‘90210’ preview: Jessica Lowndes wants Brenda back


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Of all the damsels on ‘90210,’ Jessica Lowndes gets to be the most dramatic. In just the first half of the season, her character, Adriana, has already morphed from West Beverly’s resident prima donna to strung-out junkie to lying best friend and, most recently, the girl with a bun in the oven.

And Lowndes couldn’t be happier about it. She tells us about getting into character (watch a lot of movies about drugs!), pays homage to Shannen Dohertyand reveals the next play the West Beverly thespians will tackle.

On the commercial for tonight’s episode, you look like you’re going to die. Do you die?

On tonight’s episode, I tell Navid that I’m pregnant, so…

Shut up. Navid kills you?
(Laughs) Well, you see how he reacts. And you see how some friendships grow closer, some grow apart, how everyone handles the pregnancy news. It’s one thing after another for my character. She’s constantly reaching for that happy ending, and it’s nowhere to be found. She’s back to a place of loneliness in this episode, and she needs people around her to support her.


A little birdie told us Navid is not going to be the father?
A birdie told you that? (Laughs) It is implied that he is a virgin. The identity of the father won’t be revealed tonight, but next week.

Do you like playing Adriana?
When I first signed on, I was just a guest star. I’d do four episodes if I was lucky and I’d be the singer in the school musical. To sing on TV was enough for me. The fact that they kept writing for me and giving me all this drama, I feel really blessed. For this last batch of episodes, I got to do all this research. I talked to real addicts and I watched what seems like every drug movie ever made. That’s been my life for the past few months: watching drug movies and taking notes. A lot of A&E’s “Intervention.”

Is it draining to play her, though? She’s a wreck.
It was a challenge because I don’t have any experience with any of it. Luckily, I have never been a drug addict, I’ve never almost died and I’ve never been knocked up. Or had an HIV scare. So it’s all new to me! Before every take I get scared because I don’t know how I’ll come off. I don’t want it to come across as stupid or goofy. I really also don’t want to make a mockery of it, because they’re serious issues. I think we’re dealing with her issues in such a real and honest way, I feel fortunate that it’s not just over the top. She’s dealing with the consequences of her actions and she will follow through with the pregnancy.

Adriana really is the juiciest role on the show so far. And we just read Lori Loughlin complain that Deb hasn’t gotten to do much. Is anyone else jealous? Griping?
I think everyone at this point is just so fortunate to be on the show and have work, especially with the economy like this. I haven’t heard any griping whatsoever. We’re all doing the same thing, and at the end of the day without everyone else’s drama it wouldn’t be “90210.” It can’t just be a show about pregnancy and drugs and HIV scares.

What was it like working with Shannen Doherty?
Incredible. I pinched myself in every scene.

Yeah, but Brenda ditched Adriana last week in all your scenes. Rude! Adriana gets to be a mom, Brenda doesn’t, so Brenda hates Adriana. Wha?
True, true. Our characters have an interesting dynamic. I really hope they bring her back because I have so much fun working with her. She’s such a giving actress even when she’s not on the camera. Jennie Garth’s fun to work with too. She’ll be back during the episode that Jason Priestley is directing.

You have Jason and Tori Spelling to look forward to.
Jason and I were both in Vancouver, so we bonded majorly last week. He was on set getting prepared for the episode he’s directing. We couldn’t stop chatting. He’s such an inspiration because I also want to do more than acting in my career. I love it, but I want to venture out, maybe direct one day.


I just heard about Tori a couple of days ago, and yes, I’m totally excited. I want them to bring back everybody from the original cast!

What about an album?
I would love to when I have time, but I’m working every day. Hopefully they keep writing singing scenes on the show. I did a demo CD a couple of years ago. The CBS show “Moonlight” ended up buying one of my songs, “Goodbye,” and in “90210” in the second episode, I sang one of my own songs, called “Fly Away.” I had to sing it while my character was high (laughs) so it wasn’t a good representation, but it was still very exciting.

What’s the next West Beverly theatrical extravaganza?

It’s ‘Cleopatra.’ My character is the lead of that.

Annie better not win out again, because Adriana is So. Much. Better.

She’ll be going through a lot in the second half of this season, so you never know. Hopefully I get to perform this time!

Thoughts about going up against “American Idol” tonight?

(Laughs) I’m trying not to think about that. I don’t know. I’m a fan of that show. But tonight, I’m sorry, I’m watching “90210.” Party at my place!

— Denise Martin

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