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Series / The Bold and the Beautiful

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The Bold and the Beautiful is a half-hour long American Soap Opera that airs on CBS. The show premiered on March 23, 1987, making it the youngest American soap opera on television; it is also the last remaining half-hour soap opera on network daytime television, in no large part, because its CBS timeslot was abbreviated to allow stations to carry their midday newscasts at noon local time.

Set in Los Angeles, California, The Bold and the Beautiful centers around the fashion industry, the struggles of surviving in such a competitive environment. At the center of the show are two families; the influential and elitist Forrester family – headed by Eric and Stephanie Forrester, founders of the fashion company Forrester Creations, and the once upper-middle class Logan family – primarily headed by oldest daughter Brooke Logan. Both families become integrated together through marriage, affairs, and bitter feuds. Adding to the conflict includes the Marone family, headed by Jackie, and the Spectra family, headed by Sally.


Provides examples of:

  • Abortion Fallout Drama: Morgan DeWitt, an ex-girlfriend of Ridge's came to town still bitter about the abortion she'd had years ago. Flashbacks showed that she had wanted the baby, but had been browbeaten into terminating the pregnancy by Ridge's controlling mother Stephanie, who didn't feel that Morgan was good enough for Ridge, nor that the two were ready to take on the responsibility of parenthood. Her storyline consisted of her manipulating and seducing Ridge into committing adultery with her in order to conceive again, spending the next nine months pulling out all the stops to keep Ridge's wife Taylor from finding out, having a Tragic Stillbirth when she did, kidnapping their daughter Steffy, kidnapping Taylor herself when she found out, trying to kill Taylor, trying to kill Stephanie after Ridge managed to rescue the other two, and finally being carted ofc to jail. Whew.
  • Absentee Actor:
    • Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke Logan) took a sabbatical from the show in the fall of 2014 so she could compete on Ballando con le stelle, the Italian version of Dancing with the Stars. Unlike Ronn Moss (Ridge Forrester #1), who competed two years earlier on that same show, Lang chose to temporarily set up residence with her family in Italy, resulting in Brooke being written off as going there as well. She returned in January 2015, after she was eliminated from Ballando con le stelle.
    • Lindsey Godfrey (Caroline Spencer) was written out of the show temporarily twice within the course of a year for two different reasons: In June 2014, Godfrey gave birth to a daughter (with then-boyfriend and later, briefly, fiancée Robert Adamson); the pregnancy was not written into the show, even though her character was married to Rick Forrester (played by Jacob Young) and even contemplated having children with him. The second incidence, resulting from a near-fatal auto-pedestrian accident, is detailed under Written-In Infirmity in the YMMV page.
  • Accidental Adultery: Morgan sends Ridge a fake email supposedly from Taylor, granting him permission to sleep with Morgan and father her baby. Ridge does so and is promptly horrified to learn that the email was false and that he has in fact cheated on his wife.
  • Advertised Extra: Wayne Brady was added to the opening fashion reel right after his character appeared for the final time.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Ridge calls Taylor "Doc" (she's a psychiatrist), and Brooke "Logan" (her surname).
  • The Alcoholic: First Macy, then Taylor, now Brooke as well. Taylor's alcoholism tends to resurface when she's under deep stress. Unfortunately, her relapse caused her to temporarily lose custody of her son, Jack.
  • Arch-Enemy: Without a doubt, Stephanie and Brooke, although they sometimes got along. In fact, Brooke was the last person Stephanie saw when she died of cancer in 2012, with the two finally putting their adversarial relationship beside them.
  • Artistic License – Medicine: In a crossover with Artistic License – Law, we have Dr. Finnegan's relationship with Steffy. While the show goes out of its way to not truly put them together until Steffy is officially no longer his patient, the fact remains that this relationship breaks every kind of doctor-patient ethics law that exists, for the exact reasons that Liam brings up. This kind of relationship compromises a doctor's objective thinking and would get his medical license suspended as soon as it becomes public, former patient or not.
  • At Least I Admit It: Steffy Forrester has recently meddled in on relationships and is unabashed about it. When the Logans – particularly Brooke – confront her about her misdeeds, she throws all of their previous crimes in their faces.
  • Ax-Crazy: Morgan fits into this, as does Pam (though she got better), and later Quinn (who could easily be called Machete Crazy, if such a trope existed) and Aly.
  • The Baby Trap: Stephanie used this against Eric to get her to marry him over Beth Logan. It's quite despicable in the first place, even more so when a retcon reveals that Massimo Marone is Ridge's father and that Stephanie had to have known there was a possibility of this. Eric often throws this in Stephanie's face whenever he's caught in an affair. It doesn't quite explain though why Eric goes crawling back to Stephanie after all his affairs end.
    • Also, when Sly poked a hole in the condom he planned to use while having sex with Jessica, hoping to get her pregnant so that he could "do the right thing" and marry her – and get his hands on the Forrester millions. It backfired, as he was too drunk to... complete the deed.
