|The fire of the Lockridge villa|
Announced by John Conboy in his exclusive interview with TÚlÚ 7 Jours, the fire of the Lockridge mansion takes place at the end of the first quarter of 1990 (episode 1415). This fire serves of course the storyline around Gina DeMott Capwell and Augusta Lockridge, but it also serves for the new producer to mark a clear difference, by imposing his "touch" on stable elements of the show, namely the sets. As a proof, a few months later, we'll see another essential set change : the Capwell mansion. Thus, the two most famous places, present from the beginning of the show, are reviewed and transformed by John Conboy.
Transformed into a bed and breakfast for several months, the neighboring property of the Capwells is no longer Lockridge, but DeMott, since it now belongs to the amazing Gina. We can not speak of success for Gina's conversion, since the only people who took advantage of it are the mobster Bunny Tagliatti (who rents all the bedrooms), and Augusta Lockridge (the former mistress of the house). Today, only Brandon and Phyllis Blake live in the luxurious villa.
After breaking up with Keith Timmons, Gina seems to have found a new balance in her life hitherto tumultuous, with the new district attorney, Ethan Asher. This new affair is not without risk for Gina because Ethan is married to Laura, one of her old friends. And Laura is ready for everything to remain the wife of the district attorney...
Aware that Ethan goes away from her a little more day after day, Laura decides to take up arms to keep Ethan with her, and also to move Gina away from her husband's arms. First, she persuades Ethan that she is pregnant. For that, she does not hesitate to tamper with a pregnancy test (as did Mason Capwell with Gina years earlier). Playing both ways, she even agrees to be interned (after a suicide attempt) to put all the chances on her part to save her marriage. But soon, reality catches her up and everything changes : Ethan has chosen, it is towards Gina that his heart turned to. This is too much for Laura, who has then no other choice than to eliminate her rival.
Crazy about jealousy, Laura succeeds in escaping from the asylum where she is interned. And, sure that Gina is at her home, she reaches the Lockridge property with the firm intention to put an end to the affair between her rival and her husband.
That same day, Brandon and his new friend Buck (an orphan who regularly escapes the orphanage to the city) take advantage of the joys of the swimming-pool, while Phyllis and Cy Agnew are watching them with a distracted eye. Meanwhile, Gina has a business appointment that evening with Augusta Lockridge. Not to be alone, she chose to go there with her brother Mack. During their games, Brandon injured his head. Phyllis and Cy then lead Brandon to the hospital, leaving Buck alone at the mansion.
Discreetly, Laura manages to break into the Lockridge villa. Her jealousy guiding her hand, she lights a fire that soon spread throughout the residence. Sure to have won over her rival, Laura goes back so discreetly to the mental home to make sure of an alibi.
At the mansion, Buck wakes up from his nap in a burning house. Soon, the firefighters get present at the scene, as well as Gina and Mack who assist helplessly to the ravages of the flames. Immediately, everyone is busy searching Buck, whom no one knows where he is. Gina even goes to the Capwells to try to find him. There, Derek Griffin hears the news and he accompanies Gina, who goes back home. Affected by the loss of this young boy, an orphan like him, Derek enters, despite the risks, in the villa devastated on all sides by fire. Joined by firefighters, including Hank Fisk, Derek, risking his life, saves Buck.
Everyone attends then to the complete destruction of the villa. Augusta is devastated to see ending in ashes the house she lived in for many years, and of which she loved the power and the luxury that it symbolized. A new feeling is being born into her, the desire to get revenge against Gina for what she has just done to the Lockridges. Gina is certainly upset to see her business melt like snow, but she hopes to use insurance to rebuild a house which will correspond more to her own tastes.
Once the fire extinguished, the investigation can begin. Cruz Castillo, helped by the firefighters of the city, quickly discovers that it is an arson. And the list of Gina's enemies able to have lit the fire in revenge is potentially quite long. Gina, as for her, did not arrive at the end of her surprises : Phyllis, her mother, used the money of the insurance to partner Cy in poker games. Gina is ruined and she has no other possibilities than to move into her brother's caravan.
Afterward, the mansion becomes C.C. Capwell's property, before being subsequently purchased by Maxwell Hammer, a friend of Minx Lockridge's, upon her return in town. The villa is then reconstructed in a style close to the original villa. The interior, after reconstruction, is always an exhibition of works of art. The villa does not stay long as the Lockridges' property since, the following year, Lionel will be constrained and forced to sell it to C.C. Capwell, to honor the ransom for Augusta's kidnapping.
The Lockridge mansion is the first major set to be revisited. We can imagine that his transformation was used as a test for John Conboy before completely transform the Capwell house. This last one will not keep any element of the former villa : neither the fountain, nor the heavy wooden door, and even less the arches of the immense atrium. However, this new Lockridge mansion, although different, keeps an appearance close to the first villa, a little as if the Lockridges could not imagine to live in another setting.
Text written for this site by Lilian