Sympathy Depleted…Michael Corinthos Jr: Jailbird

I know that scenes like the one below are supposed to make me feel sorry for Michael, and are supposed to lead me to want to see Dante and Lucky do everything they can to free him, but they DON’T.   I’ll tell you why after you watch the clip, if you haven’t already watched the show:

  • Do I think Michael belongs in prison for trying to stop Claudia from running off with his minutes old infant sister after she’d kidnapped his pregnant mother?  No.
  • Do I think he belongs there because he let his father cover up an act of “self-defense”?  No.
  • Do I want him there because his pinhead father told him that he was ‘proud of him’ for taking Claudia’s life?  Would sending Michael to prison be a great way to teach Sonny a lesson? No.  Michael should not be used as a pawn to teach his father a lesson.  In fact, Sonny and Jason should be in prison for obstruction of justice (they burned down a freakin’ cabin and hid Claudia’s body over something that wasn’t even a crime).  While we’re at it, Carly should be in prison with them so that Jax can save that sweet child of his from her mother.

So why the lack of sympathy?  Because in the end, it’s most likely the case that the writers will have Michael learn absolutely ZERO from his prison stint.  This is the kid who wanted to take his father’s place as mob kingpin (as though he would never have to face justice and the possibility of prison at some point in the future).  Michael was so mean and spiteful when thinking that he could be passed over as top boss that the character was insufferable.  His behavior included wanting to see his father kill Dante because Dante was <GASP> an undercover cop and a ‘rat’ who infiltrated his father’s organization.  Even after he found out that Dante was his brother, he lacked sympathy and compassion  for his brother.  He felt that the bullet to his chest, courtesy of their father, was well deserved.

Now he’s in prison with the sort of men his brother works hard to put away to keep society safe. He’s in prison with the sort of people The Quartermaines, and Jax, wanted to protect him from.   They are the sort of men his father does business with on a regular basis.   Welcome to the real (soap) world, Michael Corinthos Jr.  It’s tougher than you thought.

I don’t believe he belongs in prison, but at the same time  I just don’t have any sympathy for him.  If the GH pattern holds, there will be no redemption.  The only thing Michael will learn is to not go to prison unless he takes his fathers’ chief enforcer with him.

I’m resentful that characters who have always  shown a clear preference for truth, honesty, and justice are now just mob puppets.  I’m bored by Michaels’ ‘scared straight‘ prison moments that will lead no where.

Ending on a high note

WTF!?!?!?  Someone remembered the show’s history and is using an old plot point to tell a new story.  Lulu must be far more serious about Dante than she was about Johnny.  I don’t recall Lu ever caring if Johnny knew about her abortion.  I don’t think it even came up, but that was so long ago, I can’t remember.

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Defending My Maxelli love

I’m stunned (STUNNED I TELL YA’) when I read that there are fans who don’t like Maxelli (Maxie and Spinelli).  I’m not so shocked about fans not liking Spinelli, alone, I think he’s been too closely linked to the mob boys and they breed contempt in many a GH fan.  Winifred would never have lasted for the same reason – being too closely linked to Sonny and Jason. (Honestly, how could the writers have believed that fans would applaud a character who begins as an honest federal agent, but begins viewing her own government as “the evil” enemy because of  a fascination with Spinelli that also made her prey to Sonny’s magical impregnating dimples, or Jason’s icy-but-honest–except-when-he’s-taking-a-life blank stares?  I pretty much wanted her dead about a day after she arrived – figuratively speaking, of course.

What makes Maxelli so worthwhile as a couple is that they are the unexpected.  GH writers have lost their ability to tell the unexpected storyline and I can only believe that Maxelli works by not by design, but by accident.  I can only imagine that the positive fan response to Maxelli caught TPTB offguard or they would still be pushing a Maxie and Johnny.   Matt and Maxi wouldn’t work for the same reason – too predictable.  QUICK, which GH storyline below did you NOT see coming:

  • Carly’s pregnancy with Jax is high risk.  Can the man just have a child?  Sonny’s impregnated half the town, mothers living or dead.
  • Kristina is a terror, and Alexis is clueless.  It’s been so long since the writers have allowed Alexis to have a clue.
  • Michael is a sociopath in the making and wants to follow in Sonny and Jason’s footsteps.  Yeah, yeah, Sonny’s comeuppance for taking advantage of vulnerable Jason… how about jail time as comeuppance, and not the innocence of the Quartermaine heir? 
  • Jason has been involved in a shoot out.  Anyone keeping track of how many shootouts he’s been in?  Aren’t we averaging at least two a year onscreen?
  • Sonny is seemingly torn between two women (though he’d never seem to give Olivia much of a second thought before, now that she’s with Johnny Sonny is jealous.  Maybe the unexpected is that there aren’t THREE women fighting over him? 
  • Nik is as dumb as a post and has fallen in love at the drop of a hat.  He doesn’t realize that Remily is running a game.  I remember a time when Nik wasn’t as dumb as a post.  <sigh>  We need more Nik-Alexis scenes in which they keep each other clued in to the lives around them.  Nik has ignored Alexis’ warnings, DeadEm’s warnings, etc, etc, etc… Nik should start to realize that it’s only because of Alexis, and originally Helena, that he managed to not be taken for every penny he’s worth.
  • Ethan and Remily are connected.  Two cons who show up in PC at about the same time it Traci was the only truly suspicious one?  Two ‘long losts’?  What’s happened to the smart characters?  What’s happened to writers who respected smart viewers?

