Last week you heard from Nita, now it's time for Allison to weigh in with her Best of the Best and Worst of the Worst lists for The Young and the Restless. It's part two of our special Y&R: The Year In Review columns.
LISTEN: Allison discussed her picks for the Best and Worst of the year on Soap Central Live's two-part special wrapup of the year -- The Best of 2011 and The Worst of 2011.
READ: Nita also offers up her picks for Best and Worst of 2011 in last week's Two Scoops column.
Was it really just a year ago that Victor was swearing off his family because his children wanted to get their hands on the trust funds? Was this really the year that Diane returned to Genoa City and was pretty soon the character everyone wanted to kill? How about Sharon's New Mexico vacation -- was that just last summer? Oh, right, that was after her volcano two-step with Skye that left Miss Lockhart melting in lava, never to be dealing with her hedge fund again! It's been a year more restless than young, with an emphasis on the veteran characters that really make Genoa City tick. Let's recall together, shall we?
The Wacky Worst of the Year: Daisy does Daniel!
Actually, the entire Daisy-Daniel-Phyllis thing was a wacky mess. Daisy never wanted the kid in the first place, but used it to manipulate Phyllis, who completely disrespected her son Daniel by forcing the issue to get custody of the baby before it was even born. As bizarre as that was, it was nearly eclipsed by Skye plunging into the volcano -- with Victor letting Sharon stand there and helplessly let Skye slip from her hands.
But that night in the freezing backseat of the car, when Daisy gave birth and then hit Daniel on the head with a flashlight was just too much. She left him to die in the snow while she drove off with the baby. Now, seriously, can you imagine any women woman who just expelled a baby from her body having the wherewithal to drive away in the deep freeze of a Wisconsin winter? Even a desperate creature like Daisy should have had more sense…but she didn't.
The Wacky Worst of the Year: Canadian Club
. This was the leftovers from the Meggie and Deacon storyline, also known as "let's throw Nikki off the wagon and into a bottle of vodka!" Was Meggie really thinking that she was going to replace Nikki in Victor's life? And was Nikki really so loopy that she didn't taste the booze in her Earl Grey tea? The entire Meggie tale, especially how it related back to Murphy, was just too convenient…and wacky! …
However, there was one other wacky story that cannot go unmentioned; : Ronan and the need for a liver. I know, on the surface it doesn't seem very wacky, but it was. How else can you explain why just hours after receiving a life-saving transplant from Chance, Ronan was on a helicopter and up, up, and away, and not a single "thank you for the liver." That was weird and wacky…and remains so since Ronan's return has yet to delineate exactly why he did what he did. But on the plus side, he has a healthy liver now.
Man of the Year: My heart belongs to Billy
, although Adam was close in the running. But Billy is just a terrific character, especially the way Billy Miller plays him. You know that Disney song from The Lady & and the Tramp
? "He's a tramp, but I love him?" ." That's Billy. He's such a screw-up; he did everything wrong to get a baby for Victoria. Going to the baby broker, buying Lucy, letting himself and Victoria fall in love with the baby, and then leaving town when everything fell apart (thank you, Phyllis).
But the Myanmar mess-up was an even better storyline than the baby-broker deal because Billy was forced to knuckle under to Victor. The two of them together was exciting. And watching how Billy came to the rescue for Delia and yearned for Victoria was poignant. You have to love this guy because he's just a charming, flawed goofball of a character. Did I mention he's charming? He's very charming, like another Disney character, Prince Charming. He can get away with a lot.
Woman of the Year: Sharon has really had some kind of year
. Loving Adam, for a start, is a cross to bear for any woman, but for Sharon, it's been more like a dozen crosses. She went to the volcano for him, and it cost her big time! Jail, a prison break, being presumed dead, trying ranch life in New Mexico, losing Faith, being left at the altar by a vengeful Adam, wallowing behind bars when he tried to destroy the evidence that would clear her… and now she's out and there's a new man in her life - Victor!
Can you believe it? That diamond ring sure looked legit, didn't it? Will she really marry the father of the men she's loved -- Nick and Adam? If Sharon goes along with this, is it going to be a real marriage, or is this part of Victor's master plan? Maybe Victor is doing something so drastic -- marrying his daughter-in-law, the mother of his grandkids -- in order to make Nick realize that he belongs with Sharon? I don't know; it's pretty weird, which is one reason why Sharon's the woman of the year, see?
Frustrating Phyllis: There was no character more annoying and vexing that Phyllis Newman
. She destroyed Billy and Victoria's happiness in order to get custody of Lucy, justifying her actions in the name of family. But later, when her sister appeared in town, she had no interest in family. Huh? Phyllis didn't care that Daniel was against her, and that Michael and Lauren and everyone who Phyllis considered close friends were upset with her. No, Phyllis had to have her way.
She was selfish and cruel and single-minded. And somehow she won. It wasn't right then and still isn't right. And if Avery succeeds in getting Lucy turned over to Daisy, which will be horrible for poor little Lucy, it'll be just desserts deserts for Phyllis. Someday Lucy will turn on every adult who's ruined her childhood, you wait and see! And speaking of Avery, while I appreciate that we're finally getting some back story about Phyllis, thus far we've learned very, very little about why Phyllis abandoned Avery. One more reason that I'm still frustrated with Phyllis.
