I hate to even type this date. After 72 years on radio and television, Springfield's beacon has shut down, and Guiding Light is no more. Having watched and followed this show for over 30 years, seeing it end is like losing an old and dear friend. No, it's like losing a whole bunch of old and dear friends. Tears were shed, even as some parts of the final episode were a disappointment, and others a complete puzzle.
They should have had one kiss. Sorry, but it must be said. Yay for the girls being together, and happily, but there should have been a kiss.
I loved the scene of Natalia and Olivia sitting at the table, Olivia talking about how the happy ending isn't supposed to be hers, and how she can't believe she actually got everything she wanted. Olivia seems like a friend to me. I've been rooting for her pretty much since she first came on the scene - even when she's been soooo wrong about things. I couldn't be more glad to see Olivia get a happy ending if she were a real person.
I know some people were angry at the naming of Natalia's baby. I'm not. First off, Francesca is a really good name. Second, Frank is, after all, the baby's father. Naming the baby after Frank is no less fitting than if they'd named her after Natalia. And, keep in mind that Natalia suggested naming the baby Ivy Olivia - now that would have been walking a little too far on the side of fantasy. Francesca has a father and two mothers. Of the three parents, it was Olivia who got to name the baby, which is significant. She chose a good name (ok, I admit to being partial to Francesca because it's the name I chose for my niece, and my sister actually went with it...but I digress.) She chose a name that honors and acknowledges the fact that the baby's father is part of the baby's life. One can also look at it this way: too many people have this crazy idea that lesbians are trying to be men or replace men, or that we hate men. Some lesbians do hate men. Most don't. If we couldn't have an Otalia that was edgy enough to kiss on screen (heaven forbid!!!!) at least we have an Otalia that has bucked several conventional ideas about women in same sex relationships: we don't hate men, we aren't trying to be men, we don't hate heterosexuals, we don't always couple up in butch/femme pairs, we quite often lead very traditional, family-oriented lives.
But, really, people, they should have kissed.
He's a douchebag with a uniform. I will never be ok with the fact that Guiding Light portrayed a homophobic bastard as a hero. No matter how much I love this show, and how much joy it's given me - this will never be ok, in my book. I'm actually more ok with the whole "let's just have Jeffrey do some pretty damned nice things for Olivia and pretend he never raped anyone" ploy, because that's basically damage control after the fact. With Rafe, the writers didn't even do any damage control. They set up Rafe's homophobia, beautifully, as a conflict, but they never resolved it. A simple apology and admitting he was wrong would have gone a long way. The writers couldn't bother. Who cares if he spit all over a whole segment of society? What's the big deal about him condemning his mother and telling her she was going to hell? For this I don't blame CBS. Blame for this incredibly irresponsible (and sloppy) bit of story-telling lies squarely with the executive producer and the writer. This situation could have been remedied in under 75 words:
"I'm so sorry, Ma. I'm sorry about the terrible things I said. I'm sorry I wasn't here for you when you needed me. I don't really understand what it is that you and Olivia are doing, but I'm going to try my best to just support you the way that you've always supported me. I just want you to be happy."
Um, that took me one minute to come up with. The writers had over a year to figure out how Rafe's reaction to Otalia was going to play out, and they fucked it up, royally.
Phillip and Beth/ Rick and Mindy
I was hoping against hope that Mindy would show up and wind up with Rick. It would have been too awful to leave poor, dopey Rick with no one. Long live The Four Musketeers!
I loved Phillip's revelation that he is now the oldest Spaulding living in the Spaulding mansion. I remember you when you were practically still a boy, Phillip Spaulding! I also loved Beth's little nod to Phillip's literary past - giving him the journal and suggesting he start writing took me back to Phillip and Beth reading poetry to one another, a million years ago, when they were first falling in love.
