I know...it's a shocker, isn't it?? I really spent a lot of time over the last few weeks trying to put on my 'positive cap' in looking back at the last year's goings-on in LA. and I found that while it seemed impossible at times, I was able to come with a healthy list to ring in the New Year. My brain still hurts, by the way, but here goes nothing....
10) Amber Leaving the Show. I see nothing but good in getting rid of her character. No offense to Adrienne Frantz but Amber's time had come. The Mrs. Robinson storyline was just trashy from the beginning and let's face it-without Deacon she is just not that interesting to watch. The mineshaft nonsense was so over the top I can barely find the words to adequately describe how AWFUL it was. Buh-bye Amber! Good riddance...
9) Thorne Finally Getting Out From Ridge's Shadow. Yes, I know the year ended badly for him at Spectra but I thought it was wonderful to see him get to have a moment in the sun at Ridge's expense. Though his parents still think he is nothing more that the 'pretty son', I think this helped his cause to show viewers that he can be every bit as viable as a male lead on this show. Now if we could just see more of him, we would really be getting somewhere! He is a good father (we think...he has the OTHER invisible Forrester grandchild) and a good husband (great scenes with Darla...very nice!). He deserves to run Forrester and I hope his good fortune goes well into the New Year. Hey, maybe he could even make enough cash to move out of that lifeguard shack by the sea?
8) Felicia's Return. Ok, I have to add that I hate that she has come back only to be sick again but I'll take ANY Forrester sisters at this point over none. I love the recast and think her return could really inject some new life into this 'triangle-laden' show. She is certainly the most fun Forrester kid to watch and the least predictable. Her latest leap of faith in the Malibu Whiner is a little misplaced, though. That child is a cutie and should NOT be punished by being raised by such a selfish character. Let's hope something happens soon to fix that train-wreck waiting to happen.
7) Dante's Shirtless Relocation To LA. Hmmmm...I don't care if he has a significant story or not, he's the finest man on the show right now. I'm a little confused that he originally came to LA. to puppy-dog around after Taylor but then shifted to being completely infatuated with Bridget of all people. Ok, whatever. I do believe he is sincere and hope he finds a woman worthy of those juicy pecs. Felicia may fit the bill if she goes into magical remission. Who cares....just keep him around for awhile, will 'ya???
6) The Mysterious Trust Giving Stephanie Forrester Creations. What a stroke of luck, huh? All these years in the safe that she had probably been and out of a thousand times and she JUST now finds the most famous document since the Dead Sea Scrolls. What I liked about this story is that is takes the focus OFF Nick's triangle adventures with Brooke and Bridget and brings it back to what made the show so engaging in the beginning...the fashion industry and Forrester Creations. That had been put on the shelf and only dusted off MAYBE once a year if we were lucky. This story has also allowed Thorne to come back into the fold and has given Stephanie a better storyline than the monthly Oedipus-like manipulations into Ridge's life we have suffered too long through. Can she really make Forrester any better than Eric did? Maybe not but it sure will be interesting to watch her try. The tension between her and Eric has been great and it all just makes for better viewing than 'all Brooke/Bridget/Nick, all the time.'
5) Confession Night On The Shady Marlin. Sorry 'Bridge' fans, I have to treat this as a good thing. Though the sick and depraved 'abortion lie' is what precipitated this revelation for Brooke and Nick, I believe she had loved Nick all along but her lifelong obsession with Ridge would not let her admit it to herself. I have long been an advocate for these two to get together and felt that they tore up the screen in every scene they shared. However, anything that has widespread viewer appeal is always marked for termination by Brad and his writers. No matter...I loved the scene on the boat and was hoping beyond hope that they would just drop right there and get busy. It was the happiest that either character had looked in months. I'm holding on to a flicker of hope and if all these daydreams that both of them are having lately are any indication, my hope may not be THAT misplaced.
4) Nick FINALLY Being A Proud Daddy. This goes a little hand-in-hand with Felicia's return but I felt it was worth making a separate point of saying that her bringing his son back from Paris was really great to see. Nick loves Hope and RJ so much and you just get a sense that with all his waffling in his love life that he would NOT be that way about his child. The scenes where he first held him were very well done and I hope the child bride doesn't make him choose between children as that could backfire at any moment. After the heartbreaking scenes when he realized RJ was not his, he deserves to be a proud and doting Daddy. Can't you just picture him sitting topside with little Dominick Jr. fishing for sharks or something?
3) Taylor Coming Back From The Grave (Again) . Now last week I referenced the 'way' she came back as one of the worst things about 2005 but it should NOT be confused with her return in general. I am glad she is back and have always said she is a great foil for Brooke. She may have been an insufferable 'goody two-shoes' in the past but I think, if the events of the last week are any indication, she will be shown to be just as flawed as anyone else on this show. Hey, if you were married to Ridge and he put you through all that nonsense last year, you would have a wandering eye, too! He doesn't post for the holidays, expected her to 'audition' for the role of his wife last summer when he couldn't decide between her and Brooke, and really hasn't treated her very nice at all since the bedside vow renewal. Ok, I know that whole scenario was insane but still...no one held a gun to his head to renew those vows. She has been, til now, pushing Hector away at every turn hoping Ridge would act more like a husband. It will be interesting and very refreshing to see her character undergo a realistic makeover. You go girl! If Ridge doesn't wake up and smell the coffee, then pour Hector a cup!!
2) Less Ridge. Couldn't resist here, folks. It has been so nice to have some Ridge-free days and weeks lately. Hey Ronn...isn't Asia or South America looking to promote your CD, too? We'll be fine...take your time...
1) Brooke's Declaration of Independence From Ridge. Now some have said that her epiphany about loving Nick was a little 'sudden' but I don't care either way. Just to hear her say those words to Ridge were worth all the ridiculous stories of he last few years. Ridge is such a pompous ass that nothing makes me smile more than seeing Brooke turn her back on him and his colossal ego. She needed to do that years ago and now she finally has the chance to build a life for herself that is not dependent solely on whether Ridge is there to love her. I have liked Brooke more and more this last year than I thought I would and I hope this stronger attitude continues. Unfortunately Brad can never leave her well enough alone and while I am sure that the majority of fans are happy with the 'new Brooke', he can't possibly let her have it too long. She'll do something awful or be vilified in some other way soon. But for now I revel in the fact that she told the Wooden One to take a hike.
Next week I will bring you my astute predictions for 2006 in my usual warped and deranged manner. I am hoping for bigger and better things for the upcoming year as I am sure you all are as well.
I hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday season!