Holy plot holes, Brad Bell!

For the Week of January 21, 2013
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B&B Two Scoops: Holy plot holes, Brad Bell!
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Did you see those plot turns coming, or were they big holes that you fell into? Katie and Bill aren't having sex anymore, Steffy ran off to Paris instead of confronting Liam about their little bun in the oven, Hope declared that she refuses to let her and Liam's love story end, and Eric dealt with his grief for Stephanie by talking to Pam. Wouldn't it have been wiser to share his feelings with Thorne, someone who's lost a wife like he did? We're putting up the orange construction cones as we navigate through this week's Two Scoops.

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As much as I've been excited about the truth coming out on The Bold and the Beautiful -- you know, all that business about Deacon and the wedding in Puglia -- the powers that be have created some major plot holes along the way. How big? Think about the Grand Canyon.

This past week found characters falling into these gaping holes, when they weren't acting in ways completely foreign to their personalities. For instance, Brooke turned into Dear Abby, listening to Bill's belly-aching about not having his single malt scotch and asking his sister-in-law to get Katie to give him back his booze! Doling out advice is not Brooke's thing.

That's the kind of thing you expect from characters like One Life to Live's Victoria Lord -- who's coming back to the soap world with the signing of Erika Slezak to the Prospect Park reboot of OLTL. Brooke, however, just stinks at dispensing advice. That scene where she was trying to urge Katie to be more sensitive to Bill, to do what her husband wanted her to do, was just awful. Katie's too smart to take romantic advice from her scandal-ridden sister. Katie knows Bill a lot better than Brooke does.

By the way, can you explain to me what the hell is going on with Brooke? Her loyalty should be to Katie, her beloved little sister who has nearly died a couple of times in the past few years. Brooke cannot side with her bully brother-in-law, the same guy who ruined Hope's wedding in Italy, at the expense of her love for her sister. Are we really supposed to think that Brooke is so dazzled by Bill's brawny physique that she can't see straight? Perhaps.

Speaking of Bill's bulging muscles, I have to bring up that sword in the chest incident. First of all, I'm still trying to figure out if that thing around his neck is a silver sword or a fancy-schmancy toothpick? It looks like something that keeps a club sandwich from falling apart when you order it at the deli. All it needs in the plastic frills at one end.

But that stabbing stunt was just too much for me! As Mike pointed out last week, when Bill extracted the half-inch blade from his pectoral muscle, there wasn't a drop of blood. Really? Bill has no blood in his heart? And Liam didn't even go after his father to check out the wound. Didn't he think that Bill might need a Band-Aid? I guess Liam never got a First Aid badge from the Boy Scouts!

All through the week, after Katie found out about the sword business, it gnawed at me that she hadn't even noticed that her husband had a boo-boo on his manly chest. Considering how Bill enjoys sauntering out of the shower with just a towel around his waist (remember his encounter with Brooke?), wouldn't Mrs. Spencer have noticed an imperfection on Bill's hot bod? I would. I notice when my husband's missed a spot shaving in the morning, and he's not a gorgeous Don Diamont! You see, when you're married, that's what you do as a wife.

But on Friday, suddenly -- out of the blue -- Brooke discovered that Katie and Bill haven't been having sex. Really, no sex? We're supposed to believe that since recovering from her postpartum depression, Katie has not made love with her husband at all. Not even a cuddle.

Hmm... how likely is it that Katie would receive a fabulous diamond necklace, one that cost a pretty penny, from her hubby and not thank him with a night of lovemaking? That was the moment to let on if there was a problem between Katie and Bill in the bedroom, but neither character said a word. I don't know, but that just seemed off to me. On soaps, expensive jewelry is usually the prelude for strawberries and whipped cream in bed.

You see, that's just another example of the plot holes cropping up all over The Bold and the Beautiful. The "we're not making love anymore" storyline for Katie and Bill was a complete surprise, and it feels like a big hole in the storytelling. There was no set up for the lack of intimacy.

Steffy's decision to keep her pregnancy from Liam was another whopper of a hole for a number of reasons. For starters, why on earth were Steffy and Liam not using protection in their lovemaking? I don't expect Liam to use condoms, but is it really realistic that Steffy was not on the pill or some other form of contraception?

Yes, they are in love and living together. Yes, they have the means to raise a child in comfort. But doesn't it seem more likely that two smart cookies like Liam and Steffy would want to plan on having a baby? Wouldn't Steffy want to be married first? Wouldn't she want Liam's name, legally, so that the baby would be a Spencer?

