Bill of goods?

For the Week of January 9, 2023
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Before Sinn could toast the arrival of 2023, their bubbly was flattened by the revelation that Bill had taken up with Sheila. Not only that, but Bill getting Sheila arrested was part of his plan to free her! And can you believe that Taylor's single bullet to Bill's back has come back to haunt her? See who gets top Bill-ing with Two Scoops' Mike.

Has your week been bold and beautiful? Were you the victim of the mother of all blackmail? Did you continue to lose the woman you kept voting for? Did you make "he who lives by the sword dies by the sword" your motto for '23? These and more situations faced the Forrester-Logan-Spencer-Walton-Finnegan clan this week!

What the serious soap, Scoopers! A handful of weeks away from watching, and suddenly we've got a whole new show, turned upside down! Granted, I did just wail in my Best and Worst of 2022 column that Taylor shooting Bill had been completely buried, but what a dig-up! And out of nowhere, Bill is running around the Death Star with Sheila! Is this the Dollah you're looking for? Let's Scoop about it!

BILLY CLUB

By the way, happy New Year, you guys, but that's as far as my solicitations go, because my energy has been totally used up by this twist that's got Sheila in Bill's arms and Bill throwing Taylor's gun-toting past in Sinn's face! I feel like Amber Ruffin over here. "I was like WHAAAAAAAAT?? This. Soap. Has. Been. Crazy!" I mean, where to even start, except...when did this even start?

It was barely a month ago that Finn realized Sheila was alive, which prompted Deacon to give Sheila a well-meaning heave-ho. You know, Deacon, whom Sheila supposedly had all these feelings for? Meanwhile, Bill, fresh off trying to win back both Brooke and Katie in the same breath, got all butt-hurt and moped around with his restored sword necklace weighing his steps down.

Sheila put on her mask, made the stupid mistake of wearing sandals, which caused Steffy to glimpse her nine toes, and then Sheila escaped the po-po in a stolen car. And the next thing you know, Sheila and Bill have gotten together and caught feelings to the point that Bill is willing to flip off his entire extended fam to keep Sheila free? Dang. I don't know where all that came from. I'm trying to get my head around it.

Skipping ahead a little, Bill and Sheila gave us a little recap of this romance's beginnings, talking about how Sheila followed Bill out of Il Giardino to a beach, where Bill plopped himself in the sand. They talked all night and made some sort of connection, one neither feels they've had with anyone else, like, ever. Something about Sheila's desperation and loneliness reached Bill.

You mean like how something about Li's desperation and loneliness reached Bill? Even Finn was aghast at how Bill could have saved him and Li from Sheila, only to jump over to Sheila's side. I haven't figured that one out yet, either. Sheila kept saying she wouldn't try to change Bill like other women had, but I still think Li could have and should have been that woman. Why the switch to Sheila?

I appreciate the backstory, and I'm all for a good twist whose reasoning gets filled in later. Still, I feel like it would have made more sense for Sheila to have met Bill a little earlier and started something with him then. After all, while Sheila was living with Deacon, he did say she disappeared for hours at a time. Could she not have been with Bill?

Steffy and Finn kept trying to get through to Bill, hoping he'd see the insanity in what he was doing. But Bill was strangely robotic, not just in that scene, but pretty much in every scene he was in this week. Some of you think this Bill is really Deacon in a Bill mask. Possible -- Deacon is conspicuously absent right now, supposedly overseas brokering a deal to buy Il Giardino, though I don't know how a janitor could afford a flight, let alone a restaurant.

I can't help wondering if Sheila has poisoned Bill's necklace. It's not like she hasn't tainted trinkets before -- on Y&R in 2005, Sheila dosed a charm Lauren was wearing and drove Lauren so crazy, she was ready to jump off a building. Bill putting his sword necklace back on, out of the blue, after so many years does rather time out with all this, and it would redeem him later to not have been in control of his actions.

Let's not forget, though, that Sheila is not Bill's first crazy lady, drugged or not. Otherwise, Wyatt wouldn't be here, and Bill did have all that funky S&M sex with Quinn circa 2013. Quinn had stabbed Bill with his necklace and licked the blood off; Sheila must have watched, because she stabbed herself with the sword and smeared her blood on her lip. Then she kissed Bill. Eww. Just eww. A nurse should know that's unhygienic!

After all this blood in the afternoon -- I mean, er, love in the afternoon, Bill and Sheila got down to business. Sheila would go to jail, but Bill would fix it so she emerged a free woman. So, the subdued, nearly catatonic Bill became the most animated he had all week, bellowing to Lieutenant Baker that he had apprehended Sheila in his house. Ah, Lt. Baker. He's only been on Sheila's case since 1998. Too bad no flashbacks.

