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« Oh, They're "Special" Alright | Main | Our Latest Soap Opera Digest Column »

March 04, 2008

This Hour Could Be Better Spent Doing Anything, Including Staring at a Wall

All My Children has been bad lately. This is an open secret. It's been painful for me to actually sit and watch it, to the point where I start coming up with things that I absolutely MUST DO at that exact moment so that I can put off watching AMC for a little while. Nails all of a sudden need to be touched up, clothes all of a sudden need to be ironed and I'm overcome with a paralyzing need to know exactly how many old issues of Entertainment Weekly I have kicking around (12, all kept for a reason that made sense to me at the time, like being part of a shrine to the cast of Freaks and Geeks or being used as evidence in my future class action lawsuit against Stephen King for crimes against humanity including Pennywise the Clown and multiple references to himself as "Uncle Steve").

Yesterday, I was priming myself to watch and then all of a sudden was struck by this unbelievable urge to know that the hell the Led Zeppelin song "Kashmir" is actually about, which led me to Wikipedia, that font of user-submitted knowledge. After reading up on "Kashmir", I took a look at the four members of the band and that taught me that Robert Plant isn't even 60 yet, which freaked me the hell out because he looks like he's at least 70, and then that made me wonder who else was born in 1948 and if they also look like a shaggy haired corpse, which led me to Mikhail Baryshnikov (who, for the record, does not look like a shaggy haired corpse), which then led me to Jessica Lange, which taught me that she appeared on Broadway with Christian Slater, and remember when he used to be famous? Those were good times, and so on and so forth, and long story short, did you know that Agatha Christie got the inspiration for Murder on the Orient Express from the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby?

Normally, I'd feel bad about wasting time on something so trivial, but, hello, my other option was sitting and watching All My Children. At least my jaunt to Wikipedia was educational and could help me later in life, should I ever appear on Jeopardy! or get targeted by a serial killer who asks pop culture questions like in Scream. What has AMC taught me lately?

  • That Ryan is sexy
  • That stripper poles are work appropriate
  • That if you write a book in two hours and have it published a week and a half later, you may get a stalker
  • That even great actors can't sell crappy dialogue and storylines consistently enough to keep a show together

None of that will aid me on a game show or help me in the hands of a quizzical serial killer, so thanks for nothing, AMC.


Let's start with the...thing that's eating the entire show. The thing that was born from either a writer saying, "You know what's always fun? A good love triangle. Remember how the last good love triangle was in the mid 90s on General Hospital? I think we could bring that back, but make it even better by adding another person and amnesia! Watch your back, Y&R! I smell a new ratings leader!" or from someone taking massive amounts of peyote. Do people still take peyote? I don't know. I'll research that instead of watching today's episode of AMC.


The first time I saw that promo, I thought I hallucinated it. And then I got REALLY scared, because I know that I can be a little bit daffy sometimes, but I didn't think my mind was so far gone that I'd imagine something so wholly ridiculous.

(Side note: why is Melissa Claire Egan's mouth like that? And did you know that she was on the cover of Girl Talk?)

There are three distinct issues that I have with this stupid quadrangle aside from the obvious fact that the official Serial Drama position is that quadrangles suck:

(1) I have no issues with Cameron Mathison, the person. He's a very handsome man, if prone to crazy eyes, and, if comments by co-stars are anything to go by, he seems like an awesome, well-liked person. So we're cool. Or would be if we knew each other. But...in the most recent issue of Soap Opera Digest, they have a spread about soap stars celebrating milestones this year and he originally joined AMC ten years ago. That's 10 years of being told how sexy and hot and amazing and perfect Ryan is, and 10 years of other characters and, like, medical science being manipulated so that Ryan has every eligible girl in Pine Valley throwing herself at his feet. That's a very, very long time to spend on the same storyline.

(2) The original Kendall/Ryan/Greenlee triangle was terrible and I have absolutely no desire to relive it. Yeah, the amnesia angle and the presence of Annie might make it different, but it brings up a lot of bad memories of those three characters at their worst.

