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dc11786

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  1. I think I've seen this before. This time something stood out. Doris Hursley died around the time "Santa Barbara" was beginning and there was all this animosity between the first family and the second family of Frank Hursley, a lot of it with Bridget Dobson at the center. Also, Frank dies in 1989, which I believe was during the big fight NBC over control of the series. I wonder how this effected the writing. I know Mason, the product of the first marriage, is treated very well by the Dobsons and that Bridget had half-siblings from both her mother and her father. I am curious how much of this drama bled itself into the show's writing. On a different note, I noticed Eric James (the actor best known for playing Jimmy Boswell on "Bright Promise") commented on the article. The Boswell family also seems to be a complicated. In the episode descriptions I've seen, Jimmy was also in love with Ann Boyd, the woman his father Tom was seeing. The daughter Marion sounds a little bit like a daddy's girl who seemed to capitalized on Jimmy's attraction to Ann in order to separate Tom and Ann. James has been vocal about his criticism of the series as the cast was promised it would be very relevant to then modern society, but it seems after some initial modern situations the show focused on complicated romantic and family entanglements.
  2. It's unfortunate to hear Flora Plumb has passed away. I loved reading those old SOD summaries of "Lovers and Friends" where she was determined to rise above her lot in life, but wasn't really seducing a wealthy man to do it. George was a lawyer so he wasn't hurting for money, but he doesn't seem to be the type of old money that the Cushings, the Brewsters, and the Hamiltons represented. During the 1977 run, Ellie was getting chummy with Edith Cushing in hopes that Edith would help introduce her to society. Edith seemed to only care about using Ellie to keep Megan and Rhett apart. Ellie ended up miscarrying her child because she intervened in Rhett and Megan's romance on Edith's behalf. The miscarriage created friction in Ellie and George's marriage leading George to seek comfort in the arms of Barbara Manners. I don't think Barbara and George slept together, but it was clear where this would end up going. Edith would most likely manipulate George and Barbara into a relationship, sacrificing George and Ellie's marriage, in order to save her marriage to Richard in order to maintain social standing. I wonder what Lemay would have had Ellie react to Edith's deception. From the summaries of "For Richer, For Poorer," none of the Ellie/George/Barbara/Edith story continued. It seems like the show did a C-story love triangle between widowed Edith Cushing, desperate Viola Brewster, and Edith's first love, Roger Hamilton. This only gets some brief references in the summaries of SOD and the columns at the time. I imagine it didn't get much airtime before being abandoned. Ellie and George had some issues with fertility. Ellie was obsessed with Billy, Connie and Bill's son, and then George learned he was the source of the fertility problems. This seems less interesting than the potential manipulation of Edith Cushing into the lives of all those around her. The 1978 clip is nice to see. It seems to be a very low energy show, but I find Tom King's "Another World" similar. I don't hate it, but I can see why it didn't catch the world on fire. I do think the Laurie Hamilton material is intriguing. Everyone seems to have their own mixed motivations here. Does Laurie really want to spare Megan, her childhood friend, of heart ache or is she just jealous that Megan landed Jason? Viola similarly seems to have some layers here. I'm pretty sure Viola hired Chester Higgins, the PI who took the photos, so she isn't as innocent in her declarations either. Laurie and Desmond are planning to buy back the Brewster home, the one briefly owned by the Saxton family. If Desmond and Laurie split, Viola loses her chance to return to her home. The Lee / Lester scenes are very bland. I don't hate the idea of Lee Ferguson, the sort of minor underworld figure with ties to the Saxton clan. I just don't care for the bulk of Tessa / Lee angst. There are some interesting layers, Lee being Amy's former lover, which should have allowed the show to explore some of Amy's darker sides, but mostly its Tessa and Lee against the (under)world.
