Episode 32: Dead Sisters Walking


Ooooh, fun stuff going on! After a pretty Lame-O season, the series rebounded nicely in the last two episodes. (Hint to the producers: We like the exaggurated, campy melodrama; leave the corporate takeovers and the heavyweight social issues out of it.)

The End-of-the-Season Matt Slot goes to ... a large chunk of the Melrose audience, which gave up on the series about halfway through the season. The Powers That Be have a lot of fence-mending to do over the summer if they don't want to permanently lose these viewers to "Savannah." A special season-ending citation goes to Jo, whose character was often defined by which loser she was dating that week, and to the I'm-still-not-convinced-he's-dead Hayley Armstrong. Ahh, Big Daddy, we hardly knew ye.

Matt, Jo, and Dr. Love:

Jo and Jake visit a recuperating Matt in the hospital. Matt apparently had an allergic reaction to the first dose of antibiotics and has a bad fever: "My eyes are burning ... I feel like I just watched Liza Minelli sing 'Send in the Clowns'..." He falls asleep. As they leave the room, Jo says she's very worried about Matt, so Jake gives her a consoling hug -- which is seen by Dr. Love, Dominick O'Malley!

Later, Jo and Dominick are attempting to frolic in her bed, but she's not into it. She says she's just concerned about Matt. He seems to think it's something else, and after questioning by Jo, he finally asks her about the guy she hugged in the hospital. She laughs! "That's just Jake! Everybody laughs at him!" She teases Dom for being insecure (a rare condition for him) and says, "That kind of turns me on." "You are a strange woman!" Geez, if insecurity turns Jo on, it's no wonder she falls in love with every man she meets!

Back at the hospital, Matt is feeling much better and he taunts Jo about her new guy: "He's great. He's not like the other guys you've been dating!" Well said, Matt! Of course, the same might be said of you, young man!

Jo visits Dominick at his apartment for the first time and, as they sip champagne, Dom says, "Jo, I think we should get married." Spit Take! Jo gags! This is much too fast for her: "Don't pull that romantic crap on me! We've only been dating for an episode and a half!" Dom strangely implies that time is of the essence, but Jo says she can't trust him on that level yet. As she goes to leave, Dom kisses her and says, "Sayyyy, could you trust that?" Jo says, "I want more than chemistry. I want physics! I want engineering! Give me MacGyver!"

The next day, a still-weak Matt is preparing to leave his hospital room, much to Jo's annoyance. However, Matt says he has finals to prepare for, and Dominick says he can't stop Matt from leaving. (Hey, the poor guy had spinal meningitis, not a head cold! Couldn't he get some sort of temporary waiver for the tests?) Dom then turns to Jo and asks for an answer to his proposal. Jo, backed into a corner, says no: "I enjoy you, but then I also enjoy Snickers bars. You don't see them proposing to me, do you? This is all too fast." "Not for me." Really? So he and Jo probably make love for, what, 30 seconds?

Later, Jo makes a surprise visit to Dominick's apartment -- just in time to see the movers! When she demands an explanation from him, he says he's going to Bosnia! He'll be with a team of doctors, primarily helping out orphaned children and CNN journalists. It's a year-long commitment! Jo is upset that he's thinking of doing this just because she turned him down, but he says this has been in the works for months! D'OH! Jo is P.O'd: "How dare you make me fall in love with you? This is enough to turn me off to men for a whole two weeks!" Dom says he was really hoping that she would leave everything behind and follow him. Jo slaps him and his presumptions!

At night, Matt is trying to study in the medical library, but he's dosing off. Another med student sees this and walks over. Matt tells the guy he's got an exam in a few hours, he's exhausted, the coffee machine doesn't work, and Comedy Central canceled "Mystery Science Theater 3000." The guy pulls out some white pills: Dexedrene. He says they'll keep Matt going. He leaves one pill behind for Matt, adding "It's a student's best friend." Shouldn't that be Cliff Notes?

Dom goes to Jo's pad to make peace. (Did you notice the photograph of the woman shielding her eyes above the mantle?) He apologizes for not showing enough respect for Jo's lifestyle earlier -- as sad and pathetic as it is -- and tells her that his flight departs in several hours. As he turns to leave, Jo stops him: "If you only have a few hours left in this country, you should spend it with me." Wow, Jo's so patriotic! You're a wonder, Wonder Woman!

