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 Two Scoops: November 24, 2008 columns
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Peter Bergman
Good things came to fans who waited
by Nita
For the Week of November 24, 2008
It's been a long time coming, but the current crew of writers have finally started to right many of the wrongs committed by their previous pen-wielding peers.
Before I get started, I want to take a moment to say to the scribes; you go, gals and guys! It's been a long time coming, but the current crew is finally beginning to right many of the wrongs committed by their previous pen-wielding peers. Sure there's always going to be something (the Chloe Daddy trap nonsense) and someone (Tyra) I could do without, but at the moment, I like more stuff and people than I dislike. And I'm hoping things will only get better.

Anyway, Y&R watching has once again made it onto my list of pleasurable pastimes. Things had gotten so bad, it has become sort of chore, one I was seriously considering giving up for good or at least until things got better. The inhabitants of Genoa City didn't even act like real people anymore, let alone like the characters I had come to, if not love, at least like enough to use up a valuable week's worth of watching time. But these days, like fans Mary and Brigitte below, I too, have found I can hardly wait to see what's happing in my favorite fictional town. In fact, I am so enjoying what seems to be a return to a Y&R formula that has worked so successfully in the past, one watching is sometimes not enough. I'm watching taped shows multiple times, tune in to Soapnet to see bits and pieces live and one day I even spent an hour on Youtube dipping into the distant past for a nostalgic look back at some of my favorite moments. For instance, right now, there's no enchanting young love connection I care about. I don't count Cane and Lily because although I liked them, they were over almost before they really got going. And sticking him instead with disgusting stalker Chloe was definitely not an even exchange. So to get my fix, I cued up my personal all time favorite couple on Youtube - the sweet first love between original Billy and Mac. Even all these years later, I still miss the chemistry between those two and consider it an enormous error in judgment on the scribe's part for dousing the flames of this inferno. Next, I sniffled through several versions of J.T. rescuing original Colleen from the fire at Gina's. Then, I giggled at a svelte and sultry Nikki crashing Diane's surprise birthday party for Victor, followed by numerous Nick and Sharon scenes. How young and baby-faced they were! Lastly, I couldn't leave Youtube without meandering down a few of Katherine's paths. Remember her absolute agony the day she discovered she was the reason Jill is stalking up and down the earth, breathing evil fumes her way? Wow, what a moment that was! But, alas, while my stroll down memory lane was great fun, those particular days are long gone, so I'll return my attention to what's happening today.

Welcome back Abbotts! Watching the Abbott family gathered around the breakfast table felt like old times again, almost as if the missing members had never been banished. It was déjà vu for this fan as a scowling Jack angrily denounced the black knight, predicting future dire consequences if his sister failed to get out while the getting was good. And just like always, Jack's doomsday predictions bounced harmlessly off Ashley's deaf and know it all ears. Some things never change. Ashley's always been more than a little smug and a whole lot over- confident when it comes to Victor, each time certain he's way over Nikki and wholly into her. But I'm guessing that there will come a day, weeks or months from now, when Ashley is again going to be biting on her bottom lip and weeping inconsolably in her wine. Because unfortunately, though Jack isn't right about many things, when it comes to Victor and the pain he is likely to inflict on Jack's severely smitten sister, he's probably got the tail pinned dead center on the burro's brown behind. And I do believe, like Jack, that eventually Ashley's going to be handed the sharp dirty end of the shortest stick.

From the first moment a ghostly John wafted into town, away without leave from the afterlife, my fingers fought with one another to refrain from repeatedly pressing my FF button. I had no patience at all with a ghost who could easily see the wrong in Jack, yet whose old eyes remained blind to all the dirt hidden beneath his former beloved's carpet. But last week, it didn't take more than a tiny little dab from my handy dandy belief suspension bag to be drawn into the pretense that John was really there in the moment having various conversations with his family. To me, those scenes provided some much delayed closure, since I felt the prior scribes bum rushed John right out of town, writing him off in a way the Abbott patriarch definitely did not deserve. This has been better than nothing.

