LANGFORD’S PICKS AND PANS
Please Like Me (Australia)
There were several moments I really enjoyed here. I loved where Josh talked to his father about him paying for Josh to visit him in Thailand — the only problem being Josh would have to see his father there. Josh’s quiet comment of ‘That’s a shame’ was hilarious as was the bit with the dog in a dress. I also liked Tom talking about having a child, only to find out that you didn’t like it very much and would have to pretend to love it. It had an odd ring of truth. But, my favorite was the gag about the erotic gif that Tom made. This show is full of lines that are rich with wit and warmth. And Claire and Tom’s kiss in the rain was really sweet. But I still think that Tom’s ex isn’t pregnant.
You made the right decision to dump Geoffrey, Josh. No need to take him back!
Josh helping his mother get ready for her date, was fun, though it’s obvious that Alan is still in love with her. I wonder if Alan and Rose will get back together by the time the show is over. As for Geoffrey and Tom splitting up, my feeling is that except for the fact that Geoffrey is cute, there’s really not much to him. I think, as Josh noted, that he only liked Geoffrey because he has muscles and they got to make out. So I didn’t care about them getting back together at the end. In fact it seemed kind of dumb and pointless that they broke up to begin with, even though I wish they did and Geoffrey would just go away Still, I love this show and lament that it’s almost over.
Secret Lives (Finland)
Gee, you think that Lari’s attempt to try out for hockey despite his injury is not going to go well? I suspect he’s going to cause some permanent damage and wind up never being able to play again. That’s a shame. But I spent most of this clip wishing Elias would just leave this boy alone and stop looking after him like he’s a lost puppy. Lari is hot and all, but not worth the drama.
I do wish that Ida’s role in Lari’s being outed would be revealed soon though. Her being a friend to Elias and giving him advice on what to do in regards to Lari just makes me sick. I doubt she’ll be sorry though since she still thinks she’s the victim.
Shortland Street (New Zealand)
I’m sorry, but this storyline is so ludicrous and not based in reality that it’s hard for me to get into it. I have been around hospitals most of my life. I’ve had family members and friends who worked in them, I’ve dated a few doctors in my day and there have always been gay people filling all positions on the staff. So for Seth to be afraid that he would jeopardize his career in hospital administration if his sexuality was revealed is just mind-boggling. And it sends a horrible message to the viewers that such a thing would be necessary in the year 2013.
I truly hope the show moves past this. Seth and Henry could actually be interesting characters (though I’m not sure if I buy them as a couple) if we could get some better writing for them. By the way, where is Henry living now? He and Seth were sharing a place, but if Henry dumped Seth where did he go? I know those nurses asked him to move in with them, so maybe that’s what happened. Or perhaps the show simply didn’t bother to explain it.
And all this endless discussion about the minutia of running these hospitals is not what I call gripping drama. Perhaps longtime viewers understand what the characters are going on about but for me it’s like Star Trek technobabble. It doesn’t make sense and it’s notinteresting to watch.
It’s funny, but I think that Scotty was more affectionate with Chris than Aidan was with Chris the entire time Aidan and Chris were together. Or maybe I’m just remembering it that way. Anyway, I thought it was interesting that Scotty just expected Chris to fall into bed with him when he dropped by and even the next day after Chris found out that Scotty and Georgia were getting married, I had the feeling that Scotty would have had sex with Chris if the opportunity had presented itself.
How come we never got to see Chris’ boyfriend try and undress Chris?
It didn’t bother me that Scotty was sexually aggressive with Chris. It’s just too bad we’re not seeing that in a relationship that was actually going to go somewhere. I don’t really care much about this story because it’s almost over (just check the spoilers). Besides, Scotty being into Chris is really just a plot contrivance since they’d never even shared a scene alone until Scotty slipped into Chris’ tent last week.
I knew this past week as going to be difficult to watch, not because it’s Emmett Scanlan’s next to last week since Brendan is a character who wore out his welcome with me six months ago, but because Ste would get yet another beat down from the man who supposedly loves him and Brendan’s supporters would rush to defend his horrific actions. It just stuns me that people can watch Brendan savagely beat Ste and see the bruises and cuts on his face and then weep and cry about Brendan’s pain and what he is going through. Such complete apathy and wrongheadedness shouldn’t shock me, but it still does. Fandom remains a curious and sometimes very disturbing thing to me even after all these years of watching soaps.
Another day, another beating…
Having folks say that ‘Brendan did this because…’ or ‘if only Ste hadn’t done this then it never would have happened’ sickens me. Especially when I see it from those in the media who should be decrying these things and not excusing them. I know there are those who will sit on their message boards and mock me for not ‘getting it’, but I’ll never get how domestic violence can be acceptable, excused or considered what one must endure in order to be with your soulmate. What’s funny is that Emmett Scanlan, who plays this character sees him as I do: as a violent, dangerous sociopath and that his beating up Ste yet again shouldn’t be shocking or surprising at all, but something you would expect from a man like Brendan.
