'Melrose Place': Welcome to the neighborhood, Nick Zano

melrose-place-nick-zano-jessica-lucas-320x180.jpgWith Violet and Auggie off galavanting elsewhere, "Melrose Place" welcomes its newest resident Drew Pragin (guest star Nick Zano), in a desperate rush to revive its lackluster storytelling as of late.

He's a hottie, but the others learn that he may be more than they bargained for. 

Jonah Hits the Big Time: The gang celebrates at the bar when Jonah sells his first screenplay "Living in Reverse," but he's doing some drunk thinking about the pros and cons of Riley and Ella. The morning after, Ella brings Jonah a copy of The Hollywood Reporter (with the fake Cosmo Johnson byline) and Variety with his lovely mug plastered on the front. (Oh not to mention Deadline Hollywood.) Because she's the star PR girl, Ella has also set up a meeting with A-list actor Owen Anderson, and Jonah's like a kid in a candy store.

Ella and Jonah meet Owen at a small amusement park and make nice with the actor. When Owen finds out that the love interest in Jonah's script is based on a real person (Riley), he asks if he could meet with her to, you know, do research. Jonah's hesitant, but Ella tries to move the deal along by giving Owen the go-ahead. Ella persuades Jonah that it's a good idea to have Riley around for at least one day so they can secure Owen as the lead actor. Of course, that's just a disaster waiting to happen.

Jonah calls Riley, asking if she could come by the Malibu Speedzone, to act like everything's OK between the two of them. She objects to the idea, but shows up anyway to help Jonah out. When Owen first meets Riley, he's taken aback by her beauty. "Jonah never said you were a goddess," he says. The foursome reminisce about Riley and Jonah's golden days as a couple, much to Ella's chagrin. Owen comments on the vibe between Jonah and Riley, after which Pandora's box is opened. Secrets come out that weren't intended for Owen's ears, which jeopardizes Owen's interest in the project.

Ella tries to get Riley to change her mind about putting Jonah's career in limbo. Ella explains her side of the story, telling Riley that it was her who was there for Jonah every time Riley said no to his numerous offers. Riley comes right back, calling Ella delusional and telling her that she's never committed to anything other than a pair of shoes. "You will never win over his heart!," Riley passionately declares. "Jonah's way too good for you." What's up with the Ella bashing?

Ella tells Jonah that she isn't the right person for him. "I'm not as tough as you think," she confesses. That doesn't stop Jonah from rethinking his script. He wants Owen to reconsider doing the project if he rewrites the "happy" ending. Jonah grows a pair when he finally makes a decision to embark on something new with Ella. Turns out, Riley had it all wrong.

Drew Lights Lauren's Fire: The first we see of Zano's character, the new tenant who moves into Auggie's old apartment, is one that's conducive to heart palpitations. OK, not really, but you catch my drift. Lauren storms over after being woken up by a loud guitar and is as shocked as we are to see a tanned, well-toned body staring back. "Do you always wake up this cranky?," he asks, amused. I have a feeling the Lauren-David pairing will be heading toward rocky waters soon.

Later that day, Lauren is told at the hospital that the dean wants her to show the new doctor from Johns Hopkins the ropes. She's all for it, until she sees that it's Drew from earlier in the morning. Drew insinuates that Lauren doesn't like him because she doesn't think he's serious enough. He postulates that she was the only sophomore in AP Bio, had braces and knee-highs, and that her idea of movie night doesn't necessarily have anything to do with well, watching a film. "When's the last time you laughed?," Drew asks. After a moment, Lauren says, "I'm not here to laugh." The energetic banter between the new colleagues, who don't quite see eye-to-eye on how to be a doctor is already a welcome relief.

A teenage victim is rolled in on a bed. Lauren tries to calm her, but she's not succeeding. Drew offers to give it a shot. "What are you writing?," the victim asks. "Just that you crashed on your Razor scooter," Drew responds. The young girl is offended, revealing how she got hurt in the first place -- driving a car at 80 mph. Ding ding ding! Lauren is impressed. Hey, sometimes it takes the unorthodox approach to get a patient to tell the truth.

Lauren Saves Mancini's Butt: What's going on with Michael Mancini, you ask? Well, he's not doing so hot, as he completely forgets a patient is allergic to penicillin. Had Lauren not been there to rectify the problem, he'd be looking at one less living person. He's still grieving after learning that his last wife was responsible for killing Sydney. Lauren suggests he take some time off, but Mancini tells Lauren that he doesn't want to be lectured by a student.

When Lauren goes to make a payment for her loans, the clerk tells her her outstanding balance has been paid in full that morning. She goes to Mancini, assuming it was he who made the anonymous donation. He tells her it wasn't him who did it.

Riley Looks for a Second Chance: Riley goes to Amanda (guest star Heather Locklear) to see if she can get her an interview with her boyfriend Ben (guest star Billy Campbell). It takes some persuasion but Amanda comes through for the former first grade teacher. When she goes in to meet with Amanda's doppelganger, Ben tells Riley that he'll fund her project, hiring her on the spot. Score one for Riley!

Ben invites Riley to fly to Washington, D.C. with him on a private jet to check out that school she discussed in their meeting.

Amanda's Broke: Amanda finds out the horrible news that her financial advisor took $15 million from her. Now, she's broke. What's a high-flying girl supposed to do now? Amanda pays a visit to her old friend Mancini, telling him that her heart has been beating irregularly. Mancini checks her heartbeat but he tells her nothing seems out of the ordinary. He asks her if there's anything else that might be causing the panic attacks. Amanda tells her everything's going well, but we know that's a boldfaced lie. Mancini writes a prescription for some drugs to remedy her problem.

David Has a Kid?!: David receives a letter from his father's latest wife Vanessa, the same one who murdered Sydney. In it, she makes the shocking revelation that it's David who fathered Noah, her son. David's life is about to change. David visits his dad, confessing to him that David had a fling with Vanessa before she ever became intimate with Mancini. David shows him the letter Vanessa sent and a desperate father threatens David, telling him he will never get close to Noah -- ever. Then the two get into fight, shattering some glass in the process, not close to resolving their neverending conflict.

Lauren's Last Debt: Lauren tells Wendi (guest star Kelly Carlson) that she will no longer be servicing her clients anymore, but Wendi says there's one last client Lauren has to visit. Wendi reminds Lauren that one phone call can rid her of all she's worked for. Damn. Lauren makes an appearance at her last client meeting and of course, it's Dr. Mancini. Oh Lauren, what have you gotten yourself into? Mancini wants Lauren to break it off with David, in return for keeping her secret. Oh boy.

Qoote of the Night
"I'm a vampire." -- Drew to Riley

What do you think of "Melrose Place's" new resident?