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 Two Scoops: April 4, 2011 columns
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Crystal Chappell
Livin' on a prayer
For the Week of April 4, 2011
Carly's been due for a breakdown since she stabbed Lawrence to death, but she's been too busy running from Vivian, being reunited with Melanie, and keeping Chloe's affair a secret.
It was New Year's Eve. I can't remember the year because that's what happens when one gets older. And this song came on. (See the title of the column if you're not following me.) Maybe it was the delicious cocktails that my best friend, Scott, had invented. Maybe it was the fact that I was reunited with my college friends and we were reliving our glory days like we'd gained neither a pound of weight nor responsibility since graduation. Or, maybe it's the catchy chorus of this party anthem. But, I distinctly remember being in a downtown bar, clad in my cutest little black dress, throwing my hands up into the air, and singing along to this song like I hadn't a care in the world. And all of my friends were singing along with me.

Those points of oblivious jubilation are priceless. And considering how many changes -- new characters, exits, recasting, and changing storylines -- are happening in Salem, this week is kind of like my New Year's Eve sing-along. I can't help but relax, sing out loud, and blindly hope that it's going to be a great tomorrow.


CARLY
Man, that Bo must be the best piece of lovin' since Michael Douglas in Fatal Attraction. The second that Bo moves on -- BAM -- his ex turns to drugs. Personally, I recommend Ben & Jerry's Half Baked ice cream (half chocolate chip cookie dough, half chocolate fudge brownies, all win) for depression, but I'm not a doctor.

Oh, but Carly is! And that means she has access to some pretty powerful drugs if she wants them. While I am not advocating substance abuse of any kind, I am all for giving Crystal Chappell a meaty storyline. Better yet, this one is completely appropriate and organic for Doc Manning.

Carly's been due for a breakdown since she stabbed Lawrence to death. But, she's been too busy running from Vivian, being reunited with Melanie, and keeping Chloe's affair a secret to have time to deal with the fact that she killed a man. See ladies, it's important to build "me time" into our busy schedules.

Most importantly, I feel bad for Carly. The flashbacks of how it was with Lawrence made me remember that Carly wasn't a scheming harlot when she came to Salem. I hope that Daniel, Melanie, and Jennifer rally around Carly to help her back on her feet. I'd do the same thing, but I'm still not convinced that the characters can hear me when I yell things at my television. I need to look into that and get back to you. But for now, I'm weaving and fist pumping to Carly's shiny new storyline!


JENNIFER
Ah, I get it! The Horton house is a metaphor for Jennifer! Brilliant! It's not the newest or fanciest thing in Salem, but it's got history and class that makes it a great find. And, unlike some other places in Salem (DiMera mansion, I'm looking at you!) it's not so easy to get into. Yup, I went there. And I mean it.

I'm love Dr. Dan and Jen spending time together right now in the name of friendship and lasagna. They're believably funny and refreshingly entertaining. Jennifer's not one to hop into bed with the first hot doctor she meets (see: Dr. Ben Walters). So, maybe the second, or third, heck maybe she'll wait for Jack to smurf his was back to Salem and we'll have a Jack and Jen reunion. Whatever happens, as long as Jennifer is on my screen, I'm a happy girl.


HOPE and BO
Bo and Hope took a break from soap drama this week to be actual parents. (I'll wait for you to pick your chins up off the floors…I was shocked too!) They didn't go so far as to mention Shawn and Chelsea, but other than that, I appreciated their parenting talk about how to raise Ciara. I can't help but realize that if this conversation happened years ago, I wouldn't have had to endure Crazy Jerkface Hope of '09.

Let the record show that I would much rather see real-life filler like this than flashbacks of the Accessory from Hell. I like it when we get to see soap characters being normal people for five minutes. It reminds me why I like them.

Further icing on the cake was Bo lamenting over Ciara's dating life. I chucked at the thought of Bo telling a 45-year-old Ciara, "No way in hell. You can't date him. Now go to your room and forget about it." Hope only made the moment better when she reminded Bo that he was a long-haired biker at one point in his life, and her father was not happy about her choice of mate either.


VIVIAN
Vivian has so many people on her revenge list that she can't keep track of them. Happens to me all the time. Nicole had to remind Vivian that the pictures Viv showed to E.J. were to serve as Nicole's punishment for the sarcophagus cover-up. Good point, oh tall blonde one. Perhaps Gus should invest in a smart phone to keep track of these things via portable spreadsheet.

