Sunday, July 31, 2011

Like New

It was almost like watching a new show this week.  Well, that is an exaggeration.  I would have noticed a difference even if I hadn't known the new writer's shows started airing on Tuesday, but I would have probably wouldn't have seen these shows as the prelude to a new direction.

Several things are being set up.  Kate's name has come up at least twice and a new actress is being brought into the role at some point.  Anthony has an accomplice - a woman who loves beautiful jewelry.  That narrows it down to half the population. Skye is also supposed to be coming back so I'd say it is her as Anthony needs some help getting ELQ.  Sibohan is ill; will this be a result of her surgery or something else? Carly is obviously not pleased about Jason and Sam's engagement.  This puzzles me since she wanted them to have a child together.  Someone is stalking Carly.  Franco?  Jerry?  And Sonny is back in the old neighborhood.  Thank goodness he didn't go after Brenda.

Anthony and Tracy's scenes are priceless.  As refined as Anthony appears with his NYTimes crossword vocabulary and his appreciation for all the fine and beautiful things in life, it is hard sometimes to remember he is the most ruthless mobster in Port Charles.  He is behind the drug ring setting up Lucky.  Casting should get extra credit for J.T. - he fits his role perfectly.

While I never got to know the Quartermaines all that well, I've always liked them so I love the new direction of more time with Edward, Tracy and probably Skye.  I love seeing Jonathan Jackson in any scene and he definitely is getting a storyline.

It wasn't all new directions.  What the ? was Nicolas about this week??? At first I thought he was just trying to run Lulu off at Luke's request but then there was that speech and creepy kiss he gave his grandmother.  Nicholas had a nice sendoff before.  I'd just as soon leave him gone.  At least he did run Lulu off.  Another great thing this week is that it appears the new writer has wrapped up Lulu and Dante's island adventure and sent them home.  Good!

However, I'd rather have Nicolas back than Jax.  I didn't figure Jax would go so quietly.  He's angry and bound to come back sooner or later.

So there are lots of storylines building.  It is a pity this didn't happen sooner to get more summer action.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

New Writer - New (or Old?) Directions

Gavin Wolf is (as Spinelli or Jackal PI would say) on the case!  From the last two episodes, the show is already moving in a different direction with an eye over the shoulder at the past.

As a fairly new viewer - less than 3 years - I love to find out the history of characters.  Many references have been made to the past these last couple of days and I'm going to have to visit Soap Central's character references to understand some of what is being talked about.  Carly made a quick mention of her upbringing that I wasn't aware of.  On the other hand, Helena, Nicholas and Lulu have given me a pretty good idea of what happened to Lulu's Mother and how the Spencer/Cassadine war got started in the first place.  So does this mean Nicholas is coming back?  Personally, I'm not that crazy about him but maybe in the hands of a different writer? No, a prince is a prince and a character I just can't identify with.  Helena, while I certainly can't identify with her, is so much fun to watch.  I'd love for her to stick around.  She skillfully turns accusations around to the accuser, why do these people bother trying to engage her in a verbal battle?  She's going to win every time.

Yesterday, I liked the rooftop ending with Elizabeth and Sibohan.  I know Sibohan is being made out as the bad gal here, but Elizabeth has her weaknesses.  Chief among them is that she can't let go of any man she has ever been with.  If she can't have them, no one else can.  She seemed devastated that Jason was getting married and I don't think she wants back together with Jason.  Clearly, she wants Lucky back.

Ugh!  I so hoped whoever outfitted Brenda and Sam would get fired.  But no, now Carly is sporting that awful tube top/racer back overshirt look.  It is hideous, hideous!!!

Steve's reference to Kate is obviously a precursor to Kate's return albeit with a new actress.  I don't know why, I liked the old Kate just fine.  I'm delighted that Olivia will have her cousin back to fight with and perhaps we will see more of her in her fiesty Bensonhurst(?) ways again.

Love seeing Monica call out Jason and Elizabeth for keeping Jake a secret from her.  She was hardly a threat to the child.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Absence of a Cliffhanger

It used to be that Friday afternoon's ending left you counting the hours until Monday's show.  Not lately.

Oh, there have been a few good ones, like the week Sam was discovered as the victim of the limo bombing, not Brenda.  I think that was a Friday cliffhanger.  But this week's was very ho hum.  Does anyone besides Lulu who has proven herself the queen of gullability believe that Helena doesn't know who Dante is much less that her island was invaded by a Spencer?  I also don't think she is about to knife Dante although she is certainly welcome to continue his job interview with him shirtless.

