Recap: Dylan and Toni are sitting on the couch, looking at real estate listings in Hawaii. Dylan says he'd like to build a house from the ground up, but Toni thinks that that would be time consuming and too much of a commitment. Dylan agrees that it is, but tells her he's thinking of making an even bigger commitment, then casually says he's contemplating getting married. (Say what?!) Toni acts casual and says, "Really? Anyone special?" and he's like, "No, just this girl I know...but I don't know if she's into it." Toni tells him he'll never know unless he asks, so Dylan turns to her and says, "Marry me." Toni looks startled, then tells him that that wasn't a question - plus he wasn't in the required bended knee position. Dylan dutifully gets off the couch, kneels before her, professes his love for her, then asks, "Will you marry me?" Toni happily accepts his proposal - despite it being completely insane to marry someone you met less than two months ago - and the two start smooching.
As I watch the opening credits, I wonder why Pumpkin Head is being featured as a regular cast member. It's reminiscent of when Jesse Vasquez was billed as a regular cast member in Season 5, even though all he ever did was boringly bicker with Ahn-drea in a handful of episodes.
Beach house. Donna is primping for the next round in the dragged out selection process of the Royal Court princess thing. Clare asks her why she keeps wearing the same pink dress, and Donna tells her that all the princess wannabes are doing this 'cause it's considered good luck. Ray drops by uninvited, and when Clare answers the door, she flashes Donna a look of distaste and mouths, "Bad luck." One of his arms is wrapped up in a bandage, and Donna's like, "What happened?" so he reminds her about the [much deserved] ass-kicking he got from Joe during the previous episode. Donna explains that Joe was just looking out for her, and Ray's all, "Whatever" and tells her that he started going to therapy for his deeply-rooted anger issues. It's about damn time. He asks her to join him at one of his therapy sessions, and Donna reminds him that they're no longer a couple, but Ray insists that the therapist is aware of that and still thinks it's necessary. Donna agrees, but says she'll meet him there. After he leaves, Clare tells her she's insane to go to therapy and warns her not to get sucked back into Pumpkin Head's toxic orbit, but Donna clucks sympathetically and points out he's trying to get help.
Susan and Brandon arrive in Palm Springs for a newspaper convention. When they check into their hotel room, Susan turns on the radio and listens to a couple of DJs talk about "earthquake weather". Brandon grumbles that he hates "those guys" and turns the radio off. Susan then slips out of her dress so that viewers can gratuitously ogle her slim taut body in a skimpy purple bikini (at first I thought it was her underwear), and Brandon hornily steers her toward the bed, but she shoves him away and bounds over to the door and tells him she wants to go for a dip in the pool.
Colin's loft. As Colin works on another of his grisly paintings, he tells Kelly he's starting to love L.A. - in particular the palm trees and the huge supermarkets. Kelly tells him that the weather in New York is very cold today, and he says he never wants to go back. He then says that his new TA job will be great, since he enjoys teaching and still has plenty of time to work on his art (oh joy). He happily tells her that everything is falling into place perfectly.
The Walsh house. Steve is in the foyer, playing pinball. Clare offers to make him something to eat, and then the two talk about the super hot doinkfest they enjoyed during the previous episode. Clare chalks it up to unbridled passion, but Steve thinks it was maybe the effect of Madame Raven's love potion. Clare deliberately ruins his pinball game by tilting the machine, then saucily says if he wants to make the earth shake, he should hang out with her. She sashays up the stairs, and a horny Steve mutters, "I'm so weak.."
Over in the kitchen, David compliments Valerie's egg salad...and then the two start sucking face. David wants to know when they're going to hit the sheets already, so Valerie says she wants to be sure that the moment is exactly right. David, who's clearly still scarred by Donna's stringent self-imposed chastity, asks her how longthat's going to take...so Valerie mulls that over for a few seconds and declares that tonight's the night! Yippee!
