Yes, it's time to raise your cup o' kindness and toast to ringing in the new year -- and to bidding adieu to the long, dull week of Christmas episodes. Actually, it was over a week, but who's counting? The numerous preemptions of our beloved soap didn't help any when the Christmas tidings continued long after we all had finished eating our holiday feasts and opening our presents, but that's the reality of the television world. So, while we all prepared to celebrate the New Year's Eve festivities, the Newmans and Abbotts continued to embrace the joy of Christmas and then later came together in anticipation of ringing in a new year.
The biggest problem with the Christmas episodes is that storylines rarely move along during that time. There were a couple of interesting developments, such as Phyllis telling Nick about Adam's plan to have her seduce her ex-husband, and Billy's continuous push and pull with Victoria. But otherwise, it was pretty much all sweetness and light with all the families gathering together to rejoice at different times. If you were alone and depressed during the holidays this year, those episodes wouldn't have been the medicine to cure your blues, although Theo might have cheered you up some. Not really, though, since Theo had received several offers to join in the merriment, but he had refused them all. Hey, he only had himself to blame for being alone.
So, Nikki got to play savior to a young woman with child by offering help through New Hope, which seemed to be a Newman tradition. And, of course, the baby girl's name was Joy. What else could it be at this time of year? And wasn't it sweet that Chloe had baby news of her own to spring on hubby, Kevin? After all, it's the time for miracles, although the biggest wonder was that Chloe hadn't done anything underhanded this time, like stealing Billy's sperm, to get her little bun in the oven. Nope, she did it the good old-fashioned way, with no mystery afoot about her baby's father's identity. Chloe's almost become boring. Who would have ever thought that would happen? It's a good thing Bella was around to make the happy announcement, or the rest of the family would have never found out.
The most frightening 2019 Christmas event was for Connor to find the kitten he named Oliver. Well, I guess Chelsea will be able to find out if Connor really is headed toward becoming a serial killer or not, since many of the Jeffrey Dahmers of the world started out by murdering animals, usually cats, just for the pleasure of it. When Connor was crying that the kitten couldn't die, I was thinking, yeah...right. Not until Connor gets mad at it, anyway. Then all bets are off. But, until then, the little cat became just another tool for Adam to use to get Chelsea.
Thankfully, Abby's New Year Eve party certainly put our storylines back in motion. It was there that Nick saw that he and Chelsea were together for the wrong reason and decided to release Chelsea from their relationship by stating that it was clear she should be with Adam. Instead of denying it, Chelsea thanked Nick and ran like the wind to Adam, and they welcomed the new year together. Well, for Pete's sake, why didn't she just admit that from the first second she moved in with Adam? Just because Nick was her safe haven, that didn't mean she should just string him along. What a happy birthday for Nick, since he lost his girl. Besides, it was New Year's Eve in a previous year when Nick and Chelsea had declared their love for each other. Fortunately, Nick still had Summer at his side.
Well, Connor and Adam got what they both wanted, which was their family all together again. "Can't beat three. Mom and Dad and me." How long will it be before Connor gets bored with his new kitten? I tell you, that cat's days are numbered. Chelsea told Adam that she didn't want to rush things with him; however, they had a date for brunch on New Year's Day and pretty much declared their love for each other. Uh, yeah, that's certainly not rushing things at all. Adam came up with his own cute little ditty, "To you and me, and what can be." Shoot, Adam and Connor should take their act on the road. I mean, they even rhymed with each other. Chelsea had better get her stuff together if she wants their duo to become a trio.
I had still held a little hope for Chelsea and Nick, when she surprised him for his birthday with a photo of them as a family and with a future photo for "picture perfect days to come." Nick had so much patience waiting for her, as she requested, but seriously, just how long did she think he should wait? Adam had done everything he could to keep the two apart, and Chelsea had given both Nick and Adam every reason to believe that would continue indefinitely. She's been so wishy-washy about her true feelings, which kept them guessing, but it also helped Chelsea to avoid making a definite decision. She said her living with Adam gave Connor false hope, but still, she wouldn't move out. Plus, she gave Connor so much power over them, he will never learn how to interact normally with others.