(3) Why does Kendall even have to be a part of this story? Wouldn't it work just as well for Ryan to get amnesia and think he's still in love with Greenlee? That way they could have a Ryan/Greenlee/Annie triangle and Kendall could be part of her own story with Zach or anybody else. It's not like the dynamics between Kendall, Ryan and Greenlee are so perfect that the story would be a mess without Kendall, because they aren't. And I love Alicia Minshew to death but, you know, they could have her off the front burner for a while. It's not a necessity that she be a part of this godforsaken story.

And then it gets even more complicated when you factor in Kendall's dreamboat husband, who had a bonding experience with Greenlee, whose boyfriend had ill-advised grief sex with Kendall when they thought Zach and Greens were dead, a secret that hasn't come out yet but surely will soon and send Greenlee and Zach into each other's orbit again and--gah! It's so complicated! If you're going to write a story so convoluted that you need a rubric to follow it, can't you make it good?


I don't have the world's most glamorous job; I work in an office not unlike the office on The Office, except we sell houses, not paper. I answer the phone. I sometimes wonder if working for a fabulous cosmetics company would be better, although if they are anything like Fusion, I'd be working alongside two babynappers.

But if having a glamorous job means that there is an off chance that your boss would install a STRIPPER POLE into your place of employment and get you POLE DANCING LESSONS as some sort of team building/stress relieving exercise...well, then I'm thankful for the fact that our stress relief and team building consist mainly of Successories posters hung all over the place.

A STRIPPER POLE! It was one of those days that I was ashamed of everything in the world. I felt so embarrassed that I watch All My Children and I have to tell you that when a person who loudly and proudly watched Days of Our Lives through the Melaswen era and counts Gossip Girl and The Hills as top television addictions says she's ashamed to watch a show that that means something. And I'm not trying to be all "Tee hee", self deprecating and ironic. I'm seriously saying that I have very low standards and that watching AMC was cringe worthy in a way that Simon and Ryan's awkwardly scripted banter on American Idol is not.

I could start on a huge rant about the pornification of our culture, but I won't, because I've gone on enough tangents already. But I will ask what the hell sort of deficiencies the people at ABC Daytime have, what with the pole dancing here and the never ending parade of violence against women on General Hospital. The works of V.C. Andrews have a healthier attitude towards women.


Speaking of the myriad ways in which ABC shows respect towards their viewing audience: Kendall was nearly raped by a crazed romance novel fan. Can we please declare a moratorium on rape/attempted rape stories on soaps?

And...Charm! inspired a man to go all nutty crackers and stalk and attack Kendall in the roughly 8 days that it has been available for purchase. O...kay.


As much as it pains me to say it, I need to break up with Richie. It's sad, because I think Billy Miller is awesome, and he had such potential, but they've made him so wretched, and not in the fun way. And, okay, isn't he a convict? Like, a newly released convict? How on earth is he able to have a staff of thugs at his disposal? 


I am worried about Ambyr Childers. She's getting very, very thin very, very quickly and I am having flashbacks to the Kirsten Storms/Lamp incident. Ambyr, you are adorable!


Jesse and Angie's reunion is still the most enjoyable part of the show, but it's not quite as awesome as it was a few days ago. The only logical explanation for the swift downturn in awesomeness can be summed up thusly: Krystal Freaking Carey. I swear to you, this woman taints anything that she touches. She could probably ruin Sephora and Starbucks if I let her. I feel bad because I quite like Bobbie Eakes, but whenever I see Krystal, I just have this instantaneous reaction and my eyes roll. I can't stomach her. Is it wrong that I hope Robert Gardner kills her? I know it would leave Jenny motherless, but it opens up a whole new world for storyline possibilities where, for some reason, Tad and Adam raise her together in some inspired My Two Dads homage. Think about it.


All I can say is thank the gods for YouTube in so many ways. It is now my time traveling device (since no one has built the real thing yet) and my watch good soap minus the crap device.

As for Kashmir, I thought it was about a Muslim tragedy (yeah, I went and looked it up too) but apparently Robert Plant wrote about it while he was in the actual region. As for his looks...well, heroin is a hell of a drug. British rock star don't tend to age well..well, except for David Bowie but then again he was always freakishly hot (I got this thing about Brit rock stars and the hotness they had in the seventies these days).

I feel your pain about Richie too. I'll drink a shot and a brew in his memory-well, the memory of his lost appeal anyway.

