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« Good Loving Gone Bad | Main | All My Indifferent Sighs »

July 28, 2010

The Very Definition of Damning With Faint Praise

"Patrick cheating on Robin with Lisa" is a storyline that I have hated on principle ever since Lisa Niles came to town practically accompanied by a neon caption trumpeting "She is going to cheat with Patrick" but curiously devoid of a personality.

It's not that I am so devoted to Patrick and Robin as a couple (although I do love them, when they are being written in character. Obviously, my love took a leave of absence early last year) that I am unwilling to accept an infidelity story; as I have mentioned here and an upcoming Soap Opera Digest column, infidelity stories are a tried and true soap trope, so OF COURSE General Hospital, a show that is unoriginal under the best of circumstances, is going to go that route. It's just that they went that route in the laziest way possible, the directions for the route in question being "Go straight on Character Assassination Lane. Turn right on Appalling Lack of Chemistry Between The Characters Doing the Hooking Up Street. Take the second exit on the traffic circle for Wild And Crazy College Stories--Oh My GOD Can You Believe Patrick and Lisa Used To Drink Alcoholic Beverages and Have Sexual Intercourse? That's Like, Soooo Crazy! Avenue."

And I find it wholly ridiculous that Lisa, who was able to have a life and function in society after she and Patrick broke up IN COLLEGE, has sex with him once and dives headfirst into the land of the nutbars.

Lisa

Lisa: I can taste you on this cup.

Lisa: Or do you only have trysts in the supply closet with your wife? This is the part where you try to convince me that we don't have a good thing and then I do that thing that you like so much and prove you wrong.

Lisa, surprising Patrick half naked in an empty room: Don't worry, Sweet Robin doesn't need to know.
Patrick: Stop it. Enough.
Lisa: You're in danger of becoming a very dull boy.
Patrick: You know what? I've tried to be nice. Have some self respect.
Lisa, hauling off and slapping him: Okay, you don't use me and then throw me away.
Patrick: If that's what it takes to get through to you, that's exactly what I'm going to do.
Lisa: You don't do what we did and then turn around and act like I mean nothing to you.

I mean, I know the mind of Bob Guza well enough to know that he thinks, "I saw this movie called Fatal Attraction last night, and it was awesome, so..." counts as character development, but really.

And it's more than a little uncomfortable and pathetic for Robin to be uttering lines like this, knowing what we know that she doesn't know.

Robin: You can't keep secrets from me.
Robin: You're such a good dad and a wonderful husband. Do you know how blessed we are?
Robin: I don't tell you enough how much you mean to me, and how much I depend on you and I love you so much.

AND YET.

AND YET!

This is the most entertaining, enjoyable part of the show, which either means that this story, for all of its faults, is still soapy, or that the rest of the show is tremendously dull and offensive and this seems, like...decent in comparison.

Considering that the rest of the show gave us:

  • Dante and Lulu again some more, because a day without these two would, apparently cause mass fatalities on account of all of our broken hearts. "Oh, no! No Dante and Lulu today! But I haven't seen them in 24 whole hours! Noooooo!"
  • Lulu blissfully unaware that one of her brothers was shot, and that her newborn nephew was kidnapped.
  • Spinelli just being...the worst.
  • Michael (who, really, has been through enough and should be exempt from these kind of horrors) playing marriage counselor for Carly
  • Sam suggesting that--nay, begging for Jason to leave Port Charles forever--"Leave now and never look back" being her exact words, which irks because 1.) it's so good to know that her relationship with her mother and sisters means something! and 2.) why does this show tantalize me with the prospect of Jason leaving? I know it will never happen, but whenever that possibility is floated, I still find myself having glorious daydreams about a Jason-less Port Charles.
  • Johnny ONCE AGAIN telling the tale of why he and Sonny hate each other, in great detail, eating up screentime that could have gone to a story we haven't lived through and then heard about in detail on the regular. He has told this story so many times that he even has an overly dramatic opening line, a line that I think a truly awful mystery I wrote in sixth grade also started with! "It's hard to remember exactly where it all started", he said in a well-practiced and theatrical voice, as I reached for the remote to fast-forward him. If he went on to tell the story not of the Corinthos/Zacchara feud, but of a woman coping with the suicide...OR WAS IT???? of her husband, I am calling plagiarism!