POST NO BILLS

Poor Finn had more to deal with that night than bullet scars and coitus interruptus with his wife. The doc couldn't quite put together why Bill had his blackmail information on Taylor in the first place. After all, Finn has only known Krista Allen's sweet, world-renowned shrink Taylor! But Hunter Tylo's Taylor spent her final year on B&B with all the cuckoos having flown from the cuckoo's nest...

...a detail we are finally addressing. As I said before, the show completely ignored that part of Taylor's past when Krista Allen was cast, and it was maddening. B&B brought it back this week -- and how! Steffy was forced to explain exactly what had driven Taylor to use Bill for target practice, and Steffy accurately recounted how Liam had kissed another woman (now-Y&R's Sally Spectra), a smooch that landed Steffy in bed with Bill.

Finn did not like it! He kept most of his cool but balled up his fist! Rut-ro! Yes, Finn, first you had to deal with Steffy thinking Liam was Hayes's father, and now you find out Steffy lifted up her skirt for her father-in-law. But hello! Could we be leading to the reveal that Kelly is Bill's daughter, not Liam's? The day Steffy had her paternity test, Bill was loitering around the hospital, and I have speculated about that ever since.

Finn barely had time to absorb that before he found out the next morning that Sheila had been arrested -- because Bill had turned her in. Sinn couldn't make heads nor tails of that. Why did Bill threaten to have Taylor arrested if Sinn blew the whistle on Sheila, only to turn Sheila in himself? In my mind, that kind of negated Bill's threat. With Sheila already in jail, Bill lost his leverage.

Do you think Bill has gained another enemy in Finn? Not that Steffy's past before meeting Finn should bother him that much, unless her behavior is something that could repeat in the present. Finn seemed to understand Taylor's rationale for popping a cap in Bill, too! Shame that Steffy left out the part about Ridge getting Taylor all riled up. This is really all kind of Ridge's fault, when you think about it.

I'M JUST A BILL

For a house that's reportedly all "Fort Knox" with security, Bill sure leaves his door unlocked for people to tramp in a lot. He should just put in a revolving one, the way visitors charged in and out this week. First up was Liam and the oft-missing Wyatt, who were perplexed by what the hell was going on with their pop. He wasn't there, but an earring and blonde wig were found, thanks to Wyatt's sleuthing abilities.

Was Bill trying out for RuPaul's Drag Race? The Spencer bros didn't go there, but Wyatt did piece it together that Sheila might have been in residence, given Steffy's description of the once-masked crusader. Wyatt wanted to call the cops -- and did, after Liam checked with Bill's security dude. Turned out the stereotypical storm (Sheila arrived to thunder and lightning in 2002 already) had knocked out Bill's entire system, including the cameras.

Liam and Wyatt managed to find Bill at home later and grilled him on why Sheila would have been at Casa Spencer in the first place, whether or not she had been arrested. Bill spouted some monotone mumblings to justify her presence and corrected his boys when they insisted that Sheila was a lunatic. Bill's "Spencey senses" may be dulled, but his kids' are on full display. They knew something was off.

I've got to tell you, the wig and earring doesn't track with Bill saying that Sheila just showed up at his house. If that were true, why would her stuff be stuffed between and under the couch? That little tidbit better come back to bite someone in the butt, or else there's no sense in its being. Wyatt and Liam weren't the only ones to scratch their heads at Bill's rationale. Finn and Steffy did, too, as did Katie.

With Sheila in jail, Steffy figured that there was no reason for Bill to send Taylor there in addition. Steffy admitted that Taylor's reaction to their ugly bumping had been extreme but also that Taylor hadn't been in her right mind then. Finally. I've only waited a year for this to come out. Steffy sympathized about how alone Bill had been feeling, but his actions made no sense. Did Sheila have something on him?

Indeed! I don't know what that could be, outside of trying to kill Amber and breaking Deacon out of jail, in 2011 and 2012 respectively, though I don't know if there are any statutes of limitations to expire in those cases. Bill simply gravitating toward a woman who "gets" him after being dumped by sisters he hasn't had relationships with for years isn't enough to explain his one-eighty.

Bill listened as Steffy argued that a free Sheila meant nothing but trouble for her family. "I hear what you're saying," Bill murmured. But Bill felt that Steffy didn't understand his loneliness or his feeling that everyone had turned their backs on him. Therefore, the ultimatum stood. If Steffy and Finn pressed charges against Sheila, then Bill would report Taylor shooting him to the police.

