Monday, November 29, 2010

Soap Sense

Sometimes when you're wrong you just have to admit it. And boy was I wrong and this time I am very happy to say that I should have given the writers of All My Children some credit. The mystery surrounding David Hayward's death was contrived and horribly done but the pay off was more than worth it.

Mondays episode was the best I have seen since Lorraine Broderick wrote the show earlier this year. It began with the news of Zack's plane exploding, permeating through out the town. One by one the denizens of pine Valley found out about their friends death the reactions were of shock and sadness. Once Greenlee and Ryan told Erica, there was no stopping the sublime Susan Lucci. She let loose her fury on her step-daughter but stopped short of blaming her son in laws death on her.

Erica realized that she had to tell her daughter. Now here I must praise the writing regime, in the past it would have been Greenlee that broke the news but they went the route of a good soap and had family break the news. Ryan in no way had to be there, except for Kendall to unleash her anger on him for not looking hard enough for her missing husband. As Erica broke the news to her daughter, Susan kept her Erica form going too far over the top, as Alicia Minshew kept her Kendall in denial.

After kicking everyone out, Kendall went upstairs and Bianca came in. Here is my one qualm about these scenes Christina Bennett Lind is not Bianca. She did an apt job portraying Binks but there was no oomph to the performance and that made the scene of Kendall looking at her sister and realizing the truth seem very out of place. Despite her best efforts, I along with many other fans still see the luminous Eden Riegel in the role and this would have been the perfect place to bring her back. The weight that would have been added to those scenes are immeasurable.

The show was wise not to rest on the laurels that the Kane family always provide. No in the same episode we also got to find out the fate of Greenlee. the writers had been building suspense for a while and it finally came to a frenzied conclusion, The jury had come back, and they found Greenlee to be guilty of murdering David. After a very short recess, enough time for commercials and some more tears from the Kane women, the judge handed down her sentence. Greenlee would spend the rest of her life in prison without a chance of parole. Her father Jackson promised that they would get the evidence needed to clear her and win an appeal, as she was handcuffed and they started taking her out of the court.

There was one last surprise in store though. The camera panned to shocked faces, including the priceless Jesse Hubbard, whatever they Darnell Williams is not enough (Don't kill me Mandy), his face best sold the final surprise. Again like many fans I figured the writers would throw Madison North under the bus and have her confess to killing David, thus clearing Greenlee and they could continue the train wreck of Rylee. Finally they panned to a very much alive David Hayward and the show ended.

By taking one character out and brining another back, the writers have set themselves up for some really good, classic soap drama for months, if not years to come. With Thorsten Kay out of the picture, they needed a strong, male lead on the show and Vincent Irizarry can very easily step into that role.
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