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dc11786   

I loved the Faith / Frank romance. I didn't find it plot driven at all. Ken George Jones? Yes. I believed that was something born out of a desire to give Jill and Frank drama. I felt when they paired Faith and Frank, both were in a place in their lives that they would be open to something else. Frank was reacting to Jill's infidelity and Faith to the loss of Tom and her attempts to recover from alcohol dependence. Did I think it was some grand love? No, but it was a delightful trainwreck. I liked that everyone told Faith that Frank still loved Jill, and that Frank denied it to high heaven. Frank was a selfish b#stard who had no problem with loving multiple women at once. 

 

The scenes in the episode posted really make me reevaluate Faith's position on Jill. I think I better understand the nature of her animosity after Frank declared he still loved Jill. Jill really didn't suffer for what she did to Frank. She got to get with Ken right before her wedding, she dealt with some angst watching Frank with Faith, but, in the end, Jill won in Faith's eyes. Do I think that's necessarily fair? Probably not, but I can see the genesis of Faith's view. I think Faith should have been more angry with Frank, but it was naturally for her to blame someone else. Do I think Jill is at fault? Not for what Frank did to Faith. 

 

In the larger context, I do see some of the trouble with some of Faith's retelling of Coleridge family history. While Faith Catlin's version was frigid and neurotic, the recasts after had been level headed and had most friendly relationships with Jill. The sudden "Jill was the usurper" position that Faith presented wasn't really accurate, but also was one of Jill's biggest fears early on. It was almost inhuman of Faith to go that route, and probably out of character given how things had progressed. On some level, I feel that the Coleridges were always fundamentally flawed individuals who struggled with connecting with one another and each other so I was willing to dismiss some of Faith's tirades as hyperbole rather than accepting them as fact written in stone. 

 

I also really enjoyed some of the layers that were added to the story, which was clearly a B-story using A-characters. I liked Little John telling Frank he wanted Frank to marry Jill, not Faith, and his Delia-esque antics (running away from the Bar, growing bored and calling home, and then later running to Jill when he thought she was leaving New York). The Jill-Johnno relationship is a very rich relationship that was really well nurtures. I also like Bob getting mad at Frank about what he had done to Faith because he cared for her. This wasn't Rae or Delia who Frank was wronging. This was Faith, an insider. I also thought Faith trying to be a Ryan by bringing Annie to town and by agreeing to go through Catholicism classes with Father Shane were nice touches that could have easily been skipped but gave the story a level of depth.  

 

The biggest problem I had was that Frank, who completely led Faith on and then pulled the rug out from under her, didn't really suffer. I know the strike happened and then Hugh Kelly exited, but I never felt like Frank ever really got what he had coming to him for all the stunts he pulled. Maeve almost went there and blamed him for his behavior in one of her verbal altercations with Faith, but then both Maeve and Faith pulled back and absolved Frank. F#cking Frank. 

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DRW50   
5 minutes ago, dc11786 said:

I loved the Faith / Frank romance. I didn't find it plot driven at all. Ken George Jones? Yes. I believed that was something born out of a desire to give Jill and Frank drama. I felt when they paired Faith and Frank, both were in a place in their lives that they would be open to something else. Frank was reacting to Jill's infidelity and Faith to the loss of Tom and her attempts to recover from alcohol dependence. Did I think it was some grand love? No, but it was a delightful trainwreck. I liked that everyone told Faith that Frank still loved Jill, and that Frank denied it to high heaven. Frank was a selfish b#stard who had no problem with loving multiple women at once. 

 

The scenes in the episode posted really make me reevaluate Faith's position on Jill. I think I better understand the nature of her animosity after Frank declared he still loved Jill. Jill really didn't suffer for what she did to Frank. She got to get with Ken right before her wedding, she dealt with some angst watching Frank with Faith, but, in the end, Jill won in Faith's eyes. Do I think that's necessarily fair? Probably not, but I can see the genesis of Faith's view. I think Faith should have been more angry with Frank, but it was naturally for her to blame someone else. Do I think Jill is at fault? Not for what Frank did to Faith. 

