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« 19th Nervous Breakdown | Main | Generally Unhospitable »

September 13, 2009

How Many Lives To Live Again?

This was a pretty action-packed 4-day week in Llanview and, given that I'm 95% spoiler-free, a surprising one at that.  We had kidnappings, shootings, rescues, surgeries, homecomings, inflatable boats, stolen kisses and, most importantly, Brody In A Wetsuit.

I am not sure which Broadway musical comedy John-Paul Lavoisier thinks he's performing in, but I hope I can find some discount tickets for it somewhere.  There's nothing better than a musical comedy about children with leukemia and aunts who endanger their lives and who try to date-rape their ex-boyfriends.  Who wants to join me in the TKTS line?  Leukemia Shenanigans and Vegas Strippers, The Musical!

We all knew Stacy would end up preggers anyway, right?  That wasn't much of a surprise to me, but it irked me anyway since this storyline ran its course long, long ago.  (Some would say it ran its course the second it started, but I thought there were moments of potential in there, and I do enjoy the addition of Kim, but overall it's been tedious and is chock-full of actors who aren't up to the task.  Scott Clifton deserves better.)  I do love the way Carlivati intertwines the storylines through the characters so that there's never anything happening in a void, so I will reluctantly say the one good thing about this is the potential it holds for Fish.  But how awesome was it that Gigi just kept toting that pregnancy test box around town?


Now if anyone's annoyed by the whole timing-of-the-pregnancy issue, just remind yourself that Stacy and Kim are trying to trick Rex and Gigi.  These are two of the dumbest people alive.  No problem-o.

As for the kidnapping of Starr and Hope, I wish I could care more.  Starr is an incredibly infuriating human being and Kristen Alderson's overacting hurts to watch.  The major misstep John made in this whole undercover operation was including Starr in the secret -- to me, the lunacy involved in her decision to tell Todd (the most unreliable man who ever lived) about it makes her responsible for this whole mess.  And someone may very well end up dead by the end of this.  Here's how she reacted to the man who came to save her who was sneaking up behind one of her captors:


Very subtle, Starr.

This is of course forever tainted by the fact that I also watch General Hospital, but it was refreshing to see lots of heroes being heroes (and none of them named John or Todd).  Shaun coming in and almost saving the day and getting shot in the process, Fish being the one to zero in on the location of the mobsters (note that I don't have to specify whether they're the good mobsters or the bad mobsters because they're all bad!), and of course Brody In A Wetsuit.  This is not to say, however, that I'm not incredibly appreciative that we all got what had to be a comic-relief bit, and that would be the rolls that John and Bo took into the warehouse.  Hilarious, yes?

Brody's stabbing worries me.  This thing looks like it would hurt:


Will he live?  Will he die?  Were they grumpy that Bree Williamson didn't win an Emmy for her outstanding performance at Nash's funeral so they decided to kill off another of her men to give her another shot?

Not to be politically incorrect or anything, but do the towns of Pine Valley and Port Charles combined have this many people of color?       


And here they are in Llanview, all in one room!  And there's more right outside the door!  Madness.  But as much as we love OLTL for its diversity, I am going to have to call them out on this one.  First of all, Greg's initial, "God no, that's my brother!" was laughable.  Like 3rd grade class play laughable.  He picked it back up later, and I know the soaps are made at breakneck speed and rarely have a chance for a second take, but this was dire.  As for the medical situation, let me get this straight.  Shaun needs life-saving surgery to move a bullet "frag" from his head; it's so urgent that they need to have his brother do it because there's no time to wait for a specialist from another hospital to clear his schedule and come to town.  However, it's elective surgery.  Shaun could go on to lead a healthy life, just knowing that jerking his neck the wrong way one day could lead to his demise.  But he gets to choose whether he has the surgery.  Eh?  So he could leave the hospital and go on with life, but they can't just leave him in bed and keep his head still for a few days to find another qualified surgeon for this elective surgery?  It does lead to a lot of potential for great drama, though, with Shaun's life in the hands of his brother.

I am exhausted by Todd and Tea and Blair.  Ross's arrival is fun and has some promise, but cutesy Todd and Tea is completely unearned and stomach-turning, and pathetic Blair undermines the entirety of her history.  These are all tough, dark people.  The not-very-reformed rapist and the two super-hot bad-ass women fighting for his love is insulting.  These are couples that worked in the past because they had passionate, ugly relationships.  Also insulting is the frequency with which they are beating us over the head with Tea's obvious "secret."  Tea, you don't know what it's like to be a mother!  Tea, if you had a child you'd understand.  Tea, you've never had to experience making a sacrifice for your child!

Thanks, Ron.  I get it.  I just don't care.  Two things I do care about regarding this storyline?  WHERE THE HELL ARE JACK AND SAM?  And could we please have a few more weeks of bloody-faced Todd?  Thanks.  I kind of love it.



Oh my, what a pleasant surprise! I had almost forgotten that OLTL was now on serial drama, and seeing the picture of Starr made me happy just because of the show associated. I really like that while you have some problems with the stories, you seem to generally enjoy the show and the show-running choices. Also, Rex and Gigi really are morons, and Scott Clifton is almost distracting in his scenes in this storyline because he is so much better than everyone else.

Can't wait to see more of your thoughts!

Was Rex always this bad an actor? It seems like he used to be better but now I'm wondering if I imagined it..
The "rolls" by John & Bo were hilarious!

I laughed out loud when I saw Starr with her feet tied to a chair & a gag tied around her head, but BOTH HANDS FREE... Is she not smart enough to realize she can untie her self and spit the gag out?

Pour Scott Clifton... I hope the really, really bad over acting of Rex, Gigi, & Stacy doesn't rub off.

I actually used to really enjoy Rex, and JPL acted the part just fine for many years. He had great chemistry w/ Natalie, Roxy, Bo, and even Dorian on occasion. What the hell went wrong? Is it all since Gigi came on that he became stump dumb? And was she always so vapid and clueless? I loathe everything Stacy related, so for me, that whole grouping gets FF'd.

GH had Dunk a Hunk :-) Now OLTL needs to have an event where the townsfolk and fans like us can get a Whack a Todd!

Brody is crazy hot, I was relived when his character got flushed out for real. In the beginning he was a kid obsessed drunk rage a holic? Anyhoo. If he doesn't survive this, I'll be sad. And I am not looking forward to more wailing from Jessica. Between her and Starr, my ears hurt.

Yay! More OLTL!

Whenever I feel down, I just remember the JohnBo rolls, and the world gets just a little bit brighter.

Thanks for this! I love Serial Drama and read it for the hilarity but must admit that OLTL is the only soap I watch with any regularity anymore.

I know Ron Carlivati makes a misstep or two but his material is so far ahead of anything on GH or AMC that I will forgive him anything. (Plus, he's wicked HOT and that never hurts!)

Glad someone else thinks Kristin Alderson is over the top (and not in a good way).

Really don't care if they get rid of Brody. He does nothing for me.

Brody was a thousand kinds of hot in the wet suit. And I love that OLTL has some competency in law enforcement with Fish, Brody, and Bo. I didn't even mind John putting himself out as sacrifical lamp. Thought OLTL did a good job of the entire shoot out. And Shaun also was great.

LOL at your point about Shaun's surgery though. I suspect OLTL didn't fully think this out beyond 'teh angst.'

Finally, where the fig is Kyle?! I want more Kyle (and much, much, much less Gigi/Rex/Stacy) and Schuyler is entirely too awesome for the group of characters that he's stuck with. Can't he run into Layla and there be a Schuyler/Layla/Cristian triangle?

"Not to be politically incorrect or anything, but do the towns of Pine Valley and Port Charles combined have this many people of color?"

I think AMC is doing much better than GH in that area. There are 5 black actors on contract while GH currently has none.

I'm totally on board with those of you who think JPL used to be a much better actor. I used to really enjoy him, but he seemed to turn a corner about a year ago. He plays everything for comedy now, regardless of the situation.

anonymous, you're right about AMC, they've got a good group there and two of them are stellar actors; I'm just in denial these days because of the horrid storyline the Hubbard gang has been stuck with.

I too noticed and loved the John and Bo rolls. ITA with 95% of this. (For some reason I still like Starr...)
My only complaint was that they picked Starr and Hope to be the hostages. I wish there could be a "no babies in danger" rule. It seems like they do it just to get us all worked up. I hated thinking that a real baby was in that room for most of that time seeing all that craziness even if it was pretend. Couldn't they have kidnapped someone else? Cole maybe? Marty? Anyone else?
I felt especially glad too that ALL of the mobsters were bad so I won't complain. Overall most of the stories are great or tolerable and there is very little I FF through so I am counting my soap blessings!

I will not have to post on any of the OLTL message boards, I'll simply copy and paste your entire blog since you read my mind and touched on everything that annoys ME.

I wasn't happy with the kidnapping storyline. I was really hoping they'd just leave it with the drama caused by the Mayor being exposed, but, hey, I do like the turn the Greg/Shawn/Rachel storyline has taken and it seems like the whole thing will be wrapped up soon so I guess I shouldn't complain. But, yeah, it amused me that, don't mind them or hate them, OLTL currently does its violent crime stories even better than GH does!

Anyone else thinking that the Mayor getting busted will lead to Dorian and Vicki running against each other?

I agree, *Chad*. How bad-ass would it have been if Shaun had actually
succeeded in rescuing Starr and Hope before the kidnapping even happened?
And yeah, I don't feel like they would've even started in on this Dorian vs
Viki storyline if it were going to stop here -- having them run against each
other would be great fun!

On Sun, Sep 13, 2009 at 5:34 PM, wrote:

"First of all, Greg's initial, "God no, that's my brother!" was laughable. Like 3rd grade class play laughable."
LMAO....thank you! That was rotfl laughable. I literally couldn't help myself from bursting out giggling and then thinking anyone who had walked in on me watching a scene where a guy is dying and laughing would think me cruel. I think that maybe he was playing around and didn't know the director had said action..cuz yeah that was pretty bad lol..it's even retrospectively laughable.

I love that I can come here to talk about OLTL- (Thanks Louise!!) although, I have to agree with some of the other comments... it's so much better than AMC and GH (although I've been liking GH a little lately) that its faults don't really seem like faults...except the Rex/Gigi/Stacy thing..that's crap.

OK first off YOU'RE BLOGGING OLTL (to point the obvious)!!! Sooo glad :) I would just like to agree that at least u don't have to differentiate b/w the "good" and "bad" mobsters, like u do on GH and the good guys saving (or working on saving) the day is refreshing! But yeh, the John and Bo rolls was a good LOL moment...JPL acting is definitely no longer up to par since this whole ridiculous story came into play...end it already carlivati

The thing I've noticed about JPL is that his acting has become - and I'm saying this as a gay man - a mixture of major drama queen combined with William Shatner line readings. I sit and stare in amazement at how badly he can go totally over the top in each and every scene he's in, what with the mouth contortions and hand waving and shoulder shrugging and head snapping. While everyone else in his scenes is on a 5 or 6 energy level, he's on a 15.

I read this blog regularly to remind me why I no longer watch GH or AMC. In the past year, I have started re-watching OLTL for the first time since the Eterna debacle. And I have the multi-generational cast (and in some cases, talent), but am not opposed to relishing snark... So yay! OLTL in the Serial Drama house!!!!

You are too funny, Louise. I watched OLTL many years ago and have picked it back up since your first blog, just so that I can follow along.

In regards to many of the comments above about about OLTL's quality, I am in
complete agreement. Do take all my snarking with a grain of salt; I watch
all three ABC soaps (though I haven't been able to bring myself to watch AMC
at all in a few weeks, it's just too awful) and have for a very, very long
time, and OLTL is far and away the best of the three right now. Anyone
that's churning out five episodes a week is bound to falter sometimes,
though, and we'll just be having a little Serial Drama-style fun with those
missteps. Never mistake any of my criticisms to mean that I'd prefer
the violent-mob-with-hearts-of-gold to take over Llanview, nor that I'd
prefer all the citizenry to be completely lobotomized. We have Guza and
Pratt for that. And no thanks!

On Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 12:15 PM, wrote:

what a great review im thrilled that oltl is being blogged here at serial drama! yes i agree starr overacts and im surprised KA has gotten so bad when she was a n amazing actress at 10 years old. also i lov brody and shaun rachel etc. llainview is the best town in soapdom

I really have nothing to add. From Greg's LOL-tastic exclaim about his brother to high-larity of John and Bo's tuck-and-rolls to the annoyance that is Starr, you've hit it all on the head.

I will, say, though, that once upon a time, Starr wasn't this barf-worthy. I think she's dealing with material that is beyond her acting range. She's never been a pregnant teen. I've known quite a few of them, and none of them has been as sickening about their kid as she has. Let me tell you: 17-year-olds don't like to wake up when the sun rises, let alone before the sun rises for a crying baby. Starr acts like its the cutest thing. It's not, it's just not.

Can someone please tell John McBain he doesn't have to whisper all his lines? Can't stand him & the hero they make him. Having Cole go undercover, truly was a ridiculous idea.

John/Bo - rolls of fun! Rex/Gigi, I'm NOW rooting for Stacy & Kim. Starr, what happened to that sassy kid before Cole blew into town? Where is Nat/Jared? Hot Brody, sexy David, we have people of color, gays, young, old, lovers, etc...love OLTL.

Thanks for the OLTL post!

I hate to say it, but I am fast forwarding through more of OLTL lately. As you pointed out, Louise, there are things to be positive about and my favorite thing is that the stories are so much more interwoven on this show than on others. BUT .... the baby being in danger reminds me too much of GH, the entertainment industry's view on politics is laughable to me (not to mention that I get enough of lying politicians just listening to the Pres when he opens his mouth and the real-life stuff is far more frightening than anything in Llanview).

What has happened to JPL? He has always been a bit hammy and OTT but lately there are no words for what he is doing. Does he think he is in silent films? That is the only explanation for those facial contortions of his. Since the Stacy story I consider Rex to be dumber than dirt and I won't watch him anymore. But I love Scott Clifton. I think he is doing a great job, but how did he get stuck with these characters? It is not fair.

I have been complaining on the comment line about Tea and Blair (and Marty) - strong, intelligent women - acting like idiots over Todd? I don't think so. It is an insult to women and I am tired of it. Hell, Todd makes John McBain seem like a good choice and that is all kinds of wrong. The "Tea has a secret child" anvils are not exactly subtle; I thought OLTL had a higher opinion of their audience than AMC or GH does, but apparently not.

But, yes, at least it is clear that the mob is bad and the cops are good. Even on its worst day, OLTL is miles ahead of GH and AMC.

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