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Welcome home, Craig
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The week of December 8, 2008
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Luke is having a tough time. Having your new grandfather hit on you, getting suspended from school for election tampering, and constantly fighting with your boyfriend is no picnic.

Dear Santa,

Since it's several weeks before the big day, I've decided to get my request in early. You see, there's only one thing I want this year. Please Santa, a story for Henry Coleman.

For six years now, I've been begging the writers of As The World Turns to make this wish happen. Guess what? They haven't. So I'm asking you to work your Christmas magic and soften the Grinchy hearts of those in charge of the show to get them to love Henry as much as I do. Please, Santa, make their hearts grow three sizes full of Henry love. Make them realize what a waste it is to have Henry making BLTs at Al's and having silly sex romps with Vienna, when he could be doing so much more. He's deep. He can play comedy. He can do drama. He can make us cry, laugh, or laugh so hard we cry. But still, year after year, he languishes on the backburner, propping up other characters and providing comic relief several times a month.

Santa, I know this is an unconventional wish. But I read once that faith is believing in something, when common sense tells you not to. I believe you can get Henry front and center in the drama in Oakdale. I mean, you get reindeer to fly and elves to talk, so why not a storyline for Henry? It seems logical that he could get some good material, instead of the show honchos writing the same stories over and over. Seriously, how many times can someone try to kill Paul Ryan? (Sigh.) Just once I wish someone would succeed. It's like my own personal version of Groundhog Day. (I digress.)

It's not that hard to come up with story ideas for Henry. I'll show you. He could become a detective again and partner with Jack. I think we both know that the Oakdale PD could use some help with crime solving. Or, how about tapping into Henry's family history? Henry came from a big family that we know little about. Let's make him filthy rich, Harvard educated, and get him into the boardroom to face off against Lucinda and Craig. Or they could give revisit his relationship with Katie, and this time, not have her treat him like she's doing him a favor. Or, they could hook him up with Carly. That would at least get him some screen time, since she seems to be a favorite of the writers. See where I'm going with this? It's not tough to come up with ideas for Henry. He's an Emmy nominated actor for a reason.

That is my wish, Santa. It's all I want: Henry Coleman, as a leading man with a real storyline. I'll leave some special cookies for you to sweeten the deal. Do you like Pepperkacher?

Thank you for listening. Sincerely,
Jennifer B.

--Welcome home, Craig Montgomery! It's so great to see you back in Oakdale mixing it up with Margo and Katie. So far, Jon Linsdtrom is killing in this role. He had great chemistry with Katie and Margo. I have one request, though. Writers, please write him some snarky humorous lines. Those are signature Craig, and this version hasn't had any. Normally, my Best Lines of the Week would be full of zingers when Craig is on our screens. Sadly, not this week. Lindstrom can do snark. Writers, give him some.

--Speaking of Craig, is anyone else creeped out that he's sleeping with Dani? Many years ago, when he was with her mother, he thought Dani was his daughter. Say it with me, "eww!" I'm guessing Betsy has no idea her little girl is knocking boots with "big daddy" Craig.

--I like Dusty Donovan, but so far, his return has been a bust for me. I'm sorry, but I hate Josie almost as much as I hate this storyline. It's made Dusty seem like an idiot, not to mention cruel. Did you see how awful he treated Emily? Not that I'm taking up for her; she basically used Casey and tossed him aside the same way Dusty did her, so I suppose it's karma. But when Dusty got physical with Emily and threw her on the bed, I was actually afraid for her. When did Dusty turn into a physical bully of women? His return should have been somehow linked to Lily, not his dead wife. That ship sailed years ago.

--What is going on with Casey? He's suddenly hitting on Alison and wandering around town more aimlessly than usual. I'm glad Tom gave him an ultimatum to get a job or get out. Kudos to the show honchos for showing us a realistic teen, who is a little lazy and doesn't have it all together. Casey may not have much to do, but I still find him one of the most entertaining characters in town.

--Speaking of confused teens, Luke is back on the bottle even though he has kidney issues. Sure, Luke is having a tough time. Having your new grandfather hit on you, getting suspended from school for election tampering, and constantly fighting with your boyfriend is no picnic. Watching Luke's down spiral could be a great storyline. Bring it.

--Is Janet a bridezilla? I couldn't believe she didn't look at the price tag for that wedding gown or agreed to a $20,000 reception. She works at a diner and her fiancÚ is a cop. Janet, you may want a Princess Di wedding, but you aren't a princess. You're more like a pauper. You can still have a gorgeous wedding without spending a fortune. And while that dress was pretty, it wasn't $5,000 worth of pretty. It's too bad she doesn't know a talented designer who could whip her up a dress. Oh, wait. That's right, she does. Too bad Carly is Janet's fiancÚ's ex wife.

--How am I supposed to like Paul when he keeps trying to kill people? Is Paul supposed to be a full-on villain a la James Stenbeck now? If not, then he needs to stop plotting murders.

--Emily Stewart, please find your self-respect. Watching you throw yourself at Dusty was troublesome this week, not to mention pathetic. For Christmas, I'll be putting a copy of "He's Just Not That Into You" under your tree.

--Margo is officially the worst sister ever. Period. She didn't believe Katie or Brad when they declared their innocence in the Spencer murder. Margo is more apt to believe Jack or a perfect stranger than her own family. Poor Katie, with Craig and Margo as siblings, who needs enemies?

--I'm taking up donations for a one-way plane ticket to get Josie out of town for Christmas. I know she's supposedly already left, but she's still on my screen and it looks like she's back next week. So I'm ready to do anything to get this chic gone forever.

--We need to clone Paul Ryan. I think he's from Krypton. The man can stop a speeding bullet with his body and be fine, not to mention fall hundreds of feet from cliffs and crash planes and still walk away. He's a Super Man. I'm telling you.

--I wonder what Dani's mysterious link is to Spencer? I'm not sure I should care because Dani will probably be just collateral damage in the Craig storyline. Then again, who knows? The writers may surprise me and make her character more important than I think.

--So, JJ is off to boarding school. Next time we see him, he'll probably be six feet tall and ready for a teen romance. Those boarding schools have a way of rapidly aging kids I hear.

--Did Margo refer to Henry as Toto this week when she was dropping charges against Katie and Brad? Was she implying that Henry was Katie's bitch? Someone please explain. I didn't get the joke, but I'm pretty sure it was funny.

Best Lines of the Week:
(This may quite possibly be the best line of the year. I swear when Ellen Dolan delivered it, she was saying what all of us do every day!)
Margo: "This time it's gonna be different. I would actually like to make an arrest for someone trying to kill Paul Ryan."

That's all for now Scoopers! See ya next time.
Jennifer Biller

Jennifer Biller
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