Playing with the Queen of Hearts:
Phyllis and Billy have upped the ante and raised the stakes in the Internet security project shuffle. Have Victor and Adam stacked the deck to put ... Read the column now...
A birthday celebration and a poker game raise the stakes in the loves and lives of the citizens of Genoa City. In this week's Two Scoops we up the ante, and go all-in to remember our friend and columnist, Allison J. Waldman.
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It is Y&R time again, and I am pleased to be back to discuss the excitement, thrills, and chills of the events for our favorite soap icons throughout the week. There were plenty of suspenseful moments for many of our beloved characters, and enough lies and deceit to be shared by everyone. Hang on to your hats, as we talk about the whirlwind events that took place during the week in Genoa City.
This week, Nikki celebrated her "29th" (or maybe "28th") birthday, and Victor gathered family members, with the exception of Adam, to invite them to join together for the festivities. Will the celebration be "remarkably chaos-free," as Nikki would hope, or will insults and even punches be traded during Nikki's birthday bash?
First, Nikki's birthday was approaching, so Victor gathered the troops (Nick, Victoria, Billy, and a new Abby) together so that he could invite them to her party. Victor stressed to his family that it was to be a worry-free, drama-free celebration. When Victoria noticed that Adam had not been included in the gathering, she acted on her own to offer a personal invitation to Adam at his home. Victor was pleased with Victoria, because he has suddenly had a change of heart, and he has come to realize that family is number one with him after all. I absolutely think this is terrific, if only I could trust that his new attitude will stay. However, I agree with his family that this is only a temporary condition. I do enjoy watching this new Victor Newman though, and I will take it as long as I can get it.
When the time arrived, Adam attempted to bet Billy a bowl of peanuts that Victoria would be unable to get through the party without creating some kind of drama. (Billy refused the bet.) Nikki welcomed Adam to his home, and Adam gifted her with "a bird of peace" for her birthday. Even Victoria was pleasant and cordial to Adam, so, of course, it was just a matter of waiting for the fireworks to burst…and Victoria did not disappoint. After hearing that Victor and Adam would be working together towards Newman Enterprises' success, Victoria dramatically announced that she would be joining the company, after all, to work with them, to the surprise of Victor, Nikki, and Nick, and to the shock of Billy.
Billy could not believe his ears after he heard this announcement because Victoria had already denied to him that she would wish to return to the company, since her only desire was to have a baby with him. Then, suddenly, at the birthday bash, she decided to return to Newman? It was no wonder he was shocked. Later at home, outraged, Billy pointed out to Victoria that she was obsessed with the family company and with all of the highs and lows that accompany the business. Billy also believed that Victoria was jealous of Victor and Adam working together, as "the co-masters of the Newman universe." However, Victoria blinded herself to that and claimed that she would be able to help run the business and have another baby also.
I will take on the treacherous task of assigning the role of a Y&R Two Scoops' Pooper each week, which would be the character who does a despicable, or just plain cruddy, deed. Victoria Newman Abbott is my Two Scoops' Pooper this week (and believe me, she had lots of competition from Chloe, but let's face it, I can't pick Chloe every week), because she confronted Billy about his gambling addiction while denying that she had an addiction to Newman Enterprises and to the drama of her family. By doing this, Victoria has set off a chain of events that is surely going to mess up her marriage.
Frustrated by Victoria's denial, Billy stormed out and later arrived at the restaurant/bar, On The Boulevard, where he also found Adam and Michael. Ah yes, poor Michael. Earlier that evening, at home, Lauren kissed Michael, and he immediately realized that her kiss had been one of grief and despair. Michael told Lauren that she needed to find her path back to him with little steps, and when they kissed again, she thought of Carmine and flinched from Michael's touch.
When Lauren claimed that the flinch was unintentional, and that she was trying (too hard, in my opinion) to find her way back to him, Michael cried out that "we are flailing in the deep end, using up all our energy, making just one more frantic splash, before we go under." I love that line! How appropriate in these circumstances. As long as Lauren continues to keep her affair with Carmine a secret, she and Michael will never be able to build that bridge over their troubled waters. Sorry, I just had to say that. It will be even more difficult to renew her relationship with Michael if she can't keep her wandering lips away from Carmine. And Carmine has made it perfectly clear that he will tempt her in every way.
