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 Two Scoops: July 18, 2005 columns
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Christian J. LeBlanc
Plots are simmering nicely
by Nita
For the Week of July 18, 2005
In fact, there should be something worth nibbling on for nearly every fan.
... on the Genoa City stove. In fact there should be something worth nibbling on for nearly every fan.

If you're searching for a love story meaty enough to sink your teeth in, you can probably find it in Lauren and Michael's meander toward marriage. No doubt they will eventually arrive at the altar safely and still madly in love, but their love is sure to be tested once Sheila's malevolent presence slinks into the City. I don't imagine an extended absence has magically made Sheila's black and shriveled heart grow one bit fonder toward Lauren. Unadulterated hatred is still likely the only emotion invoked when Lauren crosses Sheila's evil mind.

If you thirst for a strong cup of tea consisting solely of revenge and punishment, you needn't head for Crimson Lights. You can whet your whistle at Nick Newman's personal fountain which spouts an unending supply.

If you've seen every mob movie ever shown on a big or little screen, and hunger for more, just follow Bobby and Brittany Marsino; they're living a watered down version of Goodfellows, Genoa City style. Reluctantly joining them is J.T. "Heartbreaking Homewrecking" Hellstrom.

Need to be on the edge of your sofa, panting with anticipation of what will happen next? Tune in to the travails of Terrible Tom. I don't think he'll disappoint.

For the heartbreak of damaged families in desperate need of healing, knock on the door of the Winters' apartment. They have enough to go around. And if they don't, ask Devon to take you to the park in the seedier section of town. I'm sure Yolanda Hamilton can tell you a harrowing tale or two. And just to show you that massive amounts of money don't automatically buy you a happy, whole family, Nick, Sharon and Noah can show you plenty of pictures of their shattered lives.

Unrequited love? Mac can cry you a river. Or Kevin.

Do you tune in because it's all about the payback? That would probably describe Brad.

If all you care about is the cutthroat corporate world of strong women wheeling and dealing, Victoria and Jill will likely be at the head of the pack.

Are you the kind who sheds tears of joy at weddings? Well, haul out your hankies. Because Gloria is likely to have you weeping for all you're worth. Hopefully you won't be wiping away tears of mirth at the flashy show she might have planned for the expectant wedding guests.

Well, there are all those things and much, much more going on right this moment in our favorite fictional town. Starting with the love story, it's interesting that Lauren made such a big deal about Michael's failure to share his innermost emotions about Tom Fisher. She insisted he must be an ever open book to her, ready to read aloud at a moment's notice any or all of the chapters of his past and present. Yet, when it came time to recite a record of her own past experiences, she was not nearly as forthcoming as she expected him to be. Yes, I know, her reticence is likely owed more to storyline dictates rather than true reluctance, but I still find it amusing every time a GC resident makes it clear that what is mandatory for others is only optional for themselves. I don't know quite what the big deal is; after all it's not as if Lauren was at fault for Sheila's relentless stalking of and insane obsession with Dr. Grainger. And though it's understandable talking about those long ago days wouldn't be her very favorite thing to do, just as it wasn't a joy for Michael to rip the scabs off the unhealed sores covering his relationship with Terrible, why wouldn't she want to fill her intended in on Sheila's dastardly deeds? If it's that she feels she may still have something to fear from Sheila, then that's even more of a reason to let him know what's going on.

Michael deserves a couple of congratulatory hand claps because unlike so many of his male GC peers, he refused solace from the first soft shoulder that came along in order to ease his troubled heart and mind. No, Mike decided to first try a little male bonding in hopes of getting some answers to his Scotty questions. But Paul's loyalty to his ex-wife came before his regard for his office mate and he zipped his lips, tossed the key over his shoulder and refused to repeat a single tall tale from Lauren's distant past. Not one to beat his noggin against a brick wall just for the heck of it, Michael immediately admitted defeat and appears willing to wait until Lauren decides to unlock her Pandora's Box so he can see the Sheila headed snakes hissing inside.

