SoapLand - The Battle Of The Booze Scenes: The Result

Discussion in 'TV Central' started by Willie Oleson, May 20, 2018.

  1. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    There were a few notorious drunks, but I thought it would be more fun to focus on the scenes.
    Also because it gives all the soaps a chance to participate.

    upload_2018-5-20_16-40-3.png

    Bottoms up, chin-chin and let's find out who drunk it best.​
     
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  2. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm thinking, I'm thinking....:confuse:
     
  3. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Let me help you...

    upload_2018-5-23_1-13-55.png
     
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  4. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    [Jeopardy contestant] "What is....the number of beers it takes to get through an episode?" [/JC]
     
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  5. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Alcohol is not the solution:mo:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Hmmm. An interesting topic, this.

    Just to clarify, are we including only scenes that involve alcohol? Or can we also include scenes with tipsy people or scenes that involve direct focus on alcoholism?
     
  7. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Precisely, scenes with (a) drunken character(s). I assume we'd focus on scenes where the state of being drunk bears some significance, but what that is will be your choice - and ultimately, our choice.
     
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  8. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks, Willie. That's cleared that up nicely.

    Two of the initial scenes that sprung to my mind don't qualify in that case, but that's all to the good as it means less agonising over which to exclude.
     
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  9. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Fan

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    I was hard pressed to not just compile a top ten of Sue Ellen as she is the queen of the drunk scenes but I resisted and tried to make it a bit more varied.

    1: Dallas - Sue Ellen's bottle hurl

    "Don't you lecture me on what I should and shouldn't do" glug glug glug.




    2: Knots Landing - "We're ruining liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiivvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvveeeeeesssssssssssssssss"

    Such high drama. Gary shows up roaring drunk during Ciji's recording session, faceplants a window and calls out Abby. Yet, it's Abby who manages to steal the scene with a dramatic hair flick in the closing seconds.




    3: Dallas - Sh*tfaced and Pregnant

    More staircase action with expectant mother of the year Sue Ellen Ewing, who has been drinking for two while Lucy rocks in off her face on something. I love that despite the medical emergency unfolding in front of them, Lucy tries to get into Uncle Ray's pants.




    4: Dynasty - Steven's pool plunge

    I find this scene more funny than anything else. Mid conversation, Steven drunkenly stagger-runs away from his father and then continues to run into the night and then ultimately headlong into the pool. I know he was hammered but where was he running to?


    5: Falcon Crest - Drowning in Drink

    Probably doesn't fall within the parameters of this poll but it includes alcohol so I'm counting it. While other soaps have characters drowning their sorrows, Falcon Crest upped the ante in their earthquake cliffhanger by actually drowning their characters in wine leaving viewers wondering if Angela and Julia had met their makers by being submerged in this season's cabernet sauvignon.
     
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  10. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Fan

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    Honorable mentions

    There was a scene that I loved that one of you Dallas die hards should be able to identify for me. The Ewings were either at the Oil Baron's Ball or some sort of event in a restaurant and Sue Ellen, drunk and dressed in feathers or fur, spent much of the evening downing the good stuff and fell asleep face down on a table and had to be carried home.

    Also, shout out to my favourite Aussie soap queen Pat The Rat who was an Alexis and Sue Ellen all rolled into one



     
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  11. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Two scenes immediately came to mind, but I had to dust off my ol' gray matter to fill up a list of five. And no, I have not been drinking. I don't drink any more. Nor do I drink any less. [/rim shot]

    1. Gary and his humiliating scene (for everyone) at Ciji's recording session, Knots Landing (better known as the "We're ruining liiiiiives" scene). Ted Shackelford has to be given props for being willing to put it ALL out there and not be a "photogenic drunk".

    2. Richard Avery lashing out at Sid and Karen, KL. A con woman had accused Sid of raping her, and Sid hired Richard to represent him in the court case. Richard made the whole situation worse, so Sid fired him. Richard got all liquored up and blasted Sid, yelling "Guilty! Guilty! Guilty!" at him on the front lawn. We already knew Richard was not a very good husband, and not a very good lawyer...so now we saw he wasn't a very good friend, either.

    3. Mack Mackenzie's "poor me" act at Laura's wake, KL. Hey, Mack--sometimes it's just not about you. I know we Irish aren't happy unless we're sad, but your falling apart when a lot of people needed to lean on you was not funny. It was pitiful. Greg should have left you to sleep it off in that coffin at the funeral home.

    4. Jill's "assault" of Paige at the same wake, KL. Unlike "sad drunk" Mack, Jill became a borderline "fun drunk" after spotting her brother's cremains on the coffee table. She snarked on a few people, then slugged Paige with her purse (which contained the urn). Paige deserved much worse.

