So, Verbotene Liebe is no more.
The finale (which you can watch the whole episode of here with English subtitles because now I'm unemployed I actually did have 9 hours free to sub it...what bad timing), the finale was...actually kind of okay? My expectations were rock bottom, because I knew it wasn't going to be something I'd love, and honestly the last few eps I've just skimmed through to see if there was anything I should be subbing (...let me know if there was something I missed). I thought it would be beyond shit, and I was pleasantly surprised, even though it was nothing I would have chosen for the finale (except the incest and awful play-on-words, I would have chosen both of those things, and actually they're mostly what redeemed the show in my eyes...that and a certain sexy policeman).
I was going to do a picture recap for old time's sake, but given I didn't pay attention to the previous episodes I worry it will be harder to be glib. I feel I have to be properly informed to mock this show to the extent it deserves. Plus I'm a little out of practice. But worry not! I will persevere.
Would it be incredibly pretentious of me to do a dedication? I will anyway: this is for all of you who've ever read my picture recaps, especially those who are sweet enough to comment or PM, but most of all for 4lugia to whom I fear I have made a more empty promises than I have even to the calorie-counter app on my phone... Off we go.
Where I last left you, Jo was lying in a field, bleeding profusely from the thigh, while paramedics removed his clothes (I assume it's so that if he didn't make it, Olli would have had one last chance to see him topless - the true value of the emergency services).
Anyway, Jo was walking towards the light/Sam, when suddenly he started to hear Olli's voice, saying powerful things like "Jo, come back to me", "don't leave me", and "you seriously think you'll be joining Sam in heaven? you shagged your brother's wife, you'll be rooming downstairs, mate". This is a persuasive argument, so Jo decided to live a bit longer after all so he could lounge around looking sexy while he waits for the paramedics to bring him a new shirt.
His leg miraculously healed in about two days, but obviously with VL having paid for a hospital set (or perhaps they just bought a real hospital...an odd investment for a soap opera - in fact the sort of decision making that might lead to a show getting cancelled [/speculation]) the action couldn't stay away for long, so Bella conveniently got hit by a car and fell into a coma for 8000 years.
This led to lots of tedious angsting on Jo's part, lots of immense dickishness on Charlie's part, lots of being-a-sappy-pushover-ness on Olli's part, and terribly awkward moment in which Andi was left in a room with a comatose Bella and told to "stroke her". I was slightly worried it would end up like the original version of Sleeping Beauty, but in a turn of events even more Disneyfied than the Disney version, Bella woke up, forgot she had even broken up with Andi in the first place, got back together with him and lived happily ever after.
Jo and Olli decided to buy a holiday together (my money's still on it being on Ayia Napa), and also lived happily ever after with only a slight blip when offscreen-Olli left to go to London for a photoshoot and then one of the actors decided that meant "omg, Chrolli for everrrr!", even though, like, no one even likes Chrolli, duh, and then Dr Jo was lumbered with paying the mortgage on a beach hut that nobody will ever use and also having to man the hospital to deal with whatever mischief the various Lahnsteins had got themselves into. Because at this point the show became only about the Lahnsteins.
Which brings us to today. I might need to do some introductions.
On the left is Mila - she has a tragic backstory in which when she was 15 Ansgar raped her, impregnated her, and then had her locked up in an asylum for 20 years and she had her baby stolen from her. This was told through a series of Break the Cutie flashbacks in previous episodes. On the right is Martin - he is a policeman, and I am in love wth him, which means statistically he must be gay. I ship him and Olli even though they've never been onscreen together, and are now unlikely to be unless he can get a transfer to Essen. He is also a Cutie waiting to be Broken. I know this because I've seen soaps before.
Martin has discovered Mila's secret identity (which she had to adopt to escape from the asylum - she used to be called "Steffi"), which sends Mila into a panicked voice-over about second lives, and being dead inside but covered in paint on the outside and half-cooked in the middle. This efficiently scares Martin away, to the extent that he has to go to the fairground to try and calm himself down with a ride on the Spinning Teacups.