At the hospital, Matt is asking a nurse for some painkillers for a patient, but she's too busy, so she gives him the keys to the drug cabinet. As he walks off, he sees the other medical student. He thanks him for the pill and asks if he has anymore. The guy says, "I'm all tapped out. But it's a good thing you work in a hospital, eh? Nudge nudge wink wink. Know what I mean?" What? This guy had a full bottle of the stuff last night! What did he do? Give it to the Boy Scouts? Matt goes to the drug cabinet and slips some Dexedrene into his pocket, casually ignoring the big red warning sign: "For prescription purposes only. Misuse of these drugs will lead to severe plot complications. This means you, Matt Fielding."

Jo and Dominick finish off their prolonged game of Operation, and he says his goodbyes. She follows him out to the stairway, where they look at each other doe-eyed. Ewwwww...

Later, at the airport, he's about to get on his plane when Jo rushes after him. She pleads with him to stay, but he asks her to come with him. There's a two-hour layover in New York; if she hurries, she can get her things and follow him on the next flight out. Jo is confused! He boards the plane. Oh no, it's a ValueJet! Jo sobs in indecision. What will she do? (Well, if Daphne Zuniga is really leaving the show as reported, it's interesting to see that the Bosnia gig is only one year long, meaning she could return if any cinematic efforts flop.)

Amanda, Peter, Michael, and Kimberly:

Just as Kimberly/Betsy and Special Cameo Appearance Person Priscilla Presley are about to drill into the skull of The Bizarre Dr. Peter Burns, Dave the orderly arrives and says they've caught two people trying to break in: "They say they're friends of yours." Kim sees Michael and Amanda and says, "They're not my friends -- they're escaped mental patients!" After telling Nurse Benson to move Peter, she confronts the two and tells the orderlies to escort them out. Amanda won't leave until she sees Peter. Kimberly pretends to play along, then tries to lock them inside a cell: "Bye bye, suckers!" Michael stops the door from closing, then body-slams the two orderlies! He and Amanda make a break for it! Kimberly yells like a villain from the 1940's serials, ordering the orderly orderlies to get the two at all costs! (See, producers? Now this nuttiness is Melrose Place!)

Amanda and Michael hide out in an air duct, trying to figure out their next move. Their presence is almost revealed when a rat (Special Cameo Appearance by Ben) sits on Amanda's foot, but Michael prevents her from screaming.

Later, they sneak into the main ward, wearing blankets and mingling with the other patients. Michael does this weird twitch! Of course, no one looks twice at Amanda and her black roots. A scarred and stitched Peter, heavily doped up and in a wheelchair, sees Amanda, and his buddy Willie brings them over to him. He's too drugged to walk, so Amanda and Michael push him on a direct course out of there -- but run smack into Kimberly and the orderlies. "End of the line, sickos!"

After locking the three up in the boiler room, Kim tells the orderlies that Amanda and Michael are dangerous mental patients from Arizona and that the Arizona police are on their way to collect them. Dave wonders about the medical ID that Michael had. Kim scoffs: "Anyone with 50 bucks can get a fake medical license. Look at me -- I mean, look at the time. Gotta go!" Nurse Benson shows concern, but Kim won't tell her where the three are locked up. Meanwhile, the three prisoners ponder their fate. Peter is amazed that Amanda came after him: "You look lovely when you're all covered with sweat and grime." Michael doubts that Kimberly will really harm them, but Peter assures him that Kimberly is "gone."

Dave and the other orderly are getting increasingly antsy; Kim has ordered that the prisoners receive no food. When asked about this, Kim says Michael and Amanda are actually escaped murderers who committed horrible crimes in Arizona. Thinking quickly, she also says the Arizona authorities have requested that she lobotomize all the prisoners and make them new members of Hootie & the Blowfish! Unseen, Nurse Benson is troubled by what she hears. Inside the boiler room, tempers rise with the temperature as the three play the Blame Game. They calm down, and Michael says he's convinced he can get to the "real" Kimberly if he just has a chance to talk to her.

