Picture it: Port Charles, 1996.
There's a heat wave. We know this because everyone is sweaty, and not in the usual way you'd think of that adjective and 1990s soap operas. We open with little Lucas (played by the son from Liar, Liar -- how did I never put those two pieces together before now?) running a lemonade stand outside his parents' brownstone. Tony is there, teasing his son that doctoring might have been the wrong business to get into and maybe lemonade's a better gig, when Tom arrives. He's in a linen suit, sharing that ol' gem that anyone who's ever lived in the Northeast knows/hates by heart: "It's not the heat, it's the humidity that gets me. Oy." Then I "oy," because Felicia and her giant hair arrive and she and Tom start making sex eyes at each other. The three adults start talking about how the brownstone's air conditioning is out, as it always is during heat waves.
Then Tom and Felicia have a conversation-within-a-conversation that is ostensibly about the AC but is, in fact, about sex. Their sex. That they have. I feel compelled to disclose at this point in the post that this Tom-and-Felicia-sexin'-it-up plot throughout this episode is not something I can detail for you on the sacred pages of our blog. There is dirty talk, there are many double-entendres, there are ice cubes used in a sexual fashion, there are illusions to orgasms. I cannot possibly be expected to recap that. I only barely tolerated Tom and Felicia independently but together I was repulsed by them and I don't want to spoil my otherwise happy walk down Port Charlesian memory lane with these unfortunate goings-on. Therefore, when throughout the episode Tom and Felicia have, allude to, talk about, or prepare for The Sex, I will I will instead substitute my Matthew Ashford/Jack Devereaux happy place: Jack and Jen flirtatiously banter at The Spectator!
Anyway, back in front of the brownstone, Original Recipe Carly flies onto the scene on Rollerblades and makes googly eyes at Tony.
I had to rewind this first scene several times in order to recap it, because I kept getting distracted -- shallowly, I will acknowledge -- by the outrageousness of:
1) The aforementioned grossness of Tom and Felicia flirting.
2) The extent to which Dr. Tony Jones is tragically unhip.
What's the worst part? The tucked-in shirt, the "short" sleeves to his elbows, the short shorts, the white socks with black sneakers, or the haircut? At what point did Carly decide she had to hit that? (I do miss the warmth that Brad Maule brought to the show, and I recognize that we all looked a little like this back then. I am not totally heartless, just really shallow and easily offended by outfits this bad.)
3) The enormity of Felicia's hair.
Whoa. That's like 10 years past stylish.
4) Tom wearing a pinky ring, in addition to the poseur African bracelets for which I have previously expressed my dislike.
It's like they were trying to kill my Jack Devereaux love.
Meanwhile, outside of Kelly's, Robin runs into Jason. Jason is searching out a cold drink and unlike these days, when he would probably just blow some random passer-by's head off and snag his Dr. Pepper, he was going to buy one at Kelly's. But Robin says he's in luck, she has a drink, and he can have some! Oh, teenage flirting. How I don't miss you.
Jason polishes off Robin's drink but then decides to drink out of a hose that is conveniently placed outside Kelly's. Robin watches and says "you're so funny!" but she doesn't actually mean he's funny, she means she wants to hook up with him. And he's all, oh I'm funny huh, why don't I threaten to spray you with this hose? Sigh. So dweeby. Yet so adorable.
DISCLAIMER: I cannot promise to be unbiased when it comes to Jason and Robin. Back then, I really liked Jason, and I still had a lingering crush on Steve Burton that started way back with Out of This World. (I still think he's gorgeous when his hair isn't effed up, I just refuse to talk about that because of how horrible his character is now.) And Kimberly McCullough had me wrapped around her little finger from the moment I started watching this show, so that side of things is a no-brainer. Both of these actors have sold pretty much every single one of their romantic pairings, and they had crazy chemistry, and they were legacy characters with legitimate obstacles who got a good build-up and WHY MUST I JUSTIFY MYSELF TO YOU PEOPLE?!