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AMC: Choose Your Own Cliffhanger!


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So apparently this is now just my [[email protected]#$%^&*] playground. Well, that's fine. This ain't my first failed thread. Now instead, I shall treat you to my very own over-the-top, ridiculous AMC finale. I am very ashamed, and yet not. Mostly rough ideas, mostly playing with people that were presently available.

Number one: I would've insisted on two hours, or at least 90 minutes. That's the bare minimum you need, IMO, to both do some nice closure and set up good cliffhangers. A lot of the existing finale would remain, but there would be some additions as outlined.

I would've had it open a few days after Stuart's release from the hospital. Everyone is settling back into the mansion and Stuart and Marian are settling back into married life, as well. Yet he finds himself painting, over and over, images of a creepy black house on fire. His memories of his time in Orpheus' care are fragmented, hallucinatory, but that image recurs...

Across town, Dixie awakens from a dream of a patient at the Orpheus facility, with blonde hair and a "B" necklace. She and Tad enjoy breakfast with Joe and Ruth, and Tad confides in his wife about his troubled relationship with Damon, who has been out of touch for months. He wonders where the boy is, and Dixie suggests they search for him together.

Over at Jake and Amanda's, they're preparing to visit the rest of the Martins with Trevor, and another special guest - Janet, who is out on supervised visits! Janet frets over her grandson but seems to be kooky yet relatively stable, for Janet. Amanda, OTOH, is suffering from headaches. She wonders if they're brought on by some of her recent medication. She seems distracted, off-balance.

At Ryan and Greenlee's, Greenlee awakens from a dream about her time with Leo, at the Orpheus compound. She's ill at ease as Ryan discusses their future now that he has withdrawn from Cambias. When he brings up Jack and Erica's issues, and his relief that he and Greens don't have that kind of indecision in their marriage, she can barely offer up a smile. Her time revisiting her true love has rattled her, and she tells Kendall this during lunch at the Slater house.

A lot of things proceed as they did in the existing finale. After David is released on bail, he drops by the Hubbard household to visit Angie. They have a heart-to-heart about his work and its shadowy origins. He explains to Angie that he had once worked with another party to create Orpheus; the genius, and the funding, wasn't all his. But their goals differed, and the other party was dangerous, far more dangerous than he could ever hope to be. They punished him severely when he broke away from them, and his life is likely to be forfeit now that he's taken his version of Orpheus public. It's good that he's going away - it'll keep Cara and the baby safe.

Angie asks him again about the final patient, and David insists that to tell her would to be put all of Pine Valley in danger. Angie reminds him of Dixie's memory of a woman, but David hedges and says Dixie was on psychotropic drugs and her memory is unreliable - she doesn't know what she saw, and she's wrong. He's protecting everyone by keeping the patient's identity secret. Before leaving, he thanks Angie for being a friend and tenderly kisses her cheek, a gesture frowned upon by a quietly eavesdropping Frankie.

At the PVPD, Liza is confronted by the Mayor about her conduct during the Orpheus scandal and unceremoniously dismissed. Furious, she plots to take revenge by framing Blanco, but instead Caleb Cortlandt appears at ConFusion and offers her an alternative: go back to what she does best. Run his revamped WRCW, and make the establishment pay over the airwaves. Liza toasts to conquest.

After listening to Opal's words of wisdom, Erica heads to the cemetery for a heart to heart with Mona, cueing obligatory flashbacks. Her expression of her fears and doubts to her mother about how to choose between Jack and stardom is cross-cut with Greenlee's testimonial at Leo's grave, on the other end of the grounds (also with flashbacks). The women run into each other as they leave, trading barbs and expressing false confidence in their romantic futures.

The Chandler party proceeds as planned, everyone attends, etc etc - including the kids - and much goes down as in the finale we saw. JR creeps around with a gun (and flashes back to his happier days as Jesse McCartney), Adam and Brooke get engaged, Erica admits she doesn't want to marry Jack and he walks out. Zendall are headed off on vacation. But before the public speech, Greenlee finds herself out on the patio, unable to take Zendall's wedded bliss. While there, she is surprised by a visitor - Leo! Leo explains that he really had been at the Orpheus compound. There are dangerous people involved in the project, people even David couldn't control. David had thought he was dead, that his ex-partners had killed Leo to punish him, but Leo escaped their clutches. He's on the run, and he needs Greenlee to trust him and come with him. He begs Greens to take his hand.

