Yes, there ARE other daytime storylines that were building to a payoff last week – other than the One I’ve Been Yapping About.
And one of the most talked about stories was last week’s same-sex wedding between Reese (Tamara Braun) and Bianca (Eden Riegel) over at All My Children.
I’m really happy AMC had this wedding, and it IS meaningful that these two women were able to marry (although that wedding wouldn’t be legally recognized in Pennsylvania, where the fictional Pine Valley is set).
But I’ve had a long laundry list of issues about how this storyline has been handled (and how unwatchable, in general, AMC is these days). The ladies at Serial Drama have captured some of those issues beautifully in their posts.
So, what’s MY problem? Well……
Bianca – Queen of the Iron-On Storyline: I’ve had problems with the last few Bianca stories because they are so random and forced. I understand and appreciate that Eden Riegel doesn’t want a long-term deal, but they’re asking the audience to accept an awful lot. It’s ready, set…….go with a year of unknown!backstory, and who cares, because we all love Bianca! (Um, no.)
Jeffery Carlson (Zarf/Zoe) and Tamara Braun (Reese) are both amazing actors. But even the best actors can’t saved forced story. Zarf landed on canvas with a big splash (a naked one, as I recall) and by day 5 he was spouting cliches and comforting Pine Valley citizens like he was Myrtle freaking Fargate. Braun and Riegel DO have chemistry, but it’s hard to deeply root for them as a couple when we’ve only seen them together for a few months.
Character Assasination: There is simply no way that Bianca would have had Zach donate his sperm without asking Kendall first. I simply cannot buy that under any circumstances. AMC’s writers obviously thought it WAS okay. Bianca needed to have her halo dented a little to remain interesting, but instead, she’s been stripped of her warmth and empathy and made to look like an insecure simp. Is Megan McTavish back at the reins?
Lesbians As A Rule Do Not Care for Male Genitalia: This is perhaps a statement of obviousness surpassed only by “Water is wet” and “Stephanie Forrester could kick your ass.” And yet, AMC seems to think any story about the lavender ladies of Pine Valley is incomplete without a set of twig and berries.
We were treated firstly to the joy of Michael Cambias forcing himself onto Bianca. Then there was the Zarf/Zoe story….and while I totally get the intent of the story and appreciate Zoe’s trans identity, the fact of the matter was that a significant portion of the audience was still seeing Zarf/Zoe as a man at that stage. (It would have been interesting to see Zoe with Bianca when Zoe was much further on her trans journey.)
And now we have Reese, who loves Bianca and married her, but is clearly bisexual. The audience is hating on Reese, and rightly so, since she’s lied to Bianca about what she was really feeling.
Listen, a story about a bisexual character torn between two lovers of different sexes could be ah-may-zing, but plot point #1 would CLEARLY need to be honesty. As in, the bisexual character in question would be aware of their bisexuality, and all of the parties involved would also be aware before they became involved.
Instead, we’ve had a character who has been dishonest about the feelings she’s had since the get-go. It may make for a messy story, and potentially interesting one, but unfortunately, this story makes Zach, Reese and Bianca look stupid.
I’ll say this – As The World Turns fans (me included) can bitch about limited screen time and sporadic kisses for Luke and Noah, but the AMC story has made me appreciate how committed ATWT actually IS to the Nuke story. Noah’s initial forays into bisexuality (he was dating Maddie) made more sense since he was younger and just starting the coming out process. And though the show did subject us to the eye-rolling Ameera story, we were never asked to believe that Noah was straight, only that he and Luke, like any starcrossed couple, had some obstacles to deal with.
None of this is meant to be critical of Riegel or Braun, who have worked really hard to make this coupling work and succeeded to some degree. It’s a shame that the honeymoon for this couple will be so abbreviated, and that the fallout will make the audience less likely to root for their characters.