So, yeah, I'm leaning towards Option B.

Comments

And this was an episode that was about 18 times better than the one before it, since nobody, particularly not an educated woman whose job it is to send Sonny to prison forever, suggested that Sonny sire yet another doomed child, this time with them.

Talk about faint praise.

Mallory - truly brilliant, as always. There's nothing more I can add to it. Considering that I'm rarely at a loss for words, that's ACTUAL praise!

Guza sucks. Goodnight.

I love reading GH recaps since I refuse to watch the show.

Please, Sam is an idiot. If Jason refused to run with Liz and Cake when Michael was shot, he sure and heck wasn't about to leave town for her! Actually, the dialog between Jason and Sam was EXACTLY like the dialogue in April 2008 between Liz and Jason. Is GH so bankrupt that they have to repeat the same conversation with the same man but with a different woman?

Lisa is killing me! Go ahead with your bad self and chase Patty boy who couldn't wait to cheat on Robin.

Lulu is a moron. What a silly goose. She's always been about whatever man she's into at the time and everyone else gets nothing.

I am liking Patrick and Robins story as well! Absolutely HATE the way it started with the cheating, but thrilled Scrubs are finally getting airtime. Did you notice that Patrick didn't actually drink from the coffee cup that she supposedly tasted him on? What a freak! My newest and favorite nickname for her is Crazy Balls. I think it fits!

Seriously can't wait until Robin finds out cause you know Jason Thompson and Kimberly McCullough will rock at them. They do emotional/angsty scenes so well together!

I had a thought today about Guza's moronic interview. I was thinking how much different this Franco story could have played out if there were (real) Quartermaines that were actually still alive and/or, I dunno, shown onscreen. I mean, if they're going to have someone obsess on Jason and the number 66, why not have Franco kidnap his mother, who lives on 66 Harbor View Road?

OH, WAIT! That requires a knowledge and ability to acknowledge historical canon for this show. My bad.

(And don't even get me started on his comments on a "what if Michael were raised by Qs" potential episode. They wouldn't be able to afford to buy out the contracts of the actors they'd need to bring back since most of the Qs would be *relatively* happy and adjusted [and ALIVE] if it weren't for the show turning into General Mobster. I figure the downhill slide started right about the time Sonny meathooked AJ and hit a rock-bottom that hasn't ascended any since about the time of Alan's death.)

Wow, I apparently had a delayed rant in there. Sorry!

I am really truly enjoying the scrubs story. I think it is one of the best they have had in a long time. I think Lisa is completely insane it's entertaining to watch. I however think the Robin praise of Patrick is ridiculous. I mean it is so OTT that it sound like she is guilty of something JMHO. I think I'm so use to Scrubs being a realistic couple and some of the more "soapy" eliminates fall flat because of it. But overall I do think the scrubs story is the best on GH right now. And I'm beyond thrilled that Jason Thompson (who is doing an amazing job so far) and Kimberly McCullough is getting a story and airtime. They are both far to talented to be waisted with nothing and no story so I'm happy they have one now.

actually lulu IS aware that her nephew was snatched by psycho franco. but satisifying dante's needs, which is all she's good for these days, was more important to her than being with the older brother who's always been there for her, even when luke and lucky couldn't be bothered by her 'drama'.

this scrubbie is loving this FA sl, even though the buildup was crap, which is nothing new for guza. but the over the top adoration robin is showing for patrick is soooo obvious and really not needed. we get that robin loves her husband and her life; i don't need to hear it everytime lisa is skulking in the background watching their PDA's. it's such a soap cliche. but i give props to bbr; she does the 'creepy ex with a fixation' justice. can't wait to see how far they take this character in regards to sticking it to patrick and robin. now would be a good time to send emma to see granny anna. LOL...

Ugh, the FA redux is only entertaining in the faintest possible definition of the word. And yes, only in comparison to the rest of the GH shlockfest.

The extreme overuse of certain unimaginative and cliche words and phrases on GH is frightening. Almost like the writers are fined or beaten if they describe sex in any other way than "mind bending" or if every doctor and every surgery is described as "brilliant" and don't get me started on "muhnipple8" or "betrayal"......


