Bad girls vs. Good girls on Soaps. Soapland vs. Reality!
Laura Wright (GH's Carly) (ABC)
Recently our Soaps.com writers delivered you a segment titled Bad boys vs. Good boys on Soaps. Soapland vs. Reality! Since we had no problem ranting and raving about the guys who make daytime drama a little nicer – and a little more dangerous – it’s only fair that we now shine the spotlight on those ladies who do their part to either corrupt those around them or who try to bring peace throughout the storylines in question!
So get ready to smile while we talk about the niceties displayed by some of soap’s leading ladies but don’t feel bad if your knuckles start to turn white as we rehash some of the darker female characters – and the crimes they’ve gotten away with!
The Good, The Bad and the Really, Really Bad of Pine Valley!
Okay, raise your hands, ladies, if your mother ever said, “Good girls don’t (and you can fill in the blank from here).” One, two, fifty-five, two hundred… okay, most of you have your hands raised. What’s the difference between soaps and reality for girls? Well, even good girls can be a little bit bad. Take resident angel Annie McDermott Lavery. Many fans think Annie is a little bit too good to be true. She’s a great mom, she writes fairy tales for her daughter and she co-parents with Kendall Hart Slater (that definitely puts her in angelic company!). So it was refreshing for fans to learn that Annie had a past – complete with sending her brother to prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Granted, she wanted him to get psychiatric help, not wind up in an actual prison but still… Bianca Montgomery is another fan favorite and good girl extraordinaire. Bianca is the so-called golden child of the Kane household and sure she has had her run-ins with authority (she once set fire to her Uncle Jack doll, she had some problems with underage drinking and she trashed Erica’s office) but really when faced with bad-girl activities Bianca is downright saintly. She is a recovered anorexic, she was raped and became pregnant – and kept the baby! – and is regularly the voice of reason in the Kane household.
Speaking of the Kane women, no good-girl/bad-girl article would be complete without a mention of the two “bad” Kane’s. Erica Kane is the diva to end all divas, and while she loves her kids and has a lot of fan support, there is no denying that she is a bad girl. Erica’s exploits include kidnapping a baby, many, many, many counts of adultery (and 10+ marriages, too!), faked amnesia, assault, impersonating other women, spending some time behind bars, providing false alibis, kidnapping and a host of other crimes. But we still love Ms. Kane, don’t we fans? She’s a wonderful bad girl and we all wish we would get away with the things she has done! Daughter Kendall has followed in her mother’s footsteps and is another favorite bad girl of Pine Valley. She broke up Ryan’s wedding, locked Greenlee in a tower, locked Bianca in a crypt (are we getting the picture yet?), faked a suicide and kept Emma McDermott’s paternity a secret.
In real life these bad girls would never be forgiven, and let’s face it the good girls wouldn’t have many friends. But in Soapland, these characters give fans a lot to talk about! These are the women we love to hate and in a corner of our minds we wish we could act just as bad!
Good Girls vs. Bad Girls of Oakdale
The line between good and bad in Oakdale – at least where women are concerned – is a very light grey. Our favorite girls love with all their hearts which can get them into trouble. Take Meg Snyder. She has loved several men, namely Paul Ryan and Dusty Donovan, and the power of her love has led her down a twisted path. She switched paternity results so that Dusty would think she was having his child; she helped Paul hide the paternity of Jennifer’s child – and then had the paternity of her own child hidden from her by Rosanna. Meg’s sister-in-law Lily is very similar. Sure, our resident good girl has had her problems with drug and alcohol abuse and hasn’t had the best luck with men but really, who wouldn’t want to be Lily? She is a great mom, has a successful career and has a host of friends.
While the name “Walsh” may not be synonymous with the word “good” in Oakdale, it is often associated with bad – especially where Lucinda Walsh is concerned. Lucinda clawed her way up in the world of business and didn’t care who she hurt to get what she wanted. She has won and lost her business several times over – and is currently in the no-business column because of Meg and Craig. But, one thing is always certain: Lucinda will do whatever it takes to make Lucinda – and daughter Lily – happy. Recently, Lucinda has had company in the bad-girl department from Carly Tenney. Now, bad-girl Carly is misunderstood. Carly, like the good girls on our list, is controlled by love. Many times, though, that deep love she has – for her kids, for Jack Snyder and for her sisters – has gotten her into trouble. Carly became pregnant – with John Dixon’s help – to get money from Rosanna, she seduced Mike Kasnoff to get revenge on Rosanna, was involved in a hit-and-run with Julia and became a bigamist by marrying Brad Snyder and then Hal Munson while still married to Winston Lowe! Among all the badness, though, Carly has built up several businesses, had three great kids and found the love of her life with Jack Snyder.
