Four Stars Leave ‘The Young & the Restless’ in Casting Shake-Up

Four Actors Leaving “The Young & the Restless”; Diana DeGarmo Joining Cast

The Young & the Restless” has let four actors go, according to Soaps In Depth. Eden Riegel (Heather), Darius McCrary (Malcolm), Sean Patrick Flanery (Sam) and Tristan Rogers (Colin) will be leaving Genoa City. Rogers announced his departure via Twitter yesterday saying, “seems Colin is leaving GC.”

Riegel apparently had not been informed of the show’s decision before the story broke first tweeting, “It’s not for me to say they’re wrong but I have not been told of my departure. Boy would that be embarrassing!” then, an hour later, “Oops. I take it back. Apparently my run on Y&R is soon coming to an end. It was a fun ride!”

While I never take pleasure in an actor losing his or her job, these characters are not essential to the show. Flanery’s Sam seemed like a short term character that I assumed was going to help Sharon go on a journey of self-exploration while away from Genoa City. Instead, she did not seem to learn anything from her time with the veterinarian. Once she was arrested and rejected him for another shot at Adam, I did not understand why he continued to stand by her. Riegel created one of daytime’s most beloved heroines when she played Bianca on “All My Children,” and would have been a great recast for Mac, but she never really gelled as tough, bitter Heather, and the writers never figured out where her character fit into the canvas. McCrary similarly never seemed like the right person to fill Shemar Moore’s shoes. I liked Rogers chemistry with Jill, and was more willing than most to embrace Cane’s (Daneiel Goddard) dark, campy family, but after creating Genoa City’s version of the Cassadines or DiMeras, the writers seemed as a loss as to what to do with them, essentially asking viewers to forget that Colin was the John Gotti of Australia and that his wife Genevieve (Genie Francis) was totally insane, and accept them as lovable schemers. That could fly on an ABC soap, but not Y&R where committing a violent felony is supposed to have realistic consequences, even if Adam and Victor have spent the past two years getting away with criminal acts. Daytime Confidential is reporting that Francis is out as well.

A lot of fans, myself included,  are hoping that the departures of these relative newbies mean that Melody Thomas Scott,whose character Nikki has been off the canvas for months due to contract issues, will be returning to the soap. There is no word about that, but the show has announced that American Idol finalist turned Broadway star Diana DeGarmo will be joining the show in a contract role. TVGuide reports that she will be playing, “Angelina, the Jersey-girl daughter of mob boss Angelo.”  It’s unfair to judge a character based on a one sentence description, but Angelina sounds more like a “General Hospital” character than someone who will fit into the Y&R canvas. If the Atkinsons, who are connected to a popular character didn’t work,why would a full fledged Mafia princess? It seems a little late to attempt capitalize on the “Jersey Shore” phenomenon. I’m disappointed because I hoped we’d seen the last of Angelo and his poorly developed storyline. Let’s hope I’m wrong and six months from now Angelina is everyone’s favorite soap newbie.

Erica Kane Goes Hollywood

I am of two minds about Erica’s (Susan Lucci) Hollywood Boulevard location shoot on Monday’s episode of “All My Children.” One one hand, it was a great nod to the show’s history. As a teen, Erica dreamed of visiting Hollywood and Vine, something which was acknowledged in the dialogue. It was terrific that the show took advantage of it’s Los Angeles shooting location. A producer wanting to option Erica’s book and have her play herself in a movie is semi-plausible given that she is supposed to be a celebrity. I do wish so much airtime wasn’t given to a dayplayer with so few episodes of the show left. I would have preferred to see Erica go to Hollywood with Jack (Walt Willey). The shot of Lucci’s star on the Walk of Fame broke the fourth wall, but it didn’t bother me since it was part of the show’s farewell. What did bother me were the lousy production values. I don’t expect the show to pay the exorbitant amount it undoubtedly costs to block off one of L.A.’s biggest streets, but couldn’t they afford some post-production sound re-recording? Seemingly every single big truck and city bus in the Thirty Mile Zone drove through the scene resulting in distracting background noise and rendering the scene unintentionally hilarious. I doubt the teenage Erica dreamed of inhaling exhaust fumes.

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Knocking Some Sense Into Jack Manning

I am now convinced that “One Life to Live’s” headwriter Ron Carlivati and executive producer Frank Valentini were picked on by their peers in high school and the experience convinced them that all teenage boys are evil. First they crafted three storylines where teenage boys murdered adults. Now two other annoying teenage boys have attempted to get their fathers arrested for murder. Do Jack (Andrew Trischetta) and Baz (Sebastian Bach) truly believe that their respective fathers, whom they barely know, killed Victor Lord? Or are they just so self-absorbed and lacking in family loyalty that they believe getting their Dads potentially locked up for the rest of their lives is the perfect way of getting them off their backs, man? Baz is on his way out. All of the other characters express their contempt for Jack on a regular basis, so I think the show has given up on its attempts to make him remotely sympathetic. The great scenes between Todd and Blair about what a creepy jerk Jack is cemented that the show wants me to hate him, presumably so he can be redeemed when Todd whips him into shape. It better be a long, hard whipping. In the meantime, I have never liked John McBain (Michael Easton) more than when he gave Jack this etiquette lesson.

I think John missed his calling. He would make an excellent high school guidance counselor.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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