Talk about daytime drama!
CBS’s “The Young and the Restless” has been the number 1 soap opera since 1988. It’s been an extraordinary run. But now it’s over.
For the week of March 16-20th, CBS’s “The Bold and the Beautiful” toppled Y&R and took the number 1 spot. Yes, that’s an old fashioned soap opera courtroom gasp you just heard.
“B&B” literally leap frogged over the show by adding 405,000 viewers from the prior week. “Y&R” lost 249,000 from the prior week but more importantly, 1,163,000 viewers left the show year to year.
Even more bad news: in the 18-49 category, “Y&R” fell to third place, behind “B&B” and “General Hospital.”
This is significant because the other two soaps, like “B&B,” added viewers that week, robustly. This was the beginning of the virus panic, with more people home during the day. But virus updates were also cutting into the schedule. Each of the shows was pre-empted at least one day by news, and cut into on other days by updates.
The trouble at “The Young and the Restless” is very bad. It has been for a couple of years, but it’s just gotten worse lately. There’s no central story. The main actors– Eric Braeden, Melody Thomas Scott, Peter Bergman, Eileen Davidson– are never on. Long term actors like Doug Davidson, who’s got the longest tenure– are complaining on social media about their absence. The audience has obviously responded.
Granted the soaps got a raw deal this winter with the whole impeachment business interrupting their schedule. But three of the four shows have clawed their way back. Only “Y&R” has drifted away, with the producers and writers refusing to listen to the audience.
This should be a wake up call to CBS and Sony TV. It’s time to restore “Y&R” to its root characters and stories, or the party is going to be over. It may already be over.
Numbers courtesy of Soap Opera News:
1. B&B 3,620,000 (+405,000/+61,000) <——- first time #1
2. Y&R 3,445,000 (-249,000/-1,163,000)
3. GH 2,471,000 (+365,000/+130,000)
4. DAYS 2,089,000 (+242,000/-39,000)