Only One Thing Can Save Young & Restless’ Confusing Mess of an Adam Story
How many times are we supposed to forgive and forget his sins?
Remember that time The Young and the Restless’ Adam kidnapped the woman he loves and seemed ready to blow up his dad’s office building? You know, two weeks ago, when he was talking to the younger version of himself and spinning wildly out of control?
Well, somewhere between then and the episode which aired on November 13, Adam had what Dr. Phil would call a changing moment in his life. What motivated the change is a little unclear, but it might have been the realization that the bullet which felled Chance was actually meant for him. Although it’s not like this is the first time someone tried to take Adam out. (In fact, topping his list of suspected would-be assassins is Billy, who attempted to do away with him just last year.)
In any case, Adam says he’s now over those patricidal urges. Oh, and remember him declaring — repeatedly — that Sharon was the only one who could possibly save his troubled soul? Strike that. It’s now Chelsea whom he can’t live without.
If you’ve gotten whiplash watching Adam’s story, you’re not alone. As far as we can tell, the only solid through-line has been the fantastic performances by Mark Grossman, who has taken Adam from one extreme to the other as effortlessly as the rest of us put on pants. (Or at least did before we all started working from home.)
The writers seem convinced that love is the only thing that can save Adam, which in and of itself is exactly what you want from a good soap story. And creating a scenario in which we’re uncertain of which woman’s affections will be the cure for what ails him is also solid soap, given that triangles have long been the bread and butter of the genre.
That said, we can’t help asking ourselves why either Sharon or Chelsea would be willing to put their hearts — and possibly lives — on the line for Adam. Sexy guys with tortured souls have long held a magnetic appeal for daytime heroines, but the numerous evil plots concocted by Adam (or should we say created by the writers and foisted upon Adam) have combined to create a character with some serious baggage.
“Stand by your man” works as a romantic concept (or an awesome country song) right up to the point where your man has you kidnapped or hands your newborn child over to someone else as a make-good for having caused them to miscarry. There’s no denying that there are fan bases who want to see both Sharon and Chelsea live happily ever after with Victor’s younger son. But for our money, he’s not a viable option for either in his present condition.
That’s not to say that Adam is unsalvageable. The daytime landscape is practically littered with serial killers who were reformed by the removal of a brain tumor (a la General Hospital‘s Franco) or some old-fashioned psychotherapy (as with Days of Our Lives‘ Ben). Done right, watching Adam go through intensive therapy sessions — with someone other than the ex-wife who clearly still has unresolved feelings for him — could not only make for gripping television but go a long way toward allowing the audience to see him in a new light. Once that’s accomplished, then perhaps we’ll also have an easier time thinking of him as a potential romantic interest for Sharon, Chelsea or someone with whom he can have a truly fresh start.
What say you, Young & Restless fans? Is Adam as badly damaged as we think? And which woman — if either — do you think he should wind up with? Hit the comments with your thoughts, then visit the gallery below in which we look back at Adam’s complicated life.