It was an eventful week for One Life to Live behind the scenes. We found out that Jason Tam and Terrell Tilford were released from their roles as Markko and Greg respectively. While I was surprised to find out about both of them at the same time, neither exit is surprising.
I was actually more surprised to see Markko return to Llanview than to find out that he is leaving for good. When he left for UCLA, it felt like a clean exit for the character, and since he and Langston broke up, Marko didn't have a reason to return. I guess his return last week was solely to prove to Langston that she messed up and that Markko wouldn't be taking her back. I am glad Markko has started a nice, new life in Los Angeles. He deserves it after being duped by Langston for so long. As for Jason Tam, he is a talented actor, and I am sure we will see him do well in other ventures.
Greg's upcoming exit was obvious, even before the news of Terrell Tilford's departure was announced. After telling Téa she was dying when she wasn't, making her undergo physically and emotionally taxing treatment she didn't need, faking her death, and keeping her from Todd and Dani, it would be difficult to redeem him at this point, especially since we still don't know why he has been working for Eli. I can't see Greg co-existing in Llanview with Téa, Todd, and Dani after everything he has done. I don't think any of the Mannings would accept blackmail as an excuse to put Téa and her family through so much agony. Not even injecting Eli full of poison would redeem Greg in their eyes, even if I hope he succeeds!
It seemed like the writers never knew exactly what to do with Greg. He had a couple of stories, but none of them cemented his place on the show. His relationship with Rachel was over before it began, and the debacle surrounding Shaun's operation might have humbled him slightly, but it didn't set him up for a future story. He had nothing to do except be the only doctor in Llanview who specializes in every field. Terrell Tilford is a good actor, and I've seen him on other shows, such as 24, so I know I'll see him in other things soon. It's just too bad that the character of Greg Evans was never really given a chance!
Moving along to things that happened on the show last week, I have to say that I am getting tired of seeing the Ford/Salinger family on my television screen almost every day. I realize that they are Llanview's newest family and need exposure to be woven into the canvas, but I feel like they are on all of the time, while other characters that have history in Llanview languish in the background. So far, I don't like Robert, Inez, or Nate. James is okay, although he is also on too much. I am sure he'll be on even more once Starr and Cole break up. I don't know if I would like these characters better if they were on less, but it doesn't look like I'll get a chance to find out!
To be fair, I know that people complain about the introduction and time consumption of new families almost every time one is introduced. For example, I remember that people complained about the Rappaport family taking over Llanview several years ago. However, now that they have been gone for a while, people miss Lindsay Rapparort and probably other members of the family too. It takes time for a new family to build a fan base. Maybe I will like the Fords/Salingers, but right now, it feels like too much too soon. Every time I see a scene with Robert, James, and/or Nate, it feels like overkill.
The custody trial didn't hold my attention either because the outcome was predictable. Ross was going to win custody of Dani because it was the more controversial outcome and because it furthered Eli's plan. It also provided a forum for inappropriate outbursts and revelations, but none of it was surprising. Ross had the upper hand the whole time, and I am sure the judge and maybe even Todd's lawyer were bribed to make sure it turned out the right way.
The decision to award custody of Dani to Ross will be moot soon anyway, since Téa will be returning to the fold. Going through all of this was kind of pointless. It seems like most custody trials on this show are pointless. Todd has been through enough of them to know that the ruling rarely has any long-term effect! I am glad Todd knows that Dani loves him now, though. After months of being shunned and yelled at, Todd knows that Dani did grow to accept him as a father.
I liked Todd and Viki's scenes on Friday. Todd was desperate to keep Dani in Llanview, and Viki was torn between helping Todd keep his child and doing the right thing according to the court ruling. I understand Viki's decision to not help Todd. When Todd gets desperate, he does irrational things that tend to make things worse. Viki knew the plan ultimately wouldn't work, even if she understood his motivation. I wish Todd and Viki would have more scenes together. Their relationship has always been interesting, and it's been neglected for a long time!
I am looking forward to Viki and Charlie having a story! Some nice readers e-mailed me and described Echo DiSavoy's history in Llanview, and while that information didn't have me eagerly anticipating Echo's arrival, I like that it will give Viki and Charlie something to do for a change. I am also interested to see Clint's role in this story, especially since he has turned to the dark side. Viki's reaction to the "new" Clint should be interesting! As for Echo, she made quite a debut on Friday, as she endearingly called Charlie "Chuckles." I can't wait to see Charlie and Viki's reactions to Echo's arrival!
I am glad that we got to see some good Bo and Nora moments last week, as they bonded over a cheeseburger. It's amazing how entertaining they can be while discussing/eating junk food! I wish they would discuss something other than Inez and Clint once in a while, though. They are newly remarried. They should have better things to talk about, but I am always happy to see Bo and Nora.
Nora is working overtime to ease her guilt over what happened with Clint. She is ready to rush Clint and Inez to the altar so that Clint will be happy again. I think Nora might have to wait on that wish, though. Inez barely seems to feel comfortable with Clint (not that I can blame her). Nora's proposed dinner party sounds like a disaster in the making. We might not see a food fight break out like the last dinner party that Nora attended with Clint, Bo, and Lindsay, but I am sure it will be uncomfortable, nonetheless!
As I've said before, I don't like Inez. I didn't like her when she first arrived in Llanview and kept the money that Nate obtained illegally, and she hasn't done much to win me over since then. However, I give her kudos for being suspicious and on guard with Clint. He has tried to give her too much way too soon, and while he claims it's because he likes using his power, she seems to understand that there is more than meets the eye with his generosity. I doubt that Clint and Inez will ever be a super couple, but maybe Clint will make Inez more interesting.
Speaking of getting more interesting, it looks like Marty's airtime will be increasing, now that she has a story and a home! In a previous column, I speculated that Marty wouldn't have much to do with Cole leaving, but now that she has Hannah living with her, I think we'll be seeing a lot more of Marty.
I have mixed feelings about Marty taking Hannah under her proverbial wing, though. On the one hand, Hannah shouldn't be near Cole, since she has been obsessed with him. On the other hand, I can see why Marty wants to help Hannah, since she sees herself in Hannah and knows that Hannah doesn't have anyone else to help her. I think this could be a good story, but I suspect that Hannah isn't actually going to try to change. The look on her face after handing Marty the cup of tea made it clear that she is plotting something. Marty might learn the hard way that no good deed goes unpunished!
It looks like Brody's guilt is eating him up, since he decided to make a house call for an impromptu counseling session with Marty. Brody deserves to feel that way, and I have no sympathy for him. He watched Jessica agonize over her confession about sleeping with Robert Ford, and yet he continues to keep his own secret about Natalie. He's had several chances to tell Jessica the truth, and instead, he continues to remain silent while Jessica tries to be optimistic about their future together. It's hard to watch.
It's equally hard to watch Natalie be happy with John and counsel Jessica about Brody, when she is keeping the same secret. Natalie seems to have an easier time with keeping her secret than Brody, but it's still difficult to watch. I hope Brody and Natalie's secret is revealed soon. I suspect it will be revealed at Jessica and Brody's wedding, but it can't happen soon enough. Jessica and Natalie's babies are due in February, and I can't endure another five months of the secret-keeping, uncomfortable looks, and fake happiness!
Finally, I am glad Gigi is staying in school. Clint did an awful thing by having her grant revoked, but at least she got another opportunity to pay for school. I also like Gigi and Cristian as friends. I don't want to see them be anything more than that, but they are fun to watch as friends. The scenes with the nude model were frivolous but somewhat amusing. I don't mind a few scenes of light-hearted humor, especially in a week that was hard to watch!
Until next time,