Even if she hadn't meant to, Adam claimed that Phyllis had helped him by blabbing to Nick about Adam's idea to have Phyllis seduce Nick. And as far as Phyllis claiming that she had no interest in Nick...well, I have a bridge that I can sell her. Hey, if she truly believes she has no feelings for her ex, she can believe anything, right? It's funny that I had never considered, through all his manipulation, that Adam was interested in Chelsea's money. I thought Adam just wanted back what he had always thought belonged to him -- his wife and his son. After all, he tried to get Christian, too, but thankfully, that didn't work, since Adam tends to look at them all as his possessions.
I can't blame Nick for running to Chelsea with Adam's seduction plot, which was intended to free Chelsea. Adam's intent was to lure her away, which ended up working in the long run. Adam was still able to wiggle out of her anger by declaring he had only meant to fix things for them as a couple, after all. Even after acknowledging that Adam had tried to decide her future for her, Chelsea backed down and stated that Adam only wanted Connor's mother, not her. Yeah, she sure didn't sound like someone who was hopelessly in love with another man. In fact, for an ex-con, Chelsea didn't have much of a backbone around Adam, Connor, or even Nick. Sadly, though, Nick and Chelsea were not "the golden couple of Genoa City," after all.
Yes, Chelsea had let Adam and Connor call all the shots all along, even after she claimed that Nick was the man she loved. If that was true, she should have been shouting it from the rooftops instead of Adam practically having to force it out of her. If she had truly loved Nick, Adam would have been an old acquaintance long forgotten by Chelsea, son or no son. Chelsea's had trouble using the word "no" around Connor and around Adam, too, which continued to give Adam hope that their reunion would happen -- and it did. Chelsea's always been such a pushover around Adam, and she will continue to be so into the new year.
Billy was using every excuse in the book to not spend time with Victoria, including not frolicking the New Year's Eve night away with her. At least, he graciously managed to arrive in time to award her with a kiss at midnight. That's just pathetic. While Victoria romantically believed that they had an unconventional love story, Billy revealed in his thoughts that he believed Victoria only perceived him as a man who needed to be saved, but he put himself in that position. If he didn't want to be a victim of circumstance, he needed to stay away from temptation rather than head toward it. Victoria needed to be realistic that she couldn't fix somebody who didn't want to be fixed. Billy liked his demons. And because he was comfortable with her, Billy spent New Year's Eve with another lady -- Amanda.
Even if she didn't see it, Billy's treatment of Victoria was downright sad. He only sabotaged himself by letting a business call keep him from going on their family getaway. What's wrong with him? Seriously, Billy could have made his phone call while away with his family, rather than use it as an excuse to stay home without them. He continued to pull Victoria toward him as he pushed her away. I do like being able to hear his thoughts, though. With a complex character such as Billy, it helps the viewers hear what he's really thinking when he interacts with Victoria. He obviously still loves her and wants to be with her, but he's afraid he will do something to disappoint her, which, of course, he will. It really is a self-fulfilling prophecy, because Billy's been doing everything to make that happen.
Although it would be fascinating to hear Amanda's thoughts, because we still know so little about her, that trick shouldn't be overused. It works for Billy because it lets us know that the gum-chomping Billy isn't completely gone yet. But the mystery that is Amanda will probably be revealed in layers to be peeled back one at a time. Although Amanda and Billy both denied that there's any kind of sexual chemistry between them, it was almost like they protested too much. They're certainly very comfortable around each other. But Amanda has been Billy's secret from Victoria, and that will surely blow up in his face along with all the cards of his hidden poker games.
The quadrangle continued, although Theo finally declared to Summer at the New Year's Eve gala that his resolution was to eliminate anything in his way, and it appeared he meant Kyle for Lola's hand. Hmmm...now Kyle might have a legitimate reason to be rude to Theo. And Summer's eyes still followed Kyle everywhere he went. It's funny that neither Lola nor Kyle has ever been too worried about leading them on, even if it was unintentionally. Kyle was already fully aware of Summer's feelings for him in the past, so he should continue to be on alert regarding her intentions. And as naïve as Lola can be, even she should be able to get a clue about her favorite taste tester, Theo, since he was always underfoot, like a little puppy begging for her affection. It's just so obvious.
