Another holiday tale...By Marc Wilkofsky Posted: Dec 30, 2010
The Daytime Club story continues (look here for part one), as we return to the circle of chairs in the television section of an electronics store, while a few customers mill about and test the TVs.
Cheryl: Welcome, everyone, to the latest meeting of the Daytime Club. Thanks for coming out in this challenging storm.
Rick: Glad to be here, Cheryl.
Cheryl: Thank you, Rick. And I know it's weird that we meet in the evening, but at least we can now discuss the daytime soap world while the store is open.
Jay: Right, and we can score some "impulse members" during the last hour of business.
Judi: We do need another soap fan or two, because…
Frances: …Sidney left last month.
Cheryl: Yes, most of us were here.
Judi: Well, I wasn't…what exactly happened, Fran?
Frances (looking down a bit): He said he was saddened by AS THE WORLD TURNS ending for good, and despite there being six other soaps to choose from, watch and discuss…
Judi: He just left?
Frances: He…he simply didn't feel like discussing soaps in general. (She looks up again.) Even though there's so much out there…YOUNG AND RESTLESS and ONE LIFE TO LIVE are going as strong as ever. Each Y&R episode has at least one storyline that I find exciting, and Billy and Victoria are arguably the new couple of the year. Plus, Kevin and Chloe are such a charming duo. And as for Llanview, there's so much fun stuff going on…
Rick: Fran, it's my favorite soap to watch these days. And ATWT actors are on both of them, in sizable roles.
Cheryl: Before you go on, remember, Jay, we stay positive in the Daytime Club.
Jay: That's sometimes hard to do.
Cheryl: I know, which is why I…we allow constructive criticism of daytime soaps. We don't just say something sucks; there's enough of that negativity in Soapland. In this club, we don't…we can't kick a show when it's down; we try to figure out how to "heal" it, or note what about it works when it's up.
Jay: Okay…I'll say Frances is right — both Y&R and OLTL are rocking these days. I'd even venture to say that several of each soap's storylines are worth watching in some way, especially on OLTL, where Rex's paternity story is intriguing and twist-filled, while connecting to several other plots…
Rick: Like Natalie and Jessica's babies, and what in the world Vimal actually did to their paternity information.
Cheryl: Right; with complex writing and modern touches, OLTL's transformed "Who's the daddy?" into a brand-new question.
Sara (sitting down): Made it, people…the sitter was late. What'd I miss?
Rick: WORLD TURNS ended, Sidney left us and at least two soaps are still great.
Sara: You mean OLTL…
Sara: …and B&B, right? It's consistently one fun half hour.
Jay (with a glance at Cheryl): I agree with that.
Sara: BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL packs so much into each half hour. Heart from Stephanie's kindness to the Skid Row people — and Brooke! — and hilarity from Thomas and Brooke's scandals. How do they get in these messes?
Cheryl: Well, Whip was behind the latest one...and I'm now realizing that was a rhetorical question.
Sara (laughs): Right. Also, Liam has grown on me, largely due to Scott Clifton's performances. I was all about Oliver and Hope, but I'm now rooting for her and...the Spencer heir.
Rick: You mean GH's Ethan? Or Lucky?
Sara (chuckling, as Jay groans): I mean Liam...but yes, it's funny that Clifton became a Spencer years after his GH character, Dillon, slept with Lulu Spencer.
Cheryl: And Dillon's mom just married Luke in a lovely, funny ceremony. Speaking of GH, anyone here like that show?
Rick: I'm watching it now, after my main soap, OLTL, airs, and...
Rick: It's entertaining! Especially the sharp dialogue and quick pacing. I find it somewhat dark and depressing, but I can tell the writers are working hard to make it unpredictable.
Jay (sighing): Unpredictable is one word for it.
Rick: Unpredictable in a good way, Jay. The most interesting aspect of Brenda's return story is Dante's involvement, not her reunion with Sonny.
Judi: But Dante and Sonny's relationship was compelling enough as it was, as was Sonny and Brenda's longtime connection. At least that's what some GH viewers say.
Rick: It's a brave storytelling move...and I have faith that the ramifications will rock.
Jay: Your faith is phenomenal.
Cheryl: Well, I have hope for the show.
Judi: I have Hope on my show.
Jay (rolling his eyes and rising from his chair while holding back a smile): Cheryl, can I just leave now?
Cheryl: You know you love this, Jay. (Jay sits down.) Judi, go on...how is DAYS OF OUR LIVES doing?
Judi: Beautifully. I'm captivated by Parker's wild storyline. And I was so torn about the Hope/Bo/Carly triangle. All I have to say is, well, I'm less torn now.
Sara: Bo and Hope on the run are pulling you in?
Judi: Mm-hm...exactly the opposite of about a year ago, when I was all for Bo and Carly.
Sara: Can I tell you a secret?
Judi (smiles): Well, you'll be telling all of us —
Sara: I know. Bo and Hope are fantastic together. I can see why they have such an enormous fan base. As do Bo and Carly, but...
Judi: But in their latest adventure, Bope have proven their meant-to-be status...at least with me.
Jay: They do need a new, better couple name, though.
Cheryl: Like Zendall? Sorry, bad example.
Jay: No, that's a fine example. Don't start me on how distressing Zach's departure from ALL MY CHILDREN was...
Frances: I know about distressing departures...go on.
Jay: ...but I have to say, Pine Valley has gotten livelier during the past few months. Please, please let Erica and Jack stay together. And Madison's pregnancy makes Ryan and Greenlee's romance much more fun. Kudos to the writers for that one.
Frances: I see the soap scribes as DJs. Sometimes, they play amazing songs, and sometimes, they make ridiculous or awful choices, but I try to give them credit and support, and stay on the dance floor.
Sidney (approaching the stunned circle): Shall we dance, then?
Frances: Sidney! You're BACK!!!
Sidney: I missed all of you.
Cheryl (hugging Sidney): So glad to see you...it's a holiday miracle.
Jay: It's not that big.
Rick: Shut up, Jay. (to Sidney) Are you watching any soaps now?
Sidney: Well, Mr. Blunt, I've tried and liked yours...partly because ATWT's Terri Conn and Tom Degnan joined it as Aubrey and Joey, but mainly because OLTL truly has tremendous romance, from Rex and Gigi to Viki and Charlie.
Frances (quietly): They're wonderful couples. So in love...
Sara (whispers to Fran): You need to tell him what you told me.
Frances (whispers): What? No.
Sara: Tell Sid after the meeting.
Sidney (sitting down): Tell me what?
Frances: I...I missed you. (Sara sighs.)
Sidney: That's very sweet, Frances...like I said, I missed each one of you. Even you, Jay.
Jay (laughing): Thanks, man. Glad you're back and still watching soaps. Whatever pulls you into daytime works for me.
Sidney: That reminds me...I'd very much like you all to meet...come on, Chris!
Chris: Hi, folks. (As she approaches the group, Frances and Sara's mouths fall open.)
Sidney: I persuaded her to watch OLTL, as well, since many of her favorite GUIDING LIGHT actors are on it.
Cheryl: And...on that positive note, we need to wrap up for the night. But welcome, Chris.
Rick (noticing what's going on): Yes, definitely come back next time.
Judi: We went from six members to eight tonight...whoo!
Cheryl (as people walk toward the store's exit): Good night, everyone...and have a fantastic, soapy 2011! Keep watching daytime.
Rick (looking back at the television sets, which are still on): It's going to be one happy new year. (to everyone) Here we go!