Once upon a time, Genoa City was a pleasant place to live. Although its residents weren't immune to the tragedies of life, their trials and tribulations were usually alternated by episodes of love and laughter. Not anymore. Instead, these days, love and laughter is about as hard to find as that proverbial needle in a haystack. On the other hand, however, if hate and hypocrisy is what you live for, pop up the popcorn and make yourself comfortable, because Genoa City has those things in abundance.
Standing arrogantly at the head of the line, the pillow-proclaimed King, Victor Newman, his Grinch-like mouth pulled down in an unbecoming frown, dispenses hate and hypocrisy wherever he goes, heedless of the destruction he leaves in his wake. Like so many other fans, I despise this despicable despot at the moment. What he is doing to Billy and Victoria is cruel and inhumane punishment. I understand that he loves his daughter and probably believes he is protecting her, but why does he get a vote in her love life? When he fell in love with and married Victoria's best friend, a woman decades his junior, he didn't tolerate Vicky's interference, and in fact was willing to cut her from his life because of her disapproval. But, as always, it's all about Victor. Apparently only his daughter is important. In his arrogant mind, the loss of her father in Delia's life is of no concern to Victor.
Every King has his court jester, and Newman is no exception. Michael Baldwin eagerly performs that role. When Victor tells him to jump, Michael doesn't wait to hear how high, he just starts leaping in the air, the bells on his tri-pointed floppy hat tinkling in obedience. What a disappointment Michael has turned out to be. He used to have a mind of his own.
Michael used to have standards, even if they weren't very high, but not anymore. He never minded bending the rules, mostly when it came to his family, but where Victor is concerned, he acts as if the world has no rules. Whatever Victor wants, his horrid henchman, Michael, supplies with few questions asked and even fewer objections. I couldn't believe it when he told Sharon how impossible it would be to be separated for 20 or 30 years from his son. Apparently, he must think he's the only one who could love his child because he certainly isn't concerned in the least about helping Victor separate Billy from his daughter, Delia.
By the way, I don't buy for a single second that Billy did something so wrong he should be banned from the lives of not just Victoria, but from his entire family besides. As a matter of fact, I'm guessing Billy hasn't done anything at all, and is likely only guilty of getting drunk and passing out long enough for Victor, the puppet master, to put his dirty, vindictive plan into play. Remember Victor's comment about the success of his plan remaining to be seen? That comment makes me believe that somewhere out there is likely at least one man who has been obscenely overpaid for his treachery.
Another one eager to spread hate and show hypocrisy is the diminutive, yapping Chloe. I'm so sick of hearing her yip and yap about how bad Billy has been in the past. She acts as if she's an expert on all things Billy. First of all, Billy never loved her at all, let alone the way in which he loves Victoria, and would likely never have married her if not for Delia. But even Delia wasn't enough to keep Billy tied to the jealousy-ridden, controlling, sharp-tongued little shrew. And, another thing, where does she get off dispensing advice to Vicky that she could do worse than allegedly good guy, Sam? Chance was a good guy, and look how loyal he turned out not to be.
Also dancing disjointedly at the end of Victor's puppet strings is Kevin, proving that every man has his price, and Victor is willing to pay whatever it is. Another disappointment for me was how he went along so easily with Victor's plan. I know he has no love for Billy, but how can he stand there and listen to everyone gushing about how great a guy he is when in truth he's just another liar and a pawn on Victor's big chess board? I want to believe that Kevin will grow a backbone and refuse to continue going along with Victor's scheme. But I won't bother to hold my breath
I'm even disappointed in Billy this week. Up till now he's been one of the few men who refused to drop to his knees every time Victor showed his grim, unhappy visage. I should have known that couldn't continue. I'm beginning to believe those fans who think there's some kind of clause in Braeden's contract that prohibits anyone from taking a real stand against the King of Genoa City. What a shame the only love in this town is being thwarted by Victor. I continue to feel that Billy and Victoria are the most endearing couple to come along in a long while. Yes, Billy made plenty of mistakes, but his actions were those of a man who just wanted to make his wife happy. It's breaking my heart the way these star-crossed lovers are being kept apart. I just hope it doesn't last for much longer.