And now I remember why I gave up on ABC Daytime. Also, I want to state again how much I love YouTube. You can also find old Santa Barbara clips (and old live footage of kick ass rock bands) there. Ah, the good old days...

My Two Dads AND Gossip Girl referrences in ONE post? I have died and gone to Awesome TV Heaven right now!

It's only been ten years of Ryan? God I thought it was longer than that....it totally feels longer than that.....

Is it wrong that I hope Robert Gardner kills her?

If that hope is wrong, then I don't wanna be right.

I originally stopped watching AMC because I couldn't take the coochies who ate Pine Valley, aka Krystal and Babe, any longer. Jesse and Angie dragged me back in, dammit.

Let's see: Cameron Mathison appears on DWTS, in an attempt to draw viewers to AMC.

AMC actually goes down in the ratings during this time period. Coincidence? Or did I just blow your mind? [/Cosmo Kramer]

Rebecca Budig mentions in just about every interview that during her time away from AMC, she learned to pole dance.

A pole mysteriously appears in the Fusion offices a short time after Ms. Budig's return, and she showcases her pole abilities on screen. Coincidence?

AMC is a train wreck. Any place where the block of wood named Aiden Turner is considered leading man material should be declared a disaster area.

Run Alicia! Run Thorsten!Save yourselves!

a few months ago I had such high hopes for AMC with only few exceptions it seemed to be heading in a good direction.

maybe it's just me but sometimes when I watch i feel like i'm watching the Rebecca Budig show. as much as i like her it's getting really annoying!The quadrangle is just annoying and it makes absolutely no sense at all, the first Greenlee/Ryan/Kendall story was boring so why do they think this one's going to be any better. and the inclusion of Zach and Kendall is this horrific mess is just dumb!

NuBabe and JR is just ickiness to the extreme! between Jacob Young's hair and JR's personality, and just her being her...ICK!! I don't think they realized that the only reason Babe had any supporters at all was because Alexa Havins was so awesome, take her out of the equation and Babe becomes a nothing character.

The only good thing has been Angie and Jessie, but as awesome as Debbie Morgan and Darnell Williams are they can't carry the show all by themselves!!

Seriously, Dwight Schrutte pole dancing...HOT!

Now seriously seriously. All behind the scenes execs, writers, and showrunners etc....need to be fired immediately from all three ABC Daytime shows.

Then the good actors and enjoyable characters should all form one new show. It can take place in three different locales to begin, then most characters will migrate to one location for ease of storytelling, shooting schedules etc...

Zach will still be Zach, Todd will still be Todd, Vicky, Robin, Patrick, Alexis, Angie, Tad, Dorian, Kendall and so on.......If the mobsters and their molls remain it will only be to redraw them in reality. They will be appropriately villified instead of made into heroes.

But all the awesome characters worlds will intertwine and new bonds and enemies will form. And this all will be written and produced by real talents like Claire Labine etc...

And because now it is a one hour show that kicks ass instead of three one hour dramas that mostly suck, it will actually make money, lots of it. Thus allowing vets to work with dignity and the end of soup propping. Not to mention location shoots on occasion vs. sad silly amateurish CGI.

See, seriously, all better.

Oh my god, Girl Talk. I think that's still in my parents' game room. . .

I accidentally watched 2 episodes of AMC this weekend while I was being fluish, and they were both the pole dancing episodes. I sat there screaming (hoarsely) at the screen "THIS MAKES NO SENSE!!!" Especially when Annie gets off her pole and says that they need to make a perfume that makes women feel the way they do. . .and Kendall and Greenlee say "you've nailed it." Nailed what? It's not like she was so inspired that she rattled off a list of notes they should include. She said something vague and kind of stupid.

Anyway. I blame AMC for setting back my recovery at least two days.

The pole dancing incident just reinforces my feeling that ABC Daytime is now targeting teen-aged boys instead of any-aged women. And speaking of the pole, wouldn't any perfume inspired by a bout of such dancing likely smell like sweat?

I don't know any business that would install a pole; you are just asking for a sexual harassment suit. It is on the order of, though not quite as bad as, the unisex locker room in General Hospital where the shower is open for all to see. I have scratched my head quite a bit about that one.

