Doug Sheehan passed away

Daniel Avery

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...and I'm reasonably sure Sheehan enjoyed that Jean Hackney plotline, since he seemed to throw himself into it. It allowed him to play stuff he'd never done before (i.e. not just holding Val's purse).

A bit off-topic, but Joseph Hardy has also died. He was the Producer mastermind (if you can call it that) of the S13 revamp. He'd come from daytime, having been hired in various jobs, most notably to revamp Ryan's Hope on ABC. KL wisely showed him the door after only 13 episodes...RH was nowhere near as lucky.
 

Soaplover

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The only positives of the Jean Hackney story was Ben having Lilimae in a headlock, caused some tension between Val/Laura, and Val had some good understated work in two scenes (one where she told Karen about driving in either an ice storm or thunder storm, and telling Lillimae that she knew in her heart Ben wasn't coming back).
 

Julia's Gun

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I accept I’m in a minority of one, but I loved all the Jean Hackney back story rubbish

Well I do remember liking the bit when the Gibsons go on the run - I recall Lilimae and Val having to escape out of the back of some Walmart store with the kids.... That was all ridiculous but fun, with Val and the twins yet again in jeapordy.
 

James from London

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The only positives of the Jean Hackney story was Ben having Lilimae in a headlock, caused some tension between Val/Laura, and Val had some good understated work in two scenes (one where she told Karen about driving in either an ice storm or thunder storm, and telling Lillimae that she knew in her heart Ben wasn't coming back).

To me, the story would be worth it just for Sheehan's performance. Ben is one of Soap Land's most soulful and thoughtful characters and here we see him slowly unravel as, bit by bit, he's forced to surrender everything he holds dear, including his own integrity. It’s all so quietly, desperately heartrending because there’s nobody he can turn to for help or confide in.

Heck, it would be worth it just to watch Sheehan and William Devane on screen together. The climactic gunpoint showdown between them is fantastically tense and beautifully acted, but all the smaller scenes between them leading up to it are just as good. (But then, maybe yer average Knots viewer - if such a thing exists - is less interested in seeing the male characters interact than the female ones.)

Like Wes Parmalee claiming to be Jock on DALLAS (or even Hamlet's dad appearing to him as a ghost to say he's been murdered by his brother), the far-fetchedness of the premise doesn't really matter. It's about the emotional reality of the characters' response to the situation they find themselves in.
 
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Soaplover

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To me, the story would be worth it just for Sheehan's performance. Ben is one of Soap Land's most soulful and thoughtful characters and here we see him slowly unravelling as, bit by bit, he's forced to surrender everything he holds dear, including his own integrity. It’s all so quietly, desperately heartrending because there’s nobody he can turn to for help or confide in.

Heck, it would be worth it just to watch Sheehan and William Devane on screen together. The climactic gunpoint showdown between them is fantastically tense and beautifully acted, but all the smaller scenes between them leading up to it are just as good. (But then, maybe yer average Knots viewer - if such a thing exists - is less interested in seeing the male characters interact than the female ones.)

Like Wes Parmalee claiming to be Jock on DALLAS (or even Hamlet's dad appearing to him as a ghost to say he's been murdered by his brother), the far-fetchedness of the premise doesn't really matter. It's about the emotional reality of the characters' response to the situation they find themselves in.
Which is why I thought the scene where Val tells Lillimae that she knows Ben isn't coming back was so good. She, of all people, would understand his mindset considering how her life had unraveled a few years previously.

Not enough was focused on the reversal of roles between Ben and Val where she was well emotionally and mentally during season 8 and he was slowly unraveling and she being unable to help him.. just as he was unable to help her a few season earlier.
 

Karin

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Really sad news, 75 is too young to go. :(

My sympathies to his family, friends and co-stars.

Also I really loved Ben on the show. I thought he was a good guy who was so good for Valene to start with and I liked that he was a journalist. But I think they ruined his character with the Jean Hackney story and the way he just disappeared. Also him cheating on Val with Cathy.
 
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