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Background: On Siblings and SORASing

Sibling Bonds

I've enjoyed writing Andrew and Jeannie so far.  I'm not going to try to describe their characters very much here, because I want the story to do that without my input.  However, I did want the last scene I posted (Chapter 14) to reflect something that I always loved about Classic Days -- the wonderful sibling bonds that existed between the Bradys. 

Kim's two brothers -- Roman and Bo -- were always great support to her.  Her sister Kayla was too, but then they had a little spat over which sister should be sleeping with Shane in 1991, which requires a separate discussion, I assure you.  I'm just going to deal with the brothers here.  They provided a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen, and, every once in a while, a kick in the pants.  (I'll post a bit later on the friendships they had with Shane, which I think will play an equally important part of this story.)  Here are a few clips:

These two clips are pretty good illustrations of the Bo/Kim relationship. They start with Kim trying to comfort Bo after he learns that he is Victor's son. < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=durdnk6Cv0k >.  That is followed by < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1VlQyAgamu4 > with Kim explaining why she slept with Victor in Miami.

Here is another Bo scene where Kim laments Shane leaving Salem to take a job in Stockholm (he returned shortly thereafter). < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUu2uphr90Y&p=34E47214E34AA872 >

And, finally, a nice scene where Bo lays into Shane for breaking up with Kim.  This is right after Shane has learned that Andrew may be Victor's son and that Kim had lied to him during her entire pregnancy. < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGJOAXSQ_jo > Shane doesn't reveal the reason for the break-up and Bo is not terribly forgiving.  Bo's wife Hope plays peacemaker.

Roman also had a great relationship with Kim.  Now during much of the time that Kim was on the show, "Roman" was really John Black, who believed he was Roman and even had Roman's memories.  I still consider them "Roman" scenes.  Here is one where Kim comes to "JoRoman" (as I tend to refer to him during this time period) and asks for the keys to an apartment so she can move out of Shane's house during one of their breakups < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_orMDNiMjc&p=82ECA50220483913 >.  I absolutely love this scene because of the discussion of longshots and playing it safe.  There are echoes of this conversation in Kim's thoughts about her relationships.

Another great scene from the same time period where Roman tries to encourage Kim to fight for her relationship with Shane < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7vS5bUKK8s >.  And in the tables are turned category, Kim tries to help Roman deal with his feelings toward Diana at a time when he thought his true love, Marlena, was dead < http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eoi_FaTNqBQ > (the scene is at the end of the video).

So with that family history, I'm hoping to convey that Andrew and Jeannie have a similar bond.  They will tease each mercilessly and even fight bitterly, but their family bond will always prevail.  They are highly loyal and will fight to the death for each other.

SORAS, the dreaded aging disease

And that brings me to the second issue I want to mention about Andrew and Jeannie -- their ages.  SORAS or Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome is a time-honored tradition of rapidly aging a show's children, first to teenagers (usually for the first-love story) and then to adulthood (so they can become the focus of the show as the "vets" get older and begin having too much plastic surgery to be recognizable).  However, since Andrew and Jeannie disappeared from the Days universe as young children, they never underwent SORASing while their contemporaries did.  And I've chosen to keep Andrew and Jeannie relatively close to their actual ages.  Andrew was born in spring 1986, and is 26 in this story.  Jeannie was born in 1990 and is 22.

That creates quite a few oddities involving their cousins who have been SORASed.  The three most likely oddities involve Sami Brady (who has been mentioned already in the story), Brady Black (John's son), and Stephanie Johnson (the daughter of Kim's sister Kayla and her husband Steve).  FYI, I have no intention of any of them becoming love interests, particularly as Sami and Stephanie are first cousins.  But I want to point out the oddities.

Sami, along with her twin Eric, was born in October 1984.  Andrew was born in spring 1986.  Yet despite being relatively close in age, Sami was SORASed.  As of the time of the story, she has been married four times and has four children, including Sydney the infant who was kidnapped.  Her oldest child, Will, has been SORASed also, and is 17 according to the current storyline.  I'm just going to accept that as canon.

Stephanie Johnson was born right before Jeannie.  I'm not sure exactly how old she is supposed to be in the show, but she is definitely a little older than Jeannie in the story.  I'm going to assume that she is mid- to late-20s, more in line with Andrew's age.

And then there is Brady Black.  He was actually born after both Andrew and Jeannie.  Brady was born in 1992, but was in college in 2000.  He is also the vice-CEO of Victor's company, Titan, and is played by a 39-year-old actor.  Therefore, it is difficult to place him as a contemporary of Jeannie and Andrew.  I figure he is in his early 30s, which wreaks havoc on the entire JoRoman storyline, but lets suspend disbelief on this one.

