History rewrites. Are you for them, against them or somewhere in between?
This is my third attempt to write this column. My first draft made no sense. Even on Planet Crack it would not have made sense.
The second draft was ponderous. It’s never a good sign when I find my own writing loathsome, and pedantic, and just plain awful.
The subject was/is history rewrites. I got lost in a discussion of why they sometimes work. And why sometimes they don’t. Hard to believe, at least for me, but the column included an embarrassingly detailed account of AMC history rewrites throughout the years. Blegghh.
I have strong opinions, both pro and con, about history rewrites. Why was I having such difficult time writing about them? Because I was tiptoeing around the one I really wanted to talk about. And what I have to say about it isn’t pretty:
Krystal used to work for defense attorneys? Really? I mean, REALLY? It’s clear we are supposed to forget about how she started the Mirabess mess. And went on to lead both JR and Bianca to believe that their babies were dead. Oh, and how she told Adam the baby was his, knowing all along that it was Tad’s. Not to mention the recent reveal that she sold infant Marissa for no small chunk of change.
I didn’t think my opinion of Krystal could sink any lower. This rewrite proved me wrong.
It makes Krystal even more odious. When she arrived in Pine Valley she was rude. She was nasty. She looked down on people who had more than she did. Her excuse for this behavior? She was poor. She was uneducated. The only jobs she could get were below minimum wage. She was forced to trade sex for reduced rent. There were times when all she and Babe had to eat was French toast made with a curling iron. The reason they moved so often? Because when she traded sexual favors for rent, she was trading them with married men. All this was no excuse for being rude, but it did explain much of her behavior. She painted this picture of a poverty-stricken single mother struggling to provide a home for daughter.
And now it turns out it was a lie.
She worked in a law office. She had skills beyond “comforting” men. She wasn’t making an attorney’s salary but she wasn’t making minimum wage, either. She had insurance. She has a resume. She had a life that was the polar opposite of what she told the Valley.
Instead of making her appear to be a good person, she now looks like she has run the biggest con in Pine Valley history.
The Valley has had its share of cons. There was Langely. And Myrtle. And the sleaze who was running the land deal to scam little old ladies.
Krystal has out done them all.
AMC has changed Krystal’s narrative. The problem with changing someone’s history to fit a storyline is that it seldom works. Maybe the change fits the story at this moment. Once the moment passes viewers are left shaking their fists at the TV screen.
It’s a quick fix that leaves a mess behind.
Sometimes a more recent history is rewritten. A good example of a bad rewrite is the burying of Greg Madden.
We saw how Tad behaved when Madden disappeared. Tad was afraid that he would never be able to track him down. He was frantic. All that made perfect sense. We could feel Thaddeus’ pain. He was lost with no idea what to do next.
Then the history of the previous few months was rewritten. Tad was named the designated grave digger. Tad had known all along where Madden was. He was buried alive under a bed of flowering bushes in the public park.
It was bad enough learning that Tad was the culprit. It was even worse realizing that Tad was the one who dug Greg up, cleaned him and buried him again. Just thinking about it gives me the shudders.
Sure, the story was a surprise. But when the shock/surprise ended we were left with Tad. Not the Tad we had loved for decades, but a Tad who buried a man alive, dug him up, and buried him again. To add insult to injury, Tad went on to let Dixie, the love of his life, stand trial for a capital offense.
The shock was brief. The damage done to Tad’s character continues. Each time he rants about anyone being a bad person, I’m the one you hear shouting, “but you buried a man alive.” Tad has taken hypocrisy to a new level. And it doesn’t suit him.
There’s no hope for Krystal. The damage is done.
There is hope for Tad. What he needs is a long visit from a spectral Ray Gardener constantly telling him, “Guess you are a real Gardner after all.”
More writing needs to be done to make up for the rewrite.
I have one more history rewrite that irks me no end. Ryan was not born Ryan Lavery. He was born Ryan Curry. Lavery was his mother’s maiden name. He changed his last name to distance himself from his abusive father. His family’s surname is Curry.
I know it’s a little rewrite but it drives me crazy.
What do you think about rewrites? Do you agree with me or do you think I need a rewrite, too!
Thank you for reading what I write.