“My sweet Emily, your love still warms me. It’s in my soul, and in yours. And our love will live in our child. That child proves that the power of love is stronger than war, stronger than even death. Remember that when I’m gone.”
“Don’t leave me, I love you so much, I need you.”
“I will always be with you. I will live in your heart, and in the heart of our child. I love you Emily. I will love you until the end of time.”
The Emily and Gideon storyline makes me wish that we had TWoP in the 80’s. In a time when the show was generally good, this would be so much fun to snark on—not viciously, you understand, but in a good-natured way.
Here’s how it happens: Steve and Kayla are given a mansion by Nick Corelli, after they help him when he is injured in a car accident. At the mansion, they find a diary that dates from the Civil War. Reading it, they discover the mansion used to belong to southern belle Emily (who knew Salem was in the Deep South?), and they read the love story between her and Union officer Gideon.
Mary Beth Evans has said that this story is her favorite from the first run on the show, a fact that I found staggering when I first heard it. But, from a performer’s point of view, I bet it was fun to play—the costumes, the wigs, the accent (Mary Beth’s southern accent is very good). The storylines that I think showcase her best work, like the rape storyline, were probably emotionally draining. This would be nothing but fun. Plus there’s no doubt she looks gorgeous:
Poor Stephen Nichols didn’t fare quite as well. His pornstache rivals Santo’s:
I also bet it was fun to get a break from playing Steve and Kayla, and just play someone else for awhile. In my opinion neither Emily nor Gideon rises above the level of being a stock character, but Stephen and Mary Beth do their best with what they’re given. They redeem some of the cheesiness of the dialogue with their facial expressions and body language—Mary Beth particularly.
Regarding Stephen, I’m always struck in interviews by how refined he looks. He somehow manages to make even his features look rougher when he’s playing Steve. The same thing occurred to me when I watched this clip of Gideon singing. Stephen sounds good, but more than that, he sounds nothing like Steve. Even singing a ballad (“The Rose” in quarantine, anyone?), Steve would never sing like this:
That gives you some idea of what the storyline was like. Many more clips are up on YouTube. And apparently there is a significant portion of S&K fans who love Emily and Gideon, so don’t feel obligated to listen to a cynic like me.