Michael Muhney on Young and Restless Viewer Erosion "How Do You Plug That Leak?"



The Young and the Restless' Michael Muhney is one who never pulls any punches. Muhney spoke with TV Watercooler regarding his thoughts on what can make the #1 show in daytime live up to the title.

Days of our Lives is going through a reboot to bring back the viewers they lost, what about The Young and the Restless? It's been the number one rated soap opera in the United States and Canada, however the ratings are falling. Fans aren't too happy with the current storylines. They want to see Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott) back for instance, rather than new characters that aren't working out. What's being done to make fans happy?

I have just heard some good news. There's optimism that can be had on the horizon, in terms of steering the ship in more finer, maybe acute direction. Just a couple of weeks ago, there were folks that were let go from the show [Tristian Rogers (Colin), Darius McCrary (Malcolm), Sean Patrick Flanery (Sam) along with Eden Riegel (Heather)]. I sniff on the horizon that perhaps another three or four in another six months ago. There's been talk by journalists, my fellow actors, by fans and by the network that we have a rather large cast. What if we streamline the cast and knock off, and this is just an arbitrary number, 10 folks and we really cut the fat off? I think that's happening.

I want to tell people that I think there's going to be a stronger focus on core characters. I think it's going to take some time, after Thanksgiving, but before Christmas. It's already happening. I can sense that the show is telling stories about more core folks and getting rid of other characters.Yeah, it's losing viewers. It's hemorrhaging viewers at times, and you have to wonder, how do you plug that leak?

To read the entire interview, click here!


Comments

SoapArmageddon's picture
Member since:
22 January 2011
Last activity:
15 hours 58 min

Michael, I love you. But you refuse to say what really needs to be said, "As long as Maria Arena Bell holds the reins at Y&R, the show will never be as good as it has been in the past and can be again."

Member since:
8 November 2009
Last activity:
24 weeks 14 hours

No offense to Michael but his character and all the despicable things that Y&R has let Adam get away with is part of the problem.

harlee490's picture
Member since:
6 December 2009
Last activity:
1 hour 26 min

Michael is just plain wrong. I read this a couple of days ago and it sounds like spin to me. But the drumbeat is getting stronger and CBS and must be starting to feel the pressure. Sony, who knows because of the guy in-charge and his email address is not reading any of the emails he's deleting all. So snail is the best way and still been sending one out once a week. As long as Murdering Maria and the whole writing staff is intact nothing will change. Maria has made many statements how she writes "character driven" stories...is a big fat LIE. If Sony really wants to step in and do something then put the pressure on who needs to realize Maria is NOT the right person for the Y&R is Bill Bell, Jr. her husband. The Bells are in denial or they just don't want to make the change because of family. Family is one thing but business is a whole another ballgame. MAB is destroying this soap, the cast has to also be feeling the aniexty of the fans. Regardless of who they try to put out front, God Bless MTS for coming back but until MAB is gone I won't return as a viewer.

Member since:
19 August 2010
Last activity:
2 weeks 6 days

No offense, but letting Tristan Rogers go was not good news especially to this viewer..Actually letting him go is the main reason this longtime viewer will stop watching when he leave... Taken away Jill Abbott (a legacy character) love interest especially when Jess and Tristan chemistry was so amazing and Jill and Colin was becoming a popular pair) does not endears fans to the show. It was not a good move period....They really need to bring him back..The actors ain't the problem. The show need news writers that knows how to write for soap operas and tell 18traditional soap stories.

Coffee_Junkie's picture
Member since:
30 March 2009
Last activity:
1 day 1 hour

Michael Muhney is entirely too mouthy for his own good and he'd better be careful sounding off the way he does or he'll be one of the remaining five that they let go. He keeps whining in his tweets why they keep giving him long stretches of time off. They do the same thing to Kristoff St. John whenever he says "too much" to the soap media.

True, Tristan Rogers was one of those refugees from another soap, but (IMHO) it was a DREADFUL mistake letting him go. Plus Y&R is not *trimming the fat.* Every time they let someone go they hire 3 or 4 new people. We have some American Idol reject coming on, some chick pertaining to Billy's storyline, Lauren's son Scotty coming back, and a couple more characters I can't think of at the moment.

