For all of the years I've been doing this column, I've been pretty honest about how I feel about casting changes. I typically like the first person I saw play a character (or sing a song, etc.) and it takes a long time for me to warm to a new "take" on a familiar character.
This week we said goodbye to the character of Tony Santos. However, there was a huge part of me that still thinks the character died when Jordi Vilasuso left the role he originated (and won an Emmy for). When Tony returned, in the form of Stephen Martines, GL completely changed this character. Now I realize that you can only act what the show gives you, so I ask TPTB, why would you set this character up to fail? Tony had many fans, and the character had been woven into many stories. But, at the end, he was an obsessed man who wanted Michelle at any cost.
It makes me pause, and wonder what will happen to other characters. Mallet recently returned to the canvas, as Harley's cheating ex-husband/warden. Hopefully GL will be true to the character that many of us remember. So far, they do seem to want to work with the character's history on the show. And I know that much of Tony's changes were done under other writers. So hopefully we have some hope for Mallet.
But then I think of Edmund, the cad. The Bad Boy of Springfield (and formerly San Cristobel) who did every bad deed known to man. For some reason, even though he locked her in a tower and tried to kill her (and her un-born child) Cassie fell in love with him. GL spent an enormous amount of time trying to convince the fans that he could be redeemed. Now the ink is barely dry on their marriage license and he's up to his old tricks. Which part of me really likes - we need a good bad guy. But when you make him a simpering, sniveling idiot you really want to see fail, GL loses some of the punch this character used to deliver. In a way, you have made him like Tony - desperate for love and willing to do anything to get what he wants.
One character who has had to live with many character changes (especially on-screen careers) is Blake. GL seemed to have forgotten about one of my favorite characters, and I was so glad to see her last week. Let's hope that GL remembers to keep this much-loved character front and center - keeping Dinah in line and hopefully a great new storyline of her very own!!
We should learn who Phillip's killer is very soon (I'm still holding out hope that GL brings him back). From the spoilers, I think I know who Gus' captor is - and I am not surprised. I'm leaning towards Olivia as being the shooter, but you never know. At least GL has said that the killer won't be leaving the show. I guess they'll take over Harley's cell - poor Mallet will have to deal with losing Harley all over again.
I would be remiss if I didn't mention the passing of B&B and Y&R creator (and former GL writer) William J. Bell, who died April 29, 2005 due to complications from Alzheimer's. He is survived by his wife of 50 years (Lee) and their three children. Funeral services will be arranged at the Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Beverly Hills, Calif. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Alzheimer's Association.
For those of you who have written, I know I am once again behind on emails. If you asked a question, I will try to get back to you as soon as I can. I'm fighting yet another cold, but once I'm feeling better I'll be back online more regularly.
Keep the Light Shining and Have a Great Week!