September 4, 2007

Warning:  We'll get the spoiler portion out of the way, right off the bat.  So those of you who wish to remain spoiler free, please step away from the saloon right now, so as to remain unsullied!

Keep those VCR's, DVR's or TiVo's programmed so as not to miss a minute of GH in the upcoming month or so.  Apparently, the conflict between Sam and Elizabeth is coming to a head - and according to Soap Dish sources, Sam goes completely nuts!  Her last over-the-top act is a verbal  outburst, which likely escalates into physical violence against Lizzeh.  This episode is probably what finally prompts Alexis and Nikolas to cart Sam off to the funny farm (Shadybrook?  Rose Lawn?).  As a result of her crimes against Lizzeh, Alexis is sure to plead insanity for Sam thereby enabling her portrayer, Kelly Monaco, to either go on a lengthy vacation, or exit altogether; paving the way for a Sam McCall  recast. Whatever the case may be, Monaco could see her final GH airdate on or about September 21.

Now, let's get to discussing...  Is Sam truly ill, or is she going to cry wolf?  Personally?  I believe it's somewhere in the middle.

There is one camp which is firmly entrenched in the belief that Sam is a sociopath - pure and simple. There are lots of those walking around among us.  A sociopath doesn't really care what happens to other people, because they have no conscience.  They can easily mimic caring, because they have learned that it will make them more socially acceptable, less stand-outish.  You cannot "cure" a sociopath.  For those of you who are long time fans of GH, Kevin Collins was also a sociopath.  Like him, Sam has gotten very used to getting what she wants, when she wants it, no matter what.  Thus the intense frustration she is suffering, because Jason won't play ball - and before you know it... tharrrrrrr she blows!!  In a situation such as that,  I can totally see her going batshit, and striking out in all kinds of nefarious ways; then plead insanity (*wink-wink*) to get herself out of the mess she's made.   A sociopath; while "detached"  from all normal feelings (emotions), as Sam appears to be, as well as devoid of morals and scruples,  can still think clearly enough to know how to get out of a dicey situation.  But, (and it's a big but) the fact that Sam gave her real name and didn't use a disguise when hiring those park thugs, could be an indication of an actual useful (for lack of a better word), mental illness. Then again, it could simply be that she doesn't care if she gets caugh, or she truly believes she's so clever that she won't be caught. 
If Sam really is mentally ill, then this would explain why she doesn't *get* that when you break up with someone, (ie: Jason) you stay-the-frell-out of their life.  Period. 

There is another faction out there who can totally understand how a con woman could suffer a mental breakdown after a life full of nothing but cons.  (AND that losing Jason was the straw that pushed her over the edge.)   I mean really... How DO you keep it all straight in your head?  So many men, so many identities.  Does she even know who she really is any more?  Is she Sam McCall, is is Sam McCall just another identity she assumed upon stumbling across information about her life?  (That would make for an interesting twist if they decide to go ahead and do a recast - and even if they don't and KM ends up re-signing!)   Anyway, suppose Jax was her first mark when she "bumped" into him.  Things went south and she latched on to the next person, Sonny.  Personally, I think it's an easy assumption to make, since her personality did change in subtle ways from how she was with Jax to how she was with Sonny.  I think it could go either way as to whether or not her pregnancy was intentional - Sonny and Jax are both big on family, so Sam would have been sitting pretty no matter who turned out to be the father.  For my money though?  I'm guessing it was NOT intentional and that the baby was conceived the night she slept with both Sonny and Jax - the night of the PC Hotel fire. 

If we go with the notion that Sam was conning everyone from minute one, then her initial intent to abort her baby would have been a case of her thinking that a baby would prevent her from pulling future scams.  Then, when it came right down to it?  She couldn't go through with it because, for all her scamming ways, there is a part of Sam that really wants a family.  (Which is why I find it hard to lump her into the sociopath category.)  Sam genuinely seemed to love Danny, her brother, and I do believe that she could have loved her daughter - so much so that it could have changed her life drastically.  The situation with Jason?  That was kismet for her.  Sonny wanted her close by, because he wanted his child close by - what better way to accomplish that, than by having her live with his friend and enforcer.  Sam-the-con went along with it, because it kept her close to the money and living in style.  Sam soon morphed another personality, one taylor-made to appeal to Jason - who turned out to be VERY good at taking care of her and making her feel safe.  He didn't ask questions, which suited Sam just fine, as she really didn't want to have to answer questions about her past.  She'd stumbled onto the perfect arrangement!  Here's this great guy, who happens to be a killer with his own skeletons in the closet, he's good looking, loyal, trustworthy, and probably not too shabby in the sack.  She conforms herself into the perfect little mob-moll, but... then finds herself suddenly deeply in love with him!  Whoops!  So much for conning him, and maybe she doesn't have to.  I mean, she has a baby on the way and this great guy is offering to help her raise that child and take care of them so she never has to want for anything in life ever again!  Then, the unthinkable happens - she loses her baby.  The child she had all her hopes and dreams wrapped up in - gone!  Naturally, in the midst of all this very real grieving, there is bound to be some insecurity mixed in there as well.  Not only did she lose the child she had come to genuinely love and want, but it looks like she might be losing everything else because of that.  Sonny certainly has no use for her anymore - so in her mind, it would stand to reason that Jason wouldn't either.  Yet, he surprised her.  He assures her that he's going to stand by her and look out for her - with or without a baby.  BONUS!  Still...her world has been rocked on its axis, so it's not impossible that the veneer on her mental health is cracking some - maybe even a lot.

