RIP Caroline Spencer: Another death cripples the Spencer Family
For the Week of March 18, 2019
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In the past three months, the Spencer family has lost two family members -- one to a tragic hoax and another when a hoax tragically became true. The young Caroline Spencer joined Caroline Senior in that great design house in the sky, leaving the rest of us wondering: was the death of this legacy character worth it just to bring Pencil Pants Thomas back to town?

Caroline Spencer the Second passed away this week. To borrow a lyric from Elton John, her candle burned out long before her legend ever will. Though many details have yet to be revealed (and might not ever be, if we know B&B writers), we at least know that Caroline succumbed to a blood clot, leaving behind her son Douglas and the seemingly DeSORASed Thomas, now played by Matthew Atkinson.

Before we scoop the drama, I have to know -- are my eyes deceiving me, or did Thomas get younger than Steffy right before our eyes? I think the writers might be attempting to age Thomas, because Atkinson is actually three years older than Pierson Fodé. For me, the problem is that Atkinson actually looks younger than Fodé.

Atkinson appears so young that my confusion about Thomas' age pulled me out of the soap reality bubble during the show. To me, it is absurd to have a newly thirty-year-old play Thomas, the older brother of Steffy, whose actress turns thirty-two next month. Yes, Fodé is even younger than JMW, but at least he looks more mature, even if his character didn't act more mature. Maybe this new, baby-faced Thomas needs to grow a scruffy beard so that I'll stop thinking he's a boy and so that Ridge stops calling him "the boy."

Back to the soap reality bubble -- this week, Flo learned that blood is thicker than water when Zoe reneged on her promise to tell Hope the truth. Steffy decided that distance might cure Hope of her obsession with Phoebe. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but like Reese and Zoe, Steffy hopes absence makes Hope grow a new baby.

Can distance times time equal a new baby for Hope and Liam by the time Steffy gets back? Is Steffy really going to be gone that long? Soap time is faster than real time, but still, that's one heck of a maternity leave for JMW if Steffy is gone long enough for Hope to have a new baby upon Steffy's return, which Steffy stated was her wish for Hope.

If Hope doesn't have a baby, it won't be for lack of trying on Zoe's part. Reese made it Zoe's mission to ensure Hope breeds again immediately. It's not because he needs more babies to sell. It's because he thinks a new baby will magically make Hope forget Beth and move on.

How can Zoe ensure that Liam and Hope will copulate? Will she become like Katie and Bill's mystery cupid and arrange "accidental" liaisons in the Forrester dressing room? I doubt Lope needs help with that. Just ask the single Steffy.

Let's get two scoops deep into the untimely death of Caroline Spencer, the untimely European road trip of Steffy's, and the untimely return of Reese Buckingham, which prolonged a storyline that should have run out of time weeks ago. We'll also scoop into whether the third time is really a charm for Batie this week on The Bold and the Beautiful.

Nothing can replace a baby -- except another baby

If at first you don't succeed, try again. Steffy, Reese, and Zoe think the key to Hope's healing is to strap a baby Band-Aid on it and move on. Reese didn't think it was that easy when Zoe's life was threatened. Zoe didn't think her solution was to go out and find a new daddy. Steffy certainly didn't try to have another baby directly after she lost her first one. But when it's to their advantage, a loved one becomes just as replaceable as a pair of lost gloves.

Did anyone else want to yank Zoe by her Cabbage-Patch-Kid hair and shake some sense into her when she sniveled to Flo that her father was right about keeping the secret? Just when we thought we could finally pull Beth out of the grave and stuff this storyline into it, in walks Reese. His actions, combined with Steffy's sudden decision to take the girls halfway around the world for what could be long enough for Hope to give birth again, might prolong the baby switch story indefinitely.

Our antihero Flo finally realized that she had to tell Hope and Liam the truth. Zoe reminded her that they'd all go to jail, but Flo wondered what she and Zoe had done wrong. Zoe hasn't done anything wrong except keep silent about a crime. Is that even illegal if we have the right to remain silent? We surely don't see the mother-of-two Steffy worried that she'll get arrested for not telling on Taylor.

Flo, on the other hand, falsified documents and perpetrated a fraud on Steffy and Taylor. Flo can blame it all on "naively going along with Reese" if she wants to, but we were there. We heard all the questions she asked before she participated in the crime. Yet there she was, slapping a stack of bills on Reese's chest as if doing so absolves her.

That was a mighty thin stack of bills, Flo. Where's the rest of the 50K? I'll bet she picked that money right back up after Zoe left. Flo is no victim. She went into it with her eyes wide open, and it's way too late for her to pretend that Reese took advantage of her.

No one was surprised when Reese showed up at exactly the wrong time, having flown across the world because Flo wasn't returning his texts. He walked in as soon as Zoe agreed to confess the crime to Hope, and he talked Zoe right back out of it. Reese decided that Zoe had to make it her mission in life to get Hope to have a replacement baby.

Hold on. Didn't Zoe just tell Xander that all living things are unique, and she cannot replace Harry with another cat? How can she counsel Hope that it's fine to replace one human with another?

The writers left the scene hanging on whether Flo would go along with Zoe and Reese or march over to Hope's house to tell her the truth that night. Obviously, Flo didn't do anything, because the next day on the show was a new day, and we haven't seen Flo since. So, either Flo chose to remain silent, or Zoe locked her in a closet at Reese's apartment.

Meanwhile, Steffy announced out of nowhere that she was packing up the girls and hauling them and Amelia off to Europe indefinitely. Taylor asked why Rick couldn't handle the International duties. I'd like to know that, too. Why can't Rick, Thorne, or Felicia handle it? Steffy claims that buyers need to see the co-CEO occasionally.

Maybe Steffy is right. Maybe their buyers need assurance after Forrester lost two Los Angeles designers in one month and their social media game plummeted in Wyatt's absence. But why can't Ridge go? The writers spent a great deal of time talking up Steffy's support system and hammering home the importance of Liam in the girls' lives. It seems disingenuous to uproot the babies, make them live out of hotel suites, and reduce Liam's role to video-chat-dad.

Visiting buyers and taking meetings is a rather flimsy excuse to leave the country indefinitely. Steffy's real reason for leaving is to end Hope's obsession with the girls and to put a stop to Hope's insane insistence upon giving her husband away. Taylor thought Steffy was the crazy one for not taking Hope up on it. Had it been Brooke offering up Ridge, Taylor would have snapped at it like Scooby at a dog snack.

In her absence, Steffy wants Hope to heal and even wishes that Hope will have a child of her own when Steffy returns. A baby takes nine months, so exactly how long will Steffy be gone? Is it really fair that Hope loses even more time with Beth as we wait for JMW's maternity leave to end? Is there even the slightest chance that Flo will come clean just before Steffy's jet takes off, so that Hope can finally be reunited with her daughter?

Here's what members of our Soap Central message board think:

"I watched Flo since day one. Nobody twisted her into this plot! She knew she was lying, and ruining Lopes life and marriage. She didn't care as long as Reese wanted her, and she was going to make a profit. How many times did Steffy look into her eyes and trust her? She doesn't even care about hurting her either..." -- Lakergirl_04

"I want to like Flo... but she is beginning to get on my nerves...Flo was all about the fake adoption when she thought she was getting the man, but now she's all about how wrong it is. Even when Zoe first became suspicious, Flo was all defensive and denied everything. Now she acts like she was forced to do something she didn't want to do. Anyone with half a brain would have taken the money and run back to their life in Vegas." -- Quintessential

"Reese is telling Flo and Zoe that Hope and Liam can just have another baby but never know about Beth, and they'll be fine. Even if that were so, which it's not, what about what's fair to Beth/Phoebe? She's not allowed to ever know her biological parents? I don't get how Reese can't see how wrong this is." --ILoveBizzie

ILoveBizzie brings up an excellent point. "Phoebe" deserves to know that she had two biological parents who wanted her. If she only had Steffy, she'd probably be happy, but if the way Hope talks about her upbringing is any indicator, "Phoebe" will forever feel like a piece of herself is missing because she doesn't know her bio-parents.