Later, as the three are on their emotional and physical reserves, Nurse Benson appears and tells them what Kim has planned. Amanda shrieks, "I don't want to be like Billy! Don't let it happen!" Peter appeals to Benson for aid. "Well," she says, "you're not as seductive as you were when you were sedated, but okay." As she lets them out onto the upper catwalk, Kimberly pops up with Dave the orderly. Michael confronts her, and the battle of wills is on! Turn away from the Dark Side, Kimberly! He keeps telling her that he loves her, and "Our love is worth fighting for!" Betsy hesitates. Michael grits his teeth: "C'mon, Kimberly, come back!" Kim sags into his arms and mutters, "I'm sorry ... so very sorry." Dave tells him to back off. Benson interrupts: "Don't you see what's been going on?" "Yeah," says Dumb Dave. "You're boinkin' Peters and this guy is hypnotizin' Dr. Shaw!" Michael tells Amanda, Peter, and Benson to run for it as he fights Dave. Benson gives Peter the key to the front gate and says she'll call the police. He and Amanda escape. Meanwhile, Michael isn't doing too well against Dave. Kimberly tries to help, and Dave gets a face full of steam from a valve she opens. Dave staggers back, grabs her, and they both fall off the catwalk and plummet to the floor! Michael screams, "Kimberly!"

The medical team rushes a battered Kimberly into Wiltshire Memorial. Hey, wait! The mental hospital was supposed to be near Sacramento. Are they actually going to fly a person in critical condition back to Los Angeles? Sacramento does have hospitals, doesn't it? Anyhow, she's in pretty bad shape. Fortunately, her fall was partially broken by the chunky orderly.

Peter is hiding out in Amanda's pad, but he can't stay there. Amanda says, "I think you should leave the country. I hear there's a good subplot brewing in Bosnia." "No, that's Jo's subplot. Besides, I have an alibi!" Amanda tells him his "alibi" is in critical condition and isn't exactly reliable anyway. Peter says he needs to see Kim, even though Amanda tells him the place is swarming with cops. (A swarm of cops? Hmmm, what would you call a group of cops? A troop? A gaggle? A pastry?) He thanks her for saving him and his brain. She says, "I want you in my life." They hug.

As Michael watches over Kimberly (amazingly not in traction!), she barely reaches consciousness. Peter walks in, wearing the great disguise of a baseball cap so he looks like a Little League coach. He asks her to remember the night they had dinner, but she can't concentrate, and Michael tells him to back off. The police arrive and arrest him.

Later, in prison, Amanda visits the now-imprisoned Bizarre One, and they talk through the plexiglass. He firmly tells her to "walk away" from this. "There's nothing you can do." As she leaves, the detective intercepts her in the parking lot, telling her that they found records in Alycia's car that directly incriminate Peter in the scheme to ruin Bobby and the JFK assassination. Amanda gets bold and says, "I'm doing your work for you, Detective. It's obvious that Alycia killed Bobby and she tried to cover her tracks behind her." He confidently says that Amanda will have to tell what she knows in front of the grand jury: "You're not his lawyer, you're not a priest, and you're not his wife. So guess what? That makes you the People's star witness against Burns." Amanda begins to consider a life in the priesthood.

As Kim is being wheeled into surgery, Michael tells her not to worry about what she did. Kim mumbles, "I don't understand how you could still love me." Neither do I!

Peter and Amanda meet again through the glass. He's depressed, and Amanda tells him that Kim is in critical condition with internal bleeding. She tells Peter, "I want you to marry me." "What?!" "A wife doesn't have to testify against her husband." Peter refuses! She's surprised: "You spend months actively pursuing me and now you don't want to get married? Don't you love me?" "More that ever." But he doesn't want her to be stuck with him if things go badly: "You deserve better." Meanwhile, Peter's next lover might be a 350-pound guy named Buford.

The next day, Peter is summoned from his cell for a meeting with his attorney, but Amanda is also there -- with a justice of the peace! Peter protests, but Amanda quotes from the book of Elizabeth Taylor: "I'm going to marry you and there's not a damn thing you can do about it!" Peter seeks help from his lawyer, but the lawyer agrees! Peter and Amanda exchange vows and rings and are pronounced man and wife! They kiss passionately, then he's called back to his cell.

