Another week goes by with the continued non-stop focus on Liam, Steffy, and Hope. If you were hoping for some storyline other than the triangle, you needed to find some other show to watch. The Bold and the Beautiful is all-triangle, all the time. There's something really off with the show, and it's not about being bold or beautiful; it's about balance. There isn't any.
Brad Bell has seemingly forgotten how to tell more than one story at a time. Therefore, every show is Steffy and Hope fighting over Liam. Liam disappointing Hope and Steffy. Rick interfering. Thomas getting manipulated. Taylor, Ridge, and Brooke wringing their hands over the love lives of their children. Forget about Forrester Creations and making dresses. The only thing that matters, seemingly, is what will happen to three people under the age of 25.
Nobody has been more vocal about being disappointed in Liam than yours truly, but I'm prepared to cut him some slack. Not a lot, but some. Here's the thing: I think Liam has been severely lacking in parental guidance. That became very clear this past week or so. Lack of strong parenting would explain why he's so disconnected to a simple understanding of right and wrong. It might even explain why he cannot learn from his mistakes.
Despite his knowing that Hope had been terribly hurt by what happened in Italy just hours before he took vows with her before a priest, Liam made the same mistake -- again with Steffy -- just hours before the wedding at the Forrester mansion. Instead of being a smart guy and popping one of his Bob Hope videos into the VCR to pass the evening, Liam went back to the dance club where he had partied like a rock star the night before. The first "last fling" party was bad enough, but it was somewhat understandable. But to return to that wild and crazy environment, where he knew nothing good would happen for him in regard to his relationship with Hope, was just asinine. The fact that two to three days later he realized that he'd made a big mistake is not particularly comforting to Hope.
Okay, I get it. He's a young guy, and he wanted to have fun. Liam was just blowing off some excess energy. But answer me this, readers... If that's how he feels, why is he getting married? If he wants to be a party guy, dancing with a lampshade on his head and drinking shots of tequila until he passes out drunk, why become a married man? Liam is not ready for a committed relationship, no matter what he says when he's sober. He doesn't need Hope. He also doesn't need Steffy. He needs to sow his wild oats and get them out of his system. He needs to remain a bachelor.
So, with my new sympathy for Liam, here's my prescription for him. Go see a therapist. He has complicated issues about his mother that are coloring all his relationships with women. Resolve those issues. Liam's also intimidated by his father, whom he's never known before the last year or so.
By trying to live up to Bill's standards of manhood -- including that ridiculous sword around his neck -- Liam's worldview is skewed. He doesn't know what to think or feel. It seems to me that Taylor should be the person telling Liam to get to a therapist, since she's a psychiatrist. She should give him the names of colleagues who might be able to help him.
Dr. Stacy Barton might be a possibility, but Brad Bell has forgotten all about her. Hope should be on Stacy's couch three times a week after the trauma she's endured of late. But here's another thought. Maybe because of all this political convention coverage and the talk of religion, it occurred to me that nobody on B&B goes to church or seeks spiritual advice. Not even yoga!
What about this for a storyline: Liam goes for a walk and instead of searching for funky clothes in Venice Beach, he stumbles into a church and speaks to a minister. Make it a cool, young guy who can give Liam advice about how to treat the women in his life. Wouldn't that be old-fashioned and -- I don't know -- comforting? The Bells used to include religion in their storylines. In fact, there was a little bit with the priest who married Hope and Liam in Italy, but he didn't know them. Hmmm, I remember before I was married, my husband and I had to meet with the rabbi who was marrying us to make sure we knew what it meant to be married. By the way, that was 22 years ago, and yes, we're still married.
The latest problem in the Liam-Hope-Steffy triangle now, however, is Rick. Tell me, how can Rick call himself a loyal sibling when he's lying through his teeth to Hope about the man she loves? Is that brotherly love? If so, she better hope that R.J. doesn't follow Rick's example.
Rick has a motive for being ruthless. He thinks that if Liam and Hope are broken up for good, Thomas and Hope will be revived, leaving Caroline available for Rick. Presumably that would also eliminate any obstacles in Liam and Steffy being reunited. Maybe that's what Brad Bell has in mind, but I doubt it. After all, happy couples equal boring soap opera, right?
My hope is that Steffy will wake up one morning, open her eyes, and realize that Liam's immaturity is not that appealing after all. Steffy needs a grown-up, fully developed man. She needs someone who has a grip on his emotions and knows what he wants. How many times has Liam said to Steffy that he wants a future with Hope, only to then run back to Steffy again and again? That's the kind of man a woman should avoid at all costs. He's just trouble, trouble, trouble. Taylor's warned Steffy, but for some reason, Steffy won't listen.
