It’s only fitting that Santa Barbara, one of the most atypical serials in soap opera history, would birth such an atypical leading man like Mason Capwell. He wasn’t a swashbuckling adventurer or a baddie-busting policeman. Nor was he a physician who tended to the sick or a crusading newspaper reporter.
Instead, Mason was an acid tonged, trial lawyer and Shakespeare enthusiast who always felt the sting of being the black sheep of his prestigious west coast family. Even when he had the love of a good woman – and he chose two of the best – Mason still felt unworthy of love and sympathy.
Mason’s deep-seated inferiority complex stemmed from the fact that his mother had been CC Capwell’s first wife, meaning that he was only a half-sibling to his father’s favored children with Sophia — Eden, Kelly, and Ted.
Furthermore, he was painfully aware that CC had pinned all his hopes and dreams on his second-born son who had been shot dead in the prime of life. For many years, the bitter Capwell patriarch only saw Mason as the spare to his long-lamented heir Channing the third.
The Scheme Team
Although Mason initially set out to woo Santana Andrade, he instead steered his attention towards Gina Demott – a scheming blonde who had weaseled her way into CC’s bed and then falsely claimed to be pregnant so he would propose.
When Mason found out that stepmother dearest had indeed become pregnant, he hid the news from Gina and offered to bed her himself in hopes of “helping” her conceive. CC caught the two of them during an assignation and cut both of them out of his will.
A Sign From The Allmighty
After meeting Mary Duvall, Mason believed he had finally found the love of his life but he was shocked to discover that she was a nun. He continued to pursue her and when she left the church, he begged her to marry him. However, a crafty Gina arranged for Mary to walk in on her and Mason sharing a lovers’ tryst and a dejected Mary wed another man.
Mary later realized the error of her folly, and she tried to extirpate herself from the marriage but her new husband Mark raped her. A dejected Mary learned she was pregnant but was unsure who the father was since she and Mason had made love just a short time prior to her assault.
Sadly, Mary would never get an answer to her question. While arguing with Mark on the rooftop of the Capwell Hotel, she was felled by the giant letter C from the property’s sign, which blew atop her during a windstorm. The blow killed Mary and left Mason devastated.
In 1986, Mason agreed to enter into a no strings attached, sexual congress only relationship with feisty lawyer Julia Wainwright. Julia, you see, had no desire for a romantic partner. But she did need a man’s donation to help her produce a child and then sign away all parental rights and Mason proved her best bet. But he only agreed if the baby could be made the old-fashioned way.
As is typical with best-laid plans, Julia went against her personal rules and fell in love with Mason. However, he wed the pregnant Tori Lane so that her baby – fathered by his sister Eden’s true love Cruz Castillo – would be born legitimate. But in the end, love prevailed and Mason divorced Tori so he could be with Julia, who had given birth to a baby girl she named Samantha.
The Two Faces of Mason
Mason and Julia’s relationship – though a happy one – was frequently strained due to both parties being particularly stubborn and Mason’s penchant for drinking much more than he should. But their love affair was severely tested when Mason mysteriously disappeared for an extended period of time only to reemerge with a split personality who called himself Sonny Sprockett.
Mason’s former paramour, Gina, used her ex’s mental illness to her advantage and she convinced him to help her bilk CC out of $10 million. Gina also succeeded in getting Mason/Sonny down the aisle but an assassin’s bullet struck Mason at the ceremony’s conclusion and he suddenly reverted back to just plain Mason.
Mason and Julia finally married in 1989 – but Mason cheated on his new bride the very next year with a woman who wound up murdered and propped up in Julia’s bed! The duo hid the corpse in a walk-in freezer, but even after solving the murder, they both lost their law license.
In the End
Mason and Julia’s first marriage ended in divorce but they remarried in 1992 and made plans to adopt a teenage runaway’s baby. By happy coincidence, the couple learned that Julia was also expecting, so the Capwell family began preparations to expand their numbers by two.