this is scott scanlon. just looking at that cowboy hat, you know he's doomed, right?
if you've seen any of the episodes pre-"the next 50 years" and are aware of scott's character arc, you've likely seen this coming. scott is david's best friend. during the first season of 90210, david slowly worked his way into The Gang (ie. the seven cool people who attend west beverly around whom entire show is based). and then scott shows up after the summer sporting a cowboy hat and talking about how his uncle's got these rad guns and he is, like, totally way not cool.
this is a classic tv move. the incredibly random schizophrenic personality shift. think dean on gilmore girls and that one week where he was suddenly ALL.ABOUT.BASKETBALL and jess skulked around looking SO.HOT reading catcher in the rye. rory gilmore may not've known who was on their way out, but everyone in the audience did.
and so it goes with scott. dude returns from oklahoma and he's doomed. but the producers are kind. he and david got to bond in the halloween episode just before this, thus, making what happens to scott ever so slightly more impactful when it happens...
translation: shit is going to go down, ya'll.
so today's a big deal at west beverly. they're opening a time capsule left by the class of 1941.
david is strutting some wicked polka dots as he films The Gang for the yearbook.
scott is, obviously, not a part of The Gang and barely even worthy of david's notice.
scott's mother (ie. the scariest woman in beverly hills) corners david to remind him that friday night is scott's birthday and to ask him to recruit all scott's friends to come to his party.
omg, SCOTT HAS NO FRIENDS. panic time! not even this girl who dated him in fifth grade and who's now wearing a scrunchie wants to come to his party. hell, she doesn't even want word to get out that she once dated scott in elementary school.
david, with the help of donna, coerces The Gang into making party cameos.
scott's party is maybe The Worst Party of All TV Time (with the possible exception of that SATC fete where kristen johnston fell out the high-rise window).
a circumstance in no way helped by the fact that scott overhears david complaining to donna about scott's lack of friends...
(david: "it's not like scott's mr. popular. nobody would've even shown up if it weren't for you and me.")
and brandon and emily valentine getting caught making out in an 8-year-old's bedroom and thrown out.
did i mention that this guy has "rad new guns in his collection"?
remember: "guns aren't toys... they're weapons."
you're bleeding from the eyes after playing witness to those sick moves, am i right?
but then brandon and emily valentine get kicked out and The Gang leaves to go to the peach pit and david is all alone, pining after donna.
and then this happens:
kelly: "i can't swallow, my throat is dry, my digestive system is all messed up. i hope it's not the flu."
steve: "whatever it is, you're doing better than scott."
[um... kelly is the palest person on earth outside of the twilight universe, no?]
very important subplot: emily valentine.
the newspaper is putting together a memorial issue on scott. ahhhhhhhhndrea and brandon are tense. months ago, ahhhhhhndrea bought tickets for them to attend a screening of citizen kane, but brandon blew her off to hang out with emily. because she is a woman, ahhhhhhhdrea does not tell brandon that the sight of him and emily valentine together makes her want to puke and instead lets him think she's just pissed that he "doesn't care about classic hollywood cinema."
in her grief, mrs. scanlon is super creepy and manipulative.
donna does not approve.
brandon can't study. because he keeps thinking about life and death and how happy he is with emily valentine.
steve: "must've been tons of blood, huh?"
ahhhhhndrea is reading aloud the obituary that she has written for scott. brandon doesn't seem to be paying attention.
because he is BEWITCHED by emily valentine's dark roots.
ahhhhhhhhhndrea is pissed.
brandon and emily valentine are SOOOOOOOOO happy.
they are SOOOOOOOO happy all over school.
this makes ahhhhhhhndrea SOOOOOOOOO mad.
brandon confronts ahhhhhhhndrea to find out why she's being such a bitch.
she is honest and tells him that it hurts her to see him with emily valentine and that her heart is breaking every single day.
mrs. scanlon, who seems to hang out at west beverly a lot, asks david to come over and pick up some of scott's things. david has a meltdown in scott's room and takes it out on The Cowboy Hat of Doom.
david is a sassypants to donna.
donna is pissed.
david watches videos from what feels like the day before but must've been at least a week by now and gets all melancholy.
OMG, brandon is SOOOOOOOO happy. emily valentine makes him SOOOOOOO happy. it's like he's a complete man, an immortal, with no worries re: death.
david is, understandably, SOOOOOOOO sad.
his sadness goes head to head with brandon's happiness in an epic clash in the radio booth.
david: "nobody gave a rat's ass about scott until he died."
david: "it doesn't matter what you write about him in that paper. it doesn't matter what you say about someone when they're gone. what matters is how you treat them while they're here."
oh yeah, this is playing over the PA system. the whole school hears.
donna's got an idea! everything is instantly better!
The Gang (of which david is a now a part by virtue of his only non-Gang friend having died) makes a scott scanlon time capsule.
ahhhhhhhhndrea includes a copy of the newspaper ("printed on recycled paper") and a floppy disc.
david includes The Cowboy Hat of Doom.
proving that every problem can be solved with pyrotechnics, The Gang lights sparklers that they dedicate to scott.
ah, it's good to have friends.