Better than last week: Michael and Sydney shine once again, but some of the characters -- like Jo and Jane -- arouse no sympathy whatsoever. And what's the deal with Kimberly? Are we supposed to think of her as a nice person? Shockingly, the person who now generates the most likability is Alison, last season's Whine Merchant!
The Matt Slot belongs to ... Billy! Even though he did have lines, Billy has been even more useless than usual over the past few episodes. ("Daah, ya shouldn't say things like dat.") He's accumulated enough points to earn his first Matt Slot in the history of the Melrose Place Recaps. Congratulations, Andrew Shue!
Wearing an incredibly tight black dress, Amanda thanks one of the construction workers for the great job they've done repairing Melrose Place. (Wow, they actually have unattractive people on this show.) Painting is just about the only thing left. However, he says they won't finish until Amanda comes through with the rest of the money. She explains that the residuals from "Dynasty" aren't as big as she hoped, but the guy says they don't work on trust. (This is "Melrose Place," after all.) Syd happens to overhear this because it was in the script.
As Brooke prepares to leave for work, Billy walks across the courtyard carrying flowers. He says they're for Alison. Brooke is stunned, but Mr. Sensitivity says, "Daaah, they're not from me -- they were outside." Brooke sees the name of the florist and jumps to the wild conclusion that they must be from Big Daddy for her! (I'm tellin' ya, there's something weird about that family...) She reads the note: It's from Big Daddy to Alison! Coincidentally, Alison pops up and takes the flowers. Brooke says, "Would you mind telling me what's going on?" Alison smiles politely: "Actually, I would!" Billy looks at Brooke: "Dere! Are ya happy now?"
At a D&D meeting that morning, Amanda sings Alison's praises for some recent work. (By the way, just what does Alison do at D&D since her demotion?) Amanda pointedly asks new VP Brooke what she's been doing. Brooke doesn't come off well: She just says she's been making a few phone calls and has spent too much time reading the Melrose Place Web pages. However, she swears that she's about to get Armstrong Ltd. (Big Daddy's company) onboard soon. Alison is skeptical, but Brooke says it's a done deal. Billy looks back and forth, sticks out his jaw, and silently wonders who would win in a fair fight: The Hulk or Superman?
In Amanda's office, lawyers for her and husband/mobster/psycho Jack Parezi discuss terms. Amanda wants none of his money or holdings, and certainly not the "ugly" portrait of her that Jack has kept hanging on the wall. All she agrees to take back are some personal mementos: letters from her father, a teddy bear, and an autographed picture of Joan Collins. Jack says there's the little matter of the life-insurance payoff to be resolved; in the real world, Amanda's "death" translates to fraud. However, he has "friends" who can smooth things over. (Thank you, Don Corleone.) To Amanda's dismay, Jack says he's staying in town until the divorce is finalized. He makes an obviously bogus statement about how he's planning to marry again soon. What I don't understand is why Amanda, when she's about to meet the "ex"-husband that she loathes and fears, chooses to wear the tightest, most cleavage-intensive outfit of the year! Amanda, you want to get RID of this guy, remember? Wear a burlap sack, for Pete's sake!
Later, Brooke corners Alison and asks her about Big Daddy, saying "Maybe it's time to bury the hatchet. "Well, you'd have to pull it out of my back first." ZING! It turns out that Brooke does not have a "done deal" with Armstrong Ltd., and she asks Alison to help her out -- for Billy's sake, of course. I don't THINK so! Alison delights in the fact that the Brookster lied to save face and now she's stuck with it. She smiles victoriously. Brooke looks increasingly like the spoiled brat she is.
The next day, The Bizarre Dr. Peter Burns pops up. He offers to give Amanda the money she needs for the repairs. (Syd blabbed.) He sees Jack sitting in Amanda's office. "Who's that?" "It's my husband. Get lost." She brushes the Bizarre One aside. She's annoyed that Jack would show up without calling first. He says he just wanted to drop off some of her stuff. (Gee, that was a quick delivery!) Amanda finds some stuffed animals. Hey, Amanda, how old were you when you married this guy? 12? Jack seems to think that this will send Amanda right back into his arms. (Dope.) He says Amanda hasn't changed a bit in 5 years. "Oh yes, I have."
