Nation/World


If It’s Monday, This Must Be ‘Melrose’ Fans Of Sexy Soap Gather At Valley Pool Hall For Weekly Installment Of Romance, Intrigue, Revenge

MONDAY, MARCH 20, 1995

Tonight’s special is smut.

It’ll be splashed on the big screen at McQ’s Billiards.

Every Monday night, the special at McQ’s is “Melrose Place.”

“It’s full of smut,” said Deyonna Batacan, 21, who watched the Fox television network show last Monday with five of her friends at McQ’s, 9614 E. Sprague.

During that show, Alison and Billy did it on her desk. Jake seduced Jo. In their bedroom, Michael’s wife discovered Amanda’s lingerie and prescription bottle.

That’s how the show closed.

“They just leave you hanging,” Batacan said.

Tonight at 8, McQ’s again will flash “Melrose Place” on its big screen and on televisions throughout the pool hall.

Last week, about 40 people filled the bar area for “Melrose Monday.” As they drank beer and watched the show on a big-screen television, plenty of others continued to shoot pool.

The pool players didn’t pay much attention to the show, but that’s no worry to those who organize “Melrose Monday.”

The event isn’t just a comment on the show’s popularity; it’s a device to lure more women, like Batacan and her friends, into the pool hall.

“The billiards industry has shown its greatest growth with women in general,” said Vincent Miesen, who is a marketing consultant to McQ’s.

Miesen said the target audience of “Melrose Place” is 18- to 49-year-old women, which is the group McQ’s wants to attract.

Since coming up with the idea last month, McQ’s has had at least 30 people come to “Melrose Mondays,” and Miesen is pleased.

Last Monday, the mix of men and women was about half and half.

During commercial breaks, prizes such as T-shirts, key chains and posters were raffled off by McQ’s, KZZU-FM and Fox.

Once the show was back on, everyone’s eyes were on the screen. Except the pool players.

In its third season, the one-hour show focuses on the lives of eight adults who live in a fashionable Los Angeles apartment complex called Melrose Place.

The characters include a fashion designer, doctor, photographer, motorcycle shop owner, social worker and advertising executives.

The prime-time soap opera is loaded with romance, revenge and intrigue, which some at McQ’s find comparable to real life.

“I think I like it because a lot of the story lines are true to life,” said Kristin Rhodes, 23, who came to McQ’s with a friend.

But she doesn’t believe the show is totally realistic.

“I’m from California, and there’s not that many pretty people there,” Rhodes said.

Rhodes took notes as she watched the show. She was preparing a report for KZZU-FM listeners, which was broadcast once the show had finished.

“Good story line - you can really get into it,” said Jeremiah Sauser, 22, on why he watches “Melrose Place.” “There’s a lot of girls on the show that guys really like.”

Sauser and Tom Cox, 21, sported “Melrose Place” T-shirts they had ordered from a cable television home shopping network.

“I like Alison,” Sauser said. “She used to be sweet and nice. Now she’s evil.”

Cox prefers Amanda, played by Heather Locklear.

Both said they consider the big questions on the show to be whether Billy and Alison will get back together again (the seduction on the desk was just a fling) and whether Matt, who’s gay, will ever meet the right man.

“The guy keeps meeting bums,” Cox said.

The “Melrose Monday” crowds still don’t compare with those who watch “Monday Night Football,” Miesen said. He hopes Fox will move the show back to Wednesdays once football season begins.

“‘Monday Night Football’ is huge,” he said. “If it’s between football and ‘Melrose,’ football will win.”

MEMO: This sidebar ran with story: TROUBLE AHEAD? Tonight at 8 on “Melrose Place,” Jake’s angry brother Jess (Dan Cortese) makes a surprise visit.

This sidebar ran with story: TROUBLE AHEAD? Tonight at 8 on “Melrose Place,” Jake’s angry brother Jess (Dan Cortese) makes a surprise visit.



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