Riddle me this. What's faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap over gaping mouths in a single bound? Rumors, of course. A maelstrom of them is whipping around Los Angeles, blazing like a wildfire through the Forrester corridors, and dancing itself all the way down to the beach in a bikini. Next stop -- the news media superhighway, courtesy of Spencer publications.
Rick was so happy this week, he offered to let Nicole throw a party while he's away at Big Bear, worshipping his goddess. Somehow, I don't think he's going to like the riffraff her big mouth attracts. My Spencer senses tell me Rick might come home to more than some beer bottles on the lawn. It'll be more like media tents and microphones all over the place, and in the middle of the shopping-cart-dancing frenzy, Pam will be serving lemon bars as the Spencer men lay in wait for the first quote about Rick's life with the transgender Maya.
At least that's how scandals used to come out at Forrester. Remember all the shame that coated the Forrester corridors every time the media found out Brooke came home with her panties in a wad at the bottom of her purse? Remember all the flashing cameras in Hope's face over her virginity? If the press is anything like it used to be, Rick needs to borrow Maya's floppy hat and cat-eye sunglasses and slip into the house through that bunker of a wine cellar he mentioned to Maya months ago.
In case you missed it, the secret is finally out! What a relief. I was beginning to think we'd spend the whole summer at Maya's altar, bowing down and worshipping the ground that Rick won't dare let her precious little feet walk on. I thought all hope was gone when Charlie and Pam disappeared from the scene, and I half-suspected that Maya and Nicole had the couple tied up in the wine cellar after discovering, off-screen of course, that the couple knew the secret.
It's not that far-fetched. Anyone notice we haven't heard a peep out of Charlie and Pam since they figured out the secret? And wasn't it odd that Rick was on the phone with Donna this week instead of giving instructions to Pam? Where are Pam and Charlie, and why isn't Charlie down in the security office, stringing together yarn and photos of Myron and Maya to prove his theory?
Charlie should have at least bet Pam a night of medieval role-playing passion that his theory was right. I was disappointed that the pair's involvement in the storyline didn't go further. Did anyone else find their role filled with sound and fury but signifying abso-freaking-lutely nothing?
Just before Mount Carter finally erupted with rumor, I was starting to wish Taylor was back on-screen. Now that woman could put anyone on blast without caring if it caused heart attacks or collapses. And she wasn't above checking out people's medical files, either, so Maya can forget her secret being safe between only her and her doctors. If Taylor was around, she'd be right up in the doctor's office, thumbing through the files.
Taylor also would have more balls than Brooke. Taylor would straight up tell Rick what Maya has been hiding, and she really wouldn't give a damn about how the facts affect anyone. Taylor stared down an axe and still dated Thorne. She ripped open Steffy's door and made Bill and Steffy stop rolling around like teenagers in the bed in her house. Taylor told Stephanie about her sick crush on Ridge, and like a man, Taylor took a crack in her jaw for saying it.
Taylor also accepted another smack on the face in stride when she told Brooke to keep her dirty intentions away from Thomas. Taylor blasted Brooke and Bill out of the water and never looked back -- literally. In fact, the confidence-keeping therapist never had any problems telling the truth -- except when it came to her own little indiscretions, but that's another story.
The next person I would have chosen to learn the secret would have been Caroline. She was right on the money each time she called Maya the wrong name, and if Caroline was a part of the big reveal, viewers could have at least gotten some off-color humor by all the new names she could have conjured up. Caroline has a lot of bones to pick with the self-righteous Maya. She bore the brunt of countless speeches from Maya about loyalty, integrity, and being genuine. I wouldn't mind hearing Caroline's hammer pound down on Maya over and over and over again. It would sure be a welcome change from that nauseating love-sick drumbeat Rick keeps pounding into everyone's heads.
It was apropos for Ridge to be the town crier, and he got the truth without even trying. It came to him when he employed the simplest method around; he quit, just like viewers have been begging for everyone to do since day one. This fiasco of a plot would have been over before the new year if, one-by-one, they had lined up and slapped their bow-wrapped resignations down in the desk and said, "Merry Christmas, Scrooge Jr. I quit!"
Ridge didn't sell stock. He didn't make a deal with Dollar God Spencer or resort to betrayal. He just quit -- quit the job and quit giving a damn. To keep Ridge in the designer's chair, Carter threw Maya under the bus, the train, the scooter, the bicycle, and the Rollerblades. I felt run over by Rollerblades, too, because Carter's revelation to Ridge about Maya deprived me of the satisfaction of seeing the blood drain from Rick's face as he crapped his pants over Ridge's resignation.
