one critic as rescuing a "laugh deprived season." I guess that critic hasnít been watching 90210.

And back in 90210land, itís yet another game of Musical Houses as Noah makes his move from Dysfunction Junction to Davyís Pad. Why is it all of these people have slept with each other/each otherís girlfriends/boyfriends andíve totally been at each otherís throats one episode, then are all hanging out and even being roommates the next? Davy was ready to rip of Noahís head and shit down his neck when he raped Valerie or was going through his drinking phase. . . and Noah was ready to give Davy an enema with a fire extinguisher when Davy was going through HIS drinking phase. . . and now Davyís letting Noah just crash ≠ with a cast of drunken friends ≠ at his place? Personally, I canít see any reason why ANYONE except mebbe Donna and Kelly should even be talking to each other, much less living together.

Why did we once again get the ‹berMacho Eating Scene with Davy and Noah slurping coffee and orange juice and chomping cereal? Barbarians. Why is Noah supposedly now all ethical and moral about diving whilst intoxicated? "Driving was not an option"? I mean, too little too late, lunkhead. And why didnít Gidgetís niece and Gidgetís nieceís brother wake up with all of the yammering and clumping and all that going on?

Now, on to LawyerBoyís bag of oranges.... For those who might not be familiar with this particular LA Practice, let me shed some background light on the supposed guy at Melrose and Fairfax. . . . See, whereas here in New York thereíre people that make a living wandering through subway cars selling electric razors and batteries and stuff out of their jackets, in LA thereíre people that make a living posed at the end of freeway offramps or busy intersections, hawking (usually) flowers and/or bags of oranges. Sometimes other produce, like potatoes or apples. Sometimes newspapers. Thereís some guy who plays the sax at one of the offramps and, legend has it, makes so much money at it that people claim theyíve seen him driving a Lexus or walking into a huge house or that he supports his wife and three kids this way. Anyway, so LawyerBoy wants to bring Kelly a guilt-flower... but had to settle for oranges (whatís up with the oranges on this episode anyway? Does this go back to Kellyís post-rape passing-the-orange game from earlier this season?) because thatís what the person at Melrose and Fairfax was selling? LawyerBoy, if you really wanted to impress Kelly, why didnít you MAKE AN EFFORT TO STOP AT ONE OF THE TEN MILLION CONROY FLOWERS... or any given grocery store (most of them are either open 24 hours or open at 6am), or even the freakiní 7-11, and get a flower? Or if you wanted to be cute, do something cute that would take an effort, like "I stopped at the donut shop and got you this portable coffee travel cup" or "Look, all seven flavors of bubble-gum from the Mini-Mart" or something? And then we get Kelly at her rosebud-lipped backboneless best as she whimpers all apologetically that Mt. Rushmore is okay with her and then pathetically queries "Why do I feel like something terribleís about to happen and you know what it is but you wonít tell me?" Kellycakes, thatís exactly how I feel right around 7:59 on Wednesday nights when the "and coming up on Beverly Hills, 90210" teaser comes on. Plus itís really obvious that you and LawyerBoy have a relationship built on trust and respect, that healthy communication is the cornerstone. You stupid girl. Itís like that big, honkiní diamond ring is the glass slipper and youíre one of the stepsisters willing to cut off toes and heels and whatever else it takes to make it fit! (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!)

So then LawyerBoy chugs upstairs, somehow managing to peel an orange with one hand in 15 steps. And Gina refers to him as being "a superhero," which Iím tempted to take as a shout-out: Denser than a loaf of white bread! Lamer than a legless dog! Able to blow 15K on his selfish, surface-oriented, materialistic girlfriend in a single bound! Itís a dolt! Itís a moron! Itís LAWYER BOY! And thereís the whole whateverness of Gina magically providing him $15,000 either 1) because she really wants to help him Ďcos heís SUCH a NICE GUY or 2) because itís a really convoluted scheme for Dylan to find out that LawyerBoy blew it with Kellyís ring is just rilly unfathomable. And, after the whole Gina-asking-Dylan-for-money scene and her basically living off him (because thereís NO way sheís making more than a couple hundred bucks a month working for LawyerBoy) at the hotel for months, thereís no way I can take her "you and I are the only two people in this town who appreciate a dollar" blather seriously. Plus Mr. Vest Boy blowing all that money on a ring for Kelly kinda contradicts that argument as well.

