In what was mostly a slow week in Llanview, some interesting developments emerged in the Jess/Tess/Nash/Antonio storyline. Knowing that a super couple cannot remain too blissfully happy for very long, the writers threw a new obstacle in the way of Nash and Tess as Antonio uncovered information regarding Nash's old girlfriend, Claudia. Would Antonio's revelation spell the end for the new favorite couple in town, or would Nash come clean and spill the whole can of beans to his beloved? Well, I'm not sure either really happened, but I do think we discovered a partial secret and a big hypocrite this week.
First, I am simply annoyed by the fact that Antonio thinks that Nash's unsavory past with Claudia would be grounds for ending the relationship and kicking him to the curb! Is this man kidding? When did Saint Antonio anoint himself as the moral police in town? To my knowledge, Nash hasn't done a single bit of hard jail time, nor was he involved in deadly and violent gang activity. In all fairness, those days for Antonio are long gone. Upon release from jail, he became a (mostly) model citizen, enrolled in the police academy, and became a respected member of the Llanview Police Department. Pretty admirable turn-around, isn't it? Looks like Antonio is the epitome of someone who can turn his/her life around after making some poor decisions. So I'm curious what makes Antonio think the same can't be true for Nash? Why can't Antonio believe that Nash has turned his life around after falling in love with Tess? Surely Saint Antonio cannot believe that he alone is capable of miraculous transformations! I was floored by this hypocrisy flaunted right before our eyes. Saint Antonio even went so far as to try to convince Viki and Clint that this man should be kicked right out of the house without an explanation. Fortunately, I think Clint is the more rational of the two parents; he has always seen something in Nash that he can't quite pinpoint, and that is what keeps Clint believing that Nash is a good man. With that said, Clint wasn't completely buying what Antonio was trying to sell.
Given the chance to explain, Nash put it all right out in the open for Tess and the rest of the eavesdroppers in the room. Explaining that he basically used Claudia in order to make her believe he loved her so that he could continue to milk her out of money, Nash appeared genuine and sincere. It seemed pretty clear to him anyway that this transgression of his wasn't going to be the reason for a Tess/Nash breakup, so he decided to be forthright and come clean. From explaining Claudia's mental deterioration and attempted suicide after the breakup to his own beating by Claudia's family, Nash pleaded with Tess to forgive him for what he had done in the past and to continue their plans to raise the child that he believes is his own. That Nash is sure one smooth operator, that's for sure. He played the family card (including making a reference to Clint as the kind of father he himself wants to be to the child---SCORE ONE), the loyalty card (including reminding Tess that he stuck by her even after learning she was a split personality---SCORE TWO), and the transformation card (including telling Tess that there was no way that he is that same person again because he rescued Tess from the streets in New York and took her in without knowing her past or her financial history---SCORE THREE). By the end, "he had her at hello" (sorry, I couldn't resist the cinematic allusion).
That leaves the smile on Nash's face as Friday's episode drew to an end. As Tess embraced him and assured him that she would never leave him and that they would be a family, Nash grinned from ear to ear. Was the smile one of victory as he realized he trumped Saint Antonio's ace card? Was the smile one of deceit as he realized that he duped Tess and the rest of the family into believing his half-truthful story? Or was a smile just a smile? This is the part that is left wide open to debate. The Nash we have come to know and love is a tricky fellow, for sure, but is he that vindictive that he could still be the same guy Antonio found out about? I really don't think so. We've seen Nash transform right before our eyes as this woman has taken a hold of every fiber of his body and made him fall completely head over heels in love with her. But I do think there is more to this story than Nash has revealed. That part will likely come when Claudia pays a visit to Llanview.
Now, on to some other thoughts from this week's episodes...
1. I applaud the writers for FINALLY getting Duke out of the only storyline he has basically been a part of since returning to Llanview (I'm referring to the one with the insipid Adriana). I love the set-up that is taking place between a Kelly/Kevin/Duke showdown! Naturally, whatever virus Spencer gave to Kevin is going to have some sort of ramifications on his sterility (or maybe not), and Spencer's cunning ability to set up Duke and Kelly in the car alone together on New Year's Eve will be a pivotal moment in the storyline down the road. I'm excited to see Heather Tom get her acting chops into another delicious storyline!
2. The mystery of the woman in the photograph that Spencer left Asa is intriguing and keeps me guessing. Seeing David's reaction to the picture only fuels my speculation even more. I'm guessing that Spencer will probably turn out to be some relative who is hell-bent on getting what is rightly his, but I'd love to see the storyline go in a different direction.
3. Although it was cringe-inducing, I really thought the scenes during which Evangeline humiliated Viki on the stand in court by making her admit that her own D.I.D. has re-emerged were just spectacular. The shock in Viki's face as she realized that Evangeline was making her out to be an unreliable witness was heartbreaking. Even though Viki was reluctantly acting as a witness for the Prosecution against her brother, there wasn't anything that Viki admitted on the stand while being questioned that warranted Evangeline to pull out the big guns and mention her recent struggle with Niki Smith.
4. Is Blair ACTUALLY starting to think for herself?
1. Is this trial soon over? If I hear Margaret's name one more time after this whole mess of a storyline is over, it will be too soon. It's time to give the Mannings a fresh start and a new story. All of the actors involved deserve it.
2. Although I like the writing on the wall that suggests the writers are staging a Dorian/Clint/Viki triangle, I'm nervous as to what that means for David. Where does this leave him in the aftermath of a newly formed romantic triangle?
And now for my new final thought entitled, "A FAVORITE NORA MOMENT." As I mentioned in last week's column, it is my mission to make sure that Hillary B. Smith's character be utilized to her fullest potential, and it is my hope that Smith extends the one-year contract extension she recently made with the show.
It was a long and difficult time for Nora after she had been in that train wreck and was nursed back to life by Colin McIver. When Nora finally realized that Colin was holding her hostage and that his accomplice was none other than arch-enemy Lindsay Rappaport, the stage was set for the ultimate showdown between two strong women. In Colin's living room, Lindsay prepared to give Nora a shot that would erase Nora's memories so that she wouldn't be able to press charges against Lindsay for kidnapping her. A magnificent struggle emerged between the two characters as control for the syringe took place. It was a classic soap opera moment that reminded me of the still-classic acrimonious relationship between Dorian and Viki! When a show has the phenomenal acting talents of someone like Smith and Catherine Hickland, wouldn't it make sense to use both of them and their past together to propel current storylines? I wish the show would continue to see the goldmine it has in Hickland and Smith and pit them against one another once again!
If you haven't already written a letter in support of Hillary B. Smith, please do so today. Just a few paragraphs will do the trick! And every letter can make a difference. If you want/need an address, please just email me.
Enjoy your week,