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Charles Pratt
AMC head writer lays blame for "Rianca" misfire, fans fire back
Posted Sunday, April 19, 2009 2:08:25 PM
Outspoken All My Children head writer, Charles Pratt, Jr., has upset fans -- again. The furor has nothing to do with what fans are seeing on-screen, though some may argue that point. No, this anger was brought about by an interview in which the writer blamed a storyline's failure on an actress leaving the show -- an exit Pratt says he knew nothing about.
All My Children head writer, Charles Pratt, Jr., has made yet another comment that has fans fuming. A week or so ago, Pratt made waves when he revealed that the show's new Liza Colby, Jamie Luner, would "shake up" things behind-the-scenes. Now comes word that the scribe is blaming one of the show's stars for a storyline that didn't quite go over as expected.


The storyline in question is the groundbreaking nuptials of Bianca Montgomery and Reese Williams. The plot that featured the first same-sex wedding on a soap opera, resulted in the first same-sex annulment on the soaps. Within the course of an episode or two, Bianca found out that Reese had locked lips with Zach Slater on the eve of their wedding. According to Pratt, he believed that he had several more weeks to play out the story -- only to find out that Eden Riegel (Bianca) was leaving the show.


"I was led to believe we had her for longer than we really did -- suddenly I got word that Eden is leaving now," Pratt told TV Guide's Michael Logan.


Riegel exited the show to focus her attention on pilot season, the time of year when new shows are being put together for possible inclusion on the networks' fall schedules.


It would seem that Pratt believed that Riegel and on-screen love interest, Tamara Braun (Reese), had signed on to appear on All My Children for the same amount of time. That was not the case, as fans could tell from the show's storylines. By the time "Rianca" said their "I do's," it was time to pen Bianca off the canvas.


Pratt confesses that he could have speeded up the wedding and allowed more time for Bianca and Reese's dissolution to take place, but he admits that viewers probably wouldn't have liked that, either. He also reveals that he'd toyed with the idea of further exploring Reese's bisexuality. That, too, he said would probably not have played out any better with the audience.


Indeed, the majority of the audience did seem dissatisfied with the way the story unfolded. Two clever fans went as far as to create an online movie called Pratt Falls to skewer the show's top brass over the debacle. In the parody, which you can view right here by clicking the "play" button on the video to the left, a make-believe AMC executive producer, Julie Hanan Carruthers, has to tell Pratt that there are "fans" who become "emotionally invested in the show." More than that, the fictional Pratt also asks, "Who are Bianca and Reese?" and "We have lesbians on our show?"


The tongue-in-cheek offering concludes with the animated Pratt announcing that he's devised a plan to blame the failed storyline on Riegel and urges Carruthers to call TV Guide to arrange an interview.


Riegel returns on April 24 for four episodes, during which time Bianca and Reese are finally slated to get their happily ever after. The couple will reunite and head back to Paris... together.


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