Recap: Kelly ambles into the kitchen at the beach house and remarks to Donna that Noah has slept over the last three nights in a row. She asks if he'll be moving in, and Donna shrugs and says she has no idea what his plans are. Donna's assistant, Carrie, drops by to pick up a stack of designs that need revisions, and Carrie lays it on thick about how super talented Donna is. Brandon arrives with coffees and tells Kelly he can give her a job recommendation, but she tells him she's actually OK being unemployed for awhile. Noah emerges from the bedroom and grunts at Donna that he and Brandon are going down to the police station to pick up his dead dad's things. After they leave, Donna tells Kelly she really really hopes Noah moves in, and Kelly urges her to come right out and tell him that...then notices that Brandon left his cell phone behind.
Police station. Noah asks Brandon to write an obituary for his father and publish it in the Beat, but Brandon says he's too busy chasing human interest stories about undocumented pregnant ex-convicts who work in sweatshops. When Noah gets the packet of his father's things, he's aghast that it includes the gun he used to blow his head off. The cop shrugs and tells him this ain't no warehouse and that he has to take it along with the rest of his stuff. When Noah continues to bitch and moan at the injustice of being forced to take possession of the gun, Brandon grabs the packet and heads outside.
Valerie cooks breakfast for her mom and Carl, and they thank her for her hospitality over the last few days. David drops by for a needless visit and remarks to Valerie that she's suddenly a lot more upbeat than she's been lately, and that he's glad she didn't spill the beans to her mom about killing her father 'cause no good could possibly come of that. Michelle Phillips tells Valerie that she and Carl are getting married in Las Vegas in a couple of days, and wants her to be her maid of honor. Valerie gives her a hug and squeals, "I'd love to!" then gives Carl a creepy, lingering hug.
Sophie stands in the Walsh driveway, looking over her to-to list and checks off 'get start in the business'. Did I miss something? Did she suddenly get a movie role, or a Keeping Up with Sophie reality show we don't know about? Steve toddles behind her and carries her school books, staring admiringly at her new '65 Mustang. It's unclear who she hustled to afford that lovely classic. Sophie tells him he shouldn't have to sleep on the couch anymore and suggests they share the bed in his room - but only as platonic bedmates, of course. Steve grunts something unintelligible to that and invites her to go with him to Donna's parents' 25th wedding anniversary. She chirps, "Sure!" then drives off without taking her books.
After Dark. Donna meets with prospective client Paul Jankowski, who remarks that her partner delivered a very impressive presentation to him the other day. Donna's all, "Wha-a?" and scrunches her big face in confusion and says she doesn't have a partner. Paul's like, "Yeah, whatever" and tells her that the home office in Chicago is eager to see her designs...and if all goes well, her clothing line could go national. After the meeting, Donna finds Noah slumped in his jeep, shooting stink-eyes at his father's gun. When Donna asks whassup with him clutching the weapon, he retorts by aiming it at the sky and firing. Donna wigs out and tells him his tough guy act is starting to wear thin.
Steve chases after Sophie to bring her her school books. He's behind her in traffic and calls out to her, but she doesn't hear him and keeps driving along in her '65 Mustang.
Brandon drops by the Hunter estate to interview Mama Hunter about her late husband. I guess he decided to write the obituary after all. Mama Hunter tells him that her husband loathed the company and eventually became numb to his life of being an uber-rich businessman...and when the company collapsed, he collapsed along with it. She then instructs Brandon to include in the obituary that Papa Hunter had always aspired to be an artist [but went into business regardless, even though no one put a gun to his head - pardon the expression - and forced him to live a life he didn't want].
Steve tails Sophie to a cafe, where she meets up with David. She gives him a playlist for his KVIB audition, and the two smile flirtily at each other...while Steve watches, crestfallen, through the cafe window.
The Walsh house. Valerie is in her room getting dressed...and when she hears Carl approach, she unzips the back of her dress so she can ask him to zip her up. She has some serious issues, that Val. Carl flinches at the request since he's about to become her stepdad, but Valerie breezily says her dad always used to zip her up. Gross, Valerie. Kelly drops by the house to return Brandon's phone, and Valerie grimly tells her they're all going to Vegas, where her mom will marry her moron boyfriend. Brandon's phone rings, and Kelly answers and talks to someone named Suzy, who wants to know if she and the male owner of the phone are on for tonight. Kelly's all, "Wha-a?" then decides she too needs an out-of-town vacay. She begs Valerie, "Take me with you!" and Valerie agrees, but makes clear that it doesn't mean they're friends. Kelly makes a blech face and mutters, "God no."
