Friday, December 05, 2008

Interview: (Y&R) Victor Newman Finds Love Again

When Victor left Genoa City earlier this year, his young wife, Sabrina, was dead, his family had betrayed him and he was suspected of murder. Now that he is back in town, it’s business as usual. His nemesis, Jack Abbott, is trying to bring him down yet again; this time with the help of Victor’s son, Adam, and a certain forged diary. Victor has also found love once again; this time with an old flame.

Eric Braeden, who plays ruthless billionaire Victor Newman on The Young and the Restless, is excited about his new story line and anxious to see how Victor is going to handle it all. Regarding Jack’s duplicity, Eric is certain of one thing: “Oh, he’s gonna get it. You know Victor doesn’t leave any stone unturned. Jack is definitely gonna get it.”

When it comes to Adam’s part in the betrayal, according to Eric: “Victor feels an enormous betrayal. But that’s not really his son, not really. Victor was never really a father to him.”

But Victor’s return isn’t without his fair share of baggage. Eric explains: “He is in an emotional hell because of an accumulation of things. The whole thing with Nikki and her getting involved with a guy (David Chow) who Victor suspected from the beginning (as being bad news), and his estrangement from his children — that all started before Sabrina’s death. It was exacerbated by her death. It was one of those critical moments in life, where he essentially wanted to be left alone.

“With Sabrina, there was an enormous, sudden surge of love that he felt with a much younger woman, and it sort of rejuvenated him for a while. She gave him unrestricted love. I think it mesmerized him. The reality of her death had not sunk in yet. He was still very much in love.”

Now, with the help of his rediscovered love for Ashley Abbott, Victor is back, he’s strong and he’s ready to stand up to his accusers. Eric says he is “excited to explore that relationship again. And also for the audience who was used to it. A lot of the audience sort of felt there was unrequited love — it was always sort of there and alluded to, but never really realized. So now, it finally is, hopefully.

“Frankly, I think they missed a chance a few years ago to pick up on that relationship, when she came to him finally and told him how much she loved him and he turned her down, which I think was a mistake at the time, but those were different writers. I think it’s natural for them to find one another again — and at the same time it’s tragic for Nikki. It’s complicated, isn’t it?”

While life has never been without complication for Victor and Nikki, he doubts this antagonism between them will last. “It never has been peaceful between the two of them. But, I don’t think this is a permanent parting of the ways. I certainly hope it isn't. I love working with Mel. But, well, it’s drama.”

During one of Eric’s breaks from the drama of Y&R, he executive produced and starred in the Western drama The Man Who Came Back, which will be released on DVD Tuesday, Dec. 9. In the movie, Eric plays Reese Paxton, a man who stands up against injustice and seeks revenge against those who have wronged him. Catch Part 2 of this interview next week when Eric talks about the movie, the star-studded cast and his chance to get physical and kick some bad-guy butts.