    5. Danny Waleska runs down poor Patricia Williams, KL. I would not call it "Best" in the sense that I enjoyed it; quite the opposite. A character I hated basically murdered a character I loved. It was memorable, though, especially when drunken Danny yelled at Pat as she laid on the ground, mad that she had "gotten in his way".
     
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  12. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    1. Gary Ewing's drunken meltdown.
    upload_2018-5-24_3-20-30.png
    I'll never forget how shocked (and entertained) I was when I watched it for the first time (not sooo long ago).

    2. Sue Ellen Ewing's sneaky drink during Jock's trial.
    upload_2018-5-24_3-22-31.png
    It's scandalous in a way that still feels scandalous ("let me tell what I saw in the courthouse today!") and at the same time it just looks very sad.
    Partially because of how it's filmed: apart from the rest - and that's what addictions do: they isolate people.

    3. Miles Colby's drunken defeat.
    upload_2018-5-24_3-32-6.png
    There's a strong sense of "hell hath no fury" during Jeff and Fallon's engagement party, but then he does the opposite and tells them to "be happy".
    I love all these unexpected The Colbys moments.

    4. Sue Ellen Ewing's drunken showdown with John Ross.
    upload_2018-5-24_3-43-36.png
    I chose this one for the sheer venom fuelled by the booze, but this would have been a great scene even if she wasn't drunk.

    5. Jeff Colby's drunken insults during Cecil's birthday party.
    upload_2018-5-24_3-51-15.png
    It wasn't quite as powerful as Steven's dramatic farewell scene when he exposed the Carringtons for what they were, but it worked very well in combination with Cecil's equally drunken partner. Especially if you consider the scandalous reason that caused him to drink. The terrified look on Krystle's face shows the difference between her and these people.
     
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  13. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Fan

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    I do love Jeff's "emerald studded zoo" remark in this scene.
     
  14. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    That sounds like Swan Song.
     
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  15. Victoriafan3

    Victoriafan3 Soap Chat Fan

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    1. Pat the Rat from Sons and Daughters and so poignantly realises and cries ‘My Children hate me’ :-( suburb acting, quite touching

    2. The ostrich dress that’s wearing Sue Ellen scene in Swan Song

    3. Katherine is drunk and blurts out that Mark is dying

    4. Sue Ellen drunk and falls down the stairs Lucy is high. So funny

    5. Early years Sue Ellen standing with a drink in her hand in the outside doorway saying in front of the family ‘Pamela, you’re a disgrace to this family’. Pots? Kettles? Black anyone?
     
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  16. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    1. Gary Tells Abby About Ciji
    Knots Landing
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Gary’s drinking as a standalone issue is fascinating. The Bottom Of The Bottle two parter is the genre’s definitive look at alcoholism. I thought I may end up choosing five scenes from those two episodes alone, but turns out that they work better as a complete experience. His 1983 binge took elements of the earlier story and threw in a whole heap of soapy goodness.

    Nothing highlighted the change in dynamic that came from the Gary and Abby pairing better than when he relapsed into alcoholism. Three years earlier, Val had tried everything she could to support and stop Gary. For her trouble all she got was a black eye. Abby wasn’t one to be passive in any situation and her response to Gary’s drinking was right in character. As she’d told him in an earlier episode:

    What she neglected to mention was that he could expect her to utilise his incapacity to her advantage, all the while ostensibly protecting his interests.

    The domestic discord at the beach house as a result of his drinking were classic Knots. The scene where she scolded him like a naughty schoolboy, towering over him in her slinky negligee as he sat on the stair in a dishevelled mess pulling faces behind her back was the perfect physical embodiment of the shift in power between them.


    With Gary’s discovery of Ciji and his frantic run back to the beach house, all the skeins came together to give an energy of genuine excitement to a series of events that would be cliches were it not for the carefully woven characters: a murder mystery; an amnesiac drunk; the devious new wife.

    Gary is a trembling wreck, desperately clutching the bottle to his lips. Abby is as poised as ever, telling him how disgusting he is and merrily quipping away. When Gary tells her something terrible has happened, she queries if he ran out of booze (these two lines nicely foreshadow two later significant Knots events: Olivia responding to Abby’s proclamation of a dreadful event by sarcastically asking if Abby had run out of eye make up; and the 200th episode gag reel where the terrible event in question is Gary and Abby realising they’ve run out of people on the show to sleep with). When Gary mentions Ciji’s name, Abby asks if Ciji had run out of booze. And it’s here that Gary drops the bombshell that Ciji is dead on the beach.