The spoilers, barring a surprise, pretty much spell out that Brendan will die, sacrificing his own life for his sister, letting him go out as a martyr. Not the ending I would have given Brendan, but the show has always seen Brendan as a tragic, wounded figure, no matter how many wounds he has meted out to other people. Oh I’d kill Brendan all right, but he’d go out like an evil villain should, paying the price for a lifetime of misdeeds. He definitely would be no martyr or some noble hero or some such rot.
I recently had a viewer write me and complain about my disdain towards Brendan (they weren’t writing to me when I loved the character and gushed out him endlessly in this column) and asked me why can’t I just want Brendan to have a happy ending with Ste? I guess my answer to that is: why does he deserve it? What has Brendan done to deserve anything but prison for his crimes or death as a result of the life he’s led?
Danny may have threatened Ste, but did he deserve to be brutally murdered? What about Mick? He wouldn’t have died if not for Brendan, nor would have Riley, who was a completely innocent victim. And don’t get me started on his murdering his grandmother. She may have been terminally ill, but did she deserve have her life cut short by her vengeful grandson? Let’s not forget all the lovers and boyfriends Brendan has beaten to a pulp. We saw him beat up Ste and Macca and we know he was abusive to all his previous men. So again, why does he deserve to be happy when he’s dished out so much unhappiness? He doesn’t.
Hollyoaks sure does love their men crying, don’t they? Seeing Kevin sob reminds me that at some point during their time on the show, men will weep copious tears. Ste is crying all the time (usually with a black eye) and Doug did it constantly when he was involved with Ste. George has done it, so has Callum. And of course there is John Paul, who is the best at it. I’m sure we’ll see more of it as his story goes on. But as much as I like Kevin, I’m just baffled as to why he’s not dead.
Walker is supposed to be this bad-ass villain, but not only did he not kill Kevin after finding out he didn’t kill Maxine, he still left Kevin alive after Kevin let Maxine go. For that matter why didn’t Walker kill Maxine himself? I guess we’re really not supposed to think about such things. So given that Kevin, thus far, has survived, it makes me wonder if he’ll be sticking around after all this drama. I hope so. BTW, Ash and Sienna were so worried about Maxine last week, but when she finally shows up they are no where to be found. Typical.
I did like that scene where Brendan warned Nate about keeping his sons away from Seamus, if they were to ever have sons. But it’s a shame that Cheryl continues to be the most clueless character on TV this side of Days’ Will Horton. And while I thought that Brendan beating up Ste again was horrid, there was a lot of truth in what Ste said to Brendan and Brendan knows it. He might not abuse children like his dad, but it doesn’t make him any less a monster. And having Maxine show up to warn Brendan about Walker just as Brendan was chasing Ste down the street after beating him up, was a delicious, classic cliffhanger as was Brendan walking in on his father being held captive by Walker. Hollyoaks does have the best cliffhangers. They’re always not so good on the aftermath though.
Days of Our Lives (U.S.)
Let me start this week by saying this: Sami, you are a woman in her 30’s with a teenage son expecting his own baby. That pink stripe in your hair is not a good look. And that’s my hair tip for the week.
I get a lot of flak for finding Will and Sonny dull and chemistry-free with folks asking me to cease and desist with the negative talk about them. It takes me back to my As The World Turns days when people derided me because of my white-hot hatred of boring-ass Noah Mayer, who of course was played by the charming (and super sexy) actor Jake Silbermann. My feeling then is the same as now: write the characters better and make them more interesting and I won’t complain. And since I have to watch them every week, I’m gonna bitch if I want to. Besides, I get paid to speak my mind so that’s what I will do. And well, last week was a perfect example of the problem with Will and Sonny.
Snicks, who does the DOOL liveblogs tweeted out a question wondering why Will and Sonny weren’t breaking into the Salem police lab and stealing the evidence that could prove Will shot EJ instead of Lucas and Sami. And my response is that the show wants to keep their gays good, even if it means they are boring. This show completely ignores Will’s lineage and the naughty things he was up to last year and that Sonny’s favorite uncle is a mobster who casually orders hits on his own children if they got in his way. Will and Sonny don’t have to be evil, but they should have touches of being bad and show they will play on the dark side if need be.
I would love a scene of Sonny going to his uncle Victor and getting his advice on how to handle Nick. Instead we get Sonny lecturing Will about counseling Justin and doing the right thing. Yawn! And Will being so sad and refusing to do anything to really help himself is pathetic. As was how stupid and clueless he was being written as last week. It’s just so frustrating how wrongheaded these characters are being scripted. These are talented and good looking actors in legacy roles. The writing for them should be so much better. And they are sexy so why aren’t we seeing more skin? I remember Days eps where the men walked around topless for entire episodes for no reason. Get with it, show! Trust me, the audience would love it.
