Whores of the world, UNITE! Women in Daytime, Vol. 2

Women in daytime = whores.  At least, I think they’re the same.  I dunno.  It’s hard for me to figure it all out since I’m just a woman.    Either I’ve been watching too much daytime or it’s the peyote… (just kidding on the last part, though given what some shows are doing to daytime women and viewers as a consequence, a little peyote might make daytime shows go down a little easier).

General Hospital

I’m all about the ‘I told you so’ lately and I want to hand one out to the writers of GH.  I’ve never been impressed with the casting of James Franco in the role of ‘Franco’  and have been horrified by the drooling and self-congratulating  linked to the casting of JF in the role.  The fact that the character was named  Franco was enough to tell me about the lack of creativity  attached his development.  It seemed to be all about stunt casting and the hope that a primetime/big screen actor could save GH from falling ratings.

It feels as if  GH’s PTB were so convinced that negative stereotypes about daytime viewers were real, the stereotype that we’re just a bunch of sex-starved panty-clinching rubes, who lick our screens whenever a hot male actor is featured, that casting JF as ‘Franco’ made sense!  As if we don’t already have enough testosterone filled doom and gloom on screen! (As for that screen licking part, I freely admit that I do think about licking the screen when Jason Thompson’s Patrick is on, but hell, who doesn’t?) The idea that “Franco” would cause us to swoon was as big a fallacy as almost everything else the GH writers have offered us by way of propping the Suckpranos storyline.   I don’t want to see one more character, stunt casting or otherwise, sacrificed on the altar of the mob boys.

  • Give Olivia her brain back.   She was such a strong vibrant character for so long and now she’s a walking-talking mess.   All the daydreaming about Sonny  makes me ill.  If I had to worry about Sonny putting a bullet in my kid’s head because my kid was a cop working to make the world safe?  I wouldn’t be able to daydream about having sex with the guy or daydream about him holding my hand. I wouldn’t even daydream about spitting on the guy if he was on fire!  What’s wrong with this woman?  What’s with her libido?  Sonny rocked her world over two decades ago, bedded and nearly wedded her cousin – swore his eternal love for Kate before the world while barely noticing or remembering Olivia, and she’s still lusting for him?  STOP! IT!
  • Quit making Carly an idiot who treats Jax’s child as Sonny’s future ‘kidnapped bait’ child.  It’s disgusting.  Notice that when Carly was listing off the children who were protected by Sonny’s grace, she included Josslyn, and not Molly?  STOP IT!
  • STOP making Lulu fall for the mob boys and/or supporting them to the point of even trying to convince the police that they really deserve to be set free instead of in prison where they belong.  Stop making her fall for anyone connected, even tangentially, to the mob boys.   Whatever those mob boys have going on below the belt must be some powerful mojo!  And it’s demeaning to us all.
  • Quit making me feel sorry for Rebecca “NotEmily” Shaw by having her actually be the voice of logic and reason before you ship her off.  I really resent you for this one, GH writers.  I’m an avowed ‘Remily’ hater and to leave me cheering for her is one of your worse offenses, yet.  Even still, I grew tired of the “Liz is a slut’ mantra she had going – not that I disagree with the sentiment, just the constant expression of it.  I did enjoy the fact that she continued to remind Liz that her house of cards would soon fold.  The sendoff for Rebecca, the Emily- clone was perfect, by having her make friends with a Zander clone… Chad Brannon was pretty darned delicious looking.  When his clone character drops  Rebecca off in Paris, have him come back!   Patrick’s stalker ex could use a good hook up – then again, so could Matt Drake, who spends far too much time trying to convince Robin that her marriage is in trouble!
  • Maxie, Maxie, Maxie… REALLY?  She’s gives herself to Franco for the sake of getting him to agree to help her out professionally?  Then she tries to pimp out Spinelli to make herself feel better?  She gives relationship advice to Max and Diane about ‘balanced cheating’?    Maxelli, Scrubs Love, and Jax and Carly were the only interesting things GH had going in its favor and the writers are slowly dismantling all three.  Speaking of…
  • For the love of all that’s soap-holy… give me a Scrubs storyline that has nothing to do with old girlfriends crawling out of the woodwork!  Yeah, yeah… Patrick puts it on ’em… they can’t get enough… once you go Patrick, you never go back… Even though I can believe that his arrogant aloof treatment of women made them want him more, I’m getting tired of women who are attracted to him on that basis.  The writers made the courageous decision to make him a happy family man, now I wish they’d make the courageous decision to create family driven storytelling around the Scorpio-Drake clan.  What makes Patrick attractive is that he’s a man who loves his wife and child.  Having him betray them would destroy that.  Leave something that’s still a little pure and  just for us.

