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Bay and Daphne's highs and lows on 'Switched at Birth'

As the third season of ABC Family’s baby-swapping American Sign Language saga Switched at Birth inches toward a summer finale, I thought it would be a good time to look back on some of the highs and lows of our two favorite Kansas City sisters from the same misters (you know what I mean.)

A lot has happened to and because of Bay Kennish and Daphne Vasquez, from blackmail to adultery to running away to drug use. What was Bay’s lowest point? Do Daphne’s character highs outweigh some of the truly egregious mistakes she’s made over the last three seasons? Let’s discuss.

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Daphne worst: It’s not a shocker that Daphne’s foray into blackmailing tops her Worst Moments. After she finds out Coto had an affair with an underage intern at his office, Daphne blackmails him with the  help of her uncomfortably overeager and slimy boyfriend Jace. It was one of the first times we had seen Daphne do something that was outright unlawful, and at the time, pretty uncharacteristic. Luckily she owned up to it, dealt with the consequences, and ended up kicking Jace to the curb.


Bay worst: Cheating on Tank. For someone who had sworn she would never, ever do to someone what Emmett did to her back in season 2, this was surprising on so many levels. While I’m happy it brought her and Emmett back together, it was disappointing to see Bay commit an act that wrought so much heartbreak and despair on her life. She wasn’t immune to the guilt that comes along with cheating on someone, however. She owned up to Tank after John inadvertently spilled the beans, and had to reap those consequences big time and lose a good friend in Tank in the process.


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Daphne best: Fighting for Carlton. The closing of Buckner/mainstreaming of Carlton storyline from season 2 remains one of the strongest and one of my favorites of the series. Daphne’s refusal to take the mainstreaming of Carlton’s all-deaf curriculum was all at once inspiring and endearing. It was an all-out “Hell yeah!” moment to witness. This remains Daphne’s strongest moment, one in which her identity was, for once, not determined by a male in her life, and one that showed just what she was capable of when faced with adversity and ignorance in an already discriminatory and ignorant world.


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Bay best: Confronting Regina on her alcoholism. This is sort of a half best/half worst moment because while Bay did confront Regina on her drinking, she also agreed to keep it a secret, which turned out to be more hurtful and disruptive than just telling John and Kathryn. It was the first time Bay was forced to face her biological mother’s darkest shame, and she handled it with grace—especially when dealing with Regina’s wrath after she found out Bay told her boyfriend, Zane, and Daphne. She could have easily taken Daphne’s advice and just not said anything to avoid the confrontation. But she had Regina’s best interests at heart and did the right thing, even if it was hard and uncomfortable.



Daphne worst: Her streak of reckless revenge after Angelo’s death. Everyone deals with grief differently: Some wallow, some refuse to partake in social situations for a while, some raise hell. Daphne chose the latter when she (wrongly) determined it was Regina’s fault that Angelo died. She has since gone about dealing with her grief in the worst way possible. She vandalized Regina and Wes’s East Riverside project, did cocaine, and got drunk at her Senior Ditch Day. Grief causes people to do crazy things and Daphne is a teenager, so it’s not a surprise that this is how she’s choosing to act out. It’s just mostly sad and frustrating to see her fall so far off the wagon so quickly, especially when this grief has caused the biggest rift in her and Regina’s relationship.


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Bay worst: Running away to Mexico. The entire storyline with Bay’s edgy artist friend Zarra was a bit ugh-inducing, and it was obvious from the get-go that Zarra was going to be a bad influence on Bay in more ways than one. Things blow up when Bay steals money from her father’s car wash to bail out one of Zarra’s friends, moves in with her, then tries to run off to Mexico to meet Zarra’s artist father. The whole thing was a teen-screaming-for-attention cliché, and some of the worst judgment calls Bay has made so far on the show.



