One Life to Love
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September 6-10 1999

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Poor Midge was on tenterhooks from Monday all the way till Friday's cliffhanger worrying about the fate of my favorite troublemaker Sophia at the hands of creep-boy! What a relief to find her tied up and stashed in Brian's closet. I'd imagined a whole lot worse. Iím keeping my fingers crossed that the show will wrap things up without any more victims. They've more than established that Brian is one sick puppy -- please, no more rapes!

I've actually liked this story's twists and turns thus far, but this latest one -- the idea that the rapist has been following Rae and her advice column from city to city -- doesn't quite click. Does this mean he'll start stalking her soon? Was their encounter at the diner a hint of things to come? Should Ann Landers be worried? Maybe John will finally get to play the hero after his flop with Tea. Remember how he screamed in the phone for 10 minutes: "Tea, are you alright?! Tea, what's happening?!" while R.J. boogied on over to the penthouse and saved the day?

Am I a horrible rat to admit that I found Viki's humiliation at the hands of Skye a teensy bit entertaining? It's just that she's been so disgustingly smug about her perfect new boyfriend. This unwelcome reality check is just what the doctor ordered. BTW: If Ben's such a paragon, why does he manhandle the women who annoy him. He used to muscle Sophia
on a regular basis, now Skye's getting the rough treatment -- and he supposedly loved her once. Nice, real nice. Just wondering, did Ben used to call Skye "Red"?

Later, when the unhappy lovers met up at Crossroads, I was glad to see Viki sweating Ben just a little -- way to have some pride, girl! Though when is it suddenly such a big deal to get a divorce on a soap? Don't all these Richie Rich-types just jet off to the Dominican Republic? Say, did I miss the part where Viki bought Crossroads? Is that why it's always closed and she and Jess use it as a soul-searching hangout? Guess it's more convenient than the cabin.

How about the way Kevin sucker-punched Ben? Given this lusty lad's romantic history, he's the last person to play the gallant defender of female virtue. Let's run it down, shall we? First he pursued the very-married Cassie Carpenter, then while married to Cassie, he grabbed a quickie with Barbara Graham. Most recently, he began hitting on Grace while the ink was barely dry on his annulment papers. You know, I thought Kevin was soooo disgusted with Nora. So why was he
grinning ear to ear and chatting with her so sweetly? Guess all it takes is a little roll in the hay to melt that chip on his shoulder. That's our Kevin, always thinking with the little head.

Not to sound like Asa, but isn't this mass commingling of Buchanans and Rappaports-Davidsons-Monroes a bit much? Sam is with former Buchanan-by-marriage (BBM) Nora; Viki, another former BBM, is with Ben; Kevin is with Grace; and Will is doing his darndest to get with Jess. If Jenny Rappaport ever surfaces, Kelly had better keep a tight leash on Joey! Soaps are always a bit incestuous, but this is ridiculous!

Rae continues to bug me. I mean, a good 80-90% of the situations she decides to weigh in on have absolutely nothing to do with her personally. And talk about hypocrisy! Didn't she follow Grace to Llanview, misrepresent herself to gain access to The Sun offices, and confront Grace about her affair with her husband? That's not too terribly different from Skye's modus operandi. So put a cork in it, lady. Still, my heart went out to her during that painful scene when she read Daniel's ultra-mushy love letter to Grace. How crude and cruel of Grace to wave it in Rae's face. I guess that's why Rae felt she had to return the favor. I think I like Dr. Rae best when she's sticking it to Grace.

The Rae/John pairing is percolating along nicely. It donít float my boat, but I'm sure itís a hit with the Lifetime crowd. Something for everyone -- that's what soaps do best.

It was great to see Carlotta again. I think that's another reason I resent Rae; she's assumed Carlotta's role as Llanview's favorite "talk to" -- and her arrogant bossiness is a sorry replacement for Carlotta's warmth, compassion, and wise counsel. Mrs. Vegaís kind and caring response to Dorian was typical of this wonderful character.

Bo and Lindsay patched things up this week. Apparently Bo is actually turned on by Lindsay's drama queen antics. No wonder straight-shooter Hank looks at their relationship and shakes his head. Did Bo really say that he has "a Lindsay-shaped hole in the rest of my life"? Any more dialogue like that and someone's gonna have a Midge-sized hole
in their head!

You know, in terms of missing the old Bo/Nora magic, I actually feel sadder when Bo dances with Lindsay then when he smooches her. I was just thinking I'd finally warmed up to Sam and Nora and then I saw Nora and Bo again -- there's just so much chemistry there, not to mention oodles of unfinished business. Damnit, if Matthew isn't Bo's child, I'm gonna spit fire!

I'm glad Lindsay and Dorian are, if not friends again, at least friendlier. And all it took was a little blackmail on Dorian's part. IMO, Lindsay ought to be down on her hands and knees thanking Dorian. That whole Lindsay-falsely-accused situation did wonders for her relationship with Bo.

Poor Dorian! She's desperately trying to keep it together, but between her guilt and those malicious pranks, she's beginning to unravel. (Could R.J. be right? Is Dorian unknowingly gaslighting herself?) She made a heartbreaking visit to Megan's grave, begging her forgiveness and praying for peace of mind. I love the subtle way Robin Strasser is playing Dorian's distress. In the past, I've sometimes felt that Dorian was too continuously over the top, too much at the same high decibel level, both emotionally and literally. This more modulated approach is much more effective. Contrast the almost ethereal way she's falling apart -- fraying around the edges -- to her high-pitched anguish during the Canton saga.
Brava, La Strasser!

After languishing in storyline Siberia for months now, the faux-Buchanan-heir plot is finally heating up. Can you believe this tale was in the works before Dorian mowed down Jessica!? It's a shame because this has the makings of a compelling storyline. It draws on Max's tempestuous history with Asa and his long-standing bond with Renee. Throw Blair and her baggage into the mix and that's oodles of juicy backstory to play from. But instead of frontburner status, this saga has played out as a lackluster second-string storyline -- slow-moving, repetitious, and carelessly written (come on, would Asa really accept Max that willingly!). And the stuff about Max's illness just doesn't work. Let's hope the writers finally pull it together. If handled correctly, the climax could be devastating. Not only will Asa be hurt and angry at Max's betrayal (and Renee heartbroken), but the mystery identity of their real progeny will finally be revealed.

And lastly, here's a few of this week's amusing tidbits that made me smile:

  • I cracked up watching Blair cover herself with a large leopard print pillow after Asa and Renee found her with Max in flagrante delicto.
  • Asa's sure was quick on the draw when it came to shutting down Max's plastic.
  • How delightful to see little Star again -- where those matching mother/daughter hairstyles or what?
  • I loved Blair's joke about the "real Blair witch" -- was that improvised?
  • And how about Nora mouthing the words "no kissing" to Sam as he walked over for a confab with Lindsay -- too funny!

Till next week.

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