Family matters

by Nita
This week's Two Scoops columns
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July 26, 2004 columns
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Coming as no great surprise to anyone, Victor unequivocally vetoed Ashley's suggestion she or Brad be present to police his visits with Abby. And although she expressed great parental and marital concern for the damage Victor's supervision-free visits might do to her daughter and her malfunctioning marriage, Ashley's pitiful pleas failed to garner any sympathy from Victor or succeeded in moving him one iota from his unyielding position. Which effectively wedged her securely between both baby Daddy's, or said another way: between a rock and a very hard place. I can't say I faulted Victor for his stubborn stance, since I confess not a drop of sympathy at Ashley's dilemma oozed from my flinty heart either. Because despite all the insincere words that rolled off this semen stealer's forked tongue during the week, I'm not completely convinced being tugged between Victor and Brad is all that abhorrent to her. Remember, she'd been warned repeatedly to think long and hard before opening Pandora's Box, but she was insistent Victor should learn the truth about Abby sooner rather than later. And doggedly disregarding any and all opinions which were contrary to her own egotistical one, she lifted the lid anyway. Just what did she expect the Victor snake to hiss when it slithered out of captivity? Heartfelt congratulations and earnest entreaties for her and Bradley to take good care of his bio daughter, along with assurances he'd never lift a finger to interfere in her or their lives? In my cold-hearted opinion, Ashley got exactly what she bargained for and not so secretly always desired. Victor forever a part of her life.

Whether or not that life will continue to include Brad remains to be seen. Since I have never believed Ashley's so-called love for Brad was anything to write home and brag about, I doubt the end of this painfully passionless pairing would leave many fans reeling from an overwhelming sense of loss. After all, it's not as if these two have been existing in an ongoing state of marital bliss. Ninety percent of the marriage has been spent bickering bitterly over Victor. So just how far will Brad go to keep Victor out of Abby's life? If all his bellowing is to be believed, he claims he's prepared to go all the way to Divorce Court. But that wouldn't solve the problem; it would just ensure he would join Victor in seeing Abby only during scheduled or court-ordered visits. What would be much more interesting would be for him to grow desperate enough to vanish with Abby to some extradition-free shores. Or does such a place exist that would be out of the long reach of Victor's millions?

I might not have shed any tears on Ashley's behalf, but the Devon/Winters family bonding hour sure tugged terrifically on my heartstrings. While I thought Dru played the part of a concerned mother for a family-less child quite passionately and believably, and found Neil's brief resistance to taking a stranger into the family circle equally well done (although we all knew Dru would eventually win him over) Devon's performance was the one that got me all teary eyed. The look of wariness on his face as he looked around with wonder at the well-appointed Winters family premises, convinced that any minute one or all of them would yank the rug of good fortune from beneath him and sending him sprawling, or worse, that Ashton Kutcher. would burst into the room howling "You've been Punk'd" was perfectly done. And after listening carefully to Neil's unending list of house rules, the helplessly defeated look on his face that seemed to say he believed the game was over before he'd even gotten to play just made me want to echo Dru and tell him everything would be all right. While it's practically a given the road ahead for Devon and his foster family will not be perfectly smooth, I haven't yet decided from which direction disaster could conceivably come. The most obvious problem would, of course, be if he and Lily begin to have feelings for each other. Maybe it's just me, but so far, the tie between these two comes across as more brotherly/sisterly than romantic, despite Lily's past track record with Kevin and once burning desire to have a boy of her own. But perhaps that will change with their new closer proximity to one another. The only other thing that could place a fly in the ointment would be if one or both of Devon's parents were to come creeping out of the crack house or the woodwork, a situation that's unlikely to happen.

As for the other potential blended family-to-be, that particular nucleus being made up of Damon, Phyllis and Daniel, Phyllis is pushing powerfully for all of them to reside restlessly under Damon's roof. Phyllis continues on that particular course despite Damon's clear preference for them to find a nest of their own which would leave him free to ponder his past without Phyllis' constantly gushing chirping and Daniel's sullen silence. A past that we might be closer than we think to finally learning about. How accurate were Diane's guesses as to Damon's supposed relationship phobia? And after her sage, womanly advice, will Damon see things in a different light and decide to let Phyllis in on some of his secrets?

