The Real Vixens of Port Charles

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Is Trina doomed to pay for Esme's dirty deeds? Should Willow tell Michael about T.J.'s concerns? Now that Carly rejected Nina's gift horse, what's next ­ a little payback? It's time for Two Scoops of truth and consequences.

These days, there certainly isn't a shortage of martyrs in Port Charles. If people aren't making selfless sacrifices for the ones they love, they are being tossed in the fire by evildoers. It's quite the challenge to keep track of all the saints, sinners, and wolves in sheep's clothing.

Let's start with an innocent lamb named Trina. She didn't do anything wrong except be herself, which quickly caught the notice of a young prince who found himself captivated by Trina's genuine goodness. For that, she's facing an uphill battle in court as she tries to defend herself against salacious allegations of posting revenge porn to hurt her best friends. We know it's a bunch of malarky, but the evidence against Trina doesn't bode well for our poor ingenue. The prosecutor has the black-market burner phone used in the crime -- which Trina innocently handed over to the police commissioner herself -- and Trina was the only person in the cabin that fateful night besides the other two victims.

Everyone who knows Trina believes in her innocence, but that doesn't matter. Now that Trina is on trial, time is quickly running out to clear her name. Taggert, Curtis, and Marshall are all hunting down leads, trying to gather incriminating evidence against Esme, but Esme has covered her tracks well. Meanwhile, Spencer has set his own plan in motion to force Esme to vindicate Trina. Will it work? Who knows, but Spencer is partly to blame for Trina's troubles.

I feel like Spencer should have seen Esme's true colors long before he did. In fact, he should have seen them in bright technicolor the minute Esme agreed to help him stalk Ava. Esme's actions weren't misguided; they were diabolical. If that didn't show her true character, the fact that she let Spencer take the fall for her crimes definitely should have. It took Esme faking a pregnancy scare to open Spencer's eyes, and by then, it was way too late for Trina. While I did enjoy the romance brewing between Spencer and Trina in the beginning, the writers have made it so that I want Trina as far away from Spencer as possible.

Spencer has been nothing but bad news since he dumped the can of red paint on Trina.

Rory is a much better boyfriend for Trina. He's been supportive, respectful, and kind, and he's believed in Trina's innocence from the very start. Unfortunately, nice guys generally end up getting dumped for the bad boy, especially on soap operas, so I don't hold out hope that Rory and Trina will progress beyond a few kisses and a handful of dates.

My friend Vanessa -- the one who started watching GH in January and is now completely hooked -- is beside herself with worry that Trina is going to be wrongly convicted. Vanessa avoids spoilers like the plague, but every week for the last month, she's been asking me if there are any spoilers about Trina's fate. I wish I could assure her that Trina will be exonerated, but I can't. However, if Trina is found guilty, I fully expect Spencer to make an appeal to Uncle Victor to get Trina a sentence similar to the one that Spencer received when he was convicted of stalking Ava.

I understand why the writers might be tempted to go down that road with Trina. Being wrongly convicted and sent to prison would be a traumatizing experience, especially for someone with a family history of mental illness. It's as clear as the worried look on Portia's lovely face that Trina is Curtis' daughter. Not only is Portia worried sick about Trina's trial, but Portia obviously fears the stress of the situation might overwhelm Trina and affect Trina's mental health, but is that how it works?

I don't know much about schizophrenia, but I know it usually develops early in life, and stress can have an impact. I think a story about mental health would be timely, and -- if done right -- it can be informative. The thing is, I just don't want to see Trina convicted for a crime she didn't commit.

A couple of weeks ago, Portia vented to Stella about Esme framing Trina. One of the things Portia's identified was her certainty that Esme had deliberately thrown Trina into the judicial system because it was stacked against Black people. Was Esme motivated -- even in part -- by racial prejudices? I have no idea, but I do agree with Portia that Esme acted recklessly. Perhaps Esme didn't know that Trina would be fighting an uphill battle because of her race, but it certainly makes Trina's legal battle much more difficult.