This show is a TRAIN WRECK. And I'm about to get off.

Member since:
13 February 2009
Last activity:
22 weeks 2 days

What an ego. Of course he is putting himself in that circle of "core characters" but I'm sure he'll gritch when he sees the teflon Victor stealing all the screenspace and Adam having less time. On the other hand, kissing up to MAB may be the safest thing to do. Get on her bad side an you're out. Be on her good side (ahem... Genie Francis) and you stay on no matter how much fans complain. I'm wondering about"Occupy Beverly Blvd" (CBS) or "Occupy Washington Blvd" (Sony) events, because these corporations use us for our money (through ratings and sponsors), claim "CBS Cares" (rme), yet throw us all under the bus. Bell got rid of pure gold in having Tristan on the show. She taunted us with a feast, and let us get a good taste, and then slung it off the table in lieu of moldy oatmeal.

Yes, yes, yes, the cast is too full, but look at how easily Bell adds unnecessary parts that bring nothing. Tristan filled out a need for Cane and Jill, and answered (or was supposed to answer) questions about Cane's past. Colin bolstered Jill's part and I smiled and laughed during my show for the first time in a long while. Sure cut some part, like GenV, Yoharmony, the incoming mobsters that have nothing to do with Colin. While you're at it, get rid of Adam.

alstonboy4315's picture
Member since:
12 February 2010
Last activity:
6 weeks 1 day

How do you stop the hemorrhage? Get rid of Hackarena Bell. Simple as that.

jetty's picture
Member since:
19 June 2009
Last activity:
49 weeks 2 days

I haven't watched Y&R in about two months and won't go back until MAB is gone and at least some of the storyline travesties are fixed. The story with Delia's leukemia was the final straw for me (my mom died of the same illness and I didn't want to revisit that), but the dreadful, never-ending stories and loathsome characters on this show made it very hard to watch at all.

I'm convinced TPTB are in line with what the networks want: To destroy the remaining daytime soaps on all networks by spacing out the cancellations of the remaining shows (don't need to send up another red flag like the joint axing of AMC/OLTL), replace them with cheaper programming, keep the highest upper management execs in network berths, and fire middle management, cast, and crew.

The_Moustache's picture
Member since:
17 June 2009
Last activity:
1 week 9 min

FIRE THE WRITERS AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS ASAP!!!

THEY ARE THE REASON THE SHOW IS SHEDDING VIEWERS.

soapbaby's picture
Member since:
7 April 2011
Last activity:
22 hours 14 min

^^ jetty, I am sorry to hear about your mother and do not blame you for not watching the Delia s/l, it's disgusting enough with Victor and Michael's behavior without the possibility of kicking up sad memories.

I agree with you about the networks wanting out of soaps. But Sony oversees Days of Our Lives and with it's reboot, it's been very good.

jetty's picture
Member since:
19 June 2009
Last activity:
49 weeks 2 days

Thank you for the kind remarks, soapbaby!

I've never been a regular DOOL viewer (although I used to keep up with all the shows through Soap Opera Digest and weekly soap updates in the paper), but I did watch a couple of episode on SoapNet since the reboot. It looks a million times better (a lot less purple!) and was happy to see familiar faces. Hope the ratings start to reflect the show's improved quality.

Restless Fan's picture
Member since:
12 December 2008
Last activity:
13 hours 51 min

As long as Maria Bell and Hogan Sheffer are allowed to smear their stink on this show it will never get better. The storytelling needs to be radically overhauled. These writers rush through plot like the show is about to end. They write cliche story after cliche story. They have no respect for the history of it's characters and almost all of the new characters they have created have been inferior to the legacy ones.

Focusing on the vets is nice (and sadly it took them losing almost a million viewers since May to figure that out) but with the limited creative talent of both these writers the problem will always exist. Get rid of both these hacks now!!!

Member since:
15 January 2009
Last activity:
2 weeks 5 days

I hope his character is the next to go permanently. I've been enjoying the lack of "Adam" on the screen.

soapbaby's picture
Member since:
7 April 2011
Last activity:
22 hours 14 min

You are welcome jetty.

Ya know, I am just a "see it to believe it" kinda girl. I mean, I counted DAYS out years ago and upon September 26_ BOOM_ back in love again! Y&R and GH both need major overhauls. I will not believe any statements of improvement until I see it played out on screen. DAYS is delivering quality and while it does, I will support it. Just that simple.