Boat. Brandon tells Noah about the chat he just had with his mom, and learned about all the pressures his father was under, along with the interesting tidbit that he always wanted to be a sculptor. Noah stares broodily at his father's gun and mutters about how the jerk ruined their lives when he shot himself. Brandon agrees that, yeah, he was a miserable sad sack - but on the upside, he loved his family. Noah snappishly disagrees.
The Walsh house. Steve walks Sophie to her car as she performs her usual morning routine of pretending to head off to campus. He tells her she forgot her books yesterday, and she deflects the issue by chiding him for not sleeping with her in his bed, as she had weirdly suggested. Steve says he got home too late and didn't want to disturb her, then bullcacks about how he totally lost track of time last night while he was out romancing his new starlet friend. Sophie looks intrigued by Steve's showbiz connections.
Las Vegas. Valerie and Kelly are at the casino, having a fun time gambling. Michelle Phillips says she's tired and is going up to her room to sleep, and Valerie overhears the exchange and offers to keep Carl company.
As Kelly continues to gamble, she gets hit on by a cute guy named Henry.
Boat. Donna helps Noah pack up his things, and he's being a sullen, snappish prick. She tells him she's very worried about him...and he tears up and says he thinks about his father every night, specifically what a selfish douchewad he was. He then turns down Donna's offer to move into the beach house and tells her he'll just crash inside his After Dark office.
The Beverly Beat. Janet tells Brandon that there's no room for Papa Hunter's obituary on page three, but Brandon doesn't want to hear it and bitchily barks, "Make it fit." Steve argues that an obituary of a riches to rags businessman is not what their readers want, so Brandon sanctimoniously says he's taking it upon himself to give the readers what they need. He then gabbles about Papa Hunter's legacy, and how important it is for people to do something meaningful with their lives and not just settle for being average. Janet and Steve look unimpressed with his nonsensical rambling and just stare at him blankly.
Las Vegas. Valerie and Carl have fun bantering as they people watch in the casino. Carl yawns and says he's finally ready to hit the sack, and Valerie follows him into the elevator. As they mill around in front of his room, she tells him she's not tired yet, then leans in for a smooch...but breaks away when - ack! - Michelle Phillips comes out and says she thought she heard familiar voices. She canoodles with Carl and thanks Valerie for taking such good care of her fiance.
Back in LA, the rest of the 90210 gang has gathered to celebrate the Martins' 25th wedding anniversary. Noah is drunk to the point of stumbling around and slurring his words, and Donna just stares at him from several feet away, frowning in disapproval. Brandon and Steve talk about Steve's imaginary starlet, and when David arrives at the party, Steve makes a beeline over to him and gives him shit for hanging with Sophie at the cafe the other day without his authorization. Papa Martin introduces Brandon to reporter Lou Jessop from The Chronicle, and he pretends to be a fan of The Beverly Beat and an avid admirer of Brandon's writing. Brandon, who is also visibly drunk, babbles nonsensically about how he's not a real journalist, then stomps off.
Donna gets up in the front of the room and thanks everyone for coming to her parents' party - but before Papa Martin can make a toast, Noah staggers over and rambles incoherently at the crowd for several minutes, then raises his glass to "the Martians". LOL.
After Dark. The next morning, David chuckles at Noah, aka "the toastmaster" and tells him he made quite a giant arse of himself in front of Donna's family and friends. Noah is mortified at his drunken behavior, which he doesn't even remember, and stumbles up to his office to find an aspirin. Sophie drops by to flirt some more with David, and he firmly tells her they have to stop whatever it is they've started 'cause Steve is his friend and doesn't deserve to get hurt. He then urges her to find somewhere else to crash and stop leading Steve on. Sophie puts her pouty face on and quietly whimpers, "You don't want me?"
