The Doctor’s Order

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gourmez3Bringing back Franco and forcing the characters to deal with his sudden presence in their lives has been interesting, because they’ve all reacted so differently. The Quartermaines interested in the CEO position have taken the news of their wretched new relative in stride, probably both because his vote matters to their self-interests and because Quartermaines try to commit murder as a rite of passage. Then they forgive and move on. Then there’s Carly and Sonny’s response…

Kill him, kill him, kill him!

Kill him, kill him, kill him!

Those two discussing vengeance and murder got old a decade ago. I can’t remember if Sonny’s ever legitimately threatened Carly’s life before, but her reaction was as it should be: “Yeah, right. Tell me another.” To defend her actions, she has accomplished placating his great need to be the one in control by conveying that she knows she shouldn’t have done it, et cetera, all the while knowing he wouldn’t go through with it. As much as I never enjoyed Carly and Sonny romantically, she does know him better than anyone. His anger is far more about Carly using his hit man without his permission than it is about caring so much for Olivia that he’d be willing to kill his two favorite children’s mother.

Which reminds me, cousins waxing poetic over the same man is not cute, especially when the rest of us figured out how bad of a catch he was years ago.

conni poetic sonny

Kate explained how she “could always see the sadness in his [Sonny’s] eyes. Made me want to just hold on and love his hurt away,” and Olivia agreed wholeheartedly. Sorry to break it to you, women, but what you just described is not boyfriend material.  Your significant other should make you happy, more complete, not make you want to fix them. Sonny hasn’t shown interest in moving on from that sadness in his eyes for over a decade. It’s more likely those tears are annoyance over his hitman’s woeful aim these days.

And I officially give up on that hitman.

sean hitman

So many times, I’ve hoped Shawn would be more than a hitman, but he’s always brought back to working for Sonny. I guess a war vet who used to be a chemistry teacher aspiring to a life behind guns is a heartwarming story? At least he makes a good grilled cheese, if Alexis can be believed. He’s great with TJ, and I appreciate that he actually had a conversation with Alexis about the very, very gray area that most people on this show live in between murder and killing a person who deserved it, meaning that most of them don’t think it’s murder if the dead person was a jerk. But that conversation, while interesting, also cemented my suspicion that Shawn no longer worries about being an assassin at all. Conflict gone for him, interest gone for me.

But I was talking about Franco’s effect on those around him, wasn’t I? Once again, I am amazed that Michael has handled it the best. He has changed so much from the spitfire, moderately psychotic Michael that emerged from that coma once upon a time. I think his relationship with AJ has contributed to that newfound maturity, giving him a perspective that his parents never did. But that doesn’t stop him from taking the blame for his own actions, mainly the killing of Claudia.

michael tells about claudia

First of all, it’s really weird how much this newest tour of rape reveal has been about everyone else’s reactions and not about how it still affects Michael. The Quartermaines and Elizabeth were particularly concerned about AJ’s over-the-top angst about it. But Michael has calmly explained what happened to multiple people at this point, and I’m particularly proud that he takes responsibility for what led him into prison even though he didn’t deserve what happened to him there. Franco, you are not off the hook for that just because you claim to not have wanted Michael harmed. Sorry, dude.

Despite the awkward insertion of Michael’s rape in all conversations surrounding the new Quartermaine heirs, I still enjoyed how absolutely silly it was to have Kiki and Michael revealed as cousins at the last possible second.

Morgan's "I won the lottery!" face.

Morgan’s “I won the lottery!” face.

It was a comedy of errors, and Morgan’s giddiness may have been the best part…and this Morgan has done nothing to endear himself to me. Yet I’m a little worried for him that Franco honed in on him being Jason’s namesake. And can we get a little of thoughtful, well-behaved child Morgan in this incarnation? I’m hoping it’ll come in time, once Morgan recovers from being shuffled off to boarding schools for half his life.

Equally as silly and slightly disturbing as the Quartermaine heir shenanigans was this scene with babysitter Duke and Emma.

duke sparkly

Bonding with a child who’s essentially his step-granddaughter and the tango dancing was fun, but Duke’s clownlike make-up and intense stare made me nervous in a horror film way. Perhaps it would be less uncomfortable if we’d seen Duke more than the once in the past month. Bringing back so many familiar faces has been wonderful, but by the time we see them again, we’ve nearly forgotten their storylines. I do hope the show finds a better way to balance the large cast soon. But complaining almost seems ridiculous when I remember what the show was not that long ago.

Prescription for Better Soap: Keep up Michael’s maturity; he’s fast becoming one of my favorites on the show. Though perhaps we can stop rehashing his rape now? Not everyone needs to know about it, I swear. If you want me to care about who the Falconeri cousins date, then they need to re-evaluate their obsessions with fixing broken men, especially the same man. And thanks for the silly scenes, even when they have a tiny thread of menace in them. They might be better that way, just like watching bad guys like Shawn is when there’s a hint they are somewhat conflicted about the choices they make.

Becca

My romance novella, Maya’s Vacation, is available for purchase at Astraea Press,  Amazon, and Barnes and Nobles. Follow me on Twitter @thegourmez or on Facebook. Find info on all my writing at my website.

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