The Depths

Let’s wallow, shall we?

Failed date 2

Failed date 3

This is obviously nothing on the angst we’ll get later, during the Adrienne breakup, the Jack breakup, or Marina, or many other storylines. But it’s painful enough.

I do think it’s interesting, psychologically speaking, that Steve drops the flowers outside Kayla’s door before he goes. Maybe he can’t bear to take them with him, or feels they belong to her, not him. Maybe, subconsciously, he wants her to know he was there, that he didn’t just stand her up. And maybe, just maybe, he even wants her to come after him. (Though if that’s true, his subconscious mind should also have prevented him from kissing a prostitute on his doorstep.)

What I think it particularly well done is that they make this painful for both of them, not just Kayla. Steve goes to the Cheatin’ Heart to drown his sorrows and a woman starts chatting him up. Steve softens a little, listening to her sympathetic banter. Then, when it becomes clear she is a prostitute, just looking for a customer, the look on his face is heartbreaking. When he says “Why not?” and leaves with her anyway, we can see clearly what is in his mind: maybe this is all I deserve.

Then — and we knew this was coming — Kayla finds the flowers, goes to find Steve … and sees him with the prostitute. I can never watch this scene without covering my eyes when Kayla comes upon them. It’s just a horrible, horrible moment. After her excitement and hopefulness earlier, it kills me to have her evening come to this. After that, I appreciate the fact that Steve sends the prostitute away. And I think it’s in keeping with his character, the same person we saw reluctant to fall into bed with Britta, who we see having romantic fantasies about Kayla.

Back at the loft, watching Bo comfort Kayla, when he was the one who ruined her evening, adds insult to injury for me as a viewer. Actually, it kind of makes me want to punch his lights out. But, I have to admit that Bo would not have been able to ruin their evening if Steve hadn’t been susceptible to what Bo told him. This is a dynamic that will play out again and again over the next months. Kayla succeeds in breaking through to Steve, and then something happens that makes him close up and run away again. The pain Kayla feels tonight foreshadows far greater pain to come.

Then the final shot – Steve sitting on his steps, holding the harmonica Kayla gave him. Caught between longing for more, and better, and not being able to accept the comfort of less, and worse.

Next: Heart of my own


14 thoughts on “The Depths

  1. Oh this scene! I vacillate between thinking “Steve, you bonehead!” and “Bo, you bonehead.” With poor Kayla, caught between, and coming upon Steve kissing another woman right after standing her up. It’s so Kayla, that she ran right out after him when she found the flowers! I just love her character.

    MBE is really heartbreaking in this scene. All her hopes and excitement dashed!

    Steve really is a self-fulfilling prophecy during this period. Kayla pretty much remains true throughout everything (she has her moments of wavering, but in the end always comes back to believing the best of Steve), but Steve is bascially dancing around HIMSELF. He clearly has strong feelings for Kayla, but his terrible self-image doesn’t allow him to see clearly. It really was genius, using Steve’s “Patch” as not only a physical disability, but a metaphor for his whole mental state as well. He never really SEES clearly. He doesn’t see himself clearly, and he doesn’t really see Kayla clearly at this point either. He believes she is deluding herself about him, when he is clearly the one deluding himself! Oh this was so good! There surely is greater pain to come as they grow closer, and Kayla slips further and further under Steve’s skin, but this is really our first taste of what a mountain Kayla will have to climb in order to open up his heart!

    Two more days!!! I’m so excited. Haven’t watched today’s show yet, but I’m impressed so far with the quality of the new writing and the new directions we seem to be being led in!

    • I love the way you put it, that he is dancing around himself. I think so much of this early story is him trying to decide who the real Steve is. Or to put it another way, is he Steve or is he Patch?

      It’s so interesting watching him really, really want to believe Kayla. It’s like she seduces him with this vision of himself, but almost because of that, how much he wants to believe, he doesn’t. Or he doesn’t for long. It’s such an amazing dynamic.

