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|:HOME:|:RANTS:|:MARCH 8, 2000
"I Will Be Your Father Figure"
March 8, 2000

So Iíve been putting off my second make-up Rant, even though I really have to get my butt in gear, because I start my new job on Monday, and itís not like Iím going to have a whole lot of spare time to finish this... at least, not like my self-indulgent, lazy ass is used to. Iím not sure how this is going to affect the scheduling of my Rant postings... Mebbe Iíll have to have Ďem up on weekends now, like xix used to. Weíll see. And tonight The Husband-Type Man finally returns from a 10-day sojourn in Southern California (with a quick jaunt Ė Iím not kidding Ė up to Alaska with a couple friends to see the start of the Iditarod! How kewl is THAT?), so Iím working with one eye on the clock.

Anyway, I had good intentions, but, joy of joys, I happened to play switchies right by VH-1 and saw that they were airing the Duran Duran Hard Rock Live Ė the show that I was at Ė that I missed last weekend because of a TV Guide mishap at my brotherís house. I mean, let the Estrogen flow! I havenít had a good Est Fest since... well, since I was at the show! And to my joy, YOU CAN SEE ME IN THE AUDIENCE! Well, me and my Psycho Duranie Pals stayed to the back of the venue because we hate crowds, but you can see me holding up my Simon LeBon Is A Poetic Demi-God (© dwanollah, 1992) sign that I take to all the shows! Well, okay, you canít really see me, but you can see my sign. And, well, not that you can actually READ my sign, but... you can see someone holding up a piece of white paper. So. Thatís me! Hi, Simon!

So in honor of my Estrogen-Laden frenzy inspired by My Boyfriend, todayís monikers are all Duran-related.

Actually, on Wednesday night, The Husband-Type called me to tell me heíd heard Kevin and Bean talking on KROQ about how... how... Tori Spelling is directing this episode. Does that mean lots of cavern and French Manicure shots? Donnaís disgusting tongue-lurching kissing? I can only imagine the horrors.... So it was with a sense of deep foreboding that I watched that night.

So. We open at the Emergency Room with a really badly made-up Faux Patient being wheeled by on a gurney, with pasty-white lipstick that makes her look less like an injured person and more like a Ď60s mod girl cover model, and a horrible special effects bandage with a decorative splotch of bright red blood on one side wrapped around her head. And looking all worried is Donna "Electric Barbarella" Martin, holding the pay phone receiver. And cut to Homeslice House, where, in a salute to Brandon, Davy "Yo Bad Azizi" Silver is sleeping with NOT ONLY a big honkiní watch (tm xix), but a bracelet on the other arm as well. And tucked into bed with him is Camille "So Misled" Whatever Her Last Name Is, quite naked (well, as naked as can be shown on a teen drama). And Donnaís calling Davy to tell him that Noah "Drug (Itís Just A State of Mind)" Hunter is in the hospital. And Camille mumbles and Donna goes "Is that Camille?" Cute, huh? And when Davy wants to know what happened to Noah, Donna goes "Well, I ignored his calls like you told me to do and... I guess he got drunk and he broke in and we all thought he was a burglar and Matt went after him." And Davy mumbles "Yer kidding" and Donna continues "So far he has a concussion and some bruised ribs. Weíre waiting for some tests but if theyíre clear Iím just gonna take him back to my place." And Davy groans and mumbles some more "nooo, no, Donna if the guy broke into your house because he couldnít get you on the phone you need some space." And Donna gets pissy and snips "David, I donít need your second guessing right now, I just called because youíre his roommate! I thought you might worry about him!" doing that annunciating-every-other-word thing that she does when sheís all agitated, albeit in a softer tone of voice because she is, after all, in the ER. And then Kelly "All She Wants Is" Taylor and Matt "Save A Prayer" LawyerBoy and an Ethic RN show up and Donna goes "Uhhh I gotta go" and hangs up. And Davy huffs and stares at the phone and hangs up and stares some more. And the Ethnic RN announces that "the CAT scan came back fine" and I just want to know how theyíd be able to tell if Noah was brain-damaged in the first place? And she continues that he "may experience some nausea in the next few hours and breathing wonít tickle. Just keep an eye on him." And Donna smiles in deep gratitude and says "Thanks" in her breathy little-girl voice (which isnít quite the same thing as Kellyís Patented Baby Talk, but is a special infantile feature unique to Donna). And why didnít they at least warn all of us watching that we might also experience some nausea in the next few hours? And then Donna announces to Kelly that she was letting Davy know that "weíll be taking care of Noah for a few days" to which Kelly of COURSE goes "We are?" all surprised. And Donna... presses her lips together and nods and goes "Mmm hmm" in her little-girl voice and looks down while Kelly huffs and glares and rolls her eyes and LawyerBoy goes to get the car. And then Donna says that "I know that on principle you could do without Noah around"... um, Donna? It kind of goes beyond mere PRINCIPLE, honeybun. How about the fact that Noah just PHYSICALLY ENDANGERED not only you, but your roommate and her (dorky) boyfriend?! And then we get they Stupid Contrived Typical Hillster Mantra with Donna telling Kelly that Noah "needs a friend." And Kelly wants to know how Donna and Noah are "supposed get past things if heís sleeping on our couch?" And coming from a girl who doinked her ex-fiancť on what was supposed to be their wedding night right after they called things off because they felt "too much like brother and sister" or whatever Brandonís rationale was, and has waffled back and forth between the same two boys for the better part of the last decade, Kelly really doesnít have any room to talk about "getting past things." And Donna gets defensive and tells Kelly that "David already gave me the lecture" but "no one has anything to worry about, especially me." And Kelly says "Iíll hold you to that" and Donna insists "Iíll hold myself to that, thanks" Oh, yeah, Donna. First, thanks for being concerned about the safety of your friends! And second, considering your past track record, Iím SURE we can all feel confident that you have nothing to worry about with your druggie, drunken ex-boyfriend who has been stalking and harassing you, has shown up drunk at your home and the homes of your friends repeatedly, and JUST BROKE INTO YOUR HOUSE, again drunk out of his mind. I mean, didnít you learn anything from Ray Pruit? From watching Dylan "Wild Boys" McKay self-destruct time and time again? From your repeated dysfunctional relationship with Davy? HOW EFFING STUPID CAN ANY ONE UNDERWEIGHT, OVERBOOBED, SICKENINGLY INSECURE MORONIC GIRL GET?! I mean, writers? I know you all really dig re-hashing stupid plots, but for Godís sweet sake, this Hillster Girl Saves Her Pathetic Self-Destructive Boyfriend thing has GOT to go for once and for all! Arenít you sick of this yet? I know I sure am. And, in the interest of not re-hashing things, Iíll spare you my oft-repeated lecture about your responsibility to your teen viewers. But Iím thinking it. And Kelly must feel at least a little of the exasperation I do, because she huffs and pouts and makes faces and stomps off, and Donna just goes crazy with the huffing and eye-rolling in response. And this is kind of like the scene in the video for "Goodbye Is Forever" with Simon strapped to the turning clockwork thingie and Nick hanging on for dear life to the swinging pendulum and the camera following their inescapable going-nowhere motion. Which, Iím soon to find, is an apt comparison with the pacing and direction of the whole entire episode.

And, um, the intro music for this episode is actually George Michaelís "Father Figure." And Iím wondering just how this relates to Donna desire to save Noah. *snicker* (They really couldnít come up with any better music to illustrate Dylanís Quest for Jack? Nothing?)

And in a double-shout-out to me, over at the Royale With Cheese Hotel, Dylan "Come Undone" is slopping coffee from an elegant china pot into a coffee cup and, naturally, slurping it noisily and making the Hard Liquor Grimace and he stares at the laptop on his coffee table and broods really hard. And Dylanís interrupted by my favorite motif, The Knock At The Door. Enter Kelly "The Reflex" Taylor, whoís come over because "the operator said your line was busy" when she tried to call. Well, Kelly, why didnít you ask them to send up a message to Dylanís room? And the lineís been busy because Dylan (along with Stevie "Femme Fatal" Sanders) was on line doing "detective work," "trying to get the phone numbers of the people on this list here." Dylan... Dylan has been trying to call all the other people on the plane? In the wee hours of the night and the early morning? Dylan, why not just try to get Eddie Waitkusís number, huh? So then Dyl-head explains the whole Jack McKay/Eddie Waitkus pseudonym thing to Kelly. And Kelly earnestly wants to know "How can I help? What can I do?" and Dylan rasps that "I donít know that you can." Oh, donít underestimate our girl Kelly, Dyl! But Dylanís "beginning to think that somebody or something does not want this little family reunion to take place!" Oooh, the forces are all against Dylan finding his father! He searches, but Jack remains illusive, no matter how hard he tries! And itís like the video for "Lonely In Your Nightmare," where Simon and John are both trying to make contact with the Mysterious Dark Haired Beauty, but she keeps disappearing just when they get close. And Kelly suggests the FBI, but Dylanís above that sort of thing. No, no professional organization can help Dylan now! Heís questing for his father, like the many mythical heroes before him, and no crummy police force, no lousy, lying detectives can help him now! His friends can assist him, but ultimately, Dylan must seek alone, for that... that is the nature of the Heroic Quest For Oneís Father! And then Dylan broodingly speculates "What- what- what if heís trying to send me a message, that this [he holds the list] is as close as he can get?" And Kelly suggests contacting the flight crew and, instead of driving down to the airport at that suggestion, Dylan actually picks up the phone and calls information for World Continental Airlines (which is a rather redundant name, if you think about it). And I thought Dylan was on-line and thatís why Kelly couldnít call him. And youíd think that a hotel as ritzy as the Royale would have more than one phone line in their big fancy suites.

