Sarcastic Clapping

{June 8, 2010}   Maybe I have it backwards?

You know maybe it’s not that the people in charge of General Hospital think we’re morons. Maybe it’s the characters who are morons and the repeated dialogue is for their benefit and not ours!

Otherwise I can’t really fathom why Sonny Corrinthos is basically taking a census of every female in Port Charles over whether or not he abused them. Are we going to be subjected to this every day until he finds someone who agrees with his limited notion that abuse only happens when it involves fists?  I know self-awareness has never been Sonny’s strong suit…or even a remote possibility but still.  How many times does he have to hear that abuse is not just what Deke did before he gets it?  What does he need at this point? Cue cards? Billboards?  Television ads?  A subsciption to Lifetime Movie Network? 

Who’s he going to talk to next?  Will he randomly knock on Elizabeth’s door?  (HA! I made a funny! Like Guza’s going to allow this crazy thing called cast integration) Will he call up Maxie and ask her?  Lulu? Acutally Lulu would be relevant considering the loads of crap he’s laid on her feet lately for not daring to put his need to know about Dante above all else.  Or you know her apperant moral imperative to place Michael’s well being above say…the law.

Speaking of Michael, can he please stop monologuing on how awful prison is?  Is the concept that prison is a bad place really that revolutionary?  Given the way his entire family has avoided the damn place his entire life, you think would be the apparenlty earth shattering conclusion that it apparently is.  But no…we have to hear about it every three seconds.  I  understand this is  a hard time for him, what with being raped and not being able to say anything about it because it’s not sweeps anymore but still.  Maybe this is just the result of this show ignoring the actual legal system for the past decade but still, let’s not try to reinvent the wheel here.

However on a more positive note, I am loving the Johnny-Kristina interaction lately. Yes I know I’ve railed in the past about the illegal nature of Ethan-Kristina and how creepy I find it.  Does it make me a hypocrite?  Yeah probably.  Maybe my objection to that pairing may in fact be related to my still on going hatred of Ethan’s existance.  And yes Johnny’s pattern of Sonny hate is like sweet dirty talk to my ears.  But if this is set up correctly, I could so get into a Johnny-Kristina storyline.  Johnny swooping in to save Kristina from mean girls at school?  Sweet!  Johnny protesting to Sam that he is a good guy with morals who wouldn’t take advantage of Kristina?  I can believe that.  (Also…Sam….the last time you basically jumped down a guy’s throat for being near your sister, you almost got him killed for something he didn’t do.  Dial it back killer.) Right now I don’t get the vibe they are actually looking at a romance between them but a mututally supportive friendship that as a side benefit will completely piss off Sonny, whichis total win.  Plus Johnny carrying Kristina’s pink back pack is the stuff of teenage girl dreams. 

Just saying…the show keeps this up….you’ll be seeing them as frequently as you see Steven.


I have to be honest that when Johnny Zaccarah first arrived on my screen, I rolled my eyes.  The “greatest mafia son” ever wind up they saddled him with felt uncomfortably familiar with the build up of St. Jaysus Our Deadly Savior.  And the love story they shoved him in with Lulu was maddening in it’s anti-chemistry.  All the constant anvils that Johnny was just like Luke.  Johnny was respected by Jason. It was like the show was telling me that I had to live Johnny because of course I totally love the two characters they constantly compared him to.

Except I didn’t like Luke or Jason.  (I know…you are all shocked by that admission)  And to be 100% honest with you, every time I saw Brandon Barrash I would flash back to his time on Gilmore Girls and doubt the judgement of someone who willingly dated Paris Gellar.    (What do you mean that actors aren’t the same as their characters???)

But then they finally broke up him up with Lulu and hooked him up with Olivia.  On paper and in spoilers it seemed random as all hell but it’s surprisingly super hot. (the fact it requires frequent shirtlessness is a plus!) And quite frankly given the number of blatant times Sonny was sent sniffing in Olivia’s neighborhood….his relationship with her lasted a heck of a lot longer than I thought it would.  But I didn’t fully embrace Johnny until he became a one man truth teller about Sonny Corrinthos. 

It started with Michael getting shot in the head and Johnny correctly observed that it was the fault of every person who took up a gun and told themselves the lie they were doing this to protect women and children and not illegal business practices.  And then in the wake of his sister’s murder, he has become a one man band of Sonny hate. Which is always the way to my heart. 

But then this week….of all the people in the town…after I had gotten to the point I was begging the soap gods for even a random day player….Johnny finally said what quite frankly this show has been avoiding since they started the Kristina abuse storyline.

