It used to be that sunshine on my shoulder made me happy, but when my air conditioner stopped working last week and the temperature outside climbed to 107°, I was not as happy as I might have been. After catching up on last week's episodes, I noticed that some of my imaginary friends in Genoa City were feeling the same way because their storylines heated up and started to sizzle.
Call me fickle, but I have fallen for Austin and Summer. Austin seems so nice and so redeemed by Summer's love that it is hard to imagine him as a crazed, gun-toting stalker. Surely he was temporarily insane, due to grief over his mother's death. If Chloe could use that excuse to get out of kidnapping Connor, why can't Austin skate also? After all, Paul recovered quickly, and it was an accident -- yes, it was in the commission of a crime, but lots of folks in Genoa City have done worse and escaped with a slap on the wrist.
I think Austin deserves some sunshine, and so does Summer. They make a believable couple, and their church wedding brought tears to my eyes. I was rooting for Austin and Summer before the "I dos," but that simple ceremony put the sun on my shoulder, the stars in my eyes, and me firmly in their corner. I was so glad that Kelly made Jack see the light and choose to be part of his daughter's wedding instead of channeling his inner Victor and sending Summer to jail. Now I wonder how long it will be before Summer, Austin, and baby make three. No annulling the marriage then, and we will be calling "Smiling Jack" by his new nickname, "Gramps!"
I have never liked how the soaps portray the police. They are either bumbling buffoons or over-zealous bullies like Detective Harding. His treatment of Austin has been over-the-top, especially considering that Paul is okay and that Austin turned himself in and admitted what he had done. That alone should have earned him some points. Harding observed the actual shooting and knew that it was an accident caused by the struggle, not a deliberate attempt on Paul's life. Yes, if Paul had died, Austin would have faced murder charges, accidental or not, but Paul lived, so no need for the bullyboy tactics. (Memo to self: "It's only a soap!")
Paul's sunshiny day turned cloudy after he went back to the office a mere three weeks after being shot and having a liver transplant. He was blindsided by hurricane Christine, who let her insecurities about Nikki and Dylan show. Paul seemed genuinely puzzled by Christine's desperate and needy behavior. Her emotional and neurotic display was out of character for the Christine we have come to know. I can only assume that Christine will continue to behave in such a way as to drive Paul into Nikki's welcoming arms, because that is what happens in real life. The more you behave jealously when there is no cause for jealousy, the more likely you are to plant the seeds that will justify jealousy. So take heed, Christine, and don't push Nikki and Paul into each other's arms because you are a jealous shrew!
Victor has been very accepting so far of Dylan's parentage, and his talk with Paul was very sane and mature. Paul and Victor really seemed like two old friends coping with a highly unusual situation. I had never thought of Paul and Victor as friends, but there seemed to be a genuine bond and understanding between them.
Dylan needs to get control of himself and his PTSD. He also needs to stop ordering Avery around and dictating what should happen to Austin. Where is forgiveness? Pardon me, Dylan, but weren't you the guy that freaked out and kidnapped baby Connor when you were in a delusional state, and the kid almost died from dehydration? Everyone makes mistakes. To paraphrase the Bible, Please remove that large piece of wood that is in your eye, blocking your vision, before attempting to remove the eyelash from your neighbor's eye. So listen up, Dylan, before you make a serious error in judgment and disappoint all your friends.
I can hardly wait for the revelations in Nikki's diary to emerge and for the courtroom showdown, which I fully expect Michael to win, to begin. I am so glad that Michael is out of prison and back in the courtroom where he is a dose of sunshine. Michael needs to win so that Nikki does not let Ian push her off the wagon.
Nikki's diary, which should win the case, has got to be a piece of revisionist history. I'm counting on all of you who have watched from the beginning to be picky, picky, picky about anything that is not supported by facts as you remember them!! Speaking of picky, have you noticed that the hairy-handed Adam is gone, and now we have smooth hands and stubby fingers? How many hands will stand in for Adam before we have a face to put to those hands? Did TPTB think we would not notice the changing-hand actors?
Hilary has been trying to find a place where the son don't shine, but every place Hilary goes, she finds Devon lighting the way. Hilary tried to recapture the joy of March Madness with Neil, but sadly the fun-in-the-sun trip to a ball game in Chicago, which she had planned for the two of them, was rained out. Neil, oblivious to the growing attachment between Hilary and Devon, insisted that Hilary was just the ray of sunshine that Devon needed to brighten up his life and help Neil get to the bottom of what was bothering Devon.