Oh, God, truly, truly Tori did direct this episode, because why else would we be treated to a scene as grotesque and pathetic and sickening as Donna "Friends of Mine" serving Noah "So Long Suicide" Hunter breakfast in bed... in HER bed... and SPOON FEEDING HIM!? Uch. And thatís prolly why weíre treated to Donna carrying in this breakfast tray with, like, a melon-half-holder on it that swings the cantaloupe on the tray back and forth, and Donnaís posture is all weirdly super-erect, as if sheís offering up her barely-covered, misshapen, bursting-at-the-seams thrice-augmented boobies as well as whateverís on her tray. And sheís taking these tiny, mincing steps like a foot-bound woman from centuries-ago China, and looking all demure and sweet with her hair piled in a chaos Ďdo (tm xix) as she coos in her little-girl whisper "Hey" to Noah. And Noah grunts and groans and winces and grunts some more as he holds an icepack to his head. And Donna coos in her little-girl whisper "Be careful...." as he groans and grunts and winces and winces some more and grunts again while he sits up and throws aside the icepack and grunts and winces again and mumbles about "Oh man I smelt your burnt toast" and Donna sweetly protests "Hey, I tried to scrape most of the black stuff off" which must be a metaphor for the exclusivity of Hillsters or Donna-Toriís beauty aspirations or something. And Noah grunts and groans and winces and mumbles "Thaís okay I kinda Ďquired a taste for it over thí years." Gads... Donna actually spent years with... with this?! And for an early-morning scene, Donnaís sure got a carload of makeup on her face, including her major falsie eyelashes. Honest to God, I think the last time she wore this much makeup was, like, the West Bev Senior Prom. And Noah slurps his coffee and groans and winces some more while Donna swallows audibly along with him and blinks sweetly at him. And finally Noah grunts and winces and groans "Oh man Kelly aní Matt musí hate me" and Donna coos in her little-girl whisper that LawyerBoy "feels guilty" (appropriate lawyerish LawyerBoy feeling) and "And Kellyís just Kelly and sheíll cool down." Yeah, like how dare Kelly be the least bit upset that Noah, whoís been showing up drunk at Hillster Events for weeks now and JUST BROKE INTO THEIR APARTMENT, has been installed IN THE HOUSE IN WHICH SHE SHARES WITH DONNA! And then, God save us, Donna coos in her little-girl whisper "Arenít you hungry... you should eat a little bit... just a small bite" AND STARTS SPOON-FEEDING NOAH! Donna, I beg you, please PASS ME THAT SPOON SO I CAN GAG MYSELF WITH IT! God, this is really, really, RILLY bad. And Noah groans and winces and sits up some more and gazes at Donna, wincing some more, and lets her feed him a bit of scrambled egg or whatever it is. And Donna coos in her little-girl whisper "There..." and makes all sorts of hideous moues and continues to blink demurely and look down and then back up again through her huge false eyelashes at Poor Noah. And Iím hard pressed to say who is more pathetic here, Donna or Noah. I mean, this is like some elaborate Medieval mating ritual in which the woman is brought to the man and is all modest and sweet and innocent and virginal and soooo overcome by his masculinity that she can barely raise her eyes and she carefully offers him food to show that she is willing to share her life with him. There arenít enough words to describe how deeply this scene IS TOTALLY CREEPING ME OUT! I think Iíd rather hear Skeevy Stevie talking about sex and lactation again. And Noah grunts and groans and winces and mumbles "Man I dunno what hurts worse my ribs or watching you take care of me like this." Like, yeah, Noah, Iím sure this is all just so extraordinarily painful for you, you loser. BUT IS ISNíT AS PAINFUL FOR YOU AS IT IS FOR US! God, take a hint AND KILL YOURSELF ALREADY! PLEASE?!? And of COURSE Donna coos in her little-girl whisper "I want to." Of COURSE she wants to! Of COURSE Donna wants nothing more than to pamper and baby and take care of the drunken, druggie, girlfriend-killing, lying, raping, cheating, manipulating ex-boyfriend WHO HAS BEEN STALKING HER AND TREATING HER LIKE CRAP AND JUST BROKE INTO HER HOUSE LAST NIGHT! And Donna adds that "Besides, I have Camille covering the store so I have plenty of time on my hands." Of COURSE Donna does! Itís not like she spends any time designing anything. Itís not like she has hobbies or activities! Itís not like she does anything but hang out with Davy and take care of Noah! IS ANYONE ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH THIS MUCH OF A DOORMAT?! And then Donna coos in her little-girl whisper "ínother bite?" and Noah grunts and groans and winces a couple of times and mumbles "No, Ďm okay, thanks" and winces again. And Donna blinks and gazes modestly down again like a 14-year-old Indian bride being brought in ceremonial parade by all of her female relatives to her husband-to-be. And Noah grunts and groans and winces and mumbles "ím sorry Ďbout lasí night. I guess I hadta see you." Of COURSE he HAD to see Donna! Despite the fact that theyíve had little-to-no contact in the previous episodes and Noah barely even acknowledged Donnaís dadís death and Donna barely acknowledged Noahís kidnapping, NOAH LOVES DONNA SO MUCH HE HAD TO GET DRUNK AND BREAK INTO HER HOUSE JUST TO SEE HER! And Donna makes a youíve-been-very-naughty serious face and says "Why?" And Noah winces and grunts and winces and mumbles "Who knows? I was drunk." And Donna keeps making her stern schoolteacher face and says "Noah, you HAVE to get back into AA." And Noah groans and winces, and Donna bugs her eyes out sternly at him and Noah winces and grunts some more and looks downcast and winces again and Donna huffs and sighs and gets up slowly and seductively from the bed like sheís going to do a striptease but instead makes an exasperated face and goes "Iím SERIOUS" and Noah grunts and groans and winces and Donna continues in her little-girl whisper "You promise and you promise and you always find reasons to fall short" and Noah winces and Donna continues "You do it again and youíre on your own" and Noah winces again and Donna presses her sticky-lips together and tries to look stern but just looks pathetic.

And could there be anything worse that that scene? Oh yes. The return of Randy Spelling as Stevie Sandersí brother Ryan. Tori Spelling truly IS directing this episode, isnít she? Hail Mary, full of grace....

Over at Casa Skeevy, Janet "Fallen Angel" Sosna Sanders has Maddy in one of those little kiddie swing seats in the back yard, and sheís decked out in her own Training Matron casual track pants/zippered sweat shirt ensemble as she waters rosebushes with a truly evil glare on her face. She must know whatís coming next, because thereís this bawling "STEVE-O, YOU READY FOR SP-" and Iím hoping he doesnít continue with something like "spooging in tandem" or "spreading the legs of every bimbo in town" or "splash-back all over your toilet seats" or "a speculum up your ass" or any of the other expected possibilities from one of the two Most Annoying 90210 Characters Of All Time. You got it. Ryan "Late Bar" Sanders comes tearing through the bushes, scaring the daylights out of Janet (and me) and wearing the grodiest sunglasses Iíve seen all year, including tonightís Duran performance of "Hallucinating Elvis" in which Simon dons a silver shirt and a pair of huge Fat Elvis sunglasses for the occasion.

Actually, speaking of sunglasses, that reminds me of one of my All Time Most Moronic moments, when I first met Simon, yes, in his dressing trailer at the Duran Tribute Show a few years back. I mean, I was in a dither to begin with, because (despite the fact that Iím a relatively articulate person, given the right opportunity) put me in front of Simon LeBon, and itís instant flashback to age 14. Iíve actually been known to swoon, God help me, yes, really and truly SWOON in his presence. But this was just COMPLETELY out of control. To begin with, and I canít emphasize this enough, SIMON KISSED ME! Yes! So while I was recovering from that, the band was getting ready to go out to perform. And there was this delightful little interlude (lifted from my journal entry):

...Someone is readying Simon's remote mic pack, and heís wearing his earplugs covered with rhinestones, along with a rhinestone necklace. He polishes his sunglasses on his shirt and puts them on. He turns to me and mugs a bit. "Whaddayou think of me glasses?" he asks me. "...Nice," I say stupidly. ("I carried a watermelon?!")Take them off so I can look into your eyes, I'm thinking. Still just totally numb. SIMON LEBON KISSED ME!!

Can Simon Memories ease the pain of a Ryan Sanders plot? Well....

So Ryan apologizes and covers his mouth with his hand and mugs and introduces himself to Janet and Janet makes a smile and introduces herself to Ryan and they kind of hug. And then Ryan spies Maddy and says "Wow..." and moseys over. "Surrealism defined.... I never had a niece before." And first of all, whereís Austin? And second of all, since when would Ryan "Bevis" Sanders use a multi-syllabic word like "surrealism"? I mean, "Budweiser" maybe, but "surrealism?" Anyway, Janet says "You go away to school for eight months and things kinda change, huh?" And I guess Janet means the thing thatís changed (other than her total 180) is the whole entire character of Ryan Sanders, because she continues, God help me, God help us all, she... she continues: "So... um, how do you like Amherst? Because I actually thought about going there."

Iíll give you all a minute, so you can stop laughing. Heck, so I can stop laughing!

WHY IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS GOOD AND HOLY IN THE WORLD ARE WE EXPECTED TO BELIEVE THAT RYAN "MONKEY BOY" SANDERS IS ATTENDING AMHERST?!? I mean, I applied to Amherst two years ago for graduate study, with my 3.5 GPA and three excellent letters of reference and a really solid package of essays and writing samples and got turned down. RYAN SANDERS, RYAN "THING TWO" SANDERS, RYAN "MARY-KATE" SANDERS... IS GOING TO AMHERST?!? And guys, it only gets worse.... Ryan Sanders Ė yes, THAT Ryan Sanders Ė is not only going to Amherst, HE IS SUPPOSEDLY A PREMED STUDENT!

There is only so much a person can take. I mean, they want us to believe that Donna Martin is the most beautiful and desirable and talented and fuh-nee creature on the face of the earth. They want us to believe that Dylan McKay and Davy Silver and Stevie Sanders are really "good guys" despite profound evidence to the contrary. They want us to believe that Kelly Taylor rose within two days, with no previous education or experience in the field, to a prominent spot in a PR firm. They want us to believe that LawyerBoy is (and Brandon Walsh was) ethical. But now THEY WANT US TO BELIEVE THAT RYAN SANDERS IS SUPPOSEDLY PREMED AT A TOP RANKED EAST COAST UNIVERSITY? Iím sorry, guys, but watch me close my wallet and walk away from the store, because I AM NOT BUYING IT, no more than I would believe that Simon LeBon is faithful to Yasmin and lives up to his supposed motto of "Flirt, donít squirt"! NO WAY!

Ahem. So then, Janet tells Ryan that she and Stevie of COURSE are "taking a couple days off" work (not that weíve seen either of them actually work in the last season anyway) and they can go to "the Getty and then maybe hit the beach-" But Janetís oh-so-genteel plans are going to have to wait, because Skeevy Stevie "Girls On Film" Sanders has arrived and is screaming "Ryan? Heeey Mr. Premed, buddeeeeee ah ha ha ha!" like a demented monkey (which he resembles, what with his beet-red face). And he jumps on Ryan and Ryan jumps on him and they hug and yodel and chortle and pat each other and pound on each other and Janet just beams at their antics because itís all so heartwarming. And Stevie pats Ryan some more and fondles his shoulder and looks down at Ryanís genitals and tells him "You look great" and Ryan pats Stevieís left booby and says "You are, uh, starting to look like dad!" And-

Oh God. Hang on....

*sounds of violent retching, then, after a moment, a toilet flushing*

And then (Do I really have to do this? Do I?), um, then Stevie... um, looks down at Ryanís genitalia again and (*shudder*) says: "Hey! Grounds for a crotch-fire, pal!" And.. uh... oh, jeez, then Ryan (*gag*) pretends to... violently tweak Stevieís nipples and declares "Not unless you want a tornado twister!" And they yodel and tussle like hyperactive puppies some more.

Can I say that I have 1) never seen so disgusting a thing on this show in my whole entire life? Iíll take, like, an hour of "belly man" before this episode ever ever ever again, based on these last two scenes alone! And 2) I have never ever ever in my life heard of anything called a "crotch fire" or a "tornado twister."

And then Stevie tells Janet "Itís a brother thing" and Janet the Bossy Jealous Nagging Wife is starting to look really Bossy, Jealous and Nagging in true stereotypical form and huffs and snips "Right, Iím sure it is." Then she announces that she was just filling Ryan in on her plans for his vacation (spring break? Already?). And Ryan tells Janet that, actually "You see... Iím... all about partying. All about partying" and he and Stevie start listing bars by the dozens to go to. And first off, I just want to mention... after Ryan almost died from alcohol poisoning, Stevie things itís cute and fun and kewl to get him drunk? And, excuse me, but if this is Ryanís first year in college, that would make him 18-19, and several years too young to get into any bar in California. Unless, of course, Ryan is actually 21 and has spent the last three years with his nose to the grindstone at a grueling military prep academy in order to catch up on everything he missed in high school when he was slacking off and thus got into premed at Amherst that way. Which, I might add, I SERIOUSLY doubt is the case here. And Janet the BJNW is FULLY into BJNW mode by this time and sniffs "Thatís a lot of bars." And Ryan and Stevie beam Skeevily at each other and Ryan says "Weíre SO there!" and Stevie goes "Right on, pal" and they do an Mucho Manly Macho Man handshake. And Janetís so totally BJNWed now that she snips with light sarcasm that "I am SO happy to just stay home with Maddy so you guys just go and have a good time." Oh, poor Janet. And Stevie beams and chortles "Honey, youíre the best!" and, still holding Ryanís hand, goes "Címon, headbutt!" and "Psyche!" and chortles some more and goes "Címon, man!" and drags Ryan off into the house saying something about "show you a dirty film" or somesuch, leaving Janet behind to huff and sulk and be annoyed like any Quintessential BJNW would do.

