What has happened to controversy in daytime?

I began thinking, about whether there are any truly unique storylines in daytime.  Every storyline billed as “Never Before Done” has been a bitter disappointment. They were either storylines in which writers ripped off their own work – playing out earlier told storylines with different characters,  storylines that truly were unique but never have been attempted (all of #Passions, or #GL’s Clone Reva), or storylines that offered some other thinly veiled variation on a theme.

The only storyline I could think of that is unique (and not one that I’m applauding) is the storyline involving the #boldandbeautiful’s Brooke.  She has had affairs with two sons-in-law and a brother-in-law, having children with all three men: with Son-in-law Nick there was a child inadvertently carried by Taylor Hayes – who was married to Nick and accidentally artificially inseminated using Brooke’s egg; an egg that was supposed to be donated to science.  The son-in-law Deacon affair produced Hope Logan, while Deacon was still married to Brooke’s rarely mentioned daughter, Bridget.  The affair with brother-in-law ¢Bill Spencer – who was married to her sister, Katie, resulted in a pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage.   The writers appear to be gearing up for a storyline in which Brooke’s former son-in-law, Deacon Sharpe, finds himself competing against her former brother-in-law, ¢Bill Spencer, for her affections. The only truly original plot in daytime  is also one of its seediest… pun intended.

I prefer to think of it as the lust triangle from soap hell. Thanks to the ever wonderful Katie Logan (portrayed by Heather Tom) and Ridge Forrester (now played by Thorsten Kaye) working together to expose  the perennially sleazy ¢Bill Spencer for the lying fraud he is, I realize how much I miss REAL controversy in daytime.   Whatever happened to the days when scandalous storylines weren’t always about sexual impropriety?  I’ve had enough of #BoldandBeautiful’s Brooke and her various in-law affairs.  I was never able to tolerate #Days Sami cheating with Ej – the man the writers admitted was her rapist.  Their relationship is a sadly outmoded “victim-perp” romance and #Days writers should have none better.   As brilliant as #GH’s Maura West is in the role of Ava, I am exhausted by storylines about women who are unsure of the paternity of  their children, most especially when those men are related.  I have had it with men like #GH’s Sonny, or now defunct #SunsetBeach’s Cole who have slept with and/or impregnated mothers and daughters, as well as half the town around them.

Do you know what kinds of controversial and awe producing storylines I miss?

  • Realistic and useful return from dead plots – #AllMyChildren’s Nina Cortlandt was led to believe her mother  died in childbirth.  Yet, years later, Daisy Cortlandt shows up, reclaims her family, and becomes a pillar of the community despite her reportedly scandalous past.  What a joy it was to watch Daisy operate in stealth mode, trying to figure out if she was friend or foe, as she reconnected with Nina while avoiding the watchful Sauronesque angry eye of Palmer Cortlandt, Nina’s father.
  • Shady corporate take overs were some of my favorites (and not those that are resolved with fashion show takedowns, #BoldandBeautiful).  Remember when Lucinda welcomed Connor and Evan into the fold, not knowing who they really were, at first, and having no clue that they were back to reclaim the Walsh family fortune?  HA!  What about Lucy “helping” Barbara Ryan by buying the “Simply Barbara” clothing line, to have money for Paul as Babs went on trial for the murder (HA!) of James Stenbeck?  Barbara is cleared, later, and has to start a new fashion label when her “friend” Lucinda refuses to sell back the company.  No annual competing fashion shows.
  • Remember #AnotherWorld’s Mac Cory fighting for his corporate life, only to find out that the mastermind behind the attempted takeover of his empire was his own daughter, Iris?  Heartbreak as it was the end of her relationship with her father.  Mac Cory, due to Douglass Watson’s death, was soon gone on screen as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLNnnCgPhm0 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UkgaeETUPs

  • If you’ve forgotten that #AsTheWorldTurns’ Kim Hughes was once terrorized by an unknown stalker, how can you call yourself a soap fan?  The greatest twist ever?  The stalker was seemingly innocent, highly successful and beloved  Douglas Cummings, fiance of her stepdaughter, Frannie Hughes.  Even now, when I hear “Someone to Watch Over Me”, a part of me begins thinking about this storyline.
  • #GuidingLight’s Sonni/Solita/Sonni storyline.  Sonni Carrera, a brilliant psychiatrist meets and falls in love with Josh Lewis (and who didn’t fall for Josh?).  Sadly, it was a ruse.  She and lover Will Jeffries were plotting to steal the Lewis fortune.  The twist?  Sonni was not Sonni, but her “evil”, wild child twin sister, Solita.   Solita was Will’s mistress and muse.  Solita had long been buried when Solita stole her identity.  Double twist?  Solita wasn’t Solita after all. She was the real Sonni Carrera, who had a psychotic break after her sister’s death and created a Solita persona.  I could have died for soap joy.