 

In the larger context, I do see some of the trouble with some of Faith's retelling of Coleridge family history. While Faith Catlin's version was frigid and neurotic, the recasts after had been level headed and had most friendly relationships with Jill. The sudden "Jill was the usurper" position that Faith presented wasn't really accurate, but also was one of Jill's biggest fears early on. It was almost inhuman of Faith to go that route, and probably out of character given how things had progressed. On some level, I feel that the Coleridges were always fundamentally flawed individuals who struggled with connecting with one another and each other so I was willing to dismiss some of Faith's tirades as hyperbole rather than accepting them as fact written in stone. 

 

I'd think Jill going on trial for murder was some form of punishment, although maybe not in Faith's eyes. 

 

The Ken George Jones story was contrived, but I liked it because I thought it spoke the basic truth of Jill mostly only wanting Frank when he was unavailable and having a difficult time actually wanting to be with him when there were no obstacles. That made more sense to me than the whole "Jill and Frank are so in love because she was his mistress for a decade even though he couldn't leave sad sad Delia" narrative. I think this was even more true after she did try marrying and settling down, to Seneca, and it was a living nightmare. 

 

The Faith/Frank/Jill story may have made sense as well but I just hated the setup too much to be able to judge it fairly. It didn't help that I thought KMG was an unsympathetic and cold actress so only ever saw her as suited to the self-righteous and angry parts, but not the parts where we were supposed to feel sorry for Faith. It seemed we were always supposed to feel sorry for Faith without being told why. It was mostly just that she suffered or that she was a good person - when someone makes foolish decisions and goes around saying and doing nasty things, that doesn't really work for me anymore. 

 

If they'd actually addressed a real conflict and allowed Jill, or anyone besides Delia, to give some home truths about Faith, it would have gone a long way. 

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applcin   
2 minutes ago, DRW50 said:

The Ken George Jones story was contrived, but I liked it because I thought it spoke the basic truth of Jill mostly only wanting Frank when he was unavailable and having a difficult time actually wanting to be with him when there were no obstacles. That made more sense to me than the whole "Jill and Frank are so in love because she was his mistress for a decade even though he couldn't leave sad sad Delia" narrative. I think this was even more true after she did try marrying and settling down, to Seneca, and it was a living nightmare. 


I think, also, it spoke to Jillian's own fears of, perhaps, losing her independence. As much as she proclaimed her devotion to Frank, even while getting involved with other men, her telling those men about loving Frank...it all gave her an out. She didn't have to commit to any one man 100%. Frank was unavailable, marriage-wise, for a long time but she still had him, more or less. Seneca was willing to be devoted to her but she drew up a "marriage contract" making sure he never forgot he wasn't her great love and what that may have implied for the future. Then, as soon as Frank is 100% available, she sabotages things by being with Ken, all the while telling Ken, like Seneca, he's not her grand love...in fact, totally compartmentalizing the two relationships. At least, when she was with Seneca, she and Frank were on the outs and she thought her baby was Seneca's. She felt she needed Seneca even if she didn't like that fact very much.
I remember catching the show when I could during its original run (in between school) and really liking Jill. I thought she was smart, professional, beautiful, kind of bohemian. I thought she was stronger than most female soap characters were portrayed at that time, without be the "bad girl" or villain. I guess I still thought  that watching again much later...even though I got really sick of hearing Frank this, Frank that, Frank, Frank, Frank coming out of her so much.

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3 hours ago, DRW50 said:

 

I'd think Jill going on trial for murder was some form of punishment, although maybe not in Faith's eyes. 

 

The Ken George Jones story was contrived, but I liked it because I thought it spoke the basic truth of Jill mostly only wanting Frank when he was unavailable and having a difficult time actually wanting to be with him when there were no obstacles. That made more sense to me than the whole "Jill and Frank are so in love because she was his mistress for a decade even though he couldn't leave sad sad Delia" narrative. I think this was even more true after she did try marrying and settling down, to Seneca, and it was a living nightmare. 