And over at LawyerBoyís Lawyer office, Matt "Meet El Presidente" LawyerBoy is, I guess, all done with his suspension, because heís back to work trying to solicit clients, with what looks like a pile of cracked walnut shells all over his desktop. And if LB was out of work for two months and was so broke that his car got repossessed, how could he afford to keep his office? In a strip mall? That usually has those rule I mentioned in a previous Rant about tenants being open mandatorily during business hours? And LBís getting the major brush-off from the woman on the phone, who hangs up on him just as Kelly "Who Do You Think You Are" Taylor comes sauntering in. And LB whines to her about how heís "made twenty cold calls today trying to get new clients" (whatever that means) and all of these people have turned him down for all of these crummy reasons. Um, LawyerBoy? How did you get your clients to begin with, bonehead? And, God help us all, Tori Spelling truly IS directing this episode, because LAWYERBOY IS DOING COMEDY as he complains about why clients have turned him down and grinds a pencil into a pencil sharpener with such violence (lookit that wrist action!) that any Freudian or Lacanian would just have a field day. And Kelly states the obvious and goes "I think that pencilís sharp enough" and LB goes "Hnnn?" and wrenches the pencil some more and Kelly giggles and LB goes "Oh" and chuckles and goes "Yeeeep" and shakes pencil shavings all over the place and goes "I guess it is" and throws the pencil down on his desk and throws the pencil-sharpener down on his desk and brushes off his hands and then makes a "lookit my clean hands" gesture, and this scene has got Tori Spelling stamped all over it. And that, I must emphasize, is not a good thing. Jeez, Tori, heed your calling and go direct, like, the dolphin and sea-lion skits at Sea World or something, for all of your too-obvious un-fuh-nee two-steps-too-far beat-viewers-upside-the-head banality! I mean, this doesnít even have the such-a-major-dork-itís-endearing (at least to Duranies) quality of Simon at the end of the "View to a Kill" video identifying himself as "Bon... Simon LeBon" and then mugging as his little remote control goes buggy on him and the Eiffel Tower on which he is standing blows up.

And then Kelly whines about having quit her job and she defines it as having "left Pia" which makes me wonder just how much in "favors" the actress who played Pia is owed by Tori Spelling and/or the Spelling clan, because that was a really odd and unnatural way of putting it. And if Kelly needs work, why doesnít she just take over Ginaís useless sometimes-secretary job at LBís office? And they both whine about how useless they feel (howzibout how useless you both ARE?!) and then... then LB wants to know if... if Kellyís "given any more thought to opening your own firm?"

WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY WHYYYYYYYY???

How could Kelly open her own PR firm? Where would she get clients, what with no education in PR and only a day and a half of work experience? How could she possibly finance something like this? WHAT HAPPENED TO HER SUPPOSED CERTIFICATION TEST?! I know, I know, the writers saw that I was onto them, that my Episode was too clearly mirrored by their own writing, and they had to change things around really quick. Unless, Lord have mercy on us poor sinners, this is yet another tedious slow-dragging step in the Kelly Realizes She Wants To Be A High School Counselor At West Bev process, which will not actually coalesce until the showís finale.

And Kellyís excuse is that "I was with Dylan and all my mental energy is zapped." And LB makes like he cares about Dylan "UMF" (Ultimate Mind Fuck) McKay and asks "Howís he doing?" and Kelly squonches her mouth and says "Okay... for a guy who thinks that his dead father is alive." Like, ever the sensitive one, that Kelly. And then Kelly claims that "I believe him" and explains all the Detective Findings to LawyerBoy and informs him that "weíre going to go to the airport tonight and talk to the flight crew" of this commuter flight that supposedly flies back and forth several times a day. [The Husband-Type Manís flight should be getting in any minute now!] And then LB says all Brandonly "Wait. Wait wait wait wait wait" and asks Kelly if she doesnít think that "blowing his cover could cause some serious problems" if he really is alive? And then Kelly squonches her mouth and sighs that "Dylanís life derailed when he lost his father. You werenít there. You have no idea what this means to him" which not only underscores the fact that Kellyís BEEN THERE (Hillster Truism) for Dylan, but that she knows what this means to Dylan, so therefore she and Dylan are MEANT- Okay, you know. And then for some reason, LawyerBoy, who when we last saw him and Dylan interacting, was making a bitchy comment about "Kellyís waiting for me... donít you just miss saying that?" to Dylan, has now decided "Iím in" and he wants to HELP DYLAN AND KELLY FIND DYLANíS FATHER! See, in the Hero Quest, the Hero meets Helpers along the way, and often reconciling with oneís Enemy can provide a crucial source of Help. Actually, the whole Hero Quest can be seen in the video for "Union of the Snake," where Simon and John and Roger go on this Adventure and fall into an enchanted sleep, and Simon descended to the underworld and meets all of these archetypal figures like the Trickster and the Child, and has to escape with his Holy Grail, in this case a map, and upon his escape, heís met by an archetypal "Stranger" figure who takes him off to his next adventure quest.... Okay. So then, go forth, young Questers!

And over at the Homeslice House, Davy "Silva Halo" Silver and Camille "Sin of the City" Not Paglia are clearing the table of the remains of their shared candlelit dinner, and Camille remarks "Uh oh, Iím dating a stacker." No, not a slacker, a stacker, someone who stacks the plates when they clear, so that "both sides get dirty." And then Davy has to retort that heís dating "a compulsive... yet very attractive... freak" which isnít a first for Davy, considering he sorta dated Gina. And they start mackiní, but the phone rings, and itís Donna "New Religion" Martin, who just called to apologize quickly for "snapping" at him last night and to inform him that "Sleep Away Camp" is on TV and sheís on the couch while Noah "The Violence of Summer" is asleep in her bedroom. And Davyís all amused by Donna calling him, but Camilleís a little miffed, and comments that "you guys are like my grandparent" which I think has less to do with the calling-each-other-when-horror-flicks-are-on thing and more with the Donna-and-Davy-as-Donnaís-own-grandparents-reincarnated thing. But Camille explains that is because they "bicker, make up, repeat" in the oh-so-redundant and very unhealthy formulaic stereotyping clichť that couples who argue all the time are "cute" and "funny" and "endearing." I beg to differ. But what else should we expect from 90210, huh? Anyway, Davy says "It kinda feels like weíve known each other that long" (i.e. the Hillster Truism about "history" and "weíve known each other too long to let go now" and all that other hokum) but then the phone rings again and itís Donna again, to let Davy know that, in fact, it isnít "Sleep Away Camp" but rather "itís ĎSlumber Party Massacre,í SO much better!" and Davy goes "Get outa here" and hangs up again and then goes to Camille "Uhhhhh... we gotta go look for the remote," leaving Camille behind with a very exasperated and rejected look on her face.

We canít see this one coming, can we?

And Tori truly directed this episode, because for some reason, the scene continues on with Davy digging around sofa cushions and flinging pillows aside and Doing Comedy, and Camille rolling her eyes some more. And if Donna and Davy are into mondo cheesy horror, they should try watching the video for "Waiting for the Night Boat."

And if we thought that this episode has been painful thus far, well, then, try this scene on for size. LAX. LawyerBoy "Last Chance On The Stairway" Matt in his usual bidnizwear. Kelly "Buried In The Sand" Taylor in a long gray suit jacket and matching pants, not unlike a suit I own. And Dylan... Dylan "(Iím Looking For) Cracks In The Pavement" McKay in this weird rust red jacket and a majorly Ď70s hiddy striped tie. And theyíre anxiously watching for the flight crew from that commuter flight from Phoenix to LA [Yay! The Husband-Type Man just called from the airport!]. And Dylan instructs Kelly and LB "See what you can find out from them" and so LB goes over to the check-in desk and says "Excuse me" to a flight attendant who just walks away, leaving him all befuddled-looking. And Kelly gets rebuffed, and is instructed to "try baggage claim, lower level" (at least they got that part right). And then Dylan... Dylan is accosting some flight attendant whoís struggling with her bag and... and starts talking in this Billy McCoy accent and babbles "Uh, hi... exkyews me, exkyews me, mah nameís Dick Millsaps, I work over at Coastal... Auto Leasing... on Concourse B. Ah, we, ah, had a mix-up with, uh, one of our passengers, Eddie Waitkus? Díyou know if Mr. Waitkus is on the flight... heís a real big VIP with us" and so on. And the woman doesnít know anything but suggest they check with "Cathy, our first-class attendant." And so Dylie accosts Cathy and drawls "Howdy, Iím uh, Dick Millsaps, I work at the Coastal Auto Leasings I just wanted to know uh was there a passenger named Eddie Waitkus on your flight?" And when she says he "wasnít on this flight" Dylan hastens "Well, yíknow uh our uh compyewterís broke down at work and I need to inform Mr. Waitkus of a change of arrangements that we made for him and I was wondering... do you have a uh... contact number of any kind?" And when she regretfully says "Mr. Millsaps, I canít release that" and walks away, Dylan sighs melodramatically and announces "Well there goes my job then." And Cathy, who is seriously wall-eyed, turns back and Dylan looks sadly at the ground... which of COURSE makes her come back and tell him that sheís heard him say he lives in "Tolleson, just outside of Phoenix... but you didnít hear it from me." Smoooooth, Cathy. And Dylan drawls "Youíre... youíre an angel" and Kelly and LB rush over to find out and Dylan announces all forehead creased "Anyone up to a trip to Tolleson, Arizona?"

And for the love of God, Tori, WE DIDNíT NEED TO SEE BROODING REBEL MAN DYLAN MCKAY DOING COMEDY! God, STOP IT! STOP IT! I mean, Dylanís fake-o salesman act was more lame than Simonís melodramatic recitation of Mercurtioís "She is the fairyís midwife" soliloquy from Romeo and Juliet in the "Waiting for the Night Boat" video!

