I am beyond excited, readers. I spent Labor Day watching a marathon of original 90210 episodes in preparation. I think "Slumber Party" is my favorite. I also forgot that before the building was Sunnydale, it was West Beverly. I can’t wait to see the new cast of characters. I’ve purposely stayed away from information about 90210 (other than the fact that Kelly and Brenda are back, yay!), so I’m anxious to see the new kids. I also apologize for the length of this recap. There is A LOT of information thrown at us in the first episode, plus it is two hours long. Whew.
A mini van rolls into Beverly Hills. Rob Estes is in this? Yes! Silk Stalking jokes, here I come. In one short scene, we discover the Wilson family is moving there from Kansas to be with grandma, the Dad has accepted a job as principal of the high school, the daughter Annie left behind a boyfriend and a lead in the school play, the son is Dixon, and the grandma is played by Arrested Development’s Jessica Walter, drinks before noon and hates the Mom (Lori Laughlin from Full House). There’s also a boy named Ethan here in Beverly Hills that Annie knows, but Jason is the boy from home. Also, Dixon isn’t her "official" brother, but we don’t find out yet what he actually is.
Yay, we’re back at Sunnydale! Annie runs into Ethan in the school parking lot and surprises him getting a little parking lot head in his car. WOW. This is not your father’s 90210. Dixon heads for the journalism room and the editor assumes (or knows) that Dixon is adopted and welcomes him aboard. OH MY GOD, the girl on the school news broadcast is Hannah Zuckerman-Vazquez! Andrea and Jesse’s daughter!
Annie is in English class and we meet the awesome Mr. Mathews who looks like Mr. Rooks from "Mars vs Mars," resident bitchy girl Naomi, who has a book report overdue, and
Dick Casablancas George. Naomi talks to Annie after class and we find out she is dating Ethan, but the girl Annie caught giving him parking lot head was NOT Naomi. Ethan introduces Annie to Adriana, who is the lead in Spring Awakening. There’s a nice flashback to Annie playing the Major General in Pirates of Penzance back in Kansas. Snerk. Adriana is a huge bitch to Annie and we cut to commercial. The theme-song is the same, just revamped. Excellent. I am so excited about this show!
Ethan catches up wtih Annie later and tries to explain his
skankiness active social life. She says she won’t tell on him. Outside, Adriana and some curly-haired blonde kid make a little drug deal for pills. Something tells me those are not Jessie Spano’s caffeine pills. The blonde guy tells Adriana that the money is due tomorrow.
At lunch, Annie meets Silver, a funky alternative girl actually named Erin. [Ed’s note: I put it together 10 minutes later that that is Erin Silver, as in David and Kelly’s half-sister! This show could not make me any happier if money came spewing out of the TV.]
Cordelia Naomi steals Annie away from Willow Silver and invites her to her birthday party on Friday, saying they have to go shopping after school.
In the principal’s office, Naomi’s parents can’t believe Naomi has to turn in the book report for Mr. Mathews the night before her birthday. Naomi’s dad storms out, saying he’s taking it to the board, and the mom Tracy snarks that if things had been different, they would be talking about her and Mr. Wilson’s kid. Nice. They were a high school couple.
After school, we hit the Peach Pit and Nat is still there! Outstanding! Naomi and Annie dish and Naomi gets a text about writing the paper for Mr. Mathews. She (very obviously) manipulates Annie into giving her a paper she wrote in Kansas about the book. Who doesn’t know where this is headed?
Lacross practice. Dixon seems to be pretty good, though I call BS that Kansas schools had lacrosse. That is strictly coast schools’ domain. In the Heartland, we play FOOTBALL! GRRR! He shows up everyone, including getting George bumped to JV and Mr. Mathews is suitably impressed. Wow… an English teacher who coaches lacrosse? What will they think of next? George picks a fight with Dixon and Dixon kicks his butt.
After school, the Wilsons have dinner and the grandma incourages Dixon to fight dirty next time. She thinks it might be racially-motivated (Dixon is Afircan-American) and the clink-clink of ice makes me think grandma’s drinking some more. She excuses herself with a snotty remark about Debbie Dixon’s cooking. Grandma rules.
Adriana, Naomi and Ethan head out to a club, where Naomi runs into Mr. Mathews at the bar. (On a school night, Mr. Mathews?) He busts on her book report, then busts her age to the bartender. Snerk. At the Wilson’s, Naomi’s mom Tracy (sporting some crazy bug eyes) stops by with a bottle of wine and gets all tipsy while reminiscing with Harry. Debbie rightly puts her in her place and Tracy excuses herself.
