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 Two Scoops: June 21, 2004 columns
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Peter Bergman
Let the games begin!
by Nita
For the Week of June 21, 2004
Life has been a bit trying for some of the major movers and shakers of Newman and Jabot lately.
Life has been a bit trying for certain of the major movers and shakers of Newman and Jabot lately. Victor's hours have been filled ensuring there would be a minimum of business disruption when he yanked the controlling reins of Newman Enterprises from the tightly clenched fists of his disrespectful son and placed them securely into Neil's. For Jack, trying to cope with the loss of his wife (and the subsequent blow to his ego) to a man he once felt close enough to confide in, engage in frequent battles with his sister in an attempt to force that same man out of Jabot and into unemployment, and almost single-handedly try to keep Jabot's creditors from closing what little financial avenues still remained open, has left him with little time or energy to pick up the gauntlet tossed down by Victor when he cleared the table of the $75 million he had originally placed there. And Brad and Ashley have been squandering most of their mental manpower trying to figure out the best way to catch and contain the hissing Newman snake Ashley let out of Pandora's Box when she decided to take a melancholy meander down memory lane to watch herself babble the truth about Abby's bio daddy.

Well, things are finally beginning to settle down a bit, and the parties mentioned above are now readying themselves to settle skirmishes in several situations. Denied a chance to repair the rutted road between him and his son, and with his responsibilities at the Wreck Center failing to consume his every waking thought and moment, Victor is eager to reopen settlement negotiations with Jabot. Though Ashley was supposedly on her way to a morning meeting weeks ago allegedly with a settlement olive branch offer in hand, something must have happened to derail her from her destination since she apparently never arrived. Anyway, since Victor's never been a man to just have one iron heating in the fire, he's also sounded the trumpet over the Carlton compound, announcing his plans to topple any Carlton-erected barrier in his path which keeps him from being an important part of the life of the pretty princess with his blood flowing freely in her veins who resides happily inside the castle walls.

Jack, having apparently lost interest in punishing Damon for picking up with Phyllis where he left off, didn't even put up a token show of resistance when Ashley announced her intention to keep the chemist close. But when she added that Dru's partly hairless head was on the block in Damon's place, he perked up long enough to plead for leniency on her behalf. Apparently feeling her brother had groveled quite nicely, in an abrupt about face, Ashley magnanimously allowed herself to be convinced to keep Dru on the payroll as well. Now that those menial matters have been settled, Jack is free to devote all his time to continuing his vendetta against all things Victor.

And in that regard, in a chance meeting with Victor at the bar of the Athletic Club, Jack shot off the first cannon in what is believed will be a long-running battle. Ticking off Victor's children's names like a demented detention class teacher, in an effort to illustrate why the last place Victor should stick his nose was into Abby's life; Jack pointed a long finger of blame at Victor for his poor parenting example. While the muscles of Victor's emotionless face barely moved, the grin that split my face caused my jaws to ache unmercifully. What is it about some GC residents who can clearly see the fault in others but are blind to their own sometimes identical behavior? Who in the world is Jack to talk? His parental handbook doesn't look a whole lot better. From once having complete Kyle custody (where, by the way Phyllis was expected to carry the lion's share of his care; Jack being too busy being CEO), he now spends little, if any time with the boy he once craved above all others). Mamie has replaced Phyllis as company keeper and cookie fetcher. And then there is Keemo, the product of Jack's once burning love for Keemo's mother, a son whose name, exactly like he accused Victor concerning Victor Jr., never crosses Jack's pouting lips. But the barbs about Victor's horrendous handling of his parental duties were only the opening act in this play. The main event will consist, of course, of coming up with the best way Jabot can get its sticky fingers on the currency in Newman's cookie jar.

How funny to hear Brad and Ashley insist the decision when and where to permit Victor access to Abby should be a family decision. Said after each had gone individually without the other's knowledge to consult separately with psychologists. Hers says yea, his says nay. Brad, of course, wants to be the only Daddy in little Abby's life, even though I haven't forgotten that when he first learned of her true parentage, he wondered how he'd ever be able to look into her innocent baby blues without seeing Victor glaring back at him. I guess he's past all that now. Victor, however, makes a valid point. Abby won't always be an adorable precocious, smart for her six years of age little girl. One day she'll grow up and is bound to learn all the dirty details surrounding her birth. Of course, this is Genoa City, and if history is anything to go by, as we've all learned, some secrets are never brought out into the light of day. Just ask a frustrated, angry 16-year old Daniel. And John has never learned that his beauty has, to borrow Victor's recent phrase, "none of his blood flowing through her veins."