I’d love it if the GH powers that be would stop treating women (onscreen) like a bunch of ‘spare parts’ waiting to be traded by GH males, as they’re needed.  Bringing on stellar actors like James Franco can’t  cover the holes in plots, the obsession with the dark  arts of the mob boys, or the weak female characters who aren’t just damaged- they’re damned deranged.  Treating your viewers like sex-starved fiends who’ll gladly buy what you’re selling won’t help either.  I know it’s not just my perspective that GH has lost what made it great… I’ve seen the ratings.  GH is hemorrhaging viewers and the great ‘Franco’ (onscreen Franco) doesn’t deliver a big enough draw to stop it:

Ratings for the week December 7-11, 2009 (when the character Franco’s arrival and work should have made a difference)
HH
1. Y&R 3.7/12 (+.2/same)
2. B&B 2.4/8 (+.1/-.4)
3. DAYS 2.2/7 (+.2/+.1)
4. AMC 2.0/6 (+.1/same)
5. ATWT 1.9/6 (+.1/-.1)
5. GH 1.9/6 (same/-.3)
7. OLTL 1.8/6 (same/ -.2)

Week of December 14 – 18th)

HH
1. Y&R 3.5/12 (-.2/-.3)
2. B&B 2.3/8 (-.1/-.4)
3. DAYS 2.1/7 (-.1/same)
4. AMC 2.0/7 (same/-.1)
5. GH 1.9/6 (same/-.3)
6. ATWT 1.8/6 (-.1/-.3)
6. OLTL 1.8/6 (same/-.3)

Week of December 21 – 25
HH
1. Y&R 3.5/11 (same/-.2)
2. B&B 2.3/7 (same/-.3)
3. DAYS 2.0/6 (-.1/-.1)
3. AMC 2.0/6 (same/same)
5. ATWT 1.8/5 (same/-.1)
5. GH 1.8/5 (-.1/-.4)
7. OLTL 1.7/5 (-.1/-.3) <—— ties low rating (Last time: August 31 – September 4, 2009)

Ratings courtesy of Soap Opera Network:  SON

So why am I still watching? I don’t think soap fans like me want too much.  We just want a balance.  How about  2  smart women for every woman who is lobotomized for the sake of the dark storylines?  I’m hoping Scrubs will survive and find a real storyline and that the writers will give us a storyline about them that will engage the audience without either of them cheating, I’ve FINALLY gotten the Mac and Alexis pairing I’ve been pimping for, through 2009  (don’t think I’m not grateful, just realize I’m not fully satisfied.  They’re off to a great start, and I need MORE).  Dare I hope that Mac/Alexis/Robert/Anna/Robin/Patrick  would be able to restore law and order to PC and that they turn the town around and take down the real bad guys?  I’m hoping that smart, funny, and strong-if-not-neurotic, women like Robin and Alexis (and yes, even Diane) will be allowed to lead the way.

One Life to Live

Nora Buchanan.   Nora is the woman who slept with her ex, Sam Rappaport, and passed his child off as her husband Bo’s child.  Even better is the fact that she did it for Bo– whose son was recently killed.  That was the rationalization she gave for betraying her husband, she most saintedly did it FOR his sake – all the while knowing that Sam was deeply in love with her and knowing what the emotionally fallout might be.   Fortunately (or unfortunately)  for all involved, after Bo and Sam’s deep pain, it turns out that Matthew was Bo’s son after all.  Now we have Nora, who’d been warned/pleaded with/begged not to marry Clint because she didn’t really love him, has now left Clint to be with Bo – during a dark time in Clint’s life.

Once again, another ABC male refers to the cheating lying woman who betrayed him as a whore – I can understand Clint’s rage and his willingness to throw Nora’s past in her face.. I just wish I hadn’t already been overwhelmed with the use of the word ‘whore’ from almost every other ABC male before that.  Nora’s reaction was still priceless.  She’s rude and judgmental and has made a habit of telling others why they’re so unworthy of being loved or trusted.   She was stunned that anyone would dare give her the same treatment.  I wasn’t crazy about Clint’s choice of words, but I’m glad that the writers finally allowed someone to point out to Nora what a hypocrite she is.

