Thursday, September 22, 2011

All My Children: I thought You'd Always Be There. Nothing Lasts Forever, Not Even A TV Soap

Queen of Soaps: Susan Lucci. Will she sign on to a projected continuation of "All My Children" on the internet or cable TV?

What a strange poignant sadness I feel. I haven't watched the show seriously in years, other than looking for Erica a few times a year and then rarely finding her. It was she who hooked me, around 1980, her wickedly subtle sense of humor, I swear. Oh, heck, I'm going to make an embarrassing confession here. I once actually sent her a fan letter, but only because I found her so funny and wanted to tell her so. For a time, they treated me as a fan of their club. I did not respond.

Giving birth so many years ago.

For my money, too many of the show's more interesting characters faded away over the years, leaving us with a lot of rather dull posturing studs and dolls. The clever potting that so once compelled me seemed to slacken off. Two of my favorite characters were Palmer and Opal. Palmer is no longer there, it appears. Opal is.

A great actor: David Canary played both the ruthless tycoon Adam Chandler, above, and his lovably innocent pure-as-sunshine brother, Stuart.

Today I had to watch the whole thing, the Grand Inevitable Finale, and Erica did not let me down. Long-time love, Jack, below, vexed again in his latest offer of marriage to Miss Elusive, finally had the guts to tell her, "Frankly, I don't give a damn!" and head for the door. Erica followed after him, stopped with that plotting gaze in her selfish eyes, and had the last word on the last ABC episode of All My Children: "Watch me!"

Lost in a perennial dating game, Erica forever balking at marriage. Jack has had it.

Just the fact that, after 41 years, it's going off the air feels like the end of an era that I once was a part of, and era that I would still like to feel existed.

It feels like a great big death in a virtual family.


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