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Monthly Archives: May 2010

Biased DAs, Girls who need a good shaking, and Dumbass DEA (5/31/10)

Man, no one can say the Abbotts and the Newmans can’t get together…Adam, the ultimate douchebag, is alive and free, apparently having crossed the line into murder.  I always thought Adam was a douche, but I also thought his family treated him unfairly.  Whatever he did to Nick and Victoria was relatively alright to me because they treated him like garbage.  Where he crossed the line was when he started scheming and involving innocent people who were nothing but kind to him…that made him a douche.   Now, to have apparently murdered a very nice person with a little boy, he has crossed yet another hurdle into Sheila Carter territory.

The thing I liked about Adam is that he had occasional pangs of conscience he had that made clear that he was not some psychopath.  You could kind of understand how he got to what he became and that he went too far.  Now, there’s a point of no return.  Adam Newman will either have to be a supervillain a la Sheila Carter or Matt Clark, or he must die.  Then again, Phyllis has murdered and run over Paul to make him impotent and Michael Baldwin is a rapist and ex-con, and no  one ever mentions that, so for all we know, they may rehabilitate his character.

On another front, how in God’s name do the DAs keep their jobs?  The only conviction I ever remember them winning was John Abbott, which was a 2 month life sentence.  Nick’s been prosecuted for murder at least twice now, and is always exonerated.   So Pomerantz is admitting he’s biased?  Doesn’t Victor need to call some of his political friends and see about getting him fired?  That has to be prosecutorial misconduct, right?

**I don’t believe in hitting women, but man, I wanted Billy to shake Abby very badly.  At least when Billy was doing ill stuff with his magazine, he was going after his enemy, not his family, and his purpose was revenge, not fame.  I like Abby’s character because she sparks stuff, but I need to see her get her comeuppance.

**I’m not a lawyer, but if Dr. Peterson can provide documentation that she had her identity/persona stolen and was held in a mental hospital for the past several months, shouldn’t that be proof enough for the dumbass DEA to leave her alone?  I’m just saying….

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2010 in Episode Commentary

 

Best Recasts in Y & R history

In no particular order, original castmembers returning don’t count in this one:

Billy Miller as Billy Abbott:  The original Billy Abbott (David Tom) was a tough act to follow.  He started out as a bit of an arrogant jerk, but softened up with Mac.  By the time they were to get married, David Tom had been replaced by Ryan Brown, who I didn’t hate as much as others, but he didn’t have the same vibe as Tom and played Billy as too much of a goody goody.  When John Abbott died, they brought Billy back from a several years’ project with Scott Seymour (see my next post) and he was a completely different person who didn’t seem like an Abbott at all. But when Billy Miller came, he took the character and made it his own.  He’s a bit of an arrogant jerk, but he’s so likable that you forgive it.  Moreover, he connected with David Tom’s portrayal in a very real way.  It’s not only possible, but probable that a guy finds out the love of his life and the woman he just married is his cousin, and he responds by becoming a womanizer and losing his idealism.  That’s what Billy Miller did with Billy Abbott.  He’s got great chemistry with Jack and Victor (though I am concerned about his chemistry with Ashley) and is like a younger version of Jack.  He’s proably my favorite character on there right now.

Davetta Sherwood as Lily Winters:  Off the top, the character of Lily annoyed me from the moment she got back from Paris.  She’s like that snooty broad you went to school with who knew everything and would get whatever she wanted the rest of her life.  Even as they softened her character, she still bugged me….maybe because I couldn’t see Christel Khalil as Drucilla Winters’ daughter….not nearly enough sass.  Then, Khalil left and I fell in love with Lily.  She was not only fine as frog’s hair, but she seemed a more natural fit as Dru’s daughter.  I was EXTREMELY disappointed when Khalil came back to reprise the role, because this was one recast they got right.

Peter Bergman as Jack Abbott:  Yeah, I know there will be some heartburn over this one, but the fact that he’s been in the role for 23 years alone makes him a must for this list.  People SWORE by Terry Lester’s portrayal of Jack and he’s the original Jack to me.  However, Peter Bergman made the role his own.  He does vulnerability very well and makes the ongoing Newman-Abbott war one where you don’t know who’s the good guys and who’s the bad guys.  His showdowns with Victor (especially when he threw the chair through the window!) are legendary,  but I especially liked when Victor was sick and he was buddies with Jack.

Rachel Kimsey as Mackenzie Browning: Another one people will disagree with me on, but I liked Rachel Kimsey’s turn as Mac in ’05.  There are some recasts that allow you to take a different turn with a character and this was one of them.  I couldn’t picture the original Mac (Ashley Bashioum) as…sexy.  She was cute in a pollyanna-ish kind of way, but they took great pains to make her into a pure, chaste, virgin.  When Mac got with JT and they started co-habitating, that could only work with another Mac, not the one that people associate with virgin.   They did something similar with Colleen…how creepy would it have been to see Lyndsy Fonseca sleeping with Professor Korbel (although, after seeing Hot Tub Time Machine, I’d like to see more of Lyndsy Fonseca!)?  They had to bring in the slutbag Colleen (Adrianne Leon), who I grew to like, before going in the other direction and bringing it full circle with Tammin Sursock, who played it less slutty.  Anyway, I appreciated Kimsey’s turn and would like to see more of her.  She had far more charisma and better chemistry with JT than the current Mac, Clementine Ford.

