Now in HD

by Mike

Has your week been bold and beautiful? Did you model the wedding dress but not the wedding night? Did your kisses require a rating? Did a man get delivered to your door faster than UPS? These and more situations faced the Forresters et al this week!

Scratch what I said in my last column about B&B being an entirely different show every two weeks -- at least where Hope, Liam, and Steffy are concerned, because we're still on it. We get it, guys: Hope wants to wait to have sex until her honeymoon. Liam has agreed but wants to get freaky with Hope now. And Steffy is still chasing after someone else's man. This is a recording...recording...recording...

Many fans are up in arms about B&B's perhaps unintentional message that saving yourself for your wedding night is something to be scorned. "It's just a piece of paper," Steffy scoffed. Okay, so Ridge's merry-go-rounding didn't set the best example, but it's a little disturbing that Steffy seems to have no respect for marriage at all, as proven by her recent pursuit of Bill. And that massage? Even more disturbing! Telling Liam she used to do this for Ridge as she unbuttons Liam's shirt? Eww! Double eww.

I also didn't buy Steffy saying she respects Hope's conviction. Ha! If she did, she wouldn't be hanging all over Liam, although at least she isn't vamping anymore. And Steffy did make the interesting point that Hope may not like sex once she actually has it -- what then? But Liam, while tempted, again told Steffy that he loves Hope and that waiting three months is not the end of the world. Which is the precise moment Steffy decided to kiss him. Methinks Miss Forrester needs a hearing aid. Badly.

The great thing about visiting Hope's end of things in Paris was seeing Eric in the mix. Someone please give this man a storyline -- one that doesn't involve honey. I smirked, though, when Hope asked if three months was a long time to wait for a wedding. When, in recent memory, did anyone on this show wait longer than a day or two? And do you realize how many wedding dresses Eric has designed for his family over the years? He could open a whole new branch of Forrester on those alone.

Mercifully, once we got past the "Like A Virgin" saga, things got more varied. Are we sure Steffy and Amber aren't best friends? Because they sure have chasing uninterested men in common. Check it: Amber spent her entire pregnancy trying to entice Liam into a relationship. (Also a no-go; Steffy could learn from Amber's example!) Then on delivery day, she discovers Marcus is the father, and decides she has feelings for him and wants to raise the baby with him. Does that feel right to you guys?

I like that Amber wants to clean up her act after all the stunts she's pulled. (Not that she needed cleaning once she left Genoa City, but that's a whole 'nother column.) It's just that B&B keeps missing so many important beats. All right, so she 'fessed up to Marcus about not being bilingual, not having gone to law school, and that she had, in fact, tried a kinky sex trick with someone before him. That's what the spoilers meant when they had Amber "admitting all the lies she told over the years"? What a letdown.

How about -- especially with Rick coming home -- she admitted to trying the "who's the daddy" stunt before? How about mentioning her miscarriages and how she got a little crazy because maybe it was her last chance to have a baby? That might really have put Amber on the road to redemption. But no. And seriously, how many times was Amber going to ask Marcus if he liked her kiss? To say nothing of telling him she wanted to change or else he wouldn't want her! Can you say "codependent," anyone? At least Marcus gently told her not to cling to any hope of a relationship, but when she later smirked, "He didn't say no," it made her look more desperate and pathetic than she did when she went after Liam.

Interesting scene with Donna and Justin, though. Donna tried to be diplomatic, but Justin came right out and said they think Amber's a bad person. "You tried to rob Marcus of his child -- do you know what that can do to a man?" Ouch! Especially because Donna, who kept Marcus from Justin, was standing right there. Donna must have picked up on Justin's resentment, because she told Amber she couldn't throw the first stone, and that if Marcus wanted a relationship with Amber, she'd support it. I kind of like the idea of Donna and Amber being friends. Might give them each something new to do.

Can anyone tell me exactly what was the point of Dr. Maponya's appearance this week? I like her -- but last time I checked, cardiologists didn't make house calls at places of business to discuss patient progress. ("I guess I'm not your ordinary heart patient," Katie beamed. You can say that again, Miss-Get-Over-A-Heart-Attack-In-Six-Hours!) Later, we found out that Justin had a history of some description with the South African doctor. All right -- a little contrived, but I went with it.

Until Justin decided to lock lips with her! That wasn't just a catch-you-next-time-you're-in-town kiss, either! What about Donna, who walked in a few seconds later, bid adieu to the doctor, and then got kissed by Justin, who still had the other woman's saliva on his lips! Like, gross or gross? And again, other than expanding the canvas a bit, why get into this? Unless Donna has something to worry about.