Johnny: I never had any proof that your father ever actually hit my sister. I never saw it happen. Claudia never told me about it. However, there were many times I was over there and I saw Sonny manhandle Claudia. Sometimes there would be even bruises up and down her arms from where he grabbed her. And his words…Claudia would flinch from Sonny’s words, as if they were fists. You know, sometimes it’s not the actual physical abuse that inflicts the most damage. Sometimes it’s the words. And Sonny called Claudia a whore all the time; told her every day that she was nothing. It’s abuse to promise love, win someone’s trust, and then turn around and to use that vulnerability as, I don’t know, a weapon against them.

After months of walking around telling us all that Sonny is not abusive because he has never hit a woman….Johnny finally spoke the words that needed to be said.  Abuse is not only physical. It is sometimes words.  And Johnny is totally correct that verbal abuse and emotional abuse is often the most damaging. Bruises fade.  You can move away and separate yourself from a physical abuser.  You can’t always predict what words stick in a person’s psyche.  Or when those words will replay themselves. 

Kristina: I know she was your sister, but she did get Michael shot. She wasn’t a nice person.

Johnny: Okay, but that does not make it okay, the way Sonny treated her. I mean, that right there is abuse, to make the victim and everybody else feel like it’s their fault. You said that I hate your father, and there’s really no denying that. But what I really cannot stand about Sonny is the way that he plays himself off like some… nice guy, when he’s caused a lot of damage to a lot of lives. And I don’t just mean my sister. Look what you’re going through right now. Look at Michael.

Yes Claudia was a nutcase whack job of the highest order. I hated her on sight.  But it doesn’t excuse how Sonny treated her.   Plotting to get pregnant, plotting to keep him from finding out she ordered the hit that accidentally caused Michael’s coma, having an affair with Ric…..nothing there was abusive either physically or verbally.  And if Sonny had an issue with any of these, you know the other option? Divorce.  Setting her up to be murdered in front of half the town? Not so much. 

Johnny: No. I couldn’t. You don’t hit somebody you love. And you don’t hit somebody that loves you. It was sad and delusional, but Claudia did love Sonny in her own little screwed up way. That’s why the way he treated her hurt her so bad.

See how much better this message comes across from someone who realizes there is more than one form of abuse and acknowledges that his sister was a whack job?  No justifications of how it was alright what Sonny did to Claudia.  No excuse throwing that it’s the job.  Just the simple truth…you don’t hit someone you love or someone who loves you. It’s a message Kristina needed to hear the first night she confessed that Keifer beat her up and instead she heard about how Sonny would kill him if Alexis hadn’t done it first. 

Alexis: I certainly respect your right to grieve for your sister. And I certainly know how you feel about Sonny. Do you think it was a good idea to have a conversation with his daughter? It could be misleading.

Johnny: I didn’t mislead Kristina.

Alexis: Did you just tell her that Sonny abused Claudia?

Johnny: He did. That’s his thing. He degrades and bullies women. And he’s gonna keep on doing it until you people stop making excuses for him

Alexis, you are a smart woman.  You know this is how Sonny is with women. This is how he was with you.  And Sonny will continue so long as everyone pats his head and reaffirms his deluded notion that he is a good father.  Alexis, you kept your daughter out of his life for years for good solid reasons.  You would constantly point out the destructive nature of Carly and Jason’s relationship.  What did he do to you in order to attempt to get custody of Kristina?  He bullied you. He degraded you.  He enlisted other people to do the same thing.   Alexis come on now….remember how he actually is and not how you want him to be for Kristina’s sake. Remember you had to tell him to stuff the constant self pity about Deke and threatening to kill people in front of her while she was recovering! 

And God…was it glorious to hear Kristina level the truth at her father in her session.  It would have been even more glorious if her doctor told Sonny to shut it with the excuses and actually look up the word abuse.   I mean really Sonny? The doctor is brainwashing Kristina? Kristina got it confused?  Johnny manipulated the situation? You don’t have an entire organization of people that swing into action to save your idiotic behind?   And him asking Carly if he ever abused her while they were married…correct me if I’m wrong folks but didn’t he SHOOT HER IN THE HEAD?    And isn’t he still blaming everyone else for his shooting Dante in the chest?  It’s almost like TIIC heard all the criticism of this story that didn’t acknowledge the fact that Sonny was completely abusive as well as Keifer.  But I have to admit that there is a part of me that fears that even though right now…it looks like there is a very real chance we will have someone acknowledge that Sonny is in fact an abusive asshat…..there is that part of me that watches this show that feels it’s a all a set up….that it will come out in later events that Johnny was attempting to manipulate Kristina with distorted facts just to get back at Sonny.  After all I have watched this show before and seen such things happen.  Everyone vowing to change their ways when Michael was shot and the promptly changing…absolutely nothing for example.  So while I am cautiously optimistic about said truth telling I will cover my bases and say this as well.