As for when the baby storyline will finally end, a lot of viewers think that, because of JMW's maternity leave, we might have to wait all the way until November sweeps. Some viewers are hopeful for a Mother's Day reunion for Hope and Beth. Others believe that the writers could drag this out until Beth is many years old. God, no!

The Mystery Cupid

Bill just got set up, and he's never been happier about it. It's a good thing Katie put on her mink lashes that morning because she needed them to enhance her coy gaze when she found herself unexpectedly gazing across the table at her ex twice-divorced.

Bill and Katie have a mystery cupid on their hands, and that person set up a coincidental lunch with all the romantic trimmings from Bill and Katie's favorite dishes to an impressive wine selection. Bill thinks his BFF and son, Wyatt, might be mixing up his and Katie's schedules in the hopes of creating a match made in Batie heaven, but Katie thinks her sappy sister might be the culprit. It could be Katie's sister, but maybe not the clueless Donna.

A cupid with a keen taste for wine who knows Bill and Katie's favorite foods -- and who can hack into both Bill and Katie's calendars? That's got to be Brooke. Think about it. Brooke used to be a wine glutton. The date was at Il Giardino, the only restaurant Brooke even knows exists. Brooke is conveniently out of town, so no one would suspect her.

Brooke could have easily sent the invitation to Katie's Google calendar. All Katie has to do is open the event and scan the details to discover who really put it there. As for how Brooke got it on Bill's calendar? As his former wife, Brooke probably logged into Bill's calendar all the time to put in lunch dates or parties the other God was having, like Christmas and Easter.

Why would Brooke do it? Out of guilt. She is Hope's mother, remember? Guilt for breaking up a family, just like Hope feels guilty for breaking up Liam's family with Steffy. Never mind the fact that the husbands willingly walked away from those families.

If it isn't Brooke, my next guess is the too-old-for-his-britches Will Spencer, who wants his family reunited. I clearly imagine Will sitting with his feet up, a bubble gum cigar in his mouth, and a shot of apple juice in a scotch glass, as, on his tablet, he rigs his parents' calendars to alarm meetings on the same day, at the same time, and in the same location.

There is still a chance it might be Donna. After all, how did she know about Katie's lunch with Brooke if Katie checked her calendar after Donna exited the office that day?

Whoever set up the romantic interlude forgot one thing -- Katie shouldn't be drinking. Isn't Katie a recovering alcoholic? For some reason, I remember that Katie gave us some lame excuse that she was a "situational alcoholic," only becoming one because of Bill and Brooke. Does anyone else remember that?

Everyone saw the Batie reunion from an eyelash bat away. We just didn't know what would frame it. Now that Caroline has died, I hope the writers use the tragedy as an opportunity for Katie and Bill to uplift each other and restore the Spencer family. So far, it's been a Forrester loss more than a Spencer loss. Caroline was a Spencer to the manor born, and this is the Spencer family's story to tell, not the Forresters'.

What's your opinion? Are you into the Batie reunion? At this point, I'd take anything over the baby storyline -- except another baby storyline. As for the mystery cupid, we'll know if it's Will or Brooke as soon as the person plans either an evening of coloring fake money or an evening of Bill stripping bills off the money-teddy "someone" leaves in Katie's closet. Just, please, no Brooke underneath the bed this time, okay, writers?

The Great Spencerini or Spenceradamus?

Bill Spencerini can do magic, but can he also predict the future? When Thomas had been set upon leaving Caroline, Bill desperately lied to Thomas, saying that Caroline didn't have long to live due to a terminal illness. Caroline confessed the lie to Thomas about a year ago, causing the couple to temporarily separate. A blood clot cut short the reunion. Caroline died, and Thomas returned to Los Angeles with Douglas.

Linsey Godfrey, you know we love you. Your talent dug deep down into the core of The Bold and the Beautiful, and it spread like the buds of a beautiful rose. You gave us everything you had in every performance, and you left it there on the stage for us every time you performed, even up until the last time, about a year ago, when Caroline tried to strangle Bill in his hospital room.