And over at Casa Skeevy, the coffee table in the living room is completely demolished, covered with dead pizza and Ben&Jerryís cartons and opened bags of chips and all sorts of other carefully placed junk food. And Stevie "None of the Above" Sanders and Ryan "Hungry Like The Wolf" Sanders are asleep together at opposite ends of the couch... both fake-snoring really loud and raspy. Oh yes, Tori Spelling truly IS directing this episode, isnít she? And Janet "Ball and Chain" Sosna Sanders comes clomping in, yanks open the drapes, and all fake-happy-like sings "Rise and shine!" And, still being majorly BJNW, she goes over to Stevie and says all fake-lovingly "Darling? Hi. Even though I know you came in at the crack of dawn... and I know this because I heard you warn your brother not to wake up the old ball and chain Ďcos sheíd freak-" and Stevie, faking like heís tired, goes "Oh boy" and Janet continues "Yeah. Um, you have to get up. You have a meeting with a sasquatch watch group in about an hour." And Stevie whines "Canít you go honey?" and Ryan mumbles "Some people are trying to sleep, here, okay? Thank you." And Janet goes "No. I have to color-proof." Whoa. Janetís actually... working? Well, of course theyíre "taking the day off tomorrow for quality family time," as she quickly clarifies. And then... then Janet spies that the tail to the carousel horse in the Majorly Ugly Living Room has been broken! And Janet turns even more BJNWly and goes "What is this? What happened?" and Ryan says "it was dark I tripped" and (SHOUT OUT! SHOUT OUT!) Steve mumbles "I always said that thing was ugly anyways." No, Stevie, I always said it was ugly! And the bottom line is, it isnít your furniture and stuff anyways, itís the Walshes. And then Janet the BJNW snips "Steve? A word!" and grabs him by the ear and drags him off! Like, nice fucking marriage and adult relationship, Janet! And (Tori truly is directing this episode, isnít she?) Stevie kicks Ryan in the face and is basically behaving like the naughty kindergartner that he is and yelping "Ow! Ow! Ow! Honey! Honey! Oooh! Oooh! ...Ow, ow, ouch! Owww!" and Stevie rubs his ear indignantly while Janet hisses "Stop! Showing! Off!" And while Iíll admit itís nice to see someone treating Stevie like the child that he is, I find it deeply offensive that itís done in the "bickering couples are cute and fuh-nee" "bossy, jealous, nagging wife" motif. I mean, Archie and Edith were two generations ago (good God!) and Al and Peg were a parody and Marge and Homer are cartoons, so STOP IT! And Stevie is all patronizing and says "I am not showing off!" And, while that might be false, Janet also needs to quit showing off the fact that sheís the Ultimate Ball Breaker Wife. And then Janet lectures Steve about how Ryan "constantly mimics you and heís always trying to get your attention" ...which, of course, is what Ryan is doing right now... heís doing... doing... Doing Comedy. Heís gotten up and is holding the broken carousel horseís tail behind him, which only brings to mind visions of the ponies in "The Taming of Sleeping Beauty" or whatever it was by Anne Rice. And then Steve... Steve says that "Ryan is the, uh... the brain of the family." And, say it with me folks, if Ryan is the brain of the family, then that family has got to be extremely fucking stupid! And to prove my point, Stevieís trying not to laugh as Ryan prances around holding the horseís tail at his butt, and it actually looks like Ryanís trying to poo the thing out. And Janet whips around and gives Ryan the BJNW Look of Death, which makes Ryan look abashed, and then she whips back and gives a chortling Stevie the BJNW Look of Death, which makes him immediately look serious. And for a new mother and supposed career woman, Janet sure has a lot of time to spend arranging her hair in all those little corn-rowed ponytails. But I guess in Hillsterland, where phenomenal careers can be had at the drop of a hat and complete idjits are pegged as "brains," itís entirely reasonable to have an infant child who sleeps 12 hours a night, leaving plenty of time for grooming activities. And then Janet continues to lecture Stevie: "But youíre the one with the legendary reputation! And maybe heís just trying to live up to it!" LEGENDARY REPUTATION? As WHAT for chrissake? A total lame-ass loser slacker?! And then Stevie says "Well Iím glad heís coming out of his shell!"</b> HIS SHELL!? HIS SHELL?! If Ryan running around drunk at a frat party like a chimp on crack is reclusive, then God save us all from what weíre going to see from him in this episode! Ryan was about as reclusive as... as... as Simon LeBon in the presence of a camera! And now Ryanís pretending that the horseís tail is a trumpet and is parading back and forth like a four year old. I mean, my hyperactive low-marks-in-deportment brother wasnít this immature and stupid in junior high school! And Stevie claims that "weíre Sanders men, we stir up trouble every once and a while, we canít help it, itís our birthright!" FOR GODíS SAKE! And then Janet continues "Yeah but youíve been really lucky. Every time you or your antics got out of control there was always someone there to reel you back in. For years it was Brandon Walsh, now itís my full time job!" Which is not only really revealing in terms of 1) Janetís career of choice and 2) Janet and Stevieís marriage, but 3) is also pretty revealing in terms of our suspicions about Stevie and Brandon, because was Janetís basically saying is that her role as Steveís wife is identical to Brandonís role as Steveís... Steveís... whatever it was you want to call him. And boy, between the bossing and the ear-pulling and the lecturing and the "itís my full-time job to keep you under control" shtick, Iím giving Stevie and Janetís marriage another six weeks, tops! I mean, love? Respect? Friendship? Trust? If men are the Mighty Elephants, then I suppose itís only obvious that women are the Mighty Shrews. And lucky Maddy, getting to grow up in a household where she sees her mother constantly ridicule her father and treat him like a child, and her father act like a child and treat her mother with condescension. I havenít seen two people so stereotypically nasty and rotten to each other within a marriage since my Sicilian grandparents! If this is what their marriage is like, NO WONDER STEVE GOES TO DYLANíS HOTEL WHEN HE CANíT SLEEP AT NIGHT!

[Yay! The Husband-Type Man is home! YAY!]

And now Ryanís doing fake-o hip-hop "raise the roof" and "walk like an Egyptian" dance moves with the horseís tail, not unlike my Auditioning For The Boy Band scene I wrote for the LWOOE board. Shout-out? Okay. Anyway, and Janetís wanting to know "who does Ryan have" to reel him back in...? Well, surely not his brother Austin, who has, I donít know, gone the way of the Cunninghamís oldest son Chuck and the Bradyís dog Tiger. And Stevieís again laughing all chucklehead style at Ryanís oh-so-fuh-nee Doing Comedy antics before sobering and admitting to Janet that Ryan has "Me, I guess" to be his controller. Oh dear. And then Janetís lecturing "Then BE that guy! Donít boss him around or anything, just give him a little guidance" which is pretty ironic, coming from Janet the ‹berSterotypical Bossy Jealous Nagging Wife who just dragged her husband, the partner sheís chosen for life, off by the ear like a baby to boss, nag and lecture him. And now Ryanís trumpeting the horseís tail around like, you got it, a Mighty Elephant. His fate is sealed. And Stevie starts laughing as Ryan does more dorky dance moves, which are almost but not quite as bad as Simon the Worldís Clumsiest Dancer doinging and whirling and bounding around onstage, and Janet whips back around with another BJNW Look of Death while Ryan plays innocent and looks contrite. And then Stevie, all protective older brotherly, says "Ryan? A little hung over?" with a sympathetic face. And Ryan goes "Yeah, yeah, a little" with a pathetic face. And Stevie goes "Okay" with a sad face and then "Bloody Marys cominí right up, dude!" and Ryan goes "Great! Iím pouriní Ďem!" and doings past Stevie who chortles "Clothesline!" and slings his arm around Ryanís neck (unfortunately not enough to cause asphyxiation) and then pretends to punch him a couple times with the appropriate "Huuh! Huuh!" sound effects while Janet the BJNW just goes CRAZY with the huffing and eye-rolling. Hey, hon, YOU MARRIED HIM! And I also just want to mention... after Ryan almost died from alcohol poisoning, Stevie things itís cute and fun and kewl to get him drunk?

And over at Dysfunction Junction, Noah "Undergoing Treatment" Hunter is sitting on the couch, reading a TV Guide and listening to the weather report about "chance of showers," which we can only hope is a foreshadowing of all the tears Donna "Big Thing" Martin will be shedding at his funeral in a week or so. And I notice, as Donna can be seen through the windows walking to the back door, that the bookshelves in the living room... actually have some books on them now. And when Donna comes in, Noah turns off the telly and, biting his lip like a little boy, beams up at Donna, who marvels "Look at this place, itís spotless!" And Noah mumbles, "Yeah, Iím pretty slow but Iím quite effective" which I can only hope foreshadows the fact that itís taken Noah TOO DAMNED LONG to off himself, but when he does, heíll definitely be dead. Really and truly dead. No saving him this time, Donna. Heís DEAD! And Donna of COURSE gets all protective about how "the doctor said you werenít supposed to move around a lot" but Noah "just wanted to help out." Well, Noah, if you want to help out, I have a suggestion. Hereís three bottles of sleeping pills and a bottle of vodka. Go to it. Or, better yet, hereís your daddyís gun. Make like Hemingway. Too messy? How about a car in a closed garage? Slow but effective enough for you? Just DO IT ALREADY! And Noah grunts and groans and shifts around as Donna sits next to him on the couch, and grunts some more and mumbles "You okay?" And Donna, all marshmallow-fluff, says in her little-girl whisper "Yeah, Ďm good," mumbling, I suppose, because of all the time sheís been spending with olí Mushmouth. And Noah mumbles that Donna looks "a little tired" and brushes a strand of hair away from her face and Donna is just the most passive lump of invertebrate goo by this time and mumbles in her little-girl whisper "Oh? Really?" and maybe sheís "catching a cold." And the seagull chorus in the background starts singing their hallelujahs as Noah winces and pauses for a Big Effective Moment and then mumbles "AcoupleweeksíagoIthoughtIwasgonnadie. Ireallydid." Yeah, Noah, we all had our hopes. But of COURSE Noah continues that "allIcouldthinkaboutwasyou." Since when, you dolt? If Donna was such a prime concern for you after your brush with death, why didnít you pay a condolence call when her dad kicked the bucket? Oh, because you "didnít want her to worry" about you. Your loving generosity knows no bounds, eh? And Donna is STILL just a passive wet noodle and does that half-smile a little and mumbles in her little-girl whisper "Weíve been through a lot" (Hillster Truism! This is only going to make it that much harder for dear, sweet, loving Donna to let Noah go, despite the fact that heís a substance-abusing, mentally unstable, girlfriend-killing total loser of an emotional manipulation. Doesnít matter! He "needs a friend" and he and Donna have "been through a lot together"! Whynít you just marry the guy now, Donna, and save him from himself? Stupid twit.) And Noah winces and laughs and mumbles "yeah we have" and then he mumbles "ífwehadínutherchanceIídoalottathingsdíffrently. ĎSpeciallythíend." And oh yeah, Tori truly IS directing this schlocky piece of gik, isnít she? Because Donna half-smiles again and just STARES and Noah and Noah STARES back and finally leans forward and plants a mushmouthy kiss on Donnaís totally passive sticky lips... and Donna, like, doesnít move at first and then kinda kisses him back with an understated version of the Tongue Lurch From Hell, and then FINALLY pulls away and goes "Noah..." and (hereís the kiss of death, no pun intended) WIPES HER LIPS. With, I might add, short, un-French manicured nails. And then Donna mumbles, barely moving her lips, in her little-girl whisper "I know what youíre feeling.... I feel lonely all the time...." AND WIPES HER LIPS AGAIN and Noah mumbles "Thenwhycanítwejustsithere?" and Donna breathes in her little-girl whisper "Because we canít!" And Noah looks at her like sheís sprouted a second head, and Donna continues to breathe, hardly moving her lips, in her little-girl whisper "Because after we broke up, you were out partying and drinking all night long.... I wasnít.... I was dealing with it." And sheís making those little sticky-lips faces the whole time, breathing intently in her little-girl whisper "And it was sad, and it hurt.... A lot.... But I got over it." Obviously not, you lame-brain, or Noah wouldnít be in your house right now. And Donna continues intently in her little-girl whisper "And now that youíre sober youíre just finally feeling it." Yeah, Ďcos Iím sure Noahís turned over a new leaf and is clean and sober for good now. And Donna stares and Noah and Noah stares at Donna and Donna stares and Noah and Noah grunts and mumbles "Youíre right" and winces and grunts and moves away and buries his face in his hands and sighs and mumbles "Iím sorry" and winces some more and shifts again and mumbles "Iímgonnacallacabanígetoutayourway" and winces some more and grunts some more and picks up the telephone and starts dialing, while grunting and wincing, and Donna says intently in her little-girl whisper "Iím sorry" and continues to look pathetic and passive and Noah winces and grunts and when "Directory Assistance" picks up, Noah winces and mumbles "YeahcanIhavethenumberforGottaGoCabCompanyplease?" and I am just praying harder than you can imagine that "Gotta Go" cab company is foreshadowing of the fact that NOAH NEEDS TO DIE SO FREAKING BAD AND SO FREAKING SOON! And Donna makes more Sticky Lips and tries to look sad and troubled.

