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|:HOME:|:RANTS:|:JANUARY 26, 2000
"Fertile Ground"
JANUARY 26, 2000

 

Huh. So this week’s episode opens immediately with a shout-out, when, after weeks of questioning whether or not Donna (or anyone for that matter) on the show actually works (in her case, as a designer), we get to see the living room of Dysfunction Junction littered with tear-outs from My Big Coloring Book Of Sweaters, which Donna is assiduously coloring in with her marker kit. And her stripy turtleneck sweater and pigtails only make her look all the more like an industrious 6-year-old playing pretend: "I’m a fashion designer!" And then Kelly comes in and marvels at all the pictures Donna’s colored, and, perhaps is wondering if they have enough magnets to hang them all on the refrigerator, or if some will have to be taped on the kitchen wall next to it. And Donna tells Kelly it’s for the new fall line, and, I guess since Donna is so talented, she can not only work with the delicate fabrics necessary to design eveningwear and the skimpy tank tops and skirts her store seems to favor, she can just jump right into the totally different designing of knits. Then again, she’s randomly done kids’ clothes and menswear, too. Isn’t it nice that you don’t have to spend all those messy years toiling at one boring specialization to make a name for yourself, but can, like, just *doing* about all over the entire spectrum of couture?

Then we get the usual Marveling at How Wondrous Donna Is bit, before Kelly, thinking she’s softened the blow, announces… again… that she wants to leave the store. With no potential job on the horizon, no applications turned in to schools or training programs, no leads on possible positions, no updated résumés and cover letters, no interviews schedules, no plans at all to speak of, Kelly is quitting her job ­ not that she actually worked anyway ­ to devote more time to self-fulfillment. And Donna, of course, is "scared" that Kelly is leaving the store and leaving her, because, of course, we’ve seen how Kelly’s made all the difference in the store, what with taking care of all of those post office errands and picking up coffee at the Peach Pit and all that. And Kelly, of course, thinks Donna has "nothing to be scared about" and Donna blathers about all Kelly "did" to negotiate the lease blah blah blah and Kelly says "with the help of a cute attorney who had an office upstairs" (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!) and then Kelly claims that it’s all fair because "you got a successful business out of the deal… (*sigh of delight, smug smirk*) I got a future husband!" (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!) And it’s clear that this is going to be one of those "What My Best Friend Means To Me" episodes because then Donna starts sighing about how there’s always been "something binding us together" like school, the apartment… And Donna, don’t get your hopes up, hon, ‘cos Kelly hasn’t moved out YET! (And, of course, when Donna and Davy reunite, that’ll be just one more thing "binding Donna and Kelly together.") So then they pledge their eternal friendship with "fudge ripple ice cream and a sappy movie" because, yeah, that’s what all girlies do. And WHY does anyone expect us to believe that Donna actually eats anything, much less ice cream? And then Kelly picks up some of Donna’s coloring book pages to look at them, and presses her rosebud lips together, trying not to laugh. And, from the kitchen doorway, Donna sighs winsomely about how she "misses Kelly already." And then Kelly smirks and preens some more because she’s got a Future Husband (KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!) and Donna doesn’t… Donna’s just a poor lonely spinster channeling all her energies into her successful career- Hey… why’re you all laughing like that?

Ah, the PPAD. Haven for losers everywhere. Um, doesn’t there come a time in adult life where just… hanging out at a club becomes… I don’t know, really BORING? I suppose that’s why Gina, improvisationator that she is, has decided to make it all more interesting, sitting at the bar playing pick-up-sticks over her highball glass with drink stirrers. How useless can one person be? Doesn’t she even make the occasional stop at an ice rink, just to keep in practice? Anyway, Gina’s so into this little game, sitting there by herself at the bar just absolutely DELIGHTING in these red plastic straws, that she gets all pissy at Dyl-head when he sits down next to her, bumping her and ruining her game. Oh, wait… he ruined something of Gina’s… I get it! See, they’re using symbolism again! So Gina huffs at Dylan about ruining her job last week, and then Dylan makes her an offer she can’t refuse. Okay, then… what’s more pathetic than these 20-something losers who hang out at a bar? Yup… a 40-50-something loser who "hangs out" at the Beverly Hills Royale With Cheese Hotel. And evidently the "Super Sports Channel" is hiring. Because that’s how big networks… or even not so big networks… find their sports-journalism commentators… they put up a big "Now Hiring!" sign. And then Dylan presents Gina with the guy’s business card and announces that "whether [she] calls him or not, it’s up to [her]." And with that he reaches over and takes one of Gina’s straws, and then Gina, in a snit, grabs another straw and then sighs and throws it down on the counter.… and wow! The symbolism contained in this one little activity is overwhelming! I’ll explain it, because y’all prolly didn’t "get" it, because it’s really abstruse… you see, it’s like they’re taking turns playing a game, but Gina doesn’t want to play the game with Dylan, and is upset that he’s intruded on her game… making a move for her without her say-so, so to speak. I mean, and I thought the "Game of Chess" part of "The Waste Land" was deep!

And then Dylan stalks off across the dance floor with his bottle of recovering alcoholic beer, and we get the stupidity of Noah’s Tragic Posse… Noah coming over to ask for help for Gidget’s Niece …and Gidget’s Niece’s Brother stalking over like the tough guy he is …and then Noah explains that "she flushed her drugs down the toilet when the cops came" and that "her dealer thinks he has some money coming" and Gidget’s Niece appears and mentions that it was "about a kilo" and her dealer’s "share of the sale" would’ve been "over $90,000." And then Dylan self-righteously proclaims that "there isn’t going to be a sale" and Gidget’s Niece’s Brother goes off on Dylan and Gidget’s Niece announces that her dealer’s "going to kill" her and then swallows her own lips in consternation. But what’s really impressive is that they’re having this conversation about drugs and selling drugs and selling large quantities of drugs worth a lot of money and killings in related to selling drugs and stuff IN A PUBLIC PLACE SURROUNDED BY ALL SORTS OF PEOPLE. Smart, guys. And then when Noah whines about Dylan, despite the fact that he’s been hanging with Noah off and on for two years in Hillsterland, shared residences with him on a number of occasions, and has been partying pretty heavy with him of late, claims "I’m not your counselor, I’m not your big brother, dude, I barely even know you!" before stalking off to brood somewhere, leaving Noah gazing after him, lovelorn. I think when Dylan asked him "So, you do a lot of blow?" it got Noah awfully excited, like, thinking it was an offer or something.