If the retainer issue is such a major ethical issue, why wasnít there any mention LAST episode about the fact that LawyerBoy was spending money that wasnít really his on Kellyís Mongoid ring? Why wasnít there any buildup of conflict, a scene of LawyerBoy biting his lip as he considers whether or not to do it, a scene of LawyerBoy shopping for rings within his "budget" and then spying the Big Huge Ring that he just HAS to get for Kelly because, as the salesperson will pressure, "itís a reflection of his commitment" or "make two months last forever" or whatever and then LawyerBoy touches the check in his pocket or something and rashly says "Iíll take it"...?

Anyway, then Poor Insecure Gina prostrates herself in front of LawyerBoy, basically telling him that sheís trying to buy his endorsement of her because he "could say ĎNo matter what people say about you Gina youíre really not such a horrible bitch.í" And then Mr. Kellywhipped pretty much kicks Gina in the teeth by responding with pointed unreassurance only "Thank you" leaving Gina all consternated and pathetical and addlepated.

And downstairs at Now Scare This, Donnaís trying to convince Gina to wear some ruffly peasant blouse to the baptism. I didnít know that you needed to buy new trendy outfits to wear to baptisms, but, obviously, from the rehearsal, this isnít like most baptisms, so maybe showing up in skimpy peasant blouses is part of Special Hillster Baptisms, like, honoring Maddyís spiritual life with fine raiment. . . or no-so-fine raiment. And then we get Ginaís Victim Blather Du Jour as she whines about being unable to handle the baptism because "our" father is also Ginaís godfather blah blah blah whinecakes. I mean, gosh dang it all, does everyone have to be getting over/dealing with some emotional tragedy that either is their crutch for destructive behavior or ≠ Oh. Wait. Iíve done the "Professional Victim" rant before, silly me.

So whatís up with more homoeroticism with Davy gloating that Mark the Coffee Guy gave him a "free mocha with extra whipcream (sic)" and he makes that "throw him a bone" remark and then bounds off for a "refill" with his shirt all unbuttoned ...? But before that, we get shout-out number eight with Davyís emphatically itchy sweater that causes him to scratch and deedle with a vigor unlike anything Iíve seen before. And then itís truly spectacular shout-out number nine when Donna, Donnanticing on and on, remarks that the contemporary dating scene is horrible "even if you know what youíre doing, which from my past track record I obviously donít." And no sooner do I wonder where the Real Donna is than she reassuringly tacks on that "present company" (nťe Davy) is the exception, whereas I think that a more accurate statement would be that present company is more like the root of all evil. And Donna, why would you worry that maybe Mark the Coffee Guy or any other potential date might do something gross like "lick his lips before he kisses," huh? I mean, if youíve kissed Noah and Davy and Ray, so your benchmark canít be very high, can it? And then in truly spectacular shout-out number ten, Donna asserts that in relationships, "you gotta move on." [As I railed in 11/10ís edition: "CAN ANYONE ON THIS SHOW EVER LET GO OF AN OLD RELATIONSHIP!? I mean, WHO REALLY LIVES LIKE THAT? Breaking up = The End!"]

So, after Donna-Davy Donnantics about Donnaís Dating Desirability, why did Donna leave her store unattended. . . with customers inside (you could see them when the scene opened) . . . to go do her femme fatal routine on Mark the Coffee Guy, which included Doing Comedy, mugging, posing against the counter and smelling the scones?! Ugh. Isnít there anything ≠ like chemicals, therapy, physical restraints ≠ that could get her to stop?

