As this is a new blog, I will start with a new(ish) show: the new, and some would say not-at-all-improved 90210. I have to admit, I never watched the original, but I'm assuming it was basically identical, just with bigger hairdos. The first few episodes depict various chemically imbalanced Southern Californians whose lives are interrupted by the they-can't-possibly-be-that-perfect family from Kansas (by the way, how has Lori Loughlin not aged a day since Full House? This is weird). One of the more despicable characters is named Adrianna, drug-addict and evil sidekick to the hotter, blonder Naomi. In any case, we are immediately primed to hate Adrianna: she's rude to our country-bumpkin protagonist, she turns her back on her so-called best friend (aforementioned hot blonde), and she refuses the advances of the naively cute Navid.
Adrianna is the girl we love to hate. But suddenly, she kicks the drug habit, befriends the nice girl, apologizes to Naomi, and starts dating Navid. We were wrong. She's actually the most "real", down-to-earth person involved in all the Beverly Hills drama. So, when we find out she's pregnant from a pre-clean encounter (yeah, I know, but come on, it's a teen soap), we feel nothing but sympathy and support for the newly respectable Adrianna.
And we can't forget that there's a versa to this vice. How many of us loved Joey Potter and rooted for her against the skanky Jen Lindley from day one of Dawson's Creek? But then, as we get to know her, we realize that she's self-centered, condescending, completely unreasonable, and does a really annoying thing with her forehead when she's angry. Joey has the opposite effect as Adrianna: we used to root for her, but now we just can't.
I think anyone reading this (I can say that confidently since my readership currently totals about four close friends) can think of someone who they used to hate, despise even, who now seems like a diamond in the rough. Or how about someone you met and immediately wanted to be friends with, who you now realize just isn't your type. Why does this happen?
Our current love for Adrianna would give us the following possible answers for the first situation (why we go from hate to love so quickly):
1) This person kicked a drug habit. Heroin affects people in weird ways (who knew?).
2) This person became friends with someone you like: you (even if subconsciously) trust the judgment of your friend, and begin to see that they're not all bad.
3) It has nothing to do with this person changing and you realize (oops) it's your own fault: you were quick to judge (which, by the way, is not always a bad thing...some people who seem like tools just are).
And Joey Potter provides some insight for the second situation (moving from love to hate). I will avoid any obvious shots at Katie Holmes' recent life choices simply because I love her haircut and aspire to imitate it daily (good enough reason, right?):
1) This person told their boyfriend/girlfriend: "I'm not that much smarter than you" after she found out he was failing out of high school because his douchey Sheriff-dad didn't support his unique ways of learning...hence confirming that this person is condescending and arrogant.
2) This person claimed to have found their life's passion after one art class and threw a tantrum when someone called it a hobby.
3) See #3 from first list.
Anyway, I hope that this can make us all feel even a sliver more comfortable with our decisions to change our minds about people, for better or for worse. Put bluntly, some people suck, some people don't, and sometimes, you just can't tell.
And as a post script, don't worry: these posts won't all be "moral of the story" types. Some stories just don't have morals, especially when they're told on TV.