So it’s another beautiful sunshiny day at Casa Non-Walsh, where (shout out number 2) Kelly and LawyerBoy are making it clear that, yes, LawyerBoy still lives there, in Brandon’s old room, even, if the paint job is any indication. And for Kelly the So-Called Psych Major to ignore the obviousness of this situation is quite amusing, innit? Anyway, Kelly and LawyerBoy are changing the sheets on his bed and talking about his older brother and sister-in-law, who’re coming to visit and "catch up." And, much like with Noah, LawyerBoy has a rich and successful brother that 1) has never been mentioned before and 2) he feels inferior to, blah blah blah issuescakes. "He sets the standard, and when I don’t reach it…" whines LawyerBoy, the conclusion of his sentence too terrible to even utter aloud. And Kelly, naturally, jumps to Her Future Husband’s defense, sneering "HIS standards, not yours… Besides, look at him, he’s a bonds…trader," and sniffs with disdain. Like, yeah, Kelly, and look at you… a nothing. And as for Chumley there, he’s an mini-mall lawyer who’s been grounded for two months. And fortunately LawyerBoy says the only semi-intelligent thing I’ve ever heard him say when he proclaims "What am I? An out-of-work ambulance chaser." E-zactly, White Bread Chump. And his Chumpiness asserts itself full-force when he continues that his brother "has a huuuuge house… his wife has a huuuuge engagement ring." Um, excuse me? LawyerBoy? Get off the fucking engagement ring kick, you surface-oriented butt-hole! Why not just say "he has a huuuuge penis… his wife has huuuuge hooters" for all you’re talking about stuff that really matters and connotes happiness…? ‘Cos happiness is measured in carats and cup-size. At least Kelly must think so, judging from the sour face she makes in response. Anyway, Kelly and LawyerBoy are all chucking pillows and putting on pillow cases and stuff, yet another one of those Really Deep Symbolic Moments. Stop! Deconstruction Time! (ho-o-o, ho-o-o ho-o-o…) The bed-making is a symbol of, on the surface, Kelly and LawyerBoy’s domesticity, their desire to domesticatitate together … But underneath, there is a darker current, the message of "you made your bed, now you have to sleep in it," implying that things in their Happy Lil’ World might not end up as happy as they’d like it to. And then the doorbell rings and they tromp off to answer it. And Kelly then says "I think my engagement ring is perfect." And LawyerBoy says, in what might be the Stupidest Thing Uttered On Tonight’s Episode: "So do I. But he’s my big brother and what he thinks affects me." Like GOD FORBID your BROTHER thinks that your fiancée’s engagement ring isn’t big enough!? And instead of saying "Maybe there are some issues between you and your brother that need resolving" or "You seem to have a serious self-esteem problem. Why is it so important to you to appear successful to others?" Kelly says "You don’t have to compete with him!" and LawyerBoy outright lies when he says "I don’t!" and cutely adds "I just tend to sulk a lot when he’s around." Ha ha. Fuh-nee.

Now then. What was up with those bizarre close-up shots of Patrick and JulieAnne, and Kelly making her trademark chicken-y head movements as she checked them both out?

And then, shout-out 3, LawyerBoy emphasizes to his brother that he doesn’t own this "great house" but rather he’s "just renting one of the rooms" all poor, sad, pathetic Matt-like.

Was Patrick kidding when he asked LawyerBoy if he was "still keeping the streets safe for the criminals?" It sure sounded less-than-joking. Which makes me think Patrick knows a lot more about LawyerBoy’s career than LawyerBoy’s letting on.

And where did JulieAnne get the idea that Kelly "runs a boutique?" Unless "running" a place equates dropping by about twice a week and spending a lot of quality time hanging out upstairs at your boyfriend’s office.

Anyway, LawyerBoy overemphasizes that both he and Kelly "are on vacation…together" and then Kelly smiles and jerks her head around about six times in goony reflex, much like a hyper puppy wagging it’s tail, because of COURSE everything they do, they do it together.

Over at Now Bear This, it’s time for shout out number three, after my numerous retail diatribes wondering WHY Donna can just hang around the store talking with the Current Boy in her Life instead of, I don’t know, dealing with the realities of customers. And, before I mention anything else, lemme throw in a bit from my 12/15 Rant:

So, looking back to the years I worked at clothing stores and smaller shops…huge lines of customers checking out aside, there were always twenty million people wanting help and asking questions of the staff. "Do you have this in blue?" "Are there any more in back?" "I can’t find my size!" "Is there a shirt to match?" "Can you help me find something?!"

Anyway, in a matter of seconds, Donna has to 1) cajole a customer into a dressing room and 2) offer to help her accessorize her outfit, 3) respond to a woman who wants a shirt "in a small?" and then 4) offer to check in back before someone else asks 5) "Do you gift wrap?" and then 6) the woman who wanted a small reminds Donna that she’s waiting for help and 7) says she’s running late. And by this time, Donna’s got more work to do that she usually has in a whole week, but luckily Davy doesn’t have any work whatsoever because, again, he’s hanging out at Donna’s store and can just jump in and save her incapable butt by answering questions and checking back stock. And Donna laments "Was the store always this busy or does it seem busier since I’m doing it alone?" and I’d like to point out that this covers several inconsistencies, because, based on Kelly and Gina’s appearances at the store, Donna, you always WERE doing it without much help and also, no, the store was never that busy because it functions merely as a trendy backdrop for the pathetical happenings of Hillster Lives instead of an actual means of support. So shut up.

And, since Davy’s already doing so much gadding about at the store in the first place, why don’t you just kill three birds with one stone and hire him to work for you, already?! Then 1) you’d have more help and someone to pick up all that slack from Kelly and Gina, 2) it’d provide employment for Davy, who, again, doesn’t even seem to be playing Faux Adam Carolla at the PPAD anymore (yet miraculously can still afford a two-bedroom LA bungalow and a Jeep) and 3) it would continue to set up the Inevitable Donna and Davy Reunion.

Would it be too much to hope that the show could end on a Donna Martin "I Choose Me" note? Yeah, I thought so.

And then Kelly comes in to DONNA’S BUSY STORE and has the gall to be put off that Donna can’t talk about LawyerBoy’s Brother right now because, um, SHE’S WORKING…? And then Kelly CONTINUES to be put off that Donna won’t be home tonight to talk about whatever the latest trauma in Kelly Taylor’s Kelly-Tailored World is because she’s going to some "buyers’ meet&greet" (whatever). And Kelly protests "But you hate those things" and Donna retorts that now that she’s "on my own, I have to do a lot of things I hate." So, what, are we supposed to believe that Kelly was doing that sort of PR thing for the last year? Yeah, right. And Kelly sniffs "Ouch!" and Donna grovels and apologizes but blows Kelly and Kelly’s Problems off some more and Kelly actually tosses her head and stalks from the store in a total snit, making pissy faces the whole time, I might add, because Donna doesn’t have time to listen to her problems! And I’m channeling my Inner Queen (or Inner Springer Guest) now to say: Hellooo, Kelly? Clue Department on line one, and it’s urgent! From the look on Donna’s face, I suspect she felt the same way, even though she didn’t say anything.

So Gina’s doing a recap of Donna and Val’s Girl Friday business lo these several seasons ago because she discovers that the Super Sports Guy will only hire her to be an Ersatz Scotty Hamilton (who, actually, I happen to adore. Sadly, though, he’s one of the few skaters I haven’t met in my years of haunting arenas in Southern California when the ice shows would make their way into town. I did get 3rd row to one of his televised shows, where he did the lounge routine with the light-up ruffly costume, which was kewl-rad. And I’ve met Christopher Dean [twice] and Kurt Browning [once] and Brian Boitano [once, got personalized autograph, too], which counts a lot. But I digress….) if she promises to first (walk his dog? hire a medium? sleep with him?) get his teenaged son to lose weight.

Why would Gina say she still "skate(s) a lot" when she hasn’t been near a rink that we’ve seen, in, oh, ever? No, wait, there was that one time that she was supposed to film some special but collapsed from too much puking. And then she claims that she was the "first alternate for the Olympics in ‘92" (whatever… Kristi Yamaguchi woulda kicked your ass left, right, and left again) and that she "would’ve made the team, but I pulled a muscle" during warm-ups. And I’ve never heard any skater, any professional athlete, say, generically, "pulled a muscle"… they always specify which muscle: hamstring, groin, whatever.

And, another thing… Super Sports Guy wants Gina to get Michael in shape in three days? For a "winter carnival" dance? Um….

So Gina huffs and sighs and she and Michael glare hateful shit at each other.

