Paramount // 1998 // 627 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // August 11th, 2011
Bodily fluids everywhere!
We're right out the gate with an exciting helicopter crash! Amanda (the perpetual guest star Heather Locklear, T.J. Hooker) crashes into the middle of the woods and must struggle to survive, while Kyle (Rob Estes, Silk Stalkings) acts like a dick to the park rangers. Only a few episodes later, Amanda and Kyle are engaged! And then a little while after that they hate each other! Meanwhile Craig (David Charvet, Baywatch) is losing his mind! Samantha and Billy are committing simultaneous adultery! Michael, Peter, and Coop clash over medical stuff! Oh, and Michael's dating a stripper! And pulling bullets out of gang members! Lexi is hooked on Peter, despite his murky past with Amanda! And Taylor may or may not be pregnant! Jennifer (Alyssa Milano, Charmed) is scheming a way to pry Billy away from her best friend! Oh, the intrigue and the filthy, back-stabbing, unbridled lust that percolates from within Melrose Place. It's as if the unassuming and dumpy apartment complex were perched upon a Hellmouth of boinking.
Season Six, Volume Two of this prime-time guilty pleasure showed me two things: 1) splitting up full seasons into two volumes is bush league, and 2) as much as I hate to admit it, I can see why the show was a big a success. Pleasures don't get guiltier than this, as relationships and plot points change from minute to minute. Forget big season-ending cliffhangers where characters confess their love to one another following a slow burn. Here sentiments and sexual trysts blow up from episode to episode, ensuring that no matter where you are in the show's 219 episode run, something saucy and unsavory awaits.
There are many simultaneous storylines and surprisingly few intersect. Billy, Sam, and Jennifer have their weird quadrilateral affair-mongering, while Amanda and Kyle wrangle with their ridiculously bi-polar relationship, and Lexi and Peter...well, they're pretty boring actually.
But that's the genius of Melrose Place! They play the odds, throwing multiple storylines at the viewer, so if one of them stinks, who cares? Wait 90 seconds and there'll be something more to your liking!
Oh, there's one more thing I learned from this release: It's no surprise you never see anyone swimming in that pool. The bacteria levels must be hovering somewhere between "homeless man's underwear" and "llama anus."
Ho-hum DVD set from Paramount: full frame, stereo, no extras.
Guilty of being a Guilty Pleasure that I felt Guilty about taking mild
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Scales of Justice
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 627 Minutes
Release Year: 1998
MPAA Rating: Not Rated