Lisa going psycho is somewhat entertaining, but it's also pretty much a complete ripoff of the movie, and so it's destined to also be another weak Guza imitation of the original. Also, it's yet another story on GH of a woman going crazy because she was rejected by a man (why do the men never go crazy when a woman rejects them?). It is probably better than most of the stories on GH, but that probably says more about how terrible the rest of the show is.

Lisa is batshit crazy all of a sudden and I'm loving it. Technically Lulu & Dante actually weren't on for 24 hrs, and I really was all "Oh, no! No Dante and Lulu today! But I haven't seen them in 24 whole hours! Noooooo!"
Mainly because of that lame cliffhanger of Jason pointing a gun at Dante which went absolutely no where and two days later they were back in Port Charles. What the what?
yes this show has no regard for continuity, and I get the feeling a lot of scenes that would help in that regard are just simply cut.

Is Lisa going to shoot up the hospital if Patrick snubs her? Wait, Warren just did that...Guza would never repeat the same storyline twice...oh shit...

If Lisa steals Emma, then later shows up at Robin and Patrick's house with a knife, wearing a white dress with a late 80's-psycho-batshit hairstyle, I'm definitely going to send Guza a lovely "fuck you" fruit basket.

All I care about on the "Lante" (gag) front right now is that Lulu stop wearing hideous outfits and eliminate the homeless-hooker hairstyle. PUHLEAZE.

On a side note, I will admit when I might have been wrong, although with much trepidation. I was a Chad Duell HATER in the beginning, even writing an article about how much I thought he sucked; HOWEVER, I thought he kind of rocked it in his conversation with Maxie at the hospital, and his mannerisms and delivery are starting to grow on me. I'm interested to see what he does with the rape storyline (butchered and worthless as Guza will probably write it).

I am disturbed, however, that he's starting to physically look and carry himself like Jason 2.0. Eek.

Yeah Lulu is aware that Aiden is kidnapped...her entire purpose in LA I think was to inform Jason of that development...because it was vitally important for Jason to blink at that. but I can understand why it looks like she doens't know because she was FAR more outraged by Jason suggesting the entire mess was Dante's fault than the fact Jason "killed" the best lead to find her nephew.
And Rene....I've been thinking the same thing about the now physical transformation of Michael into Baby Jaysus. It's damn creepy.

D'oh! Thanks for the correction about Lulu, guys. After Friday's show, I must have stopped paying attention to everything in LA. It's like a self-preservation thing.

Rene:I am disturbed, however, that he's starting to physically look and carry himself like Jason 2.0. Eek.


I am convinced this was the reason for the recast. Drew Garrett reminded me a lot of Sean Kanan, which I thought was brilliant on the part of the casting director. But Jasus forbid viewers are reminded of AJ when Michael should be emulating Port Charles' own patron saint.

Thus, we now have a kinder, gentler Michael who is just as passive, yet violent at a moment's notice, as the town hero.

It should be illegal how much I enjoy your recaps :devilgrin:

Mallory, thanks for the great post.

If you could just clarify one tiny detail for me.

Why exactly Johny and Sony hate each other?

Thanks.

There was a show on years ago called "Jake and the Fatman," which I think was a detective show, so I think GH is trying to create a spinoff called "Dante and the Hitman," because how else do you explain those endless scenes of Dante and what's left of Jason's brain trying to figure out Franco. The whacky misadventures of a cop and the hitman he loves to hate.

Of course Lisa has to go all FA on Patrick. Guza must vilify Lisa in order to redeem Patrick to Robin and the viewers. Now Patrick's all noble and moral and fending off psycho Lisa. I'm not saying it's going to work for us or Robin, but that seems to be where Guza is going. He's definitely not subtle in the way he telegraphs his next plot moves. I don't know why he is recycling from a movie as old as FA, but he would probably say the crazy woman scorned is a "timeless" classic!

Carlee - I'm glad that you pointed out the resolution to the "cliffhanger" of Jason threatening to shoot Dante was never even shown. There have been several scenes that seemed to me to just be dropped and I kept wondering if I had ff'd through some things or if the DVR missed them. Guess not.

As stupid as this Patrick cheating on Robin with Lisa and Lisa then going all batshit crazy storyline is, I am going to have to say that it's massive suckiness is not the fault of Jason Thompson or Brianna Brown but rather, as per usual, is the fault of the craptastic writing this show churns out on the regular.