Pasadena. The Rose Court hopefuls each hold a single rose and pose for a group photo, and Leslie Sumner informs everyone that the final interviews are scheduled for tomorrow. One of the candidates tells Donna she hopes that the interview doesn't conflict with her shift, and Donna marvels at how she's able to balance school and a job. Oh Donna...the world is full of non-spoiled brats who don't have rich mommies and daddies paying their every expense and have no choice but to make ends meet by working their way through university. Donna glances through an old Rose Court photo album and is startled when she sees her mother in the 1969 group photo. And just as she's trying to process this boring realization, Leslie informs her that Joe has arrived to see her.
Joe greets her with, "Hi gorgeous" (which was nauseating) and tells her he was "in the neighborhood" so he dropped by to take her to lunch. She thanks him but says she has an appointment with Ray's therapist. Joe's all, "Wha-a?" so she assures him that she and Pumpkin Head aren't getting back together or anything; she just wants to ensure that he gets professional help. Joe, who is unfailingly nice and un-meddlesome, has no objection and gives her a kiss.
Palm Springs hotel. Brandon and Susan get into the elevator with a heavily pregnant woman...and judging from the title of this episode, I think we can all guess where this dumb subplot is headed.
The Walsh house. Steve is playing another game of pinball when everything in the house starts shaking. Egads!! Earthquake!! He, Clare, David and Val all take cover underneath doorways...and over at Dylan's house, we see that Dylan is canoodling a panicked Toni as they too stand beneath a doorway. At Colin's loft, meanwhile, Colin is all, "Wha-at's going on?!" as his paint and art stuff goes flying everywhere. After a few seconds the earthquake ends, and a shaken Colin tells Kelly he takes back everything he just said about loving L.A.
Palm Springs. After the earthquake, the elevator is plunged into darkness. Brandon tries to use the phone to call for help, but naturally it's dead. He and Susan introduce themselves to the pregnant woman, whose name is Ellen. She tells them she's due next week...and just as Brandon assures her that they'll be rescued soon, Ellen's water breaks because the Beverly Hills, 90210 writers are predictable and lame.
Donna, who's been unaffected by the quake, is on her way to Ray's therapist's office. She hears mention of the earthquake on her car radio, so she hauls out her giant car phone to call her father and assure him she's OK. She then starts to ask him about Felice being a Rose Court finalist in 1969, but the giant phone cuts out on her.
Dylan's house. As Dylan and Toni clean up broken dishes, Toni grumbles about how much she hates earthquakes. Bruno calls to check up on her, and she assures him she's OK, then pauses the call to ask Dylan if she should tell him about their engagement. Dylan's like, "Sure, why not?" so Toni gives Bruno the disturbing news. He's speechless for a few seconds, then says he's happy for her...and she tells him she'll call again tomorrow to break the news to her father since he's currently out of town.
The Walsh house. Kelly and Colin drop by as everyone's cleaning up. Kelly asks if anyone has heard from Brandon and Susan, and Valerie tells her she tried to call them in Palm Springs, but there was no answer in their hotel room. Valerie suggests they all spend the night at Casa Walsh, then heads out to the garage to retrieve the "quake kit" that Jim and Cindy left. A spooked Colin, who's afraid the roof of the house is going to collapse on him, accompanies her. Kelly snarkily remarks to David how well he and Val are getting along these days, and David says she was there when he needed someone. Kelly warns him that she's a manipulative dicktard who always has an agenda, and David irritably tells her to give it a rest.
Therapist's office. During Ray's/Donna's joint session, the therapist explains to Donna that she figured she was entitled to an explanation of Ray's volatile behavior. She says that she and Ray have discussed his abusive father, and how his childhood was filled with fear and violence. The therapist then asks Ray to step outside for a moment - and once he's out of earshot, she tells Donna that breaking a lifelong pattern of abuse can't happen overnight. She adds that Ray's therapy will succeed better without her in the picture - hurray!! - otherwise she could be risking a potentially dangerous situation, as Ray continues to be an unpredictable nutter.