Yet worry was the order of the day at Jackie M. Seems Mrs. Knight had some insecurities about her age after seeing Steffy and Hope's sexy promo videos. "They're powerful women," Jackie sighed. Hardly! They're girls play-acting as women -- or at least Steffy is. So how wonderful was it for Owen to lovingly remind Jackie she still had her attitude, which had nothing to do with age? Finally, they got something to do besides slobber on each other. Isn't it nice when that happens? More, please.

What happened to Bill's proposed merger, anyway? Bill was all hot to snag half of Jackie M to destroy Forrester, then made some deal with Ridge. I'm lost. But no sooner than Jackie stopped worrying about herself did she extend her worry to Taylor. Don't you hate it when characters start talking about characters they don't interact with as if they have some reason to be concerned? More like, they have no story of their own but they need to be on-screen, so we'll have them yap about a completely unrelated character. Yes, I know Taylor used to be Jackie's daughter-in-law. But still. It just came off as idle gossip.

Though didn't they call Taylor out on a few things? Nick saying he was only with Taylor a minute -- Jackie saying Taylor should have learned by now and that any other man in her life was a substitute for Ridge? Sing it, sister. Nick suddenly became very concerned about his ex-wife...but we'll get to that.

In my last column, I basically called Taylor crazy and criticized B&B's inconsistent characterization of her. Well, this week the pendulum swung the other way again, because strong Taylor was back and taking no prisoners! Why can't we always have this? We don't want to see loony Taylor endorsing Steffy's pursuits of married and engaged men. We want to see strong Taylor serving up an ice-cold glass of Whoop-Ass. And blessed be, the Kiddie Patrol is over -- the grown-ups are back and in full effect!

You know Stephanie had the Whoop-Ass coming, too. Brooke forgave her way too easily -- maybe because, in the end, her relationship with Ridge was restored. But when Stephanie came looking for absolution, Taylor wasn't handing it out. The resulting smackdown was some of the best B&B I've seen in a long time, and this is the way Hunter Tylo should be written for all the time.

Taylor snorted that Stephanie's friendship was more like a bargain they struck to keep Brooke away from Ridge, and that the friendship wasn't real but merely existed because it served a purpose for Stephanie. "Even on its best days, I wouldn't want it back!" Taylor yelled. In your face, Stephanie! La Forrester did view everyone as chess pieces, but Taylor owned that she allowed herself to be manipulated out of her love for Ridge.

And just when the ish couldn't fly any further, Stephanie slipped that her Brooke/Thomas lie was the only way to make a Ridge reunion happen for Taylor! Oops! Taylor went medieval: "You were fully aware Ridge didn't love me enough to come back to me on his own!" Well, Scoopers, now we've got that out of the way. Unfortunately, Stephanie lost me when she handed Taylor a document about the ever-confusing shares, saying it was a way of making things up to her. Not that it affected Taylor, because she turned that document into shredded wheat lickety-split, with frosting to match!

Taylor claimed that Stephanie's loss of the stock was her payment for what Stephanie did to her, and a more fitting payment there couldn't be. "I am not just sitting on the sidelines anymore," Taylor announced. "My life is just beginning!" You go, Mary Tyler Moore! You're gonna make it after all. She might as well have thrown a hat in the air, the way they ended the episode on a black-and-white freeze-frame of the good Doctor Hayes. Strange.

But not as strange as watching Taylor get a psychic reading from Anthony. Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't psychiatrists usually frown on the occult? I'm amazed Taylor didn't show more skepticism. Anthony predicted a stormy night in which a stray cat would show up at Taylor's door, followed by a mystery man who would turn Taylor's life around. Was it just me, or were any of y'all thinking this man might be Anthony himself? Because I was seeing an interesting chemistry there between them.

Apparently, Taylor's reading was set up by Stephanie to keep her there until Stephanie could extend her olive branch. Still manipulating, Stephanie! But I couldn't help smiling when she reacted to Anthony's prediction. She's right -- it just doesn't rain in L.A. in September. October, maybe!

But Stephanie had more than weather on her mind when she inexplicably went to Brooke after her failed reconciliation attempt. Is that where Ridge gets it from? Stephanie can't make it work with Taylor so she runs to Brooke? Anyway, Stephanie lamented her nefarious scheme, declaring "I'm really not that kind of person anymore." Sure, Queenie, you keep telling yourself that. She wasn't once she mended fences with Brooke -- until she trashed that hard-won friendship for no good reason.