    This gives us a wonderful exchange in which Abby tries to find out all she can in order to cover up while Gary - who has been in an alcoholic blackout - has no memory. While Gary goes to pieces, Abby recovers her composure and is quickly spinning webs (her first action is to lie about Gary’s whereabouts when Laura phones).

    This scene working is crucial to make what was Knots’s biggest storyline up to that point - one which casts the shadow of doubt on almost the entire cast - work. And the execution - character driven, naturally - is admirably flawless.






    2. Digger’s Demand
    Dallas
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Drink-driving; extortion; damaged property; the Barnes-Ewing feud. It starts with Digger pridefully “returning gifts to the ladies’ auxiliary” and ends with him selling off his own daughter to the Ewings... at a marked down price.

    My favourite moment comes when it dawns on everyone what Digger is asking and there’s this wonderful Mexican wave of everyone’s heads looking down and to the right that starts with Jock then runs from Bobby to Val to Gary (a fellow alcoholic, remember) while Pam stands in frozen dignity. The actors and the beautiful score make this an unexpectedly moving scene.






    3. Dusty’s “Death”
    Dallas
    Love the direction in this one - the way the camera follows Sue Ellen’s instinctive wordless reaction to the tragedy all the way to the bottle, the glass and her lips. And that dramatic single tear as she swigs. This is how divas drink.






    4. Blake’s Original Sin
    Dynasty
    [​IMG]

    One of Dynasty’s darkest moments and a most unsettling watch in any context. Blake at his most dangerous and unreasonable because he’d been swallowing down his bitter resentment with brandy. It may have come from a beautiful crystal decanter, but the outcome, nonetheless, was the ugliest in all soapdom.







    5. Gary and Val: Trouble In Paradise
    Knots Landing
    Season One of Knots had a recurring theme where Val would slowly let people in with a snippet of information here and there about her history with Gary and the Ewings. When Gary picked up a drink to celebrate a happy milestone, it led to another, and another. To all the neighbours, he was a guy having fun and cutting loose. It was left to Val to set them straight - and let them in a little more - with the reveal that her husband is an alcoholic. But not before a scene that perfectly showed the Jekyll and Hyde nature of Gary’s personality when drinking as he went from happily lit up to furiously flinging accusations because he didn’t like the way Val looked at him. In true Knots fashion, this was all about character and history. It’s technically two scenes - one in which Gary and Val argue, and another where she tries to stop him driving away before confessing to her neighbours - but as they both follow each other to make a whole I’ll include them together here.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
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  17. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Special mention to some great scenes which are directly driven by a character’s alcoholism but don’t involve a character being drunk at the time:



    “My name is Gary...”
    Knots Landing
    Had it been eligible, this would have easily been my #1 choice. After the feature length rollercoaster of Gary’s alcoholism, the powerfully understated denouement pulls the rug out from under the exhausted viewer. It’s hopeful enough, without being too satisfying. As emotional season finales go this is up there with The Long And Winding Road.




    “Val. Or the whiskey.”
    Knots Landing
    There’s some twisted healthcare going on here. Valene forced to covertly watch as a doctor (also a recovering alcoholic as I think it later transpires) makes Gary choose between a vial of whiskey or a dime to phone his wife. And since the vial Gary chose turned out to be full of tea, there were truly no winners here.




    "Sure he does, honey. It just depends on the woman."
    Knots Landing
    Frantically searching for Gary, a tougher Val emerges when confronted with the floozy he'd just slept with who complained that Gary didn't care about anything but his bottle.
     
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  18. Jock Og

    Jock Og Soap Chat Active Member

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    IMHO the top spot in the booze scenes would be the flip of a coin between Digger and Sue Ellen.

    1) Digger Barnes: After the argy bargy with Jock at the barbeque the Barnes patriarch falls off the wagon. He signs ‘The Yellow Rose Of Texas’, among some onlookers, all while downing a bottle of bourbon, (the mini-series, DVD-1, 1978) – DALLAS.
    2) Sue Ellen Shepard Ewing: JR’s woman hits rock bottom and starts drinking with a few street alcoholics, in downtown Dallas. Not long after this she goes to dry out, (season 8, DVD-9, ‘The Dream Season’, 1985 – ’86) – DALLAS.
    3) Digger Barnes: Pam and Cliff have been looking for their father, to break the news of Pam’s marriage to Bobby. They find him in a bar, surrounded by some comrades, as usual Digger has been heavy on the ‘jungle juice’, (the mini-series, DVD-1, 1978) – DALLAS.
    4) Sue Ellen Shepard Ewing: Sue Ellen is pregnant with John Ross. She escapes from the sanitarium; manages to get a bottle of liquor, downs it when her driving her station wagon and gets involved in a smash up, (season 1, DVD-2, 1978 –’79) – DALLAS.
    5) Cole Gioberti: More often than not it wasn’t a bed of roses between Melissa and Cole. After their wedding attempt wasn’t successful it seemed Cole could’ve drunk a complete wine vat, while alone in the winery. However Joseph’s mother and father were lucky with the rings, at the next attempt, (season 4, 1984 – ’85) – FALCON CREST.


