A fork in the road

by Nita
For the Week of October 15, 2012
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Y&R Two Scoops: A fork in the road
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As the days go by, that small glow at the end of the tunnel is expected to brighten. The new executive producer and head writer's stories are now playing out on our television screens. Hold tight to your sofa cushions because it could be a wild ride in this week's Two Scoops.

This is it, fans. The long-awaited, much anticipated, magical, mystical moment has finally arrived. The first day of the new regime's writing has made its debut.

Of course, we all know things aren't going to suddenly be perfect just because Jill and Josh have taken over the helm. I expect there will still be choppy waters ahead as they try to right some of what fans consider a number of wrongs. This will be no abrupt awakening from a nightmare, when we discover the past years have just been a very bad dream. Neither is Sharon going to open the shower door and find a dripping-wet Adonis waiting to step into the scene and tie up all the improbable ends.

Case in point: It didn't take long for message boards to reflect fans' opinions of Friday's episode. Clearly, some of the fans were a bit outraged; others, much more than a bit, over the quick dismissal of the case during which characters were compromised and/or ruined forever. After months of fan investment in this storyline, once again, the feisty feline eluded karma, managing to land safely on all four paws, her fur hardly ruffled.

Some fans, those who presumably had been holding on by their fingertips, finally let go, vowing to abandon Y&R immediately and forever. Others were more optimistic, hoping the dismissal meant payback would come another way. Fans seem to feel as if they got punked somehow. But, really, did anyone, whether Phyllis-fan or foe, actually expect her to be prison-bound? If this dismissal was to be her payment, then I confess I'd much prefer she receive it now, instead of after I'd suffered through a two-week, or longer, trial.

Sure, it might have been nice to hear Michael painstakingly pin the case together, with the evidence, albeit largely circumstantial, coming out one excruciatingly slow piece at a time. I might have enjoyed a few sweet moments of satisfaction at the dismayed look on Ronan's face, as the State proved he falsely provided an alibi, and tampered with both evidence and witnesses with impunity. I might even have laughed out loud, watching Phyllis get caught in one lie after another. Yes, I might have experienced all those pleasures and more, had the scribes decided to write the trial that way.

But there is a silver lining, a bright side, an on-the-other-hand, whatever you'd like to call it, to the abrupt ending of this long-ago crime. Why bother going through the motions of a tedious trial if the witnesses weren't going to do something out of character, like, tell the truth? Kevin was likely to lie. Ronan was going to lie. Tim Reid is dead. Beth was enticed out of town. Chloe wasn't going to push her husband beneath the bus wheels. And Phyllis was going to bellow, bluster, and blame, anything other than admit she was an attempted murderess. And even if none of those things occurred, it wasn't as if Phyllis was actually going to do any time.

In fact, when the trial began and ended so abruptly, at first, I was one of those fans shaking my head in resigned, but still miffed, disgust and disappointment that Phyllis' Teflon surface was still intact. But, though Phyllis didn't pay the price many feel she might have deserved, she didn't get off completely scot-free either. Even her foes were probably not looking for a forever kind of payment, and neither was I. In my book, no one deserves forever for a soap crime, short of premeditated murder, or else the scribes might as well kill them off and boot them permanently from the canvas.

For instance, though Phyllis won't have to do any time, that doesn't change the fact that everyone knows she very likely did indeed do the crime. And though she won't be donning prison garb, if Summer has her way, her mother will be wearing an itchy suit of sackcloth and ashes, at least for a little while. And Summer's alienated affections weren't the only loss Phyllis suffered. Sure, she saved herself, with generous help from her ignoble knight, Ronan, but the price she paid for that victory was high: her marriage. Having said that, however, while I commend Nick for finally drawing a line in the sand, I'm not ready to risk a penny of my savings betting that he will stick to that decision.

So, all in all, I'm mostly satisfied with the scribes' decision to move away from the trial and on to something else. But, on the other hand, I certainly don't blame Chris for wanting payment from the woman who caused so much trouble in her life. Remember, Phyllis has been a thorn in Chris's side since the moment Phyllis laid eyes on already-spoken-for Danny. And then Phyllis added insult to the long list of injuries she'd already inflicted on Chris by trying to take her life! If any one of us was Christine, would a single one say they wouldn't have wanted justice, no matter how many years had gone by?

