BnB: Voted Most Likely To…

Two months into the new year and I am already thinking about how  the current #boldandbeautiful plots will end.  In the past, that statement would have been an expression of my exasperation and desperation to see this show move forward.  Currently?  I can’t wait to find out which couples survive, and which plots turn into something bigger, something scarier,  or even something more tender!  The Bold and the Beautiful is, hands down, the best in daytime right now.  I am completely obsessed with this show (and the Walking Dead – so make of that what you will)!

By the end of the year, I expect to see the BnB yearbook for 2014 to read as follows:

Voted: Most Likely to Become a Misogynist – Liam Spencer

I’m confused by Liam’s dismay at Katie’s attraction to Ridge.  Neither of them is tied to other people.  Katie’s separation is legal (although it’s not clear to me how she holds Spencer stock since the writers continue to tell us that she is still married to Bill and that the stock offer was supposed to be part of a divorce settlement – part of a future plot twist or just a loose tie?).  Liam not only seemed to cheer on his father’s happiness, but chastised his brother, Wyatt, for daring to be outraged that their father finally had the chance to raise a child, as he was never around to raise them, and that Bill threw that chance away and traded his infant son’s happiness, feelings of safety and well-being, for the sake of another woman.

Liam, more than any of the males on this show, has viewed women as the playthings of the men they are intended to serve.  He is surprisingly sexist for such a young man.  A woman who serves him or his father can do no wrong.  A woman who fails to serve him or his father is evil, bad, deserves shaming.  Both women can engage in the exact same behavior for the same reasons – and it wouldn’t matter to this guy.  Liam’s actions make me think of the conversation he and Bill had about how doing something “nice” blew up in his face and Bill’s immediate reaction was “What have I told you about that?”.  It speaks to the shape of Liam’s character that his father is anyone he should want to emulate or seek advice from.  Bill Spencer is an old school bully and misogynist.  Liam is learning from a master.

No surprise, I imagine Liam to also be voted Most Likely to Rebound – no explanation necessary.

Voted: Most Likely to Succeed – Quinn Fuller

Taylor was such an abject failure as a psychiatrist.  All of the big moments seemed to escape her, but not others.  I’ve often wondered why Quinn wasn’t cast as a psychiatrist with a jewelry making son!  The writing for Quinn is so much better and psychologically nuanced, at times.  Pam only figured out what Quinn was up to, once Charlie spilled the truth about Wyatt and the Hope Diamond, but before that?  She had Pam eating out of the palm of her hand.  I’m assuming it was the left hand, because she already had Eric eating out of her right hand.

Quinn knows how to keep Donna at bay without firing a shot (as Stephanie would have, and I mean that literally – that battle ax was out on the edge).

Quinn knows that Liam is only as faithful as his options (to borrow the old Chris Rock line), so she gave him another option.

Quinn knows that Ally has a raging crush on Liam  while everyone else still sees Ally as a fresh faced girl still trying to figure out how to physically make her way to the elevator leading to Eric’s office, from the mail room downstairs.  Quinn can see Ally’s ambitions at work and at play.

I can’t wait to see more  from Quinn, I think.

Voted: Most Likely to Break Your Heart – Katie Logan and Ridge Forrester

I just know that this one is going to be a toughie!  They are going to fight their passion to the bitter end.  They are going to be called hypocrites from the very people , Brooke and Bill, who self-servingly won’t realize that their actions  ( sleeping around behind Katie’s back while she believed herself to be a happily married woman who boldly turned back a dark time in her marriage) are not the same as Ridge and Katie’s.  KaRi is uncommitted to anyone but the children they are loving and raising.  KaRi are not making promises to others minutes before running off to meet for sleazy sex.

I hope the writers don’t take KaRi down BRill’s dark path.  They deserve better, and so does the audience.  I’m hoping that if there is heartbreak, it’s not that the couple has been trashed to try to make BRill less offensive.  The only thing the writers will be left with are two equally offensive pairings.  I’m hoping that if there is heartbreak, it’s because KaRi separates to avoid hurting others, and we watch them painstakingly work their way back to each other.

