Grins and Gripes For The End of The World
The inevitable Carly/Jack reunion is making my whole soapy life right now! In the words of Brian McKnight, “Everything I did before you wasn’t worth my while. It should have been you, you all the time.” You don’t have to be a longtime viewer or scientist to know that these two characters’ chemistry should have its own octane level. I feel as if Carly is truly coming full circle after battling an alcohol addiction. She and Jack are working cooperatively to rescue little Ms. Mafioso Janet (Julie Pinson), and Carly is no longer insecure and scheming. Brad’s (Austin Peck) death seems to have grounded Jack as well. Formerly a member of the Snyder's Know Best Male Chauvinist Club, he now realizes that people are imperfect and is the better for this revelation, as evidenced by his newfound patience with Carly. Hark; are those wedding bells I hear?
I never dreamed that Paul Ryan (Roger Howarth) would be the bastion of wisdom and calm in his chaotic brood. I attribute his Zen attitude to Emily (Kelley Menighan Hensley). I didn’t think he’d recover from his stint at the Snyder Concentration Camp for the Forcible Assimilation of Imperfect People, but he’s flourishing now that he is not being made to jump through hoops or prove his love in blood. Isn’t it awesome retribution that Meg (Marie Wilson), who tortured him to the point of madness with her come-here/go-there routine, is now tucked tightly in her very own security blanket (strait jacket)? Paul needed a woman who would embrace all of him rather than feed into the negative programming laid by his father. Formerly bonkers Emily is exactly that, and her reconciliation with Barbara (Colleen Zenk Pinter) and maternal relationship with Eliza are the soap gods’ blessings for this match made in Deerbrooke.
Barbara’s got a brand new bag! While I’m still not foaming at the mouth over Bank (Barbara and Henry), I must say that I love her zest for life. Henry (Trent Dawson) must be holding something serious under those chicky get-ups! Bab’s time in captivity was so cathartic for her. Barbara admitting her ruthless past and claiming her joy is a wonderful way to end the show. The James (Anthony Herrera) exorcism after her nuptials beautifully symbolized healing for the whole Ryan/Munson/Coleman clan.
And Then a Meteor Came…
Kleenex and cotton balls aside, I’m all gassed up on my liquid courage and ready to go the pluck off! One utter disappointment is the way that they’ve chosen to end Luke’s (Van Hansis) storyline. ATWT was scoring major cool points with viewers everywhere for the grown-and-sexiness that is Ruke. Reid (Eric Sheffer Stevens) broke all the stereotypes for a gay character in daytime because he wasn’t the altruistic, long suffering homosexual who compensated for his “deviance” by being a victim and a wimp. Just when I thought Luke was finally getting his shot at a mature, equal relationship, I’m hit with this foolycorn about milquetoast Chris (Daniel Cosgrove) and his weak heart. Who cares about Chris Hughes? Daniel Cosgrove is a great actor, but the character is written to be perpetually forgettable. The idea that Reid will be sacrificed to save Dougie Howser, Jr. is a ridiculous and piss poor plot point to prop Nuke. Reuniting Luke and Noah (Jake Silbermann) is a terrible crime of character regression, in my opinion. I guess we’ll have Phillip III (Thom Bierdz) and Rafe’s (Yani Gellman) uninspiring gay storylines to look forward to on The Young and the Restless…sigh.
I tried to like Janet, Lord knows I did, but she has resorted to a new level of tart-iness that I just can’t get behind. What heavily pregnant woman “goes away” with a man other than her baby daddy? I just thought that was all kinds of skanky. Why would she toss Dusty (Grayson McCouch) aside for a rag-tag wannabe gangster named Blackie (Billy Warlock)? Why can’t she see that she is surrounded by Sopranos? Why does she put her dumb, beautiful chin out and insist she can take care of herself while trouncing from one self-induced peril to another? How dare she get mad at Dusty for sleeping with Lucy (Sarah Gladdening) when she dumped him! And why does she think every problem can be solved with food? This once strong character has been reduced to a caricature. Somewhere, Susan B. Anthony is weeping.
Speaking of taking two steps back in the feminist movement, I see the writing on the wall for Lily (Noelle Beck) and Holden (Jon Hensley), and it looks as if Lily’s going back to her master for a lifetime of lashings to her womanhood. I liked Lily’s independence with Craig (Jon Lindstrom). They could have been intriguing, but I knew it would never work. Please give Craig a woman and lose the pariah treatment. The constant lambasting is making him look like a cartoon rather than a villain with layers.
Finally, I felt that the Coleman nuptials were too rushed. We went from Barbara being in captivity for what seemed like eons, to her hating Henry and not wanting to see him again, to a proposal, then an attempt to back out of the marriage…I almost got whiplash! After the trauma and drama, they – we – deserved more than a wedding neatly wrapped up in one episode.