Before continuing to the rest of this post, which (spoiler!) will be rather cranky, I’d like to take a moment and acknowledge the one thing that hasn’t enraged or bored me about the last few days:
ELIZABETH: I can’t do this anymore. you need to know the truth.
PATRICK: What truth?
ELIZABETH: Patrick, Robin’s sick. Her HIV levels are unstable.
BOOM! I was all resigned to this dumb secret continuing to drag on as so many other dumb secrets have. But no! Elizabeth “My Poker Face Is Reserved For Paternity Lies Only” Webber just stepped right in like a champ and nipped this thing in the bud for me. Love you, girl.
It should probably go without saying that Jason Thompson was working Patrick’s denial, fear and hurt to the hilt. I could wish for a lot of ways this story should have been told differently, starting with Robin not being out of her goddamn mind, but for now I’m just grateful the cat is out of the bag and we can hopefully get on with the rest of the fall out from the possible death of one of this show’s longest running and most beloved legacy characters.
You know, as soon as the writers get done with focusing on much more important subjects, like Sonny’s childhood (hey, did you know that it wasn’t a happy one? I know! I was shocked too!), Carly’s cunning plan to prostitute herself to save Michael from his own douchiness (um, yeah… good luck with that), and the exciting vagaries of Ethan’s sex life.
Speaking of the latter, I should have known it was shortsighted to complain when the Lady in White — sorry, Cassandra — spent months not speaking. Because now that she’s finally opened up her mouth, we’re being subjected to gems like this:
THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS LADY IN WHITE: Is that all you really wanted to know about me? How sexually proficient I might be?
ETHAN, aka THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS A CHARACTER I DIDN’T HATE: No, no, of course not! I’m sure you’re sufficiently proficient. [Ed. note: You are… the grossest.]
THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS LADY IN WHITE: Yes. And what happens next, after that? What becomes of the girl with no past, your curiosity spent in the sheets, leaving me with no named accomplishment other than that I brought you pleasure? Or do you think I’m virginal territory to impress? You think you’ll give me something to remember if I can remember nothing on my own. A gift of desire and destruction that I can’t return for a refund; my moment of weakness. I have none. I am not weak.
ETHAN, aka THE GROSSEST: Prove it. With your vagina. [Ed note: That last part may have just been implied?]
What? Who talks like that? I’ll tell you who: characters in bad romance novels, whose authors think purple prose, pretentious twattery, and abuse of commas sounds “old timey.”
So, listen: I get that the writers think that this is “Gothic” (it’s not) and that Nathan Parsons apparently believes this is Wuthering Heights. (Also no, it’s really not. Dear Garin Wolf: I knew Emily Brontë. Emily Brontë was a good friend of mine. And you, sir? Are no Emily Brontë.) But there’s a reason real people don’t talk like characters from Wuthering Heights, and that reason is that they will sound extremely stupid.
The one good thing I can say about this plot is it gives me an excuse to share one of my favorite things in the universe:
(What does it say that the plot of that spoof toy commercial was way more interesting than anything currently happening on this show?)
Elsewhere, Natasha and Luke had another little sit down, and it started all cute with the sparring and the missing each other and the straight talk… and then the talk got a little too straight, if you know what I mean:
LUKE: Look, Tracy used to like me just as I was. She didn’t want me to change. She knew I was a challenge. Did I steal from her? Did I cheat on her? Absolutely. But she liked that! She expected me to do it!
ALEXIS: Did it ever occur to you that maybe Tracy was willing to take you any way she could get you? How about maybe she guards her heart because she was afraid you would break it, which is exactly what you did. Now aren’t you glad you invited me here?
Oh, I see! It’s not that you don’t treat her like shit — it’s just that she likes being abused! Of course. Why haven’t I seen it before? All these years of Tracy pretending to be frustrated, angry, and hurt by Luke’s philandering has all been an act designed to hide her enjoyment of being disrespected! And her pained resignation over his continual abandonment and thievery has really been a secret signal to tell him how much she looks forward to being taken advantage of and then dumped for something shinier and more interesting for months at a time. It’s all so obvious now. I mean, if she wasn’t asking for it, he wouldn’t do it, right?
You know who else is asking for it? Strippers. Not all strippers, of course! Just, you know… the bad ones. The ones who like stripping:
MICHAEL: Look, these dancers that this guy’s beating up? Most of them only dance there to make ends meet. They don’t like taking their clothes off for strangers any more than Abby did.
SONNY: You don’t think I know what that’s about? I ran a strip joint. And that’s why I got out of a business. Guys are pigs!
Michael’s right, you guys. It’s okay to be a stripper, so long as you feel degraded and trapped in a life you can’t escape. Only women who enjoy taking their clothes off for money deserve to be beaten! I also love Sonny’s explanation for why he got out of the strip club business — hey, Sonny? Did you have that epiphany about men being pigs before or after you coerced a teenage abuse victim into stripping for you by drugging her to the gills?
(If I feel degraded and trapped after watching this show, does that mean I don’t deserve to beaten either? These rules are so complex!)
Fortunately, we have Tracy herself — after being hilariously kidnapped by her betrothed — to finally cut through the music of wacky hijinks and call this bullshit what it actually is:
ANTHONY: I’m going to call you Venus. My own personal goddess of love!
TRACY: Look, this cuddly mobster act is completely wasted on me. I know that you’re lethal, and no matter how you try to dress it up as quirky or cute, you’re threatening me.
I understand that there are people who actually find this story funny? And I kind of… don’t understand how that’s possible? But at least one character is actually clear on the fact that what Anthony is doing isn’t harmless or shenanigans! as usual. I know the writers would like us all to forget that this is the same man who calmly smothered Siobhan in her hospital bed less than five months ago or who had another woman offed last month simply for the leverage to force Maxie to plan his wedding (because Maxie’s… so awesome? Yeah, I got nothin’). But there is literally nothing about him railroading and frightening Tracy that I find amusing in the slightest.
(Dear Ron Carlivati: FREE TRACY! You wrote for Dorian Lord. I know you can handle this aging battle axe with a little dignity.)
Oh, and also, Jason supposedly killed Franco? But not until after letting him blather on interminably for an episode and a half? And then later he seemed oddly uncertain about whether or not he was even dead?
(Like, how about a couple kill shots to the head, Jason? It’s called being a professional. God.)
(You know we’re all going to be paying for his incompetence later when JF shows up again to torment us all with his pretentious douchery until the end of time or until he finally gets bored and wanders off to shake up all of life and art as we know it by playing himself somewhere else.)
Thanks for nothing, Jason. WORST. HIT MAN. EVER.