At another D&D meeting, Amanda says earnings are a bit down, but that'll change with the arrival of the Armstrong account, right, Brooke? "Ahhh...well...there may be some delays..." Just as Brooke is about to crash and burn, Big Daddy turns up! He tells Amanda he's already to sign on with D&D, but he wants an experienced account rep working with him. "Do you have someone in mind?" "Alison Parker." Brooke Grimaces! She stammers, "But Amanda -- I brought this account in...!" "And the client has made his choice, Brooke." As Big Daddy leaves with Alison to discuss things, Brooke seems on the verge of tears. She says, "Amanda, you have to do something about this!" "You brought Jack Parezi back into my life, Brooke -- you can't blackmail me anymore." Billy silently wonders who would win in a fair fight: Thor or the "Shazam" Captain Marvel? (He inexplicably does not react to Amanda's spoken-aloud statement that Brooke blackmailed her.)
Back at MP, Amanda and Billy discover that the construction work has been finished! The guy says everything has been paid for. She angrily calls up Peter, who is having dinner with Kimberly (more on that later). He says he had nothing to do with it. By the way, Amanda, are you free for a drink sometime? She hangs up and soon realizes that it must be Jack, putting her in a position where she has to owe him something.
At the engagement party for Richard and Jane (I'm getting to it!), Amanda toasts Alison and Brooke. Alison excuses herself, saying she needs to read up tonight on the Armstrong account. Brooke makes a snide comment, and Amanda shoots her down, saying that Brooke has never gotten anywhere on her own merits. She leaves. Billy silently wonders who would win in a fair fight: Batman or Captain America?
Amanda takes Billy with her to the bank to view her safe deposit box. When Billy asks why, she says, "Because you're the person I trust the most. You remind me of the pet Dalmatian I had as a kid. Dumb as a post, but incredibly loyal." Inside are Polaroids of a battered and bruised Amanda. She says Jack did this years ago. He's extremely violent when he's angry. Billy astutely realizes that Amanda is scared! She instructs him, "If anything ever happens to me, make sure these get to the police. Now fetch!" WOOF!
Back at D&D, Billy takes Alison aside and questions her about how they got the Armstrong account. Alison says, "You nimrod! Are you accusing me of being part of some big 'Anti-Brooke' conspiracy? Face the facts. Brooke has made so many enemies that there's no more room on the Grassy Knoll!" ZING again! She leaves, and Brooke turns up, still complaining about recent events. Billy tells her to shape up: "Daaah, I got Alison out of my life, now it's time to get Big Daddy out of yours!"
Jack turns up at Amanda's place, admitting that he paid the repair bill. She tells him to get out. Backed up against the kitchen counter, she grasps a Ginzu knife: It slices! It dices! It mutilates ex-husbands! He sees it, and he calmly takes it from her. "It's too bad -- I thought we were getting along so well." He touches her hair (hmmm, those dark roots are permanent, aren't they?) and leaves. Then he utters what sounds liked dubbed-in-later dialogue: "It's not over, Amanda." (He's not even in the shot when we hear this.)
Matt goes to the offices of the Gay and Lesbian Antidefamation Coalition, or something like that; anyhow, it's GLAC for short. He tells Tom (the one who convinced him to sue) that he's being countersued by Hobbes. Tom tells him not to worry; countersuits are standard in this sort of thing. He convinces Matt to stick to his guns. (Oops, bad choice of words considering recent events.) Later, at a meeting between Tom, Matt, Hobbes, and his lawyer, Tom prods Hobbes about his past negative attitude toward gays. Hobbes conveniently loses his cool and tosses some more non-PC comments toward Matt. His lawyer drags him away. Matt says, "God, this is so sad." Tom replies, "Why? We won."
Tom meets Matt at MP to give him the good news. He can have his job back, or he can take a nice big cash settlement. If he accepts the agreement, though, he can't pursue the matter further. Also, Hobbes has been fired, but Tom says he'll probably find another job soon at the Anita Bryant Medical Center. (Boy, this hospital has a rough time with chief surgeons: attempted murder, bigotry...) Matt is not jumping for joy, though. He says nothing has really changed: Hobbes still hates him because he's gay. Tom praises Matt for putting everything on the line; he said it was the right decision. Matt doesn't give an answer regarding the settlement, but he thanks Tom.
Just before the flowers arrive for Alison (see above), Jake and Jo are frolicking in the pool. (Awww....) Later, at Hart-Mancini, Richard thanks Jo for encouraging Jane to pursue the relationship. Jo, knowing that Jane doesn't love him, tries to be mellow; Richard says he and Jane are planning a big engagement party. Oh, that's nice. Jo follows up with Jane, who reiterates that this will be a good wedding for both -- even though she still doesn't love Richard. Jo is uneasy!