And then Donna, standing awkward and alone at the so-called "meet&greet," gets meeted and greeted by a woman with short, spiky blonde hair who just chummily pops over and says, all friendly-confidentially "Aren’t these the worst? It’s like being at a high school dance but without the cool music or cute guys!" [I don’t know what school she went to, but there was no cool music or cute guys at my high school dances!] And then, when Donna asks if they’ve met, the woman CALLS HER BY NAME and reminds her ­ beaming with delight, I might add ­ "Donna, I’m Camille Desmond from LA Fashion…" and smilingly reminds Donna that she interviewed her last year for a "Who’s Hot and Who’s Not" list of some kind and praises Sweet Modest Donna about how much she loooooves her stuff and wanted her "on the good list" and she loooooves the way Donna’s marketed herself and-

And I guess we’re supposed to believe that Kelly was the Marketing Genius behind Now Blare This? Oh, well, how could I forget that stellar, star-studded party Kelly arranged. Man, she MADE that store….

Now. That said… why would Donna, supposedly in the fashion design business, not remember something as important as an interview for a major local periodical? Like she does so many of them that she can’t keep ‘em all straight? Wouldn’t she think it might be a smart idea to, oh, perhaps remember what contacts you’ve made and try to maintain them if you’re new to the fashion industry? Or ANY industry? Or even not new to the business, for that matter? But no, Donna’s so magically talented that she can just stand there and the movers & shakers of the fashion world will, like, recognize her on sight and beat a path to her and fawn over her and heap praise upon her and buy her stuff because she is sooooo talented and they all just loooooove her!

So Donna continues to moue and grimace and mug and roll her eyes and play all cutesy while Camille continues to reassure her of how Wondrous she is. And she says that it’s a "tough crowd" tonight and she’s "tried getting dates with a lot of them… and the result is, I’m here interviewing you!" And at this point, I’m sure that, after The Coffee Guy and The Married Headhunter have both been unable to resist Donna’s charms, this week’s plot twist is going to entail the lesbian fashion editor who is unable to resist Donna’s charms. And so Camille is turning herself inside out with excitement about wanting to "profile" Donna because she’s a "young female designer on her own!" And if that isn’t enough, Donna wants Camille to play dating service, because she insists that Camille include prominently the fact that she’s "single" too. For, she adds, "the three straight guys who subscribe."

Okay, now, not only is that a really lame thing to say in general, but I am now thoroughly convinced, after a set-up like that, that Camille is a full-on lesbian and she wants Donna bad. Because who doesn’t? And besides, while Donna’s had stalkers and abusers and all kinds of guys who won’t leave her alone, she’s never had a lesbian yet! Even KELLY had a lesbian! It’s only fair that Donna be shown to be attractive to women, too!

And then Camille, Donna’s new best friend, promises to "even mention" Donna’s singleness to "Dan Clemmens… one of the biggest buyers for federal (Federal?) department stores."

Once more I have to comment on the moronicaciness of Donna not being the least bit familiar with the names of major buyers.

And, naturally, even though Camille has "never met him [which might put a crimp on that aforementioned mention of Donna’s single state]… [Donna’s] about to" because Dan Clemmens has been scoping her out and comes over to goon at Donna and shake her hand because he "heard" about her new line of sweaters… but he’s so overcome by her beauty and amazing presence that he can’t do much more than gape at her, tongue-tied. Excuse me. Question: Would it be possible for any professional buyer, particularly one supposedly as major as this guy, to not have some sort of small-talk shtick for occasions like these meet&greets… or at least something a little more informed to say than a kowtowing-to-Donna’s-sweater-designs remark that "I hear wool is back this year"? And then he says "Personally, I prefer mohair." And Donna just stares at him. And stares. And then he kinda cracks a small smile, and Donna makes the most obnoxious fake-o token laugh and then shifts her eyes around all nervously and sips from her glass of wine. The lack of chemistry and/or comedy between these two is as palpable as the element of reality pervading the entire Donna the Fashion Designer plot. And honest to Gawd, Mel Silver is, like, a Party in a Bag compared to this guy!

And I also have to comment on the weirditity of the fact that there’s this very careful introduction of Donna to Dan and Dan to Donna so that we get their names pretty-close-to-coupled via the dialogue "Hi Dan I’m Donna"… and, as I’ve posted here before, The Husband-Type Man’s name is Dan and my name is Dawn. Dawn and Dan. Coincidence…? But, shout out or not, I can’t take the lameness of this colorless Donna-smitten moron having the same name as my witty and dynamic and gloriously dorky spouse, so I’m calling the Buyer Guy "Etherized Kramer." EK for short.

And, so, without any effort at all except to show up and stand there, Donna’s scored two major coups in two minutes: a feature article in a prominent LA fashion magazine written by a journalist who wants her bad, and a meeting with a major buyer who also wants her bad. I’d say that was well worth blowing Kelly’s Me-fest off for.

And then we get the utter lameness of Steve and Janet, who, despite having a newborn and supposedly running a newspaper, have the luxury of going out to the movies for the evening! But (dun da DAAAA!) when they return home, they find Noah… AND THE NANNY in a state of dishabille! Oh no! What to do?! Well, if you’re Janet, the Bossy Jealous Nagging Wife, you storm "Get out of this house… NOW!" And if you’re Skeevy Stevie, Penis Boy Supreme, you stand there with this lame-ass frozen look of Great Horniness as you imagine your friend and the nanny doinking. And I’m guessing that sometime tonight, when Janet’s sound asleep, Stevie’s going to creep downstairs and, like, sniff the couch for left-over au de Darby. And maybe take blottings of the wet spots.

And LawyerBoy’s still all size-fixated, because he’s creaming for details of Patrick and JulieAnne’s new pool as they sit at some restaurant. But JulieAnne wants to know more about Kelly because she "seems so nice." Someone needs to remind JulieAnne that appearances can be deceiving. And LawyerBoy says lightly that she’s "great" but fortunately he modifies that remark by adding "Although she has decided to spend the rest of her life with me so I guess you hafta wonder." Amen.

And then Patrick just suddenly announces "We can’t have a baby." We’ve been trying but we can’t… I can’t… so much for controlling the universe."

Oh God. We now have proof that Patrick and LawyerBoy are related.

Yeah, Patrick, that’s why you have kids! They’re your freakin’ DYNASTY! And if you can’t breed, it means you have no control! You’ll leave no lasting mark on the world! You just plain SUCK!

So then Patrick and JulieAnne tell LawyerBoy they’ve been "considering options" for A WHOLE WEEK now. Oh, wow, the anguish they must’ve suffered, having to agonize seven whole DAYS over not being able to have a baby! Anyway, and they want LawyerBoy to be the sperm donor. And then everyone smiles at each other. No doubt LawyerBoy’s grateful for the opportunity to masturbate for fun AND profit.

And then Noah goes into the Peach Pit where, God help us all, we have to endure the TOTAL AND COMPLETE SKEEVINESS of the REAL issue of Noah doinking Darby: Stevie’s all bummed because… she doesn’t seem to remember having sex with him! And Stevie’s making these incredulous faces throughout the whole conversation, like a big dumb dog, and when Noah says "Maybe she forgot" Stevie actually scoffs "Like that’s possible!" And, I suppose, based on the number of posts in the "Worst Sex I Ever Had" topic on Hissyfit, then, yeah, I guess I gotta give Skeevy Stevie that one. And Noah laughs… and licks his lips and says (I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP!) "Okay, you know, Steve, you’re probably the best she’s ever had…" and then Steve oh-so-modestly agrees "Maybe" and then Noah says "but since you were so Epic-" AND YES, HE SAID "EPIC!" "­maybe you should tell Janet before Darby does." And, gosh, it’s tough to be Steve Sanders, with such deep ethical issues rocking your world, innit?!