Alexandra and Fletcher
Sweet that Alex got to do something and be with someone, and moving to see her say goodbye, because that was really Marj Dusay saying goodbye to Guiding Light. I've enjoyed the closeness between Alex and Phillip during the last two weeks. I'd begun to think the writers had no idea how much Alex has always adored her nephew. In so many ways, Phillip has been more like her son.
Reva and Josh/ Edmund and Jeffery/ Jonathan and Sarah
Don't hate me, but I found this to be pretty awful. I am so over Josh and Reva and, HELLO - Jefferey is still alive. It think they forgot to tell Bradley Cole to come in for the last day of filming. Or maybe the writers got home after the last day of shooting, with that nagging feeling that they'd forgotten something. To turn off the iron? To leave water for the dog? Oh, shit! We forgot to finish Jeffery's story line!
Why did they even start the whole Edmund "murder" mystery, if there was never any intention to solve it? Are we to believe that, a whole year later, Jeffery still hasn't had any luck in killing Edmund? Isn't he some sort of secret government operative? And, yet, he can't shoot the broad side of a barn. We never found out who it was that Dinah murdered. There's actually no rhyme or reason for any of this. Edmund is supposed to pose this huge danger to baby Henry, Sarah, and just about everyone in Springfield (although it's kind of difficult to figure out why he'd bother), yet a year passes by and no one has been killed or kidnapped or anything? Who cares?
Still and all, it made me weepy when Josh and Reva drove off in the pick-up truck. It reminded me of H.B., and I loved H.B.
Is Sarah on reverse SORAS pills? We skip ahead a year and baby Colin has aged, Natalia and Olivia have a baby who looks to be a few months old, even stupid Remy and Chistina's baby is the right age. But Sarah is still the same size? Stupid. If I cared about the whole Sarah/Jonathan/Lizzie thing I'd be annoyed. I don't, so I just find it stupid and funny.
Reva and Olivia
This was pure win. I love it that Reva got a crack in about Olivia finally finding someone who could handle her. I am really going to miss these two characters so much! We haven't seen old Reva in ages. This was a glimpse of her, but softer. It made me happy.
Blake and Frank
Awww. That was sweet. I thought Frank Dicopoulous was really good in the bridge scene. He hasn't had much of a chance, in the last year, to play just normal, nice Frank: a pretty damned good guy, who deserves a break. I felt we got that Frank back in the final episode. I loved it that he so comfortably mentioned Francesca having two mommies in the flash-forward scene. Unlike Rafe, whose conflict is never resolved, Frank's journey from "What exactly are you???" to "She's in love with you, Olivia" to "In the grand scheme of things, our situation isn't that bad" to "I thought you ladies could use some help moving" has been realistic and satisfying. He was never going to fall instantly in love with the idea of Natalia jilting him, especially not when she jilted him for Olivia, of all people. Because he is (one last time, people) a good man, though, he's come around. Family has always been the most important thing to Frank. In many ways, the flash-forward scene is all about Frank and Olivia: two people who never, ever got the happy endings, finally getting their turn.
Remy and Christina
Wow. So furious precious time was wasted on these two again. Those minutes could easily have been used to give us some quality Emma/Olivia/Natalia/Francesca time. Or a really good Phillip/Beth scene. Or anything besides Remy and Christina. A photo is in order.
Odds and Sods
- I'm really sad that Maeve Kinkead wasn't around for the very end. Vanessa and Billy had no screen time together after the wedding. I love Vanessa, and I don't feel as if we've had a proper goodbye.
- The whole Dinah/Mallett and Shayne/Marina thing is awful and is best ignored.
- I really wanted Dinah to at least phone her mother, as Vanessa asked her to. It would have been nice to have that bit of closure.
- Daisy and Ashlee: I dig Ashlee's pseudo hippie look at Berkeley.
- Daisy and James: cute.
- Ashley and Doris: Cute, but a little bit of a letdown. I wanted more Doris.
- Buzz and Lillian: so adorable together in the flash forward scene.
Goodbye, Springfield. Thanks for the years.