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Just How Desperate is The Young and the Restless?

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Jersey Shore is a cultural phenomenon. It has made Snooki, The Situation and Pauly D household names. The show has inspired countless spoofs and knockoffs and now The Young and the Restless has fallen under its drunken spell. On October 31, American Idol runner up Diana DeGarmo makes her debut as Angelina, a character being compared in various articles and interviews to Jersey Shore’s Snooki. However, every time I read something about the new character I find myself asking myself why, just why?

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Regardless of who portrayed the character—because I have absolutely nothing against DeGarmo—why does Y&R need yet another big name stunt cast? Remember Sean Young's Meggie? Of late, Y&R hasn't even written well for soap icons like Tristan Rogers, Eden Riegel and Genie Francis. Why is the brass focusing on something like this when this show desperately needs to get back to once made it the fine wine of soaps? I realize soaps are trying to draw younger viewers and the real-life Snooki is definitely popular with that demo, but what's the purpose of wasting time creating a Snooki-lite, when the show currenty has a bloated cast, starring in half a dozen lackluster stories with no emotional resonance or pay off?

It was one thing when Y&R introduced a SORASED Abby (Marcy Rylan) as the Naked Heiress, a blatant celebutante rip off. Abby is a member of two of Genoa City's core families and her obsession with becoming famous simply for being famous was a sharp observation of just how wrong pop culture could go. I'm sorry, but the old "if you can't beat 'em, stunt cast 'em" thing is growing old on this soap and the ratings seem to reflect that. It's time for Y&R to get back to telling character driven, sexy, fun stories for the characters fans know and love.

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