Inside, Liza offers Marissa a job as WRCW's general counsel. She warns her that the station is developing into a new media platform all its own, and would be going after all of the Pine Valley establishment - including possibly the Kanes. Marissa hesitantly insists she can handle it. Meanwhile, Jamie reunites with family and friends, including the Hubbards. Upon meeting Brot and Natalia, he freezes up. It's clear in his and Natalia's eyes that the two know each other, but they fake a greeting anyway...

David wanders the grounds with Cara as they ponder their future. He assures her it's best that he take time away, but doesn't tell her what he told Angie. He promises to meet her back inside, then stares at the moon for a moment alone. "It's better they don't know about you," he murmurs, remembering the mystery patient with a "B." "It would change everything." Just then, shadowy men in black uniforms come out of the bushes and drag David off into the night.

Back in the house, Madison takes Frankie aside into another room after learning of Randi's pregnancy. She tells him how happy she is for him, and how thrilled she is to be back with Scott. No one will ever know they slept together. Of course, someone does - little Kathy Martin is listening in. Meanwhile, a well-dressed European gentleman, who introduces himself as one of Adam's colleagues, buttonholes Angie and Jesse. He tells Angie he's eager to take David Hayward's work with Orpheus public and global, but with Hayward incarcerated, someone else will have to take the reins, someone respected, someone humane - someone like Angie. But she'd be needed in France - soon.

Amanda arrives to the party late, apologizing to Jake and Janet for being caught up with Fusion business. She seems fine, but back at Fusion we see a darkened office, and a growing pool of blood by the elevator...

After Jack's Rhett Butler moment, Erica ignores Opal's pleas just as she did in the broadcast finale ("just watch me") and resolves to have it all again - she'll go to Hollywood and win Jackson back, too. She storms out of the party, and Tad's speech is moved to after Erica's exit.

After Tad's speech and the toast, Ryan walks out onto the patio, searching for Greenlee. He finds nothing - except her glass of champagne, and her wedding ring. Heartbroken and shellshocked, he reenters the party to see the young children reciting the poem from their school play - the "All My Children" poem - to the assembled guests. As the kids finish, JR is overcome and enters the living room, embracing Adam and Dixie and telling them he wants to get help.

Suddenly, the drawing room doors open and Damon Miller enters the party. Tad rushes to him, and Damon, who seems fragile (as always), tells his father he's come home.

Meanwhile...over in the sleepy little town of Corinth...a grumpy police chief (possibly Randolph Mantooth as Alex Masters?) is yelling at some officers who are making the "click-click" pen noise from the Loving Murders to pass the time ("That's still not funny!"). He's called down to the front desk to take a look at a child who's been brought in, found wandering the streets. No ID, no personal effects. It's a blond boy of about 10-12 years old, bedraggled and bruised, wearing what looks like a battered winter ski jacket...and carrying a "B" necklace and a torn picture of a black house on fire. The chief asks the kid his name. "I'm Bobby Martin," the boy replies.

At Pine Valley Airport, Erica weighs her options - go to Hollywood, or stay and fight for Jack. We close on her remembering her long history in Pine Valley, her many adventures, her conflicts with Mona, and a montage of the other characters at the party. Then, we cut back to Erica, staring at the departure listings at the airport.

A passing traveler stops her - it's Oprah Winfrey. "Oh, hello, Oprah!" Erica replies casually. Oprah asks Erica what she's doing there alone, without baggage. Is she alright? "But of course!" Erica says, smiling. "I'm Erica Kane! And I know exactly what I'm going to do."