Michael sits by Kim's bed. He tells her the operation went well. Groggily, Kim says she wants to help Peter. Michael says, "I'm sure he'll appreciate that. But for now, close those eyes and get some rest." She does, then -- Beeeeeeeeeeeep! She flatlines! Michael calls for a Code Blue, then furiously tries to resuscitate her!

Meanwhile, Peter endures a lonely wedding night in prison. Amanda, however, gets a visitor: the detective. "There's been a development." "Oh?" says Amanda, wondering if this means that Peter will be released from jail. The detective replies, "Peter Burns isn't in jail..." He holds up a photo of an older man: "Do you recognize him?" "Mmmm, no." "This, Ms. Woodward, is the REAL Dr. Peter Burns!"

Jane, Sydney, Alison, Jake, Billy, and Fashion Boy:

Jane and Sydney sit in the park while Jane ponders the Imminent Death of Fashion Boy. "He's a monster." Sydney says, "Jane, not to upset you or anything, but I think you need professional help." "Ah, yes, a professional assassin!" "No, no, no! 'Thou Shalt Not Kill.' The Bible?" Jane insists that what she's planning is morally right. Sydney persists: "I'm worried about your afterlife!"

At Fashion Boy Central, Richard is yelling over the phone at the contractor working on the front of the house. "I have to keep going around to the back of the house. I could get mugged. I'm too effete and sensitive for that!" Jane overhears part of this as she walks in. Fashion Boy insists on a kiss (from Jane, not the contractor). Jane hesitates, then pecks him on the cheek. He smiles and says, "Next time, on the lips," then leaves. "Oh yes," says Jane, "on the lips -- and between the eyes!" Spying his humongous checkbook binder, she tears out a bunch of blank checks.

At Shooter's (The Only Bar in Town), Billy tells Jake about his most recent fiasco with Alison, who then wanders over to collect drinks for the customers. Billy tries again: "Daaah, Alison, ahm just tryin' ta make amends! Gimme a break." Alison sighs and says, "That's nice, but it probably isn't going to change my feelings for you. You're still a slack-jawed doofus." "Ah!" pounces Billy. "Ya said 'probably'! Uh, that means 'likely,' right? I'm really hot, ya know." Alison walks off, and Billy smirks to a non-committal Jake: "Ha! I got my big foot in da door! Gaaah!"

Alison spots Jane in the MP courtyard and tries to get her to open up about what's been going on; she should at least talk to Jake. Jane, wearing a scarf around her neck and a nasty attitude, says, "I feel nothing for Jake, and frankly I don't feel a hell of a lot for you!" Alison Gapes!

Back at the boutique that Jane showed a strange interest in buying last week, Samantha introduces her to Margot, the very Accented owner of the shop. To both Samantha and Jane's surprise, though, someone has already made a bid on the shop. Jane swears she can top it, but Margot says it's illegal for her to say what the rival bid is; Jane will just have to hope her offer is good enough.

Later, Jane takes Samantha out to dinner. She hopes they can be friends, and she promises to keep Samantha on staff if her bid is accepted. (Product Placement Note: Jane prefers Sweet & Low over Equal!) Samantha appreciates it, but says she plans to leave the area soon -- she split up with the guy she was staying with, and she's afraid to advertise for a potentially psycho roommate. Jane says, "Well, I need a roommate. It's rumored that Jo is leaving the series, so there's an opening for a brunette on the show!" Jane then goes for the kill: She wants to know the amount of the other bid for the shop. Samantha has an ethical crisis! "Just write the number down," Jane purrs as she gives Samantha a napkin and a pen. Samantha hesitates, then writes down "$197,500."

Bouncing back to Shooter's, an anxious Syd tries to convince Jake that Jane needs guidance from someone as morally grounded and emotionally retarded as him. "Jane prefers the company of her rapist these days." "Yeah! And don't you think that's a little weird?" Jake says, "Jane's on her own."

