Titans Article #12

Spelling's 'Titans' is one funny drama

(From Rocky Mountain News)

I'm giving you ample time to plan.

The premiere of NBC's Titans, the most humorous hour I've seen on the fall schedule, is only a week away.

If you've read about the fall season, you might be confused.

Yes, Titans (7 p.m. Oct. 4, KUSA-Channel 9) is from Aaron Spelling's soap-opera company the same organization that made Dynasty a nine-season prime-time hit in the '80s. (Remember the oil-rich Carrington clan of Denver?)

For many, Dynasty was the ultimate in campy drama. Well, the first hour of Titans makes Dynasty look like Masterpiece Theatre.

A brief plot breakdown:

Richard Williams (Perry King), a filthy-rich Beverly Hills industrialist, is about to wed Heather (Yasmine Bleeth), a scheming vamp-tramp who was recently bedded down in Hawaii with Chandler (Casper Van Dien), Rich Daddy's Navy flyboy son. (Rich Daddy, of course, is unaware of this.)

Meanwhile, Rich Daddy's ex-wife, Gwen (Victoria Principal of Dallas fame), lives directly across the street in an equally opulent mansion, meaning the various characters can walk, rather than drive, to all the mindless situations.

Rich Daddy and Perky Gwen have another son, who drinks (you know that because he walks around with a martini glass seemingly attached to his hand), and two daughters, a brunette who drinks a lot and a blonde who sneers all the time.

Hanging out on the perimeter is a lovely Hispanic woman who, evidently, grew up in servants' setting while developing a crush on Flyboy Chandler.

Now she's all grown up after graduating from Brown University. (Only in a Spelling drama would writers have a Hispanic attending Brown.) You can just feel the romantic sparks flow through the screen.

Flyboy Chandler then resigns his Navy commission to help Rich Daddy run Williams Global Enterprises.

And we end the first hour with the start of the wedding. Rich Daddy chooses Flyboy Chandler to walk Vamp Tramp down the aisle in posh Beverly Hills.

Now, keep in mind that Flyboy Chandler and Vamp Tramp had a rousing roll in Hawaiian sunshine for a week. And Rich Daddy has told Flyboy Chandler he hasn't slept with Vamp Tramp, out of respect for her.

So as the two walk down the aisle, Vamp Tramp turns to Flyboy Chandler and tells him she's...

I won't spoil your fun.

Obviously, to find humor in all this, it's important to approach the hour the way I did. Some scenes play like classic Saturday Night Live material.

Early on, Flyboy Chandler rings the doorbell of Perky Mom's house. She opens it and Flyboy Chandler voices that memorable line: "Hi, Mom."

Perky Mom, overcome with joy, responds, "I can't believe you're home." Later, when Flyboy Chandler discovers that Vamp Tramp is going to marry Rich Daddy, he shouts, "You have five seconds to explain!"

It takes Vamp Tramp triple that time to raise her ample bosom and bat her eyes.

What's even more humorous is that Spelling, at least publicly, doesn't see the humor in all this.

When asked last summer whether preview audiences might have laughed at the wrong times, Spelling replied: "No," adding, "there wasn't a single note (from the network) about this not being drama or that people were laughing in the wrong places."

That I don't believe.

Titans also has a catty scene where Vamp Tramp first meets Perky Mom. Remember the mud-fight sequence in Dynasty between Joan Collins and Linda Evans?

I can hardly wait unil Bleeth and Principal start ripping off each other's designer gowns on a Beverly Hills lawn.