Saturday, July 7, 2018

Y&R Report (July 7, 2018): The Latest on The Young and the Restless

Hey Y&R fans, every second Saturday TV Banter discusses the latest happenings and provides commentary on your favourite daytime drama. Note to U.S. readers - SPOILER ALERT: Here in Canada, I watch the show on Global TV which is one episode ahead of CBS.  I will inevitably refer to incidents you haven't seen yet. Read at your own risk.  If you are the curious type, though, you may prefer to discover some things in advance.

He's alive! (maybe) Yes, fans, it looks as if J.T. Hellstrom is on the loose.  He may have survived his own burial and is lurking in the shadows.  Still, I'm not convinced he's really alive and  kicking.  Was the man in the hoodie really J.T. or was it some kind of trick or optical illusion.  Is Victor Neman behind it?  Why did Victor take so long to show up at the Newman ranch when Nikki was frantically trying to warn him about J.T.?  Is someone purposely trying to scare Nikki and Sharon?  The writers are going to keep us guessing for a while.

By the way, where is Clueless Paul Williams?  It seems that everyone in Genoa City knows that J.T. has been sighted and that someone has been using his credit card.  Why isn't the GC Police Chief on the case?  No wonder so many people tell him he isn't doing his job.

Does Y&R head writer Mal Young have some weird obsession with graves and burials?  This past week, viewers saw the spectacle of Kyle Abbott trying to dig up Phillip Chancellor's grave.  We've already seen J.T.'s burial in Chancellor Park. He may have been buried alive.

I still don't think Phillip Chancellor is Jack Abbott's biological father.  We'll find out soon, courtesy of Kyle, who managed to procure a piece of bone from the grave.  The DNA will be tested and I suspect it will not match Jack's.

It''s hard to have much empathy for Kyle.  He's far too ambitious for his own good.  There is a better side to him, but he hasn't been showing it much lately.  I thought he sincerely wanted to help Jack find out the truth about his paternity.  Now it seems his only concern is his own advancement in the business world.  He dug Phillp's grave because he hopes to have a high position at Chancellor Industries.  All he cares about is climbing the corporate ladder as fast as he can.  He is not willing to work his way up and learn the ropes.

Is Scott Grainger coming back Genoa City?  There are signs that his return is imminent.  An article Scott wrote about J.T., was given prominence.  Scott, played by Daniel Hall, was written out of the show.  Sharon dumped him after he two-timed her with Abby., Abby also dumped him.  For the moment, she's blissfully happy with Arturo.  The return of Scott would really complicate matters and create conflict, especially if Abby has lingering romantic feelings for him.  It has not been conformed that Daniel Hall is returning to Y&R, but I wouldn't be surprised if he does.

Daniel Hall

Billy Abbott has given into temptation again.  He just can't resist the lure of a poker game.  He is an addict.  He has to quit cold turkey.  Once he starts gambling, he can't stop.  Summer has taken full advantage of his addiction.  Still, Billy didn't put up much of a fight and he didn't seek help or advice.  He chose to cover for Summer.  Billy Boy has already lost the Jabot yacht.  Expect him to lose Phyllis next.  She won't put up with his irresponsible behaviour.


If you have any comments on Y&R, please email them to me with "Viewer Forum" in the subject line. I will be happy to publish your comments and reply to them  You do not have to use your real name. 

My email address:

Here are some comments from regular contributor CC in Etobicoke, Ontario.

Summer is one of the worst characters to have ever landed in Genoa City.  They have made her into a very extreme version of every parent's worst nightmare of a daughter.  They matured her very quickly in the worst ways.  She will not be a good role model for Faith.  

The pool scene was disgusting, as was the strip poker scene with Billy and Phyllis.  I guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

In today's episode, Hilary definitely looked like she is pregnant in real life.  Now that she and Devon have reconciled and declared their love again, it feels like a dark cloud is looming on the horizon.  Her days on the show are numbered.

I also do not care for the character o Shauna, Charlie's teenage match.  They are not well-suited.

So much sleaze is unnecessary.  Phyllis and Billy are desperate to hang on to something that isn't there anymore.  Summer will take advantage of that to do her damage.  What is Summer's reason for wanting to break up Phyllis and Billy?  I don't recall either of them doing anything to her that should push her into being so vengeful.  Like I said when she first arrived, I hope she doesn't stay past the summer.  

Do you think that the Hilary character will die in a deadly car crash?

