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« A Letter to Nora Hanen Gannon Buchanan | Main | The Catch Up Blues »

August 31, 2011

And There Are Silver Linings Yet

I maintain that a whodunit murder mystery taking out Victor was not the best way to let this Todd Returns story unfold. Even if Trevor St. John's departure was necessary, they could have removed him from the scene in some other manner (taking off to find himself? dying in a non-whodunit situation?) so that we could still get to the human drama of Todd reconnecting with his old life, as well as the various family members coping with the truth about Victor. I just want that out there. That said, here's what we have now and here's what we have to deal with. And today's episode was pretty damn good from my spot on the couch. Let's review some highlights:

Todd in the rain.

Toddrain1

I mean, you know, whatever, no biggie.

Toddrain3

Hot.

Toddrain2

I can't really explain why it's hot, but it's hot. Leave me alone. 

And I don't think I've ever said this before, but I really liked Starr's hair today.

Starrhair

It just looked like a real person's hair. A real person's pretty hair. Someone who wasn't styled within the hour. I still want to wash off some of her eye makeup and pluck the inner parts of her eyebrows, but she really was at her loveliest today.

Now, yesterday I tried to give some good girlfriend advice to Nora about how she deals with Destiny from now on, and encouraged her to get a grip and to back off. Uh, she did not take my advice. Not even a little bit. In fact, she drew up a draft of legal papers for the Evanses to look over and sign to make sure the Buchanans have some sort of rights to Destiny's child. (Destiny's Child, heh heh. I'm 12.) These were great scenes because they seriously made me cringe. Nora was so way out of line that the line had been shot, bled out, body-bagged and disappeared long ago.

Norabo

And the level of "OH SWEET JESUS THIS IS AWKWARD" on the faces of Bo and Dani and Richard (Frankie Faison is back!) made me about as uncomfortable as the first time I watched that torturous episode of The Office when Michael and Jan had everyone over for their Dinner Party of Ultimate Discomfort (I don't really know why I linked to that, everyone who'd be interested knows what I'm talking about and it's not like NBC is giving us kick-backs) (note to self: get NBC to give us kick-backs for linking). 

Dani
Evanses

I wonder if it's occurred yet to Nora that if and when Matthew wakes up and finds out he's now a teenage father and is, in fact, legally bound to be, his first thought might not be to thank his mother? (Also, come on, Matthew! Wake up! Time to get up!)

Well, that's pretty much all that happened today on the show.

Oh wait! Just kidding. Victor died. Someone shot him. The suspects they want us to be thinking of are Brody and Todd, at the moment. Jack also turned up dumped at the emergency room with a bump on his head, and his keychain was found at the scene of the crime -- making it look like whoever did it went there to kill Victor but had to knock out Jack in the process, and anonymously dropped him at the hospital. Because giving a crap about what happens to Jack limits it to very few suspects, today worked pretty hard to convince us it was Todd, so of course it wasn't. Were it Rex, I wouldn't be so sure he'd take Jack to the hospital. Brody? Tomas? Yes indeed.

Victor's death was very soapy in the sense that his wife was over him begging him to stay with her the whole time, but very non-soapy as he actually had blood spurting out of his mouth, was convulsing, and did not manage to string together a long, poetic goodbye. I found the soapy and the non-soapy juxtaposition very effective; for all the complaining I have done over the years, this tugged at my fraying heart strings. Trevor St. John played dying very well. That sounds like strange praise, but it's not easy to pull that off without looking incredibly fake or incredibly cheesy, and I really felt like I was watching a man lose his life -- and it wasn't quick.

   Teavictor

Florencia Lozano rocked the crap out of the material as she tried desperately to keep him alive and then went straight to numbed shock after the EMT's pronounced him dead (and they did it dickishly, I might add, but we know about Llanview Hospital's doctors' bedside manner so getting him to the hospital wouldn't have made anyone show any more grace giving her the news).

I was really worried yesterday that today would open with a Very Dead Victor and that was way too abrupt for the character that's essentially been the male lead of this show for the past eight years, love 'im or hate 'im. This was far more fitting, and I hate to say it but I was glad they put off Dani finding out until tomorrow. We already know exactly how she'll react and exactly what notes she'll hit (they'll hurt the ears) because she reacts like that to a lot of things (I really don't dislike her; I'm just not interested in the histrionics), and that would've put a damper on today's episode for me. (I will be very excited to take this all back if she turns in a low-key reaction tomorrow. I will also eat a small piece of my hat.)

