The Marriage Grinch who couldn't steal Thomas' wedding

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This week on the Bold and the Beautiful, no one, not rescue ranger Liam, not meddling mama Brooke, and not even drunk Flo could stop Hope's wedding to the devil. If she takes her vows, can the frigid bride escape a honeymoon hell?

The wedding came without care or planning. It came without friends but plenty of unsupportive family. It came with neither a custom vow or designer gown. It came without anything old, borrowed, or blue. It came against Brooke's will because it was what Hope insisted that she must do.

It came without Wyatt or his date, Flo. Nor did Katie have Dollar Bill or Will in tow. Will might be too old for petting zoo stations, but Lizzy curiously received no invitation. Despite the things that the wedding came without, Hope still strode to the altar. As Brooke solemnly warned, without love, this marriage will falter.

Let's get two scoops deep into how neither the wedding Grinch Brooke or any other human on the planet could stop Hope's umpteenth wedding. But true to form, will Hope be the one to stop it herself? We'll also scoop on what's ahead on the Bold and the Beautiful.

"Hello, this is Child Services. How may I help you?"

If you've got ghosts -- freaky projector ghosts, baby -- you'd better call child services. If there was any doubt that Thomas is mentally abusing Douglas, Thomas put those in the grave, possibly along with Caroline, when he scared the pajamas off his child in hopes of getting one step closer to Hope's marital bed.

In case you missed it, Thomas planted a timed projector beneath Douglas' bed that simulated a ghost floating on the wall. I think Thomas' motive was to somehow get Hope out of the cabin and into his bedroom that night. Stoking fear in Douglas would make Hope want to be nearby, thereby giving Thomas that chance to make his move. To his surprise and deranged delight, the prank made Hope, for no sane reason at all, conclude that she and Thomas had to get married right away.

After Thomas's fake ghost stunt caused Douglas to scream until the wallpaper curled off the walls, Thomas deterred Hope from spending the night in Douglas' room once the terrified child had fallen asleep. Thomas had an agenda. Get Hope into his own bed, not Douglas'. And the crowd says, "Eewww..."

Thomas got Hope into his room, but he almost got himself out of a wedding by insisting upon making advances on Hope. Though she'd been planning to wait until the wedding night, she became frank with him and said he was probably never going to get it. She even said the wedding might be a mistake. Thomas claimed that he could wait as long as he needed to. My guess is that he can afford to be patient when he has two more sex pills in his top drawer.

The writers probably thought the ghost prank was a lighthearted stunt, but just like other stunts they pull with characters, this one leaves behind moral ramifications that the writers tend to ignore. Thomas looks bad for scaring Douglas but appears even worse as a parent for neglecting Douglas' fears about the ghost after the incident served Thomas' purposes.

It was a prank (one that I detest); however, Douglas genuinely feared it. Thomas, the adult who pulled the prank, doesn't seem to realize that. So far, Thomas hasn't even asked the child once since then if he's okay or had any resulting dreams or problems sleeping.

Remember: Thomas is the one who said Douglas has been having nightmares. This ghost prank could have brought on more of them. You'd think an immature but concerned parent might think of this, wouldn't you? I'm surprised Douglas didn't want to sleep in his dad's bed for the rest of the summer. Douglas could have been silently cowering in his room for the rest of the night. The way Thomas turned his sexual advances on Hope into a priority over Douglas' fears was simply revolting.

Hope thinks that she set Thomas straight and that they are on the same page about co-parenting without co-sexing, but I'm beginning to suspect that Thomas' sole reason for marrying Hope is to have sex with her. As if the perverted way he stared at her legs and mouth as she told Douglas bedtime stories wasn't any indication, right?

And then there are the little things Thomas does that make me question his fitness as a father. Things like -- I don't know -- taking down the pictures of Douglas' dead mother the very morning after he gave the boy the scare of his life! What if Douglas thinks the ghost did that and is screwing with him? Thomas might drive this poor boy crazy!

There's no reason to replace Caroline in Douglas' heart and mind, but Thomas is busily blotting the child's mother out of the present and setting down Hope's pictures in place of Caroline's just as easily as he'd swap out Douglas' old toothbrush for a new one. Thomas does it with such ease that it makes me question what really happened to Caroline.

