The Elephant in the room

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The Elephant in the room
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The week of December 20, 2010
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Elephants are celebrated not only in cartoons for their oversized ears, but also for the memory. With all due respect to anyone who might be offended by this comparison: soap fans are just like elephants. They never forget anything.

Elephants are celebrated not only in cartoons for their oversized ears, but also for the memory. With all due respect to anyone who might be offended by this comparison: soap fans are just like elephants. They never forget anything.

So I was quite thankful for the hundreds of emails from readers who took time to dissect my comments on Ryan's vasectomy in last week's column. I completely forgot that Ryan's vasectomy never took -- because it apparently never happened. How a man could not know that he wasn't snipped is beyond me -- and apparently a lot of you, too.

That doesn't really rule out my scenario that Madison and Frankie had sex while intoxicated. I am not alone in thinking that Madison might be carrying Frankie's baby. In fact, I heard from a few readers who were overjoyed that I'd mentioned it in my column because they'd either had the same thought -- or they just want to see Frankie and Madison together.

There was one reader, however, that was furious with my suggestion that Frankie and Madison had sex the night of David's murder. A reader who goes by "middleone," threatened to boycott all things AMC if the writers go down this path.

"I feel that if AMC even tries to suggest that Madison and Frankie had sex, I will STOP watching this show for good and write a letter to the President of the NAACP! For Frankie to have had ex with Madison, while drunk would not only make him a cheat and a sleaze (for betraying his wife Randi) it would make him a felon. Sex without consent (conscious or unconscious) would constitute RAPE I mean really, Dan, c'mon."

If we take Frankie out of the equation then that just leaves Madison as a foil for a Ryan and Greenlee romance. Yawn. I again have to express that I am not necessarily opposed to a "Rylee" pairing, but for me it's just the way that everything was handled by the writing team. Everything was so telegraphed. There was no surprise to their reunion. Granted, there are many stories or plot twists that viewers can see coming -- remember Madison fainting? -- but this one was like Soap Opera 101.

While we're on the topic of the Hubbard family. I'd like to send out a collective positive thought to Debbi Morgan from everyone at Soap Central. As you may have read here on the site, Debbi will be taking some time off from AMC for an undisclosed personal reason. She is expected to be off-screen as long as two months.

One reader, Vicki, did bring up an interesting story point that had sort of not made its way to my radar.

"Are we supposed to believe that Angie can do her own makeup -- blind?! Surely Jesse isn't making up her eyes every morning, so I guess we're to assume that Angie is able to do it herself? If I did my own makeup without seeing what I'm doing, I'd look like a clown."

Vicki's comment made me wonder if early on in the story the writers should have had a scene with Angie trying to put on her own makeup. It seems like a little thing, but I'd imagine that there are a lot of "little things" that we take for granted by having full use of our senses.

Let me backtrack to Madison for a moment. It's a miracle that this woman has gone from universally loathed to murderer to someone who has been redeemed and liked by a substantial portion of the AMC viewing audience. Before you race to your email program, please note that I said a portion. I know that there are viewers out there who dislike Madison just as much now -- or more -- than they did before.

It is interesting to me, though, to see Madison's ambivalence about having the baby. In my mind, she seemed quite ready to terminate the pregnancy, but now I'm not so sure. I would say that her renewed interest in babysitting shows that she's at least considering having the baby. It was, however, a bit overdone to have Angie randomly have Madison feel her baby kicking. Does Angie even like Madison? I forget if those two have ever buried the hatchet, but I know that they weren't exactly touchy-feely a few months ago.

Speaking of touchy-feely: so it looks like Griffin didn't steal Cara away from Jake as originally believed. It turns out that Griffin and Cara are brother and sister. What I can't wrap my head around is how Carolyn Finn went from being a blue-eyed blonde to Cara Castillo, beautiful brunette Latina. I guess if One Life to Live could transform Blair from an Asian to a Southern Belle... then AMC can do whatever it wants with Cara. But is it just me or does it seem like the writers are trying to make it sound like we've never met Cara before. We have. Just because none of the actors/characters on the show have been around for more than a few years, that doesn't mean that viewers don't remember seeing her. Elephants, remember?

Also as a side note, published stories state that actress Lindsay Hartley is of Greek and Italian heritage.

Amanda is a losing her mind. First she hits the roof over Cara's secret return to town and then she's inviting Cara to "girls' night out." A bunch of years back, Janet threatened to whack someone with a candy cane. If I were Cara, I'd watch out.

There is an interesting dynamic to having Cara and Griffin be related. Out is the Griffin/Jake/Cara/Amanda quadrangle. There is some sort of chemistry between Tad and Cara, but let's face it -- that will never happen. The show seems to have no interest in giving Tad any sort of meaningful storyline. He's over a certain age now, so he's just background filler. Anyway, let's say that Jake breaks up with Amanda and returns to Cara. Does that mean that Amanda will run to Griffin? Griffin was allegedly Slatered, er, slated as a love interest for Kendall. Would the writers have Kendall and Amanda fight over a man?

Better still, many readers said that they like the chemistry between the new minister, Ricky, and Kendall. Eddie Matos, who plays Ricky, is only supposed to be around on a recurring basis, but that could certainly change if the show learns that fans like the character. Griffin is too smug. There's a certain arrogance that just irritates me. He reminds me of Inigo Montoya, the character on The Princess Bride that ran around saying, "You killed my father. Prepare to die." I don't know why Griffin would be made out to be so hard to like. Do the writers really need to try that hard to have a hate-to-love relationship between Kendall and a future mate?

I do hope that AMC is integrating its storylines for the right reasons. As someone who watches all of the soaps, I've seen many shows diversify their canvas just so they could say that they did. After a few months, the characters they'd touted earlier simply vanish. That's even more of a disservice to underrepresented groups than just not making the effort in the first place.

A character that is out of sight and out of mind is Pete Cortlandt. Why wouldn't he inherit Cortlandt Electronics instead of Caleb? Does anyone know that Petey still exists? Opal sure enough doesn't mention him. Maybe he got struck by another bolt of lightning and turned to dust.

One other thing before I close this week's column. A lot of you wrote in to take the writers to task for having Kendall be able to call Zach's cell phone and still get his voicemail -- even though the cell phone is at the bottom of the ocean. The writers didn't bungle this one. Voicemail is not physically stored on a phone -- it's on your phone providers' computers somewhere. That's the reason that people can still call and leave you a message if your phone is turned off or you're out of service.

Well, this is the end of another year of columns here on Soap Central. Next week, I'll be back with my special year-end Best of 2010 column. The week after that, on January 2, 2011, I'll be posting my selections for the Worst of 2010. In the interim, be sure to listen to Soap Central Live on December 24 at 6:00pm Eastern/3:00pm Pacific to hear a preview of my columns -- along with the opinions of nearly a dozen other Two Scoops columnists. It's a lot of opinions -- and a lot of fun. dan

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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