Soap I Don't Watch #4: One Life To Live
I thought it was pretty hilarious that the show doing a week-long musical prom storyline was nominated as Best Drama at the Daytime Emmys. But then I thought hey, maybe it was really good a few months ago, and has only recently declined. That kind of unevenness happens all the time on soaps. Especially on Days of Our Lives. Now, having watched the episode that got OLTL its Best Drama nomination, I have to ask: Huh? Why? How was this one of the four best soap episodes last year? What a sad commentary on the genre!
In fairness, I suppose this One Life to Live episode was slightly better than the Young and the Restless one that somehow
won tied for Best Drama. (Though from Mallory, I know that is damning with faint praise.) And I imagine it would have been better if I didn't know that the dude in the casket whose funeral consumed the whole show was, in fact, not dead. I don't know. Overall, I'd say it didn't wow me, but it contained fewer clichés and annoying performances than Y&R, so it's not the basement-dweller of the bunch. Of the Soaps I Don't Watch, I'd rank them:
At some point soon I'll do a poll to get your rankings, since many of you actually watch these shows and therefore won't be just talking out of your ass like I am. Not that I'm not totally comfortable with the ass-talking, mind you. Speaking of, here is the highly refined pro and con list for One Life to Live:
One Life to Live Pros:
- Michael Easton. I didn't really like him on Days eons ago, but he endeared himself to me with his red carpet interview with Laura Wright at this year's Daytime Emmys, in which he joked about OLTL being an inch away from cancellation. He wasn't actually in this episode, on account of his character being "dead" and "in a coffin" and "being buried," but I am trying to be generous.
- The baby named Thomas is played by a seriously adorable little boy.
- McBain is/was apparently a cop, and also a good guy and not a bumbling idiot. GH and Days viewers, please try to contain your shock and confusion.
- Some dude named David is hungover and shoeless in a park and seems like he'd be consistently amusing.
- Some good casting: Erika Slesak and that girl who wore the weird pink hair thingie to the Emmys look like they could be mother and daughter in real life.
- Renee Goldsberry (whose name I only know from the Emmys) has a lovely singing voice.
One Life to Live Cons:
- Almost nothing happened. I mean, I get that when a major character dies, the funeral will consume most of at least one episode, but this was the nominated episode? Huh?
- Since the show opened with guy digging grave of John McBain and from the Emmys and recent promos I know Michael Easton is still on the show (and ABC Daytime would never fire a main character only to do something stupid and pointless and insulting like have him come back as a ghost), I'm assuming there was a stupid "not dead!" plot after this. Yawn.
- Uh, Robin Strasser? You can turn it down about eleventy notches. And also quitting smoking would probably be a good idea. Your voice sounds like it's filtered through sandpaper and charcoal briquettes.
- Some crazy apparent trailer-dweller with enormous hair slapped her daughter Natalie with the Moonstruck rip-off accompaniment of "snap out of it!" -- and even that wasn't interesting.
- For some reason, probably associated with me not being that bright, I thought that at some point in the first few minutes of the show the guy who it turns out is John McBain's brother said he was McBain's son. This sent me off on an extensive rant about ridiculously age-inappropriate casting on soaps, and included a comparison of McBain's brother's forehead creases to those of Luke Perry when he was in "high school" on 90210. Alas, it was all a misunderstanding, and my rant exists now only in an electronic recycling bin. I'm not sure why I am holding this against the show, but since like I said almost nothing happened, I needed more bullet points.