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Seasons 4-7: The College Years

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Taking my lead from desertflower, here's a thread to discuss the college years of Beverly Hills 90210. From Avocado Heads to Zuckerman's deflowering, this is the place to talk about all the soapy goodness that came post high school.

 

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I really liked season 4. They did a good job of transitioning the kids into college. They still seemed young and fun and a lot of the storylines actually had to do with school. I thought Donna looked super cute at the start of the season, there were a few solid weeks there with nary a buttcheek in sight! (I think they make an appearance at the 70s themed frat party but I'll cut her some slack there.) I don't like Andrea's look though...her college hair aged her a lot and I missed her curls.

Refresh my memory...when did Dylan help David flush his huge stash of pills (along with cigarettes, baggies, and the kitchen sink) into the turbo toilet? Was that season 4 as well? Events start to run together for me in the college eps. 

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Kind of OT, but I think I saw Darla (Brenda's MN roommate) on season 6 Mad Men, in the 2nd episode.

I actually had a hard time determining if it was really her from her looks, but it was her voice that made me stop and say "wait, who is that" because actress had a somewhat unique sound.  If there are any Mad Men fan out there, it's season 6, episode 2, I think? During the dinner party with Don, Megan, the neighbors, and then another couple. Darla is the blonde who keeps throwing herself at Don during the conversation. 

I liked season 4.  I liked the sorority and fraternity story line, I liked the natural tension that existed as they discovered that their interests varied more greatly than they realized in college, and their subsequent struggles to stay together.  I liked the campus setting and seeing them in class and life in the beach apartment.  I liked the seemingly natural draw of Kelly and Brandon, that actually made more sense than Kelly and Dylan.   And I even really like Stuart Carson.  I know that's unpopular, but to quote high-school Brenda, it was nice to see her with somebody who wasn't brooding all the time. 

I could have done without Lucinda story-arc and the return of Emily Valentine, who I don't buy for one moment Brandon would have hunted down in San Francisco as the great love of his life, because let's all try to remember that the bitch be crazy....but I'm digressing.

I wish they had handled the character of Brenda better.  I think that what Brenda went through as a college freshman is not atypical, but her desire to find herself, not be who everybody thought she should be, and her general unhappiness and sense of misdirection was no reason for her friends and family to treat her so poorly.  Brenda could have still gone off to London without having everybody pissed off at her for some reason or another all season long. 

But like others have said, the biggest flaw of season 4, was the character of Andrea Zuckerman.  I think Gabrielle Carteris did wonders with some of that material, her talking to her baby when she's almost certain she's going to have an abortion, is just a fantastic scene.  But the bottom line is that I don't believe that Andrea Zuckerman wouldn't have at least given Yale a chance.  They address it in season 5, where she says that she just started backing away from things, but season 3 ended with Andrea psyched about Yale.  We still had our go-getter, overacheiver, all the way through to graduation.  What happened to her that summer that changed the core of that personality to profoundly?  Because aside from her being intimidated by the wealth at the Yale tea for admitted students, she seemed pretty excited and ready to take Yale by storm. 

The rest of college?  I don't like as a whole.  I like certain storylines.  Donna's stalker.  Anything Val.  Susan & Brandon.  But overall, as a college student myself at the time, the show was utterly unrelateable and too heavy.  Unlike most people, I really like the post-College years. 

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Kind of OT, but I think I saw Darla (Brenda's MN roommate) on season 6 Mad Men, in the 2nd episode.

She'll always be Margi from the X-Files episode Syzygy to me, but I just looked her up on IMDb and, yes, she was in that episode of Mad Men.

Because aside from her being intimidated by the wealth at the Yale tea for admitted students, she seemed pretty excited and ready to take Yale by storm.

And it's not as if she didn't have four years of practice at going to school with affluent kids.

I wish they had handled the character of Brenda better.  I think that what Brenda went through as a college freshman is not atypical, but her desire to find herself, not be who everybody thought she should be, and her general unhappiness and sense of misdirection was no reason for her friends and family to treat her so poorly.  Brenda could have still gone off to London without having everybody pissed off at her for some reason or another all season long.