Palm Springs. Repair men are working on getting the elevator going again. Brandon urges them to speed it up, since he has no clue how to deliver a baby. The work man tells him that the generator keeps shutting down, so their rescue could be a few hours away. Ellen shrieks through another contraction, and Brandon nervously announces, "Looks like we're going to have a baby!"
The Walsh house. Valerie and Colin return from the garage empty handed; apparently the "quake kit" is buried under a pile of junk. That's a handy place for it. Colin is mystified by how casual everyone is acting about the earthquake, and Kelly tells him he just has to get used to it, 'cause it's part of living in L.A. Meanwhile, as Steve cleans up his bedroom, Clare asks him if he's ever considered doinking during an earthquake. Steve's like, "D'yuh", but when she brazenly tells him she'd like to get it on right now, he reminds her that there's a house full of people. She says they can do it quietly, so he thinks that over and the two start getting it on.
Palm Springs. A medic is on hand to talk Brandon and Susan through the delivery. Ellen starts whining about wanting her husband, and Susan tries to minimize her freakout by asking questions about her family. Ho hum.
The Walsh house. Donna arrives and tells everyone that she saw her mother in an old Rose Court group photo, but no one seems to give much of a rat's ass. Dylan and Toni drop by, and Dylan tells everyone that they're about to cause a jolt that's bigger than any earthquake: he and Toni are getting married! Everyone is understandably shocked at the crazy announcement, and Kelly looks particularly put out by the news. Clare invites Dylan and Toni to stay for dinner, and Toni eagerly accepts. A few seconds later, Nat calls to inform everyone that he lost a lot of dishes because of the earthquake and needs their help in the kitchen; in exchange, dinner will be on him. Dylan cheerfully chirps, "Can't say no to Nat!" and I just don't get why the hell not..
Palm Springs. The medic counsels Brandon through the delivery, and Brandon urges Ellen to give a final push - yadda yadda - and a few seconds later we hear the crying of a newborn baby. As Brandon hands Ellen the swaddled babe, she tearfully calls her new son Little Brandon, and thankfully the lights in the elevator finally come back on.
The Peach Pit. The gang is busily cooking for a diner full of customers when Joe drops by. He tells Donna he came by for a meal since the cafeteria at his dorm is out of commission. He asks her how it went with Pumpkin Head's therapist, and she says it went fine. Dylan slouches through the kitchen where Kelly and Colin are working to empty the trash, and Kelly follows him outside to scold him about his engagement. She asks him how he could just "waltz in" and make his big announcement, then wonders if he considered her feelings. Mmm...not sure why Dylan should be required to consider her feelings, since she was the one who dumped him, turned down his trip around the world, and then hooked up with Colin. She scoffs at his past life experience in the dopey Real McCoy episode when he "discovered" that the two of them were soulmates (the "seminal link" LOL), then snarkishly wonders why Toni wasn't in his past life. Heh. Dylan says he really loves Toni, so Kelly snaps, "I'm happy for you" and starts walking away. Dylan wryly retorts, "You sound thrilled" and then reminds her, "You chose you." Ah yes...the infamous, nonsensical "I choose me" decision from Season 5 that has been heartily and mercilessly ridiculed by viewers and television recappers alike. Kelly says she so badly wants to hate Toni, but unfortunately she can't 'cause the girl seems genuinely nice. She then softens and tells Dylan she hopes they'll be happy together, and Dylan thanks her and concedes that maybe people have more than one soulmate in life.
Beach house. Joe walks Donna to her door...and they're dismayed to find Ray putzing around, boarding up a broken window. Donna tells him to leave 'cause she has no desire to see his Pumpkin Head anymore...and when Joe irately chimes in to second that, Ray gets enraged and tosses his hammer through the patio door, shattering the glass. He then suckishly snaps, "Fine! Fix it yourself" and storms off. Joe looks like he'd love to go after him and give him another thrashing (which I'dsoo enjoy watching a second time), but Donna restrains him and tells him to let it go.
