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Y&R: Is It The Breakdowns?

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Unless I'm mistaken, the LML/primetime writers are doing the breakdowns right now... Usually, I noticed Bell and Alden (and their BD writers) paired a couple of A storylines, with a couple of B ones, etc... That way, the less-interesting or in-early-stages storylines would be much more sufferable, for a lack of a better word. You weren't very invested in them, but you also had the A stories, so it kind of balanced itself out.

But right now, that is definitely not the case. Yes, there aren't really many stories that matter right now, but there are veteran characters that seem to add some gravitas to the stories and some newbies that don't. So, instead of pairing Victor/Sabrina, Nikki/David, with a little bit of Phyllis/Nick and Amber/Daniel (or other combinations), we have Amber/Daniel, Nick/Phyllis, Gloria/Jeff, Lily/Cane, Adrian/Colleen, Kevin/Jana all on the same episode, and they all suck, scene after scene after scene. True, the others do too, but at least the veterans make it a little bit better.

So would the show seem a lot better if it just mixed its veterans and its newbies more (and if it got, like, a couple of real stories)? Naturally, it is just the BDs, but just a thought....

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Well, this whole team plain sucks:

Head Writer

Maria Arena Bell

Co-Head Writer

Hogan Sheffer

Associate Head Writers

Scott Hamner

Beth Milstein (script editor)

Natalie Minardi Slater

Breakdown Writers

Paula Cwikly

Jay Gibson

Marla Kanelos

Lisa Seidman

James Stanley


Amanda L. Beall

Cherie Bennet & Jeff Gottesfeld

Eric Freiwald & Linda Schreiber

Darin Goldberg & Shelley Meals

Christian McLaughlin & Valerie Ahern

Marc Parent

Thom Racina

Sandra Weintraub

And even when they fire those infamous 7 (if that's the show Tous talked about) - it's not going to get all that better.

The show needs writing surgery, a really long and tedious operation that will last for hours and that will in the end and hopefully bring the show to a better state.

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Okay, I'm trying to get a handle on something though.

You say "we have Amber/Daniel, Nick/Phyllis, Gloria/Jeff, Lily/Cane, Adrian/Colleen, Kevin/Jana all on the same episode, and they all suck, scene after scene after scene. True, the others do too, but at least the veterans make it a little bit better". I think there are many "veterans" in the scenes you list: Daniel, Nick, Phyllis, Gloria, Kevin, Lily...these folks have been on the show 5-10 years! They are not "newbies".

So, are you saying that you want the REALLY old-timers (Paul, Nikki, Victor, Brad, Katherine, Jill) mixed in with your list?

I think I agree with you. I like to see the full canvas...from young to old, and from new to original.

But I think many of the actors in your list count as veterans AND have proven themselves as very capable in previous storylines.

I don't think the problem is "veteran" status...I think it is the lack of a compelling storyline...superficial writing, no high stakes. Because we have seen Amber, Daniel, Nick, Phyllis, Gloria, Lily, and Kevin all BRING IT in major storylines they have had in the past.

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Honestly, I think it's improved in the last few weeks. For the summer time, I think we're actually get a good mix of characters. The RS crew isn't eating up the show as much, though less Victor and Gloria would be nice too.

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Well, Nick and Phyllis are old characters, but they have certainly been sucked dry out of all complexities and interest. As for Kevin, Gloria, etc, technically they're very recent characters (compared to decades of the others) but also they're just not that good. Gloria can't be compared to Kay and Jill. Daniel can't be compared to someone with Victor's status on the show. In no way, shape or form, even if they have been on for 4, 5 years! :lol:

Of course, I'm not claiming that veterans will suddenly make the show good. They can't. But seeing more of Jill with a little bit of Lily bothers we faaaaaaaar less that seeing Heather, Adam, Kevin, Jana, Jeff, Victoria (who has been neutered), Gloria, Adrian, Collen by themselves. When it rains, it pours!

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And that says it all. No amount of fabulous dialogue writers, superb outliners, the whole armada of excellent story/creative consultants can make a bad storyline projection shine all of a sudden. Yes, they might make it bearable on a daily basis, like when GH dialogue writers make me watch the - how did LoyaltoAMC call it - "landfill of putrid storylines"... But that is not a long-term strategy...

But then another problem arises - yet another writing team? Yet another HW? Another vision? How much more can these ratings plummet?

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I'm over GH's writing team. They're good, but not that good to make me keep up with that garbage. Not to mention, I'm tired of seeing the same old tired actors get the "Emmy bait" material to play out. Yet, GH wonders why they fall short of Emmy noms. Hmmm.....

If you look back at the June analysis many vets were pretty much listed, and Chapman and Braeden are in the top two positions for the year, and it shows!