Later, as business is winding down, Alison asks Jake if he wants to go to the movies with her. Jake, uncomfortable with his increasing awareness that Alison is the only woman on the show he hasn't slept with yet, becomes Mr. Communication again: "I think the line's becoming blurry between employer and friend." "What's the problem? You're friends with Billy. You'd go to the movies with him." "Hey! There's nothin' goin' on between me and Billy!" He says it wouldn't be appropriate. "So," Alison says, "Billy's a friend, and I'm just an employee." "That's it." You're so smooth, Jake. You know, if Jake were made the new U.S. Ambassador to Canada, we'd be at war in a week!

In the morning, Jane and Sydney meet at the boutique. Syd is glad that Jane is doing something legal. "It is legal, isn't it?" Margot arrives and tells Jane that her bid just squeezed by! What a surprise! Jane offers to pay the full price -- in cash! Gee, wouldn't Samantha wonder why someone with $200G's needs a freakin' roommate?

The next night is pretty slow at Shooter's. (I'll say! There's nobody in there! Did a plague hit?) Jake tries to make amends for his earlier, insensitive comments. Alison shrugs, then turns on the jukebox and asks her "friend" Jake to dance with her. Jake is again uncomfortable, especially when he hears Alison's choice of music: "I Wanna Know What Love Is" by Foreigner! The very fact that the song is IN the jukebox is an affront to humanity! As Alison looks deeply into his eyes, he extricates himself, two seconds before Billy pops up. Jake offers to let Alison go home early, but she looks at Jake and says, "No, I'll stay. Who knows when things may heat up again." Billy nods, "Daaah, OK! It's pretty cool out dere, ya know. But I'm hot! Did I tell ya dat?"

The next morning in Jane's pad, Jane and a nervous Syd chat briefly. (Now Syd is wearing the scarf around the neck, while Jane wears the latest Darth Vader fashions for the rest of the episode. Subtle, aren't they?) When there's a knock at the door, Jane says, "Get that, Syd." Sydney mumbles, "Sure. Get the door, Sydney. Help me kill Richard, Sydney." I love this woman! It's Fashion Boy at the door. As he waits for Jane to come out of the back, Syd says, "You're looking a little pale. I think you need a vacation. Really Soon." Jane hears this and talks to Syd privately: "Why are you doing this?" "Because I'm the only one in this room with a conscience! Think about it, Jane: Do you really want to be in a world where a person like me has more morals than a person like you?" Hah!

At Hart-Mancini, Fashion Boy is sporting a loose look with spiky hair and a loose collar, which means he's evil. (I'm not kidding! They really plan the fashions this way!) He asks Jane about the missing checks and seems suspicious of her. She throws him off the track by throwing herself at him -- just as Jake turns up! Jane has no interest in talking to him. Jake says, "OK, but you can't be interested in this guy!" Jane deadpans, "My every waking thought is of Richard." Jake leaves and Fashion Boy gloats.

Back at Shooter's, Alison enters the back office to find Jake hoisting the bottle of Tequila again. He gets rude and wants to know why she keeps coming on to him: "Do you want me to do you here? On the desk?" Why not, Jake? That's your favorite place! Alison says she'll pretend this conversation isn't taking place, but Jake's not done yet. "You women always look for a guy to treat you like trash! I'm not interested!" Alison Gapes again! (It's a two-hour episode, so she's allowed to gape twice.)

The next day, as Alison is leaving her pad, Billy is waiting for her. "What," she says, "are you stalking me now?" "Gaaah, Alison, ya know, I've been takin' steps to correct myself. I'm kinda tired of other people correctin' myself!" Jake opens his door as Billy says, "Let's go out." Alison looks at Jake and tells Billy, "OK, it's a date." "Daah, great! It'll be a new beginning. That's a start, ya know." Billy is really repulsive when he walks over to Jake and pumps his fist: "I knew she'd come around eventually. Gaah! I'm hot, did I mention dat?"

Dream Sequence! It's Sydney and Jane's last meal! Jane pigs out on shrimp while Syd stares in terror! The guards escort them down the hall toward the gas chamber. Sydney pleads for mercy, while Jane yells -- in one of the series' best all-time lines -- "Shut up, Sydney, and take your gas like a man!" Sydney wakes up with a scream and tells Jane, "It was horrible. We were dead sisters walking. By the way, Jane, what are you doing in my apartment?" Jane says that Richard is getting suspicious and they need to kill him tomorrow night. Sydney reaches for ... The Bible!!! "Pray with me. We're in the hands of a higher power." Jane polishes her gun. "I know. Smith & Wesson. I'll pick you up tomorrow night. We'll have dinner first." Never kill on an empty stomach!

