The New "90210" Q&A Discussion

September 3, 2008 by The Gossip Chic  
Filed under Entertainment

90210 promo

How exactly is this new 90210 a spin-off of Beverly Hills, 90210?

Well, it kind of isn't; calling it a remake is probably more accurate, in that the character archetypes and plot (Midwestern siblings move to California and befriend a nerd, a goofy girl, a hunk and his girlfriend) are similar. The catch: It also includes characters from the earlier series. Though one draft of the pilot script revealed Hannah Zuckerman-Vasquez, the offspring of Andrea and Jesse, to be the head of the high school's TV station, it's Erin Silver (Jessica Stroup) who will carry the next-generation torch on the CW series.

Wait, who? Remember at the end of Season 2 of Beverly Hills, 90210 when Kelly's mom and David's dad improbably got married and had a cute little towhead named Erin? Well, Erin is now a teenager, a quasi-celebrity blogger who will play best pal to Annie Wilson, the new "Brenda."

Which actors from the original series will appear on the remake?

As of press time, only Jennie Garth (Kelly Taylor), Shannen Doherty (Brenda Walsh), Joe E. Tata (Nat) and Ann Gillespie (Jackie Taylor Silver, Kelly and Erin's mom) have signed on to appear on the new series. Kelly is now a guidance counselor at her alma mater. Brenda, now a successful actress on the London theater scene, comes to town to guest-direct the high school's production of Spring Awakening -- as successful London theater actresses are wont to do...
Good old Nat still owns the Peach Pit, but it will look significantly different than the 1950s-style diner fans remember from the Fox show, as it's now a soigné coffeehouse. Recovering alcoholic and drug addict Jackie Taylor Silver will appear on the show long enough to fall off the wagon, forcing Erin to move in with her big sister Kelly and 4-year-old nephew (more on him later).

Tori Spelling backed out of the show when there were reported salary disputes. Original Brandon Jason Priestley has expressed interest in directing an episode or two of the show. Luke Perry, Ian Ziering and Brian Austin Green have all stated that they wish the new show luck, but aren't interested in cameos. Thus far, Gabrielle Carteris hasn't gone on the record about the new show.

So then who is going to play the mystery dad of Kelly's son?

On the new 90210, Kelly Taylor has an adorable, blond, 4-year-old son named Sammy. Which begs the question: Who's the daddy? At the close of the original series in 2000, Kelly and Dylan reconnected at Donna and David's wedding, but since Sammy's birth would have taken place four years after that, it's really anyone's guess. Producers have said they haven't decided on Sammy's paternity yet, but the sentimental favorite seems to be Luke Perry's Dylan.

Why are the Wilsons moving to Beverly Hills in the first place?

While the Walshes changed zip codes because dad Jim got a new, higher-paying accounting job, the Wilsons move to Beverly Hills to take care of family matriarch Tabitha Wilson (Arrested Development's Jessica Walter), a faded 1970s TV star -- and an alcoholic -- who can no longer take care of herself.

How do we put this? In the original series, Brandon and Brenda were fraternal twins. But the new siblings are, er...

Harry and Debbie Wilson (Rob Estes and Lori Loughlin) have a 16-year-old daughter named Annie (Shenae Grimes, who appeared on Degrassi) and a 16-year-old adopted son, Dixon (The Wire's Tristan Wilds), who is African-American. The producers emphasize that Annie and Dixon are best friends who will weather the adjustment to their new home together.

Who will date whom? Is there a love triangle of any sort planned?

Dustin Milligan, who plays Ethan Ward, kind of a Steve-Dylan hybrid, has confirmed that while he is dating Naomi Clark (Nip/Tuck's AnnaLynne McCord) in the pilot, new girl Annie will also catch the lacrosse star's attention. Early rumors have young English teacher Ryan Matthews (Ryan Eggold) either pairing up with guidance counselor Kelly Taylor or -- gasp! -- one of his students.

These days, doesn't Josh Schwartz (Gossip Girl, The O.C.) have this beat covered?

Nobody will deny Schwartz's talent for tapping into the teen zeitgeist, but 90210 has its own secret weapons in the form of co-executive producers Jeff Judah and Gabe Sachs. This talented pair also co-produced Judd Apatow's critically loved Freaks and Geeks, which was an unorthodox, unflinchingly honest look on the abject cruelty of one's high school years. Plus, it was smart, well-scripted, and very funny. Who better to ensure that the new show's cheese levels remain under control? Because, let's face it, at times the original's earnestness reeked of Velveeta.

Who will our favorite character be?

After watching Jessica Walter tear up the scenery on Arrested Development, we just know that any scene with the melodramatic (and hopefully drunk!) Tabitha Wilson is going to be a little slice of trash-TV heaven. In the fantasy 90210 of our dreams, Tabitha is some delicious amalgamation of Piper Laurie as Sissy Spacek's Bible-thumpin' nutjob mama in Carrie and Joan Collins' from Dynasty. Dirty pillows... and shoulder pads!

Did you watch the new 90210?  What did you think of it? 

I have to admit, I'm a fan!  I'm hooked from episode one and will continue watching.  Mostly to find out who is the father of Kelly Taylor's son - but still - I like and I like a lot!


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