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The Young & The Restless

Y&R’s Melody Thomas Scott Weighs in on the Future of Soaps

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 To mark her 45th anniversary of playing Nikki on THE YOUNG & THE RESTLESS, Melody Thomas Scott penned a guest column for Deadline in which she reflected upon her time in Genoa City and shared her thoughts on why daytime dramas continue to survive.

Scott — who celebrated her anniversary with the soap last month — began her guest column by explaining how TV-viewing habits have changed since she started playing Nikki in 1979. At the time, there were 13 soap operas on the air. “There was a certain excitement for someone watching their soap live long before VCRs, DVRs, streaming, and the ability to go online to read a recap of the episode,” she mused, adding that present-day audiences have “an abundance of choices” when it comes to viewing content.

“The fact that Y&R continues to maintain and cultivate a loyal and dedicated fan base is something that is never taken for granted as it’s the sole reason for the show’s longevity,” the daytime icon wrote.

Y&R Nikki Victor 80s
“There is no other medium that would have given me the opportunity and good fortune to have the same scene partner, the extraordinary Eric Braeden, for four decades!” wrote Scott of Victor’s portrayer.CBS Photo Archive

The tried-and-true format presented by soap operas has much to do with why viewers continue to tune in day in and day out, Scott pointed out. “Anytime the genre has tried to adopt characteristics of other forms of programming (such as extreme pacing), it has learned a painful lesson not to veer too far from the recipe of success for the daytime drama: compelling storytelling with captivating characters who viewers want to invite into their homes five days a week.”

Seeing the same actors on the screen is another comfort to viewers, said Scott. “Luckily, all of the daytime dramas are fortunate to have actors who have captivated audiences for decades. The relationship that a viewer forms with the characters of a daytime drama is unparalleled to any other medium.”

Concluding her essay, Scott noted that it’s this special connection that allows daytime dramas to tell impactful storylines. “This bond between the audience and the show lends to Y&R being able to entertain and educate its audience while exploring relevant social issues such as substance abuse and mental health,” she wrote. “The trust and stability a viewer shares with a daytime drama is the reason they will not only survive but thrive for years to come.”

We couldn’t agree more!

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