Once Michael left Lauren, he headed towards the very restaurant/bar mentioned earlier. Carmine was almost joyous, when he saw Michael walk in. He immediately poured Michael a drink and practically cheered in glee. After Billy arrived, a Vegas gambler from his past, Barry, sauntered in shuffling a deck of cards. Barry challenged the gentlemen to a poker game, and Adam yelled out that he was in.
When Billy questioned that the restaurant owner would permit gambling in the establishment, Barry revealed that he was the owner. Barry, Billy, Adam, and Carmine sat to play, and Mason joined the game. Carmine invited Michael to join and then taunted him that Michael was afraid that Carmine would take everything that Michael had. Later, when Carmine was losing to Michael, Carmine indicated that he would rather lose to Michael there and that he would take something from Michael before the night was over.
There is a famous saying that the spouse is always the last to know, but honestly, I think that it is more likely sometimes that the spouse just does not want to face the truth. Denial is a less painful place to be, so the spouse holds on to the hope that the deceit is not true. In this case, Michael definitely has blinders on. Carmine keeps hinting at the truth, and Lauren's eyes always follow Carmine whenever the two of them are in the same room. While the poker game was still in progress, Carmine left to be with Lauren, who had texted him that she needed a friend, and he informed her that Michael was playing poker with the boys. After Carmine's lips were able to persuade Lauren's to kiss, she finally pushed him away and insisted that she just wanted Michael and Fenmore to be happy again. Good luck with that!
Back at the poker game, Barry and Billy were "playing for keepsies," and Barry threw in the keys to the restaurant to up the ante. However, Billy realized that the last time high stakes were involved, Barry said, "I ain't worried," when he was bluffing. So, when Barry said that for that final hand, Billy knew he was bluffing and called Barry up. Indeed, Barry was bluffing, and Billy won the restaurant, along with the pot. Billy yelled, "Wild Bill is back," as he laughed and raked up the chips.
Later, at home, Billy announced to Victoria that he had "bought" a restaurant, and she was upset that he had not discussed it with her first. The next morning, Billy gave Victoria a tour of "On the Boulevard," even though they had just eaten there the previous day. Billy introduced her to Barry, who had already indicated that the restaurant was Billy's true calling as a people person and a schmoozer. Billy felt that the restaurant was what he wanted to do with the rest of his life, and he was pleased that he had gotten it "at a steal." He, of course, had hidden the fact from Victoria that he had actually won it in a poker game.
Victoria, look what you started! Again, Victoria has put her father over everything else that should be more important in her life, and she may end up losing it all. By throwing Billy's gambling in his face to excuse her return to Newman Enterprises, she has belittled everything that Billy had done to quit gambling. Billy has an addiction, and it is very tough to battle and win over an addiction. Yet, Billy did just that, but once Victoria made it clear what was more important to her, Billy caved back in to his demon. And there may be no way of going back.
A drunk Tyler kissed Lily, who then tried to leave. Tyler declared that he valued Lily, and she was the one that he had needed to talk to. However, Lily stressed that they could only be friends, and Tyler agreed to that. That night in the bar, Tyler met Lola, who had a weakness for "hot guys with even hotter résumés," and he gave her a tour of Jabot the next day. Although Lily appeared to be a little jealous at first, she covered it well and told Tyler that he and Lola looked good together. Lily then took a phone call from Cane. I am sure that Lola will play a bigger role in this, since it appears that she will be the next new employee at Jabot and will be working side by side with both Tyler and Lily.
In the meantime, Gus is another one who is trying way too hard, as he attempts to fit into Leslie's world. Gus decided to cook a spaghetti dinner for Leslie and Neil to show his appreciation. When he also offered to wash the dishes, Leslie insisted that Gus had done enough, and that she was used to taking care of herself. Neil realized that Leslie needed Tyler and left to retrieve him. While Leslie and Tyler both admitted that they were not sure that they wanted a relationship, Leslie was willing to try with her father.
