Poking a sleeping lion

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Poking a sleeping lion
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The week of March 6, 2006
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Beth isn't very secure, and she's about to be thrown for a loop! She's come a long way from the fragile girl who Bradley Raines molested in the early 80's, but her scheme to keep Alan and Gus out of Springfield can't end well for her.

As the saying goes, March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. That's ok, March is my favorite month (thanks to my birthday and March madness - that's college basketball to non-sports fans) and I think GL has suitable story that will keep fans watching all month long.

There are several lions just waiting to roar in Springfield - some who don't even know they have it in them just yet. But the fans will soon see fireworks before the 4th of July thanks to some interesting storylines that have been on simmer for awhile.

When characters come and go from a show, it is difficult to ensure that newer viewers get a handle on what makes them tick. This week, we got to see how living as an outsider in the Spaulding family has molded Alan-Michael into the man he is today. Having watched the show from well before A-M was born (in the early 80's on-screen) I have a good idea of what he could be like. Alan has hardly been the ideal parent. He only had eyes for Phillip - the "golden child" - who he went to great lengths to adopt when Elizabeth lost her child.

Now, as someone who would love to have a child, I understand the desire to do everything to have one. With all of the power and money Alan has, he was in a great position to obtain a child. But all of the money in the world can't give his child - any of them - the love he never had as a child. Alan and Alexandra have, over the years, told the tale of life with Brandon Spaulding - their dastardly father. Who, in the end, left them for a secret life with a secret lover - and another child. Brandon locked both children in the closet for any misdeed and never really showed them the love and care a child needs - and deserves. Instead, he showered them with expensive toys - things that cannot replace the love a child needs.

Fast forward many years and we see Alan making the same mistakes with his children. Phillip doted on Alan, until he learned the truth about his parentage in one of the most memorable scenes I can recall on GL (which they can't really show since Alan is played then by his originator, the late, great Christopher Bernau) at the Country Club. Phillip was hurt that the deception of his birth had gone on for years, and all four parents were "in" on it (Justin and Jackie Marler, Ross' brother and sister-in-law are Phillip's biological parents). Jackie and Justin even divorced then reconciled in the hopes of getting closer to Phillip.

In the middle of all of this turmoil is little Alan-Michael. Son of Hope (Bauer) Spaulding and Alan. Hope worked for Alan many years ago and they were lost on an island (that Alan later bought and named "The Isle of Hope") and fell in love. But the old Alan came back, leaving Hope wondering where her prince charming went. And A-M paid the final price. He reminded Alan of the relationship that failed, reminded him that he wasn't (Golden Boy) Phillip, and was pretty much persona non grata in Springfield for many years.

But in Springfield this year, Alan and Phillip are "dead" leaving A-M a nearly perfect shot at redemption. From the "grave" Alan is still showing A-M no respect, by leaving him a dime of inheritance. Which sets A-M up to be a pretty bitter guy, with no one to aim his ire at but Harley who gave his coveted job to Dinah - not that she knew he even really wanted it.

So now we have the perfect storm. A-M mad at the world, and Alan getting ready to return to face the son he betrayed. I can't wait to see the fireworks! Somewhere along the line, I expect GL to break my heart and recast Phillip, which will put this relationship in even more interesting footing.

Funny how a kid can be so mad at his father and be so much like him. With A-M getting the goods on Harley, how long will her friendship with Dinah last? And Dinah's relationship with Mallet - is this doomed as well? (please say it isn't so, GL) Let's not forget A-M's own relationship with Marina - which could also be collateral damage to the revenge A-M seems hell-bent on getting.

His niece Lizzie is just as bad is she thinks that she can lure Ava away from Coop with an escort? When will this Spaudling learn to be happy with what she has right in front of her? Of course, given the family history, we know she's as insecure as the rest of her family.

Lizzie's mom Beth isn't too secure herself - and this week will really throw her for a loop! She's come a long way from the fragile girl who Bradley Raines molested in the early 80's, but her scheme to keep Alan and Gus out of Springfield can't end well for her, either. But maybe a baby will make Alan go lightly when he plots his revenge. Don't count on it - this will be a custody battle royale - just what I hate to see anywhere - fictional or not.

Meanwhile, we see Sandy just won't leave Springfield quietly. Instead he wants to make sure that if he can't have Tammy, neither can Jonathan. With all of the outbursts we've seen from Jonathan since he's come to town, I can't imagine why Sandy wouldn't take the easy way out. But, of course, this is daytime, so he'll poke at Jonathan and there will be hell to pay.

It seems there is a lot of discord in Springfield - which means plenty of stories to watch and root for. I just hope all of this angst and anger leaves us a little time for some warmth and romance.

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