Friday, May 14, 2010

We Love Soaps On "Starr's X'd Lovers"

First a disclaimer.  Those of you who have read my interviews and features here at We Love Soaps are aware that I enjoy my soaps with straight up drama, complex relationship dynamics, and revealing psychological layers.  I am one of the people who maintains that you can tell a compelling story in front of a dark curtain just so long as the acting and the writing are good. It with this in mind that I wholeheartedly and sincerely encourage our readers to tune into ONE LIFE TO LIVE’s fantastical musical event, “Starr's X'd Lovers,” featured on May 14, 17, and 18th on ABC. 

No, I have not been the latest casualty of Mitch’s ECT treatments.  I genuinely enjoyed the splashy dazzling scenes I was previewed at ABC last week, for the following reasons:

1. Groundbreaking musical numbers on daytime.  Trust me, you have never seen this many (dozens) of professional dancers performing serious moves on daytime before.  Careful consideration was paid to every detail in every shot, and it shows.

2. Intergenerational dynamics.  These episodes are not just for the young-uns.  Ilene Kristen and  Kassie DePaiva are also given a chance to shine by displaying their gorgeous singing voices in various numbers.  Jason Tam finally gets the opportunity to display some of his jaw dropping talents as a professional dancer and singer.  And newcomer J.J. Singleton (last seen in Broadway’s The Little Mermaid) demonstrates a refreshing and abounding energy that daytime desperately needs to survive these days. 

3. Different styles of music.  While there are some familiar pop songs included (“I Gotta Feeling”, “Our Lips Are Sealed”), there are also many original numbers which incorporate a diverse palate of musical tastes.  From softer intimate Disney-style ballads, to hard-rocking angry Rent-style songs, there is something here to fulfill everyone who has ever enjoyed a musical. 

4. Same actor / new layers.  The genius of musical theater is that it uses song to allow the audience to get an intimate perspective on the inside world of it’s characters.  You will absolutely find that here with the numbers I already mentioned above, as well as a can’t-miss song revealing sides to Kristen Alderson, Tika Sumpter, and Brittany Underwood, that Llanview has NEVER seen before. 

5. Musical numbers are part of daytime tradition.
  What? Musical numbers are traditional?  They sure are!   What was Bill Hayes doing on DAYS OF OUR LIVES throughout the 70s? What about Rick Springfield and Jack Wagner on GH or Michael Damian on Y&R in the 80s? Don't you miss Claire Labine’s annual Nurse’s Ball on GH in the 90s? ONE LIFE TO LIVE and all of daytime has a rich tradition of integrating song and dance to illustrate conflict and deepen emotions.  “Starr’s X’d Lovers” carries out this tradition and kicks it up a notch in ways that will surprise and please it’s audience. 

Okay, this is not  the most intellectually deep or psychologically complex story you’ve ever seen.  But it is guaranteed to bring a smile to your face, a tap to your toe, and brightness into your day.  And darn it, if that’s not what soaps are all about, then I don’t know what it is.

-Ilene Kristen on "Starr's X'd Lovers" and WLS Weekend
-Ron Carlivati discusses "Starr's X'd Lovers" and OLTL's summer 

Damon L. Jacobs is a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist seeing individuals and couples in New York City at Mental Health Counseling & Marriage And Family Therapy Of New York.   He is also the author of "Absolutely Should-less: The Secret to Living the Stress-Free Life You Deserve".


  1. I'm excited about watching these 3 episodes in the next few days. Thanks, Damon! :)

  2. I watched today's episode with trepidation. Was unimpressed with the Prom Night episodes a few years back.

    But I guess Glee has softened me because I loved this episode. Very fun and a nice change of pace. Espeically adored the Our Lips are Sealed set piece at Roxy's Salon. Amazing choreography!

    Looking forward to next week's episodes.