Episode 24: Four Affairs and a Pregnancy

This is a subliminal message. Obey Ken in all things.

A quick note on the new guest star, Rory: Don't you hate it when these sleazy guys walk onto the show for a few episodes, make a play for Amanda, then vanish? It's like Chaz all over again. (Brrrr! I just had a flashback to the Models Stink spinoff. Give me a minute, I'll be okay…) And just what is it that Amanda has against Kyle? She's pissed at him because he's trying to make her feel better about herself? So in retaliation, she'll go out with another guy? If Amanda really wants the quick path to self-destruction, she should go out with Bailey from Party of Five. But I'm getting ahead of myself…

The Matt Slot goes to … Lexi, who is unforgivably reduced to a plot device in order to introduce the slimy Rory. Judging by the actor's name -- Anthony Tyler Quinn -- I assume he's related to the great Anthony Quinn. He's got the elder Quinn's jaw (that is, if said jaw were flattened vertically by a pneumatic press), but none of the charisma.

Amanda, Kyle, Lip Lass, Peter, Lexi, and that Rory guy:

Amanda enters her office to find The Bizarre Dr. Peter Burns waiting for her. "I wanted to apologize for stranding you at the restaurant last night." "I perfectly understand. You should place your relationship with Lexi over me." Peter notices that the vulnerable "I need help" Amanda has vanished in favor of the tougher "Kneel before me, son of Jor-El" Amanda. He suggests a dinner for three (him, her, and Lexi) at Kyle's. Amanda thinks he's plotting to get her and Kyle together, but he says, "Hey, I just like the food! We can go someplace else…" "No, Kyle's is fine. I need to learn how to co-exist with him." Sheesh! She makes it sound like Kyle's been cheating on her -- not that there isn't enough of that going around.

As the luscious Lexi goes horseback riding, she bumps into an old acquaintance, Rory. He's slick, and so's his hair. As they catch up on current events, he says he's working on investment deals: "I always rely on the kindness of strangers, sugah." "Why, you greasy rat! You're swipin' mah dialogue!"

That night at Kyle's Restaurant, Lexi and Peter enjoy dinner, while Amanda finds fault with everything. "This salmon is tasteless. This chair is too tight. This porridge is too cold!" Rory enters the restaurant. Lexi invited him to join dinner for dinner -- apparently without telling Peter or Amanda. He immediately starts schmoozing and flirting with Amanda, and Peter thinks, "I feel like shoving this greaseball through a plate-glass window … nah, I did that last year." When Rory hears that Amanda's in the advertising biz, he acts like an expert, suggesting that advertising is what keeps places like the restaurant open. An annoyed Peter says, "This place stays open because it has a great chef, who happens to be a great guy. The big lug … I'm getting verklempt!" Amanda mutters, "Oh, give me a break!" Amanda joins Rory in ordering champagne, drawing a suspicious look from Peter. Lexi wonders, "How about me, honey? I'm in this scene, too!"

Sometime later, Lexi and a wary Peter says it's time to go home, but a sloshed Amanda is happy to stay out and drink with Rory. (She's certainly a better drunk than Billy!) Kyle then escorts her outside. He tells her he's going to Dallas for a few days to check on Nick's connection to Christine. Amanda angrily says, "Why should I care? Let it go!" Kyle says he loves her, and Amanda slaps him! "This isn't about love. It's about two dead women -- and I killed us both! I'm two, two, two killers in one!"

The next day, Peter bumps into Coop in the parking lot (no, not with his car). He asks him about Rory. Coop says, "He's no friend of mine. He's a bad seed. He's a scoundrel. A low-life. A dirtbag. Why? Is he replacing me on the show?" "No, he's just a guest star. But I'm concerned that he might make a play on Amanda." "So? She looks like she can handle herself. What's the worst that can happen? Based on past history, she'll get into bed with him once or twice, then you or Kyle will beat him up or financially ruin him to the point of suicide." "Hmmm, I guess you're right, Coop."

