It's been nearly a month since viewers got their first glimpse of Dixie -- and she hasn't budged from her bed. I know that a lot of you have written in to grumble that Dixie's return hasn't been moving fast enough for your liking. There's a reason why.
If you recall, it was only a matter of days from the time Cady McClain announced that she was returning to All My Children until she popped up on-screen. That never happens on a soap. Why? Because soap episodes are taped weeks and sometimes months ahead of the date they air on-screen. So when an actor tapes their first scenes, those scenes don't typically air until a month or so later.
All My Children does not have the luxury of time, so there was some careful editing involved. AMC spliced the scenes of Dixie in her bed into already-taped episodes. That allowed Dixie's "return" to show up on-screen earlier than it normally would have, and, hopefully, it grabbed the attention of viewers to keep them tuned into the show.
By the end of July, Dixie's whereabouts will be revealed, though that doesn't necessarily mean that we'll all be clued in to how Dixie survived pancakeicide. If there is someone with a sense of humor in the advertising department, I really hope that they sign IHOP as the show's sponsor on the day that the entire saga is explained. "All My Children... brought to you by IHOP. Try our new All My Children-inspired peanut butter banana pancakes, available, like AMC, for a limited time."
Sometimes storylines clobber you over the head like a steel mallet. That's not the case with Bianca's interest in Marissa. For months now, there has been a slow build as viewers wondered if there might be a potential romance between the two. It became clear early on that Bianca had feelings for Marissa, but no one quite knew if this would be a case of unrequited loved.
So what I liked about Bianca's big admission was the response that Marissa had. For folks out there that want to see something happen, Marissa certainly didn't shoot Bianca down. There is still every possibility that Marissa just doesn't want to open up about her feelings. On the flip side of the coin, for viewers who do not want to see Marissa and Bianca together, Marissa's reaction could equally have been taken as "Are you crazy? I'm straight!" The ambiguity, if you will, allows everyone to have a horse in the race -- even if viewers will have to wait a little while longer to see if their horse actually wins.
Secretly, though, I'd like AMC to find a way to bring back one of Bianca's past romances before the series finale. It's probably not possible, since Elizabeth Hendrickson (ex-Maggie and Frankie Stone) is under contract to The Young and the Restless, and Olga Sosnovska (ex-Lena Kundera) hasn't been spotted on daytime television since that jewelry commercial featuring the impromptu wedding proposal was airing in heavy rotation. I have no idea if Tamara Braun (ex-Reese Williams) would be willing to return -- or if she even can. Until recently, Braun had been under contract to Days of our Lives. Now that she's been let go from DAYS, I don't know if Tam would have to wait until a certain day before she could appear on a "competing" soap.
If I didn't know better, I'd have thought we were closing in on Halloween. In the course of a single episode, we got to see Greenlee as one of the Knights of the Round Table, and Madison looking like something out of the Matrix or the Twilight series. Not to mention that earlier in the week, Jake was dressed up like a pirate.
How many times can one couple be married? I really want to care about Ryan and Greenlee, but I just can't. But, Ryan did give me one of the more amusing lines of the week. "You're not Dr. Hayward," a housekeeper gasped upon discovering Ryan in David's hotel room. "Thank God," Ryan mumbled under his breath.
I have to ask: am I the only one who was left dumbfounded when the woman that looks like Erica Kane announced that she was a virgin? Yes, I know that the woman wasn't really Erica -- but it's one of those things that just jolts you into another space-time continuum. It'd be like "Weird Al" Yankovic proclaiming that he's a serious musician. Anyway, I've gotten off track.
The first thing that went through my mind -- and a lot of yours based on my email bag of comments -- was that Jane had talked endlessly about her daughter. It slipped my mind at first, but then I remembered some seemingly throwaway dialogue from a bit ago where Jane said that she'd adopted her daughter. I'm a soap skeptic, so I have to ask if there really is a daughter. For all we know, the daughter is a figment of her imagination or an old photo of Kendall. We need to go back and zoom in on the photo and see if it wasn't a grade school photo of Sarah Michelle Gellar. What I'm trying to say is that a woman who would go through surgery to look like someone else isn't easily going to convince me that anything she says is true.
Ironically, Jane slept with someone who also isn't easily trusted. I wasn't buying David's proclamation that there was "something special" going in between him and Jane. I zipped through the commercials (Sorry, sponsors!) because I wanted to see if David would have a monologue announcing how he was going to take down Jane. One could argue, though, that he's already taken her down.
It just occurred to me that there is a new angle to the Erica look-alike story. Because of the storyline, we get to see Susan Lucci play off of the chemistry she had with Vincent Irizarry, she gets to continue being involved with Walt Willey, and now the real Erica has some sort of bond with beefy bodyguard Ben. I enjoyed Erica and David's romance, and I have always liked Erica and Jack. So now I am wondering what's going on with Ben. Is Erica using Ben to get out of her prison or might there be a bigger connection? It doesn't have to be romantic connection, but I do have this feeling that Erica cares about Ben.
The week ended with an unintentionally funny fight between Erica and Faux Erica. We'd already witnessed Erica sparring with a pillow earlier in the episode -- and Erica had a hard time subduing her downy combatant. Were we really to believe that the little push Erica gave Jane was enough to render Jane unconscious? I was waiting for a battery pack to fall out of the pretender's back.
Still, that doesn't mean that I wasn't secretly rooting for Erica.
"I was thrilled to see Erica knock Jane out," Jen, a regular Two Scoops reader wrote to me in an email. "It's about time! I found myself yelling to her to run, Erica, run. But actually a better storyline would be for her to change clothes with the now unconscious Jane and have her pretend to be Jane pretending to be Erica, until she can get things straightened out."
Or, Jen, Erica can just put on the clothes that she was really wearing when the mine exploded.
Last week, I asked if anyone else had noticed changes to storylines that might indicate some sort of shift from the way ousted head writers David Kreizman and Donna Swajeski envisioned them. Here are a few of your comments.
• I absolutely believe that the Jack, Erica, Caleb triangle would have played out differently if the cancellation wasn't looming out there. I think that is obvious. -- Carol
• I don't think Broderick is any better than Pratt or Kreizman and Swajeski. Her first week back as HW, and she is already giving Rylee another lame wedding, David is back in one note cartoon Villain mode, and Ryan is one again the appointed hypocrite, superhero, bully trying to stop David. Nothing but repeated garbage. -- Cathy