I know, I know. Steffy is in love with Liam. She can't stop feeling the way she does. She's tried to get over him, and she can't. I guess the same is true about Hope. She's doomed, too, because she loves this loser. Yes, friends, that's Liam. A loser. It's inexplicable to me why these women are so gaga for him. It's not about looks either, because in a scruffy way, Liam's attractive.
It's his personality. He's too weak. Maybe Hope and Steffy like that about him. Maybe they want to dominate him? ...Somehow, Brad Bell wants us to believe that Liam is different than how he's presented. He wants us to think that he's a strong man that two beautiful, accomplished women cannot get over. Hmm, I don't see it.
I'm also wondering why Brooke is so anxious for her daughter to be with Liam? Brooke has experience as the girl who gets the fuzzy end of the lollipop. How many times has she been on the wrong side of a relationship, the one who doesn't get the guy? Sure, she has Ridge now, but remember when she was kicked to the curb and saw the love of her life with other women -- first Caroline and later Taylor? Brooke should want a man for Hope who will treat her with love, respect, and regard -- and only want Hope. A man who will put Hope's feelings ahead of his own. Liam is not that man.
Thomas could be...but has he really fallen out of love with Caroline? Or was he never really in love with Caroline? I'm not sure; are you? The impression given the past three months has been that Thomas and Caroline were clicking in every way. Thomas certainly seemed sincere. However, it's only taken a few insinuations by Rick to make Thomas reconsider his feelings for Hope.
I wonder, though, in the pre-wedding scenes with Dayzee and Marcus, Brad Bell gave us the impression that Thomas was still dazzled by Dayzee. Now we're being told that Thomas is still smitten with Hope. I don't know, friends; is it possible that Thomas is as much a waffler as Liam? If Thomas and Hope were to reconnect, if they were to become lovers and perhaps get engaged, would he be tempted to flit back to Caroline?
Last week, in the world outside the fiction of Forrester Creations, the news broke that the diva of all divas, Susan Flannery, is leaving the show...but not right away. Brad Bell is going to write her a great send-off storyline. As Mike suggested last week in his Two Scoops, the most logical outcome for Stephanie would be a poignant death from her lung cancer. It would not only be realistic, reminding viewers that some cancers cannot be cured, that they are fatal, but it would also be a graceful way for Stephanie to review her life and make amends. Think of it like a variation of A Christmas Carol, with Ebenezer Forrester recognizing the mistakes of her life and doing something about them before her death.
In other off-camera news, there's the report that Sean Kanan will be back as Deacon. So, does that mean Allison gets to have sex again? No, probably not, but I do suspect that all the bad stuff Bill did in Italy will come back to haunt him. While that will muck up his relationship with Katie for a while, I don't see Katie and Bill falling apart. They'll fight and yell, but he's going to be by her side when she has their son...and probably health issues caused by the delivery!
I was really excited to learn that Jon Hensley will be upgraded from recurring to full-timer. He's going to be Ridge's replacement...sort of. The character of Ridge is likely to be written off in some way with Ronn Moss leaving, but Brad is going to eventually recast the role. For now, however, Brooke will be finding romance with Jon Hensley's Dr. Meade. Presumably he'll be given a first name this time around.
Dr. Meade is the same doctor who cared for Steffy's knee in Aspen and Anthony's foot after the hit-and-run. Now he'll be taking care of Brooke's broken heart. I guess you could say he's a "handy man" like the James Taylor song!
While it's terrific that Jon will be promoted into a real storyline, what the heck is going on with some of the other characters who've been introduced and just shelved? Danielle, Dr. Stacy Barton, Karen, Marcus, Dayzee... And did they ever bother to say what happened to Nick, Owen, Bridget, and Jackie? I must have blinked, because Jackie M. no longer exists. Shouldn't that have been covered in the pages of Eye on Fashion? Doesn't Spencer Publishing report on the entire fashion industry, not just Forrester Creations?
So, till next week, please share your thoughts with me about what's going to happen in the weeks ahead... Your comments are always welcome at Soap Central, so stay in touch. And tell me which other characters you want to see fixed or changed -- or return to the show. All you have to do is click here to send me a message. And keep on reading Two Scoops every week!
Meanwhile, here are some letters from the readers!
• I cannot stand the characters Ridge and Stephanie! Stephanie is a criminal on so many levels. Ridge is also, plus a serial rapist to boot. All I can say about these two characters are: Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out! I stopped watching this travesty of a show when Bell fired Jack Wagner. What a waste of excellent talent. Bell is an idiot. -- Marilyn
• For the recast of Ridge, can we please get Robert Kelker-Kelly? Enough said. -- AJ