We never really got a chance to see John interact with his youngest son, Billy. By the time Billy returned, John was caught up with Gloria and hardly had time or attention for anyone save her. Which made it difficult to try to believe in the post-Mac Billy without knowing or hearing anything much about how he traveled from old Billy to new. During Billy and John's conversation last week, though, I was riveted. Those fans who were there back then, watching with dismay as the pieces of Billy's world broke and crumbled into dust, know exactly why he totes around that huge piece of baggage, disguised under a footloose, fancy free heartbreaker attitude. But his conversation with Daddy finally gave us a peek behind that mask he so painstakingly puts on each day to convince one and all nothing in life is all that serious and let us glimpse the frustration he feels about his perceived ill fit on both his family trees. And he was right in all that he said about how he's treated by both Jill and Jack. I had to agree with him, too, about his astute assessment of Jill and Cane. Although, once Cane has been around long enough, Jill will surely show him her more uncaring side. In fact, had he not been sold for the price of one of Kay's glittery baubles, he, just like his half-sibling Billy, and his not really his brother, Phillip, would likely have been hustled off to some out of sight, out of Jill's mind and way boarding school. In those days, for Jill it was either about the hunt for her next victim, or a scheme about how to amass stock in something someone else built. She had no time nor desire to nurture a needy son. I'm looking forward to hearing more about how Billy feels about his family and hopefully, we'll eventually get to witness his pain about his forced parting from Mac, perhaps as he relates all the particulars of that portion of his past to Lily. It should give the actor a chance to showcase his acting chops. It would be nice to have the tale told via flashbacks, but with the multiple faces of the Mac character, it probably isn't likely.

Still with no desire whatsoever to fast-forward through a single second, I hung on every word spoken by John to his family. Always a straight shooter, he calmly reminded Ashley how many times her heart had to be glued back together after a rough and tumble round with Victor. And Ashley was also believable in her confusion and inability to let go of her dream of a lasting love with Victor. This is a man who has tromped on her heart repeatedly, yet she still can't walk away and is obviously going to stick it out in hopes this latest time will turn out to be the charm.

After months of John constantly nitpicking Jack, but saying nada to Gloria, his words to his former wife were long, long overdue and were a treat, though brief, I thoroughly savored. And even though they clearly didn't cause so much as a single flicker of remorse in Gloria's indifferent determination to get her greedy mitts on something she has no real right to, it was still gratifying for this fan to hear him say them to her. Too bad the veils of the past haven't parted enough to show him her part in the face cream tainting.

Talk about the will that was worth waiting for! That scene could be the basis of the next commercial in the "Priceless" vein. Because the expressions on everyone's faces, especially Jill's, was precisely that. Priceless. When Mitchell first mentioned the recent changes in Kay's will, I wondered for a moment if control of Jabot would be taken from Jill and given to Cane, perhaps even Nikki. But Kay's way was so much better than my imagination. Even though I hate to see Gloria get her heart's desire, I can see a storyline written her way has much more explosive potential than simply returning it to one of the Abbotts. But the twist, giving half the mansion to Esther, was a stroke of pure brilliance and my hands are still sore from applauding. What a perfect way for Kay to forever thwart Jill's hopes of finally having the place to herself where she could decorate it to her heart's tacky content. And that won't be Kay's last hearty ha ha ha from the hereafter, putting Jill and Esther under the same roof and also leaving her enough cash to tell Jill to scorch her own coffee, or hire someone to do it for her if she so desires. No, Kay's final giggle will come when she returns from the dead and everyone is forced to return all that she so generously gifted them with.