The wasted opportunity that was Brenda's freshman year storyline is one of the many reasons I stopped watching the show.  Brenda was pretty much the only character I still liked by that point, so there was this fundamental disconnect in watching the show because while I was enjoying her all the characters were dumping on her.  Including her parents, whose first reaction to their upset daughter dropping out of college and running home is to worry about how Brandon will react to having to give up his "bachelor suite." 

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That's something that annoys me as an adult that I didn't really notice on first watch (I was about 12 when S4 first aired). It just flew over my head then, but now it's just so damn obvious that the writers, actors, powers that be took every opportunity to dump on 'Brenda' because they couldn't stand SD. It's just the worst mistreatment of a character because of RL shenanigans I can remember. But when taken with the way the gang just floated right past the triangle crap the year before, it actually fits with their dynamic - i.e. what Kelly wants is a-okay and Brenda can like it or lump it.

 

The one thing I did like was the 60s episode. Not because it was good because holy moly it was not - "I wanna make love, oh yeah, sweet love" (!!!) - but because it was the first episode, that I can remember, post-triangle that seemed to take Brenda's side. Brandon was an indefensible grade A douchebag, Kelly was a whore, Dylan was one fur coat short of a pimp and Jim Walsh was a sexist, border-line abusive dickhead. For once, the show didn't try to paint them as the ones in the right; it actually seemed to take Brenda's (or rather, Wendy's) side. Which was a relief.

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Agree with Brandon and Emily Valentine hooking up. That ,made zero sense. She suddenly appeared at West Beverly and becomes the center of attention of the gang because she wears a beret and knows where all the KEWL parties are, gets Brandon to take scary SCARY drugs and wreck his car at said party, then goes all way super stalky and is presumably institutionalized and we never hear from her again, I mean NOTHING. No hints that Brandon and she are exchanging letters or whatever or anything then out of nowhere Brandon just decides for no reason to drive to San Francisco and ZOMG ITS EMILY!!!!! And because it's Brandon and he's now in college, of course they doink.

The story arc with Lucinda was okay, but the end game especially the lines Steve says about students reviewing their old tests was horrible. I guess they used a horrible take of Steve but that came off as horrible cue card reading.

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But like others have said, the biggest flaw of season 4, was the character of Andrea Zuckerman.

 

 Yeah. And their first misstep with her was having her drop journalism like a hot potato in favor of pre med. While it's true college students often change majors, it just didn't ring true with her because it happened so quickly and only because Josh Richland asked her to write a review of the Peach Pit. WHAA? This is the same Andrea who lived and breathed the newspaper and stood up to Call Me Gil and anyone else who got in her way? No way would she quit that fast. Seems to me they could've had some good plots with her and Josh on the newspaper. 

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I have about 7 or 8 college years episodes on my dvr (season 5, specifically) that I recorded when I realized that 90210's time on soapnet was coming to an end.  I was watching the Texas Dip episode, and part of the following ep, and I realized, the animosity towards Dylan in the beginning of Season 5 is really quite atrocious and I'm not sure I get where it stems from. 

 

I can understand Jim and Cindy's anger - Dylan's irresponsibility and lack of understanding of business really put Jim in a bind and risked his professional reputation.  I suppose that animosity could extend down to Brandon, but since the Jim and Dylan feuds in the past never really affected the friendship, and since Brandon never makes mention of it in Season 5, I'm not sure that's a cause of Brandon's anger now. 

 

The timeline as I saw it (I was folding laundry as I watched so I wasn't paying closest attention): 

 

1)  Brandon goes to Dylan's house to tell him about Kelly.  He sees Dylan drinking.  He chooses not to, but realized that Dylan has fallen off the wagon, despite Dylan saying that he's fine (this isn't retcon season 10 where Dylan "can handle it.")

 

2)  Nat reveals to Dylan and Brandon and Kelly are together. 

 

3)  Dylan shows up and interrupts Donna's Texas Dip and awesome dance with DeShaun.  He causes a big scene. 

 

4)  Kelly goes to Dylan's to "apologize" where Dylan lets her have it, and calls her out on her "3am apology." 