Mila follows him there, and they stand in the exact same pose they were earlier, just without a door in the way, this is called visual continuity. It also effectively conveys the emotional sate of the characters, Mila with her back to Martin, hiding herself from him, while Martin is still trying to get her to open the metaphorical door and let him in. Most importantly, it also means that the scene only has to be shot once, with one camera. Saving time and money people, that's why we watch VL!
There is much angsting about secret identities, lies, murders, and whose fault it is that they didn't get to the Spinning Teacups ride before it closed.
The long and short of it is that Martin wants the truth, and he will not placated with balloons or even candyfloss. Mila offers to go and win him a cuddly bear, but he sits down petulantly and refuses to move. So Mila confesses everything, and Policeman Martin realises he has fallen in love with a murdering, revenge-seeking crim :(
Then his day goes from bad to worse as Uncle Frank gets cross with him for spending all day with a girl instead of with his police bros. Something about how he should be doing work and keeping up to date with what's happening and inviting his superior officer to the fair too, if he insists on going there during work hours.
Meanwhile, Kim is cheating on Emilio again. Not really, she's just happy that she won €3.78 in a fruit machine. And also she does fancy that guy. His name is Jannik, and he's her brother but she doesn't know he's her brother. This episode kind of plays it like we don't know he's her brother either, but we definitely do already know he's her brother so I don't know why... Whatever, I'm just happy to get some actually forbidden love up in this Forbidden Love, and seeing as they never used my idea for Christian/horse OTP, not even in the finale, I will settle for some third gen Lahnsteincest.
This ties in with all the other Lahnstein stuff, because Ansgar is worried because someone is scheming against him. His computers were hacked, and tragic misfortune keeps befalling all of his relatives. He doesn't realise it's the woman he raped, and he doesn't realise that Jannik is his son, but he does think Jannik is out to get him. He goads Jannik, asking about his intentions towards Kim, alleging that he wants to hurt her. He tries to push him into revealing his true plan, pressuring Jannik to for once be honest about what he's up to. About how he's a lying, sly, craft shifty little man who needs to come clean.
And it works, the entire story bursts out of Jannik in a jet of pent up secrecy. His real plans, ideas and feelings come spilling out, ready for Ansgar to absorb the information and use it to protect himself from the terrible plot. Unfortunately, Jannik's secret is not a nefarious plan, rather it's a torrent of teenage angst about being in love with Kim.
Oh well, Ansgar. Never mind, you can't win them all. I guess you'll have to continue being a victim of the terrible plot a little while longer (anywhere between 20 minutes and forever, depending on your stance on headcanon).
And things go from bad to worse for him when Martin punches him in the face. ...See, this is why I never liked doing more than storyline in one recap you know, because everything gets so tangled up, and there's so many different characters to focus on, and it's awkward if I keep switching back and forth between different scenes, and there's only so many times I can say "meanwhile", and all I want to screencap is Martin looking sweet and indignant.
So we'll stick with Martin for now, and come back to Ansgar later.
After the punch, Martin went straight to Mila, and upon seeing him she bursts into tears.
I can fully understand getting wet if he appeared at my front door too, but the moisture definitely would not be in the vicinity of my face (...until later maybe, depends what he's into). She says it's because she's just so happy that she can finally be herself "Steffi", and doesn't have to be the fake "Mila" any more. Martin says she can be herself, with him, and they can live happily ever after.
For some reason he then picks her up and carries her to the sofa.
The effort of which brings tears to his eyes. She must be a heftier lass than she looks. And after all that they don't even bone - Olli would never put up with that nonsense, Martin might be new to the show, but he needs to learn that weeping is no barrier to sex.
The next morning, and Martin makes his desires known but Mila's still preoccupied about how she's just told a policeman that she's a murderer, which might not have been the cleverest idea.
He tries to change the subject back to something sexier by whispering in a low voice about lawyers but that doesn't seem to work. He doesn't even mention Sebastian. Mila is so unimpressed that she chucks him out.