Anyway, unless Chris decides to go after Phyllis in a civil suit (I certainly hope not, because I'm ready for this one to be done), it's all over but the running of the credits. Phyllis has been playing the hateful, combative, angry, vengeful shrew for a loooong time. I'm ready to see this character head in a different direction. It will be interesting to see where the scribes plan to take Phyllis next. I've heard rumors of a re-pairing with Jack, but that could just be a red herring. Although I like Phyllis with Ronan (when he's not playing a rogue FBI agent), I really can't see this working out. Summer is never likely to accept, as step daddy, the man she feels ruined her happy home.

As the functioning half of the dysfunctional duo of Nick and Phyllis, Nick finally earned back the respect I haven't been able to give him for a very long time. For far too long, Nick has let himself be squashed beneath Phyllis' controlling thumb. And it hasn't been a very masculine look for m'boy. Finally! He showed some spunk and backbone, and spoke words Phyllis has long needed to hear. For once, he didn't allow himself to be shouted down, or to be left looking like a cowed little boy. I was proud of him, and for one fleeting second, I almost felt sorry for Phyllis.

My respect for Nick almost faltered when he laid that lip lock on Avery, but I gave him a pass because clearly he was just mad at Phyllis. Still, Avery is Phyllis' sister and has already made it clear she isn't willing to lose her sister's love by fooling around with her fellow. Unfortunately, given the scarcity of available Genoa City women, Nick is just going to have to fly solo for a while.

Am I just easy, or are there other fans already willing to forgive and forget when it comes to what Tucker did to Sharon? Sure, it was dastardly behavior, but I think Tucker more than made amends by trading Beauty of Nature for Sharon's freedom. Plus, Tucker made some good points. I had forgotten Victor's part in teaming up with Kay to wrest Jabot from Tucker's comatose hands. So, we know that given the opportunity, Victor would undoubtedly behave just as despicably as Tucker did to get something he wanted.

When Tucker first arrived, Victor was adamant and arrogant. "Sharon has to pay for what she did to my family," he insisted pompously, fiddling with items on his desk. But, I just about laughed myself breathless when Victor quickly changed his tune the moment he saw the offer Tucker was sliding onto the table. I guess, when it came right down to where the rubber met the road, Beauty of Nature was just a little bit more important than the family's injured honor.

Tucker went even further toward winning my eternal admiration when he set Victor straight on the way his beloved family had treated Sharon. Yes, I know, as far as Victor's concerned, the golden, chosen two and the narcissistic Nikki's transgressions never rise to the level of the betrayal of outsiders, but I still enjoyed Tucker saying it.

And lastly, when Nikki snootily tried to give Tucker the tongue-lashing she felt he deserved, she was the one left stunned speechless, her lips primly and impotently pressed together, when he gave it right back to her. Lucky for Nikki, Tucker was a gentleman, or he might have returned the stinging slap she delivered with one of his own.

By the way, just how rich is Tucker? This man could afford to pay what is presumed to be a pile of pretty pennies for Beauty of Nature, but then give it away, apparently without blinking an eye, and not having to rob Peter to pay Paul.

With the hit-and-run, and associated Tim Reid death storyline, nudged from center stage to the wings, there is now room for other stories to unfold.

Obviously, there are plenty of chapters left to read in Sharon's book of self-destruction, and thankfully, different scribes will be writing them.

With Noah announcing for the umpteenth time that he wants nothing to do with the woman who gave him life, Sharon is left standing alone again. Of course, by now, it should be a familiar position for her. Perhaps she should try to kill someone. That seems to bring supporters out in droves for others.

We get it. Sharon Newman is a horrible person. The most horrible person in town, apparently. Noah thinks she isn't properly remorseful for her bad deeds. And he, apparently, can't stand to look at, nor forgive her. Maybe he should model himself after his stepbrother, Daniel, who can still manage to love, support, and forgive his mother, even though she tried to kill two people he also loves. Hmm, go figure.