  3. I like Paul Avila Mayer and Stephanie Braxton's work. The circus story is too much, but, if you look past the circus trappings, the story is solid. The scene where Stu gives Danny some tough love and calls him on his antics would never happen today. In a genre that has become obsessed with love triangles, it has really ignored this version (two friends who love the same person with no true villain). The Ryder / T.R. scene where Ryder admits he's jealous that T.R. has feelings for Ryder was very honest. Adam Storke, Jane Krakowski, and John Loprieno are all very strong. It's a shame that the main story isn't that good. I know I'm alone, but I do like the Hogan / Liza story. Liza clearly doesn't care for Hogan as much as he cares for her. I've been watching episodes from December, 1983, and Hogan has just arrived. He and Sunny are doing their flirty banter thing. It is work. I can see why Sunny / Hogan were well liked in their time, however, I still think this is a good story. Hogan isn't acting out of character and acknowledging his dual nature, he can be both arrogant and passionate, is such a powerful moment. I wonder how this would have progressed had Mathis and Braxton/Avila Mayer stayed. I think it was a mistake to get rid of Caldwell House so quickly. I love that set. I love Stu and Sarah out in the garden just talking. This version of Sarah is interesting to me. She is one of the innocent ingenues that soaps have foregone, mostly because they were treated as paragons of virtue. The Sarah / Quinn dynamic is my favorite. I only got halfway through the three episodes so I'm hoping there is some interaction there with them. The television station stuff isn't that bad. Having seen more of Maree Cheatham's Stephanie, I get why people don't like Louise Shaffer's version. She is clearly a workhorse, while Cheatham's Stephanie was shady as anything. In the December 1983 episode, Liza Sentell has decided to work at the station (Travis inherited his father's share of the station) and Stephanie is doing everything she can to ignore Liza. It's a fun little rivalry that I don't think really goes anywhere. I thought Stephanie promoting Wendy and not Quinn was very Stephanie and I like that Stephanie seems to allude to Quinn being like Warren. Peluso does really well with Meek and Shaffer. It's a shame she didn't make it to the end, but I don't completely blame her for bailing on a sinking ship. Hope more episodes appear from this period.
  4. These appeared before, but haven't been around in several years July 1984 November 1984:
  5. It's interesting to jump between time periods on "Loving." In the 1989 episode, the scene I found most effective was Rick interacting with Curtis because it didn't guide the plot. Also, there was no other Rick scene in the episode. It was nice to see a lot of that simple relationship stuff. I find the Alex / Clay imposter story infuriating (mostly because I haven't seen all of it) and fascinating (because of the potential to it). Watching Taggart and King play the Curtis / Rick dynamic, I'm curious what the relationships between Rick and Clay and Rick and Alex were like. From what I recall, Rick arrived in town when Alex was playing Clay, which was why Rick was initially dismissed as an imposter because Clay's (Alex) and Gwyn's blood types didn't match up with Rick's. I think having Rick drawn to Clay and Curtis to Alex could have produce some interesting twists in the stories. Anyway, maybe more "Loving" will appear. I finally watched a bit of the Stacey / Jack clips from around the time that Stacey / Jack / Lilly has all come out. These would be probably from spring/summer 1988 when either Ralph Ellis or the scab writers were writing the show. I find them compelling in a completely generic sort of way. I do like the potential conflict between Anne and Stacey over Anne's knowledge of the affair. I guess it was more engrossing if you knew and loved the characters, but I don't think this style of drama is really the forte of either Perry Stephens or Lauren Marie Taylor. With that said, it's nice to see Lauren Marie Taylor front and center. Back to the 1993 episode, the JJ / Buck dynamic was interesting. I have one episode where Buck comes over to the Forbes house and Stacey ends up going out (either by herself or with Jeremy Hunter). I think that dynamic is also interesting, and that would have been where the real conflict would have been in a Stacey / Buck / Jack triangle when the show smartened up and brought back Jack. Sometimes I misread things, but Tess had been around for several months by the time that 1993 episode aired. I imagine it was Nixon resetting the character, who easily could have been written out. When Tess initially arrived, she was Christopher's nanny and deadset on getting her hands on the money Trucker was due to inherit once Trisha's will had been probated. At the same time, she was also the source of conflict between Curtis and Buck as they had been involved in the death of her husband in Kuwait. Tess seemed like an attempt to create a Dinahlee-esque character as she was in her original form. I think it's entirely possible that Dinahlee may have even been a Taggart creation. Anyway, Tess worked mostly as a scheming con artist. By the end of Taggart / Guza's run, they had clearly given up on Curtis and were shifting Buck into Stacey's orbit and Tess into Clay's. @DRW50 your point about Susan Keith is interesting. From what I've seen, Mary Ryan Munisteri had little material for her to play and Isabelle, upon returning to Corinth, was planning to ship Shana off to Hong Kong. Addie Walsh gave her that brief affair with Larry Lamont during the diet scam, but if that lasted a full contract cycle I would be shocked. Taggart and Guza seemed to have the best angle for Shana with the triangle involving Ava and Leo, but a lot of this was just a retread of Julia and Mason from "Santa Barbara." At times, Guza and Taggart try too hard with that triangle and some of the comedy and dream sequences are off. I will say, there is a pretty funny scene from August 1993 where a pregnant Shana has been arrested for messing with Ava and has to deal with cops and judge who hate her because she has defended people they feel should be in jail. It is Nixon who writes Shana and Leo out after having them deal with Patti's developmental issues. I think there was definitely story to play involving Shana and Leo. Given the issues with Patti's development and Leo's past, an old flame could have easily come to town with a child, whether it be Leo's or not, and presented itself with a situation. I also think that Shana and Leo would have been torn by the revelation that the Rescotts were the real recipients of the Alden fortune in the same way Alex and Ava should have been torn up by this situation and loyalties would be divided.
