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« Whistling Dixie (In a Tone Of Your Choosing) | Main | A Ghostly (?) Visit I'm Not Even A Little Conflicted About »

June 05, 2011

When The Actors Are Acting

Ah, Sunday morning with the soaps. It's been a traumatic weekend (y'all, I endured the Spiderman musical and I'm still standing and only mildly scarred-for-life), but Friday's One Life to Live is some small comfort food. Very small, because seriously? No Clint or Matthew or Bo or Nora or Viki? 

Blair dressing down John for the fact that he should be looking for Marty and Liam rather than grilling her about her boyfriend was kind of awesome. I mean of course John's right that something's up with Thomas and his reaction to the name "Patrick Thornhart," but that's only because John always has to know everything and be totally omniscient. Still nice to see him get called out for brooding over a cup of coffee digging about Thomas while he's supposed to be leading a search for a kidnapped infant and a crazed murderous lunatic.

And may I just say: please, please, please let TSJTodd be the fake. I don't know how he knows Patrick, which he said Friday he did, but he barely reacted at all to the news he's alive and then went on nonchalantly about how Marty's had "bad luck" with men.

I loved that Marty was trying to run off and TSJTodd came to tell her about Patrick and instead of doing the usual soapy, "I have something to tell you. No, it's really important. No, I swear, this is big news and it's really important and you're walking away but you really shouldn't because there's something I have to tell you, and I would tell you this two-word sentence if you would just stop talking and come back here. I could just say it but I won't because I have to use up all my word space trying to convince you not to walk away, etc, etc," he just said, "Patrick's alive." Good.

Am I crazy, or is everything TSJTodd (or whoever Trevor St. John's character is) does all of a sudden a million times more interesting than it's been in years because this new mystery and (potential) identity is coloring every single choice he makes so differently? I've always thought St. John was a very good actor but I just couldn't reconcile his choices the last couple of years with the character we were being told he was, so I'm really excited to see him digging into something new. It's kind of like he woke back up. (Of course I'll take it all back if he does turn out to still be the real Todd. But frankly, St. John probably doesn't know how this'll play out yet, so he's making interesting choices regardless.)

Tsjtodd
Marty

His scenes Friday with Marty were fascinating, in a weird skin-crawling, bone-chilling kind of way. No matter who his character is. Unfortunately, TSJTodd has now been roped into the boring-ass "OMG JOHN IS LIAM'S DAD THISCHANGESEVERYTHING!" plot.

So they got a photo of Patrick taken yesterday? Jesus, whoever Thomas is working with moves fast. Do they take pictures of their prisoners every single day, just in case?

Divider

Natalie rolling around face-down on the ground screaming outside Todd's poolhouse was pretty hysterical.

Nat1

Natmarty

The way they block these poor actors when they're not supposed to see someone else in the frame with them is often a little embarrassing.

Divider

Hope lives!

Hope

But can someone explain to me why we had to watch a mother and daughter have a conversation with each other about how their respective sex plans got interrupted the night before (and no, I don't mean Starr and Hope, because that would be ridiculous even for this show)? I do enjoy Blair/Starr scenes and it's all good that they discuss their romantic relationships with each other, but must they delve into the sexual details? Ever? It's just icky.

Divider

I find Bree Williamson to usually be pretty decent at playing Jessica and Tess (please note not to interpret that as my thinking that the actual characters of Jessica and Tess are "pretty decent" or even mildly interesting, as that is certainly not what I think), but as Bess?

Bess

No. Just no. They should retire all the alters ASAP for story reasons, of course, but if we simply must be mucking around in alter territory, Bess needs to go. (Also, isn't Bess supposed to be the one who can't understand emotions? Why was she so preoccupied with what Tess feels for some guy we won't mention?)

Destiny out!

Comments

SH was awesome on Friday.

As for the alters, I hate all of them, but would probably prefer Bess at this point because Tess is so OTT and in love with who we won't mention, which is disgusting.

Hello,
I enjoy your commentary and agree with some of what you say but I must take you to task with some of your comments regarding the actors. You seem to many times blame TSJ about how he plays Todd the last couple of years, which I believe is unfair. How is it his fault if the writing for the character has been utterly atrocious the last couple of years. Do you really believe that after doing a good job playing Todd the first few years (Your Words) that he all of a sudden forgot how to play the character.
Clearly, its the writings fault, I know you have taken them to task but it also seems like you put to much on the actor. What can he do if they write him as an uncaring jerk who diminishes what he has done to Marty (AirQoute Controversy). That is on the WRITERS. An actor can only do so much with bad material. You have also done this before with a couple of Actors on GH which I also believe is a case of putting the blame on the wrong party. I know you take RC and definitely BG to taks many times but I think sometimes you confuse acting choices and performances with writing choices and plot driven material.
Just my opinion. Other than that I enjoy reading your columns and look forward to keep reading them.

Gnat on the ground was gloriously funny. But how on earth did she make it out of the hospital without anyone noticing? And at the pace she was walking, it should have taken her about a week to get to Todds house.

I had never seen RH as Todd, only TSJ, so I've enjoyed "hating" this character since I first started tuning in. He does loathesome very well. I am, though, very much looking forward to this storyline, and I'll be happy if RH turns out to be Todd and I can actually feel something other than dislike for the character. No matter how well I think TSJ has done, I cannot understand how he could rate any devotion from anyone, particularly Tea or Blair. Maybe if RH is Todd, he'll play it in a way that makes sense to me.