At Shooter's (The Only Bar in Town), new waitress Shelly tries to be "nice" to Jo, who is in a bad mood. When Jake comes over, Jo tells him she doesn't know what to do regarding Richard and Jane. Jake amusingly reminds her that it was Jo's prodding that brought Jane closer to Richard (yeah, thanks), but he says that if it were him in Richard's place, he'd want to know the truth.
The Engagement Party: Everybody turns up, including an uninvited Sydney and Michael! He says to Richard and Jane, "This is much classier than your last fiasco in Las Vegas. At her last wedding, Jane's Aussie kangaroo boy dumped her, but we had the best time! -- except I married Kimberly. That kind of ruined it." Syd pokes him: "Michael, the buffet's open!" These two are the best! And they even mentioned the Accent! What I don't get is how they continue to be so chummy after everything they've done to each other! (Hmmm, actually, I've been in relationships like that...)
Elsewhere at the party, Jo is getting plastered on Korbel Brut. She sees Jane, who tells her she's thrilled by all the connections Richard has. "Is that all Richard is to you? Connections?" Jane says, "After Reid and Jess, you're the last person to be giving advice on relationships." Wow, more continuity! Jane says that if Jo isn't here to celebrate the engagement, maybe she should leave. "Maybe I will. Hiccup!" As Jo waits for Jake to get a cab, Richard walks over and wants to know why she and Jane argued. Jo blabs that he's a nice guy who deserves the truth: Jane doesn't love him. (Patrick Muldoon, a graduate of the Andrew Shue Academy of Acting, has two expressions: He smiles, which means he's happy; and he doesn't smile, which means he's not happy.) Jane takes him away from the party for some action in the hotel room, but Richard utters those four dreaded words, "What's on TV tonight?" Just kidding -- "We have to talk." He wants Jane to say to his face that she loves him. She can't. "I don't even know what love is anymore." But she is sure that love will come. (Did Michael Bolton write this episode?) Richard says, "I'm not willing to take that risk." Sounds like the engagement is off. Jane is not a happy camper, but who cares about her anymore?
In the prison, Peter gives Kimberly a present: The Unabomber Manifesto! No, no, no -- it's a sundress. Oh, boy! He also tells her, "The review board granted your release!" (What?! Pigs have less baloney than that!) She'll have outpatient status, and she'll stay at Peter's place and continue her treatment at his office. She has to wear an electronic bracelet, though, to keep track of her location. He says it's for her own protection. She's thrilled to be getting out. (OK, so Kimberly has been freed, non-psychiatrist Burns is allowed to treat her, AND the board said she can stay at his house. Why, what's the sharp sound? It's credulity snapping like a twig!)
Kimberly happily cooks dinner for Peter, who comes in after a swim. ("Say, Kimberly, you're using an awful lot of arsenic...") She tries to come on to him, but he gently rebuffs her. He says he needs to take a shower. (He still has the hots for Amanda. But then why is he so obsessed with taking care of Kimberly?) The doorbell rings; Kim answers it. It's Sydney, who is quite shocked to see Kimberly out of prison! Kim explains that she was released. Syd says, "You may have fooled those medical dimwits, but I still know you're a murdering mutant freak!" Sydney leaves just as Peter arrives. Kim tells him what Syd said; Peter comments, "Sydney isn't exactly the poster child for sanity." (Hey, that was a good one!) He tells Kim that she shouldn't answer the door or phone for the time being. She says she still feels like a prisoner. He consoles her, and they hug.
At the office, Syd reports to Michael: "It was so freaky -- she was trying to get me into the house. And she was wearing some gizmo on her wrist." "A monitor?" "I think she uses it to beam up to the mother ship!" Peter arrives and confirms that, yes, Kimberly is staying at his place and is under his care. Michael angrily tells him that Kim is nuts and won't stop until she's finished the job of killing two-thirds of the cast! "She wants every breath I take!"
Michael and Syd have a Kimberly Strategy Meeting. Syd has gone through Kimberly's file, and they've convinced that Kimberly will still try to kill them. They need to get Kim back in prison. When Syd tells him about "Henry," a GE light bulb clicks on above Michael's head. They'll get a Henry of their own! "This is Hollywood -- there's a lookalike for everybody here!"
Next Week: "Who will give in to temptation?" Big Daddy and Alison kiss, and Shelly comes on Big Time to Jake.