  • Back from the Dead: Being a Soap Opera, this happens frequently. Most prominently with Taylor (twice!) and Macy. Some characters, however, stay dead; for example, Stephanie Forrester (due to her portrayer, Susan Flannery's, decision to retire from acting) and Darla Forrester (whose actress, Schae Harrison, has appeared on the show since Darla was killed off in 2007 but only as either a mental illness-induced hallucination or a ghost in a dream sequence).
  • Beta Couple: Compared to the constant drama of the main characters, Rick/Maya is surprisingly stable and sane. Wyatt/Katie is a more recent example, as all their problems are caused by outside forces (i.e., Bill).
  • Betty and Veronica: Taylor and Brooke for Ridge, respectively. In recent years, the focus was on Hope and Steffy for Liam. However, a larger focus had been placed on Wyatt and Liam for Hope since Wyatt's introduction, with Caroline and Maya for Rick getting some steady increase in screen time and plot relevance as well. Liam's tendency to waffle on his feelings for women would later result in a Betty-Betty situation with Hope and Ivy, which Quinn put a stop to by pushing Ivy off a bridge into the River Seine to keep Liam from taking Hope away from Wyatt (Quinn's son). Ivy then became the Betty to Steffy's Veronica after Liam's, Steffy's, and Ridge's takeover of Forrester Creations, and the end of Liam and Ivy's very short-lived marriage due to a misunderstanding regarding Ivy (who's Australian but a dual U.S.-Australian citizen)'s citizenship status.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: Seriously. The Forresters and Logan are tied forever because of the numerous affairs Brooke has had with all the men in the Forrester family, not to mention the children produced from said affairs.
  • Both Sides Have a Point: The 2020 storyline featuring Liam taking Kelly away from Steffy has Liam and Steffy fight, with both of them bringing up accurate points. On the one hand, Steffy is correct that Liam has no right to barge in and invade her privacy the way he did whether he genuinely was worried for her or not, and to take her daughter out of nowhere the way he does is borderline cruel. On the other, Liam is right that Steffy very clearly needs help for her incoming drug problem before it becomes a full-fledged addiction, and his concerns about what could've happened to Kelly while Steffy was passed out are all valid.
  • Break the Cutie/Break the Haughty: Steffy Forrester has experienced these two tropes a few times.
    • After Steffy finds out she is pregnant with Liam's child in 2013, leading to them getting married, Steffy miscarries her baby after crashing her motorbike. Upon discovering that the accident has left her infertile, she decides to divorce Liam and move to Paris.
    • After returning to L.A. to take over Forrester Creations with Liam and Ridge in 2015, Steffy is repeatedly Slut Shamed by cousin Aly Forresternote  for "flaunting" her body and attempting to snare Liam from their shared cousin (and Aly's best friend) Ivy. Extremely mentally unstable, Aly attempts to "re-enact" Darla's deathnote  by trying to run Steffy over on the same stretch of the Pacific Coast Highway where Darla died as her cousin tries to repair the tires on her car (which Aly punctured) when it breaks down. Steffy – unsuccessful in trying to talk her cousin down – is nearly killed by Aly with a tire iron, which Steffy kills Aly with in self-defense when she tries to bludgeon Steffy with a rock. Adding to the trauma, a resentful Ivy (a witness to Aly's death, who ends up making veiled accusations that Steffy murdered Alynote , not knowing the real story) decides to use a cell phone video she taped of Aly's killing (which makes Steffy appear as the aggressor) to blackmail Thomas into making her a lead model of the "California Freedom" fashion line (under the guise of trying to honor Aly's legacy by trying to keep the line from becoming "overt" – sexualized – than if Steffy was in it), in exchange for her silence. Insisting that Steffy lied about the self-defense claim, Ivy even chastises Wyatt (whom she catches trying to delete the video upon Steffy's urging) for "siding" with Steffy's account, forcing him to back down when she expresses her own loneliness. The fact Ivy even used blackmail to keep the tape under wraps from the police was even Lampshaded by Ivy as being out-of-character for her. Then after the video is deleted, during a confrontation with Ivy over her kissing Thomas while still dating Wyatt (resulting in Wyatt breaking up with Ivy), Steffy accidentally electrocutes Ivy on a broken electrical panel, resulting in Steffy being slapped with a restraining order; she then accidentally injures Ivy again on the staircase during an argument over her feelings for Liam as Ivy prepares to return to Australia. So to summarize, she nearly gets killed by one cousin, kills said cousin in self-defense, and is blackmailed by another cousin, whom she nearly kills by accident twice.
  • Break-Up Bonfire: Bridget does this after finding out that her husband Deacon has been sleeping with her mother and gotten her pregnant. She takes particular glee in throwing his ashtrays into the mix—"Kissing you was like licking one of these! I HATED it!"