Because honestly, I think Brianna Brown is rocking it at playing a creepy bunny boiler. She was on an episode of Criminal Minds once, and she played a hooker who was offing her rich clients, and she was kind of awesome at that, so I think she's got the whole "I'm a creepy killer / spurned lover" thing down pat. I'm not saying I like this story (because that would just be lying), but at least Lisa will be a convincingly nutty fruitcake.

You have to take the little victories where you can get them, right?

@Beth R: Love "it was vitally important for Jason to blink at that."

Must say, Brianna Brown does play psycho very well. And I kind of hope she does torment Patrick a little, because COME ON! He frickin' cheated on his wife and he deserves to pay for it somehow. Let's hope it doesn't end w/ him drowning Lisa in the bathtub, though.

Sooooooo sick of Robin happening upon Patrick & Lisa's conversations and having to deliver lines like "oh, I know exaaactly what you two were talking about."

Lastly, am I the only one who felt a twinge of chemistry between Maxie & Michael? Just me?

What I was wondering is, when did Lulu leave LA? Supposedly one reason she went there was to "protect" Dante from Jason, yet she was nowhere to be found when Jason was holding the gun on him, and when Dante got home, presumably on a direct flight from LA, then dropping Jason off at the penthouse and heading home, there she was all snuggly in his bed.

sorry but i just don't find chad duell a great actor he is mediocre at best and i dont thnik he could carry a rape storyline. he only has two facial expressions. anything to make us like st. jaysus i guess.

and am i the only one that wants a krissy soras?

@veve
Totally agree with you about Chad.

thanks jennifer i knew i couldnt be the only one. he has been on my screen way to much lately and is apart of almost everyone's storyline's its annoying. he seems to be guza's new pet. i'm sure drew garrett got fired becuse he wouldn't succumb to guza's perverted demands and chad was a kid he had on speedial

Alright putting on my bitch pants because GH has gone too far. TOO FAR! YOU HEAR ME! I don't want to watch a Prison Rape story line. I have no interest in seeing a character I've watched grow up on the show, a character who we've seen, shot in the head, put in a coma for a year, killed his stepmother, and exposed to Sonny's parenting techniques go through another nightmare in the last two years alone (note a year of which he spent in a coma). For god sakes the kid has been through enough. GH doesn't agree with me though.

I can live with that. I can accept that. Hell I can even watch that. But at least own up to your own story line. Rape, however overused and generic (I swear I watch the same shower scene a million times because it is in EVERY rape story line), is NORMALLY handled well when it comes to daytime TV. If the victim is a woman. Everyone remember the Jasper Jax fiasco? I didn't think it was possible to handle a rape with more umbrage and complete dickery. Once again, Guza, you have proven yourself to be a rage inducing hack with delusions of adequacy.

My first problem with this rape story line is that it is not a rape story line. No one has said the word rape. I understand how disturbing it is a disturbing topic BUT YOU CHOSE TO WRITE THIS STORYLINE SO OWN IT! I understand that Michael is ashamed to say this out loud. Which is understandable. Rape victims normally feel ashamed. This amplified by gender standards of society.
GH should be examining these standards and point out that they are unreasonable. They should be examining the connection between masculinity and dominance is outdated and offensive. Just as a man is no more of a man because he rapes, a man is no less of a man because he is raped. And Michael has nothing to be ashamed of.... GH has done nada. So what Guza? It's okay to say Rape when you are talking about women, because women are weak and natural victims. THAT'S JUST AS'DLKFJ AW;ELISFUN[!!!!! RAGE BUILDING!

Another thing Michael is this isn't Michael's story. This is Jason's and Franco's story. Of course when I hear about a 18 year old being raped in prison as part of a game between one demented serial killer to another saintly and good serial killer, my first reaction is WTF?!?! Wheres Guza wants me to feel POOR JASON!!! Meanwhile Jason sweeps the rape under the rug, to spare Michael? Good idea Jason! If no one knows about Carter and Franco, that'll undo the rape!

And of course you know the sick depraved monster responsible for all of this. The evil scum of the earth that is to blame for Michael's trauma is... Dante?!?!?!?!?

You know what I would say that a strategically shaved baboon with a pen could have done a better job with this storyline, but it'd be such a understatement I don't feel like insulting said baboons. If only you felt the same way about your audience!

Way to be progressive there GH!

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