I'm sure Bill still feels Caroline's grip on his neck even to this day. Or maybe it's culpability that he feels. Bill is a pragmatic man, but that doesn't mean he isn't a little superstitious. When the news of Caroline's death darkened his door, Bill couldn't help but wonder if he'd somehow cursed Caroline to die before her time at the hand of an unnamed illness.

We do not know much about what happened to Caroline, except that it was a blood clot, the same thing Spenceradamus had once said afflicted Steffy when he'd tried to keep Liam from leaving her. Does this mean Bill can predict the future? I don't know. He did say that loser dressmaker would leave Katie, and he did say that Katie was making a mistake by marrying Thorne. Maybe Bill can predict the future -- or he has a knack for stating the obvious.

When I first heard that Caroline was dead, I thought of Rick. I thought of Ridge. I thought of Douglas. I remembered the glam entrance she made at Forrester when Rick awaited her on the curb. I recalled when Amber set Rick up as a cross-dresser, when Caroline and Maya had fought in heels on the waterbed, and Caroline and Rick's first showing. I remembered Caroline flipping over Bill's balcony, the Caridge love affair, Ridge and Caroline ducking at the sound of gunshots, the horrible rape accusation, the birth of Douglas, and alas, Caroline's fingers around Bill's throat.

I'm unhappy about the death of Caroline Spencer. I realize that it was storyline-dictated to give Hope and Thomas something to bond over that will ultimately lead to Hope leaving Liam free to reunite with Steffy. Nice and neat, and no one will be a villain. If this is truly the way the storyline goes, I find it reprehensible to sacrifice Caroline Spencer for Steam's "blameless" reunion number ninety-nine.

I really have nothing profound to say about our loss because I believe it's truly a waste, and I'm still processing it. In the meantime, this is what some of our message board members think:

"When I turned it on, I saw that everyone was sad about something. Didn't know it was Caroline, until Ridge turned her picture to the camera. Sorry for everyone's loss. I'm sad for little Douglas. Cute kid. I'm wondering how Caroline's two moms are doing. I'm sure Karen and [Dani] are just as devastated as Thomas is." -- SharikaC

"If they wanted Caroline out of the picture to leave Thomas single and free to raise their son, they could have had her run off to Europe, abandoning them, which would have opened the door to future storylines. They didn't have to kill her off. What a waste." -- DepecheMode_Fan

"Is it just me, or was Taylor's reaction to the phone call over the top? Did she ever even meet Caroline? I mean, I get that it's her grandson's mother but her reaction was overdone...I'm very much over this Taylor." -- AAC82

It's not just you. Taylor is over the top about everything! Remember -- she shot Bill for sleeping with her daughter. She still sobs over Ridge. According to her conversations with Steffy, Taylor can't differentiate between Hope and Brooke. Taylor was this same sack of tears, begging Brooke not to turn her in, and the moment Brooke left, Taylor was whistling Dixie.

When I first saw Taylor carrying on, I was like, "You don't even know Caroline. WTH?" I then realized that Taylor could very well have visited Caroline, Douglas, and Thomas in New York off-screen and developed a relationship with Caroline. The problem is, too much stuff happens off-screen for my taste.

In a look ahead: Suffering a Terrible Loss

Cue the flashbacks and pull out the hankies. Next week, the Spencers and Forresters come together to help each other through their second loss of the year and lament the death of Caroline Spencer, mother, fashion designer, and immortal diva.

Next week will be a short week because March Madness begins on Thursday. In that week, the families remember Caroline, Steffy prepares to leave town, and death doesn't stop mystery cupid, who plans another accidental encounter for Batie. See, this is what happens when you procrastinate on telling Will that his cousin died -- if Will is indeed the mystery cupid, that is.

Grief must make Taylor lose her damn mind because she winds up kissing Ridge. Brooke spies the kiss, and hopefully, Brooke spies Ridge setting Taylor straight, because Ridge sure wasn't having it the last time Bill kissed Brooke. Plus, Ridge knows how Brooke felt when she caught him kissing Quinn. Why don't Brooke and Ridge just become the swinging Bridge?

Until we scoop again, share your fond or ire-raising memories of Caroline in the comments below and wish Linsey Godfrey the best in her future endeavors. Again, we love you, Linsey! Stay bold and beautiful, baby!

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