Week of June 15 - 19:
On the whole, I enjoyed The Young and the Restless this week, but there is really some strange stuff going on in Genoa City! It's almost like someone has made a conscious decision to push the envelope, or to take the show to the outer limits of what the established audience will accept - perhaps to try and entice a more varied group of viewers? The Young and the Restless has always been a class act, set apart from the others, never approaching the freakishly low depths to which some soaps have been known to sink - just saying. Currently some of the new material is working in a big way, while some plot points are definitely raising the hackles of the discerning Y&R viewers. Let's take a look:
Addam's Family: The whole idea of having Ashley and Victor go on with this 'hysterical pregnancy' is quite a turn-off to some. To think that Adam, Hope's son, could be so hateful as to have caused the miscarriage in the first place is bad enough, but to stand by as they choose baby names is abhorrent! Adam used to be safely in the realm of self-indulgent, misunderstood, and/or immature - now he's become sheer evil on two legs, packing a loaded syringe, and plotting Newman Ranch domination from a Braille-enabled laptop! As I mentioned last week, I feel a disappointing disconnection from the characters, which is affecting my perception of the story - it's like they all left GC for the Twilight Zone! On the plus side, as the situation escalates, I find that I am able to enjoy the unraveling of Adam's scheme, and I love the addition of Nikki into the whole mess!
Billy/Chloe/Mac/Raul: The characters of Billy and Chloe have enough 'wow' power to make any love triangle or quadrangle truly explosive, but in the current storyline, the character of Mac is having the effect of a wet blanket. Her glum demeanor and not-quite-believable school girlish crushing on Billy is dragging down the scenes. If having Raul walk in on her and Billy was supposed to spice up her image - it fell flat. It just made her look insipid and insincere, just as she does when she teases Billy - letting him get close, then saying they can 'never go back' - yeesh! I don't know what isn't working exactly with the character, but there is an energy missing in Mac that is necessary to make her a viable part of the equation. I want to feel pulled in two directions with a love triangle - even if I have a favorite pairing - I want to feel the heat between the characters, and it's just not happening here! What is slightly interesting is how Billy seems to be changing little by little as he goes through all of this - even though it's barely discernible at this point. I hope they develop that theme.
Nick/Sharon/Phyllis/Jack/Mary Jane: Flop! Within a week, Nick is ditching house-hunting plans with Sharon to 'be there' for Phyllis. Ack! I don't know how much more of this I can take. I have to say I'm thrilled that Mary Jane has been incorporated into this quadrangle - here's hoping she goes 'bunny boiler' on every one of them, just for something different! Unfortunately, it looks like she has her eye on poor Summer! Once again, Y&R may be taking the darkness a step too far - as a mom, I say let the adults deal with the psychos - leave the kids out of it! Mary Jane is positively creepy, though. I absolutely love this character, and can't wait for the identity reveal - her imaginary scenes with Paul this week were amazing!
Back to the Salon: Jill going back to being a manicurist? Worth a chuckle, but not as entertaining as I expected it to be - just too far-fetched, I think…
Daniel and the Art Scheme: Yawn. More scrapes with the law. What will Michael pull out of his hat this time? The one thing I did enjoy in this storyline the past week was Kevin's line to Amber about Jana and Daniel, the do-gooders, finally being the ones in trouble. So funny!
Nina/Jill/Katherine/Cane: Loving this storyline the most right now! So many powerhouse actors, so many possible twists, so many implications for so many! Scrumptious! I can't get enough of Nina and Jill going at one another - it's so satisfying watching Jill tangle with someone who isn't intimidated by her at all! I can't wait to see what is going to happen next in this storyline! To hear what Lauralee Bell (Cricket/Christine) had to say to Soaps.com about this storyline, click here!
Devon: Really? Thinking about kissing a woman he has known as his aunt for his entire life? The ick factor on this idea is off the charts! It won't sell, don't go there - enough said.
The Young and the Restless seems edgier than ever, and I'm not sure that's the correct formula for this soap. I'd hate to see it get too 'out there'. What makes Y&R unique is that there is a different set of expectations from its audience, thanks to Bill Bell, and it needs to live up to that. On that cautionary note, there are some fabulous stories being told on the show right now, as well as some duds. Here's hoping the writers find the clarity to see what is not right, and alter it!
What do you think about the storylines right now? Do you agree that the show has become edgier and is pushing the envelope more? Drop your thoughts below!