But that remains to be seen. For right now, back to Phyllis. For years she has boo-hoo-hoo-ed to all who would listen about her burning desire to build a bond with her snatched away boy, but now that her supposed dreams could be a reality, always needs to have a man handy Phyllis is teetering on the fence of indecision, acting as if her moving out will call an immediate halt to her amorous relations with Damon. I say, what's the big deal? It's not as if she actually has to move into a home of her own, something she's never lived in unless the deed was in someone else's name. Why not simply return to her old stomping grounds, the Genoa City Hotel, which is undoubtedly a mere block or two away. By the way, Daniel's repeated threat to find an apartment of his own caused me a quiet giggle or two. I know we're talking about Genoa City, where the outlandish and unbelievable is often the norm, but even in this City would any landlord with a grain of common sense rent an apartment to a jobless 16 year old? It's not as if Danny would be eager to dip into his dwindling savings to foot the bill for his son to live high on the hog on his own. Although Daniel would fit right in with the rest of the rarely or never working youth at the loft who still somehow manage to pay the rent, I'm guessing bunking down with J.T. in Raul's soon to be vacated space is not an option.

Of course, J.T. might be more amenable to the possibility of an underage roommate if Brittany flies the communal coop to live happily ever after with her Godfather. And while I'm on that page, I ask you, could Bobby's marriage proposal have been any less romantic? Not that his attaching all the romantic accessories, you know, like, candles, mellow music, intoxicating drink and begging his beloved on bended knee in the middle of Marilyn's would have made any difference to me. I have never and still can't buy this boring together mismatched mating and see him as a besotted man way past but running after his lost youth anyway. Though he's handsome as all get out, watching them together still brings to my irrational mind, the cover of the Disney video, tiny Beauty and the big muscular Beast. Though you may not agree, these two still easily win my "ick" factor award. But back to the proposal. Brittany's answer was never really in doubt, and as all expected, it was in the affirmative. But my question is will they still be altar bound when she discovers finances necessitate Marilyn's sharing the lighted billboard with Marsino's? Because you know it's not likely to be long until she finds out. To make things more complicated, I just heard a whispered rumor there might soon be a new man coming to town who will be entering his name in the sweepstakes for Miss Britt's love. Which probably means that although J.T. has pulled a few unexpected tricks from his party bag recently, not least of which was that scorching kiss he laid on Brit, for which he received a resounding slap (but not right away), romance is not in the cards for these two right now.

Speaking of love, or something that often passes for it in Genoa City, now we know, because Nick has said so in so many mumbled words; unrequited lust for Sharon is what has likely caused all the sensible marbles to roll willy nilly from Mr. Kirsten's obsessive skull. Oh give me a break! Yes, the lovely Mrs. Newman is probably many men's impossible dream, and for certain already unbalanced individuals, having once sampled her uninhibited charms, they could never be satisfied with another's. Matt Clark comes most readily to mind. Although others like Diego and Frank apparently weren't nearly so impressed with her bedroom aerobics. Be that as it may, it's clear Cameron falls into the category of the former and we can also see even with our eyes closed tight that his longing for Sharon will be his undoing. Being that I'm a woman and completely uninterested in Sharon and Nick's or Sharon and anyone's seduction scenes, as I've repetitively reiterated ad nauseum, Cam's unmasking can't come soon enough for me. And hopefully with not too many more incidents of Sharon showing him her god-given or store bought goods, whichever way you believe. This time notwithstanding, most of Sharon's many misfortunes have been centered around her appetite for some man or theirs for her, something I long ago had my fill of. I would be nice to see her sink her acting chops into something totally unrelated to her libido. How many more times must we be subjected to yet another variation of the "Sharon's so hot no man can resist her" scenario? Complete with dripping watermelon, scanty barely there wear or steamy clinches where she clings helplessly to some male knight in shining armor, uttering phrases of needy love speak. Seduce him, trick him, get him on tape, hog tie him and make him shout the truth to the rafters. Just let it be over. By the way, does anyone else wonder whether Grace, as one of the two people able to help the Newman's bring Cameron down (Cam's hired henchman being the other), may wind up paying the same price as Frank Barritt? I'm not Grace's biggest fan, but hopefully her life will be spared.