  • Butt-Monkey: Thorne. Not only has Ridge overshadowed him for most of his life, but he's had to deal with Stephanie's obvious favoritism towards Ridge. The fact that he exposed Eric's plot to elope with Brooke wasn't enough to turn Stephanie away. He's also repeatedly accused (primarily by Ridge) of being an idiot and a loser with no original ideas. He's often had to gain strength from the women in his lives – Macy, Darla, and Taylor – in order to stand up to Ridge or fight for his place at Forrester Creations. He even initiates a physical fight with Ridge one time Ridge unnecessarily insults Darla.
  • Cain and Abel: Ridge and Rick, just who is the Cain and who is Abel varies depending on the applicable storyline. There are moments of civility between the two, but Rick's feelings of being The Unfavorite in Eric's eyes when compared to Ridge contributed to their rivalry.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: At one point Brooke had gotten pregnant by Eric (eventually giving birth to son Rick), and Eric wanted to get a speedy divorce from Stephanie without the latter finding out so he could marry Brooke. Ridge decided to go along with the plan to protect Brooke and her baby, but Thorne found the whole thing disgusting and ratted them out to Stephanie. Eric treated Thorne like he'd committed treason, and it was then that Thorne really let Eric have it about what he was doing. Not that it made any difference, because Eric followed through with his plan regardless.
    • In recent years, this has pretty much qualified for all of Eric's children with Stephanie when he's caught in an affair with another woman.
  • The Cameo: The most recent example would also be the weirdest—a wedding-related storyline in October 2016 had Wink Martindale as Reverend Brown.
  • Celeb Crush: Brooke fell in love with Ridge when she saw him in a magazine, and she helped her mother cater a high-end LA party because she knew Ridge would be there and she wanted to meet him.
  • Character Outlives Actor: The late Darlene Conley's Sally Spectra.
    • Played straight when Michael Fox, who played Sally's friend and employee Saul Feinberg, died in 1996.
  • Citizenship Marriage: While the main goal was to help her stay in the country, Thomas and Gabriella might be the only example of this trope where the couple in question was genuinely in love with each other (rather than one half of the couple being in love with someone else or neither being attracted to the other) and had to convince the INS that their Fourth Date Marriage was for real.
  • Convenient Miscarriage: After manipulating things to get pregnant with Ridge's baby (she was desperate to replace the child Stephanie forced her to abort years ago), Morgan has a Tragic Stillbirth following an argument with Ridge's wife Taylor and falling over a balcony, thus eliminating the couple having to deal with a permanent reminder of his infidelity.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Steffy and Hope's response when they find out their mothers have gotten into, of all things, a Food Fight, ruining Hope's wedding cake? Make them both walk out into the reception and tell everyone what they'd done. Without giving them a chance to clean up first.
  • Crossover: Most prominently with The Young and the Restless. Characters from Genoa City like Sheila and Ashley Abbott show up in L.A. to be new love interests.
    • In the June 17, 2009 episode, Pam and Donna wind up in the audience of The Price Is Right; Donna winds up being picked to play on the show and wins big on the next day's episode.
  • Dead Guy Junior:
    • Several babies on this shown have been named after deceased relatives and/or friends (and even more have been named after living ones). Mary Warwick was named after her dead grandmother, the new Caroline Spencer was named after her aunt who died of leukemia, and Alexandria Forrester, who was conceived in an adulterous affair between her father and his then wife's best friend, was named after the betrayed wife...
    • Subverted with Steffy Forrester, who was named after her grandmother Stephanie, who had just suffered a potentially fatal stroke at the time of Steffy's birth. However, the elder Stephanie miraculously survived.
    • And the fashion house Spectra has been revived, with younger namesake versions of the previous employees—Sally, Saul, Darlita (for Darla).
  • Double Standard: Rape, Male on Male: Averted. In the early '90s, the show launched a groundbreaking storyline when Jake, Felicia's boyfriend, came to grips with the fact that he'd been sexually abused by his uncle as a child.
  • Easily Forgiven:
    • A lot of men and women in the show are forgiven in a short period of time for affairs, most particularly Brooke. Bridget swore she would never forgive Brooke for sleeping with her then-husband Deacon, but they were back on speaking terms within a short period of time. Also, Stephanie is quick to forgive Eric for his affairs when they end and he begs her back.
    • Taylor really nails this trope with Thorne though after she accidentally killed his wife Darla. Thorne forgave her enough to the point that he entered into a relationship with Taylor and almost married her, but his daughter Aly's outrage over the relationship stopped him from going through with it.
  • Everyone Is a Suspect:
    • When Stephanie was shot, everyone literally was a suspect because they all had reason to be angry at her. Storm did it.
    • Similarly, when Bill was shot. Tends to happen when you screw over everyone you come into contact with. Taylor did it.
