Who are you and what have you done with Dollar Bill Spencer?

For the Week of January 23, 2023
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Word got around Los Angeles this week that Bill Spencer had taken up with Sheila Carter. While his exes and kids reeled, Taylor was willing to negate Bill's blackmail by serving time for shooting him. But could it be true that someone else tried to devalue the Dollar? Dish the story everyone's dishing with Two Scoops' Mike!

Has your week been bold and beautiful? Did you offer to fall on the knife you didn't bring to a gun fight? Did you hear the same argument so many times you even commented on it? Did you recall something that could make you, and not someone else, a guilty party? These and more situations faced the Forrester-Logan-Spencer-Walton-Finnegan clan this week!

What a different B&B we've got in front of us, Scoopers! I know I've been scratching my head 'til it bleeds, trying to figure out what in the soap hell is going on. But it's a lot more entertaining than watching Ridge Ping-Pong between Brooke and Taylor for the 81st time. And, for whatever its plausibilities or implausibilities, this Bill/Sheila saga certain has people talking!

Seriously, the soap groups I frequent on Facebook are chock-full of chatter about it, with folks trying to figure out what exactly is driving Bill to bed down with Sheila, of all people. The reactions have ranged from eye rolls to disgust to genuine intrigue. I must say, I'm in the latter category. I don't know what to make of any of it, but B&B is the most interesting right now that it's been in years!

That it cycles back to Bill's shooting, one of the only other truly compelling arcs to play out in recent history, makes it all the more fascinating to me. Not that Beila (Shill?) hasn't been coming, with its share of repetitive dialogue and other silliness. But Don Diamont's performance is adding to the mystery of Bill's motivation -- and holy concussions, Batman, could Bill be doing it all to protect Liam? Let's Scoop about it!

HIT ME WITH YOUR BEST SHOT

Steffy and Taylor did their best not to blow chunks as Bill and Sheila kissed on each other, professing their undying love. While all our focus has been on Bill, let's examine Sheila for a moment. Was her time with Deacon just a fling? It's certainly true that they boinked a lot, but the "L" word was never discussed. Yet Bill, whom Sheila has been with for a much shorter time, is the one she is declaring the love of her life.

It may just fit her pathology that she would invest that much that fast. "Surely whoever speaks to me in the right voice," as Walt Whitman wrote. And look how obsessed Sheila was with Scott on Y&R in the early '90s. Her brand of fixated love returned when she wanted Eric back in 2002. Her naysayers say she can't love, but Sheila can -- just not without losing herself in it and breaking laws to protect it.

It was the same when Finn entered Sheila's life! If anything, Sheila's maternal love turned out to be even more toxic than her romantic love. So, I can see why she's placed so much importance on the love Bill has declared for her. Now, Sheila may be good with a gun, but Taylor made a major move to take the bullets out of it that had me yelling "Oh, yeah!" like the Kool-Aid Man! Well, yelling on the inside, at least.

Taylor decided that Bill would have nothing over her if she merely turned herself in to the police for shooting him. With that, Steffy and Finn could have Sheila arrested and this time testify properly, putting Sheila back behind bars. Yes! I mean, I've been thinking that since this whole "Taylor's freedom for Sheila's freedom" bit started. Taylor certainly could neutralize Bill, and it wouldn't be the first time Taylor sacrificed herself in the name of love. (Maintaining her "death" and marrying Prince Omar so Ridge could be happy with Brooke, anyone?)

Steffy, and later Brooke off-screen, talked Taylor out of it, citing Bill's ability to buy whatever judge Taylor would go in front of. Couldn't Steffy and Finn warn Lt. Baker so that a judge could be put on the case who couldn't be bought? For that matter, why don't Steffy and Finn threaten to report Bill for paying off a judge? Hell, new buddy Deacon could help establish a pattern by revealing how Bill bribed a warden into releasing Deacon in 2012. Bill may be holding all the cards right now, but several of them are bent.

WE'RE NOT GONNA TAKE IT

Carter was indignant when he heard that Sheila had been released from the pokey. "She has a list of charges, and there's not even a full trial?" he asked in disbelief. Indeed. I was looking forward to Sheila having an actual trial, though I can understand how breaking out a court set would be budget breaking. Carter's right, however. While the water was muddied regarding Sheila's prison bust, many of you have pointed out that Steffy and Finn's word alone wouldn't determine whether or not Sheila did more time.

And let's talk about this muddy water! Finn reported to Li that Judge McMullen had said Mike Guthrie forced Sheila to escape jail against her will?! Like, how is that even possible? "Leave this correction facility now, or I will do horrible things to you!" That part of this makes no sense. No more than any of Bill's actions did to Katie, who paid a visit to her ex in an attempt to get through to him.