True to form, Nora didn’t let a little thing like the truth stop her from being who she is.  A full scene later, SHE referred to Kim as ‘that slut’, the ‘whore in her husband’s bed’, a ‘tramp’… uh huh… Sweet irony!  She was talking to Bo, Clint’s brother, the man she’d been having an emotional (almost sexual) relationship with and lying to Clint about it when she said it… YIKES!  Something about the way Bo and Nora are getting together and the pain it’s causing Clint that’s causing me to want to root for Clint and Kim (a couple I’d previously referred to as the reincarnation of Asa and Blair).

Somehow, the writers managed to give Clint and Kim depth.  Kim was fixated on her ‘plan’ to get Clint into bed to help him forget Nora.  She’d treated Clint like a feeble and emotionally dependent ‘old man’ who would be felled by a little bit of a wiggle and giggle.   Kim would have loved Asa – being felled by a wiggle and giggle was more his speed.  Clint had already had her investigated.  He knew about her stripper past, and didn’t care.  He also knew that she thought she was gaming him, and he didn’t care.  He knew that her plan to ‘drink him under the table’ was about taking advantage of him… and he didn’t care because he also knew three other things:

1 – He had the truth on his side and still had the upper hand.

2 – That being involved with the town’s  ‘sainted woman’  isn’t a guarantee that you’ll end up with an honest woman who’ll treat you well.

3 – That Kim isn’t all bad.   Her bark is worse than her bite.  Despite the fact that there is a risk of turning Kim into a ‘hooker with a heart of gold’ stereotype, the writers have so far avoided taking her quite that far.

The storyline seems to be shaping up into one in which the person in need of rescue may be KIM, not Clint.  He’s as intent on using her as she was on using him.   I hope that doesn’t happen, because despite my exhaustion with female-male May-December romances, there’s something about this pairing that I like. Nice touch, writers, on having Kim’s plan fail when she underestimated his ability to hold his liquor.  BRAVO for letting Clint walk away despite Kim’s offer to let him spend the night and having him warn her to quit while she was ahead.  I could root for them as a couple – with Melissa Archer’s Natalie fighting with Kim and making her work to prove her love for Clint.  I could <gulp> just as easily  root for them developing a strong father-daughter relationship (Oedipal, I know) or have them remain as good friends.  Either way, I’m hoping to see far more of Clint and Kim than Bo and Nora.  SON’s  CarlID offered this observation:

It’s interesting to see the fallout of the Bo and Nora reunion. They were a beloved couple many years ago but not only have times changed, many of the people who were in their lives at that time have changed. It’s like, what if you reunite a supercopule and no one cheered? I don’t mean the fans, I mean the characters in their lives. You don’t have a lot of people endlessly going, “You’re fated to be together,” as you do with many other couples on the show. I also think it would be an interesting writing choice if Matthew wasn’t thrilled they were back together and preferred them apart.

I’ll add one other observation about this storyline.  I found Nora’s reaction to seeing Clint with Kim unusual.  Kim was the whore in her husband’s bed?  Why did she care, she was dumping him!?!?! You’d think she’d want Clint to find someone, ANYONE to take the heat off of her betrayal of Clint.  Is it possible that Nora will wake up and realize that her rekindled love for Bo was based on their mutual concern for Matthew and his health issues?  Could Nora wake up and realize that she was happier with Clint than she imagined?  What happens then?  Where does she turn?  Does anyone care?

BTW, folks, is it just me, or did Jerry Ver Dorn make Clint his own with this bend in the storyline?  JVD’s left me breathless!

Tea Delgado/Blair Manning… not whores, they’re just written to allow Todd Manning to treat them as if they are.

Days of Our Lives

Two words:  Carly Manning.  Two more words:  EPIC FAIL.  There are some soap staples I can’t get enough of:  scheming liars who are eventually figuratively  beaten down and forced to eat their own misery.  Bad boys who are only clever by half and outwitted by their victims, victims they eventually fall in love with.  Anything to do with corporate intrigue.  Good old-fashioned romance.  Deep dark family secrets – that have nothing to do with long lost children.

