‘Melrose Place Is Still the Most Scandalous Address in West Hollywood’

Don’t expect The CW’s second reboot of a Gen-X classic to pop and then go poof like those Beverly Hills kids who went bust.

90210‘ may be an exclusive zip code, but ‘Melrose Place‘ is “definitely the most scandalous address in West Hollywood,” says executive producer Todd Slavkin. “That hasn’t changed.”

The requisite hot, young cast has moved into the modern ‘Melrose’ melodrama, but the allure is still anchored in the return of the familiar faces we know and love and hate.

“There was no downside to coming back,” according to original cast member Laura Leighton, who returns as ginger-topped troublemaker Sydney Andrews.

“Sydney was always doomed to be the center of controversy…and always destined to live in a penthouse,” jokes Leighton, who now landlords over the, uh, complex apartment complex.

Even though the little sister of Jane Mancini (Josie Bissett is also returning) is now running the joint, everyone still wonders if there will be a ‘special guest star’ appearance by the biggest bitch on the block.

“The door is always open for Heather Locklear,” says Slavkin of ‘Melrose’s’ most famous manipulator, Amanda Woodward. “We are huge fans and already have a great way for her to come into the show. You never know what happens.”

While Locklear notoriously made ‘Mondays A Bitch,’ these days, ‘Tuesday Is the New Humpday.’

“It’s got all the sex and scandal of the original,”
says Thomas Calabro, whose Dr. Evil, Michael Mancini, is also back for an open-ended, unlimited run. Another former tenant is also back for more.

In fact, the new spin on the old soap is probably dirtier than the original.

There’s financially challenged medical student Lauren (Stephanie Jacobsen) who turns to hooking.

Katie Cassidy (David’s daughter) is the resident vixen, with a twist. “We call her a try-sexual…she will try anything,” jokes Slavkin, who confirms there are plans to have a gay character on the series. “Yes. Keep watching. Soon.”

And even the innocent one, Violet, “is probably not so innocent,” says Ashlee Simpson-Wentz of her character, who’s the new nice one in town. Ashlee dishes more here.

While the show glistens with modern touches, some things never change.

Like finding someone floating face down in that infamous pool.

A murder mystery launches the pilot and drives the arc of the season, but producers promise not to torture viewers: “We won’t milk it out over the whole season, but it will last several episodes. Suspense and mystery is part of the tone of the show, one of the prime elements that will keep going through the life of series.”

“We’re huge fans of noir and ‘Sunset Blvd’ is one of our favorite films,” says Slavkin, who explains that flashbacks will tell the story in the past, even beyond the whodunit, and [the dead character] will still be a huge part of everyone’s lives.”

‘Melrose Place’ premieres Tuesday, Sept. 8th on CW.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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