Voted: Most Likely to End Up On Pay=Per-View: Hope Logan and Quinn Fuller

Yeezus!  All things Kanye West, I can’t BREATHE with these two!  Many actors have commented that filming sex scenes are no fun because they are too technical (lighting, direction on movement, etc).  If Kim Matula (Hope) and Wyatt (Darin Brooks) aren’t enjoying their passionate scenes, I think they both deserve Emmys for those performances – now, please, no need to wait for a ceremony!

Am I alone in thinking that the employee absenteeism rate is close to zero (or even negative) on the days these two film their scenes?  Negative?  I’m guessing that crew members who aren’t scheduled for work show up on that day!  These two are taking their portmanteau: HOTT seriously!  Again, I’m starting to become a little embarrassed watching those scenes . It feels like I am  the dirty snoopy neighbor peering into the bedroom windows of the cute little couple next door.

Clothes on, standing up, HOTT is adorable and just make me smile.  Clothes off?  They make me blush.  I don’t know what’s coming with this lover from Wyatt’s past, but she has big shoes to fill if the writers are going to convince us that she has a snowball’s chance of breaking this couple up.  I have a feeling she’ll have to settle for a slightly WELL used Wyatt sibling.  Poor Ally.

Voted: Most Likely to Have a Professional License Revoked

In honor of Taylor’s brief return, l’m hoping that two things happen – the first being that she sees Katie and Ridge in action and just blows her unprofessional lid.  It should dawn on Taylor that her very public interference in Katie’s life, all to ruin Brooke, ultimately brought about the relationship between Katie and Ridge.  An affair that was kept under wraps became a public spectacle and utterly devastated Katie.  There is NO WAY Taylor did it for Katie’s sake, even knowing that Katie deserved the truth.  If it was for Katie’s sake, it wouldn’t have happened in front of everyone Katie loved, adding to her hurt and humiliation.  Taylor joined Brooke and Bill in destroying Katie and paved the way for Ridge to help her heal.  Symmetry!

As a result of publicly humiliating her client, in addition to sleeping with her clients (Ridge, Nick, attempt with Eric), trying to manipulate Liam into staying with Steffy, and betraying a host of other trusts- it’s time that the show’s writers and producers address Taylor’s lack of professionalism and stops pretending that the woman is anything other than the person she’s been (initially while hiding in the shadows): manipulative and MEAN!  If she hasn’t had to surrender her license, let’s hope she’s just decided to choose a new field to save others from her malevolent form of “help’

What are your 2014 BnB Yearbook picks?

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Daytime’s worst psychiatrist: Or why the BnB is a little like watching porn

You’re probably thinking of DAYS’ Marlena Evans.  In her defense we should remember that when Marlena was a venom-spewing cold-hearted, mean- spirited psych0, she was possessed by the devil.   The ‘Worst Psychiatrist’ award goes to someone who is supposed to be ‘healthy’, and has yet to show a reasonable example of good mental health.  For my money, The BnB’s Taylor Hayes tops the list of daytime’s professional mental health  malcontents.   While daytime demeans the work of almost all individuals in all professions, you’d think that daytime writers would be more careful about the portrayals of those in the helping professions.

Instead, police officers are ‘stupid’ and never catch real criminals – unless the guilty are  recurring characters or day players.   Nurses are typically women who are looking to move up the social ladder by latching on to a hot eligible physician, or his married  successful ‘businessman’ brother/father – all of whom are  usually womanizers (how very 1960s).  Mental Health professionals typically need more help than they’re capable of dispensing.

Which brings us back to Taylor Hayes.