A much better cliffhanger would have been Jason's proposal or rather Sam's response because for a minute there I thought she might actually turn him down.  She wants to spend her life with him but marriage scares her.  Given the length of marriages in Port Charles, I can certainly see why. I was also hoping he had somehow found the fabulous ring, but the bolt was a Jason sort of touch.

When I first started watching GH, I didn't like Jason very much.  He showed no emotion.  I just didn't get him.  Over time of course as I found out more about Jason's past and watched him more carefully, I realized how much Jason does reveal with just the slightest tilt of the head and with those fabulous blue eyes.  Steve Burton does an amazing job of portraying his character.  It must be much more difficult to control the anger and pain in scenes and make it show in minor movements and slight changes in his voice.  I admire the character of Jason and his portrayer more every time I see him.

Another thing that isn't much of a cliffhanger is Sonny chasing off to find Brenda. Since she is headed for Rome, it isn't a big secret.  I'm hoping something stops him.  Maybe he won't be able to afford the jet fuel with that $20 million still missing.

Speaking of which, it is time to put Spinelli back to normal.  I've had enough of Jackal P.I.  It was cute, it is well played but it is wearing thin.

The storyline I am really interested in is Robin the Chief of Staff.  This has potential for all kinds of problems.  Matt seems particularly put out by her and since Patrick isn't getting the 'good' surgeries I would assume Matt would be and would be happy about it.  I'm glad to see Steve around.  I was afraid he would disappear to the ER.  Steve's right, bringing Elizabeth back is a mistake.

I may have to retract all the wonderful things I had to say about Lucky and not finding a women good enough for him. First he burns down a house and nearly kills his wife - though he didn't know she would go running in there after him.  Then he goes camping while she is still in the hospital albeit with her encouragement, then he goes off to family dinner night with Elizabeth and finally doesn't go to the hospital with Sibohan for her final doctor's checkup.  He is back at work taking on an assignment and telling his ex-wife about it and not his current wife.  I've given him a lot of slack because of Jake's death and his father's role in it, but he needs to pick a wife.

Another storyline I'm watching is ELQ.  I loved it when Micheal told Tracy off.  I knew there would be animosity there and it is good to see everyone getting stirred up and pointing fingers.  I hope someone comes to their senses before Anthony takes over.  Asher probably should be nervous; he is expendable.

Finally, what happened to Shawn?  I thought the actor got a contract.  There is storyline potential here too. Besides Carly is bound to get lonely and jealous - she isn't going to be number 1 in Jason's life much longer.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Couples Day

What a great episode today!  Every couple was shown with their struggles and hopes.

When Jason told Sam to wear something that made her feel beautiful, I swooned.  What a wonderful line!  The door frame was the only thing keeping Sam from falling to the floor herself. She knows what is coming.

And I knew what was coming when Maxie marched onto the balcony with THE Ring which I hope we get a better look at.  But still, I brought my hand up to my mouth in almost shock.  Will Jason's famous control last through Maxie's planning?  I imagine she will have done such an outstanding job on the roof top decor that he will forgive her.

I think Carly's plan is going to backfire, don't they usually?  Still it was awfully nice of her considering how Brenda has talked about her.  Then again, Carly had it in for Brenda from the start.  No love lost there.

I thought it just proved Sibhon's point that Elizabeth assumed Lucky would "be better off without her."  Coming to family dinner night, doesn't mean he has chosen you, Elizabeth.  One thing that frustrates me about Elizabeth is how she always says one thing and clearly means another.  Lucky is one of my favorite characters and I still haven't seen a women good enough for him.

Jax still can't see that he set this whole mess in motion.  Why is no one confronting him with the fact that he paid off the mediator?  He did commit a crime, not as bad as what he is being framed for but hardly in keeping with a white knight image.  He has said himself he has nothing left to lose so I imagine a big exit for    Jax.

Can't wait until tomorrow to see Jason's proposal - sans ring, or will Spinelli be walking by and catch the ring in a box of his $400 worth of cupcakes?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Is Brenda gone yet?

I've been waiting on Brenda to leave almost as long as she has been back.  I completely fail to see the attraction to her character.

Before Brenda returned, ABC ran three hours straight of old episodes in various time periods of Brenda with Jax, Sonny and Jason.  The only one that wasn't a complete snooze was the one with Jason when they went to Vegas to get married.  I was mildly interested in why they would marry if they hated each other - which was eventually explained.  I know taking episodes out of context greatly decreases a viewer's interest, yet with all the hype I expected to see something in this character.  All I ever saw in Brenda was a needy "girl" who wanted to get married.  It drives me up the wall that she calls Carly - a mother of two teenage sons and a working woman - a "girl."

