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90210 vs. Melrose Place: Which Was More Scandalous?

Last night on the CW, we got our second round of back-to-back fun in the California sun with 90210 and Melrose Place. Heading into the new Fall season, I fully expected MP to be the more daring of the two shows — there was theft, murder, and sex in the pilot alone. On the other hand, while 90210 tried to keep things more wholesome in season one, clearly the writers are cranking things up a notch this year and seem to be leaving those Wilson family values in the dust.

So here's the real question — which episode brought more scandalous, over-the-top moments last night? Can a racy high school text message really compete with the inner-workings of a group of amoral 20-somethings? I'll break it all down and declare a winner when you read more.

  • 90210 point: Naomi corners Annie in the bathroom multiple times, threatening to ruin her life. Bonus point because AnnaLynne McCord totally would have made me cry in high school (or now).
  • Melrose Place counterpoint: Lauren decides to embrace her new life as a hooker escort with a heart of gold.
  • 90210 point: It was a big night for evil Jen: first she admits that she's just using Ryan to make herself look less like a gold digger. Then she manipulates her poor sister into sending out a naked photo (aka sext) to everyone in school, thus defaming Annie's status as the sweet and innocent principal's daughter.
  • MP counterpoint: We find out that Auggie's past includes a deadly knife brawl and getting into a stabby fight with former landlord Sydney. He should probably pack his knives and go.
  • 90210 point: To some extent, Teddy knows about Annie's hit-and-run. Annie's life continues to suck.
  • MP counterpoint: Sydney may be Violet's mom. Violet enjoys floating face down in the pool, striking fear into the heart of Jonah, though I don't really understand what his problem is with a little floating time.
  • 90210 point: Dixon punches out the obnoxious dude responsible for the sext.
  • MP counterpoint: David steals from his ex-girlfriend's house party while Ella is outside using her powers of persuasion to catch an actor with his pants down.

Now that I've covered the major plot lines, it's time to declare a winner. It's a tough call, but I've gotta give this round to 90210. Sexting didn't even exist in my own high school days, but now that it's a common phenomenon, I give kudos to the show for what may be its juiciest episode thus far.

What do you think of my assessment? Did I leave out any shocking, noteworthy moments?

Photos courtesy of The CW

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