We only have Thomas' word for anything that went on between him and Caroline. With all the drugs, fantasies, lies, and manslaughter Thomas has been up to since his return to town, it's starting to seem plausible that none of what Thomas claimed transpired was true, and instead, he killed Caroline.

To some, it sounds far-fetched, but remember, this is a soap that twice brought Taylor back from the grave. Anything is possible. Now, let me give you a few theories. What if Thomas, trying to move from co-parenting to co-sexing, gave Caroline a drug, and she got that blood clot? What if Thomas found out somehow that Douglas was really Ridge's, and out of anger, Thomas killed Caroline? Maybe he didn't mean to -- like with Emma.

I've said for years that Ridge needed a second opinion on that fertility issue, and there was never a paternity test done on Douglas. Wouldn't it be completely sick for Ridge to learn that the son who he thinks is so great now is really the same guy that he was back when he took advantage of Caroline in the first place?

I'm only speculating, of course, but if Douglas is really Ridge's son, then Ridge and Brooke can raise him after Thomas goes to a mental facility for life.

The bride wore blasť

Brooke can plan a wedding with just a moment's notice, but she learned the hard way that it's nearly impossible to stop weddings that happen at breakneck speed. Where's a good third wheel with a secret to unveil, a manipulation to unmask, or a pregnancy to announce when she needs it? Drunk Flo is on her way with a doozy -- unless Zoe instructs Flo's Uber driver to drop Flo off in the ravine on the way to Brooke's house first, that is.

Liam is the third point in this love triangle, and if Brooke suggested it, he'd probably be willing to say he was pregnant if he suspected that Hope would believe it and stop the wedding. He even offered to move out of Steffy's house, in essence giving up the unit he claimed that he and Steffy had formed, if it would make Hope renege on her decision to marry Douglas -- I mean Thomas. Even so, for the children's sakes, Hope remained compelled to chain herself to a bolder and sacrifice herself to Thomas the Kraken.

For a woman so happy to commit her life to a child through his father, Hope didn't show it. For her wedding day, she didn't care what she did with her hair. She was fine with whatever unworn white dress she had in her closet. Lord knows she has dozens of leftover dresses from the pop-up weddings Brooke planned in the past. Hope didn't care if Thomas had goats, monkeys, and llamas all over the place, stinking up the event.

With barnyard animals trampling all over Brooke's garden, it probably goes without saying that Brooke didn't plan this shindig. She was too busy trying to turn it into a shin-don't. And I'll bet she's just a bit bitter that the first wedding Ridge ever plans for his kid actually goes off without a hitch -- or wait. With a hitch? You have to have a hitch to get hitched, right? Oh, you guys know what I mean!

It's worth noting, and correct me if I'm wrong, that this is Thomas' second wedding. If it sticks, it will be his first marriage because his initial teen marriage to keep his bride in the country got annulled.

Douglas is a doll, and he was handsome in his tuxedo, standing on his stair-step pedestal at the altar. It was a bit surreal to watch the bride and the best man/child gazing deeply into each other's eyes at the altar, but I rolled with it for the scene's sake. Thomas is the one who should be worried about Hope wanting to marry his son more than to marry him. What an insult that, on your own wedding day, your bride can't keep her eyes on you!

During the ceremony, Hope was looking everywhere she could -- at Douglas, at Brooke, at Liam -- anything to avoid Thomas' penetrating gaze. Brooke was inwardly perturbed when Ridge volunteered her to give words of wisdom to the bride and groom. I'm sure that inside herself, she was thinking, "I already gave all my words of wisdom, but they won't listen!"

Steffy even did her part, which is more than we can say for her father. She advised Hope not to marry Thomas unless she can commit to Thomas. Hope wasn't listening. She gaslighted Steffy with the co-parenting and putting the kids first mantras.

It seems the only people Hope will listen to these days are the children. PhoeBeth spoke at the ceremony, rocking Hope to her core by crying to mama. Is it enough to melt Hope into a pool of tears and send her running out the front door, or unlike the majority of her weddings to Liam, will she pull herself up by her garter belt and marry the devil?

"I been drinking...(hiccup)...I been drinking..."

If Brooke and Liam can't rescue Hope from herself, and Hope can't see the wisdom in stopping her loveless wedding, here comes cousin Flo to save the day! Right after another shot of gin -- or vodka -- or whatever it is in the half-pint she's toting around.