Farewell Johnny….you were great while you lasted!

{July 28, 2009}   Highway Danger….

Over at the fabulous Deep Soap, Sara Bibel has a theory that GH has finally run out of mobster movies to rip off and has moved on to driver’s ed films.  After two entire shows devoted to nothing but did Michael or Kristina hit Claudia….I am forced to admit that she is right.  GH has found the most disturbing hybrid of a mobster/driver’s ed scare film to show us.

Let me start off by saying the less said about those “special” effects the better.  I saw better at the end of The Ugly Truth…and those special effects were the funniest thing in that movie.  (Besides guessing if Gerard Butler’s accent was going to make a surprise cameo appearance before the credits rolled.)  Memo to GH…you had better special effects in the 7os when you were about to be cancelled.  It’s a little thing called good writing.  We’ll forgive a lot of cheese if the writing is good.  See just about every cult sci-fi show prior to the X-Files become the 90s phenomena it was. (Coming soon….Beth discusses why Soap fans should take notes from sci fi fans to actually get good stuff.)

Why are the PCPD more involved in this case than who killed the mayor’s mistress?  Logically thinking, and I know Guza-land is the place where logic goes to die, they should be investigating both.  But apparenlty they were preparing to devote all their resources to proving who was behind a hit and run that may or may not happen.  So thank goodness they have the newly appointed medical examiners Robin and Patrick to work on that one.  Thank Gloria Monty we have such competent trained investigative professionals at the helm to watch over that one.   We sure bit the bullet there.

Now how to say this delicately…my main issue with the whole thing is Michael.  I don’t see why everyone is so hell bent to protect this little monster and why the idea of plopping that child down on Kevin Collins’s couch is such a horrific idea.  THE KID NEEDS THERAPY!  Some major behavior-management.  I work with high risk, traumatized children for a living and I do not hesitiate to say I would drop kick this little fartnose into a residential treatment facilitylike yesterday.   I just don’t buy that anyone would be so concerned about keeping this kid out of jail when he clearly needs to be locked up for his own safety.    

Now I like to fault Michael for many many things…starting with his birth marking the begining of the long slow slide into the ridiculous hell we are cursed with right now. But really..could some of the adults actually blame themselves?  Carly and Jax for getting a kid with impulse control issues and brain damage a TEMPORARY DRIVER’S LICENSE?  Sonny for buying a kid with no driving experience and brain damage a freaking sports car?  Why has it occured to none of them this is a bad idea? Clearly when they cue up to the obvious fact that Krisitna is maybe also involved they will all blame Alexis for breathing or not letting Sonny near Kristina or something.

Related…really? Robin comes down and swears that Michael won’t skip bail and it’s allowed?  First off, I’ve watched Law & Order long enough to know how the bail system works.  lets see… kid + shady parents who insist he didn’t do anything + family with its own private freaking island and business contacts in other countries + lawyers out the wazoo = NO WAY IN HELL THAT KID IS GETTING BAIL.  Not to mention….now call me crazy…but wasn’t there this crazy storyline where Jason was in jail for a murder he committed and somehow got bail and then he broke it, allegedly to do something “heroic” and was arrested for it like two seconds later?  I know at the time we were supposed to think it was all just about some supposed jealousy…and we aren’t supposed to remember that time now. (hush….the whole nightmare never happened) BUT OH MY GOD JASON BROKE FREAKING BAIL WHY WOULD HIM GAURANTEEING ANYTHING ABOUT MICHAEL NOT DOING THE SAME DARN THING MEAN ANYTHING MORE THAN A GOOD LAUGH?

It also doesnt’ help anything that no one in this convuluted storyline is remotely rootable.  Michael’s a holy terror. Kristina is a brat.  Carly operates on Carly logic which means makes no sense and inverts all known laws of logic and sense.  Claudia has changed characterizations so often I’m suspecting Sarah Joy Brown needs cue cards just to keep up with her changing character motivations.  Jason and Sam being all concerny mc concern about Kristina and Michael not doing good and giving lectures that basically amount to “do what I say, not as I do” and being completely baffled as to why this sage advice isn’t being followed is stupidity to the extreme.   And Sonny….well whenever he enters a chapel to “pray” I both look for lightening to strike and really wish GH would quit defaming my religion by having Sonny described as a devout Catholic. Really we have enough issues of our own without Sonny’s slippery morality to add in there. I imagine real Bensonhurst residents feel the same thing. 