 

5)  Brandon goes to Dylans.  Dylan lets him have it.  Brandon apologizes for not telling Dylan when he first saw him, because he was drinking.  Dylan pushes, and I think this is the scene where he talks about how Brenda couldn't "you people" and went halfway around the world to get away from them (more on that later).  Brandon warns him not to push, and Dylan basically says get lost.  Brandon leaves. 

 

6)  Registration at CU.  Kelly and Brandon arrive, and Brandon makes some joke about how "with Dylan falling off the wagon, per usual, I feel disgustingly wholesome" and Kelly says "you don't know how attractive that is." 

 

Also to note, throughout the episodes, any time Val asks about Dylan, they basically blast him, paint him as bad news, and warn her to stay away.  A couple of episodes in and Brandon makes the point about how it's "not the first time he's shared a bathroom with a girl who thought she could heal his wounded psyche" and it takes until Halloween for him to FINALLY respond to the fact that his friend is spiralling.  And that's after he yells at Val for going to see him.  It takes Val pointing out his hypocrisy in forgiving her, over and over again, and hating Dylan and her comment of "What did Dylan do that's so terrible?!?"

 

Excellent question, Val.  What did he do?

 

Now if the outline below were in a vaccuum, then okay, I could understand the anger.  Dylan attacked and said some pretty wretched things.  But you're talking about relationships that were really well established at that point, that had been challenged by both sides, and that had even survived the betrayal of his own sister.  So where DID the animosity come from? 

 

I can understand if there had been a scene where Brandon expresses that he's frustrated at this point - between the drinking, the betrayal towards his father, the betrayal to his own sister, and the negative drama that just seemed to surround Dylan, the friendship had just gotten too hard.  But we never really saw that.  We just saw Brandon, seemingly really angry, that Dylan had started drinking again, with virtually no sympathy or concern for weeks.  We saw Kelly, judgemental and angry ("it's nice to see you among the living").  Steve made some wisecrack about Dylan falling off the wagon at the benefit, long before he discovered anything about Val and Dylan. 

 

So what DID Dylan do that was so terrible?

 

And speaking of terrible Dylan, I kind of love it when he rails into Brandon about Brenda.  Because he was absolutely right.  Brenda was miserable by the time she left.  Her friends and family had betrayed her plenty of times and basically painted her as a person she never was, so she said "fuck you" and left and never came back.  Granted, the show would never acknowledge that, it had to be said by drunk, angry, lashing out Dylan who doesn't mean the things he says and does when he's under the influence, but I kind of love that moment of clarity and insight on the part of Dylan McKay. 

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I have about 7 or 8 college years episodes on my dvr (season 5, specifically) that I recorded when I realized that 90210's time on soapnet was coming to an end.  I was watching the Texas Dip episode, and part of the following ep, and I realized, the animosity towards Dylan in the beginning of Season 5 is really quite atrocious and I'm not sure I get where it stems from. 

 

I can understand Jim and Cindy's anger - Dylan's irresponsibility and lack of understanding of business really put Jim in a bind and risked his professional reputation.  I suppose that animosity could extend down to Brandon, but since the Jim and Dylan feuds in the past never really affected the friendship, and since Brandon never makes mention of it in Season 5, I'm not sure that's a cause of Brandon's anger now. 

 

The timeline as I saw it (I was folding laundry as I watched so I wasn't paying closest attention): 

 

1)  Brandon goes to Dylan's house to tell him about Kelly.  He sees Dylan drinking.  He chooses not to, but realized that Dylan has fallen off the wagon, despite Dylan saying that he's fine (this isn't retcon season 10 where Dylan "can handle it.")

 

2)  Nat reveals to Dylan and Brandon and Kelly are together. 

 

3)  Dylan shows up and interrupts Donna's Texas Dip and awesome dance with DeShaun.  He causes a big scene. 

 

4)  Kelly goes to Dylan's to "apologize" where Dylan lets her have it, and calls her out on her "3am apology." 