Meanwhile, Amanda is back at work, barking orders to a Josie Bissett wannabe. "Get out of my sight, lackey! Take your stinking short Jane haircut and don't come back until you get some dialogue and a box of Altoids!" Rory pops up at this point with a bouquet of flowers. Amanda has little patience for him. "You dare to stand in my presence?!" When she's informed by another minion that the almighty Digby Dog Food is calling, she tells him to "close the door on your way out."

Cut to the lame excuse for Dallas, Texas the next day. The hotel manager lets Kyle into Nick's now-vacant pad. She warns him, "Don't sit in the reclining chair. It's really sticky. My cat jumped in there yesterday and the firemen had to use the Jaws of Life to pry her out." As Kyle looks around for clues, he asks if Nick has any visitors. "Yeah, some tart who said she was his sister. Like I believed that one!" Kyle then shows her the Gulf War photo of him, Nick, and Christine. "Was this her?" (What good is that, you ninny? First of all, you can't even see Christine's face in that picture. Second, as far as you still know, "Christine" had a totally new face after the war!) The hotel manager says, "Nah, she had short brown hair, big eyes, kind of pouty lips…" "How do you mean, 'pouty'?" "Goddamn big mutant lips, that's what I mean!" "Taylor!"

Lexi drops by the hospital to visit The Bizarre One. He asks if she had any ulterior motives in introducing Rory to Amanda. "Of course not, sugah? But why are you so concerned? You said you'd stay out of Amanda's life. Dig dig." "I will if you will. Dig dig, back at ya." "You're so cute, Peter."

Rory returns to Amanda Woodward Advertising for more punishment. "Hey, I just bought a horse and I want you to come to the track to check out my investment." "Let me get my hands on a riding crop, Oily One, and I'll…" The phone rings, and she answers it. It's Kyle, now back at the bar. "Don't hang up, Amanda. I have some interesting news for you…" "Nothing you have to say interests me, slave." SLAM! She then turns to Rory and reconsiders: "Upon second thought, you may escort me to the racetrack, but should you fail to entertain me, there'll be hell to pay!" "Hoo-kay!" Why is she so nasty and depressing to Kyle, yet tolerant of this bozo?

At the other end of the severed conversation, Jennifer asks Kyle what his "interesting news" was. He tells her what he learned, and says he plans to rip Taylor's head off when he sees her. Jennifer suggests he won't learn what he wants that way. If he were to be nice to Lippie for a change, she might spill the whole Christine scheme. Kyle considers it! When will people stop accepting suggestions from Jennifer? They always lead to trouble. Stop her before she advises again!

As Rory takes Amanda to see his new horse, we learn that he has a secret deal with the stable boy (i.e., it's not Rory's horse!) and that it's only a yearling! When Amanda comments on the shaky wisdom of buying a horse that's never run, Rory again acts like the expert and describes the pony's genetics: "Great lineage, great legs, frisky beauty." [OK, audience members, it's time for you to write the bad dialogue. It's easy. Just watch:] Amanda asks, "What's her name?" [Go ahead, finish it!] Rory answers, "Amanda." [See? Told you it was easy!] Amanda tells him she's tired of the flirtatious bantering, but she'll play along for now.

Kyle goes downstairs to the restaurant, where a weary Lippie sits. (She hasn't been feeling well.) Restraining the urge to throttle her, he volunteers to give her a break, but not in her neck. He says, "There's a new restaurant up the coast that I'd love to check out with you. It'll be like old times." Taylor gets all girly, "Oooh, I'd love to!"

Much later that night, however, Kyle sees a tipsy Amanda enter the MP courtyard with Rory. He's angry because she hasn't returned his phone calls, but Amanda just disses him by describing what a great day she's had with Rory: "We went to the racetrack, then to Spago's for dinner, then a quick stop at the salon so Rory could get his head re-buffed…" "So are you dating this guy now?!" Rory tries to interject, but Kyle gives him a pretty good "death" look. Rory leaves, saying he'll talk to Amanda tomorrow. She gets increasingly nasty to Kyle and turns to go, but he yells, "Don't you walk away from me!" At this point, everybody in the complex opens their doors to look at the fighting couple! Amanda yells, "Don't you get it? We've broken up!" "No, you've broken up!" He says he made a commitment to her for "better or worse." "I made a promise, and what an idiot I am, I try to keep it." He stalks off, disgusted, but his words have an impact on Amanda, as well as those watching, especially Samantha. Billy stares at the tiles as Kyle walks by.