I don’t just like/love Maxelli, I NEED them.  Otherwise, GH is just more of the same crap, different year.  Maxelli is not.  This is another GH couple in which the weaknesses of one character is compensated for  by the strengths of the other (GH’s Scrubs being the other).  Spinelli is probably the most life-experience challenged character GH has ever created.   He’s clueless about anything without a mother board or internet connection

[at the wedding of Lucky Spencer and Elizabeth Webber, March 23, 2007]
Priest: Why do you think these two should not be joined?
[Seeing that Lulu is about to object to the marriage, Spinelli quickly jumps in.]
Spinelli [stumbling] : Marriage is out-dated. It’s a primitive remnant of a pre-computer age. Y’know, like, ‘With this ring until death do us part’? I mean, they’re arcane, archaic phrases with no real meaning. I mean, are they internet-compatible? I mean, y’know you could still be using dial-up, and she could be a high-speed chick. Are their servers in-synch??
Lesley Webber: Who are you?
Lulu Spencer [reluctantly] : He’s my boyfriend.
Spinelli [plesantly surprised] : Really?
Lucky Spencer: Grandma, what’d you put in the punch?

 

Doesn't this picture just say it all? The only thing missing is Sonny's halo and the rest of the angels bowing before him. - All images are courtesy of ABC Daytime

He trusts far too easily and is prey to his fantasies about the lives of others; which then makes sense of his over-the-top hero worship of the likes of Sonny and Jason.   He identifies with them and their cohorts in the way a child identifies with outlandish childhood creatures, images from mythology… c’mon Carly ‘the Valkyrie’?  Stone Cold?  The Blonde one?  Unhinged one?  Sir?  His nicknames for Port Chuckles citizens reads like a comic book.

What Maxie gives to Spinelli is the benefit of her edginess.  She’s jaded and as such she helps Spinelli see the world through more skeptical eyes.  Maxie’s job isn’t to remove his innocent wonder, it’s to allow him to continue to express it, and to learn how to protect himself against the world.  Spinelli’s role is to make the world a less threatening place for Maxie.  She doesn’t have to plot and scheme to protect herself from those ‘out to get her’.  Spinelli allows Maxie to take a step down from her delusions and fears.  He makes her happy without asking her to ‘prove’ her joy through sex, or complete adoration.  That makes him different from any other man she’s known.  He just wants her to be who she is without the fear and anxiety dragging her down.

What about GH’s other couples?

While I’m not happy that SCRUBS is wasted on Matt Hunter, who I have ZERO interest in, their current storyline makes a hell of a lot more sense and is far easier to watch than the PPD storyline.  Oddly enough, the writers are allowing GH’s gold standard couple to become involved in storylines that require INTELLECT… In the case of “The Death of the Mayor’s Mistress”, two highly educated people who care about something other than what happens to the lollipop mob?  Count me IN!  This feels like ‘old GH’, with a good bit of intrigue and possible danger.  The Scrubs are splitting their time between home with Emma, work at GH, and solving this case to protect Matt.   The writers totally screwed the audience on the PPD storyline.  This is a nice start in making it up to fans.  It’s the storyline they should have told after the Scrubs honeymoon, a storyline that continued to play off their wit, charm, intellect, and sexiness as a couple.

Johnny and Olivia?  So far, there’s no depth, but that’s not what the couple is about.  They’re a guilty pleasure and I accept them as such.

Diane and Max?  Ditto. 

Carly and Jax?  Some days I believe that the writers intend for them to make it.  Other times it feels as if the writers intend for Jax to be Sonny’s ‘placeholder’.  I’m dying to see more scenes of this couple that don’t including Michael, Sonny, or Jason, and not even the mention of them.  When the hell will Jax get back to being a corporate raider with his new partner, his wife.

Rebecca and Nik?  I can’t tune them out fast enough.  I’m waiting for technology that allows you to not only skip commercials, but skip scenes featuring specific characters.  In my world, it’s as if they never existed.   My world is a happy place.

OLTL, the good, the bad, and the WTF!?!?!

The Good: Thank you writers for finally wrapping up the ‘Baby Chloe- Hope’ storyline.   It’s been a long time in coming and I was getting sick of it!

The Bad: (With sarcasm):  Thank you writers for the ‘Baby Chloe -Hope’ storyline.

