In this month's Busted to Blissful, Soapdom's Lesleyann Coker is fed up with As the World Turns, but she couldn't be more delighted with One Life to Live. What is it about the goings on in Oakdale that busted her bubble and what's so wonderful in LLanview that has put her in bubblicious bubble bliss? Read on!
ATWT's 50th Anniversary
On April 2, 2006, As the World Turns celebrated its 50th anniversary. For a show that has been on television since 1956, you'd expect it to have a lot of history. Fifty years of story should mean a lot of clips and flashbacks for fans. Unfortunately, ATWT failed to capitalize enough on its vast archive during the recent anniversary special. Instead, fans were left with a few quick trips down memory lane courtesy of Barbara and Lucinda, a painfully brief clip of Nancy's past, and montages of the respective loves of Lisa and John.
I expected much more from a show with such a proud pedigree. The anniversary episode focused on core characters Lucinda, Barbara, Susan, Kim, Emma, Lisa and matriarch Nancy Hughes, all stuck in the woods after their chartered bus broke down. While it was certainly a clever idea to throw these seven powerful women together who have shared such volatile history and so many men, the execution was poor.
The show featured Nancy (Helen Wagner, who has been on the show for all 50 years) receiving an award for her lifetime of service to the community. This was a great concept, and should have been an excellent way to showcase the past via clips of Nancy and her family throughout the years. Instead, we received some words from the other Oakdale women in attendance at the out-of-town ceremony, and an extremely brief montage feting Nancy. After viewing this, I though it was just a preview of what the rest of the hour was to hold. I was wrong.
Following the awards ceremony, the women's bus broke down on their way back to Oakdale. This plot device was obviously designed for female bonding to occur, as the women gathered around a campfire and reminisced on their lives and loves. While the flashbacks were a treat, they lasted less than a minute each, in order to allow time for Barbara to be chased by a bear, only to have the other women scare it off by singing a chorus of 'The Bear Went Over the Mountain.' The women spent additional screen time rescuing Lucida who was trapped behind the steering wheel after the bus tipped over, before it caught fire.
These ridiculous moments were not only beneath the actors, but didn't benefit the historic milestone ATWT was trying to celebrate. And don't even get me started on the show that preceded the anniversary episode. This hour of 'comedy' gave us our beloved favorite families of the Snyders, Ryans, Munsons, as well as Katie, Mike, Henry and the insipid teens, portraying classic sitcoms such as The Beverly Hillbillies, I Dream of Jeannie, The Addams Family, The Munsters, I Love Lucy, and Happy Days. As the World Turns deserved a more fitting tribute than either of these two shows provided on this momentous occasion.
Which flashbacks would you have liked to see included in the anniversary celebration? Visit the Soapdom Message Boards under Lesleyann Coker at http://www.Soapdom.com.
OLTL's Endless Possibilities
Over the past year, One Life to Live suffered in the ratings after it lost its way relying on a pat storyline where an endless stream of day players were murdered one by one. Today, the show has returned to its former glory. For the first time in a long time, there are several storylines that are not only watchable, but actually entertaining.
One of the most compelling stories revolves around Todd being framed for the murder of the nefarious Margaret and their unborn child. Of course Margaret and the baby are really alive, stashed in Thailand courtesy of evil Dr. Spencer Truman. To make matters more interesting, Spencer became romantically involved with Todd's wife, Blair, while Todd was sitting on death row. Typical of Todd, he escaped from prison, determined to prove his innocence. In the process a dramatic helicopter crash ensued, allowing Todd to go on the run.
In the face of Todd's escape, an unlikely friendship has blossomed between Todd and his good hearted lawyer, Evangeline, who has been helping him hide from the cops. If I didn't know Todd's heart already belonged to Blair, I would think he has developed feelings for Evangeline, and she for him. This relationship is reminiscent of Todd's pattern of choosing beautiful female lawyers to take on his cases, like his doomed romance with his former lawyer - and wife - Tea.
Another unlikely friendship is progressing between Evangeline and Christian. Evangeline's portrayer, Renee Goldsberry, has chemistry with all of her leading men - enough to almost make me forget the passion she shared with Michael Easton's John. Even if Evangeline thinks she's still in love with John, and Christian thinks he's still in love with Natalie, I predict it's only a matter of time before these two get together. And when they do, Natalie, Christian's estranged wife and John's lover, will not be happy about it. The friendship and chemistry between Evangeline and Christian has been an unexpected treat , and if things take a turn in a romantic direction, it will be fun to watch the different relationships that are affected by this union.
If those relationship seems complicated, they're nothing compared to the tension brewing between Kevin, his current fianc'e (and ex-wife) Kelly, and his grown son, Duke. Duke has been fighting his feelings for Kelly for sometime now, and just confessed his love to her. Kelly can deny it all she wants, but there is a powerful pull between herself and Duke, not unlike the illicit feelings that originally drew her to Kevin when she was still married to his brother, Joey.
However, this emotional triangle pales next to the one featuring Nash, Tess/Jessica and Antonio. The split personality of Jessica and Tess is on the verge of becoming integrated into one personality again, which raises the question of which of her lovers will be the odd man out. I'm sure whichever man is left alone will not be alone for long. The way things are currently progressing in Llanview, anything is possible. Maybe the Jess/Tess reject will wind up with Evangeline. She does have chemistry with Antonio...
Which pairs would you like to see together? Visit the Soapdom Message Boards under Lesleyann Coker at http://www.Soapdom.com.
Lesleyann Coker is a contributing columnist for Soapdom.com, and co-author of Boob Tube, a satiric novel currently being shopped to publishers that examines what really goes on behind the scenes of the soap opera industry. She is a former reporter for Soap Opera Weekly magazine, and has interviewed over 200 daytime and primetime actors during her career.
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