But while the Carlton's collaborated on Abby's best interest, Victor was busy answering all of the questions his curious daughter posed to him (another chance meeting at the Club). When Ashley learned of this little tete-a-tete, she was less than pleased and made a lot of loud noises about who should decide what was best for her daughter and when. I must admit it was enormously gratifying to see Victor strip off the white kid gloves he normally handles Ashley with and give her the scornful side of his rough tongue. If he is forced to take legal measures to get his bio foot in Abby's door, can anyone spell the name of the legal eagle who might be keeping her sharp eyes on his best interests? Yes, I'm guessing Counselor Christine, who has little to do with her time now except try out different hairstyles. Can she use some of that idle time to help Victor wrangle visitation rights from the stalling Carlton's? Or will she be flexing her legal muscles over settlement issues between Jabot and Newman?

The showdown at the OK Cabaret was a little more comedy than drama. Question: If Weber and his cohorts in crime enforcement were already in place, how did Britt manage to slip through their loose net? But it did accomplish one thing. Yet another criminal case that should have been solved by Weber was wrapped up instead by one of the very citizens Weber had supposedly been hired to serve and protect.

Although Lewis and mob member Sal issued a couple of empty threats while being led handcuffed away, this mission has essentially been concluded and accomplished its main purpose. Which, in my opinion, was simply a creative way to cement Bobby and Brittany closer. With Lewis out of the loop, Brittany's Sugar Daddy should now have total control of the club. And if he still needs a backer, I presume Brittany's real daddy will be so grateful Bobby brought to justice the men responsible for disfiguring his daughter, he'll be happy to put his bank's stamp of approval on the Cabaret, and spread the word to all his socially upright friends and associates that the Cabaret is the perfect place to spend some of their easily gotten gains. Brittany's nightly warbling will presumably bring in a deluge of dollars which will be more than enough to pay the monthly bills.

Well, if that canary-eating ear-to-ear smile of satisfaction was anything to go by, it appears Brittany may have finally gotten to fulfill a few of her girlish fantasies with a man instead of boy. I hope this makes her happy at last. Because even when her life seemed good she still managed to begin and end nearly ever day with that dissatisfied frown on her face. Perhaps Bobby can finally cause her to awaken with a grin instead of a groan. I don't know about any of you, but I was grateful to be spared the sight of this couple's consummation. While not many 19-20 year olds would have the slightest interest in a man double her age (even though this one is especially yummy looking), Brittany has always been eons more experienced than her peers, and by her own proud admission, sampled many, many boys before Billy and Raul. And we certainly haven't forgotten her pursuit of older man, Webmaster Sean, who she tried unsuccessfully to wrest from Jill's arms. Now that Brittany and Bobby are the newest cooing twosome in town, do you think Bobby will finally be given a spacious apartment of his own? After all, he can't continue to woo his mistress in some back room in Marilyn's and I can't quite see him coming over to cuddle on the couch with Britt's roommates watching in horrified fascination.

Raul is a perfect example of a nice guy finishing last. Who else but a nice guy would practically wrap up the love of his life, arrange her enticingly on a polished platter and present her to his rival? Well at least he has J.T. to keep him company on those long, lonely summer nights. As for the days, some type of job might be in order so he can put some dollars in the loft's communal pot. Otherwise he might find himself moving back in with his smothering parents. I can't even remember the last time Raul worked. In spite of what was clearly implied, I'm not buying that the 10 bucks a part time hour Bobby was paying him until his recent firing has been paying his share of the rent.

Now that J.T. has admitted his singing career is over before it even began, he was seeking to sell his employee services, and he found a buyer in Paul Williams. Even though Paul's office lease will soon be up, and he's apparently unwilling or unable to double his rental payment to remain in place, things aren't so tight that he can't afford to pay a part time college boy to do little or nothing. So where will Paul go? To an office with Williams & Blair Security and Legal Services on the door in gold leaf? Or maybe it will read, Williams, Blair and Baldwin?

In Detroit, another comedy/drama was the Breaking News on every channel. But first things first. Where did Kevin get the gun, the clothes, the duffel bag? Are we to believe Weber had nearly the entire police force scouring the grounds of the mental ward for Kevin, but didn't bother to send just one of them to watch Kevin's residence? And how did Kevin manage to get into Mikey's apartment? How did he get to Detroit? Hitchhike? Walk? Ride the bus? If so, where did he get money?

