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Carolyn Hinsey's It's Only My Opinion

Maura West, Roger Howarth

ABC/Christine Bartolucci

Double Trouble: Austin (Roger Howarth) was the latest of Ava’s (Maura West) lovers to die.

Smart characters are much more fun to watch than dumb ones — especially when a soap uses dummies to advance story.

Give me DAYS’s Patch every day of the week. He sussed out Konstantin in about 30 seconds after The Konman gave that bargain basement tablecloth to Maggie (claiming it was her late husband Victor’s), and he smelled a rat immediately when Konnie “rescued” baby Victoria.

Patch: “Isn’t it a little too convenient?”

Kayla: “You’re thinking Konstantin arranged to have Sarah’s baby kidnapped?”

Patch: “Yeah. So he could come to the rescue.”

Which is exactly what Konstantin did (with help from Theresa). Patch’s theory was that Konnie was working overtime to suck up to Maggie, which of course he was. And he was frustrated to have to spell that out for the usually smarter-than-this Kayla and Sarah.

Patch: “The dude is a senior citizen. The minute he volunteers to watch your little girl he gets knocked out from behind. Then this senior citizen leaps up, runs like the wind to locate this supposed kidnapper, retrieves the baby, but loses the perps. And in the process he conveniently forgets what they look like.”

Kayla: “He had been knocked out!”

Patch: “Had he been?”

No. I’m disappointed in Maggie for buying Konstantin’s lies when she’s always been one of the brightest bulbs in Salem. You don’t wed a rich reprobate like Victor Kiriakis and stay happily married for years if your battery’s not fully charged.

Patch eventually blackmailed Konstantin into coming clean… sort of.

Konstantin (to Maggie re: the tablecloth): “It was not Victor’s. It did not come from Greece. I was trying to bring you some comfort.”

The kidnapping kaper remains a secret — for now.

Elsewhere, I’m trying to figure out how Nicole could have birthed a dim bulb like Holly. The kid hit town and immediately set her sights on her much older stepbrother (via Nicole’s marriage to EJ) Johnny DiMera who is involved with Chanel. Meanwhile, the dreamy and age-appropriate Tate Black is bringing her pie on Thanksgiving and all Holly wants him to do is help her break up Johnny and Chanel.

Holly (to Tate): “I’m going to be over the moon once Johnny sees how wrong Chanel is for him!”

What teenager talks like that? I’m all for aging legacy kids but they have to have clear motivation for their actions and established relationships with their elders. Playing Holly’s grandma Maggie and Aunt Sarah in this one-note tale of the newbie lusting after her stepbrother could help create rooting value.

We always root for Nikki Newman but she did not do her due diligence when hiring Claire on Y&R and it landed her whole family in the hospital. That’s on her. But who could have seen Claire’s lunatic Aunt Jordan coming? She was the unknown sister of Victor’s ex-lover Eve Howard who blamed Victor for driving Eve to an insane asylum and therefore kidnapped the baby Eve’s son Cole had with Victoria Newman and let them think their baby died while Jordan secretly raised her — and that baby supposedly grew up to be Claire. (Got that?)

Victoria dismissed Jordan’s cockamamie story since she and Cole mourned that baby but Jordan stopped her cold with this sentence:

Jordan: “I stole her from the hospital to make your family pay for all your sins.”

Victoria had problems at home, too: Her boyfriend Nate dismissed her absence to make a date with Audra. Wise up, girl!

The Oregon police need to wise up after finding “no sign” of Jordan, who had been locked in a room by Victor.

Victor: “Officer, find that woman. She is criminally insane.”

But she’s fun. The close-up of Jordan peeking through the air vent as the Newmans left the house was Stephen King-worthy.

Speaking of horror, may I ask why anyone in Genoa City continues to buy Tucker’s act? He’s a failed businessman lurking in hotel lobbies making threats to people he claims to love, and the way he screamed at Ashley and threw glassware at her was unforgivable. Abby: “He is a rage-filled man.”

We have to assume that our favorite GC residents are playing Tucker and not the other way around.

Devon: “What are you after?”

Tucker: “Nothing.”

Devon: “Then why all the deception?”

Tucker: “I’ve tried my best to be honest with you.”

Devon: “I’d hate to see your worst. I’m done with you.”

Take him down, Devon!

GH’s Sonny routinely takes down his enemies because the clever mobster is usually so far ahead of them. When he heard Austin was dead he went straight to Ava.

Sonny: “If you killed Austin you better tell me. Every second we waste makes it harder to cover your tracks.”

Ava tried to pooh-pooh his concern but Sonny pointed out all the times she visited Austin in the hospital and had been seen with him in public. We should all have an ex so protective. Come to think of it, Sonny is the last one standing of Ava’s paramours. Ava slept with Franco, Silas, Morgan, Ryan (thinking he was Kevin) and Austin and they’re all dead. Next time GH wants to get rid of someone they can just pair them with Ava.

It’s a little strange, though, that Sonny hasn’t caught on to the angry freeze between his son and his wife. Love really is blind.

Sonny (to Nina): “You’re the one trying to make peace with our family.”

Because Michael is blackmailing her…

What can we say about B&B’s Eric? He was told by one doctor that he was dying of a vague disease (no second opinion) and his sole priority before he died was designing better dresses than his son so he could beat him in a fashion challenge.

Eric: “I really feel vindicated. I won fair and square.”

Donna: “You certainly did.”

Eric: “I don’t think Ridge thought I could do it.”

If I was dying I wouldn’t spend every waking moment deciding whether a dress needed a belt or not, but I guess the focus on fashion helped keep Eric in denial.

Eric (to Donna): “No hospital!”

Katie (entering): “Hospital? What happened?”

Eric: “In case you’ve forgotten, I’m dying.”

How could she forget? They talk about it every episode. Eric’s desire to keep it quiet means only Katie, Donna and RJ are allowed to know. The whole approach is curious considering Stephanie’s long, slow death from cancer in 2012. The Forresters even threw her a goodbye party! Shouldn’t someone be talking about a proper farewell with all of Eric’s children?

Steffy: “I wish we could have an honest conversation with him.”

Exactly. It was surprising that Eric’s grandson Zende — who worked down the hall — was one of the last to know that his granddad was dying. Perhaps he’ll turn to his cousin R.J.’s girlfriend Luna for comfort so we at least get a young triangle out of the diss.

Zende (to Luna): “Interoffice relationships aren’t really frowned on here. Basically everyone has had one. My advice: Made sure the door is locked.”

He may be the smartest guy on all of daytime.

Hey. It’s only my opinion.