For the week of May 15, 2006

            Welcome to Pine Valley 
        “Where everyone is miserable”

 I haven’t seen a town this miserable since Megan McTavish was torturing the folks over in Llanview. Last week I invited Marion Chandler out for drinks at the Yacht Club. She turned me down saying: “I’m feeling too miserable to drink.”   Now that’s miserable.  

Misery is spreading throughout Pine Valley faster than Botox. Where is the love? Where are the friends meeting for fries at BJs? Or drinks at the Valley Inn?  Where is the hot, passionate sex? Where is the witty repartee between sworn enemies? Where are plots without women, in one way or another, playing the victims?  

Kendall wins the victim Trifecta, having been victimized by Ryan, Greg and now JR. Oh, and I guess we can throw Zach in there, too.   

I am sorry Kendall is in a coma. It makes me feel sorry for her. It makes me feel sorry for Spike. It makes me feel sorry for Zach. It even makes me feel sorry for Erica and Ryan. Mostly, though it makes me feel sorry for myself. 

Comas are a soap staple. It’s a great chance for loved ones to express their feelings for the patient. Viewers like me often tear up hearing confessions of love, regret and even attempted murder. Sometimes we get to hear the patient’s enemies saying hateful things. We, the viewers, get to hear all these outpourings of emotions. 

If I enjoy coma stories so much, why do I feel sorry for myself during this one? Not because I have to hear people talking to Kendall but because I have to hear Kendall talking to them. Endlessly.  

When Kendall realized she was in a coma, hearing her pain and fear would have been dramatic. Once. When Kendall realized Spike was in trouble, hearing her fear would have been dramatic. Once. When Kendall realized she was JR’s accidental victim, hearing her anger would have been dramatic. Once. 

Eventually Kendall’s words just sounded like prattle. I half expected her to start commenting on Julia’s poor lip gloss choice. What could have been overwhelmingly heart breaking turned out to be ineffectual. 

It must be almost unbearably difficult to make a life or death decision based on what you and you alone think is best. What you and you alone think the patient would want. Not knowing what the patient will think about your decision if they recover. That suspense is part of what makes good drama. That part of the dramatic equation has been cancelled out by hearing Kendall’s insistence that the baby be saved. Kendall being Kendall she might have changed her mind while walking from the main Fusion office to the construction zone. The viewers’ anxiety of wondering if Kendall would approve of Zach’s decision or not, has been removed from the story. 

Wouldn’t it be great if ABC hired good storytellers to write their soaps? 

Time for me to stop with the wishful thinking and get on with the non-sequiturs: 

Air France may have stopped flying the Concorde but not Air Slater. How else to explain Zach flying roundtrip to the tropics and back within a matter of hours? 

I love the actor who plays Lil’A. His non-scripted ramblings (“Are you a real mommy?” “Is he my daddy?”) were the best part of this week’s AMC. 

What a relief it was when Zach silently kissed Kendall’s hair. Anyone else afraid he was going wax poetic about getting lost in its loops and loops? 

Lily knows how to check into a hotel but not how to call collect? Just asking. 

Erica and Krystal bonding was a mistake. They should be life long sworn enemies like Adam and Palmer.  A Kane/Carey feud? Interesting. A Kane/Carey friendship? Nauseating. 

Now that we know Greg is donor number 1, I wonder if he chants, “I’m Number 1! I’m Number 1” while filling his specimen cups. 

Note to AMC casting: next time you hire actors to play street toughs, try to get some that look tough, ok?  

Poor Amanda. When your mother is crazy it’s impossible not too see other crazy people as normal, too.   

I like Kelli Giddish. I wish the writers would give Di something to do besides yearn for Tad. 

Why aren’t Jack and Reggie out looking for Lily, too?  Maybe if they changed their last name to Lavery they could get some screen time. 

I, for one, am very relieved that we only saw Greg’s introduction to the “procedure” he performed on Erica. I was afraid we were going to be subjected to Erica-in-stirrups. 

Just for fun, let’s pretend we’re each in a coma. We get to pick not only who is reading the spoilers but in which language. For example, my choice is Antonio Banderas reading the spoilers in Spanish while naked.  Wow, suddenly these are the best spoilers ever. 

Let’s start with Babe and JR’s production of The Days of Whine and Roses

JR refuses to get help with his drinking. 

Why does he need anyone to help him drink? JR seems to be doing a fine job getting drunk all on his own. 

Babe convinces Derek to arrest JR for attempted murder. 

I know JR is guilty. There’s no doubt about that, but it irritates me that the police listen to Babe about anything.   Still, it’s a Derek scene. I’ll take what I can get. 

DixieBitch tries to get JR to take responsibility for the pain and suffering his actions have caused. 

