The verdict is definitely in (literally and figuratively). Most of the action this past week certainly pertained to Todd's "guilty" verdict at the Margaret murder trial. But my verdict has come down as well---WHEN WILL THIS STORY EVER END??? I feel like I'm stuck in that Bill Murray movie, "Groundhog Day." Every time I think this is over, I wake up and it starts all over again! I haven't stopped to count, but I would guesstimate that this story has well exceeded the year mark. Looking back, I can't even remember the last story that Blair and Todd had together that didn't involve that lunatic Margaret. And now comes the news just published in "Soap Opera Weekly" that Margaret is alive! I just don't think I can handle much more. I really, truly don't.
Let me at least start my rant on a positive note. I did like a few things that came out of Todd's guilty verdict. Mostly, I loved seeing Trevor St. John's nuanced performance at having to balance the sick feeling of knowing that he's probably facing a life sentence (or death) with the horrible suspicion that his wife no longer has faith in him and thinks he is a baby-killer. I almost feel sorry for the guy. Almost! Furthermore, I was completely engrossed in the scenes at jail between Todd and Viki and Todd and Jessica.
Viki has always been the strongest of Todd's supporters. No matter what trouble he finds himself in, he always has the backing from his sister. For someone who has never grown up with a true sense of family, Viki's loyalty and sisterly love for her brother are so important to Todd. Even with her own problems, Viki isn't stopping to find a way to help Todd fight the verdict with an appeal and some advice to give Blair time and space to figure through her feelings and emotions. Although, in typical Todd fashion, his jealousy of Spencer Truman is getting in the way of that. Then there is Jessica. It's been so long since Jess and Todd talked, and it was nice for her to come to see her Uncle Todd and let him know that her own problems aren't preventing her from thinking of him. Trying not to talk about Tess, the two of them tried to have a normal conversation before realizing it was hard to avoid what was happening to each of them. Those were great scenes.
I also appreciate the loyalty (and friendship) Evangeline has demonstrated towards Todd. As Evangeline tried to convince Blair that Todd was innocent, we were treated to the standard "He lied to me, and I'm not being lied to ever again" line by Blair. Yeah, yeah, yeah, Blair, we've heard those lines before---like 20 times before! Evangeline even attempted to point out that Blair has always taken Todd back, but THIS TIME (!!) is going to be different. So says Blair. Todd would be happy to know that Evangeline is defending him so vigorously and that she is doing everything in her power to start an appeal.
With this said, I really just don't think I can handle discussing Margaret for a single minute longer. Knowing that Spencer is in cahoots with Margaret is one thing---but it really stretches the limits of what I'm willing to concede to accept as a viewer. This "master plan" that Spencer has---are we to think that his alliance with Margaret was part of this grand plan? When does this guy ever have time to save lives at the hospital when he's figuring out how to settle the score with each and every Buchanan who has done him wrong---in addition to a few Mannings! It doesn't make sense.
Also, as much as Terri Signor is a fabulous actress who really took a bit role and turned it into a must-see character (for a while anyway), it really is time to say goodbye to Margaret. Alive, dead. Missing, found. This woman just can't stay away from Todd, Blair, Starr, or the rest of Llanview. And the thought that she will give birth to a baby that will remind Todd (and the rest of us) of these months of insanity just drives me to want to throw my TV across the room. The pacing of this story is absolutely horrendous, and I'm shocked that Higley has been granted permission to let it drag on so much. It's not a popular story, and it doesn't do much for the likeability of Blair or Todd's characters, so why keep it around so long (especially when poor Nora is in a hospital bed getting no story)? It's time to cut the losses and give Todd and Blair something more meaningful to do.
Now on to other events in Llanview...
1. I really loved the quiet scenes of Jessica and Nash sharing breakfast together. It was such a simple moment-Nash making omelets for Jessica and the two of them just talking normally to one another. It was nice to see the two of them share some scenes apart from the intrusiveness of Antonio or Viki or anyone else. I think this is a way of allowing us to fall in love with the idea of Jess and Nash as much as Tess and Nash. Wouldn't it be a cool twist if Nash fell in love with Jessica as well and then was torn about which one he really wanted to remain "in control"?
2. R.J. trying to get Nora to wake up out of the coma by instigating her with "news" that he was ready to propose to Lindsay was really quite humorous. I love seeing that R.J. still adores his ex-sister-in-law more than ever. But for poor Lindsay, it was just cruel (see "Thumbs Down").
3. I love the fact that Cristian isn't giving up on Natalie (even though she's acting like the biggest spoiled brat in the television universe). Good for him!
4. I also love the brotherly bond between Michael and John. There's something deeper going on here between the McBain brothers, and even though there was tense conflict following John's shooting of the man holding Mike hostage, it's still evident that there's a lot of caring and understanding between the brothers. I appreciated how Michael kicked into doctor mode and then drilled into his brother that he felt he was being too reckless. Great scenes!
1. Since when has Viki ever been annoying to me? I can't really recall a time, but she's starting to come really close in her disgust and distrust of Nash. So what if she sees Nash hugging Jessica? Oooooh! Does that mean he's secretly urging Tess to come out? Not necessarily, yet Viki barks her commands as though he's a pet---"Get your hands off my daughter! Stay away from Jessica! Show yourself out!" If Viki wants her daughter to be successfully integrated, then she better realize that Nash is part of the recovery process for Jess/Tess.
2. Poor Lindsay! As much as I'd like for my girl to get a break, she always pulls the short straw. She was excited at the prospect of an engagement to R.J. only to find out it was just a scam. At least R.J. was honest and forthright in explaining to her what happened. Unfortunately for Lindsay, he was a little TOO blunt and honest!
"A FAVORITE NORA MOMENT."
In my continued quest to make Hillary B. Smith a permanent fixture in Llanview again (more than just the next year of her contract extension), I take a moment to reflect back on a favorite memory of Nora.
Flashback to 1997 when Nora began experiencing symptoms that she thought spelled "preggers"; after some tests with Larry, she discovered she was in pre-menopause. Needless to say, Nora wasn't happy about this at all, but her husband Bo was as reassuring as ever. Their relationship was rock-solid, and their status as one of the most beloved couples on the show was clear to see in situations like this. To help Nora out, she began looking for an assistant---one who eventually turned out to be Georgie Phillips (played by Jennifer Bransford, the actress who recently filled in for GH's Carly and was released from the role). Georgie was initially a dream---efficient, quick, knowledgeable. But soon, Georgie started moving in on Bo and become very unstable. All of this resulted in a great whodunit when Georgie was found dead at the cabin. Hillary B. Smith had a lot of meat to play with in this story---going from the agony and misery of thinking she's now entering menopause to trying to handle work with the help of an assistant to playing the jealous wife to playing a scorned woman who is hellbent on seeing psycho Georgie taken care of. Nora was always a fan favorite, and when a character like Georgie Phillips came on the scene to threaten the sanctity of Bo and Nora's marriage, fans rallied together and made sure this person wasn't around long.
If you haven't already written a letter in support of Hillary B. Smith, please do so today. Just a few paragraphs will do the trick! And every letter can make a difference. If you want/need an address, please just email me. We must not give up!
Enjoy your week,