Relive all the best and worst moments that happened on The Bold and the Beautiful, Days of our Lives, General Hospital and The Young and the Restless in 2015.
Best: Maya Is Transgender on The Bold and the Beautiful
Before Caitlyn Jenner made headlines, This Bold and the Beautiful shockingly revealed that Forrester model Maya Avant (Karla Mosley) is transgender on the episode that aired on March 28. Everyone involved with the story did their research to provide their global audience (35 million viewers in more than 100 countries) with a storyline that educates and spreads understanding. As Bill Bell told The Wrap following the reveal, “First and foremost, this is a love story. A love story of the characters Rick (Jacob Young) and Maya.” Rick stuck by Maya’s side and the couple is planning to have a child in 2016.
Best: The Avant Family on The Bold and the Beautiful
Maya coming out as transgender wasn’t The Bold and Beautiful’s only move towards diversity. In addition to giving Maya (who made her debut in 2013) a sister (Reign Edwards’ Nicole), the show cast Obba Babatundé and Anna Maria Horsford as Julius and Vivienne Avant who struggled to accept their transgender daughter (more so Julius). It would have been easy for the show to have Julius appear as a throwaway character that could have simply come in and rejected Maya within a week but B&B was smart to keep the parents on the canvas as the Avant family relocated from Chicago to Los Angeles. In December it was revealed that Sasha (Felisha Cooper), Nicole’s friend from Chicago, is actually Julius’ illegitimate daughter. As we enter 2016, the rest of the daytime landscape has a long way to go but hopefully they’ll take a look and see what positive changes are taking place at B&B.
Best: The Plane Crash on The Young and the Restless
The Young and the Restless co-executive producer Jill Farren Phelps loves her disaster “storylines,” and February’s plane crash was actually exciting as it was the backdrop to the Winters family finding out about Hilary (Mishael Morgan) and Devon’s (Bryton James) affair.
Worst: Devon/Neil/Hilary on The Young and the Restless
Chuck Pratt inherited a supercouple in the making in Devon (Bryton James) and Hilary (Mishael Morgan) when he took over as head writer and co-executive producer of The Young and the Restless but it seems that the scribe had no idea what to do when Morgan went on maternity leave, so he had Neil (Kristoff St. John) hold his comatose ex-wife turned daughter-in-law captive. This left Devon grieving and Neil also managed to drive a wedge in his daughter Lily’s (Christel Khalil) marriage when she began to doubt Cane’s (Daniel Goddard) involvement in Hilary’s disappearance.
Worst: The Death of Aly Forrester on The Bold and the Beautiful
It’s always a mistake to kill of legacy characters and we’re sure The Bold and Beautiful will realize this when they have a seat to fill in the endless Spencer Bros. triangles with the Forrester and Logan women in the near future. Ashlyn Pearce’s Aly was a refreshingly sweet character and “Crazy Aly” was entertaining and could have had many story possibilities in the future but TPTB at B&B thought it would be best to kill off Throne’s (Winsor Harmon) only child. In killing Aly, B&B also said goodbye to the last link of the Spectra’s.
Worst: The Death of Will Horton on Days of our Lives
The Bold and the Beautiful wasn’t the only guilty party for killing off a legacy character. Days of our Lives gruesomely killed off Will Horton (Guy Wilson) this fall at the hands of the Necktie Killer. The character of Will has played such an integral part int he fabric of DAYS and the character of Sami for well over 18 years, even before his conception. Sami (Alison Sweeney) schemed to get her sister, Carrie’s (Christie Clarke), man, Austin (played by both Patrick Muldoon and Austin Peck). She then lied about Will’s paternity — it was really Lucas (Bryan Dattilo), giving soap fans LUMI. We had Will’s relationships with his grandmothers Marlena (Deidre Hall) and Kate (Lauren Koslow), his coming out (when he was played by Chandler Massey) to his marriage to Sonny (Freddie Smith). So don’t even kill off a legacy character if the recast isn’t working out. Rest the character and bring them back down the road.
Best: Ridge/Caroline/Thomas on The Bold and the Beautiful
Pierson Fodé has been a welcome addition as the recast and re-energized Thomas Forrester on The Bold and the Beautiful. After coming home for cousin Aly’s funeral, Thomas took his place at the family company and bedded Caroline (Linsey Godfrey), his former flame who is now his stepmother. We’re going to overlook that story beat where Caroline wondered if Thomas took advantage of her during their tryst and look forward to see this triangle picked in 2016 as Caroline will have her child. Ridge (Thorsten Kaye) probably won’t have a great father’s day next year as he’s passing off his soon to be born grandchild as his own. So nasty Ridge. Hopefully they’ll add Brooke (the underused Katherine Kelly Lang) into this storyline as she’ll begin to question the baby’s paternity after Ridge revealed to her that he had undergone a vasectomy while he was living in Paris. Expect fireworks when Ridge and Caroline 2.0’s secret will be revealed. Let’s hope the rest of the Forresters play into this, we’d love to see Eric’s (John McCook) reaction as well… Maybe Taylor (Hunter Tylo) could resurface to support her son?