Summer isn't my favourite Y&R character, but she doesn't bother me as much as she bothers you.  I'm not quite sure if it's the fictional Summer who annoys you or Hunter King, the actress, who plays her.  Maybe both of them annoy you. Either way, Summer sure rubs you the wrong way.  You ask about her reason for trying to breaking up Phyllis and Billy.  I don't think she resents Phyllis for any specific reason.  Snowflake is obviously unhappy with her life and takes delight in causing trouble.

I agree with you, CC, that there is a cloud hanging over Devon and Hilary, especially since Mishael Morgan, who plays Hilary, is leaving the show.  When a couple is too happy on a soap, expect the bubble to burst.  According to Internet spoilers, Hilary will have a severe car accident.

In real life, Mishael and her husband, Navid, are the parents of a son, Niam, born August 9, 2015.  As far as I know, there has been know announcement that she is expecting another child.


Eileen Davidson (Ashley Abbot) is leaving Y&R

There is some disappointing news for Y&R fans.  Eileen Davidson, who won a Daytime Emmy this year for her role as Ashley Abbott on The Young and the Restless, is leaving the show.  On June 20th, Eileen confirmed on Twitter that she will be leaving in order to spend more time with her family.  She is married to actor Vince Van Patten since 2003 and has a son, Jesse Thomas Van Patten, born May 20, 2003.

Eileen has been playing the role of Ashley Abbott on and off since 1982.  It is not known yet whether the role of Ashley will be recast.  I hope not because it is Eileen's signature role.  It will be much better if Ashley joins her sister, Traci, in New York.  This will leave the door open for her to make appearances on the show now and then.

Brooks Darnell joins the cast as Nate Hastings

The son of Dr. Olivia Barber and the late Nathan Hastings has returned to Genoa City.  He's all grown up.  He's a doctor too, and he's secretly treating Victor Newman for a hidden medical issue. We have also learned that he had a girlfriend who died.

Brooks Darnell, a newcomer to soaps, portrays Dr. Nate Hastings Jr.  Previously he starred in the Shadowhunters series as Charlie Cooper.  Brooks was named after baseball great Brooks Robinson.  He put his acting career on hold while attending pre-med school on a football scholarship.  After a sports injury, he returned to acting.

Brooks' character,Nate Hastings, is staying with Neil Winters, who was married to his late aunt, Drucilla (Olivia's sister,).  He's living right across the hall from busybody Hilary Curtis, who seems fascinated by him. Hilary is determined to find as much information she can about Nate (a.k.a. Dr. Shirtless).


Well fans, do you think J.T. Hellstrom is really alive?  Let me know what you think by responding to the poll below.

Do you think J.T. is really alive?

Yes, was't really dead when they buried him.
No, someone is playing tricks and making it seem as if he's alive.
I don't know.
Please Specify:
Created with Quiz Creator

That's all for now.  I hope you're enjoying the summer.  Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, July 21, 2018.

- Joanne

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Whatever happened to the cast of Silver Spoons?


Silver Spoons, an American situation comedy, ran for for five seasons and 116 episodes.  It aired on NBC for four seasons, from September 25, 1982 until May 11, 1986, and then for an additional season in first-run syndication, from September 15, 1986 until March 4, 1987. The series showcased child star Ricky Schroder, who had made an auspicious debut in the 1979 film The ChampSilver Spoons featured Schroder as Ricky Stratton, the 12-year son of divorced parents whose mother had remarried and sent him to a military school.  The youngster wangled an invitation to the palatial home of the wealthy father he had never known.

Edward Stratton III, Ricky's 35-year-old dad was very immature and had avoided taking responsibility for anything in his life. This overgrown child owned a toy company called Eddie's Toys.  His mansion was filled with video games, stuffed animals and a miniature railroad upon which he traversed the rooms of his massive estate.  In a February 2010 interview with Will Harris for, Rick Schroder stated, "I cannot tell you how many people were, like, blown away by and lost themselves in the world of Silver Spoons.  And everybody asks about the train.  Everybody!  I think the train is in a train park at Griffith Park, over by Universal"

Below is a photo of Joel Higgins as Edward Stratton III in a conductor's hat, riding the train with son Ricky.

Ricky and Edward had their differences.  Ricky recognized that Edward needed to grow up and Edward thought that his son was much too uptight.  He wanted Ricky to loosen up and have fun while he was still young.  Nevertheless, the pair bonded as father and son.  According to The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows 1946-Present, "Ricky soon helped Edward to be a father, while Edward taught his son a little about enjoying life."


RICKY SCHRODER (Richard Bartlett Schroder,, Jr.) was born April 13, 1970 in Brooklyn, New York and raised on Staten Island.  He was 12 years old when Silver Spoons first aired.  He continued acting as an adult and billed himself as "Rick" Schroder.  In 2007, however, he announced that he was changing his credit back to "Ricky" because "no one wanted to call me 'Rick'."

