Monday, September 13, 2004

Did anyone else catch the Days of Our Lives "four years in one go" bumper catch-up episode today? Well, I did. But that's okay because I was writing up an essay at the time. I mean, I only had it on in the background. Whatever, it was quite the rip-off, in terms of what I thought it would deliver. See, I was expecting an onslaught of scenes, cutting from significant moment to significant moment, with a commentary filling in the gaps between. But no. Instead, we got a cast interview/ behind-the-scenes kind of thing, with barely enough catch-up at all. I did get to find out that [dudes!] the real name of the guy who plays John Black is Drake Hogestyn! And he is on a soap playing a guy called John Black?! Ha! What a pisser! Another good moment was when some cast members were showing us their 'end-of-scene' faces in the mirror. It was fun, but it wasn't what I was there for. I don't really care how the show is made. What I wanted was soap story lines, and I wanted them condensed and hyper-ridiculous because of the speed at which we would run through them. But most of the hour was spent in interview fluff. The catch-ups we did get were kind of confusing because they were hardly explained. I mean, what the hell is Roman doing marrying Kate? She framed his daughter for murder! And he was really dark on her for it. And ew, Nicole married Victor Kiriakis? I mean, EW! Well, I guess she also married Lucas, so the girl just has no taste, but, ew! And why didn't Austen marry Sammi? I mean, I'm sure there was a reason, but it would have been nice to know what it was. And now it's just too horrifying, because Sammi is actually considering getting together with Lucas. I mean, he's the one who killed the dude that Sammi was going to be executed for murdering. Oooh, I just hate that guy so much. What a weasel.

Anyway, the quality catch-up time was devoted to the recent serial killer story, which we are picking up from after the four-year jump. This storyline catch-up was quality, but still, a bit confusing. Because, like, what the hell is motivating a serial killer to kill off all the dead wood in the cast? I mean, Abe? What could 'the killer' have against Abe? He's just a friendly police commissioner, a little past his prime. More confusing was the tendency of people to actively put themselves in the frame to be murdered by going, "I know the case Abe was working on so I'm all over you, killer" or, "I've had a vision and I know who the killer is". What a pack of dumbarses! When I figured out who Jack Deveraux was, I was pretty upset that he got killed. Damn replacement actors, making it all so mixed up. But I liked the old Jack Deveraux and the old Jen way better than this new pair, so I got over it pretty quickly. But, he did spend all those years in jail for a crime he didn't commit only to be freed and reunited with his woman, only to like, die [six years later]. Sad. Anyway, lesson; don't go on TV and say "I've got all the files and I'm gonna find you, killer". Uunnnn. But then 'the killer' moved on to all these old ladies, who I was clueless about, but my mum was all, like, "Hey, that's Maggie Horton. And that's Caroline Brady" and I'm like, "uh huh". But I did figure out that Caroline was the mama of Beau, after he went "Mom, mom. You've prayed enough. We've got to go" and then he nudges her and she falls over, dead. And then he holds her in his arms, on the floor of the church, and goes, "Noooooooooooo!" Ha ha ha ha ha! Next victim is Cassie Dimera. Again, no idea who this girl is, even though she is young and not some random family picnic/ wedding/ funeral crowd filling old lady. Still, I'm like, "Who?" I mean, she's a Dimera, but does that mean she is the spawn of Stefano? Or maybe Tony? I dunno. Anyway, she dies rather brilliantly. After saying to 'the killer' on the phone, "I'm going straight to the police and I'm telling them everything", [nice move, Cass] we move to the next scene. And oh, look, it's a bunch of kids playing with a giant, yes, quite oversized really, pinata as part of their Thanksgiving Day frivolities. You can pretty much guess the rest - "Hey, is that blood?" and then bang, a bloody Cassie Dimera falls out of the pinata in a slow-motion hail of blood and paper-mache. Gold. She was young and beautiful, too, so I'm thinking, coke habit? Anyway, next up for death was Roman Brady. Yep. 'The killer' wanted him dead too. On his wedding day, when he and Kate are cutting the cake, all this blood comes out of it. So, check this. Roman goes alone to talk to the kitchen staff about it! Ha ha ha! What was he gonna say? Like, "Hey guys, I didn't order the oozing blood in my cake. I'm not paying for that" or something? Anyway, all he finds in the kitchen is a note saying that all the staff have gone home. Hmmmm. Cue killer, in mask. And Roman's all like, "Hey, I know it's you Tony Dimera" [oh yeah, Tony came back from the dead... at some point] and Roman's all cocky and he keeps saying stuff like, "I'm not scared of you, Tony Dimera." And, "Hey, how did you get the judge to allow bail, Tony Dimera?" Which means, der-face, that it's clearly not Tony Dimera. And then Roman pulls the mask away, gasp, "My god. It can't be!" Slashing knife says, yes it can. Next victim is Tony Dimera, and this is the best death of all. For some reason, he's the ringmaster of some kind of charity fund-raiser circus. And, would you believe it, a tiger has been let loose! Crazy. Nonetheless, Tony decides to take this emceeing opportunity to say "Ladies and gentleman, the name of the killer is..." and then some dude from the side goes "Look out!" and then this cauldron of blood tips onto Tony's head. The blood obviously attracts the tiger, and, ha ha ha, it mauls Tony! Fabulous. But he doesn't die. He goes to hospital and is receiving treatment when 'the killer' manages to get into his room and give him an overdose of something. And, as the camera pans up from his IV drip, 'the killer' is revealed as... Dr Marlena Evans!!!!!! Oh. My. God! There, now, we're all caught up.

By the way, did anyone catch that new Australian reality show, Playing It Straight, last week? I only ask because it made me feel very uncomfortable. See, I found that there's this loaded view built into the premise which encourages judging the gay guys unfairly compared to the straight guys. Because of the set up, the gay ones are damn mercenary liars while the straight ones are mercenary maybe, but at least they ain't liars. It's not an equal footing. Also, the requirement for secrecy and the fact they'd be cast out if their secret was revealed, all makes me squirm quite a bit. But what I found most disturbing is that, after annoying my brother by yammering on about the show putting the gay guys in a more precarious position compared to the straight ones and the 'tropes' this feeds off blah blah blah, I still found myself watching and going "Dude! That guy is sooo gay!" But then I'm like, "Wait, maybe he isn't. I mean he could be, but so could that guy. Or could he? Or could they all? Well, yes. What's the point of this game again?" It becomes this objectification thing, with viewers [or at least, with me] playing a game of 'yes or no' and eventually slapping ourselves on the back going "Ha! I knew it." A bit wrong, methinks. Anyway, I guess the deep lesson will be - as the sexuality of each evicted contestant is revealed as the weeks progress - that, like, wow, masculinity is like, totally diverse.

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