Seriously who is concerned about any of these people?  Was anyone really wanting that baby to survive?  Didn’t we all secretly wish that Claudia would die too?  Don’t we all know in the end it will be Double Dead Diego and not anyone we currently see on our screen for every segment in the show?

Does no one involved in this show understand the concept of balance?  Yes this is a soap opera and we need umbrella storylines that feature angst.  Got it.  and when well done and featuring the full cast i don’t care to see one storyline the entire show. But this one is so full of holes….so illogical… mind-numbingly stupid….so focused on how will Jason and Sam save everyone………SO FECKING TEXTBOOK EXAMPLE OF EVERYTHING THAT IS WRONG WITH THIS SHOW!

The entire show was devoted to the mob.  And I don’t mean in the figurative sense we all complain about.  It was all we were shown today.  That was it.  I was craving a sighting of Lulu Spencer. Lulu. I’ve hated her for two years.  When I’m craving a Lulu “I’ll fork my brother over for Jason Morgan repeatedly for no good reason” Spencer sighting  THINGS ARE VERY WRONG.

I know better than to expect something like logic or well thought out planning when it comes to a GH story.  Or promo.  Clearly such things are not what the audience wants.  Clearly the ratings are going through the roof  because we just love nonsensical storytelling…


But really this whole “Who hit Claudia” storyline?  OMG!  It makes toxic balls look well planned and logical!

First off it’s reminding me of Who Hit Sam last February.  And really who gave a crap about that? Sam survived and wasn’t even that hurt but for a solid two months all we heard was who hit Sam and how awful it was that either Elizabeth, Monica, Nik or Carly hit Sam. How hard this would be on Jason. Blah blah blah.   And in the end? What the heck did it change but allow Guza yet another chance to defame the Quatermaines?  Woo.

So the first glaring problem with the storyline is this…..Who the hell thinks hitting Claudia with a car was a bad idea?  Who is all worried that she won’t survive?  Aren’t we all more upset that she did survive?  If Claudia left today would anyone really give a crap? 

Now lets move on to Carly’s involvement.  Ummm isn’t she supposed to be on bedrest? I know what Carly wants Carly gets and if she wants to have this baby then by God she will because Carly can control the universe like that, but really? She A – was aware Morgan effing exists and B- she HAD to go look by the side of the road (when Morgan said “in the woods”.  Apparently Carly can also manipulate time and space!) for that freaking medal at night?  All so she can save Claudia, the woman who shot her son?  ohh GH writers PLEASE stop trying to use ironry correctly. Much like Alanis, it’s not your strong suit.

Michael…well if you didn’t know something was going to happen with Michael and the car after the umpteen million referrences to the accident that happened to Jason with AJ…well then Hi….let me welcome you to GH. You clearly haven’t been watching long. I suppose Michael’s bad driving will be blamed on AJ and not the fact he shouldn’t freaking have a driver’s licence much less a “temporary” one.  Anything so Sonny and Jason won’t take the blame dont’ you know.  (which has always confused me because AJ and Jason were brothers. So techincally some of Michael’s traits did come from Jason… it CAN BE JASON’S FAULT!  Woo hoo!) 

And of course Jason is going to make all evidence of Michael being there disappear.  Way to show Michael crime doesn’t pay there Morality Morgan! Way to preach it! Don’t know why that kid doesn’t get the fact that the mafia is not a great life, what with all the hard time and consequences you both have to face.  It’s like when Sam lectures Krisitna on not acting out of conrol and following the rules.   No clue why those lessons fell on deaf ears.   Nope. None at all. 

Kristina…oh Kristina.  I can’t actually hate too much on her being on the road like that except to say I have no illusions that while Kristina will be in speical issues storyline hell with domestic violence there will be absolutely no mention or realization that her father is the biggest domestic abuser in daytime. I am so looking forward to the show where we see Kiefer hitting Kristina is wrong…but between Sonny and Claudia its just foreplay!  That will be fun won’t it?  It will just be like the week they had Michael and Kate tell us violence was never the answer for kids, while showing Sonny and Jason threatening everyone within a five mile radius.   However I will say that good lord what genes are responsible for her inability to keep guilt off her face?  Cause seriously I think Martians could see it.  Did she take notes from Jason about how to keep your feelings “secret”? Cause you know he was so awesome at it. 

Not to mention, where the hell is her bodyguard? you know the ones we heard Sonny had on her due to the DANGER?  Wouldn’t said bodyguards already have killed punk boyfriend?  Or is that further proof of the complete ineptitude of Sonny’s security force?  I know….it’s the latter. 

Alexis was just there so Sonny and Carly can blame her and make her look stupid right? 

