Caroline Brady pressures Victor to keep their past affair a secret. It is revealed that Caroline and Victor's liaison produced a son: Bo. Bo moves in with his recently discovered father to try to get the goods on him. Victor learns that the baby Kim is carrying may be his and plans to sue for custody.
To appease Caroline, Victor forges proof that he is not Bo's father after all. Victor learns that he is not the father of Kimberly's son, Andrew. Victor pursues a computer disk that contains information leading to a priceless mineral. He sets up Steve Johnson to shoot Sen. Harper Deveraux, who had the disk, with real bullets instead of blanks; Steve and Kayla are forced to go on the run. Victor begins a relationship with Diana, whose mother, Serena, takes possession of the disk. After Diana's father is killed, Victor and Serena try to trick Diana into marrying Victor, but Roman rescues her. They then fake Serena's kidnapping to force Diana to turn over the fortune she inherited from her father, but Roman thwarts that effort too. Victor is shot by one of his many rivals but recovers. Victor proposes to Angelica, believing that his nephew Justin fathered the baby she is carrying. She weds Neil Curtis instead, and a spurned Victor gets revenge by successfully tempting Neil back into his gambling addiction. Victor drugs Justin, who becomes impotent. Justin learns the truth and attempts to ruin his uncle with the help of a prostitute, Yvette. Victor prevents Justin's plan from succeeding. Victor and Angelica plan to wed and raise Angelica and Justin's son, but Justin stops the ceremony. Victor persuades Adrienne to fake a pregnancy to keep Justin, which ruins Justin and Adrienne's marriage.
Victor partners with Marina Toscano to track down her family's treasure, but Marina double-crosses him. Marina is killed and Victor kidnaps Kayla to force Steve to reveal the location of the key that leads to the Toscano treasure - but Steve knows nothing about the key. Victor ultimately takes possession of the key, but it's too late: the Toscano treasure is gone. Victor learns that Isabella, Marina's sister, killed Marina. He frames Kayla for the crime, but the truth comes out. Kayla is freed and Victor is charged with withholding evidence. Bo returns to Salem and learns that Victor is indeed his father. Victor also learns that he is the true father of Isabella.
Victor suffers a stroke, which results in partial paralysis. He falls in love with Carly, his physical therapist, who is herself in love with Bo, whose wife Hope was presumed dead. Believing Bo doesn't love her, Carly accepts Victor's marriage proposal. Bo confesses his love to Carly in a letter and urges her not to marry Victor, but Victor replaces the missive with a forgery to trick Carly into believing Bo wants her to marry his father. Carly and Victor wed, and Bo hovers near death after being poisoned with a lethal virus that Victor purchased from Lawrence Alamain. Victor kidnaps Emmy Borden when she threatens to tell Carly about the forged note from Bo. When Victor discovers the source of Bo's illness, he offers Lawrence a deal: he'll give Lawrence information about John Black if Lawrence gives him the antidote to the virus. But the vial containing the antidote breaks, and Bo's chances for survival look grim. Carly is able to recreate the antidote and save Bo's life.
Carly leaves Victor after learning of his betrayal. Victor tries to destroy his rival for Carly's affections, Bo, by rigging Bo's death in an elevator mishap. The scheme goes awry and Carly is injured instead. Disgusted by Victor's role in the accident, Bo and Isabella disown their father. Victor fakes his own death and flees to Mexico, but is discovered there by Bo and Carly.
When cancer claims Isabella's life, Victor attempts to rehabilitate his devious ways. He begins a relationship with Vivian Alamain, which he ends upon learning of Vivian's checkered past. Victor falls head over heels in love with Kate Roberts, whom he had hired to run his new business, Titan Industries. They marry but the union is proved invalid when Kate's first husband shows up alive. Victor tells Kate he will marry her again only if she agrees to have a child. Kate has difficulty conceiving, so she heads to a fertility clinic. Vivian learns of Kate's plans and secretly impregnates herself with Kate and Victor's embryo. Vivian convinces Victor and Kate that the mix-up was an accident and secures herself a place in the Kiriakis mansion while she carries the child. Next, Vivian tricks Victor into believing he's marrying Kate, then substitutes herself as the bride. Vivian gives birth to a healthy child, Philip. Kate learns that Victor actually married Kate and plans to expose Vivian, so Vivian drugs her coffee. However, Kate doesn't drink the coffee; it is consumed instead by the pilot of the flight she's taking, and the plane crashes. Kate is presumed dead, and Vivian works her way back into Victor's heart by consoling him through his loss.
Kate returns to Salem and exposes Vivian's schemes to Victor. Victor tries to kill Vivian, but settles for throwing her out. Vivian responds by suing for custody of Philip, which so angers Victor that he suffers another stroke. He becomes catatonic and later, when shocking photos of Kate's tawdry past provoke another stroke, completely comatose. Kate reluctantly sends him to a nursing home.
In time, Victor begins to recover, and leaves the nursing home when Vivian discovers the staff had been drugging Victor to keep him infirm. But he remains impotent, and Kate is tempted by the sexy Nicholas Alamain. When Victor discovers them in a compromising position, he breaks things off with Kate. Kate orders a hit on Victor, but her scheming daughter-in-law, Nicole, gives him a heads-up and he fakes his death to avoid being killed. When he resurfaces in Salem, he strips Kate of her wealth, then takes Nicole as a lover.
ęCopyright Soap Opera Weekly, 2002