And this whole episode thus far has been cheesier and worse-acted than Duranís full-length feature "Arena"... although "Arena" also had all the hiddy, cheesy special effects. "Special" in the short-bus sense, I mean.

And I guess weíre in Arizona now, but it sure looks a lot like Burbank or Glendale to me. And Matt "Keep Me In The Dark" LawyerBoy and Dylan "The Needle And The Damage Done" McKay are both standing outside their car, bending over the trunk. And theyíre wondering "whatís taking Kelly so long" and all that other contrived stuff and Dylan even mentions that LB "blew off a day of work" to come out here... oh, yeah, Dylan... Iím sure LBís practice is gonna be hurtiní now. And Iím guessing that LB is only there to keep an eye on Kelly and Dylan under the guise of helping, because thereís no way he and Dyl-head are suddenly best buddies. And Dylan whines a little about this whole venture being pointless and about why his dad never called him, blah blah blah Little Orphan Annie-cakes. And finally Kelly "Serious" Taylor doings out of the, um, Tolleson cable company office and gloats "Worked like a charm!" Evidently, without any form of ID whatsoever, any verification of a Social Security number or a home phone number or a motherís maiden name or any of the other ten billion methods of verification used in situations like this, she has procured a copy of Eddie Waitkusís phone bill because she simply went in there and claimed to be Mrs. Eddie Waitkus. And "E Waitkus" lives at 11 Peachtree Rd. Guys? WHY DIDNíT YOU JUST OPEN THE FREAKING YELLOW PAGES? Check on-line? Good grief. So you know where weíre off to now, huh?

And what is up with the Davy cooking for Camille thing? Because Davy "Burning The Ground" Silver and Camille "Can You Deal With It" Not Paglia are sitting in some restaurant called "Carmineís" in front of a Take Out counter, and Camille is like some bad Hollywood Stereotype or Poor Lilí Rich Girl, dressed in some fluffy lavender Muppet-like sweater-thing over her red shirt, which clashes in a major way, and sheís checking her face and reapplying lip gloss in a compact mirror before whining "I thought you were going to cook for me tonight?" And Davy goes "Yeeah... well, that was a blatant lie" and Camille goes "Oh?" and Davy goes "See, I wanna save my energy for the long, drawn-out seduction Iíve planned for later." Uch, and before dinner, too. And Camille pretends to be charmed and goes "Whoís the lucky girl" and Iím thinking "Mitzy, the family dog" but Davy goes "Iím taking volunteers" and they continue with this oh-so-not-charming playful banter which has all the fizz and zing of a 2-liter bottle of ginger ale left uncapped for about a week (and hey, flat ginger ale is a great cure for nausea, btw). And... all the while... Davy is just... holding his cell phone on his lap...? Not even in his pocket, but in his lap? I mean, 1) Davy, you arenít that important. No oneís going to be phoning you with a stock tip or a software emergency, so put the phone away. And 2) since Davyís actually sitting in a restaurant, having a cell phone on is a little rude (in fact, when The Husband-Type Man and I went with his co-workers to a performance of "Tony and Tinaís Wedding," a cell phone rang during the "ceremony" part and the "priest" stopped the ceremony, glared at the red-faced woman sitting behind me whoíd taken two calls before the play began, and said "That BETTER be Regis!"), unless 3) instead of calling his name when the orderís ready, the guy behind the counter is going to, what, maybe CALL DAVY ON HIS CELL PHONE or something? And Davy asks how Camilleís day at work was and Camille says it was "a little off, actually" because she "screwed up things with Donna." What did she do? "I got on this weird RANT about how perfect my life is right now." First of all, SHOUT OUT! SHOUT OUT! And second, itís clear that Camille doesnít understand the definition of the word "rant" (rant: v. To speak loudly, wildly, and at length; rage, fume, rail, shout) because, since "rant" is a word redolent of anger, you donít quite really for the most part "rant" about how perfect your life is, so Iíll just take that as another shout out in regards to my own personal Life Babble here in the Rants in which I compare me and stuff Iíve done and The Husband-Type Man to stuff on 90201, always in my favor, naturally. And even more, Camille continues that "and as the words were coming out of my mouth, I realized that Iíve basically... stolen everything from Donnaís world" which is not only a really Typically Donnacentric/Praise Donna line of reasoning, but Iíll take it as another jibe towards the fact that Iíve fundamentally been cashing in on "Donnaís world" and Hillsterland and 90210 because if it wasnít for them, the Rants wouldnít exist, and Iíd prolly be, I donít know, writing Duran Fan Fiction or something instead, so I better realize that Iíve "basically stolen everything from Donna-Toriís world" too. And as Iím watching this scene, Iím hollering for the Husband-Type Man to "come see the worldís greatest Dwanollah shout-out!" and I make him watch that bit and Iím, like, snapping my fingers and pointing at the telly and (yes) ranting "See? See? ĎRantí!? ĎStolen everything!?í" And he kinda looks at me in bemusement for a moment before he starts doing this weird motion around my desk and office chair, complete with sound effects, and announces that heís "illustrating the world revolving around you," which, of course, results in much poking, tickling, laughter, and my continued insistence on my integral importance to the 90210 World and the fact that, when the show ends, Iím going to get a thank-you letter from the cast, from the writers and producers, even from xix, saying "Ooooh, Dwanollah, you made the last two seasons worthwhile! We want you to come write for us! Weíll pay you bigbucks! We looooooove you!" And, man, I accuse Simon LeBon of being a raving egomaniac?

Anyway, Camille continues to enumerate the things that sheís "stolen" from poor, perfect Donna: "her store, her boyfriend" and Davy jumps to correct "her EX boyfriend." And, since Camille isnít, I donít know, moving into Dysfunction Junction or hanging out with Felice or Kelly or dressing exclusively in Now Whore This clothes and dying her hair mahogany and getting boob jobs, I think the "store, boyfriend" = "stealing Donnaís whole life" bit is a bit of a stretch... unlike the pleasant experience I had with a former best friend of mine who, like, was this high-maintenance sycophant for several years, and the whole while, sheís wanting to come live at my house and starts calling my mother "Mommy" and my grandmother "Gramma," and starts appropriating my hobbies, suddenly claiming that she "writes" all the time too or buying poetry books (the same e.e. cummings and Emily Dickinson books I owned), and writing letters to my pen-pal who Iíd been corresponding with for years.... Then, when I start making my own jewelry, SHE starts buying beads too and saying sheís going to start making jewelry, and is, like, shopping at the same stores I do and dressing in the same long, flowered granny dresses and boots as me and even going to my hairdresser, to the point that our other mutual best friend began asking me repeatedly "doesnít that really bother you? Itís like sheís trying to BE you!" And, after initially saying sheíd outgrown them and preferred Ozzy and Queensrych, now sheís claiming that she loooooves Duran Duran and 80ís music, and wants me and our other mutual best friend to move out of the apartment that she and I are sharing to instead share a place with HER too... and a couple of her guy friends. Luckily that didnít pan out, because soon after, the h.s.b.f. and I split up and she... she, within a couple weeks of the break-up, showed up at his house, his PARENTSí house, with her dog and a suitcase, claiming sheíd been kicked out of her momís house, so she moved in with my ex-boyfriend... at his PARENTSí house. And the whole time, sheís becoming instant best friends with a former friend of mine who she claimed to hate for years previously and telling her and the ex-boyfriend all this stuff about me, to the point that the exís MOTHER was calling me, crying, telling me sheíd had to go in and stop anti-Dwanollah conversations between them and sobbing about how "that girlís white trash! Sheís a brain-washer!" and how much she "prayed" that me and her son would "work things out" (Um, you let her move into your home, so donít complain to me!) And our third mutual best friend/my now-ex-roommate is calling me crying about how "immoral" this relationship is, and another former friend of the h.s.b.f. is telling me that the h.s.b.f. is emphatically telling everyone that they are not dating and are not boyfriend/girlfriend but the Sycophant is telling everyone that theyíre MEANT to be together and theyíre in love and all that, and, after I finally started dating and refused to see/talk to the ex the few times he tried to contact me, he finally started calling her his girlfriend, which only caused his mom to call me again, sobbing about how he was "just sowing his wild oats" and she still "prayed" that "someday" weíd work things out, and by this time, the Sycophant is sending me these nasty e-mails and showing up at my work with a friend to talk loudly about how she needs to pick up a book for her boyfriend (who I never saw willingly read a book in the 7+ years we were together).... And thatís more along the lines of "stealing" someoneís life than Camille just working with Donna and dating her ex-boyfriend, because there were times when I actually felt (before and after our friendship) this creepy draining sensation, as if she was siphoning Dwanollahness away from me. And I donít flatter myself that it was because I was so wonderful or my life was so special, not in the least... sycophants just attach themselves to the most willing host, and I, spineless wimp that I was, was a perfect host. So Camille bemoans the fact that sheís causing poor, sweet, innocent Donna pain because "still, things stink for her right now, and there I was... rubbing my happiness right in her face." Aw, poor, poor Donna. And Davy, sweetheart that he is, grumbles "Camille, I think youíre being a little sensitive right now." Yeah, Davy. We wouldnít want anyone being sensitive now, would we? Especially not to the ex-girlfriend/supposed best friend who you claim to be so concerned about. And then Davy has to assert that "Donnaís not that kind of person. Believe me, I KNOW... sheís my best friend." And Camilleís "still getting used" to the fact that Davyís best friend is a WOMAN, and an ex, at that. And "I just feel like our relationship is trying to grow in its giant shadow." Because no woman will ever live up to Donna in Davyís eyes. It all comes back to Donna. She was his first love, his truest love, and no matter how hard heís tried over the years, he can never get away from that... he keeps finding himself returning to the same place, the same person... Donna. Donna, who IS love. And if this line of reasoning is true, then The Husband-Type Man must be all atwitter trying to live up to Simon LeBon in my estimation. Which Iím sure is just whatís happening. And Camille would "NEVER ask" Davy to "just drop" Donna but just hoped "for a little distance sometimes...." And Davy, like LB last episode, is "glad you said something." And, right on cue, the phone that Davyís HOLDING IN HIS HANDS starts ringing. And Camille snips that "itís probably Donna with a movie update" because, of course, no one else like his father or Kelly or Erin or anyone would be calling him. And Davy magnanimously chooses to let his voicemail pick it up. Um, Davy? WHY DONíT YOU LEAVE THE PHONE AT HOME OR IN THE CAR OR TURNED OFF IN YOUR POCKET OR SOMETHING!? But... alas... Poor Donna is listening to the unanswered rings with a sad, rejected look on her face, and leaves a message "Hey, itís just me... gimme a call, okay?" in her little-girl whisper, and hangs up the phone and leans her head on her hand, all sad and rejected and little-girl like, and rolls her eyes a couple times and makes sad, sticky-lips moues. And this is even sadder than the time I saw Duran in concert in 1989 and went rushing out to their tour bus after the show in hopes of getting an autograph or SOMETHING, but the band rushed on board and zoomed away, leaving me standing there, pathetic, in the rain, while the red tail-lights dwindled smaller in the distance....

