That warm and cozy feeling

Two Scoops Somehow I don't think the Spaulding family ever watched "Leave it to Beaver" or "The Brady Bunch." Those were families who had differences, certainly, but they were all peacefully resolved by the end of each 30-minute episiode. Dinner at the Spaulding Mansion means donning your battle gear for a family fight - slightly more civilized than most - but down and dirty just the same. The Snake Pit was certainly an appropriate name for that group. How can Gus ever expect to find Phillip's killer in a group of people dedicated solely to self-preservation. I loved how he was able to deftly tell each Spaulding how their own actions were certainly a big part of Phillip's downfall - and ultimately his defense of Harley. They have all done any number of things in the name of love - so why shouldn't he? But Alan is a pretty shrewd manipulator himself. What will all of this deception mean to his relationship with Gus?

And then there is Gus himself. He has walked back into "the Snake Pit" full of people who are secretly hoping that he'll fail in freeing Harley (and perhaps nailing one of them at the same time). How can you look across the breakfast table at someone who wanted you disbarred just weeks ago? The cat and mouse game Alan and Gus are playing can't end well. Will Alan never learn that family members are not cut out of one mold and are individuals with their own personalities and lives to lead? You would think that the death of # 1 son Phillip would have mellowed him a bit. Yeah, right.

The other Spaulding residents are also failing miserably at their other relationships as well. Olivia went back into the house she shared with Alan (and Phillip) for Emma's sake - or her own? And what about her relationship with Bill? Lewis and Spaulding aren't exactly bosom buddies. Once upon a time Lewis OIL was taken over by said Spauldings, so they really don't mix socially these days. I really like Bill and Olivia, and the sparks they generate, but how many times can she keep messing up at the cost of her current (and ex) in-laws company? She's going to run out of men to marry quickly if she keeps throwing Bill under the bus. And when Vanessa comes to town, Olivia will finally have met her match! Can't wait to see those two square off!!

And what will happen if/when Gus proves a Spaulding, and not a Cooper, killed Phillip? There goes his shot (pardon the pun) at being invited back for holidays, weddings, divorces, etc. - all of those great, fun, Spaulding family events we love and cherish.

Lizzie's tortured relationship with the Cooper clan has left them nearly jobless and homeless. Yet she sees herself falling for Coop. Where can this lead but heartbreak for these two? Just ask Harley how a Spaulding/Cooper relationship works - it doesn't. But she's running out of romantic options. Is there a family (other than his own) that Alan thinks is good enough for Lizzie? The poor girl will never find a guy willing to stand up to that family!!

Coop's cousin Marina isn't faring too well in the romance department, either. Danny is falling for her, but sleeping with Michelle? I really wanted to dislike this pairing, but they are sweet together. I just want one happy couple in Springfield - please!!! Michelle's rejection of Tony will have lasting consequences this week - so where does this leave Marina? Out of too many romantic choices in Springfield, I'd say. She's either related to them (Coop) or knows better (Jonathan) or they are taken (Sandy). What's a girl to do?

Even though she's behind bars, Harley has romantic troubles of her own. Although I can't see how (legally) someone would allow Mallet to become the warden of his ex-wife's prison, it does protect her from some harm. But you know that his intentions can't be all honorable. I was glad to see that Mallet's previous relationship with the Coopers was shown this past week. He and Frank were once best buddies on the force. But since Mallet cheated on his little sister, and broke her heart, he is persona non grata at Company. Somehow I think that even if/when Harley is freed, Mallet isn't going to go quietly.

The next 8 months will certainly be stressful for Cassie, Edmund, Dinah, Jeffrey and the baby. I can't see Cassie ever forgiving Edmund for this deception (and the fire as well) which leaves her free and clear to see Jeffrey. Not that Dinah is complaining one bit - she wants Edmund all to herself. But what this doesn't really highlight is what happens to the baby itself. Will this baby (like all the others in Springfield) only be brought out for holidays and special occasions? Or SORAS'ed into a teenager in a few years?

All of these changes in relationships mean that many of Springfield's characters are running out of romantic partners. Unless you want to really have cousins together (no thanks). I understand that daytime is built on family relationships and romance, we are running out of romantic pairings. Here's an idea - try to keep relationships together for more than 6 months. Couples have troubles, we all do, but we also work hard at getting past the hard stuff to make a relationship work. It's not as sexy, or as glamorous as someone with 4 ex-husbands, but it is certainly something that fans might actually appreciate. Just my two cents for the week - until next time.... Keep the Light Shining and Have a Great Week!

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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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