 

5)  Brandon goes to Dylans.  Dylan lets him have it.  Brandon apologizes for not telling Dylan when he first saw him, because he was drinking.  Dylan pushes, and I think this is the scene where he talks about how Brenda couldn't "you people" and went halfway around the world to get away from them (more on that later).  Brandon warns him not to push, and Dylan basically says get lost.  Brandon leaves. 

 

6)  Registration at CU.  Kelly and Brandon arrive, and Brandon makes some joke about how "with Dylan falling off the wagon, per usual, I feel disgustingly wholesome" and Kelly says "you don't know how attractive that is." 

 

Also to note, throughout the episodes, any time Val asks about Dylan, they basically blast him, paint him as bad news, and warn her to stay away.  A couple of episodes in and Brandon makes the point about how it's "not the first time he's shared a bathroom with a girl who thought she could heal his wounded psyche" and it takes until Halloween for him to FINALLY respond to the fact that his friend is spiralling.  And that's after he yells at Val for going to see him.  It takes Val pointing out his hypocrisy in forgiving her, over and over again, and hating Dylan and her comment of "What did Dylan do that's so terrible?!?"

 

Excellent question, Val.  What did he do?

 

Now if the outline below were in a vaccuum, then okay, I could understand the anger.  Dylan attacked and said some pretty wretched things.  But you're talking about relationships that were really well established at that point, that had been challenged by both sides, and that had even survived the betrayal of his own sister.  So where DID the animosity come from? 

 

I can understand if there had been a scene where Brandon expresses that he's frustrated at this point - between the drinking, the betrayal towards his father, the betrayal to his own sister, and the negative drama that just seemed to surround Dylan, the friendship had just gotten too hard.  But we never really saw that.  We just saw Brandon, seemingly really angry, that Dylan had started drinking again, with virtually no sympathy or concern for weeks.  We saw Kelly, judgemental and angry ("it's nice to see you among the living").  Steve made some wisecrack about Dylan falling off the wagon at the benefit, long before he discovered anything about Val and Dylan. 

 

So what DID Dylan do that was so terrible?

 

And speaking of terrible Dylan, I kind of love it when he rails into Brandon about Brenda.  Because he was absolutely right.  Brenda was miserable by the time she left.  Her friends and family had betrayed her plenty of times and basically painted her as a person she never was, so she said "fuck you" and left and never came back.  Granted, the show would never acknowledge that, it had to be said by drunk, angry, lashing out Dylan who doesn't mean the things he says and does when he's under the influence, but I kind of love that moment of clarity and insight on the part of Dylan McKay. 

I know. They knew Dylan had a drinking problem, family problems etc, but they decide to drop him like a hot potato when it actually looks like he might be hurting but no one gave him any flack for his atrocious treatment of Brenda. It seems like a horrible way to treat a friend. It seems more like they are upset that Dylan has inconvenienced THEM than upset that Dylan may be falling off the wagon. I mean I get it, dealing with an addict can be exhausting, but like you said that was NEVER anyone's statement, that they thought Dylan was "beyond hope", but that Dylan was this random person they had no affiliation towards what so ever. 

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Brandon became dead to me in Season 4. Well maybe three as well, when he didn't fucking stick up and support his sister; never mind that she was his TWIN.  Being okay with Dylan cheating on her; willing to believe that she would vandalize the lab. All of it.

 

And don't get me started on how Josh that asshat, who blackmailed Brandon, but then decided Brandon was the bestest and greatest person to be his running mate, suddenly becomes Brandon's best friend. When Josh was killed, Brandon acted as if Josh was his ONLY friend. We know Steve was his fucking best friend, as screwed up and selfish as Steve was. I think I was hate watching Shannen's last season, and just wanted to see what the show would be without her in Season five.

 

Hated Val. Wanting what Brenda had. I so wished Dylan had stuck with his no, you only WANT what Brenda wanted/had, and not fallen for those crocodile tears and hooked up with her. UGH. I was never a regular viewer after that.

 

ETA: And don't get me started on Kelly's "I choose me", which has become an anthem, meme, whatever you want to call it for other shows, when CLEARLY, she didn't choose her selfish damn self. She returned with a new boyfriend, Colin, that she had met over the summer. So how long was she with "me"?

