Primetime Suds: Fabulous Soapiness vs. Family Night (Guess Which Wins?)
This week, Gossip Girl featured schemes, an adulterous duchess and an homage to Cher Horowitz's sage advice that "anything you can do to draw attention to your mouth is good."
90210 was about...bowling.
Our thoughts on these wildly different episodes after the jump!
Mallory: Okay, so, this is not related to the show itself, but can we talk for a quick second about how Blake Lively and Leighton Meester are going to be on 30 Rock? Because, to quote Miss Waldorf herself, "Oh my effing god!"
Becca: It's like NBC executives live in my dreams. Though that's obviously not possible, given the state of Days of Our Lives.
Mallory: So, on with "Never Been Marcused"!
Becca: I say "effing" all the time, I have been to the beach shown in the opening scene (my dog illegally swam there!) and I've stayed at the Hudson. Sadly, this episode therefore made me feel cool.
Mallory: That's not sad. Did you take the jitney and seduce your sort-of boyfriend with chocolate covered strawberries? I never knew that chocolate covered strawberries were traveling snacks. This show is so educational!
Becca: I hate strawberries! It's one of those things I don't say much in front of people, because they judge me. But more on topic, I have only ever driven to the Hamptons, but I imagine the bathroom on the jitney is majorly grody, no? You have to be pretty desperate to choose that over your palatial Manhattan co-op.
Mallory: Totally. I mean, granted, I obsessively use anti-bacterial hand gel after using the escalator, so my perspective may be skewed, but still. Ew.
Becca: Though I can understand being a little antsy over Penn Badgley. How is it that he got hotter over the summer? I mean, he started off at a good level, but seriously. And even Chuck seems a little attractive to me this season. What is happening?!
Mallory: Everything that Chuck does delights me. Between his squash playing, and selling his shares in Victrola to pay off the Archibald family debts, I was in a constant state of happiness.
Becca: Chuck becoming a generous and altruistic person worries me. If he switches to an earth-toned wardrobe, I'm going to stage a protest.
Mallory: I wish that he'd use some of his money to finance some sort of Flowers for Algernon deal for his best friend, though, because Nate is hopelessly dim. I will applaud him for moving up in the world by making his own choice to become a kept boy, though. He was pimped out by his father and Little J for too long, it's sort of nice to see him assert himself in this way.
Becca: Nate is so, so pretty. But so, so dim. He's like a younger, richer Lucky Spencer.
Mallory: It kind of breaks my heart, how he is always looking for someone to talk to and everybody is too wrapped up in their own superficial problems to spare a moment to talk to the pretty nitwit.
Becca: I know when I was in high school I took great pains to make time to talk up good looking but dumb guys. But yeah, you know it's bad when I am sad that Nate didn't get a chance to spend time with Vanessa. Vanessa! Blergh.
Mallory: I didn't realize how much I hadn't missed Vanessa until her smug self showed up onscreen. I have such a knee jerk reaction to her. She's like my Newman.
Becca: I have a similar reaction to Nate's mom. Something about the face of the actress who plays her freaks me out.
Mallory: My heart stopped beating when I saw her scary-ass Irish wolfhounds onscreen. What are those, why do they exist, and why didn't the CW air a viewer discretion advisory?
Becca: Irish wolfhounds exist so that I am never able to say "I love ALL dogs." I anxiously await the first time we see Blair encounter those beasts. Can you imagine the fabulous line that will result?
Mallory: Oh yes, the woman, the myth, the legend: Blair Waldorf. Not even her tragic orange culottes could dim her brilliance.
Becca: I know America Ferrera will not approve, but I must say, Blair's delightful bitchiness absolutely makes my week.
Mallory: Hardly anyone else on television these days has such ease with bitchy one-liners as Leighton Meester does. Who else could pull off "I think she recognized herself in me...or rather, I recognized someone in her"?
Becca: Her walking in on Nate and the Duchess was amazing: "Oh my effing god!"
