Divorce, American style
by Mike
For the Week of December 16, 2019
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Two Scoops is an opinion column and the opinions expressed are solely those of the author. The views expressed do not represent the opinions of Soap Central, its partners, or its advertisers.
Ridge and Brooke found out that apparently the eighth time isn't the charm -- thanks to Thomas, who did so much pot-stirring, he found himself at the center of his own marriage fantasy! Sign on the dotted line with Two Scoops' Mike!

Has your week been bold and beautiful? Did the something blue from your wedding turn out to be your divorce papers? Did you call begging for a storyline? Did you not pass the smell test no matter how much air freshener you used? These and more situations faced the Forrester-Logan-Spencer-Buckingham-Fulton clan this week!

Thanks to all who wished me a happy tenth Soap Central anniversary! It's funny -- in some aspects, we're revisiting storylines from 2009 lately. Thomas wants to purge the Logans from his family (a decade ago, it was Steffy), and we're poised to again choose between Steffy and Hope's fashion lines, like back then. But someone's gotta do something about Thomas -- and Ridge's denial! Let's Scoop about it!



A HORSE IS A HORSE, OF COURSE, DIVORCE

There are those among you who feel Brooke is taking too hard a line with Ridge about Thomas. Some of you think Brooke has some nerve scoffing at Ridge asking her to forgive Thomas when she's already been forgiven for loads of shady ish she's pulled over the years. But I gotta tell y'all: I am totally Team Brooke on this one. La Logan is right -- Ridge isn't supporting the so-called love of his life one iota!

"You're just sitting back and accepting everything he does," Brooke correctly pointed out to Ridge. The former Speedo King confirmed it himself when he wondered if Brooke was asking him to banish his son for her. What is in that Kool-Aid Ridge is drinking? Some Stefano DiMera-esque mind control? Ridge was married to a psychiatrist for years. He should see that Brooke's call for Thomas to get help is not unreasonable.

Instead, I feel like Ridge is bucking for a few therapy sessions himself. Why is he so quick to dismiss any nefarious deed Thomas does? This is cult mentality -- there's enough of it going on in the real world right now that the parallels are unmistakable. And it's not like Ridge has a history of giving Thomas a free pass. In fact, Ridge was often tough on Thomas to the point of being unfair.

In Thomas' adolescence, Ridge raged about Thomas marrying illegal immigrant Gabriela Moreno. As recently as 2017, Ridge essentially disowned Thomas for giving Sally enough money to keep Spectra running. Here, Thomas has gone after a married woman, lied about her baby being alive, and run a teenager off the road and watched her die, yet, somehow, this is all okay now in Ridge's book?

"Thomas is getting better all the time," Ridge insisted to Brooke. Yeah...cult. Thomas has given zero indication he's made even the slightest improvement. Ridge put Thomas into therapy before, when he blew up Rick's car and set fire to his house. For Ridge to obstinately refuse to in the face of the exact same kind of behavior says far more about Ridge's mental state than it does about Thomas'.

As if proving my point, when Brooke maintained that simply forgiving Thomas wasn't going to fix him, Ridge sat down and signed the divorce papers he'd brought over! No Parent of the Year award for you this year, Ridge. This would actually be a good time for Taylor to come back. She's been away long enough that she could (finally) be mentally healthy again herself and see how far over the edge her son has slipped.

"For years, Thomas tried to undermine your trust in me," Brooke sighed. It's true. Sporadically, but it's true. In 2009 he and Steffy were falsifying texts from Brooke to push Ridge toward Taylor. In 2011, after drooling over his stepmom for months, he lied about having sex with her because Stephanie promised him stock in the company if he did. So, none of this is new. Again, Ridge's eyes should be wide open here.

Brooke reluctantly signed Ridge's papers, with her trademark single tear landing on her John Hancock and smearing it! Nice! As was the classic music cue from the '80s that underscored the scene. It was like sonically coming full circle, given Bridge's long history. Ridge is gonna smack himself silly when he comes out of that hypnosis Thomas has him under. Only, by then, he might not be able to get Brooke back!

Brooke wandered around the big house Ridge bought for her after their first marriage in 1994 to find Eric walking in, having heard from Quinn that Bridge's marriage was kaput. Oh, the Bericness! Maybe if John McCook and Katherine Kelly Lang weren't the only original two cast members left, I wouldn't swoon so much anytime they have a scene together. They're as meta as B&B gets!

Indeed, Eric declared himself Brooke's oldest friend and held her close, dreaming of them getting a cabin unlike Big Bear, which held so much ugly history, and reading each other stories of what might have been instead of what really happened. I'm not sure what Eric was going for there -- is he still lamenting the 1992 collapse of his own marriage to Brooke? -- but his words were pure gold. Watch out, Quinn!



DIVORCED FROM REALITY

Steffy stood in her office, looking all fashionista and whatnot, unwilling to swipe her card for what Thomas was trying to sell her. "You are going back to your old playbook," Steffy scoffed, "using Douglas to get Hope!" I am so glad sistah-friend ain't about dat noise. And it's not exactly an old playbook -- just last month, the Tomster tried to trade custody of his son for sex.

That's the thing -- the show never lets up on Thomas being psychotically devious; we never get a chance to actually start to believe he might be reforming. Thomas qualified his desire to reboot Hope for the Future with Hope by announcing he wasn't going to get what he wanted through manipulation; he wanted to work for it and be the best man he could be. All while clearly trying to manipulate Steffy.

"You can't relaunch Hope's line and demand she be a part of it," Steffy countered. Besides, decisions about Forrester lines weren't his call to make. I damn near applauded. I loved that Steffy wasn't giving Thomas any room to maneuver, and that she isn't green-lighting Thomas' BS the way Ridge is. "You know she doesn't like you, right?" Steffy reminded her bro regarding Hope. Grandma Stephanie would be proud!

When Ridge came in, he reminded Thomas (though this was the first I heard of it) that Steffy was also crafting a line to target the younger demographic. This gave Thomas an idea. "Remember when I was cutting my teeth in fashion, and you challenged me to a fashion duel?" Thomas asked Ridge. Good nod to history! Ridge did exactly that in 2005...though if Thomas lost that duel, he had to get an annulment from the aforementioned Gabriela. (FYI: he lost it.)

Ridge liked the idea of an in-house competition then passed on the news that he and Brooke were divorcing. Thomas offered his best puppy-dog-eyed condolences...then did a Home Alone "Yessssssss!" as soon as Ridge left the room. Sure, Ridge, Thomas is getting better all the time. I have never been so disappointed in Ridge. Usually he's the one to be overly suspicious, not stick his head in the sand.



IRRECONCILABLE DIFFERENCES

Hope visited Liam at Spencer Publications, where, apparently, Bill was taking a kinder, gentler approach to the organization. Thomas more diabolical than Bill? How the tables have turned. Anyway, Hope was gushing about how Douglas had drawn her a Hope for the Future logo and how Thomas' designs for the line were really good. Liam asked the obvious question: "How do you know it's not happening again?"

But before we get to that, let's backtrack. Didn't HFTF just reboot two years ago, with Thorne at the helm? And do fashion houses always go with the same lines year after year? I seem to recall that Forrester used to just have spring and fall collections like clockwork. Now Hope's goodness garments come back to roost a lot. I suppose if Brooke's Bedroom/Intimates can have gone on since 1998...but it just seems weird.

Liam saw that Hope was actually considering working with Thomas and officially voiced his objection. What I kept thinking was, "How can Hope be this stupid?" How many times does she need to see Thomas in action before she stops being swayed by him -- or by Douglas? Hope already knows Thomas is fully chill about making the boy his puppet. Ironically, it's Thomas that's Pinocchio!

Hope countered Mr. I've Got No Strings at the office, who couldn't wait to drop the 4-1-1 about the Bridge collapse and made sure it was the first thing he told her! Hope wanted to rush home and comfort her maxed-out mom, but Thomas stopped her with the idea of his/their fashion challenge against Steffy. So, we're back to Forrester having to choose either Steffy's line or Hope's, but not both?

This is the "so 2009" storyline I was alluding to earlier. Grown-up Hope started on the show with her Hope for the Future concept being pitted against Steffy's Afterparty line (I admit I had to look back at that column from nearly a decade ago for the name). Even Hope seemed to sense she was being set up for rehash.

While Hope mulled over whether to partner up with Thomas for another HFTF reboot, Zoe called Thomas out of the blue and wondered how it was going with him getting his fam to hire her back as a Forrester model! Why is Zoe even still around at this point? It feels to me that she's outlived her usefulness. For that matter, why are Maya, Xander, and Taylor still in the opening credits? They are gone, gone, gone.

Thomas promised Zoe that she would get back on FC's payroll, but I wouldn't bet Vinny's apartment on that if I were you. Zoe, honey, go paint something, and/or take back your daddy's pad that the absent Flo has been squatting in. There's something seriously wrong with that picture. Hey, why not put Zoe with Carter if she's going to stick around? Carter's so desperate, he won't even mind her switching out accents.