His rage reduced only slightly by Daniel's capture, Nick has at last found his way back home to the Newman range. Unfortunately, he's not much more approachable than when he first began his quest to avenge his daughter's untimely death. The reunion of the young Newmans seemed awkward and strained; Sharon definitely has her work cut out for her. She is likely to find a preoccupied Nick is not much better than the empty house she found so lonely in his absence.

I bet pleasure wasn't one of the things Nick felt when he saw his remaining family members smiling happily into the camera at the Abbott 4th of July festivities, invited there by Bradley Carlton. And I doubt learning Sharon was the one who suggested Brad be added to the executive roster at Newman isn't likely to improve his mood. Sharon shouldn't be surprised at the raised eyebrows of friends and family at her growing closeness with Brad. Yes, she's been devastated by the tragic turn of events, but if she was really so concerned that people might try to make a mountain out of her Brad mole hill, perhaps she ought to refrain from throwing her arms around him at every available opportunity. Since Sharon isn't ready to return to work and doesn't want to pace around the empty house alone, perhaps Nikki's on the right track about how Sharon should spend some of the time on her hands. Nikki wants her to become involved in some charitable pursuit, but after last year's gala disaster with the undelivered food and Ashley's bathrobe appearance, I don't blame Sharon for shouting nay to that particular portion of Nikki's brainstorm.

It was a nice and tender moment between Newman husband and wife when Nick admitted he was nowhere close to the state of sometimes serenity as his wife and asked whether she might be able to teach him how to live life after Cassie. Equally enjoyable was Sharon's Remember When stroll down memory lane. It made me Remember When. When fans loved the young and wildly in love young Newmans. And hated the Grace spider spinning her web and spoiling their marital milk. A time before Sharon inexplicably evolved into this shrewish Wicked Witch of the West like person who dallied with the hired help and coveted her father-in-law's kisses.

As expected Nick has pronounced himself unready to return to business as usual and has magnanimously allowed Victoria to continue on her present CEO course without having to go around his belligerent body. The only string tied to his easy agreement? Victoria must help him bum rush Phyllis straight out the company door. After an initial show of stubborn resistance, Phyllis reversed herself and made it easier for the Newman siblings, quitting even as they fired her. The way I see it, despite Victoria's claim that Phyllis' services were somewhat sorely needed, I disagree, since in the last year, Phyllis has been away from her desk more than she's been behind it.

According to Vinny T, Bobby is not a mob man unless he does in J.T.. Me, I'm still having a bit of a hard time buying into all this mob madness. Over and over we've heard how the mob doesn't forget, the mob doesn't let anyone walk away, yet day after day we see Bobby, a man who traitorously turned on the mob and sent some of them away for a long, long time still living, breathing and talking tough. Instead of doing what you might expect a mob member to do, you know, like sending a gaggle of mob goons to break all Bob's limbs, weight the broken pieces with cement blocks and toss him onto the Genoa City river, the mob elects to send him expensive presents. But if the unforgiving mob mentality was really the way Bobby keeps describing it, he would never have lived to be in today's mess. After what he did he's lucky he, his wife and son to be aren't already long buried six feet under in some seldom traveled, off the beaten trail GC soil.

Am I the only fan who thinks Bobby's behaving as if he's doing J.T. a big favor, rather than the other way around? J.T.'s temporarily lost his lady and if Vinny had had his way, would have lost his life permanently as well, or at the very least full or partial use of one or more of his limbs. Bobby ought to go down on bended knee every time he's in J.T.'s presence, yet he talks to him as if J.T. is obligated to toss his life aside to clean up the mess Bobby's made of his own. But, now that Bobby and Paul have joined forces to bring down the mob, how will this all play out? Will Bobby's second mob betrayal force him into the witness protection program with Brittany to follow after little Joshua's birth?

J.T. danced a little too close to the unbecoming truth for Nikki's liking and he was rewarded for his impertinence with a resounding slap. You would think Nikki had enough problematic portions on her own family plate to nibble on without reaching over and helping herself to some of Bobby's meal.

Tom constantly disproves the adage that swears beggars can't be choosy. He not only chooses to do what he pleases, he has the brass ones to demand Michael pay for it. Now that Ashley has made it clear she won't be providing Tom a free romantic ride on the millionaire gravy train, if Michael continues to refuse to finance his lazy lifestyle, I expect Gloria will likely be the next stop on Tom's journey. So much for her declaration of Terrible's death.

