I can only guess that the YnR writers are burning-out from the fabulous time they’ve been having rebuilding the YnR and making it a show worthy of its top-rated position in the ratings. What else explains:
1- why the writers have decided to have a three way “who’s the daddy?” storyline with Sharon/Nick/Billy/Jack? Daytime writers seem to always be in the process of one-upping each other in plotting to offer something ‘different’ by way of storyline; something ‘never seen before’. But why is it that the ‘something different’ is almost always a plot that makes soap fans cringe with embarrassment to say that they’re daytime viewers? DAYS gave us Marlena’s demonic possession. PASSIONS gave daytime a bad reputation, PERIOD. AMC gave us an ‘unabortion’. GL gave us (temporarily) twins with separate fathers and cloning. The BnB gave us a back-from-the-dead storyline with a character who’d been viewed in a casket for days (it was a wax dummy, don’t you know?) GH gave us the ‘Ice Princess’, OLTL gave us the DID storyline with Viki Buchanan – ok, this one was freakin’ fabulous!… Now the YnR gives us a variation on the daytime “Who’s Your Daddy?” theme. This storyline feels more like a ‘Maury’ episode than a daytime plot.
If the writers are determined to fight the groundswell return to Sharon and Nick, so be it… just DON’T put them together, but what is the purpose of having Sharon sleep with almost every male (of age) on this show? What’s with the rumors that the father is actually a fourth, previously unnamed male? My guess? If it’s true, it’s either ‘the great man’, himself, Victor Newman, or it’s now-deceased Brad Carlton… OR we’ll find out that Sharon has secretly slept with both and only one is the father… OR, she’s carrying twins, one is Victor’s and one is Brad’s?
Why the hell not? When you put that much effort into destroying your show’s lead romantic heroine, you might as well go all the way.
At what point did YnR writers start trashing the show’s history? At what point did they decide that character development was for losers? Any fan remembers that Sharon was Nick’s long suffering wife who couldn’t find her husband when she needed him most – when their daughter was killed in an accident. Nick deserted his grieving family and when he did return, he began a sexual affair with the show’s resident homewrecker, Phyllis-then-Abbott-now-Newman. His wife was crying for their dead daughter, he was getting laid.
Phyllis’ disregard of Sharon’s grief surpassed her own selfish disregard of Christine’s grief, when she became pregnant with another man’s child and passed that child off as Danny’s. Don’t get me wrong, that’s when I became a Phyllis fan – ‘St. Cricket’ drove me mad! I couldn’t wait for someone to take her down a peg and love-to-hate Phyllis was perfect for that. Then the writers transformed her from a love-to-hate character to one I could root for without checking my conscience at the daytime door.
I loved watching her take on Diane and her various schemes to break up Phyllis’ marriage to Jack. I knew it was part of the ‘divine retribution’ poor Phyllis had coming and so I was patient, and waited for her to prevail (the wicked Phyllis over the even MORE wicked Diane).
By the time the Sharon/Nick/Phyllis storyline came along, I realized that the only thing that had changed about Phyllis was the calendar year. She was still the same selfish, thoughtless, pants-dropping person she’d been in the past and what a HUGE disappointment. This time, it wasn’t as much fun around. She wasn’t helping a loser husband destroy his marriage of the town’s hypocritical resident saint. She was helping a different loser destroy his marriage to a deeply grieving, lonely, frustrated mother who wanted nothing more than to hold her deceased daughter, or at least hold her husband to help her through the pain. Phyllis had become so much better than that – I thought.
It’s not that Nick was much better, he’s always been a man-whore extraordinaire. It’s just that in THIS case, I allowed myself to believe that his wretched cheating ass was grieving with his little brain. Other than Phyllis being pathetic, what was HER excuse?
THIS is the scene that plays in my mind when I see Nick and Phyllis together:
To ‘even’ the score between the two women, the writers decided to have Sharon behave as classless as both Nick AND Phyllis? Sure, writers, that’s the way to get fans to tune in… don’t bother with building your characters UP… don’t have Nick finally become a BETTER MAN and realize that without sex, he and Phyllis have nothing. Don’t have Phyllis realize that she’d sold her dignity to have a man she never really wanted and who could never have really loved her once the grief cloud cleared… just tear everyone else down too! It’s quicker and takes less creative effort!
Now Sharon is pregnant, with multiple possible baby’s daddies… is that supposed to make fans NOT want Nick and Sharon back together? Is it supposed to make fans root for Phyllis? Are fans supposed to want to see Sharon ‘get hers’? I’m thinking that the only thing this storyline is going to do is cause fans to tune out even faster than before.
HEY, while you’re at it? Why not make Lily a stripper and have Nikki coach her on the fine art of shakin’ it? Why not make Victor a con man? He can take Murphy and Kaye for all they’re worth! Victor could start with the people who love and trust him most and work his way out! Why not have him take all of the money and property Brad left Colleen, just for kicks? He could throw her out on the streets where she’ll hide out, in shame, we’ll all pretend to forget that she’s related to the Abbotts and that they could take her in. Watching her survive the streets would be far more ‘fun’ instead. Mac could decide that all that ‘do-gooder’ crap is for suckers, and she could become a cut-throat corporate raider. Billy could become a gigolo (only, collecting money for his services, this time. The man has just been giving it away!) Why not have Neil, who is as straight-laced as they come, start sleeping around and betraying his family?
OH WAIT! That brings me to
2 – The destruction of Neil. No one is saying that Neil should remain the pious (and at times overly-judgmental) man he’s always been, but what’s the point of changing his character all at once? What’s the point of having Neil fight to help Karen open her heart and trust him, only to fall into bed with Tyra and fall instantly in love with her? Neil and Karen were JUST married! There are any number of cads on this show, Even if the writers decided to have Neil become one of them, ease us INTO it writers! Don’t shock our systems by having Neil become unlikable overnight. What is it about Tyra that appeals to Neil, other than the fact that she’s beautiful, especially since Karen is a beautiful woman as well? Tyra isn’t an especially interesting character.
Neil’s life was torn apart by Dru’s (assault at Malcolm’s hands? Affair with Malcolm? I’m not sure how to classify it). His heartbreak was palpable and he became one of the most easily sympathetic characters in daytime. This storyline makes a joke of that time in his life. Dru worked incredibly hard to earn his forgiveness. He punished her in every way possible. He publicly humiliated her. He treated her like a naughty child. Now? He’s just one more lying cheat who believes he deserves more than he gives.
I once suspected that Guiding Light had an “A Team” set of writers and a ‘B Team” set of writers – before the show started ROCKIN’. It’s starting to feel as if the YnR is following suit. The show is starting to feel disjointed, and the demeaning of fan favorites (like Sharon and Neil) is beginning to feel intentional. I’ll pass!