There is no doubt that Tony Santos was definitely not the man Joshua Lewis envisioned for his daughter. The danger and violence surrounding Tony wasn’t just because he was a member of the local mobster family, it was a part of the man himself. And though Tony tried repeatedly to fit inside Marah’s world and impress her family Josh’s opinion that Tony was too dangerous for his daughter never truly wavered. It had thawed considerably towards the end of 2003 but by then Marony was over and the damage was done.
But I have always wondered if there was a deeper reason to why Josh felt so much animosity towards Tony. Besides the one instance when Tony attacked Marah it could have been said that Tony was simply misunderstood. With all the pressure to impress the Lewis family Tony was bound to fail. But does it go deeper than simply a father protecting his daughter? Could it be that Josh saw a lot of himself in Tony Santos? Because looking beyond the surface Marony and Jeva have some clear similarities…
The Early Days Of Jeva:
Josh Lewis was the “black sheep” of the Lewis family. He had an often unpredictable relationship with wild Reva Shayne that ended when he left to attend college. To get revenge on him Reva married his brother Billy. Upset that Reva married Billy instead of him, Josh in turn dropped out of school.
In 1984, Reva and Josh rekindled their passion and a return to Cross Creek where they had made love for the first time. They planned to wed but before they could make it official, Josh learned from Anita, Reva’s maid that Alan bribed her to come to town to break up Billy and Vanessa Chamberlain. H.B. was relieved when Josh bitterly called off the wedding. His father, H.B. was relieved at first, and decided to further drive Reva away from Josh by bribing Reva into marrying him. When Josh (who had gone to see Reva to patch things up) learned about the marriage, he was so disgusted that he went for a wild drive and crashed his car into a telephone pole that left him paralyzed from the waist down. While at a party at the Country Club, a drunken Phillip Spaulding was coming on to Reva. Josh thought the worst of Reva and accused her of making a play for another man. It was then, while he was wheelchair-bound, that he and Reva had the showdown to end all showdowns … culminating in her stripping off her clothes, diving into a fountain, and baptizing herself “The slut of Springfield.”
The Couple Comparison:
As you can see things weren’t always hearts and flowers between Josh and Reva. In fact, the early days of their relationship was a series of ups and downs. And yes, sometimes Josh and Reva toed the line at being violent with one another.
Like the Jeva hot tub scene. Josh was trying to get Reva to stay away from him but Reva being Reva would not listen. Pushed to his limit Josh flipped Reva into the hot tub with him then proceeded to shake her.
Reva’s face is one of shock, surprise, and even a little bit of fear. Which makes sense, she thought the man she loved was trying to drown her.
And though I wasn’t around for the legendary “Slut of Springfield” scene it is one of those scenes that has been passed down through time almost as if it was a treasured family memory. As such I almost feel as if I watched it live. But it’s the dialog that is the real importance when comparing the two.
Reva: “I think that I am tired of this. I have given you everything. I have groveled. I have taken your orders. I’ve given you love and understanding. I’ve given you the best doctors money could buy. And none of it satisfied you. None of it! I think that there’s only one thing that’s gonna make you happy. One thing you want more than anything else in this world. And that’s to catch me being unfaithful to your daddy. Well, that’s just fine with me Bud. You want me to be a slut. Oh, I’ll be a slut. Reva ain’t nothing if she ain’t obliging.”
Reva stripping herself down, both literally and figuratively, and you can tell Reva is just done being Josh’s whipping post. He is taking his anger and frustrations out on her and looks at her as if she is the “slut” she baptizes herself to be. The scene was emotional, raw and the vulnerability Reva was able to convey remains a favorite among Guiding Light fans.
But doesn’t it sound like a scene from another couple we know and love?
When Tony attacked Marah it was a turning point for their relationship and the character of Tony. He was angry with Romeo, angry with Marah, and most of all angry with himself. Tony felt that by not having sex with Marah he was finally doing something right, that he was not tarnishing something beautiful and pure. By Marah giving herself to Romeo his vision of Marah was destroyed.
When Marah strips herself in the office at Infierno and offers herself to Tony…it is uncomfortable and raw. And in retrospect, similar in feel to the Slut of Springfield scene. In fact, Marah even refers to herself as a “slut”.
Marah: “Yeah! This is what I wanted! It’s what I wanted! Can’t you tell, Tony? Can’t you tell? So do it, do it! Just take whatever you want! Take it! Huh, you think I’m a slut? You think all I want is sex? Then treat me like a slut, Tony. Come on, come on, show me, show me! (Sobbing)”
Unlike the Slut of Springfield clip that scene would NOT go down as one of Guiding Light’s most legendary scenes. Except maybe as one of the more controversial. Though as a Marony fan I have looked at it objectively as Tony’s decent into darkness before Marah brings him back into the light. Doesn’t make the scene any less uncomfortable but it does show that there are some parallels between Jeva and Marony, even if Josh would have liked to have ignored that fact.
Tony VS Josh:
Josh and Tony were both men whose emotions bubbled to the surface easily. Both men tended to react first then think about the consequence. This was especially true if they were angry. What I found ironic was that Josh always accused Tony of putting Marah in danger when Marah had been abducted multiple times before Tony even came to town! And as for dangerous people Josh introduce several stepmothers into Marah’s life that can only be described as “mentally unstable”. So in my opinion Tony Santos didn’t so much introduce Marah to danger but remind Josh about the many times he himself failed to keep Marah safe.
What About Reva?
Reva wasn’t always thrilled with Marah’s choice of soul mates but Reva was different from Josh in that she knew that you couldn’t help who you loved, but when the bust cleared Reva could admit that there was good in Tony. Reva was a wild child, the vixen of Guiding Light, and I like to think she knew what it was like to be judged like Tony was for being a Santos.
When Tony attacked Marah Reva was of course in full mother mode. But afterwards, when Reva was sent to prison for turning off Richard’s ventilator, Tony put the word out that Reva was to be treated good. When one of the other inmates was giving Reva trouble the guards moved her to the library to keep her safe per Tony’s orders. When Danny was thought to be dead Tony gave a speech about how Danny was a hero because he was willing to sacrifice his life for his family, for love. Moved by this Reva told Josh, “There is good in the boy”. Which he would again prove during Reva’s stalker storyline when he acted as Reva’s personal bodyguard.
And towards the end of the Marah and Tony relationship it was Reva who tried to tell Tony that he was more than just the violence that people associated with the Santos family. Because she was Reva Shayne, daughter of the Lewis family housekeeper and not expected to succeed. But she did by marrying IN to the Lewis family. But her great love was always Joshua Lewis, even if she did marry his father and his brother first.
And Reva knew it was the same for her daughter. Tony was Marah’s constant, her one true love. As she explained to him, “I’d be lying if I said the violence didn’t bother me. But the young man I see sitting here, I think, is above all that.”
I kept some aspects of the Josh VS Tony in “I Believe in the Mystery“, at least in the initial reveal. Josh had to see Tony beyond those Santos colored glasses he always viewed him behind. But I finally had Josh accept Tony as his son-in-law, faults and all. Because as history showed Josh and Tony were not too different. They both reacted in anger, and it never ended well. But now that Josh has finally moved beyond a simple truce and finally accepted Tony he might just prove a much needed ally when the drama in “What Matters Most” takes off.