 

The Faith/Frank/Jill story may have made sense as well but I just hated the setup too much to be able to judge it fairly. It didn't help that I thought KMG was an unsympathetic and cold actress so only ever saw her as suited to the self-righteous and angry parts, but not the parts where we were supposed to feel sorry for Faith. It seemed we were always supposed to feel sorry for Faith without being told why. It was mostly just that she suffered or that she was a good person - when someone makes foolish decisions and goes around saying and doing nasty things, that doesn't really work for me anymore. 

 

If they'd actually addressed a real conflict and allowed Jill, or anyone besides Delia, to give some home truths about Faith, it would have gone a long way. 

 

Do you think had they done the faith/frank/Jill story when Catherine hicks had played Faith..it would have worked better?

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DRW50   
4 minutes ago, Soaplovers said:

 

Do you think had they done the faith/frank/Jill story when Catherine hicks had played Faith..it would have worked better?

 

I think the performances would have made Faith more sympathetic, but Catherine Hicks was playing a very different character. I can't see her Faith ever going there. 

 

For me Faith never worked as a character. Hicks was very popular but that was mostly on the strength of her performances and charisma. 

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dc11786   

And for the same reason, I liked the Faith / Frank pairing. At the heart of the matter, Frank was an arrogant, selfish individual who was often reckless with other people’s emotions and was often absolved because he was a sainted Ryan. Despite all the protests, I felt Faith was duped and that’s why I sympathized with her even if her hatred was misdirected. She had been open and honest about her concerns about Frank still being in love with Jill, but decided to believe that Frank was telling the truth about his love for her. As a politician, Frank was supposed to be charismatic and persuasive so I could buy Faith believing in him. Hugh Kelly did a good job with those aspects of Frank’s character. He also played a lot of the material with an emotional detachment that made me loathe Frank even further. He was just a wonderful scumbag.

You hit on some interesting points about Jill and Frank. They didn’t work on a certain level. Frank waffled between respecting Jill as an independent and strong woman and wanting her to fill the mother role. I think the disconnect related back to Maeve, who was a strong woman but ultimately condoned a lot of his bull because he was her first born. Jill was less willing to coddle him. While I don’t think it would have been fulfilling for the characters, I would have liked to have seen Jill with Barry, which they sort of hinted at during the strike. If for no other reason than to see Frank and Delia squirm.

Faith is one of the show’s more problematic characters. The initial concept was very cold and standoffish, but than they hired Catherine Hicks who was so saccharine. I never warmed to Hicks’ portrayal. I thought Hicks played Faith like a Ryan, slightly sanctimonious but mostly angsty. At Mulgrew instilled some inner turmoil in her conflicts with Dee and Jack. Faith came off as so passive. I also agree they would never have played Faith / Frank with Hicks in the role. Hicks basically played a different character. After Barrett’s few weeks, Hicks played Faith fresh from the mental hospital with none of that history in her performances. I never got the haunted sense that I got from Catlin or Morris Gowdy (in her later performances).  

KMG was very vanilla until the alcoholism story. In the end, icy and disconnected Faith worked better for me, and I think it provided the canvas with a very different type of character. With that said, it was such a departure from what Faith had been for so many years I can see why it would put people off.

I agree that the show often skirted Faith’s accountability. She shouldn’t have been involved with someone so intensely on the heels of her recovery. It would have been nice if someone like Roger had played that card. Actually, I think someone may have said this, but Faith dismissed it.

For me, it was the trainwreck quality that I adored. There was no way this was going to work no matter how deeply Faith wanted it to, no matter how much Frank protested he loved her, or how much Jill tried to stay out it. Eventually, it was going to explode, and I just really enjoyed the momentum to the climax. I got a lot of enjoyment out of seeing Faith's world crumble even if I didn't feel she deserved it. I think Faith as an archetype, someone in love with someone she could never have, was identifiable and relatable, but I could see how her reaction afterwards put people off. At times, I felt Faith attacked the status quo by calling out some of the hypocrisy, while being blissfully unaware of her own. I also felt she suffered because she was alone, and I don't think that was something that she was as comfortable with as Jill was. 

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