The one plot I’m pretty freaking tired of is the damsel in distress who can’t get enough of the man she left behind and (oh gosh) if only he’d choose her over his wife and family.  He (being the real ‘whore’ in this scenario) decides that he can’t leave her to her own fate and risks losing his wife and child/children, while keeping secrets with the damsel in distress.  It’s not a stretch to believe that daytime writers typically set this storyline up to do one of two things:  try to make us root for our damsel in distress and if that fails, we’re to hate her as a home-wrecking ‘whore’ who broke up a perfectly happy and  loving family.

You’d think that watching her ‘get hers’ would be satisfying – assuming that the lunkhead goes back to his family and treats his wife as his equal partner, and not his potential mistress.   It’s not.   In reality, for fans like me, it only causes us to dislike BOTH partners – the cheating spouse and the idiotic woman who finds his willingness to betray his family a ‘thrill’ and further evidence that she is the object of his desire, not his wife and family. She’s only the next woman to be betrayed when his former victim/spouse becomes the damsel in distress. It’s all less satisfying because he’ll never ‘get his’.  He’ll just become the object of desire for two women – who’ll continue to fight over him until one of them is exhausted or dead.

Isn’t it time for daytime writers to leave iconic couples alone and find new ways to make them relevant to the audience?  Haven’t we seen these storylines play out a million times before?  Viewers exiting daytime in droves isn’t enough evidence that we want something more?  When did daytime become a genre about deconstructing and destroying rather than building something new or building better and higher on the strong foundation already in place?  Where are the powerful female characters who leave us feeling unashamed of being daytime viewers?

If you’ve made it this fair, I’m sure you’re wondering why I’ve left poor embattled CBS off the list.  Am I sympathetic to the network that’s lost two soaps in two years?  Nope.  I just don’t have the room to continue with CBS’ list of maltreated women in daytime.  This blog would have to be at least three times as long as it is now.  I’m saving that one for a later date.

Suffice it to say, if daytime really is dead -running on fumes,  kicking the bucket, headed for the big one, living on borrowed time… I’d greatly enjoy being able to celebrate women in daytime before it goes.  What do daytime writers have to lose?

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GH: What Mac Scorpio Should Do Now…

I could tell you how much I hate the mob storylines – again… but you know that if you’ve read this blog even once… OR, I could tell you about a storyline I’d  love to see happen for our dear Mac Scorpio – who has to face yet another daughter marrying into/getting involved with the mob circle.

My dream storyline would have to be, of course, something that takes us far outside of the mob boy’s storyline, while still feeding TPTB’s apparent need for vice.  Any viewer watching for longer than a decade remembers that the great Mac Scorpio was once a mercenary.  His past actions in the political world were as shady and low as his actions with other men’s wives (by his account and that of his brother, Robert).   He’s done a lot of bad things, we were just never told what those bad things were.  Mac is now a decorated hero, pillar of his community, loving father/father-uncle, and the chief peace officer in Port Chuckles.  Surely that’s not sitting well with someone, somewhere.  Surely he’s responsible for someone’s untimely death, or for having callously turned over an innocent man (maybe a celebrated freedom fighter)  he tracked down on behalf of some vicious despot.  Surely this man has a son or daughter, seeking revenge, angry that Mac’s life has gone on brilliantly and that he lives among ‘decent people’ while he/she still suffers from loss of a parent.

Let’s make the vengeance-seeker a woman – ah…so you know where this is going!  What if she slowly wormed her way into Mac’s life?  She could share her sob story with him: orphaned as a young adult, left alone to fend for herself in the world… surviving but desperate, doing some unsavory things to survive and often finding herself in unhelpful situations.  The only thing she won’t share with him is his role in her misery.  Outside of her unbridled rage, something  neither Mac nor the audience would know about her as we first meet her, she would be the very definition of goodness and light.  She would seem to have only Mac’s best interest at heart at all times.  We wouldn’t realize, initially, that she was  alienating him from the people he loved most.   She’d start with Maxie.  Why?  Because Maxie is hooked up with the mob boys through her love for Spinelli, which makes her an easy target – low hanging fruit, if you will.

Copyright ABC Daytime

We wouldn’t know she was out to hurt Mac so we, the audience, would applaud her.    Someone other than Mac  is finally telling Maxie and Spinelli there’s a choice to be made and that the options  aren’t even close to being ‘similar’.  They’re very different choices (Mac or the Mob) and that either could alter the course of the young couple’s future.   Ellenna, we’ll call her, would remind Maxie of how important her career at Crimson is to her, of how hard she’s worked to be taken seriously. She would remind Maxie that her father is the same way.  He cares deeply about his work, he cares that he does well, but he also cares to be taken seriously and can’t be, as long as she and Spinelli have chosen Jason and Sonny.  What message does that send to the people of Port Charles?  How much longer is Mac supposed to defend is personal integrity because of their actions and their associations with Sonny and Jason?