But while I'm throwing praise around for performances, I have to offer it up for just one moment that was played today. Kassie dePaiva hasn't been given much in terms of big, dramatic scenes lately (most of Blair's drama has been in muted, quieter discussions), but what she's done with just a small reaction here and there has told us a great deal. And today after John nonchalantly told her (in front of two of her children) that Victor had been killed...

Blair

Oh come on! These stupid screencaps never do anything any justice. Point is, there was just so much in that one-second reaction shot that let us know just how many layers of everything she's experiencing in this moment. Victor, who she just learned is Victor. Victor, who she did love and marry more than one time. Victor, a man who all of her children do love. Is dead. And she "knows" that Todd killed him. Todd, the love of her life who she just got back in her life. Todd, the father of two of her children. Todd, a man she cares about, was driven to kill his brother. And she's hearing all of this in front of the two children they share.

Rough moment, and well done.

Poor Sam. 

Comments

Wow Louise I'm glad you recapped the show because after the opening shot of wet RH my brain melted. Really you want to keep the ratings up instead of showing a dripping wet TOdd with his wise homeless vet friend, how about a dripping wet Todd with an equally wet Blair. I knopw a lot of people loved TSJ and his acting, but all I felt when he air quaotes died was laughter at his very visible receding hairline.
RH. to showed more emotion, remorse, pain, anger loneliness and humor than TSJ did in his last few year, but I could still be melting cause of the very gorgeous Mr Howarth.

That first shot you've got of Todd in the rain is orgasmic.

Wow.

Blair needs to get wet with him and fast.

TSJ died well, which was welcomed since his getting shot scene was rather laughable. Tea was way too Sally Field hysterical on 'Soapdish' for me to take seriously.

And it's a little unfair to go from Roger Howarth's perfect hairline to Trevor St. John's not so much one.

Blair seems to be completely fed up with all the idiotic men in her life... son included.

John and Brody casually strolling in as Victor was pronounced dead really made me giggle inappropriately. And the surfer dude EMTs were actually kind of horrifically awesome.

I empathized with Tea a hell of a lot more AFTER the death rather than during. And I am not looking forward to Dani freaking out tomorrow.

I think Shane is a good candidate as well. On Tuesday's show, didn't they show Rex at the mansion at the safe where he put the gun that was then missing and Shane missing with it?

Someone also pointed out that Irene could be a good candidate too seeing as how he tried to choke her to death and refused to help her get out of jail.

I have had many issues with TJS and what he has done as "Todd" over the years but this Todd/Victor story not only put those things in much better context but also allowed TJS to give the best performance I have seen him play pretty much since he's been on. It's a shame that ABC treats its actors like crap and couldn't allow him to stick around longer. His death scene was one like I haven't seen in a long time on a soap opera. And Florencia Lozano played the hell out if it too.

I am not really looking forward to Dani's screeching either. And I think there's plenty ahead when she finally gets a chance to go head to head with Todd.

I think making Todd the lead suspect though is part of what makes Todd...well Todd. It speaks well to RH's history since he likely didn't do it because he really does have a conscience yet Victor was his sworn enemy so naturally his death will fall on him. I think it will allow Todd as a character to have to prove himself innocent as part of reconnecting with his family.

Todd needs to stand in the rain on a regular basis. He needs his own personal raincloud to follow him around just for aesthetic purposes.

I'm happy for Sam. He's better off not having to be raised by Victor. Or maybe I'm just feeling biased after watching that "Shut Up, Jack" video on YouTube.

I was really surprised that they showed Vic choking on his own blood. Ick-- and yes, well played by TSJ.

Dang!!! The recipe I have for Hot Toddy's doesn't sound anything like what I just saw above. ;)

CZ, the Shut Up Jack video is hilarious and sad at the same time. I'm sad that they didn't play on Victor's abusiveness towards Jack more with Todd around. I know they had Victor yelling at Jack at Sam's party, but they should have had more scenes where Todd witnesses Victor yelling at Jack and Jack cringing and he has to deal with how he sees himself reacting to Peter's abuse.

You know what I liked (there's plenty I didn't like but that's for another day)? That Victor kept telling Jack and Blair that Todd wouldn't shoot him. He just knew it wasn't possible. He understood why it wouldn't be possible for someone to throw away a life they just got back. That alone makes me sad he's gone. There could have been years of him and Todd as enemies who understood one another.

That said, I won't miss TSJ. He couldn't even be anything but sneering in his last scene with KDP. Speaking of which, when does Blair get to do anything important again?

Today was exceptional. And as always, Florencia Lozano delivered in a way that few performers good. The woman is a powerhouse of talent.