I don't know if having Sheila arrested and pressing charges against her is the same thing, at least in term of Bill's threat. Remember, I said that Sheila being in jail negated the demand. I guess Bill switching it to pressing charges fills in that blank, but it felt like the threat was neutralized then Bill just found a new way to make it. In either case, Steffy believed Bill had suffered a psychotic break, and so far, I can't disagree. Hell, why not. Everyone on this show goes crazy!

Ah, that L.A. smog. Anyway, Bill's next visitor was Katie, who deemed Bill a hero more than once for being the one to get menace Sheila out of society. Katie got emotional at the thought that Sheila could have hurt Bill, which surprised him. His pity party is that intense that he thinks Katie doesn't even care about him just because she didn't want a fourth (or would it have been fifth?) go-round with him?

There's something in Bill that still seems very whiny and childish with all this. If Liam was all boo-hoo about the women in his life not wanting him, Bill would tell Liam to man up before Liam could even get tofu out of the package. Yet Bill is on this deep a downslide? Perhaps Katie is right that Bill is extra vulnerable, and perhaps Sheila did see a mark in him at his lowest moment.

I'll reiterate that it's very possible Sheila has poisoned Bill's necklace. It would explain his physical apathy, and B&B made a point to have Sheila mention the sword herself. I would call that foreshadowing, but we shall see. Katie didn't think Bill needed to wear the necklace anymore, but he was adamant that he continue. I dunno. There's something more than an albatross hanging around Bill's neck these days!

BILL-ABLE HOURS

Lest you think Bill Spencer was the only person in the City of Angels this week, Mike Guthrie showed up as Sheila's prison buddy! As you likely recall, he helped Sheila escape the pokey last June, and us long-timers remember Mike from all the way back to 1992, when he actually worked against Sheila by spinning the carousel containing Eric and Ridge's blood samples for Bridget's paternity test that Sheila was hoping to rig.

The next year, Mike tried to blackmail Sheila into giving him a job at Forrester. She responded by siccing a Doberman on him, and after that, Mike was in love. And still is! As they sat in the visitors' area, Mike told Sheila, "We can finally be together! Sort of." But poor Mike got voted down yet again like a certain congressional hopeful last week. Sheila had her own contacts, and she gloated that she wouldn't be imprisoned long.

Should Sheila be saying things like that with guards and other prison employees roaming about? Way to put a target on your back, Sheila. And Mike, I think it's time to face the fact that she's just not that into you. The guy must be in his 60s, and he's spent half his life pining for a woman who wants to get with every other guy but him. But Mike wasn't Sheila's only visitor this week. Li popped by to say hello, as well!

Another point I made in my Best & Worst two weeks ago was that the meowfest of Li and Sheila was not to be ignored. This week proved no different, as Li crowed that she "had to come feast my eyes on [the] glorious sight" of Sheila being in jail, while Sheila still had her own arsenal of comebacks. Neither woman blinked. I tell ya, Li is fierce! Not just anybody can go up against Sheila and not flinch.

Which brings me back to my ongoing supposition that Bill should have chosen Li as his lady. Li would also let Bill be who he is, and she's shown she can be as ruthless as he is -- plus, she's not even wanted by the law. Sheila made the rare move of playing up her commonalities with Li, remarking how they were both strong women and both Finn's mothers. But Li wasn't about any of it.

Li knew that Sheila experienced fear like everyone else, and she bragged that Hayes would grow up never knowing who his biological grandmother was. Not once, but twice, Sheila erupted into what's becoming her signature cackle. Once was already enough. It's just too on-the-nose. But then, Two Scoops reader Rhonda observed that B&B has "fallen into telenovela mode. The exaggerated facial expressions, lingering stare shots, it's flat-out Univision."

I'd have to agree! Unfortunately for Sheila, she's been written like a cartoon since her 2002 return. During her initial B&B run from 1992 to 1998, Sheila was trying so hard to be good but just couldn't help being bad -- and that's what made her interesting. She had levels. She was more sane than crazy. For the past two decades, she's been straight-up bats**t. And I don't find that nearly as compelling.

Sheila also really ought to learn not to give herself away. There she was, vowing to Li that she'd be in the lives of Finn and Hayes again. If you have a big, secret, nefarious plan, isn't it better to keep your mouth shut about it? Of course, if Li hadn't slipped and referred to Finn in the present tense the last time she was in that room with Sheila, Sheila likely wouldn't have escaped, and none of what happened after would have.

BILL AND COO

As Steffy and Finn weighed the consequences of jailing Sheila over jailing Taylor, I kept thinking that Sinn should just bring Taylor into the conversation. I mean, the whole sitch only concerns her. Maybe, by talking it out with Taylor, they could all figure out a way to untie the noose Bill had hanging over Taylor's head. And who should let herself into the cliff house through another unlocked door? Taylor!