And Dyl-head and Steviekins prove that male friendships can be just as dysfunctional as the usual male-female Hillster Relationships as Stevie whines to Dylie about whether or not Dylieís really committed to this godfather thing and the whole emphasis on "lifelong responsibility" can either be taken as truly spectacular shout-out number eleven in regards to my numerous parenting rants, or as a sign that Dylan and Kelly are- Right. You know where Iím going. Anyway. So. Why has Dylan been. . . reading BOOKS on godparenting? Do such things exist? Could there be more than one?

Why? Why? Why why why why why did we have to endure Donna Donnanticing all over the place on her First Date with Mark the Coffee Guy? I mean, it was PAINFUL to watch. Who acts like this in real life? Why, no matter how nervous you might be on a first date, would you. . . talk about your friendís bras? Or any bras? Or Matt Damon? Gawd, Donna, DONíT DRINK ANY MORE COFFEE! I fear weíd have to peal you off the ceiling if you get any more jittery. And after watching and re-watching this scene, I can only speculate why Donna later tells Davy that Mark the Coffee Guy "got really quiet"... I mean, he didnít seem like the life of the party before the coffee remark.

Why is it the PPAD seems to be the scene of all of the most Yeah Right scenes of the show? I mean, what was up with Dylan admonishing LawyerBoy "You coulda come to me" about needing to borrow money. . .? Whaa? Letís go back to that bit about Davy and Noah and me not understanding why weíre supposed to believe these people are friends. Okay, now double it. And then The Stay-Puff Marshmallow Lawyer gets all Dicky and delivers a coup d'ťtat of his own about how "Kellyís waiting for me. . . donít you just miss saying that?" I mean, the only thing he DIDNíT say was the requisite pop catch phrase "Ouch! Thatís gotta hurt!" afterwards. And, btw, why does LB keep emphatically calling Kelly "my girlfriend" instead of "my fiancťe"?

And as a result of this altercation, Poor, Hurting Dylan is so angst-ridden that he has to go fuck Gidgetís horny niece. Who, in keeping with Hillster tradition, has already been with Noah.

Kudos to Mr. Bhaer who provided the credo that the Hillsters ought to adopt and live by: "What you did was wrong. And I resent you trying to make me understand why you did it." It makes sense if you think about it, honest. And LawyerBoy has no comeback because his shirt collar is too tight and buttoned all wonky.

Shift back into MEEEE! Mode, because Kelly Taylor is in front of a jewelry store hissing and spitting when Dylie finally manages to show up. How much MORE of a total and complete loser asshole can Dylan be? I mean, yeah, weíre supposed to feel sorry for him because the writers are telling us clearly that this behavior isnít HIS fault, heís just hurting so much with unrequited love for Kelly that is MAKES him be a butthead so heís not REALLY being rude, selfish, nasty and immature, heís REALLY being loving, caring, concerned and generous! (Writers: "What you did was wrong. And I resent you trying to make me understand why you did it.") And, saturated in ME!ness, Kelly wants to know whatís bothering sweet lilí Dylie more, "that I made a decision or that itís permanent," like, ease down, Kelly! Itís just a silver comb-and-mirror set! And if youíre making not-so-oblique references to your engagement and pending marriage, well, after your non-wedding wedding with Brandon, that "itís a permanent decision" isnít gonna swing much weight. So Dylan gets all canoodled and booblechequed and storms back into the store with the comb-and-mirror set to demand that they return it, like, ASSHOLE?! And the poor salesperson has to grovel and scrape to him while Kelly sniffs and puckers up her glossy lilí strawberry candy lips in agitation. And THEN we get a truly loving and respectful interlude when Dylan starts badgering Kelly about her ring and making remarks like he thinks "a plain gold band" would be more appropriate "especially on Mattís salary" and OBVIOUSLY Dylan knows NOTHING about women in general or Kelly in particular because WHO CARES what your groom can AFFORD as long as you get that great, big, super-expensive diamond (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!) to flash and flaunt and goon over. Otherwise, your love is, like, nothing. I can think of many a crappy relationship thatís been validated by the presence of a mammoth colossal gigantia diamond on the third finger of your left hand. Like my cousin whoís been on-again off-again with this absolute BUTTWIPE of a boy (and has two of her three children by him, not counting her child by her h.s.b.f. or his child with his first wife-) who lies to her and cheats on her constantly and steals money and doesnít work (hey, sounds like Davy) and theyíve been kicked out of two apartments for late rent and had two new cars repossessed and are routinely having crises with utilities or the phone getting turned off because someone (gee) spent the money for the bill on buying drinks at his favorite hangout, the bar at Applebeeís, or went skiing when he was supposed to be going on a job interview. But when they got married (to the protests of everyone in our family and everyone in their neighborhood) when she was seven months pregnant, she went out to the jewelry store at the mall and charged herself a huge, gawdy, chintzy diamond ring and matching diamond-studded wedding ring because, somehow, that solidified or consecrated their union and she could hold her head (or hand) high despite the essential shittiness of their marriage because she had a big ring that was bigger than her sisterís and many of her friendsí diamond rings. Or like an ex-friend of mine who was emphatic that she would not accept anything less than a carat-and-a-half ≠ but preferred a two-carat ≠ diamond ring from her significant other because smaller rings just would not do enough to reflect his love for her, so at the appointed time, the boyfriend had to go into debt to buy her a great big diamond and she made it a point of telling everyone how much it cost him, too. "Can you believe he spent almost ____ thousand dollars on it?!" I mean, WHO CARES!? Was it given with love and joy? Or the girls (friends of my cousins, incidentally) who wrinkled up their noses at the antique sapphire ring The Husband-Type Man and I picked out together, exclaiming "you mean... itís used?" and "why didnít you get a diamond? Engagement rings are supposed to be diamonds!" which shows that they really have their hearts in the right place.

And speaking of hearts being in the right place, Kelly responds to Dylanís critique of her Big Fat Diamond by sniping "WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO RUIN THIS FOR ME!" like, GOD FORBID someone tries to dim the sun in Kelly Taylorís shiny happy world. Why, if Kelly Taylor is happy, then EVERYONE should be happy! But before We the TV Viewers can catch our breath from this particular gem, Dylan rebuts with what is easily the most truly spectacular shout-out of the whole show, and mebbe one of the top three shout-outs of all time, number twelve: "In some PASSIVE-AGGRESSIVE WAY Iím trying to help you!" To which Kelly sulks and pouts and mentally tries to calculate how many times the words "passive-aggressive" have been used on the Mediarama boards in connections with Hillsters, which means sheís going to be standing there in the jewelry shop for a long, long time.

And then thereís the nonsense with Davy loitering around Nowhere This because he doesnít even make the effort of working at a car wash, even, but would rather discuss Donnaís date with her and whine because Mark the Coffee Guy had the nerve to CHARGE him a whole buck ninety five for his iced tea, which sends Donna off into a twittering panic about what she did wrong to upset Mark the Coffee Guy. And so she launches into her Donnanticing Reminiscences about Mark the Coffee Guy "getting really quiet" and I have to point out that Donna must be as self-involved as Kelly to notíve noticed that Mark the Coffee Guy has pretty much been NOTHING BUT quiet for the entire duration of this whole stupid plot. And THEN Donna hits on the brilliant possibility that Mark the Coffee Guy must be totally upset because she mentioned ≠ in truly spectacular shout-out number thirteen ≠ men with receeding hairlines. I mean, come on, Mark the Coffee Guy has WAY more hair on top than Skeevy Stevie. Or Dylan. And in the meantime, Davyís mourning the real loss. . . the loss of free coffee. Wanker.

So back at Casa Non-Walsh (which, I guess means that he still lives there with the Sanders family) LawyerBoyís making a sandwich on WHEAT BREAD, and Kelly comes in, her angelic blue eyes wide with concern, because of this possible discrepancy with "my engagement ring" and she blinks her big doe eyes at LawyerBoy with glossy-puckered-lipped earnestness, wanting to know "is that a problem?" when she hears about the clientís $$$ financing her ring, looking all angst-ridden at the though of having to give up her precious gazoomba diamond. And LawyerBoy admits ≠ with a most Brandon-like "heh heh heh" that "the money wasnít mine after all." Cute, LawyerBoy. Cute AND mature. So then Kelly rises to the bait by wrenching off the ring to return to LawyerBoy, and LawyerBoy protests because "this ring is from me... the promise to wear it forever is from you" and I had to rewind that bit SEVEN TIMES before I could decipher what LawyerBoy was saying, because it sounded like "this ring is from me... you promised to wear it forever... is from you," which, obviously, didnít make sense. But neither does the fact that Gina and Dylan are all involved in "my engagement ring" or the fact that LawyerBoy even HAS a legal practice based on the way he conducts business on a regular basis despite his sudden concern with "ethics." And Kelly, of course, "want(s) to help you... please let me" because thatís what Kelly Taylor does best: making outrageous demands, then retracting them and making like a jellyfish in front of the Man She Loves.

And then Donna, behaving like a ten-year-old, has to gallumph over to Mark the Coffee Guyís coffee stand to babble her nonsense about finding bald men sexy. And, based on this scene, I think Mark the Coffee Guy is just the guy for Donna because he mugs and overdramatizes and basically Does Uncomedic Comedy left and right and up and down all over the place as he sticks his hands and face in his box of coffee beans and chastises Donna for not appreciating the fact that he had to live off tortillas and beans for seven months to provide her with this superb blend. Um. There are so many things that could be said about this. So many. And I donít know whatís giving me the creeps more, Mark the Coffee Guyís masterbatory rites over his coffee beans and geno-generalities about South American cultures and people, or Donnaís bugging out her eyes and quirking her over-lined lips and "wiff"ing before she does that icky hootchie-cootchie mama Donna Stomp off into the sunset.

So. Why is Noah suddenly all buddy-buddy with Dylan, buddy-buddy enough that he shows up drunk with a passel of other drunks and sluts to "party" at Dylanís hotel room, first presenting Gidgetís niece ≠ who parties with her brother on a regular basis, it seems ≠ as, like, a gift or something. Mebbe next time, Noah should bring a box of chocolates or a bottle of wine instead. And then the elevator partying muzak starts up as Gina arrives to continue her Victim Blather Du Jour about promises that people never keep, and how her godfather let her down and her insecurity about Dylan and Kelly doing something for her, but of course Dylan could "change [Madelineís] life... or maybe she could change yours." Yeah, yeah, and a little child shall lead them. Break out the Wordsworth, guys, itís time for the Beautiful Child being the Father of Man yet again. So we know that two weeks as a godfather is going to make Dylan realize that what he wants most is the responsibility of a family of his own, to make a difference in his own childís life, the way Jack never did with him. And, naturally, the one to make a family with is Kelly (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!). Like we canít see this one coming a trillion miles away. So Gina presents Dylan with a cross to give Maddy, representing the act that all Hillster Women perform for their Hillster Men, and Dylan sighs and rolls his eyes around and wonkies his eyebrows and does Twisty Head and looks Tragical before going back to party with Gidgetís niece and her brother Shane and (in a gutteral voice) "Georges."

So then LawyerBoy does a particularly Brandonesque move by, in the guise of taking responsibility for his actions, using a formal/serious platform of some kind to deliver mouthy rejoinders in that "the best defense is a good offense" tradition, snapping to Mr. Bhaer that his check is good "how Ďbout because I hocked my girlfriendís engagement ring to get the money." And first of, why is he again saying "girlfriend" instead of fiancťe? I guess next week we can look forward to Kelly being all concerned about the same fact, and whining to Donna and wondering if itís a sign that maybe Stupid Vest Boy doesnít really want to marry her. And second, after such a poignant and moving statement, I wonder why Mr. Bhaer doesnít just break down in tears and apologize to LawyerBoy and give him back the money to go get Kellyís ring. And then the Punishing Woman in charge tells LawyerBoy heís going to be suspended for thirty days "to make an example" of him, to which he protests that he might lose his business if that happens. Donít worry, Mr. Wonder Bread, you can always go work for Donna. Or Dylan. Or something. And besides, as Gina, Davy, Kelly, Steve and Janet all clearly illustrate, you donít have to actually WORK in 90210Land to live. You can have a house and a car and fancy accouterments and trips and clothes and babies and all that without haviní to sweat for it.

And then Donna has to go back ONE MORE TIME, again leaving her store open and unattended, to try to get Mark the Coffee Guy to forgive her her trespasses. Mark the Coffee Guy, naturally, is SO upset over Donnaís lack of appreciation for his coffee beans that heís going to leave this store and work at his other locations. And Donna tries to kiss butt saying "I didnít know business was going that well." And Mark the Coffee Guy gets all pissy and says "I know this might come as a shock to you-" and I though he was going to finish "but some of us actually WORK" but no, he says "some people actually LIKE my coffee." And he continues that Donna isnít "enthusiastic" about his coffee and Donna over-dramatizes that she "can be enthusiastic about it!" First of all, why does Donna care so much? Itís not like sheís made any mention about having had a really good time with Mark the Coffee Guy or really enjoying his company, or even thinking he was cute... itís merely that heís upset with her. Break the cycle, Donna! And why is Mark the Coffee Guy so freakiní stuck on his coffee? Compensation? Substitution? I hope Davy never asked him for cream in his coffee. . . . So anyway, Donna Donnantics and Does Comedy and is charming and blithers on and on about "enthusiasm is my strong suit" (yeah. Uh-huh. Whatever. He said "enthusiasm" Donna, not "rabidity." Calm down.) because we all know Donna is just so bright and loving and fun to be with and happy and never wants to hurt anyone. And Mark stands up and smiles and looks kinda cute, even. . . but he suddenly becomes The Most Desirable Guy in Hillsterland when, upon spying Davy swaggering, hands in pockets, into Donnaís store dressed in, um, a sweater, Mark bursts into hysterical laughter, and yodels "What the HELL is David wearing?!" in truly spectacular shout-out number fourteen. And by the time Mark adds "he looks like a MUPPET!" Iím, like, not only ready to drink this guyís coffee, Iím ready to eat tortillas and beans for seven months with him. Unfortunately, Mark doesnít continue on in Airplane! mode with "and where did you get those shoes, oh, and that coat, geez !" or something, but calls Donna a "fashion maven." Yeah. I think you mean "craven," Mark. And poor Donna sulks and chastises Mark for making fun of her designs and he says "Iíll call you?" and Donna huffs "Whatever" in a salute to all Mediaramans everywhere before stomping back to the store dressed in an animal-print jacket that I think I owned back in 1989. And Markís smile at the end of this scene, as he shakes his head in disbelief of Donnaís hiddy fashion sense, was a lovely thing indeed.

So, ah, why did Donna show up to the plaza where her store is, go talk to Mark, then... leave for the baptism 1) without locking/closing the store and/or 2) even bothering to go into the store in the first place? Who was at the store before Donna? Or did she just leave the door wide open all night so that her creations would be available to the public at any time of the night?

At the Beverly Royale With Cheese Hotel Noah is waking the dead and announcing that for breakfast his "man" Shane Oliver is going to "snort whatís in this glass. . . if the price is right." And Shane holds up a bottle (not a glass) of liquid. Do people actually snort liquid? So Dylan is "out" of this bet because heís holding Maddyís cross and seeing the light and all that, so Noah holds Shane Oliverís hand as Shane prepares to snort for money.

So itís time for the sacrament of Maddyís baptism into the Church of Hillster. And Donnaís got her bra straps all hanging out and her boobage hanging out in church, which is really tacky. And speaking of inappropriate, I just have to comment AGAIN on how lame it is that the baptism is only attended by the coupleís friends and not any of their family members. I mean, have Rush and Samantha even SEEN their grandchild? Have the monkey-twins met their niece? What a crock. Anyway, Stevieís pacing and Janetís saying "Dylanís irresponsible we knew that this is our own fault" in full-on Asian Claire bitch-mode, even down to the Whatever Face (tm xix). But who cares about Mommy and Daddy Sandersí angst when you could be focused on Kelly, huh?! So Kellyís petting LawyerBoyís hand and telling him "weíre gonna get through this" which I would like to nominate as being Overused Hillster Platitude Numero Uno, folks. FíGawdís sake, every couple is ALWAYS trying to get through SOMETHING. . . especially when one-half of the couple is Kelly "Drama Queen" Taylor.

And LawyerBoy must have some serious issues working, because he actually and seriously says what is now the All-New Stupidest Thing Uttered In The Entire Episode: "But a ring this small is embarrassing" and Kelly protests because she doesnít want to rock the precarious boat balanced on the edge of a cliff with a sheer drop of several thousand feet that is her relationship with Matt and then Matt stupidly continues that the ring is "supposed to be a public declaration of our commitment and when people look at this they should see nothing but our love for each other" but when they look at this ring "they also see my screw-up" like WHAT THE FUCK?!?! The WEDDING CEREMONY is the public declaration of your commitment, you meathead! Just because a couple can afford to spend bigbucks on a huge diamond DOES NOT MEAN THEY ARE DECLARING MORE COMMITTMENT TO EACH OTHER OR LOVE EACH OTHER MORE OR ARE MORE SUCCESSFUL AS HUMAN BEINGS! I mean, Iím guessing that Donald Trump got Marla Maples a pretty hefty rock, and that Jim Carrey put a big olí diamond on Lauren Hollyís hand and Michael Jackson surely got Debbie ≠ and Lisa Marie, for that matter ≠ an expensive ring, so, WHAT DOES THAT PROVE? LawyerGump and Mrs. KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT prolly also think that they have to have seventeen different kinds of hors díoureves and a full orchestra and orchids flown in from Hawaii or else their wedding wouldnít be declaring their love for each other either, God help us all! And Kelly and Matt make sorrowful deprecating faces over Kellyís new, smaller-scale diamond, like, WHY DIDNíT THEY JUST WAIT AND BUY THE RING LATER IF GETTING A DIAMOND RING THE SIZE OF AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER IS SO FREAKINí IMPORTANT TO THEM?!

Actually, I think, based on their mutual lameness and surface-orientation to the extreme, Kelly and LawyerBoy are just PERFECT for each other!

And then Gina scurries in, also late in the extreme, but no one cares about her. And if she just came in, um, wouldnít sheíve seen Dyl-head arriving three seconds behind her and couldnít sheíve then told Stevie "itís okay, heís here"? Why didnít they drive over from the Royale together?

And then Dylan swoops in and announces all dramatically "Anybody need a godfather?" And Iím wondering if at this very moment, thereíre guys takiní out Noah and Nat and anyone else who might be in Dylanís way. And instead of breaking into cheers and applause, Stevie stomps over and says "You know, swooping in at the last minute really worked in high school but it doesnít work here." Actually, Stevie, it never really WORKED, per se, in high school, but you guys all bought it. And Dylie pulls his wide-eyed innocent shit by claiming that Steve "wanted me to think about it and Iíve thought about it and Iím still here Iím here for you if you want me." Um, Dyl? I think they meant for you "think about it" over the last few months, not overnight, not to mention shaving time off the actual baptism ceremony to come to your Enlightenment.

Why did Davy have his arm around Donna?

And then Stevie grabs Dyl-rod by the lapels and urges "Hold her tight... she likes that" and Iím kind of expecting that Dylan will then reach down for Stevieís penis.

But then Maddy starts crying because she must know what sheís in for.

Sure enough, Dylan wants to "say a few words" in which he babbles about how he wasnít "first choice" for godfather because his "record with some of the women in this room is a little less than stellar" which, causes Kelly and Gina to make faces at each other. And first of all, thatís a pretty inappropriate thing to say for a babyís baptism, unless Dylanís planning on having sex and/or a screwed-up love-hate relationship with Maddy, and, actually, second of all, is only referring to two of the four women ≠ and two of the eight people ≠ there at that time... unless thereíve been things happening with Dylie and Donna and Janet that we donít know about. And third of all, Dylanís been "less than stellar" with the GUYS in the room, too, so mebbe he should apologize to them while heís at it. But he has a "clean slate" with Madeline, whom he calls "this little lady" in a patronizing tone (much like Nat refers to Kelly in the Rewritten Brandon and Kelly Wedding LWOOE Episode from last year) ≠ like, yeah, an unsoiled napkin for you to wipe your ass with, Dylnoid≠ and he promises to "be there" for her. And we all know what Dylanís promises are worth, donít we? Then he makes the Presentation of Ginaís necklace, that was given to him "by a little girl [which should tell us how he sees Gina] who never had a godfather." But, actually, Gina HAD a godfather... that was the problem: her so-called godfather was actually her father. But Gina beams and everyoneís hearts sing and leap for joy and Janet, holding her doll, looks incredulous and happily accepts this most generous gift.

Why was there an organist for this rinky-dink private baptism?

So then Janet presents her doll, "Madeline Susna [sic] Sanders," and Dylan, much like he did with Hannah Rose back on that far-off Christmas day, takes the doll Janet hands him and coos and marvels at the miracle of this fresh, innocent new life and all it promises and he maketh his face to shine down upon her and the glory of the Lord shone round about them and of course we get to see Kelly all radiant in the background (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!). And why, I want to know, would Janet have to hand the baby to Dylan, who then walks around the baptismal font to hand the baby to the pastor who was standing right next to Janet in the first place? If it was the whole holding = commitment thing, then why didnít Steve and Kelly also get to hold her for a moment? This is all just so dumb. And the pastor doesnít actually say Maddyís name when he baptizes her, which is actually one of the most important parts of a baptism (i.e. christening = "to dedicate and name ceremonially").

And then Donna goes back to Dysfunction Junction, wearing her animal-print jacket again, and Noahís there moving the last of his crap out, which includes... a lampshade... and something that looks like a brass bull. And I thought Noahís stuff got moved out last episode in that box with the football in it. And so Donna and Noah make totally inane small talk about how they are and what theyíre doing and about how David is telling each of them that the other is "happy." Iím not sure what the significance of that is supposed to be. I mean, why is Noah so melancholy and wistful when he was the one who did the dumping? I guess Donna must just be sad because it seems she always gets dumped on Christmas. And Noah goes off leaving Donna trying to make Sad Twisty Frown, which actually just look like sheís trying to get her caked lipsticked lips unstuck. Poor, sad, lonely Donna. Pass me a tissue.

And from the looks of things, thereís gonna be another "those arenít my drugs in the car, the big bad brunette mustíve left them!" incident. Hey, was the guy who Donna is "free" for Mark the Coffee Guy or a new blond stud come to woo her?

Dwanollah, who somehow manages to ramble on longer when the shows're at their boringest....

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