Well, had I not seen it for myself, I never would have believed it could have been so. Yes, I'm talking about Victoria and her long winter's nap. Three weeks and counting, and still no Prince Charming with Carmex coated lips has come calling, anxious to plant an awakening kiss on the sleeping maiden's mouth. Actually, Victoria already has her prince nearby; he's the rumpled looking one without the miniscule pony tail poking from the back of his skull.
Seriously, though, this storyline, if done right, had plenty of promise. A beautiful, young woman with a history of tragically incomplete pregnancies has finally found true love and is blissfully awaiting the birth of her son. And although I could easily have done without the who's the Daddy part of it, I can certainly understand the scribes tossing the other man in there for conflict purposes. Tying it into the Clear Springs collapse was good too, though had I been the witty one writing the script, I would have injured her inside the garage rather than popping her on the noggin with that tiny pebble while having her wave like Miss America on parade.
The resulting coma should have made for some wonderfully dramatic and sob-inducing moments. So what went wrong for me? Well, Fan Ann, below, spoke my thoughts quite well, repeatedly hitting the nail right in the center of its flat shiny head. In a real life situation, the Newmans and other assorted visitors would probably behave precisely the way they all have. I can easily imagine someone's parents and all significant others wringing their hands and keeping up a running monologue at the side of the loved one's bed. And should a situation arise where a choice had to be made over which one to save, again I would imagine it would be exactly the heart wrenching experience the Newmans have shown us.
So, having said all that, what makes this like fingernails on a chalkboard? Well, for one thing, again in total agreement with fan Ann, it's been way too much of the same thing. Day in and day out, family and friends perch next to the bed, pretty much saying the same thing they said the day or even the moment before. Sure, there have been some sort of touching moments. If I had to pick a winner, I'd have to say I've liked Victor's scenes with his silent daughter best. J.T. has done well as the devoted and frantic, yet brave, fiancť, Nick as the anxious, loving brother and Nikki as the anguished mother. Although as much as I believe my own mother would love to welcome her grandchild into the world, I don't believe she'd have such a dilemma deciding whose life to save. Just making a wild guess that she would pick mine. Which brings me to the least believable part of the entire coma premise. That a nearly 6 month old would allegedly have absolutely no chance at life if delivered now. And without that very important belief in place, the resulting stalemate between Nikki and Victor has much less impact. Not to mention the fact that despite the tension between everyone over the baby's and Victoria's fate, I don't know that there's a fan out there who actually believes mother or child is in any real danger. By the way, how can the baby be due in January (J.T.'s birthstone engagement ring) if he's only 22 weeks near the end of November? Anyway, despite the few good moments in this long, drawn out storyline, in the end for this fan, realistic or not, after three solid weeks, it's grown stale and is much less than edge of the couch compelling.
But even in what I don't like, I could still manage to find a couple of gold-plated nuggets to enjoy. For instance, I loved the very end of Thursday's show (this column covers both the full week before Thanksgiving and the partial week of). After talking with the doctor, the despair felt was very clear. Victor and Nikki, his head up, hers down and leaning against his shoulder, followed by a sad and sober J.T. framed in the window looking in at Victoria. A well done and believable scene.
And what's not to like in J.T.'s certainty about who he'd choose if indeed a choice had to be made? When it comes right down to where the rubber meets the road, J.T. has no doubt who'd he save. Victoria. Sure, some fans might say that's because he isn't sure that he's the father, but I don't know if I agree with that. In his mind, the decision is a no brainer and I find I respect him for his unapologetic stance.
Okay, was I dreaming back then or are we supposed to forget that Abby and Victoria are sisters, albeit, only half ones? So whether or not Brad no longer as much of a Cad is the proud papa or not, Victoria's son won't be her half-brother, but her half-nephew. Not that their familial connection has anything to do with anything else, it just irks me that the sister bond is being so pointedly ignored.
Okay, moving on to someone else.
Was it just me or did anyone else practically howl with uncontrollable laughter at Michael's over the top reaction to Paul's confession that Heather had overheard his imprudent rehash of that oh so ancient kidnapping? Maybe it's just me, but sometimes Michael's line delivery brings to my mind an elaborately costumed stage actor bellowing out his lines to make sure he projects to the last row of seats in the very back of the theater. Not only does affronted indignation not often become our dear Michael Baldwin, it's giggle-inducing as all get out every time he slaps that indignant card face up on the table. I don't know how Maggie and Paul were able to keep their faces poker game inscrutable as Michael ranted and raved, strutting about like a little bantam rooster. Because I didn't even come close, as, hiccupping with hilarity, I nearly toppled from my bed as Michael and Lauren curled their claws and ripped chunks out of Paul's hide for exhuming the skeletal remains of his past criminal acts and showing them to his daughter. Why I could lose my law license, Michael exclaimed huffily. Phyllis could remain at camp, I mean, prison with her sad sack sidekick. And Lauren could join them and make musketeer No. 3. Fen would be both motherless and fatherless, left to be raised by Kevin and Gloria. Okay, he didn't actually say that last part about Fen, but he probably wanted to. And considering how many crimes these two have helped to cover up, it's a bit hard to believe either of the Baldwins are the least bit bothered by the outside chance of the loss of Michael's license to circumvent the law.