And you know what really stinks?  We will be subjected to countless hours and hours of this horse hockey pucks.  It will be the over-arching story of all August and into November sweeps (cause Guza does nothing without thinking about sweeps).  And just who will be responsible?

Some no account dayplayer.  Some random person who happened to be out the same night that we never saw.  IT WILL BE DEAD DIEGO!  Sorry to spoil it for you.

Don’t you just love it when you know in advance that the entire storyline will be bs and a waste of time?

Inevitably when I watch GH, I am reminded of The Princess Bride and the great always quotable Inigo Montoya. 

“I do not think that word means what you think it means.” 

This is not a new feeling per say.  I felt many many times when three-fourths of the canvas would show up to praise Jason inanely about alleged sacrifices he made for Jake during the unending time of Jason’s secret pain. I would grab my trusty, not so rusty copy of Websters’ and try to figure out how a word that means “the surrender or destruction of something prized or desirable for the sake of something considered as having a higher or more pressing claim” was being applied to a person who was giving up nothing in exchange to continue on in the exact same manner he was living before the child showed up.   I would sit there with the confused puppy look on my face, almost yelling at the TV “But he hasn’t even bought a diaper!  He’s not offered anything!  He was offered a chance to be a deadbeat dad and he took it!  He doesn’t even seem interested in that kid. PLEASE SOMEONE SHOW ME THE SACRIFICE.”

Believe me…my neighbors are soo much happier with me now that story has finally been concluded. 

This strange dictionary of Guza’s causes me confusion. And as someone who actually watched during Toxic Testicles, Monkey Virus, Re-peat Ball,  Amelia and the really odd plot to make Sam famous in order to get revenge on her and Jason the Noblest Snitch Ever to Snitch to Save the World’s Only Innocent Mob-Employed Computer Hacker, it embarrasses me that this show confuses me.  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance confused me.  The never ending popularity of Paris Hilton confuses me.  General Hospital should not confuse me over something as simple as word usage. 

Watching Kristina and Michael throwing around judgment on Alexis is infuriating on many levels.  While the actors are good and some of the reactions are totally on target.  The self-centeredness, the emphasis on how this is going to affect them.  Total teenager.  But them calling her a slut?  Kristina complaining that Alexis is the most embarrassing parent on Earth?  I know these two just became teenagers yesterday….but are they forgetting the fact that I can almost not recall the last relationship Sonny had that did not involve cheating.  Oh wait, yes I can.  A little horrific thing known the Internet over as Soliey.

Sonny Corrinthos sleeping with a woman that is A – one of those kid’s AUNT/godmother, B- is closer to their own age than anyone else Sonny has ever dated, C- he once gave the safe sex talk to and D- he got busted with in a hotel room amid gunfire and someone trying to kill him is more embarrassing than anything Alexis could dream of doing.  Now this might be because I can remember the night of One Night Stands from Hell and know that Alexis was in the hospital almost dying from a breathing attack brought on by her lung cancer so therefore sex was not on her mind at all and therefore the said one night stand with the Mayor just couldn’t have happened.   (I get a little testy about ret-conned history when it just happened three years ago.) And it could be because I consider Soliey one of the worst couples ever dreamed up. 

Or it could be because I’m completely right. 

Here…I’ll tap into my teenage outrage scale.  And since I work with highly emotional teenagers this wont’ be that hard.  Mom gets outed as having a one night stand by a man who is accused of murder and is obviously trying to save his own neck.  Upsetting.  Dad gets busted in a hotel room by my hit man uncle as he races to save Dad’s life once again and finds my aunt in lingerie.  Hit man uncle’s gunshots have caused other guests to call the police and a crowd, including reporters get pictures of my dad outside a hotel room with my aunt (who is pretty darn close to my age), clearly standing in her underwear and Dad’s coat.  They then continue a very public affair despite everyone being skeeved out about it beyond belief in the pages of the papers and throughout the town’s gossip chain.  They also took time to explain to me that they were dating so it’s not like I am clueless about this relationship or in Kristina’s case, my mother knew about it and disapproved as much as everyone. 

Yeah still not seeing the moral high ground these two are giving to Sonny. 

I am well aware of the GH code which states Sonny and Jason are greater than all people at all times no matter what. I probably will write pages over time about the characters this show destroys to keep these two nitwits front, center and as alleged heroes.  I can ignore all that and just lump it like I do with other shows where the leads annoyed me but I adored the supporting characters. (Roswell Dreamer fans I’m looking right at you) All I ask is that it makes sense.  And that my ability to remember things longer than a commercial break be respected.    Or failing all that…they at least consult a dictionary and use the right freaking word!

et cetera