October 27th, 2009 by thetvchick
Have shows improved since their premiere or have they gotten worse? Have new shows been able to keep up their momentum or have they fallen short? These are all questions I am going to answer in a new segment I like to call Checking In. Throughout the fall season, I will be “checking in” with specific shows, and giving them my grade and analysis. There are definitely some pleasant surprises this season. But there are others which are not living up to the hype. I will start with Melrose Place.
Melrose Place has some large shoes to fill. Whenever there is a remake of a show, it runs the risk of being criticized and closely compared to the old one. The pilot did not impress me. I thought there were too many characters to keep track of, and not enough depth. There was a murder mystery to keep it together, but overall, I wasn’t sure if it would earn a season pass on my DVR. However, when I watched the 2nd episode (written by the super talented Liz Tigelaar), I became a little more hooked. The writing sharpened up, the characters became more interesting, and I heard there would be some cast members returning from the original show to play their old parts.
The show has slowly continued to build on that 2nd episode, and I have to say, I’m really enjoying it. Katie Cassidy is by far the best part of the show and she is truly unstoppable. Her ruthless character Ella is a take-no-prisoners PR maven, who has to deal with a terrible boss and difficult clients. Any episode that highlights Ella is always fantastic. Daphne Zuniga (Jo Reynolds from the original) returned this week, and I thought she was great too. I’m not sure how crazy I am about Lauren’s (Stephanie Jacobsen) whole storyline about becoming a prostitute to pay off her medical school debt. And Ashlee Simpson-Wentz’s character Violet is mysterious, but I’m not sure I like it. Recently however, the show announced that Simpson-Wentz and Colin Egglesfield (he plays Auggie, and I do enjoy him) are not going to be on the show anymore (after the episodes with them in it have been filmed). I was slightly surprised about Egglesfield (the network said his character is too dark), but taking Simpson-Wentz out of the picture is a pretty good decision.
I enjoy Riley and Jonah, as well as finding out everyone’s secrets. And I’m excited for the return of Heather Locklear (Amanda). I think the show is really making a name for itself, and while it has big plans to incorporate the old characters, it is very different from the original. No matter what the title of the show is, it’s still a completely different cast of characters…even if they still live at the same address. And in my opinion, it’s definitely better than it’s Tuesday night companion, 90210 (also a remake).
Melrose Place may not be my all time favorite show of the season, but I thoroughly enjoy it every week. I look forward to seeing where they go from here, and what storylines they have planned for the new (and old) characters. Be sure to tune in every Tuesday at 9 pm on the CW!