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Guiding Light writers were chock full of twist heavy, jaw dropping, edge of your seat storylines – ones that weren’t purely about sexual scandal: — Annie, in her desperation to hang on to husband Josh Lewis, carried a dead fetus, until she could set Reva Shayne Lewis up for pushing her down the stairs “killing” their baby. — Beth revealing she had been the victim of sexual abuse by Bradley Raines and her fight to become strong enough to turn him in and reclaim her sense of safety. You’re beginning to get my point, right?  Someone (or a group of people) in daytime have decided that not only does “sex sells” but that sexual impropriety is all daytime has to offer, any more. I want more.  I want those cleverly drawn, nearly impossible to think of on you own, scandals that daytime once offered.  I want family betrayals that take place with clothes on, both feet on the floor – no bumping uglies, folks. I want to look at new characters and wonder if they are friend or foe, and if my fave characters have something to worry about. I want daytime writers to give me romance and intrigue, and stop making sex feel like a weapon. I miss daytime for what it was.  I’m not willing to accept it for the limited thing is has become.

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Soap couple moments I love

Days Of Our Lives

There’s something about EJ and Nicole that allows them to bring out the best in one another.  He’s STILL  a manipulative power-mad monster; his Dimera genes don’t leave him much choice.  What I love is the fact that he’s not power-mad and controlling with Nicole.  Unlike characters like Phillip Kiriakis, who dumps on any woman who dares to love him – in order to prove he’s worthy of his perpetually angry papa’s love, EJ is willing and able to put his love for Nicole first.   EJ is not afraid to stand up to his father and protect the woman he adores.

Every other woman he’s been with brings out the lowlife in him.  Nicole brings out the loving husband and father who feels secure and who can trust the woman he’s with to build a future and grow his family with… which makes it a shame that Nicole is lying to him about his daughter’s maternity.  While he hasn’t been able to tame the manipulative side of her, he at least brings out the humanity in her.  This time, she’s lies for someone else’s benefit, not JUST her own.

Guiding Light

Beth and Phillip are the best of what daytime soap couples are meant to be, even if they aren’t together – yet.  Seeing his face, all Beth had to do was touch him – the love of her life, the man she thought died and left her behind.  Is there doubt in anyone’s mind that she’s been written as a character in free fall because Phillip wasn’t there to catch her?  Every romance was an attempt to recapture the love she shared with him. All have failed.   What made Phillip and Beth great is not that she was always a stereotypic damsel in distress, in need of a knight in shining armor to save her.  Indeed, Beth has been Phillip’s rescuer for as much as he’s saved her.

How fitting that he returned to save, for now, the newest replacement soul mate she’s involved with – another relationship gone horribly wrong.  Coop’s blood on Phillip’s red hoodie, blood that ended up on Beth’s wedding gown through contact with Phillip… Coop has symbolically become yet another casualty in Beth and Phillip’s epic saga.  His return had to signal Coop’s end.  There was no other way.

 When Phillip helped Beth step out of her blood soaked wedding gown, and wrapped a robe around her, something in me welled up.  Beth stood there, half undone but unafraid. There was no shame. There was no angst. Just love and trust and comfort.  It’s been a long time since we’ve been treated to a scene like that ANYWHERE in daytime.  They don’t need words to communicate.  They just need to be together.

General Hospital

I wish I could say that the money TPTB spent on yet another helicopter… to airlift even MORE ‘stranded’ PC citizens had a positive effect on me, but it did not.  All I could think about is how GH writers are now ripping off their own  disaster moves… Hotel fire, Port Chuckles citizens running to the rooftop to make it to the waiting helicopter, not enough room for everyone to go at one time, some will have to wait…been there, done that. Some of the same citizens are involved in this one too.  What?  No PTSD?  No flashbacks to the hotel fire?  (If there were, I missed them, I tuned out most of the yawn inspiring poison gas disaster).

The couple scene that warmed my heart most happened with a couple that shared little to no screen time through most of this catastrophe.  While Patrick yelled orders, telling Sam and others to get to the rooftop and let him worry about who needed to get out next, my heart melted.  So strong, so brave, so much the man a great love made him.  Could you imagine the Patrick Drake who first came to town being so selfless?   THAT Patrick would have been trying to figure out how to get out to save his precious gift for the world.   He’d have been throwing elbows on his way up the stairs toward the helicopter (wondering about the poor heartbroken women who wouldn’t survive if he didn’t make it out of there).  Ok, Patrick was never THAT callous, but he was pretty damned close.

Love has transformed him.  THIS Patrick worried about his family.  THIS Patrick could think of the families of all of the others who wanted them back home that day.  While he was saving others, Robin was bonding with Emma – and praying that they would all be back together again.  Each in their own way recommitted to their loving family.

By the way, given the annual disaster event (or what seems like an annual disaster event), why does anyone in that town ever leave home? Why haven’t they all moved elsewhere?

All My Children

Reese touching Bianca’s cheek as she cried at the altar would have warmed by heart… IF Reese weren’t just kissing Zach a short while before that.  What do I love most about Reese?  How much she makes the audience appreciate what real women Maggie and Lena were!  Bianca’s two greatest loves, and TPTB wasted a Binks wedding on Reese. 

Rather than suffer through another eye-boink between Reese and Zach, I would have loved to have had either Maggie or Lena wiping Binks’ tears away.  Those tears would have meant something, then.