Edited by GHScorpiosRule
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And don't get me started on Kelly's "I choose me", which has become an anthem, meme, whatever you want to call it for other shows, when CLEARLY, she didn't choose her selfish damn self. She returned with a new boyfriend, Colin, that she had met over the summer. So how long was she with "me"?

 

So much this! BUT Kelly dating Colin brought a whole new level of hilarious when she became a coke head, which is possibly my favorite of all the insane Kelly plots. I just love watching her solemnly roll up the check Daddy gave her to make up for not being able to see her and doing a line with it. It cracks my ass up every damn time. Man I wish all of these were streaming! 

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Oh dear. Did I kill the forum?

 

 

 

So much this! BUT Kelly dating Colin brought a whole new level of hilarious when she became a coke head, which is possibly my favorite of all the insane Kelly plots. I just love watching her solemnly roll up the check Daddy gave her to make up for not being able to see her and doing a line with it. It cracks my ass up every damn time. Man I wish all of these were streaming! 

 

Oh tell me about it! I couldn't be bothered with any of Kelly's dramas. I was insulted that they got John O'Reilly as her recast dad to become this deadbeat father. Should have stuck to the bald dude from graduation.

 

And the only thing that kept going through my head, when this show suddenly focused on Jennie/Kelly over everyone else was what Jennie said, when Shannen left-that Shannen wasn't a team player, that all the plots centered on BRENDA!BRENDA!BRENDA! And gee, what happened after Brenda left? Let's see:

 

  1. Kelly gets burned--check
  2. Kelly gets a drug addiction--check
  3. Kelly is raped (again)-check

 

Errr...what other trauma happened to Kelly?

 

KELLY!KELLY!KELLY!

 

Damn. I feel like Jan Brady now.

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...And don't get me started on Kelly's "I choose me", which has become an anthem, meme, whatever you want to call it for other shows, when CLEARLY, she didn't choose her selfish damn self. She returned with a new boyfriend, Colin, that she had met over the summer. So how long was she with "me"?

I've always thought this line was pretty over-blown because all she was really saying was she hated the pissing match between Brandon and Dylan. She didn't want to choose so she went with herself. I don't think she was making a statement that she wanted be single for the rest of her life.

Kelly goes to NY, meets a "cute" artist who knows nothing of the spoiled, BH princess she once was. A summer fling turns into something more when Colin gets a job in LA and then we get Coke!Kelly!

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Aaah, back when this was on live I would chant "Coke Fiend Kelly!" whenever she came on screen. Good times. 

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I actually liked coked up Kelly better than judgmental beige Kelly who resided between her old boyfriends at her own birthday "party" (read: concert that was so not for 20 year-olds!), holding both their hands, while her boyfriend blew her off to paint the world's most childish pastel-coloured cake painting. Coked up Kelly was entertaining at least, and sometimes snarky, and actually she sometimes really laughed. Is it a sad testament to the show's writing that I like her better in her inebriated sad endangered days than her happy and heathy ones - or is that a sad testament to me :-)?

 

Plus, coked up Kelly led to the absurdity that is Single White Tara. I love Single White Tara. I know she's an acquired taste (she certainly was for me), but now I really appreciate the unintentional hilarity of her random psychological illness, her magical ability to afford $$$$$$$$ rehab as a homeless teenager, and the over-the-top, misfiring murder suicide plot.

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Nope, Single White Tara was the BEST you're right. OMG That season! It was so great (in how terrible it was!) I lived for that shit! 

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I enjoyed quite a few of the new characters they added during this season.  I guess I'm the only person on the planet who thought Tracy was the most likeable lady in Branden's harem.  I also thought DeShawn would have made a great match for Donna although I liked Joe too.  On the other hand, I despised the self-righteous prematurely-balding Jesse and sometimes I think Mrs. Arnold faked her own death to get away from Clare and her daddy.

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I'm not a fan of Tracy and Joe (although I don't dislike them either), but I do love D'Shawn!  I wish they would have given him more scenes and stories.  It would have made me more interested in the college years, which lost their appeal for me after Dylan left.