  • Expy: "Dollar" Bill Spencer, Jr. could easily be seen as this of Donald Trump; the two both are extremely wealthy self-made businessmen who have high opinions of themselves (even acknowledging they think they're good-looking with shameless confidence), have little if any filter when it comes to their actions (an example in Bill's case being his decision to out Maya as transgender in his magazine) and can be very obnoxious.
  • Flip Personality: In recent years, The Bold and the Beautiful's writers have had characters change personalities as the storyline dictates. In some cases where a Face–Heel Turn or Heel–Face Revolving Door is used, the character usually reverts back to their old personality later on:
    • Maya Avant came to the canvas out of prison and ready to turn her life around. Then came Caroline Spencer, who conspired to keep them apart and eventually snagged Rick. In addition to becoming a rival to Caroline, she flips between a woman who wants to redeem herself and a Manipulative Bitch. She then is shifted towards more of a heroine role when she is revealed to be transgender.
    • Quinn Fuller's personality change is explainable through a plot point in separate storylines in 2014 and 2015. When her son Wyatt (who is revealed to have tried to deal with his mother's erratic behavior for years) begins dating Hope, whom his half-brother had been in an on-again/off-again relationship with, Quinn tries by any means to keep Liam from interfering, leading her to threaten to murder him and actually try to chop him with a machete! When Quinn returns after allegedly admitting herself in a mental health institution, she threatens Brooke to stay away from Deacon (whom Quinn had started seeing at the time), but doesn't go farther than dreaming of stabbing her in the stomach. After that storyline, Quinn has been depicted as still mischievous but quirky, rather than mentally deranged.
    • When Aly Forrester was SORASed in 2014, she started as The Wallflower type. However, she seemingly had a Split Personality as she went from being a nice girl to mentally troubled and back, twice (the latter was due to her hatred of Taylor for running over Darla when Aly was a kid). Upon her second flip, she grew into The Resenter towards Steffy, channeling her hatred of Taylor towards her daughter, and descended into a violent behavior by attempting to murder Steffy with a tire iron and a rock, the former of which led to her death by Steffy. Again, this is explainable by way of her mental issues serving as a plot point.
    • Ivy Forrester started out as the Nice Girl when introduced in 2014; however, tied into she flipped to a Manipulative Bitch Resenter and persecutorial blackmailer as part of a Break the Cutie incident caused by Steffy "stealing" then-boyfriend Liam from her (although Liam later states that he chose to leave Ivy – whom he broke up with at Aly's funeral! – for Steffy on his own terms) and then killing their cousin/her best friend Aly in self-defense (though Ivy, who held a cell phone video she took of the killing over Steffy's head and used Aly's death as a means to get ahead in the company, saw it as murder). Ironically, of those who noticed something wrong with her, Quinn's Out-of-Character Alert toward her is the most telling, as she was surprised that Ivy started acting like a jerk (and not in a good way).
    • In the running for the show's most egregious example of the trope, Thomas Forrester. As an adult (as played by Adam Gregory and Pierson Fodé), Thomas was a standard Bad Boy Lothario, but the version played by Matthew Atkinson has seen the character devolve into a full-blown sociopath, fueled by an obsessive infatuation with Hope that developed amid his grief over the off-screen sudden death of Caroline from a blood clot hemorrhage in the Spring of 2019, causing him to rack up a large amount of amoral actions rivaling those any other soap baddie has committed in such a relatively short timespan. Over the last eight months of 2019 alone, he found out and hid the true identity of Liam and Steffy's adopted daughter Phoebe, who was really Hope and Liam's thought-to-have-been-stillborn daughter Beth, and manipulated multiple people involved in Dr. Reese's cover-up of the faked miscarriage (including Flo and Zoe) in order to prevent Hope from getting back together with Liam; manipulated and basically mentally abused his young son, Douglas, to get closer to Hope and to keep him from revealing the Beth secret; used Brooke accidentally pushing him off a cliff (an incident he survived) after she catches him manhandling Hope, during a failed effort to convince Hope to forgive him for keeping Beth's identity a secret, to drive a marriage-ending wedge between Brooke and Ridge, whom he manipulated into believing he's changed; faked a McLeaning into a vat of acidic chemicals during an incident with Hope, leading her to briefly believe that she accidentally killed him; tries to coerce Hope into having sex with him in exchange for receiving custody of Douglas; drugged Liam and planned to drug Hope; and... oh yeah... caused a vehicular homicide by running Emma off the Pacific Coast Highway to keep her from revealing the truth about Beth.