Maxie, in her typically obstinate manner, would chose the mob boys (she always does).  They ‘accept’ her as she is. They don’t make demands on her.  They aren’ t out to change her. We’ve heard it all before (and we’ll hear it, or some variation of it, again this week)  Maxie will argue that Mac claims to love her, but only loves her as long as she is the person he wants her to be.   She’ll deliver the ultimate low blow as she tell him that his demands for perfection even drove her mother away and left Georgie vulnerable.  Having ‘been there-done that’ too many times before with Maxie, Mac does cut her out of his life this time.  Maxie is devastated.  Mac is devastated.  Ellenna (‘Elle’)  is secretly elated.

Robin is next.  How does Elle alienate Robin?  This one is more difficult because Robin has been the model daughter-niece.  She has to be more clever with Robin:  ‘unintentionally’ picking fights with her, setting Robin up so that Mac catches her unloading on a seemingly innocent Elle, making Robin uncomfortable with the way she holds Emma – think ‘Hand That Rocks The Cradle’ crazy.  Robin’s inability to accept Elle after everything Mac has done for her and the fact that he’s loved her unconditionally is the final straw.  Mac has  supported Robin in her happiness no matter where she found it and he wants nothing to do with her if she can’t do the same for him.

He’s been on his own for so long that it feels good to finally have someone who is willing and able to put him first.  He confides in Elle that he wasn’t always a good man who cared whether he was loved and needed.  He confides that he’s haunted by the man he use to be, and that it’s why it’s so important for him to be a better man.  He confides that he’s always felt that he was unworthy of happiness, but that he’s been grateful for every moment of it he’s ever had.  He prays that he can have happiness one last time  before he dies, and then has to face whatever ‘punishment’ there is for his past life.  He asks Elle to marry him and they begin  planning their family and their future together… but not so fast!  After comparing notes, Robin and Maxie realize three things:

1- Mac has been strong for everyone else.  He’s been so strong that no one put the pieces together – he’s been slowly falling apart.  Mac has been  suffering from depression since the day he lost Georgie – another reason is was so important to him to help Robin w ith Emma during her PPD.  It gave him meaning and he could connect with Robin without having to share his ‘secret’ his ‘shame’.  He’s been alone in the same house Georgie lived until she died.  He’s alone with the memories of a wife who deserted their family, and a dead daughter.  They start to learn things they didn’t know about Mac – that he secretly drinks at night, for example.  Coleman has seen him there several nights a week passing by a neighboring bar.  It’s where Mac met Elle.

2 – that they’ve both been set up… they realize that Elle wanted them both out of Mac’s life.  They’re not sure why, but they know it’s not for love.

3 – Mac’s depression and that they’ve ignored him other than to lean on him when they needed him made it easy for Elle to set them up and isolate Mac.

They know that talking with Mac is useless because he doesn’t want to go back to his old life of picking up the pieces for everyone else.  He’s happy again and his happiness is like a drug that leaves him wanting more.  What Mac doesn’t realize is that his drug state is both literal and figurative.  Elle’s original plan was to slowly drug Mac, eventually killing him – until she learned about Robin and Patrick and knew they would investigate his death.  She then begins working on ‘plan b’… setting Mac up for murder.  If he can’t be made to pay for her father’s murder, he should be made to pay for someone else’s.  She realizes the irony of taking a life to make Mac pay for the life he took, but she rationalizes her actions by planning to take the life of someone who ‘deserves’ it -unlike her heroic father.

