Nightmare in the daytime

For the Week of September 1, 2014
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Y&R Two Scoops: Nightmare in the daytime
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Mariah had more than the wind knocked out of her when she realized that Ian had drugged her and then dragged her on the path to wedded bliss. Nikki attended an A.A. meeting in an attempt to evade her demons, but evil Ian was not deterred. As Jack moved forward with Kelly, Summer screamed and Phyllis opened her eyes, thanks to Victor's Machiavellian manipulations. On a happier note, Katherine invited her near and dear to a party in the park. This and more in this week's Two Scoops as horror and heartbreak mix it up in Genoa City.

Camryn Grimes may never be compared to Elsa Lancaster, but she sure can play it forward as Genoa City's version of the bride of Frankenstein's monster. The monster in this case is the suitably slimy, always dastardly, and now probably unredeemable and so-evil-that-he-will have-to-die soon, Ian Ward. I have no doubt that we will get a murder mystery out of this with Nikki, Victor, Nick, Sharon, Mariah, and Dylan at the top of the suspect list.

I think that's why Leslie is suddenly taking a job as an A.D.A., so her character can prosecute the case, which Michael and/or Avery will defend. We'll get some courtroom drama, a tough trial with a lot of tears, and a surprise murderer, like Clarence, Willa, or another person from Ian's past with a reason to hate him. I am on the edge of my chair. Where are those villagers with pitchforks when you need them?

Have you considered the great histrionics we can expect once Ian announces to Sharon that he is her son-in-law? The age-math alone is mind-boggling. (If Ian is older than Nikki, how much older is he than Mariah?) Despite having no witnesses to the ceremony and the fact that Mariah was drugged and forced to say "I do" or suffer the consequences, it's very unlikely that this marriage will be annulled either quickly or easily.

There is some legal loophole that will keep Mariah yoked to Ian, or Ian will threaten Mariah's loved ones and Mariah will tough it out until literally "death do them part." Ian will give everyone a reason to hate him, and more than one person will angrily announce a desire to murder Ian Ward. Eventually, someone will crack and succumb to the impulse to wipe that smug, smarmy smirk off Ian's face.

Who will be the real killer? It won't be Nikki, but she could be indicted and go on trial if she falls off the wagon and has a blackout and no alibi. Really makes me wonder about Victor's security team -- you know, the one that's supposedly watching out for the family. Ian seems to come and go from the ranch as he pleases. If I were Nikki, I might also find more comfort in the bottle than in my protectors. At least I could hit Ian with it, or pass out and become dead weight.

I don't know whether it's good makeup or great acting, but I love how Melody Thomas Scott is starting to sink her teeth into this great story and how she really looks the part. After only one slip with the bottle, the subtle changes in her character were apparent when Nikki snapped at Victor in a hateful tone. Nikki is starting to have a haggard look. Lies and deception won't be far behind.

I can hardly wait until Nikki meets up with Meredith Baxter's character, a new drinking buddy and confidante. This will be a real treat for us fans who love to watch terrific acting. I am salivating as I imagination the interaction of two wonderful actresses with scenery to chew and material that, reportedly, will involve Stitch and Kelly as the Baxter character's children.

There are lots of possibilities, but if Baxter is Stitch's mother then I am even more convinced that Stitch is innocent of murdering his father. I think he took the blame for his mother, who murdered her abusive husband. I am looking forward to seeing a lot of red faces in town when that truth comes out and Stitch is reinstated at the hospital.

Genoa City sure has a funny way of dispensing justice. Austin stalked and kidnapped Avery, almost killed Paul, and then tried to escape with Summer. On a positive note, he did turn himself in. After that, he got a good lawyer, said he was sorry, made nice with Avery and Paul, paid a fine, and got community service, and everybody gave Austin a second chance.

Stitch, on the other hand, supposedly killed his abusive father as a teen, admitted it, served his time, and tried to leave the past in the past. He has spent many years in the medical profession, helping people and atoning. Instead of being forgiven or given credit for being a good doctor and helping people, Stitch lost his job, Victoria, his good name, and his best friend. If Genoa City were Salem, Abby would be the head cheerleader at the witch trials, and Billy, Kevin, and Chelsea would be waving pompoms, while Victor, Nikki, and Avery sat in the stands.

It was appropriate that Phyllis opened her eyes just as Jack and Kelly -- by the way, I do like Cady's new haircut with the bangs -- "moved" on and Summer vowed never to give up. Poor Kelly, just when it looks like she's going to be happy, Phyllis, like the Phoenix, is rising, and Victor is standing by to glean every piece of information from her that he can. I just wonder if Phyllis is going to have any better memory of what happened to her than Sharon does. I do expect Phyllis to be ticked off and look for some payback.

Neil might be up for some plotting, also, especially if he's wearing dark glasses when his sight returns. If so, I expect the first thing that Neil will see is Devon and Hilary making goo-goo eyes at each other or exchanging long, soulful glances. Even before he lost his sight, Neil was blind as a bat. Tell me, is there any one of you out there who has ever been a cheater or a cheatee? Yeah? Well, this question is for you: how long did it take you as the cheatee to figure it out? If you were the cheater, how long before your significant other figured it out?

