‘The Hills' Knows No Economic Drama

We know, we know: The financial world is collapsing, people are losing their homes, and the election is becoming nastier every day. But if there's one thing that can lift our spirits in hard times, it's those gosh darn kids of The Hills, impervious to economic ruin, cheerful and resilient in times of trouble, and so, so blonde.

This week, we open at the Heidi-Spencer-Holly house of pain, with Holly complaining that she's a loser with no friends. Well, duh. She suggests that maybe she should call Lauren, as the three girls used to be besties, and Spencer, predictably, becomes enraged. "While you're living under this roof, there's no Lauren fraternizing!" We'd probably take him more seriously if he weren't wearing such a lame, wannabe hipster lumberjack button-down. Nevertheless, Holly, in a blatant defiance of King Spencer, texts Lauren about hanging out.

On the receiving end, L.C. gets the text and tells Whitney that the whole thing is just "SO weird." Always one to dole out inane advice, Whitney tells Lauren she should definitely see Holly. "It doesn't hurt anybody," she wisely tells her. She didn't get to be head of the L.A. office of People's Revolution for nothing, people. Lauren scrunches her lips in deep thought. But Lauren and Holly have a lunchtime reunion, and Holly is wearing very large, very distracting peacock-feather earrings. No wonder she has no friends. The girls chat about Heidi and Spencer, and how they're determined not to let that ruin their friendship, which was so strong that Lauren didn't even have Holly's number programmed in her phone.

Meanwhile, over at Epic Records, Audrina pretends to work while blankly staring at a wall, counting the number of words she knows: The, her, Justin, implants… Her boss, Kristin, calls her in to explain that Audrina's going to have to work at a band showcase, and Audrina looks scared shitless at the prospect of having any real responsibility. Don't worry Aud! We're pretty sure you're just going to have to stand around and look vacant, as that's your role at your job, and in life. Then Audrina joins her better half, Justin Bobby, for a romantic dinner and a discussion about — you guessed it! — Lauren and Audrina's relationship. J.B. tells Audrina that he likes her dress, to which she replies, "It's a skirt." Ha! The dialogue slays us!

Time for the band showcase! At the party, the head of Epic Records takes a shot with all his employees. Maybe this is why the music industry is failing? Lauren and Lo and Stephanie show up (Hi, Steph! Good to see you!). They dance to some lame-o band called the White Tie Affair — we'd been trying to figure out the band name all episode ­ whenever Audrina said it, as it sounded something like, "white elephant sale." Audrina confesses that Justin Bobby, who was supposed to come by, won't text her back. Ew, J.B. That's just rude, and no amount of cutely throwing Audrina in the pool can make up for it.

Then there's a boring scene with Heidi and Holly. Heidi is wearing a beret, which is really all you need to know.

At the after-party, Sean the guitarist is hitting on Stephanie. He shows her/us his nipple piercings! Ouch! He is not cute at all, but we won't judge, Steph, as musicians get a pass, no matter how Nazi Youth–ish they look. Meanwhile, Lo asks Audrina if Justin Bobby is coming, and she definitely just inquired in order to make Audrina feel stupid. And the next day Audrina tells her work friend Chiara that J.B. bailed. "He needs to make more of an effort," she says. Yes, Audrina, he'd be a perfect boyfriend if he could ever remember to call you back.

To close, we cut back and forth between Heidi and Kimberly (wearing too much
bronzer) and Lauren and Lo. Heidi is hopeful that Holly will bring them all back together, and Lauren is adamant that she's not going to. The angsty music swells as Heidi laments, "Maybe one day, by a miracle, we'll be friends again." In the fake universe of The Hills, anything can happen, Heidi. Here's hoping!

Next week: Lo and Audrina bond, and Stephanie goes out with Doug. Yes! We've been waiting for Steph's big betrayal all season.

And now, the Unequivocal Hills Reality Index:

As Real As J.B. Is Thoughtless
• We really do think that Justin Bobby bailed on Audrina of his own accord. Who is this flaky guy, anyway? What does he do? Can someone fill us in?
• Lo's facial expressions at the concert. Girl was NOT having any fun, and it showed.
• Sean's nipple piercings. Real and gross.

As Fake As Lauren and Audrina's "Friendship"
• Holly and Lauren's lunch date. If ever there was an orchestrated meeting, that was it. How did Holly get Lauren's number, again? Hmm.
• Heidi's desire to be friends with Lauren. Heidi's only desire in life is to star in eighties music videos that her evil boyfriend directs.
• Spencer's empty threats. He's not kicking Holly out of that house on MTV's watch.

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