And, wallowing in Domestic Bliss at Dysfunction Junction, Kelly’s prepared LawyerBoy’s morning coffee and comments, all Stereotyped Wifey-like, on how he "got in late last night." And I guess after dinner LawyerBoy just dropped his brother and sister-in-law off at the house where he rents a room, and then left them there alone with Steve and Janet and the baby and the nanny to go spend the night with Kelly, huh? Anyway, LawyerBoy announces that Patrick and JulieAnne want to have a baby and Kelly pretends she cares and says "Oh, is she pregnant?"(KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT!) but is inwardly cursing the fact that if JulieAnne is pregnant, Kelly can’t inflate her own importance by bearing the First Grandchild for LawyerBoy’s parents (which might make up for the fact that she’s merely LB’s second wife). And then LawyerBoy says "No… and it seems that Patrick is the reason why." And, I swear, Kelly is just GLOATING over this comment. And when LawyerBoy says "They’re looking for a sperm donor," Kelly snips "To measure up to his standards? What, are they going to go to one of those genius sperm banks," making these nasty, evil smirks the whole time. And let me bitch-slap you, Kelly, because you just met the guy yesterday and I don’t think you’re in any position to make a judgement call on his essential character based on one remark from your doofus husband-to-be. I mean, what is Kelly’s problem? And then LawyerBoy explains that, no, they want him to be the donor… and that Patrick said LB "was the most decent person he knew… my brother said that about me…"

And the look on Kelly’s face by this time is priceless; it’s like she just swallowed a handful of live guppies. And her sour-candy mouth scrunches up and she swallows a lot and her chin works and she huffs and puts her coffee mug down and finally she stammers "I… I’m sure that… meant a lot to you… but you… can’t father someone else’s child!"

She just told LawyerBoy, with finality, "you can’t."

And LB protests that it’s "his brother!" and magnanimously, Kelly "could possibly understand" why LB would want to do this if it was "anonymous," just "some stranger"; her problem seems to be that someday the child will find out "that his uncle is really his father." And then… then Kelly supposedly qualifies that statement by saying "I mean, ask Donna and Gina what a brilliant idea that was!"

Uhhh. As if LawyerBoy being a sperm donor for his impotent brother and sister-in-law can compare to Dr. John having an extramarital affair with his wife’s sister and then conspiring for years to hide the child’s true parentage?!

But, anyway, this is KELLY’S sperm, these are KELLY’S future children we’re talking about! LB has no say in this matter. In fact, he’s so totally Kellywhipped ­ to the extent that I’m thinking about dropping his The New Brandon title ­ that he hastens to assure her that "You and I are a team, and whatever decisions we make, we… we make together." As if.

But Kelly… Kelly, bless her loving and sensitive heart, tells LB: "I really don’t think that there’s a decision to be made here. I don’t want you to do this!"

And BAM! Kelly Taylor has spoken! And as LB sighs in bloody defeat, Kelly CONTINUES TO HUFF and make pissy faces and look completely put out by the fact that LB would even DARE to CONSIDER such a selfish and evil thing as making babies with someone other than her when HE KNOWS DAMNED WELL THAT KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT. And she’s still making Big Wide Eyes at him, perhaps hoping he’ll see his unborn children there instead, and give up this horrific notion of sharing his seed with someone else.

And, hey, LB and Patrick, wouldn’t a brother being a sperm donor be important along the lines of, say, passing the close genetic make-up of the same family as opposed to… hoping the child will somehow inherit LB’s (ahem) decency?

And after that touching interlude, we get another touching interlude with Gina and The Super Sports Channel Guy’s kid, Michael as she jogs him along one of the walks at Santa Monica. Could Gina BE any more manic-depressive bi-polar anxiety-ridden disordered to the max? I mean, you’d think she’d at least attempt to empathize with this poor kid who’s spilling his out-of-shape guts to her about his mom’s death and his dad’s stringent standards and that he can’t ever do anything, not even get an earring… but instead she’s all bitter and nasty and basically tells him "up your fat lard ass, kid, I’m just sucking up to your dad for a job." And then, for some reason, Gina’s manic side has peaked and she starts the downslide and decides to tell Michael he’d look cute with an earring and acts all nice to him.

Uch. Icky Skeevy Stevie is lurking outside the baby’s room, spying on the nanny and shaking his head, like, "how DARE she not remember ME, the Mighty Steve Sanders" or something. And Darby looks up and says that Steve "scared" her.

Darby, this whole fucking plot scares me.

And Stevie jumps right in by asking "Do you remember a KEG party-" as if that’s going to narrow it down for the slutty little barfly. But Janet interrupts, bringing Maggie/Maddy in and settling in a rocking chair to nurse. And despite the fact that the baby is already chowing down on breast milk, Darby leaves, at Steve’s urging, to go get the bottles that are in the refrigerator. And then Janet manages to rack up points for stupidity when she starts BMCing about what to do about Darby, because she likes her, but (One of the Stupidest Things Uttered In Tonight’s Episode) "somehow I can’t help but feel that… Maddy’s world is … somehow contaminated."

As if being born to a vermin like Steve Sanders and a knucklehead like you wasn’t contamination for the poor kid, Janet?

And then Stevie makes the big confession. Well, that is, Stevie Sanders Style, he beats around the bush a little until Janet, pissed, exclaims "You had sex with our nanny!?" And Stevie actually says indignantly "No! No, I, I- yes." Which means we then have to listen to Janet’s Bossy Jealous Nagging Wife comments about thong underwear before she yanks her boob out of Maddy’s mouth and huffs, refuting Steve’s help with the baby because that’s how women and wives REALLY exert their power in the relationship.