Couple of the Year: This might be a surprise for some of you, but my couple of the year is Tucker and Ashley
. You have to admit; , they've been through the mill…and back. Ashley had to handle her daughter from hell, Abby, who seemed determined to destroy any chance Ashley had for happiness with Tucker. Okay, Abby didn't trust Tucker. She thought he was a liar. However, with the exception of cheating on Ashley -- before they were married -- when he had a one-night-stand with Diane, Tucker hadn't really done anything to warrant Abby's distrust.
But Abby blew up her hatred to epic proportions, and on the crazy night before Tucker and Ashley's wedding, she ran him over with a car! She was drunk out of her mind, but she set in motion an evil plan while still sober. Abby's actions were completely over the top and nearly killed Tucker. But here's why Tucker and Ashley are the couple of the year; : they survived that. Ashley never gave up on Tucker. She stuck by him through his recuperation, even when mother-from-hell Katherine decided that Ashley was a danger to Tucker! And now, they're a really good pair.
Worst Mother of the Year: This was an easy choice. : Katherine Chancellor
. She already had a contentious relationship with Tucker before Abby's car nearly killed him. But then Kay used Tucker being in a coma to take over his life. Of course, why he left her the power of attorney was never made clear, but once she had it, Kay ran roughshod over McCall Unlimited. She also had Ashley barred from seeing Tucker, the man she loves, because Mother thought she knew best.
Later, when Kay discovered that Tucker was suffering post-traumatic brain difficulties, she took him to court to maintain control over his business. That was despicable, especially because she was never his caretaker when he was a child. She'd abandoned Tucker, remember? The villainy -- selfishness -- of Kay continues now with the Devon story and her keeping that truth from Tucker for as long as she could. A mother like Kay is right out of a Grimm fairytale, the evil witch variety.
Fresh Face of the Year: Is it possible to call Genie Francis a fresh face considering she's been a soap opera superstar since the 1980's?
Well, she's a fresh face in Genoa City, and as Genevieve Atkinson, she's been absolutely brilliant. She was mysterious and potentially deranged when she first appeared -- bringing out the best in the '"Cane's not really dead" tale' -- and was a wonderful foil for Tristan Rogers' Colin. The dysfunctional, gothic Atkinson family was a terrific change of direction for the soap. While I'm not happy that they let Tristan go, I am very pleased that Genevieve and Jack are sticking together. Genie should settle in for a long run because she's a welcomed welcome addition to the GC lineup.
He's Evil Through and Through Award: Maybe this should be renamed the Adam Newman Jr. award?
I want to like Adam; really, I do. He's so well-played by Michael Muhney, with his soulful eyes and unkempt haircut. I enjoy seeing him on the show. But Adam is a twisted SOB. The way he turned on Sharon was beyond evil. He had the memory card in his hand and could have gotten her out of jail…but he dropped it in the stream instead. He could have stuck by her in prison, but he humiliated her in front of a minister instead.
Because he was hurt over her fling with Sam, Adam justified all his nasty retaliation, no matter how ruthless. Now, he's finally in charge of Newman Enterprises and seems to have a hankering for another chance with Sharon. Please, Sharon, remember what Adam has done to you and stay away! And Adam, if you want to prove your worth, get Patty under control before she kills again. Make that your number one priority.
Lost In Space: Why has Michael been reduced to being Victor's lackey?
Remember the days when he and Lauren actually had a story of their own? Another character who's been on the back burner for months is Daniel. What does he do to fill the hours, paint and brood?
But while these characters had no story or some story, what are we to make of the goofy story involving Neil, Malcolm, and Sofia? I'm still trying to figure it out. Was Malcolm supposed to stick around so that Sofia would be married to him, but tempted by Neil? Maybe baby Moses was going to be Malcolm's all along? It makes you wonder why they didn't just re-cast Malcolm with another actor, because this marriage of convenience between Neil and Sofia is dull, dull, dull. I don't believe either one of them would settle for this type of arrangement for the sake of a baby. They're rich characters and need more drama.
Death Becomes Her... Because She Had No Story
: There was a lot to be happy about from the past year, but not the casting of Maura West as Diane Jenkins. What was the point? A two-time Emmy winner joins the show and she's given…nothing to do. Seriously, was this the plan? Have Diane make everyone hate her guts, let her double and triple-crosses cross anyone who tries tried to align with her, and then kill her off? Does the show ever plan to solve this murder? What a waste of talent! I expected so much more. And if it turns out that Patty is the killer, I'm going to really be ticked off, because everyone seemed to be in the park that night and had a hand in doing something to Diane. It wasn't just Patty.
Sam I Am: Hanging around that New Mexico ranch was a nice change of pace, but ultimately this was a story and a character, Sam, that went nowhere
. What was the point?
All in All: A good year, not a great one for America's number one rated soap
. The Abbotts got Jabot back. Billy and Victoria reunited. Nikki's a lush again. Victor's about to marry for the third time in about a year (although maybe Meggie doesn't count), which is ridiculous when you think about it. We had Ashley, Sharon, Daisy, Billy, and Victor behind bars at one time or another. Kay was on death's door again, but has since reverted to type. Harmony's checked into the mansion. Devon's got another daddy and a grandmother. Eden's back; , although nobody seems to care. Well, maybe 2012 will pick up these strands and spin a new canvas that's beyond criticism? We can all hope, right?
Allison J. Waldman
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.