Gus decided, in the middle of the night, to reorganize Leslie's kitchen, and he banged pots and pans around, waking Leslie. In the morning, Neil came to the rescue and suggested that they eat out, after Leslie stopped Gus from moving to a hotel. At the restaurant, Gus had a tough time fitting in, and Leslie flew out after Gus adjusted her spoon. Back at home, Leslie apologized for her behavior, and Gus suddenly was attacked with chest pains. Could this be signs of a heart attack, or will it be more of a panic attack from trying to adjust to outside life? It will be interesting to see where this leads.
Neil realized that Leslie needed Tyler and left to retrieve him. While Leslie and Tyler both admitted that they were not sure that they wanted a relationship, Leslie was willing to try with her father. A good, solid relationship needs time and care to nurture it, and hopefully, Tyler will eventually give his father the same chance that Leslie is giving him.
After Nick had proposed to Avery, and she had accepted, Dylan also desired that Avery marry him, but she refused. Avery decided that Nick was the one she wanted, because in her past, she had always had a love mixed with pain -- in the loss of her baby, the hurt of the people they betrayed, and the emptiness of her being alone. Avery felt that Nick could give her a love without the pain. Dylan and Avery also understood that the loss of their baby would always be between them. Dylan later called to sell the ring that he had meant to give Avery, so he could pay off his bail debt to Avery and leave town.
his rescue. Nick also wondered why Dylan was having such a hard time leaving town, and Nick noted that he would finally be relieved if and when Dylan could finally get five miles outside of the city limits. Dylan claimed he just wanted what was best for Avery and then said goodbye -- again. Later, after Avery questioned if Nick had proposed because of Dylan, Nick admitted that since he was madly in love with Avery and crazy jealous of Dylan, that had given him "the kick in the pants" that he had needed to propose. Then Nick and Avery kissed.
Nick and Avery's wedding has not taken place yet, and soaps have a trend of having non-weddings these days. I remember back in the day, when soaps had the huge production weddings. Those were very glamorous and so much fun. I think the most notable weddings were Luke and Laura's wedding (of course) on General Hospital and Cliff and Nina's wedding on All My Children. I can still picture Nina, looking like a princess, as she arrived to marry her beloved "prince," Cliff. It was very romantic!
Unfortunately, big production weddings are very expensive, and soaps just cannot afford to have them anymore. However, I am not sure that Nick and Avery's wedding will take place anyway, since Avery still has unresolved feelings for Dylan. Time will tell, I am sure.
Chloe, Chloe, Chloe...what are we to do with you? I have to admit -- Chloe is not boring. But she is still trying to steer Chelsea to trap Dylan into being Chelsea's baby daddy, no matter how it would affect Dylan. Who cares about Dylan? (Or "Blue Eyes," as Chloe refers to him.) Apparently, not Chloe.
Unfortunately, Chloe's advice appears to have stuck with Chelsea, since Chelsea told Sharon that her baby was not Adam's, after Sharon saw Chelsea's prenatal vitamins. If she is to stick with her lie, Chelsea will have to fabricate that Dylan is the father to keep Adam from learning the truth. If this happens, at least Dylan will have Cane to turn to for support as another faux-father who had been duped. Chloe spreads hurt and sorrow with this same fabrication and never seems to learn her lesson.
What is even worse is that Chloe and Kevin have now decided that it is okay to steal from friends, as long as they give part of it to charity. Really? How is it okay to steal from the very people who love you and who have stood by you? However, Kevin took it a step further and on a whim, stole from a rich person who was walking his dog. Strangely enough, Chloe was horrified by this. I guess in Chloe's world, it is fine to steal from friends, but not from strangers.
Chloe's reasoning is since she and Kevin were playing Robin Hood, they could steal from Katherine and the charity, as long as they gave part of it to the charity. But Kevin claimed it was also acceptable to steal from the dog-walker, because he was rich. Chloe maintained that they could not do that, because that is not what there marriage was all about. Kevin had me laughing out loud when he responded, "I don't know. I was thinking that until you put on that catsuit and started playing Bonnie to my Clyde, this marriage wasn't about much." Ha, take that, Chloe!