I'm going to miss TSJ, and all the possibilities that the two Todds could have brought. TSJ has been the only Todd I've known, and while I've quite often despised the character, I've always enjoyed the actor. But, I'm a RH convert too. He's just tremendous. I would have liked seeing them both, at least a while longer.

But now it looks like Blair and Tea will be front and center, and that can only be good.

Please, Victor's being transported to a Cassadine's Ye Olde Patented Resurrection Tank and Tavern as we speak. Those EMTs weren't just dicks, they were Irene plants! Plants, I say! I mean, yeah, he was shooting blood and convulsing, but, hey, he's got a head, doesn't he? He'll be back.

Still, that was a massively effective death scene. Florencia Lozano was DOING it. If she doesn't get an Emmy nod, there's not justice in this world. No one screams like her, and that aggressive, almost violent, petting of his hair was heartrending. I also agree, Louise, that TSJ did just about the best dying scene I've ever seen. They're very, very hard to get right, but he managed it.

RH with wet hair? ROWR!

That Evans and Buch family reunion? Just about the most awkward thing ever. I think Dani was about to have a stroke, and she knows from awkward family situations. And just SHUT UP, Nora!

Bourgeois Nerd I agree with you, Victor can't be dead. Maybe David from AMC is a visiting Dr @ Lanview General...

RH + gun= Illogically Sexy! Add rain and leather jacket (in August? YES!)? I'm not sure, but I think I swooned! LOL

Nora is a bold woman. She stepped to Destiny's Mama again after that epic smackin' she got last time? Even Bo knew to stand behind his wife.

Victor's death scenes got me all emotional. TSJ and FL were incredible. FL should have gotten an Emmy nomination last year and I really wish she gets one for this year's work.

I also think HBS deserves an Emmy nom as well. Yes, Nora has been beyond desperate but there is no denying that HBS has been delivering on the material all year. The woman who plays Destiny's mom/grandma deserves a nom for the courthouse-slap alone.

Seriously, I FLOVE TSJ and always have. There are a lot of complaints about his "checking out" over the past few years but I disagree. I think the writing for Todd has been pretty abysmal after the 2006 execution s/l and Evangeline was written out. The show will not easily rebound from his being written out. Victor/Todd s/l had so much untapped potential.

Um, I guess I was the only one who FFWD'ed Todd in the rain/talking to homeless guy. Don't get me wrong, I like RH and think he's attractive but him walking around town with a gun does not progress story or interest me. It's obvious he's not the killer so didn't see the point of his scenes. He may have the hairline but TSJ is far more sexy to me.

It's not just the TSJ fan in me speaking, but I feel a sharp decline in Todd's interest factor without TSJ around.

If the rumors are true then TSJ is already in talks with PP.

Lawd, Nora is bold! Destiny's grandmother already put a *itch slap on the DA and she comes back with legal documents?

I was looking forward to Todd vs Victor for years to come and OLTL takes the lazy way out and kill off the character? Why not kill off the Ford's, Deanna, Baz, and Rick instead of a very popular male lead that came in to do a job when RH wanted out? I truly hope that this doesn't bite OLTL in the butt when they go online and find out that neither RH or TSJ signed on for the new show!

@waitingforwow, you are the type of RH fan that makes me absolutely loathe him.
Trevor is not losing his hair, but RH looks so much older.
You got him for a few months, your ilk say he is Christlike.
So............what happens when the ratings do NOT go up because the male Madonna is back?
I absolutely loathe some RH fans.

TSJ's hairline is either starting to recede or he's always had a high forehead and has just stopped wearing bangs. Nonetheless, he looked like a sweet, little angel during his death scene.

While I've been defending Nora a bit, as late, I cannot comprehend how or why she would ignore all the indications everyone was giving her that then was not the time to bring up custody agreements. I was glad that Destiny did manage to speak up a little before that happened. Nora is in no way to blame for the current situation, but she does need to take a chill pill before she makes things worse.

Y'all, be nice to each other in the comments please! Rail on the characters or storylines or even actors or writers you don't like all you want, and vehemently disagree till the cows come home, but don't take it out on each other here by getting personal with other commenters.

(If the cows do come home, though, give me a heads-up because cows are adorable.)

I'm just waiting to see if the writers do decide to make Brody the killer. If they have a freaking brain cell they won't, due to one simple fact. That fact being this: Brody is supposed to be an ex-Navy Seal. So one thing he should know how to do is to kill a guy. Not just shoot him and allow the dude to live long enough to talk to a witness.