-

....soooo, that's it. Angie can have gone to France, you can pick up or drop as many of those cliffhangers as you like, and obviously Finn Wittrock would likely do only one day as Damon and then be recast on the new show. Greenlee would be gone AFAIC. And no, that's not the Bobby Martin from the '70s - probably. Like I said, I am very ashamed. And now you can point and laugh! So we're all happy.

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Okay so this is my version of the entire finale:

The show opens with the baby montage. Then it slowly fades into yet another montage. It begins with Scott/Marian rushing through the halls of the Pine Valley Hospital. Erica and Jack fight, as she accuses him of squandering her dreams. Zach/Kendall are seen packing boxes in their living room. Ryan sits on the couch holding Emma, while Greenlee stands holding a picture of Leo, gently touching his face. Then it goes back to Marian as she rushes towards Stuart's room. When she sees him, she reaches up and puts her hand on the glass door, tears running down her cheeks.

*OPENING CREDITS*

The next scene is the reunion of Stuart/Marian. They talk/kiss/hug, etc. It's a several-minute long scene.. Marian thinks she's dreaming and breaks down, begging to wake up, knowing she can't take another dream like this. Stuart grabs her hand and says "You're not dreaming, darling." Marian turns to look at Stuart who wipes the tears from her cheek and says "This is real."

Erica is sitting on the couch, fanning herself dramatically, seemingly unaware that her relationship has truly ended. Opal enters, handing Erica a glass of ice-water. "Honey, are you sure this is what you want? Is a movie really more important than the love of your life?"

"Opal, darling, you've known me for how long? Being in the movies is my dream! Yes, Pine Valley has come a long way, but it's still not exactly the corner of Hollywood and Vine!"

"But if you go to Hollywood, this movie will be all you have. You'll have lost Jackson, and you won't get him back."

"Why of course I will, darling....I'm Erica Kane!"

*fades to black*

*ONE MONTH LATER*

Ruth and Joe are sitting in the Martin living room. It is revealed that Joe has accepted a permanent position at the hospital, and that they will be returning to Pine Valley for good. After they share a kiss, the doorbell rings. Joe opens the door, and is stunned to see his daughter Tara standing before him, seeming distraught. Tara greets Joe and Ruth warmly, but then quietly asks to talk to her father alone. Ruth leaves, and panic instantly takes over Tara

"Tara, what's wrong? What's happened?"

"Daddy, it's Bobby."

"Tara Martin. You know we agreed never to speak of him again. *his voice cracks* It's too painful, after what happened."

"But daddy, it's not true. None of it's true! Bobby didn't die in that ski accident! They lied to us. The boy we buried, that we mourned in private, was never Bobby. He's alive, and he's dangerous."

The next scene takes place at Krystal's, with Marian/Stuart. They discuss their future, and how they are going to stay in Pine Valley because their family needs them. Scott/Madison walk in and share fantastic news with them: They're having a baby!

Over at Erica Kane's apartment, she paces anxiously, waiting for something. Just then, the doorbell rings. When she opens it, Kendall stands in front of her. The two embrace. Then it is revealed to the audience that a month prior, Kendall, Zach and the boys had moved to California to expand Fusion. Kendall is back in town to visit her mother and tie up a business deal with Fusion. During the conversation, it is also revealed that Greenlee moved to California to help with Fusion - ALONE.

Ryan sits at home, holding a picture of Gillian. "I miss you, love" he whispers. "It was all too much for Greenlee. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe I shouldn't have moved Annie in here after she was released. But I thought it was best for Emma...Oh who am I kidding? Greenlee left because she believes Leo is alive. And for her sake, I hope she's right."

Brooke and Adam stand in the Chandler living room, crying. They discuss JR's mental lapse. Adam tearfully discusses how JR has been admitted into (a newly rebuilt) Oakhaven.

"Oh Brooke. Seeing my son locked away, insane, breaks my heart."

"I know dear...I know."

"And it's only getting worse. Whenever I think he's getting better, it gets even worse. Now, he's imagined a whole new person. He keeps shouting "Beth! Beth! My friend Beth". He insists he's found this beautiful blonde woman, living in a secret room under Oakhaven...It's heartbreaking."

"Well dear, sometimes, when someone is on the verge of collapse, they make up friends...as a coping mechanism."

