I left my Hope in San Francisco

For the Week of May 15, 2023
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Many were they who wrung their hands about Hope, she who remained stuck on her lusty longings for her stalker and tormenter, Thomas. The specter of Brooke Logan's lasciviousness loomed large, but is this twist on the usual Hope/Thomas happenings something B&B should even be attempting? Cross over with Two Scoops' Mike!

Has your week been bold and beautiful? Did you want your former rival to do as you said, but not as you did? Were you more and more of the opinion that guys who torment are totally trippindicular? Did you keep trying to push a story that is all in the family? These and more situations faced the Forrester-Logan-Spencer-Walton clan this week!

My, my, my, Scoopers. In the middle of what I still assume is May Sweeps, famous for hot stories coming to a head and explosions setting off months of story, B&B led with a full week of handwringing about Hope and Hope's contrivance-filled hop to San Francisco with Thomas. That's it! Not only is the one track tedious, but I keep wondering -- should B&B even be shipping Hope/Thomas? Let's Scoop about it!

BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER

I'm gonna break it down for you guys. B&B has basically been teasing out the idea of a Hope/Thomas pairing since early 2012. That's eleven years -- in real time. It was one thing for Brooke to bounce between brothers, or Nick to bounce between sisters. But "Hot," or Thope, came to us hot off the icky heels of the Rick/Steffy pairing. You know, because stepsiblings. If Steffy could do it, apparently, it was all right for brother Thomas, too.

As implied by its title, this soap started off with beautiful people doing bold things. Somewhere along the line, however, pseudo-incestuous almost-pairings were added to this definition of "bold" -- starting with Ridge making goo-goo eyes at I-thought-she-was-my-daughter Bridget in 2003. It didn't matter that Eric turned out to be Bridget's father but not Ridge's. It was still eww. Just eww!

But Ridge has nothing on his son, who has been coveting his most-of-the-time stepsister for over a decade, except when Pierson Fodé was playing him; Hope was off the canvas at the time. In Matthew Atkinson's personage, Tommy Boy has wanted Hope so badly that he kept secrets, let someone die, partook in kidnapping, faked a death, terrorized a child, and tried a gaslight wedding to someone else.

Now Thomas is supposedly all better, and I might be able to move on from his misdeeds if he was given something new to do and a new, real love interest. But no -- the saga continues, and this time, it's Hope who's getting all weak in the...er, knees over Thomas, her one-time tormenter. How mentally ill do you have to be to lust after someone who's put you through that much of a wringer?

Don't get me wrong -- I am all for Hope exploring her darker side. After all, she was born of scandal, and her parents are ex-Slut from the Valley Brooke and ex-convict Deacon. Hope was bound to have some latent naughty DNA present itself. But it's just nasty to have her wanting Thomas in any way, even professionally, and at this point, Hope needs therapy more than Thomas does.

Could it be that Hope is simply acting from the trauma Thomas inflicted on her that she hasn't dealt with? That's the only way I can excuse her getting so flustered over touching Thomas' hands that his sister Steffy raked Hope over the coals for it. "You were flirting with him!" Steffy cried, aghast. "Are you actually turning into your mother?"

That was kind of out of left field, but that does seem to be the implication we've been getting the past several weeks. Hope's Logan DNA is asserting itself! Never mind that daddy Deacon committed actual crimes, even as Brooke committed, or tried to commit, sins of the flesh. But should Steffy be shining up that glass house she's rented out?

After all, Miss Sexy CEO canoodled with a married Bill, tried to steal Hope's boyfriends, and had to have paternity tests run on both her children. If anything, for a while, it looked like Steffy was meant to mirror Brooke while Hope was meant to mirror Taylor. Of course, by now, everyone's gone amok. The only thing Steffy was right about was her worry that any attention from Hope would reignite Thomas' obsession with Hope.

Another interesting question Steffy posed to Hope was, "Do you miss [Thomas'] affection for you?" Sometimes attention, even of the unwanted variety, can be flattering in an unconscious way. But seriously, I just can't with this story. I don't need it to go any further; can we end it now? Please? Imagine what Virgin Hope would think of HFTF now being run by a future self who wants her victimizing stepbrother!

OPEN THE GATE

The only slight deviation from this skeevy tale this week was R.J.'s strange bonding moment with half-bro Thomas. Strange because R.J. had already taken Thomas to task two weeks ago over Thomas faking the CPS call that broke up R.J.'s parents...and here, though Ridge's sons had already seemingly formed even a temporary truce, R.J. was quick to remind Thomas that he had crossed lines.

