Online dating - so soon? (Soaps.com)

The hug! (Soaps.com)

Restless Rant
September 29 - October 3

It's very interesting to note the changes in the fabric of the show as we begin to see the work of different writers. The plots are gaining depth, and becoming more intricate. I have more of a sense of not knowing exactly how things will play out - and I love that. It means there might be surprises, shocks, and conflicts - these are the elements that keep us tuning in day after day. I hadn't realized how predictable the storylines and characters had been until they became less so - this is good change, and reminds me more of the Y&R of the Bill Bell era. That's a big compliment! But of course, we live to rant about the show, so here we go!

Michael/River/Eden:
No one does stress like Christian LeBlanc. "I don't care if you were shoving flowers into gun barrels!" he roared at River in the episode where he went off on his father in the jail. I love how Michael wrestles to be rational and find patience within himself - only to completely snap! It's my favorite. Of course, by week's end, Michael had lost it again, this time on Eden, and wound up not only threatening to put her in foster care, but blurting out the truth about River's circumstances! I love the 'oh, crap' look on Lauren's face whenever Michael does something they both know he's going to regret. I still don't like the Eden character, but I get that the writers are trying to bring out some vulnerability in her via her talks with Lauren and her sensitivity where her father is concerned. Judging by the overwhelming support for the River character in our poll this week, it seems most fans are hoping he will be sprung from the slammer and get back into his family's lives soon!

Esther/Chloe:
There's nothing like having a heart to heart with your mother and having her tell you, "Who knows, maybe you and your husband will find love in a dirty diaper!" I get such a kick out of Esther, how could Chloe/Kate not love her?! As you'll see in my interview with Kate Linder, I told her how much I admire the comic relief Esther brings to the scenes, and she told me that she loves playing it! Seriously though, it was nice to see Chloe and Esther open up to one another, even if Chloe has been so nasty that you feel she doesn't quite deserve Esther's kindness. I'm hoping we see the day where Chloe has to apologize to her mother, or bow down to her in some way. I know, I know, seems impossible!

Nikki:
It seems that my satisfaction with this character is fleeting. Just when it looked like she was going to be stronger and learn from her experiences, she becomes "The Meddler". It's such a disservice to 'mother' characters to have them relegated to spending all of their time interfering in the lives of their grown children, and in Nikki's case, their ex-husband's life! I have ongoing frustration with the character of Nikki, who is forever taking one step forward and two steps back!

Nick/Phyllis/Sharon/Jack: There's obviously a shake-up in the works for these four! Nick is becoming way too much of a marshmallow for his wife's taste, Phyllis is feeling insecure as she senses that Sharon still has feelings for Nick, Sharon is having feelings for Nick and doubting Jack, and Jack is focusing far more on revenge plots and takeovers than on his beautiful wife. As of Friday, Jack will see a hug between Nick and Sharon, and will no doubt beat a path to Phyllis's door to tell her about it. Phyllis has let her insecurities get the best of her and lashed out in print at Sharon, which will only serve to create more conflict with Nick. Sharon is bound to find out what Jack has been up to, which she won't like - it's all gonna' blow up I'd say! On my nerves is Nick having to be physically present every time Noah wants to ask a question. "Can I go to the corner store?" "Just wait, we'll have to talk about this together - and not over the phone!" This is a little unrealistic, but mostly I dislike it because it is transparently serving to further a plot point. I prefer that the writer's hide their agenda a little better - it's a writer thing. The one exception, however, was the scenario with the party, given what happened with Cassie, this would have been extenuating circumstances, and very stressful for both Nick and Sharon!

Adam: Well, well, he may be smarter than I thought! I'm somehow relieved that he backed out of the revenge plot, telling Jack, "It must have been the tequila!" Too funny. I wonder if he left Jack feeling kind of stupid? Probably not, but one could always hope that Jack would see the light where this stuff is concerned. As for Adam, I'm not sure where he is coming from on this yet, but I'm looking forward to finding out!

Gloria/Jeffrey/Kevin/Katherine: Gloria and Jeffrey are certainly a dastardly duo, plotting to take advantage of Katherine's mental difficulties to further their own ends. And what about Kevin agreeing to help? His wife would be appalled! Give this two seconds thought, buddy! It's interesting how Katherine seems to be making mistakes one minute, then perfectly lucid and sharp the next. You have to wonder if it's stress, or if there's more to the story. Here's hoping it doesn't turn out to be a health issue.

Lily/Colleen: Is this whole thing ridiculous, or what? I 'love to hate' annoying Colleen, but find it difficult to even care whether she's taking Lily's job, or her ex-husband, or if Lily has a job, or a life. This is truly boring stuff! So, Lily is getting a backbone? Right. That's why she backpedaled completely on Friday's show. Oh, and now she's ready to try online dating, when she just lost the love of her life in the last month?! I'm begging the writers not to pair Lily with Billy down the road. They've got a gold mine in the Billy character, and it would be a big mistake to water him down the way they did Cane.

Cane/Jill/Billy: I got my wish from last week - there was some conflict between Cane and Jill when she turned up at Jabot in the middle of a staff meeting saying, "I'm back!" There's sure to be more coming up too, as Billy now gets into the mix. Did you catch Jill telling Billy that Cane was just a figurehead, and that she is really the one running Jabot?! This will be good stuff. The scene where overzealous Cane meets his brother Billy for the first time was hilarious - very well done by both actors! I found myself wondering though, wouldn't Cane, logically, have met his brother back when he first became a part of the family? I mean, it's not like they couldn't afford for him to take a trip to Hong Kong!

Chloe/Billy: Well, as many people had predicted, Billy and Chloe share a past. All the little nuances at that dinner party were great - I loved that scenario! Chloe finally seemed to be out of her depths! Everyone has an Achilles heel - and hers is obviously Billy Abbott! Yay! Seemed to be the start of some tension between the brothers too, in these scenes, although Cane is trying to resist the urge to go there.

The Abbott Family: Loved seeing them together again. They are like a real family, all very aware of one another's flaws, but loving each other just the same. I like how John appeared to Jack once he was alone and warned him not to trust Billy. Ominous! Thanks writers for restoring one of the core Y&R families!

Don't forget to leave your own rant, or just a comment, regardless if you agree with me or not - it's all in fun! Be sure to cast your vote in the poll below, as well! Please keep Soaps.com's guidelines in mind when posting.

-Candace Young