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Time for secrets
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The week of September 3, 2007
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Between John and Michael, Lindsay and Bo, Todd and Lindsay, and Marcie and Blair (among others), viewers were immersed in rich dialogue that had substance and significance to it this past week.

RYAN: Welcome back, Dawn! I know that you helped fill in for me this past summer while I was away in China and had a chance to banter back and forth with Denise (who is away celebrating a milestone birthday in NYC!!), but it's great for me to have a chance as well! Didn't you feel spoiled this past week? Between John and Michael, Lindsay and Bo, Todd and Lindsay, and Marcie and Blair (among others), I was immersed in such rich dialogue that had substance and significance to it. It really made me feel the heightened tension of what was going on in regards to that umbrella story. But other than the Spencer's killer/Tommy's identiy storyline, didn't you find that there were so many secrets being kept this week? Since I'm already on the topic of Spencer's death, we know that Lindsay has been arrested for the crime, but didn't you find it interesting that she never really ADMITTED to doing this to anyone quite yet? It's ASSUMED that she's guilty, and she certainly isn't suggesting that she's innocent, but there hasn't been a confession in any way, shape, or form yet. I'm wondering if this is going to contribute to the overall plan that Ron Carlivati has to make Lindsay redeemable. At this point, Lindsay is being painted as the Patron Saint of Llanview who committed this crime for the good of Michael and Marcie's family (and I'm okay with that depiction), but I just find it interesting to watch the avenue that we are being led down in regards to Lindsay's incarceration and watching her fiercely protect the secrets from that night Spencer died. What is your take on that?

DAWN: : Thank you, Ryan! It is great to be back, and I must say, I really enjoy reading and writing the column in this format! Yes, I have felt spoiled! The show feels completely different these days, and I actually want to watch! I think the way Lindsay's arrest has been played out is genius. After a week of episodes, we still can't say for sure whether she murdered Spencer. We've been getting mixed signals from her all week: a knowing look here, a confused look there. It is intriguing, and it has kept me watching. When Lindsay was talking to Bo, I could tell she wanted to tell him something badly, but she knew she had to protect herself. This was a great use of history, and I could see and feel her personal turmoil! I also liked how Lindsay's past was brought up. She has committed murder before, so even though she has turned over a new leaf and has become Llanview's biggest humanitarian, her murdering someone is not out of the question. The thing that I couldn't figure out was why Lindsay would have kept the bloody dress if she really did kill Spencer. Nora said it best that Lindsay is a "smart cookie." Why would she knowingly keep incriminating evidence in her home? What did you think of that development? In terms of Lindsay doing anything to keep the secret about Tommy, I think that is vintage Lindsay. She will go to great lengths to protect the people she cares about, and she doesn't care about the consequences. We are truly in the dark about how this will turn out, and I love it! The interesting thing now will be to see what Lindsay does when she finds out that Todd knows about Tommy. I have to say, I really like how this story now involves so many different characters, and each of them has a stake in what happens. I really like how Lindsay is at the center of the story now, and I can't wait to see how she will be redeemed! What do you think will happen now that the big secret is out? Will Lindsay talk, or will this string of silence continue?

RYAN: You know, Dawn, you bring up the biggest (and most refreshing) change I've noticed since Carlivati's name started appearing in the credits as "Head Writer"---the fact that stories are not overlapping. Sure Lindsay is holding something back (and I can't wait to find out what it is!), but more importantly, look at how her story is intermingling with that of Michael/Marcie/John/Todd/Blair! John has known for weeks about his nephew really being Todd's biological child, yet this "good cop" has struggled more than in his entire career in deciding what he should do. Even in his one-on-one interrogation of Lindsay, John seemed torn as to whether he should reveal Tommy's parentage as the primary motivation for Lindsay's committing this crime or keep it quiet for the sake of his brother and his sister-in-law, who can never have children of her own. What an internal conflict to have! And poor Marcie, kept in the dark from all of these secrets. John and Michael who are attempting to shield her from the truth and then Blair who is holding the very child she knows belongs to her husband! I have a feeling Marcie's woes are only beginning! But isn't it GREAT beyond words to see so many characters affected and impacted by the same story. We haven't been treated to this in such a long time. I am accustomed to certain characters having their own certain stories and not really mixing it up with anyone else except for parties or banquets or funerals. So, I'm really delighted by this.

DAWN: I know what you mean, Ryan! I am not used to being so interested in every episode as I have been recently. There is finally movement in the storylines, and I find myself caring what happens! After waiting for 6 months to find out who killed Spencer, I really didn't care anymore. That question could have never been answered, and I wouldn't have given it a second thought! Now that his murder has been tied to the secret about Tommy (or at least it is for now), solving Spencer's murder is interesting again! There are so many things that can develop from this storyline now that it's unbelievable! Marcy will feel betrayed by her husband, and she could lose her son. Todd has finally found his son, but what will he do now? What will happen with Michael and John's relationship? What will happen to Lindsay? This show has been lacking good payoff for a long time, but now we are finally seeing things happen that are meaningful. The show feels more cohesive, and it is easier to watch. With this umbrella story taking up the majority of each episode, the writers have been able to bring in Jared Banks slowly, who seems to have a secret or two of his very own. Honestly, I am not convinced that a new character is necessary at this time, and I feel like we've seen a new stranger deceive Natalie more than once (Mitch and Paul, anyone?). Is this really the same story all over again, or is there more than meets the eye regarding Jared? It seems that he is really interested in finding Jessica (or Tess), but for now, he's fine with trying to win Natalie over. I do not want to see him be overused like Spencer was when he first arrived in Llanview. Jared has already appeared in several places, but we still don't know anything about him except that he has money! What do you think of this new character?