It makes sense to me that the writers have penned the new Forrester Creations campaign ‘Hope for the Future’.   Near death experiences, actual death, Alzheimer’s, sexual assault, physical attack, lost love, miscarriages,  public humiliation, you name it and the Logans have experienced it.  Those experiences have made them stronger,and  they push forward after their greatest calamities, continuing to love life and rebuild from what’s left – seeking happiness along the way.  It’s why they resonate with fans in a way the writers haven’t been able to understand as they’ve tried to push them to the margins as the show’s bad girls, but not being able to take the audience along for the ride.  We see them for who they are and the term  ‘bad girls’ doesn’t describe them adequately.  It doesn’t describe them at all.

The Logan women are a lot like many of the viewers who’ve been knocked for a loop on occasion and have had to fight their way back up.  Many soap fans have had to bootstrap after losing someone they love, a home they cared for, children who weren’t theirs by blood- but by deed.  In real life, you do it without complaining about how horrible life is, or moaning that you’re a victim.  So, we have very little patience for people who do pretty stupid things and then whine that they were the victims of others.  We don’t like those who can’t take responsibility for their bullspittle, especially when they keep piling it higher and deeper – or when they fling it at others .

While the writers reveled in the ‘mean girls’ storyline this past year with Stephanie and Taylor plotting to destroy Brooke and Ridge’s happiness, viewers most likely remembered the ‘mean girls’ in their own lives who spent more time tearing others down rather than building themselves up.   These mean girls aren’t ‘pretty’ women frustrated by boredome.  They’re not ‘smart’.  They’re not even likable.  They’re just mean.   Every time Stephanie ‘mean girl’ Douglas, Taylor ‘mean girl’ Hayes, and now Steffy ‘mean girl’ Forrester-Marone starts attacking the Logans as ‘whores and sluts’ with no redeeming value, they remind us of who they are at their core.

The writers can try to tell us that they are women of good character, but the picture they paint through the characters’ actions tell a different story.  I find myself doing one of two things when they’re on, lately – turning the channel or muting the sound.  What can they say that tthey haven’t already said a million times before?  The writers aren’t even creative at coming up with new ways for this legion of doom and gloom to refer to the Logans as ‘cheap’.

Taylor is the worst of the ‘mean girls’ legion for the obvious reason.  She’s supposed to know better!  As a psychiatrist, she’s supposed to be the one who helps her children realize that their irrational fears  are no threat to them.  Her job as a mother, if nothing else, is to help  them become better  and happier people.  For Taylor to encourage Steffy’s asinine sniveling over the ‘Forresters vs. the Logans’ is a true travesty.   At one time, she considered herself  ‘another mother’ to Brooke’s children, and taunted Brooke with that view.  After having taken a huge  Oedipal leap into Rick’s arms, and into his bed, taylor has decided that Brooke’s children are ‘the enemy’ and that Brooke’s children are replacing her children at Forrester Creations and in Ridge’s heart.  She’s decided that it’s ok for her to encourage discord in the Logan-Forrester household by supporting Steffy’s delusions of entitlement and calls to hatred.  She’s doing exactly what Brooke’s accused her of doing, helping to spread poison to the next generation.  Stephanie Douglas couldn’t do it with her own children – who had no quarrel with the Logans, so she created a ‘proxy’ in taylor who helped pick up the call to arms.

If your son is a car bomber, your daughter slept with her ‘uncle’ and is now foolish enough to think that her ‘sweet sweet lovin’ will make a billionaire give back the family company he stole – if she could only get him away from his wife – you might not want to encourage  volatile levels of uncontrollable rage in your children.  You might remind them that while they’re screaming about being ‘outnumbered’, there are actually more Forresters than Logans and even then it doesn’t matter.  You might want to remind them that the children they’re railing against are as much part of the ‘Forrester clan’ as they are – given the fact that their biological father is not a biological Forrester – but  a biological Marone.  Ridge is a Forrester out of love, as are Brooke’s children.  You might want to remind your children that if they pull together as a family – they’re stronger, and more likely to kick Bill Spencer’s butt out of the company.  Rather than helping her children step outside of their self-pity and other- loathing, Taylor would rather encourage them to despise their own siblings.