One final comment on SORASing.  Shane, John and Marlena are all intended to be just past 50, with Kim just a little younger.  That's despite having all these grown children.  For Shane, the age is particularly hard to reconcile with his having a 15-year-old daughter Eve in 1987 after an affair with another ISA agent following the apparent death of his first wife, but I'm going to assume that Eve was SORASed too, despite never appearing on the show as an infant.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 13th, 2010 08:14 pm (UTC)
I know this is an old post, but I've just been reading it, and it made me smile. SORASing seems to annoy and amuse everyone in fairly equal measure. The really funny thing about the ageing of Brady and Belle was that it happened initially slap bang in the middle of a story about John's past. Everybody kept talking about how he first came to Salem at the end of 1985, and yet they'd just that moment aged his kids to sixteen and eighteen. And this was in 1999. Every other line of dialogue neatly underlined that his children were born before he met their mothers. :D

And then there's EJ. Born on screen in 1997, returned in 2006 as a man in his thirties. There was a lovely scene not long after he arrived in Salem, where John said "I can't believe he's the same little boy I used to hold in my arms..." No, John. Neither can we. :D

As for Eve, that was always weird. Shane clearly married his first wife very young!
Oct. 13th, 2010 09:08 pm (UTC)
I actually had to reread this post and realize that I probably am going to change Stephanie a little to make her and Jeannie closer in age to reflect that they grew up together and had a closer relationship. That would have presented itself in close bonds but also some petty jealousies. Family matters could be one -- e.g., Jeannie was from the rich family, while Stephanie was of lesser means; Stephanie had no father, but Steve probably attained a mythical status in her mind, while Jeannie had a real father who, for her, never matched the image everyone else projected. And just normal teen interactions could be another, with Stephanie more of a popular girl while Jeannie was more of a serious, academic type.

A couple of other thoughts. Looking at the post, I realize that I really failed to address a big SORAS oddity that is likely to arise in the story -- Philip. When I wrote the post, I did not have the same plans for Philip that I now do, and his age creates quite a conundrum when it comes to Andrew. Philip was born long after Andrew, but would appear older due to SORASing. Now that might not be a big factor, but Victor made clear that his interest in claiming Andrew as his son was because Victor had no heir and probably never would. That entire motivation makes no sense if Philip was already born. I don't see how to reconcile it, so will probably downplay that element of Victor's interest and fudge why Philip has no recollection of the custody battle over Andrew. (I actually cannot tell how old Philip is supposed to be on the show. It seems like characters get SORASed into their 20s, but then time slows down, so maybe I can get away with Philip being relatively close in age to Andrew's 26-27.)

And then there is Eve. I could have accepted 15-year old Eve in 1988 if she had been Emma's daughter without significant SORASing. Not only did Eve resemble Emma more than Gabrielle, but the entire Shane/Emma history provided a logical explanation. Shane said they fell in love as teenagers. If that was the case, Eve could have been the product of a teen pregnancy. Given her relationship to the royal family, that would have been a tremendous scandal for her family, so it makes sense they would have sent her away to give birth and then forced her to give away the child. She then returns, Shane finishes Eton and university, they marry, live together, Emma "dies," two years pass before Shane meets Kim (that's canon!), and two years later Eve arrives at age 14. With that scenario, Shane can still be about 30-32 without SORASing.

With the retcon that Eve is Gabrielle's daughter, all of this falls apart. Suddenly, in the absence of SORASing, the canonical two years that passed between Emma's death and his meeting Kim has to be at least 13 years, since Shane didn't even sleep with Gabrielle before Emma died. And when you factor in that Emma died after Shane joined the ISA and they had some life together, suddenly Shane has to be pushing 40 by the time Eve arrives in 1987. And for what purpose? To manufacture some lame conflict between Kim, Gabrielle and Eve. Sorry, but the late 1987 to mid-1988 time frame is my least favorite part of the Shane/Kim years.
Oct. 14th, 2010 10:58 pm (UTC)
Their blasted retconning is a pain in the neck. Like when they suddenly announced that John was Stefano's half-brother, and only nine years younger than him. I don't think so! Ignoring the fact that Joe is obviously a lot older than Drake H, that still leaves the question of Stefano having practically raised John (or so we'd been told for the last decade or so). It would also make John a good fifteen years older than Tony. Now I appreciate that Thaao has aged well, but not that well. I rather enjoyed retconning that retcon over in the paralleloverse. ;)

It certainly makes far more sense for Eve to be Emma's daughter. I didn't realise they'd changed that. That's what comes of only watching isolated storylines on YouTube!
Oct. 16th, 2010 09:33 am (UTC)
I never realized they retconned John's age that badly. It makes virtually no sense.

As for the Eve's mother issue, it wasn't so much a retcon since they never specifically established that she was Emma's daughter. IT was just always assumed given her age and the established timing of Shane's relationship with Emma. Then the show tried to create a triangle with Gabrielle and give Eve even more reason to torture Kim -- Eve wanted her father and mother together -- so they suddenly changed it so Gabrielle was Eve's mother.

Well with those retcons, I guess Shane and John should probably both be in their 60s by 2010. I think I'll just consider both Eve and John to be SORASed ;-)
Oct. 16th, 2010 12:08 pm (UTC)
It wasn't John that they SORASed, it was Stefano (SORYSed, maybe?!). I think they just forgot he had a son Tony's age. Going by various things they uncovered during that plotline, it had to be Stefano who got de-aged. And Tony, I guess, by association. All of which completely destroys Stefano's personal history, and his supposed past with Victor, but what do they care. I think it would also have made Tony a teenager back when he was on the show in the eighties, so what that does to his relationship with Anna is anybody's guess.

Also, John's birth supposedly happened before Shawn left Ireland, when he was very young. So he got SORYSed too, as presumably did all of his children. It was not the best thought out storyline ever.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )