Steve finds out

Poor Steve just can’t catch a break.

First, Kayla encourages him to go to Italy and help Marina find the key she’s looking for, with the goal of getting her out of their lives. So he goes, thinking he’s doing something Kayla wants. He does have a moment of temptation while he’s in Italy, but he gets past it and really seems to have shaken off Marina’s ghost. He just wants to find the key so he can come home to Kayla. When he does find it, some guy stabs him in the (fake) eye. He’s hurt and in pain and, again, all he wants is Kayla. But she’s thousands of miles away and she doesn’t answer the phone, even though he keeps calling and calling. Instead he’s got Marina, who fusses over him and tries to use his helplessness make further inroads with him. He can’t even relax because he practically has to fight her off all the way home. When he finally gets home, he finds out Kayla has left him.

All this is quite deliberate, of course. Steve has been keeping secrets from Kayla for months. He’s been shown to be attracted to another woman. Now the show is making him pay, as a way of gaining sympathy for him, and to balance the scales of power between him and Kayla. And then there’s Kayla’s newfound relationship with Jack. Steve clearly doesn’t know what to make of it, and it bothers him. A lot. When Steve shows up at the house looking for Kayla, he finds Jack there instead. And when Kayla finally comes to the hospital to visit him, it’s Jack who brings her there. And Kayla very deliberately does not explain this; she lets him wonder.

This scene is a good example of that:

Steve finds out 1

You would think there would be something inappropriate about the show using Jack as the person Steve is jealous of, given all the history, but somehow all that history makes Jack the perfect person. No one else would have the same effect. If Kayla were confiding in Marcus, Steve might feel excluded, but he wouldn’t feel the acute dislocation he does with Jack. It shows the distance between him and Kayla and the depth of their problems more than anything else ever could. How far has Steve sunk in Kayla’s estimation that he now ranks below Jack?

The other half of the clip above, of course, has Jack telling Steve Kayla is pregnant. I’m never exactly sure how I feel about Jack being the one to tell Steve. Part of it is just my shipper-ness, wanting a scene where Kayla tells him—although under the circumstances, it probably wouldn’t have been a really touching scene anyway. I also feels like Jack is betraying Kayla’s confidence. But, Jack’s motives are good ones. He seems to be trying to break them out of the stalemate they are in, and he thinks it will amp up Steve desire to make things right—which it does.

Here, Steve goes to find out if what Jack said is true:

Steve finds out 2

One thing that this scene establishes very well is that Steve really is happy about having a baby. That was something Kayla was worried about, and that is laid to rest here. I love how he calls the baby the “best thing that ever happened to us” and “dammit, this is not about Marina, we’re having a baby.” He says it with so much passion.

This scene also provides some balance back the other way. The show has been beating Steve up, and now he gets to be, well, not happy (this isn’t a happy storyline) but at least in the right. Steve is really hurt by this—and he has a right to be. We see Kayla respond to his emotion, his pain. When he buries his face in her neck and embraces her, we get a moment of connection, she doesn’t push him away.

I love that she finally reassures him that she didn’t turn to Jack on purpose, that he guessed that she was pregnant. That makes Steve realize that Jack has been more observant about Kayla than he has. I like to think he’s realizing that Jack was right when he told him earlier that he’s been too caught up in the past to see what is happening right in front of him. That maybe Kayla had reason not to confide in him. When Kayla says, “Do you really think I’d tell him before you?”, it obviously is what Steve believed. He says he doesn’t know what to think anymore, and Kayla agrees, saying, “Neither do I, and that’s what scares me.” Here is one thing they can finally agree on. So sad. But this is the closest they’ve come to connecting for a long, long time, and it shows the bond between them is still there.

Kayla is going to stand her ground—but she opens up to him, to explain why. That in itself is a step forward. She says that all she could think about for the last few weeks was him, and the baby, and how this should be the happiest time of her life—but that this baby doesn’t bring her to closer to him, all it does is make her realize how far apart they are. I love that Steve listens to what she’s saying, but in the end insists that they still love each other and that’s what matters. He says he’s not giving up and “neither are you,” and that’s both a pledge and a plea. I love his vulnerable look when he adds, “… okay?” Steve is starting to get it, that this is not going to be simple and straightforward, where he apologizes and Kayla forgives him. Kayla has always been the one to be understanding and to have faith in them. Now he’s the one who will have to have enough faith for both of them. This is new to him, and maybe a little scary.

