The kids aren't all right

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The kids aren't all right
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The week of August 4, 2008
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Watching Junior get his comeuppance from Adam was a thing of beauty, especially after watching J.R. prattle on to Babe about his impending victory. The best part: J.R. promising to buy Fusion and give it to his once (and likely future) wife.

I'm officially sick of the Hubbard kids' attitude. First, we had Frankie yelling at Jesse because the older Hubbard couldn't see the value and nobility of aggravated assault and premeditated murder. Honestly, Frankie should be way smarter than this. I'm not buying the I've-been-to-Iraq-so-I-know-what-I'm-doing routine, either. Military service or not, Frankie was acting like a petulant child.

Back to Frankie and his pet project: I guess I was supposed to feel bad for Randi, who applied for a job at BJ's this week. (Pardon my immaturity as I giggle at the prospect of a reformed hooker working at a place called 'BJ's.') The thing is, aside from the sexist 'find yourself a rich husband' remark he threw in, I was pretty much onside with the manager. Most employers don't welcome random women with no experience or references. And Frankie needs to take the Randi worship down a couple thousand notches. "She doesn't do well with questions," he said frantically. "It's a job interview!" Jake replied. Thank you, Dr. Martin. The only thing that genuinely piqued my interest during that scene was the out-of-the-blue reference to Emily Ann and Donna. Someone's been doing their homework.

Unfortunately, Frankie's behavior was trumped by his sister, Cassandra, who lashed out at her understandably worried mother, Angie. Is this how every argument between these two is going to end, with Cass threatening to catch the next jet to France when she doesn't get her way? Never mind the fact that she was saying horrible, hurtful things to her mother and reciting sermons on trust while lying through her pretty little teeth. Angie deserves a lot of credit for staying so calm through all that sound and fury (and for ultimately letting Jesse arrest Cass and her pals). I would have called the freaking airline and packed that little brat's bags myself. I wouldn't mind if all three of these kids were locked up for life.

Speaking of whiny, ungrateful children, watching Junior get his comeuppance from Adam Sr. was a thing of beauty, especially after watching JR prattle on to Babe about his impending victory (I have yet to understand why this guy deserves to run a multinational corporation). The best part-Junior promising to buy Fusion and give it to his once (and likely future) wife. This insanity would have made me furious if I actually gave a damn about that company anymore. I could care less if Greenlee loses her empire and Kendall deserves to move on to bigger and better things. I do wish AMC would have given Adam and Junior's confrontation a little more time. With all that build up, I felt gypped when their showdown was cut short by a drunken Colby's arrest. I could have done with at least three more segments of Adam berating his arrogant ingrate of a son.

A highlight or two

I have to admit, once again, that I couldn't help but giggle at Annie's antics this week. The way she instantly transitioned from panicked car accident victim to cool, collected schemer was worth a laugh. I'm certainly not giving the girl a pass, but I'd much rather watch that then the Hit and Run Gang. When Kendall once again voiced her concerns (a 'decapitated' Greenlee? Honestly?), Zach was typically dismissive, even though its clear he thought she was on to something. Kendall got another pat on the head before Zach went off to check out Annie. Or was he checking on her? It seemed as though Slater's damsel-in-distress meter was on overdrive. Why he'd want to protect this woman is beyond me, but it's frustratingly in character. From Maria to Julia to Dixie to Hannah, Zach's track record is clear. He gets credit for caring, but enough is enough. But let's forget that for a moment and focus on the good Zach and Kendal brought us this week.

From the unexpected (and smoking hot) love scene to the playful flirting at the Valley Inn, I was reminded why I fell in love with this couple to begin with. The banter, the humor, the closeness-in fact, even when Zach was telling Kendall to butt out (just prior to the aforementioned hotness), he did it in a way that didn't denigrate her. It was that same 'you're crazy, but I love you' vibe that no other partner has ever maintained with Kendall and it's something that's been missing for me in recent weeks. As much as I still root for the couple, I feared the things Zach used to find exasperatingly charming were aggravating him, that one of the truly special things about my favorite couple was lacking. This week, those concerns drifted away, if only temporarily.

Speaking of the Slaters, I love Kendall and will defend her to the end, but even I can't understand her devotion to Ryan and Greenlee and desire to make them happy. That said, I think I'm just going to have to accept it and move on (well, for a week or two anyway!) This week, Kendall did the hard sell of 'Rylee' as one of history's great love stories, even comparing the manufactured coupling of Lavery and Smythe to my beloved Zach and Kendall. Yes, it makes me want to wretch. Would I prefer she walk away from this whole Greenlee/Ryan/Annie insanity? Yes. Do I wish I never heard the term 'Kenlee?' Damn straight. But it's just not going to happen. Kendall, for reasons that escape me, actually cares about these people. Expecting her to stop trying to help them is tantamount to asking her not to breathe. It's simply a sad reality.

Ryan loves... wait, who cares?

If you're expecting some commentary on Ryan's tortured, unrequited love for Greenlee or Aidan and Greenlee's dream house planning and gas-fuelled make-out sessions, you'll be waiting for a while. I really don't give a flying you-know-what about any of these characters.

Let's move along to the budding Samuel/Erica romance, shall we? I know a lot of people find this couple about as exciting as watching paint dry, but I'm enjoying them. I can't even really explain it. Maybe it's still the sheer novelty factor. After Jack and Erica's prolonged back-and-forth dance, I'm just dying for something-anything-different. It's better than Jeff Martin, at least, and Mario Van Peebles is not too hard on the eyes. I didn't even mind Jack and Erica in their scenes this week, since it was mostly snark. They really need to take an extended break. Jackson can go on and on about how he knows Erica better than anyone else, but until he can accept her as is, I'm not interested.

An invitation to Llanview

In closing, I wanted to take a moment to encourage you all to stay tuned to ABC after AMC to check out One Life To Live. (No, ABC is not compensating me to say this, I swear!) I started watching this show in 1993, when the story of Marty Saybrooke's rape got me hooked. Now, 15 years later, I'm watching a resurgence of Agnes Nixon's first soap opera. The writers are mining the show's history, integrating new characters and letting stories evolve slowly and purposefully. As a viewer who followed the Marty/Todd story for years, the recently returned Susan Haskell and Trevor St. John have been wonderful as an amnesiac Marty and tortured Todd. Rex and Gigi are a couple to root for and David Vickers is a must-watch character. (Just ignore the campy Mendorra storyline-it will be resolved soon enough.) It's really amazing stuff. Whether you've never watched or have tuned out in recent years, you really ought to give it a chance.

Mr. Pratt, I'm begging you to take note and follow One Life's lead. I've got my OLTL back; I want my AMC back, too.

Thanks for reading. See you again soon.
-- Kristine

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