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I enjoyed quite a few of the new characters they added during this season.  I guess I'm the only person on the planet who thought Tracy was the most likeable lady in Branden's harem.  I also thought DeShawn would have made a great match for Donna although I liked Joe too.  On the other hand, I despised the self-righteous prematurely-balding Jesse and sometimes I think Mrs. Arnold faked her own death to get away from Clare and her daddy.

 

 

Nope, you're not alone in that.  I know over at TWOP, where the 90210 board was quite active, thanks to SoapNet, Tracy was not a popular character.  Doormat and cringeworth were a few words that got tossed around quite a bit.  I actually really liked Tracy.  I think I like Susan and Brandon better, but Tracy's only fault was liking Brandon more than he liked her.  She certainly was not and won't be the last young woman who thinks "if I just hang in there, we will get there."  They trashed the character of Tracy, making her bitchy and intolerant, simply for the sake to bring self-righteous Brandon and uppity Kelly back together. 

 

Jesse sucked.  And I DESPISE. HATE. LOATHE. Clare Arnold.  My god, she was one unlikeable character.  I might hate Ray a bit more.  But it's really a tossup.

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As I watch some of these episodes. I just find Tori Spelling so unatttactive. From her short hair and long face and her fake boobs and hollow cleavage. I just can't buy that several good looking men would be interested in her. Am I in the minority?

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I caught some of the Halloween eps they were showing on TVGN today and I agree Donna was at her worst in those middle college seasons. I've always thought she was cute in season 4, then again towards the end in seasons 9-10. But when she first started showing off the boob job it was just...yuck.

The two episodes I caught today were a year apart (as I said, they were doing a Halloween marathon) and it was funny to see how most of the characters were with a different love interest by that next year. The first one I watched it was Val/Dylan/Steve, David/Claire, Kelly/Brandon, Donna/Griffin/Ray. A year later it was Val/David, Dylan/Toni, Kelly/Colin, Brandon/Susan, Steve/Claire, Donna/just meeting Joe. PHEW! Those kids were busy rotating among love interests. Of course I always knew that but it really drove it home to see those episodes back to back.

Oh, and I also caught Donna slapping Griffin and stomping away in her pantless bunny costume, which is always entertaining to watch!

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I love Donna's pantless bunny outfit - in combination with her righteous anger! Heh. So funny.

 

I really like Donna's look in Season 4. Particularly in the episode where Stuart proposes and the Walshes celebrate their anniversary. Brenda looks pale and like she just overcame a stomach flu, and Kelly looks somewhat washed-out, but Donna is great with the natural look, with her tanned skin and white dress and for once, not a ton of make-up. But later in college, that changes! In the scenes where she's with the firefighter who grew enarmoured with her deer-saving ways (forgot the name just now), during the black-out, she looks nearly scary. Although of course he compliments her supreme beauty :-). And in the scene after the boat party with Prince Carl, the prince of Montmartre (hah! the mere existence of that character will never not be funny to me!), her skin is so orange, her teeth so white and her hair so yellow, she practically glows in the dark. And when that creep tries to rape her, she looks like a clown. And don't get me started on those pigtails she has later on...!

 

Wardrobe was really hard on poor Tori. She isn't a natural beauty, but when they made an effort with her, didn't dress her grotesquely, didn't cake on hairspray like there was a prize for that, didn't dress her like her wardrobe threw up on her, and didn't paint on her lipstick so far beyond her lipline that I can see it from my sofa on my tiny 90s TV screen, she is actually rather cute.

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The two episodes I caught today were a year apart (as I said, they were doing a Halloween marathon) and it was funny to see how most of the characters were with a different love interest by that next year. The first one I watched it was Val/Dylan/Steve, David/Claire, Kelly/Brandon, Donna/Griffin/Ray. A year later it was Val/David, Dylan/Toni, Kelly/Colin, Brandon/Susan, Steve/Claire, Donna/just meeting Joe. PHEW! Those kids were busy rotating among love interests.

 

I think they should be at that age.  What was weird to me was how eager most of them were to settle down.