I was surprised by the comments I saw on the message boards. Some were quick to defend Esme, while others lashed out at Portia, claiming that her fears were totally out of left field and unfounded. I disagree with that. I thought it was entirely valid and needed to be said.

First, Trina is Portia's daughter, so Portia gets to think the absolute worst about the person who maliciously framed her child. Trina is facing prison time. That's not a slap on the wrist. Trina's very freedom is at stake. Second, given who Esme is, I wouldn't be surprised if she had calculated all this. Esme is an entitled snob who was raised in the lap of luxury and attended an elite boarding school in Paris. Racism is everywhere, including amongst the elite.

I applaud the writers for Portia and Stella's exchange. I think soap operas have always been at their very best when they tackle real-life issues and offer viewers insight to a perspective viewers might otherwise not have.

Luckily for Trina, a lot of people are working to clear her name. Spencer hopes to trick Esme into exonerating Trina, while Curtis and Marshall are chasing down leads. Taggert, too, is hard at work sleuthing, and Ava is eager to help, as well. Plus, Trina has Diane in her corner. I love Diane, and I'm so happy to see her in charge of defending Trina at the trial.

Will Esme take Spencer up on his offer? It's hard to say, but it now makes sense why the writers cut Esme off from Ryan. Without Ryan to bounce things off of, and no money to grease the wheels, Esme's options are limited. She could blackmail Nikolas by threatening to squeal about their tryst in the turret, but that's a dangerous game that could easily backfire if Nikolas decides to call Esme's bluff. Who will believe Esme's claims of bumping uglies with Nikolas if Nikolas accuses her of making things up to cause trouble. No one. That's the price you pay for lying and scheming.

At least if Esme takes Spencer up on his offer, she will have an opportunity to reconnect with her biological mother. It won't actually happen, because Spencer is lying, but Esme doesn't know that. Do I feel sorry for Esme that she's pretty much doomed regardless? Nope. Esme deserves all the misery she's got coming to her and then some. It's not just what she did to Ava and Trina but the fact that Esme is helping Ryan -- a psychotic serial killer. Has she never looked at the trail of bodies behind him?

Nothing about Esme's background justifies the terrible things she's done. Yes, her biological father is a dangerous murderer, but she doesn't seem to have any issue with that. In fact, it appears that she might be following in his footsteps. Not only did she drug Trina, but she clearly put something in Oz's drink. Will Oz survive? Knocking Oz out serves no purpose except delaying the inevitable, so Esme likely dropped a lethal dose of the medication she gave Trina at the cabin into Oz's tequila.

If that is the case, the die will be cast for Esme. Killing in cold blood is not the kind of evil you can come back from.

To be honest, I'm not sure I want Esme to be redeemed. Villains serve an important purpose on soaps, and Avery Kristen Pohl plays wicked to perfection. She's a fantastic actress, and even though I want Esme to do some time for her crimes, I wouldn't be opposed to Esme getting out on a technicality -- after a few months -- and returning to stir up more trouble. It makes for great television.

Trouble is all Carly has these days. Her marriage fell apart, her best friend is dead, and now she has lost her half of the hotel. To add insult to injury, Carly's nemesis -- Nina -- now gets to reap the rewards of Carly's hard work.

Nina is a mess. She told Sonny that she didn't want to buy Crimson -- in part -- because she didn't want to look like a rich, spoiled real estate heiress playing at business, even though Nina has been successfully running the magazine for several years now. Buying the magazine would have been a brilliant business move for Nina, especially since Crimson is the biggest moneymaker in Aurora Media's print division.

However, Nina didn't think twice about buying Metro Court to gift to Carly -- or so Nina claimed. Anyone could have told Nina that Carly would rather eat glass than accept anything from Nina. I'm certain that Nina knew it and counted on it. The offer was made so Nina could have plausible deniability that she'd made the purchase to give Carly a little payback. I have no doubt that if Carly had accepted the offer, Nina would have found an excuse to weasel out of the deal. If Nina had been sincere, she would have sold the shares to Olivia when Carly refused to take them. Nina's sudden yen to get into the hospitality business is more about sticking it to Carly than about a new career path.

