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 Two Scoops: October 11, 2011 columns
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I'll gladly clean your toilets on Tuesday, for a death row pardon today
For the Week of October 11, 2010
Soap operas need to remain on the air. Sure, they are entertaining, but where else can you also be educated on life's most important issues?
Soap operas need to remain on the air. Sure, they are entertaining, but where else can you also be educated on life's most important issues?

"Where did you learn to scrub toilets?" Leona snapped at Kendall. The response was equally as amusing. "I must have been sick that day," sassed Kendall. "You've got to be firm with your brush," Leona instructed. "Move it in circular motions, not in these little prissy strokes like you were doing."

Move over, Rachael Ray -- there's a new girl in town.

There's also a... girl who isn't exactly new... who's back in town. Of course, that would be the one and only Erica Kane. I was really rather surprised by reader feedback this week. It seems like a lot of people did not miss Erica while she was away -- and even the most ardent Erica fans seem to be underwhelmed by her return.

Let me make this clear before moving on: I didn't expect there to be fanfare or a formal service held in some revered Pine Valley square to welcome Erica back to town. What did I expect? Well, I am not entirely sure. However, it was almost as though Erica was never gone. Within two minutes, she was right back to where she was two minutes before she left: going tête-à-tête with Caleb over some nonsense. I do, however, admit that I enjoyed hearing Caleb calling Erica and Jack "Dorothy" and "Captain Marvel." That never gets old for some reason.

"While you were up on that mountain all those years, women really did make great strides," Erica replied offhandedly to one of Caleb's macho grunts.

Rather than having any sort of sexual friction between Erica and Caleb, why not -- if you're not seated, please sit now... and move away any sharp objects onto which you could fall if you faint while reading this -- have them become strong allies and business partners. Though it wasn't the most stimulating storyline ever created, I enjoyed watching Dorothy and Grizzly Adams putting their heads together to come up with a plan to try to determine what Scott had stolen from Cortlandt Electronics.

Damon's reaction to acing his GED exam surprised me. I thought he'd be pompous about passing it -- or at least somewhat giddy. But no, he remained rather low-key and explained that "passing the test was never the big goal" and that "getting a job that pays more than minimum wage" was more important. Our little Damon sure has grown up. Of course, it was absolutely hilarious when Tad did the "Got'cher nose!" I think Michael E Knight has been playing fast and loose

I do have to wonder if this was always the plan for Damon, or if the writers perhaps caught on to some of the fan discontent and decided that it was time to make Damon a little more responsible. Personally, I think introducing Asher to the canvas forced the writers to reexamine Damon's story. Damon needs to be the "I've overcome obstacles in my life to become an upstanding young man" person because Asher is driven by anger and revenge -- not to mention he hacks into computers and clobbers people with laptops.

Am I the only one that finds it odd that Colby somehow always ends up around Asher when the dude just "happens" to have his shirt off?

Back to Damon for a second. I can't be alone in thinking that nothing good will come of Damon working for/with Liza. It just feels wrong. Okay, so Liza's previous assistant was a mess. Apparently the old file clerk wasn't even able to spell Liza's name correctly. Liza with a "Z," meet Krystal with a "K."

Colby, meanwhile, continues to prove that she's the heart of the Chandler family. Whereas we could always count on Stuart to rein everyone in and keep some sort of semblance of order, we no longer have Stuart around. Lately, Colby pops in at just the right moment to offer a shoulder to cry on, an ear, or a hug. She's like a mini Touched By An Angel moment.

I appreciate that Greenlee has claustrophobia. At this exact moment, though, I can't recall how we first learned of this or what the cause of it was. However, I do think Greenlee needs to appreciate that she had one of the nicest prison cells I've ever seen. I've noticed that the cells on television shows often look nothing like the ones in real life. No, I have not been in jail! I, um, saw a lot of documentaries. Yeah, that's what it was. Documentaries.

It appears that the groundwork is being laid for the introduction of Cara Finn and Griffin Castillo. Did you notice all the talk about Zach's top-secret mission? Jake was working with Doctors Without Borders when he was abducted, so I am guessing that this will somehow soon be linked to Griffin. Maybe he had been held captive with Jake... or Jake did something selfless to allow Griffin to get away.

So what if you threw a party and no one showed up? Again, thanks to the instructional nature of All My Children, I now know that you have to sleep with someone who is not your spouse/partner.

After Scott walked in on Annie and JR, I did get a chuckle from Annie's "It's not what it looks like" pleas. Since we didn't see everything, I'm guessing that JR and Annie were involved in some naked light bulb changing. JR obviously slipped and he landed... well, you get the idea. That's what it looked like was going on to me? What? It wasn't?

Equally odd was Scott taking offense to the fact that JR and Annie were in Scott and Annie's marital bed. Would it have been less offensive if they'd been on the dining room table or hanging from the chandelier? If they'd been smart, they'd have gone to the panic room that Adam built a bunch of years ago.

Adam Mayfield has been really amazing the past few days. In my head, I'm guessing that he knew he was being let go when these scenes were filmed. I guess if you have nothing to lose, there's suddenly nothing to hold you back. Regardless of the reason, Mayfield is showing that his Scott isn't just a giant pushover. He scared me a little bit.

I would be remiss if I did not comment on Melissa Claire Egan's performance last week. I've already gone on record by saying that I was mesmerized by Egan's work when Annie was cuckoo. Since then, however, so much of the material that she'd been given was... well, it wasn't always material that I think viewers were able to get behind.

For those of you who think the writers are "propping" Annie -- I never fully understood what that meant, but I do get the usage -- put that aside. In the post eruption (not like that, folks!) scenes, Egan turned in what I think was her best performance in quite some time. As Annie, she exhibited heartbreak, anger, confusion... it was all there.

Finally, I had an email exchange with a friend who asked me why she wasn't more amped up about watching AMC now that there are some decent stories being told. Strangely, it was a comment echoed by a lot of you in your feedback. Some of you complained that the pacing of the show is too slow. The dramatic moments are too long in the making. Others said that the characters that are on-screen are ones that they don't care about. There were also quite a few readers who grumbled that the characters are doing the same things today that they did ten years ago -- there's no growth and no change.

To that, I have advice for the writers: You've got to be firm with your pencils. Move the story in dramatic, daring directions, not these little prissy strokes like you've been doing.

You can thank me later.

dan

Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of soapcentral.com or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen, what has happened, and to take a look at the logistics of it all. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same view point.
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