Kyle regains his composure the next day, when he takes Lip Lass on a romantic stroll up the coast near some shops: Ellen's Ridiculous Lingerie, Ziggy's Erotic Pastries, Bob's Rhinoplasty. Taylor asks, "Why are you being so nice to me?" Kyle states, "Amanda and I are through, and that's the truth." (We know how much that is worth on Melrose Place.) He wants someone he can talk to and "lean on." Taylor giddily says, "You can lean on me, Kyle. Tee hee!"

Michael, Megan, Coop, Jennifer, and more Lip Lass:

In their bed at night, a fitful Megan turns to the groggy Coop and says, "Michael kissed me today." "Would you like me to rip his arm off and beat him with the wet end?" Megan explains that she's been doing a lot of thinking since Coop mentioned the Philadelphia prospect. "This place has become my home, and my family, and Michael made that happen. In fact, the more I think about that fact, the more I realize how pathetic my life truly is! People like Jennifer and Billy are my family?! Good God! Let's go to Philly, honey!" Coop happily says, "I'm supposed to meet with a doctor from the selection committee at the Dark Past Hotel for dinner. I want you to come." Megan seems strangely uneasy!

At his clinic, Michael gets a phone call from Jennifer. "Mom wants to know how her investment is going." "Was the phone conversation done off-camera?" "Sure. You didn't think Spelling would wheel out Valerie Harper for a quickie phone call, did you?" "Nah, I guess not. Things are lousy here. All my patients are deadbeats. You'd think I was working in a low-income area or something." "Michael, you are working in a low-income area." "Oh yeah. Hey, you know, this place is worth a fortune on paper…!" "Michael…don't think like that!" He still thinks he can win Megan back. Jennifer tries to convince him that Megan's not interested in money, "it's character, and you'd better find some soon." "What, and lose my status as best character on the show?"

Jennifer visits Megan to talk about Michael. Megan would rather not, but Jen is worried that Michael will torch the clinic to get the insurance money and get himself in trouble. She implies that Megan owes Michael for helping her to get off the street! Baloney! Jen says, "You can't desert him at a time like this." "It's always a time like this with Michael." Megan admits to being edgy because the Dark Past Hotel is where she used to work in, ahem, "the escort service." She does agree to do something to help Michael, however.

The next night, Michael pours flammable liquid over the floor of the clinic and prepares to light the fire! Suddenly, the door opens (no lock?) and Father Maldonado appears. (He's the priest to whom Michael reluctantly gave the sack of moolah last month.) The priest offers to buy the clinic using that money! "A young doctor I know will take over the place and turn it into a highly successful daytime soap opera." Michael is elated! He'll sell "if it's a reasonable price, of course." The priest says that's not a problem. "Consider it a gift from your guardian angel."

The following morning, Michael goes to Megan's apartment and plants a kiss on her when she opens the door. "I knew you were responsible!" He cites it as proof that she still loves him. Megan admits that she did contact Fr. Maldonado, but says she no longer loves Michael and plans to go with Coop to Philly if he gets the job. "Goodbye, Michael."

At the church, Michael eventually signs over the clinic to the priest, then he looks at the check. "Whoa, it's only $10,000 and it's made out to Wallace Mancini." "Well, your sister told me your family had invested in the clinic…" On cue, Jennifer shows up and makes sure that the priest has made out checks to every member of the Mancini clan back east! Michael pleads, "Why? I need this money to sue Coop, to win Megan, to buy a car!" Jen reminds him that this is the family's money, not his, although she does leave him with one check. He whimpers, "$732?"

