‘The Young and the Restless’ has generated heat on CBS’ daytime schedule for decades. However, relatively recent on-screen changes and off-screen rumors clearly caused some fans to jump overboard. Everyone’s perspective matters, but it’s always worthwhile to insert common sense into any serious equation.
YR has not (repeat, has not) lost 1.5 million-plus viewers since Michael Muhney and Billy Miller veered off the road in late-January 2014. Documented Nielsen Rating numbers prove that CBS’ top-rated daytime drama was seen by approximately 4.3 million viewers per week in September 2012. That was one month before executive producer Jill Farren Phelps first episode was seen.
The most-recent soap opera ratings results show that approximately 4.3 million people per week were watching YR. Yes, nearing two years later, the show is still being seen by the same average weekly number of viewers. Maintaining an audience isn’t something to boast about, but it’s also something that can’t be portrayed in a negative light.
Imagine if someone tried to claim that interest in football had suddenly declined by pointing to last season’s Super Bowl ratings, as compared to the new season’s opening-game numbers. Anyone who made such a statement would surely be naive.
YR spiked toward the 5.8 million viewer line in late-January because Muhney’s exact departure date, along with that of Miller’s, was known. Curious new viewers obviously padded the show’s temporary ratings during that time. Many shows have experienced similar special event surges in TV history.
Few would argue that Muhney is a terrific actor. The power to command the stage isn’t reasonably denied by those who have seen and respect his work.
However, some people who consider themselves to be daytime fans revealingly chose to focus their feelings on everything that surrounded the former ‘Adam Newman’s’ departure while ignoring the actor’s own words. There is clearly a section of souls who seemingly ignored the honestly humble comments (in this author’s opinion) Muhney volunteered about his termination after it occurred. That specific point can’t be cut out of the picture. And, there’s no doubt that this matter clearly offended some viewers far more than others, which caused them to respond with understandable emotion.
No evidence has been offered, or has been seen within any social media tea leaves, tweets and the like that actually proves anything illegal happened on the YR set. There’s also no evidence that the decision-makers at YR wronged Muhney either. Speculative assessments, interpretations of various actors’ public statements or feelings about whatever anyone hasn’t said don’t serve as facts. If any conclusive proof ever emerges that adds to any portion of this real-life story, than everyone (including the author of this digital space) will need to shift personal opinions in a new direction.
Claims of storyline weaknesses, stabs at acting abilities or questions about behind-the-scenes powers have existed to varying degrees since ‘Nadia’s Theme’ was first heard. YR has engaged more viewers than any other soap opera for 27 consecutive years. End of story.
Now that the postscript has arrived no one should mistakenly read more into what was written. The point of this piece is clear: An overwhelming amount of YR fans still enjoy the show. They’ve stayed afloat by not allowing any situation, real, perceived or both to skew their view of a fictional televised world.