Soap Opera Weekly: So what’s happening in February?
Dena Higley: It’s an interesting Sweeps period because the way everything timed out, we culminate two stories in the middle. We have the culmination of the crossover story, and we also have the culmination of the mystery surrounding Cristian. We’re going to wrap up the Tico murder mystery.
Weekly: What about Paul’s murder?
Higley: We’re continuing to play that and thread that through, but we slowed down a little bit because it was hard to play two murders at once. When we heat it back up after the Tico murder mystery is solved, it is going to become more about the person who killed Paul — the exposure of that secret is going to be more about relationships and love and hurt and betrayal. That will all be played out toward the end of Sweeps/beginning of spring. We’re going to lay in little clues along the way so that if the audience wants to figure it out ahead of time, good for them. I hope they do.
Weekly: It’s nice to see Jessica smarten up and tell Antonio off. Is that going to continue?
Higley: Yes. As we tell the story of the mystery surrounding what’s going on with Jessica, just as important is revisiting the dynamic between Jessica and Antonio, because I do believe these are two people who love each other very much. They just don’t know how to love each other. Antonio doesn’t know how to love Jessica without being overprotective. That’s the way his love expresses itself. She’s drawing boundaries, nice healthy ones, saying, “It’s not that I don’t want you to love me. I just can’t be loved like that.”
Weekly: And Viki will be involved in Jessica’s story?
Higley: And Viki will be involved. And yes, we are going to play Viki in her own story, and I can’t wait to do it. The story is all written, it’s all ready to go. We’re bringing in a new love interest for her. ….It’s a brand new character.
Weekly: How about Bo and Nora?
Higley: Bo and Nora are going to continue to lock horns. Nora believes that she’s doing the right thing marrying Daniel, and we’re going to see Daniel being this great guy that does all the right things, says all the right things, and yet Bo is not willing to give his blessing to their union. Nora can’t help but wonder, “Is he saying this because he’s just being ornery, is he saying it because he still has feelings for me, or is he saying it because he really doesn’t like Daniel?”
Weekly: Any Dorian/David action?
Higley: They continue Dorian’s vendetta against Viki. I see David as just being a good sport. Of course, once Blair is in danger, Dorian’s all over it. She’s not about to let a Cramer woman go down in flames. Eventually we’re going to be front-burnering David and Dorian with a new story, but that won’t be happening until probably more like the end of February sweeps. We’re going to be bringing on a new character that will impact their relationship.
Weekly: I know fans are very happy that Michael and Marcie are getting more airtime, that we’re seeing more facets of their relationship.
Higley: Marcie has so much enthusiasm and so much courage and she can dig deep down and find this amazing inner strength. I love exploring that about her. As we do this, Michael is going to become increasingly more in awe of that about her. I think he loves her so much, and I think he’s so — as most men are — confused about how to handle the woman in their lives. In February, her book,The Killing Club, comes out. Fans can go out and buy the book and read it. I suggest they do because the situations in the book will start being mimicked in Llanview, and we’re going to build a whole mystery around that. If you know the book, you can sort of be one step ahead of the story, which I think would be kind of cool.
Weekly: Any other stories you want to mention for February? Some other characters we didn’t touch on: Rex, Jen, Riley, Lindsay, RJ…
Higley: Rex and Jen and Riley are going to be a triangle. They are all caught up in the Paul murder. As we play through February Sweeps, it’s going to look more and more like Jen did it. Rex is the kind of guy that loves her so much he doesn’t care if she did it or not, and Riley is the kind of guy that loves her so much he can’t believe she could possibly do it. Riley has a certain insight into the investigation because his dad’s the DA. Jen has a certain insight into the investigation because Nora’s her friend and sort of semi-surrogate mother. Then she’s got RJ and Lindsay worried about her. Everybody sort of puddles around Jen with different agendas. That plays through February and into spring.
Weekly: Will Lindsay and RJ get any closer this month?
Higley: Yes, we’ll see that.