Ricky appeared on the 1989 TV Western miniseries Lonesome Dove.  From 1998 until 2001, he played Detective Danny Sorenson on the crime series NYPD Blue.  In 2007, he played Mike Doyle in twelve episodes of the action series 24, starring Kiefer Sutherland.  More recently, he portrayed Robert Lee Parton, Dolly's father, in the 2016 TV movie Dolly Parton's Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love.

Ricky Schroder in 1976 photo

Ricky Schroder began his career by appearing in numerous television commercials.  His big break came when he starred opposite Jon Voight and Faye Dunaway in Franco Zefferelli's remake of The Champ.  For his performance in the film, Schroder won international recognition.  He also won a Golden Globe for Best New Male Star of 1979.

Schroder in 2008 photo

Ricky wed Andrea Bernard, an interior designer/real estate developer, on September 26, 1992.  The couple met in Canada while Rick was filming Blood River in 1991.  They had four children, sons Holden (born January 8, 1992) and Luke (August 1, 1993) and daughters Cambrie (born September 14, 1997)  and Faith (born August 8, 2001).  Son Holden is named after actor William Holden with whom Rick co-starred in the film The Earthling (1980).

In September of 2016, after almost 24 years of marriage, Andrea filed for divorce in the Los Angeles Superior Court, citing "irreconcilable differences."

Faith and Cambrie star in Lifetime's reality series Growing Up Supermodel.  The show premiered on August 16, 2017.  It follows the sons and daughters of famous models or actors as they try to launch a modelling career.  The cast also includes their mother, Andrea and actress/model Kelly Le Brock and her daughter, plus size model Arissa Le Brock (Arissa's father is actor Steven Seagal).

Below are photos of Faith Schroder (left) and Cmbrie Schroder (right).

JOEL HIGGINS, an American singer and actor, portrayed Edward W. Stratton III, Ricky's childlike father.  Higgins was born September 28, 1943 in Bloomington, Illinois and is a graduate of Michigan State University  Not only is he an actor, he is an accomplished singer with a stage career spanning over four decades. He originally performed at coffee houses to put himself through school.

During the 1970s, Joel Higgins played the role of Vince in the first national tour of the musical Grease.  He also appeared on Broadway.  In 1975, he appeared on daytime television, beginning his portrayal of Bruce Carson on the CBS soap opera Search for Tomorrow.

From 1981 to 1982, Joel starred in a spoof  of the Old West called Best of the WestBest of the West was a short-lived series, airing on ABC for just one season of 23 episodes.  Higgins  played Sam Best, a Civil War veteran who became a marshal after inadvertently scaring off a gunfighter.

Joel Higgins in 1978 photo
After five seasons on the hit comedy Silver Spoons (1982-1987),  Higgins returned to television in a new ABC comedy called Have Faith. in the spring of 1989.  He played Monsignor Joseph "Mac" MacKenzie, who oversaw a zany group of Catholic priests at an inner-city Chicago church.  The series received poor ratings and was cancelled after just seven episodes.

During the 1990s and the 2000s, Joel Higgins continued to perform on stage around the United States.  Joel has been married to Stacy Alberts since 1983.  They have one child, s son named Graham Franklin Higgins, born 1991.

ERIN GRAY played Kate Summers Stratton, Edward's secretary, whom he married in February 1985.  Erin was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on January 7. 1950, but moved to California when she was a child.  As a teenager, she met Nina Blanchard, the head of one of Hollywood's leading modelling agencies.  This convinced her to move to New York City and pursue a career in modelling.  She eventually became a top model  In 1967, she made her television debut as a dancer in a variety series called Malibu U, hosted by singer Ricky Nelson

After developing an interest in acting, Erin moved to Los Angeles to seek a Hollywood career..  Universal Studios was so impressed by Erin's TV performances in episodes of Gibbsville (1976) and Police Story (1978) that she was signed to a seven-year contract.  Her performance as a newspaper reporter in Irwin Shaw's 1978 television movie Evening in Byzantium was well-received and led to her next role.  From 1979 to 1981,she played Colonel Wilma Deering in the science fiction television series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.  She then appeared as Kate on five seasons of Silver Spoons (1982-1987).

Erin Gray and Ricky Schroder in Silver Spoons cast photo
After Silver Spoons ended its run, Erin made guest appearances on episodes of series such as Superboy (1992) and Burke's  Law (1994).  In 1997, she played the role Nicole Devlin  in Port Charles, a spin-off the soap Gemeral Hospital.  In 2000, she portrayed Congresswoman Karen Archer in the TV drama Profiler.