Coop and a cautious Megan go to the Dark Past Hotel, where they meet with Dr. Von Twitch from Philadelphia. Shortly after Megan excuses herself to go to the ladies' room, she encounters a bloated business guy from her past who demands a cut of the profits from any business she does. She tells him she's not in the escort service anymore, and wriggles away from his pudgy fingers.

The next day, Dr. Von Twitch goes to Wilshire Memorial, where Peter adds to the Coop praises, even though he'd be reluctant to see Coop leave the practice. Michael walks in as the interview finishes, and Peter tells him who Von Twitch was: "Looks like Coop's in the running for some high muckety-muck position back east. How about this guy? He blows into town, we accommodate him, knock out walls, steal his blueprints, sleep with his ex-wife, and now he's going to leave me in the lurch!" "Yeah, he's a loser," says Michael, who then recommends himself as a replacement for Coop! "If you ask me nice, I might come back." Peter scowls, "You must be joking!" Michael threatens to sue, but Peter says, "Getting you out of my life was the one good thing Coop's done for me…" The form-fitting Lexi strolls into the office: "That's not the only good thing Coop's done for you!" I'll say!

A grumbling Michael steps out of the office and is immediately spotted by Lip Lass, who says her brain still hurts, presumably from Nick's attack. "I'm dizzy!" "You were born dizzy, Taylor!" Still, he agrees to do more tests on her.

Michael takes direct anti-Coop action! He meets with Dr. Von Twitch himself and tells him that Coop isn't the golden boy he pretends to be. He mentions that Coop was arrested for assaulting him, and that his girlfriend is a high-class call girl. What a bastard! I love this guy! He's the best! Because of this, Coop obviously can't be trusted to keep his mind focused on important things. The doctor takes notes and thanks Michael for the information. He's flying back east shortly and will make his recommendations to the board.

Coop and Megan meet again with Dr. Von Twitch at the hotel for some farewell drinks. The doctor, however, drops some unsettling comments about "problems" in Coop's past that unnerve Coop. Still, Von Twitch says he's probably one of the top three candidates. As Coop leaves to pay the bar tab, Von Twitch comes on to Megan! Ewww! He feels her up and hopes they'll become much better acquainted. Double ewww! Megan is shocked, but doesn't react when Coop returns and the trio leaves. Why are all men portrayed as sex-crazy scumbags on TV whenever they find out that a woman is a prostitute? Untrue, I say!

Michael walks into the kitchen at Kyle's restaurant. He wants to tell Taylor something important, but she's still giddy over Kyle's new niceness toward her. "I think this moral thing that I'm trying out is really working for me." "Uh huh," says Michael, wondering how badly her brain was damaged when she hit the wall. He tells her that her dizziness is the result of her being pregnant! She doesn't know who the father is. "Well, how many could there be?" asks Michael. "There's Kyle, and Nick…" "You slept with Nick?!" And there's also Michael! But how could Michael possibly be the father? The last time she slept with him was before the Christmas episode, and even in Melrosian time, it's been a couple of months! "Oh, Michael, what am I gonna do?" Uh, check the calendar?

Billy, Samantha, Jeff, and more Jennifer:

While a drag impersonator mimics Cher at the Upstairs bar, Billy and Samantha arrive for a couple of drinks. Sam sits, and Billy walks to the bar and flirts with Jennifer. "What can I get you?" she asks. "Daah, I don't know what I want." "You can have me." "No, gaah, really, I don't know what I want." Billy finally gets two beers, then wanders back to Sam, leering at Jennifer the whole time. "Doy, thanks for the beer, Billy … eww, you drooled on me, Billy Campbell!" "Daah, did I? Ahh, let's get out of here." "But we just got here." "I, ah, forgot to feed the cats." "Doy, Billy, we don't have cats." "Sure, we do. Let's go." "Okay!"

