Each and every week you welcome me into your computer screens to hear all about what I like and dislike on All My Children. That means so much to me (even if some of your monitors could use a little Swiffer action). Just kidding!
I've decided that there is something that I strongly dislike -- perhaps more than anything else. What is it? It's when the writers make me eat my words -- especially when I was griping and moaning about something the week before in a Two Scoops column. I've poured myself a tasty beverage, so let's get on to my eating crow.
For as much as I dislike the Chandler bed hopping, I have to admit that there were some really, really good moments in the JR/Scott/Annie/Marissa quadrangle last week.
The first was purely from a visual standpoint. The black-and-white nightmare that Annie had of Marissa tormenting her was a visual masterpiece for me. The picture quality was unlike anything I'd seen in daytime before. The motion was sort of staggered, like surveillance cameras that don't record every single second of action. The nightmare also featured bitchy Marissa, which, I think many of you will agree, is a lot more fun than do-gooder Marissa.
The second thing that I really, really liked was the Friday cliffhanger. After Annie awakened from a nightmare, she expressed to JR her fears that Scott would kick her to the curb, just as every other man has done to her. JR assured Annie that Scott wouldn't walk away from her. "I've tried. It's damn hard," JR said softly. "You have your faults, God knows. There's just something about you, Annie, that's worth fighting for." As JR and Annie shifted their glances uneasily, Scott burst into the room to announce that he wanted to marry Annie as soon as possible.
JR turned his head as Scott passionately kissed Annie. After Scott ran off, JR and Annie knew that they'd have to say goodbye to each other. The longing looks on Jacob Young and Melissa Claire Egan's faces were absolutely heartbreaking. "Give my best to the bride-to-be," JR whispered, before giving Annie a farewell kiss on the cheek.
If having to endure the endless musical beds was the setup for this great payoff, then I'm fine with admitting that I was wrong about the storyline. The thing to watch, however, is where the story goes from here. Obviously, Scott and Marissa's affair will come to light at some point -- more than likely when she ends up pregnant. That would probably propel JR and Annie back together, but then that leaves the characters of Scott and Marissa damaged.
Last week I'd said that I didn't want to see Marissa end up pregnant from a one-night stand with Scott. I heard from some readers who said that they were very much looking forward to a who's the daddy plot.
"Of course we want Marissa to be pregnant with Scott's baby. Don't you remember when Maria slept with Dimitri and then thought she was having his baby? That always [makes for] a fun storyline," Linda, one of my regular, weekly readers wrote in.
Quick note to Ryan: Hiding your spare key under a fake plant just about four feet from your front door is not a good idea.
Speaking of Ryan, the filler scenes between Ryan, Madison, and the "blanket with sleeves" rather amused me. Ryan's comment that he had no idea how he'd gotten through life without such a product were right on the mark. Though I've never bought an "As Seen On TV" product, I often sit fixated on the commercials like they're National Geographic specials. The businessman in me wonders if the show approached the makers of the best-known "blanket with sleeves" for a product placement.
I think most everyone watching All My Children is aware that not every scene is filmed in order. So it was great to see that someone had the wherewithal to make sure that fans weren't distracted by Rebecca Budig's laryngitis. During a remote scene in the park, Greenlee remarked that she'd once again lost her voice because she had to chase after David. The outdoors scenes were more than likely filmed at a different time, when Rebecca was still not feeling well -- so I like that they addressed this with a quick throwaway line.
Also on the topic of remotes, I've decided that I am going to follow every AMC star imaginable on Twitter. That way, when they tweet that they will be doing remote scenes in the park, I can hop on the first flight to Los Angeles and try to pop into as many outdoor scenes as possible. It'll be like those popular kids' books where you have to find the hidden red-and-white-striped guy with glasses. Think of it as "Where's Danno?" Wouldn't that add a new dimension to watching All My Children every day?
Soaps can be melodramatic at times, but sometimes those seemingly over-the-top plot twists can make watching the soaps so much fun. I thought that last week's big cliffhanger with Angie in the park unable to see that David was standing just in front of her was a perfect example of this. We all knew that sooner or later Angie and David would be in this situation -- but that didn't make it any less juicy. And sure, Angie will probably say that she had her eyes dilated at the doctor or something to get out of the situation -- but it's still fun. Add in that spooky background music and an ominous line from David, and it's golden!
By the way, a lot of people have written in about Angie's storyline. Two ideas really caught my attention. The first said that David would be the one to find a cure for Angie's condition. That would make for some interesting fallout. The second hinted that maybe AMC's Christmas miracle this year will involve Angie regaining her sight.
Never in a million years did I think that Krystal would become the "new" Myrtle. What am I talking about? Well, it seems that Krystal is the new mother lion in Pine Valley. She's a pal and a confidante to just about everyone in town. Let's review. She was there for Jack when he was down and out over Erica's plane crash, and even traveled to West Virginia to help him search the woods for La Kane. She welcomed outcast Caleb into Pine Valley and even gave him a shave and a haircut, presumably without charging him two bits. She's also lends Angie an ear and a shoulder to cry on -- and offers the doctor a personal shopping service.
In true Myrtle fashion, Krystal is also an attack dog, sinking her teeth into anyone who wrongs her friends. The same can be said for Natalia. I know that some viewers are still trying to figure out how the character has survived on-screen so long without a substantial story. That aside, it was great to hear her rip into Frankie about his relationship with Madison. She demanded to know why Madison was giving Frankie a kiss on the cheek -- pointing out that Frankie had a beautiful wife waiting for him at home. I think we've all at one time or another thought that something was going to happen between Frankie and Madison, so it was refreshing to have a character on-screen call Frankie out on this.
Also very real (again, just a week or two after I griped about it), was Frankie's sudden money woes. It's only natural to think that Frankie would be short on funds with his work hours being cut in half. That comes off as real. No one wants to see someone working less and spending money like it's going out of style.
It's also a nice surprise that the writers haven't forgotten that Caleb was a hermit for years. I like that he wasn't rushed into getting a cell phone. "Man has existed for thousands of years without a need to talk on the phone while walking down the street," Caleb replied when urged by Krystal to get a mobile phone. Likewise, it tickled me that Caleb had no idea who Tom Cruise was. Someone should have pulled out a picture of Josh Madden and said, "He looks just like this."
The newly descruffed Caleb also had an observation that had me cheering from the stands. "Has anybody in this town ever heard the words 'not involved?'" Can you imagine how life in Pine Valley would be different if people just minded their own business? Shoot, some townspeople have made their livelihood out of sticking their noses where they don't belong.
And I'm glad that we have so many newsy people in town. Things would be a lot more boring if people did what they were supposed to.