"I know, I know...But between that and losing the house. I pulled all the strings I could. I had this pushed back as long as possible, but I can't delay it anymore. They're taking the house."

"Darling, I tried my hardest. I tried so hard to buy this house, with Aunt Phoebe's inheritance...But someone beat me to it."

Before Adam has a chance to respond, they hear heels clicking in the front hall. Skye Quartermaine enters the living room and says, with a bright smile: "That would be me."

Tad and Dixie sit in the park, holding hands. It is revelaed that their wedding day is quickly approaching. Tad is talking away about the happy day, but he can tell that Dixie is in another place.

"What's wrong darling?"

Dixie insists that nothing is wrong, but she continues to flash back to the blonde-haired woman she saw while being held by David.

Skye and Adam reunite lovingly back at the mansion. "Thank you my darling. Thank you for buying my house back." he says.

"Oh daddy, it's my house now." She says with a smile. Adam looks startled, but before he can inquire, Skye insists she must leave, but will be back later.

"I've sent out an email. All of Pine Valley should be here tonight, for a little party I'm throwing. A welcome home to me, you, and Uncle Stuart" she says with a wink, before exiting.

David sits in his jail cell, feeling lonely. Just as he is about to dose off, a surprise visitor shows up - SKYE. David is shocked to see her.

"What are you doing here, Skye? We agreed. No one would ever know you were a part of this."

"Yes, that was the agreement, wasn't it? And I would have been fine with that, had you not botched this so badly."

"Everything is under control. The last patient is stable."

"The last patient happens to be my sister, Mr. Hayward. And I will be taking over from here."

And with that, she leaves. David insists he make a phone call, and the guard escorts him to the phone. He picks it up and dials urgently.

"You have to get her out of there! She's not safe. Skye is coming after BETH, and it won't end well."

Meanwhile, Frankie and Randi gather at the Hubbard home with Angie/Jesse.

"We're really going to miss you." says Randi

"We'll miss you, too" Angie says "But this opportunity was too good to pass up. I'm hoping this research study in France will be revolutionary. I was lucky enough to get my sight back, and now I want to help others achieve the same. I wish I could achieve that from Pine Valley, but right now France is where the calling is."

Everyone begins gathering at the Chandler home. Kendall arrives with Madison, Scott, Amanda and Jake, and tells Adam/Brooke that Erica will be coming shortly. Brot and Natalia arrive and announce that they're engaged. Angela/Jessie arrive with Frankie and Randi. Stuart, Adam and Brooke tell Angie they will miss her. Ruth, Joe, Tad, Dixie and TARA arrive at the chandler mansion. Everyone is rather surprised to see Tara there, and wonder what's going on. Ruth confides in Tad that she has no idea why Tara is back in town, but fears it isn't good.

As the party starts, everyone heads into the living room. Skye clangs her glass and makes a toast and enters. "I bet you're all surprised to see me!" She says. "And soon you'll know why I'm back in town. But until then, enjoy the party we're throwing here at the Chandler mansion, the home I recently purchased."

Erica rushes into the party, running late. Her hair is messed up, and she's holding her wrist, as if it is hurt. She insists that she's fine, but the she then cuts to a shot of Krystal, laying motionlessly in bed. The camera then pans out and shows Jackson laying on the ground, next to the bed, a pool of blood near his head. We don't know if they're alive or dead, or if Erica was involved.

Skye steps into the hallway and answers a call:

"Yes Bobby, I know. And I'm taking care of your daughter. Everything will be okay. I'll take care of my sister. No one will know what you're doing, or that you had a daughter with my mother."

Just then in the living room, Adam proposes to Brooke. After she accepts, Adam stands and says "We're getting married!" and the room starts applauding. Just then, the doors to the living room swing open and Skye screams "Over my dead body". Then, a shot rings out, and Skye falls to the floor, bleeding, as the screen fades to black. Who shot Skye?

THE END.

Now obviously, Skye is NOT dead. Anyone who knows me knows I'd never kill my Skye. But that's my cliffhanger.

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