Along with Mara Purl, Gray co-authored a book titled Act Right: A Manual for the On-Camera Actor, Haven Books, a handbook for actors.

In 2014, Erin guest-starred on the web series Star Trek Continues in an episode entitled "Lolani."  She played the role of Commodore Gray.

Erin teaches Tai chi.

Erin has been married twice.  In 1968, she wed real estate executive Ken Schwartz, who eventually managed her career.  The marriage lasted until 1990 and the couple had one son, Kevan Ray Schwartz (born 1976).  In 1991, Erin married Richard Hissong and their daughter Samantha was born the same year.  Samantha plays Buck Rogers' girlfriend, Maddy in the Internet video series

Erin Gray in 2013   Photo Attribution Luigi Novi.

LEONARD LIGHTFOOT played Leonard Rollins, Edward's lawyer, during the first season of Silver Spoons (1982-1983).  After his departure, Lightfoot was replaced by Franklyn Seales.

Leonard was born on December 2, 1947 in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.  Prior to his role on Silver Spoons, he appeared in episodes of such TV series as The White Shadow (1979). The Incredible Hulk (1979), Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1980), The Brady Brides (1981), The Greatest American Hero (1982), Hill Street Blues (19810 (1982), Diff'rent Strokes (1982) and The Jeffersons (1981) (1982).

Leonard Lightfoot

After leaving his role in Silver Spoons, Leonard continued to work on television during the 1980s and 1990s.  From 1987 to 1989, he played Deputy Alvin Wiggins in the comedy She's the Sheriff.  He also appeared in episodes of Married . . . With Children (1990), Hunter (1990), Quatum Leap (1991), Major Dad (1991) and A Different World (1992).  From 1993 until 1994, he had the recurring role of Detective Henderson on Murder, She Wrote, starring Angela Lansbury.

Leonard guest-starred in a 1996 episode of Seinfeld entitled "The Rye" (Seaspm 7, Episode 11, Air Date: January 4, 1996).  He then appeared in an episode of  The Pretender (1997) and Brooklyn South (1997).  After 1997, he has no further acting credits on IMDb.

In 2003, Leonard appeared in a TV commercial for Toyota.

FRANKLYN SEALES portrayed Dexter Stuffins, Edward Stratton III's finicky business manager.  Seales was born in Calliaqua, St. Vincent, West Indies on July 15, 1952.  The fifth of eight children of Francis Seales, a merchant seaman and government employee, Franklyn was of mixed ethic and racial background: His family left the Caribbean and settled in New York City when he was a child.

Franklyn Seales
Franklyn originally intended to study art.  However, actor/producer John Houseman, who later became Seale's castmate on Silver Spoons, noticed his acting talent and offered him a scholarship at the famed Julliard Manhatten.   Franklyn graduated from Julliard and performed with The Acting Company, a professional theatre company that was co-founded by Houseman in 1972.

Seales caught his first big break in the 1978 PBS drama, Trial of the Moke, in which he portrayed Lt. Henry O. Flipper, the first African-American to graduate from West Point Military Academy.  In the 1979 feature film The Onion Field, he played Jimmy "Youngblood" Smith, the real-life killer of a Los Angeles police detective.

Franklyn went on to play Dexter in 96 episodes of Silver Spoons, from 1983 to 1987.  From 1986 to 1987, he also appeared as Lorenzo Hollingsworth in five episodes of the sitcom Amen, starring Sherman Hemsley of The Jeffersons.  His television credits include a 1987 episode of Growing Pains  entitled "This Is Your Life" (Season 3, Episode 10, Air Date November 17, 1987) and a 1988 episode of the crime drama Wiseguy entitled "Fascination for the Flame" (Season 1, Episode 12, Air Date: January 11, 1988).  In 1989, Franklyn played the role of William Klein in the daytime soap opera Santa Barbara.

On May 14, 1990, Franklyn Seales died from complications from AIDS at his family's home in Brooklyn, New York.  He was only 37 years old at the time of his passing.  During the last years of his life, he worked mostly in non-profit theatre in Los Angeles.

JOHN HOUSEMAN played Edward Stratton II, Edward's father and Ricky's grandfather.  Edward II would make snide comments whenever he visited.  The well-to-do industrialist believed that money should be used to make more money.  His son, in contrast, felt that wealth should be a means of making people happy.

