Young & Restless’ Ashland’s Future Is In Question – Plus, Chelsea’s New Direction and Another Obstacle for Sizzling Hot Sally and Adam

January 31 – February 4

Ashland, Noah, Chelsea, Sally, Adam Y&R

Credit: CBS screenshot, Howard Wise/JPI

Three cheers for Young & Restless, which offered up a truly enjoyable soapy episode this week on Thursday as Victor ramped up his cat and mouse game with Ashland and Adam came to Sally’s rescue. The intrigue and sexual tension was very welcome. Other storylines still aren’t hitting the mark, but some changes in direction just might help.

Downward Spiral

Clearly, Noah is going to go into some sort of downward spiral, with his resurfaced feelings for Tessa being the catalyst. He never properly dealt with his heartache over the nameless, faceless woman in London and is probably going to develop the drinking problem that they should have written for Reed, if recent episodes are anything to go by. I care about Noah because he’s Nick and Sharon’s son and a core character, but the reality is that this regime hasn’t given us any reason beyond that to care about what he’s going through. I’d wager that few are invested in this plot surrounding Tessa because it makes no sense to what we saw play out before he left town. Further, making every special moment Mariah and Tessa share (and there were plenty at the engagement party) into an opportunity to pan to Noah looking wistful is getting old. I can’t wrap my head around why they ever thought this was the way to go.

Noah drinking Y&R

Yep, he’s getting a drinking problem.

Credit: CBS screenshot

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New Direction

I’ve found myself wondering what the heck they’re doing with the Chelsea character recently. She’s been flat-out mean to Sally, who helped establish a company for her to come back to, and literally worked to sabotage the redhead by doing things that would hurt her own fashion platform. Not too savvy! Considering Chels is supposed to be a world-class con, one would think she’d have gone about handling her Sally problem in a much more covert and cunning way. Rather than write her as wilier, or even as a bit crazy, which is when she’s at her best, her behavior has just been… off-putting. I guess that’s what made it so satisfying when Adam came to Sally’s rescue, and they shared a steamy close encounter. The sexual tension was palpable in their scene at the end of Thursday’s episode! However, it looks like they’ll put the brakes on once again. It’s clear Adam will say they can’t act on their attraction because they’re working together, but we know it’s just a matter of time until they give in to temptation… just gotta give them more obstacles so as to build up the longing first.

In related, why the hell would Lauren ever entertain the idea of working with Chelsea again after she stole from her and skipped town?! Patently ridiculous. Also, as I’ve pointed out many times, these writers seem to think that characters playing musical jobs and offices constitutes a story. It doesn’t. Do they not have other ideas?

On a positive note, Chelsea will get a wake-up call this week and I suspect this will have to do with her coming to realize she has feelings for a very married man who has been extra nice to her and Connor despite the fact that she poisoned him. I’m intrigued by the idea of this new direction.

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Over It

Does anyone else sigh resignedly or even groan when the Baby Chancellor story comes on? I’m so bored by the low level or non-existent drama of it all. This week they literally held hands in a Kumbaya moment; it felt like trolling, frankly. And now that Dominic appears to be heading into a health crisis it feels like we’re never going to be able to move on.
Abby Mariah Devon Y&R

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Say What?

As mentioned last week, Phyllis contemplating leaving her beloved hotel behind to work for Summer makes not a lick of sense. Delaying her inevitable reunion with Jack because she doesn’t have the nerve to tell him what she wants is highly suspect as well. At least Stafford makes her character’s inner agonies entertaining because this retread of ‘Phack’ is running on flat tires and they haven’t even gotten back together yet.

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Ye Olde Fighting Spirit

Probably the most compelling story right now, once again, surrounds Victoria and Ashland. While his health might be improving, the prognosis for his marriage and future at Newman-Locke isn’t looking good what with Victor putting him under a microscope. I like the cat and mouse stuff, and I love that Michael’s involved – he’s been so very missed and adds so much to every scene he’s in (watch for my story on Michael’s bombshell reveal on Sunday). The pace of this story has been excellent as well, which truly makes a difference. It doesn’t feel as stuck as some do. As for Adam joining the mix at Newman-Locke, I was encouraged by him perking up and showing that old fighting spirit this week. The last thing we need is another man moping around town. Almost every one of them has been neutered, figuratively speaking, at this point. Anyway, here’s your first look at Victoria and NuAshland. Thoughts?
Victoria, Ashland Y&R

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This is just my opinion. Feel free to join the conversation below, but first, as we celebrate Black History Month, join us in looking through a gallery featuring some of soaps’ most important Black characters below.


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