  • Good Adultery, Bad Adultery: Brooke tends to justify her flings as being part of her 'destiny', though Ridge seems to be the one she considers her soulmate. Also, all of the women Eric has affairs with (and ends up leaving Stephanie for) throw this excuse in Stephanie's face, citing her neurotic control smothers Eric and that she needs to let him go. Yet, once these relationships end, Eric will go crawling back to Stephanie and beg her forgiveness. Lather, rinse, repeat.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Three of Brooke's pregnancies were under circumstances where an abortion would have been the most logical choice (conceived during an extramarital affair and her pregnancy would have destroyed the couple's chances at reconciliation. The third one was also complicated by her advanced age). But in all three cases, she chose to have the baby, and in all cases (even with her miscarrying the third time), the inevitable damage was done.
  • Heteronormative Crusader: Aly Forrester grew into this, the result of her inability to cope with losing her mother Darla in a drunk driving accident when she was a little girl and her being mentally unhinged as a result (she actually sees and hears a floating image of her mother's head, for crying out loud!). It results in some serious Slut-Shaming against Steffy (Aly's grudge is really against Steffy's mother Taylor) and some not-as-overt judgemental behavior towards Maya, who, like Rick, treated her more like a servant after Rick took over at Forrester (though the fact that Maya's transgender also has something to do with it).
  • History Repeats: The Brooke, Ridge, and Taylor Love Triangle has pretty much been transposed to Hope, Liam, and Steffy, with Brooke being the best analog for Stephanie. Irony!
    • Not only that, Hope is the "Good Girl", the opposite of her mother Brooke, while Steffy is the "Bad Girl", the opposite of her mother Taylor.
  • Hoist By Her Own Petard: This relates to Stephanie's plan with Andy Johnson. At the time, Ridge was engaged to Ashley Abbott, but Brooke was trying to win him back. Stephanie liked Ashley and wanted Brooke to back off, so she hired Andy to seduce Brooke and show Ridge once again what a slut she was. Well, the plan completely backfired on Stephanie. Andy raped Brooke when seducing her didn't work, and Ridge was there to pick up the pieces and help her through it. Tending to her and helping her deal with her rape reawakened Ridge's feelings for Brooke and he dumped Ashley to be with her. Most of all, everyone turned on Stephanie when it was made known she had hired Andy.
  • Hot Scientist: Brooke is actually an incredibly skilled chemist, and one thing that makes her an asset to Forrester Creations is that she created a formula that permanently removes wrinkles from clothing.
  • Hypocrite:
    • When Katie had an affair with Nick, her niece Bridget's husband, Brooke went into full Mama Bear mode and completely railroaded Katie for hurting Bridget. However, Brooke had also betrayed Bridget this same way. Twice. One of these times with Nick!
    • Taylor is a pro at this as well. She constantly bashes Brooke for her many romantic entanglements, especially for dating more than one man from the same family and for getting romantically involved with her daughter's love interests. Taylor herself has been engaged to Storm Logan, has had a relationship with Stephen Logan, and has been romantically involved with Eric Forrester, Ridge Forrester, Thorne Forrester, and Rick Forrester (the last of whom was her daughter Phoebe's great love and Phoebe's distress over this led to the car accident which Phoebe died). It coming to incredible degrees in which she fully blamed Bill for the affair that imploded Liam and Steffy's marriage, even after Steffy accepted and took the blame for her part with grace and maturity, even fostering a familial relationship between her and Hope, that Taylor attempted to gun down Bill in cold blood, almost even letting Ridge be persecuted of the crime. Once again she evaded jail after Steffy begged Bill to not implicate Taylor for the crime, once again she got back on her high horse condemning and calling Brooke, Hope, and Bill horrible people, even as she made thinly veiled threats against the three.
    • Ridge also, who spent decades flip-flopping between Taylor and Brooke, yet went ballistic if either of them even looked at another man—he kicked Brooke to the curb over her kissing Grant and publicly humiliated her by publicly proposing to Taylor, and kicked Taylor to the curb over a one-night stand that happened over a decade ago and under duress.
    • The entire family is this when they refuse to attend Quinn and Eric's wedding, citing the many terrible things that Quinn has done—and conveniently forgetting the terrible things that all of them have done. Eric gives them an epic "The Reason You Suck" Speech regarding this.
    • Brooke always hated it when Stephanie meddled in her relationship with Ridge, and she has hated Taylor for years for stealing Ridge (more than once). The fact that Stephanie blatantly favored Taylor did not help matters. But Brooke meddling in Steffy's relationship with Liam, trying to push him towards her own daughter Hope, and at some points just straight-up refusing to give Steffy the benefit of the doubt in any given situation? Totally different.
    • Brooke is also quick to condemn Steffy for sleeping with Bill, her husband's father, seeing it as a reason why her own daughter Hope should be with Liam instead. This is a bit rich when you remember that the only reason Hope exists is that Brooke had an affair with her daughter's husband.
  • Large Ham: Sally Spectra. Big, bold, and larger than life, Sally was never afraid to chew some scenery. Her niece and namesake is proving to be this too.
  • Last of Its Kind: The Bold and the Beautiful became the last remaining half-hour daytime soap on American television in 2003, when ABC cancelled the General Hospital spin-off Port Charles.