  6. I think it is between these two weeks: March 27 – 31, 1989: While Alex undergoes surgery, the camp is bombed. Surviving, he is plagued by dreams that Ava leaves him. He begs the doctor to release him, but the doctor says it is physically impossible, and the government man tells Alex that, as of now, Alex Masters is dead. Although he is in great pain, Alex slips away from the camp. Ava is upset when she responds to Clay’s kiss. Harry realizes the damage he has caused when Ava pleads with him to stay out of her life. Jeff is shocked when he learns Clay has given Trucker and Trisha his blessing. Rick learns that Stacey is pregnant. Cabot and Clay wonder why Alex didn’t steal money. Ava is puzzled when Clay appears to care about what happens to her and Alex. Rocky loves to hear Todd talk about owning his own restaurant. Todd is not pleased about the attraction between Rocky and Curtis. Jack learns that Stacey is pregnant. April 3 – 7, 1989: Jeff can’t stand Trucker and Trisha’s continued romance. Ava is confused by her attraction to Clay. Curtis, Todd, and Rocky are locked in the restaurant. Rocky finds it hard to believe that Curtis was once a spoiled snob. Alex makes his way to Corinth. Jack is infuriated at the news that Stacey is pregnant by Rick, but Rick is thrilled with the idea of becoming a father. When Todd, Rocky, and Curtis are released by the overzealous guard who had locked them in the restaurant, Trucker doesn’t buy Rocky’s story and forbids her to see Todd. In trying to locate the timing of the episode, I stumbled upon a few details I either didn't know or had forgotten. When Jack Forbes locates Alex Masters in South America, he has gone down to locate his own presumed dead father, Roger Forbes. It's interesting that, in 1989, Roger Forbes was still used to generate some story. I wonder if there were actual plans to bring him back or this was simple a way of using history to move the story. In other synopses from this year, there are references to Harry Sowolsky still being in love with Ann Alden Forbes and Curtis using Forbes Construction for the restaurant project. There was also a reference to Rocky and Trucker having a wicked stepfather. I've been watching the Mac Huston story in 1993. Millee Taggart is writing at this time as well. There were references to Rocky and Trucker's mother being heartbroken, but I have very little use for Mac. There are few scenes, from what I've watched, between Mac and Buck. Mac is clearly just there to get the inheritance, which seems overkill as you already have Tess Wilder circling like a vulture. I don't think it was a bad idea to bring on Trucker and Buck's absent father, but the writing is pretty weak. The 1993 episode that @DRW50 posted is from late September 1993. Agnes Nixon is credited as the headwriter. I imagine this is pretty early in her last run. The tornado works to provide some interesting setups. I think those Dinahlee/Alex scenes are pretty strong. I love Alex realizing that Dinahlee is talking about his one time son Curtis and his adversary Clay. The Clay / Alex story can be a bit wonky at times, but it is probably one of the longest running, and most developed, stories "Loving" tells. The Tess / Shana scenes at least provide something different, but I'm not sure if they actually go anywhere in terms of character dynamic. Seeing Buck and Stacey, I don't hate them as much as I do reading about them, but I just don't see much potential for conflict. With that said, it did, briefly, create a nice rivalry between Gwyn and Stacey. The 1989 episode has some nice moments. I like the thread they seem to be building around Rick about the trust fund. He clearly has not been provided money despite being the eldest Alden heir. Even Sandy, per this episode, has a trust. In reading the synopses, I wonder if Rick was hoping to access the money that would be set aside for Stacey's baby. I also enjoy the conflict between Ava and Clay over the tape. True to Ava, she struggles to tell the truth. I thought the moment between Cabot and Ava was nice, but I would like to know if anyone question whether Ava was in on the deception. Clay clearly does, but he also has proof. I would love to see a scene with bitchy Stacey telling Trisha that Ava was in on it the entire time citing Ava's history of lies as her only evidence. I really don't have much use for Rocky / Todd / Curtis. The dance number worked thematically, but I don't really care for anyone involved.