And over at 11 Peachtree Rd., L "Interlude One" B has gone back to the hotel, leaving Dylan " Hothead" McKay and Kelly "Too Late Marlene" Taylor to stake out the place in their rental car. And Dylan broods and rasps "You know, Mattís a good guy," again setting up the fact that LBís gonna get his chumpy LB ass dumped in a matter of weeks so Dylan and Kelly can be together again, but we canít really critique Dylan or Kelly for that, because, with the platitude "Mattís a good guy," theyíre both absolved from blame and retribution. And Dylan stares at the ranch-style house with the living room warmly lit, and rasps that "life on the run seems pretty idyllic" and broods some more until a SUV turns in the drive... and a weary looking Jack McKay gets out. And Dylanís just open-mouthed and speechless and Kelly squeaks "What should we do? ... Dylan, go to him!" But Dylan is still immobilized as the front door is opened by a woman and... a little boy, about five years old and looking just like Little Dylan in last episodeís picture, bursts out, dressed in feetie-pajamas. And a smile comes to Jackís face as he calls the kidís name, which, as best as I can make out, is "Bubba!" And the kid cries "Daddeee!" and runs to Jack and Jack scoops him up and the kid laughs with delight as Jack whirls him around and calls him "buddy" and all that typical father-son bonding stuff. And Kelly, sensitive psych major and soulmate that she is, is apparently oblivious to the effect that A New Family would have on Dylan, and keeps urging "are you going to go to him?" while Dylan stares at Jack embracing and kissing the woman and the three of them going, en famile, into the house. And Dylan finally rasps, a la Luke Skywalker to Ben Kenobi at the burned remains of the jawa crawler, "Thereís no place for me here." And Kelly pouts at Dylan and Dylan looks sad and broods. And for the life of me, if Jack McKay is on the run and has been trained by the FBI and is a criminal at large or has dealt with criminals at large and all that stuff, WOULDNíT HE BE AWARE OF A CAR PARKED ACROSS THE STREET FROM HIS HOUSE WITH TWO PEOPLE IN IT WATCHING HIM?! He wouldnít be primed to be on the lookout for suspicious activity of any kind?

Gotta admit, I didnít expect a kid....

And over at 7250 Whatever Blvd., Davy "Proposition" Silver strolling into the store dressed all baggily/BAGilly, and announces to Donna "Anyone Out There" Martin that heís "so sorry." And Donna goes "You should be, I fell asleep with the phone under me and woke up with *69 imprinted on my face." And Davy babbles about not setting the alarm and Camilleís late, and is getting coffee, and Donna gets pissy and demands "So you arenít apologizing for not calling me back?!" And what friend would be THAT ANAL about having a phone call returned? Itís not like Donna said "Call me, itís really important" or "Please call back, this is urgent" or anything.... And Davy goes "Oh. Right." And Donna whines that "I needed to talk to yooooou!" and Davy goes "What, Noah?" and Donna "Obviously!" and babbles about the kiss, to which Davy has no reaction, so Donna demands "Well?" and Davy goes "Iím trying SO HARD not to say it" and Iím hoping for a "what are you, a total idiot!?" or something but Donna goes "Fine, you told me so! Why does this keep HAPPENING to meeee?" and Davy says "Well, youíre too nice" because of COURSE itís because Donna isnít dumb or spineless or self-destructive, sheís too NICE! And Donna babbles about "I just gotta learn to set better boundaries, thatís all. Whoís gonna teach me that?" Like, der, Donna. And Davy goes "you got a pen and a piece of paper, you might wanna take some notes" all Dwanollah-style. And Donnaís offended, but thatís nothing compared to when Davy lays down the law to her about "now that Iím dating Camille" some things have got to change, like "late night phone calls" "two or three times a night." And first of all, thereís the whole annoying deal about new SOís being pissed about old friendships. And second, wait... Donnaís been calling Davy 2 or 3 times a night? And it never occurred to her that it might be annoying? I mean, even with Camille aside, she never considered that it might be annoying to call Davy several times an evening? Does she HAVE NO LIFE WHATSOEVER? And then Tori truly is directing, isnít she, because Donna does Innocent and Naive Donna Comedy: "I do do that, donít I? ... Ohmigawd, am I driving you guys crazy?!" Um, Donna? YOU NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT THAT BEFORE? It never crossed your mind to think that calling Davy 2 or 3 times a night when heís having a date with his new girlfriend might drive them crazy? And Davy hastens to assure her "No, we both do it" and then Donna makes a sad, rejected face and goes in her little-girl whisper "Just ... not any more. ...I hear what youíre saying" and makes more sad, rejected, sticky-lips faces. And then Camille comes in with Donnaís coffee by way of apologizing for being late, and Donna, in characteristic Donna Generosity, says "Oh, no problem, letís get started!" and Camille smiles perkily and Donna smiles perkily and then Donna looks guiltily at Davy and Davy looks guiltily at Donna and Camille looks from Donna to Davy and Donna smiles wanly at Camille.... I think itís safe to say that Tori Does Directing as good as she Does Comedy.

And over in the parking lot of the May Lane Motel, a dump with kitchens, no less, Matt "To Whom It May Concern" (Which is, incidentally, a vituperative anti-lawyer tirade) LawyerBoy announces he has his first client and has to go back to LA... but Kelly "Vertigo (Do the Demolition)" says to Dylan "The Seventh Stranger" McKay, "but Iím going to stay with you." Yeah, LBís gonna be setting Kelly free any day now. But LB again warns that Jack "might take off" if he finds someoneís been asking questions and poking around. And then LB "uh, think I forgot something in the room." Like, give Kelly a handful of condoms and a pat on the head already, LB! And Kelly says "itís now or never," which foreshadows their inevitable reunion and LBís (pleasepleaseplease) departure from Hillsterland. And Dylan broods and rasps that Jackís "new life" must be better than his old one, and Kelly wants to know "Why? Because he has a wife, a little boy?" which, according to Kellyís essential I WANT THATism, must be the absolute proof. And Dylan broods and rasps "his SON" and Kelly earnestly says "he has two" ... but no one mentions "and a daughter!" because in the heroís quest for his father, the daughters donít count at all, so bully for Erika. And Dylan broods and looks sad some more until Kelly says "Címon, letís go get breakfast, figure out whatís next" but Dylan rejects her with a rasping "You got a plane to catch." And Kelly pouts and Dylan broods.

And this episode is sinking faster than Simonís capsized yacht, "Drum," back in 1985. Which reminds me of a rilly cute Simon story and Duranie Inside Joke. About 7 or 8 years ago, Simon was doing an online chat, and a friend of mine asked him "Are you ever going to get a new yacht?" and Simon responded "No, but Iíve got a rubber duckie that I play with in the bath." Which, of course, we IMMEDIATLEY seized upon: "Oh, so THATíS what he calls it." Hence, Simonís willie is known as "the duck." And since he doesnít wear underwear, going "duck hunting" or declaring it to be "duck season!" is a favorite pastime of any Simon fan... myself rabidly included. And for my birthday about five years ago, a Duranie friend sent me an e-mail with an attachment titled "The Duck" and when I opened it, lo and behold, a picture of Simon nekkid (that had been taken in the early Ď90s by a reporter with a zoom lens when Simon was sunbathing nude on his mumís back deck in Florida)! Oh, the joy! The fun! "Duck Season" indeed!

And over at the stupid PPAD, Janet "Winter Marches On" Sosna Sanders is sharing a table with Skeevy Stevie "Medazzaland" Sanders and Ryan "Everyone Is Getting It But Me" Sanders, who, naturally, are scamming on bimbo waitresses with all the subtlety and finesse of Simon LeBon at a backstage party after a concert. And despite the fact that Ryan is a college freshman, heís in a bar and drinking a beer. And I also just want to mention... after Ryan almost died from alcohol poisoning, Stevie things itís cute and fun and kewl to get him drunk? And PodJanet just laughs at their Skeevy Antics and announces that "You two are definitely built from the same double-helix" and Stevie wants to know "whatís that supposed to mean?" because, of course, Stevie made it through four years of high school and then college without ever having to learn basic biology. But Ryan the Supposed Brain (yeah, right) can supposedly clarify "genetics joke, Steve, you wouldnít understand." And Stevieís big comeback is "well at least I know my helix wonít be going home alone tonight." Oh, God, Stevie, DONíT HAVE ANOTHER BABY WITH JANET! And Stevie mauls Janet in front of his brother with all of the class and love and respect we could expect from Skeevy Stevie (which is almost as classy as Yasmin LeBonís penchant for, when Simon is being flirted with by fans, walking up, grabbing/patting his crotch, and announcing "This is mine, girls" or "This is taken.") But then Stevie notices "baby drool" in her hair and she notices "creamed carrots" on his shirt. Is Maddy already up to solid foods? Since I know little about babies and even less about their developmental stages, I can only ask. And Ryan looks on at these expressions of overt domesticity and parenthood in utter disgust and finally queries "Mushed carrots?! Drool?! What is this, youíre entire life now?" And Iím guessing that, no, since Janet was doinking Stevie for a while before they had a baby, that drool and mushed carrots have been her entire life for quite some time. And Stevie gets pissy (yeah, heíll be tempted by an extramarital affair ANY DAY NOW) and protests, and Janet adds "thereís also diaper rash" because, yeah, again, sheíd been dating Stevie for some time before they had a baby. And Ryan sniggers that "you are SO baby-whipped" and Stevie snarfs "Oh yeah? I only hope it happens to you one day!" Like, you hope WHAT happens, Stevie? An unplanned pregnancy? A quickie wedding to an about-to-pop ballbreaker bride? And Janet just smiles fondly because isnít Stevie cute? But Ryan claims that his "child-development course" is as close as heís gonna get. And that segues into Stevie and Janet being super interested in his college classes and Ryan demurring, and Iím hoping itís because heís been in some community college or business skills training school in Indiana or something and has been lying about Amherst. And Stevie says "I just thought you might want to impress us, thatís all" but "the only thing" Ryan wants to impress is "that hottie over there, so if you guys will excuse me, I got some mumble mumble mumble." And off he goes, to Stevieís great delight, to hit on the waitress that looks at LEAST ten years older than him. Oh God. And this scene is as classy as one of Simonís on-stage jokes, my favorite being the one that he told at the Hard Rock Live filming during a break: "How do you get a dog to stop humping your leg? Pick it up and suck its dick." And now Iím having a Really Disturbing Moment, realizing how close in personality My Boyfriend is to Skeevy Stevie Sanders....

And back at 11 Peachtree Rd., Dylan "Drowning Man" McKay is parked out in front of Eddie Waitkusís house, brooding really hard. And Jackís visible in the lit window, reading a paper as his wife comes to say goodnight to him. And Dylan gets out of the car and approaches the house slowly, actually looking... kinda sad and vulnerable instead of just brooding. Which is also a nice change from the I-anticipated-Toriís-touch-on-this-scene-antics that I half-expected, with Dylan tiptoeing around the house and hiding in bushes and Doing Comedy when the police catch him. But he just stands in the driveway and stares at Jack for a really long time, making me AGAIN wonder why a fugitive like Jack WOULDNíT NOTICE SUSPICIOUS BEHAVIOR LIKE SOMEONE STANDING OUTSIDE HIS HOUSE?! In fact, Jack the FBI-trained man-in-hiding is completely unaware THAT HEíS BEING WATCHED. And Dylan finally hangs his head and slinks back to his car.

