Deep Soap: ‘B&B’s Scandalous Party; ‘GH’s Shock Therapy

by | June 7, 2010 at 9:30 AM | Deep Soap

The Bold and the Beautiful (CBS)

The Bold and the Beautiful (CBS)

B&B’s Wild Party

Finally, a soap teen party that actually looked like fun — and had an insane plot twist.  The build-up to Hope’s high school graduation party on ‘The Bold & The Beautiful‘ made it look like it was going to continue the by the numbers teen story of bad girl Steffy’s (Jacqueline Wood) determination to steal Oliver (Zack Conroy) away from virgin Hope (Kimberly Matula ).   The party, which doubled as a video shoot for real life reggaeton star Daddy Yankee actually seemed like something privileged L.A. teenagers would want to attend.  The conceit was that everyone was supposed to don identical ‘Vanilla Sky‘-style blank face masks and  that numerous women were wearing identical sequined dresses was far fetched even by soap standards, but at least it was allegedly all part of the video shoot.  The direction was outstanding.  The shots of all the party goers in the dark, dancing to the pulsating beat were sexy and built the tension.  It was obvious that there were going to be some cases of mistaken identity.   But it was a real shock that Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) would show up dressed exactly like her daughter, and that she would appear to mistake the masked Oliver for Ridge (Ronn Moss).  The two of them had a steamy tryst of some sort, with Oliver thinking that Hope had finally decided she was ready to have sex.  The deliberately ambiguous scene, with Brooke wrapping her legs around Oliver in the hallway was hot. When Oliver came downstairs, ran into Hope, and realized that he had just hooked up with someone else, his horrified expression was priceless.  (I probably had an equally perplexed expression as I watched, trying to figure out how Oliver and Brooke potentially had sex without saying a word, or noticing the obvious physical differences between Brooke and Hope or Ridge and Oliver.) The slo-mo shot of Brooke taking off her mask, and Oliver realizing that she was inexplicably wearing the necklace he gave Hope was pitch perfect.  Has Oliver just unwittingly slept with his girlfriend’s mother? That’s a Friday cliffhanger.  It may be a total mislead.  It’s possible that Steffie, wearing a blonde wig, crashed the party and seduced Oliver.  But, for the first time in a while, I cannot wait for the next episode of B&B.

Watch the full episode here:

GH’s Shock Therapy

Finally.  It may have just been one day to silence the thousands of angry, sarcastic ‘General Hospital‘ fans, but watching Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn) , Kristina (Lexi Ainsworth), the back of a mute therapist’s head and even Carly (Laura Wright) tell Sonny (Maurice Benard) that, yes, as a matter of fact he does abuse women, made me stand up and cheer.   Sonny, having apparently never seen a single episode of ‘Oprah‘, honestly seemed flabbergasted that calling women bitches and whores, manhandling them and putting them down was not a typical date night.  It’s like Sonny took Chris Rock’s bit about how you should never hit a woman, but you can shake the — out of them as an instruction manual, not a comedy routine.  Granted, it’s unfortunate that Claudia and Sonny’s marriage is the one going under the microscope.  Their relationship was a mutually dysfunctional tit for tat.  But the big, steeping bowl of truth served up to Sonny was so delicious.

Sonny: Do I have to tell you again that I don’t hit women?
Alexis: Well, but you do call them bitches and whores, and that kind of verbal abuse might–
Sonny: You’re either physically violent, or you’re not.
Alexis: Really? See, this is why it’s a good idea that you work this out with her in therapy.

It’s not that I want Sonny to turn into kind and gentle Mac Scorpio. I merely want to see some self-awareness on his part, a realization that he is at best the anti-hero, not the hero.  Sonny was such a terrific character when he was the villain who got called out on his crap on a regular basis.  I love to watch numerous soap men who would make lousy, emotionally abusive real life boyfriends, from ‘All My Children’s‘ David and to ‘Days of Our Lives‘ E.J. The difference is that they are well aware of their own shortcomings and vacillate between fighting to be better people and giving into their worst instincts.  In my fantasies, that’s where this storyline leads Sonny.

Kristina: You lose it. Someone makes you upset, and you fly into a rage, and it’s scary. You make it seem like it’s the other person’s fault for getting you upset, and I think that’s part of why I stayed with Kiefer. It felt familiar.
Sonny: Really? Kiefer hit you. He hurt you so bad, he put you in the hospital.
Kristina: And I apologized for him, just like everyone does for you.

Checkmate, Kristina.  Everyone in Port Charles does give Sonny a free pass, with excuses ranging from the mob code to, say it with me, he was locked in a closet as a child.  That’s why it is so frustrating to watch him. He is never held accountable, while basically good characters like Dante and Alexis get pilloried for every mistake they make.  When confronted with the truth, Sonny fled the therapy session.  The truth hurts.

Sonny: I’ve never fought with anyone like I fought with you, been angry at anyone as I was with you, and…. you think I ever abused you?
Carly: You know, you really shouldn’t ask questions that you don’t want the answers to.

Oh, yes.  More please.  Given that Carly is one of the characters viewers are supposed to always root for, this one is particularly sweet.  I took that as the show’s way of telling me that, for at least that episode, we were supposed to think Sonny was in the wrong.  It would be amazing if Sonny actually realized the error of his ways and changed his attitude and behavior towards women.  It’s more likely that he’ll spend a few days soul searching then revert to form, just like Jason did after Franco made Jason feel bad about killing people.  But at least I’ll feel vindicated for a couple episodes.