  • Last Words: Caroline's final words to Ridge have been a driving force of the relationships on the show. Initially, she told him to marry Brooke because that was who she felt he belonged with, but her words keep getting retconned for storyline convenience. They can be either the former, or that she tells him to be with the woman who will make him happy.
  • Lighter and Softer: While not without drama or some genuinely sad or even scary moments, this show is, on the whole, noticeably more lighthearted than its sister show, with less serious storylines, more comedic moments, and its characters falling more on the lighter end of the morality spectrum. It's generally campier and more melodramatic, sometimes giving the impression that the writers and actors aren't taking this at all seriously, or have just decided to have as much fun as humanly possible with what they've been given.
  • Malaproper: In reflection of their rivalry, Caroline Spencer intentionally mispronounced Maya's name on various occasions.
  • The Masochism Tango: Stephanie and Eric, in spades. Stephanie does something to make Eric angry or otherwise make his life hell. He leaves her, finding comfort in the arms of a pretty young woman. Age difference aside, he seems genuinely happy with said woman as opposed to the constant bickering with Stephanie. Despite this, sooner or later, he is inevitably drawn back to Stephanie and they eventually reconcile, only for the whole thing to start all over again in just a matter of time.
  • May–December Romance: Quite a few. Eric and Brooke, Eric and Donna, Eric and any woman who isn't Stephanie or Jackie, Ridge and Bridget, Nick and Bridget, Jackie and Owen, Rick and Taylor, and more recently Ridge and Caroline (Spencer).
  • Meddling Parents: This trope is Stephanie. She frequently butts in on the personal lives of her children, and if Brooke is in a relationship with any of them she'll do everything in her power to convince whichever son it is to give up on her. This has also extended to other Logan women, like Donna.
    • In recent years, both Brooke and Ridge have become like this with their own children. And when Taylor thought Thomas and Brooke had slept together she entered Stephanie-territory with her rage at Brooke, screaming at her to stay away from Thomas.
  • Minor Flaw, Major Breakup: In 1994, Taylor had a one-night stand with a man named James both while she was separated from Ridge and while they were trapped together after an earthquake, believing that they would die any moment. This remains a secret until 2006, a year after Taylor comes back from the dead. Brooke finds out about the fling and after repeatedly throwing it in Taylor's face and almost blackmailing her with it, the truth is made known to Ridge. Ridge reacts to a fling Taylor had twelve years prior while they weren't even together and occurring under extreme duress as though she were committing adultery in the present and immediately dumps her with the intention of hooking back up with Brooke. His treatment of her becomes even more despicable when you recall that he cheated on her with Morgan – in addition to years of ignoring Taylor's complaints about Brooke's constant interference. Double Standard, much?
  • Monochrome Casting: One of the most shameful examples ever, as the show is set in Los Angeles, yet in 25 years, the amount of minority characters can be counted on one hand. The show got better about this in 2015, with the expansions of existing African-American character Maya Avant's family (with younger sister Nicole as a regular, and parents Julius and Vivienne as recurrings) plus the return of Zende Forrester Dominguez, an orphan adopted from Africa by Kristen Forrester and her husband Tony Dominguez 13 years earlier, all of whom are joined by fellow existing black character Carter Walton.
  • The Nicknamer: Sally Spectra. She would usually give other characters at least one nickname, sometimes more. Clarke became Bucky, Darla became Einstein (and her daughter Alexandria later inherited that nickname), Massimo Marone became Mojo and Stephanie Forrester was usually called some variation of a royal title like The Queen Bee, Queen Stephanie, Highness, Queenie, and so on.
  • Never My Fault: Plenty of characters, but Sheila in particular. No matter what horrible things she did, she always blamed someone else—namely Stephanie—either for her actions or for whatever punishment she received.
  • Not Blood Siblings:
    • The show entered squicky territory when it decided to pair Ridge and Bridget up together, shortly after it was discovered that they weren't half-brother and-sister, never mind that for years they had believed themselves to be, and that before that he had thought he was her father. Thankfully the storyline fizzled out before they went too far.
    • Similar reactions came from trying to pair half-siblings (kinda) Hope and Thomas up. Though Hope isn't related to Ridge by ancestry, she still calls him father and the whole thing raised the eye-brows of fans.
    • Also, the brief attempt to pair CJ, Macy's brother (they shared a mother), with Kimberley, Macy's sister (they shared a father). Even CJ had to keep reminding Kimberley that despite sharing a sister, they were not related.
  • Oedipus Complex: Inverted, in what some psychologists have termed "The Jocasta Complex". Stephanie was so obsessed with Ridge that several people outright suggested that she's in love with her own son. Even favorite daughter-in-law Taylor got fed up with it when she finally realized that the real reason Stephanie had always supported her over Brooke in the battle over Ridge is that Taylor reminded Stephanie so much of herself that she figured that since she herself couldn't sleep with Ridge, she'd settle for him being with someone just like her.
