The saga of Ryan's sample

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The saga of Ryan's sample
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The week of October 29, 2007
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More than two years ago, AMC scribes started a storyline that just won't end. Ryan Lavery, Pine Valley's favourite son, was determined not to procreate and got a vasectomy behind then-wife Greenlee's back, prompting her to covertly conceive their child. Ever since those fateful decisions were made, AMC has rarely veered away from what has become the core of its storytelling. In short, it's all about Ryan's sperm.

More than two years ago, AMC scribes started a storyline that just won't end. Ryan Lavery, Pine Valley's favourite son, was determined not to procreate and got a vasectomy behind then-wife Greenlee's back, prompting her to covertly conceive their child. Ever since those fateful decisions were made, AMC has rarely veered away from what has become the core of its storytelling. In short, it's all about Ryan's sperm.

Since then, Ryan's phony death, the blackout, the surrogacy, Kendall's pregnancy, Spike's birth, the introduction of Annie and Emma, Greenlee's return, Spike's kidnapping - they all centred on the blessed Lavery seed in one form or another. Now, just when you thought the sperm saga was finally behind us, we have the chase-the-embryo scenario currently being fashioned by AMC's writers. More than 700 days later and it's still all about Greenlee wanting Ryan's child.

Clearly, I'm no Greenlee fan, but if I were, I'd be more than a little ticked off that the result of two years of pain and suffering landed Ms. Smythe in the exact same place she started - desperately grasping at motherhood as a way to fill a void. I do believe there was a time when Greens truly wanted a baby for the right reasons. It was a very brief window, before Ryan took his anti-fathering stance, but it existed. That dream, however, soon became a way to prove a series of points. It wasn't about maternal instincts or longing - it was about showing Ryan he'd be a good father, or having a living memorial to her dead husband, or taking back what she felt she was owed. Now, her sole motivation to have a child is so she can wedge herself back into the Lavery-Slater extended family.

As much as she and the writers would like us to believe, those embryos are not Greenlee's last chance to have a child. They are, at most, her last chance to have a child with Ryan. Her little fantasy about this child bonding her to Ryan and Kendall all over again is beyond ludicrous. And no, that doesn't make me feel any worse for her. It makes me glad that those embryos don't exist, that a child won't be brought into the world to serve the needs of a selfish woman who is trying to fast track her way back into the Lavery fold. But what I would love more than anything, is to never hear another word about Ryan's blessed sample, embryo, etc.

It's Time for Wedding #12

You know, as much as I have enjoyed Erica and Jackson in the past, I'm finding it harder to understand why they're together anymore. They have a strong connection, but their relationship has become all about their kids - more accurately, fighting with each other over their kids. I know I've touched on this before, but watching a soap couple repeat the same mistakes over and over again is a lot less charming when the characters are in their 50s. I can only listen to the "let's never let our kids affect our relationship again" speech so many times before it loses all meaning. What people on Earth could possibly live up to that promise, anyway?

I might not appreciate Jack's defense of Greenlee, but I understand why he feels he owes her his loyalty ... to a point. Despite the fact that she treats him like crud and usually only comes to him when she needs something, she is his flesh and blood and I think he still feels enormous guilt for missing her childhood. There is always going to be a certain connection there, however dysfunctional and one-sided it may be. But there's a difference between loyalty and blind devotion.

Jack can support his daughter while still acknowledging the horrible things she did. If he doesn't fully acknowledge what happened, he does a disservice to both his wife and his other daughter, Kendall. (Before you say it, yes, Erica is Greens' stepmom, but she's never made the kind of sweeping declarations and promises to her that Jack has to Kendall.) And yes, Jack may know that Greenlee's plan doesn't involve kidnapping this time around, but it's ludicrous for him to act so shocked and indignant. The fact that Greens [i]did[/i] kidnap Spike makes it perfectly reasonable for Erica to jump to the conclusions she did. This isn't an out-of-the-blue random accusation hurled at an innocent victim. What is past is prologue, as they say.

What other conclusion should Erica reasonably draw? Why does Jack have any right to angry with her for it? He expects Erica Kane, the woman he allegedly knows better than anyone else, to just sit back and let Greenlee carry on with her mysterious plans unopposed? La Kane, of all people, is supposed to let Greenlee and Jack's hurt feelings outweigh the well being of her eldest daughter and her grandsons? In what universe does that make any sense?!?! I'm officially done with these two. The unfortunate part is that there aren't many options for these two, romantically speaking. So until then, I'll go back and watch my old Erica & Dimitri tapes and hope for a miracle.

Recasts & Wastes of Time

I know that the timing of the Babe recast was not really under AMC's control, but it's still unfortunate that most of Amanda Baker's first scenes continue to be with Richie, a brand new character. It's hard enough for a recast to establish herself in the character; the viewers need to see more scenes like the ones she shared with Krystal, or with past loves JR and Josh, to accept her as Babe. I think she's doing as well as can be expected, and much better than other recent recasts (who shall remain nameless).

Speaking of Krystal, I was more than happy to watch Tad give her his unedited two cents regarding her tryst with Adam. What Krystal and Adam are doing right now is pathetic. I hate watching Adam stoop to this level and I'm even sicker of hearing Krystal deny her feelings for the man who was going to sell her baby. I'd much rather watch Adam interacting with (well, actually torturing) Hannah like he did this week.

"Well, I know you were the busiest maid at the Cambias estate," Adam said, with his devious little grin. "You got knocked up by Slater while you were still two-timing him with his old man. And then you had to make up both beds!" That's the Adam I love - taunting Hannah about Ethan's parentage (please, please, PLEASE let him be onto to something there) and sending her back to her mission. I'm thinking I might enjoy Adam and Erica joining forces next week, too. And Jackson? I've had enough of him for now.

It Comes Full Circle

As much as it pains me, I have to end this column where it started - in the land of Lavery, just because Ryan's arrogance never ceases to amaze me. He's currently taking on a motivated, incredibly intelligent foe who may in fact be on the verge of death with nothing to lose. Yet, Ryan still thought he was brilliant by putting a camera in Richie's office, which he thought would make him privy to his brother-in-law's every move. Let's review, shall we: when Ryan offered Richie this job, he told Novak it was just to keep him close. He hammered that point home ad nauseum. Did Lavery really think Richie would sit in his office and spout off the details of his evil quest for vengeance? Seeing Richie look directly into the surveillance camera with a sly smile was amusing; Ryan's shock that Novak figured out the ingenious plot was downright hysterical.

Look for Suellen to fill in for me two weeks from now, as I'll be making the trek down to Orlando for Super Soap Weekend. As much as I may complain about this show, I love this event to see the actors I love and more importantly the friends this show has helped me make.

Have a great week!
-- Kristine

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