There aren’t enough words to describe the absolute shameless selfish bitchiness of Kelly tromping down to the coffee bar-patio of 7250 Yeah Right Blvd., where Patrick is brooding and smoking, and announcing to him in a know-it-all voice: "In case you haven’t heard, those things can kill you." And, see, those clever folks at 90210 are doing the symbolism thing again, aren’t they? They want us to think that Kelly, because she’s privy to such stores of knowledge about life and death, has a moral edge on Patrick. And Patrick excuses his nicotine habit by saying that all traders smoke. And Kelly… Kelly pulls this Total Dumbshit looks and coos "I thought you were on vacation." 1) Like smokers TAKE VACATIONS FROM SMOKING, Kelly?! And 2) what kind of a moralistically judgmental little conversation opener is this, Kelly? And 3) how much does Kelly’s innocent dumbshit face remind me of my dumb dad’s favorite Control Tactic…? I mean, I can’t remember a time where I actually had any semblance of a healthy and fulfilling relationship with the moron. Trying to communicate with my dad, even with the added aid of counseling, is about as productive ­ and fun ­ as running full-speed into a closed sliding glass door. Repeatedly. To say that he only hears what he wants to hear is the understatement of my lifetime. Like, remember my bitching about his giving-the-bride-away bullshit three days before our wedding? After a year of planning and talking, he suddenly "didn’t understand what his role in the wedding was supposed to be" and claimed he needed to "talk" with me and, despite my saying no repeatedly, he actually followed me to my Gram’s house to coerce me into a conversation (when I had ten minutes before an appointment) because he "didn’t understand his role in the wedding." The man had had over a year and, three days before, still had not copied the family photos we’d wanted to display, still hadn’t rented a tux, still hadn’t contributed the "couple thousand" dollars that he claimed he wanted to kick in for wedding planning, had managed to flake on every detail of the wedding… except for the fact that he wasn’t giving me away. And so he starts this nonsensical beating-around-the-bush conversation all acting like he doesn’t have an agenda and faking like he’s really concerned about the fact that The Husband-Type Man and I have decided to hyphenate our two names and it bothers him to see MyLastName-THTM’sLastName and blah blah blah but he really doesn’t "understand his role in the wedding." And, since my tolerance level for bullshit is located right around my toes, I said "Is this about giving me away?" And he continues to give me his best Dumbshit Innocent Face and again insists that he "just doesn’t understand his role in the wedding." And he expected me to be so stupid as to believe this crap? So after that charming performance of his, and for scores of other reasons, I pretty much terminated all relations with him. But every so often he pops up, e-mailing me a chain letter about the girl dying from leukemia who teaches the cranky old man the value of life and love or something of that ilk, or wanting to know if I’m going to go up to Boston to visit some 3rd cousins of his (when I’ve told him ten million times I find it personally uncomfortable to just make contact with distant relatives or to show up at some great-great-uncle’s house and announce "Hi! Just thought I’d drop by!")…. But a couple weeks ago, I get an email from him, wanting to know if he can have my address, because he’s got a belated Christmas gift for me that he knows I’ll love, and he closes with the teaser that "it’s beaded and VERY cute!" and has included a j.peg of this…beaded…cat…thing. And I was tempted to shoot back a snotty response, like "Gee, beaded and VERY cute ­ two of my favorite things!" because the fact that the man, despite my best efforts, has no CLUE what kind of person I am has been the main point of contention for, like, my whole life. But I tell myself not to be such a bitch. And I don’t respond immediately, because the home computer’s broke and THTM has to take the laptop to work for the day. But my dad, being the charmingly manipulative jerk that he is, sends me another e-mail less that 20 hours later: "So you no like the kitty purse?" and includes this pathetic, guilt-inducing schlock that he guesses I’m afraid that if I give him my address, he’ll "God forbid" come visit me and blah blah blah some more. So I get pissed. And usually it takes a lot to piss me off, but my stupid dad can do it quicker than any other human being on the face of this earth. Issues? Issues? You bet! And so I tell him: "If you would like to send me a Christmas present, I certainly appreciate the gesture and the fact that you were thinking of me. But that does not mean I welcome the emotional manipulation projected by notes like this." Which takes the place of the "Fuck off, asshole!" note I’d really like to send him. So I give him my mailing address. And yesterday, I got the beaded and VERY cute kitty purse. It is almost the type of thing that The Husband-Type Man or one of my friends would get me as a joke, since I dig Kitsch. However, my dad purchased it because, no matter how many times I’ve told him differently, he is convinced that (and I quote) I would "be happy as long as [I] had a book and a kitty cat" and all girls love cute stuff like beaded kitty purses and puffy appliquéd sweatshirts with hearts on them (like he gave me when I was 23) and rayon sea-green nightgowns embroidered with roses (like he gave me when I was 24), etc. But what really cheesed me was that the package was (pointedly?) addressed to Dwanollah The Husband-Type Man’sLastName. He is the only person who has ever address anything to us as "Mr. And Mrs. THTM." I mean, even the mass mailings from credit card companies don’t call me "Mrs. THTM"! And, to make matters worse, he had misspelled THTM’s LastName. My dumb dad, who preaches all this bullshit about how nothing is more important to him that his family, cannot even manage to get his daughter’s last name correct. I mean, based on our lovely pre-wedding chat, it’s not like he doesn’t know what my last name is… but if I was to call him on it, he’d claim he didn’t, and then pull that dumbshit face innocent face…. So, feeling pissy about the whole situation, when I sent him a thank-you note, I attached a j.peg of the Kitty Purse on our Kitsch Shelf and wrote the following: Thanks for the wondrously kitschy kitty purse... it fits in perfectly with our kitsch corner display of goofy and tacky stuff (along with other such Very Important Things like the Spam sno-globe, pickanniny dolls and Yoda giga-pet). However, I almost didn't receive it because you addressed the package to "Dwanollah THTM’sLastNameMisspelled (sic)"; our legal last name -- and the name on our mailbox -- is " MyLastName-THTM’sLastName" (S-P-E-L-L-E-D). Luckily, the mail carrier left the package sitting outside the mailboxes, and I was able to spot it. Which, I hope, makes a number of points. The moron. And he wonders why I can’t stand him? My dad is, like, the Italian Steve Sanders.

Which brings us back, I suppose, from Dwanollah’s Father Angst to the actual subject at hand….

So Kelly’s basically attacked Patrick, attempting to put him on the defense and/or manipulate him emotionally by making nonsensical comments and faking like she has no idea what must be the foremost issue on his mind and the she doesn’t know that he knows that she knows what the problem is and who, namely her, is at the root of it.

But Patrick, luckily, is a cut-to-the-chase kinda guy, and, much as he did at the dinner table the other night when he blurted in the middle of casual conversation that they couldn’t have a baby, he announces here: "Matt turned me down"

And Kelly says "Oh, I’m sorry," but can barely contain her look of smug, selfish delight as she attempts to blow off Patrick.

But Patrick, again, decides to be "direct" and baldly tells her: "We both know he’d do this if it weren’t for you."

And Kelly actually gets pissed that Patrick is pissed at her… like, how dare Patrick not acknowledge what he’s demanded of her, KELLY TAYLOR, by asking Her Fiancé to donate his sperm ­ SPERM THAT BY ALL RIGHTS IS EXCLUSIVELY KELLY’S! ­ to his brother and sister-in-law! Why, then LB would be… LINKED… to Patrick and JulieAnne… JULIEANNE, NOT KELLY would be carrying LB’s baby! How WRONG is that? What kind of an injustice is that!?

HOW MUCH IS KELLY SUBLIMATING THE BOTTOM-LINE FACT THAT SHE MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO "GIVE" LAWYERBOY A FAMILY SOMEDAY AND IS TOTALLY JEALOUS THAT, IN A ROUNDABOUT WAY, JULIEANNE WOULD BE (in the immortal words of my chauvinist pig father) GIVING LB HIS BABY!

Since 90210 is seemingly attempting to refer to incidents in the past ­ in a rather slap-dash, inconsistent manner, but ­ I suspect that next week, we’ll get some big confession scene where Kelly quivers her rosebud lips and gazes up at LawyerBoy with her dewdrop eyes and admit the whole Brandon/pregnancy plot twist and tell him about the burden she carries about not being able to "give" him a family/baby of their own.

With all of the unwanted children in the world, I just don’t get why more people don’t adopt. Look at all the Rumanian orphans, the abandoned girl-babies in China, the foster children here in our own country! I find it hard to see why anyone, really, should have more than two children in this day and age [which I know is a controversial thing to say. I’m not suggesting we should limit families legally or anything that extreme. I just think it’s selfish and irresponsible to have four and five children per family when this planet is so freakin’ overpopulated with children anyway]. About a year ago, I was listening to an NPR story that got me so pissed that I almost put my foot through the radio. It was about parents with AIDS having babies. Again, this is controversial and I’m still asking myself questions about the ethics of having a child when you could potentially be passing on to them a disease (my favorite aunt had lupus, and had two children)…. But one of the couples interviewed were two already-multi-divorced partners, EACH OF WHOM ALREADY HAD TWO AND THREE CHILDREN WITH OTHER PREVIOUS SPOUSES, but, despite the fact that they both had AIDS and could be passing the disease on to an unborn child (and it was very costly to medically try to prevent such a thing… not to mention the cost if the child was born with AIDS), and even though the guy had just been laid off work and the woman was a stay-at-home mom, they went ahead and got pregnant. Why? "We wanted to make something together," they both said dreamily.

Um, TAKE A FUCKING POTTERY CLASS!