Speaking of gifts, how cruel was Jill to tell Nikki her life was such a mess, she wouldn't add to the chaos by throwing a hissy fit about Kay's ancient jewelry. That woman can be such a mean, embittered old broad, I can't help but laugh every time she gets shot down. Kay's gift, while sentimentally sweet was really kind of funny when you think of it. I mean, this is Nikki we're talking about. Thanks to her multiple divorces from Victor, she will probably never be able to spend all the money she has. And I'm sure she has little need for another glittery bauble to wear round neck or finger. And if she did, she could easily buy it herself. By the way, are we to believe, that rather small red box contained Katherine's entire collection? Well, other than the family heirloom currently adorning one of Kay/Marge's digits. Will anyone check and realize the ring is not in the safe deposit box? Or is that to be the prop that will one day prove Marge may not be who she believes herself to be. Who in Katherine's circle is liable to enter that diner and spot Kay's twin, who just happens to also be wearing her most prized piece of jewelry? Oh , and one more by the way. I'm a little confused. Because I could have sworn Murphy said Marge was fired from the diner? And who knew she was living in a boardinghouse? I thought those only existed in those historical romances I used to devour.

Aside from having a roommate she detests in her home, obviously, Jill isn't liable to be any happier when she packs up her briefcase and heads to the office. For there, she will come face to face with the other woman she simply cannot stand: Gloria and her always grinning sidekick of a hubby. I'm guessing the Jabot employees will barely be able to work, what with all the juicy gossip grist to be discussed across the office desks and in various break rooms and deserted conference rooms. I hope Ashley plans to come into the office dressed in her best blade-resistant armor, as well as with every wit she has about her. She's already proven once she's no match for Gloria's shenanigans and she will be even more deadly with Jeff by her side. Obviously, Jack hasn't thought a moment beyond getting Jabot back in the family. How else to explain how he could possibly believe Gloria will be content to be an in name only head honcho in charge. It will definitely be interesting days ahead watching all the players maneuvering to get themselves into the most influential position. Like Adam, Jill didn't take but a breath to show her power hungry tendencies, didn't she? I can't wait to see the next Priceless moment when she realizes Gloria, Jeff and the Abbots have managed to buy her company right out from under her. Well, at least no one can disown her and blackball her from all future employment.

Speaking of Adam, I was on my feet screaming so loud I drowned out their conversation and had to rewind my tape so I could hear what Adam had to say to Victor. He said everything I've been screaming at the screen for him to say for months. Victor wants to act like what Adam did was so awful. Adam is his son, no matter how much he wants to deny him now, and he should have given Adam a chance to at least tell his side of the twisted tale, instead of taking the words, without a single question, of people who hate Adam's guts. Victor had the gall to mumble about Hope whirling in his grave because of the actions of her son. Like Adam, I believe that if there is any whirling, it would have more to do with how Victor treated he beloved boy instead of the other way around. Sure, Adam could have done things a little differently. But I still don't believe it was because he didn't care about Victor. I distinctly remember his asking if he could be a part of search efforts. And his territorial half-sibs wasted no time snatching his verbal offer and stuffing it right back between his teeth. He was shouted down and shunted aside from every quarter, Michael, Neil, Victoria, Nikki and Nick, included. So, yeah, yeah, I know, Victor plans to crush him like a cockroach. With his money and power, it shouldn't be all that hard. By the by, what is it about these Newmans who feel they have the right to resort to fisticuffs when someone says something they don't want to hear or don't happen to like. Victoria once slapped Adam, and now Nick has added his four fingers and a thumb. Who will take a swing at Adam next? Nikki? Victor? Phyllis?

Funniest moment of the week award goes to Jack, no contest. There he was, his mouth wide open, in the middle of the lie he was making up on the spot, when in waltzes Gloria and Jeff. And before Jack could switch gears in order to get a lying word in edgewise, Gloria had spilled the beans and let Ashley in on the silent partner secret. The look on Jack's face and his mouth opening and closing like a hooked fish hauled up on the river bank was worth two rewinds.

