The CW has gone and given Beverly Hills, 90210 the Gossip Girl treatment. The resulting premiere teemed with so many scheming, fashion-forward characters it could have been Vanity Fair with bleached teeth. The show preserves the original's conceit of midwestern siblings dropped into the shallow decadence of a high school in Beverly Hills, but it's unlikely this 2008 cast will be as potent an ensemble as the stars of the '90s version: Jason Priestley, Luke Perry, Shannen Doherty, on and on. It's not promising that a high point in 90210's debut was the arrival of Doherty herself, reprising her role of a now-adult Brenda Walsh. Maybe the new kids just need time to gel.
Shenae Grimes, as good-girl Annie Wilson, is adorable, winsome and, after a while, annoying. AnnaLynne McCord is the standout as bad-girl Naomi Clark: She's striking physically—somewhere between Charlize Theron and Courtney Love—and alternates between violent bouts of spite and self-pity. She's fun.