I could buy Shane being the shooter. With Brody, Rex and/or Jack walking in on the scene. Jack being knocked out by Shane, Rex or Brody. And Brody/Rex seeing what has happened(or believing that Shane committed the crime) and he decides to go into cover up mode. With Brody(or perhaps even Rex) deciding to drop off Jack at the hospital. My only issue with Brody covering up for Shane is that Brody knows the mental that come with lying. He suffered for years after his war traumas. The man spent time in a hospital for in-house therapy. So I'd like to believe that he would learn something. So I'm actually kind of inclined to believe that Rex would be the perfect coverup guy. Since he can be as stupid as Sonny Corinthos.

FL? Rocked her lines. Totally bought her in pure shock mode.

John? Is still a complete and total asshole. Why the fuck didn't he pull Blair(his own ex-wife) aside and tell her first about Victor's death? Instead he just matter of factly just tells them. What. An. Ass.

Nora? SHUT THE FUCK UP. Really. Someone should really give her that advice. Rambling on and on about Matthew's rights(by which you really believe are your rights, let's be honest), throwing out legal documents and just digging yourself in a deeper and deeper hole. How deluded is the woman if she couldn't see the look of "How does this crazy bitch not see how pissed I am? Now she is telling me how to run my family? Now she wants to use legalese on me? Get the bitch away from me! GET THE BITCH AWAY!" on Destiny's mother's face, voice and body language?

If Nora's not careful, Phylicia's going to have to escalate from "Slap the Bitch" to "Punch Her the Hell Out!" And, really, what Phylicia said about Nora trying to replace Matthew is absolutely on-target. Dani's doing the same thing, though, so of course she'd defend Nora. God I hope Matthew wakes up soon and gets these people to all chill.

And by "Dani," I mean "Destiny," of course.

You guys might be right that the EMT's were Irene's minions, that would explain how quickly the EMT's gave up and how much they went out of their way to do the body-bag zip-up and everything.

I mean in a way I want him to be dead just because actual death almost never happens on soaps and it would be oddly bold, but on the other hand there's obviously plenty of drama to be mined from Victor and it would be cool to see him on the online version (though I wonder if St. John would be interested in that).

The line of the day was Phylicia's "My daughter's childhood is over thanks to her foolishness, your son's carelessness, and your interference."

@stlbf: I agree that Brody would have done a way better job killing Victor. He was a SEAL and now he's a cop. He'd know better than to go into the house where he could leave forensic evidence and he would have double-tapped Vic to make sure he was dead.

I'm hoping that being a suspect will cause him to take another Shower of Angst. If they cut between Brody in the shower and Todd walking in the rain they'd have a great show.

John? Is still a complete and total asshole. Why the fuck didn't he pull Blair(his own ex-wife)

John and Blair were MARRIED?!? Oh my god, why pair a firecracker with Blair with a boring drip like McBain? What in the hell?

I am no fan of Felicia's and haven't been since her bossy behind first debuted on OLTL. She was overbearing and a pain in the rear to Rachel when she was dating Greg, and barely better to Vivian. Know it alls do not entertain me, or make my sympathetic to them.
And, if she really means it, about supporting Destiny and her decision,then she'd stop badmouthing that decision every chance she gets, especially since it's too late for Destiny to change her mind. And she'd keep her mouth shut about her opinion of Nora around Destiny too. She's going to put Destiny under the stress she says she wants her to avoid. Felicia is a loudmouth painintheass who must be one lousy social worker.

BUT, Nora was so far out of line that she was in another country. She was verging on hysteria, and IMO about as close to a breakdown of some kind as I've seen her so far in all this. Too bad Felicia, with all her supposedly wisdom choose not to see that. Too bad she decided it felt better to stress out her daughter and taunt the (almost) crazy lady.

Get Mathew out of this coma so he help Destiny shut the door on all these loudmouths.

@Minirth, they were. Mercifully, it was a very short lived marriage.

I'm just waiting for the day that Phylicia and Nora start up and then Phylicia starts to take her earrings off. Nora had better run like hell the day that happeneds.

I'm always in favor of Brody's showers of Angst. Who isn't?

And today's show? Once again, everything is ALL BLAIR'S FAULT! That phrase had better be in the OLTL drinking game. Also, SHUT IT Jack!

@Minirth: John & Blair weren't exactly a great love match or anything. They were just friends, with some benefits. They only got married to improve Blair's chances of getting custody when Todd (aka Victor Jr) went Full Metal Asshole and decided that he should have them.

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