After she asks him to leave, I love when he gives her that little kiss on the back of her neck, determined to make a small connection before he goes. And then right after he leaves, the baby moves. This symbolizes their missed connection but it still gives us some hope, as Kayla clearly wants to share the moment with him. And at the same time Steve outside the door marveling at the fact that he’s going to be a father. Great scene.

16 thoughts on “Steve finds out

  1. These scenes are some of my favorites…not necessarily the storyline, but Stephen and Mary Beth are at their best when angst is involved. Add to that, the music in the background makes the scenes that much more “angsty.” I get teary each time I watch these. But now my tears are also for the lack of S/K knowing the calliber of their work and their work ethic.

  2. This is part of the story that I started to like. Steve having to fight for Kayla. I felt bad for Steve but not so much too. He did many things wrong and he had to start making things right again. I did start feeling bad for him the more he kept trying and not suceeding. Steve seemed like Steve again because before he lost his eye again he seemed like a different person caught up in his past with Marina.

    I wish that the Ava story had given Steve the opportunity to fight for Kayla and make right the mistakes he made. Instead it was all ignored.

  3. Sherry, SN and MBE are pretty wonderful with the angst, aren’t they? I think this story, as painful as it is, really shows what they can do.

    Mary, I agree that the show let Steve earn his way back to Kayla by showing how hard he had to work in order to get her back (and how much he suffered without her). He earned his way back with us that way, too.🙂

  4. >When he does find it, some guy stabs him in the (fake) eye. He’s hurt and in pain and, again, all he wants is Kayla.

    Watching those scenes not too long ago, I really appreciated how they used what had been some of the most grating parts of the story, up until that point. Steve’s turn-around here still seems to be playing into that idea of Kayla as supreme nurturer vs. Marina the sex goddess. Now that he’s wounded again, that’s the kind of womanly attention he’s searching out. I think the flashback they used was even the patch removal scene, when Steve first began to realize that nothing about him could scare her away, and she was safe… only to come home and find that that refuge is gone.

    I just love the scenes in these clips, although I don’t have a lot to add about them. The angst is all deserved and earned, and right on pitch, and none of the three actors misses a beat. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that it’s some of their best work.

  5. lska, I absolutely love how they set this up after Steve loses his eye. Marina taunts him about Kayla accepting him and he looks at himself in the mirror, obviously having a flicker of insecurity. Then he flashes back to the patch removal scene and laughs to himself and says, “Kayla loves you.” It’s something that has always been constant—she’s his refuge, as you say. And all the time we know she has left him (though for a totally different reason of course) and no one can find her.

    And I agree this is some of their best work. I just love the angst.

  6. “Steve’s turn-around here still seems to be playing into that idea of Kayla as supreme nurturer vs. Marina the sex goddess. Now that he’s wounded again, that’s the kind of womanly attention he’s searching out.”

    I kind of disagree with this or at least what I think you are saying here. I think the show did a good job of showing Steve’s rejection of Marina and desire to get home to Kayla before he ever loses the eye. The standout scene is the fantasy he has of Kayla on the boat, telling her how much he loves her and how he’s going to fix things. But there are other moments as well. So, when Steve gets hurt, it just intensifies that focus and that need for Kayla that was already there. I don’t think it causes the turnaround.

    But, I totally agree that the contrast between Steve’s desire to get home to Kayla and his focus on her love for him and the fact that Kayla has left is wonderful.

    And I definitely agree that this is some of their best work. It’s wonderfully done.

  7. esp, I do really appreciate how they establish that Steve really wanted Kayla and not Marina before he ever loses his eye. That’s really important to see, and I totally agree that they make it quite clear.