Worst: Michael Had Cancer on The Young and the Restless
Remember when Michael (Christian LeBlanc) had prostate cancer and made a big deal about refusing to treat it? Oh, you don’t remember? Neither does the show. As he always does, LeBlanc brought it for the story, too bad there was no follow up.
Worst: Steffy/Liam/Ivy/Wyatt on The Bold and the Beautiful
We were tired of the the Spencer Bros. merry go round with Hope in 2014 and the added layers of Steffy (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood) and Ivy (Ashleigh Brewer) fighting over Liam (Scott Clifton) and Wyatt (Darin Brooks) just isn’t cutting. We’re glad that JMW is back as Steffy but we’d love to see her ditch the lads and build and add to the Forrester empire. Why not throw Wood and company into a story with underused power players Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke), Rena Sofer (Quinn), Don Diamont(Bill), Sean Kanan (Bill) and Heather Tom (Katie)?
Best: General Hospital’s 52nd Anniversary
General Hospital celebrated its 52nd anniversary well on April 1. The episode had Jason Thompson (Patrick), Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth) and Ryan Carnes (Lucas) take on the roles of original characters Steve Hardy, Jessie Brewer and Phil Brewer (who were originally played by John Beradino, Emily McLaughlin and Roy Thinnes). The set designers re-created the original nurses station as the actors re-created key scenes from the first episode. The special episode revealed that a young Luke Spencer (Anthony Geary) tragically killed his mother and father in newly created flashbacks that were told by Luke and Bobbie’s (Jackie Zeman) older sister Patrica (guest star Dee Wallace). The episode also featured haunting performances by Laura Wright (Carly) who was portrayed Lena Eckert Spencer while Geary played Tim Spencer. Joey Luthman wowed critics and audiences as the young Luke Spencer and Bill Eckert.
Worst: Anthony Geary Exits General Hospital
Following the reveal of Luke’s demons on General Hospital, we finally said goodbye to both Luke and Anthony Geary during the summer. It was a lackluster exit which bitter taste still lingers. Rather than thank his fans and celebrate the Luke and Laura (Genie Francis) phenomenon that made him a household name, Geary pissed all over his and the show’s legacy during his exit interview with TV Insider. He also wasn’t a fan of his exit story which saw Luke, Lucky (Jonathan Jackson) and Laura rescue Jake, the “grandson” he thought he had killed in a drunk driving accident. While it was nice to see Jackson, Nathaniel Parsons (Ethan) and Emma Samms (Holly) again, what fans would have loved to see was a goodbye scene between Luke and Laura. We didn’t get that. Instead, Luke said goodbye to Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) on the pier.
Worst: Jack and Marco on The Young and the Restless
So let’s get this straight: Jack Abbott, a white businessman from Wisconsin has a Latino drug lord named Marco Annacelli for a lookalike? Sure. Kudos to Peter Bergman for trying to pull this mess off. Also, what a waste of Cady McClain as the cuckoo Kelly.
Best: General Hospital Live!
While things got bleak in Port Charles for the rest of 2015, General Hospital successfully pulled off broadcasting live episodes on May 15 and 18 (two timezones each day!). The episodes featured Nina (Michelle Stafford) marrying Ric (Rick Hearst), Hayden (Rebecca Budig, who had recently joined the show) confronting Nikolas (Tyler Christopher) and Elizabeth (Rebeca Herbst) about Jake (Billy Miller) being Jason and later getting shot and Anna (Finola Hughes) avenging Duke’s (Ian Buchanan) death.
Best: Chelsea Reveals That Gabe is Adam on The Young and the Restless
Chelsea and Adam cemented themselves in soap supercoupledom in 2015 as Chelsea (Melissa Claire Egan) was upset that Adam (Justin Hartley) was wasting his time feuding with his father, Victor (Eric Braeden) rather than leave for Paris with him that she revealed that Gabe was really Adam. All was forgiven as Adam raced to the towering inferno that was the Newman Tower to save Chelsea, their son and his father.
Worst: General Hospital Loses Jason Thompson to The Young and the Restless
General Hospital benefitted from key casting coups at the expense of The Young and the Restless in recent years – they got a hold of Michelle Stafford and Billy Miller – but the latest soap swap will deal a deadly blow to GH as Canadian actor Jason Thompson will be hanging up his scrubs as Dr. Patrick Drake after 10 years and taking on the role of Billy Abbott on Y&R in January 2016. Unfortunately the writers on GH never made Patrick a lead on the show, which was a huge mistake as he has the ability (no man cries on daytime like Thompson). Hopefully Y&R will give the actor a better platform to showcase his talent – he’s been a great supporting player on GH but let’s see what work he can do as a lead character on another show. At least we got to have a proper goodbye with Kimberly McCullough returning for Thompson’s exit story as Robin.
