In the ever-changing world we live in, one universal concept pulls us together: love. Discover how websoap Palm Terrace recently used the love theme and classic soap opera elements to launch a moving and compelling storyline.
By Dallas Walsh
A Special Magazine Feature From [Original Post]

"So what, (Kendra) helps you out once with a tiny task and now you're in love with her? I can't wait to see what happens to someone who does something major, like donating pints of blood for a transfusion to keep you alive..."

-- Lana to Jake, Episode One: "Something about Her"

In Palm Terrace's "The Power of Love" miniseries, a foursome of passionate young hotties have fallen head over heels for one another. Unfortunately, the pairs aren't quite matching up as the individuals hope...

Before delving into the storyline, let's meet the players. Jake Herrington, the good-natured hunky hero and currently unemployed sports writer. Lana Whitmire, the young hapless heroine who's been Jake's best friend since their college days. Kendra Blake, the rich heiress beauty who collects hearts like some collect butterflies. And Bryce McKeon, the fourth member of the quadrangle, a newcomer to Palm Terrace.

Lana has had a simmering passion for Jake for years, but can't seem to drum up the courage to reveal that her feelings for her best pal are deeper than he suspects. Jake is utterly infatuated with Kendra's stunning beauty and easy confidence, but worries that he's just not up to her standards. Kendra is similarly infatuated -- but with Bryce, who appears to be the only guy in town not pursuing her. Finally, Bryce rounds things out by having fallen for Lana's sultry but down-to-earth style.


"Sure," Stacia agreed, "Why should Jake choose snobbish, conceited Kendra when he can have bitter, secretive you?" Stacia raised an eyebrow and peered at her with a daring look. "You've known Jake for years, I thought you two would be together by now."

"No, it's not like that. And it's never going to be," Lana sighed sadly. "We've sunk too deep into the comfort of the 'Friend' zone. There's no turning back now. Besides, it's obvious that he doesn't feel the same way about me. I'm like one of the guys to him."

-- Palm Terrace, Episode One, "Something about Her..."

With these four characters set up, everything's in place for producer Valencia Brady's plans for Palm Terrace's special three-part miniseries, "The Power of Love." The story began one fateful day, when Kendra stopped Jake on the street. As always, Jake's "heart fluttered" as he and Kendra talked, although Kendra was basically just being friendly.

Then the unthinkable happened: when Kendra's shoe heel got caught in a drainage gate, she lurched herself out of it -- only to fall headlong into oncoming traffic! Jake literally jumped into the action, pushing Kendra out of harm's way. But no good deed goes unpunished, and no one would save Jake. A van smacked right into the poor would-be hero, leaving Jake unconscious, battered and struggling for his life.

Ironically echoing her sarcastic words in the first episode, Lana had the chance to save Jake's life when he required a blood transfusion. She gladly donated blood to save her best friend and secret love. While Jake lay unconscious, still fighting to survive, Lana finally professed her love to him.

Unfortunately, though Jake heard everything Lana said through his unconscious haze, he fantasized that it was Kendra, not Lana, who had spoken the words he so longed to hear. And when he woke up, he believed that Kendra had been the one to save his life.

Jake wasn't the only one emotionally affected by his accident. Spoiled Kendra was, for the first time, touched by someone else's selflessness, and started to wonder if she could ever sacrifice for someone -- even Bryce, the man she supposedly loved. Could she be a better person? Meanwhile, Lana was heartbroken when she realized that Jake was under the deluded belief that Kendra was his savior, and had to fight with her instincts to tell him the truth or let him recover through his happiness.

The love/sacrifice theme is woven throughout "The Power of Love" miniseries with Jake's willingness to sacrifice his very life for Kendra's, Lana's donation of life-giving blood to the man she loves ... even Kendra's acknowledgement of the power of sacrifice as proof of love. It's no coincidence. Before producer Valencia Brady began to write her story, she found inspiration through the definition of love, as seen in a quote from Ernest Hemingway's "A Farewell to Arms." As Hemingway writes, to love is "to sacrifice for, to do things for, to wish to do things for."

Brady then used classic soap opera elements to make the audience squirm with anticipation. While Jake was unconscious, his mind had one focus: Kendra. While Lana was at his bedside, she recalled her donating blood--and professed her love for Jake. However, Jake believed it was Kendra talking to him! Perfect soap opera twist by Brady.

The accident affects all the characters involved. Brady reveals that for Jake and Lana's friendship, "Jake's accident is really a turning point ... Kendra and Jake will grow closer, while Lana drifts away." And what about Bryce? Naturally enough, Brady promises that Bryce will be there for Lana, which could make Jake and Kendra a tad jealous. Brady also offers a teaser for Season 2, revealing that Kendra and Jake will "get together for the first time!"

Clearly, thanks to the skillful combination of a classic love theme from literature and the classic plot twists of soap operas, "The Power of Love" will continue to resonate throughout Palm Terrace.

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