  7. Cast additions / clarifications: Duke Andrews... Arnold Freeman (first appeared c. July 1951) underworld figure Vern Andrews … John C. Beecher (first appeared c. May 1951); tormented Sam Martin Andrea Blake … Elaine Ellis (first appeared c. late May/early June 1951 murder in August 1951) Sam Martin's sister-in-law. Chic divorcee. Sam is attracted to her Bill Carter... Mark Roberts former childhood boyfriend of Susan; later described as a professional rival Joan Benson Carter... Gerry Locke John Croft... Joseph Foley Susan's law partner Bruce Landon... Robert Courtleigh (first appeared c. May 1951) a former stableboy turned distinguished author Sam Martin.... Don Hammer brother of Susan Daisy McCue... Natalie Priest (nurse / secretary / friend of Susan) George Small.. Dick Knox (c. November 1951) teenager Judge... Robert Pike (March 1951) maybe in Laura's theft case??
  8. The Loving credit is also off. She was credited head writer from January 1992 until January 1993. Granted that was the on air credits. Millee Taggart was announced in November 1992. I think Riviera aired in 1991 though the material was probably written earlier. I imagine Walsh genuinely forgot or was trying to create the sense of consistent employment.
  9. Curtis seems to have potential during Christopher Marcantel’s first run. Like you said, spoiled heir who was threatened by his adopted cousin. I love some of the more sexual elements they explored with Curtis; he fell in love with LiIy’s alter, he was involved with the production of pornographic films, and he seduced Rita Mae while pretending to be Jack. think moving Curtis out of Jack’s orbit was a mistake. Pairing Curtis with Ava seems like an easy way to continue the Jack-Curtis rivalry especially since I don’t believe Johnny’s parentage had been revealed. It was Linden Ashby’s Curtis that married Ava and in the few scenes he appears in from around the time of his marriage to Ava he seems more than serviceable. With Burke Moses, we get a more romantic lead it seems. He falls for poor illiterate Lotty and has to deal with her con man husband Eban Japes. It might have been more appealing if Eban offered Curtis some seedy business opportunity and Lotty saw that other side. Or maybe just had Curtis pop in to Diane Winston’s bordello. Instead, the show pursues Rick Stewart as the bad Alden son. I think Rick and Lotty might have worked better with Gwynn meddling in that relationship. When Stan Albers arrives the character is shifted into a younger set of characters. None of the Curtis / Todd / Rocky nor the Curtis / Rio / Rocky material is overly compelling. Albers handles the comedy well, but his Curtis is more the brunt of the joke rather than a smart aleck. Albers is very good in Alden family scenes, but all the other romantic stuff seems super generic. i don’t mind Michael Lord. I do think the source of the madness seems to be rooted in Curtis’ feelings of inferiority to Clay. The Clay / Curtis dynamic should be more compelling. In his own way, Clay was repeating history, in his own way, by undermining Curtis’ confidence. Gwynn seems to push Curtis out of town to save him, which is compelling. I do wish the show had invested more in that (Gwynn/Clay). Also, Curtis and Cooper could have been compelling as well if it was fleshed out more. Cooper was the type of golden boy that Curtis hated. As Cooper and clay grew closer, this could have been pursued further. I do wish that the show had kept Elise Neal’s Janie Sinclair around. I think her manipulating Curtis into marriage could have been a way to really connect the fractured canvas.