Oh how I adore Mr. Baldwin. When is this yummy piece of eye candy going to find a box of his own to nestle in? Yes, the pun was intended, though I agree it was slightly off-color. But in my defense, he started that particular train of thought with his "it's nothing you haven't seen before" remark to Chris. With Paul and Danny out of town, I guess the pampered princess needed a strong, manly shoulder to weep upon. Speaking of that, were any of you with me or was I all by myself in thinking Christine was acting more than a wee bit flirtatious? To my knowledge, Miss Blair, Williams or whatever name she's using these days has never visited Damon's lair and observed his unorthodox seating preferences, so what was with that provocative straddle the sofa arm pose she struck as she moaned and groaned to Michael about all the trials and tribulations complicating her life? Convoluted problems which as usual, leave her unable or unwilling to devote herself to something so time consuming and mundane as full time employment. Should she change her mind, however, Michael made it clear her old office directly across from his was still available. And in my opinion, he probably has her gold-plated name wrapped in cushioning tissue paper, tucked carefully away under lock and key in hopeful anticipation of her eventual return.

But back to Michael and a possible romance. With no new or old Victoria in sight, does anyone see any heat between Michael and Lauren? They've definitely become good friends, something poor Michael seems destined to be with most of the ladies of Genoa City, but is Kevin the only thing they have in common? Since Paul is not breaking down Lauren's door in an effort to get her to pencil his name in her date book, Michael might as well toss his hat in the ring to see what could happen.

In between trying to convince Victor to steer clear of anything Ashley, Abby included, in case there's a chance history might eventually repeat itself with Ashley ripping Victor from her arms, Nikki can ponder the perplexities of the tiny skeleton found buried on the grounds of her father's old workplace. While at the Rec Center, her sharp eyes watched J.T.'s every move and I wonder how long it will be before she too views the birthday video and watches the mysterious girl be gifted with ruby earrings. I know I have to learn patience, but I was hoping for more on this story. Looks like it will be a case for senior and junior PI's Paul and J.T.. Hope the coming week will contain another piece in this puzzler.

Watching Cassie was enjoyable this week. The dual shock of learning who her bio daddy was at the same time she realized she'd never have a chance to know him wore off this week as Cassie finally showed some emotion over Frank Barritt's unfortunate demise. Many fans have commented on the uncaring coldness with which Cassie originally treated the bad news, but her belated response was both touching and believable. I'm slightly twisted, as some of you might have guessed, so you probably know I also enjoyed her truthful digs at Sharon for her part in the parental suppression.

Apparently not having learned a thing after Daniel's advice to offer his accounting services at the Rec Center resulted in his complete humiliation, Kevin seems willing to make it two for two. While Daniel has not yet worked out any details in his upcoming plan to somehow redeem Kevin in Genoa City's eyes, it's beginning to appear it may involve Lily. Since just about everything Kevin's been involved in so far has had less than stellar results, there's no real reason to believe this next time will be any different. But, if by some unlikely stroke of good fortune or blind luck, Daniel and Kevin manage to pull this caper off, there could eventually wind up being a new face at the Abbott breakfast table. Yes, I'm referring to the inimitable Gloria Fisher, who will soon have an infatuated John Abbott gratefully nibbling crumbs right from her gold-digging paws. Squint your eyes nearly closed and just imagine the possibilities with Michael, Kevin and Gloria munching on mammoth muffins and making small talk with John, Jack, Ashley and Brad.

You would think Victor would have decided there was enough on his plate without asking for another portion. But after finally being brought up to date on all the twists and turns that have been taking place right under his nose in the Cameron obsession situation, Victor was foolish enough to think his son might want his help. Needless to say, he didn't. And another round of contentious sparring between father and son concluded with Victor being shoved out of the ring by the son who would probably welcome assistance from the devil himself rather than accept it from his despised Daddy. While none of the vicious barbs Nick threw at his father literally drew blood, it was obvious they were painfully received. It seems centuries ago since Nick exhibited any warmth toward his father. It's too bad, because one of the things that made the Newmans likable, in spite of their sometimes superiority toward lesser beings, was their intense and total loyalty toward each other. From my lofty perch of opinion, Nick's reasons for continuing to harbor something that if it isn't hatred, is perilously close, makes me root for him to come out the loser no matter what battle he's fighting. Enough is enough and too much has grown tedious. I would so love to see Victor stop trying to curry Nick's favor and simply wash his hands completely of his sullen son.

So what plot pots are simmering on the stove for the coming week? Just about all of them is my guess. Please feel free to share your opinion about any or all of them.

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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