Type keyword(s) to search


The WB’s Grosse Pointe, a spoof of Beverly Hills, 90210 from Darren Star, feels dated yet ahead of its time 20 years later

  • Beverly Hills, 90210 creator Star created Grosse Pointe in fall 2000 based on his experiences working on the Aaron Spelling Fox teen drama. Grosse Pointe lasted one season. "In many ways, The WB’s Grosse Pointe is a time capsule, perfectly preserving the Teen Beat celebrity culture of the end of the millennium," says Patrick Gomez. "In others, it was ahead of its time, providing a peek behind the Hollywood façade in ways most viewers wouldn’t embrace until years later. Named after its show within the show, Grosse Pointe centers on the team creating a soapy teen drama airing on The WB. And the network wasn’t afraid of poking fun at itself, leaning into the clichés and demands it placed on its shows like Dawson’s Creek. If only audiences had leaned in as well. 'Who better to poke fun at the world of teenage angst than The WB and Darren Star,' an announcer explains of Grosse Pointe in a video we can only assume was made for the upfronts ahead of the 2000-2001 TV season. It was an accurate statement. At the time, The WB was fresh off its expansion into Friday nights and was riding high on the successes of Dawson’s Creek, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, 7th Heaven, and Roswell, and had just launched Buffy spin-off Angel, which became the second-highest rated premiere for the network. Its bread and butter was teen girls, but The WB was the only network to have gains in its total audience viewership and in each key demographic during the 1999-2000 season. It was also a good time to be Darren Star. The prolific writer and producer had just accepted his second consecutive Golden Globe for Sex And The City, and his earlier creations Melrose Place and Beverly Hills, 90210 had just ended their 1990s-defining runs. On the DVD commentary for Grosse Pointe, Star explains that—while no character was designed as a mirror image of a 90210 star—much of Grosse Pointe’s drama was lifted directly from his dealings with that young cast."

    TOPICS: Darren Star, The WB, Beverly Hills, 90210, Grosse Pointe, Retro TV