Lose the pink stripe, Sami!
I keep hearing folks comparing Will and Sonny to iconic Days couples like Patch and Kayla, John and Marlena, Bo and Hope, Jack and Jennifer and so forth and so on. The thing is, those couples were active in their own stories. They went out and had adventures and got into trouble and took risks and made things happen. They didn’t sit in a college dorm room weeping about how unfair life was while everyone else worked to solve their problems. Until that changes, Will and Sonny will be boring. And they’ll certainly never be an iconic supercouple. One last thing, if Will and Sonny were a straight duo, you can bet they’d be the ones breaking into that evidence room and having those cute and funny scenes like Lucas and Sami. And nothing is more true in my mind.
BTW, it’s so dumb and annoying that with all this honesty that Will and Sonny are supposed to have, Sonny is holding back on the dirt he knows about Gabi and Will is okay with that, especially since Gabi is having Will’s baby and there’s all this drama about custody. I just shake my head when they have scenes about this. And that scene between Rafe and Sonny was so weird and random for two characters who have never really spoken before. I know it was so Sonny could find out about Nick and Gabi getting married, but it was so awkward and out of place.
I did love the scenes with Sami and Lucas. I don’t think they should ever be romantically involved again, but Alison Sweeney and Bryan Datillo have such amazing chemistry that they should always have scenes together. Lucas and Sami know each other so well and their relationship is full of such frank honesty that I always enjoy them together. And I love that they are coming together for the one thing they do agree on, which is Will. My favorite line of the whole little arc was Sami telling Lucas that she had a plan and Lucas responding that that was the most frightening thing she could say.
So, a cop finds two people in the evidence room and he just lets them go?
But yet, the whole thing was ridiculous for so many reasons. No evidence room should be that easy to break into. Even in small towns, they actually have an officer working that room in order to sign things in and out and keep track of everything. And Rafe finding them and just letting them go was highly implausible. Besides, don’t most police stations have video cameras everywhere? Certainly Sami and Lucas’ break in would have been recorded. I did like how the show noted that nearly everyone in town was involved in a murder or crime at one time or another, most notably the DiMeras.
I like the intriguing idea of Will having to go to Stefano for help in getting rid of the evidence against him. And I love that Sami might have to move into the mansion to help facilitate that. I’m sure that Stefano will want Will to do something in return and if the show is smart they’ll use it to create conflict between Will and Sonny as Sonny will be a wet blanket about the whole idea. So let’s hope that Stefano will want something particularly nefarious from Will. Besides, Will should want to do anything to keep his kid from being raised by a bigot, even if it does mean breaking a rule or two.
And Nick was complaining about being locked up with this guy?
Speaking of a rule breaker, I’m loving the introduction of Vargas and I’m looking forward to what happens when he’s unleashed on Salem. I thought the actor was hot and the show confirmed it by giving me a sweaty shirtless scene of him working out. Thank you, show! No wonder Nicky can’t forget the time he spent with his cell mate. But, I’m starting to doubt if Vargas and Nick were actually prison lovers and maybe the writers are just teasing us with that. I guess we’ll see. I will say it’s too bad that the show refuses to get rid of Bo. I think Hope getting involved in a steamy romance with an ex-con would be delicious writing. She really needs a storyline. And we’d get to keep Vargas around for awhile.
As for the rest of the show, Rafe and Kate continue to do my heart good and I’m so glad that Kristen’s ultimate revenge is more than just having sex with Brady and dumping him at the altar. I always thought that was a lame plan. And I have no words for Chloe setting up Jen to think that she and Daniel had sex except to say that it’s one of the oldest soap tricks ever and Jen is so dumb for having fallen for it. She is now officially as stupid as her boyfriend. Of course Chloe is dumb too because Daniel is so not worth all this drama. But it’s nice to see Chloe’s mom, Nancy.
SCOOPS AND SPOILERS
River City — Robbie endures another beating from Will, with Robbie injured badly. Will convinces Robbie not to go into work that day and Robbie agrees, calling in sick. But when Robbie’s co-worker Kelly-Marie, comes visiting to see how he’s doing, she quickly realizes that Robbie is a victim of domestic violence. She pushes Robbie to leave his husband and he’s about to do so when Will comes home to tell Robbie they can start the process of adopting a child. With that dream close at hand, Robbie fears he could lose everything if he were to leave Will.
