Tori Spelling is “sTORI telling”

“sTORI telling” has been on my “to read” list for about five years.  Crazy, right?  I finally got my hands on a copy and was so excited to read about Tori and her amazing childhood, but more importantly I was so ready to get all the juicy details about her years on “Beverly Hills, 90210.”  Too bad she wasn’t spilling many beans.

I, along with everyone else from Generation X, watched each episode religiously every week.   I wish I could say the only reason I watched was because of Luke Perry but, I also watched to see what my girl crush Kelly Taylor {Jennie Garth} was up to, and wearing, while she cruised around the BH, I mean Torrance, in her red convertible BMW.  Donna, aka, Tori, wasn’t my favorite, but it was because we all knew that even though she auditioned under a fake name, she was only cast because her father was Aaron Spelling.  She openly admits it in her book.


It was hard to like someone, TV character of otherwise, who lived such a charmed life.  Alas, Tori lets you know her life wasn’t charmed.  Her mother continually stifled the real Tori, wanting her to be a Madame Alexander doll loving, Marie Antoinette Halloween costume wearing, pint size Candy {Spelling}.  When all Tori wanted, was to be accepted by her peers.  Seems simple enough, since it’s the same thing we all wanted and actually still strive for – acceptance.

While the “90210” years were magical for any fan, Tori points out they were a little marred for her.  For me, “90210” helped fuel my love of all things LA.  A love which started when I was 9-years-old, so as soon as I could, I spent a lot of time there.  There was the time my roommates and I geeked out over seeing Jesse Vasquez at a Starbucks near the Beverly Center.  You don’t remember Jesse?  Well, you know it’s bad when you’re excited to see Andrea’s husband.  He was on during the college years.  You may have stopped watching by then.  On the same trip we ran into Jason Priestly and Ian Ziering at the Roxbury.  I talked to and shook Ian’s hand to the horror of my friends.  It was pretty embarrassing, I should have been mortified myself.

Ian Ziering

And then there was my favorite, sitting in a booth at the Formosa looking at Tori Spelling and Jamie Walters sitting in the booth next to us.  Jamie was Donna’s abusive boyfriend, Ray Pruit, on the show and real boyfriend in life.  Hmmm, I don’t know that she talked about this relationship in the book.  Anyway, I swear to you Jamie Walters was making eyes at me the whole night.  I did look a little Jennifer Anistonish at the time with my Rachel haircut and all.  Maybe he was confused.  Regardless, he was hot.  Whatever happened to that guy?

While we were enjoying all the shenanigans on the show, Tori’s real life consisted of a horrid boyfriend named Nick, who basically walked all over her, gambled away all her “90210” money and cheated on her relentlessly.  However, since her parents had never taught her conflict resolution, or how to stick up for herself, Tori allowed it to happen, and not only that, continually bought this douche presents because of her guilt.  Like the time she called her apartment only to have the phone be answered by another girl who said she was “Nick’s girlfriend” when asked.  Nick of course was full of excuses and Tori bought Nick a Rolex to say she was sorry for bringing it up.

What’s amazing is how much of this book, published five years ago, is relevant to her life today.  To me, this relationship was just a precursor to her current marriage, only now she has a husband who’s riding her coattails while she’s the one pimping herself out trying to make a dime to support their four kids.  Four kids.  I guess he wanted to make sure she wasn’t going anywhere.

I’m not a fan of Dean McDermott’s and never was, and although I still have a love/hate relationship with Tori, I feel rather protective of her.  In the book, she talks a lot about her first marriage to Charlie Shanian and all the red flags she ignored prior to marrying him.  I’m wondering now if she is seeing all the red flags she ignored with Dean.  For one, her friends didn’t like Charlie.  And they liked Dean?  I find that hard to believe.

If you remember correctly, which Tori doesn’t talk about in her book since it’s not her story, Dean and his wife had just adopted a baby when he cheated on his wife with Tori.  The wife got custody of the baby and they share custody of their son.   I guess if you’re the friend of someone who has just fallen in love with that catch, well you just want to be supportive but maybe you’re really not telling the truth?

She does talk about the fact that they both cheated on their spouses when they met.  They slept together hours after meeting, but it was “love at first sight” {I wonder how many other times Dean has fallen in love at first sight over the years?}  And she talks about their money woes.  These woes have been there since the beginning of their relationship.  I imagine most of whatever money Dean makes, goes to alimony and child support.  Once again, Tori is funding a relationship.

During this time period, prior to “Tori and Dean: Inn Love” she talks about moving around a lot, not having furniture, and scaling back on clothes shopping.  Instead of shopping at Dolce & Gabbana, she was shopping at Forever 21.  “Once you change, I think you change forever.  I don’t think I could ever go back to spending money so easily,” says Tori on page 231.

The book ends with the birth of Liam, a hit reality show and a new and blossoming love.  Today, their brood has grown by three, they had hit TV shows {plural}, money, and endorsement deals only to be right back where they started – close to bankrupt.  That goes for their love, too as Dean is currently in rehab for what one can assume is a sex and alcohol addiction.  If I’m wrong, I’m an ass.

So I guess the quote on page 231 means nothing.  I blame Dean.  Tori openly talks about having no knowledge of proper spending habits.  How could she with her upbringing?  Dean on the other hand, grew up in a normal household, he wasn’t rich and after spending years as a struggling actor, he should know a thing or two about a budget.

I’ll leave you with another Tori quote, “love made all the other stuff unimportant.”  I wonder if that’s still the case.  I’m not sure I would want Dean to be the role model for my kids, and right now, I hope they are her number one priority.  I’m sure they are, because that’s the way she is.  Hopefully she’ll learn from her past mistakes and quit making the same ones.

What are your thoughts on Tori and Dean?  What do you think about Tori’s upbringing?

For more on Tori’s newest television project {she’s reuniting with Jenni Garth!  How exciting!} click here

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