Talk about looking like a spoiled, rich heiress.

I wish Carly had taken Nina up on the offer and had the paperwork signed, sealed, and delivered by the end of that very day. To heck with principles. It's not like Carly is a paragon of virtue, anyway. Nina owes Carly. And before anyone fires off an angry email about Carly keeping quiet about Nina and Willow's biological connection, I don't see that as Carly doing Nina dirty. Carly owes Willow -- not Nina -- the truth. Nina made her bed when she kept Sonny's fate from his family, slept with him, and took Michael and Willow to court for visitation with Wiley.

Since Carly can't have the hotel, I hope she petitions Drew to fire Nina from Crimson and hire Carly as the new editor-in-chief. If Nina can play hotel magnate, then Carly can certainly try her hand at being a fashionista. I would love to see the look on Nina's face when she learns she was replaced with Carly. Karma at its finest.

I'm just not sure that I want Carly's future to include a romance with Drew. I see sparks between the two, but not passion. Drew seems almost too good, too kind, too honest for someone like Carly. Carly has always been drawn to men who have an edge of danger and darkness to them. Jason (post-head injury), Sonny, Lorenzo Alcazar, Johnny Zacchara, Franco (pre-brain tumor diagnosis) were all men whose names struck fear in the hearts of the good people of Port Charles. Carly enjoyed the power that went with being connected to men with intimidating reputations.

Carly dated a few nice guys -- Steven Webber, Patrick Drake -- but things fizzled out pretty quickly because they didn't excite her the way men who lived life on the edge did. Jax was an exception, but even Jax was known for being cutthroat in business, and he was protective of his international terrorist brother, Jerry Jacks. Jax definitely had a dangerous streak to him.

Drew -- as everyone keeps pointing out -- is a chip off Lila Quartermaine's block. He's a good and decent man. Drew can be lethal, and he might do dangerous things, but it's always for the greater good -- mind control deeds aside. Carly tries to do better, but she's a schemer. She gets jealous and angry, she flies off the handle, she has a tendency to believe she knows best, and she can be quite petty at times. Drew might be able to look past those things for a while, but eventually, he and Carly are going to clash, and their fundamental differences will become glaring.

A fun fling to help Carly move on from Sonny might be interesting because I certainly don't want her sitting on the sidelines alone while Sonny and Nina carry on their bland, borderline-platonic affair. However, in the long run, I want Carly to find someone who will keep her from finding her way back to Sonny when he grows tired of Nina.

I'm surprised it hasn't happened already. Sonny used to be a passionate man, but with Nina, he's practically a monk. It's weird that the writers have invested so much time into Sonny and Nina's pairing, but they've only slept together once or twice in the nearly two years Sonny and Nina have been in each other's orbits. It's not even a slow burn at this point. It's more like lukewarm ember.

In other Corinthos family news, Michael told Sonny and Dante about Willow's pregnancy. It was a hostile exchange that I'm sure is going to come back and bite Michael in his tush when T.J. gets Willow's test results. There's lots of foreshadowing with this storyline, starting with Michael's confession that it felt weird not to have trouble looming over his and Willow's happiness. Michael has clearly never heard of the concept of jinxing oneself. Fool.

It's a soap opera, so T.J.'s concern is a harbinger of what's to come. Will Willow face a health crisis that will impact her future if the pregnancy continues? I'm almost certain of it. I'm also positive that Willow won't hesitate to sacrifice her life for her child. It's in her nature. Willow was born a martyr. Even now, Willow is trying to spare Michael from worrying about her by keeping mum about T.J.'s concerns. When Michael mentioned joining her for her next doctor visit, she rushed to assure him it wasn't necessary. Willow doesn't want Michael to get wind of what is going on until she has answers and can decide what to tell him.