      And yes, both men are boneheads here! πŸ™‚

  2. I don’t like to wallow. it is so unfair to make me watch these scenes without getting to watch the next two clips on the playlist…lol.

    I clearly remember seeing these scenes back when they aired and watching with horror as Steve let his insecurity almost derail this entire relationship. Stephen Nichols plays Steve’s pain, insecurity and longing so perfectly and I felt every bit of emotional turmoil right along with him. This is what i miss and what I long for….stories and characters that move me.

    • What was always so impressive to me was how REAL everything seemed. SN and MBE kept their characterization so TRUE. The good writing helped, but I think a lot of the credit goes to them. You knew who these two were. You could understand and relate to the emotions on both sides, even when you wanted to shake one of them for being a dunce, you could understand WHY they were being a dunce :). That’s why these scenes are still so resonant after all these years, and don’t seem dated at all (except of course the clothing, etc). They are based in human emotion that we can all still relate to. A good love story is timeless.

      I remember the horror too! And Steve just kept on doing it, for what felt like FOREVER.

      • Shea, I promise I won’t leave us wallowing too long! We’ll move on from here over the weekend. πŸ™‚

        I agree with both of you that a lot of the credit goes to Stephen and Mary Beth, but I would also say that good writing leads to good acting. What made them feel so real, and what allowed them to add so many layers is that these characters were written well, and – crucially – consistently! You can’t play layers and subtext if the writing is turning on a dime. That’s what I noticed during their second run, especially at the beginning. The story wasn’t well thought out, so Stephen and Mary Beth were kind of at sea a little bit. They didn’t feel as “true” as they did back then, and I could feel the strain sometimes, coming through in their performances. Trying to find moments, sometimes force moments. That got better as they went along, the writing got better (at least in spots), but also I think they found their rhythm, and adapted to a different writing style, that plays more at the level of the scene, and not at the level of the long arc.

        I hope we’ll get more consistent writing for them now, at least it is one team instead of a revolving door of writers! And they’ve been onscreen more recently, and I think that helps. I’m optimistic. πŸ™‚

      • I think it took them a while to “find their feet” during the second run. It didn’t help that Stephen had to play a Steve that didn’t remember Kayla. I think it took a while for them to recover from that. It just didn’t feel natural. I noticed an almost immediate change once Steve remembered. The story wasn’t great, but they had some great moments.

        This time, they are coming back right away as Steve and Kayla. We know who THEY are. Stephen and Mary Beth know them better than anyone. I hope the writing and story lives up to them. I’m very hopeful.

        Did you see their instagram takeover today? Very cute.

  3. I saw their Instagram take over today. They are so cute and look like they are having a lot of fun. I bet they are just fun to hang out with. I loved the picture of them with Alice and Tom and MBE getting ready to dive into the cake celebrating their 6000 show. So great to see them having fun at work.

  4. Dang, this is good stuff! I started watching the show after this, and it’s been fun to go back and watch it. I loved the announcement for Another World coming up next almost as much as loved the clip. “An evil man enters the love mansion!” or whatever. Hee. Another World was the first soap that I got into, and though I pretty much ditched it for DAYS once my friend showed me a JnJ clip, I’ll always have a soft spot for it.

    • I like the Another World promos too. Though I never watched the show, even when I watched both Days and Santa Barbara, and Another World was in between. I think I would get mad at Another World because it meant Days was over. Hee!

      Glad you are enjoying these glimpses of other stories!

  5. I find myself gravitating to something different about a scene each time I watch it (although granted, it’s been ages since I saw these!), and it has to be Bo and Kayla this time. I just love their rapport. All of the Bradys, really, are so strong minded and tough with each other when they have to be, but then he’s so sincere here that he didn’t want to see her hurt. PR and MBE are so good together, I hope they get some quality scenes coming up.

    • I love PR and MBE together. And these scenes are really well written, which I have to admit even though I want to punch him. I like that he doesn’t say I told you so and is so sincere in wanting to comfort her.

      I hope they get some good scenes coming up too. I’m enjoying the 1991 Kayla/Bo storyline, which is new to me.

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