Title: Melrose Place S1.E01 “Pilot”
Released: 1992
Series:  Melrose Place (1992)

Remember the old days, when there was no such thing as the summer television season? When you had to spend three months watching the same old Cosby Show and Cheers episodes instead of new ones? I know — it kind of sucked! But it also took the pressure off television watching. You could catch the eps you missed, and didn’t have to worry about missing anything new.

Anyway, after the popularity of Jenny’s My So-Called Life Lessons, we’re bringing back summer reruns! This summer, I’ll be checking out Melrose Place and hitting two or three episodes in a quick rundown — part recap, but mostly OMG-I-totally-remember-this-one! I didn’t get to watch the show every week, but I had a Wednesday night babysitting job in eighth grade, and I remember how grown up I felt watching MelroseParty of Five and reading the mom’s Redbook magazine after I’d put the little boy to bed.

Ready to ride the 90s nostalgia wave with me? I’ll be breaking down each episode the handy-dandy FYA-scorecard way to make it easy to follow along, starting with the pilot.

Main Plot

Finding a new roommate for Allison (Courtney Thorne-Smith). This seriously took 30 minutes of the hour-long pilot — I wish I was kidding. Despite (!) hectic commute monologues of her classified ad to a montage of scary respondents, this was SO BORING. What was I thinking at 13??

90210 Crossover Subplot

I’m not sure how long the crossover thing went on, but at the beginning, Melrose was totally riding the 90210 wave. Sadly, it was with Brian Austin Green (did his voice ever drop?) instead of Jason Priestly. Anyway, tonight’s crossover plot involved high-school-aged Kelly getting involved with an older guy who lives in the Place.

Other Subplots

  • Marriage troubles between Dr. Michael and his wife Jane, because Michael is married to his job and his wife just doesn’t understand. Wah-wah, Michael.

  • A creepy older account exec hits on Allison, prompting her new roommate Billy to stop playing air guitar in his room and step in to save her. That’s sexual harassment, and I don’t have to take it!

  • Aerobics instructor Rhonda, aka the embarrassing Token Sassy Black Woman (complete with 4 SBW catchphrases this episode), goes on a date with a guy from class only to find out he wants her to sell vitamins.

Embarrassing Scenes

There’s nothing like watching a show I loved in adolescence to bring back those very adolescent feelings of humiliation!

  • Billy’s shirtless dance montage, with full closeup of the dual tape deck (He’s always shirtless — maybe I should start an ab count for this show)

  • Rhonda’s aerobics class, in full spandex thong and overalls glory. Oh, ’90s. You so crazy!

  • I wrote “faux porno” in my notes, but now I can’t remember what that was about. Huh. That’s pretty embarrassing, though.

  • Billy dancing again, this time with a mop. Please don’t make this his schtick.

Miscellaneous Tallies

  • Lame pickup lines: 2
  • Major ’90s flashbacks: 2

To Be Continued … Tune in next Wednesday for episodes 2 and 3! And maybe 4, if I’m feeling ambitious (spoiler alert: I probably won’t be).

Meghan is an erstwhile librarian in exile from Texas. She loves books, cooking and homey things like knitting and vintage cocktails. Although she’s around books all the time, she doesn’t get to read as much as she’d like.