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Dancing With Mary Jane: Y&R

Unlike the villain Y&R has in Adam, they seem to have somehow managed to create a believable soap villain in Mary Jane Benson, aka Paul's sister Patty. Mary Jane embodies everything a soap villain should be. She is manipulative, calculating, and diabolical, but most importantly she holds the potential for future redemption. What makes Mary Jane different from Adam is the fact that she has an excuse for behaving the way she does. She had a nervous breakdown years ago and continues to suffer from mental instability, so it is not entirely beyond the realm of possibilities that she could one day receive help and be completely cured of her psychosis. It also does not hurt that her brother is perhaps the only resident of Genoa City without skeletons in his closet, making it easy to believe that there must be some good in Mary Jane as well. Moreover Victor is using Mary Jane's own weaknesses against her in order to get to Jack, which sort of makes her a victim. In fact one could almost sympathize with her if she had not crossed the line this week.

There has always been sort of an unwritten rule about soap villains, children are off limits. I am not referring to baby switch stories or kidnappings, or even children caught in the crossfire of a mob war like Michael on GH. I am referring to soap villains deliberately hurting someone's child in order to satisfy some sinister plot. No one watches daytime television to see an innocent child suffer at the hands of a soap villain because the truth is we love our villains, but we would have a difficult time even accepting them as part of the show if they all went around targeting defenseless children. That is why it was such a shock when Mary Jane intentionally caused Summer to have an allergic reaction after overhearing Phyllis refer to Summer's peanut allergy, a serious affliction that affects many people. All it took to send Summer into anaphylactic shock from her allergy was Mary Jane eating one peanut butter cookie before kissing her. I had hoped that Y&R would use this storyline to educate the public about how dangerous peanut allergies are because people can have serious reactions to them even if they do not actually eat them. I am not sure this is something that could be considered common knowledge, so I think it would have been helpful if the show had directed the public on where to find useful information about this type of allergy at the end of the show. I think this would have made Summer's reaction seem more authentic because there may be people watching these episodes thinking that it would be impossible for such a severe reaction to occur unless she had eaten the cookie herself.


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For Immediate Release
Contact: Suzanne Curry suzannecurry@ho…