But what Heather decides to do with the informational mess she accidentally stepped into is for later. Although in the end I really don't expect she'll prosecute Paul or any of his co-conspirators. Speaking of Heather, she's certainly a sharp edged one, isn't she? What Assistant DA concerns herself with such small things as a probationer missing a couple of his community service obligations, with his probation officer's permission, at that? Does the woman not have enough to do? While she decides whether or not she should prosecute Paul, she walks to and fro through the halls of Newman, seeking who she might devour. What was she doing at Newman anyway? Was she tired of paying for overpriced Crimson coffee and decided to mosey over to the Newman break room for some free Brazilian roast? Or was that the scribes' way to put her and Daniel together to see if they might generate a few heated sparks?
Heather didn't have much time to contemplate Paul's fate. She had her legal pad filled with scribbles on how to keep Phyllis imprisoned. But, in the end, it was all in vain. The only arguments I heard were Michael's, and I must say, I wasn't much impressed. I also didn't get why Phyllis wasn't allowed to attend her own appeal hearing, but hey, what do I know? I just work in a law firm.
Anyway, I didn't buy that the video was unfairly prejudicial. The State had the burden of proving beyond a shadow of a doubt, the defendant's guilt. That tape left no room for misconstruing. The jury could see for themselves the look on her face, the implied threat in her tone. No one viewing that tape would have any doubt as to what Phyllis meant, nor could they fail to hear the pleasure she was taking in her blackmail attempt. Regardless, the wrap up of 'Phyllis Goes to Prison' was as senseless as the rest of the whole ridiculous prison storyline, like unlimited prison visits where people can actually bring in laptops and cell phones, phone cards, a work release program that was laughable and completely unbelievable, and Phyllis running around using Daniel's phone when she had an office with a door she could close, and a desk with a phone on it that she could have picked up and called Nick anytime she wanted. What? Did she think the line was tapped? Dumb, dumb and dumber still. Anyway, the wicked old witch is free now and officially back. Oh joy, oh joy, I shouted, bounding about my living room with unrestrained abandon. (Yeah, right!) But really, was she ever really gone? Sure, she was locked up, but unlike John Abbott, who was rarely seen, let alone heard, Phyllis was both seen and heard from more than her less locked up GC counterparts.
Oh darn. It's beginning to look like Jeffrey isn't as savvy as he originally appeared. After effortlessly finding the recorder, the note and the cream, it seems she's already gained the upper hand. What's next, she'll frame Jeffrey for tainting the cream? Anyway, at first I was hoping the brain in Jeffrey's cranium was lethally sharp, but now it appears it's as dull as every other dude's who's ever fallen for Gloria's cheap charms. I guess she's proof positive that stalking leopards don't change their spots. She's on the hunt for the third time, with Jeffrey her willing prey. There just doesn't seem to be a single genuine feeling in this old hag. It's always all about her and who she can trick into loving her by whatever fake and fraudulent means are necessary. Yeah, yeah, I know, by the time she's dispatched her victim, I mean suitor, to whatever afterlife his former life had earned him, she always claims to have come to love him unreservedly. That's always been her story and I'm sure she will continue to stick to it over and over again.
I can't believe Jeffrey so easily fell for her transparent performance. With that affected southern belle, breathy delivery, I half expected her to swoon into Jeffrey's arms like a maiden with her corset knotted too tight, fanning herself with a hanky yanked from the billowing sleeve of her jewel encrusted ball gown. But one thing you can say about Y&R. You know there's no problem with age discrimination there. Anytime a 60+ woman can be a femme fatale. Well, Gloria anyway. Jill doesn't seem to be granted the same privilege.
But, back to Jeffrey. Go ahead and color me completely disillusioned by his easy hoodwinking. I keep hoping I'm wrong; that he's not as gullible as he's coming across, but my once high hopes are definitely beginning to dim.
And also color me quite confused. Gloria told Jeffrey she'd been using the cream. If he didn't suspect the cream was tainted, why did he have untainted cream made up to give to her? And he seems to have forgotten everything about the tainted cream case he went to such pains to unearth. He looks to be about as confused as I am. And lastly, even if the cream is tainted, it's not as if Jeffrey can do much of anything about it. The evidence has already been compromised; the chain of possession has been irretrievably broken. At this point, tainted or not, anyone could have tainted it. And if it came from police custody, there's certainly no way to put it back. Enough of that. Just trying to make sense of the insensible is causing my head to hurt like heck.
One more thing about that cream, was it funny or what watching Kevin's panicked protests against Gloria using what they thought was tainted cream. Even it if was tainted, which it wasn't, she was hardly going to become life threateningly ill from that tiny smear she put on her wrist.
Before I go, I have to ask, who else wonders if the rumors might be true? You know, the one about the alleged re-assignment of the head scribe so many fans malign. The same rumors that has her belongings packed up and carried off the premises. And not just solely because of the writer's strike. Many believe (and this fan is definitely included in that number) that she has practically single-handedly lowered the show's once lofty standards and destroyed just about every once beloved character in our fake tinsel town. Now, let me first say, I would never rejoice at the news of anyone losing their job. But, while I'm sure there are many fans that enjoy the present pace and direction of the show, there is likely at least an equal number of them who abhor what our show has become. If the rumors are true, I don't necessarily think she has to be fired, but it certainly wouldn't hurt my feelings in the least to see her take on a lesser role. Because, again I must concur completely with Ann below. The characters HAVE suffered. Most of the plots ARE ridiculous, unbelievable and insultingly infantile. Which makes it difficult to give a flying fig what happens to any of them.
Hope everyone had a very happy Thanksgiving. I know I did, but thank God for that treadmill in my basement. I'm definitely going to need it! See ya next week.