Right time plus right place equals Phyllis. Boy, I wish I had her uncanny ability and sense of timing. Just imagine the people I could blackmail or manipulate. I guess Paris must be just like Genoa City, in that no matter where you go, you'll coincidentally run into the very person you most want to see. Or your worst enemy. Who knew that in all of Paris, Phyllis would manage to wander right onto the exact path taken by Sharon and Nick just in time to witness their kiss. Once home, her sense of timing was still magically on target because everywhere Sharon went, Phyllis happened by the very second she was clasped in an embrace. And her uncanny ability didn't end there. There she was again, this time at the AC, lurking near enough to hear Brad confess his unrequited love for the mystery woman that, of course, Phyllis knew to be Sharon. I couldn't help but cackle when Phyllis went to Jack, hoping to get him to keep his wife far from Nick's reach. Now she's ready to talk to Jack. But the week before when he went to her for that same kind of assistance, if he hadn't move quickly she'd probably have broken his tailbone with the knob on the door she slammed on him.

Oh my goodness. Is Tyra like a panting puppy hoping for a pat on the head or what? She was staring at the side of Neil's head like he was a juicy steak and she hadn't had meat for a year. How can he not see her obvious infatuation? For that matter, how can anyone not see it? Considering the two other women in Neil's life, potential haters, Tyra and Olivia, perhaps Karen might want to rush her man down the aisle toward the altar before one of her rivals pushes her right out of Neil's life.

Is Lily ever going to meet her online dating admirer? Not if Chloe has anything to say about it, I'm guessing. During the mourning period and farewell of Katherine, Chloe had been bearable, mostly because she had been silent, even supportive of her husband and mother. Unfortunately, she's all done with that and has resumed her Billy stalking. Even Cane, about the dimmest bulbs in Genoa City, may be starting to notice the frequency with which Chloe manages to cross paths with his brother. But since we're talking about Cane, I didn't get my hopes up that any real suspicions would be raised. No, I'm guessing the only way Cane will figure out the nasty trick Chloe has pulled on him will be if somewhat spells it out for him. Maybe Chloe will be kind enough to write out a full confession and accidentally leave it where Cane will see it. Yeah, I know, never happen.

Anyway, I'm weary of Cane constantly coming up to Lily and stabbing her with that speculative look as he unintentionally inflicts yet another wound to her soft skin then looks intently at her as if he's trying to see if he drew any blood. You married your little game-playing Gremlin, Cane. It's the bed you made, now go take a nap in it. Let the woman go on with her life. I don't know if there will be any heat between Lily and Billy, but I'm ready to see what happens. So either expose Chloe so Cane and Lily can reunite or move on. Just my biased opinion.

Which brings me to the end of my opinions for this week. What's up next are yours, fans. Happy Thanksgiving all.

* * * * * * *


Theresa - Please tell me Jeanne Cooper is not leaving Y&R. Before I even started watching this soap I knew who Jeanne and Eric were, even though I had never seen the show. They are that good! Jeanne, Eric, Jess and Peter are the main reasons I watch the show. Perhaps Katherine will really believe she is Marge, or spy on GC residents as Marge, then surprise everyone as Katherine during Feb. '09 sweeps. At least Katherine is getting a better funeral than John Abbott. He was given a disgraceful sendoff under the reign of LML! This is a much better, respectful and believable funeral for a GC citizen such as Katherine. Someone has definitely done their homework. Amazing! There's another black guy in GC Tyra can date and he's not even related to the Winters family! Alright! Interracial dating would have been ok too, but we're finally getting some depth and perspective on this show. It's beginning to feel like these characters actually live somewhere and are part of something larger than themselves. What was the poem Jill read at the funeral? I would like to look it up. Finally, for the last time scribes, Nikki and Victor are so boring and beyond yesterday's news. Let's have Victor go for Ashley (so glad to see her back, but I hope she's not going to be defined solely as Victor's love interest.) or better, how about no one for Victor for awhile and keep us guessing. Ashley could be his main interest and bring back Abby too please, but gor all that is sacred in this world, keep Victor far away from Nikki.

