Maybe it's too much turkey or something but as I was watching the condensed week's viewing of B&B, I began to think I must be hallucinating. Did I actually SEE with my own two beady little eyes Nick Marone (slick, Gordon Gecko hair and all) blow into Forrester and take over in the same fashion his father would have? WHO was that guy? Not the Nick I came to love watching everyday. Not the Nick who oozed integrity and honesty when first coming ashore after the tanker crash. And certainly not the Nick who was, hands down, the best thing that ever happened to that poster child for co-dependence Brooke Logan. No, couldn't be.
But alas, the writers have completed their latest hatchet-job on the only decent man to come onto the cast in the last 4 years. He has made his fair share of mistakes and has paid dearly but compared to the slug that shares half his DNA, he's an alter boy. I have been thinking about a few characters that have taken an abrupt 'about face' in the last year and the list is no less than staggering.
Taylor is the first example that comes to mind. We went from pseudo-saint to murderous drunk driver in what seemed to be no time at all. It's like the Merry Band of Amateurs sits around and picks names out of a hat to decide what character gets the next shake up. No continuity, no realistic transition to a flawed existence…just WHAMO! Add water, instant psycho. Taylor has, of course, been redeemed at the last minute and given some random community service to perform while playing house with Thorne. By the way, I am starting to see where a little romance between them might be a good thing. There has to be at least ONE healthy and sane couple on this show.
Nick's deconstruction just goes without saying really. He's got Phoebe's 'crazy eyes' and Mojo's slick and shallow endless power trip swagger about him now that does NOTHING for him. He's unrecognizable and just plain misguided in his attempt to do the right thing by Brooke and his mother. There is a fine line between justice and revenge and I think Nick has not yet figured this out. I agree it was time for Stephanie to get her comeuppance but the rest of the family should not have had to pay for her lack of self control.
Hector is another one that should have highway construction cones all around him for the changes they have put him through. This is hardly the same guy that showed up as the pious and saintly firefighter raising his daughter and adopted son on the wrong side of town. Now he's an accomplice to manslaughter and raving looney tune that almost killed the woman he said he cared for by tying her to a handrail. WHAT? How do you get there from here? Makes no sense. Now he is a blind ex-firefighter roaming around with nothing to do but mind Taylor's business 24/7.
Jackie's transformation is probably more a result of the latest 'incident' with Stephanie and Brooke's waffling more than anything else. I like her, though, and hope she doesn't get painted out to be a psycho. She has always tried to do the right thing by her son and in defending him as paid quite a price now with the mysterious headaches and all. She went from devoted wife and career woman to adulterer and overall lonely woman in the wake of the Deacon affair. I am hoping better days are ahead for her.
As far as everyone else, well it was reverting back to form for Brooke. Imagine that. Don't really try to figure out what's at the heart of Nick's ridiculous behavior. Don't try to fight for whatever marriage you think you had…which isn't much considering you married the man knowing full well you still loved Ridge. She really does belong with Ridge now that I really look hard at this. She can't be without the mentally abusive and codependent relationship that only Ridge can offer her. She has no positive sense of self-worth and is back to being the seemingly contented Forrester Family 'Pass-Around' she has always been. She has always been objectified and pawed and petted by that scoundrel like she is something that should be on display like a trophy on a shelf. I saw the marriage with Nick as being a break from that, not the suffocating presence some have said he was on her. He tried liberating her from the Forrester's when, truth be told, she never wanted to leave their influence in the first place. I really saw her as being stronger and more self-assured with Nick but the writers knew differently. Curiously, though, is whether or not the majority of fans will actually embrace this or if it will backfire as the 'forgettable' romance of Ridge and Brooke has truly lost any luster it may have once had.
Speaking of the Forrester's, I couldn't remember the last time ALL the kids were in the same room before last week. Of course there is no explanation about Rick but at least Kristen did mention the designing she is doing with Tony, so he must still be alive. Eric's heartfelt plea to save his wife was a little over the top but I would expect nothing less from him. How about all that concern for their Mommy from the kids, though? I laughed as I watched everyone act more concerned about their own livelihoods than their mother going to the clink for attempted murder. Nothing like a little 'family unity', huh? If I were Rick and Bridget, I would have told Dad to kiss our collective butts…Stephanie is not their mother, so why give up everything to protect her? And Felicia's slap was, I hate to say, well deserved under the circumstances. Think about it…Nick had slept with three women in that boardroom and she is the only one with the guts to call him on his crappy behavior.
Donna certainly is positioning herself well in Nick's good graces. Since when does she stop by to 'take care' of Jackie? I didn't know they even knew each other that well? So the handwriting is on the wall…Donna will get in good with him and secure a spot at Forrester/Marone Fashions and I suppose end up sleeping with him ultimately. Ho Hum. Wake me when it's over.
So Ridge, Brooke, and the rest of the homeless fashion designers need to take their toys and go play somewhere else, huh? Can't wait for the next great 'stitch-off' between the two companies as rumor has it that Clark may get some airtime as a designer for Nick. Ok, I'm buyin' that. So what kind of fashion are we talking about here? Peacoats for the Fall, dashing new 'sailor' business suits for women? A new line of sleazy boat wear? How about 'Nick's Crows Nest' instead of Brooke's Bedroom? Ugh…this is shaping up to be as successful as the maiden voyage of the RMS Titanic.
By the way, I have already received many emails saying that now that Brooke and the Wooden One are 'back together' for the moment, they have officially stopped watching. My message to the writers…hope this tired repeat of history was worth it. In a world where soaps have a smaller market share of viewers than ever before and casts are shrinking due to budget cuts, it may not be a good idea to go back to what clearly hasn't worked for a long time. New couples with fresh energy wouldn't be such a bad thing especially in a 30 minute soap where options are more limited than in other more established shows. Watching Ridge and Brooke onscreen makes me not want to watch at all, period.
One last thought at the close of the holiday weekend…thank you all for your support during my 'pet crisis'. Your emails and personal stories are truly inspirational and I am more appreciative than I could adequately express in words. I hope everyone who 'tunes in' to the column every week had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving.
Monica writes: 'I am so excited about Nick and the Forrester takeover SL. It´s about time the high and mighty Forresters got a dose of their own medicine. Besides, does anyone remember how Eric got into the ragtrade to begin with? By using Stephanie! See, what goes around, comes around.
Dee says: 'Well today capped the show for me. Brooke running back to Ridge as usual! She was so in love with Nick, yeah right. Why is what Nick & Bridget did different than her and Nick when Bridget & him were married? They didn't sleep together but the intent was there. Brooke made Nick the way his is, true Brooke form she always takes a good guy and turns him into someone unrecognizable. As for Shane like Deacon? NO WAY. Deacon should come back and take Hope away from Brooke she deserves it, and Deacon and Jackie could raise Hope that would serve her right. Brooke stated she is a Forrester, she has never been a Forrester except by name, they have always treated her poorly, she has a very short memory then. Lastly, I hope Brooke is pregnant with Nick's baby, she said today to Nick, you wouldn't take a child from its mother so why would you take Forrester away from the Forresters? So maybe she is pregnant that would be a great story. I absolutely hate that she went back to Ridge, but they do deserve each other they are both undependable spouses.'