“How about this, mom-who-is-dead-to-me? How about if you set an example for me by taking responsibility for the pain and suffering your actions have caused? Huh? Huh?” 

Tad listens as Babe pours her heart out about how JR’s actions have affected her and others in his life. 

“I just don’t understand him any more, Babe, I really don’t. With people like me, you, and Jamie in his life how could JR have taken such a wrong turn?” 

Adam makes a difficult decision about JR. Adam decides not to help JR out of his current mess. 

Does this mean that Adam refuses to break the law to help JR? Refuses to procure false papers so JR can escape to Argentina?  Does this mean Adam risks losing JR’s love in order to do what is really best for his son?  What kind of parent is Adam, anyway? Apparently the good kind. 

Greg Madden is still alive, but for how long? 

Tad is surprised when Greg admits having known DixieBitch in Switzerland. 

“No, no, Tad, you misunderstand. I did not know her in “that” way. I can assure you I never once showed her parts of her body she did not know existed.” 

Greg tells Tad that Kate died shortly after being born. 

At this point, why would Tad believe anything Greg has to say?  After all, Tad knows what Greg did that Greg lies about having done. At this point, why would Greg think that Tad would believe anything he has to say?  After all, he knows that Tad knows what he did that he lies about having done. 

Greg goes on to tell Tad that DixieBitch mistakenly believes that Kate is alive. Not only that, the silly woman believes that Greg has her stashed somewhere. 

At this point, why would Tad believe anything Greg has to say?  After all, Tad knows what Greg did that Greg lies about having done. At this point, why would Greg think that Tad would believe anything he has to say?  After all, he knows that Tad knows what he did that he lies about having done. 

Greg is not done with Tad yet. He warns Tad to keep DixieBitch from besmirching his reputation with her delusional lies. If Tad doesn’t stop her, Greg will take legal action against her. 

Perhaps Greg will have DixieBitch committed?  Having Janet as a roommate would be torture for DixieBitch, which is why I would love it. 

Once more, Tad asks DixieBitch to give him some straight answers. She refuses. 

“I have my reasons, Tad, you’ll just have to trust me.”

“Now I know why Kate and David call you DixieBitch.” 

Erica is none too pleased to discover DixieBitch not only knows her Maddening secret, but also has one of her own.  They do not agree about how and when to reveal their respective secrets. 

“Well, you have to go first, Dixie, because I’m Erica and you’re not. And besides my secret is much more interesting than yours. Why? Because it involves me, that’s why.” 

In the real world, newlyweds get cuddling, canoodling and candlelight. In the soap world, they get comas, courtrooms and C-sections. 

Erica is furious when Zach refuses to agree to the C-section. 

Of course, if Ryan was refusing the C-section, Erica would think that was the greatest thing since, well, since Ryan came into her life.  

When Kendall’s condition worsens, Ryan insists that the C-section be performed.  

Joe then patiently explains that the “C” in C-section does not stand for “Clown Nose.”  Shaking his head in confusion, Ryan walks away. 

Ryan and Zach both lawyer-up and head for court. 

I guess court is the best option for Zach and Ryan. Dueling would give Zach an unfair advantage since he has the larger pistol. 

Livia is Ryan’s lawyer. She presents evidence that Kendall’s death would benefit Zach. 

This cannot possibly be right. Can there actually be two scenes involving the Fryes this week? 

Zach testifies that Kendall would choose Spike’s life over her own. Babe supports Zach’s testimony by saying Kendall gave her a “sign” to choose Spike. 

Sidebar, Your Honor, I need some clarification. Would Ms. Carey’s testimony about a “sign” be categorized as “hearsay” or “just plain nuts”? 

When the judge rules against him, Zach makes up his own rules. 

Compared to helping Ryan play dead and hiding an injured DixieBitch, kidnapping a comatose Kendall should be a breeze. 

Meanwhile, on the mean streets of NYC: 

Lily puts her trust in Teddy, who is not what he seems. 

Got it. Teddy is the Big Bad Wolf. Lily is Little Red Riding Hood, except for, you know, the red part. 

Oh, those AMC actors:

Photo from

After months of secret and not so secret negotiations, AMC has signed John James to play Jeff Martin.  I did not think much of him as Jeff Colby but loved him as Dr. Rick Decker, whose specialty was euthanasia, on ATWT.

Here’s to another week in the Valley




Kate's Archives For This Column for 2006

May 8, 2006

May 1, 2006

Apr 24, 2006

Apr 17, 2006

Apr 3, 2006

Mar 13, 2006

Mar 5, 2006

Feb 20, 2006

Feb 5, 2006

Jan 30, 2006

Jan 23, 2006

Jan 16, 2006

Jan 9, 2006

Jan 2, 2006

Kate's Archives For This Column Through 2005


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