I love Vivian. I really do. So, I'm hoping that she'll get a new storyline soon. To that end, I think it's time to bring Nicholas back. Carly mentioned that Nicholas isn't talking to her, which can only mean that he and Aunite Viv would get along brilliantly right about now.

This vendetta against Kate isn't really working for me. And as enticing as the idea of Viv and Nicole teaming up may be, Vivian doesn't have a big enough carrot to get Nicole to start a fight with Kate and Stefano. Nicole has everything she's ever wanted -- just ask her. Besides, Nicole only fights back when she's cornered.


E.J. and TAYLOR
Since Natalia Livingston is on her way out as Taylor and the show is claiming the ever-cryptic, "We're taking the character in a new direction" excuse, I thought we'd have a little fun with this section. So in the sense of sublime sarcasticness (why isn't that an album title?), I now present to you, "Let me get this straight…"

1) E.J. has never felt anything like this in his life. Let me get this straight…
The man who brought Sydney back to Sami because his love for Sami was greater than his DiMera need to punish Sami for lying to him about the very existence of his child has never felt anything like he does for Taylor.

And The man who bought every excuse Nicole threw at him, including sleeping in separate bedrooms for the duration of her pregnancy, for the sake of having a happy life with Nicole has never felt anything like he does for Taylor.

2) E.J. told Taylor that he loved her. Let me get this straight…
E.J. and Taylor met for the first time less than eight weeks ago, have gone on no dates, have had no meaningful conversations about anything, yet he loves her.

3) Taylor can't wreck her sister's life. Let me get this straight…
Taylor delivered that line while sitting on top of her half-naked brother-in-law, wearing nothing but jeans and a hot pink bra.

4) Taylor told Fay that she and E.J. were arguing. Let me get this straight…
Taylor had to take off her sweater and lock the door to argue with E.J. I mean, who doesn't do that?

5) E.J. thinks Taylor is a woman of integrity. Let me get this straight…
See #3


There's something fun about how silly this storyline has become. It's much like my singing. I know it's terrible, but there are some times when I can't help myself from indulging. And as I mentioned before, since this storyline is getting a reboot soon, this lame duck nonsense is humorous.


BRADY
Brady is sort of like that one guy in a small town. You know which one I mean? He's the one who is the barber, sheriff, judge, and gas attendant, depending on which hat he is wearing at any particular moment. Smarmy with Victor, rough with Dario, or forgiving with Chloe, Brady has an ability to be brutally honest with people, but his demeanor is always tailored to the character of the scene. Eric Martsolf is earning his paycheck each week simply because he makes nearly everything believable.

I said "nearly." And I mean it. The one hat that Brady should not wear is Melanie's love interest. The reformed party girl and the recovering drug addict have shared way too much friendship, that a romantic relationship would be a step backwards for them right now.

I'm so super serious about this that if the writers try to pair Brady and Melanie romantically, I will hold my breath until they change their minds. Try me. I don't care that Chloe scolded them or that they complimented each other on "faking it" (eww, just eww) when they kissed. More often than not, soap romances make enemies out of people. I don't want to watch a show where Mel and Brady hate each other. I've invested too much in their friendship.


FAFE
Some people are really missing Rafe. I'm not one of those people. Nope, I don't miss Sami following Rafe along like a puppy. That analogy is especially applicable since Rafe also cleans up Sami's sh… well, you know. Moving on…

This week showed me that Fafe is a zillion times more interesting than Rafe, and I would like to keep him. Galen Gering is simply delightful in this role. Fafe's "Look what you made me do" plea to an unconscious Fay at the end of Friday's show makes me want to know more about him. He's not your typical DiMera goon. He thinks on his own and had a conscience, which can be a detriment and a credit at the same time.

What if hurting Fay is a wake-up call? What if the DiMeras just double his salary and buy Fafe's morals right back? What if Fafe actually falls for Sami? What if the guy who has more dirt on the DiMeras since Patch turns on the family and goes to the Salem PD? There are so many possibilities that exist with Fafe that weren't there with Rafe.

Truthfully, I know it won't last and Rafe will be back someday. But, it's New Year's Eve and I'm singing right now. Who's with me?


SAMI
While I didn't like seeing Fafe try to force himself on Sami, I do like where that move got us in the storyline. She reared back and slapped Fafe. It's about time. They'll be no more hanky-panky between Fafe and Sami. Thank goodness. That disgusting element of this storyline made me angry.