All that aside, the Detroit police waited patiently outside Gloria's flimsy front door, repeatedly demanding Kevin open it and give himself up, and remained put even after hearing a gunshot. But all ended well, when another officer arrived with the message Kevin was soon to be an innocent man, just in time to stop anyone's finger from inadvertently pulling a trigger.

Although Weber granted Mikey permission to bring Kevin back unescorted, he isn't even out of the hot water for his wrongful arrest for Brittany's face baking, and already J.T. has splashed lighter fluid on the coals in preparation for roasting him for what he did to silly Lily and her former musketeer, Colleen.

But that's for later. For now, it looks like Mikey will never be lonely again. As if one half-crazed brother wasn't enough, his household will soon expand to include a gold-digging Mother as well. Because after just one trembling-voiced rendition of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, for Kevin, all his childhood nightmares have been banished by the nightlight and everything is forgiven and forgotten between misused son and ineffective Mommy. Given Gloria's tendency to be drawn inexorably toward the wrong men, for heaven's sake, keep her from crossing Cameron's path.

After what amounted to little more than a few minutes stilted conversation, Mackenzie is intrigued by Daniel. Obviously believing Daniel is the college man about town he outwardly appears to be, she has no idea that should he relocate to GC, he'll be attending Walnut Grove with Cassie and her cronies, instead of sporadically showing up at GCU with her, J.T., and Raul. But since Daniel's decided to stick around, at least for the summer, she'll have plenty of time to learn all she'd like to know about her new admirer. And she won't be the only one seeking information. Daniel has lots of questions of his own. And he's begun asking them of Daddy Dan.

Not that spaghetti-spined Danny is likely to be quick with the answers. Finally admitting what we've all been jeeringly whispering about him, Danny confessed he hasn't been the perfect father. Heck, he's barely been a father at all. And he continues to fall short of our low expectations by remaining mum on the truth about his lack of a blood tie to Daniel's life. Taking a page from Gloria Fisher's book of parental rules, he tries to convince Daniel he's better off living in the carefree and uncomplicated present instead of continuing to bring up old unpleasant parts of the painful past. Well, if Danny refuses to talk, maybe Daniel will turn to Phyllis for answers.

It's always a nice change to see the side of Phyllis that doesn't leave scratches on the inside of my TV screen when she brushes up against it, and after their obligatory exchange of insults, Dru and Phyllis were able to complete a mostly civil conversation about the ills and chills of proper parenting. Dru left Phyllis with just enough hope to attach her heart on her sleeve and tentatively show it to Daniel, but he turned up his still irked nose at it and stalked away. As he left, even though the tiny droplets left behind from the melting ice beginning to drip from his thawing heart were probably invisible to Phyllis, I'm guessing he could be closer to finally feeling a mother's love than even he knows.

More angst at the Mansion while Jill, Arthur and Esther continue to try to halt Kay's drinking. Unfortunately, if Kay wouldn't or couldn't stop drinking for Phillip, who was allegedly the love of her life, Arthur's efforts to get her to put down the bottle probably rank right up there with a snowball's chance of not melting in the hot place. I find it rather ironic that through all those long empty years when Kay literally rattled around the mansion with only Esther for company, and on into the years of battling mightily with Jill over half-ownership, Kay wasn't even tempted to take a sip of the rotgut, but now that all the cracks and crevices of her life have been filled with the potential for lifelong love not only from Arthur, but from new daughter Jill as well, she suddenly decides she can't live without daily drops of soul sustaining but life-avoiding alcohol? Go figure.

A thing that's suddenly making everyone go ... Hmmm. In the Cameron Kirsten mystery another dark detail has just been revealed. Cam has on his payroll a body snatcher who apparently snuffed the life out of it first. The question every fan is now asking is: who is the faceless corpse and how does he connect with Sharon? Since it now sounds as if it's Cam's intention to frame Sharon for the murder of the mystery man, it has to be someone she knows. Could it be Frank?

And finally, even as the Kirsten mystery deepens, another is just beginning. Just what is in the locked file cabinet at the Wreck Center? And which GC resident will it impact? Early rumors are running rampant that it could involve an ancient murder and a certain former exotic dancer. I guess time will.

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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