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I have a real problem where they slut shame Kelly for her outfit at the party. "What did you expect?"  Wearing your trampy dress?  Why didn't you wear an impossible to navigate mermaid costume like your good friend Donna?????

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I hate the Kelly slut shaming. It is probably Brenda's worst moment ever. "I tried to tell you the dress was a little much". Excuse me??? Now I don't need to tell you that no matter what dress, you may still say no and expect not to be raped. But aside from that - even if it had been Kelly's fault (which it absolutely 100% wasn't), it would still have been an abysmal thing to say to a friend who's just been attacked and is shaking and crying. I know Brenda tries to salvage it later by saying that no matter what Kelly said or did before, the attempted rape was not ok, but at this point she had already implied that Kelly was at least partly to blame. And I can't even excuse that by saying that Brenda was young. One, I experienced a situation that was similar, though much less horrible, with a friend at the same age, and none of us would have dreamt to say anything that implied she was to blame. And two, much more important, this is a TV show. What the blazes were the producers trying to teach the watching teens by including the slut shaming shit?

Not to mention that on the scale of sluttiness displayed on the show, Kelly's dress doesn't even make the top ten. In fact like you said, all of Donna's holiday outfits trump Kelly's dress with tantalizing ease.

Edited by Marie Claudine
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I agree.

 

Now, I think Kelly's dress was ridiculous, in that it wasn't a costume (other than in that nebulous way favored by some of my gender who equate Halloween with dressing sexy rather than actually dressing as something), and I don't think it was particularly age-appropriate for a teenager.

 

However, as has been stated, it's incredibly disturbing for the show to imply that for "someone like Kelly" to wear a dress like that leaves her vulnerable to attack, especially when all the while it's no cause for concern for "someone like Donna" to walk around scantily clad. 

 

And it's just unpardonable for Brenda's immediate reaction to be of the "I tried to warn you about that dress" variety.  Kelly will easily go down as a shitty friend to Brenda, yes, with the whole Dylan thing, but in that moment Brenda is even more hideous.  All the times the show piled on Brenda without justification, and then something like this is let slide. 

 

If you truly want to remind your impressionable viewers of both genders that someone's right to say no is not diminished by anything she may have on her body, then you don't have the main sympathetic female protagonist react that way.  She later speaks the truth, yes, but she never backtracks on that horrible initial response.  Giving the whole thing an air of, "That guy was a jerk who had no right to do what he did ... but if Kelly hadn't worn that dress, he wouldn't have tried it in the first place."  Nice message, show. 

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The funny thing (going back on topic and back to the college years, sorry!) is that the show was pretty sensitive about rape later. I mean, Crazy Laura may be viewed one way or the other, but the storyline regarding her, flawed as it was, made it pretty clear that saying no means no, under all circumstances. Same with when Kelly really got raped; nobody said something about her walking alone. When Donna was stalked nobody said it was because of her cleavage. Rightly so!! So my point is, our show managed to get in rape storylines quite a few times without blaming the victim. I have no idea why on earth they went a different way at the High School Halloween.

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If anything, Donna's cleavage at that point in the show would be a deterrant against rape.

 

Ok, that was a bad joke, but I always hated how Donna/Tori's look changed over the course of season 5. Especially because she looked so cute and (so much more relatively) natural in season 4.

 

As for the Halloween thing...well, it came first, and most shows get it right (or better) as the show goes on. Had the slut-shaming-a-rape-victim happened in, say, season 7 or 8, then I'd cry foul. But there is quite a bit I excuse during the show's first couple of seasons.

Edited by AndySmith

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One of my favorite episodes from the college years was the one where they help David with his "Real World" film project, and pretend to be his roommates.  I'll never forget when David's real roommate comes by and sees Brandon dressed and acting like him, dude!  I also liked the melon balls Kelly was so into! 

 

I think I like it because it started out as something they all were involved in and were having fun with, and then things "got real" and some truths came out. 