One Life to Live

Tea with?  ANYONE.  I love Tea’s chemistry with everyone she’s with, and sadly even with Todd.  It doesn’t seem likely the writers will ever go anywhere with the two… they’re past lovers who’ve developed a sibling relationship (icky as that sounds – it’s the reverse of a BnB lovestory where past siblings become future lovers once they learn they’re no longer related by blood).

Since we most likely won’t get Tea and Todd, I’m still lovin’ the Rex/Gigi relationship.  I’m not fully sold, but I love the friendship/lover vibe the two have.  Wes and Marty are equally, if not more, interesting -but for all the wrong reasons.  They’re  a trainwreck in the making!  Wes doesn’t know Marty all the well, but he’s got her number.  He’s figured out that not only is she using him to get to Todd, but to get to McBain, as well, and he’s not having it! 

Now, if only Wes would learn enough about Marty’s history to ask her how she can afford to keep drinking when she’s supposed to have Lupus.   Has Marty gone into classic soap remission?  Is it just that the writers have forgotten about Marty’s illness?  Outside of the drinking, Marty and Wes have it going on… if only it would go on a while longer… we’ll see.

There’s whoa and there’s WHOA!

Whoa!  Abe Carver is the new Mayor of Salem?  HELL YEAH!  Let the games begin.  Abe has always maintained his integrity as a police officer, but I have a feeling (no spoiler here) that Abe will find power as seductive, and corrupting, as the next man.  It’s time for the writers to open this character up.  Other than occasionally dropping in a briefly appearing family member for his wife to have an affair with, we still don’t know as much as we should about the man.  This could be the start of something magnificent for Abe.  A secret from his past comes back to haunt him?  All thanks to his father-in-law?  Seriously, writers, I’d pay you for that storyline.  I would – as long as you’re down with monopoly money!

WHOA!  Lexie Carver is the First Lady of Salem?  Hide the children, batten down the hatches, and pray good people of Salem… PRAY!  Any Dimera that gets that close to power also becomes increasingly more psychotic along the way… Gotta’ love the DAYS writers for that.  In an earlier blog I theorized that the writers would have Stefano extract his pound of flesh from Lexie once Abe took office.  Stefano is the obvious choice, but I wouldn’t mind having the writers surprise us and have EJ flex his DiMera muscle!  Torn between two loves and trying to fight off their father who is always scheming to steal custody of his and Nicole’s child could make a man desperate- Good luck, EJ, not that you’ll need it (hanky alert and spoiler if you haven’t already heard:  this is one baby that won’t make it… sad.  I was looking forward to an EJ/Nicole offspring.)

Then again, how likely is it that Abe will be in office long enough for either EJ or Stefano to blackmail Lexie into helping them?  Isn’t she overdue for an affair?  How long has she been faithful now, a year?   Lexie and ‘scandal’ are like twins.  Where one goes, the other follows!

Whoa! No shortage of romantic weddings on AMC?  Who are the wedding participants?

WHOA!  My money is on (and get this!)  Adam and Erica AND Reese and Bianca.  Reese and Bianca are the obvious, I think. They’re the only couple not swirling the drain right now.  Erica and Adam?  They’re my long shot favorite.  Sooner or later, J.R. WILL turn on Adam – it’s his history, it’s what he does.  J.R. turns on Adam as often as DAYS’ Lexie has an affair!  Given what Erica knows (and her fondness for Adam despite herself and despite his often loathsome behavior) Adam may need to marry to keep himself out of prison.

Whoa!  Fans have complained repeatedly about the ill treatment they’ve received at the hands of TPTB of daytime.

WHOA!  RogerD posting about Tom Casiello’s blog on “The Loss Soap Fans Don’t Know They’re Experiencing”  You’ve gotta read it, but first a warning:  If you’re already peeved about the fact that the more fans tell TPTB what they want,  the more they get the opposite in return, “The Loss” won’t make you feel any better.   You’re not crazy, it IS daytime, and seemingly only day time, that blows off its fans and seems to believe that fans are mindless drones, property of daytime, too busy drooling and dragging knuckles to figure out how to change the channel… how wrong they are.

WHOA!  The BnB writers know how to do ‘subtle’? Well geez, why not do subtle MORE OFTEN!?!?!?

Rick admits what we already knew, and what the writers have already admitted about Brooke and Ridge – the show has been centered on this couple from very early on:

Rick: I am, yes. Someone I’m hoping to lure into executive management. Steffy, come on. You gotta eat. (Laughs) besides, your dinner date ditched you.

Steffy: My dad didn’t ditch me. He had other plans, a better offer.

Rick: A better offer. And how does that make you feel?

Steffy: It was only dinner.

Rick: And how many is that now? Missed dinner dates and birthdays and graduations unattended. How was it for you growing up when my mother and your father decided that spending time together was more important than spending time with you?

Steffy: It was only dinner. We didn’t have any plans. He was already with brooke when I called.

Rick: He was with brooke? You see, steffy, we have more in common than you think.