I understand Willow's desire to protect Michael, but I don't agree with it. She's setting him up to be blindsided by bad news, and she's adding unnecessary stress on herself and her baby. It also suggests a lack of trust.

Michael is the baby's father. He has every right to know what's going on, whether that worries him or not. How would Willow feel if their roles were reversed? She would be furious and consider it a betrayal. How do I know? It's exactly how she felt a few months ago when she found out Michael had taken steps -- without telling Willow -- to have Nina criminally charged in Pennsylvania for keeping Sonny hidden in Nixon Falls. Willow had been adamant that Michael's failure to confide his plans to her had shown a lack of trust. It had made Willow question their relationship and if they had a future.

I adore Willow. She's one of my favorites, but I want her to be honest with Michael. She should be leaning on him. He's not a fragile flower. He's supposed to be her partner in life -- not just in good times, but also in bad times.

That brings me to Britt, who is being "wooed" by Cody. I'm certain he has an ulterior motive that somehow connects back to Faison, so he's already got a strike against him in my book.

I don't find the way Cody talks to Britt amusing or charming. Challenging everything she says and pushing her to do things she doesn't want to do isn't romantic. Cody's antics stress me out, and he comes off as a bully, not potential boyfriend material. Why would a woman want to date someone who is constantly insulting her and picking apart everything she says?

I think horses are beautiful, but they also terrify me. I understand Britt's reluctance to get close to one, and trying to shove a horse into her face is not going to help her get over her fear. If someone says they don't want to do something because they feel uncomfortable, it should be respected. You catch more flies with honey, and respect goes a lot further than insults.

Britt deserves better than Cody. If she was my friend or loved one, I'd tell her to run. My advice to Cody would be to grow up.

Random observations

Could Austin's mother be the one who sent the messenger to order Austin back to Pautuck and "the fold"? It's the only thing that makes sense. Austin didn't seem scared of the mystery bald guy; he seemed annoyed. The bald man mentioned a "she," and as far as I know, Austin's mother -- Charity -- is still alive. It's food for thought.

Seeing Spinelli and Maxie at the Haunted Star reminded me how much they belong together. They still have the magic that made them so popular years ago. I like Austin, but not with Maxie. Austin needs to give Britt a helping hand with Cody, and she can help Austin with the Pautuck problem.

In the real world, Linc would be sitting in jail -- minus a few front teeth -- facing a slew of sexual harassment charges.

Reader feedback

I'm wondering if Liz is actually someone else's daughter with Jeff? Maybe mom died in childbirth and Jeff & Carolyn decided to raise her after she got over his "affair?" While Sarah was the goody-two-shoes, Liz got into some trouble. Maybe they just didn't 'bond' with her. -- Donna

Remember when there was romance? Remember when it was realistic as two people saw each other and decided to go on a date? Why on a soap does EVERY relationship have to start with arguing and/or despising each other? Chase & BLQ have been doing the dance to nowhere for maybe two years? Britt & Cody? Alexis & Gregory? Can't two adults just admit attraction and see where it goes? I know that might not be soapy, but do we have to have at least these three couples on this same "don't like each other" path??? -- Lucky Lady

Morgan Fairchild??!! I haven't seen her in YEARS! I've always been a big fan of hers. She's a girl from Dallas, who became a familiar, and unforgettably gorgeous face as a teenager after doing a number of local TV commercials when her name was Patsy Ann McClenny. She changed her name and headed for Hollywood as soon as she graduated from high school, and the rest is show business history! Back in the day, she, along with her fellow Texan, Farrah Fawcett, were the icons of fashion and glamor for millions of women nationwide, and the poster girls for millions of young men, and she's still looking pretty good! She was MADE for Soap Operas! It was also fun to get an Erika Kane shout out. Having La Lucci do a cameo, or even a short stint on the show wouldn't be a bad idea, either. -- Scrimmage

I love hearing from readers, so please feel free to leave a comment below or email me.

Take care and happy viewing,
Liz Masters

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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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