Now that Cane has caught Devon and Hilary in a passionate embrace, it won't be long until others catch on. Will Neil be the last to know? Will Lily burn with the glow of a thousand suns when she finds out?
While this is a trite and hackneyed story -- girl meets boy, loses boy, meets new boy, gets engaged, still has crush on first boy, but when first boy tries to stop wedding girl won't admit her true feelings and marries second boy, only to find that she cannot control her passion for first boy who continues to pursue her. Eventually passion overwhelms them, and before they can come clean with husband, she finds out she is pregnant and stays with hubby for the sake of the child or perhaps hubby finds out anyway and lots of people get hurt, but eventually love conquers all -- we have seen this story in a million movies, TV shows, and yes, soaps, but no matter how many time we see it, we never get tired of the drama or the three-hankie ending when the lovers are finally united and live happily ever after.
I'm sorry that Neil is going to get hurt, but honestly, how can any sane person think that they can find lasting happiness with a person 30 years their junior, unless they are looking for a caretaker in their old age. I can't even imagine having the energy to keep up with someone 30 years younger, much less start a family, which, I have a feeling, is exactly what is about to happen to Hilary. Just as she is about to tell Neil that she loves Devon, I'll bet that Hilary finds out that she is pregnant. The only question is whether or not she slept with Devon first. Hopefully, we won't have another "Who is the baby daddy?" story so quickly on the heels of Billy, Stitch, and Victoria.
I'm ho-hum about Victoria with either of these men. They both seem like losers to me. Both are liars, and Billy is a serial cheater who can't keep it in his pants when he gets stressed about anything. The jury's still out on NuNuBilly and whether or not he should reconcile with Victoria. I do think that NuNuBilly and Chelsea play well off each other, but then there is really no one that Melissa Clare Egan does not have great chemistry with. She is a beautiful and talented actress that can make the sun shine on anyone, even a jerk like Billy.
I am quickly losing all my respect for Stitch. He started out as a good guy and a great friend to Dylan. He had terrific chemistry with Ashley, but then, suddenly, he fell for Victoria and started behaving more like a love-struck teenager than an objective doctor.
As far as I'm concerned, Stitch, Ben, or whatever his name is can "stick it where the sun don't shine," until he tells Victoria and us, the heinous secret that he is hiding. We know that "Ben" is Kelly's brother, that he committed a murder, and that he served time. What we don't know is who was murdered and how. We also don't know why Kelly calls Stitch "Ben." If Stitch stole dead Ben Rayburn's identity after Kelly left town, why doesn't she call him by his childhood name? Does his name just coincidentally happen to be "Ben?"
I'm guessing that Ben was driving drunk and killed one of his parents, or perhaps Kelly's boyfriend, "Ben Rayburn." Though neither of those actions seems bad enough to cause a man's wife to divorce him and take his kid out of the country. I also have a difficult time believing that Y&R's current management is brave enough to tackle the very serious problem of incest, as some of you have suggested the secret might be.
GH's attempt to broach the subject in a humorous way was not well received, including by me, because incest has devastated too many lives to be treated lightly, even by people who like to joke as much as I do.
I don't know how many more weeks this is going to drag out, but I'm counting on knowing Ben and Kelly's secret before July is over. We ought to get the results of Victoria's paternity test (hopefully untampered with) as well.
We will all be singing in the sunshine if Sharon remembers her secret -- she was getting close with the lipstick memories and the traffic ticket -- or if someone else figures out the secret, or if Phyllis recovers and spills the secret. I really want Nick to forgive Sharon. I still I think I'd prefer it if Summer remains Jack's biological daughter because that gives Jack, Phyllis, and Summer family ties while Nick, Noah, Faith, Sharon, and Mariah have their own ties that bind.
What a great story could be told of forgiveness, redemption, and enduring love if Nick forgives Sharon and proves that he meant it when he said that he loved Sharon unconditionally and "until death," like he promised in his wedding vows. Saying that you love someone unconditionally is easy. Actually meaning it is another matter. This is a great opportunity for terrific writing and acting. Sharon and Nick are one of the absolutely best couples in daytime. The sun is always shining when they take center stage. Please, Y&R I beg you, don't mess this up!
Now for my favorite part!