A love-hate relationship

by Nita
For the Week of November 1, 2010
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A love-hate relationship
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Instead of episode after episode being monopolized by one or two characters, the show seems more balanced lately. There should be something for every fan.

Okay, so hate is too strong a term since, even during my least favorite storylines (Sarah and the dysfunctional Ryder/Daisy duo, the silver chipmunk silliness, the looong drawn out reliquary rotgut, and others), I never actually reached the level of hatred. Frustration, disappointment, dislike? Of course. Or, as Phyllis would say, "definitely, definitely." But, there have been times during my long viewing history when I've absolutely, positively loved this show. The week just past was one of those times.

These days, there should be something for every fan on our favorite show. Because, instead of episode after episode being monopolized by one or two characters, the show seems more balanced lately. Every character is getting at least a little camera time, and if I was a picture, you could color me completely captivated. In fact, there's so much going on, I hardly know where to begin, so I guess I'll just jump right in and start rambling.

Nick's quite the hothead these days, isn't he? Like his father, he's taken off on a tangent or two lately, aiming his ire at Adam and Deacon. Unfortunately, though I love Nick dearly, a tough guy he just isn't. In spite of the threats he made through clenched-together teeth, neither man seemed the least bit shaken by all the hot air blowing in their faces. I half expected one of them to do that thing people do. You know, that fake shiver accompanied by an "ooooh" to simulate their complete lack of fear.

Nick just doesn't seem to have enough of the ruthless gene a mini-Victor would require. Oh, don't get me wrong, Nick's not completely animosity-free. After all, he did turn Victor in for commercial bribery. But that was mostly fueled by the rage he felt believing Victor had made improper advances to his then wife, Sharon. Still, that was a not so nice side of Nick that came very close to his father's ruthlessness.

Noah seems to be the sole voice of reason in the whole Newman clan. How well adjusted he has become, given the shenanigans and examples set by every adult in his orbit. He neither wants nor seems to need the money his grandfather and parents have worked for. Although I can't help but wonder how he's been paying his way through life, since I don't recall him ever having or working at a job. Since he's been soap rapidly aged, I have no clue how old he's supposed to be, but assume high school graduation came and went without comment. Do you know how much you can buy with ten dollars, he asked Abby. Well, where did he get the ten dollars? And when it ran out, where did the next ten dollars come from? Does he get a monthly allowance, and if so, he can hardly boast too loudly about making it on his own.

But all that aside, I like this Noah, although I wish he didn't have his heart set on a music career. Unlike Devon, I was not impressed with his singing and strumming. Of course, singing on soaps has never been my favorite thing and is the one thing that will tempt me to use my fast-forward button finger. Or at least the mute.

But anyway, thank you, Noah, for saying what many of us fans have been screaming at our screens for months! Snap out of it, Sharon. What are you doing? Do you ever learn? Does she realize that getting with Adam could cost her the relationship she has with her son, who is clearly not impressed with Adam's super hero heroics?

When it comes to Sharon and Nick, I've been a diehard fan of their eventual reunion because I was watching back when they were pretty good together. Were they perfect? Not even. In fact, I remember how I used to fume at Sharon's tendency toward holier-than-thou-ness, and the way she almost always coldly withheld forgiveness until she deemed Nick had done the proper amount of penance for whatever crime he'd committed. But aside from that, they did have some heat, and they managed to convince me they really loved each other.

But now, especially with Adam in the picture, I'm not sure if these two will ever be good together again. Adam is the current obstacle to their lasting joy, but the whole Nick-Phyllis-Sharon thing may have already doomed this reunion. Nick was like a fish out of water, flip-flopping between Phyllis and Sharon and back again way too much for my taste. The fan debate over which woman was best or worst got so rabid at times, if the two camps hadn't been arguing via cyberspace, handcuffs and police pepper spray would likely have been required to end the exchanges. Sometimes, in an effort to milk a cow for every last drop of its nectar, the scribes drag things out too long, until by the time the long-awaited climax commences, the thrill has long since gone and nobody cares, not even the characters. This could turn out to be the case for these two.

But, if Sharon and Nick are never to be again, does her destiny really lie with Adam? Exactly where is Sharon coming from here? Though she's clearly continued to love Nick, even during his marriage to Phyllis and her own with Jack and Adam, now that he seems to be hers for the snatching, she just doesn't seem all that jazzed about it. Not that I totally blame her for that. After all, Nick has led this woman down the primrose path more than once. Only to leave her stranded like Hansel and Gretel, but without any bread crumbs to lead her back home. It's no wonder she's not racing to launch herself into his open arms.