So, good girls vs. bad girls: which ones do you identify with? Who would you like to be, even if only for a single day?
Bad girls of Los Angeles vs. Good girls of Los Angeles
The most obvious bad girls on B&B right now are on opposite sides of a man! Donna Logan and Stephanie Forrester are currently adding to their already long lists of reprehensible acts by trying to out-evil one another! Stephanie is blackmailing Donna, and Donna is trying to steal Stephanie’s husband by beating her at her own game. Stephanie and Donna are both willful characters, admired by viewers for defending themselves, their families, and their relationships at any cost! In reality, women like these two might have a handful of devoted admirers, but would probably be too scary for the average man!
Resident good girls are Katie Logan and Bridget Forrester. Katie is still fairly new in town, but so far has spent her time cleaning up messes made by the rest of her family. She began a romance with heartthrob Thorne, but broke up with him promptly when he disappointed her by becoming involved in a plot against her sister.
Long-suffering Bridget Forrester has repeatedly been walked on – even by her own mother, and still comes out loving everyone! She has stepped away from men because they were in love with someone else, and now, this totally unselfish human being is being accused of switching the eggs in the lab on purpose, and has still barely raised her voice at anyone! Katie and Bridget are both beautiful and brainy, but viewers tend to find them a little boring. In reality, men would be knocking down their doors!
Bad girls of Salem vs Good girls of Salem
Kate Roberts is known for butting into her children’s lives. Some would argue that’s not exactly evil but more annoying than anything. Still, Kate has done a few evil deeds other than just peeve off her kids. To name a few, when Franco Kelley was killed by Lucas, Kate framed Sami for the murder. She also hired a hit man and attempted to murder ex-husband, Victor Kiriakis. She set fire to the Kiriakis mansion, almost killing Lucas in the process and in order to stop the marriage to Lucas and Sami, she drugged Sami and Brandon Walker and put them in bed together in order to ensure Lucas caught them and called off the nuptials. Though she’s single, fans want to see her with a man. Any takers? She’s a handful but she loves deeply- protectively! We hear Stefano’s single, but even he is too evil for dear Katie – and is now a vegetable. In reality, she’s more like the stereotypical “Mother-in-law”, or “Wicked Step-mother” yet beautiful and intelligent enough to attract any man in spite of her shenanigans!
Sami Brady-Horton-DiMera was as bad as can be. There was a time when Sami was as evil as Kate. Where to start? An insecure teenager, she tried desperately to seduce her sister’s boyfriend, Austin Reed away from her. She drugged and raped Austin, but had sex with his brother Lucas the same night and pawned son Will off as Austin’s son when he was Lucas’. She lied about Lucas abusing their son Will, and almost murdered EJ Wells. But… Sami has recently blossomed into a respectable, dependable and responsible person! Reality and Soap Reality lines can blur together on this one. She’d be a great catch for any man. Beautiful, and feisty!
Sami vs Kate…. Before the writers re-created Sami, who was the nastiest? You tell us!
Marlena Evans Black, AKA, Angel… (to me) or if your name is Stefano DiMera, Marlena is known as the Queen of the night. Creepy. Marlena is a Psychiatrist, going for Alice’s position of Matriarch and thanks to some creative writing recently; she’s not going to take any guff from anyone anymore. No longer the victim, she is still one of the good girls in this segment and in our eyes, can do no wrong. As a Psychiatrist, she understands human behavior, is loving and forgiving to all and gives good advice to friends and family. Even when she messes up… after all, she is human… she’s still good! Though she lapsed with her good girl behavior when she turned Stefano DiMera into a vegetable last week, she’s still taking notes from Alice Horton to become the next matriarch of Salem. Gorgeous, intelligent, what man wouldn’t want her?
Bad girls of Port Charles vs Good girls of Port Charles!
The line between good and bad for the female population in Port Charles is much clearer (than their male counterparts). The first name that comes to mind when thinking of the bad girls is Sam McCall. There are some redeeming qualities in the lovely Miss McCall, but we cannot forget the history that was recently revealed about her. She would target (and marry!) rich older men and then rip them off. She was the ultimate scam artist there for a while until she married a bully and had to kill him in self defense while he was beating her. More recently, her jealousy of Elizabeth Webber caused her to stand by and watch Liz's baby kidnapped. What's more, to send Liz a signal to stay away from her man, she arranged for Liz to be mugged in the park - with both her sons!