Over in the flat, which is now populated solely by Emilio, Kim is desperate to find Jannik, so I suppose she must assume that Jemilio shenanigans are happening.
...There's no real reason for this cap to be here, except to say bye bye, WG. You're probably my favourite soap flat, pushing the boundaries of believable floorplans far beyond even the McQueen house in Hollyoaks or the pub in Eastenders, but possibly not as far as the old woman who lived in a shoe and had so many children she didn't know what to do.
And bye bye, No Limits. I've lost track of whether you're the new No Limits, the old No Limits, the new old No Limits, the old new No Limits, or the new old new No Limits, and you've not been the same since Miriam stopped smashing things inside you, but still, the memories we've shared... [/nostalgia]
Anyway, Jannik is busy running away by standing still which makes it actually quite easy for Kim to find him, and he confesses that he likes her.
But at the exact same time, Ansgar has hired Bruce Forsythe's less tactful maiden aunt in order to find out what happened to his dead infant son.
After a series of puns and jokes about how the it was "probably thrown out with the bathwater", after having its "candy taken", but at least it must have "slept like" the proverbial, and "how do you tell the difference between a lorry full of marbles and lorry full of dead babies?" which even Ansgar thought was in poor taste, Ansgar eventually gets his answer. Jannik is his son. Dun dun duhhh.
It is a wise child that knows his own father, as they say, and the reverse is probably also true, because it makes it easier to prevent your children from boning each other.
Oops, too late. Ansgar tries to take evasive action anyway, or at least ensure they use a condom because any baby with double Lahnstein genes is going to make Loki look under-sexy and under-evil.
But on his way there he discovers the limp body of Martin! Oh no, I forgot about the other storyline...
Let's not dwell, I'm losing the will to live too at this point, I think the inexplicable fondness I had for the finale was just endorphins and they're wearing off. Basically, Martin was on his way to the castle to confess to Sebastian that he had made a terrible mistake by nearly sleeping with a woman, but then he remembered Sebastian is in prison so he couldn't help him back to the gay and narrow. Then he went to hang around in the bushes to see if he met anyone interesting, but Justus was on security detail and you know how protective he gets when he thinks the castle is threatened. So he started hitting Martin with his pole, and not in a good way, like it was a scaffolding pole or something nasty, and then Ansgar found Martin and used one of his magic Lahnstein kisses to bring him back to life, because that's the superpower he traded his soul for, and then they all moved to Essen to live with
Olli "Nick", which is Olli's new name and identity that he adopted because he was raped and impregnated as a 15 year old and locked up in a mental institution which is run by a corrupt agency called UFA who couldn't organise a piss-up in a brewery.
So, yes. That's it. I suppose I could go back and fill in the gaps for the episodes I skipped between December and now (...I'm tempted solely on the basis that some are half done and I don't want to throw away several quality jokes about Andi's idiocy, but I do concede that that's already well-trodden ground on these pages). But for now, bye, VL. We had such a lovely time, until you wrecked everything and made yourself unwatchable shortly after I had constructed a social obligation to watch the show. I'll miss you.
Thanks again to anyone who's ever read/commented here or on youtube, you're all sweethearts. And if anyone knows if there are any other German soaps/shows being subbed at the moment, can you post a link in the comments - because I've had a few people ask what they can move on to, and I'm not up to date with who's subbing what right now.
Also, there's a Verbotene Liebe book thing about...its impact and fans and so on, I think? Which is available here. I have not read it, because if I'm honest reading German takes me about 2 hours per page, and there's about 1500 pages of German in that book so it would take me over 4 months to read. But I'm sure it's excellent...or, I mean, I at least give the benefit of the doubt unless proven otherwise. Really I'm just incredibly flattered to have been sent a press copy of a book (!!!) - which I think speaks for the good taste of the authors ;) - and therefore am multi-tasking by unsubtly bragging about that while also advertising the book. And it was all going so smoothly until I accidentally told you all about my sneaky plan. Anyway, go buy the book, read the book, and then translate the book so I can enjoy it too. Though it does have pictures, so I'm not completely at sea here.