Unaware of Elle’s actions or plans, Robin, Patrick, and Maxie begin investigating her (better than getting them involved in every half-wit unrelated plot on this show).  They  rely on the help of Alexis Davis when they run across red tape in the European nation Elle claims she’s from. Alexis has a history with the European courts, both personally and professionally. Alexis helps them find out that the woman whose name is being used died over two decades before Elle began using it.  They decide that it’s of little use to share this information with Mac.  He would only rationalize their findings as ‘mixed up paper work’, or that she used the name to escape an oppressive life.  They need more proof in finding out who this woman is.  After weeks of searching, the trail grows cold.   They need more help.  While Robin calls her father to ask for help in picking up a warm lead,  Alexis decides to get close to Mac in order to get closer to Elle.  Now that she’s in private practice and he’s on leave from the PCPD for health reasons, she begins showing up at Mac’s to talk to him about several cases she’s working on, seeking input from him.  Watching the dynamic between the couple, discomforted by Elle’s evasive manner whenever she’s asked about ‘home’ or her family leads Alexis to believe that Elle is a bigger threat to Mac than anyone believed.

After the full group gets together, they begin to wonder why they hadn’t thought to investigate the real ‘Elle’.  Why did this woman taking control of Mac’s life, whoever she is, choose that name?   They find out that the woman whose name she uses was her mother’s, which uncovers the sordid history of her father’s death and Mac’s role in it.  By the time they realize what’s going on, it’s too late.  Elle has chosen her victim and set her plan in motion.

In the best possible soap world outcomes, Remily (Rebecca Shaw to most fans!) would be the intended victim.  Catching Ethan and Rebecca on the docks, she realizes what a horrible person Rebecca is to take advantage of Nik’s grief.  Identifying with Nik, who has also lost as love one, she decides to ‘protects’ Nik by getting rid of Rebecca.   She realizes that setting Mac up for murder would be difficult – he has no reason to hate Rebecca (hard to imagine, I know!  Do you need a real reason to hate this character? The fact that she exists makes her cringe-worthy in my book).  She decides to ‘break up’ with Mac, citing his family and their constant attacks against her as the reason.

The break up triggers Mac’s drinking, the drinking leads to a fatal accident, the accident leads to Mac being arrested, tried, and convicted of manslaughter.   Wracked with guilt, he accepts his fate.  It’s only after the fog clears, as he relives the episode, that he begins remembering small details, one of which is the key to unraveling what happened.  He remembers Rebecca being pushed and the car not being able to stop in time.  He starts to remember viewing the accident from the passenger side, it occured just as he was waking up.  His memory triggers a further investigation:  Robert, Anna (who returns when Robert puts out the call about a woman named ‘Ellenna’ – there’s more to her back history than even Elle knows), Robin, Patrick, Alexis, Maxie and Spinelli (who’ve given up the mob boys and are married and in the Scorpio-Drake-Spinelli clan), band together to prove Mac’s innocence.

The prove that Rebecca was pushed in front of Mac’s care… but if Elle was driving the car, who pushed Rebecca… or who drove the car as Elle pushed Rebecca… There’s more…

This storyline pulls several past storylines together:  Georgie’s death, Mac and Felicia’s unresolved failed marriage, Mac’s history as a smiling, but dangerous, playboy, and the Robert-Mac history.  Anna and Robert are back at the WSB – there can still be vice on the show without the lollipop mob.  The difference?  The bad guys aren’t the ‘heroes’.  Spinelli and Maxie follow the family tradition and actually put bad guys AWAY, not save them.

Future directions:  Obviously romance between Mac and Alexis once he’s cleared, conflict between Alexis and Nik – who refuses to listen to Alexis’ pleas to trust in Mac’s innocence – until later, the person who helps Elle could be Ethan – if you’d like and we could get rid of him,  Robin begins to have a relationship with her parents and they begin to clear the air on past events that even the audience isn’t aware of – yet, An unknown connection between Ellenna’s family and members of Port Charles…. so many future directions.

In the end… I know I won’t get any of it… but a girl can dream!

 

* Copyright to all images retained by ABC Daytime.

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.

AMC – It’s like she never left

I was on ‘Babe’ overload about ten minutes after the character arrived.  Every day after that was slow and painful torture.  I won’t say that I ‘celebrated’ her death, let me just say that I didn’t mourn the charcter’s passing and it was mere coincidence that I was eating chocolate and drinking my favorite tea during Babe’s death scenes. 

I thought I would finally get  MY AMC back, with Babe gone. That AMC characters spent MONTHS after the death of St. Babe trying to convince the audience that she was a gift from the soapgods raised my hackles, but I took it in stride.  St. Babe was DEAD, I wouldn’t have to worry about hearing her name for too much longer… or so I thought.