Veteran viewers know that Ridge and Brooke spent MANY days and nights together, during BOTH partners’ many marriages/love affairs.  Ridge and Brooke have had the various ‘soul mate’ talks, have refused to give up ‘working’ with one another for the people they loved,a nd have fought tooth and nail to remain a part of one anothers’s lives, even when they hadn’t crossed the line.   Their affair was an emotional affair, instead of a sexual one.  Interesting… very subtle.

Bigger question about the writers, how long will they let Stephanie and Eric stay together this time?  Stephanie is truly the architect of her own misery, plotting with Rick against Ridge and Brooke knowing Eric wants them to be left alone.  Her liasion with Rick will end up costing her family a whole lot more… then again, add Eric to that mix.  Everyone who indulges Rick in his self-righteous behavior is only making things worse.

Buh bye Daytime?

Goodness, I hope not.  I bitch about daytime… uh, A LOT, it’s what I do!  That doesn’t mean that I don’t love daytime – even when I’m crabbing about how much I hate it.  It’s like marriage, people!  Ok, so there are some things I don’t like.  All right, I lose perspective from time to time and the stuff that’s just good old fashioned storyline telling gets lost in the crappy stuff (case in point?  Grady, Guiding Light.  In another lifetime, I’d have loved some, not all, of his bad boy antics.  If it weren’t for the fact that he was a hitman-for-hire who’s never shown any real remorse, and has never had to pay for anything he’s done wrong I would have fallen madly in love with this character).

I don’t want daytime to go away.  I want daytime writers to remember what made the genre great and get us back to that time.  Yes, yes.. budget constraints make it hard for big storylines and make it hard to offer the old wonderful scenes of families and friends gathered in the same room for almost any occasion (geez, remember Ryan’s bar for the celebrations and the holidays)?

Don’t you miss the huge Christmas celebrations on the Bold and The Beautiful (though TPTB have given us a couple of great celebrations the last couple of years).

Remember the Nurses’ Ball on GH?

How about the Bauer BBQ?

The Hughes Family Fourth of July picnics?

We’ll probably never see big family scenes again (short of soap weddings and soap funerals), but maybe we’ll occasionally see scaled down versions – scenes along the lines of tense dinner parties:  Picture it, GH’s Jason and Liz/Lucky and Sam having dinner together, working out the details of a shared custody arrangement that allows Lucky to keep his sons.  Liz, giving Sam the evil eye, is making it clear to all but Jason that she’s not completely over Lucky.  Sam doesn’t notice that hypocriti-liz is giving her the eye, because she’s too busy staring into Jason’s empty but beautiful blue eyes.  Lucky is staring at Liz, who is still staring at Sam, and he’s wondering why her ovaries seem to only warm up to the bad boy seed.  He wonders if he’d either killed someone, or joined the mob, would HE be the biological father of one of her children?   Jason?  He’s staring at his navel lint, trying to figure out how many more children, with how many more women, he needs to create before he’s TRULY walked a mile in Sonny’s shoes.   What I wouldn’t give.

I don’t hate daytime.  I just want a little more.  A little more love.  A little more romance.  A little more laughter.  Daytime has become a dark and depression genre.  I don’t know if current storylines are simply more reflective of daytime writers’ mood, but if they are, the worst is yet to come.  I don’t think the writers  have bottomed out, soap fans!

BnB

  • The writers have made it clear that Eric is an asshat.  Stephanie AND Donna living with him until he can make up his mind?  Sure, as I said before, it’s a rehash of the Macy/Thorne/Caroline storyline.  It’s alsoan unnecessary storyline since the writers have already proven that Eric and Stephanie are kindred spirits.  He tapes Donna working on the men’s line with Owen.  Stephanie taped Brooke (Donna’s sister) in the lab working on ‘BeLIeF’ with Ridge.  Technology is a very bad thing in the hands of Ma and Pa Forrester…a very bad thing.  Can you imagine what sort of titles their dvd collection contains?
  • Add Phoebe’s impending death.
  • Rick’s mewling that no one should be happy because he’s no longer having sex with Taylor
  • Katie stealing her niece’s husband, sleeping with him after she pushed the two of them back together, and after her niece saved her life.
  • and Marcus being sent away (and for what purpose?  So that Uncle Rick can seduce Steffy to stick it to Ridge, again?  Nice, since Marcus thinks the world of his cousin)
  • Watching the BnB requires a boatload of Pepto… but it’s not the worst offender.  The show DOES score high marks with me for recreating some of BRidge’s best times (the romantic Malibu wedding, the black teddy seduction scenes, last year, the Nagano scenes from the winter ’98 Olympics).

Guiding Light

  • Reva’s high risk pregnancy
  • Grady intimidation and physical assault of half the female population of Springfield.  WHAT?  Has no one on the GL writing staff ever watched an episode of Buffy?
  • Daisy is getting dumber by the day
  • The frequent prison scenes featuring Rafe (um, where is Grandpa Alan?  Why are Alan and Grady walking free while Rafe sits behind bars? Grandpa’s got no visions of his son, so he has no need for his grandson?  Alan leaves Rafael to rot while he mentors Grady.)
  • Olivia’s health crises
  • Bill Lewis in a coma
  • Watching the Guiding Light requires a good stiff drink.  You’re cutting back on your alcohol consumption, you say?  EASY!  Take a drink for every happy character you see on screen.  That’ll keep you sober.