Ethan tells Naomi that he has to lie about Dixon starting the fight so he’ll get kicked off the team. Naomi (shockingly) can’t believe he’s going to do it and Ethan is obviously a spineless loser. When they storm off, Naomi forgets her purse and Adriana conveniently steals all her money to pay for her drug habit.
The next day, a bunch of people harass Annie, calling her "farm girl" and mooing at her. Wow, cerebral. On Silver’s blog, The Vicious Circle, Dixon shows Annie a video Silver made making fun of Annie being a farm girl. When confronted, Silver accuses Annie of ditching her to hang with the popular girls. Silver calls Naomi the anti-Christ and Annie says, "Yeah, well, the anti-Christ didn’t humiliate me in front of half a million people." Burn.
Kelly has a talk with Erin about how she didn’t hurt Naomi with the blog, she hurt Annie. She asks her to try being nice. There is obviously something big Naomi did to Erin, but we don’t know yet what it was. Also, Kelly and Erin’s mom gets a name-drop and it sounds like maybe she’s back to her boozing ways.
Ethan heads to Principal Wilson and says Dixon started the fight with George. Mr. Mathews vouches for Ethan not being a liar and says that Dixon can’t be on the team. Harry doesn’t want to believe that his son would do that, but Mr. Mathews points out how many times parents say that. Outside, Dixon laments that lacrosse is the "thing" he has with his dad and that it makes him feel like they’re really father and son. Annie let’s us know it’s been 8 years since he joined their family and he’s one of them.
Annie confronts Ethan about being a big fat liar and cheating on his girlfriend, who Annie weirdly likes. She’s wondering what happened to the guy she used to like because the new Ethan is an ass. Way to go. However, speaking of the girl you "like," we cut to Naomi reading Annie’s paper verbatim in class. She confronts her after class, outraged that she just completely copied it. Naomi gives her the $800 dress from when they were shopping as a make-up present. Wow.
Cut to Spring Awakening rehearsal, where Silver finds Annie backstage. Cut to outside, where Dixon is contemplating telling Naomi that Ethan is cheating on her (Annie told him the night before). Back inside at the rehearsal, Silver suggests that they add Annie to the cast and the director lets her have a chance, much to Adriana’s dismay. Silver is delighted and it’s actually pretty impressive. I wonder if they are doing their own singing? Harry shows up and asks Annie why Naomi Clark turned in her book report to Mr. Mathews. DUN DUN DUN.
Harry hauls Naomi and Annie into the office. Naomi can’t believe Annie sold her out, calls her a bitch, and disinvites her to the birthday party. Outside, Ethan shoves George and they start fighting. Harry says if Naomi wants to keep cheating off her record, she has to write a new paper by the end of the day. He says good luck getting into Yale with cheating on her record, and the mom snipes that Naomi isn’t going to Yale like her sister. Naomi is obviously offended by that and says she’ll write the paper.
Outside, Silver apologizes to Annie about the video and hopes they’re cool and maybe friends. Yay! Annie spies Ethan looking all bloodied and beaten and he tells her to tell Dixon he’s back on the team. Way to step up, Ethan. But it’s too late. Dixon texted Naomi about Ethan cheating on her. Eek. Annie is worried he’ll think it was her.
That night, Dixon is off to the party and Annie is grounded. Debbie worries they bend over backwards for Dixon, but don’t treat Annie the same way. They decide to tell her she can go, but discover she’s gone and grandma didn’t stop her. Haha. Grandma might be my favorite character.
At the party there is a live band and a bar. There is also one particular shot where Naomi looks even MORE like Cordelia. Wow. That casting could not have been accidental. The editor of the news broadcast sends Dixon around with a camera to get good footage for their story. Harry shows up to find Annie and of course runs into Tracy. THey go off to "talk." Dixon and the editor tell Annie that Naomi’s purse was stolen, which means she didn’t get the text! Yay! Just then Adriana returns the purse. Uh oh.
Naomi’s mom tells Harry that she’s still upset about when she got pregnant and he left her and that she didn’t go to Europe, or the clinic. She had the baby and gave him up for adoption. Harry just walks away.
Inside, Naomi gets the text and is invited to dance with Ethan by her father. She puts on a brave face but when she dances with Ethan, she asks him if it’s true. When he doesn’t say anything, she invites everyone else to dance, smiles and walks away.
Silver invites Annie to get out of there, go to a normal party. (I can’t believe we’re only half-over tonight. This is information OVERLOAD). They hit up a beach party, where Ethan is surfing. Aww, look at Erin. Being all helpful! Annie apologizes for what happened and he cops to becoming an ass. She says not totally, because he helped Dixon.
