The Bold And The Beautiful Classic Romance: Clarke And Sally

Newer viewers of "The Bold and the Beautiful" might not be as familiar with the original Sally Spectra as longtime fans are, but the redheaded owner of Spectra Fashions was a force to be reckoned with. Portrayed by the late Darlene Conley, Sally schemed her way to the top of the fashion world, often by stealing designs from Forrester Creations. Her feud with Stephanie Forrester (Susan Flannery) was both legendary and comical, gaining depth over the years as their relationship evolved into a true friendship. 

While Sally was larger-than-life, unashamed to flirt with younger men, and had no problem speaking her mind, she seemed to finally meet her match in the romance department when she fell for the charming but shallow Clarke Garrison (Daniel McVicar). The full-figured redhead's romance with the tall, dark, and handsome fashion designer quickly won over viewers, earning them the title of one of the soap's best couples of all time.

Sally didn't let anything stand in her way

From the moment the brazen and brassy Sally Spectra appeared on "The Bold and the Beautiful" in 1989, she made it clear she could handle herself in any situation. She and her husband, Adam Alexander (Michael Swan), started Spectra Fashions, quickly becoming a rival of top fashion house Forrester Creations. However, because Adam became too deeply involved with organized crime to fund their company, he had to disappear, leaving Sally and their daughter Macy alone. While she struggled to keep the business afloat at first, Sally realized she could be successful by stealing designs from other firms.

Sally approached Clarke Garrison, a designer for Forrester Creations, and blackmailed him into giving designs to her company — unaware that he was handing over his own creations instead. When his designs turned out to be a hit on the runway, Sally hired him under the alias Beau Rivage to create more exciting looks for Spectra Fashions.

Sally and Clarke were first partners in deceit

Clarke Garrison was a ladies' man and fashion designer who tried to charm his way into Forrester Designs through Stephanie Forrester and her daughter, Kristen Forrester (then Teri Ann Linn), whom he eventually married. However, he had an affair with another woman, who became pregnant and demanded $100,000 in child support. That's what led him to Sally Spectra. Needing money fast, he asked Sally for a loan, but she turned the tables on him, blackmailing him instead.

Clarke paid Sally in stolen designs from Forester Creations — or so she thought. In reality, Clarke was giving her his own original designs, which were a big success. Because of their popularity, Sally ultimately hired him to work for Spectra, even though he was still employed at Forrester. Together, he and Sally created the alias Beau Rivage, but their ruse was exposed when Clarke accidentally created too similar of a design for both companies.

Sally surprised Clarke by proposing

When Clarke Garrison's deceit — including his illegitimate son, Mark — was exposed, his marriage to Kristen Forrester ended. Seizing an opportunity, Sally offered him an enticing proposal — literally. Sally offered Clarke his own fashion line at Spectra in exchange for marrying her. However, Sally backed out of the agreement at the last minute because the marriage wouldn't be real.

Clarke then seduced her to prove that he intended their relationship to be authentic, and the two finally married. Unfortunately, it didn't take long for Clarke's wandering eye to lead him into another affair, this time with a journalist hired to infiltrate Spectra Fashions and write a tell-all book. When Sally became pregnant, Clarke wanted her to have an abortion, but she left him instead — only for him to woo her back by attending doctor's appointments and being involved in the pregnancy.

Clarke knew he would inherit half of Spectra if he remained married to Sally for at least two years, but he grew uninterested in having sex with her and pretended to be impotent. Their son CJ was born, but Clarke wasn't interested in fatherhood either.

Sally eventually dumped Clarke — literally!

Sally Spectra proved she was no one's fool where Clarke was concerned. She tested his faithfulness by having her secretary, Darla Einstein (Schae Harrison), try to seduce him, but Clarke resisted. However, as their second anniversary neared, Clarke had an affair with his ex-wife, Kristen Forrester. When a videotape of that encounter found its way to Sally, she decided to end their marriage — especially after he ill-treated their son, CJ. Sally thwarted Clarke's takeover of Spectra Fashions when she burned their prenuptial contract and had security throw Clarke out and into a dumpster, officially ending their union. Defeated, Clarke left town, and Sally moved on to other men.

Clarke eventually returned years later, only to prove he was still a scoundrel. Instead of helping save Spectra from bankruptcy as requested, he schemed to sabotage the company. However, Clarke did try to connect with his then-teenage son, CJ (Mick Cain). He even saved CJ's life by pushing him out of the way of a bullet, which encouraged Sally to welcome him back to the Spectra family. He was last seen working for Stephanie Forrester after Spectra had changed ownership and was renamed. After actor Darlene Conley passed away in 2007, CJ shared that Sally was still alive, traveling Europe and romancing "cabana boys."

Sally Spectra lives on through her great-niece

In an interview with the "The Bold and the Beautiful: Rewind" podcast, actor Daniel McVicar reflected on his time as Clarke Garrison, noting the late Darlene Conley could never be replaced in the role of Sally Spectra. "She created a role that was four-dimensional," he said. "She lived that character ... She really reveled in being Sally." While the original Sally Spectra never resurfaced again, her legacy lived on when the show introduced her namesake great-niece in 2017, played by Courtney Hope. The younger Sally — who came to town with her younger sister, Coco (Courtney Grosbeck) — promised her great aunt she'd return Spectra Fashions to glory. However, the character only lasted a few years before the show's writers decided to write off the Spectra family. 

During her time on the show, the younger Sally followed in her great-aunt's footsteps by stealing others' designs and scheming her way from one beau to the next. While fan backlash might be why she was written off the show, the character turned up not long after on "The Young and the Restless." Even though this Sally has seen her fair share of couplings on both soaps, none have been able to match that of the original Sally and Clarke!