I went on vacation recently for three weeks and, due to time restraints on my TiVo, I quit recording AMC. That was despite my long-standing love for Thorsten Kaye. I looked at one episode this week and I realized what a very good decision it was. Icky to the max!

When KWAK covers her boobs, I will stop FFing .. and is it possible for Jesse, Angie and Frankie to use the words: 20 years any more often then they are? I didnt think so.

AMC is making GH look like a good show. That shouldn't be possible.

It was bad enough to have Ryan go through each of these women over several years, and now they want to have them all lusting after him at one time? VOMIT.

I can't even talk about the pole dancing. I was horrified. You know if Guza sees that ... oh, I don't want to think about it.

Jesse & Angie are the only watchable parts of this show now. Here's hoping they go on the run and we get that made into a show and leave Pine Valley far behind forever.

The thing about the quadrangle is...if you add Zach and Adrian, it becomes a sextet! Ha!

"The thing about the quadrangle is...if you add Zach and Adrian, it becomes a sextet! Ha!

Which was the name of a Mae West movie that was about as good as AMC these days.

Oh my! I feel the same way. I keep thinking AMC can't get worse, and then the next episode comes on. I haven't watched a full epy since January until a last week, have been FF or even deleting from my DVR after the first scenes. The pole dancing I think was the all time low...when Greenlee suggested it, all I could think was I miss how they were writing for Sabine's Greenlee, even as horrible as the writing was.

The Angie/Jessie scenes have been the best, but now the writers have hit a speed bump with them. I don't want to see them scurrying around hiding out in shacks and in attacks - I want them pulling an Erica, calling a news conference and taking back their life and the power from the bad guys.

I can't even get into the sextet thing with annie, ryan, greenlee, aidan, kendall, and zach. My vote is for a Zach and Annie pairing at this point. Annie had enough self-respect to throw ryan out one day, then went pole dancing the next. Aidan...as hot as he is, still can't act and it's showing up against those that can. I just can't believe the writers had Zach pole dance!!! It was good to see him lighten up but by pole dancing????????

And now they are bringing back Jake, played by Ricky Paul Golden...poor, poor Ricky Paul, he should be afraid....

OMG how true is this?? I have been scratching my head to figure out why they are doing this & obviously it isn't helping the ratings & it is making me tune out. ITA
that CM may be a doll personally (I wouldn't know) but he is very often nauseating to watch with all the interferring & espec. int the Slaters lives. And Zach-- Mr. Dreamboat-
well, Kendall just needs to be with him & lets please have more of their special magic & move out of this Mickey Mouse quad thing or whatever it's supposed to be before they
finally lose their last 3 viewers, me included.

"AMC is making GH look like a good show. That shouldn't be possible."

I object! Ten reasons why AMC is better than GH:
1. Diversity. Black people! On screen! For more than two minutes! Outside of February! With family and friends! With storylines! (Yes, I know this hasn't been true for more than two months.)

2. Sex. Characters have it. They like it. They show it.

3. Families and friendships. Whoa. They exist? I see children and it’s not because they’re gravely ill, being kidnapped or shooting people? I see two females in a scene together and they aren’t always bitching, lecturing or being condescending towards each other? Amazing.

4. People shown working. Maybe not doing it well or believably, but working nonetheless.

5. Veterans and/or actors over 45. Erica, Adam, Jack, Jesse, Angie, Tad, Krystal, Opal, Samuel, Robert, Joe. All involved in storylines, leading or supporting, not just propping. Okay, Joe isn’t a major figure, but I love seeing him and getting to see him when it isn’t always necessary wins points with me.

6. Violence. In the one act of violence against a woman, the woman defended herself. No one has been shot, no person or place has been blown up,

7. Happiness. That’s right, happiness. People actually smile at times, enjoy each others company.

8. Pregnancy. The men and women are not obsessed with having children and none of them are currently pregnant or trying to get pregnant.

9. Bangs. AMC seems to realize how evil they are.

10. Law enforcement isn‘t totally ineffectual and stupid, the medical community isn’t flat out incompetent and unethical and the legal system isn’t completely corrupted and illogical.

Disclaimer: I started watching in mid-January, so my post may sound completely insane to many, but as of the past two months, AMC kicks GH's ass.

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