Donna arrives for a meeting with Paul Jankowski and is shocked to learn that Carrie is now employed at his firm. She accuses Carrie of taking all the credit for her designs and threatens to blow the whistle on her.
The Beverly Beat. Brandon is annoyed that Steve approved the placement of Papa Hunter's obituary on page six instead of page three. He then starts bitching about his own "legacy of nothing", and Steve tells him he's slowly turning into a bitter, middle-aged man. Brandon snarks back that he's no one to talk since he invented a starlet girlfriend to make Sophie jealous. Steve ignores the jab and urges him to call Lou Jessop asap and show him the kind of writing he's capable of.
Beach house. A sheepish Noah drops by to apologize to Donna, and she angrily replies, "Apology not accepted" then admonishes him for ruining her parents' anniversary party. He says he called her dad to apologize and he seemed cool about the whole thing - but Donna says she's mostly vexed that he won't let her help him work through his pain...and then the topic somehow shifts to Carrie's betrayal of Donna by lying to Paul Jankowski in order to get a job, blah blah.
After Dark. Sophie, who's sitting at a table with Steve, eyes David while he DJs on stage and nervously delivers his "yo yo bro" awkward white man urbanspeak. Sophie heads over to a pay phone and calls David's cell to surreptitiously tell him he's doing great, and that he just needs to keep his cool. She then makes her voice all husky sounding and tells him he's exciting...and that she doesn't want to hurt Steve, but can't stop herself from thinking about him whenever she's with Steve.
Las Vegas. Kelly continues to hang out with Henry and play craps. She tells him she came to Vegas to forget her troubles...then gets distracted by the sight of a bride walking by. Kelly wanders away from the craps table and stares wistfully at the poofy white gown.
Valerie and Carl have just finished hitting the sheets - ew, gross, blech - and both look guilty and sheepish. Carl quickly gets dressed and flees - just as Kelly walks by the room and puts two and two together. She glares at Valerie and coldly announces that she's flying home in the morning, and Valerie hangs her head in shame and starts weeping.
Wedding chapel. The next morning, Michelle Phillips and Carl say their I dos and are promptly pronounced husband and wife. Valerie pretends to be happy for them and gives her mom a hug, and then her mom urges her to also give her official stepdad a hug too. The two do their best to avoid eye contact as they lean forward and awkwardly embrace.
Beach house. A contrite Carrie comes by to tell Donna she got fired because Paul hated her designs. I guess they weren't up to the high standard of Donna Martin originals. She apologizes for her deceptive douchebaggery, but Donna just eyes her coldly and says that what she did was not OK, even if she feels like shit about it now. Donna then gets a phone message from Paul Jankowski, telling her he'd like to get together again to further discuss her clothing line.
Brandon meets with Lou Jessop, and is stunned when Lou makes it clear that he's the one trying to impress him. Lou tells him that the Chronicle bigwigs are very impressed with his Beat writing, and would like him to go to headquarters in New York to interview for an available job in the LA office.
Boat. Donna is doing her best to cheer up Noah, but he remains sullen and quiet. When she invites him once again to move into the beach house, he tells her to leave him alone 'bout that. He tells her that his mother found a letter that his father had left for her, and it expressed much regret for making too little time for his family over the years. He asks his family to forgive his weakness, but Noah tearfully says he can't do that. Donna hugs him.
The Walsh house. Brandon is packing an overnight bag when Kelly drops by, tells him he forgot his phone at her place, and accusingly asks who Suzy is. Brandon's like, "I dunno" ... and somehow Kelly figures out that the phone she found at the beach house isn't Brandon's, but that of a car leasing guy who stopped by the beach house a few days earlier. Brandon tells her he's off to New York for a job interview...and the two sit on the bed to contemplate the writers' inability to cut the damn cord on this relationship.
Steve drops by David's apartment and tells David his DJing last night was awesome...then gets to the real reason he came over: to find out if Sophie is here. David says he hasn't seen her, and Steve seems convinced, apologizes for acting so nutty lately, and heads back to his car. David returns to his bedroom, where Sophie is lounging, naked under the covers. She murmurs, "Do you think he knows?" and David's like, "I dunno, maybe" then mounts her so the two can get it on.
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Recapper: Isabel K. French
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