This storyline has shown us why taylor will never be anything more than window dressing.   She’s a club the writers pull out of the closet to hit the Logans over the head with, and then put away.  The writers don’t care to give her depth, and that’s the real tragedy of the Bold and the Beautiful wasting the fan’s time with a gravely unbalanced show.  Given the fact that the BnB is the second highest rated show in daytime and the most watched soap in the world, I would expect more from the writing.  For  whatever reason the BnB’s dialogue writers have remained the weakest in the field for my money.  I don’t know if their hands are routinely tied by the head writer or if they’ve figured out that the BnB has survived almost purely on the shock value of its plots, and that the dialogue may not matter.

Whatever the issue, watching the BnB is like eating empty calories.  Sure, it’s a thrill at the moment, but when it’s over, you’re still hungry and a little less healthy for the trouble.  I’ve always maintained that the BnB should be the most watched soap in the U.S., as well.  It has all the elements: great production values, iconic actors and characters,  fabulous costuming whenever wardrobe is prevented from going too wild, and a neverending supply of lust filled story arcs.  Lust filled?  WAIT!  Forget the ’empty calories’ analogy.  Watching The Bold and The Beautiful is more like watching soft core porn.

I don’t watch porn, but I understand what it is.  Lots of sex, weak plots, incomplete dialogue that does little more than lead the characters to the path of lots of sex?  Why is that NOT like the BnB?

Rather than make the Logans  passive (which the writers treat the same as passive),  and willing to take all the crap the mean girls throw at them, why not allow them, and those who love them,  to respond with a truth meant to break the mean girl delusions?

Examples?

Steffy:  The Logans are taking over this place!  There’s no room for REAL Forresters.

Rick:  You mean Forresters  like Bridget, Felicia, Thorne, Kristen, their children and Me? Since our father is Eric Forrester and YOUR father  is a Marone?  What else do you have to say about REAL Forresters, Steffy?

*****

Stephanie:  You stole my husband you BITCH!

Brooke:  Sure, because you were happily married before I came along… unless you’ve forgotten that Eric was engaged to my mother after he left you, he dated a slew of Forrester models, and didn’t tell me he loved me until AFTER he was done with you for good – you hateful spiteful miserable self-deluding liar.

I didn’t steal your husband, you pushed him away with your hatred and he did the rest by refusing to allow you to draw him back in.  You blame me for losing him, but you haven’t explained why he turned to every other woman in L.A. BUT you when we were no longer together.  It’s time you stopped blaming me and started looking at why Eric has chosen everyone but you!

and then she walks away!

*****

Taylor:  RIDGE!  our children feel unloved.  They feel replaced and you’re not doing anything to make them feel better.

Ridge:  No taylor, YOU’RE not doing anything to make them feel better.  My relationship with our children hasn’t changed.  Why would you encourage them to believe that they have to fight to be loved?  What’s in it for YOU?  When will you put our children first?

*****

Steffy to Thomas:  If only I could get Bill away from Katie.  I could get him to give the company back.

Hope (who overhears them):  That trust fund you freely spend?  My mother and father’s hard work put that money in your account.  My mother made this company the success it was when she ran it, one of the most successful fashion houses in the history of the business.   She’s forgotten more about this business than you’ll ever  know, Steffy.

The next time you even think of calling my mother a whore, think about the fact that the only contribution you have to offer the company requires you to get on your back to do it.

And SCENE!

Wouldn’ t it be grand to have the mean girl characters get back the hell they give back to others?  We instead get BnB porn:

Steffy to Brooke:  You’re a whore.

Ridge to Brooke:  She made you feel bad?  (Disrobes her) let me make you feel better.

Taylor to Rick:  I’ve lost my child.  I had to give him away.

Rick to Taylor (as he disrobes her):  Let me make it better.
See? No logical response.  No exchanged heated enough to burn the remote out of your hands making it impossible to change the channel.    Bad psychiatry and almost-porn.  If you like either, you’d LOVE the BnB.