Robot, Go Home!

While we count the seconds until 90210, we should take time to remember The Ben Stiller Show‘s “Melrose Heights 90210,” where Stiller, co-creator Judd Apatow (in the first of his many TV cult flops) and their writers satirized the original 90210’s relentlessly pro-social messages, and Janeane Garofalo parodied Shannen Doherty’s weird line deliveries. This is the second of the two Melrose Heights sketches, where Vaughn (Bob Odenkirk) is shunned by his fellow students because they think he’s… a robot. The combination of melodrama with hit-you-over-the-head PSAs was a staple of Fox’s early programming — 90210 picked it up from 21 Jump Street — and also of Canadian programming (that’s kind of the Degrassi formula, but in a grittier way), but it’s what the producers of new 90210 are apparently trying to stay away from. For now at least.


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