A throwback couple: ATWT's Luke and Noah. Read more here--->>
We are nearing the end of our Throwback Supercouple series. We only have a few more to go. We will finish the series as we are now featuring supercouples from defunct soaps. We still love them!
We realized we hadn't featured any characters/couples since we restarted our Throwback articles that represent the LGBTQ community. And since representation always matters our Throwback Supercouple is Luke Snyder and Noah Mayer! (As the World Turns)
Words like "ground breaking" and "history making" can be used so much to the point that it diminishes the magnitude and significance of a moment. But the words were created with a purpose. They were created to describe worthy and deserving people, events and moments. Noah and Luke "Nuke" were such people and had such worthy and deserving events and moments. They were truly ground breaking and history making.
On August 17, 2007, Noah and Luke shared the first ever gay male kiss in American daytime. Nuke was daytime's first gay male bonafide supercouple. It was said that ATWT "became the first soap to depict a fully realized romantic male couple as an integral part of the show." ATWT purposefully planned and executed for Nuke to be "the start of a depiction of a healthy gay romance." Also, embedded in Nuke's love story was the storyline of Noah struggling to come to terms with his sexuality. Twelve years ago this was topical and timely angst. Ground breaking.
Noah and Luke met as interns for WOAK, a local television station in Oakdale, USA. Neither was in an emotionally stable place when they met. Luke had recently been rejected by his first crush, Kevin, after he came out to him. Noah was involved with Maddie Coleman while at the same time as we said struggling with his sexuality.
Luke developed feelings for Noah. Noah would be slower on the uptake regarding his feelings for Luke and Luke's feelings for him. When Luke seemed upset after he walked in on Noah and Maddie making love, Noah automatically assumed it was because he was jealous. Noah was partly correct. Luke was jealous. But Noah assumed it was because Luke had feelings for Maddie. No Noah, Luke was jealous of Maddie. Big difference.
Luke found himself becoming more and more attracted to Noah. Luke accurately surmised not only was Noah grappling with what he was beginning to feel for him but Noah was also grappling to accept who he was. Noah's suppressed feelings could only stay dormant for so long. His feelings overcame him and he surprised Luke with a kiss when helping him with his tie.
Noah's reaction? Denial. Denial. Denial. He asked Maddie to move in with him. Noah didn't
cohabitate for too long before admitting his feelings for Luke to Luke, Maddie and most importantly himself. Maddie already had an idea that something was going on between Noah and Luke. Maddie was the least of their worries. There was a big reason why Noah had fought so hard to accept who he was, his psycho homophobic daddy, Colonel Mayer.
Noah found the courage and told his dad his truth. Psycho homophobic Colonel Mayer's response confirmed Noah's worst fears. He was enraged. Psycho homophobic Colonel Mayer's rage quickly turned to "acceptance". It was faux acceptance. Psycho homophobic Colonel Mayer hadn't had a change of heart. What he had was a plan. A plan to kill Luke. He tried to kill him twice; once at a hunting expedition and once at the hospital to try and finish what he started. Luke survived but would be temporarily paralyzed. Psycho homophobic Colonel Mayer went to prison. Noah understandably was ashamed about what happened and it was difficult for him to face and be with Luke. Eventually he worked through it and Noah and Luke became Nuke.
Ameera Ali Aziz entered Nuke's orbit. She and her family was befriended by Colonel Mayer during his tour of Iraq. Colonel Mayer kept in touch with the family over the years and sent them money. She wanted Colonel Mayer to help her stay in the States. Ameera believed if she went back to Iraq she would be killed. When obtaining a student visa failed, Noah married Ameera to help her stay in the States. He was also very intrigued because this lady represented a side of his father that he didn't know.
Although it was a faux marriage, it caused real problems for Nuke. For one Noah and Ameera moved to their own place (for appearances sake) putting physical distance between Nuke (they had been staying at the Snyder family home in separate rooms). Secondly, ICE had warned Noah would be prosecuted if they found out the marriage wasn't real. Consequently, Noah fearful of getting in trouble with the law spent more time with his wife and much less time with Luke.
Colonel Mayer escaped from the pen and kidnapped Ameera. Luke reached out to grandma Lucinda Walsh for help. She provided police protection. During the law's pursuit of Colonel Mayer, he had a confrontation with Noah, jumped into the waters and was presumed dead. Noah was rocked by his father's death despite their history. He needed to get himself together and felt the Army would be the best place to do that.
Cyndi Lauper and the True Colors Tour would be the bridge to bring Noah and Luke back together. There was just one problem, Uncle Sam. Noah had already signed his name on the dotted line. Luke went to the recruiter's office and "outed" Noah hoping that would get Noah released. That didn't work but the recruiter did realize Noah's heart wasn't with the Army it was with Luke and released him from his obligation.
Luke inherited money from his biological daddy's (Damian Grimaldi) family. Luke put the money to good use and established the Luke Snyder Foundation for sick children. Next, Nuke faced Luke's infatuation with Brian Wheatley (who was also married to Luke's grandmother Lucinda), Luke trying to rig a political election, Luke's drinking and the reemergence of Maddie but Nuke made it through. And Nuke finally consummated their relationship.
Zach and Zoe inserted themselves in Nuke's life and introduced themselves as brother and sister. They were really lovers. Zoe was an illegitimate heir to the Grimaldi fortune. In her mind, she was entitled to some of Luke's cash. Zach and Zoe kidnapped Luke then Noah to get what they thought was owed to Zoe. Nuke was saved by Damian.
Mason, Noah's faculty adviser at film school, was the next problem. He offered to help Noah with his film but he had more in mind. Luke noticed and didn't appreciate the interest Mason showed in Noah. Noah didn't share Luke's concern. Even after Mason kissed Noah, Noah still thought he was harmless.
The stress and the strain was taking its toll on Nuke's relationship and Noah individually. After an argument with Luke, Noah inadvertently incorrectly wired pyrotechnics on the set of the film. There was an explosion and Noah was thrown from a ladder. Noah lost his sight which caused further strain on the relationship. Noah pushed Luke away and moved out of town for space and to recuperate.
A heartbroken Luke pressed on. He took it upon himself to finish Noah's film on his own. Noah felt Luke was being controlling. Luke pressed on and located neurosurgeon, Dr. Reid Oliver, and coerced (blackmailed) him to come and perform a risky surgery to restore Noah's sight. The surgery was successful. Noah though still wanted out of his relationship with Luke and broke-up with him.
Luke's blackmail made for an interesting start but Reid and Luke fell in love. Of course, that's when Noah began to have doubts about breaking up with Luke. Luke was torn between Noah and Reid. Reid was then tragically killed when his car was struck by a train.
In Nuke's final scenes, (the day before the finale) at WOAK where they first met, Noah was reluctant to leave Luke and move to L.A. to work on a film as planned. He wanted to be there for Luke in his time of needed like Luke was for him when he lost his sight. Luke told Noah although it wasn't for long that he truly loved Reid. So, he needed time to heal and grieve. He would stay in Oakdale and his foundation would build a new wing to the hospital. And that Noah should move to L.A. as he planned. Noah reluctantly agreed. Before leaving he told Luke that he loved him and when he was ready to come and visit him in L.A.; he'd be waiting. That was their on-screen ending.
However, we believe Nuke lives on in soap defunct land. We believe Nuke probably commutes between L.A. and Oakdale. They are married, raising a family and happy. And we firmly believe, they are raising the next generation of Snyder's ready to run the Snyder farm.
I AM KP Smith