  10. The headwriters credits for early NBC SFT: Ralph Ellis and Eugenia Hunt c. December 1981 - December 1982 C. David Colson December 1982 - May 1983 Gary Tonkin May 1983 - February/March 1984 Ellis and Hunt introduce the Carters and Keith McNeill in the summer of 1982. When they leave in December, Brian marries Kristen, who is claiming she is still pregnant even though she miscarried in December. The setup for the Brian / Suzy / Warren / Kristen quad is very good. Colson takes over in December and plays with the quad. Brian becomes a cop and he and Kristen struggle as young newlyweds. Warren marries Suzy and becomes involved with Rusty Sentell’s bank plans after already running guns for him. Suzy is pretty back burnered during Colson’s time. Colson lightens the mood in the Keith / Wendy story by allowing Stephanie to have temporary custody of Andre, Keith’s adopted sister. The story is a send up of “Little Orphan Annie” with Stephanie as Mommy Warbucks and the introduction of a mutt named Scratcher. This is when Andre is diagnosed with juvenile diabetes and is revealed to be Jenny’s daughter. Keith leaves in May, 1983, and Wendy is immediately thrown at Warren Carter. It’s a nice story that builds while Wendy emerges as a young vixen after previously being much more docile in nature. By August, Tomlin has Wendy get pregnant just as Ringo learns Suzy is behind the SMW trust which owns significant property that Warren wants to invest in. Rhonda Sue was introduced by Colson in May. I don’t know how soon Ringo and Rhonda Sue get together. Colson’s run is tonal different than Ellis / Hunt. Colson is what I expect from an 1980s NBC soap. Ellis / Hunt seems more P&G. It’s like watching 1980/1981 Another World abd then 1984/1985 Another World. Tomlin moves the story nicely and there is a lot of it. The canvas is very big and there are some duds (Angela / Danny’s Greek romance) but the good is very good (Suzy / Warren / Wendy, Jos kidnapping). It’s a nice mix of comedy and drama. I think Tomlin does a nice job with Liza and Travis. They have story but they don’t dominate the way they previously did. Ellis / Hunt go the route of the back from the dead dad and the nerdy third wheel live interest. Had Hunt / Ellis stayed, I suspect Liza would have eventually hooked up with Dane Taylor. Colson gives Travis / Liza the surprise pregnancy, the mistaken fidelity (singer Tony Burton and Liza in New York), and the murder mystery. Tomlin builds the Kendall / Sentell rivalry and really sets up Travis to be a major player by having him take in TR. Rhonda Sue is dumped when Joanna Lee leaves in December 1983. Ellen Barrett says the plans were already in place to purge the cast (the Morenos, Ringo, Danny Walton, and Tom Bergman also left). Phillip Brown may have left too I don’t know. I think Andie leaves earlier when Michael Kendall and Jenny Deacon marry. Andie was a character and I loved her and Rose, Stephanie’s maid.
  11. I don't know what they wrote in the 1970s, but they returned as headwriters from December 1981 until December 1982. They were there when the show transitioned from CBS to NBC. They inherited and continued the Operation Sunburst story which involved Travis Sentell developing an alternative energy source through his work at Tourneur Instruments. There were evil people who wanted to take control of the project including his own father, Rusty Sentell, who returned from the dead to get a hold of the money that would come from selling the project. This is how Dane Taylor, the musical spy, was introduced. Dane was paired with Sunny Adamson. Ellis and Hunt were the ones to introduce several younger characters including Keith McNeill, Kristen Carter, and Warren Carter. They paired Keith and Wendy and created the Warren / Suzy / Brian / Kristen quad. In their final days, they had Kristen reveal she was pregnant with Brian's child leading to Brian and Kristen's wedding. They also wrote the plane crash that stranded Brian, Suzy, and Warren in the jungle in the weeks before Kristen told Brian about their child. They also introduced Jenny Deacon and had her search for her long lost daughter, Danielle. They seemed to be creating a triangle between Jenny, lawyer Tom Bergman, and Tom's father Stu. They also introduced the Riverboat, the establishment that Jo and Stu ran. They were there when a lot of the older characters were written out (Janet, Ted) or deemphasized (Jo, Stephanie, and Martin). Not sure how much of this was network interference.