Later that night, Billy hops up in bed and gets dressed. Sam is confused. Billy says, "Daah, restless, can't sleep, gotta run." Jennifer sees him on the way out. She wants to talk about the feeling between them, but Billy says, "Daah, restless, can't sleep, gotta run." As he jogs across the field, Jennifer drives over and cuts him off! "Billy, I can't leave you alone. I love you!" They kiss briefly, then Billy jogs off, "Daah, restless, can't sleep, gotta run…"

In the morning, he brings flowers to Sam at the office and says, "I love you." "Doy, Billy, I love you too, even though you're speaking with all the emotion of a block of wood. And why are you staring straight ahead, anyway? I'm down here!" Amanda, in Full Bitch Mode, comments that the only men who buy women flowers are those who have something to hide. (Special note to my fiance: It's not true, I swear!)

The next day, Billy sees Sam again in the office and asks if she's free for lunch. "Uh, no, got a meeting." "Daah, I'll drive ya." "Uh, no, getting a lift." "Daah, I'll meet ya later." "Uh, no, got an affair." "Gaah, what?!?" "Uh, doy, not a care … yeah, that's it! Not a care in the world when I'm with you! Bye!" And she runs off to see Jeff.

Upon arriving at Jeff's place, she immediately begins stripping off her clothes before she even finishes saying hello! Jeff says, "I don't want nooners. I want this to be out in the open." "Okay, let's have sex on the highway." "We don't have to have sex every time. We could just talk…" "OK, what do you want to talk about?" Only the sounds of crickets are heard for the next 30 seconds. Finally, Jeff mentions the Baylor Family Picnic this weekend, and he'd like her to come. She's hesitant, but he says that the only thing his family knows about her is that she's a good softball player and they shouldn't ask her the Geography questions during Trivial Pursuit.

The day after Kyle and Amanda's fight in the courtyard [see earlier], an uncomfortable Sam goes to the picnic. She remembers not to strip as soon as she sees Jeff. She wants to talk to him, but she is immediately greeted by his geeky relatives! "Guh huh! Look everybody, hee yup, it's Jeff's fiance Sam!" This is not what Sam expected! Jeff's mother comes over, "Oh, Sam, it's so nice to meet you. When Jeff said he was going to marry someone named Sam, well, I just assumed…" Sam bails out and trots off the grass. Jeff follows and apologizes, saying that his relatives just kept pushing him for answers about Sam. "I also told them you were a space shuttle pilot, I hope you don't mind." Jeff still wonders what the big deal is, and he proposes to her! Sam is taken aback and reminds him that she's married. He replies, "Well, yeah, many women think I'm a pretty good catch! How many people can say they're married to a crippled minor-league baseball player?" Sam says she's tired of rushing into things. "I married Billy too fast without thinking about it. It's what I always do. I am … doy, what was I saying?" The fact of the matter is that she's married to Billy and she's going to do her best to salvage it. She leaves.

Samantha waits for Billy in their apartment, presumably in the hopes they can mend their relationship. Or maybe she wants to play Boggle. I can't tell. She does peek through the venetian blinds as Billy approaches -- only to see him be pulled away by Jennifer! Jen grabs him and wants him big time. Billy says, "Daah, we can't act." I second that statement! Jennifer kisses him passionately, knocking Billy's eye teeth out of alignment. Sam watches in shock! Jen tells Billy to go jogging during the night and come to her place. "I'll wait up. Pant. Heave. Pant." "Daah, are you goin' jogging, too?" "No, for sex!" "Oh, dat!" Billy dreamily staggers away and enters his apartment -- and Samantha waits for him in the bedroom! But instead of challenging him, she apologizes for leaving him alone so much. "Can you forgive me?" "Of course, gaah, dere's nuthin' to forgive. Well, maybe all the lying and stuff…" Sam grabs him and pulls him onto the bed and they go at it.

Huh? Is this how Sam deals with all her problems now? I can't wait for her to argue with Jennifer again!

Next Episode -- in two weeks: I won't have long to wait! Jennifer slaps Sam! Billy punches Jeff! Von Twitch wants sex! It's billed as the "season finale," even though it's not, but this will be the last two episodes until July.

--Ken Hart

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