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Always Tom Eplin
'Applause, Applause' (SOW, Jan. 2000)


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From sometime in Jan...
Tom Eplin was Outstanding performer for the week of Jan. 3, 2000
(written by by Tonya Lensch)

'Finding closure is hard in real life, and is perhaps an even trickier thing to achieve in reel life. Since Vicky's plane disappeared two months ago on As The World Turns, Jake hasn't been able to accept his wife's death and has been living in a state of limbo. Viewers who saw the magic Jake and Vicky created on Another World (which they successfully transferred to ATWT for a brief time)knew it would take Jake a while - if ever - to deal with her untimely death. But faced with Isaac's latest contact - an airport employee who saw a pregnant Vicky board the doomed flight - Jake first lashed out, then broke down. Most of Jake's mourning process occured is one incredibly intense episode, and Tom Eplin, who knows every nuance of his complex character, fully embraced this difficult challenge.

Eplin played Jake as an anxious, inquisitive reporter, hungry for facts when he heard the lastes news. In complete denial, Jake took off to the park, where Isaac and Lucinda finally broke through his steely resolve. It was a powerful, telling moment when Jake spoke of Vicky in the past tense. Through his defeated stance and pained facial expressions, Eplin also revealed Jake's guilt, believing that Vicky and their unborn twins paid the ultimate price for his actions.

Later,  alone at the park's swing set (Jake and Vicky's special spot), a vulnerable Jake sat, shoulders hunched. Jake told Vicky that he was glad their twins were up there with her, and that she was probably having a good time with Bridget. Trying valiantly to maintain his composure, but with tears streaming down his face, Eplin looked up to the heavens as he delivered the emotional monologue. His voice cracked, and barely escaping his lips. It was a gut-wrenching scene, which Eplin completely gave himself to, allowing Jake to find some peace - and closure.


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