The third season of 90210 has reached the midseason mark, leaving fans with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger from a stellar year so far. After a highly problematic second season (featuring one of the most deranged teen characters known to man), the show bounced back from its dark days and truly became a teenage dream to actually smile about like a love struck idiot. The characters have matured (a little bit), the story lines have improved (tremendously), and the fans are ‘hella’ gracious for this guilty pleasure.
So let’s take a look back at what has made the new kids of West Beverly’s senior year quite enjoyable.
The Class of West Beverly
So far, senior year has been pretty eventful for the kids of 90210 as they’ve dealt with rape, fame, family issues, and sexual revelations, all if which have helped the characters find their footing on the show. Naomi, Teddy, and Navid have truly shined this year after usually being predictable or, in the case of Navid, rarely even there.
After her run in with Mr. Cannon, Naomi exhibited a vulnerable side of her that we seriously thought she didn’t have. Sure, she played up the poor little rich girl role to it’s infinite power, but that pales in comparison to the full roundedness AnnaLynne McCord has brought to a role usually reserved for conflict and the basic mean throw away line. McCord has turned Naomi into a character to actually care about; wielding more depth than most ice queens in a teen drama in a long time. Her humbling journey mended fences with her sister Jen and forged an unlikely friendship with Ivy, her former nemesis and polar opposite. Naomi has really transcended from the spoiled, little girl we met in season one, becoming one of the characters we are not ashamed to root for.
Navid finally got a chance to shine this year as he’s dealing with his father’s underage porn dealings and Adrianna being a bit too much for him at the moment. Who would’ve thought pairing him with Silver would be his ticket to a viable story line? While Adrianna and Navid seemed like the most solid couple on a show where commitment is the taboo, it was plausible for Navid’s eyes to wander, but just as scandalous for them to focus on his deranged girlfriend’s bestie. As for Navid’s Dad skipping the country to avoid federal charges for knowingly hiring underage girls for porn, that was shocker in itself. We can’t wait to see how this plays out, because it just can’t be the end of that debacle.
The other most talked about character this season was Teddy, who went from playboy tennis player to confused gay teen in the most rational way possible. Remember last year’s little lesbian fling between Adrianna and Gia (Rumer Willis)? Yea, exactly. While Teddy was acting like a total douche about his scenario at first, he eventually went through the 7 Stages of Grief and came out on top. The other most spectacular thing about Teddy is how his story served as a beacon of hope during the horrifying rash of gay suicides that occurred in the summer, cascading into the beginning of the fall TV season. Bravo to the writers of 90210 for taking such strides to prove that it indeed gets better. Trevor Donovan is also a great guy for all that he’s doing off camera for the LGBT community after such a warm reception from fans of his character and storyline. Kudos, Trevor!
Pro Story Arcs
Naomi’s Rape – After we found out that Mr. Cannon actually did rape Naomi, we knew the girl was going to go through hell this year. Some people called it karma for how she treated Annie the year before, but we didn’t see it as such. What we are thankful for is how the writers avoided dragging the story line out without twisting it a bit. The fact that everyone knows Cannon is a perverted freak is a plus, but now that he’s on the run and looking for revenge is a bonafide bonus. We are scared as hell for Naomi now that Cannon is lurking in the shadows, which is good for us viewing wise.
Teddy’s Coming Out – As if we can’t praise this story line anymore than we have. Seriously, though. After last year’s ridiculous ratings stunt with Gade (Adrianna+Gia), there was plenty of skepticism and understandably so. However, the writers proved us all wrong and gave us a pretty thought provoking story line in the end. Now that Dixon knows that Teddy plays on the other team, the story line can either go one or two ways, mostly featuring how will the guy portion of the gang handles their buddy’s new lifestyle.
Adrianna’s Fame Monster – Adrianna has become basically Con One after hitting it big with Javier’s songbook. While we initially thought Victor would eventually get his ass handed to him by Navid for blackmailing Ade, she turned the tables and redecorated them in the process, throwing us all for a loop. But one thing we do know about Adrianna is that while she can be irritating at times, she sure delivers some heavy putdowns in the process. But can she remain a contender for a spot on The Bad Girls Club now that Victor recovered with the upper hand?
Navid – We’re clumping Silver and Navid’s budding relationship in with all things Mr. Shirazi, who has had a stellar year in terms of story lines this season. First, there’s the whole Adrianna debacle, then his father’s porn business scandal of hiring underaged girls, and finally, hooking up with Silver. Our man Navid has his hands full going into the new year, which hopefully means that his time in the spotlight will be extended a bit more, because we are Team Shirazi over here. And Silver and Navid? Priceless.
Ryan Matthews, Debbie Wilson and Baby Jacque – Imagine our mouths on the floor when we found out that Jen had skipped town out of fear of being a bad mother. Well, her fear came true once she walked out on Jacques, leaving Ryan Matthews to pick up the pieces. We haven’t gotten much more on that development, but what has materialized is a relationship between Debbie and Ryan, which makes some sort of sense by them being the only two adults left on the show’s main cast. Albeit, the relationship seems to be mostly physical, we’re pretty sure it will bloom into something else before it fizzles entirely.
Con Story Arcs
Dixon’s HIV Scare – A story line so brief, if you blinked, you probably missed it. When it was announced that Mekia Cox’s Sasha was returning to the show, we knew hell was around the corner; especially when it was announced that she was bringing some bad news. We deducted that the bad news would be a STD, but not THE STD. When Sasha announced her HIV status, we thought 90210 was really going to go there this year, but ultimately they didn’t. We’re happy they didn’t proceed with it, but the possibilities that story line could’ve took the show are limitless.
The McCourt Boys – We know Liam and Charlie are brothers. We also know they both have a thing for Annie. What we don’t know is why they’re at each other’s throats so tough. Yes, we’ve gotten backstories, but they don’t seem to add up. Most importantly, we don’t know if why Charlie sought Liam in the first place. Is it more than making up peace? Did their father scam him as well? What do the scars really mean? Hopefully, this will be addressed within the new year and not towards the end of the season.
Liam’s Adventures With Laura – Talk about a very random storyline that went nowhere… Which is why we don’t have much to say about it.
Oscar’s Revenge – Not really a bad story line for Ivy, who’s growing on me even more. However, when Oscar revealed why he targeted Laurel, we couldn’t help but feel like, “Who cares?” If Oscar had not of been some family friend, the ruse might’ve worked, but maybe the writers thought it would sting more if the betrayal came from an old friend. We thought about it and still think they came off a bit short, because Oscar actually had a heart and reneged on his creep factor. With that laid out on the table, we are thankful it didn’t get worse. Need I remind you of He Who Shall Not Be Named from last year?
90210 came out swinging this season and managed to prove itself a viable addition to the League of Teen Dramas. Now the only thing the show has to worry about is keeping up the pace and making the entire season a home run. A-