The Walsh house. Colin and Kelly awaken after spending the night on a giant chaise lounge on the porch. Inside, Valerie tells David that, technically, they slept together last night...but he says he wants there to be actual penetration. As they play kissy face, Kelly enters the kitchen and is all, "Eww" so Valerie quickly leaves the room to take a shower. Kelly apologizes to David about all the bitchy stuff she said about his budding romance with Valerie...and he accepts her apology and says he's crazy about his new girlfriend. Following that, Donna enters the room and informs Kelly that classes at CU have been canceled for the day and that she's off to Pasadena for her final interview for the Rose Court.
Palm Springs. Brandon and Susan are still freaked out and giddy about experiencing the miracle of childbirth. Susan tells Brandon that she's proud of him for successfully delivering the baby, and then the two start making out...and, nope, there's still not an ounce of chemistry between them.
Pasadena. Donna walks over to the panel of judges for her final interview, then stands before them with her hands neatly clasped behind her. The big question, which will count for the majority of her final score is: "How can one ensure that every kid can realize their hopes and dreams?" Donna mulls over this unrealistic proposition for a few seconds and calls it an interesting question...then cancels that and calls it tragic. She says that kids are very fragile...case in point, she knows of a certain Pumpkin Head who was abused as a child, who grew up thinking that that sort of behavior was normal. Now, whenever he gets angry, he hits...in fact, he hit her. She then starts blathering about protecting children's hearts so that they don't damage their souls, blah blah. To wrap up, she thanks the judges for the opportunity to debase herself at the Rose Court princess wannabe tryouts, and credits them for allowing her to fulfill one of her life's dreams.
Marchette mansion. Toni and Dylan enter Tony's office. Tony greets his daughter and shakes Dylan's hand, albeit reluctantly. They chat about the earthquake and how his house wasn't damaged, since he built it like a fortress, blah blah. Toni says they have news, but Tony stops her and tells her that Bruno already dropped the bomb about their speedy engagement. Toni says she'd like his blessing, and she and Dylan stare at him expectantly. Tony has no idea how to respond and kind of flails around for a few seconds before he walks over to his desk and pulls out a white bible from the drawer. He hands it to Toni and tells her that her mother carried it during their wedding ceremony...and Toni thanks him even though he completely ignored her "blessing" request.
Papa Martin's office. Donna arrives at her dad's medical office to meet him and her mom for lunch. She tells him she made it to the Rose Court finals, and he looks at her in surprise and says he didn't realize she was still doing that. She says she hasn't talked about it much since Felice has been so negative about it...and speaking of Felice, she suddenly breezes into the office. Papa Martin is called away to check on a patient, and Felice compliments Donna's pink dress and tells her she usually doesn't wear stuff that's so conservative. True that. Donna tells her that she's a Rose Court finalist, and Felice makes a face and haughtily makes it clear that she does not approve. Donna then tells her that she saw the 1969 group shot of Rose Court wannabes and saw her in the photo...and Felice pales, denies it, and shuts down. Meanwhile, Papa Martin returns to his office to take the ladies to lunch, but Donna declares she's no longer hungry and angrily flounces out. Papa Martin asks his wife what just happened, and Felice tells him that Donna saw her Rose Court photo. He looks deflated, sighs, and tells her she's going to have to tell their daughter the truth. Felice looks miserable and says she can't, but Papa Martin insists that Donna can handle it. Felice doesn't agree.
Marchette mansion. Tony's hired thug reports that Toni and Dylan have left, so Tony asks him if everything is clear. He grunts, "Crystal" and Tony comes right out and says, "I want him dead." The thug dutifully replies, "It's a done deal."
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Recapper: Isabel K. French
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