tele­vi­sion: From 90210 to Wed­ding Band

Brian Austin Green takes cen­tre stage in an en­er­getic com­edy, writes Guy Davis

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - CONTENTS -

RE­MEM­BER Brian Austin Green, the baby-faced mem­ber of the orig­i­nal Bev­erly Hills, 90210 cast? He’s nearly 40 – and he’s a fa­ther of two. So if you’d like to take a few mo­ments to pon­der the fleet­ing pas­sage of the past 20 years, feel free.

Here’s the thing, though: hav­ing a few ex­tra miles on the me­ter kind of suits Green. He looked a lit­tle geeky next to other 90210 heart-throbs such as Ja­son Pri­est­ley and Luke Perry back in the day, but car­ries him­self well as a rel­a­tively fresh-faced 39-year-old.

Plus his part­ner is Trans­form­ers star­let Me­gan Fox, so he must have some­thing go­ing for him, right?

The stars of 90210 have some­times strug­gled to find good roles since the teen soap’s 1990s hey­day.

But Wed­ding Band might turn things around for Green, who plays the front­man of a Seat­tle wed­ding band called Mother of the Bride in the like­able, en­er­getic mu­si­cal com­edy.

‘‘He never evolved. He’s a per­ma­nent 17-year-old. He’s the guy who will never stop, even though it hurts the next day,’’ Green says of his char­ac­ter.

Don’t be mis­led: Wed­ding Band doesn’t rein­vent the wheel. In fact, some of it seems pos­i­tively old hat (the women characters, in par­tic­u­lar, come across as a lit­tle stereo­typ­i­cal).

But the cast has verve and tal­ent, traits shared by the peo­ple be­hind the scenes. Among Wed­ding Band’s most valu­able play­ers is mu­sic pro­ducer Adam Sch­lesinger, for­merly a mem­ber of in­die band Foun­tains of Wayne. He’s a song­writer and ar­ranger with a real knack for catchy tunes and his in­put makes Mother of the Bride an out­fit worth catch­ing.

Take the open­ing scene of the first episode, which has Green’s Tommy per­form­ing a cover of Gwen Ste­fani’s

Hol­laback Girl while the show’s characters are in­tro­duced.

Co-lead­ing the band is Ed­die (Peter Cam­bor), who founded the out­fit with dreams of rock’n’roll star­dom. He’s since set­tled into sub­ur­ban hum­drum with his sup­port­ive wife and kids.

Ed­die’s brother Barry (Derek Miller) is the band’s wild-man drum­mer, while

Lost star Harold Per­rineau brings a sweet, soul­ful qual­ity to veteran ses­sion muso Ste­vie, the new bass player en­joy­ing the ca­ma­raderie that comes with a full-time gig.

When Mother of the Band is on­stage, belt­ing out off­beat ar­range­ments of clas­sics or sneak­ing a few alternative cuts into their sets, Wed­ding Band really finds its groove – the guys work well to­gether and their per­for­mances are en­gag­ing and fun.

Off­stage they have var­i­ous trou­bles, rang­ing from a nag­ging dis­sat­is­fac­tion to on­go­ing im­ma­tu­rity – and that’s where Wed­ding Band hits its snags. It’s not that th­ese scenes are bad, they sim­ply lack the vi­tal­ity of the mu­si­cal se­quences.

Don’t worry: There are plenty of wed­dings, stag nights, par­ties and even fu­ner­als to keep Mother of the Bride oc­cu­pied for a while to come.

Though Tommy and his fel­low musos never crack the big time, each gig is a blast in its own way. That’s the vibe of

Wed­ding Band and it comes through loud and clear.

Wed­ding Band: Wed­nes­days, 7.30pm, Ten, Ten SC

Wed­ding Band stars Harold Per­rineau, Brian Austin Green and Derek Miller.

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