Well, I have to tip my cap to Bradley Bell. He promised a lollapalooza of a story for Brooke and Stephanie, and he's delivered. Friday's show, including the red scarf flying off like "Forrest Gump's" feather, was a knockout. I can honestly say that I was moved to tears. Stephanie's revelation that she needs to live so she can do more with her life was inspiring. No kidding, fans, I was completely and utterly touched by the humanity that Stephanie revealed. And kudos to the magnificent Susan Flannery for seizing the moment and taking us along for the ride.
Not to be outdone, there was also Katherine Kelly Lang's performance as Brooke. She was completely in the moment and completely winning as Brooke searched for her nemesis with the ardor of a lost child searching for a parent at the fair. Brooke's emotions were raw and on the surface. She needed to find Stephanie, and not because it was for Ridge or Eric or anyone else. Brooke was afraid for Stephanie and emotionally tied to her in a way that went beyond responsibility. There was real love and need there.
To be honest, my initial thought when it was clear that the producers were revisiting the homeless story was skepticism. I recall the 1991 story when Stephanie lost her memory and spent some time living among the homeless. It was a great story, beautifully told. What were the chances that Brad could recapture that superb tale in a new way? I thought it was somewhere between slim and none. Well, I was wrong. Okay, I said it. I was wrong.
The ending of the sequence on Friday was tearful, but the best of the segment was Stephanie's one-on-one with Dayzee. This had the possibility of really being over-sentimental claptrap. The rich, Beverly Hill doyenne facing off with the street-smart, tough kid -- it just seemed like a cliché come to life. Well, it rose above that level to be something special. Stephanie was tough as nails as she peppered Dayzee with questions, showing no fear and even displaying her expertise about how the homeless survive. Dayzee was impressed, but -- brilliantly -- never said so. It was all implied and played with looks and gestures. If Brad's thinking of the 2010 Emmy reel, these shows have to be in the running.
Brooke also had her own connection with Anthony. His explanation for his limp was heartwrenching, and Brooke's face spoke volumes about the depth of her empathy. How could you not feel for that guy? As much as Stephanie's life should be altered by this street experience, Brooke's will be as well. It will be hard to see Stephanie and Brooke return to their war of the roses after their shared journey to the streets of Los Angeles.
Of course, if there were highs for the week, you must also acknowledge the lows. Jackie M is the low, mostly because of the cartoonish Amber angle. Sorry, Brad, I have to blast you for bringing Amber back and thinking that she's someone substantive enough to be installed as Jackie M's new designer. Okay, I get it that Nick found his "manhood" and got fed up with the Bridget-Owen-Jackie nonsense. He took a stand and made hard choices for the good of the company. But Amber? Give me a break. That's as dumb as Clark Garrison being named head designer. And when Amber kissed Nick, a bell should have gone off in Nick's head. Trouble, trouble, trouble! Hopefully, Captain Nick will avoid the pitfall that is Ms. Moore.
Whip was right to complain about how to spin this story. He's a public relations man, not the Wizard of Oz! He's been saddled with selling cougars, Roman statues, and now a complete switch in design philosophy. Whip's going to need time on Taylor's couch to get over this psychologically damaging assignment!
Do you think Steffy will really be off-canvas for a while, doing the Forrester International job in Paris? I do. It would be the best thing for the character. All this nonsense about modeling lingerie for an interview is insulting. Steffy's a business professional, not a stripper. Why is she portraying herself in such a sexist way? Doesn't she want the world to appreciate her talent more than her physical attributes?
Of course, it didn't help that Bill sent Liam back to make the interview more salacious. Okay, Bill, sex sells, but so does intelligence and good storytelling. Liam could have done a piece on Steffy that was a profile of a young woman striving for success in a family of overachievers, trying to create her own destiny. It didn't have to be about her measurements. The Spencer magazine is not TMZ or Perez Hilton, for goodness sake!
And for those of you who are wondering about journalism, take it from someone who's been in the business for over 20 years, Liam wasn't really doing an interview. For starters, you need a tape recorder, not to mention questions to ask. You also would never let a subject prance around in lingerie if you were serious about your work. If Liam had been on the ball, he'd have walked out on Steffy until she agreed to act professionally.
There were some great letters in the e-mailbox this week. You can read them below and feel free to write us with your thoughts at Soap Central... • o I love, love, love, the Brooke-Stephanie storyline! These two women have so much chemistry together, it's wonderful to see the humor and emotion of their characters. To watch their developing closeness will make it all worth the "roller coaster" ride of the past 23 years these two have been at each other! -- Wanda
• You know, I just don't get how Steffy can go on like she does when she is not a real Forrester. I will tell you why; Taylor Hayes is not a Forrester and Ridge is not a real Forrester. Rick and Thorne are the real Forresters. I think someone forgot what was going on in the show. Think back and you will no what I am talking about. Come to think of it, Hope is not a Forrester either. -- Rolando
Thanks for reading! Till next time, see you on the soaps!