So Neil has forbidden his headstrong lass from ever seeing Daniel again, huh? Well, if he actually believes his own words, I've got a bridge I'd like to offer him for purchase. Lily likes being the shining star of her own romantic drama; there's no way she's going to willingly walk away from that. No matter what Mommy and Daddy have to say about it. If she could she'd make herself a martyr and march to prison right alongside Daniel. But, of course, it will never come to that because now that Daniel's remembered the real story of who was actually driving the car that fateful night, in the end he'll never do a day of prison time.

Nice to see Devon concerning himself with something other than the problems of a member of the Winters clan. Of course, he's still preoccupied with family problems, except this time, they're his own. Devon desperately desires to knock the jabbering monkeys off his mother's thin back, though Dru thinks his efforts are fruitless and they should drop to their knees in fervent prayer. But Devon knows for Yolanda's longstanding addiction, it's going to take more than his and his foster mother's prayers to turn her around and pull her out of that park.

I know many think Kevin doesn't deserve a woman of his own, but I could get used to Mac and him. No, I don't think NuMac has the chemistry with Kevin that OldMac did, but if I was the one who got to choose, I'd still take Mac and Kev over Mac and J.T.. At least Mac seems more like a normal woman acting her age with Kevin. With J.T., it's like she's trying to regress to a Colleen-alike. I, for one, will be ecstatic to see her move on from J.T. as she's frequently threatened. Simply because I can't take much more of those hurt puppy dog eyes and her constant pleading for J.T. to kick her in the teeth one more time.

One of the things I always enjoyed about Mac was her fierce independence. Even when her decision to remain celibate cost her her relationship with Billy, she stubbornly held tight to her pride and her principles. As I said before, I'm not without sympathy for Mac, but don't you want to tell her sometimes to suck it up and quit nipping at J.T.'s heels begging for a crumb of his affection. And what was all that nonsense about "Brit always getting the guy?" Has she forgotten that she was the woman who won out over Brittany in the Billy sweepstakes? Brittany had nothing to do with the fact that her heart's desire was also her cousin.

Not that Kevin will wind up with the girl regardless of what I might like or think. Once Mac knows the sacrifices J.T. was willing to make to help a friend, she will love him all the more and we will return to the Mac and J.T. banality hour. By the way, J.T. needs to pick one side of the fence and stay on it, and stop trying to straddle it painfully. Either he doesn't want to lose Mac and he trusts her enough to tell her the truth so she can play act with the rest of them, or he leaves her alone. He says he wants her to move on. Just as long as she's not on Kevin's arm when she waltzes away.

So what are Brad's motive for transferring his allegiance to Newman Enterprises? Could it be that he'd like the opportunity to serve someone an extra large slice of payback pie? But who is the intended recipient? Victor, Jack or Jill?

It was pretty funny watching Nikki tactfully try to steer Gloria away from some of her wedding ideas. As if subtlety would ever work on Gloria who apparently believes marrying a man with class automatically gives her some as well. Gloria makes a strong argument for the belief that leopards allegedly can't change their spots. Because despite the hot water her past white lies have landed her in, she's still can't quite tell the whole truth and nothing but. Nikki did not agree to help plan Lauren's wedding; in fact, I don't recall Gloria even asking her to. And why, when Victor clearly said (with a sort of snort laugh I'd guess you'd call it) that he'd think about tossing on a tux and playing groomsman at Michael's wedding, did Gloria tell Michael he'd positively agreed?

And finally, a thing that made me go Hmmmm. Why does Brittany keep asking Lauren for a job when the past has shown she won't bother to report to it after she gets it? Will Lauren ever figure that out and quit agreeing to pencil her in on the schedule only to have to put out a frantic call for a last minute substitute?

Well, fans, if last week didn't serve up anything to your liking, the coming weeks are sure to. Look out Genoa City. Tom's already here, and shameless Sheila is on her diabolical way!



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The mail box was bare this week. Hope you all are having a wonderful summer.

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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