This week brings the beginning of Fall ’09 premieres and it looks like The CW has won the coin toss (second and last sports metaphor – primetime game telecasts, particularly of the series variety, are not by friend as they interfere too often with new episodes) and will officially kick off (seriously, no more) the season. Tonight’s premieres include their visions of ’90s primetime soap classics and on cable, FX offers up the return of some bad boy biker action.
EVERYTHING OLD IS NEW AGAIN
With the wildly successful reboot of 90210 last year, it only seemed fitting that The CW would repurpose the original 90210 spin-off, Melrose Place. Set in the same drama-filled LA apartment complex as its predecessor (complete with courtyard pool so everyone has a good seat for the inevitable water-logged catfight), this Melrose remake promises to be more scintillating; we know this because one of the main characters starts out the series as a call-girl, unlike becoming one a few seasons in to keep up with a nasty drug habit a la original series bad girl Sydney Andrews (Laura Leighton) – Scandalous!
Sydney won’t be the only character returning for more slapfests and sexytime, others from the quintessential ’90s version will be on board either in a Jennie Garth’s Kelly “I work at my old high school, so that’s why I belong here now” Taylor way, or as a guest star like Shannen Doherty’s Brenda “I’m visiting my old friend/rival/nemesis/almost-sister-in-law for awhile” Walsh. In the former category is Thomas Calabro, whose lacivious doctor Michael Mancini will now be playing the role of father to one of the new debaucherous denizens. More seem to be of the special guest variety including Josie Bisset (Michael’s ex-wife Jane), Daphne Zuniga bringing back her “hardened” NYC photographer Jo Reynolds, and the biggest buzz is if the show will be able to lock in a guest return for Heather Locklear’s bed-hopping ad exec, and she who made Melrose such a hit, Amanda.
Being of the generation that made Melrose such a pop culture phenomenon, I’ve set the DVR to record the new pilot out of curiosity but have not yet committed to putting it on my “create series recording” list. The main reservation being an un-enthused reaction to the first episodes of last year’s 90210 still fresh in my mind. Advanced news places more praise on the new MP, consistently citing it better than the 90210 pilot, and as I’m always willing to offer something new a fair chance The CW will be given the opportunity to change its current losing streak it has with me.
EVERYONE LOVES A BAD BOY
On the completely opposite end of the dial is FX’s actioner Sons of Anarchy. For those who may have missed the first season (of which I’m included – not through lack of interest, but out of space on the DVR and time to commit to another 1-hour series) the latest “there is no box” drama from the cabler takes a Hamlet-esque story – a young man who’s recently deceased father may have been taken out by underhanded means has various problems with a scheming “uncle,” devious mother and former lover/conscience back in his life – and mixes it with the dirty, criminal dealings of a gun-running, Northern California biker gang. Impeccably cast with intriguing characters, I question my foolish choice to not commit to this show’s freshman year as it fits so well in the best of FX’s top-notch dramas (Rescue Me, Damages, The Shield).
SET YOUR DVRs
- 8/7c – 90210, The CW
- 9/8c – Melrose Place, The CW (series premiere)
- 10/9c – Sons of Anarchy, FX