Ryan-Scott's picture
Member since:
4 May 2009
Last activity:
8 hours 24 min

Tell good story. That's how the leak gets plugged.

soapjunkie88's picture
Member since:
3 July 2008
Last activity:
1 day 12 hours

Sony & CBS need to fire MAB & her team. Get rid of Scott Hamner, who somehow is still there from LML's era.

Then get back Ed Scott as the executive producer. Maybe even rehire Kay Alden. She was ten times better than MAB on her best day. I rather have some stolen sperm storyline than this nonsense.

As for Michael, it's great that an actor makes his opinion known. I'm all for it. But how they are writing the character of Adam has really become part of the problem. When they broke that connection between Sharon and Adam (that he would never hurt her intentionally again), his character was dead and buried to me.
In this interview, I thought it was very sad what we found out about Maura West's last days on the set. Just be glad that you are off that horrible show, Maura!!!

Cyberologist's picture
Member since:
27 December 2007
Last activity:
30 min 24 sec

I realize the guy can't say his boss has to go I mean especially since she is a Bell but actually that is the problem IMO an Executive Producer/Headwriter rolled into one...

Even when Niki was on the canvas how was she written? As a Victor Newman doormat.

I mean its the writing basically you can get rid of character X, Y Z but if the "storytelling is the problem" then you got a problem. Personally I am not pleased with the way Tristan, Genie, Stephen are being written...

core what?

I mean aren't the Newmans in story? Aren't the Abbotts in story many fans want Jabot back in Abbot hands yet Maria refuses to do this ...

Aren't the Winters in story? Devon finally has a storyline without SiLLy. I like Cane but I'm tired of this I hate my mummy /daddy crap now we get two other icons of daytime Debbi Morgan/Stephen Nichols in a I hate my mummy /daddy storyline...so?

Isn't Phyllis in a storyline with her sister who I don't give two hoots about...

Its how these stories are told Also treating your actors lie crap them finding out they've been fired online isn't endearing Maria get your shit together for the good of the show admit you're burnt out and delegate. You're still the big cheese.

ldylkng's picture
Member since:
14 July 2009
Last activity:
3 days 2 hours

Go away Michael, He acts like he has been a core character! Well, if I were in charge he would be gone,baby ,GONE!!!

Yes, he can act, But the writers destroyed the man early on, he needs to go to prison,Pay for his sins, and come back in a couple of years as the man his Mother would have really raised. Hope would be spinning in her grave.

Member since:
7 November 2009
Last activity:
2 hours 7 min

I see my main man, Alstonboy is right on as usual, about HACKARENA.

alstonboy4315's picture
Member since:
12 February 2010
Last activity:
6 weeks 1 day

Nice to see you on here, yojoromo! Always a pleasure!

Smile Smile

gato1's picture
Member since:
29 October 2009
Last activity:
2 weeks 4 days

With all due respect to all the Colin/Jill shippers, I dont get it!!! They were on together maybe once a week & his relationship with her was always an afterthought!

Member since:
11 December 2008
Last activity:
6 weeks 4 hours

I'm aware that Y&R was losing viewers under LML,but it was a trickle. I don't think the deluge started until Adam's gaslighting of Ashley and the unfortunate fireplace incident. Not only did he get away with it, but they tried to make him look like a victim. And before that, we had Victor telling Nikki that he wished her dead instead of what's-her-name. I mean, I almost quit Y&R myself after that. No offense to MM, but The Newman Show turned a whole lot of viewers off, so I don't get why he's feeling so secure. MAB/HS/SH have taken this show in a direction that viewers just don't want to go. The misogyny, the overused doppelgangers, the senseless killing of characters, the way long-term characters are behaving in ways they NEVER would before... there's just not enough bandwidth to describe the depths of my anger over the HW's butchering of what used to be a classic soap.

We need Headwriters who respect the audience and the genre. As a woman, I am constantly insulted by what they write for us.