So, going with this scenario, it's easy to see how Sam may have rewritten her whole identity with Jason as the sole focal point of her life.  How many times have we heard Sam say that she doesn't know who she is without Jason?   (Too many!)  She desperately clung to Jason for all she was worth and when things got bad - as in Manny Ruiz bad, and she almost died as a result, she found herself suddenly adrift again, without the man she had anchored her existence to - Jason.  He cut her loose, hoping to spare her any further pain, but that wasn't what she wanted.  She wanted him and damn the danger to her own life.  When he remained unmoved, she went after those who she blamed for taking away her "life":  Alexis and Jason.  She was going to make them PAY for giving a damn about her.  And what better way to make them suffer than to use the one man who would cut them both to the core?  Ric Lansing.  It didn't matter that she despised him with every fiber of her being; he was a means to an end.  This was our first real glimpse into who the true Sam McCall.  Vengeful, selfish, petty, sadistic.  I'm sure it never crossed her mind that Lizzeh would enter into the equation at all.  After all, this was about her, Jason and Alexis.  ric wasn't even a person at that point, he was a tool - an instrument of revenge.  Of course, when she came to and finally realized what she'd done and WHO, she instantly regretted it.  I believe there were two reasons for that regret:  1)  She remembered that it was Ric she was dealing with and that he would use their Sic sex and HER as his own weapon against Jason - so she couldn't HAVE that.  This was HER revenge, she couldn't let Ric take the power from her.  2)  It wasn't just revenge - it was another component of her con.  "See Jason?  I self-destruct without you - who KNOWS what I'll do to myself if you don't take me back!"  She girded up her loins and went to give Jason her mea culpa, only to discover that Jason hadn't been sitting at home alone - pining away for her.  He'd actually had the audacity to have sex with someone else:  Lizzeh!  D'oh!  That was soooo not part of her plan! Neither was Jason actually SEEING her wax the floors with Ric.  It's one thing to tell someone you slept with a certain person, it's another thing entirely to have them SEE you doing it!  (Harder to get that image out of his mind and harder to forgive you!)

But, forgive her he did - much to her joy and rapture.  Thusly, she moved back into his penthouse, even if she didn't quite occupy the roomy space in his heart that she enjoyed before.  She knew this and, rather than placing the blame squarely upon her own shoulders, she focused the blame on Lizzeh.  She'd never seen Lizzeh as a threat before, but she sure did after that night.  And because of that, we caught another glimpse into the true character of Sam.  Jason was supposed to forgive her "indiscretion" with his mortal enemy, but she couldn't possibly be expected to forgive his one night with Lizzeh.  I mean, Lizzeh slept with him on prupose just to mess up Sam's plans!  Her fangs and her claws came out each and every time she saw Lizzeh after that, and the hate began to fester.  Jason had forgiven her, but he definitely hadn't forgotten - she knew he was distant in a way he never had been before.  But, again, rather than to take the blame for putting that distance there in the first place, she blamed Lizzeh.   Sam didn't really need Carly whispering in her ear about how Lizzeh would stop at nothing to have Jason - Sam was already there.  She knew that she herself would stop at nothing, so why wouldn't Lizzeh?   Even with the baby apparently belonging to Lucky, she could see Jason moving inexorably closer to Lizzeh.  Sam could see all her carefully laid plans beginning to unravel.  As they did, so did she - and she became more and more unspooled by the day.  Jason could see this and, I'm convinced, it's the only reason he didn't up and end things between them.  Learning the Jake-truth; and I mean the WHOLE Jake-truth still wasn't enough for Sam to see reason.  Since Jason had no intention of sharing his son with her, (as in allowing her to raise him with Jason and Lizzeh out of the picture) Jake became an obstacle to everything she herself wanted.  So much so that she allowed him to be Jakenapped, then used their pain and suffering to intentionally inflict more pain and suffering on them by torturing them with the insinuations that Jake was, in fact, dead.  Yet another glimpse into the true nature of Sam McCall - to add to the collection of tidbits we learned about Sam via Amelia Joffe.

So, when it all came out - what Sam had done - and Jason saw who Sam really was, she breaks things off with him (before he has a chance to do it himself).  Then, it takes her all of five minutes to realize that she's lost what once was the love of her life, and she means to make Lizzeh pay for it - and Jason, too.  How dare they cause her pain?  How dare they wreck the plans she had for her life?  How dare they not give her what she wants, when she wants it?  (Which would be Jason, Jake and Lizzeh gone for good!)  But... is this ill-Sam?  Or is it mean, sadistic, vengeful Sam?  Maybe it's both?  Tough to tell, right now, things can still turn on a dime.  If KeMo re-signs, they will have to do some major repair work on her character, or simply turn her into the new incarnation of Helena Cassadine.   It can go either way at this point.   Some say, once a con woman always a con woman.  Maybe that's true, maybe it's not.  We'll have to see how it plays out over the next couple of months.  Personally, I think that her being mentally ill is the only thing that can save Sam's life.  If she's not mentally ill, then she should con everyone into believing she is - or she's a dead woman!  She is certainly clever enough to hide the more poisonous aspect of her personality when she needs to. Alexis hasn't been privy to many of Sam's latest deeds, so I wonder how long it'll take her to catch on that something isn't quite right with her eldest child. When Lizzeh went to Alexis and warned her about what Sam was up to, and Alexis basically blew her off, but turned around and actually warned Sam to stay away from Lucky - and avoid any repeats of what happened last summer with Ric; Sam turned it around and used it to endear Lucky to her. Unhinged?  Perhaps, but very, very clever.  That's what scares me about her and keeps me guessing - she is capable of anything, and she may indeed be ill/unstable, but she's still sane enough to hide it.

What say you, good people?  Is Sam certifiable?  Or is she just a petty, vindictive shrew?  Is she somewhere in between?  I leave it up to you to be the judge.  


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