General Hospital

  • There’s a population control issue on GH.  Apparently, no one knows how to use the pill, or a condom, or any other birth control device.  Oh but what to do about the overcrowding in Port Chuckles?  I know!  Kill off the citizenry.  I think we’ve been down this road one too many times.
  • Forget ‘Joe the Plumber’, ‘Jared the Undertaker’ must be a BILLIONAIRE by now!  There’s no need to build more jails in Port Chuckles, very few people live long enough to make it to prison.
  • Don’t worry, you don’t have to be criminal to make the ‘population reduction’ list.  You just have to ‘be’ in PC.  Emily, Georgie, Michael (coma)…
  • Can we do something about the decor in Sonny’s home, as well as Zacchara household?  The only things missing from the current decor are coffins, crosses, and cobwebs!  Only the Cassadine castle should be that creepy.
  • If you’re watching GH, these days, might I recommend laughing gas?

Young and the Restless

  • Phyllis is flipping her gourd because her husband is cheating emotionally (ok, that one gives me a giggle)
  • Victor is being framed by his son who is in cahoots with Jack Abbott, on top of being wanted for murder.
  • Everyone thinks Kay Chancellor is dead (do think it’s odd that the man who believes she’s ‘Marge’ knows who Victor Newman is, but is clueless about Kay Chancellor and Kay’s death doesn’t seem to be big news).
  • John Abbott’s ghost is still floating around.
  • Gloria is celebrating having duped an ailing woman out of a chunk of stock
  • Nikki is in mourning because of the loss of Katherine and Victor’s reappearance (ok, I made the last part up)
  • Cane and Lily are long in the face over their separation (and admittedly, their very existence causes ME to go long in the face)
  • The YnR is not quite as bad as others… relying on denial will get you through the down moments in the YnR.   There aren’t all that many down spots in the show.  In fact, I think the YnR is the most watchable show on the air, right now.

One Life To Live

  • Blair, today: “A toddler who needs sleep, a child who is upset over not seeing his father in long time and a teenager whose baby has just died’.  OY.
  • Todd was intimate with the woman he raped when they were younger- taking advantage of her amnesia.  He ‘took’ her when the man who was holding her hostage was murdered.
  • Jared and Natalie are recovering from nearly being blown to hell.
  • Jessica/Tess/Bess are battling for control of ‘the being’.  GREAT!  Scenes of a caged Jess in a dark room, with angry Viki photos around her cage.
  • Bess has stolen Starr’s baby to exchange with “their” dead child.
  • Marcie is grieving and Michael is trying to decide whether (and then HOW) to help her.
  • John… well, he’s still John
  • You need a prescription for anti-depressants to watch One Life To Live.

Great for killing a good mood if happiness just isn’t your thing:

  • ATWT:  Step-Grandpa Brian put the moves on Luke, and then tried to make Luke think he was crazy by denying what happened.  I miss Nuke.
  • DOOL:  Nick was arrested and led away in handcuffs, today… yes, dear sweet wonderful Nick.  All because of two characters I couldn’t give a flip about: Trent and Melanie.
  • AMC: Lovin’ AMC, but I don’t know how much more Babe fixation I can take.  Admittedly, she wasn’t one of my favorite characters so watching a good part of the show being centered around the aftermath of her death is painful… weally weally painful.

Let’s hope daytime writers cheer up… SOON!  I’m not ready to lose what’s left of the genre.

The better angels of our natures…ATWT/BnB

Stop by and check out the new Sound and Fury Message Boards.  It’s a full service site: soaps, music, the arts, science, politics, you name it!  Simply click the SandF icon to the right:

If you haven’t read MarkH’s blog about applauding the experiments in daytime, you should!  It’s phenomenal and it truly makes me want to see soaps in the same light that he does.  I want to love most of what I’m watching.  As I’ve said before, like so many of you, I just feel burned out.  Every time I want to trust daytime writers, they do something so shockingly bad, that even when they are doing something right, I’m still recovering from the last crappy storyline.

It’s a nasty little carryover effect.
Case in point?  I WANTED to applaud the writers for giving Luke and Noah more airtime this week than they have in quite a while, even before Noah went to Rome.  It’s just that the writers spent so much time giving them a storyline they’ve already played out so many times before that it’s losing its effectiveness.  Luke has a loving, though highly dysfunctional family.  He has great friends.  He has more money than a freakin’ bank, and he’s still fighting the good fight over small (though not insignificant) issues.

Hey, even I thought of another storyline that had them facing a little bigotry, but one that I thought would tackle stereotypes about cultural notions of ‘family’.  My thought was that Puberty would probably end up parents.  (Puberty = Parker and Liberty, non WTers). I’m grateful to the writers that they didn’t go that route, but I thought it was the direction they were headed in, initially.   Cousin Luke and Noah could become parents/guardians/whatever, of the child, but not without Janet objecting for religious and personal reasons.   Janet would learn, over time, that she had little more than stereotypes about gay families and slowly come around.