For Whom the Bells Toll's picture
Member since:
26 August 2011
Last activity:
11 hours 54 min

I recently watched parts of old episodes from the 80's on YouTube with Jerry Douglas and realised what the show is missing - characters you can respect, who are GOOD people with hearts. There is too much evil,nastiness and ruthlessness now. No more murder mysteries are needed or characters straying from their innate personalties. The show needs to give us more love and romance and incorporate storylines that are relevant to the 21st century.
Also, how many times does Jack have to try to get control of Jabot - LET HIM HAVE IT and stories can develop from this. Crown Crown
Victor has become the "father from hell" : I thought Colleen's heart might have redeemed him in some way but he now thinks he can play God and he is an awful character! Evil Evil Evil Evil Evil
Michael is another character who has become a "yes" man and he now has no morals or heart in regard to the assignments he takes. Would Lauren approve of what he is doing to Billy? He is a father for God's sake!!! Wink
Get new writers in and get them to read the history of the show and also sit them down to look at old episodes to get a feel for what is good story-telling.............please!!!!! Sad( Sad( Sad( Sad( Sad( Sad(

Member since:
5 May 2010
Last activity:
15 weeks 4 days

It's always nice to see a genius analysis from Michael Muhney, self declared smart person.

soapjunkie88's picture
Member since:
3 July 2008
Last activity:
1 day 12 hours

gato1 wrote:
With all due respect to all the Colin/Jill shippers, I dont get it!!! They were on together maybe once a week & his relationship with her was always an afterthought!

I totally agree with you. Not to mention that Colin was another poorly developed character under MAB. Tristan Rogers is a fantastic actor and his chemistry with Jess Walton was great ... but seriously, his character - this awful background mess of Cane didn't do Colin any favors. And then ... he had to be a mob boss.

I won't be missing him. Y&R isn't that kind of show that needs a character like Colin.

Member since:
15 October 2011
Last activity:
2 years 24 weeks

This guy who plays Adam has a gigantic ego. Who is he to comment on the fate of other actors? I truly hope Adam leaves the show, because he and nuHeather are the reason I stopped watching!

alstonboy4315's picture
Member since:
12 February 2010
Last activity:
6 weeks 1 day

For Whom the Be....

I agree with your assessment. I find it difficult to root for ANYONE on this show anymore, because they are all either a.) too ruthless, b.) too bitchy, c.) too stupid or d.) too boring to give a rat's ass about. There is nothing of any real substance that is worth the emotional investment anymore.

Member since:
11 December 2008
Last activity:
6 weeks 4 hours

Quote:
This guy who plays Adam has a gigantic ego. Who is he to comment on the fate of other actors? I truly hope Adam leaves the show, because he and nuHeather are the reason I stopped watching!

The ironic part of MM's "genius" (side-eye) analysis and comments about the fate of other actors is that HE was whining all over another MB not that long ago about people who didn't like Adam because he had a family to support and implied people who were calling for Adam to leave Genoa City would put his job in jeopardy.

But I guess it's OK to get rid of every other character except for his. Nobody else needs a regular income right?

The Adam character is actually one of the worst things to happen to this show and MM is not the second-coming of YR.

Member since:
4 March 2009
Last activity:
49 weeks 2 days

Restless Fan wrote:
The storytelling needs to be radically overhauled. These writers rush through plot like the show is about to end. They write cliche story after cliche story. They have no respect for the history of it's characters and almost all of the new characters they have created have been inferior to the legacy ones.

Focusing on the vets is nice (and sadly it took them losing almost a million viewers since May to figure that out) but with the limited creative talent of both these writers the problem will always exist. Get rid of both these hacks now!!!

Spot on! They made the mistake of not checking the history or think viewers don't remember old storylines- sorry but WE do! We know what good story telling and execution is because many of us have been watching for decades and this is NOT it!

SoapArmageddon's picture
Member since:
22 January 2011
Last activity:
15 hours 58 min

Restless Fan and Chelley 62, your posts speak eloquently to the state of this show today.

I've watched Days since the eighties and Y&R since the early nineties. When Days was bad, I felt really sad and embarrassed. My history with that show goes back to my childhood, so it was like being hurt by a family member.

Now that Y&R is bad, I'm not sad; I'm furious. It feels like being betrayed by someone you thought was a really good friend. I try to keep my posts on any particular topic balanced. There is way too much negativity in the world. The only positive thing I can say about Y&R is that at least the veteran performers are still there.