After three weeks of worldwide travel, I returned to a very unchanged Springfield, USA this week. And I have to admit that I am not all that surprised.
I can admit that GL has changed dramatically since the episodes I saw in my Rome (Italy) hotel room first aired in the States (since Phillip, Edmund, Ross, Danny, Michelle, Eve, Bill and Laura Wright as Cassie were all there). But modern-day Springfield seems to be stuck in neutral.
How else can you explain how I can miss 16 episodes of the show (I've watched 4 now - plus last week's shows) but Reva still insists on hiding her cancer from the world? But somehow now she is in Minnesota with Billy (which I understand) but how in the world did she get Colin to leave his other patients to come with her? I'll find out sooner or later, but it does leave me puzzled.
The last day I watched pre-vacation was the day before the wedding that wasn't. Not that I was shocked to learn from my sister-in-law Ruth when I returned that the wedding didn't go off - even though I was very glad to hear it. But now Alan has Jonathan to contend with - guess he should have been happy with his archrival Coopers as in-laws (again).
Now we have months of watching Alan self-destruct over the thought of another Spaulding to manipulate. Since his baby with Beth died, he seems to see this as another chance to mold another Spaudling mind into an Alan-clone. And as much as this shocks me to type - I actually feel sorry for Lizzie for the first time in a long time. She's only the vessel to give Alan his new disciple. While she is certainly not a character worthy of much pity (check out where she grew up - hardly a grass shack) she has had some serious issues in her young life. Murdering a man at nine, leukemia soon after. And the "death" of her father - at her grandfather's hands. Oh how I wish her father would return to bring some stability (if that is possible) to her young life. Beth has obviously had too much of the Spaulding fruit punch - she believes nearly everything Alan tells her.
While these two stories are well-acted, I would like to see more of the characters that we see so little of these days. It seemed like it had been weeks since we saw Emmy winner Gina Tognoni and Rob Bogue (Dinah and Mallet). Michael Dempsey (Alan-Michael) must have gone on an African safari or something. I know that this is the time for vacations (I was gone 21 days myself) but GL does need to show us these characters more often. I haven't watched the Bauer Bar-be-que (which I hope took place) but I'm hoping to see most of Springfield in attendance.
Despite my grumblings, it is great to be home and watch the show again (in English - so I can understand it). Although watching years old episodes dubbed into Italian was fun as well. Some of the voices were a pretty good match for the actors. And it did give me some time to practice my horrendous Italian.
For those who are interested, the trip was great. My husband Jack and I went to London, then Rome and a 10-day cruise on the Celebrity Galaxy all over Italy, Greece and the French Rivera where we celebrated our 20th wedding anniverary. We (literally) saw the Pope (amazing even though we're not Catholic) and went to Wimbledon (ladies semi-finals on Center Court). The one negative - our room was broken into in Rome (while we slept at 3:20am) but I woke up, screamed and scared the crap out of the burglar - who jumped off of our third floor balcony to the alleyway below. Luckily for us, I am a very light sleeper - he didn't get a thing - but I lost a ton of sleep ever since. It's not easy to sleep when you wake to have a man (not your husband) standing next to your side of the bed (close enough for me to kick him). My travel advice - no matter if you are on the 50th floor and you're A/C breaks late at night, do NOT crack your balcony door to let in some air.
Now that I am safe and sound in comfortable surrounds with my favorite characters on the tube, I can sleep soundly. Once I watch those 16 GL episodes - which will probably take another two or three weeks to complete.
Wherever your travels take you this summer, I hope you travel safely and enjoy yourself!