R.J. wanted to know how things were going between Thomas and Hope, and asked if Thomas could accept that things would only be platonic with his half-sister. Thomas reassured R.J. once again, which seemed to be enough, because minutes later, Thomas was offering to have a sketch sesh with R.J., and they commiserated over Ridge continuing to pressure R.J. into taking a job at Forrester.

But that was the only break we got. Across town, Finn and Steffy were doing what they do best -- having sexy time. That is, if you consider throwing cold water on the affair by talking to your husband about your brother's connection to his former obsession sexy. Things went further over at the Logan cabin, where Hope decided to enact a full-blown seduction of Liam.

Liam wasn't complaining but again noted that Hope's lovemaking had never been more passionate. What does that say about all the other romantic interludes they've had since Hope lost her virginity to Liam back in the day? Was she just tepid up until now? And I actually feel bad for Liam, because he's really hunked out over the years, and here Hope can now only get really worked up over him because of Thomas. Dude.

SILENCE IS GOLDEN

Thomas continued to be one of only two major topics of conversation in the City of Angels -- as proven by Taylor, who popped by Forrester to see her son and delve into his love life. There was more talk of his professed progress and reassurances that his fixation on Hope was over. Too bad Taylor doesn't have a love life of her own to focus on. Deacon's still available to play pizza boy with you, you know. And Wyatt has experience at that, too. Just ask Katie.

Speaking of Wyatt, he and Liam broke into the workday to talk about how hot-to-trot Hope had been (how do you talk about your sex life with a girl to someone who was also married to said girl? Guys!). Wyatt commented on how far Hope's apple had fallen from Brooke's tree, again hearkening back to La Logan's libidinous exploits. For a week in which Brooke didn't make a single appearance, she was sure there in spirit.

Meanwhile, although Steffy had already ended her previous conversation with Hope with an ominous "I'll be watching you," Steffy returned to again wave a finger at Hope and ask about any inappropriate feelings Hope might be having for Thomas. "I thought we'd already put that matter to rest," Hope replied. Sing it up, girl. But Hope didn't do herself any favors by nervously dropping a water bottle as they crossed swords.

Steffy insisted that she just wanted to make sure that Hope wasn't following any of Brooke's patterns. After this tense exchange, the girls strangely hugged. Couldn't Steffy feel Hope's heart pounding as they embraced? Talk about a biological tip-off. I wish B&B would drop this story like Hope dropped her wawa. Oh. Have I expressed that sentiment already? I'd love to see Deacon get wise to Hope's Thomas thirsting and talk some sense into his daughter!

IF YOU'RE GOIN' TO SAN FRANCISCO

Maybe Donna should have booked two hotel rooms this week -- one for the HFTF presentation Hope and Thomas were slated to make for Forrester buyers in San Francisco, and one for Steffy and Finn, who seemed to think FC's CEO office stood for Carnal Efforts Only. First, Liam interrupted the festivities, and Finn unwisely got Liam going again on Thomas' presence in Hope's life. Good one, Finn.

Even sillier, Finn was now completely Team Thomas, which didn't work out too well for Finn the last time he jumped on that bandwagon. Liam at least had the presence of mind to concede that while he didn't want to just take Thomas' word about his reformation, he didn't want to look for problems where there weren't any. This more Zen approach was put to the test when Hope revealed she was leaving on a jet plane.

Liam was not happy when Hope let him know that she and Thomas had to fly to San Fran, but Liam tried his best to be a buttercup and suck it up. For Finn and Steffy's part, their game of playing house got interrupted again, this time by Thomas. Turned out Steffy, who only runs Forrester Creations with Ridge, was "too busy" with Finn to have heard about the HFTF run up the coast. Some CEO!

Then Sinn's sultriness was pre-empted a third time by a returning Liam! Doesn't Finn have some doctoring to do that doesn't involve Steffy? We all know that office is basically a bordello, but the show really overdid it this week. C**kblock Number Three might have been worth it for Liam snorting about being upset with "my wife's formerly obsessed head designer and her taking a little trippy trip together."

Liam contradictorily said he'd rather Hope travel with anyone else, yet he had "absolute faith" in his wife. It doesn't sound like it to me -- does it to you? Methinks Liam knows on some level that he's slowly becoming second banana to Thomas' banana. Indeed, on the plane, Thomas reaffirmed to Hope that she was safe with him. After all, Hope could never be like man-smasher Brooke. "Not you. Never you."