And over at the stupid PPAD, the really professional bimbo waitress is hanging out and flirting with Ryan ON THE JOB, while Davy "The Flame" Silver is signing off and asking everyone to tune in tomorrow when the topic will be "Uhhhh.... [dead air, dead air, dead air]" as he scrambles through papers like the professional that he is, until Donna "Skin Trade" Martin walks in, in this horrifically Silicone Valley-revealing halter dress with... this... bright blue... poncho-thing over it, that, while veils the Cavern, also highlights it gruesomely. But Davy is inspired for a topic, which is "...the rules of relationships... going beyond the time limit for calling after a first date... into the no manís land of loving someone when theyíre no longer your Significant Other... and introducing a new player into the equation." See? Get it? Because Donna and Davy still love each other, even though theyíre no longer SOís and Camille is not anyone Davy really cares about, but only "a new player." And Donna beams with pride as Davy signs off, before turning to the bar where Noah "Stop Dead" Hunter is working. And he mumbles "Hey, um" and winces and grunts and then mumbles for some guy to "getsímorevodka" before wincing REALLY HARD and clutching his ribs and grunting and groaning while Donna makes her sticky-lips little girl smile and breathes in her little-girl whisper "Hey, howís it going?" And Noah grunts and winces and mumbles "íMstillittlesoretíbeworkiníbíhiníthíbar" and grunts and groans and winces some more and mumbles "CínIgetchasomthiní?" and winces for a reeeeaaally long time. And Donna makes another sticky smile and breathes in her little-girl whisper "No... I just stopped by to make sure you didnít want one either." Donna... got all dressed up and came down to the PPAD... to MAKE SURE NOAH DIDNíT WANT A DRINK? And Noah grunts and winces and groans and snarfs and mumbles "DoIwannadrink? Yeah. [big long pause] ĎMIgonnahaveone? ...No." And Donna makes a sticky-lips smile and breathes in her little-girl whisper "Are you sure?" and makes another sticky-lips smile. And Noah grunts and winces and mumbles that not only is he sure, but "ísnotyerproblemanymore" grunt, wince, "íMsorryífItookadvantage." And Donna makes a sticky smile and shakes her head and breathes in her little-girl whisper "No, you didnít take advantage." Um- Nevermind. And as Noah continues to wince and mumble apologies, Davy comes stalking protectively over. And Donna looks at Davy and Davy looks and Noah and Noah looks at Davy and Davy looks from Donna to Noah to Donna to Noah to Donna, Noah, Donna, Noah, and then Donna looks from Davy to Noah and then looks at the ground and then Davy says all Brandon Walshly "So! How is everything here?" And Donna looks up and smiles at Noah and breathes in her little-girl whisper "Everythingís fine" and makes a sticky-lips smile while Noah swallows and winces and Davy and Donna look at each other and make minute nods until the bar back guy interrupts and announces he "didnít see any of that vodka" and Noah winces and grunts and mumbles "Yeah.... Ďscuseme" and leaves, wincing and grunting while Donna looks demurely from Noah to the ground to Davy to the ground looking for all the world like a "how to get a boy to ask you out" educational film from high school, circa 1950. Oh yeah, truly Tori DID in fact direct this episode.... And Davy asks Donna if she wants to go next door and grab a bite to eat and Donnaís face lights up until she remembers and goes "Iíd love to, but see, Iíve had this little lesson on boundaries and Iím feeling like this might be a test." And Davy asserts itís not, and then pulls out his... cell phone and... calls Camille "Lady Ice" Whoever, who is sitting on her bed with a campy, old-fashioned, Cruella DeVille rich-lady phone sitting on the bedspread, dressed in a campy red-lace nightie, ostensibly waiting for Davyís all-important phone call! In only a few short episodes, Camille has gone from being an influential fashion magazine writer/critic, to working in Donnaís store and waiting jealously for Davy to call her. And Davy explains that heís "on his way" but heís going to "grab a bite to eat with Donna" before coming over, and Camille snips "Lemme guess... she just popped into the equation?" And Davy stammers "You were listening?" And Camille, who mustíve been taking BJN lessons from Janet, snips that she always listens "to you sign off... especially when it means Iím about to see you." And Davy blusters about how Donna was there because she was worried about Noah and Camille snips "So she takes care of him and... you take care of her... thereís a certain symmetry there" which pretty much sums it up... that is, until either Camille and Noah run away together, or Camille sets Davy free because she knows he really loves Donna and Noah sets Donna free BY KILLING HIMSELF, SOON, VIOLENTLY AND CONCLUSIVLEY! And Camille all passively says "David, itís FINE, itís late and Iím tired" and sheíll talk to him tomorrow and with a cheerful "Goodnight!" she hangs up her campy old rich lady phone on him. And then Donna comes over and breathes in her little-girl whisper, "Everything okay?" and Davy weakly asserts it is and Donna makes sticky-lips smiles and breathes in her little-girl whisper "You sure?" and Davy goes "Yeah" and they stare at each other and Donna bleats and smiles and Davy stares at the phone in his hand.... And Donna is dumber and more pathetic that the shrieking Southern-accented girls in the "Sing Blue Silver" Duran documentary who try to get backstage passes because "She just loooooves the lead singer" but, when asked by the bouncer to name any member in the band, they canít answer. "They donít tell us their names, they just say Duran Duran!" *giggle giggle* "I wanna meet Stang!"

And over at the Nat-less Peach Pit, Kelly "Time For Temptation" Taylor has shown up to meet LB "Love Voodoo" Matt, who wants to know "so whatís this surprise you promised?" and Kelly chirps "Do you know that [whatever] copy shop can print up to 500 business cards in under an hour?" and she whips out this half red/half white business card with KTPR in white block letters on the red background, and KELLY TAYLOR PUBLIC RELATIONS in black on white underneath that, and (partially obscured by LBís thumb) [obscured]Box 12421, Beverly Hills, CA 90212 (NOT 90210), [obscured]5-0167 Office 310-555-0168 Fax. And if I know my Better Business Bureau warnings correctly, doing business with a company that has ONLY a PO Box address is a big no-no. And Kelly already has an office and a fax machine...? Well, unless "office" is a fancy word for the dining table at Dysfunction Junction. And would someone PLEASE inform Kelly that having business cards printed up IS NOT THE SAME THING has having a business, since you can basically get any kind of card you want printed up at any of the ten billion office supply and printing stores in LA at the drop of a hat with no, N-O, verification that said business even exists, so Kelly, this DOESNíT MEAN YOU HAVE YOUR OWN PR BUSINESS YET! This is as realistic as me thinking that I am actually in business as a professional TV/pop culture critic! But predictably, LB is happy that sheís "taken the plunge" and, how foolish of me to imply that Kelly doesnít have a PR business, because of COURSE she does... she has "snagged" her first account... a little clothing store called Now Wear This! Sheís "friends with the owner!" WHAT would this bunch of people do without their friends?! And Dylan "Read My Lips" McKay comes in to pick up an order to go, and LB calls "Dylan!" and he and Kelly want to know "how it went" because Iím sure LB really cares... but Dylanís back to his usual moody, broody self, and rasps "I doní wanna talk about it," and stalks off, brows furrowed. And Kelly pouts and looks agitated and flutters and goes "Iím gonna..." and points and pouts some more (Oh yeah, Tori truly did direct, didnít she?), and we can only hope that sheís going to go try to cheer up her good friend Dylan with the joyful news of KTPR or something. And Dylan has entered via the front door, but leaves via the PPAD back door, and Kelly follows him... wearing this gawd-awful long layered black and hot-pink hobble skirt thing and, sensitive soul that she is, is snipping "íscuse me, am I wrong or were we working TOGETHER?!" And Kelly starts lecturing "Dylan, listen to me, if your dad doesnít want you in his life, then itís HIS loss" and Dylan interrupts, rasping that "I couldnít even make it up the driveway" and broods and rasps about how Jackís now "a happy man" and Kelly protests, pouting "what about you? I mean, everythingís been taken away!" and Dylan rasps "a conversation ainít gonna change that, a million couldnít" but Kelly protests that talking might help Dylan "understand everythingís that happened" and then Dylan rasps "and make everything else Iíve been through seem even more pointless" which I guess takes care of Antonia and Brinda and all the other pit stops since he and Kelly broke up. And then Dylanís fully launched into Brooding Angst-Ridden Rebel-Man Mode, and starts blathering "Kelly, why do you think I go on binges? My dad died! I push people away who try to get close, I never EVER finish anything I started, why, because my dad died? I donít know who I am without using that as a crutch!" and moreover "Iím afraid to find out." And whoa, in two sentences, Dylanís proved more psychologically insightful than Kelly did in all her years as a psych major! And again, Dylan is THIS self-aware, yet does it all anyway? But Kelly... Kelly snips "That excuse doesnít work anymore because your dad is ALIVE!" Yeah, Kel, that just makes EVERYTHING all better, doesnít it?! And Dylan rasps "Not as far as Iím concerned" and puts on his helmet and revs his motorcycle while Kelly makes pissy faces and pouts and huffs and shakes her head repeatedly until Dylan finally zooms off. (Number of motorcycle accidents Simonís been in that I know of: 3. And once he actually caused serious damage to his testicles. Not that thatís stopped him since....) And then Kelly huffs and shakes her head and stamps and pouts some MORE, you know, just IN CASE WE DIDNíT ALREADY GET IT! CALL "CUT," TORI! CALL "CUT!"

And over at Homeslice House, Davy "Feelings Are Good" Silver comes shuffling out of his bedroom and Noah "Shotgun" Hunter is in the kitchen chomping a HUGE bowl of cereal and of COURSE mumbles "íMorniní" through a big mouthful, and then mumbles "Weíreoutamilk" though a big mouthful. And Davy huffs and Noah mumbles through a big mouthful "Prettygoodcrowdlasínighthuh?" and shovels in a few more spoonfuls and chomps some more because thatís what boys do all the time, especially during [potentially] serious/emotionally weighty conversations/confrontations, THEY TALK WITH THEIR MOUTHS FULL! And Davy, if you have such a big fat hairy issue with Noah, WHY IS HE STILL LIVING WITH YOU? And Davy snips "Yeah. [big pause] Including Donna." And Noah sets aside his cereal bowl and winces and grunts and mumbles "Wassatsuppossedtímean?" and Davy snips "She said you kissed her" and Noah mumbles all belligerently "So what? ĎSnoneayerbizness" still smacking his lips and grunting and wincing and clutching an ice-pack to his ribs and wincing some more. And Davy snips "I ... think you should give her some space, thatís all" and Noah winces and grunts and mumbles "Idoníneedalecturerightnow" while DAVY TEARS THE WRAPPER OFF A POP-TART WITH HIS TEETH AND SPATS IT ON THE COUNTER! And then he huffs and says "Noah, she... is... trying to move forward, okay, and you just keep pulling her back." And we know whatís coming next, huh? Noah gets belligerent and winces and mumbles "Youthink*I*dothat?" and Davy chomps a big old bite of Pop-Tart (no, not Donna!) and says through a big mouthful "I KNOW you do!" And Noah winces and grunts and snarfs mumbles "Whyíntyoutakealonglookinamirrorhuh?" and this next bit is soooo heavy and significant that he actually enunciates a bit "Lasí night, Donna came to see ME" and in case weíre missing anything, Noah points to himself. "Awright? We talked fír, what? Thirteen seconds? Meanwhile, yer hovering over the girl every chance you get!" And Davyís chomping more Pop-Tart and laughing with his mouth full and saying with his mouthful "Noah, itís nowhere near the same thing!" And Noah winces and grunts and snarfs and enunciates "Hey, twisí it around any way you like, man.... Youíre the one who canít get over her!" but he emphasizes "her" instead of "youíre." And then he stomps off in disgust, leaving Davy to cram a huge bite of Pop-Tart in his mouth and chomp all contemplatively.

