The 5 best couples on The Young and the Restless, past and present

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Fans of The Young and the Restless rank among the most passionate of any daytime fan base. The audience's love for the characters and the actors who portray them defines this group's loyalty. A part of the fervor are the romances that viewers have fallen in love with over the years; the ones they'll root for and hope to see reunite if they ever part.

No one can offer a definitive answer on who the best couples on the soap are, however, the five relationships you'll find here are ones that have captured many a heart. Who made our list? Keep reading to see and if you disagree (let this article provide the starting point for light-hearted debate!)

Young and the Restless romances for the ages

Jeanne Cooper, Quinn Redeker
"The Young And The Restless" Celebrates Jeanne Cooper's 30th Anniversary / Jesse Grant/GettyImages

Katherine Chancellor and Rex Sterling

Any historical piece about this iconic show must include a nod to the late great Jeanne Cooper. She is arguably the most outstanding cast member. The persona Cooper made famous from Y&R's inaugural year (1973) through her death in 2013 tops Victor as this show's all-time leading character.

Rex Sterling, whose real name was Brian Romalotti (played by Quinn Redeker), was a fabulous pairing for the Grande Dame. He loved her completely and was the father of Danny and Gina, to boot. His sense of humor greatly complimented Katherine Chancellor, whose life was a regular mix of hilarious and tragic moments.

Eric Braeden, Melody Thomas Scott
Daytime's #1 Drama "The Young And The Restless" Celebrates 50 Years / Victoria Sirakova/GettyImages

Niktor (Nikki Reed and Victor Newman)

Nikki Reed danced at the Bayou oh so many years ago. Colonel Douglas Austin saw her and served as a defacto matchmaker. Victor Newman never had a greater love, and neither did Nikki.

Melody Thomas Scott debuted in 1978, with Erica Hope initially portraying Nikki. Thomas Scott became the recast in 1979. Eric Braeden debuted in 1980. This actor, whose entertainment career began in 1961, played the businessman Katherine hired to run Chancellor Industries.

Nikki married three men before her first marriage to Victor in 1984. The founder of Newman Enterprises agreed with Douglas' assessment of Nikki and eventually married her three times, with the current marriage happening in 2013 and being the longest.

Their namesakes, Victoria and Nick, did not keep this ultimate power couple together. But even when separated or divorced, there is no doubt that Niktor's bond was and never will be broken.

Kristoff St. John, Victoria Rowell
35th NAACP Image Awards - Arrivals / Gregg DeGuire/GettyImages

Neil Winters and Drucilla Barber

Neil and Drucilla were two highly compelling characters. The place their characters occupy in this show's lore and daytime history is significant. The pair became one of the 'It couples' in daytime in the glorious 1990s. Kristoff St. John and Victoria Rowell's on-screen chemistry was electric and always believable.

Drucilla and her sister, Olivia, were introduced as Mamie Johnson's nieces. Great casting allowed the Barber sisters to flourish. While it appeared Drucilla gave birth to Neil's child, Lily, a later reveal proved shockingly otherwise. Unbeknownst to her, Malcolm, Neil's brother, was Lily's father. Neil and Dru later adopted Devon Hamilton, who came to learn that he was Katherine's grandson through Tucker McCall.

Kristoff St. John died in 2019. His unexpected passing let to Victoria Rowell being brought back to The Young and the Restless. Rowell's character was killed off in 2007 and remains one of, if not the most, controversial cast exits in this show's history. She returned to the show, playing herself during a series of special episodes in which the cast reflected on St. John's life and career.

There appears little doubt that Rowell's efforts to broaden this show's off-screen talent pool were tied to her character being written out. However, Rowell has continued to produce great work.

Lauralee Bell, Michael Damian
50th Daytime Emmy Awards - Show / Kevin Winter/GettyImages

Christine Blair and Danny Romalotti

Christine Blair was like many young women her age, crushing hard for Danny Romalotti. But unlike wanting groupies, Danny fell in love with Cricket.

Michael Damian joined the cast in 1981. Lauralee Bell, the daughter of show founders Bill and Lee Phillip Bell and the sister of The Bold and the Beautiful's producer and head writer, Bill Bell, joined the cast in 1983.

Anyone who only cites Lauralee Bell's blood ties purposely overlooks that she is a great actor. Yes, the daytime door was opened for her. But she took that opportunity and created an enduring career that includes Christine's rediscovery of love with Danny. This duo was originally married from 1990 to 1994.

Any mention of this super couple would be remiss if the name Phyllis Summers were jammed into it. Michelle Stafford took what was to be a limited-run role and willed her way into a career, starting with her masterful initial portrayal of Danny's rock concert stalker.

Christine was later married twice to Paul Williams, and those unions combined to be far longer than her marriage to Danny. However, the passion between Christine and Damian's character remains in its own category, with a long-awaited remarriage possible.

Joshua Morrow, Sharon Case
37th Annual Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards - Backstage & Audience / Christopher Polk/GettyImages

Shick (Sharon Collins and Nick Newman)

Nick went away to boarding school and was SORAS'd (soap opera rapid aging syndrome) in 1994, with Joshua Morrow becoming the recast. That happened to facilitate what would become one of this soap opera's younger generation couples known as Shick.

Sharon Collins was new in Genoa City. Two actors portrayed this character before Sharon Case became the recast. The third version of Sharon married Nick one year into her GC tenure.

The Cassie arc, where Sharon reclaimed the daughter she gave up for adoption, was truly memorable. The death of the character Camryn Grimes memorably portrayed drove to one of the most polarizing story arc climaxes ever.

Grimes returned to the show years later as Mariah, Cassie's unknown twin sister, who was stolen from Sharon at birth. Skipping through two failed remarriage attempts, Nick and Sharon are good friends with devoted fans longing for a remarriage that has unusually never happened.

Many other couples can be cited as indelible, but it's hard to suggest that the five couples mentioned could be entirely supplanted. Viewers will rightly debate among themselves. The stories that have been presented aim at emotion. Rather than being alone and restless, life is better with one's true love, as the soapy case may be.

Stay tuned to Hidden Remote for more The Young and the Restless news and coverage! New episodes stream on Paramount+.