Report Card: The Young and The Restless
Mr. Lily Winters
Summer may be dwindling, but it’s not too late to introduce you to my swell new drinking game! I call it “The Little Nikker,” and playing’s easy: When Nikki Newman doesn’t know she’s drinking, you drink too! (Caveat: Do keep a designated driver handy. Anyone but Sean “Meggie” Young.)
Yes, let’s start this Report Card off with a solid grade, for giving the aging stripper a fun story. Just watching her eyeball vodka on Monday’s episode like it was naked Shemar Moore made me tipsy. Can’t wait until she the day arrives she can barely stand. Maybe at her upcoming 32nd wedding to Victor! Grade: A (Bottom’s up!)
A big thanks to Meggie for arriving in Genoa City (Bridesmaid, Nikki?). I forgive the mess that is her hair, and I even forgive Victor. (This is, after all, shaping up to be the second paramour in a row to move in with Victor, only to have a nut job terrorist living under the same roof. Hella?) But it’s all delicious, and almost as nutritious as one of Meggie’s special spiked smoothies! Grade: B+ (Fix that hair!)
Say, I wonder if Gloria will serve such tasty concoctions at Glow Worm?
Love the best new set added to Genoa City in eons. In fact, let’s today also grade a few of the all-important Y&R sets– characters in and of themselves, really. Because frankly, the local church, apparently housing whatever major world religion the writers decide they need that day? Come off it. And that hellhole bar, Jimmy’s (as in: “Jimmy a window and let’s escape this dump!”), where no Newman, Abbott or Chancellor would ever hang but often do? Please. Or Trundles book store? How often do you run into your ex-lover, archenemy, missing child and back-from-the-dead parent all while buying a vintage copy of The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet Who Bit Her Dragon Tattoo?
Next get rid of Crimson Lights. Dull (like, Jana Fisher dull) and a silly place for drama; I’ve tried. Just the other day I confronted the woman who stole my man at my local espresso bar, and got thrown out and ordered to never come back. High drama and Starbucks doesn’t work.
But take a hot spot like Glow Worm. Here’s a locale, as this former club kid can attest, where anything can happen, including a pint size heiress bathing in an oversized champagne glass, and on-probation bartenders shagging scorned redheads against trash bins. Back inside, Glow Worm looks terrific, has oodles of fresh spots to shoot scenes in (so we’re not stuck with the same background – hello tea dispenser stand at Crimson!), and finally gives something glorious for Judith Chapman’s Gloria to sink her teeth into.
Lastly, while I appreciate the effort, I’m reserving comment on Victoria and Billy’s new ‘Father Knows Best’ retro home, but off the top, not digging it. Set Grades: Jimmy’s Bar: F, Trundles: F, Crimson Lights: C, Bictoria’s: C+, Glow Worm: A (Oh, and thanks for redecorating the Abbott pool house and showing us Jabot again! Grade: B!)
Onwards. Speaking of Billy and Victoria, two words: Super couple. Grade: A+
And ain’t it super to see Jill with something to do besides schlep around as Genoa City’s Perez Hilton? In fact, I’m so happy for this story upgrade I’ll forgive the age-inappropriate neon blue toenail polish Jill was recently sporting. Y&R star Daniel Goddard (Cane) tweeted me that he liked garish toe tones, but I beg to differ. And I digress. Easily, Walton is one of Y&R’s strongest players, too often relegated to back burner.
But now she knows her true identity: she’s Lauren’s sister. And didn’t Lauren have it coming? I’ve written before how over I was of her – but it’s all good now that it’s been explained why Lauren thinks she’s so hot-to-trot, a mystery that’s always haunted me, frankly. Wasn’t it amazing to see Lauren’s hateful mother Joanna Manning strut back into town for one episode, to testify that once the late Neil Fenmore lost track of Jill that he poured all his attention and love into his second kidlet, who then grew into the over-accessorized, entitled nightmare I wish Sarah Smythe had kept locked up? A good explanation goes a long way, and now I love the unexpected combo of these dueling divas battling for control of daddy’s shopping empire. Thank you! Grade: A –
Now. Chance, Heather, and the dirty cop storyline no one cares about. Because no one cares about this storyline, right? Really? We’re supposed to believe that Chance is such a valiant warrior of truth and justice that he just has to risk his relationship and his life to expose dirty cops smuggling drugs into the prison system? Dude, watch The Wire sometime. Watch CNN. Call my buddy in cell block H. Drugs are smuggled into prisons daily; your asinine quest won’t help anything, and I resent being asked to believe that you believe otherwise so badly.