There's foreshadowing, there's telegraphing, and there's big burning neon signs that make the ones in Times Square look like Lite-Brites. Do we really need to be hit over the head with Hope's sudden similarity to Brooke? What's next -- Hope puts a bed in her office and has a screaming O with Thomas like Brooke did with Deacon? Again, if Hope has to go nympho, it should be with any man but Thomas. Bill would be scandalous!

SAN FRANCISCO TREAT?

"We realize you have a choice of carriers -- thank you for flying Contrivance Airlines!" Our soap took on the role of contortionist, twisting itself up like pretzel to strand Hope with Thomas. First, as mentioned, Donna booked a hotel room for them...so that they'd have a place to make their pitch to the buyers. Don't hotels have conference rooms for that? And yeah, they don't make planes like they used to, because, of course, the Forrester jet picked that moment to have mechanical problems.

"Liam is going to love this," Hope lamented, and it's the only thing she was right about this week. After Hope dropped the bomb that she was going to be stuck in SFO, Liam whined to Steffy that "with my luck," the hotel would be virtually booked, and Thomas would be chivalrous enough to let Hope share the room they had. Steffy told Liam to knock off the negativity; everything was cool with Thomas now.

Okay. So, first there's a convenient hotel room for Hope to be grounded in with Thomas. Next, Thomas tried to book a commercial flight (first world problems) for Hope, knowing she wanted to get home to Liam. And. They. Were. All. Full! Yeah, right! How many different airlines have service from San Francisco to L.A.? Come on. And you know, there's a nice direct route between the burgs on the train. I've ridden it.

There's also nothing saying Hope has to stay at that hotel, if she's really worried about Liam reacting badly to her overnighting in the same building as Thomas. No, it was all drummed up so Hope would be stuck in a room with Thomas, and it's not like we've never seen this ploy before. Remember when Ridge and Quinn had to share a hotel room, also in San Francisco? And y'all know how that turned out.

Yeah, one room and several tequila shots later, sworn enemies Quinn and Ridge were tasting each others' tongues. Is that where we're heading with this? Now that I think of it, I actually made a boo-boo when I said that Hope only got one thing right this week. It was also rather astute of her to find irony in having to reassure Liam, given all that he'd done in the past. Ooh! That tofu coming back to bite you, Liam?

And it was rooted in history when Hope admitted that it hadn't been easy growing up in Brooke's sensual shadow. Some of the judgment passed on Brooke by others, Hope told Thomas, had trickled down to her. Hope found Brooke's tried-and-true excuse of following her heart to be "stupid" because it had led to a "trail of devastation" left behind her.

Brooke, Brooke, Brooke. One thing you gotta say about her -- she rode the marry-go-round with a father, his two sons, and a half-brother of one of those sons, but Brooke never suddenly got the hots for a man who harassed her. For that matter, I don't think any guy in Brooke's life ever came close to doing to her what Thomas did to Hope. Brooke at least had the good sense to steer clear of men like that, unlike Hope now.

"My principles and my morals -- they matter to me," Hope continued confiding to Thomas. That has been consistent since Hope was SORASed into an adult and inexplicably worked themes of purity into a clothing line. But now, Hope was wavering. Thomas gave her a comforting hug, and as they pulled away to face each other, the tension was high. Would they give in and kiss? Maybe more?

It's regrettable that this is what B&B is about right now. There are so many characters and so much potential, yet we're focusing on a woman wanting to reward her abuser, who also happens to be related by marriage most of the time. Bad enough we're living in a world where the goalposts of taste and decency keep getting moved; I don't really need to see it on my soap. Let's chalk this up to some fever dream of Hope's, have her wake up and learn none of this happened, and move on! Like really far away from this!

I dunno, Scoopers! Are you on board with this will-they-or-won't-they with Thomas and Hope, or do you also find it grody? Do you agree or disagree that Hope has a dark side that should be explored? Do you feel Brooke has been a bad influence on Hope? And do you think the show should tell more than one story a week like it used to in its heyday? Cross the bridge, golden or otherwise, into 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!

Hey -- y'all may or may not know that I maintain the Soap Central character profiles for all B&B faces past and present, so click through the complicated histories of all your faves. You might even run across a beloved character you forgot about! In the meantime, Hope and Thomas are on a provocative precipice, so how 'bout we all keep watching, be alert, and most of all, be bold! See you in two weeks, my Scoopnesses!

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