    It’s also true, though, that the show does draw a contrast between Kayla and Marina, with Kayla being the much more nurturing of the two, and they use that dichotomy here. That’s what I thought lska was saying, but she can correct me if I’m wrong.🙂

  8. I only mean that they could have dropped that dichotomy when the story moved beyond its original purpose. But I like the final twist of having Steve basically reject Marina’s attempts to take on the role he sees as Kayla’s, and then have his expectations about that part of their relationship collapse away underneath him when he gets back to Salem. ESP is right, of course, that there are scenes that add back some other layers to Steve’s view of Kayla before he comes home.

  9. “But I like the final twist of having Steve basically reject Marina’s attempts to take on the role he sees as Kayla’s, and then have his expectations about that part of their relationship collapse away underneath him when he gets back to Salem.”

    Now this we totally agree on. I love that Steve continually refuses to let Marina take care of him and insists that the just needs Kayla. And then has that wonderful moment of doubt (after Marina has questioned whether Kayla will want him back if the eye is a permanent reminder of her) followed by the great man in the mirror shot and the flashback to the original patch removal scene. All of this shows how certain Steve is that Kayla loves him no matter what and how much he needs that right now. Then he gets home and finds out that Kayla’s not waiting for him at all.

    I do have to mention one other part of all of this and that’s when Kayla does come to the hospital after Jack finds her and tells her about Steve. I love that they have the little moment where Kayla reaches up and touches his bandages and asks if he’s okay. On the surface it’s about his physical condition, but underneath I think she’s asking about his emotional state, knowing that losing the eye again is not easy for him. It’s a wonderful moment of connection that shows that, in some ways, his expectations weren’t wrong.

  10. This may sound mean but I am glad that Steve’s expectations that Kayla would be there waiting for him and take care of him collapsed. I think you can take for granted the people you love. Kayla has always been so understanding and accepting of Steve but sometimes you do something and you can’t be anymore. All he did was lie and keep things and the trust was broken.

    The only thing I didn’t like was if Kayla looked like the safe choice if that makes sense. They had made Marina look like the desirable and interesting one up to that point that I didn’t like how it made Kayla look. I hope this makes sense.

  11. I love the way Steve’s behavior at this point echoes his behavior in the past. When he first comes back and he can’t find Kayla, he’s like a wounded animal — in physical and emotional pain. When he grabs Jack and asks: “Where’s Kayla?”, the scene reminds of when he began to suspect who Adrienne was and it brought back all the pain he had buried. He had trouble dealing with it then, and he has trouble now when Kayla leaves him. He’s kind of out of control.

    I also like the moment in the second clip where he understands that Jack was paying more attention to Kayla than he was, that he had been blind to what she was going through. Once again, he has to deal with the consequences of his bad choices.

    I also like how long it took him to win her back (I realize part of the reason was MBE’s pregnancy) But just as he did earlier in their relationship, he had to get some control of himself and to persevere in the face of problems, not to give up and run away. And he had to believe in their love, and make her believe again, just as he did when she was deaf.

    And, as usual, MBE just breaks my heart when Kayla is sad. And Jack remains the annoying younger brother, even when he’s also being helpful.

  12. Excellent point that Steve is out of control. I love the scene at the house where he finds Jack there instead of Kayla, and he grabs him by the lapels (as per usual) and then starts sobbing. He’s truly at the end of his rope.

    Hee! about Jack being the annoying younger brother. He can’t resist a few one liners in that pier scene (“I’m not the one who was in bed with Marina”) but after everything, he’s entitled, I think.🙂

    And Mary, I think we all feel a little frustration with Steve’s actions in Italy and before, so this is all a good way to show him having to earn Kayla back—definitely a good thing.

  13. I know this is completely off topic, but I had to share here at a place where I knew it would be appreciated. Someone on Facebook just invited me to join the “Billy Hufsey Music Lovers” group.

    (And no, I didn’t join. Unlike MP, I’m not swayed by the awesomeness of the mullet)

  14. Hee! That’s fabulous, Paula. Yes, it’s true, I have succumbed to the power of the awesome mullet. Seriously, no one is more surprised than me by how sweet I am finding Emilio this time around. But I am, I really am!

    I know that Billy Hufsey still has tons of fans—I still get weekly, sometimes daily, hits from people googling him. Hee.

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