Help, I Can’t Stand Courtney!
The wonderful thing about soaps, compared to real life, is that the viewer does not have to like everyone on-screen. In real life, if someone annoys you, you can’t throw things at them and say, “You [favorite curse word]!” as you would if you are watching TV. At least that’s what I do – well, only sometimes, and usually only when watching Soap Net. Your TV is not going to walk out on you if you throw things at the people on it, and it won’t have you fired, or hit you back, or trash your reputation. It is safe to express anger at the TV set - if you haven’t done this, I highly recommend it as a safe and effective anger release!
Speaking as a soap fan, I think it is easier for us to judge soap characters than it is to judge the people in our real lives. I think that’s why we get so passionate about these characters, either in our love or our hate. When soap fans say they don’t like a character, or a couple for that matter, THEY MEAN IT – occasionally, this dislike turns to hatred, or at least we’ll call it hatred for lack of a better word.
I would like to share with you the person on whom I am currently focusing my hatred: Courtney Matthews Quartermaine Matthews Maybe Corinthos We Don’t Know Morgan. If you do like Courtney, good for you! Thanks for reading this much, and you have a pleasant day, now! You don’t have to read any further because, well, it’s not exactly a love letter to Courtney. For the rest of you: perhaps you can identify? I WANT to like Courtney – in fact, for her first year or so, I did like Courtney (even though she was kinda stupid sometimes). Alas – no more.
The ridiculousness of her character, who actually doesn’t seem like that deep of a person, was driven home for me when I caught a few scenes of Soap Net’s “Thanksgiving with the Q’s,” in which they showed three GH episodes “featuring” the Quartermaines (let’s all take a minute to laugh knowingly about their misuse of the word “featuring”). The last episode was “Courtney’s Groundhog Day Thanksgiving or Whatever,” in which Courtney had the same dream over and over, and in the end it turned out to be Jason’s dream (yeah, right).
Although that episode was annoying and insulting to the long time GH fan, it had one difference in terms of Courtney as compared to the Courtney of today: She was likable. She was human. She was a kid. She was funny. Reasonably friendly. Loved her dog. Kinda stupid, though. Take a look with me, if you will, at the Courtney of today: Buff she-man-woman. Not very friendly. Not all that likable. Thinks she’s grown. Forgets she has a dog except when convenient to trot him out. Not human. Still kinda stupid.
The very first episode of GH that I saw was the episode in which Sonny (whoa, thought I, he sure is yummy) discovers that Courtney is his sister. Courtney was depicted as a kid, essentially. She was expected to live with one of her parents. She was scared of Sonny, angry at her father, and wanted someone to take care of her even if she couldn’t admit it. That’s when the stupidity started. OK, let’s not blame her, thought I. She’s young, and sure, AJ looks good especially when you came from nothing, right?
But ah, the stupidity didn’t stop there. And as much as I felt sorry and excused Courtney, over the next two years, I disliked her more and more every day. She became a stripper to cover for her husband. If she could have just admitted she was attracted to Coleman and was doing what he wanted, I would have accepted it. She got in like 63 car accidents. She always got mad at the wrong people. She completely ignores her wonderful daddy (whom I like to refer to as Mike! Mike! Mike!). She continuously keeps secrets ensuing in wacky antics which always blow up in her face. OK, we’ll give her that one, because everybody in Port Charles does that.
And then, recently, after this whole Alcazar thing began, I realized I don’t like her at all. She took a lot of stupid chances. I was past the point of defending her rationalization, realizing then that she had none. In fact, I officially disliked Courtney enough to be on Alcazar’s side the whole time, and feel no guilt about it at all. [Note: I would like to use this as a public forum to say that if there simply must be an Alcazar and Carly, the fan name should be changed from CarLo to Alcazarly. Isn’t that SO much better?]
So, aside from the fact that she’s annoying, far-fetched, presumptuous, stupid, ignorant and self-righteous, for what other reasons do I dislike Courtney? Well, let me state the blaringly obvious: She had Jason and she LEFT him – if that doesn’t prove she’s stupid, I don’t know what does. “We’re over,” she says, huffily, as if he was going to give up the core of his personality and what made him who he is because she asked him to. As if she would do the same for him.
She’s always shocked and surprised when Jason won’t, or has to, do something – as if she’s never heard it before. I know she has heard it before, because I’ve heard it millions of times. She herself is guilty of reckless behavior in the name of Sonny or Jason or Carly OR herself – yet she can never understand when Jason defends his own actions. Although, I should say, while I’m not that thrilled with Courtney, I am not necessarily against Journey as a couple. As is typically said by Jason fans, any opportunity that may result in a shirtless Jason scene is OK with me.
Additionally, she’s in almost every scene. Yeah, I know, so are Jason and Carly and Sonny, but Carly kicks ass without lifting a finger in every scene she’s in, and well, let’s face it: Even if Sonny and Jason weren’t compelling characters (usually), they are not hard on the eyes, or the imaginations. This leaves us with – Courtney, in every scene. If the four of them must share so much screen time, can they not work out an exchange program with one of the other (need I say “lesser used”?) characters? Courtney can go have pie at Kelly’s (Lord knows she never did any actual work there) and Bobbie will get a scene. I think that will work splendidly. Thoughts?
Also, we’re supposed to believe that she’s kicking butt because the story calls for it and not because the people who put this stuff together (I’m not mentioning any names, you, the reader, can go ahead and mention them though) want to see it. And film it, and probably watch it over and over again. This is icky. Really, really icky.
Additionally, all her lines are the same – should I blame the writers, the character, or the actress? Or myself, for not being patient enough with my fictional characters and their creators? I now present, for your enjoyment, a Courtney scene. You can read through it several times and pick a different outcome each time – you’ll still end up with the same scene:
COURTNEY: [Heaving a big sigh/casting eyes downward/rolling eyes/running fingers through hair] Jason/Carly/Sonny, I don’t understand/think you understand/get it/ and I’m just so tired of waiting/explaining/hoping/sewing/cooking and I just [running fingers through hair/sighing again/whining] wish we/you/I didn’t have to live this way/do this/feel this/wait for this…
Then she yells or scowls or smiles or gets distracted or looks meaningfully at nothing.
This is annoying. And, I feel I need to point out, dangerous to one’s health. Repeated continuous Courtney overdosing can make one get Courtneyiscontrollingmeitis. One can actually begin to have nightmares of being angry, cutesy buff blondes who talk all the time but say nothing, and go around kickboxing strangers and ignoring puppies while developing unhealthy attachments.
So, that is why I don’t like Courtney. Are there support groups for this? Is there therapy? Is there –is there hope for me??? I mean, obviously, I’m supposed to like her since the power that be have her on there, right? I mean, they know what I like, right? So, if it ain’t Courtney – whatever will I do????
By the way – I do, I really do, know these characters are fiction. And so do my cats, Jason and Carly.
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