I have been a faithful Soap Opera fan for I believe it is 40 years now. The Young and The Restless and Days of Our Lives were always my favorites. Some that I loved have come and gone such as Another World, Santa Barbara and even the more recent one Passions. But life went on and I just got hooked on others like The Bold and The Beautiful, As The World Turns and Guiding Light.

The very first one I can remember was Dark Shadows. I remember racing home from school every afternoon shoving anyone that got in my path out of my way so I didn’t miss the beginning of the show. Well no, even that isn’t true. I wasn’t a big fan of it but I remember my mother being pregnant with my youngest brother and she watched the ever so popular Peyton Place. One of the characters, Constance MacKenzie was pregnant also and she was due about the same time as my Mom was. When Constance had her baby before my Mom did she got so mad and refused to watch the show anymore. That is just an example of how serious my Mom was about the show and its story line.

Every year there are new story lines added and a lot of them were so silly that you would only see them on a soap opera. Like when Marlena Evans on Days of Our Lives was obsessed by a demon or when Tabitha from Passions was casting a spell on one of the others on the soap. There are people doing illegal things like Jack Abbott trying to set up Victor Newman on Y&R or visa versa and never to be caught. Even if they are caught they always get away with it anyway. I could go on and on about what happened in the soaps that I watched that nothing was ever done about that would absolutely never happen in real life. I remember the saying “Only in the Soaps!”

I guess even the world of the soaps have to go along with the changing of the times. Back in the days of shows like Peyton Place if the mention of a gay character would have appeared a public outrage would have hit and probably forced the show off the air.

Now the times are different. I might be wrong but I believe As The World Turns was the first to introduce a gay couple on their show. The characters are Luke and Noah. On The Young and The Restless now the characters Adam and Rafe have been introduced as gay. 

The role of Adam Wilson on The Young and The Restless had been played by Chris Engen but when the character was slated to have a sexual encounter with another man, suddenly the role was recast with another actor, Michael Muhney. Could this be because Chris Engen refused to play the part of a gay man? Well he is said to have released a statement refuting claims that he was homophobic. He claims he left the top-rated CBS Soap Opera due to artistic differences. So I guess it was just the timing of his departure to make it appear that the storyline had anything to do with him leaving.

Now that isn’t the only surprise that the writers of the popular show have sprung on their audiences. There is the return of Phillip Chancellor Jr., Jill Abbott’s son that supposedly died 20 years ago in a car crash. He not only returns shocking the whole gang but he announces that he staged his own death so he could go off and start a new life. His reason for the need for a new life was because the one he had in Genoa City was so messed up and he was not happy. He announces that he is gay, flooring his Mother, grandmother and wife with his news.

The Guiding Light decided to bring this topic in with the characters Olivia and Natalia but to make this more interesting it appears that the character, Natalia is pregnant. This makes one wonder where this story line is heading. The only thing about all this is will we ever know since rumor has it that The Guiding Light and its writers and producers have decided to call it quits by canceling the show. There are claims that the shows last episode will be aired on September 18. So for all you Guiding Light Fans you might want to write in and fight for the show to stay on.

I have been writing Soap Opera Updates for The Young and The Restless (I did write about a few others before too) here on Blogger News since August 13, 2007 and I have to admit the story lines apparently have gotten a lot of extra attention lately. I have received several comments from unhappy fans about the writers starting to add in the parts of gay characters.

I remember when the soaps started mixing races in their story line and how people objected and some stopped watching the shows because of it. Now having a mixed couple on one of the Soaps is not even noticed as anything wrong because it has been accepted.

So will adding gay characters be accepted too or are the writers making a mistake? I think it will be if people just start looking at these shows as part of our changing world. I am afraid they will either have to accept it or stop watching a show they have been watching for years.

Well I guess I will always be a Young and The Restless fan no matter how much they change the storyline. I suppose if the world changes then we should expect the soaps to change with it. After all they are supposed to be about life! But are they? You decide!

Jan Barrett

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