And over at Now Wastrel This, a girl clutching a pug dog is walking by and inside Camille "Sinner Or Saint" Whatever is handing a bag to Yet Another Satisfied Customer, and Donna "Shelter" Martin is sashaying over in a pink hobble skirt and Camilleís marveling "Youíre stuff just FLIES off the racks!" (which might be a dig on the button-straining quality of Donna-Toriís chest) and making the patented Donna-thumbs-up gesture at Donna. Oh yeah. Truly, truly, Tori did direct this episode. And after a few more pleasantries, Donna apologized for "getting in the way of you and David lately. Itís just that... weíre old friends, and I... I guess Iím used to monopolizing his time." And Iím wondering why this monopolization is apparent now, and not with any of Davyís previous girlfriends, including Donnaís own cousin Gina? Why wasnít this even an issue when Davy was with Gina? And Camille stickles for a few moments and claims Donna shouldnít be sorry and canít be expected to know she and Davy are together when Donna calls but "we are... a lot...." and Camilleís making this big, cheesy, fake-o smile and saying it "usually doesnít happen that fast." And Donna agrees "it has been fast" and Camille looks a little miffed and goes "Oh, you noticed?" and Donna covers up by saying sheís "just noticed how crazy David is about you" and sheís "happy that two good people found each other, thatís all." Yeah, right Donna. And Camilleís smile fades and she looks at Donna, gauging her reaction, and queries "So I have your blessing?" and Donna effuses "Oh, you donít need MY blessing!" and Camille goes "I know I donít... but I want it... our friendshipís important to me." And Camilleís an Official Hillster at this point, ainít she? I mean, sharing a business is no big whoop, but GOD FORBID THEIR MONTH-OLD FRIENDSHIP MIGHT SUFFER BECAUSE OF THIS SITUATION! "Plus we work together" Camille tacks on "and I want your seal of approval before I fall for David any harder." And sheís still making these big, cheesy, red-glossy-lipsticked fake-o smiles at Donna. And Donna fakes a smile and says "Go fall," by which she prolly means "off a cliff" or "in front of a speeding train" or something, but she and Camille are still making all these big, beaming smiles at each other and hugging and giggling like theyíre the best of friends. And of course the SECOND Camille leaves, we get about thirty seconds of Donnaís smile fading and her folding her arms and sighing and making sad, sticky-lips faces of depression and rejection and loneliness and heartache. And cut the shot, please. Cut. Please. CUT! SOMEONE CALL CUT! (tm xix)

And over at Casa Skeevy, Janet "Faith In This Colour" Sanders is in the back yard, playing with Maddy on a blanket with one of those kiddie gym things. And itís nice to see Janet actually taking time to interact with her child as a parent should realistically want and have to, instead of foisting her off on a nanny or shuttling her off to her motherís for a week at a time. And Skeevy Stevie "Decadance (sic)" Sanders comes out of the house, evidentially having called Nat to find out that Ryanís not at the Peach Pit, evidentially having not come home last night after evidentially meeting the waitress bimbo at the PPAD. And they worry about what to do, and Stevie mentions "Normally I wouldnít care... but Ryan almost died from alcohol poisoning four years ago." And if that is SUCH a concern of yours, Stevie, WHY ARE YOU TAKING RYAN TO ALL THESE BARS, YOU STUPID BONEHEAD?! And Maddy whimpers on the blanket. But not to worry! Ryan "My Own Way" Sanders comes doinging into the backyard with a big olí smile on his face, chirping "Good morning!" and Stevie goes off, demanding "Good morning? Itís three oíclock in the afternoon, where the hell were you?" And Ryan expounds that he was with "Katrina Morrowski, but her friends call her Kitty. And Steve? Tee hee. She purrs!" Like, why not just cut to the chase and call her "Pussy" already?! And then Ryan, of course, has to MAKE PURRING NOISES TO ILLUSTRATE HIS POINT. And Janet, toned down on the BJNWness for a change, goes "Hey, Ryan, we really wish you woulda called." And Ryan sneers "Sorry, Mom, I didnít know I had a curfew." And Stevie snaps "I didnít know you needed one, you jerk. And donít you ever talk to my wife like that!" And Ryan laughs stupidly and calls Stevieís bluff: "Címon, chill out, Steve. Like you never pulled this kind of stuff when you were my age?" And Stevie... Stevie goes "Well if I did, it was a mistake!" Um, Stevie? THEN YOUR WHOLE LAME LIFE IS A MISTAKE, LOSER! And Stevie lectures about "How do you keep your grades up?" And Ryan... well, Iíll say it... God bless Ryan, he says "This from a guy who partied four years straight only to have his dad buy him a newspaper?" And Stevie gets FULLY pissed and leans forward and says "If he helped me, itís because I needed it." Oh YEAH, Stevie! You COULDNíT HELP being an irresponsible moron for all your life, and as a result, you NEEDED your dad to BUY YOU A BUSINESS ONCE YOU WERE OUT OF SCHOOL! Why, the only thing you DIDNíT claim is that you DESERVED it because it was YOUR PARENTSí FAULT youíre such a spoiled, selfish, ambitionless, useless, talentless lout! And Stevieís telling Ryan "You donít need help, youíre smart!" Because all of the stupid and lazy people in the world shouldnít have to WORK at anything, they should be REWARDED because they NEED help and thus THEY SHOULD HAVE EVERYTHING DONE FOR THEM AND HAVE EVERYTHING HANDED OVER TO THEM WITHOUT ANY WORK ON THEIR PART AT ALL! And Ryanís whining "Will you stop saying that!" I second that, Ryan. And Janet, quivering in a spineless lump on her blanket, says "I think... Steve just has high expectations for you." And Ryan sneers "Yeah? Well you know what? I didnít ask for a fan club." Which might be Randy Spellingís way of saying he didnít asked to be maneuvered into the acting biz by his family and is apologizing for having had is acting non-talents foisted upon us, the viewing public. I wouldnít worry Ďbout that fan club, Randy. And then the sad music starts up and Stevie wants to know "what happened to you?" And Ryan... Ryan says "I was a brain in high school. And it sucked." first of all, RYAN SANDERS WAS A BRAIN IN HIGH SCHOOL!? IN WHAT ALTERNATE UNIVERSE?! And second, thank you 90210 writers, along with promoting unhealthy romantic relationships and friendships, the oh-so-tired stereotyping of "being smart isnít fun," because God knows, your teen audience SURE NEEDS TO HEAR BULLSHIT LIKE THIS! "So you know what? I went to college and I tried being you. I went to keggers, I blew off classes, I slept in late.... I had a blast. Guess what, Steve? Youíd make a lousy doctor.... Iím on academic probation. Bye-bye med school." And itís "not the end of the world" but "just college" because Ryan "dropped out." And boy oh boy does my heart just bleed for poor, stupid, selfish, dumb Ryan who HAS TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR HIS ACTIONS! Welcome to the world, kid! And I remember when I finally got into a Real College after over five years of community college, because I didnít have anyone paying my way or saying "Oh, donít worry about work. Weíll buy you clothes and a car and all that so you can just study," and I was walking from the mail room one day and saw a father and his freshman daughter walking in front of me. And Dad, dressed in a business suit, was lecturing the daughter in a low, furious tone about how "your mother and I worked hard" to provide her with the opportunity for a college education, and why she canít manage to make grades higher than Ds? And heís berating her for having gone on all these snowboarding trips up to Mt. Baldy and racking up her emergency credit card they gave her with charged CDs, and Iím walking behind them, calculating whether I have enough money to buy a used paperback copy of a novel I have to read for a class tomorrow, and planning on another meal of Top Raman and one of my 4-for-a-dollar generic apple pies from the grocery store, and thinking how amazingly stupid this girl must be to not appreciate the opportunity sheís just frittering away. So donít expect me to be cryiní no river over the fact that poor, poor Ryan Sanders made a "mistake" and has now boo-booed his whole future, because, Iím sorry, you have to be living under a rock to think that you can just skate through college and end up fine. A la Stevie Sanders, I might add. Donít worry, Ryan... you can come work for Stevie and Janet at their tabloid.

So over at the Homeslice House, Davy "The Chauffeur" Silver in bed with Camille "Big Bang Generation" Whoever Not Paglia, reading the TV Guide and marveling that "The Mummyís Ghost" is on. And Camille (SHOUT OUT!) goes "Eyeeeeew!" and Davy promises to "cover your eyes during the scary parts" and switches on the telly. And Camille and Davy snuggle and watch for a while, while over at Dysfunction Junction, Donna, in...a... "roller derby" t-shirt, is also watching the movie, but with a Sad, Rejected look on her face, and she reaches for the phone, and then hesitates for a minute or two or three, and then puts it back down with a guilty tap of her fingers and a resigned look of Sadness and Rejection on her face. And Davyís covering Camilleís eyes and theyíre both "Eyew"ing and laughing and then Davy stares at his silent telephone, and then back at Dysfunction Junction, Donnaís pulled her knees up to her roller derby shirted chest and is continuing to look Sad and Rejected. Sniff.

And over at the Royale With Cheese, Dylan "Out of My Mind" McKay is not watching a horror movie, but is staring into the lit fireplace, brooding, and holding a drink in his hand. Because now that his hopes have been dashed, what else has he to do but drink and brood, brood and drink? And, ah yes, thereís a knock at the door, and Dylan rasps "Leave it outside!" and drinks and broods some more, but the knock comes again, and Dylan broods and puts his glass down and gets up and goes over to the door and opens it... and thereís Jack McKay. And while Dylan stares at his long-lost dad, Jack, unsmilingly, nods and says in a brusque, almost emotionless voice, "Hello son." And Dylan stares some more, before making an almost exasperated face, and we all know that Jack isnít there because Christine Petit called him or he had a sudden urge to see Dylan... heís there because Kelly mustíve called Eddie Waitkus and told him to hustle his ass to the Royale With Cheese and see his poor, brooding, drinking, rebellious, self-destructive son. Or worse, LAWYERBOY, for all his concern about "blowing his cover," has called Eddie Waitkus, and this is just the first major step in the inevitable "letting Kelly go" dealie.... Either that, or LawyerBoyís constant warnings about Jack "taking off" is foreshadowing his sudden turn to the jealous dark side as he turns Jack in or sics the law on him in revenge for Dylan stealing Kelly away from him....

And unfortunately, from the looks of next weekís previews, weíre going to have to deal with Ryan Sanders for yet ANOTHER episode... but as long as Tori isnít directing again, Iíll try... I said TRY!... to be brave. And, predictably, Kellyís giving Dylan the same old tired Michael Landon "Heís your father!" lecture and Donna is wondering "what if Iíve looked everywhere else, only to finally realize that what I want is right in front of me?" Woo hoo.

And this Rantís contest.... As I mentioned, I gleaned Duran (and Duran-related) song titles for the charactersí sobriquets... 64 total (not counting the extra comments and stuff... just the nicknames). So tell me what album (or single or solo project or what album it was supposed to be on before it got dropped) the songs come from, and youíll win a kernifty 90210 prize package. Iíll turn you all into Duranies yet!

Dwanollah, "Hallucinating Simon"

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