Oh, this would be it, I thought. It was time for Taylor to take control of it all. She could certainly plead temporary insanity if Bill brought her to trial. But what did the Tay-Tay do? She sat there, bleating on about how 2023 was going to be her best year yet. And Steffy didn't want to burst that bubble, I suppose. Still, what I would have given to see Taylor, in Krista Allen's guise, take responsibility for shooting Bill.

Then Lt. Baker arrived, at night, to review Steffy and Finn's statements for Sheila's upcoming trial. But there were barely any statements to be had. Just a lot of cryptic remarks that allowed Sinn to tell the truth without telling the truth, and after that, Steffy made a big speech to Taylor about how she would do what she had to so that Taylor could have that awesome 2023 -- but came nowhere close to cluing Taylor in. Bummer!

Personally, I'm jazzed that Sheila's actually going to have a trial! She's only ever had parole hearings, back in the mid-'90s when I'd hoped such a trial would reveal the extent of the abuse Sheila suffered as a child that made her the way she was. But that ship has sailed. There have been too many fake identities, too many disguises, too many mystery kids, too many bees. And way too many bullets. No info about Sheila's childhood would engender sympathy now.

Finally, of all things, Bill went to see Sheila in prison! Apparently, he made a good show of pretending to be furious with her as he pulled strings to get in, but he really wanted to see how she was doing. Don't they have cameras in those visiting rooms? Seems Bill did something or other to ensure their privacy in there, but he still advised caution and kept Sheila from expressing any kind of affection, just in case.

Evidently moved by Katie's show of concern for him, Bill had started wondering if Sheila's feelings for him were real. This is where she talked about finding a connection she never had before, but she didn't really give a direct answer. Rather, she turned it around on him, to which he didn't really give a direct answer. Why the subterfuge? It was hardly the time for a lack of clarity.

"You really think this can work?" Bill wanted to know. This is where he and Sheila got into why she followed him from Il Giardino "that night," having the beach talk, etc. "My God, what does that say about me?" Bill asked when Sheila noted how he hadn't turned her in -- a rare show of lucidity in Bill's current brain fog. Sheila wanted to be sure that Bill wasn't wavering, which he sure appeared to be doing.

"If we pull this off, I lose everyone!" Bill growled. Yeah, maybe ya shoulda thoughta that before you took Sheila home from the beach. Seriously, dude, if you were that lonely, Santa Monica Boulevard is full of "bad girls," if you know what I mean. Toot toot, hah. Beep beep. Sheila finally championed Bill as someone who could handle her, and she assured him she was telling the truth about her feelings for him.

Guess whatever feelings she had for Deacon were a flash in the pan, eh? I will fully admit to all of you that this story is out of nowhere, barely plausible, and character assassinating. But you know what? I'm very intrigued, and I want to see where it goes. For the first time in a long time, B&B has captured my true interest. Not a bad way to start out 2023, if you ask me -- and it's been a relief not to see Ridge or Thomas or Hope or Liam or Brooke. Now if we could just do something about keeping Carter off the screen for a while. I like him, but I'm still not buying this relationship with him and Katie!

What do you think of this Bill/Sheila bill of goods? Is it just soapy enough to entice you? Is it just too off the rails to engage you? Is it high time Taylor was finally held to account for blasting a hole in Bill? Will the news of Steffy's romp with Bill get far enough under Finn's skin that Finn will act on it? And should it be Li on Bill's arm instead of Sheila? Notate all your B&B resolutions for the new year in the Comments section below or the Soap Central message boards, or simply click here to submit feedback. Your comments could end up in a future column! Like these!

"I hear about this 'ruining Bill' all the time. What was there to ruin? His list of criminal actions are almost as long as Sheila's. If you don't believe me go to his character profile on this site. Bill is a pill." -- "shakethatthing"

"Hard to see how this will work. Sheila can't live openly with Bill. She's a wanted criminal, so someone's bound to spot her, even if the family keeps quiet. At least Taylor shooting Bill has FINALLY been acknowledged. Oops. Steffy obviously hadn't mentioned it to Finn before. Trouble there, especially as she's so down on his mum for being violent." -- Eva

For extra fun, check out Don Diamont and Kimberlin Brown's classic interaction when Y&R's Brad Carlton came to visit Sheila in 1993!

Whoo! Down is up and up is down on B&B right now, so keep watching, be alert, and most of all, be bold! See you in two weeks, my Scoopnesses!
AMJ

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