I wanted to see Rick grovel and massage Ridge's feet to get Ridge back at work. Instead, the rumors of Ridge's resignation never even got started once Carter dropped the matriarch of rumors on Ridge about Maya. So far, Rick is oblivious to all the ramblings about Maya, Ridge's job, and the fact that employees are making out or surfing instead of making his bottom line go up by another thousandth of a percent. While his family and employees easily keep rumors from him, the rumor of his engagement was the worst-kept secret in town.
For some reason, none of the employees had the guts to choke Eric's nuts, but the moment Ridge locked Eric's manhood in a vice grip, Eric succumbed to an ounce of common sense. I say only an ounce because his answer to the Ridge crisis was Maya.
Since when did Maya become the peacekeeper between family members? I forgot -- Eric never saw her snicker and giggle that Rick was "so bad" every time he sent Aly off on some dead-end errand for him. Eric never saw Rick's little silk terrier biting at Ridge's heels each time Ridge and Rick got into it at the office. Eric also knows nothing about Maya, her family relationships, or her ability to solve family issues. All he knows is that she's the lead model and Rick's idol. Eric could take only the most shallow of looks into Nicole and Maya's relationship to see that Maya had no clue about family bonding.
When Ridge learned the news, I thought he'd fly on his jacket wings straight to Rick to slam him for turning his back on people for simple mistakes and pouring his trust into the ultimate deceiver. I don't know how politically correct the script could have been, but I wanted Ridge to humiliate Rick and rub his nose in the dirt for all the condescension and haughty faith he'd placed in the "virtuous" Maya.
But Ridge didn't do it. Instead, Ridge did what he's almost always done when it comes to protecting the children. He found himself an adult way to handle it. Instead of using the information to his advantage, which he had every right to do, he quietly went to Eric and Brooke to find a diplomatic way to handle it without destroying Forrester internally or externally.
By caring more about Rick's feelings, sanity, and the company than getting his well-deserved revenge, Ridge was a brother to Rick, something Rick doesn't even know the meaning of when it comes to Ridge. Ridge had good intentions in talking to Eric and Brooke about the problem, but letting Brooke handle the secret was an epic failure.
Did you think we were getting somewhere when Brooke asserted the "I know" comment to Maya? I was ready to pick up in that exact place the next day, but apparently Brooke punked out off-screen. Some mother lioness Brooke turned out to be. If they were in the jungle and Rick was a cub, a hyena would be eating him for lunch right about now.
We next saw Brooke telling Ridge that she hadn't had the heart to broach the subject with Maya. Brooke admitted that she was freaked out, trying to figure out if she'll have a son-in-law or daughter-in-law, and she tried to imagine how hard it would be to feel trapped inside one's body.
Brooke finally got it together and came at Maya with some force. Maya tried to play her "blame the world" game by claiming that Brooke was treating her like dirt upon learning about the transition. No, Maya. Brooke came down upon you for hiding something significant from her son who is about to propose to you -- and trust me, you want it to be Brooke and not Stephanie Forrester doing it.
Brooke was having none of the "poor me" routine and demanded that Maya reveal herself. Maya kept asserting that she'd tell Rick in her own time, but even her transgender friend Nick looked at her sideways when she told him that Rick didn't know about her transition. Nick. Who'd told his girlfriend by the third date, tried to hide his shock that Maya was living with Rick, on the verge of an engagement, but Rick didn't know.
All Maya cared about in her talk with Brooke was herself. Maya only cared about defending her right to tell someone when she wanted to and if she wanted to, and she tried to make Brooke feel bad about confronting her with the information. She claimed that reactions like Brooke's were the reason she had to think long and hard before inviting that type of treatment into her life.
I almost laughed at Maya for saying that. Brooke has dealt with crater-fulls of events like this in her life, and I can't imagine if she'd ever told anyone that she had a right to tell her truth in her own way. Take, for example, when Stephanie revealed Brooke's pregnancy with Bridget at a press conference or when it was discovered that Brooke had had an affair with Deacon. Stephanie was screaming scandal and shame from every rooftop, and Brooke had to take her medicine.
