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Tough emotional scenes can be both a trauma and a treat for actors, which is how THE BOLD & THE BEAUTIFUL’s Scott Clifton (Liam) likens his experiences with Beth’s faux death. “I don’t think I’ve ever had to sustain an emotional state for as long as this one,” he admitted to Soaps In Depth. “But there have been pockets of really rewarding storytelling, which has been fun to do.” Case in point: Clifton enjoyed taping the agonizing scene in which Liam broke the news to Hope that their daughter had died. “I had to walk this tightrope,” he said, referencing Liam’s reluctance to drop that bombshell on his wife’s joy. “It’s a dance between what the characters know and what the audience knows. That’s kind of rare and precious on shows like this.”
When will Liam and Hope discover that Steffy’s newly adopted daughter, Phoebe, is actually Beth, the baby they believe to have died? Clifton doesn’t have an answer to that, though he acknowledges that timing will make all the difference in how things play out. “When they reveal it actually matters, because it changes the nature of the conflict,” he explained. “The longer this baby is ‘Phoebe’ and not ‘Beth,’ the longer she is bonding with Steffy and Kelly. The more maternal Steffy feels, the less it’s going to matter, as far as she is concerned, that the baby is biologically Hope’s. Potentially, you have this conflict where Hope’s saying, ‘I’ve been robbed,’ and Steffy’s saying, ‘I don’t care; you can’t rip a baby away from [the only mother she’s known] at this point. Then you have the philosophical question, which is, ‘Who is really the baby’s ‘mother?’”
Though Liam is the child’s father, we’re not sure he’d have any definitive answer to that specific question, given how loath he is to take sides (or even decide which woman he really wants to be with). Does Liam’s waffling ever wear on Clifton? “It was uncomfortable the first year or two, but at this point, it’s part of the gig to have people constantly upset with me,” he confided with a good-natured laugh. “Yeah, it’s a little gross, but that’s the character. Liam tends to Forrest Gump his way through it, but he does love and deeply cares about both of these women. Once I got over the potential of being hated by [Hope fans or Steffy fans] at any given moment, I got really comfortable with who this character is.”
Whether he’s having a daughter stolen from under his nose or getting amnesia, one could argue that Liam has the worst luck on the planet. And though he tries to keep a stiff upper lip, Clifton is convinced his alter ego would give even the best shrinks a run for their money. “I wouldn’t say he’s well-adjusted,” said the actor, who thinks Liam’s issues primarily stem from his childhood, specifically, his mom’s death. “There are holes he’s constantly trying to fill. He couldn’t save her, so he tries to save every other woman in his life, and often, rescuing one woman is perceived as a betrayal of another. He’s neurotic, but he also cares about doing the right thing and just keeps messing up.” Needless to say, this latest grenade in his personal life isn’t going to help matters!
For more on your favorite B&B stars, keep reading the CBS edition of Soaps In Depth magazine.