And the story concluded with tales of Their Baby 1, who was born with AIDS, and the fact that SHE WAS PREGNANT AGAIN! They had, like, seven kids between them and were going for more. HOW FUCKING SELFISH IS THAT? They couldn’t adopt an abandoned AIDS baby out of the thousands already living, they had to "make one together!" People are just so freaking fixated on this idea that they have to have "a child of our own." Like when I mentioned to my cousins (yes, those cousins) that (first of all, me and The Husband-Type Man were in no way ready to have kids, but if we ever decided to) we were considering the likely possibility of adopting…. They both looked at me like I was a freak (not the first time, I might add) and said "but… why would you do that if you can have a baby of your own?!" Um, if we adopted a child, it WOULD be a baby of our own, silly girls.

So anyway, Patrick’s told Kelly she’s the reason LB said no and Kelly getting pissier and more condescending by the millisecond and snips "That’s a conversation I think you need to have with him" and Patrick tells her he already did and that’s why he "knows it’s true" and then Kelly gets TOTALLY ROYALLY bent out of shape and "HE told you THAT?" and Patrick just stares at her, no doubt wondering if she’s going to realize the inherent psychological problems intimated by the entire conversation, and Kelly tries to collect herself and huffs and tosses her head around and makes her mouth look like a cat’s butthole (thank you, Sars) and snaps "You can resolve this without involving us" and Patrick says "Not the way we’d like" which is actually kinda selfish, but nowhere near Kelly’s league as she huffs some more and concludes "I’m sorry that you have this problem… but it’s YOUR problem…not ours!" and she flounces off. And this whole issue only underscores the Mediaramans’ repeated observance that Hillsters in general and Kelly in particular tends to distribute token largesse but are completely unable to give anything of substance and real selflessness.

And I guess hanging out at Donna’s store isn’t enough for lazy Davy, because now he’s hanging at Dysfunction Junction, too. And, naturally, poor insecure Donna needs his help getting ready for her non-date-date with Etherized Kramer. And Donna would rather stay in and watch The Sopranos, which I’ll take as a reference to my Italian heritage. And Donna clumps over to the door and yanks it open and Etherized Kramer says, all etherized, "Hi. You look great." And Donna looks down at her boobs and says "Hi. I’ll be right back" and runs off. And Donna-Tori? His looking at your boobs in this case prolly doesn’t mean he’s getting the wrong idea about date/non-date… it means he’s prolly wondering how such horrors could exist in this day of advanced medical procedures for removing abnormal growths. So. Why did Davy and Etherized Kramer not… talk to each other? I would think that a guy showing up on what is ostensibly a date would be semi-concerned about establishing the relationship of his female companion and the random guy who is hanging out at her apartment. And could Donna BE any more awkward? What happened to Kind, Generous, Sweet Donna who always tried to put people at ease, huh? Could Etherized Kramer BE any more weird? He’s got one of those froggy snapper thingies that clicks, and he makes like he’s clicking his fingers together, and then reveals his little trick and announces "My dad had a snap factory." My dad had a snap factory? And then Donna, now jacketed, comes back and there’s the Huge Awkward Exit deal… and if Donna’s so weirded out by Etherized Kramer, um, MAYBE SHE SHOULDN’T BE GOING OUT ALONE WITH HIM? How many times have women, despite thinking that a guy is kinda weird or odd, gone out with him anyway, and found out they’ve got a stalker or rapist or serial killer on their hands? I mean, Davy’s gonna find Donna’s head in a shopping bag on the doorstep in the morning, isn’t he?

And, despite the fact that Donna and Etherized Kramer left only 3 seconds ago, Camille shows up at the same door without having seen them. I mean, why didn’t Davy say "Yeah, Donna’s right over there, walking towards Etherized Kramer’s car"? Why couldn’t Davy meet Camille for the first time at Donna’s store, which might be a little more logical than her, um, showing up at her house at night? I guess Camille must want Donna bad to come all the way down to Santa Monica to just "tell her that my editor loves the story I’m doing on her." Camille? Telephone. And Davy, charmer that he is, just stares at Camille and laughs. Which I guess is why Camille decided to abandon her crush on Donna and go for Davy. Why was Davy just… hanging out at Dysfunction Junction after Donna left, anyway? Jeez, how useless is Davy!?

And, taking a page from the Hillster Boy Book, Kelly’s been staked out at Casa Non-Walsh, lying in wait of LawyerBoy. Kelly, wouldn’t that be a teensy bit awkward, what with Patrick and JulieAnne staying there? So Kelly, stamping around with her hands on her hips, lays into Pudly LawyerBoy: "I thought we were a team… a team stands up for each other, makes joint decisions, protects each other" … which is really inconsistent, considering the fact that Kelly TOLD LawyerBoy "you can’t" because "I don’t want you to." And LawyerBoy grovels and says "But honey, I told Patrick that I wouldn’t do such a selfish thing as give him sperm that is rightfully yours!" And Kelly snips "Yeah, you big meanie, and you told him I was the reason why!" And LawyerBoy utters the Call to Arms in Kelly Taylor’s world: "This is not about you Kelly." Which Kelly refutes immediately, because of COURSE it’s about her! And she claims "It wouldn’t’ve been if you had protected me … now I’m the bad guy, I’m the reason your brother isn’t going to live happily ever after!" Like, Gawd DAMN, how much of a bitch could you BE, Kelly? That one sentence contains more issues than a three year subscription of People magazine. And Chumley Lawyer Boy blusters "what did you want me to do, my darling pet?" And Kelly-

God help me, Kelly says (SHOUT OUT! SHOUT OUT!) "I would’ve taken responsibility" … which she says means he would’ve "lied"! But it’s okay, because she would’ve done it "for you, for us, for the TEAM" which is Hillster Credo Numero Uno, isn’t it? And then Kelly basically tears apart LB’s and Patrick’s relationship by insisting Patrick only said nice things to LB "probably just to get you to say yes!" Like, how nice that after a day and a half, she’s fully enlightened to the twisted workings of LB’s brother. And LB protests some more, but Kelly’s on a roll unlike anything I’ve seen before as she storms "You act like I told you not to give him a kidney or something!" And they shout at each other some more before LB shakes his head and says: "You talk about responsibility…. How ‘bout you take some?"

AND WHAT HAVE I BEEN SAYING FOR YEARS?!

Excuse me, while I go shriek with hysterical laughter for several out-of-control moments….

Okay. This was, perhaps, my proudest shout-out moment of all time. A moment of silence please?

Thank you.

So Kelly pouts and huffs and quivers and blinks back tears, abandoned and misunderstood there on the porch of Casa Non-Walsh

And then Gina, with her Dorothy in The Land Of Oz hair shows up at Super Sports Channel Guy’s house. And she musta upped her dosage of Paxil because she giggles and chirps and talks about how much "progress" she’s made with Michael. But Super Sports Channel Guy reveals ­ and we get a special earring cam shot to emphasize ­ that Gina is a wicked influence on his undisciplined son, and she’s thus out of a job. And Gina dumps Michael on his ass and instead kisses his dad’s… but to no avail. And Super Sports Guy really looks like Greg Brady, doesn’t he?

And over at Casa Non-Walsh, Janet: BJNW is continuing to go ballistic about the Darby thing and comes gallumphing into the kitchen, evidently still trying to get details straight, and demands "You claim that you don’t remember sleeping with Darby when you interviewed her, right?"

Janet, face facts: you willingly married ­ and had a baby with ­ Steve Sanders, a walking STD Factory. I swear, I think Simon LeBon has more respect for women than Steve Sanders.

And (oh God, I can’t do this on a full stomach…) Janet actually wants specifics on what Noah said that made Steve remember; she wonders (because she’s "just curious") "… what did Noah say to you that made you remember?" (As if that isn’t the most contrived set-up dialogue since that abysmal appearance by Keri Strugg in which David makes a supposedly-to-no-one comment about winning a gold medal blah blah blah segueing into their Big Scene together, which had to be the single worst guest appearance on any TV show in the history of television ever.) And then Steve… Steve claims it was… and I’m turning green just relating this one "a hickey, okay… shaped like Idaho… it’s kinda like her trademark." And, boys and girls, we have a winner! Once again, Steve Sanders has won the award for The Stupidest Thing Uttered On Tonight’s Episode! But don’t give him a hand, folks… you know what he’d do with it, Penis Boy that he is….

So then Darby comes in and Janet fires her, with the reason that "I can’t have someone caring for my child that I don’t trust… You weren’t honest!" And I just want to interject here… um, Janet? THEN WHY DID YOU HAVE A CHILD WITH STEVE SANDERS? WHY DID YOU MARRY STEVE SANDERS?! Good God in Heaven, girl! And then Steve, of course, has to stroke his (stop!) ego by pressing Darby to admit she had sex with him back in college… with this cocky grin on his face, no less. And Janet REALLY confuses the poor girl when she sniffs "Does the word IDAHO refresh your memory?" And maybe Janet should’ve tried a more logical and realistic allusion to jog Darby’s memory, like "Quick Draw McGraw" or "Speedy Gonzales" or "sexist pig" or "genital warts" or "tufts of nose hair" or "The Ego Has Landed!" or something…. And the nanny storms out (without bothering to pack or take anything with her, when she supposedly lives there), after telling Steve to "keep your fantasies to yourself!" and Steve… Steve is positively gobsmacked that she doesn’t remember doing him and… actually whines to HIS WIFE JANET about the fact that "he was forgettable" to a woman that he’d had meaningless sex with and forgotten. And he sulks and starts eating a sandwich and Janet stares at him incredulously…. Janet, remember that cutesy comment about "trial separation" you tossed out earlier? Now’d be the time, you silly ass.

And then at Now Whore This, Donna tells Davy ­ who is again just loitering uselessly ­ that Etherized Kramer bought "almost the entire collection" of sweaters (how many sweaters could she design in a week?)… "without even a kiss goodnight?" marvels Davy, which is pretty much the crux of all Hillster Relationships, huh? And Donna demurs and then finally blurts "Oh who’m I kidding I kissed someone to sell my sweaters how pathetic is that?!" And, having seen Donna’s kissing technique… and her sweaters… I think we all know the answer to that one, don’t we? And Davy tells her… "not that a peck from you wouldn’t be worth it" which sent my stomach, already agitated from the whole Steve Sanders thing, right over the edge. And Davy assures Donna that Etherized Kramer wouldn’t buy the sweaters if he couldn’t make money on them and that "Your honor is intact." And then Camille shows up for her movie date with Davy, which confuses Donna. And Camille reveals that "David gave me some great stuff for the article" and Davy yodels "I know everything!" in relation to Donna. And, yeah, they’ll be back together in a matter of weeks at this point. And Camille, trying to make Donna jealous, drags Davy off by the arm, leave Donna "Alone Again, Naturally."

I’m SO FUCKING SICK of Gina and Dylan and Gina and Dylan’s fukt relationship from hell. The only thing more hiddy than them interacting was Gina’s pleather snakeskin-print halter top. (Gina, if you don’t want to see Dylan, WHY DO YOU HANG OUT AT THE PPAD?) And Gina’s Victim Du Jour blather includes the fact that she never went to a dance or her prom because her mom pushed her and she had to train all the time. And she concludes that "the kid always suffers, you know? No you don’t know, forget it" and walks off, leaving Dylan staring into space, brooding, and perhaps wondering if his Childlike Self is lurking somewhere in the dark corners of the club, awaiting comfort.

And, since they’re out a nanny, Janet and Steve have roped Patrick and JulieAnne into babysitting while they go out. Which, of course, a childless couple is AWLAYS just THRILLED to do. And Kelly comes over looking for Matt blah blah blah JulieAnne understands blah blah blah Kelly says it’s nothing personal blah blah blah Patrick cooing to Maddy blah blah blah… and Kelly sulks and pouts and looks conflicted when JulieAnne talks about "things you can’t control" and all that stuff that hits so close to home with Kelly "ME!" Taylor.

And at the Peach Pit, Gidget’s Niece’s Brother is announcing to all and sundry that "A very pissed off dealer’s breathing down my sister’s neck!" and Gidget’s Niece pretends to cry and they whine about needing money from Dylan. And Noah cops some ‘tude, and, when GNB says "Do you have any family?" Noah says "a brother and a half sister" …And wouldn’t one just say "brother and sister" and not mention all the halves, unless pressed for specifics? And GNB really needs to get a hobby or something. I love my brother, but I’d strangle him if he hung all over me that much. Eyew. And then there’s this pathetic, badly acted bit where GNB says "I LOVE MY SISTER VERY MUCH!" Like, yeah, we noticed, Quentin Compson. "And if something were to happen to her… I MIGHT HAVE TO LASH OUT… you know, redirect my ANGER!" And Noah gets excited at the thought of kinky sex and tries to further explore this potential master-servant relationship by goading "are you threatening me?" And then, after this altercation, Noah cops ‘tude some more and reminds them that he was their last chance… "but after that STOOOPID outburst… you lost that chance! Have a nice day."

Please, God, let them kill Noah. Let Noah die. DIE NOAH! DIE! PAINFULLY!

And then… Etherized Kramer OF COURSE shows up at 7250 Yeah Right Blvd., OF COURSE bearing offerings of flowers because OF COURSE he’s got such a mad crush on Donna and OF COURSE wants to know if she’s free for dinner AND blathers about planetarium and tries to pin Donna down for a date and OF COURSE is gooning over her and OF COURSE is so hot for Donna and Donna lets him down gently and tries the "I’m a busy working girl" excuse and finally even says (how professional of her) "If you want to cancel the order, I understand." As if, you stupid bint, you’re admitting to HIM AND YOURSELF that the only reason you went out was to sell your stupid sweaters! But OF COURSE Etherized Kramer doesn’t want to cancel and OF COURSE he tells Donna how talented she is and fawns and goons over her some more. But then… then he says "Even if you do have terrible taste in men." WHICH IS CONCLUSIVE PROOF THAT DONNA AND DAVY ARE GETTING BACK TOGETHER! And the OF COURSE Etherized Kramer looks all sad and heartbroken as he walks away. And Donna actually … um… makes a pouty face at his back and drill-revs out her nose before doinging back to the store.

And back at the store, Davy IS ONCE AGAIN just hanging out and babysitting the place, and reassures Poor Donna that, don’t worry, she’s "going to meet the perfect guy and live in the perfect house and have perfect kids and everything’s going to be disgustingly perfect!" Yup, guys, they should be mackin’ down on each other within a couple episodes, now. And Donna insist that this perfection has to happen "SOON, right?" because not only is Davy clairvoyant, but she’s really getting almost too old to hope for the perfect guy and house and kids now that she’s, what, 23? 24? And then Donna wants to "just blow off the day" and close up the store and go to the beach with Davy. Like, that’s the attitude that will make your store a success, Donna. Just ask Kelly. And…as if her store’s lease doesn’t REQUIRE THAT SHE BE OPEN FOR A CERTAIN NUMBER OF HOURS A CERTAIN NUMBER OF DAYS A WEEK!? I remember talking to the owner of the family-run dry cleaners that I used to take my stuff to back in San Diego, and, when they’d planned a big family week-long vacation, they just unthinkingly put a "we’re out of town for a week" sign on the store and closed shop. And when they got back, they discovered that it was a violation of their lease at the shopping center, because they were supposed to be open and operating for standard business hours seven days a week (unless there was an emergency), and they got stuck with these huge fines as a result. But I guess Donna’s above that sort of thing. Or she can pay for any pesky fines with the same stash that finances her beach condo or Davy’s bungalow or Steve and Janet’s newspaper…. But, anyway, Davy can’t because he’s going out with Camille, and Donna’s all put out and rejected.