RYAN: You know, I honestly haven't formed much of an impression about Jared yet. It's funny though, because when his first prison scenes aired and he was reading about Asa, I was thinking back in my mind, "Oooh. Who is this guy? How should I know him?" And I was racking my brains trying to figure out where in the scheme of Llanview's history did I know this guy. But I guess it's going to be another secret! I'm okay with his scenes involving Natalie so far because Natalie needs a new guy in her life besides Miles. Get that creepy dude out of Llanview---stat! Blech! I can barely stand to watch any scene he is in---he completely weirds me out. But what I'd like to see is Natalie not be the victim yet AGAIN. I'd like to see her distrust him and even figure out what his agenda is (as she's falling for him, of course). But to see Natalie fall for the guy, figure out she's duped, and then wallow in her misery is a road we've all been down before. I'd prefer to see Natalie stronger this time around. As far as Jessica is concerned, though, I hope Jared's presence doesn't mean yet another reference to something Tess did OFFSCREEN! I have to admit this here, Jessica's character is completely uninteresting and almost unbearable to watch anymore. I've said this once and I'll say it again---as soon as Dena Higley integrated Tess and Jess, that character went from entertaining and interesing to boring and washed up. So, I hope Jared isn't yet another tool to come between Nash and Jessica, because I watch enough scenes with them already!

Dawn: I like your idea about Natalie figuring Jared out, and while she's at it, I think she should figure out Miles, too. Miles is strange, and I can't figure out why Natalie was so anxious to be his friend and help him. She's still defending him after she found what he did to Marty, and she won't grasp the fact that Miles has done some bad things! It's obvious that Miles has secrets, but I don't think I want to know what they are! He needs to be heading out of town now that Todd knows about Tommy. Todd will be out for his blood, and Miles is no match for Todd! Miles is a character who quickly wore out his welcome. Getting back to Jared, I would like to see him be a good guy with some mystery. I don't want him to turn out to be another guy that terrorizes people in Llanview like Spencer. Surely Llanview has reached its quota of creeps to last for a long time! As for Tess, I don't know how anything she would have done would drive Miles to search for her. She was a wild party girl, but she was hardly unique! I hope his connection to Jessica is less superficial than that the fact that she was Tess when he met her. Since he wanted to see Asa was when he first arrived in Llanview, I am hopeful that this story will tie to the fact the Jessica is a Buchanan more than anything. Jessica has been the center of attention for long enough; she doesn't need another story that is all about her. As far as I'm concerned, Jessica didn't stay in London long enough! She could have disappeared like Viki did, and I wouldn't have cared! Speaking of Viki, I find it odd that she disappeared, and no one seems to notice! I suppose Asa's funeral was only a couple of days ago in Llanview time, but it would be nice if one of her children would notice that she is GONE! Llanfair is a big place, but surely Natalie is used to seeing her mother at least once a day, since they live in the same house! Going on an extended vacation shouldn't be a secret that Viki can so easily keep!

RYAN: Won't it be interesting to find out what Viki has been doing all of this time? You know, I find it so hard to believe that Viki has been without a romantic partner since Ben, and that was years and years ago! Her brief flirtation with Clint seemed almost out of desperation and convenience, so I am hopeful that her sojourn out of Llanview will provide her with some reflection time to re-evaluate what she wants to do with the rest of her life. I'm sure that when she returns, she will be coming back with some secret agendas of her own, and I'm excited to A.) hopefully see her go toe-to-toe with Dorian and B.) carry her own front-burner storyline. Carlivati has been with OLTL long enough to know that his veteran actresses, most notably Erika Slezak, really can carry the show, and Viki is the heart of Llanview. Isn't it time to reward Slezak with her own blockbuster storyline? It's been fun sharing this brief chat with you, Dawn! Hope we can do it again sometime soon.

DAWN: I can't wait to find out where Viki has been! I like how the writers had her leave, when she felt like she was at a crossroads in her life. Ben has been gone for a long time, her kids are grown, and she doesn't much to do with herself. It is incredible that Viki has been without her own story for so long.Viki's life has virtually disappeared over the years and has been used as a shoulder to cry on for others. She definitely needs a new love interest. I initially wanted her to reunite with Clint, but with the way he has been acting, I don't want that anymore. This rendition of Clint Buchanan is a stranger to me. With the way he has been acting, Clint and Dorian can have each other. When Viki returns, I want her to have her own secrets and ultimately have the last laugh. I hope she comes back with a whole new outlook and that she will put Dorian in her place once and for all. I don't want to see everyone use Viki as their dumping ground, and when she comes back, I hope she will focus on her own life and have a few secrets of her own. Erika Slezak is One Life to Live, and I think this is the perfect time for the new head writer to restore Viki's rightful place on the show! This show is improving by the day, and for once, I don't know what is going to happen months in advance. With all of these secrets in the air, I think this fall will be a great one for One Life to Live! It has been a lot of fun talking with you too, Ryan! We'll have to do it again soon!

Have a wonderful week!

Ryan and Dawn (and Happy Birthday, Denise!!)

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