On Hope's wedding day, Flo was knocking back shots from her own bottle in her purse as she sought Zoe's support in giving Hope the truth as a wedding present. Liquid courage can give a girl a boost in her mental armor, but Flo had better watch the liquor because alcoholism runs in her family.

Was Flo really drunk, though? For a drunk person, she was making a heck of a lot of sense to me as she defended her decision to tell the truth about Beth. Flo was lucid enough to discard Zoe's rationale that Liam might be meant to be with Steffy and the girls and that Hope might be meant to be with Thomas and Douglas. Through her inebriation, Flo knew right from wrong. In her mind, it was wrong to give destiny a hand by swiping a baby from its mother.

Not that it will amount to anything. The colluders have their Design Room gaggles about whether or not to expose their secret, and it never amounts to anything but Zoe or Thomas getting their way and innocent victims careening into ravines.

Hope is heading toward the deepest ravine yet -- a marriage to Thomas that no annulment will ever get her out of if he has anything to say about it. Thomas will never let Hope divorce him or annul the marriage, but for Douglas' sake, Hope might not even try. It's what a mother would do, right? Sacrifice herself for her child?

Drunk Flo won't make it to that wedding on time. And if she does manage to get there at all, her liquid courage tank will be running on fumes by then. She won't tell Hope or Liam a thing once Thomas gets hold of her -- and you know he will. He'll sidetrack her before she can say a word to Hope.

The best that viewers can hope for is the employment of the overly used plot device we dread -- somebody new eavesdropping on Thomas or on Zoe as one of them attempts to instill renewed fear in Flo. We'll all gasp a sigh of relief once the truth is finally out, but will we get the satisfaction of Thomas paying for any of his crimes or misdeeds?

For anyone out there hoping Thomas will get nailed for Emma's death, Flo squashed that dream by simply saying, "We can't do anything about Emma, but..." You know what that means -- Emma's death might not ever be brought up again now that Xander has left town. Sally probably forgot she saw Thomas forging Douglas' artwork. No one knows about the fake Caroline letter, the manipulated photos and video from Amelia, the fake ghost, or Thomas drugging Liam.

Thomas just might get away with everything except keeping silent about Beth. Can you stomach that if it means we continue to have the superb Matthew Atkinson on-screen in the role of Thomas Forrester? Or maybe there's still one more diabolical trick up Thomas' pant leg (because you know he doesn't wear shirts) that will blow all of his schemes, including his manipulations of Douglas, right out of the stratosphere.

In a look ahead: Spoilers and casting news

Next week's spoilers indicate that eavesdropping will make a guest appearance on the show when Liam overhears an ominous conversation between Thomas and Flo. Look for Liam to enlist his brother's help to get to the bottom of it. Please do employ Wyatt. That way, we can all say "in your face" to Wyatt when he learns that Flo has been keeping an even bigger secret with Thomas than Sally was, and it has an even bigger impact on Wyatt's family.

Liam takes a renewed interest in PhoeBeth's adoption, and as he creeps toward the truth about Flo, creepy Thomas uses his son to convince Hope to stay the night with him. I don't know what this spoiler tidbit could mean, but it sounds like we need barf bags.

It might or might not have something to do with a "stay-cation" Thomas concocts for the family. Maybe it's a family honeymoon of sorts, but where will Douglas sleep? Alone on the living room couch while Thomas gets busy with Hope? You'll forgive me if I wish Douglas mistakes a coat rack for a ghost and hops under the bedcovers between Hope and Thomas.

It looks like when Xander walked out on Zoe, he meant it. Actor Adain Bradley initially announced that he has relinquished his role, although he did say he'd be back. Best wishes, and thank you for your portrayal of Xander, in case we don't see you for a while. I appreciated the range of acting in your most recent performances and had looked forward to Xander being the hero until his abrupt departure.

There will be a new doctor in the house as Vincent Irizarry joins the cast. Don't bother making an appointment with Dr. Armstrong. I've got every one of his slots filled already!

Dr. Armstrong will play a role in the baby-napping storyline. Maybe he can strong-arm the truth out of Zoe, Flo, and Reese, or maybe he's an accessory to their crime. It looks as if we'll be seeing Detective Sanchez, too, this fall as we get closer to the end of Hope and Liam's baby nightmare.

As always, I appreciate you taking the time to scoop with me, and we'd love to read what you think of the week in the comments below. Until we scoop again, stay bold and beautiful, baby!

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