The weeks following her return were long and drawn out and did nothing to endear this character to me.  Brenda constantly complained, ordered people around and proclaimed what she would not do.  All that was missing was her stomping her little feet at the end of each tirade.  And her beloved charity?  Dropped. Her modeling career?  Who cares?  She was getting married, she didn't need to help anyone or earn a living a little self esteem with work.

While Sonny definitely went too far with framing Jax (why didn't he just blackmail him over paying off the mediator or take that to the judge - it would have been enough???) I have no sympathy for Brenda.  If she had taken even a moment to actually spend time in Sonny's world with his business and his children before she spent hours and hours planning her perfect wedding, she might have figured out that it wasn't for her.  Sonny had moved on - he had a life filled with obligations.  He's a mob boss and they often don't do very nice things.  But all Brenda saw was a room filled with adoring friends and family to watch her have the wedding of her dreams.

The thing that really got me was why she didn't tell Sonny about Alec back when she thought she had lost he baby.  Why keep that secret then?

I understand Brenda is leaving soon and the door is open for her to return.  I hope the new writer slams that one shut realizing that Brenda's character was never updated for the 21st century and given the lack of depth of this character it probably can't be.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Meddlesome Children

It seems to me there will be some very unhappy parents in Port Charles in the coming days or weeks.  Luke won't be any too happy that Lulu and Dante's meddling has cost Lupe her life.  I can't believe Dante even thought for a moment that he could waltz back into the brothel knowing that Javier is a killer and probably knew Dante was a cop.  As I've said before, I'm ready for this storyline to be over.

Normally, Molly's well intentioned meddling is a bit tedious but very sweet.  This time I can't see how she thinks Sonny's son and his niece kidnapping Jocelyn is going to help anything.  They are only proving Jax point though I don't think it was junior high kids Jax was worrying about.  At the moment Jax has bigger worries anyway. Joss is in danger being out with two children after just getting out of the hospital a few weeks ago.  Surely this time, Alexis will do something about her daughters!

I knew Kristina would rise to the bluff.  And I agree with Johnny; Ethan has feelings for Kristina even if he doesn't want to see it.  I keep hoping Alexis and Sonny will cut Kristina off and make her get a job.  I'd like to see her working with Maxie for Kate - and have Kate back bossing everyone around.  I like workplace storylines. How much of the day can people really spend in a cafe anyway?

Will this finally be the straw that breaks Brenda and Sonny's marriage?  All Sonny had to do was report Jax's payoff of the mediator to the judge.  Brenda couldn't have found Sonny at fault for that.  As it is, Sonny went too far.  I'd only seen Sonny's marriage to Claudia before Brenda.  If he truly loves Brenda and this is how he handles marriage, he needs to stay away from the altar.  I don't blame him for wanting to help Carly but his methods are sure to alienate his wife.  And I don't like how he keeps saying he will 'handle' Brenda.  I want her out of Port Charles but I still don't like Sonny's idea of what a husband should be.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Playing Dirty

Do two wrongs make it right?  I don't think anyone has Jocelyn's best interest at heart.  First Jax tries to buy off the mediator and then Sonny blackmails her into framing Jax for rape.  If I were the judge, I'm not sure Joss would end up with any of these people.

I did like the way Olivia is being fit into this.  I've missed seeing her and wondered why she isn't concerned about the vanishing act of Dante and Lulu.  If she knew that her baby boy and his girlfriend were working in a brothel she would need to send up a lot of prayers for them and for herself for what she will do to them when they finally get back to Port Charles.

I got my wish.  Tracy was back at ELQ yesterday and right in Michael's face.  What I never expected was her confrontation with Monica.  The fallout from Jake's death just keeps building as Monica found out she had a grandson she never got to hold.  Heartbreaking.  I'm expecting a scene between Monica and Jason to come out of this.  Will this be another of Jason's regrets - that he kept Jake from Monica's life?  The plan was for Edward to never know but now I wonder if he won't find out too though to what end, I don't know.  It would just be heartbreaking for him, too.

Looks like Michael won't be very safe at ELQ after all.  If battling with Tracy doesn't do him in, there's Anthony out to take over ELQ with the help of Asher.  Tell me why almost all the African American characters on GH have to be up to no good or written out.

The latest casting news has Skye Quartermaine returning to GH.  I never really understood Skye's place in things anyway.  Maybe the backstory will be better told this time round.

Ethan thinks he has scared Kristina off but I'm betting once she thinks it over she will convince herself that she can do this trip to Las Vegas.  She has her father's tenaciousness.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Unlikely pairings

"Are you not dead yet?"  from Tracy to Anthony had me laughing today.  What an interesting combination.  Not that I want Tracy to get involved in the mob but his pursuit of her could be fun to watch.  Imagine the rose bouquet he would put together!