After Hope did so much wavering where Thomas was concerned, I about fell out of my chair when she told him no! She wouldn't reboot HFTF with him! She would not reboot through a scam, she did not like green eggs and ham! Miss Perfect Wedding then proceeded to read Thomas' beads, reminding him off all the crap he'd pulled on her. She wouldn't work with him if he had a ten-foot pole!

It was such a relief to see that Hope wasn't getting pulled into Thomas' tidal wave again. Oh, he tried to reverse psychology her, recalling that HFTF was Hope's baby and that she was sabotaging it. "I can't forget what you did," Hope replied, "and working with you would be unbearable...it's the truth, and you need to hear it!" Helllllll yeahhhhhh! Thomas didn't like that truth and scowled like someone trying to be a better person.

Across the hall, Steffy hugged Ridge and expressed regret that Thomas' obsession with Hope had torpedoed Ridge's marriage. "I wish you wouldn't call it that," Ridge snapped. "Your brother's hurting!" Wow, Ridge has his head so far up his son's ass that now even his daughter can't tell the truth about him. At any rate, Hope inadvertently interrupted the co-CEO's scuffle and proclaimed she knew about the fashion challenge.

But Ridge's dander again went up when Hope added that she wouldn't work with Thomas. Of course, Ridge lobbied for his kid, acting as if he were unimpeachable. However, Hope said she'd simply find another designer for her couture clash. Steffy wanted a moment alone with Hope and offered to call the whole thing off. Nope, it was "game on!" Thomas just wouldn't be a part of it.

Now, get this. Thomas rightly noted that Steffy isn't a designer. So, who should be creating clothes for her out-of-nowhere fashion line? Sally! Did you ever think you'd see the day where Sally and Steffy were working together? I know they kinda already did on Intimates...but I feel really bad for Sally. It's like stick her anywhere and see what works. This is not what Great-Aunt Sally sent her to town for!



IT'S JUST...A LITTLE CRUSH

Quinn and Shauna spent two episodes like, oh-my-godding and talking on their pink Princess phones about how crush-worthy Ridge was. Quinn was actually encouraging Shauna's interest in Ridge. What, if Quinn couldn't have him, at least her bestie should? If Brooke could get out of her own way and forgive Thomas, Shauna opined, then she'd still have a chance with the hunk. (Oh, Thorsten.)

Did Shauna spend too much time baking in the Las Vegas heat? She knew Thomas was basically threatening Flo's life and was on the receiving end of his menacing herself. And Shauna finds this forgivable? Wow, Flo ain't gonna feel too good when she finds out Mom threw her under the bus just so she could get some Ridgepole. That's as dumb as Shauna suddenly living at the Forrester compound again.

As you'd expect, Ridge came home, and Shauna spotted the signed divorce papers in his hand. She was sorry that things with Brooke had deteriorated to that point. But not to worry -- Shauna would always support him. I really think Ridge must be having a delayed reaction to the head injury he got falling out of that helicopter. There's no way he should be entertaining advances from a woman who helped keep Beth from Hope.



GETS GREASE OUT OF YOUR WAY

Wyatt and Liam cut into their workday to talk about how Sally had blurted out Liam's name while discussing their own future. Hey, Wyatt, don't take it so hard -- Sally could have blurted out Liam's name while in bed, like Taylor did calling for Ridge while making love to Whip. Liam couldn't understand what Sally's deal was. "I was never her boyfriend," Liam maintained.

I don't understand where this is coming from, either! Sally's brief under-the-rubble flirtation was two years ago already. She had a year-long relationship with Wyatt since then. Man, Liam must have the D from hell, the way these ladies fall all over him. "I am not going to chase after another girl who'd rather be with you," Wyatt declared to Liam. Nor should you, Solar Shower Man. But you totally deserve this.

Wyatt treated Sally like crap by dumping her for Flo because she kept one little secret of Thomas'. Sally should never have taken him back; I find myself hoping she called him Liam just to mess with him. Wyatt has been a total jerkwad this year, and I'd like to see Sally telling him to shove his "cautiously engaged" up his keister. Maybe Sally and Steffy can take a walk on the wild side! The Spencer bros' heads would explode.

Their convo then turned to Thomas, and Wyatt hoped Thomas wouldn't get Hope to think that she needed to work with him. Hearing that, Liam made a beeline for Thomas' office and told him the Hope for the Future hook-up was not going to happen. When Liam smirked upon hearing Hope had already turned Thomas down, Thomas did not look like a guy who "wasn't that man anymore."

Thomas should take a lesson from his one-time haircutter, Sheila. She really tried to reform during her 1992-1998 run yet couldn't help slipping back into deviant behavior. That's what made her more than a one-note villain. Thomas has less than one note. He laid it on thick for Liam, who almost got caught in the web himself. "Damn it, you almost sound sincere," he admitted. "I want to believe you."

But Liam got re-woke and let Thomas know there was no way he was going to let the berry-muncher get Hope back in his clutches! See, this is the way Ridge used to roll in the old days. Good reason, or not, he always got up in potential rivals' faces and laid down the law. Hell, earlier this year, Ridge himself told Thomas not to come between Liam and Hope! Now, Liam has to fight that battle alone.

So, Liam decided to try adding an intriguing weapon to his arsenal. He went to Steffy, and after a few warm-hearted pleasantries, he asked his ex-wife for her help. He knew she wasn't back on board with Thomas after the way he did her over with Phoebeth. "Do you want me to take down my brother?" Steffy asked, incredulous. No, Liam just wanted her to help him find out if Thomas was pulling s**t again.

Steffy repeated some of Ridge's narrative about Thomas trying to be a better person. "Pretending there's not a problem isn't gonna help anybody," Liam retorted. Steffy seemed to open up to the idea of going behind her brother's back! Now, this could be a fascinating development, Steam working together to bust Thomas. And Steffy may be the only one Ridge listens to if she can prove Thomas still isn't playing with a full deck.



THE MATING GAME

Hope finally got to Brooke, shaking her head that Bridge's break was "all because of Thomas." Even Hope knows! Hope felt partially responsible, since she knew Brooke was trying to protect her. But Hope was less than thrilled with her sometime stepdad, telling Brooke, "Ridge should know who you are by now." After 32 real-life years -- which is like 70 in soap years -- he damn well should!

Meanwhile, Thomas got home and bumped into Shauna, wasting no time before campaigning for her to go after Ridge, full steam ahead. Shauna said she'd never be excited about the end of a marriage. Oh, please! We know little about Shauna, but I'd be willing to bet my Madonna collection that some of her encounters have broken up unions. Shauna felt Thomas hated Brooke. "I've never claimed to be a fan of Brooke's," T-boy grunted.

Sorry, I gotta call it like it is here! Brooke helped raise Thomas when everyone thought Taylor was dead, and Thomas came to love Brooke as a mother figure. He felt bad when Taylor came back and Brooke had to go. And let's not forget the months preceding Berry Island, when Thomas rather wanted Brooke for himself. I agree with Brooke that Thomas hates her because she sees through him. But maybe it's also because he couldn't have her as his own.

After Thomas virtually sicced Shauna on Ridge (again), he turned to look at Quinn's portrait...which turned into a portrait of Hope! We had jumped into a future where Douglas was driving and Hope was Thomas' long-term wife! Future Hope was definitely into her sexy husband, and it was fun seeing Annika Noelle getting to put a polar opposite twist on her usual character.

But dude! Thomas' fantasy included Brooke's recent death! Plus "all the other Logans are gone now except for you!" That's right, Donna and Katie were six feet under, too! There ain't a chunk of coal big enough for this guy's stocking. He's actually wishing people dead! Is trying to kill the Logan sisters next on his list? The dream sequence was fun, but I am super really over Thomas and his shenanigans.

I mean, how much more does this guy have to do? We are already living in a time where people who do bad deeds receive a slap on the wrist, if that. Is it right for B&B to show Thomas getting away with everything and then upping his dastardly games? What kind of message does that send? Every B&B villain, even Sheila, used to have to pay the price. Now, they run around free, normalizing bad behavior. Enough already.

Do you think Thomas has overstayed his wicked welcome, or are you cool? Is Ridge in full-on denial, or just being a protective parent? And is another in-house fashion challenge a good idea? Mark your X in the Comments section below or on the Soap Central message boards, or simply click here to submit feedback. Your comments could wind up in a future column!

In two weeks, I will be back with my Best & Worst column for 2019. And if you don't already know, I never pull any punches in these, so you're not going to want to miss it!

No matter how you celebrate this time of year, or if you choose not to, I wish you all a season that's the happiest in the ways most meaningful to you. And remember: no matter color, creed, religion, gender identity, orientation, or nationality, we're all beautiful!

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of soapcentral.com or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen, what has happened, and to take a look at the logistics of it all. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same view point.

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