Cue the 2008 Power Ballad Montage. It’s no "How Do You Talk to an Angel," but it’s good stuff. At the Wilson’s, Harry lies awake, obviously wondering about his son. Kelly tells someone on the phone (DYLAN?) that "he’s been asking about you" and then her 5 year-old son comes in the room. Adriana pays blonde guy the money she owes him for drugs. Ethan shows up at Naomi’s and they reconcile (maybe? barf). Dixon and Annie chill on the beach.
The next morning (or a few days later?), grandma is bitching about spilling scotch on her computer. Snerk. Annie comes to breakfast and says she and Jason broke up. Grandma says "goodbye to Huckleberry Finn and hello to California Boys!" Hahaha!
Harry and Debbie talk about Tracy calling repeatedly. He appears to have been honest with her about the son. They aren’t sure what to do. At school, the guys from
Valley Palisades Hall have trashed West Beverly and the lacrosse guys want to retaliate, but Harry tells them they are not to do anything back.
Ethan gives Naomi a rose and tries to apologize. She doesn’t know if they can make it. Ethan catches up wtih Annie and apolgizes for being a jerk. She tells him her boyfriend broke up with her and he offers to kick his ass. She says Jason would kill Ethan, which is hilarious.
In the music room, Annie bursts in on a cute sensitive artist boy named Ty singing and gushes about his voice. She blabbers that she’s in the chorus and he says he’s noticed her. In English, Adriana is obviously upset and tells Mr. Mathews that she’s auditioning for a movie, but not to be a spoiled rich girl, to pay the mortgage because her mom can’t. Aww, poor wrong side of the track girl with a drug problem.
At lunch, Mr. Mathews flirts with Kelly while Dixon comes upon the lacrosse guys discussing retaliation against their rivals. They don’t want to let him in on it because he’s the principal’s kid. Silver is posting on her blog and Annie is worried about her blogging. Ty walks by and Silver notices him noticing Annie. She tells Annie the best way to get over a break-up is a hook-up. For real. That’s what the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies say. The best way to get over someone… is to get under someone else.
Ty promptly comes over and asks Annie out to dinner. In high school? That doesn’t happen in high school! In the hall, a weird emo goth girl apologizes to Naomi for Ethan cheating on her. Turns out Silver’s blog post is about Ethan’s extracurricular activities. Naomi finds Ethan and smacks him good. Nice.
At the Peach Pit, Naomi hangs out with the nameless Naomettes and starts her revenge plan by making bedroom eyes at George. Dixon hangs out with his paper editor (I think his name is Dave? I’m not sure) and Dixon says he needs to come up with the prank to end all pranks so he can show those guys how cool he is.
At a photoshoot, Debbie gets a call from Annie asking if she can go on her date with the guy from the play. Debbie finally says okay, but asks them to take grandma’s computer to the shop before they go out and to be home by 10 pm. Dixon and Editor are googling pranks they can do and grandma clues them in to a prank his dad did to Palisades that involved releasing pigs all over Palisades’ field. Grandma rules (again). Ty takes Annie to a private airport and says he’s flying her to a restaurant in San Francisco. WOW. Nice move, Richard Gere. Are you going to see an opera too?
Annie calls SIlver to ask if she shoudl go, to which Silver says "totally." She is at the Peach Pit and takes an opportunity to smear Ethan’s cheating in Naomi’s face. Annie confesses to Ty on the plane that she’s a little freaked out by the private plane. Luckily, Ty thinks it’s cute. Back at school, Kelly fills us in on her education and flirts with Mr. Mathews. He asks her out to dinner and she hesitates because she has a kid. He makes a "baggage" comment and she balks at calling her son "baggage." She gets in her car and he totally blew it. Awww, poor Mr. Mathews.
Dixon chills with Editor (seriously, what is this guy’s name?) on the set of one of his dad’s movies. We find out Editor’s dad is a producer of porn, but the boys can’t stay to watch. One of dad’s rules. Haha. In San Francisco, Annie and Ty walk along a fake backdrop of the Golden Gate Bridge. Heh heh. She’s obviously taken with him, but he’s just a titch smarmy for my taste.
Back at the Peach Pit, Kelly gets some coffee from Nat and THEN BRENDA WALSH COMES IN, OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD! She tells Nat that Brandon is good and that he says Kelly is beautiful (that was Brandon on the phone!) and I wonder if Kelly’s son is Brandon’s?!?! The girls agree to start hanging out and decide to leave and go some place else more fun. SQUEEEE! I’M SO EXCITED!