Then there is Abby. The same Abby who ran Tucker down with her car. The only reason this spoiled princess isn't cooling her debutante heels in lockup is because Tucker wanted to stay in Ashley's good graces. And forgive me if my heart fails to bleed for Abby because Sharon gave away her animals. Correct me if my memory is faulty, but didn't Abby try to sell her million-dollar horse to finance her Naked Heiress exploits? Finally, every time Abby goes all I'm-a-Newman-child on Sharon, I can't help but wonder where all that progeny pride was when she was helping her siblings rip Daddy off for a billion and a half dollars.

Sharon can't catch a break for her dirty deeds (and I'm not excusing her for what she's done any more than I do Abby, Phyllis, or anyone else), but fair is fair. This is a town filled with self-righteous hypocrites, and none have any room to look down their snouts or point their fingers at someone else.

Like Devon, for example. I have to agree wholeheartedly with fan Michelle, below, for the reasons she described, and more. While Neil is far from the worst man in town, he's certainly not the poster child for integrity Devon ought to be pointing to as an example to follow. As for Devon, he wouldn't win any awards either. Where was his integrity when he was sampling Neil's then girlfriend, Tyra, and his very own aunt, while supposedly being committed to Roxie? I guess Devon is better at accepting forgiveness than handing it out.

On another note, I'm hoping the scribes plan to dish out a generous serving of future sibling bonding between Kevin and Daisy. His heartfelt message to her just about had me wiping away a little tear. Plus, I loved Daisy and Lucy's rapport and, though it's highly unlikely, wouldn't protest very loudly if she returned and somehow won Daniel's affection.

I thoroughly enjoyed Adam and Victor's conversations this week. While I would love to see these two strong men forge some kind of relationship together, obviously, it isn't likely to happen anytime soon. Both have been burned too many times, and neither is going to risk trusting the other very far. Unfortunately, Adam's refusal to be temporarily knighted a Newman until the threat to the company has been neutralized, is only likely to further estrange father and son.

With Sharon recanting her accusations with the SEC, Tucker has managed to elude the noose meant to cause his company's demise. Which means he's galloping at full speed toward a hostile takeover of Newman, a triumphant and boastful Jack in harness with him.

I hope next week or soon thereafter brings a resolution to Paul's case. Which is likely to happen first? Daisy's return or the return of Eden's memory? If both happen simultaneously, you won't hear any complaints from this fan.

And lastly, since Friday concluded with a collision involving Summer, Adam, and Chelsea, Monday is bound to be a sad day for someone. You don't have to be a very good guesser to figure out what is probably going to happen next. We might want to have our hankies handy.

Turning to the e-bag, I hope you enjoy a small selection of fan opinions. Enjoy, and keep those comments coming. We love them, and your comments could pop up in a future column!

* * * * * * *
  • These new writers and the changes in EP every other year have damaged the show, seemingly, beyond repair. Soaps were and always will be popular because of the loyalty of the fans, most who have been there since the beginning. They know the characters; some grew up with the characters. When everything seems hectic in our real daily lives, it was comforting to know that Victor would be Victor -- love, hate, or love to hate him. Sharon and Nick belong together. Jack and Phyllis are a dynamic duo. The Newman Enterprises and Jabot Cosmetics rivalries would be epic and fun. YR used to be about corporate intrigue and character development. Now, it moves from story to story, bed to bed, hiring and firing, with absolutely no life, no sense of purpose or history. I'm left wondering why I should even care. I hope the newest EP can turn this ship around. Otherwise, it'll end up hitting an iceberg like the cancelled soaps before it and sink like the Titanic. - Esperanza

  • In Josh Griffith's attempts to clean up the mess, there are several things I am hopeful he will attend to. First, I am hoping that he will stop the marriage go-round please! Second, get back to true romance that moves slowly and to well-written character development as opposed to people behaving erratically with no reasonable motive. Third, please do your research. If you are going to write about a legal issue or a mental health issue, consult with experts and be sure that you know what you are writing about. Finally, please reduce the hypocrisy and self-righteousness. Was I the only one who laughed out loud when Devon said that he stood by the one father who has integrity? Okay, so integrity includes sleeping with your brother's fiancÚ (for no apparent reason because after he married her he was suddenly not attracted to her and he certainly never loved her), and marrying two women and then quickly cheating on both of them. - Michelle

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    Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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