Last week on The Bold and the Beautiful, Wyatt finally found out that his mother, Quinn, had been holding the amnesiac Liam more or less prisoner, telling him that they were married and making plans to run away together. (Allegedly, it was in the interest of giving Wyatt a clear shot at Liam’s girlfriend, Steffy. But as time went on, Quinn found herself falling for the dumb lug who didn’t realize Quinn was off her cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs rocker.)
Despite his mother’s best efforts to convince him otherwise, Wyatt locked Quinn in the closet and sped Liam back to Steffy (whom Wyatt had married in the interim, because the love of one’s life apparently doesn’t come along as rarely as it used to anymore).
As of earlier this week, Quinn still thought she could wriggle her way out of what, to most people, would look like some serious jail time. Is this yet another example of her utter and complete break with reality? Or has Quinn simply watched enough soap operas to know the lay of the land?
Soap-opera characters—if pretty and popular enough—can pretty much wriggle their way out of anything: murder, kidnapping, rape, etc.
Because even though Scott Clifton, who plays Liam, denies that his character was, in fact, raped … what else would you call knowingly having sex with a brain-damaged individual incapable of giving consent?
But of course, soap-opera male rapists have been getting away with, and even rewarded for, their crimes going on 50 years now. Why shouldn’t women share in the equal-opportunity redemption?
If/when Quinn’s case ever goes to trial (even in the court of public opinion), she’ll always have these precedents to invoke:
Daytime’s most famous rapist to marry his victim (he’s hardly the only one; their wedding just got the highest ratings of all time), Luke went from bad guy, to romantic hero, to a man forced to tell his teenage son that yes, he did in fact rape the boy’s mother, to the victim of some bizarre split-personality schism that may have been in play when he committed the crime—or maybe it wasn’t. Honestly, by the time actor Anthony Geary finally completed his endless farewell tour, it was difficult to figure out who Luke exactly was or wasn’t. But what’s unmistakable is that the rapist was once so beloved that he was elected mayor of Port Charles.
Days of Our Lives
GH may have had the quality, but DOOL went for quantity. There was Bill, who raped his sister-in-law, Laura, and kept quiet about her son, Mike, actually being his child and not his brother’s. Bill and Laura would ultimately marry and have a daughter of their own, Jennifer. Jennifer, for her part, would marry Jack, who once raped Kayla (she was his wife, but in love with Jack’s brother, Steve, and Jack did not take the development well). Jennifer, in turn, was raped by Lawrence. Lawrence later married Carly. Yes, okay, Carly ended up stabbing Lawrence in the stomach and killing him. But that was many years after they first romantically ran away together.
Jack is dead now too. But that only happened after he became a wacky and fun-loving guy. And considering how many times he’s already returned from the grave, why should we assume this go-around is any different?
Finally, there’s EJ. He didn’t physically force Sami into having sex with him. He merely blackmailed her, using the life of the man she loved as bait. Sami also married EJ, and he is now also dead. See above re: its permanence. So, Chase (and Quinn), take heart! A little thing like rape never stopped a DOOL character from becoming a romantic leading man and winning the girl … eventually.
One Life to Live
Todd raped Marty and terrorized numerous other women. But then he saved a couple of adorable children, and suddenly he’s a dreamboat (with a sexy scar to remind us that he’s also edgy).
Initially, the crime was treated, in the words of head writer Michael Malone, as “(A) graphic, honest, intensely emotional, extensively researched portrayal of the too-often unreported crime of college rape, in this case a gang rape by three fraternity men.” But 13 years later, under a different head writer, it became, in some fans’ words, a “rape-mance.” An amnesiac Marty (shades of Liam) fell in love with and slept with Todd (who, shades of Quinn, neglected to fill her in on their past, criminal history).
Of course, later it turned out that Todd wasn’t really Todd, but his twin brother, although he thought he was Todd at the time, so … still counts. “Todd” did eventually break down and admit he’d raped Marty a second time, but one of Todd’s exes got Marty to admit on the witness stand that the second round had been consensual, despite her altered mental state (are you taking notes, Quinn?).
There are others, of course. Guiding Light‘s Roger raped his wife, Holly, then the two had a brief reunion in the 1990s. As the World Turn‘s John raped his wife, Kim, twice—first in the classic sense, then later by omission when she had amnesia (see what I mean about Quinn having ample precedent?). But he still remained a viable leading man during his run on the show. The Young and the Restless’s Michael may not have actually managed to rape Christine—but not for lack of trying. He, at least, went to jail for four years (an eternity in soap time! There were children not born when he went in who were teenagers by the time he came out!). He and Christine ended up engaged. It didn’t work out, but Michael’s ultimate marriage to Lauren did, as did his current life as an upstanding Genoa City citizen.
So, for everyone who thinks that there’s no way can Quinn ever slide on this: Who’s the crazy one now?