Bill said nothing as Katie railed, begged, and pleaded. In fact, he stared at the floor for much of Katie's intervention, as he had done when Taylor and Steffy had attempted the same. Bill still seems very robotic through a lot of this. The only time Bill responded to Katie was when he stoically uttered, "I would never let anything happen to my kids."

Similarly, one of Bill's few retorts to Steffy was when he insisted, "Sheila will not be a threat to you, your mother, or anyone else." That got my gray matter graying. Has Bill forced himself into the position of human shield to protect everyone from Sheila? Katie's words added weight to this contention when she noted that Bill never does anything without a reason.

"This is not you," Katie avowed, and it's true that she would know. Bill all but shut down at Katie's entreaty, his eyes welling up as Sheila stood beside him, telling Katie how much she and Bill loved each other. Can Sheila not see that Bill isn't really into it? Sheila even wiped away a tear from Bill's face afterwards, sympathizing that having to face Katie in that way couldn't have been easy.

Bill's eyes seem dead to me, which makes me even more suspicious he might be drugged. Yet, he does perk up when he's alone with Sheila. Maddening, isn't it? I kind of like that I can't figure out why Bill is romancing Sheila. It's a nice change of pace from being able to see plot twists a mile away. And Katie desperately wanting to know how Bill was going to explain Sheila's presence to Will was a nice touch.

Over in Malibu, Steffy and Finn were worried about what Sheila could do with the ability to roam free but continued to keep their door unlocked for people to walk through. Li barreled in, animated by the news of Sheila's freedom. Hearing Finn and Steffy were being blackmailed, though not being told with what, Li decided to straighten out the whole mess herself. She would testify against Sheila!

And I loved that idea! But it seems Bill had that base covered, too. If Li called the law, he would explain how she smuggled her son's not-dead body out of the hospital. Ooh, way to tie the hands. That's actually a good piece of plotting. B&B, for its sloppy story-writing of late, seems to have cut off everyone's escape route in regard to Sheila. Not that Taylor couldn't legitimately claim temporary insanity as her reason for shooting Bill. Might be hard to prove, but there were plenty of witnesses.

POUR SOME SUGAR ON ME

Bill told Sheila that he enjoyed seeing her smile and how happy she was. As they cuddled, Bill asked Sheila what she was going to do with her freedom. Sheila just wanted to move about within the parameters of that freedom and stopped herself when she started to say that she wanted to figure out how to get revenge on the Forresters. No, she was beyond that, thanks to Bill. For now.

Shouldn't Sheila's post-prison project be ingratiating herself to Finn and Hayes? They were all she talked about the entire time she was with Deacon. Now that she isn't "dead" or incarcerated, she hasn't made a single request to see her grandson. I suppose I'd be distracted if I were being held in Bill's big, strong arms, too. But Bill let down his walls enough to let Sheila know he was guilty of his own serious infractions.

We then got flashbacks to Bill having Ridge dumped out of the helicopter in Abu Dhabi and how he blew up the Spectra building -- though it was weird that Sheila expressed relief that Liam and Sally had gotten through the explosion okay. Bill would have had to have told Sheila about that already for her to comment thusly. But Bill did drop a major hint when he stated that the one thing he couldn't take was being walked out on.

That's gloriously consistent. Bill was already telling Katie that in 2011 and 2012, when she took a break from him for the way he tried to kill Amber and sprung Deacon from the slammer. It's one more puzzle piece of Bill's behavior. Is he simply trying to fill an abandonment hole? Is he trying to protect someone that's not himself? Sheila noticed Bill's quietness after they made some whoopee, but Bill said Sheila was what he needed after his failed attempt to fit in with the Forresters and the Logans. Hmm.

PAPA'S GOT A BRAND-NEW BAG

Hope and Liam, having entered Casa Malibu through said same unlocked door, got bruises on their jaws from where they hit the floor when Steffy and Finn reiterated Bill's profession of love to Sheila. Just when they thought a simple pregnancy by one-night stand because of a mannequin was a tough nut to crack! At least Finn and Leffy/Lope could talk freely about Bill using Taylor's gunplay against them, though I don't know when Finn was told who was and wasn't privy to that information.

To my recollection, only Steffy, Liam, Hope, Brooke, now Finn and Sheila, and of course Bill and Taylor, know about that windy, bullet-flying night. So, it was good when Finn didn't go into the details of Bill's blackmail with Li and when Liam stayed mum about them with Wyatt. Liam and Wyatt were both incensed that Bill kept calling in sick to work.