  • Only Sane Man: Wyatt and Justin both qualify, though both are mostly loyal to Bill. Wyatt tries to stay out of the feuds that pop up around him and is hilariously annoyed by everyone's constant drama, but he will jump in and take a stand if something really matters to him. Justin, meanwhile, is similarly annoyed by his boss's shenanigans but tends to take a "Whatever, as long as I get paid" approach.
  • Out of Focus: Given that it's a half-hour soap, and therefore is less able to fit as many storylines in one episode as the hour-longs, this happens from time to time. Particularly notable is the show's two remaining original characters Eric (John McCook) and Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang), whose appearances began to decline in 2015, in favor of the younger characters.
  • Platonic Co-Parenting: One storyline has Hope proposing this to Thomas, so she can help raise his son Douglas. Thomas, having gone full yandere at this point and being fully willing to exploit Douglas to get what he wants, doesn't go for it.
  • Plot Tumor: The Hope/Liam/Steffy triangle. Liam started out as a minor character and has grown to the point where his love life has become the sole focus of every other character on the show for an entire year and counting (September 2012).
  • Polyamory: Discussed by Liam and Wyatt in a 2018 episode, when discussing Liam's eternal Love Triangle with Hope and Steffy. Wyatt asks Liam, if it were a feasible option, would he choose both of them? Liam denies wanting a "harem," but Wyatt makes a pretty good case for it, pointing out that he loves them both, so something more non-conventional maybe wouldn't be such a bad idea.
  • Prison Rape: While in a mental hospital for her various crimes, Sheila gets beaten up by two other prisoners. Their unpleasant appearance and demeanor, plus the way Sheila acts afterward—taking a Shower of Angst—are clearly meant to imply that they sexually assaulted her as well. Even if not, the whole sequence still gives off a Does This Remind You of Anything? vibe.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Played With with Bill's right-hand man, Justin. Justin does pretty awful things, but only because Bill pays him, and he even serves as a voice of reason from time to time. (Not that Bill listens to him, ever, but still.) That said, Justin does clearly care about Bill, and seems to genuinely regard him as a friend.
  • Rape as Backstory: Recent years have revealed this about Stephanie, which serves to more or less explain her neurotic behavior. complete with a very emotional scene where Eric and Stephanie confront her mother about the abuse she suffered.
  • Rape as Drama: Brooke is an unfortunate victim of this trope frequently. In the pilot episode, she's assaulted by a group of men and rushes home with her clothes in tatters. She's raped by Andy Johnson after the latter was hired by Stephanie to seduce her. Ridge also unintentionally raped her when he had sex with her while she was drugged. To his credit, he had no idea she was drugged and was horrified when he realized what he did.
    • Whether or not he knew she was drugged, it doesn't change the fact that she made it clear that she wanted him to leave her house – and he didn't.
    • There are fans who also believe Nick raped Brooke when everyone believed Ridge was dead and had sex with her while she was in a vulnerable state.
    • Cousin Jessica is assaulted by a masked man. It is revealed later that her assailant was her ex-boyfriend Sly, enraged that she turned down his marriage proposal and deprived him of the chance to get his hands on her money.
    • Taylor is also attacked several times by a man who appears to have this intent towards her. She's able to fend him off in one instance and Ridge rescues her the second time.
    • Ridge's first wife Caroline was also raped.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot:
    • The 1994 Los Angeles earthquake was written into the show's storyline.
    • The 2020 COVID-19 outbreak caused a several-month filming break while the cast quarantined, leading to a brief Hand Wave when the show came back to air: Katie claims that they had to close up shop to build and organize a new warehouse.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • The first time Eric pursued Taylor, she listed a lot of reasons it was a bad idea. . .and stuck with it, rather than a typical soap storyline of her throwing caution to the wind and embarking on a relationship with him anyway.
    • The 2019-2020 storylines have repeated many of the adultery/Love Triangle storylines the show has used before (a fact that many soap operas are guilty of, not just this one). Until this point, each repeat storyline was like the previous ones had never happened. Recently, characters are starting to call each other out for having this predictable behavior, specifically calling out the fact that they constantly show regret over their actions and then willingly repeat it over and over again, which is what would happen if people willingly put each other through a Masochism Tango for 15-odd years straight.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Storm pretty much dug his own grave when he shot Stephanie and didn't show any remorse for it. When he accidentally shot Katie – his little sister who had a heart condition – he was so overcome with grief that he committed suicide in order to donate his heart to her and save her life. His sacrifice paid off because the heart took in Katie.
  • Right-Hand Hottie: Darla to Sally. Darla was fiercely loyal to both Sally and Macy to the extend that though she was generally a quiet woman she would stand up for them no matter what.