Phyllis has always been a hate-filled, hypocritical harpy, so nothing she said or did during the week came as any great surprise. When she indignantly stated that Daisy, a freak with no maternal bone in her body, was trying to take Lucy from her, I could only giggle and roll my eyes. Yeah, Phyllis, kind of like you did to Billy and Victoria, huh? And Phyllis had no qualms about using said freak to get what she wanted. So, Phyllis Pot, meet Daisy Kettle. Here's hoping that kettle scorches Phyllis' hypocritical bottom with her antics. Not that I think Daisy will win, even with Avery's expert help. Still, if it gives Phyllis even a swallow of the nasty-tasting medicine she usually dishes out to others, I'll be a happy, gloating fan for however long it lasts.
I know it's mean, but it did my heart good to see Kay finally taken down a peg or two. I almost felt sorry for her when she resorted to near-begging to get Jack to shake his pom-poms on her behalf. I did say almost, but because Kay has been such a mean and cantankerous biddy lately, I stopped just a step away from sympathy. Jabot belongs to the Abbotts, and I'm going to cheer for anyone willing to make that happen.
Speaking of the man who will hopefully finally right that ancient Jabot wrong, I enjoyed Tucker this week. After all his and Ashley's talk about secrets, I was disappointed when he didn't immediately come clean about his deal with Jack. But, happily, he didn't wait too long to tell the truth. I've read a few spoilers about the upcoming court case, so I'll heed the cliché that advises me not to count my chickens before they've broken through the eggshells. But my fingers and toes are crossed that ownership of Jabot will finally be returned to the Abbott family.
With a dearth of romance in this town, I'll take any of them I can get, even if it's between Lily and Cane. I don't mind Lily. I don't even mind Lily and Cane together, but Cane has not had a very good track record when it comes to secrets and lies. In fact, he's lied so much, I can't ever be sure he's sincere, no matter how convincingly he mumbles. With the news that Colin has been let go, maybe this umpteenth time will be the charm, and Cane and Lily will live happily ever after. Well, at least what passes for ever after on a soap.
And finally, the search for Diane's murderer continues, but, despite Ronan's frantic pursuit of one Newman after another, my money remains squarely on Patty Williams. No matter how guilty the others might seem by their actions that night, I just can't get past the fact that Diane was struck ten times. Could you really imagine any of the Genoa City suspects doing such a thing? Just for the heck of it, I pretended to strike someone ten times. Even when I struck those ten blows as fast as I could, it still wasn't a quick process. It would take an enormous amount of rage to commit that particularly gruesome murder, and I just don't believe anyone else had that big of a grudge against Diane.
The murder plot pot continues to boil on the stove, unexpected twists and turns thickening the noxious brew. My mind is literally teeming with questions. For instance, since Ronan sent the bait via the ransom note to trap Nick, does that also mean he was making the mystery calls to Nick in the first place? Why did Ronan pick that particular abandoned warehouse for the money drop?
Is it just coincidence that Adam then went to that very warehouse to search for the mysterious person he told they were going too far? Is that person the killer and does Adam know it? Was he working with him or her all along, or did he add two and two together and come up with Patty? If he is indeed working with the murderer, is his plan about to backfire? Is the killer really setting Adam up to take the fall for the murder? If it is indeed Patty, turnabout is fair play because Adam made it look like Patty killed Hightower, just one of many injustices he dealt her.
More questions, like where did those pillows come from? Who put the flash drive in Abby's pillow? Who tore the missing pages from Diane's diary? Who is delivering them one by one to the police? Are they the actual pages from the diary or a very convincing forgery? This inquiring mind really, really wants to know!
So much for my opinions this week. In spite of Victor's vindictiveness, I'm still enjoying the Genoa City roller-coaster. I expect many more thrills and chills ahead when Devon's mom arrives, Nikki returns, the mystery surrounding Phyllis and Avery is unraveled, Sharon is released (hopefully) from prison, Billy and Victoria are reunited despite Victor's best efforts (again, hopefully), and much, much more.
Until my next time in this place, I hope you enjoy a few opinions from the e-bag. If you'd like to share your thoughts, send me an email -- and your email might appear in a future column.