Plus she called Chuck a "Bass-hole"! Which is a perfect complement to "mother Chucker," in my opinion. I really need for my next asshole-y sort-of boyfriend to have the last name Bass. Or be obsessed with Bass loafers, or bass fishing. Anything to give me an opportunity to use these lines.
The new 90210 lost millions of viewers from last week's premiere, and we can't say we're surprised. The show has the raw materials to make it...well, it probably won't ever be award worthy, but it could at least be entertainingly soapy! Right now, it's an hour of dullness, and we only pay attention to marvel at Rob Estes's hotness every so often.
Below, ten issues we had with the show's third episode.
1. Where the eff was Tabitha?
Maybe centering an entire series around the boozy grandmother isn't in keeping with the legacy of the original 90210, but, in the word of GOB Bluth: Come ON! Wouldn't you rather watch an entire episode filled with Tabitha being bitchily awesome than see Annie's bland self in a love triangle?
2. Bowling?! Seriously?
Mallory has a deep-rooted hatred of bowling that probably stems from the gross shoes, so she rolled her eyes during the entire Wilson family night plot, because of course your kids don't want to bowl with you. Bowling sucks! Becca has a secret affection for bowling (she inherited lovely light blue suede bowling shoes from her grandmother), and therefore was pissed that this show kind of ruined it with its boringly boring take on it.
3. Kelly's baby daddy is Dylan! Or Brandon! Or...Steve. Oh god, please don't let it be Steve.
Okay, so it's someone Kelly was involved with in high school. We got all excited that this was going to be a long soapy build-up, but then we read that the father is going to be revealed in this week's episode. What the hell, show?
4. This Just In: Sometimes Perfect Families Aren't Perfect
Watching Naomi's heart break when she learned that her father was having an affair was kind of laughable, no? In fictional Beverly Hills, everybody's father is having an affair. (As is everyone's mother, judging by the Donna Martin storyline that this sequel decided to rip off in only its second episode.) She really should have just assumed that her dad is a philanderer and went along her merry way without the angst. And her shock that her mom knows about the affair and is going along with the marriage anyway? Does she ever watch TV?
Perhaps we aren't moved by this because Naomi herself looks like a thrice divorced suburban housewife...
5. Jackie Taylor's Return Could Not Have Been More Anti-Climactic
Jackie was part of several legendary moments on the original 90210 (does the mother/daughter fashion show ring any bells?) and her confrontation with her daughters in this episode should have been epic. And yet...it kind of just fizzled.
6. Brenda's Bitchiness Was Sorely Missed
Say what you will about Shannen Doherty -- especially about whatever the hell she's been doing to her face -- but the woman brings the rootable bitchiness like no other. This episode was sadly lacking in Brenda. It doesn't seem like 90210 if she's not telling people that she hates them and never to talk to her again, you know?
7. Ethan pretending to be turned on by Annie's wriggling her bony ass at the bowling alley was disturbing.
We're going with the theory that the actor was actually puzzled by how Shanae Grimes' twig arm could hold a bowling ball, and the director went with "Ethan is hot for Annie's body."
8. Not enough Rob Estes
Yes, we know, it's a show about teenagers and not parents or grandparents, but so many scenes would be improved by featuring Rob Estes's molten hotness, even if he just walked around in the background.
9. If we're supposed to be invested in Silver, maybe, um, make her a little less irritating?
You could put an eye out on one of her collarbones. She's a rich girl who voluntarily lives in a shelter rather than confide in her sister, the psychologist, about their mother. Her wardrobe is bizarre, and not in a "and is therefore awsome, a la Chuck Bass" kind of way. She goes by "Silver." The annoying personality traits just keep piling up.
10. The Sucking Needs to be More Epic
We said before it premiered that this show was likely to be awesome, or awesomely awful. So far it's kind of non-campily mediocre, and that's not okay. We either need to love something, or love mocking it. We are simple bloggers in this regard, and we are hereby requesting that 90210 cooperate in making our lives a bit easier.