Meanwhile, Will goes back to work and arrest a young man for shoplifting. Will feels sorry for the kid and convinces his boss to let him go with a slap on the wrist. But when Will later has to arrest the boy again for attacking his teacher, Will begins to see that he has a lot in common with the violent young man and comes to a realization about himself.
Can Chris and Kyle stop Scotty from getting married?
Neighbours — After an explosion in town kills two of the town’s citizens and leaves lives hanging in the balance, Scotty tells Georgia they shouldn’t wait any longer to get married and convinces her to elope. Chris and Kyle learn of their plans, forcing Chris to confront Scotty with the truth about his sexuality. Georgia refuses to believe that her longtime boyfriend is gay and has been lying to her for all this time and accuses both Chris and Kyle of being jealous. But she’s forced to face the truth when Scotty confesses to being gay.
Please Like Me — Josh and Geoffrey break up — again. Geoffrey invites Josh to see a soccer game. Josh pretends like he’s interested to please Geoffrey, but once they get there it’s obvious Josh isn’t into the sport. When Geoffrey’s over enthusiasm about the game gets them ejected from the stadium, Josh is so embarrassed that he dumps Geoffrey. But will Geoffrey come back this time? Meanwhile, Rose finally finds out that Alan has another woman in his life, leading to a knock down drag out spat between the two former spouses. And Claire finds herself fighting for Tom with Tom’s nasty (and pregnant) ex-girlfriend.
It gets physical between Sonny and Nick….
Days of Our Lives — Vargas is out and about and gathering intel on Nick, including that he just got married to Gabi. Vargas has an impression on Nicole, who finds herself attracted to the ex-con. Later, Nick and Sonny get into a brawl after Nick calls Sonny a faggot, prompting Sonny to punch Nick in the face. Not wanting to risk his parole, Nick doesn’t fight back. Nick is unaware that Vargas witnesses the incident between Nick and Sonny.
Nick has further problems when Gabi finds out that Nick blackmailed Will into signing over his rights to his child. Gabi is upset by Nick’s actions, but Nick justifies his naughty behavior. When Will warns Gabi she doesn’t know her husband, she becomes even more concerned. Elsewhere, Sami tries to convince Will to go to Stefano for his help in getting rid of the evidence against him in E.J.’s shooting, but Will doesn’t want to play dirty, not to mention having to be in Stefano’s debt.
Holby City — Anna is laid to rest and Malick assumes that Jake is no longer going to be a part of his life. Malick makes plans with Nathan, but those go by the wayside when Jake turns up at the hospital as a patient. He got in a fight with a friend and police charges have been filed against him. Malick realizes that Jake needs a father in his life and resolves to be there for his son. But when Nathan finds out about the commitment Malick has made to the new man in his life, it could spell the end of their new relationship.
Is this the end of Brendan Brady?
Hollyoaks — A legend comes to an end when Brendan Brady meets his final fate, signaling the close of his life in Chester. The week begins with Brendan walking in on Walker holding a gun on Seamus. Walker forces a bizarre scenario in which Seamus confesses to raping Brendan as a child and Brendan admits to the litany of crimes he’s committed. Ste and Cheryl are lured into a trap by Walker and become his captives. Brendan comes to their rescue, leading to a fight to the finish between Brendan and Walker. Brendan gets the upper hand and Walker is killed during the battle. Or is he?
Later, Seamus confronts Brendan and after telling his son he isn’t sorry about raping him as a child, he attacks Brendan. Brendan begins to relive what his father did to him, rendering himself helpless. But before the attack can go any further, Seamus is shot dead. With the police surrounding the building, Brendan is determined to protect the person who saved him from his father and goes outside to face the cops. Brendan confesses to killing his dad and all the other crimes he’s committed over the past few years.
Brendan raises his unloaded gun as if to fire and the police shoot at Brendan as Ste watches. Is this the end of Brendan… or will there be one final twist to wrap up this saga?
What is John Paul’s hot new story?
When James Sutton returned late last year as John Paul McQueen on Hollyoaks, there was talk that he would have a ‘shocking’ new storyline that no soap had ever done before. But since JP has been back in Chester, he’s spent most of his time referring his to family’s drama and flirting with deli owner Doug Carter. So what happened to that big storyline that will set the town on it’s ear? James Sutton tells SoapSquawk that the storyline will debut later this year and he can’t wait to get started. Still, Sutton isn’t giving any details about the upcoming plot.
“I’ve got a huge storyline coming up later this year that is in keeping with this bullying theme. It’s not something that’s been done before and, assuming it doesn’t change, I’m really excited about it. It will be very big, I think it will be quite shocking.” Sutton said. “I can’t say too much but it will definitely push me as an actor and it’s one of those things that happens to a character and once it’s happened you can’t go back to normality. It’s something that will change John Paul forever.”
That’s it for this week’s Langford On Soaps. See you next week!