Note to Bold & Beautiful’s Brooke: You’re No Stephanie. Plus, the Scene That Made Us Cringe
October 18-22, 2021
When The Bold and the Beautiful‘s writers decide to take things in a new direction, they aren’t exactly subtle. This week, they didn’t even signal before changing lanes, leaving me with a severe case of whiplash as several relationships zigged when we thought they were going to zag. Deacon and Sheila continued to be my favorite thing on the show, Brooke extended her hypocrisy tour, while Donna helped Eric get his mojo back and Katie… well, she may have proved herself the smartest of the Logan girls! Ready to catch up on what went down? Then let’s do this!
I spent years loving Brooke and her ability to transfix every man who crossed her path while getting under Stephanie’s skin, largely because those men were usually Forresters. Brooke was a free spirit who left broken hearts and romantic carnage in her wake but couldn’t be blamed because, hey, she was just following her heart!
I miss that Brooke.
Credit: Howard Wise/JPI
I get the feeling we’re supposed to see the current version of the character as the new Stephanie, and certainly there are similarities. The big difference, however, is that Stephanie was never as hypocritical as is her former daughter-in-law. And while she could at times be overbearing, she didn’t simply complain about Brooke, she actively plotted against her. We understood that Stephanie was fighting a constant (ultimately losing) battle against what she saw as an infection the men in her family were too weak to stave off.
Brooke (and by extension Ridge) are simply filled to the brim with righteous indignation which makes them the worst kind of hypocrites given their own past behavior.
Brooke spent a lot of time this week urging Donna to ignore the fact that Eric’s married and instead throw herself at the guy. Of course, nobody dared say to Brooke that this was inappropriate, let alone that she was beyond livid when Quinn urged Shauna to go after Ridge (who was at least separated from his wife at the time). Instead, Brooke’s actions were played as not only appropriate but borderline humorous.
Credit: CBS screenshot
Of course, this was all leading to the Friday ending in which Donna poured both her feelings and a little honey out to Eric, causing… well, let’s just say the music wasn’t the only thing swelling. I’m not sure how I felt about these scenes. On the one hand, I’ve always loved Jennifer Gareis and think Donna’s long been wrongly relegated to B-stories (which this will no doubt become soon enough). But this was the show yet again seeming to equate sex and love. Also, if sucking a little honey off Donna’s finger got Eric’s engine’s revving, that would seem to indicate he and Quinn didn’t put much effort into reviving their passions before he sent her off to bed Carter.
It kinda saddens me that what started out as a story about a sexual dysfunction many couples deal with turned into a Benny Hill skit.
Katie and Bill’s latest break up came about three minutes before it became clear she’s headed for a romance with Carter. Both sets of scenes were essentially reruns. We’ve heard Bill plead his case (“No, really, this time I’ve changed!”) every couple years, while the scenes in which Katie and Carter bonded over their failed relationships was exactly how he first hooked up with Quinn.
Credit: Howard Wise/JPI
Tuesday’s episode, which saw Katie go from blasting Carter to them connecting on a deeper level, featured great performances by Heather Tom and Lawrence Saint-Victor, as well as a gorgeous script. It was about as subtle as Sheila’s arched eyebrow, but gorgeous nonetheless. One of my favorite aspects? That it brought up Katie’s long-established insecurities where Brooke is concerned. “Men live and breath for her,” she said, managing to sound more envious than bitter. “They always have.”
Speaking of lane changes, it was only a week or two ago that it seemed obvious Paris was going to be a spoiler in the Finn/Steffy relationship. They even allowed the would-be interloper to have several steamy fantasies about her usually-shirtless host. Now, it’s just as obvious that they writers have lost all interest in that idea and are instead heading for a Thomas/Paris/Zende triangle.
Kiss Me, You Fool
Sheila and Deacon can do no wrong in my eyes at the moment. Kimberlin Brown and Sean Kanan appear to be having a blast, and as a viewer, I always find that translates to me having a good time, too. It’s not an exaggeration to say that our entire staff was laughing uproariously at Hope and Finn’s reaction to seeing their respective parental units lock lips, and I mean that as a compliment. The scenes were a good time, and isn’t that exactly what we come to our soaps for?
Sheila’s plot is, of course, ludicrous. She seems to think that Hope and Finn will want to protect their folks’ newfound love in order to give them a shot at happiness. This means keeping everyone — including Liam and Steffy — in the dark. Cue Hope and Finn spending more time together, perhaps leading Steffy and Liam to suspect that their respective spouses are involved.
In a weird way, it makes sense and is a fun new twist on the Steffy/Liam/Hope story. It’s also interesting from the point of view that for the first time, one of Sheila’s schemes isn’t designed to help her land a man (although it’s easy to imagine her fauxmance with Deacon turning into the real thing). Heck, it doesn’t even involve kidnapping or killer bees!
• Scenes don’t get much more cringey than the one in which Eric asked Carter if he’d moved on from Quinn… in front of Ridge. This only days after Eric had all but pushed his wife into the CFO’s bed. Let’s fact it: In the real world, Carter would be looking for a new job… and possibly pursuing legal action against his boss!
• Now that Katie’s moving on, it’s time for Dollar BIll to do the same. My only request? That he not make another play for Brooke. I know they say that there are only so many stories out there waiting to be told, but there have to be more than the four this soap keeps recycling.
• Why do Paris and Thomas have to live together? Couldn’t one of them move into Steffy’s now-empty guest house? Heck, Thomas could move into a hotel… apparently, they’re dirt cheap in L.A., given that Sheila — who far as we know is unemployed — is residing in a pretty swank one.
Now that you’ve heard my take on the week, hit the comments section with yours. And don’t forget to check out (and weigh in on) our list of soap characters we desperately want back, including a certain troublemaker who managed to stir things up on both Bold & Beautiful and Young & Restless… and no, we’re not talking about Sheila!