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So I thought of our beloved show over the weekend....we went out of town and the toilet in our hotel was crazy powerful....yes, I had my very own Turbo Toilet! It's too bad I didn't have massive piles of drugs and cigarettes to dispose of, because it would've been a snap. Hell, I could've flushed the backpack that carried it all. I could've flushed Brandon's gigantic watch, David's keyboard and Dylan's angst, all in one shot!

So I must ask you, my friends...what would YOU flush, if you had a magical Turbo Toilet?? And, go!

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I think the turbo toilet could probably take care of Joe, the tiniest quarterback of a D-I, Bowl-eligible team ever.

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I'm watching the sorority/fraternity rush episode. Josh says that sororities and fraternities are racist and elitist to which Brandon exclaims "SOME OF MY BEST FRIENDS ARE RUSHING SORORITIES AND FRATERNITIES AND THEY ARE NEITHER ELITIST OR RACIST!"

It's like Brandon has never met Steve before.

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Or engaged in the low-level critical thinking necessary to understand that saying a system is elitist and racist is not the same as saying each individual member of that system is.

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QUOTE: " It's like Brandon has never met Steve before."

Lol, right?!!

Watching some college episodes now. Steve's swim trunks at the freshmen pool party are just terrible. Dylan looks really good the first year of college, he's dressing like a college student and not an old man. They all look great except for Andrea. Although Shannen's eyebrows drive me crazy.

Didn't realize how much I would miss the original music til it's gone. Yuck yuck yuck.

I can't watch Tori in anything now without thinking of her True Tori show, damn, girl is messed up.

Edited by KLJ

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I just saw the episode with the turbo-toilet. Pure hilarity!! It's also the episode Andrea and Jesse get married. And wouldn't you know it...Nat has Hava Nagila in the jukebox. If I could only suspend my disbelief!! :)

Is it me or does it seem like all the guys wore mom jeans for a few seasons? The shade of blue/denim is just awful.

Edited by woodscommaelle

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It's also the episode Andrea and Jesse get married. And wouldn't you know it...Nat has Hava Nagila in the jukebox. If I could only suspend my disbelief!! :)

 

This is the first time I noticed that during the Jewish circle dance thing, Dylan and David are spazzing out like Beavis & Butthead in the background. Pretty funny.

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This is the first time I noticed that during the Jewish circle dance thing, Dylan and David are spazzing out like Beavis & Butthead in the background. Pretty funny.

Same here. I was like"what did I just see in the background?" And then proceeded to rewind no less than 3 times to watch these jackasses do their thing.

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They did this in the Waltons.  Does anybody interact with their Jewish friends like this in RL?

If you're referring to the dance, the Hava Nagila is a tradition at weddings, Bar/Bat Mitzvahs, etc.

But if you're talking about the two spaz-boys in the background, no, none of my jewish friends interact with each other like this in real life. I don't think you even have to be Jewish to do what they did :)

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Today I caught some of the play audition storyline, with Crazy Laura and her crazy eyes and her crazy southern accent. Hee. I hate Steve in that episode and how nasty he is to Brenda. Granted, it was sketchy of Brenda to go to Randolph's house for a super secret night audition, (and even sketchier of Randolph to allow it), but it still bugs me how quick Steve was to assume she slept with him and then spread the rumor. But it does give Brenda the opportunity to deliver one of her best lines: "I'm still Maggie, and you have nothing. Except for Steve, which is pretty much the same thing." Ba-bam! Preach it, Brenda.

In these eps I also enjoy how Andrea is supposed to be 6 months pregnant but looks like she's about a month overdue. Can you imagine how big she'd be if she went to full term?

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I caught the tail end of an episode yesterday in which Andrea was leaving the hospital after giving birth to me and it occurred to me that her daughter Hannah would be turning 21 any minute now.

 

Anybody else do the mental math when watching shows from their childhood?

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I accidentally put this in the wrong topic thread yesterday so I'll repost here where it belongs:

Jesse's "He be gone, he be outta here" episode was on today. Yay! It's a funny line but it's also a good scene because of the smackdown he gives Steve. Poor whiny Steve is upset because he can't plan parties anymore. Wah-wah.

Oh, and Andrea looks gorgeous in that episode. Her best look in the college years by far.

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