1. Judith Chapman (Gloria Bardwell) 19

2. Eric Braeden (Victor Newman) 15

*. Raya Meddine (Sabrina Newman) 15

4. Jess Walton (Jill Abbott) 14

*. Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki Chow) 14

*. Vincent Irizarry (David Chow) 14

7. Chris Engen (Adam Wilson) 13

*. Ted Shackelford (Jeffrey Bardwell) 13

9. Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott) 12

*. Sharon Case (Sharon Abbott) 12

*. Christel Khalil (Lily Winters) 12

*. Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Baldwin) 12

13. Jeanne Cooper (Katherine Chancellor) 10

*. Joshua Morrow (Nick Newman) 10

*. Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters) 10

*. Christian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin) 10

*. Amelia Heinle (Victoria Hellstrom) 10

*. Greg Rikaart (Kevin Fisher) 10

*. Bryton McClure (Devon Hamilton) 10

20. Adrienne Frantz (Amber Moore) 9

*. Emily O'Brien (Jana Hawkes) 9

*. Daniel Goddard (Cane Ashby) 9

23. Doug Davidson (Paul Williams) 8

*. Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Newman) 8

*. Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe Mitchell) 8

26. Don Diamont (Brad Carlton) 7

*. Eyall Podell (Adrian Korbel) 7

*. Vail Bloom (Heather Stevens) 7

29. Nia Peeples (Karen Taylor) 6

30. Tammin Sursok (Colleen Carlton) 5

31. Jerry Douglas (Alistair Wallingford-3; John Abbott-2) 4

32. Kate Linder (Esther Valentine) 3

*. Thad Luckinbill (J.T. Hellstrom) 3

*. Hunter Allan (Noah Newman) 3

*. Cynthia Sikes (Zara Costelana) 3

36. Eva Pigford (Tyra Hamilton) 2

*. Jamia Simone Nash (Ana Hamilton) 2

*. Eileen Davidson (Ashley Abbott) 2

*. Darcy Rose Byrnes (Abby Carlton) 2

*. Tatyana Ali (Roxanne) 2

*. Scott Hoxby (Walter Palin) 2

*. K.T. Thangavelu (Judge) 2

*. Jeff Lorch (Ivo Marks) 2

*. Mandell Maughan (Lynsey) 2

*. Uncredited actor (Minister) 2

46. Martyn Lawrence Bullard (Himself) 1

*. McCready Baker (Mina King) 1

*. Elizabeth Abbott (Norma) 1

*. Katy Perry (Herself) 1

*. Little Richard (Himself) 1

*. Adam Tsekhman (Chapel Manager) 1

*. Uncredited actor (Paul's friend) 1

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*sheepishly raises his hand* "I do, I do".

But let me explain. I HATE her current story. They wasted Jerry Douglas as Alistair, I can't stand her flip-flopping with the vile Jeff, and I loathed her ostentatious lack of humility at the Fourth of July.

But I love every campy inch of Gloria. Some call her the "new Jill" (implying she stole Jess Walton's place), but Gloria is much more "gay icon" than Jill ever was. (Well, that's not true. Than Jess Walton's Jill ever was :) ). Gloria is the kind of showy over the top character that always brings a smile, rather like B&B's Sally Spectra. Moreover, she is not just comic relief. She has had serious and painful moments that have really stuck with me. (Most recently when Jeff was just VILE to her after the divorce, at the GCAC).

Again, I contrast the actor/character (which I love) with the storyline and degree of balance (which I hate). I think Gloria could be backburnered a bit, and she could be very effective in that role. As a 60-something, she should not be playing 20-something storylines.

I'd love to see Gloria struggle with something that REALLY challenges her femininity and her looks...like breast cancer or even just alopecia. This could bring her down a few notches.

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Y&R's breakdown writers are it's problem, I've always said that. Most of them still think Y&R is a primetime show, hence why Nikki is at the Athletic Club in one scene and at Crimson Lights in the following scene, little things like that. They need to go, Y&R needs breakdown writers who are familiar with traditional soap opera structure, not flop primetime writers.

Then again, B&B's staff is almost 100% made up of Y&R exiles, and B&B is creatively in the gutter at the moment, so...

Even though I'm not fond of Maria's recent additions, she is adding more real soap writers to the staff and I assume she's gradually getting rid of Latham's primetime friends. If that's the cast, I'll take a wait and see approach and see how things work out in the long run.

All I can say is, with Maria's slow paced story arcs, the rapid pace of the breakdowns DO NOT MATCH AT ALL.

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It IS the breakdowns. It isn't the scripts and it really isn't the storylines (I am coming around to MAB, I hope that continues and she surprises me) nor is it the actors. It's the breakdowns. MAB writes at a slow pace and yet the episodes are primetime hell. I notice a big difference between Paula Cwikly's breakdowns and anyone else's. She, of course, is a soap writer so she knows the pace, nobody else does!

The past few weeks have been a big improvement. Hopefully that will carry on.

There is much firing to be done, everyone associated with primetime has GOT to go.

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