Daphne best: Reconnecting with Angelo. Daphne and Angelo had their fair share of heartbreak and acceptance issues. There was a time when it seemed Daphne would never forgive Angelo for walking out on her and Regina when she was a baby. But after a few years and many (not all successful) attempts from Angelo to reconnect, she had finally come around. Given everything that had unfolded and seeing just how hard—albeit in a flawed way most of the time—Angelo was trying to be a part of her life, she was ready to put that part of her away and start anew with the father she never knew. Being open and honest with Angelo, finally, about how she felt, how she was hurt, how she wanted him to learn to sign—these were all things leading to a beautiful, growing relationship with Angelo. It’s just too bad it had only just begun when his life ended.


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Bay best: Being there for Emmett during/after the Matthew catfish debacle. The entirety of Emmett’s catfish storyline was excellent, and the period on the end of an already emotionally charged story was when Bay showed up at just the right time to comfort Emmett in one of his darkest moments. She only ever wanted the best for Emmett, even if it meant being with another girl. Looking into Mandy may have seemed like a paranoid or jealous thing to do as an ex-girlfriend, but Bay genuinely had Emmett’s best interests at heart. And it’s a good thing she was looking out for him as when everything came to light. Matthew’s ugly prank only sealed their fate of coming back to each other once again. They were always going to reconnect, but this was raw, real, and a spectacular moment to witness.

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Daphne worst: Always allowing the men in her life to have way too much influence on her choices. Don’t get me wrong; I love that Daphne does Daphne and totally gets it with pretty much whoever she wants (except Emmett, natch). But she’s got a real knack for allowing the men in her life to totally hijack her brain. With Chef Jeff, she sacrificed what could have been a very promising job in the culinary world to be with someone who was sort of two-timing her best friend’s mom with her. We all know how her relationship with Jace wreaked havoc on her life, when she allowed his mean ambition to cloud her judgment into thinking blackmailing Chip Coto was a good idea. And her recent descent into bad-girl territory is surely being propped up by fellow baddie Nacho. Ugh. Daphne, just do you for a change!



Bay worst: Insisting she has more “rights” to Angelo and Regina because they are her biological parents. This is getting old fast. Switched at Birth is a baby-swapping drama, so there is naturally going to be plenty of “He’s MY dad!” and “She’s not YOUR mom, anyway!” thrown about. But Bay has gotten a little too comfortable with this notion, particularly in the wake of Angelo’s death. I get biology, Bay, but you’re in the middle of a super-unique situation, and blood is not the only thing that makes a family. Show a little more tact and understanding. After all, it’s very rare that Daphne dishes out the same kind of sentiment when it comes to John and Kathryn.


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Daphne best: Overcoming her fear and treating her food-truck assailant at the clinic. Daphne’s foray into the medical field as part of forced community service wasn’t always the best, but a truly great moment in all of that was when she had to treat the one man in the world who has probably instilled the most fear in her entire life. It took a while for Daphne to fully overcome her attack in the food truck (especially because her assailant went unpunished). To see her adopt the doctor’s oath and treat him despite her own fear was a real character-building moment for her, and one that proves she has a strong future ahead. And for a teenager, no less? Kudos, girl.


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Bay best: Standing up for Mary Beth (and women as whole) when she learned of Tank’s grotesque fraternity hazing ritual. Bay has never really been one to be reticent when faced with an offensive, wrong or hurtful situation. When she found out Tank’s fraternity was taking part in a sick hazing ritual that involved making fun of women, specifically her good friend Mary Beth, she urged Tank to remove himself from the situation, even suggesting he de-pledge. It’s a bold request, but I was so happy to see Bay refrain from mincing words and cut right to the chase. Telling someone you care for that something they are doing is wrong is not always an easy task, but she handled it well. At least momentarily, their relationship definitely benefited from it.

Switched at Birth, rated TV-14, airs Mondays at 8/7C on ABC Family.

Get more of Brandi’s take on all things entertainment over at ReelSnarky.com!

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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