  • Second Love: It's a tossup as to whether Brooke or Taylor is this to Ridge following the death of first love Caroline.
  • Secret Keeper: Brooke is the only one who knows that Taylor shot and almost killed Bill Spencer - she willingly keeps the secret because she got to watch Taylor getting on her knees and begging her to keep the secret, and seeing her Arch-Enemy willingly debasing herself like that was enough for her.
  • Series Continuity Error: This frequently happens when characters are SORAS'd, but a glaring example of this is the Logan sisters' childhood angst. In recent years they've claimed Parental Abandonment and that oldest brother Storm practically raised them. But earlier episodes clearly show the Logan family to be a happy and stable family unit.
    • This also included Steffy and Phoebe. For many years these two were known as identical twin sisters and were even played by identical twins during different SORAS periods. When MacKenzie Mauzy was cast as Phoebe though, the show didn't bring Steffy on until much later, with Jacqueline MacInnes Wood playing her. Neither actress looks alike.
  • Soap Opera Disease: Caroline developed leukemia, and in a rare Soap instance her character stays dead. Recently, Stephanie was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, and made a complete recovery (at least for a little while; the cancer returns to kill her in 2012).
  • Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome: All of the children at one point or another. In fact, the show has had very few high school-aged characters over the course of its run (unusual for a modern-day soap), as even many of those that have been aged rapidly have been pushed to at least 18 to advance the Forrester Creations-centered storylines.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: Stephanie is on the receiving end of this, including: when she sabotaged Donna's debut at Forrester Creations, when she exposed Jackie's prostitute past in front of the media, and most prominently when she inadvertently caused Brooke's rape at Andy's hands.
    • Taylor is also on the receiving end of this. Ridge gave her this treatment over her fling with James, and even Nick treated her this way when she spoke honestly at Brooke's custody trial, after she begged the other woman to not be called as a character witness on her behalf. Then again, anything Taylor remotely does that's similar to what a Logan woman does is treated with long-term contempt, while the Logan women usually get off scot-free.
  • Tickle Torture: During a Black and White Dream Sequence in one episode, Quinn imagined that she has Hope tied down to a chair in her loft, surrounded by large pictures of herself. The leather-clad Quinn tells Hope that she loved her and her baby and wants to hear her say it in return. To get her to say it, Quinn tickled Hope’s arms and neck with a feather wand as Hope twitched and protested. "I love you, Mama Quinn, and I want you to be a part of my family", Quinn instructed Hope to repeat. Hope, agonizing beneath the tickling wand until she could take no more, repeated the phrase back to Quinn.
  • Token Good Teammate: The second generation of Spectras aren't evil, but Coco is the only one who's 100% committed to keeping things on the level. Though Sally is now trying to change that and is trying her hand at being good, too.
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm: Rick Forrester during his relatively short tenure as CEO of Forrester Creations. He treated many of his employees – particularly Ridge, Ivy and Alynote  – like worthless peons; Ridge actually quit briefly, unable to take the mistreatment, and makes a failed attempt to get Eric to oust Rick and appoint him CEO as his stepfather was willing to overlook Rick's jackassery on account of him helping increase Forrester's revenue with his ideas. It leads to a successful takeover by Ridge, Liam and Steffy (the latter of whom originally wouldn't go forth with the plan unless getting back together with Liam, who was dating Ivy at that time and wanted to take over the company to save her from Rick's tyranny, was part of the deal) to get rid of Rick.
  • Trauma Conga Line: This is a soap, after all. Multiple characters have been put through this.
  • Where da White Women At?:
    • Amber and Raymond, though theirs was more of a Friends with Benefits situation.
    • Also Justin and Donna, as we learn when her long-lost son Marcus comes to town.
  • Who Murdered the Asshole?: Well, who attempted to murder the asshole. At one point, someone shoots and almost kills Bill Spencer - while he does survive, he never saw the attacker, meaning no one knew who did it. It also didn't help that by the time he was shot, Liam, Wyatt, Justin, Steffy, Ridge, and all of Sally Spectra's team had motive to attempt to kill him. The evidence originally suggested Ridge, but it turns out to have been Taylor, who had previously been out of town and thus had been unsuspected.
  • Who's Your Daddy?: Brooke was so sure that Bridget was Ridge's child that she named the baby Bridget – which is a combination of Brooke and Ridge's names. However in actuality she wasn't sure who Bridget's father was but wanted Ridge to be her father. It turned out that Eric, Ridge's father, and Brooke's former husband, was Bridget's father.
  • Yandere: Bill Spencer evolved into one for Steffy. He just couldn't listen to her when she told him that their relationship was over, and did a lot of awful things to try and gain her love. And, in true Yandere fashion, it didn't occur to him that if he wants to win Steffy's heart, repeatedly showing up at her house even after she told him to get lost, trying to break up Steffy and Liam, and blackmailing her maybe wasn't the way to go about it.


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