A pregnancy at this point in the never-ending triangle of Hope-Steffy-Liam just cries out, "plot device." But that's not even the part that bugged me. It was the moment Steffy suspected that she might be preggers. She rushed out and bought a pregnancy kit and went to the office.

Ewww! Are you kidding me? Is that really what you do in the office? Who wants to pee on a stick in the executive ladies room? Then, once she had the soaked tester in her hand, she ran back to her office to gaze at it. Ewww, again! Sorry, folks, but that's just gross. Some things are best done in the privacy of your own home!

But the massive plot hole that truly made my jaw drop was this: instead of sharing the excitement of discovery with her partner, Steffy chose to do it all alone. Rather than drive home with the EPT kit and tell Liam that she might be having his child, she chose to wait. Why? There wasn't a good reason that I can see. Even if Liam might be shocked by the possibility of fatherhood, he'd at least have shared that with Steffy, who had her own apprehensions.

The next hole of plenty was Steffy spying Hope and Liam kissing like crazy on the bed and doing nothing about it. To me, that's just not Steffy. She's not the type to turn and run away. The Steffy I know would have burst into the house and demanded to know what Liam and Hope were doing?

Steffy's too volatile to just back away. Steffy's also not the type of woman to take all those hurt feelings and board a jet for Paris. She wouldn't keep what she knew to herself because Steffy's not a martyr. That's why none of this adds up!

The Bold and the Beautiful has been like a seesaw. Since Steffy is down, Hope has to be up. That's what we witnessed with the whipped-up Hope for the Future press conference. Without benefit of any designs to share with the media, Rick called a press conference, and Hope stood at the podium to spin a happy little fairy tale about her line.

Looking like a perky little Pollyanna, Hope went on and on about the great youth fashions she'll create, using only environmentally friendly products and workers who are all getting good healthcare, and every girl in America will be able to afford the clothes because the prices will be fair. It was a sweet little dream, but highly unrealistic. Does Rick know that the goal of his sister's line is not to make money? That's sure how it sounded.

Across the pond, Steffy watched Hope and seethed with anger. Thomas was also unhappy. He stood there and smiled through gritted teeth, showing the press just how little he respects the new Forrester president. Rick may be a pretty good president, however, because he artfully ducked all the good questions from the press. There was no talk about Hope's breakdown, her failed relationship with Liam, or anything else that would be of interest to the reporters sent to cover the story.

Watching Hope via the Internet, Steffy finally did something about Liam. She called him. Her message to Liam was clear and direct. She expects him to get his infatuation with Hope out of his system by the time Steffy returns to L.A. I respected her for telling Liam, in no uncertain time, that she wants a commitment from him.

Meanwhile, right after the webcast, Hope popped over to the beach house -- uninvited, of course -- and threw down the gauntlet to Liam, too. She reiterated what she's been saying for weeks about how Bill and Rick and others have robbed Liam and Hope of their future. Does she think Liam doesn't remember the story? Hope then proclaimed, "I refuse to give up on us" like she was making a speech. Do you think maybe she thought the cameras were still rolling from the press conference?

Now, you might think that after Steffy's Skype directive and Hope's in-his-face announcement that Liam would be moved to say something. You might anticipate that he'd tell both women, "Hey, I get it. Just let me figure it out on my own." You might suspect that, but that wasn't what we saw. Nope, not to Steffy or Hope. To the women he loves, Liam just simpers and smiles and shrugs his shoulders. Isn't he cute?

It's only when he's with others that Liam finds his voice. He was full of sass when he told Brooke that he was nothing like Ridge and could choose between Hope and Steffy without any help from Brooke. There's no proof that that's true, but that's what he said when she urged him not to lead Hope on again. With Bill, who couldn't wait to rip Hope to shreds after the press conference, Liam was just as forceful in asserting his independence. He told his father that whichever woman he chose, it would be his choice and nobody else's. Forgive me if I don't think Liam is capable of making a decision any time soon.

The most revealing, and touching, scene of the past week belonged to Eric and Pam. Instead of just passing over Eric's mourning the death of Stephanie, Brad Bell decided to deal with it in a realistic way. Eric is not handling the loss of his spouse very well. He misses her. He really misses her presence in his life, not just as a wife, but also as a life partner and constant companion. It was a great scene for John McCook, giving him a chance to reveal Eric as he's rarely been shown.

For all his success and admirable qualities, Eric truly needed Stephanie. Without her as the center of his world, he's like a boat adrift on the ocean. I think it will only be a matter of time before he finds a new port, if you know what I mean. There will be another woman to fill the void in Eric's heart. She won't be Stephanie, but he won't remain alone. From the spoilers, it sounds like Taylor may be the lady. What do you all think of that?

