Are you guys ready for some Shayla? 🙂
This is a nice series of scenes. It shows Shane and Kayla staying up all night together, taking care of Stephanie.
(For those who don’t know, Kayla moves in with Shane after Steve’s death so he can help protect her from Lawrence. It’s also suggested that living in the house she shared with Steve is difficult and painful, so Kayla appreciates the change of scene.)
Here they are still just friends, nothing has happened yet. But we see the basis of what draws them together. It becomes clear, as this relationship unfolds, that their shared pain, and the support they offer each other, is the core of the attraction. This is a very, very different kind of relationship to the one they each had with their “great love.” Kim left town with Jeanie (now Teresa!) and sent divorce papers to Shane through the mail. Kayla is there for him then. Shane helps take care of Stephanie and is there for Kayla when she is getting over Steve’s death. He gives her a challenging job at a research lab that gives her something else to focus on.
None of this implies a grand passionate love affair, and the show generally doesn’t try to force it to be more than it is. (When they do try, the story doesn’t work as well, in my opinion.) There is little of the dramatic push/pull of a supercouple relationship — the drama kicks in when Kim comes back to town. That feels strange on the supercouple show, but I do find it realistic that two people, after having their hearts broken and stomped on, would find a safe harbor in something quieter and more stable.
And on a personal note, this is one of the first arcs where we actually get to see Kayla be happy for most of the episode. I don’t know what it was like to watch this in real time, but watching clips it is utterly wrenching to watch Kayla grieve — especially since Mary Beth is so good at conveying devastation. Here’s an example of what I mean:
I’m telling you, I actually felt grateful when the Shayla story started to get going on my clips, just because it was a relief to finally see Kayla happy, even a little.