Do I have to talk about the Utter Stupidity of Steve and Janet at the merry-go-round in Santa Monica and Janet again trying to rationalize being involved with a troll like Steve and reassure him ABOUT HIS PERFORMANCE?! Gawd. And Janet makes comments about the new Guatemalan nanny … and her Salvadorian backups. And I believe government officials have gotten into trouble making comments like that, Janet. So anyway, they have this big scene in front of the merry-go-round. And the merry-go-round provides a complex symbol of their relationship… on the surface it seems like a cheerful and childlike delight… but essentially it is a pointless journey that never goes anywhere, just stays there, expending its energy on up-and-down round-and-round motion that proves useless in the end. Just like Steve and Janet.

And, ready that shout-out meter, because at LB’s office, where I guess LB is no longer on vacation, Kelly comes in and announces that she’s been thinking a lot and the part that stands out the most is "when you said that it’s not about me" and "It affects me, it changes my life, it complicates my world… but it’s not about me, it’s about you." And based on what Kelly just said, can we really be convinced that she believes it isn’t about her? It’s like the commentator I heard a couple weeks ago, bitching about a speech given by potential presidential candidate Donald Trump, complaining that The Donald said "I" too much, focusing on himself, not the country. But the commentator then proceeded to say "I think… and I believe… and it’s my interpretation" and just undermined himself by doing the same exact thing that he said was so ineffective about Trump, pretty much canceling out his whole point.

So Kelly takes all these deep breaths and chews her lip and bravely continues. She says, and I’m not exaggerating, "I HAVE RESPONSIBILITIES. I NEED TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY AND I’M NOT VERY GOOD AT THAT"

There is a God.

And LB wants to know if she’s here to "take responsibility for saying no" to his brother, but Kelly says "I’m here to take responsibility for saying yes." Number of times my pet phrase, "take responsibility," has been used in this scene alone: 4 And LB wants to know if Kelly’s "sure" and Kelly claims she is but she’s making those sad pathetic KELLY TAYLOR WANTS THAT! faces and pouting over his shoulder when he hugs her. So, hopefully, LB and Kelly will be finished and over in a matter of weeks, too.

And then Gina blah blah blah shows up to take Michael to the dance blah blah blah lectures Mr. Super Sports Channel Guy about disciple and love and pressure and freedom and her mom and criticism GINA ACTUALLY SAYS HER MOM’S PRESSURE TURNED HER, GINA, INTO "a self-hating… co-dependent… bulimic… bitch."

And not only has Gina just used, in once sentence, more Psychology than Kelly Taylor packed into 4 years of school, she also has repeated my favorite descriptions of her… and used yet another Rant buzzword ("co-dependant") that I’ve said here more times than I can count.

There is a God, and He’s listening.

And Gina is now officially a Hillster because she has Rescued an Other who Needs her and shown Mr. Super Sports Channel Guy the Light and Changed his whole Life. So, congratulations, Gina, and welcome to the Elite. Now, how much longer until you leave, huh?

And at Dysfunction Junction, Kelly’s moping on the couch and Donna comes moping in the door and the say these really sad "hi"s to each other. And Donna goes to her room and Kelly follows, despite the fact that Donna’s dialing the phone, to "read you something." And OF COURSE it’s more praise of Donna, this time in the form of the magazine article that has somehow already been written and published. Um, don’t most magazine articles have to be written weeks in advance to make printing/publishing/delivery deadlines?

And Donna’s whining about not wanting to hear about how things’ve changed and "I’m alone at the store I’m alone at night I’m alone all the time." Wah wah wah wah… how tough is must be to be Donna. But Kelly cajoles, and then reads the latest Spin Doctoring of Donna Martin: "In addition to being incredibly talented, Donna Martin is funny and kind and devoted to the friends she grew up with. Maybe one of the reason her designs seem so genuine is because that is the perfect word to describe the designer herself." Like the skimpy tank tops and sweaters and stuff somehow reflect Donna’s devotion to her friends? Anyway, Donna plays modest and then outs with the most important factor: "Did she mention I was single?!" And Kelly assures her "When guys get done reading this article we’re going to have to get an unlisted number!" Because, yeah, Donna, that’s the way to meet men… hope that they call you after reading an article in a fashion magazine. And Kelly, Donna pointed out earlier that only 3 straight guys read this particular magazine. Ha ha. Yeah. Donna sure is funny.

And then Kelly coos "It’s weird… how easy it is to forget what’s so great about your best friend!" And they whine about not seeing each other and how they promised this wouldn’t happen and I just wish they’d hurry up and break into that maudlin song about "And friends are friends forever" that we had to sing at every high school commencement.

And Gina does her good deed of the day and takes fat lil’ Michael to the school dance and encourages him to dance with the girl he has a crush on and seals Michael’s new-found popularity because he brought A Hot Chick to the dance (which, if I was 13-year-old Nicole, would’ve given me fits of insecurity to last well into senior year). But Gina’s taught Michael an important Hillster lesson: a hot, sexy date can solve all of your problems and make you a better man. And then… for some reason… Dylan shows up at the dance to surprise poor, abused, white-trash "I never went to a prom" Gina Kincaid. And first of all, how did Dylan even find out that there WAS a dance, much less that Gina’d be going there? And second, no school I went to would… just allow random people to come in. You had to have a student ID and a ticket. If not, you were trespassing. And I am so so so so so sick of this stupid stupid stupid stupid Dylan and Gina non-relationship. They make LB and Kelly seem, well… Okay, never mind.

And then at the PPAD, Noah’s got his car alarm turned on even though his car window is down and somehow doesn’t even notice the Big Black Van that’s parked behind his car. And GNB and his Crony break the windshield ­ just for effect, mind, because the other windows are down ­ and force Noah at gunpoint out of the car and into that black van that’s parked blocking his car that he somehow didn’t notice before. And Noah… Noah says to GNB… "Better not drop that gun, man"…? Ah, don’t you mean "You better drop that gun now!" or something, you dough-head? Jeepers! So anyway, they hustle Noah off to hold him for ransom or something.

Please… let Noah die! Die! DIE, NOAH!

And in two weeks, according to the previews, "One will love!" and Dr. John begs Gina to "call me Dad… I’d be so honored!" as if, yeah, that’ll fix everything. And "One will lose!" as Dr. John’s apparently had another heart attack and Donna freaks, screaming ‘DADDY? DADDY?" and nearly takes him out with her boobs as she lurches over him. And "One will rise!" which, I guess means once again we have to deal with Moral Dilemmas and Dylan McKay, whom Skeevy Stevie calls "a superhero" (whatever). And "One will fall" and, ah, delight of delights, there’s Noah, chained like a monkey. And I’m far too happy with the sight of the van blowing up, hoping that Noah’s in it. But I’m sure what’ll happen is, like, Noah will save Dylan or something before the van blows, and then have a Big Sad Tragic Exit from Hillsterland back to Hawaii or to be with his mom or something lame.

Please, die, Noah! DIIIIIEEEEEE!

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