  12. I don't like Larkin Malloy's Clay, but, to be fair, it has more to do with the writing than Malloy's ability to act. When Malloy arrives on the scene in January, 1992, Clay is a failed Hollywood producer looking to reconnect with his family and redefine himself. Walsh and Ryder come on with the plans of playing with Clay's paternity, which is a bizarre decision based on the character's history. Clay already felt like an outsider due to the acceptance of Alex Masters as faux Clay. I don't know why there was a need to make Clay Tim Sullivan's son especially since they ended up killing off Tim Sullivan after a couple of months. My biggest issue with Malloy's Clay was he was written as a romantic lead, which didn't make much sense given the character's previous position. Clay and Dinahlee were appealing; Jessica Collins had chemistry with both Malloy and Parlato. I think the bigger issue is that the show needed a strong villain now that a lot of the show's previous heavies were either written out or tamed. With that said, Walsh and crew swing to far in the other direction with Clay once Parlato steps in. Parlato plays Clay for the back of the house, initially. I don't blame him. Clay gaslighting Stacey into marriage was a truly awful storyline that, in modern times, the character would have been raked over the coals for, deservingly. Within the span of two to three weeks, Taggart and Guza end the storyline and move on. Instead, Clay stays in the darkness, but is more menacing than criminal. The outline for Clay under Taggart and Guza works better, Clay fighting his own son for Dinahlee's love and taking Cooper under his wing. The problem is the show never develops Curtis in any meaningful way to interact with Clay. Patrick Johnson's Curtis is a hero-type with only hints of a backstory sprinkled here and there. There's little depth given to his Curtis. Michael Lord fairs a little better once they decide that Curtis is more psychologically damaged by everything he has experienced. Curtis' descent under Michael Lord is more subtle than Richard Cox's Giff. This isn't a comment on Cox, who was super talented, but rather to how bad the writing was in 1992. Back to Parlato, I think this scene here shows how the character works at his best. Clay rejects love and acceptance because they are things he is completely unfamiliar with and, instead, he hurts the ones around him. These scenes are from the spring of 1994 during Ava's coma. If you watch the rest of the clip you will also see the returns of Carly and Sheri Rescott as well as Edie Falco as Ava's nurse. The Clay / Alex scene starts at the 43 minute mark.
  13. I don't know when Pat Crowley last appeared, but I'm pretty sure it was in November, 1989. I believe the character was last seen around the time of Monique and Jason's non-wedding. I'm pretty sure Rebecca was said to be out of town for Christmas 1989. Crowley and Andrew Massett were dropped around the same time. I think Massett's initial exit was in January, 1990, after Monique and Jason survived Aunt Mary's attempt to kill them with the poisoned English trifle ( @chrisml this was what your aunt was speaking about). Massett was brought back in March to bring closure to Trevor's character. It was revealed he was sleeping with a colleague leading to Laura and Trevor's divorce. The cast revamp was more around early 1990. Massett and Crowley were dumped in January. In March, the show dumped Pat Tallman, Sharon Brown, and George Shannon and brought on Stacey Nelkin, Debbi Morgan, and Robert Gentry in contract roles. To be fair, the show constantly seemed to be in flux. Dorothy Lyman was brought back for the Peter Whitmore storyline. Not only was Rebecca recast, the plans were to recast JD and feature Gail Ramsay's Laura a bit more. Around the same time, Anthony Addabo was dropped to recurring so I'm not sure what the longterm plans were for Monique and Jason. Maybe the plan was to pair Monique with Butch Hartman's Sean Masters. I like what I've seen of "Generations." It wasn't always perfect and was rarely consistent, but when it was good, it was very good. The Marshalls moving into the old Whitmore estate was a very unique story that blended social issues and character history. The Sam, Kyle, and Jordan triangle was very interesting. Adam and Doreen's affair was fun. There were a lot of really good couples (Adam / Maya, Sam / Kyle, Rob / Jessica, Doreen / Daniel) and some great character dynamics (Helen / Maya, Ruth / Doreen, Rob / Daniel, Sam / Adam / Monique). I think it could have worked if it had more time. Happy anniversary!
