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 Two Scoops: October 12, 2009 columns
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Beth Maitland
Hearts are breaking
For the Week of October 12, 2009
Soaps are meant to make fans feel emotions, good and bad, sad and joyful, the entire cornucopia of feelings.
Did you cry during Colleen's memorial? I did. It was just too sad. Listen, I get it that soaps are meant to make us feel emotions, good and bad, sad and joyful, the entire cornucopia of feelings. But right now amid an awful lot of sadness and loss, there's a lot of anger, hatred and downright loathing among the fans about what Adam did to Sharon and Ashley! As mentioned last week, our email boxes here at soapcentral.com are overflowing with comments about the current storytelling on Y&R and it ain't for the faint of heart.


Let's start with the most obvious - Adam. It would take a master manipulator with 20/20 vision, the luck of the Irish and the skills of the Amazing Kreskin or David Blaine to pull off that baby switch. Everything had to fall into place, everything had to work out without an ounce of planning or foresight. And, of course, it did for Adam. The blind guy. The guy who didn't even know that Sharon was at the same hospital where Jack brought Ashley to commit herself. The guy who went completely unseen and unnoticed by security guards or cameras in a locked down facility. ARE YOU KIDDING ME OR DO YOU REALLY THINK WE'RE THAT STUPID TO BELIEVE THIS MALARKEY?


I'm a soap fan and I know we have to stretch our incredulity on occasion. We have to accept the fact that Abby was six years old on The Bold and the Beautiful in 2006 and now she's a teenager! Okay, we accept it. But this ridiculous baby switch, the way they arranged it, was just awful. Ashley just happened to have labor pains - excuse me, hysterical labor pains! - at the same time as Sharon going into early labor. Big, big coincidence.


Let me ask you something… if you were Sharon and you went into labor and some strange, unfamiliar doctor comes in to deliver your baby, wouldn't you be screaming bloody murder in between labor pains? I would. Who is this guy and why aren't any nurses assisting him! Even when you go for a check up, there are nurses present. This mental hospital is the only place I've ever seen where everybody - and I mean everybody - leaves during a fire drill! Okay, maybe if it had been a nuclear attack, you leave the station unattended, but this was a case where an alarm went off and only Dr. Taylor and Adam were around to attend to Ashley and Sharon. Come on!


Now let's chat about Ashley. She's really in love with baby Faith, as well she should be. It's a baby and she thinks it came out of her body. She believes it's her child. However, Ashley is rational again. She's not a screaming Mimi anymore. Why doesn't she have a question about her body? Women know what's going on with their bodies, especially a woman like Ashley who is smart - a scientist! - and has had a baby before. Wouldn't she be curious about how her body whipped back into shape so fast? Would she be curious about why she's not lactating? (I hate to get clinical here, but breasts do fill with milk when a woman is pregnant in preparation for breastfeeding.) Still, Ashley is oblivious.


The other part of this baby switch business that doesn't add up is the hospital. What kind of a place doesn't automatically put an identification bracelet on a patient? How did Dr. Taylor get the baby out of the hospital without someone asking questions? How did Ashley get out of the hospital without a psychiatrist examining her? If you check yourself into a psychiatric hospital, even voluntarily, would they really just let you decide to walk out whenever you feel like it?


In the middle of all this, of course, is how it affects the people. As much as the baby might have brought Nick and Sharon back together in time, the fact that Nick and Sharon are mourning together might be the thing that reunites them even more certainly. Phyllis cannot fight a tidal wave and sooner or later she's going to realize that Nick still loves and wants Sharon. Yes, he's caught between both women and his love for Summer, but the heart wants what the heart wants, and I think Nick still wants Sharon.


Speaking of love, isn't it strange that Ashley has completely fallen out of love with Victor? Now that she knows that he still loves Nikki - which doesn't mean that he doesn't also love Ashley - she's ready to end her marriage. That was quick. What about working things out for the baby? What about staying by Victor through the heart transplant? What about Ashley's feeling…does she even have a handle on what she's feeling.


I relate to Billy. Victor didn't deserve Colleen's heart. He treated her horribly. He set her up to be disgraced so he could toss her from the Newman board. His tactics were destructive and mean-spirited. Billy remembers and so do I. Victor's been a heartless bastard to the Abbott family, and now he has an Abbott heart. What irony!


At least Billy channeled his anger about Victor into something positive. The memorial was beautifully done, especially the red balloons at the end. A little corny, but that was all right. It was touching.


What on earth is going to happen to Adam? This character is probably the most evil thing we've seen on Y&R since Sheila Carter was wreaking havoc. Adam needs to pay for his crimes, and I don't mean in jail. He needs to be punished and justice must be meted out. What he did to Ashley, driving her mad to get back at Victor, was sick. The business at the psych hospital was even sicker. I don't care if the guy has a guilty conscience. That's not enough. He needs a whupping and if Victor is out of commission, maybe Jack has to be the guy to dole it out.


Which brings me to the off-camera shenanigans on Y&R. Eric Braeden said last week that he was fired and is gone from the show. If that's true and the producers are unable to get him back, can Y&R go on without Victor Newman? If you ask me, the answer is no. Without a Victor Newman, there's a great, big hole in the middle of the show. So, do they make a deal with Eric Braeden or do they recast the role?


I'm going to say something here that might seem like blasphemy. They have to recast the part. Eric Braeden is not the only actor who can play Victor. He might be the best actor, but he's not irreplaceable. Remember, once upon a time, Terry Lester was "the man" as Jack Abbott. Peter Bergman came in and now you can't imagine him as anybody else but Jack. (Although All My Children fans will tell you about his days as Dr. Cliff Warner.)


What do you think? What would you do? And if Y&R punishes Adam and straightens out the baby switch in the next few months, will you still be watching? Write with your comments. Here are some recent letters from the mailbag:

  • It's time to play the 'really' game. Adam has been able to cause all these problems, half blind and no one has noticed, really? He's poked his eyes many time, but can still see, really? Ashley thinks she delivered a child but isn't in pain, or sore, really? Another baby switch, really? Let's put Sharon in a mental institution and take her baby away, really? I'm so disappointed in Y&R for these ridiculous stories. I've been a fan for many, many years & have never found the storylines so lame. I hope they pick up the pace. -- ACell

  • Y&R needs to realize this; producers, you have sponsors to please. Sponsors, you are rapidly losing viewers. Is this the writers' or the producers' fault? Pay attention to your audience, you know, the people that are TURNING OFF the show - and, by the way, your ads. The show is too dark. Babies being aborted, miscarried, accidentally killed and now switched. Don't you like children? There are too many wackos on this show -- Victor, Ashley, Adam, Billy and, yes, Phyllis. She is everything she accuses Sharon of being -- manipulating, calculating, self-centered. A bitch. If she did not have a man to lean on she would not survive. Let's see, Danny, Jack and now Nick. She should be more like Sharon. The writers/producers don't realize that true love should survive once in a while. That's Nick and Sharon! - Carole K.

  • Bill Bell must be turning in his grave! I cannot believe how this bunch of writers is ruining such a beautiful show. Watching it now is painful and no longer enjoyable. Adam is the incarnation of the devil. Switching babies is the ultimate cruelty! - Mary P.

    Best,
    Allison

    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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