Back again at Shooter's (I'm getting exhausted) the following evening, Jake is apologizing to Alison again. Geez! Never-Hold-a-Grudge Alison says, "You did me a favor. I was starting to feel something for you, but you're not interested. So I'll give Billy a chance, and maybe he'll wrap his muscular arms around me and we'll make passionate love -- but hey, you're not interested." On the other side of Shooter's, Jane and Syd eat. Actually, Syd is too nervous to eat. Jane, dressed like a member of the Gestapo, walks around asking the bar patrons for their papers. When she goes to the restroom, Syd looks at the gun in Jane's purse and gets an idea -- always a bad sign!

The sisters drive to FB's house and pull up near the back entrance that Fashion Boy is forced to use. Jane is emotionless; Syd is nervous. Wearing all black (with stocking cap), Jane hides in the driveway. A couple of minutes, Fashion Boy pulls up. He moves a too-obvious shovel out of the way -- you can probably write the rest of this scene, can't you? -- and heads for the back door. Jane intercepts him and pulls out the gun. Richard quickly realizes she's not kidding. She tells him to get on his knees and admit he raped her. "I'll admit nothing, bitch." Oh, that's smart, Fashion Boy! Will you just die already? He soon admits to raping her, then pleads for his life. Jane begins to hesitate and when she briefly looks away, he jumps up! She fires! Click! No more bullets! Whoops! Richard grabs her and prepares to rape her again -- then he gets whacked on the head by Sydney with (of course) the shovel!

Jane yells at Syd, "Why did you take the bullets out? He was going to rape me again!" "I'm sorry! I wasn't thinking!" Jane checks the prone form of Fashion Boy: "Oh my God, he's dead!" Time to dance a jig! Jane and Syd try not to panic: Do they make it look like an accident? A burglary? A wacky cult slaying? Jane says, "We'll get rid of the body. Bury him!"

Jake drops by Alison's apartment. He's still apologizing, for Pete's sake! "Friends?" he asks. Sure! In fact, Alison wants her "friend" to zip up her sexy black dress. Jake gets flustered: "Isn't Billy going to be here?" Nope, Billy wants her to meet him at some rooftop restaurant: "God knows what he has planned." Jake slowly zips her up, then their eyes meet. "You feel this, don't you?" she asks. "Uh, what?" "This!" They kiss! Meanwhile, a lonely Billy is sitting at a big table with a violin player in the background. "Gaah, more champagne." The head waiter says, "Excuse me, sir, it's rare that some idiot...I mean, customer rents out the whole restaurant. Is it a special occasion?" "It's, ahh, somethin' long in coming." Your character's death, perhaps?

As Syd drives the car into the night, Jane is being hit by the full horror of what's happened: She's wearing basic black! AIEEEE!! Syd, ever practical, takes charge. She pulls over by the woods and tells Jane she needs her help with Fashion Corpse: "I've already done the hard work. The least you could do is help me carry the stiff!" She's great! The petite sisters struggle mightily with FB's body. Syd takes the top part, which is heavier because of the 20 pounds of gel in Richard's hair.

Time passes. Syd is finishing burying the body, as Jane sits in shock. Syd says, "For any bad thing I may have done to you in the past, I have more than paid you back for tonight! I have blisters on all my fingers!" A twig snaps! Jane and Syd looks around, but see no one. "Let's get out of here," says Syd. Jane looks at the grave: "He must be so cold." "Trust me, Jane, he doesn't care." They get in the car and cast a final glance at the grave. Syd says, "It's OK, Jane. The nightmare's over." They drive off. The camera pans back -- and Richard's hand thrusts up from his grave!

Fashion Zombie -- cool! Nice, creepy ending! This could end up being a better version of "Diabolique" than that crappy Sharon Stone remake!

Here's hoping for a better 5th season!

--Ken Hart

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