At Palisades, Editor and Dixon meet up with Ethan and Mike and show them an SUV with three pigs in it to put on the field. They are putting numbers 1,2 and 4 on the pigs so that they’ll be looking for the lost 4th pig all day. Wow! That’s clever. At the Peach Pit, Naomi continues to seduce George by spiking their drinks. They start making out. Back in the plane, Annie has 8 messages on her phone and it turns out her grandma was in a car accident! NOOOO! Not Lucille! I will be so mad if Cool Grandma is killed off in the premiere episode. Laaaame.
Annie gets home and is guilt-tripped about grandma picking up her own computer because Annie forgot. She is ready to be punished and whatnot for being so irresponsible. Grandma is cackling in bed with her friend Mrs. Brewer, who it turns out is Ethan’s grandma. He and Annie go hang out by the pool. Ethan wants to know how much she likes Ty. He is playing it fairly coy (not). They start reminiscing about their summers together when she came to visit her grandma. She asks about Naomi and then he gets called into the house by his grandma.
Back at school the next day, Harry confronts the lacrosse team about the pigs prank. He says if one of them doesn’t take responsibility for it by 1 pm today, the lacrosse season is over. Yikes. In the hall, Naomi asks Adriana after her movie audition and Adriana teases her about hooking up with George, because it’s all over school.
Harry hauls Dixon in to his office to rat out his team. He says the team barely trusts him as it is, but Harry is trying to get him to take responsibility. Dixon cops to it and says grandma told him about the prank. Harry asks him if he’s sure he wants to take all the responsibility and Dixon says it’s the easiest decision he’s made since he got to town.
At the movie audition, Adriana seems to be tweaked out on something and leaves before her name gets called. Hmm. Back at school, Silver asks if Annie joined the Mile High Club. Snerk. Annie notices her tattoo, which Silver says means "friendship." Annie perceptively says that Naomi has the same one. Silver says that in 8th grade her dad had an affair with her mom’s best friend, but she kept it a secret. She only told Naomi, who promised she wouldn’t tell. Naomi told everyone, Silver’s mom found out and her parents’ marriage fell apart.
Mr. Mathews finds Adriana in the hallway and asks about her audition. She lies about how good it went. Hmm. Dixon tells the guys how he came clean about it and now is cut from the team. He says he had to do it to save the guys on the team who weren’t involved. Ethan goes to Harry and confesses that he helped with the prank, so he should be suspended too. Editor (whose name IS David) also cops to it. Back at home, Debbie has found a matchbook from the San Fran restaurant in Annie’s pocket.
Annie says it’s because she was bummed about Jason. Debbie says she was being cool by letting her go on a date on a school night, not on a plane to San Francisco. Debbie says she now doesn’t trust Annie and of course she is going to tell Harry. At the Peach Pit, Ethan can’t believe it was George. Naomi feels like this fixes it, now that they’ve both been hurt. Ethan tells her he thinks he knows now why he cheated: he wanted out. He breaks up with "us" and Naomi makes a terrible cry-face.
Harry tells Dixon that he and Ethan have to sit out the Palisades game and that David has to pick up trash. Dixon and Harry have a talk about how to figure out when he’s principal and when he’s dad. Over at Kelly’s, Mr. Mathews shows up with flowers and turns to leave when he sees wine glasses on the porch. He runs into Brenda and she knows that he’s Ryan from work. Kelly comes out and he gives her flowers and a Chicago Blackhawks hat for Sammy (her son). He turns to leave, and Brenda jumps in and volunteers to watch Sammy so they can get dinner. BRENDA FTW! Kelly and Ryan take off together, YAY!
The Walsh Twins 2.0, Dixon and Annie, lament over their being grounded because of their prank and San Fran date. In bed, Harry asks Debbie if she’s sorry they moved here. He says if they are unhappy, he’ll move them to Kansas in a heartbeat. She says they can give it some time. They talk about his son who is out there somewhere. Harry perceptively knows that he wants to know his son is alright, but that as an adopted father, he wouldn’t want Dixon’s parents popping up. Nice dichotomy there. And then they start getting all smoochy together.
Last scene is Ty coming to house to surprise Annie and kissing her outside, while Ethan wlaks up wtih the stuffed octupus they won at the Pier one summer and seeing them kissing. OH MAN! I saw that coming a mile away and it still killed me.
Next Tuesday, Jackie Taylor is back and it’s the same actress. That RULES!