It looks like last night was my last time watching the rebooted MELROSE PLACE, because the clichés are so overwhelming that it feels like I’ve seen it all before.
Let’s start with Riley’s adventures in modeling. Designer Anton V. supposedly chose Riley as the…er, face of his his jeans because she’s real” and “not a model,” but then he dispatched her to a photo shoot where she was given the standard fantasy makeover that transformed her into a standard-issue model.Instead of “real,” Riley looked real fake, just like any other model. And why did Anton hire photojournalist Jo Reynolds to shoot a campaign that looks like every ad, ever. (The returning Daphne Zuniga has a nice gig over on ONE TREE HILL, so she probably didn’t need the work). When a half-naked Riley stormed off the set, it proved she has really big principles! But then again, Anton liked the photos (of course), so she’ll take the $10,000 anyway?
Perhaps Riley’s plot was a cliché for the same reason that her fiancé, Jonah, was dispatched to the famous Paramount Pictures lot to meet a megaproducer Andy, who “loved” everything about his film — and only wants to change everything! Oh, Hollywood, you’re all the same!
Which is the problem. Everything about this MP is more of the same. Apparently the-powers-that-be are banking on the target audience of preteen girls being so young they have no frame of reference for a nighttime soap beyond 90210, GOSSIP GIRL and THE VAMPIRE DIARIES. Well, the legendary newspaperman H.L. Mencken famously noted, “Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.” (He didn’t know from Nielsen ratings, though…)
Finally, I leave you with the laugh line of the night, courtesy of Colin Egglesfield‘s Auggie: “Riley, I don’t know if you know this, but it’s kind of impossible to hate you.” Uh, no, it’s not. It’s actually quite easy to hate Riley. And her little show, too.