From personal experience, even obliviously involved in work at the time, it only took a very short period of time for me to realize that something had changed, so I find it very hard to muster any sympathy for Neil. He is much too insensitive to the moods of those he supposedly loves to be anything other than a selfish jerk.

I can hardly wait for Hilary and Devon to break his heart. Neil will continue to pretend to be blind in order to hang on to Hilary. Maybe Neil will wall Devon up in the cellar of Hilary's dream house, like in that Edgar Allen Poe story, The Cask of Amontillado.

Or maybe, Neil can fall off the wagon and meet up with Nikki and Maureen at some out-of-the-way bar where they can toss back booze and share horror stories about their many marriages, scandals, and crimes, both alleged and real.

Things were going great for Sharon and her fantasy of putting her pre-Summer family with Nick back together. But Sharon hit a stumbling block when Mariah made a blatant, albeit juvenile, attempt to seduce Nick away from Sharon. Sharon discovered that she was not as full of unconditional love for Mariah as she had previously thought.

Sharon's insecurities were on display when she overreacted and got angry at Mariah. Sharon should have laughed at Mariah instead because Mariah looked more like a little girl searching for daddy than a sultry seductress who posed a threat to sexpot Sharon. Mariah's background would make her very susceptible to mistaking Nick's fatherly interest for something more. Sharon should have been better prepared, not to mention that Mariah carries the double whammy of SOWAS (Soap Opera Weird Aging Syndrome) and SOTS (Soap Opera Time Shift).

Although Cassie and Mariah were born when Sharon was sixteen and Noah was delivered six years later, Mariah has aged at a much slower rate than Noah and may now be even younger than he is. We know that Noah has been 24 for more than a year, so Mariah should be 30, but her acting, both as Nick's seductress and Ian's bride, was much too virginal for a 30-year-old woman-of-the-world, especially one who was engaged to Tyler!

While horror and heartbreak might have been the scenario for some of the town's residents, at least one ghost reached out from beyond the grave and beckoned her friends to a party in the park. I have to say that I really enjoyed the tribute to Katherine Chancellor, and, by extension, to Jeanne Cooper. It reminded me of what we had lost in both real and reel life during the course of last year: six actors left the show, one deceased, along with her iconic character, Katherine Chancellor.

Four of the other actors have been or will be replaced and the show will go on. To remain vital, new characters have to take root, and other actors deserve the opportunity to create indelible iconic characters of their own. As the show ages, so must some of the characters, like Jack Abbott, who, though blessed with boyish good looks, has to be pushing 60, and can't stay 40something forever, or maybe Jack can if he, like Mariah, is cursed with both SOWAS and SOTS. We should all be so lucky!

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that a good soap has to incorporate change, and like a great juggernaut, or a comet hurtling through space, it takes time to make a course correction, and even a small change at one point can make a great difference farther down the way. Last year at this time, it seemed like The Young and Restless needed a course correction, and we were promised one. By New Year's Day, things seemed worse, not better. But now, a year later, it feels like that correction has been made, and we have some good stories and great acting in the show's future. I believe that Y&R has kept its promise to the fans. Y&R is getting better and I look forward to every episode.

I am more than satisfied with NuNuBilly. I think Burgess Jenkins is doing a very good job. As an added bonus, he is way more comfortable with the kid actors than David Tom was. I like Cady McClain as Kelly, and I'm hoping I will soon be saying the same about Gina Tognoni as Phyllis. My gut tells me that Justin Hartley is a great choice as Adam, and the timing for Adam's return is much better than it was for the abrupt change from BM to DT as Billy.

I'm excited about what Justin Hartley will bring to the show. I thought he was great on Revenge, and I was really sorry when he was written out because, not only was he very convincing as both a loving son and a cold-blooded murderer, he was also very easy on the eyes -- I have mentioned that I'm shallow, haven't I?

Y&R seems headed right back to its award-winning form with a dash of mystery, a splash of courtroom antics, plus the drama of family ties and the horror of Ian the terrible all mixed together with the redemption of unconditional love, the excitement of new romance, and the healing power of the mother-daughter bond. Kudos, Y&R!

In closing, I want to thank Teddi for going above and beyond to write the Two Scoops column these last two weeks when I was incapacitated.

As some of you know, I spent a miserable pain-filled week then saw my doctor and was diagnosed with a painfully debilitating, though treatable and non life-threatening, condition. The cure caused me to sleep about 20 hours out of each 24-hour cycle for more than a week. Thankfully, I am now out of pain, awake, and on a regular protocol of meds that should keep the condition from recurring. And if it does, I will go directly to the emergency room! I will not pass go or collect $200 -- nor will I stubbornly cling to the hope that the condition is self-correcting!

Until next time, fellow fan addicts, take care and remember that it is better to have imaginary friends than to have imaginary meds!

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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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