You don't suppose that the famous recording artist Tanner Watts will lure Tessa away from Genoa City? It just seems that the new year should have Mariah moving on to a better storyline. But, no, we couldn't be that lucky, since Devon desired to sign the talented singer with his company. Maybe because Fen was back, two boring stories would be combined to make one whooper of a snoozefest. But who knows? This could be more interesting with a new guy in the mix. But, wait...Mr. Watts happened to be Tessa's ex-husband, and he wanted her to go on tour with him as his opening act on the road. Writers, please, quit teasing me!
Nick and Sharon became the first ones having to deal with misfortune in the new year, since they both had to say goodbye to their darling daughter Faith, who was leaving for a ski trip with her friends. It seems like she had just returned home. You would think Sharon and Nick would want to raise Faith during these important years in her life. But that's the unfortunate lot of soap kids. Maybe one day, Alyvia Alyn Lind will have some time to stick around for a while. She'd just better hope the soap doesn't decide to SORAS Faith again in the meantime. Sharon could need Faith for support, since she might receive bad news after finding a lump in her breast. This would be a great informational storyline for Sharon if Y&R is brave enough to tackle this very serious subject.
Jill gave Chance her stamp of approval, even after she learned that he handed in his "cloak and dagger badge," once she heard why he intended on staying in Genoa City -- Abby. Apparently, Jill believed her work to be done as matchmaker for Billy and Victoria, so she could finally move on to new territory. Jill was back to support Devon during his first holiday season without Neil, and she swore she would get Devon's money back from Colin, which is one storyline that may hold some promise, especially if it involves the Las Vegas mystery with Chance and Adam. It would be nice to see Phyllis entangled in that, as well, and at the New Year's Eve party, she almost seemed to be chasing after Chance. But knowing Phyllis, her interest in Chance could just be her way of getting back at Abby.
Hooray! I am so happy that Phyllis and Jack finally made amends, as she tried to rebuild the bridges she had burned. At the very least, they make such good friends, and she even admitted that he still made her swoon. Phyllis' fire goes well with Jack's feet on the ground -- as long as his tootsies don't get scorched in the process. Since he's levelheaded more often than not, Jack has helped tone Phyllis down some on occasion, when she was fuming and about to explode, while she has supported Jack in his most dire times of need. Jack and Phyllis are probably my favorite twosome, and if I can't have them as a romantic couple, I will take the duo as very, very good friends.
Theo, who was declared the Scrooge of common sense and logic, appointed Mariah and Tessa the Christmas Day elves who wanted to take the toys to the sick kids at the hospital. The ladies really should get elf costumes, complete with the cute little hats with all the bells and whistles first, to make them official as Santa's helpers.
The same baby gave Nikki, Victor, Devon, and Elena their Christmas miracles for the year. Nikki and Victor got to reunite mother and daughter. Devon got the honor of paying the tot's medical bills. (That would be considered a miracle to a lot of folks.) And Elena got to play doctor and then announce to the mother that her little girl's fever was down. Man, that baby's got some special powers to bring so much "Joy" to them all.
The way Connor, Chelsea, and Adam were going on about the poor, sickly kitten in the box, I expected to see a tiny kitty cat, who was so meek and weak, it would hardly be able to move. So, imagine my surprise, when Connor brought out an older kitten, who looked like it was ready to spring from his arms to play. Talk about a miraculous recovery! At least, Joy looked to be a young baby, which was rather surprising. Soaps have a habit of using a months-old baby to play the part of a newborn, so I was pleasantly surprised that Joy wasn't on the verge of being ready to walk and talk. So, while I would give a thumbs-down for the casting of the kitten, I give a thumbs-up for the baby.
It was truly fitting that, as Billy told Amanda that he truly felt free to be himself when he was around her in the bar, the sign behind him read "Invincible."
When Victor stated that his resolution was to be nice to Jack, I was sure the world was coming to an end. But Victor then quickly added that he was only kidding. Whew!
Victor and Nikki's anniversary. Nick's birthday. The first time Victoria got together with Billy after she found him plastered outside of the bar. Boy, the Newmans really love New Year's Eve, don't they?
Congratulations to Elizabeth Hendrickson on the wonderful news about her upcoming bundle of joy. I suspected that Ms. Hendrickson may be in the family way once Chloe announced to Kevin that she was expecting. And a Soap Central article confirmed it was true. So, congrats to Chloe and Elizabeth on hearing of their blessed events.
Until next time, please stay tuned.
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