  14. I received another batch and have jumping around from October 1992 and June 1993 so I've just watched Trisha's exit storyline. When I've read about it, I wasn't impressed, but, after seeing the storyline play out, I have to admit there were some really nice moments to all of it. In what I've seen, Noelle Beck is given little to do in her final months after carrying the show for most of the past two years (except for the times she has been on maternity leave). Seeing her in less heavy material, Beck is quite charming and has a nice rapport with the cast. I can see why Trisha was loved. Taggart does have Trisha resume her art position at the university and plays a B-story where Arthur, Trucker's geeky assistant at the bike shop, has a crush on her, but it isn't anything big. Her last days are a nice tribute to the couple. Trisha and Trucker spend the morning in bed together, they hang out with Shana and learn she is pregnant, they plan a trip to the cabin, and, in general, just seem to be in love. Things only start to become complicated when Trisha finds a picture of Buck Huston, her mysterious houseguest, and her newly returned brother Curtis Alden. Trisha questions Buck indirectly about it, and, when he isn't honest, she makes plans to confront Curtis. She stops at a pay phone to talk to Curtis, who is at the Forest Inn with Dinahlee, only to carjacked. I wonder how people would react today to what happens in the aftermath of Trisha's death. After the car explodes, a rather big focal point is the picture of Buck and Curtis burning. It's an important point as the picture is only proof of Buck and Curtis' connection, but I'm not sure how people would feel as we are suppose to believe in that moment Trisha has perished. The funeral is nicely done. It's a true event. There is a big reveal (Dinahlee realizes she has been seeing Curtis Alden) and almost everyone is there (including rarely used players like Armando and Dr. Ron Turner). The choice of song, Amazing Grace, seems to work well for Trucker's trajectory, but it's odd that they don't announce who the singer is, I believe its Roberta Flack. Anyway, looking over the Alden clan its hard to commit to their grief as so many of them have been around for under a year. During the funeral, they finally reveal that Trisha is alive and she slips off to another town where she is befriended by a kind woman, Margie, who takes her in. They build a nice little side story here with Margie believing Trisha is a battered wife and having a daughter who ran away. When Jeff Hartman arrives freshly released from Dunellyn, Margie tells him about Trucker beating Trisha and you can almost buy what they are doing. Trisha and Jeff dance to Bonnie Raitt's "I Can't Make You Love Me," a song "Loving" has used several times, and Trisha asks Jeff if he would need a secretary in Rome. It nicely sets up what should be Trisha's return, in love and happy with Jeff but then remembering Trucker and her son Christopher. I think the story requires a lot of leaps of logic, but if you accept them its kind of a nice exit. Overall, Millee Taggart and Robert Guza's run seems to be very strong after a year of chaos under Addie Walsh and Haidee Granger. Walsh, by the way, is credited as headwriter until January 1993. The Ava / Leo / Shana triangle is very strong. Under Guza and Taggart, Leo Burnell is more of egotistical, arrogant, and a bit of a chauvinist. Shana and Leo have a combative back and forth, while the push and pull between Shana and Leo brings out the worst in Ava, which is best for the audience. At times, there is too much humor in the storyline. Some of Shana's fantasies aren't my cup of tea and some of Ava's schemes seem like they were rejected by the writers of "I Love Lucy." Overall, it's a really nice story. Shana not wanting to love Leo, Leo torn between what both women offer him, and Ava not willing to let another man walk out of her life. While Ally's pregnancy may be nothing new, the way Guza and Taggart present the material seems different. In the transition period between Walsh and the new writers, all of the lying and deceit comes out. Ally tells Casey she is pregnant. Casey confronts Cooper, which leads to Hannah learning about the baby. Then Ally goes to visit Hannah only for Hannah to confront Ally. When Cooper arrives, Hannah calls off their engagement, while Casey turns around and says he's going to support Ally despite the hurt. Most of this is strong, but there doesn't seem to be much effort put into giving Hannah much of a perspective. Gayheart was certainly green, as are so many first time soap actors, but more effort needed to be point into Hannah's point of view. In contrast, the other characters have been strengthened. As much as I hate Giff's death, it is clearly an event that defines who Casey is and guides him in nearly everything he does. Hannah arrived in Corinth from a small town very naïve. This should be her defining event, and, in a way, it is. Hannah hangs around the younger set a bit while longer, but then Guza and Taggart isolate her and have her lusting after Jeremy Hunter. The Hannah / Jeremy story is one of the weakest ones. Laura Sisk Wright has completely settled into the role of Ally and she has sort