While Sharon lay on her couch, dreaming of a drunken Adam swooping in at her place to take her in his arms and kiss her, Adam had actually arrived at Jabot to talk to Chelsea. Adam had remembered that it was the anniversary date of Chelsea's due date for their baby that had died. Chelsea admitted that she had not forgotten but then exclaimed that she was the new, old Chelsea, who did not want to be Adam's sucker any longer. After Sharon disclosed to Adam, the next morning, that Chelsea was pregnant with someone else's baby, Adam ran off to confront Chelsea (and Dylan, who happened to be there, of course) about the baby. Everyone knows what is coming next: Chelsea will cover by saying that Dylan is the father. I am sure of it. So, here we go down the fake baby-daddy storyline again, and it is just a matter of time before we also have switched paternity tests to accompany it. We have done this before, fans, and it looks like we are doing it again. Oh, joy.
And speaking of Sharon, doesn't that cottage have a bedroom with a bed and furnishings? Why is Sharon always sleeping on the couch? Earlier in the week, when Adam was still nursing his gunshot wound, Sharon volunteered to move back into Adam's mansion to help care for him. Does Sharon really think that seesawing back and forth between her place and Adam's provides a stable environment for Faith to grow up in? If Sharon thinks that, is she really still taking her medication? (We know that she is, because we saw her take it in one scene.) Or does Sharon just lack common sense?
The writers have supposedly explained away all of Sharon's crazy behavior with her bipolar disorder, but her recent behavior seems awfully similar to what we have seen from her before. She claims that she loves her kids, but she had always put Adam over Faith in the past. And it appears she would do it again in a heartbeat. I guess Sharon's problems are more than just her bipolar disorder.
Now, for my pick for Y&R Two Scoops Trooper of the week. The Two Scoops Trooper would be the character who triumphs over tragedy or bad circumstances. For me, that would be not only the character of Katherine Chancellor, but I am also hoping for the actress, Jeanne Cooper. In the last update that I read, Jeanne has been making progress in small steps, so we can only keep sending her our positive thoughts and prayers while she is recovering in the hospital. The character of Katherine had also been battling her own health issues when she discovered that she has a brain tumor. The tumor is causing her to lose her memory at times, which, at first, resulted in her fear that she had Alzheimer's. Thankfully, that was not her diagnosis; however, she still has a tough time ahead for the surgery.
Cane, who is my pick for Y&R Two Scoops Super-Duper, has been with Katherine for support. The Two Scoops Super-Duper is the character who has gone above and beyond the call of duty, or who has had a shining moment. When Cane asked Katherine again to consider telling her family the truth about her health, Katherine remarked, "The last thing that I would want is their helping. I mean, Murphy would just do nothing but coddle, Jill would launch into histrionics, and I would wind up comforting her."
How true -- and funny! Katherine claimed that once they heard the word "tumor," Jill and Murphy would be self-conscious, while they weighed every word, and then hover, be fretful, and be terrorized with dread. Katherine declared that it was her life, her body, and her decision, before she stormed out on Cane. But Cane will continue to support her, and he will stay with her during her surgery. She will need him.
In this very hectic world, soaps are a much-needed escape during tough or sad times. And this week was especially sad with the tragedies of the Boston Marathon bombings, and of the West, Texas, explosion. But Soap Central also had a very sad development with the passing of Y&R and B&B Two Scoops columnist Allison J. Waldman. Personally, I was a fan of her writing for both Two Scoops columns, and I thought she was informative, insightful, and humorous. I will try to capture the spirit of Y&R in my columns, much as she did in hers. I know that I will miss her columns, as will her many, many fans.
So, that is all for me this week. Nita will return, as usual, next week, and I will be back again in two weeks. Please feel free to submit any comments about Y&R to me, as I always love to read what other fans have to say about our favorite characters and show. I have found that soap fans are loyal and dedicated, and that is what makes the world go around. I am proud to be a Y&R fan specifically, and a soap fan in general. We, as soap fans, have shown that we are a force to reckon with, as we have proven time after time when the networks have canceled our shows. Hopefully, times are getting better for soaps, and we must remain united to keep them on the air. Until next time, take care.
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.