What isn't so much fun to watch is Lulu at the brothel.  This story has gotten old fast.  I know every soap likes to take characters on some kind of summer adventure but can't we go on location?  I'd rather follow Siobhan and Lucky to the beach.

Speaking of Sibohan, I know most people would just as soon ship her back to Ireland.  I am ambivalent but I will say she has more insight than anyone else on the show.  She is right; Lucky needs help.  While I know Elizabeth wasn't trying to kill her, I can see why Lucky's wife thinks she might.  Will she find some other way to get even with Elizabeth since she dropped the laysuit - for the sake of the kids?  I swear, kids are the most convenient reason to get out of anything.  Maybe I should have had one.

Things are getting more interesting at ELQ now that Michael has some interest in his job.  Is Asher just messing with him or will Edward put too much faith in Michael and make a disastrous choice?  I want Tracy to get back to work and tangle with Michael.  I can't imagine she likes Edward's choice of a protege.

Proposal Interrupted!  I guess we will have to wait for Jason to pop the question to Sam.   I love Maxie and I truly hope she has found a way to keep Spinelli from being dumped in the harbor.  There is no way Jackal PI awoke as a sharp shooter or that Anthony will be outdone by the hapless detective.

Lots of great character interaction today!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Family Court

Even while blackmailing the court's mediator for taking a bribe, Sonny couldn't help but chastise her for not getting enough money out of Jax.  I loved a point.

They have been building this custody battle for months now and it comes down to a very one-sided hearing in a judges chambers.  Why didn't Carly get Diane to petition the court for a proper hearing after Jax got a new lawyer?  She knows she is at a disadvantage already.  And where were her witnesses?

And then there was Brenda.  With enemies like Brenda, Carly doesn't need to worry about the mob.  As Carly said, Brenda could babble on fast enough about a shooting that no one had to know about.  Brenda had plenty of known events she could have talked about if asked.  Now I can see why Brenda has a score to settle, but this isn't the place to do it.

I think it is very common knowledge the Jax portrayer has been let go and the character will be written out at least for now.  If you had asked me for three main characters to get rid of months ago, I would have said without hesitation:  Brenda, Jax and Nicholas.  I've never liked any of them - the characters, that is.

Nicholas and Jax are entitled and they have the arrogance that goes with it.  They think they can throw their money at any problem and solve it.  These are just not identifiable traits.  I'll talk about Brenda another time; she gets a post all her own.

So whatever happens to Jax is fine with me.  I don't think Carly is the best mother in the world and I certainly think her children are at risk in Sonny and Jason's world but as she keeps saying, Jax knew that going in.  I don't care how much money you have, you don't get to change the rules in the middle of the game.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Why I watch

My grandmother called it "watching her stories."  She was a regular viewer of As The World Turns and the Guiding Light.  My mother watched them too along with my aunt next door.  My aunt said she never missed her story when she went outside to hang her wash or do other chores because my grandmother's TV was so loud the whole neighborhood heard.  My grandmother was more than a little hard of hearing.

So I was inducted into the Soap Opera Watchers Hall of Fame at an early age.  I watched during the summer and in high school, I couldn't wait to get home to turn on the Guiding Light and catch the last 30 minutes every day.  What would that skanky (we didn't call it that then) Reva be up to now?

During college I watched both ATWT and GL and after college when I got my first VCR, I recorded the shows.  Those shows were a life saver my first couple of years in the real working world.  I had a fairly high pressure job for someone my age and I needed an escape.

However, I couldn't keep up both so eventually I dropped GL and watched ATWT on to the last day in September 2010.  I knew when GL was cancelled that ATWT would probably be next though I didn't expect it quite that soon!  Still, in the spring of 2009, I was facing a summer with reruns on in the evenings and thought it would be nice to pick up a new soap just in case. So I started watching General Hospital.

I picked GH because it was the only 1 hour soap besides Young and the Restless on the Internet.  (I really don't care for Y&R.)  The first few days I wasn't sure but of course I got hooked.  The production quality is amazing, the acting first rate, and they tell a good story.

General Hospital was so different from ATWT.  It was like going back to an 80's soap with characters who talked to each other in depth, long storylines and characters that interacted with everyone on the screen.  It took a few days but soon I'll admit I was watching GH during the day and taping ATWT!  I alternated that for the next year or so and now it is only General Hospital as my beloved ATWT is gone.

So for now, I'll get my daily fix of drama from General Hospital and make a few notes about it here on this blog.  If you are with me this long, I hope you'll come back.  I won't post daily but will try to post at least once a week.

For now, happy viewing!