Best: Liz/Jason/Sam on General Hospital
It took over a year to get there but we finally got our Jason reveal on General Hospital. Sam (Kelly Monaco) outing Liz (Rebecca Herbst) for knowing that Jake was Jason (Billy Miller) for several months reignited their rivalry on screen and the fan wars online.
Best and Worst: Bo Returns And Then Dies on Days Of Our Lives
Peter Reckell returned to Days of our Lives for the show’s 50th anniversary and saved Hope (Kristian Alfonso) from her new husband Aidan (Daniel Cosgrove). They reunited but he then he died in her arms from a brain tumour barely a week later. We’re glad the show and Reckell worked out a deal to give Bo a “proper” send off rather than have him be off canvas but we would have loved it so much more if he could have stuck around.
Best: EJ and Sami Reunite – But NOT on Days Of Our Lives
The year’s best reunion didn’t even happen on the actual soap! As a surprise for Nageen Mustafa, a Syrian refugee and devoted Days of our Lives fan, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver managed to get Alison Sweeney and James Scott together to film a special clip where “Sami” and “EJ” reunited and shed some light on the Syrian refugee crisis. The HBO-produced segment also featured John Oliver detailing Sami and EJ’s sordid history (the baby switch, EJ’s affair with that “trollop Abigail Deveraux”). Check it out here.
Worst: The Fall of General Hospital — Backstage Antics, The Worshipping of St. Sonny Corinthos and More
2015 has been a difficult time for General Hospital as many behind the scenes happenings have not only affected ratings but critical praise. Fans are so fed up that General Hospital has regressed into a humourless and mob-infested show that they’ve come up with their own hashtag, #WhyRatingsAreLow.
In July, ABC removed Ron Carlivati as head writer of the show and replace him with former Y&R head writing team Jean Passanante and Shelly Altman. In 2012, Carlivati and executive producer Frank Valentini were praised for saving GH from cancellation. Sure some stories were dragged (the Fluke and Jason reveals) but what the show and Carlivati needed was probably a co-head writer at best.
Last year we named Michael (Chad Duel) renouncing his adoptive and the Corinthos name and just like how Sonny (Maurice Benard) was pardoned by the governor, it was all forgotten overnight. What viewers waited almost two decades for was undone in less than an episode as Sabrina (Teresa Castillo) urged Michael to reconcile with Sonny. There is also a shift in dialogue to make the mobster, who just last year shot A.J. Quartermaine (Sean Kanan) in cold blood, appear more appealing. In a scene that aired on Dec. 28, Liz (Rebecca Herbst) told Robin (Kimberly McCullough) that the reason why she kept Jason’s (Billy Miller) identity a secret was because she didn’t want him to go back to his old life where he’s loyal to Carly (Laura Wright) and Sam (Kelly Monaco) but originally, one of the reasons she didn’t want “Jake” to find out he was Jason was because she wanted him to leave the mob element and Sonny behind.
Fans were pissed when the show killed off Duke (Ian Buchanan) earlier this year — after bringing him back from the dead two years ago. Where did it leave Anna (the amazing Finola Hughes)? Thinking she had gone mad after offing Carrrrrrlos Rivera (Jeffrey Vincent Parise), the one character that the show deemed worthy enough to resurrect!
Social media was a dangerous tool for some of the cast members in 2015. An actor threatened to break someone’s fingers. An actress showed out when and ABC colleague won an Emmy Award and an actor shaded the headwriter on Periscope at a fan event that he once praised while an executive at the show looking for his way to climb up the corporate ladder participated in a radio show to boost his own name and social following.
GH used to be full of romance and adventure. It was funny and fun to watch. Hopefully they’ll set the course right in 2016.
Best: Days Of Our Lives’ 50th Anniversary
Days of our Lives kicked things into high gear in preparations for the NBC soap’s 50th anniversary on November 8. Josh Griffith and Dena Higley were brought on as head writers and they immediately kicked off a new serial killer storyline, brought back a bunch of favourite characters — even if some were temporary — like Sami (Alison Sweeney), Steve (Stephen Nichols), Andre (Thaao Penghlis), Shawn (Jason Cook), Bo (Peter Reckell) and Belle (Martha Madison). There’s a new teen cast as well. While it was jarring to see Salemites celebrate the bicentennial so soon after Will’s death, at least Bo was remembered on Christmas. There are a few things we’re concerned about going into 2016: Judi Evans and Wally Kurth being dropped to recurring as Adrienne and Justin and the upcoming exit of Greg Vaughan’s Eric. Eric’s new story has been teased to be quite powerful, but Eric has already been out of Salem way too long. Also, let’s make that HBO sequence a reality and bring back James Scott and Alison Sweeney full time as EJ and Sami! 2015 has been a huge improved for DAYS, let’s keep it up.