Bill's the head honcho of Spencer Publications -- does he really need to make excuses for his actions? Conversely, don't you think Bill would be worried about how all this is affecting his precious business? It was in the news that he played a part in Sheila's release; who knows how many clients Bill could lose from the association? I'm surprised that's not coming up, given how important the corporate world is to him.

Well, the Spencer bros came to the conclusion that if neither Steffy nor Katie could reach Bill, then they certainly could. Liam tried to impress on his dad and sometime rival that it was normal to feel down in the dumps after back-to-back romantic disappointments like the rejections of Brooke and Katie. Bill started staring at the floor again, and his Bill-bot mannerisms took hold. Was Team Spencer succeeding?

Nope! Bill didn't even react when Wyatt exclaimed, "You even love money more than you think you love her" (which is not an unfair statement). Instead, as Liam ignored Sheila and Wyatt told her to shut up, Bill announced that his boys would show Sheila respect. Game over. Liam and Wyatt had no answer for that and left to lick their wounds. Sheila was chuffed that Bill continued to stand up for her.

Yet, when Sheila sat down on the couch alone, she laughed to herself as she recalled Bill's confession about not being able to handle abandonment. Did Sheila see the dejected Bill at Il Giardino, as we've been told, and follow him to the beach with a plan to use that vulnerability against him? Is that why Bill is "hollow" and "muted," the way Liam accurately says he is?

I thought maybe Sheila had drugged Bill's necklace, which still comes into play and would still explain his Stepfordness, but then he wore a long-sleeved T, which prevented the sword's exposure to his skin. B&B wardrobe malfunction, or is the sword a red herring? I must say, it baffles me that I can't figure this out. And I'm getting more of a kick out of that than I expected.

I SHOT THE SHERIFF?

Steffy was tired of being the victim of Bill and Sheila. "No one threatens my family and gets away with it," she told Finn. "I don't know how, but I'm gonna figure out something." Now that's the granddaughter of Gangsta Granny that we know! If Steffy could seduce Forrester's shares out of Bill all those years ago, surely, she can find a way to circumvent Bill's extortion.

Hope came to see Steffy at FC, saying, "No one would blame you if you just want to be home with your family." That would be true if everyone knew Bill was holding Taylor's pistol-waving over Steffy's head, but Eric and Ridge aren't in that loop -- wouldn't they wonder why Steffy was playing hooky? A better bit was when Hope hushed herself and checked the door before talking about Taylor, with Steffy turning toward the door, as well.

I gotta admit, it was nice to see Steffy and Hope on the same team again after Steffy pulled the plug on their truce over Tridge. Steffy lamented that she felt like the Bill/Sheila situation would never end, contradicting her determination to Finn the evening prior. Thankfully, Steffy got her mojo back and told Hope that her ex-fling and her shooter had made a mistake she was going to make them regret!

I do hope Steffy is planning some real kind of payback and isn't just frontin'. When Steffy uses her bitch powers for good, she is unstoppable, and what fun that would be to see. As for Hope, she went home to Liam, who was flattened by his attempt to set his father straight. Liam couldn't believe that Sheila had convinced Bill to break his promise to not rat Taylor out for shooting him.

I can't help wondering how Sheila could even know that Taylor popped a cap in Bill. I mean, Sheila was actually on the canvas during that time; in fact, she was a suspect in that shooting! The last time we saw Sheila in 2018, before her three-year absence, Ridge was grilling Sheila, certain that she had gunned Bill down. But Taylor's involvement? Bill must have told Sheila, though I can't fathom why. Not unless Bill brought it up as leverage to use to prevent Finn and Steffy's testimony.

Or maybe Sheila saw the scar during her first hookup with Bill and asked about it. But I digress, because Hope and Liam got into an engrossing and continuity-honoring confab about how Taylor hadn't been herself when she'd shot Bill...and how Liam had thought that he'd done the deed! Hope mentioned the concussion Liam had sustained the night of the shooting, and Liam vividly remembered seeing himself pulling the trigger.

Are your "Spency senses" tingling, Scoopers? Because the way Liam was talking, with him adding that he'd still be blaming himself for Bill's shooting if Taylor hadn't stepped forward, put me on high alert. Why would this even come up if it didn't mean something? Okay, I know B&B brings up lots of stuff that never bears fruit. But this? There may indeed be a reason Bill is defending Sheila, but it's not poisoning or psychological warfare.