In walks  Shadow-of-Babe.  You know her as “Marissa”.  I think  of her as the bane of my existence.  It’s not the fault of the actress.  Brittany Allen is quite a find for AMC and would be a joy in any other role – for me at least.  The trouble stems from the fact that fans like me will now have to keep flipping the channel every time  we hear a new reference to ‘Babe’ or see Marissa’s face… And then there are the Babe related questions:  “Why was she chosen to stay?  Why did you love her and not me?  Was I not pretty enough?   Did I cry too much?” (Ok, I’ll admit I stuck around long enough to hear that little confrontation and almost felt bad for Marissa).  Outside of that one scene, I just don’t care to hear ANY of it. I don’t wnat to see an angry Marissa, or a young woman with low self-esteem because her twin was so beautiful, brilliant, and beloved… BULL.

I have no doubt that with these series of confrontations  between Shadow-of-Babe and Krystal, we’ll be asked to re-live the ‘Tales of Babe the Magnificent’.  We’ll have to hear on a daily basis how kind and loving she was.  Angels will sing and the heavens will open.  While that’s happening?  My belly will be sore from relieving itself of its contents.  My head will be sore knowing that there is no relief from this storyline. 

Maybe it’s already aired, I can’t tell you because I refuse to watch Shadow-of-Babe and Krystal, but it’s doubtful that Marissa will be treated to the “Tales of Babe the Loser’… the woman who had a one night stand in short order of coming home to her husband’s family, the woman who thought she might have been pregnant by her husband’s brother, the woman who knew she’d been raising her best friend’s child – a stolen child – and kept the secret, the woman who cheated though she’d been forgiven for cheating before… ARGH… Just typing that makes me want to throw shoes at the screen, again.

I just find it hard to believe that Krsystal missed Babe terribly, and never thought to tell anyone about Marissa.

I refuse to believe that she left Tad AND David in the dark.

I refuse to believe that the writers think that of all the AMC characters fans would care about if they returned (HUH HEM… Brooke English) that they believed that we would give a wit about yet ANOTHER child for David and Krystal.  Apparently, fans’ ferverent disgust over David and Krystal’s attempts to raise ‘Little A’ (David more than Krystal) looked more like ‘extreme interest’ to the writers so they decided up the ante and give them another  adult daughter -also  involved with JR.

There’s so much I WANT to see happen on AMC… Unfortunately, NONE of it will happen because the writers seem to have decided that killing Babe off was a mistake and they had to ‘start over’ with the Shadow-of-Babe.  What IS it with ABC soaps?  First Emily-Rebecca (Remily), now Babe-Marissa (Bissa)?  Could things get worse!??! (Yeah, rhetorical question… given what’s happening, I know that things CAN and WILL get worse).  At least this one isn’t an identical twin as in the Remily case.

Sorry writers but I can’t stick around waiting  for the other shoe to drop.  AMC is more OFF than ON my viewing schedule, for now at leastt.

ABC’s Kit-o-magic

I posted the comments quoted below in responsible to this: “Serial Drama” blog. I thought I’d post it here for those who haven’t ventured over there yet. Glad to know I’m not alone in being bothered by the excessive make up used to ‘transform’ Not-Emly into Rebecca Shaw… HA!

What’s that about Remily’s make up? Don’t you know that it’s part of ABC daytime’s kit-o-magic? Smoky gray eyes turn NL’s Emily into Rebecca, thick black glasses turn OLTL’s Jessica/Tess into Bess, AMC’s Ryan removes his shirt and we’re not supposed to notice that he’s still an ***. ABC, character transformations… as superficial as the scripts.

I actually posted a blog commenting that paint drying was more interesting than watching most of GH. Now the Nik/Remily scenes. Freudian scriptwriting? Poor GH writers.

Is the last paragraph confusing to you? If so then you’ve probably spent more of your time watching something other than GH, like I have. There is a posted clip at SD of Remily and Prince Nikolas painting a room. Sweet irony… watching paint dry… <sigh> You just can’t make this stuff up!
To that I could add that:
1 – Eyeglasses make you ‘smart’ and even” geekier” if you wear them with tape patching the middle or sides.
2 – Scowling makes you ‘thoughtful’.

3- Black T-shirts, denim, and leather jackets make you

  • Hot
  • Mysterious
  • Dangerous
  • All of the above
4 – Hair slicked back makes you
  • Hot
  • Mysterious
  • Dangerous
  • All of the above
The list goes on and on! Oh sure, all soaps do it, but ABC takes prop-acting to a completely different level!