The WTF: (with incredulity and a tad bit of disgust):  Thank you writers for the ‘Baby Chloe -Hope’ storyline.  Of all of the storylines you COULD have told, this is what you saddle us with?

There are some legitimately wonderful reasons to love OLTL, in my book:

1.  It’s not All My Children.  Need I say more?

2. None of the characters are named Michael Corinthos Jr.  How is it is that General Hospital writers have a knack for taking an event that should be considered a blessing and turn it into such an awful AWFUL thing?  Little Michael Corinthos’ awakening was something I felt myself regretting about 10 minutes after the kid opened his eyes.  To the credit of OLTL’s writers, they haven’t managed to make me wish that any of their teen characters would lapse into a coma!  ALTHOUGH… I wouldn’t mind seeing LESS of all of them.

3.  Viki Lord.  Period.  What would this show do without Erika Slezak?  I don’t even want to know!

4.  The triangle between Clint/Nora/Bo will be heating up soon into a quadrangle with mixed partners Clint/Nora/Bo/Lindsey.  I’ve never been a big Bo/Nora fan – primarily because I’m not a Nora fan. I say that knowing that MANY OLTL fans are Bo/Nora fans and for their sake, I sure hope that the show’s writers honors its history and gives the couple back to the audience who loves them.  The question is… what happens to Clint?

Clint/Lindsey? (Can you imagine their couples name?  Clindsey?  Lint?  FUN!)  Since it seems that CH’s Lindsey’s stay is temporary, I have  doubt as to whether the writers would move in that direction.  Too bad, Lindsey was fabulous with both Clint and Bo in the past.  I would be interested in the chemistry between JVD’s Clint and CH’s Lindsey.

Clint, on his own? Angry?  Scheming to break up Bo and Nora?  Where’s the fun in that?  I’d rather see Clint go back to London before having him take on his own brother over a woman he shouldn’t have been with in the first place.  I had a preference for Clint and Nora over Bo and Nora, but to have Clint becoming involved with the love of his brother’s life was a bit much for most of you and in moments of objectivity, I agree.

Clint and Viki?  If you’re going to make me suffer through Bo and Nora, writers, I’ll take Clint and Viki (no worries, anti-Clint/Viki fans… I never get the pairings I like).  I think Clint and Viki/ Bo and Nora have the potential to take fans back to some of the glory days of  OLTL. I have to admit that I’m concerned about the initial awkwardness of the two couples getting together in light of Nora and Clint’s relationship… eh,there’s been worse on this show.

5.  Believe it or not, I think that John and Marty (or the prospect of John and Marty) would be far more interesting than Blair and John – who’ve only managed to put me to sleep.

6.  Jessica and Brody.  Even now, I’m still disappointed that Nash is gone and that Jared survives in his place, BUT, at least TPTB have come as close as they possibly could to Nash, without trying to replace him with a ‘Nash Clone’.  Brody has ‘Nash like’ qualities (hot as sin, a beautiful body, thoughtful, kind, and loving), but have given him a unique personality and core.

So… setting aside that things I actually like, I have to say that the ‘Baby Chloe- Hope’ storyline has the potential to keep me tuning out OLTL (or at least FFing most of whatever episodes I bother recording.

I think the teen pregnancy storyline was the biggest mistake the writers have made so far.  I’m not against the idea of a teen pregnancy storyline.  I’m simply against the teen pregnancy storyline for the chosen characters.  Why?:

  • I hate the back door approach to keeping Todd and Marty connected given their history.  It’s bad enough that he’s violated her twice in a lifetime, but now they’re connected because their children are ‘in love’ and are now parents together.  BULLOX!
  • I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  This is NOT a storyline that plays to Kristen Alderson’s strengths.  She has become the weak link in this storyline. I find KA’s emotional responses to be stilted and unbelievable.
  • Adding the teen pregnancy storyline on top of the drug addiction storyline was a bit much.  The writers have seemingly decided that the juiciest storylines should go to the youngest actors and that the veterans should be stuck with trivial, pointless, boring storylines.  It’s another storyline for which Kristen Alderson seemed completely unprepared and didn’t connect as an actress, in my opinion.  She uttered the dialogue  well enough, but her performances felt like a ‘script reading’ rather than watching someone who was emotionally impacted by a loved one’s drug abuse.
  • Oddly enough, Brandon Buddy has done as well as any actor with significantly more experience.  He’s been a marvel.  The only problem with having handed him this storyline is that he seems far too mature an actor for the role he now plays.  It’s time to SORAS Cole to 18 and find him a cougar (no older than 25, please, not someone too much older).  “Starr and Cole” now feel like little Starr and her much older brother – ICK!!!!!!!!!  By the way, Brandon should be nominated, next year, for the addiction storyline.

KA fans I’m not completely ‘Anti-Starr’.  I think there are a  number of storylines that would be great for the character and would showcase the actress’ abilities well.  The Baby Chloe-Hope storyline just isn’t one of them.