Now?  Luke and Noah are stuck in ‘older teen hell’ in daytime.  Luke is running for class President (or some such) and the big issue is getting a film series going in what should be, or has traditionally been a safe environment for him. I realize that not all academic environments are open and accepting, but I wanted more for Luke .  I wish the writers had chosen a storyline that had a significant impact on social issues.  This kid is as rich as creases. He could fund his own gay film series and end up throwing enough cash around to have the university administration kissing his toes trying to get a small portion of his fortune.  Gimme more, writers, gimme more.

What would happen if Luke suddenly started behaving like the mogul he is?  What if his Lucinda gene (yeah, yeah, no biological tie) kicked in?  How would Noah react to the ‘new’ Luke?  What would happen if another young man from a powerful family came along and tried to woo Luke away from Noah?  Noah, the kind and loving, up against an rich and devious snot how has images of merged fortunes dancing in his head?  Ruh roh!

I WANT to applaud the Bold and The Beautiful for realizing that it’s the women of the show that really make the BnB world go round.  ARGH, the problem is that the writers are going back to the Brooke-Taylor, and Brooke vs the doubled headed hell hound Stephanie-Taylor.  We’ve been down that round a million times. It’s all the show had to offer for nearly 14 years.

Why can’t Stephanie lighten up?  Why can’t she smarten up?  I’d have love for the writers to follow the storyline that was rumored to take place.  Brooke and Ridge would start their own company.  Imagine Stephanie taking over FC (as she should have LONG ago rather than leaving it to Eric and cheesy Donna).  Imagine Stephanie talking herself into believing that if she ruined Ridge and Brooke’s company, it would bring her baby boy home to her –There’s a word for that!  You might have been thinking DELUSIONAL, and you’d be right.  I, however, was thinking about the word  ‘OEDIPAL” in explaining Stephanie’s constant need to dig her claws into Ridge, dragging him back home to her.

Imagine Stephanie and Brooke ripping  one another’s companies apart, leaving almost nothing standing when they’re done, and forced to join forces against an outside enemy — Jackie M’s!  While they were hell bent on one another’s destruction, Jackie Marone was hell bent on destroying them both to become the top of the fashion heap.

Instead, the writers give us the same old, same old.

I’m going to follow MarkH’s advice and try to appreciate what the writers are doing right.  At the same time, I hope the writers will begin to appreciate those of us who’ve hung in there, continuing to support daytime with our hearts when our heads tell us to RUN!  It’s ok if they want to repeat some of the storylines of the past, but repetitive storylines are always less noticable when the writers give us something else to go along with it.

She’s baaaaaack! ATWT-OLTL-BnB- YnR

Where to start, where to start!  OH!  I know!  I have news, folks!  You may miss the old boards from the now defunct, but much beloved, Total TV Online!  There is still a companion site (message board)  for the “Sound and Fury” blog.  You can access that site by clicking HERE.

As The World Turns

Carly is BACK, the Carly that so many fans have grown to love.  Carly is a cross between one of daytime’s greatest romantic heroines, and a walking disaster.  Today, we got to see a little of both, more of the former than the latter.  I believe that Carly has been sincere in her odd couple friendship with Janet.  There’s no malice between the two women and Carly wants to see Jack happy with Janet, for his sake, and that of their children.

The trouble is that despite her best efforts to do the ‘right’ thing, she finds herself in trouble every time.  I groaned a bit when she found herself getting hot and heavy with Jack.  Other than the family they share together (and yes, I’m including Parker and JJ as ‘theirs’), nothing good has come of Jack and Carly being together.  Each of those brief periods of time when they shared love and happiness were quickly replaced with some wild attack on Carly’s character, by Jack.  A little crying, a lot of clinging, and too much verbal abuse.

Even still, watching Jack and Carly fall back into bed wasn’t as shocking as I thought it would be.  They’re much too addicted to the self-inflicted pain not to keep going back for more.  It’s Carly’s guilt that was shocking.  That she pushed Jack to be upfront and let Janet know he was in the bedroom before he could stay her was brilliant.  That’s the girl, Carly.  Don’t let Jack pull his standard hit-and-run routine.  I’ll give the guy credit, he did score points by admitting that he’s been a judgmental jerk all these years, but he lost those points FAST by trying to sleep with Carly knowing he still had feelings for Janet.

To see him working on Carly, playing on the emotion she still had for him, and to then have him run back to Janet?  What a putz! Carly is much better off without the guy.  Jack thinks of himself, first.  He always has. If only the writers would hire an actor to play a credible love interest against MW’s Carly.   Brian, perhaps? I’m just not yet ‘digging’ this guy with Lucinda.  I think I’d rather seen John Dixon back, and paired with ‘Lucy Walsh’.  I miss John and Lucinda and their passion.  I have na ulterior motive for suggesting a Carly-Brian pairing.