Brooke's response to it all? "You did it for [Taylor]." Hey, Brooke got screwed over in this, too -- she is being way too understanding. She and Taylor both needed to turn their backs on Stephanie to make this believable. This high road is so high you can't even find it on Google Maps! "I'm only alive because of you," Stephanie told Brooke with that sad puppy dog look. (Oh, now you remember that, Stephanie.) "I don't deserve any kindness from you." (Well, you've got that part right.) But still, Stephanie wants to be buddies with Brooke again. Will Brooke "friend" her?

Finally, back at Casa Taylor, Steffy waltzed in not an hour after swapping spit with Liam, glammed out in a whole new look it must have taken more than an hour to put together. Well, when your family turns out entire fashion lines in less than a day, I guess that reinvent was a cinch! Taylor relayed the tale of Anthony's prediction to her intrigued daughter. And faster than you could say "Dionne Warwick," it started to storm in L.A.! Now, how are we supposed to take that seriously? Do none of these people check weather reports? I used to live in L.A. -- believe me, if it's going to rain there, much less storm, entire programs are pre-empted by the storm desk! Some prediction, Anthony.

Moments later, the fabled stray cat showed up on Taylor's doorstep! That was the healthiest-looking stray I've ever seen. And how about Taylor and Steffy just leaving it out there to get soaked! Remind me not to get them a plant. Speaking of plants, wouldn't this whole psychic episode have been cooler if B&B had planted the seed with us and then let it sprout in a couple of weeks instead of just hours later? It made the proceedings kind of silly. Then, without fail, there was that knock on Taylor's door. "You!" she exclaimed -- fade to black.

Who do you think it was? Ridge, Nick, and even Oliver worried over Taylor's state of mind. Whoever it is, why do I get the feeling it's someone we already know? Doesn't a "mystery man" imply it would be someone new? I guess we'll find out next week -- but anything that keeps Taylor kick-ass like this is fine by me!

Some of you have been knocking on my door with your comments. Keep sending 'em and you might find them here.

    • "Dear Taylor: Your daughter is an unstable whore with bad highlights. Please fix her. P.S. This helicopter mom act is really annoying. I liked you better in the '90s." -- Kendy

    • "Liam isn't some 16-year-old with raging hormones who is out to 'prove' his love by sexing Hope. And if the scribes don't quit saying that Steffy lost her man to [a] Logan woman can you lose something that never belonged to you? Bill and Liam never had a relationship with her. Enough." -- Deb

    • "Hope wants to have her wedding in Eric's house. Isn't that the same place where Oliver and Brooke had sex 'by accident'? Hope must have a short memory." -- Ron

    • "Finally a character with the guts to say NO until the wedding and all you see is poor pitiful Liam acting like's not 3 years it's 12 weeks. Get a life, Liam." -- Elaine

    • "I think you have Steffy and Taylor all wrong. I can see why Taylor would want Steffy with Liam. He is a nice guy of the right age. Plus both women have major issues with Logan women and with good reason. If I was either one I would want a little revenge. Why can't Steffy take Liam? I am rooting for her all the way." -- Linda

Two Scoops reader Sharon asks about Brooke's past paramours, adding "I'm sure there were more than Nick and Ridge while Hope was growing up." Not actually, Sharon! Brooke's marriage to Thorne was before Hope was born; Deacon, of course, is Hope's father, and Whip only married Brooke to keep the world from finding about the pregnancy. So, in Hope's lifetime, it has only been Nick and Ridge -- not that that hasn't kept Brooke plenty busy!

I'll leave you with some Points to Ponder:

Amber got booted from the cliff house and supposedly has no money -- where is she living? Regarding her desire to change, Marcus said we always start over "with the same raw material" -- I'm really liking Marcus these days... "You know you can't just walk into a place of business and just start kissing people," Dayzee told him. Why not? Everyone else on this show does -- and Thomas laid one on her in that very place of business after only knowing her five minutes!

Wasn't Hope totally channeling Brooke's giddiness in that wedding dress?... Marcus was surprised that Dayzee was talking to Stephanie -- frankly, so was I... Has Taylor been watching Taxi Driver for inspiration? Her "you got something you wanna say to me" was very DeNiro -- just as the humorous pizzicato music played as we wondered who was at her door was very Desperate Housewives!

B&B is now in HD! We know this because the first HD episode made sure to show not one, not two, but three long montages of L.A. Subtle much, B&B? But I'll forgive you because you now have Winsor Harmon in the credits! Given that credits are reserved for contract players, will our prayers be answered with a real storyline for our beloved Thorne? Keep watching, be alert, and most of all, be bold!

Mike (Adam-Michael James)
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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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