Sure, Sami will still have to deal with the fallout of realizing that she was sleeping with a different man. But you know what they say. Where one man sees deceit, I see rocking material for Alison Sweeney to play. I can feel a happy dance coming on.


LOOSE ENDS:
Holy cow! Fay knows that Fafe is fake Rafe. I would have never thought she would be the one to get the golden ticket. In other news, Valerie Wildman has the type of scream that makes me not want to watch horror movies with the lights off. Yes, that was a compliment.

Nicole is the clueless one for a change. I guess it's only fair since she did keep E.J. in the dark for almost all of 2009. I'm okay with that for now. Arianne Zucker is killing it in her scenes with Valerie Wildman and Natalia Livingston. Plus, I have no doubt that Nicole will wise up soon.

Melanie gave Philip back his ring. Also, she reminded me that she did help deliver Parker. I forgot about that. Kudos to Molly Burnett for delivering a sad speech with a very wiggly costar.

I adore that Dario is in town to reopen Arianna's murder investigation. But, it makes more sense for him to team up with Melanie and Brady rather than butt heads with them. I don't want any more bogus stories about marbles, cheesy lines about Mel's heart racing, or "you didn't step up so I guess I will" shtick from the absent brother.

Victor and Maggie are turning into an awesome couple. Now, I'd like to see the writers remember that Maggie is a businesswoman. You don't run the most posh restaurant in Salem and not know a thing or two about power and money. Victor is having business problems. Maggie built an honest business, catering to the most influential people in town. Let's build on that.

HOT:
I am ashamed to admit that I forgot how great Alison Sweeney and Lauren Koslow are together. The actresses portrayed the delicate balance between mutual understanding and complete distrust between their characters with precision unparalleled by any other female pair in daytime. Kate was genuinely concerned about Allie, but there is an element to seeing Sami suffer that Kate has to enjoy on some level. If not, then pretty much all of the late 90s in Salem was a lie. I can't wait to see what Kate will do with the information that Sami is going to leave Fafe.

NOT:
Is Chloe effing serious? She's going to badmouth Melanie to Brady. She's going to proclaim that wherever Melanie goes, trouble follows. She's going to pick up the "I Hate Melanie" banner from Stephanie and run with it. That's big of her, considering the pep talk that Melanie gave Chloe about getting better for Parker. That's also big of her considering that a few seconds later she was pushing Brady back towards Nicole. (Now, there's a no-drama gal for you!) Sorry, Chloemiester. You need to give up your computer and video games for a week.


LINE OF THE WEEK:
Victor (about his contrast from the Shakespearian character): "Lear didn't have a cute, redheaded girlfriend." Indeed! And the parallel between Victor and a king who divided his kingdom amongst his two least deserving offspring makes me ache for the days when I needed a term paper idea!


RANDOM THOUGHTS:
I guess they really aren't recasting Nathan. Point, set, match -- Mark Hapka. Well played, sir. Now go get cast in a romantic comedy because your comedic side is awesome.

The idea of Kate and Fay living in the same house makes me giggle. I don't think I can think of two more different ladies.

Is it time for Brandon to come back to Salem yet?

Melanie's lace-up boots are awesome.

Ciara's escape plans reminded me of when I tried to run away from home. I made sure to pack a Fruit Roll-Up, my Popple, and my ballet leotard -- because as any one of my favorite movies would show you, every hard luck kid can make it if they know how to dance.

Does anyone else wear that massive of a necklace when they sleep, or is Fay the only one?

When Nicole started talking about people who have succeeded in beating Stefano, it made me remember that Marlena is really the only one who's ever gotten the better of the Phoenix. Remember the drug? Remember Marlena? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Stefano and Kate never miss a minute to celebrate their joint evilness, and I love every second of it.

Justin told Dario that he would round up some names of good private investigators to look into Arianna's case. This may be a great time to remind everyone that superstar/ex-cop Hope Brady doesn't have a job. But, she does have a desire to make things right with Arianna. I'll to spell it out for Justin since he's probably busy with wedding plans: H.I.R.E. H.O.P.E.

And that's a rap for this Two Scoops! Tony will be back next week to see if Chloe or Ciara makes it out of time-out. In the mean time, leave me feedback and let me know what you think of the show. Do you think Chad will be able to live at the DiMera mansion without falling for Taylor? Any chance Adrienne and Stephanie will show up to say hi to Abby? Finally, what TV theme song do you think the key code to the DiMera house sounds like? I'm hoping for The Adams Family.

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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