Maybe Carly can distract Brian so that he STOPS telling Luke to avoid being ‘political’.  I find it hard to believe that Luke standing up for himself and supporting the Gay Film Festival would have a negative impact on his foundation.  (Uh, when did Oakadle U become ultra conservative?)  Brian needs a life… FAST!  Rather than telling Brian that she and Luke need him, it’s time for Lucy Walsh, cutthroat businesswoman that she is, to come back.  I miss her.  It’s time for the REAL Lucy Wlalsh to tell Brian to hit the bricks.   1 –  Lucinda has always had such a deep love for her grandson.  It’s hard for me to believe that she can’t see what’s going on with Brian, and what the potential impact is on Luke.  I just can’t see the writers as being true to her character if they continue to allow her to want Brian, in light of his treatment of Luke and Noah.  2 – Lawrence Lau is HOT, and I’d love to see his character out of such a creepy storyline where he’s trying to suppress Luke’s self-exploration.   Luke is finding his voice.  Brian is becoming increasingly less attractive trying to suppress it.

AND, since we’ve seen more of Kim this month than in the last several months (or so it seems), please make sure when you bring her back more frequently, writers, that you bring back the brilliant woman we’ve all loved for so long.  Kim was the victim of a mad stalker (Oh how I miss the days of the Douglas Cummings storyline). Hopefully she recognizes the signs soon, and works to help Katie with the Spencer incident.  Kim’s been there, done that.  I’d love to have her realize sooner, rather than later, that Katie has every right to be concerned.

Young and the Restless

Sharon, Sharon, Sharon, my friend.  You can’t make a good husband out of a man-whore.  Remember those words of advice.  I only regret that I forgot to include Nick Newman on my man-whore list, when I included his father.  (Read that HERE)  Nick hasn’t met a woman, throwing herself at him, that he doesn’t like.  Having said that?  I can’t help loving Nick and Sharon, despite the fact that he’s an unfaithful pig.  Nick and Sharon are their generation’s Nikki and Victor (er, without the pathology that has begun to pervade the Nikktor relationship).

Short of Nick’s cheating with slimey Grace Turner, and Phyllis (serving as Sharon’s ‘placeholder’), there was a genuine love and a sense of family that Nick and Sharon shared that neither has really had with their respective new spouses. For me, Phyllis will always be the woman who went to bed with a man while his wife was still grieving their dead daughter.  Nick and Phyllis’ relationship is at romantic as a zombie orgy (sorry, it’s close to Halloween and the commercials for haunted houses are getting to me).

What happens in Paris stays in Paris?  OH, let’s hope not.  Let’s hope that Nick does penance for being a complete idiot and cheating on Sharon, realizes what a horrible mistake he made, and goes home to his real family.   He needs to be with his true wife, Sharon.

Besides, the only time Phyllis was remotely interesting was when she was a freakin’ bad girl, and during her marriage to Jack.  Outside of that?  She hasn’t had much to offer.

One Life to Live

It’s been so good seeing Viki, so good in fact that I feel guilty having this small complaint:  Are fans to believe, that in a house the supposed size of Viki’s mansion, she wouldn’t notice that her basement had suddenly become MUCH smaller?  If there was enough space behind the sliding wall to build a ginormous room, complete with on suite bath, you’d think she’d notice SOMETHING was wrong.  EH! I don’t care, I’m just glad to have Viki back.  Now it’s time to reunite Viki and Clint… We’ve been so patient.

Viki must love the relationship between her sister, Tina, and “Jessica”/Tess getting along.  Oh, if only she knew! The most enjoyable part of One Life To Live (and dare I say the only watchable part of the show?) has been watching Tina and Jessica go at one another.  The only person tough enough, and devious enough, to handle Tess is Tina, and heaven help the show if/when Tina or Tess goes.

While Grand Dame Titans Tina and Tess are tearing each other apart, maybe the writers will let Viki serve up a little cold hard justice to brother, Todd.  You’d think that Todd would have learned his lesson from letting Blair think their son Jack was dead.  Now he’s planning to do the same to Starr, in order to take her child and raise it.  I get the saying that history repeats itself… I just don’t know why it’s always the LOUSY history that repeats itself in daytime.  Oh Viki, between Todd, Tina, and Tess, you have your work cut out for you.

Bold and Beautiful

Er, what? Taylor’s back to her lying, sneaky, and underhanded ways?  WELL!  No shock THERE folks!  I seem to remember THIS Taylor, the one scheming and plotting to get what she wants, and putting a ‘concerned’ face on it.  Let’s see, she advised Brooke to stay with Eric, for the children’s sake, even though Brooke was unhappily married to the man.  Then she (Taylor) pursued Ridge, the man Brooke loved – knowing Ridge loved Brooke and was waiting for her to leave Eric.
Taylor advised Eric to tell Stephanie their marriage was over and there was NO chance of him returning to her.. after she listened  to her ‘best friend’ cry about Eric not loving her… and then Taylor moved on Eric, herself.  Now she’s telling Ridge that the fates were probably keeping him and Brooke apart because they probably weren’t meant to be together.  Taylor, would those be the same fates that caused Ridge to walk out on YOU and not look back?  Funny how those fates only work against others, never against her.  Ah, hypocrisy.  The REAL Taylor is back… the “me first, me last, me always” Taylor.

