The Soaps: Tune In Tomorrow

Not that long ago, Marla Adams, who plays Dina on "The Young and the Restless" revealed that her character would develop Alzheimer's, so recent developments on the show have not been surprising. Many had already expected it, even before Adams dropped the spoiler. However, the actual diagnosis was swift, especially with a patient who had also recently suffered a stroke. Usually, the diagnosis of that particular disease involves first ruling out other problems. Here, diagnosis was resolved in a day, even though she did not, in fact, complete the final part of the exam. Yes, this is a soap opera, but it would have been better to have a bit more veracity.

"Y&R" has a history of trying to be medically accurate if a character is given a real disease, not a fictitious one. This is actually true of most soaps, but "Y&R," as well as its sister show, “The Bold and the Beautiful,” are particularly conscientious in this regard.

The Abbott family has been one of the core families in Genoa City for almost four decades. We care about them. We've already seen Jack and Ashley arguing about putting Dina in a nursing home. In truth, Jack is not listening to her. He is not able to listen. Ashley is talking about being proactive, but she means "down the road," not today or tomorrow or maybe even next year. Jack just cannot face it.

If and when the truth comes out that Dina caused the nearly fatal fire at The Underground, the danger she presents to herself and others will become all the more clear, as will the quandary of whether she can remain living at the Abbott house.

Dina was less than Mother of the Year, but Jack, Ashley, and Traci have recently worked hard to rebuild a relationship with their long-absent mother. Even Ashley's daughter Abby has built an amazing bond with her grandmother Dina. They will all want to hold on for dear life to the new memories they're creating, as they have scant few old ones. Soon, Dina will be robbed of most of her memories, old and new.

We are particularly glad that Jack and his half-brother Billy have reconciled as well. Although Billy is not related to Dina, he also has a bond with her. Jack will need Billy, and it is a good thing they reconciled before the Alzheimer's was diagnosed. We are not defending Billy for fooling around with and eventually falling in love with Jack's wife. However, fans with a long memory might recall that Jack had a tryst with his dad's wife Jill. Although Billy is thought of as the bad boy, Jack has his moments. Jack and Billy have a bond that plays well to the fans, and although their feud was entertaining at times, we like them better when they are not estranged.

One of the strengths of "Y&R" is that most of the actors are long-term. Dina had been off the canvas for years, but Adams is still the actress playing her. Traci has been recurring for many years, but Beth Maitland has played the character from Day 1. The only recent "recast" is Billy, but Jason Thompson had made a place for himself since joining the show almost two years ago. We are confident that these actors who comprise the Abbotts will act their hearts out and all will give Emmy-worthy performances.


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