But why does she keep turning those goo-goo eyes of love on Adam, a man who has done more damage to her and those she cares about, than Nick ever did with his sexual indiscretions? I know, I know, she's seen some good in Adam, but when stacked up against all the really awful things he's done, that small amount of good kind of gets cancelled out. I guess, bottom line for me, Adam just hasn't redeemed himself enough for me to root for this pairing. And therein lies the question. In the eyes of scores of fans, can Adam ever be sufficiently redeemed, no matter how many family members of Sharon's he rescues? For Sharon, loving Adam could come with a pretty hefty price tag. Because not only would her entire family probably ostracize her, it could convince Nick to go after full custody of Faith. She's already lost the first six months or so of Faith's life, would she really be willing to lose even more just to love Adam?

For some fans, no penance by Adam will ever be enough to win them over, but I guess I'm easy. Because if done right, I can forgive Adam, like I've forgiven most other Genoa Citians, but the scribes really have to write it in a way that convinces me Adam is worth my pom pom pumps of support. After this past week, though, I'm beginning to empathize with Sharon's confusion, because I'm starting to suffer from it myself. For instance, when Adam was talking to Sharon about Justin Hightower and how he'd admittedly turned his own life into a disaster, I actually wanted to believe every word, even as I wagged a finger of scorn at myself for my possible gullibility.

Because Adam lies so well and so often, his words could just be another bag of bull he's peddling to people always willing to look for the silver lining around the menacing dark cloud. Like me and Sharon and any other fan willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. So what do you think? Did Adam use his super power of ESP to know that leaving that balled-up paper for Skye to find would send her straight to Sharon? Or did he honestly plan to just exit the lives of the Genoa Citians he's plotted so determinedly against? Again, like Sharon, I just don't know what to think about Adam right now.

Deacon is another resident who causes me to think first black, then white. Apparently not one to learn anything from the penalties of participating in elaborate schemes concocted by greedy, crazy women, Meggie's got Deacon jumping through her hoops for a very dubious and likely faraway payoff. Deacon has been such a sleaze, I really wanted to see his other side, just for something different. Scribes, this is your opportunity to make this one really watch-worthy. It would be nice to see Deacon end up double-crossing Meggie after seeing and hearing firsthand what he's helped to do to Nikki's life. But, I'm probably hoping for too much. If anything, Deacon will fall in love with Nikki and keep mum about Meggie if it gets Nikki away from Victor. But you know eventually Meggie's mask will be yanked off, hopefully by Murphy, and whatever house of cards Deacon has built around Nikki will come tumbling down.

Joy was certainly mine when Tucker snatched back his job offer just before Diane could scrawl her name on the dotted line. Thank you, Abby, for alerting Tucker and good going, Phyllis, for writing it in the first place. Just my opinion, but I think Phyllis is right to be concerned about Diane. She's definitely been there, done that, and it didn't go well. So I don't blame Phyllis for going after Diane with such vengeance. The past has proven Jack can be like putty in Diane's warm hands when it comes to Kyle. That's how Diane ended up practically living with him and Phyllis, with Phyllis winding up in jail, charged with crimes she, for a change, never committed.

Actually, Jack has only himself to blame that Diane can hold him over a barrel about Kyle. Because wasn't Jack awarded custody when Diane's dirty, double-dealing came to light? He was the one who decided to give Kyle back to Diane. I guess it's true that no good deed goes unpunished. Of course, Phyllis' catty editorial probably only delayed the inevitable. The way Jack is already going around pompously pronouncing "my son, my son" probably doesn't bode well for his and Phyllis' relationship. I can't help but wonder what Jack would think of his precious Kyle's mother if he knew she slept with Tucker after learning he and Ashley were a couple.

In the battle for independence, the score is zip to zip for Victor and his daughters. While I thought it was manipulative of Victor to use Nikki's commitment as a weapon to try to convince Victoria to put an end to her lawsuit, I certainly can't completely condemn him for his rage either. He doesn't take kindly to anyone trying to take what he considers his -- not even if the thieves are his daughters. Omitting Victoria's name from Nikki's approved visiting list was petty, but forgivable, since Nikki presumably would have the final say on who she wants to see. Besides, it's hard for me to fault Victor too much for balking at being forced to carve off a piece of the Newman pie just because Victoria has decided she wants it. Sure, she helped build it into a profitable company, but without Victor's money, she'd never have had the chance.

Victoria is quick to condemn Daddy for his machinations, but she's no slouch in the manipulation department herself. On the surface, she's supportively saying to Abby, "I'm with you all the way, whatever you decide to do," but underneath, she's wielding that iron hand encased in velvet-lined gloves, strong-arming her sister with everything she's got. "We're finally sisters," she whispers conspiratorially, seeming to imply that if Abby wanted to remain a sister on good terms, she'd best throw in her lot with Beauty of Nature.

I'm with Sofia. This town certainly does attract more than its share of unhinged individuals. Maybe it would be best if these Genoa Citians steered clear of committed relationships. Because the minute they enter one, along comes some competition, waltzing in and flinging a monkey wrench right in the middle of their joy.