The less said about Messica these days, the better. I'm in the minority, I guess, at prefering Jessica above Tess, but enough is enough for a while. Especially since He Who Must Not Be Named is so strong in her storyline.

Christian, glad you enjoy the columns! I don't think I'm confusing acting with writing, but hey, that's what opinions are for. Never thought TSJ's acting was bad but I think he had dozens of choices as to how to play the material he was given and I took issue with several (but nowhere near all) of those choices. I'm enjoying seeing him do compelling work again!

Andrea, it's true that Bess showing up means some logic gets applied and we might get closer to Jess re-emerging. BW's just so bad at it that it makes me cringe! But yes, anything that speeds along the departure of Tess is worth tolerating for the moment, I guess.

I'm not sure whey there's still a question of who the real Todd is at this point even if we haven't had every single thing spelled out for us i.e. who TSJTodd really is and what Tomas' role in this is. RH has that iconic scar on his face and when he pretty much said he was Todd and Tea & Blair were his wife and Starr his kid (though I thought Jack was too??? I don't remember). I think they've played this story out enough that for TSJ to be the real Todd and RH to be someone else completely would be a huge disservice to the majority of the fans who are expecting RH to be the real Todd (which from what I've seen since his return announcement has been pretty huge). I don't know why TPTB would even bother to bring RH back if not to play the role he originated and made infamous. I think if this were a case of say Sarah Brown returning we would've known by now if RH were playing a completely different role.

I only caught the last couple minutes of Friday's show and I was glad to get a Marty and Todd scene (well, up until she revealed the paternity mess.) SH and TSJ are great together but I hate their story. I hate the way the characters have been written and now TSJTodd is utterly destroyed for keeping Patrick away from Marty. That fact is not lost on me and hard to digest his unabashed hatred of Marty. It's crazy. I prefer TSJ as an actor to RH (absolutely confirmed with the 2006 execution scenes...stellar.) I wish TSJTodd was not destroyed to make way for RhTodd. I would prefer TSJTodd to have been brainwashed and an innocent victim somehow and he can leave with Tea and Dani and Sam whereas RHTodd gets back with Blair, Starr, and Jack.
Not enjoying OLTL much these days but atleast the Todd s/l is moving.
I was not happy that there was no Matthew or Clint on Friday.

Soapbaby, seeing as TSJ's Todd had no idea about Patrick still being alive, he wasn't keeping her away from him.

Louise, once again our simpatico telepathy is a little spooky, because I swear I thought to myself on Friday, "Man, Bree Williamson can do Tess, but she canNOT do Bess!" Watching ES do Jean Randolph a few weeks ago just highlights how absolutely terrible Bree's gatekeeper is. But, hopefully, this means Jess can come back soon and we can move on. Not that I like Jess all that much, or have any hope that they won't do an asinine Ford/Jess romance, but at least we won't have to watch this particular stuff.

Thanks Andrea. I only caught the last few minutes and the scene read to me that TSJTodd had known about both Patrick and the original recipe Todd or a while, like all along. I thought that's what Tomas had on him. I have got to pay more attention to the Todd story!

I am just tired of the Messica's and hate hate with the fuel of 1,000 sun's the sleaze bag that OLTL is trying so hard to push down our throats.

I'm irritated that TK couldn't come back to OLTL for a couple of token scenes taking Marty off screen since the s/ll was about Todd and not enough Marty for his tastes. Whatever.

I hope Marty gets away with all of her crimes and is then doomed to be saddled with a semi-conscience Patrick and no chance of ever seeing Cole and Hope again.

I'm in the minority here, but I never liked TSJ as Todd. Ever. I've said it before, but as glad as I am that RH is back, I just hope they wrap up the Todd saga and send everyone off in a fitting manner. Other than that, I refused to get involved. They cancelled my shows, for effs sake! Sniff.

What struck me most on Fridays show was Marty's instant sanity when she was told Patrick was alive and she would be reunited with him. Then she was urgently trying to tell Todd to tell John that he is Liam's dad when just moments before she was planning to kill Natalie and planned for John to never know about the DNA switch.

The Todd story is a mess, IMHO and this Marty instant reunion with Patrick without any back story or an appearance by Thorsten Kaye just reeks. I don't mine Marty getting a happy ending but what about justice for poor Dr. Buhari?

I'm so confused. It seems that the show is getting worse since cancellation but maybe that't the plan. And why is the Matthew story on one day and then not the next? The story is not flowing smoothly at all. The PTB should just send the Fords, Aubrey and Cutter plus Deanna on a slow boat tour to China. JMHO, but the show is a convoluted, poorly plotted, poorly written and edited clusterf---.

Christian, I have to agree with you on TSJ's acting choices. People have often accused him of sleepwalking through his part for the last few years, but I think he intentionally and actively plays Todd as a sociopathic douchebag w/o limits. It might not be an appealing performance or in tune with any character development, but that's not the same thing as apathy.

I may be revealing myself as the Tangie-shipper that I am, but I've interpreted his behavior as the result of the loss of the angel on his shoulder. Vicky always forgives him for his indiscretions, and Blair and Tea are pretty screwed up themselves, so no one has really been able to taper his behavior since Evangeline went into her coma.

That said, I really do hope that RH is the real Todd and that TSJ is a brainwashed imposter. Both Todds were deliciously sociopathic, but in such different ways and I've never been able to completely wrap my head around Todd's new found sensuality (nor his lack of instinct to blow things/people up).

"the show is a convoluted, poorly plotted, poorly written and edited clusterf---."

Ariel, truer words have never been spoken.

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