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Laura vs Richard

Discussion in 'Knots Landing' started by Pamela_E, Feb 2, 2020.

  1. Pamela_E

    Pamela_E administrator

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    I have been having a bit of a rewatch of Knots and love Richard. He is such a quirky, interesting character.

    If there had been a choice to keep either Laura or Richard on the show, who would you go with?

    I loved Laura but I think Richard developed into a far more interesting character.
     
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  2. CVU360

    CVU360 Soap Chat Newbie

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    Season 5 launched the show into a new era, one which honestly worked better than if Richard, Kenny and Ginger had remained. Richard's shortcomings made him interesting and relatable. John Pleshette's performance was often understated, especially with the emotion he could show with just his eyes. When the show moved beyond the cul-de-sac with Gary's ranch, Ben's beach house and Greg's campaign, Richard might have seemed out of place. There might have been a decent story line with Richard working for Greg, but the characters and the situations would have been too much for the nuances of Richard.

    Of the two, Laura was a better choice to keep, although the writers didn't come up with much for her to do after her involvement in the Wolfbridge plot of Season 5. She was a great match with Greg, but never ended up being more than his sounding board and conscience. Given the writers' inability or unwillingness to have more for Laura, having her die likely did more for the storylines of the show than keeping her.
     
  3. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 19 Years Staff Member

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    Y'all know I love Laura more than any other character on the show. That said, I think that if the producers had been given such an ultimatum at the end of season four, they would have gotten rid of Laura. David Jacobs and John Pleshette had an off-screen friendship that would have likely trumped Jacobs's affinity for McCashin and her acting abilities. I'm sure that if Pleshette had not asked to leave, they would have continued to find ways to keep Richard relevant, since such friendships often end up being more important than what is best for the show.
     
  4. TJames03

    TJames03 Soap Chat TV Fanatic EXP: 10 Years

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    That would have been awful to have lost Laura at the end of Season 04! She added so much between Seasons 05 and 09!!!!!!!
     
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  5. TJames03

    TJames03 Soap Chat TV Fanatic EXP: 10 Years

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    Yes, she was way better. The new era was, sadly, the end of the community spirit. The second Devane joined the cast it was over. All of the business aspect of the new era ruined what KL was truly about. I remember the last scene Laura and Ginger has together here Laura said that the “neighborhood wasn’t what it used to be.”

    Massive understatement.....
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2020
  6. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator EXP: 11 Years Staff Member

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    I believe JP has commented along the lines that Richard wouldn't have fitted into the series with the injections of money and glamour it was getting, but I think he would have been fine.

    Richard had a legal background and there's definitely a role he could have played as Knots evolved. He was, in many ways, a more logical choice to be part of the new direction than Laura, a housewife who "sold little houses" as Ruth put it (I recognise this is doing Laura a huge disservice as a character, but think about how the characters' CVs compare on paper). If Laura had left after Season Four, we couldn't have imagined Laura interacting with Ciji's doppelgänger any more than we could see Richard in that same situation (oh - how I'd love to have seen Richard's reaction to Cathy). And in some ways Laura was a little sidelined and drifted a bit after the focus left the cul-de-sac anyway.

    It could also have been interesting to see Richard's response to all the money and status his neighbours were coming into. If even Laura felt she was entitled to her piece of the pie, you can only imagine how Richard would have felt. It would certainly have fuelled his persecution complex.

    It's also an intriguing thought that Richard might remain instead of Laura. And as terrible as it would be to have lost her then, there are possibilities for Richard from that, whether he ends up a single father or a swinging-but-bitter bachelor.

    That said, Richard was a dark and intense character thanks to JP's portrayal, and I do wonder if we could have had audience burnout if he'd stuck around. Or worse, he could have ended up being a Cliff Barnes type buffoon.

    Richard is a contender for my favourite character on the series but, because of the intensity, I feel that Richard was well explored in his short time on the show, whereas with Laura we'd only just begun to scratch the surface. I like that Richard left me wanting more. Throw in that JP wanted to leave and Connie McC most certainly didn't, and if we could only keep one of them I would probably still opt to keep Laura.
     
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  7. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator EXP: 19 Years Staff Member

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    If Richard had remained into season five, Laura might very well have taken the kids with her. Richard's inability to "run with the big boys" might have gotten him involved in the Wolfbridge plot, only to get himself murdered by Mark St. Claire when he learns too much or screws something up with their plans. It would have made the plot much more "high stakes" for everyone when one of their neighbors ends up dead at the hands of these shadowy people. Meanwhile, David Jacobs would develop a spin-off for McCashin with Laura and the boys starting a new life in Florida or something, where she gets to carry a series on her own.:rolleyes:
     
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