JoAnne - Loved the Paris scenes with Sharon and Nick. I thought they were able to finally say what should have been said so long ago and they were very sweet together. Phyllis getting payback was satisfying but not good enough. I want her to go through the hell she put Sharon through but I don't see that happening as she is already witness to things she can twist and turn against Sharon. Why do the writers always put Phyllis and Gloria's characters in the power seats? Why can't they get some of what they dish out? I loved seeing Dina and wish she would stay and give Gloria a run for her money. So Gloria inherited shares from Katherine. Why, why, why?! This woman needs to be taken down - enough is enough! When is Chloe's real baby daddy going to be revealed? This storyline is old and boring. Cane comes across as an idiot and Lily's martyrdom is truly boring. Love Billy as he gets into everyone's business and he sees what everyone else seems to be blind to. I hope they don't make him all evil. I see him as the old Jack - charming but devilish. Speaking of Jack - what a way to ruin a character. Peter Bergman can play his emotions so well and some of his scenes with Sharon show him as such a tender and deep man but the writers are determined to keep him going after Victor. Too predictable and not fair to the character. The show is slightly more exciting but the tired old storylines are not great. I want to see Phyllis and Gloria get what is coming to them and then go away for a while. I also want the Kay mistaken identify storyline to be short. I hope we don't see Sharon suffer more at the hands of Phyllis while Nick gets yet another pass for his disgusting behavior. The past three years of watching these two has been more than I can take and I look forward to the day when I can watch an entire show without looking away or turning the channel. Please make this my Christmas wish and make it come true!

Reynelle - I always come to your site for spoilers and I'm hooked. I've been watching since my tweens, and saw Kay with Rex, Nikki being bought a coffin by Victor, and Brad underground, courtesy of Lisa. I feel like they are getting back to the roots of the show, the good old days of the VCR.

Colleen - While I do not like violence, it made me feel good to see Nick haul off and hit Adam. There are just times when people deserve what they get. Adam has been a whiney, insolent jerk from day one. He made some real bad choices and now must accept responsibility for his greed. Between him and Heather, crying the blues that they didn't have their father's in their lives while they were growing up, it's 5 minutes ago already. Adam and Heather need to ride off into the sunset of their insecurity and maybe, they will grow up and come back as healthy adults.

KC - It's long overdue that Y&R has some truly happy, believably matched couples. I can't wait until Sharon and Nick and Cane and Lilly are back together for good! The Paris scenes of Nick and Sharon were wonderful and left me wanting more, more, more!

Countrygal - I hope Ashley gets back with Victor and Chloe tells Cane Billy is the baby's father. Cane should go back with Lily. They make a good pair.

Shantel - I've always liked Phyllis and female villains. I don't always agree with their methods but enjoy the acting. Why does Phyllis need to receive payback? It was Nick who went after her. Sharon was not innocent. She was struggling with her feelings for Brad. Everyone makes it sound like Phyllis was plotting to snatch Nick when that wasn't the case. A man cannot be taken unless he wants to be. Let's not forget Summer's paternity is still in question in the back of our minds. Only Nick saw the results. Imagine if he lied? Would Phyllis still be such a villain? I think everyone needs to give Phyllis a break, and focus on Nick.

Mary - I'm loving the past few weeks of Y&R. After the longest of dry spells, I finally feel like Genoa City is once again a place I like to visit. The characters are acting more like themselves and we're finally seeing some storylines to really care about, with a few exceptions. I hate what they've done to Adam. I thought the character had great potential when he first arrived but it seems they've squandered the opportunity to make him a true part of Genoa City life. I can't stand the way the Newman clan has treated him. It makes no sense. How could Victor be so harsh and unforgiving to the boy who is Hope's son? Why couldn't Nick and Vicki find a tiny bit of compassion in their hearts for the guy who is supposed to be their half-brother, despite their jealousy and resentment? And how will Adam possibly dig himself out of this hole the writers have dug for him? I don't like the turn Jack's character is taking either. As conniving as he is, there has always been a spark of humanity lurking under there. Jack wants to be good, but he just can't help himself. Peter Bergman is superb at displaying the two sides to Jack's nature. These days Jack has turned into a total jerk and is displaying no redeeming qualities at all. That's not the Smilin' Jack I know and love. I liked the pairing of Sharon and Jack when Jack was trying to rein in his bad boy antics to hold onto his wife.

