Fan reaction to The Young and the Restless' new Rosales family has been mixed. While it's fair to say that Arturo (Jason Canela), Rey (Jordi Vilasuso), and Lola (Sasha Calle) have won the hearts of most fans, others aren't quite sure what to make of a whole new clan putting down roots in Genoa City. For those viewers who have been a little skeptical of the Rosales trio becoming part of Y&R's mix, the show's executive producer, Mal Young, says their addition was a way for him to honor the original vibe of the 45-year-old soap opera.
When The Young and the Restless debuted on March 26, 1973, it originally focused on two core families: the wealthy Brooks family and the working class Foster family. The early 1980s saw a series of recasts and departures, with all of the original characters except Jill Foster and Katherine Chancellor written out. Bell replaced them with the new core families, the Abbotts and the Williamses. Over the years, other families such as the Newmans, Winterses, and the Baldwin-Fishers were introduced -- and bringing in the Rosales clan was Young's way of paying homage to the original setup of the CBS soap opera.
"In the early days, [Y&R's creator, the late William J. Bell] started with the haves and the have nots," Young explained to Soaps In Depth. "Then the show went through different periods of development. Now there are a lot of rich people in [Genoa City], which is great, because you can show that no matter if you're a billionaire, your life still sucks! [Laughs] But I wanted to introduce a different class of people. The [Rosaleses] are blue-collar, but they're also aspirational. That's important for viewers to see. It feels like more of a realistic representation of life."
However, as viewers likely have noticed, the introduction to the blue-collar clan was relatively slow, with Canela first appearing as Arturo in February (and subsequently signed to a contract in July), Vilasuso first appearing in August, and Calle first appearing in September. Young was deliberate in choosing that timing, as he was when approaching how to tell stories involving a recast Kyle Abbott and a recast Nate Hastings.
To learn more about Young's process of introducing new characters and recast characters, check out Soaps In Depth's Rosales family article here.
How do you feel about Y&R's Rosales family? Do you like the fact that Young brought a blue-collar family to Genoa City? Do you think the addition of the Rosales clan shadows Y&R's early history? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.