Yes ladies and gentlemen, Angela Coleman is none other than Eden August herself, and she is once again slinking around Springfield.
Eden never was a popular character (For two years she was voted Least Favorite Character in the Guiding Light section of the Soap Opera Central Awards). But she had that quality about her, you loved to hate her. And as she insinuated herself into Marah and Tony’s lives again and again I wanted to scream in frustration that she could not be trusted. Her relationship with brother Gus Aitoro was perhaps her only redeeming feature and it served to humanize her, at least marginally.
So why bring back such an unpopular character? It is because of that history with Marah and Tony that made me bring back Eden August as a threat to Marony’s future.
The Faces of Eden:
There were two actresses to portray Eden August (Augustino) from the time she arrived in Springfield in 2002 until her eventual departure in 2004. Teresa Hill was the first Eden from August 2002 until September 2003. She was the main Eden during the Marony story and for that purpose she will be the Eden that I am essentially bringing back to cause havoc in Marah and Tony’s lives.
The second Eden was Deborah Zoe, and though hard to be believe she was even more disliked than the first. She showed up September of 2003 and was gone May 2004. I found a poll over Eden’s final exit and 54% of viewers responded with “It’s about time. Eden was one of my least favorite characters.” Deborah Zoe was brought in to take the Eden character in a “new direction” but the only direction viewers wanted to see Eden move was off-screen.
Eden August came to Springfield in 2002 because of a custody battle with Harley Cooper (who was dating Eden’s brother Gus). Gus admitted that he had a juvenile record because as a teenager he was arrested for murder. Turns out he was covering for his sister Eden who had pushed the man off the roof, and Gus had covered for her at the request of their father.
Coming to Springfield Eden eventually got a job at Infierno and even started up a flirtation with Tony Santos. But Eden had ulterior motives, she was getting paid to spy on him by his Aunt Carmen. Though Gus thought Eden was trying to get revenge on the Santos family for the death of their father (much like Gus had when he first arrived in town) she really was trying to stop Carmen from revealing the truth, that she was the one who had killed Tony and Ray’s father.
Danny wasn’t blind. He was on to Eden and knew she was after Tony and in 2002 he urged Tony to, “go to Marah. Marah loves you. you can trust Marah.” before being shot by Carmen. The fact that Tony didn’t listen to Danny and was with Eden (as orchestrated by Carmen) when Danny was shot ruined any chance Eden had with Tony. And if that didn’t do the trick, learning that Eden was the one who killed his father….well that was the biggest revelation of all. Eden was sure Tony was going to retaliate but Tony had decided he was better than that and moved forward in his life with Marah by his side.
After that big reveal Eden left town for a few months before returning in 2003 and opening her own escort service, Garden of Eden. She wanted Tony to join partners with her but he turned her down because, like Danny, he wanted to make the Santos name something to be proud of for a change. She convinced Ben Reade that he could make easy money as an escort….until he started to get blackmailed by one of his clients. Soon some of Eden’s customers started turning up murdered and she worried that people would connect her business with murder. She began dating Bill Lewis but her obsession with Tony Santos was still obvious.
She staged a hit and run so he would think her life was in danger and offer her protection. She moved in to the Museum and one night when they were gone went into their bedroom and smelled Tony’s shirts (Creepy). Under the guise of friendship with Marah she helped further her fashion career, which was a source of tension between Marah and Tony. She went as far as planting seeds of doubt in Marah’s head about Tony’s support of Marah’s growing fashion career.
Throughout the summer tension remained high until it was revealed that Ben Reade was the one who had murdered Eden’s clients. Still Eden remained obsessed with Tony. She kept a photo scrapbook (of which Tony had a page) and would even mark out the faces of those who angered her, as well as Marah’s face. (Another Creeper moment.)
After trying, and failing, to get Tony interested in her all summer she heard Bill defend her to his father and finally threw Tony’s picture away.
Next Eden received pictures of Tony attacking a woman. Eden suspected Salerno was setting Tony up but before she could warn Tony about it Marah saw the photos. Marah, who had once been on the receiving end of Tony’s violent side broke up with him because she couldn’t trust that angry Tony wouldn’t return. Hurt Tony accepted Eden’s help in confronting Salerno. After getting Salerno to admit that he had doctored the photos and angry and bitter Tony turned to Eden and they slept together. Tony immediately regretted it, and though Eden agreed she also said she would never forget it. Eden didn’t want to hurt Bill and Tony was still very much in love with Marah. Tony decided to leave for a few weeks and upon his return (the role re-casted) he began flirting with Eden making her uncomfortable.
And After Marony….
In 2004, Eden found herself thrown together with Tony, when they were both summoned by a mysterious, disguised, figure who warned them that Lewis Construction was in league with the mob. Not believing it, Tony and Eden investigated the matter by gaining illegal access to Bill’s office. As Eden kept watch, she allowed Tony to enter Bill’s office and copy his files. Although, they were almost caught when Bill arrived at the office, Eden was able to sufficiently distract Bill and convince him to leave while Tony copied the files. With the files, the pair learned that men connected to a gangster named Angelo Bruzzi were in fact on the Lewis payroll.
Eden was involved in another scam that was really convoluted and pointless. Let’s just say that in the end she was forced to enter the Witness Protection Program. Bill offered to leave with her, Eden couldn’t let him sacrifice his life in Springfield and, in an effort to drive him away, she cruelly confessed her affair with Tony and told him that she wasn’t the decent girl she pretended to be; that she liked being bad and she’d only hurt him in the end. The last mention of Eden was in 2008 when Jeffery contacted her to inform her of Gus’s death.
Eden VS. Marony
When Eden first blew into town she could have been a legitimate rival for Marah. Tony was in a bad place after he unleashed his anger on Marah, and Eden had none of Marah’s inherit goodness, which would have been perfect for him at that time. Tony didn’t WANT any goodness in his life because he was sure that he was destined to be bad. And just like in the situation with Catalina, without Marah being his light Tony is lost in the darkness of his past. But as Tony explained to Marah afterwards, “I mean, we both had dads who were killed when we were kids, and sometimes that got to me. But it… it never was at the place where you and I were. And nothing happened.” And that was BEFORE he learned that she was the reason he grew up without his father.
And the idea that Tony would ever give Eden the time of day, not to mention have sex with her, is ridiculous. Tony may not have sought revenge for Eden for killing his father but the idea that he would just forget was very out of character. Because of her Tony and Ray grew up without any male guidance. As Ray explained to Marah, Ray turned to the church and Tony turned to what they grew up around…violence. And the anger that Tony harbored for this was the cornerstone of the character up until the end of 2002. So even if Marah HAD broken up with him and he was bitter over the doctored photos Tony still wouldn’t have slept with her. The only reason why Tony slept with Eden was to effectively ruin any chance of Marah and Tony reconciling. Marah wanted Tony back, but would she want him back if she knew he had sex with someone she considered her friend? She had already been betrayed by Catalina in that manner and Eden was still trying to be friends with her. Tony’s uncharacteristic actions would send Tony out of town….and upon return was the recast Tony Stephen Martines.
Thankfully Eden wasn’t a fan favorite because I have taken quite the liberty with the character. Eden certainly hurried back to Springfield once the threat of Salerno was removed so what brings her back in such a hurry? Is she out for revenge? Does she still want what she can’t have? And what is her connection to the mysterious Carlos Riviera? Well, you will just have to keep reading to find out….