Going Out With A, Um, Bang
Finn Wittrock and his glorious soap opera character name are leaving All My Children, which I think I have neglected to mention here (I have neglected to mention a lot of things about All My Childrenlately. My 2010 Review is still, after all this time, a work in progress and I haven't commented on recent episodes lately. I was having a hard time creating new and exciting ways to say "Alicia Minshew is as amazing as can be" and "I hope Madison hauls off and stabs Greenlee" and "El Douche then said something in a doucheish manner"). I'm not exactly torn up about this because, really, Damon was a HORRIBLE character. A history rewriting, wholly unlikable, sent to the backburner as soon as the show found another good-looking guy in his twenties character (and if I am choosing between Asher and Damon, I am choosing Asher, if only for the delightful homoerotic subtext he and Jacob Young bring to their scenes together).
Wittrock decided that if he's going to leave the show, he is going to do it AT ELEVEN. "I'm going to go ALL OUT," he may have thought to himself. "By next week, people might not even remember that Damon was a thing, but if they think about it long enough, they'll say 'The one with the yelling? And the strangely robotic arm motions?' Yeah. ALL OUT".
Damon walked in on Colby and Asher making out and unleashed on her. All those months sitting on the backburner gave him ample time to work on his hoarse with rage voice.
Damon, in a normal tone of voice: Save it. He already kissed you once. Am I supposed to believe this was just the second time? How long has this been going on?
Colby, shrilly (Just pretend that it says "shrilly" next to her name for the remainder of this entry because good lord. Natalie Hall is really great with light-hearted moments but she needs to stay away from angst): I swear to you, there is nothing going on between me and Asher. Yes, there was that one kiss, but that was it.
Damon, still speaking normally: Okay, that makes me feel a lot better. [With barely a pause between sentences, ups the volume as though he is heckling at a baseball game] YOU WERE KISSING HIM BACK!
Colby: No, I wasn't.
Damon: I was standing right there! Before you were all [Does higher-pitched "Colby" voice] "Oh, he just kissed me, I wanted nothing to do with it'".
Colby: I didn't want anything to do with it!
Damon: Okay, but this time?
Colby: I don't know, it just happened.
Damon, looking like he's about to start breakdancing with these bizarre arm movements: BECAUSE YOU WANTED IT TO.
Damon: Oh, so he was just really that good at making you feel all better.
Colby: You know it wasn't like that.
Damon: THEN WHAT WAS IT LIKE?
Colby: I don't know! I was upset and Asher, he was there for me.
Damon: Oh, right, right, he was just there. So if Lucretia had been in the room it would have been you two I walked in on?
Colby: You know that's not true!
Damon, as if he remembered he hadn't yelled in a couple of minutes: EVERYTHING I"VE DONE, waiting tables, getting my GED, taking that job with Liza, it was [Deafening yell] ALL ABOUT YOU [in a normal voice] to make you proud of me, to convince you that I was good enough for you. That us dating wasn't a mistake.
Colby: I never thought that we were a mistake.
Damon: Neither did I. [Scoffs dramatically] [Did you know it was possible to scoff in an over-the-top way? I didn't!] Until right now.
Then he met up with Liza, and eventually explained that his rage was caused by heartbreak (and also his ADHD, I'm guessing, since that allegedly caused all of his prior bad behavior). Now he got a chance to show off his EPIC SAD FACE.
Liza: Maybe you've lost Colby and maybe you haven't. It doesn't matter. You're still you. You're a smart, capable, hard-working guy that any girl would be lucky to have [Lies! --Ed.].
Damon: I don't want any girl.
Liza: I know.
Damon: I have to go.
Damon: I mean, I have to go. I have to leave town. I know you're in the middle of this case, and I'm sorry, but I can't stay here anymore. I can't. I can't.
Liza: Okay, Damon, wait. Please. Please don't go.
Damon: I don't want to leave town.
Liza: Then don't.
Damon, voice breaking and then talking dramatically through tears: Like I have a choice, Liza? DAMN IT!
Liza, hugging him: I know. I know. Oh, god, I wish it could be different. I wish there was something I could do.
She might as well have added, "To your penis, in particular" to the end of that sentence, because all of a sudden, Damon sniffled and then they started making out and I was caught off guard and HORRIFIED. I knew that something sleazy and upsetting was going to happen between these two all the way back in March, but then it didn't happen and Damon's presence in Pine Valley was gradually decreased, so I forgot all about it, so I was surprised and sort of revolted by the end of the episode. "Have a good weekend, but before you go, watch something disturbing!"
Will Finn Wittrock be able to check off "Over the top soap love scene" to his end of AMC bucket list? Tune in Monday to see!
Meanwhile, there is something big brewing. No, not something on the show itself because, duh. No, like all interesting things related to the show, this is taking place behind-the-scenes, and it is a doozy of a rumor: According to our friends at Daytime Confidential, Frons is courting Megan McTavish for a return.
You know how you just yelped without realizing it, slammed your laptop shut, and ran out of the room holding back tears? I did the same thing, because referring to Megan McTavish's last stint with AMC as a reign of terror is sugarcoating things SUBSTANTIALLY.
Except...it turned out that her writing ability (feel free to use sarcastic airquotes around either of those words as you see fit) was TOO HIGH A BAR for her successors to reach. Esensten and Brown were almost hilariously inept (not hilarious in the "Haha" way, but hilarious in the "If I convince myself that this is funny, I won't cry myself to sleep at night" way), and Kreizman and Swajeski don't seem to understand that the goal of a soap opera is to entertain and Pratt...Charles Pratt saw All My Children as a way for him to tell viewers to eat shit and die five times a week. He was THE WORST.
So compared to him, sure, McTavish seems like a reasonable alternative (the things I sometimes wind up typing, OH MY GOD), but really, how many times are we going to give writing jobs to the same hack writers? What daytime needs is NEW BLOOD. Remember how excited we all were when Sri Rao was writing the second season of Night Shift, because he had a new perspective and wasn't just ripping off stories he had done before on other shows? That's what we need!
And honestly, the show goes through head writers like I go through Starbucks lattes, but Julie Hannan Carruthers manages to stick around? How does that work? Isn't the show's rapid downturn and absurd loss of viewers at least partially her fault?
And, of course, my last, unanswerable question: how the hell does Brian Frons manage to hold a job for so long? And where can I get a job that allows me to pull a huge salary in spite of the fact that I have spent years doing everything POORLY?