Sharon Case as Sharon Newman:  The original Sharon was extremely hot, but a far worse actress than Sharon Case, who’s not too hard on the eyes herself.  Sharon Case has a certain gravitas that the original Sharon would never have been able to pull off.  She’s one of the rare people where I blame the writers rather than the actress for her character’s shortcomings.  They’ve always written her as needy and frail, the quintessential damsel in distress.   I’m still trying to figure out how they had the audacity to have her get on Nick for cheating and NEVER letting it go when she abandoned her husband and kids and slept with Cameron Kirsten.  Nevertheless, her performance is always good and takes weak material and makes you empathize with her.

Not that I watch that kind of thing, but what are your favorite recasts on Y & R?

 
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Posted by on May 28, 2010 in Gumbo

 

More Random Thoughts….

Hey everyone…sorry, I was out of town on business for the first half of the week, but I’m getting caught up now.  I’ll be posting regular episode recaps next week.  In the meantime, here’s more random observations:

1.  I like the new Abby, both as an actress and as a character.  She definitely is a spark in the powderkeg.  However, then Rapid Aging Syndrome is in overdrive.  When she went away to England about 2 years ago, she was like 4…then she comes back 6 months later at like 15…then, last week, she comes back again and is definitively either 18 or 21 (depending on how they define legal).  I’ve never seen them rapidly age someone twice in such a short amount of time.

2.  Speaking of Abby’s age, when Noah comes back, will he still be older than Abby?

3.  Speaking of Noah, if Eden was sent to Paris under false pretenses and was kind of forced over there due to the trouble Daisy was framing, how come she’s not back yet since it’s been definitively proven that Daisy was causing all the problems?

4.  Not feeling the Daniel/Abby paring…if there’s anyone who needs some time to himself, it’s Daniel.  He goes from Lilly to Porn Addiction (they even had him grow a creepy pervert beard) to Amber and murder investigations et al.  He needs a break.  To top it off, isn’t Abby his step-half-aunt since he’s Nick’s stepson and Abby is Nick’s half-sister?

5.  Speaking of Daniel, he may be the most realistic and responsible person on the show right now.  As a guy, you want me to become an instant father to a child who’s not yours, but is the spawn of your ex who just framed me for murder and I’m the bad guy?  GTFOHWTBS!  If Daniel isn’t ready to be a father, he isn’t ready and that’s A LOT to ask of someone. 

6.They need to hurry up and do something to progress the Malcolm/Tucker storyline before people forget.  I like Y & R because it’s generally the most realistic of the soaps (I don’t watch any others, but reading some of the storyline…yeesh!), but they tend to drag things out too long.  I know it’s dreaming, but my hope is that they’re dragging it out because they’re in negotiations with Victoria Rowell to come back as Dru and somehow want to incoporate her into the storyline.

7.  Eric Braeden forgets his lines…a lot.

8.  But he never forgets that leather jacket when he’s trying to solve a mystery!

9.  Speaking of mysteries, shouldn’t Nick have a get out of jail free card from the Genoa City District Attorney’s office?  He’s been charged with murder among other things on multiple occasions and has been exonerated each time.  Shouldn’t he get the benefit of the doubt?

10.  Accepting that The Young and the Restless is generally for women, I know that pleasing male viewers is of low priority.  However, can we get a bikini photo shoot or something?  I could use the eyecandy….new Abby, Chloe, Sharon, Roxanne, Phyllis…hell, bring back old Heather for one shot only.

That’s all for now…not that I watch that kind of thing!

 
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Posted by on May 28, 2010 in Gumbo

 

Neil vs Malcolm

Although I am really, really, REALLY not feeling Eddie Winslow Darius McCrary as Malcolm Winters, I think I dislike Neil Winters (as a character) even worse.

This entry will be brief:

STOP HATIN, NEIL!  You can’t even start your own business for sniffin behind all these white people and their companies, damn!   And Victor straight up PLAYED YOU, son!  You need to be running things at Newman, not FrankenNick and Sluttoria.

Haven’t you saved up enough to start your own shizz now?

 
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Posted by on May 25, 2010 in Rashid's Take

 

How Tucker McCall Saved Y&R

Stephen Nichols and William Russ as Tucker McCall

So a little backstory on me:

I am a rabid Days of Our Lives fan and have been since the mid to late 1980s (Specific episode:  When Max fell off the pier and Patch jumping in after him).  I kept up with Y&R in passing through my grandmother (as many black men do), but I didn’t start watching on my own until 2003.  I don’t know why — I just did.

I was proud of myself for discovering Days on my own, though.  I found a group of college buddies to watch it with during freshman year, and that was cool.  When I was pledgemaster for my community service fraternity, I think I may have even made one of the pledges watch Days with me.  (Specific episode:  the Coronation Massacre)

But enough of the context — this is about how the character Tucker McCall has saved Y&R, specifically as portrayed by Stephen Nichols.