Another bad girl (albeit with good qualities) is Carly Benson Quartermaine Corinthos Jacks. She is a loving mother, but isn't exactly June Cleaver material. In fact, when she had her first born, she tried to pass him off as Jason's son rather than A.J. Quartermaine and what's worse, she split town because she couldn't cope! Eventually she came back with her tail between her legs and redeemed herself for a while, but Carly always turns out to be her own worst enemy. She's fiercely protective of Sonny and Jason - to the point of bearing fangs every time either of them tries to get into a relationship. She has good intentions, but is completely motivated by selfishness. Coming in third on this dubious list is Maxie Jones, although it's hard to dish on her at the moment. She just lost her sister, her boyfriend and her deadbeat mother took off yet again. But when she's on top of her game, Maxie puts Carly's selfishness to shame! She deliberately fed Lucky Spencer's drug addiction in order to get him away from his wife and young son. She even faked a pregnancy and had to take a spill down the stairs and fake a miscarriage so she wouldn't be busted!
Port Charles good girls aren't nearly as fun to talk about. I'd say that Dr. Robin Scorpio tops the list. All she ever did was love people with all of her heart and end up getting hurt. We watched her grow up as the child of spies who were always leaving her behind. Her first love not only died of AIDS while she was napping in the crook of his arm, she became HIV positive as a result of that love. Now days, all she wants to do is use her doctor status to help people and become a mother. Robin is admirable on all fronts. Also sharing the goodie two-shoes limelight is fellow doctor, Lainey Winters. The only storyline she has had so far other than to be compassionate and helpful to her patients as a psychiatrist is to lose her father. She wanted to do as he asked and pull the plug to end his misery, but alas, she couldn't. She's lovely and sweet and this woman deserves some happiness! The lovely Kate Howard is pretty darned good too. I mean, her only crime is that she's afraid to let herself share her life with a mobster - who could blame her? She let her defenses down and fell in love with Mr. Dimples himself (Sonny Corinthos), but she can't quite agree to be target practices for his enemies. So, that makes her one of Port Charles' few purely good girls in this writer's book!
Bad girls of Springfield vs. Good girls of Springfield!
I had trouble coming up with a good girl from Springfield because...well, who is there? Olivia's rarely seen daughter Emma? Clarissa? Leah Bauer hasn't done anything too nasty, or much of anything else for that matter. And that's not just because they're kids, after all, Daisy and Will are hardly saintly. Anyway, I was being silly. Then I thought of Mel, who is a good girl. In fact, she's too good. Not only did she practically marathon run her way through med school, she then abruptly shifted careers and became a lawyer as well. Despite being young, beautiful, ambitious and bright, her husband Rick still managed to stray. Since then, she hasn't had an ounce of luck. Even when she was practically throwing herself at the town's loosest man, Jeffrey O'Neill, he seemed to turn and run. So what is wrong with her? Maybe she's too perfect? But would anybody actually care in the real world? No.
When it comes to the bad girls though, I was really spoiled for choice. There are few women on the show who haven't compulsively lied, manipulated, cheated and committed numerous crimes, usually with a remarkable degree of misplaced self-righteousness. An obvious choice would be Olivia Spenser, gorgeous mistress of machinations who has married and out- maneuvered most of the prominent men in town. Not only is she merciless, she's also got one of the most seductively devious smiles around. I don't think Olivia would ever need to feel alone, unless she wanted to. Then there's Reva, the self-appointed queen of Springfield, who has married or slept with almost all of the men in town and committed more than her fair share of crimes. There's a problem with Reva though: She doesn't have any coherent identity. There have been few soap characters as schizoid and unfocused as hers, whether she's a psychic, a campy southern belle or a devout Amish woman. Perhaps that's why she has managed to seduce so many men even while leaving a trail of destruction in her path. She can change into anything and never feels any guilt, after all, how can you feel guilty when you change personalities as often as you change your haircut. Reva is the fantasy version of a woman, which is perhaps why she has no real female friends. In real life, she would be the kind of woman men run away from in the middle of the night.