    Pamela and Cliff go looking for Digger, to break the news of his daughter’s recent marriage. Cliff finds him in one of his usual bars, surrounded by people and talking about when he and Jock struck oil, (a scene from the 1st episode, the mini-series, DVD-1, 1978):

    Bar patron (slurred speech): “Pour my old buddy another drink here.”

    Digger: “Thank you….thank you sir! That’s mighty nice of ya, now 1930 was my year. My partner and I walked out right here in Texas and I just followed my nose and I said here and he went back to register the claim and I stayed there and I drilled, until I thought we had enough. We owned 10 times more than we could ever spend. I said that’s a plenty and he looked at me and laughed in my face and said that I owned nothing, nothing at all. I even owed him some money. Well I tried to kill…I tried to kill Jock Ewing, once or twice but I bundled it. You see I can drill but I can’t kill.”

    Cliff: “There you have it Pammy, the product of Jock Ewing’s ethics.”

    They decide to interrupt Digger’s craic.

    Cliff: “Excuse me…excuse me!”

    Bar patron (slurred speech): “Listen don’t take him away. We’re having a good time here. What’s going on?”

    Digger opens his arms to greet Pam and says, “Pammy.”

    Pamela: “Hi daddy! You ok?”

    Digger: “Sure…..sure.”

    Pamela: “Daddy I came…….”

    Digger: “Uh?”

    Pamela: “I came to tell you……”

    Digger looks at her drunkenly.

    Pamela: “Daddy I came to tell you that I got married.”

    Digger smiles and replies (slurred speech), “well now what do ya think of that?”

    Pamela: “Daddy please don’t be mad or hurt. I love my husband daddy.”

    Digger smiles and says (slurred speech), “sure you do!”

    Pamela: “…..But he’s Bobby Ewing.”

    Digger replies, while not registering who it is, “a ha!”

    Cliff looks at Pam.

    Pamela: “Daddy the boy I married is a Ewing.”

    Digger nods.

    Cliff: “Jock Ewing’s boy.”

    Cliff then looks down at the table.

    Digger then just stares at Pamela and gives her a look that says it all. Pamela then gets emotional.

    She leaves the bar. Digger still has the shock stare, with Cliff beside him.
     
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  19. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    My Top Ten of boozies:

    1- Digger Barnes (as played by David Wayne) ("Dallas"). Because you can´t be a bigger loser but hell, the guy did know how to have fun at bars!
    Scene: Digger dancing at "The Yellow Rose of Texas"...

    2- Sue Ellen Ewing (as played by Linda Gray on the Dream Season) ("Dallas"). Because the actress deserved an Emmy nod, and the character not being just a figment of that Barnes woman´s imagination.
    Scene: Being lectured by Miss Ellie after Bobby´s death. And any other where she says: "But I´m not an alcoholic"...

    3- Julia Cumson (as played by Abby Dalton) ("Falcon Crest"). Because she usually was the most discreet about her drunk moments for being at the lab all the time. No wonder the alcohol finally hurt her brain cells and got her wacko!
    Scene: Tipsy Julia bitching about everybody at the post-nuptial party of Vickie´s wedding, right before being accused of...

    4- Gary Ewing (as played by Ted Shackelford in the first season Finale) ("Knots Landing"). Because it was a bit of a surprise how violent and nasty he would get when drunk, and because of Ted´s phenomenal performance.
    Scene: Rocking bottom at the beach and fighting with a wino for his empty bottle. Heartbreaking. Poor, poor Gary.

    5- Maggie Gioberti Channing (as played by Susan Sullivan in the seventh season) ("Falcon Crest"). Again, because it was a totally unexpected situation for this character and happened at the right moment. Though it was completely handled as if it were an "addiction-of-the-week" movie and it should have somehow continued in the boring eight season.
    Scene: When she gets all crazy while serving breakfast to her children (she probably had a big hangover...)

    upload_2018-5-29_0-28-50.jpeg

    Special mention: Miss Piggy whenever she can´t be seen...or so she thinks.​
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2018
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  20. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    @Toni, could you specify the scenes (in case you have some favourites)?
     
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