September 23, 2009By Mala Bhattacharjee Posted: Sep 23, 2009
After unifying Fish, Matthew/David/Bo and Markko and Mr. Rivera with the theme of fathers and sons in today's episode, ONE LIFE TO LIVE left me with a distinct urge to call my dad. From the touching to the gut-wrenching, OLTL covered all the bases.
I know some people think Oliver's scenes with his parents are unreal or deliberately over-the-top as part of someone's liberal agenda, but the sad truth is that the conversations Oliver had with George and Barbara happen every day, every minute, in hundreds of languages. LGBT people the world over grapple with coming out to their families and reconciling their religious and cultural beliefs with their identity. Only the characters are fictional, not the situation. And when Mr. Fish cruelly outed Fish to John and Marty and then lashed out at Kyle for "corrupting" his son, I cringed. Oliver is a good man, especially by soap standards. I mean, I don't think he's ever even jaywalked! And that his father would think he's less of a man just because of who he loves...you could see the pain that caused Fish, and by extension Kyle. I was so glad that Oliver was able to connect with his mom, but heartbroken that his dad remained unyielding. Luckily, the emotional sequences provided some touches of unintentional humor, too. I couldn't help but giggle a little at how John's trademark sangfroid worked so well with Mr. Fish — he barely blinked at the revelation that his fellow cop is gay! And when Fish called out for a deli-bound Cris and Layla to put the sandwiches on white bread...? LOL!
Over at the Buenas Dias Café, Bo tried to get through to Matthew about his decision to have potentially risky spinal surgery by talking about the death of his son, Drew. And the heartfelt conversation, which left Matthew still determined to soldier on, ended up creating a surprising moment of connection between Bo and his eldest son, David. That David is Bo's biological child has been pretty much been played as a joke. Today was the first time it felt real. I appreciated David saying he'd wished for a father like Bo, and then Bo sitting down with him for some steak and eggs. And watching Bo and his boys provided Markko's father with an eye-opening view of how time with your child can be so fleeting. Fighting over Markko's premarital sex habits and his choice of girlfriends just isn't worth losing him! Bo and David started me sniffling, but I honestly choked up when Mr. Rivera showed up at Markko's apartment at the end of the episode, telling him that Markko was his own man now but always welcome at home for dinner.