Hold up! I need to call shenanigans on this cover! This is clearly a Season 4 picture! WTF! But onward.
I realize this is just one episode of television. But it is a strong possibility that “Sex, Lies, and Volleyball” is the best episode of “90210” ever. Shit goes on that I could barely believe was possible. As far as cheesy television goes, this episode really hit the nail on the head when it came to filling almost every moment with something awesomely cringeworthy.
I wasn’t going to take notes; I was just going to watch the show, then write from memory. I got as far as remembering the awesomeness of the credits, like even for this show, and this is what I’m saying about the intensity of this episode’s amazingness. Even the credits are spectacular.
That is as far as I got because then Steve and Brandon are looking for a volleyball partner for Steve and doing something for this beach volleyball tournament. Basically, they are being ballstastic about being around all these “hard-bodied babes,” according to Steve, and that is when I had to start taking notes, because I realized I was in for something really special in this episode.
And I was. Because the next scene is possibly the most wonderful thing ever, in every way. First of all, it’s Nikki! I love Nikki! She overhears David playing his keyboards, and gets all hot for his “sound.” He finishes the song and spins around before he sees Nikki. She says something about how he’s got moves thatI couldn’t write down, because I didn’t dare take my eyes off the magic unfolding before me.
You see, David’s hair…I’m really not sure how to explain it. It’s randomly parted to the side, sort of? And sort of frosted looking? Nikki’s breathing heavily and staring at David like a psychopath, and talking about how she and her boyfriend “have an arrangement,” and she says she thinks keyboardists are way hotter than drummers, which explains a lot regarding the way she is panting over David and his sound, and THEN. She says, “Do you know ‘I Want Your Sex?’” So of course there is misunderstanding over the double entendre, and she means the song, and then says David reminds her of George Michael, which might be the awesomest thing that ever happened on the show.
On to the annoying sublot in France that basically is Donna acting all Ugly American and refusing to speak French and Brenda is wearing the first of many vests with no shirt, and tells Donna that speaking the native language of a country is the best way to learn. Donna says “Yeah, right,” and storms off, and it’s bizarre, and the music gets so intense, and I’m so confused, but then am reminded that Donna has a learning disability. But then she buys a tart in a bakery and the bakery lady is not having Donna’s bad attempts to speak French and calls her an imbecile, which Donna understands, and gives this speech that is supposed to be really patriotic, but is really unfortunate, and then. Then! Donna is celebrating her victory over understanding someone calling her an idiot in French by eating her tart, and this new lady is stalking her and taking her picture, and it is really, really awkward because Donna’s like, sucking her finger and stuff. But it turns out, the woman wants her to be a model.
In one of the biggest cult phenomenon storylines that I’ve ever witnessed, Dylan and Kelly have Sexual Tension, playing volleyball together and Dylan is touching Kelly way too much. This was before Superman even entered the picture, so I feel extra bad for Brenda, who is back in Paris telling Donna in that very still, serious way that showed you she meant business, that Donna better not dare drop out of the program to become a model, and I get angry about society’s pressure to keep us as followers as best as possible.
Steve is liking this chick he met, but of course she meets Brandon and likes him better. So he’s like hey Brandon, could you maybe not go after every girl I like? And I really sympathize with him, because, seriously Brandon. But Brandon says this chick is so “special,” and it’s like, really? This one girl you met a couple of days ago is special enough to hurt Steve’s feelings?
Over in Dylan and Kelly’s inappropriate friendship, he is helping her baby-sit her baby sister, and she of course overhears him being sweet on the monitor, and he gets Erin (the baby) to calm down, and Kelly’s like, awww. But then Dylan starts acting like James Dean and he doesn’t talk about Kerouac, but he does tell Erin she can’t trust anyone but herself, because people let you down. Nice thing to say to a baby, Dylan. And Kelly is like, “He is such a troubled soul,” and furrows her brow.
This is the episode where Brenda starts smoking! And is still judging Donna, who is still being naïve, and it’s pretty boring, but also hilarious, in terms of the level of intensity and Donna’s outfits: First like a (co-ed?) call girl, then like a ballerina daisy. Then Pierre (the fashion dude) hits on her, and she realizes she was wrong to ever think of leaving Beverly Hills, and Brenda dispenses wisdom from her bed. I seriously am hardpressed to think of another television character who had quite so many scenes where she was just like, sitting in bed. It’s actually one way the show was sort of realistic.
Anyway, that’s that, and Steve agrees to not stand in the way of Brandon’s minute-long dream of this chick, and Brandon can’t be cool, and has to kiss her right in front of Steve, while the wound’s still fresh.
And Dylan and Kelly…pffffft. Well, I should tell you she is wearing one of the most confusing outfits I’ve ever seen. It’s a white halter top, with white shorts, and high-heeled white sandals. She looks really nice, but it zooms me back to the early nineties to an unsettling degree. And then she stands in the doorway of Dylan’s place, and the light is hitting him just so, and he is wearing a white wifebeater and black pants to go with her white outfit. Will the bride walk down the aisle? Imagery on “90210” is awesome. And yes, she does! She shuts the doors behind her, and 17 years ago, a lot of people let out a collective “Noooo!” because the show ends right there.
Oh yeah, I totally forgot about Nikki and David! I think I was just that blown away by their awesome first scene. Basically, Kelly catches them making out and storms away in disgust, and he chases her and she yells at him, as she should, except that it’s all ironic because she’s right, it’s shitty to cheat on someone just because she’s in France, but that is just what she helps Dylan do. But David ends it with Nikki, who’s all distraught at the prospect of a future without David’s magnetism and sound, but luckily he gives her a parting gift: his demo tape.
On top of all this were many volleyball montages and some of the most hilarious background music ever. Two very enthusiastic thumbs up to this fine episode!
OMG, I forgot about another bit of awesomeness: Kelly’s leopard-print dress!