Y&R has always been strongest when the storylines had the big business backdrop — corporate espionage, SEC investigations, hostile takeovers, etc.  Sure, we all love the daytime staples of adultery, romance, evil twins, and angst, but Y&R was always different because it was smart.  Savvy, even.

Genoa City needed another businessman who wasn’t related to the Newmans or Abbotts.  Although I considered the hiring of William Russ to be stunt casting (really?  the dad from Boy Meets World?) I very quickly came to like the character.  He was different from the stodgy, old-money families which were so filthy rich it wasn’t even exciting anymore.  Here is a man, a swashbuckler, a cowboy, a cad, who was shaking things up.

But he wasn’t young, either!  He was a handsome, middle-aged man with wonderful curly blond hair who was smart, cunning…. and yes, filthy rich.  In no time, he bedded Jill (not that it’s a hard thing to do) — hell, I don’t think Jill got any peen since Ji-Min died a few years ago.

As we all know, since then Tucker was revealed to be Katherine’s son.  I know, die-hard Y&R fans might hate all this retconning (retroactive continuity) of the storylines, but it made me like the character even more.  He’s not cunning because he’s a shred businessman — he’s cunning because he’s a dick.  And he’s a dick because he never had his mother’s love.  And now it’s too late to give a shit.

I enjoyed the scenes when Tucker’s heart softened as he got to know Katherine.  And I loved how Jill ruined all of that.  Jill just can’t get right, and I love her for it.

Sidenote:  I also like how Jill and Katherine embrace each other as mother/daughter anyway.  Love any scenes in which they reconcile.  (Mind you, I started watching in 2003, around the time that the Jill/Kay feud started winding down and becoming the mother daughter shit, so I’m not exactly loyal to the notion of them being mortal enemies)

Anyway, I was surprised when William Russ was let go and they hired Stephen Nichols.  I LOVE STEPHEN NICHOLS.  I used to have a small poster of him up in my room when I was a child.  (It was a picture of him as Jesse James from a movie he was in.)  But I wasn’t sure that Stephen Nichols was the right person.

Well, he clearly took the part and made it his own.  He’s a little colder, more calculating, and fits the mold of self-made billionaire just a little better than William Russ.  There’s less swashbuckling, and more savvy.

The vulnerability isn’t there with him and Kay, but it was with him and Ashley.  I liked their scenes when Ashley was giving up Faith.

Sidenote:  As much as I love Tucker, I don’t like how he punks Neil DAILY.  But that’s Neil’s fault.

So how has Tucker saved Y&R?

  1. He shows that Victor Newman isn’t the only asshole billionaire in the game.
  2. He provides a better sex symbol than Victor and Jack.
  3. He gives spice to the Chancellors, and more vitriol between Kay and Jill.
  4. He has inserted himself in interesting and meaningful ways into other stories:  the Malcolm/Neil feud, the JT/Victoria custody battle, and Ashley/Faith saga, to name a few.

In short, very few characters can come along brand new to a show and have such an impact.  Tucker McCall was the right character at the right time, and both William Russ and Stephen Nichols were the right actors.  I’m looking forward to seeing how much more trouble he can cause.

 
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Posted by on May 22, 2010 in Rashid's Take

 

Response from Bloody Afrikans

First of all, I’m bloodyafrikans.  I’m really Rashid.  Yeah, it’s a long story.  Shut up.

Here is my response to my good brother’s gumbo posting:

1.  Chloe is also one of the best actresses on the show.  I hated her storylines at first, but I am glad she was redeemed.

2. Any actress named after the weakest beer ever is doomed to be a weak actress.  And YES, Jana is an awesome character and an awesome actress.  I was so glad when she, too, was redeemed.

3.  Dr. Emily Peterson’s man-hands.  OMGWTF when I noticed that I leaped out of my seat.

4.  If Victor says “for heaven’s sake” one more time, I am going to be convinced he is somebody’s black grandma.

5.   I was never invested in terrible Tom or Sheila a whole lot, so I didn’t even notice the discrepancy.  I’m glad it’s over though.

More thoughts later

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2010 in Rashid's Take

 

Random Y & R Thoughts

1.  Chloe is the hottest chick on Y & R….but they’ve neutered her character.  She needs to cheat on Chance or something…make her relevant

2.  Jana with no emotions is STILL a better actress than Yvonne Zima, who played Daisy…she may well have been the worst actress ever on the show except for the little kids.

3.  Dr. Emily Peterson has man-hands.  I know I’m not the only one who noticed.

4.  Victor Newman isn’t nearly as “cool” as once was…it’s a combination of the writing and Eric Braeden forgetting his lines….

5.  Major plot hole that’s been bugging me for a minute…when “Terrible” Tom and Sheila were on the show and terrorizing Lauren, there was no indication that they had ever met or known each other.  So they had twins together that are now in their 20s?  I know Soaps are fast and loose with time, but that would mean Lauren and Michael have been married for at least 20 years and that Kevin would have to be in his 40s.

Not that I watch that kind of thing….

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2010 in Gumbo