of gone with the tough girl with softer edges who doesn't want to play games anymore. The character has gone through such an evolution in the past year, but Taggart, who I believe introduced the character, seems to have given her the strongest sense of self. Ally's impending motherhood seems to be directly impacted by her parents' divorce. Cooper also has changed. While Ally embraces motherhood, Cooper completely rejects the idea of being a father. He starts drinking a bit, landing himself in jail for a DUI, and then puts on quite a show at Burnell's in the Arabian Nights window display. It is only after Trisha dies and Cooper has a moment of reflection with Clay that Cooper becomes more interested in fatherhood. While it's not revolutionary, the Cooper / Ally / Casey triangle works because all of the characters have stakes and all of them seem to be operating based on their own individual experiences. Also, none of the trio are perfect. Cooper is easily manipulated by people like Clay and Stephanie Brewster and was pretty quick to abandon the baby before the change of heart. Ally is wishy washy at times about whether or not to accept Cooper's role in the baby's life, while Casey tends to be jealous of the connection that Ally and Cooper will always share because of the child. What's nice is the story is all about little moments like Coop showing up at the Lamaze class when Casey is already there as her partner and Ally worrying about how she is going to be able to pay her medical bills. In the long run, Stephanie replaces Hannah, but, initially, she seems to replace Mia, an Alden University student who Cooper is fooling around with for a bit. Mia is first seen Jeremy Hunter's art class before she ends up hooking up with Cooper and is last seen breaking up the fight between Coop and Casey when Casey learns that Coop is the father of Ally's child. Mia has similarly dark features like Stephanie, but Stephanie certainly has more personality. From the moment she's introduced, Stephanie is a troublemaker; Casey catches her stealing a scarf at Burnell's. She is established as a long time Corinth resident, Isabelle has known her family for years, and she has been attending classes at AU with the rest of the younger set. She's a fun addition. Louie's prostate cancer story is probably the last nice thing done in the final days credited to Walsh. Probably my favorite scene from 1992 is Dinahlee talking to Louie at Pins the night before his surgery. She's worried about him, but he says guys aren't suppose to talk about these things with pretty young ladies. Louie is trying to reassure Dinahlee, but it's Dinahlee who has the best little moment. Dinahlee goes off on a little monologue about how she's never known her father who abandoned her when she was four years old. She talks about how she always imagined what he was like, and, now, she hopes that he would be like Louie. Under Guza and Taggart, Louie's impotence continues and there are some really nice moments between Louie and Kate. Louie avoids Kate when it's time to go to bed, first staying late at the bowling alley and then coming home to do a crossword puzzle. It's such a real conflict that you'd never see play out today with a couple at that age. When Kate is talking to Ava, Kate makes it clear that she and Louie have had an active sex life, which shocks Ava. I can see why it was well liked, and I wish it was featured a bit more. On the down side, nothing seems to really work about Curtis Alden. Patrick Johnson is given very little direction and struggles to find any depth in Curtis. The writing isn't helping. The show pushes Curtis / Dinahlee hard with the silly "Ronnie / Betty" story, which is mostly ridiculous but does lead to some nice tension for Clay and Ava individually as they realize that Curtis and Dinahlee are in love with the other before they do. The reveal of Dinahlee and Curtis' true identities after Trisha's funeral is a nice climax to the story and the possibility of a Clay / Curtis / Dinahlee triangle is intriguing, but no one has a sense of who Curtis is. It doesn't help that they've also saddled Curtis with some mysterious backstory involving Buck and their time in Kuwait. The show needed to really figure out who Curtis was. I feel like Taggart had similar issues with Curtis during her first stint. The other issue is the father/son dynamic between Clay / Curtis doesn't generate the interest that the Clay / Cooper relationship offers. After Cooper gets in trouble with Steffie for nearly having sex in a window display at Burnells', Clay offers to mentor Cooper in the art of being a calculated, vindictive Alden. Some of it is over the top as anything, but it's an intriguing proposition. I've only seen a little bit of Tess, and she works as a con artist/grifter type, but I cannot see how she could work long term.
  15. 1992. He treated Trucker in the aftermath of being shot by Giff Bowman and falling from the belfry. Reynolds was later the doctor who diagnosed Louie with prostate cancer. Peg Murray's "Loving" role, Mary Lou, was from 1992. She was Tim Sullivan's neighbor in Atlanta who let Trucker and Stacey into Tim's home during their investigation.
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