Daytime Confidential's Male Entertainers of 2008
No. 2: Eric Braeden - The Young and the Restless
Eric Braeden may not be our top pick for Male Entertainer of the Year, but he is definitely daytime's biggest trooper of 2008. Being saddled with a turkey of a "love story" opposite the dreadful, one note Sabrina (Raya Meddine) was not what fans of Braeden's Victor Newman wanted for this beloved character. Flash forward to Sabrina's blessed demise and Victor Newman was back, complete with oustanding displays of grief, anger, depression and passion. Braeden managed the unthinkable, he caused even the most vocal of Sabrina detractors to mourn for her loss, just as Victor himself mourned. His ripped-raw scenes opposite long time leading lady Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki) gave both actors their best material in decades, as Victor and Nikki's relationship finally reached the point of no return, with him blaming her for the death of his new bride and unborn child.
Then there was Victor's dealing with his other children, most notably his disappointing namesake Victor Jr. aka Adam (Chris Engen). Braeden was able to convey Victor's bitter rage at the betrayal perpetuated against him by Adam and Victor's arch nemesis Jack Abbott (Peter Bergman), yet somehow managed to reveal how much the Newman patriarch still loved his son. Speaking of love, the one woman who Victor has always loved and respected as his equal, the unforgettable Ashley Abbott (Eileen Davidson), returned in 2008, and this magical coupling picked up right where they left off. It's no wonder Braeden is the most popular leading man in daytime. If you don't believe us, just count his Soap Opera Digest covers.