Like Daisy is about to do with Abby and Daniel. As if one evil villainess in Meggie isn't enough for one rather tiny town, the child of the corn, Daisy, has returned to amp up the horror. And since she is now swollen with child, that probably brings the demon count to three. Because no spawn of hers could possibly be normal. I don't buy for one moment that Daniel is her baby's Daddy. I was there. And I would swear there was no time for any deed to be done. Especially with the drugged and incapacitated state Daniel was in. If the scribes aren't pulling a fast one, by rewriting history to make him a participant, or at least the part of him that apparently wasn't under the influence, Daisy has to be pulling a Chloe. That baby's daddy could be anyone. Even her alleged twin, Ryder.

Speaking of Abby, while I couldn't stand Abby as the Naked Heiress, she has now won me over. I loved the way she went after Tucker, in defense of her Mom. Tucker might think he has Abby fooled, but I think the joke is on him. I don't think Abby believed his little song and dance about Diane for one single second, and smart though Tucker may be, he never guessed how expertly Abby played him, both in convincing him she believed nothing sexual occurred between him and Diane and in maneuvering him into reading that article and dumping Diane. Again. Me and my pom poms were on our feet and cheering loudly for Abby. Abby has shown she's smarter than she has let her family believe, so Victoria might want to take care she doesn't underestimate her young, but savvy little sister, or she could find herself in the lawsuit alone, with Abby prancing off with a bank account full of instant independence.

It was nice to see Devon finally get to interact with someone other than a Winters family member. Every fan might not like Devon, but there are surely some who do, and he could probably win over more if given a chance to show his talents. It's been a very long time since he had something more substantial to do than stand around mute on the edge of someone else's over-acted drama. It would be nice to see a friendship between him and Noah, consisting of more than him just been an enthusiastic prop for Noah's music career, but for now, I'll take whatever I can get until the scribes come up with something compelling for Devon to do on his own.

And lastly, heart-stealing moment of the week and worth a record number of rewinds goes to Billy and Delia. Wow! Delia is absolutely adorable! She seemed as much in love with Billy as some of us fans are. Between gazing up at Billy with that irresistible grin, she looked like she was actually following the conversation, staring quizzically at Abby as if waiting for her answers to Billy's questions. Star power that little girl definitely has.

Well, November starts now, and if the past couple of weeks are any indication, it's going to be an exciting month. As usual, I don't plan to miss a moment. I've had my say now, so I'll make room for some picks from the e-bag. Enjoy their comments and happy watching!

Do you have a love-hate relationship of your own with Y&R? We'd like to hear about it -- you can send your email to me, post on our message boards, or start your own Two Scoops-style blog right here on Soap Central.

Well, November starts now and if the past couple of weeks are any indication, it's going to be an exciting month. As usual, I don't plan to miss a moment. I've had my say now, so I'll make room for some picks from the e-bag. Enjoy their comments and happy watching!

* * * * * * *
  • Before anyone condemns Tucker for cheating on Ashley, let's not forget she cheated on Neil with Tucker and got away with that! I say what's good for one should be good for the other, but we all know that once Ashley finds out Tucker slept with Diane, she'll start singing the 'How could you do this to me'? song. Whatever! I still am not a fan of Adam! I don't care how many of Sharon's children he saves, how can she look at this man (term used loosely) with anything other than disgust. I figured there was more to Cane than this hero story he tried to peddle. So what's next for him? Embezzling money from the ones he claims to love to keep his secrets? How does he think a new identity is going to help? What a loser he is and I, too, am not looking forward to Lily's pity party when she finds out the truth about her outback hubby! Lastly, how is it that Jill could smell the alcohol in Nikki's tea, but Nikki can't seem to tell when her drinks have been spiked? That just seems very odd to me! -- Carolyn

  • Why can't the writers on Y&R write something pleasant for a change? Not only are they trying to write off good old Murphy, but they are portraying Nikki as a drunk sleeping with Deacon. With everything going on with the economy, we need something pleasant to watch. I am a senior citizen who has been watching Y&R for years but if they keep this up I will stop. -- Babs

  • The show with Victor collecting a dazed and confused Nicki from that flea-bag motel was heart-breaking. Great acting by Melody Thomas. Sean Young is a great villainess, and a super addition to the show, but let's not drag this out, writers. Also, hate to admit it, but Adam is one of my faves and I am loving the scenes with Adam and Sharon. -- Patti

  • Can we not develop interesting plots with the core group of actors? It is upsetting to get invested in this "family" to only have them leave from the soap. Please make this soap family oriented again with good happy stories that make the viewers feel good after watching the show. -- Dorothy

  • First, we have Adam terrorizing Ashley right under Victor's nose. Victor, who is supposed to be not only business smart but street smart. Now we have Meggie, almost a total stranger, showing up and doing the same thing to Nikki, again right under Victor's nose. So for this I must disagree that Cane is the dumbest person in this town because Victor is right up at the top of that dumb list with him. -- Cyndi

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