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'Melrose Place' recap: Amanda brings out the crazy in everyone

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Week two of Amanda Woodward and the drama on Melrose has definitely ramped up big time. It’s not all to do with Amanda, but her bitchy presence on the show seems to have amped everyone else up to be sexier (Riley straddling Jonah!), crazier (Violet with a baseball bat!), and more scheming (Lauren turns against Dr. Mancini!). Which is all a good thing.

Amanda herself I found a little bit one-note this week (especially in her knee-jerk snappy dealings with Ella) — she can’t always just be a scheming bitch, can she? Don’t we get to see something beneath that exterior?

I won’t complain too much because her jabs are certainly more fun to watch than Auggie sauteeing scallops. Although a few lines about the old times in Melrose felt a little forced this week — not so much Amanda’s dialogue but more Michael‘s “I think you know the address“ and David‘s “was there something in the chlorine back then that made you guys so twisted?” Yes, writers, we get the not-so-subtle references to the pop culture landmark that was the original show. It just seems kind of sad to pound home the memories so overtly.

Crazy Violet confronted Riley about turning Auggie in — demanding to know “how do you sleep at night?” And if there’s anything worse than Ashlee Simpson’s dramatic acting skills on a BIG LINE, it’s a plot line involving Twitter (ugh). Violet’s old meth head pal Levi — her adopted brother/former lover (as Jonah says, “why does that not phase me?”) — shows up after she announced her secret new life on Twitter. Seth Meyers, can I get a REALLY?!? — even Violet’s not dumb enough to pinpoint her new place of employment on a social networking site while she’s trying to outrun her Oregon past. Levi turned out to be a nasty piece of work, calling Violet “a manipulative bitch” and then threatening Riley (did anyone else’s heart jump when he busted in the door?) and smashing Jonah’s prized camera.

In other door-busting developments, David tipped off the cops to catch Michael with the bloody necklace that Sydney wore the night of her murder — Dr. Mancini was arrested for breaking and entering, but something tells me he won’t go down for the murder. (Violet looked particularly bug-eyed when David announced that Michael had killed Syd — she was writhing around in Mancini’s car one night, surely she could have planted the necklace? And I still don’t trust Michael’s wife, either.) If and when Michael gets out of jail, he’s sure to ruin Lauren’s medical career then for her part in David’s plot, no?

Speaking of not trusting anyone, Ella seems to have betrayed poor Jonah. She got the “geek whisperer” a job as the IT guy at WPK, only to make him snoop around the servers for Amanda’s thoughts on her. But while snooping, he also found Ella’s backstabbing email to Caleb dropping Jonah’s credit from that BoomKat video. He quit and seemingly wrote her out of his life (until next week’s episode, according to next week’s scenes). Oh, and Amanda found out about their snooping and threatened Ella, again. And if having a tyrannical boss isn’t bad enough for Ella, now she’s got a new neighbor — yup, Amanda’s moving into Sydney’s old penthouse. Let’s hope that continues to keep the other tenants more lively. Also, I’m even more intrigued this week with her obsession about this missing “sentimental keepsake” she “loaned” Sydney before her death.

Best line of the night: Michael, to Amanda about her rekindled friendship with Sydney: “Let me guess, you ran into each other at a support group for women who faked their own deaths?”

Any good theories what that “keepsake” was that Amanda gave to Sydney? Anyone glad we won’t have to see a baseball-bat-wielding Violet for much longer? If unemployed Riley’s so hard up for money think she’ll join Lauren’s side business? Was anyone else distracted by the fabulousness of Amanda’s shoes?

Photo Credit: Scott Humbert/The CW

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