But beyond that, as I said: Who cares? Chance is as dull as dirty dishwater, and merrily bathing in that dishwater is the awful, awful Heather. I know Eden Riegel’s pedigree as Susan Lucci’s Pine Valley daughter, so I have waited patiently – patiently! – for something to gel. But she’s miscast. Perhaps some other role, but not Heather. Beyond the fact she doesn’t even look like she’s from the Williams’ gene pool (then again, check out the Winters’ family sometime), she’s just awkward and dull to the point where I miss the old Heather. Only for a single second, back when she was on the receiving end of the bitchslap served by Chloe after Heather and Chance had made dull, ugly love was this re-cast remotely interesting.
The saving grace of this wreck is of course Chloe, and it’s fun to see. I love her platonic friendship with Kevin (she’d be his hag, were he gay), and I love that she’s moved on … to Ronan. Also one of the only reasons to pay attention to this story, Jeff Branson sizzles as the cop I’d let arrest me, and is the type of guy Chloe deserves, i.e.: interesting.
The type of son Nina deserves, too. Feisty, bull-headed, and loaded with secrets. I’m so glad Nina is back, I can’t wait for her and Chance to find out that Ronan is part of the family, and if it ever comes down to a duke-out between her and (blech) Christine for Paul’s affections, I’m Team Nina 100%. She’s the new-generation Jill: meddling mother, awful mother-in-law, and maybe, just maybe, one day she’ll lock one of her son’s pregnant gals up in the Chancellor attic and not even realize the full-circle moment. Grade: D (when it’s about Chance and Heather); B (when Ronan, Nina and Chloe are in the mix).
So what do you think of Sophia? I’m digging Malcolm’s fiancée (though, sorry, still not digging Nu-Malcolm – is Tyson Beckford available?). I’m especially digging that some skinny-assed anorexic woman wasn’t cast. Kudos to that. A part of me worries Sophia is meant to be the new hell-raiser replacement for Drucilla Winters, and if that’s the case I’d rather watch Dru climb back up that cliff. But if not, I’ve got time to watch the town Fun Cop known as Neil Winters get his knickers in a knot ‘cause of his don’t-give-a-rats-ass new sister-in-law-to-be.
From there, I’m over the Winters family. What happened to them? It all seems to revolve around the played-out character of Lily and her whiny, unattractive daily dramas. Most of all, I really like the character of Cane, feel Daniel Goddard was at his best when he had a few dark secrets up his sleeve, and worry he’s now relegated to the role of Mr. Lily Winters. Methinks it’s time for an affair? Grade: B – (Sophia versus Neil) D– (the rest of the Winters family and that Cane’s stuck with them).
Did I say affair? Well, Phyllis is free and fairly crazy these days, maybe she can eyeball Cane the wrong way one night? It disappoints me that Phyllis and (blech) Christine haven’t had a catfight since Cricket returned to G.C. – especially given that The Bug was the one making out with Phyllis’ husband, Nick, the town dolt, with Phyllis watching. But the scenes with Phyllis and Deacon doing the dirty in the dirty have at least been hot. Diane Jenkins is on her way back to town (in the form of former As The World Turns player Maura West, always mesmerizing), so we hope and pray some shrew-on-shrew action is coming down the pipe soon. Grade: A. Phyllis no longer grossly humiliating herself for a man with the emotional range of a log pile is a Phyllis I want to watch.
Real quick, straight A’s for some current Y&R awesomeness: Marcy Rylan glows as Abby, Laura Stone as Skye has to please please stick around, and Eileen Davidson as a back-in-control Ashley is sexy daytime drama.
And did I mention Nikki’s drinking?
- Shaun Proulx