Maya not only wants to tell her truth in her own time and way, but she also wants to shape people's responses and receptiveness of her, which she just doesn't get to do. People will have opinions about you, good or bad, but that doesn't make it your right to keep pertinent information from them. Maya doesn't want to be treated a certain way, so she hides the truth from people, but she needs to understand that people also don't like to be treated certain ways or having choices removed from them.
Maya was whining about her right to tell her own story without any regard to someone else's right to know the full story before their feelings get involved. I'm really sick of Maya shouting about her rights while depriving people of theirs. She doesn't get to choose for people who might not accept her reality, and she doesn't get to make her reality their reality just out of fear that they won't accept her. Like Brooke said, it's better to have a man accept her fully than live in the shadow of doubt.
Maya has to accept that some people feel certain ways about things, and keeping people in the dark for fear of their reaction isn't the right way to go about things -- even though Nick brought up a very valid point about Maya's safety during her reveal, which adds to the importance of revealing before people become emotionally invested.
Safety is very relevant in these instances. Murder, rape, and various hate crimes against transgender people is a sad reality, just as it is for homosexuals, minorities, and believers of certain religions. My mouth fell open when Maya told Nick that gun-toting Ricky the Kid wouldn't hurt her. Rick and Ridge almost threw each other off a building in the heat of rage. Rick flew through a window during a fight with Thomas. Rick fired a gun at Caroline over his emotional turmoil.
Maya had better think twice about telling Rick while alone up at Big Bear, or instead of celebrating, she might find herself in a shallow grave in the woods. After watching him do all the violent things he's done over the years, including tearing up Brooke's cabin after learning about Caroline and Ridge, I think Nick might be right, and Maya should let Nick at least drive up there and wait outside to call 9-1-1 if need be.
Would the Maya-worshipping Rick choke Maya in a blind rage and bury her up at Big Bear? That would make for a great plot, but he probably will just melt into a pool of tears. What I look forward to is the reveal at least toppling Maya off Rick's mile-high pedestal.
Rick seems to be stuck on stupid about Maya. The way he was demanding that Ridge respect Maya, I almost thought he'd make Ridge create some designer toilet paper for her then force Aly to wipe Maya's butt with it. Rick would probably dissect Maya's poop to see if she'd created any diamonds from her priceless digestive system. What I'm most surprised by is how Rick bought her a regular ring instead of demanding that Wyatt sacrifice HFTF to the new Forrester Queenie.
Why does everyone have to love Maya, accept Maya, think about Maya, and fashion their worlds around Maya? Rick is so fixated on it that he no longer even cares who uses the steam room without his permission. All have to hail and praise the great Maya. That's not a healthy relationship, even if Maya had no secrets. I'd be concerned about any man who acted like I walked on water, and it might make me fear what would happen if I slipped on a ripple. No one can live up to what Rick has made her into.
Does anyone think Rick treats Maya this way because he's trying to undo what he feels Ridge did to Brooke? It's the only logic I can think of. Rick feels that Ridge never respected Brooke, but Rick's going to show the world the right way to treat a woman. Or maybe it's that he's so humiliated by Caroline and Ridge that he overcompensates his pretense of happiness.
Whatever it is, I about lost it when Rick and Maya stood in the office, grinning like the Cleavers as Rick teased Nicole about having parties at the house. "I didn't hear Wyatt say he was out surfing instead of working, did I?" Rick asked with a corny chuckle. Nicole denied it as smoothly as she drew a breath, and Rick had no problems with her dishonesty. Nicole has no problems with dishonesty, either, as long as she's getting what she wants.
Anyone notice Nicole lies for no reason? She asked Rick if she could borrow a bikini from Forrester, but she tells Wyatt it's a secret that she borrowed it from Forrester. What was up with that? When she arrived in town, it was all she could do to make Maya tell the truth and give Rick a chance to accept her. Now that Wyatt's in the picture, Nicole is slamming the garbage can lid down on the truth. Nicole's the one who stirred it up in the first place, and she can't just unstir it for her own benefit.
If you ask me, Maya never was going to tell Rick. She apparently ditched all of her transgender friends for the stealth life. I gleaned that from Nick, who was surprised that she'd reached out after so many years. Did Maya say, "Yeah, well, I was in jail for a while, and by the way, how are you?" Hells no. In true selfish fashion, Maya omitted the truth and omitted the fact that her transgender friends do not fit in her new, opulent lifestyle, just like Nicole didn't -- until Nicole convinced Maya that she'd shut her mouth about Maya.