Bad girls of Llanview vs. Good girls of Llanview
Dorian Lord and Blair Cramer
When it comes to bad girls, Llanview, Pennsylvania is full of them, and the fact that a few are relatives has made the scheming all the more easier! What do you get when you take Dorian Lord (Robin Strasser), the queen of evil plots, and her niece Blair Kramer (Kassie DePaiva), who stops at nothing to protect what is hers, and mix them in a witch’s kettle? Run! There’s about to be an explosion! Dorian has committed everything from blackmail to hiring someone to stalk her own daughter, but her biggest crime was putting a stop to her mother’s abuse against her and her sisters – the permanent way! A crime to some, justice for others! Then there’s Blair… whether her ‘wants’ include a certain man, to extract pain on those threatening her family – including family members themselves - or revenge against the love of her life Todd Manning (Trevor St. John), no task is too big! Blair will take on the world with barrels blazing in an instant! Although we can appreciate the lengths these two women will go to in the name of protecting their family, in the real world they would surely land in the same prison cell for a very long time – no manicures allowed!
Victoria Davidson and Carlotta Vega
Flipping the coin of evildoers will land you in one of two places… at the big mansion called Llanfair, headed up by Victoria Davidson (Erika Slezak) or in the Angel’s Square diner owned by Carlotta Vega (Patricia Mauceri). While Viki’s multi-personalities have wreaked havoc on the town, Viki has overcome her childhood memories of abuse at the hands of her father – and the personalities that her mind created to forget them! She’s a caring mother, a pillar of the community and a friend to many – one who’s always there for those in need. On the other side of town, Carlotta Vega has experienced the hard road in life but has always appreciated what she’s had – and even raised her mobster brother’s son from birth to save him from a world of crime! Whether it’s for a home cooked meal or a shoulder to lean on, Carlotta gives her all and makes family out of those around her!
Add a little compassion, along with some home cooking, to that witch’s brew and you’re bound to get a real recipe for disaster – but a few memorable storylines along the way, as these good and bad ladies of Llanview, as well as their families, have crossed paths more than once!
Speaking of witches brew…
Bad girls of Harmony vs. Good girls of Harmony
In all the years that I've watched Passions, I've always been shocked by how few men have gone after Pilar. She's voluptuous, sweet and genuinely good-natured. Although she can be overly naive, she is still fiery and passionate about everything she believes in. Maybe that's her problem? She's too devoted to an ideal, and not practical enough. In real life though, it would be hard to imagine her playing the wronged and solitary woman as long as she has.
I'm not sure who the bad girl on the show is. Is it Gwen or Theresa? I know that's a popular debate, but I can't decide. So I decided that Tabitha was really the baddest of them all anyway. She has caused untold carnage in the several thousand years of her life, including revolutions, wars, mass murders, tsunamis and countless other crimes. She completely dwarfs Alistair in the evil department and, from some of her allusions; you have to wonder if she hasn't been the cause of most of human suffering. Being immortal, immoral and having the powers of the universe at her beck and call make her undeniably attractive - "undeniable" being the key word since she could have anyone she wanted with the snap of her fingers. She just doesn't want them. How would that work in the real world? It's Passions! Don't ask!
Bad girls of Genoa City vs. Good girls of Genoa City!
Y&R's bad girls of the moment are Gloria Fisher Abbott Bardwell and her daughter-in-law to be, Jana Hawke! Gloria is just generally unpleasant. A rather bitter woman, she has a laundry list of blackmail schemes and dead husbands and shows no signs of slowing down as she ramps up her battle for the Abbott Mansion, while simultaneously plotting to frame her current husband for poisoning her! Jana is fresh out of prison where she was serving time for murder and attempted murders. Supposedly she was under the influence of a brain tumor at the time of the crimes, but she seems a little too eager to get involved in Kevin and Gloria's current illegal scheme for our taste! Gloria and Jana have few fans among viewers, with the exception of those who find them 'campy'. In reality, any man with even a few IQ points would be steering clear of these gals!
Two of the very sweetest good girls on The Young and the Restless currently are Karen Taylor and Lily Winters. Karen has come into the Winter's family circle following the death of beloved Drucilla and has been a loving, calming influence not only on Neil, but on Lily. Lily has rebounded from the loss of her mother and break up of her marriage to Daniel and is falling deeply in love with older guy Cane. She is also engaging in self-exploration as she tries to build a career for herself. These two have many fans due to their characters beauty, brains and nice personalities. In reality too, these women would both have loads of male admirers!
Good or bad, every soap has to have these different traits in their female characters to balance out all of the excessive drama that we thrive on every afternoon – and to please the good and bad boys who love them! In the end, whether it be the damsel in distress or the adulterous vixen, good or bad, we adore them all!