Brigitte - I have been rushing home to watch same day episodes as opposed to saving half of them for the weekend. November has been great! Now to Jill. Wow. Talk about selfish and mean spirited! Can anyone be more hateful and jealous than Jill? I will begin with her treatment of Nikki. I know the root of Jill's anger towards Nikki is plain old jealousy. Nikki was the daughter to Katherine that Jill simply would not be. Nikki and Katherine were best friends and had a bond that lasted for years. Jill was rude to her at the service and insulting after the reading of the will. Speaking of the will, I yelled out loud that this chick is crazy when she pulled the attorney to the side because she wanted to contest the money and 50% of the mansion that was left to Esther. I cannot believe how greedy and hateful Jill is. How much money does she need? She is truly pathetic and should be ashamed of herself.

Rebecca - The thing that has impressed me the most lately about Y&R is the way the writers have been mentioning the past during dialog for the last month or so. Usually it feels like they wake up daily and forget they had ever written a word and no character actually has a past. But lately, the characters have been mentioning stories and memories, allowing us, the viewer not to feel like they think we are dumb.

Angela - First of all Heather Stevens needs a hobby or something, just get over the obsession with Victor. Ashley you go girl, ain't nothing like having Victor on your arm. Adam needs a hobby too, no, he needs a job then he would have something to occupy his time.

Cheryl - The show is definitely more interesting these days. Tracy and Nina were wonderful to see again. Tracy brings refreshing perspective. John's ghost they didn't need. Gloria and Jack belong in the same straight jacket. Gloria is completely disgusting - she has no morals and cares about no one but herself and her checkbook. She truly was celebrating Katherine's death. She probably would have done Katherine in herself, given the chance. I simply cannot buy into Gloria and Jeff living in the pool house. Gloria needs to get what's coming to her - that would be more than pleasant to watch. The will reading was good, but a little disappointing. I thought Nikki should have received some company stock in Chancellor. Jill was upset, but I would have liked to see her sweat a lot more. The money amounts are always very ambiguous, but based on the apparent size of the estate, I think the percents given should have been whole numbers. The best part was Esther getting half the house and plenty of money and the next best was Amber getting her share. Katherine really mattered to Amber. I hope she makes a fortune on the memoirs. I would like to see Ashley take the CEO spot at Jabot, wiping the smug look off Gloria's face and infuriating Jill.

Judy - Last week Cheryl suggested that she would like to see Katherine reappear in a couple weeks and see how her beneficiaries were spending their inheritance. I would like to take this one step further: Gloria adds her/Katherine's stock to the Abbott's and the takeover is underway -- then the real Katherine shows up and we have a new legal tangled web. Jack and Gloria's scheme is exposed; the stock is returned to Katherine; Jill's attempt to insert herself as head of both Jabot and Chancellor Industries exposes her greedy ambitions; the trusts that the grandchildren and Amber received will be returned - hopefully, they haven't already bought expensive cars or real estate. It seems the only one who will truly be happy will be Esther. In addition, Kevin has already decided he is going to buy a car for his wife with the cash left in Crimson Lights. It will be interesting to see if the writers come up with any storylines like these - or how they perceive these situations. I don't know how much longer I can stomach Chloe and her storyline. Maybe someone in the Soprano family is looking for a job.

Jamie - Oh please, we all know the France shoot was just a horror show. Nick and Sharon are ridiculous together. The acting was horrendous, she was bubbling over like a freshly poured glass of bubbly and he couldn't have been stiffer if he tried. The dialogue was bad, the whole thing was a mess. The only thing that made it remotely watchable was the brilliant Michelle Stafford who in one second can make you feel the knife that was stabbed through her heart. If she hadn't been added to the shoot, it would have been total garbage. There is no couple like Nick and Phyllis who have chemistry, sex appeal, humor, all the makings of a super couple. If she isn't added to the snooze fest known as Sharon and Nick, what can they give us? They aren't children anymore; her giggle is not as attractive as maybe it was, if it was, 14 years ago. It is time to move on for good, shut that door and throw away the key.

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