Did Katie not say that Bill has always been a man who would do anything to protect his family? What if Liam really did shoot Bill? And what if Sheila, who I remind you was around when Bill was shot, found out about Liam's culpability and threatened to have Liam thrown in jail if Bill didn't do what she wanted? It can't just be random that Liam thinking he popped his pop is being addressed now. It just can't.

I'D DO ANYTHING FOR LOVE (BUT I WON'T DO THAT)

Even though the news of Sheila's release had already been out long enough for Bill to read about it on his phone, Brooke still had to be told about it by Hope and Liam. Hope asked the operative question when she pondered, "Is there a way to prove that Judge McMullen has been bought? Or to assign another judge to the case?" Very astute! Hope's been watching Law and Order with Beth again.

Actually, the one way McMullen could be proven buyable is for Ridge to admit how he was able to sway his pal in Will's custody case. But I guess then Ridge would have to face the music on that one. As for another judge, Liam figured that Bill would just buy whoever took the bench. I don't know that I agree with that, but Hope thought it made sense when Liam suggested that Brooke might the only one who could get Bill to see the error of his Sheila ways.

Brooke didn't want Taylor to go to jail for shooting Bill, empathizing with her former enemy. Well! Brooke has certainly changed her tune from the days she was ready to turn Taylor in herself and Taylor dropped to her knees and begged Brooke not to. Which is just as well, because that whole exchange was pretty pathetic. It's sad that Hunter Tylo's turn as Taylor ended with Taylor in such a demented place.

Over at Bill's, Sheila either played him like a concert grand or showed him rare compassion. She knew it was tough for Bill to take all the flak he was getting from everyone, and she offered him an ear, wanting to be a positive influence in his life. She then offered Bill an out, even though she had just done so the day before and he didn't walk through the door that she had opened.

Brooke arrived and shot daggers at Sheila, as Sheila observed. It's too bad that the fact that Brooke and Sheila were once best buds has never come up since Sheila's return in 2021. Sheila was Brooke's liaison when Brooke took over as Forrester's CEO in 1993; Sheila still thought Brooke was her bestie in 1996 after her first release from prison. It would sure add some layers for that to play into their current hostilities.

Steffy, Katie, Wyatt, and Liam must all have agreed on a script to fall back on in trying to bring Bill back from the Dark Side, because Brooke pretty much hit all the same points in trying to do the same. Like Katie, she wanted Bill to take off the necklace. I wonder what would have happened if he did? But Brooke went off script and took the conversation in a direction that made my eyebrow arch just a bit.

Brooke reminded Bill that, not long ago, he had professed his love for her. It was incredulous to Brooke that Bill could make that same declaration for Sheila so soon afterwards. Brooke could see how much her rejection had hurt him. I half expected Brooke to proclaim that she wanted to be with Bill, after all -- even if it was just to snap Bill out of whatever had him devoted to Sheila!

That didn't happen -- yet -- but Brooke recollected that Bill had said he would do anything for her. She needed him to do that now by calling the cops on Sheila! Bill was still an automaton, but a glimmer of recognition did seem to flicker across his furry face. "You're right, Brooke," he monotoned. "Everything you're saying." Yow! Is Bill gonna do it? Was Brooke's influence enough for Sheila to have to sing a chorus of Jailhouse Rock?

This Bill/Sheila storyline has sure fired up viewers! And polarized us -- some of us are curious to see where it goes, and some of us hate it. Where are you on that scale? Could Taylor really defuse the situation by turning herself in? Is Bill romancing Sheila as a way to tame her and keep her from hurting his family? And could Liam have pulled the trigger on Bill, after all? Rock steady 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!

"Bill is blackmailing Steffy to not press charges against the SheDevil. But individuals do not press charges, only a municipal, state, or federal attorney can decide to charge someone with a crime and file a charging document. Prosecutors decide whether or not to do so based on evidence provided by people and police, but the latter two never press charges. And what about Li? Bill hasn't asked her not to 'press charges' against the SheDevil for assault and running her off the road! Should this show be renamed The Insane and the Beautiful? Is there anyone...who is not a lunatic on this...soap?" -- Rob

"I understand Bill's character isn't the most moral of individuals but to throw this scenario at us when there wasn't any interaction between them on screen and then he's at Steffy's defending her is not good writing." -- "patriciasweeneytraphagen"

Any of you who have read my columns for any length of time know that I'm usually the first to shake my head at what we see on our screens. But I'm still among the number who is able and willing to see where this Bill/Sheila thing goes. There's bound to be a reason Bill is doing what he's doing, and the only way to find out is to keep watching, be alert, and most of all, be bold! See you in two weeks, my Scoopnesses!

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