While I loved Eric crying on Pam's shoulder -- and lap -- it would have been a better scene if Brad had Eric confessing his grief to Thorne. That's right, his eldest son, Thorne, the same son who's been a widower since the tragic death of Darla. Who better than Thorne to sympathize with Eric about losing Stephanie? Who is Eric really closer to, Thorne or Pam? This was a missed opportunity.

Last week, Mike shared his master plan for The Bold and the Beautiful for 2013... if he wrote the soap. It was quite entertaining, intricate, and more than a little bit over the top. Way to go, Mike. I agree, since this show does have bold in the title, the storytelling should be more aggressive. The massive involvement of Massimo Marone, however, didn't work for me.

Instead of trying to top Mike's road map for 2013, I'm going to give Brad Bell just a little advice. Here are my "Three Foolproof Ideas to Explain Ridge's Absence!"

1. Unbeknownst to Brooke, while on their honeymoon in Europe, Ridge was recruited by the State Department to become a liaison to England's secret spy agency, MI-5. He's spent the last six months in top-secret training to become a double-0 agent. Despite his age, family responsibilities, and lack of expertise with espionage, Ridge has been away from Forrester because he's going to be another James Bond.

2. After learning about Brooke communicating with Deacon, Ridge was angry and disappointed. He went off for some alone time, but that was when the world turned upside down. Ridge walked through a doorway that was the gateway to an alternate universe. Ridge discovered that he was trapped in the past, on a 19th century Italian vineyard, tending to the grapes and learning about giant olives. At the same time, the "other" Ridge, who took his place in the present, had no idea who Brooke was and refused to go to America with her.

3. Ridge was baffled about the reason he'd been so upset about Brooke texting Deacon. He was well aware that they'd been through many other, more serious problems and had still stuck together. Ridge was on his way back to Brooke when he passed through a small village, tripped on a cobblestone street, hit his head, and came to in a monastery. It was run by a band of brothers who've taken vows of poverty, chastity, and service. Feeling untethered from the real world, Ridge decided to join the monastery to find enlightenment.

Well, that's it for this week, except for a couple of random thoughts. I read on Soap Central that Jack Wagner will be returning to General Hospital for the soap's 50th anniversary. Good for GH, and good for Jack. It will be fun to see him playing Frisco Jones again. But I can't help but wish that Brad Bell hadn't let all the Jackie M team leave The Bold and the Beautiful.

Instead of this demented Brooke and Bill illicit love we're suffering through, Brooke might have turned to Nick as she has in the past. I always loved Brooke with Nick, especially since he was a better surrogate father to Hope than Ridge ever was. In fact, if Nick were still on the show now, he'd be getting in Bill's face about the way he's abused Hope.

So, that's it for me. Please share your thoughts with me about what's going to happen in the weeks ahead, as well as your best and worst from the year gone by... I'm anxious to read what you all have to say. Send your comments to Soap Central, and stay in touch. Don't forget to keep on reading Two Scoops every week!

Meanwhile, here are some letters from the readers!

    • NOTHING has ever disgusted me more than the Liam, Hope, Steffy story!!! This hideous ménage of fools has gone on too long. Who would want a spineless ninny like Liam except two young women with no feelings of their own self worth? It is an awful thing to watch, and has been going on the better part of a year. The interference of the parents is the icing on the poison cake! - Annie P.

    • I've watched BB since day one and it's gotten so predictable lately and unbelievable. This story about Ridge is the worst. Recast him. I agree that Ron Moss was never that good an actor anyway. Liam is so gullible and now Steffy is pregnant, as I predicted a couple of years ago. Also it seems that no one ever actually works on the show. Putting together a fashion competition between Thomas and Rick this quick while they're not even shown working on a deadline is ridiculous. - Karen

    • Also, I guess Bill is the new Stephanie. Can't help himself from interfering and manipulating his son's life to the point of the fake heart stabbing, which was really stabbing himself in his "real" heart, his dollar bills! THAT was poignant! The difference in him and Stephanie is that when she was the good Stephanie she was warm, lovable and believable. Bill can't touch that. Although I really love Don and wish they would make him less a bully! I must also say I miss Ronn Moss so much. I always loved him so much and you are right, this show needs him. I don't want a re-cast. I want my Ridge, Ronn Moss. I pray they can work something out. Brooke is not Brooke without him. This show is not right without him. - Lori C.

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Allison J. Waldman
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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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