Like the swallows returning to Capistrano and those wild horses swimming across the Chesapeake, we've come to our annual soap opera ritual: November Sweeps. That's right, folks. It's that time again when the soaps ramp up their storylines in an effort to boost their ratings. In turn, the extra viewers mean that the networks can charge more for advertise during the shows.
I'm a little puzzled by All My Children's Sweeps period so far. I'll get to my broom in a few minutes, but before I do, let's take a quick peek at the big stories that are taking place in Pine Valley this month.
Last week I groused that I felt robbed by the "Who Killed Stuart?" storyline. If you didn't read the column (why not?!), click here and you can get caught up. Briefly, though, I'd said that in the six months that the story has been plodding along, there have only been a handful of scenes that allowed David Canary to knock it out of the ballpark. Well, it looks like Robin Hood has swooped in to return what was stolen from me. The week started off with a remarkable reveal of why Adam shot Stuart.
Sure, many (many, many) of you figured that a drugged Adam shot Stuart, thinking that he was shooting himself. The storyline "secret" wasn't quite as complex as unraveling the Da Vinci Code, but that doesn't mean that we can't sit back and enjoy the story as it plays out. Watching Adam struggle to come to terms with the fact that he shot Stuart was gripping. Surprisingly, it was Annie who offered the voice of reason and compassion. We've come to think of her as "Crazy Annie" over the past year, so it was s nice change to see Annie being… calming and less of a soap opera loon.
I didn't remember that Annie was asthmatic. It wasn't until a reader reminded me that I remembered thay they've used the condition in the past. She sure hasn't mentioned her inhaler recently. Now that they are mentioning it, I wonder if it will be utilized in the future.
Scott had Annie remove her costume so that it wouldn't get caught on something, but what she had on underneath the costume was just as flowy and silky as her Bride of Frankenstein costume.
Amanda has decided that she will have David's child as a way to… break free of him? I know that Amanda has spent her time watching telenovellas lately, but if she'd flip the channel on occasion she'd see any number of talk shows and judge shows where parents are duking it out over kids. If Amanda thinks that giving David another child will somehow allow her to be free to live with Jake, she's as crazy as her mother. How nice would it be to see Janet sneak back into town and torment David?
I thought that the support group scenes were very touching. The scenes were well constructed. Having JR get lost in his own thoughts as the sound muted on the scene was haunting. It shows that viewers don't need flash and explosions.
Liza's "morning after" speech to Bailey was well done. Does she really think that Bailey is going to listen to her? At the risk of sounding like my mother, kids don't listen to that kind of talk! As soon as Liza turned her back, Bailey was off running after Fonzie. She'll have to learn the hard way. Only thing is… which she will it be: Liza or Bailey?
Meanwhile, what about this potential Liza and David pairing? I think I might be willing to buy into it. David doesn't have anyone - and let's be real: David with Amanda just doesn't work. There's no one else on the canvas for David to be paired with right away. I doubt they'll re-pair him with Erica. Krystal is with Tad. Colby is too young. Who else is left? Kendall?
There's a changing of the guards over at Pine Valley Hospital. Angie Hubbard is now in charge, which is good, since she seems to be the only doctor that's ever working. I'm sure we've all heard the expression, "Be careful what you wish for." I have a strong suspicion that Angie will soon regret forcing David's hand.
Kendall and Aidan are still on the run and using metaphor after metaphor to talk about their lives. There's talk of "even the good guys get bit" and "live wires." Strangely, as much as I have rolled my eyes about the great escape, I am enjoying the realness of the conversation between the former lovers. They've covered just about every topic in their history together, though it would have been nice to see Aidan talk about the "Maureen Gorman" fiasco. Let's face it: he hasn't exactly been lucky in love.
Am I the only one that recognizes Kat's boarding house as the old Martin house? I recognize that green paint from when the first tornado hit Pine Valley!
Okay, so here's the part where I need you to get out your brooms and help me celebrate November Sweeps. I've just shared with you the storylines that AMC is working on for its Sweeps. Now here's a look at what some of the other shows are doing:
As the World Turns wrote a storyline where one brother, a cop, accidentally shot and killed his brother. Now, that character is lost and traveling across the country trying to find himself.
Days of our Lives is finally resolving a baby swap storyline that has been going on since springtime. They've also brought back three characters from the show's past to boost its veteran population and to give the viewers characters that they care about.
The Young and the Restless wrote out two of its popular characters, Victor and Nikki. They'll be back, but not for a few weeks.
One Life to Live has brought back one of its baddest villains to wreak even more heartache on the residents of Llanview.
General Hospital killed off one of its bad girls in a memorable death scene. Cryptic graffiti has popped up all over town and movie star James Franco will debut on the show later this month.
How do you think AMC's Sweeps stories measure up? What would you like to see happen this month? As always, please feel free to drop me a line and share your thoughts -- I love reading from you. Just click the link below and send me your messages!