All Maya wanted from Nick was one thing -- validation in her cover-up. Nicole wasn't around to validate Maya and pet her after the talk with Brooke, so Maya dug Nick up, hoping he'd tell her what a big, bad person Brooke was for forcing her to reveal what she should have revealed on date three, if Nick is the example.
Rick wasn't much better in his treatment of Nick. Maya introduces the man as one of her first friends in Los Angeles, and all Rick cares about is how they are about to go to Big Bear. I thought Rick wanted to know more about Maya, and they were supposed to be open and sharing with each other? Big Bear isn't but a commercial break away. Why couldn't Rick spend a few minutes chatting with Nick?
Big Bear waits for no man, apparently. We can safely say Brooke's warnings to Maya were weak sauce, so what is the likelihood that Maya will heed them over going for the engagement fantasy? Will the pair come back engaged, or will Maya fess up before Rick opens the ring box? Could it be that Rick gets a social media update about his lover before they even get to Big Bear?
Wyatt's innocuous flirting and obvious hints finally paid off this week. "Secret" was the buzzword in Pee-Wee's beach house and at his father's office as Bill and Liam pressured Wyatt to get the information out of Nicole. "Secret -- ha, ha ha!" ran through my head each time any of them said it. Worried about whether Maya's conscience would ruin the good life Nicole had weaseled her way into, Nicole let her guard down and revealed to Wyatt that Maya was transgender.
Liam was apparently hiding in the bushes after Wyatt had told him not to because, a nanosecond after Nicole left the house, Liam arrived to find out what she'd told Wyatt. Wyatt felt guilty about betraying Nicole, but that was only for about two nanoseconds before he gleefully instructed Liam to fire up the presses and get out the barbeque sauce because they were roasting Rick on a spit with the scandalous rumor that Wyatt had just learned.
Finally, someone remembers what the hell Spencer Publications is for, and finally, Wyatt remembers who the hell he is. Since he arrived in town, he's never been one to let moss grow beneath his feet and miss capitalizing on any opportunity. Wyatt's never cared if he hurt his brother, his father, or his mother -- or whose grave he snatched a diamond out of -- just so long as he got what he wanted in the end.
This man kissed Liam's girlfriend in Liam's house, later married said girlfriend on a technicality, and tried to take the house from Liam, too. That's not a man who'd give a damn about Nicole's feelings or trust. It was good to see the old Wyatt, fired up and ready to take the media world by storm, even if it's through spreading rumors and gossip.
Though Nicole's about to learn the hard way to be careful who she befriends, Rick and Maya deserve what they get for their poor treatment of others. I have no reason to feel sorry or empathy for Maya. If she is proud of her transition, no one should feel sorry that she's about to be put on blast the exact same way she put Caroline on blast. Live by the truth, die by the truth. That's my motto. If Maya has any fear or doubt out it, then she shouldn't have transitioned in the first place. That's not something you do on a whim. Like Brooke said -- Maya thought long and hard about it and needs to own it.
What Maya didn't care to give much thought to was how her choices would affect other people including Rick, Carter, Jesse, Nicole, and even Nick, the transgender man she'd befriended when she'd needed something but disappeared on at her own convenience. Reminds me of Dion Warrick's song lyric, "That's what friends are for..." Not! If I was Nick, I wouldn't even have returned Maya's phone call.
What do you think will get to Rick faster? Spencer broadcasting the truth through all of its media channels or Maya telling Rick herself? What's going to happen to Forrester as a result?
I don't think Maya being a transgender model will matter in the fashion world, and I doubt people looking at her airbrushed photos are going to question her gender as they try to figure out if she has real or photoshopped thighs.
The fallout won't be external, even though the Spencers will build enough outside pressure through the media to pop Forrester like a zit -- if there even is a media maelstrom. Maybe Katie will talk the Spencer men out of it -- for Brooke's sake, of course.
That leaves Forrester to implode, and everyone will see that the confident façade Rick portrays on the outside doesn't match his inside any more than Maya's inside matched her outside before the surgery. Maybe Rick and Maya will be headed to Forrester International for the summer until this thing blows over, giving us a well-deserved break from Forrester secrets and chaos.
Or will it? Steffy should be returning just in time for the fight for the CEO seat that the secret might force Rick to vacate. Give us your opinions on how you think this thing will pan out, and until next time, stay bold and beautiful, baby!
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