Successaphobia

Successaphobia, n.,  pronunciation: (suhk-ses a foh-bee-uh)

Definition: disorder shared by daytime writers, producers, and network executives that leads them to fear, and therefore sabotage any possible success.

Sure, there’s a lot to like about daytime, and much of the time, I love it.  It’s just that there are times when I can’t help but wonder why writers spend so much time doing everything RIGHT, only to turn around and throw it all out the window.  The worst thing a soap fan can do is admit loving their respective daytime shows.  The writers, producers, and network suits hear it.  Successaphobia kicks in and spells a sure end to the clean storyline telling that made you, oh so foolishly, believe that this time would be different.

Case in point?

OLTL.  Hunt Block as the crude and hate inspiring Det Ramsey, as dirty a character as any soap fan (or writer) could imagine.  Whether you loved to hate, or simply hated the guy, he was fun. Fine, he was fun for me because he tormented Johnny Boy McBain and that’s always a good time in my book.  Even still, watching characters band together to find out his secret, throwing a character from the past – Tina Lord – into the mix as a partner in crime, watching the Buchanans lose their family company, watching Dorian Lord gloat about her inevitable victory, watching Tess’ resurgence… you name it, and OLTL had it going on.  So where did the writers go wrong?  Who decided that fans were having ‘too much’ fun?  Storylines that made sense came to a screeching halt and we were then force fed a diet of Marcie’s baby blues, time travel, Todd keeping his rape victim captive and deceived, Blair bedding Morbid McBain, and a psychotic break from a genuine ‘war hero’ who then takes a child hostage.  (What do ABC writers have against war heroes?  GH used a character who was an Iraq Veteran to further a serial killer storyline, later finding another suspect, but infuriating fans in the process).

As for OLTL, what I once expressed as unbridled enthusiasm has turned into dismay.

I’m sorry for picking on OLTL because it’s not alone.  It’s all of daytime.   While it’s always been the case that daytime television by definition requires periods that are ‘down time’, it’s a labor intensive genre, the ‘down’ times are displacing the ‘up’ times more frequently than before and are lasting longer.

What should happen (and would be more likely to draw viewers in):

*  Instead of praising the man who continues to sleep with and emotionally abuse her daughter, BnB’s Brooke should be ripping his head off.  She should be plotting how to take every dime he has, leaving him destitute and sorry for the way he’s treated Bridget.  How about a little corporate intrigue with a smart woman in charge, or women who at least aren’t selling their souls just to get laid?

Wouldn’t it be worth it to watch Jackie’s jaw drop when she realizes that Brooke is not only NOT smitten with her morally challenged idiot of a son, but that she’s willing to destroy the Marone clan to protect her daughter.  Given the level of disrespect Jackie has shown Bridget, I’d say she has it coming.  Wouldn’t it be worth it to watch Jackie’s anger grow, only to realize there’s nothing she could do about Brooke stripping the Marone clan of everything?

I realize that’s asking a lot from Bold and Beautiful writers, but aren’t fans worth it?

* Instead of sitting at Kate’s bedside, swearing vengeance on the person who nearly killed her on their wedding day, GH’s Kate and Sonny should be off on some romantic honeymoon. I want a location shoot and lots of sweet and romantic scenes (save the sex scenes, I don’t need them.  We need romance in daytime.)  The most frightening moment Kate and Sonny should be facing is the alliance that has seemingly been forged between Carly and Olivia.  Instead, with the exception of Carly, every woman Sonny’s loved is either dead or in some sort of danger.  No woman should be forced to spend even a moment’s notice with the guy. No fan should be forced to watch another Corinthos bride be taken down by one of his enemies.

* GL’s Cassie will be packing things up and leaving town soon.  To Nicole Forester, Cassie’s portrayer, I wish you nothing but joy with the impending birth of your child, and best wishes in your marriage.  My fondest wish, at this point however, is that Cassie was taking Rafe, Natalia, Cyrus, Grady, Daisy, Jeffrey, and a host of other characters with her!

Even more?  I’m starting to wish she’d take Bill Lewis, too.   The way he treats Lizzie is just not cool.  She ran to him without a thought for herself (sadly) when she heard about Max, and still he treats her like garbage.  Isn’t Bill a little young to tell a woman to just focus on ‘looking pretty’!?!?  Just when I think the writers can’t stun me any more than they already have.

ATWT… Wait… I actually don’t have anything bad to say about the show!  MOLY!  I’m sure I’ll find some frustration with the show when the writers come up with more ridiculous reasons for Nuke to sit in the shadows while every other Oakdale resident finds love, but I’ll take what I can get from the show, for now.  While I’m primarily a Luke fan, I realized how much I missed Noah until he returned… little cutie pie.

Between DOOL and ATWT, right now, I actually have something to watch.  YnR doesn’t suck so much either, right now… but give all three shows a chance, they’ll be back in suck rotation… SOON!

Successaphobia is a real bitch.