John Houseman
Houseman, a British-American, was born in Bucharest, Romania on September 22, 1902.  A veteran of the stage and screen, he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Harvard University law professor Charles W. Kingsfield in the film The Paper Chase (1973).  From 1978 until 1978, he reprised his role as Professor Kingsfield in the television adaptation of the film.  He also played Jewish author Aaron Jastrow in the acclaimed 1983 TV miniseries The Winds of War,.  He received a Golden Globe Award for his performance.

The actor, who spoke with a distinctive English accent, was known for his commercials for the brokerage firm, Smith Barney.  The ads ended with Houseman dropping this memorable slogan; "They make money the old-fashioned way.  They earn it."

Houseman was married twice.  His first wife was Austrian-American actress Zita Johann, best known for her appearance in the 1932 film, The Mummy, starring Boris Karloff.  They were wed in 1929 and divorced in 1933.  He married Joan Courtney in 1952 and that marriage lasted until his death.

John Housman died of spinal cancer at his home in Malibu, California on October 31, 1988.  He was 86 years old at the time of his passing.  His last film appearances included Bright Lights, Big City (1988) and Another Woman (1988).


* Only Ricky Schroder, Joel Higgins and Erin Gray appeared in all 116 episodes of Silver Spoons.

* Ricky Schroder has an older sister, Dawn Schroder Gregg.  Dawn is a model and actress who played Jenny in the 1980s television series, The Facts of Life.  Dawn is married to American actor, director and producer Bradley Gregg.

* Other member of the cast of Silver Spoons included:

JASON BATEMAN, who played Ricky's scheming school pal, Derek Taylor, from 1982 to 1984

CORKY PIGEON, who portrayed Freddie Lippincottleman, another friend, from 1983 to 1985.

Ricky Schroder with Corky Pigeon

BOBBY FITE, who played J.T. Martin, yet another friend, from 1983 to 1984.

ALFONSO RIBEIRO, who played Alfonso Spears, Dexter Stuffins' nephew, from 1984 to 1987.

RAY WALSTON, of My Favorite Martian, who played Harry Summers, Kate's uncle, in 1985. (Walston died on January 1, 2001 at the age of 86).

Ray Walston

- Joanne

Monday, June 25, 2018

Internet TV Diget #8

This is the eighth of an occasional feature on TV Banter called Internet TV Digest.. Internet TV Digest contains recent news, information and discussion about online televisio

Internet TV Digest

"The great granddaddy of streaming services remains the best . . . No other service has yet given Netflix an honest-to-goodness run for its money in terms of selection, quality and performance consistency." 

- Marxhall HonorofFrom Tom's Guide
June 19, 2018

What's new on Netflix in July 2018?

Here is a sample of some of the programming coming to Netflix in July.:

The Comedy Lineup is a Netflix original in which a variety up-and-coming comedians perform 15-minute stand-up routines.  It will be available on July 5th.

There's more comedy with another season of Jerry Seinfeld's interview series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee: Freshly Brewed,  It will be available on July 6th.  This unique series was created by Seinfeld, who is also its director and host.. Jerry picks up his guests (mostly fellow comedians) in vintage cars such as a 1977 Volkswagen camper bus, a 1978 AMC Gremlin, a 1964 Studebaker Avanti and a 1970 Ford Mustang.  They drive to a restaurant or cafe where they talk and drink coffee.
One show featured former U.S. President Barack Obama.  Jerry and Obama drove around the grounds of the White House in a 1963 Corvette Stingray.

Comedian in Cars Getting Coffee was launched in 2012 on the Crackle streaming service.  After nine seasons on Crackle, the series has moved  to Netflix for its tenth. Scheduled guests include Ellen DeGreneres, Alec Baldwin and Dana Carvey.

The second season of Anne with an E, a a Canadian series based on L.M. Montgomery's 1908 classic Anne of Green Gables, will be available on Friday, July 6th.

The Emmy-winning women's prison drama, Orange is the new Black, will return for a sixth season on July 27th.

What's new on Amazon Prime in July 2018?

Here's a sample of some programming coming to Amazon Prime in July:

The sixth and final season of the Cold War spy drama The Americans comes to Amazon on July.  Two Russian agents masquerade as an average American couple with a family.

Comicstaan features India's most promising new comics as they compete in a bid to find India's next comic sensation.  Seven of India's most prominent comedic talents judge and mentor the competitors.

There's a new season of the Amazon-produced children's show Tumble Leaf.  The series is aimed at preschoolers.

AT&T has launched a new streaming device - WatchTV

On June 21, 2018, AT&T announced the launched a second TV streaming service called WatchTV.  The announcement occurred just days after the company's merger with Time Warner.  The new service provides a less costly alternative to AT&T's DirecTV Now.  Anyone can join WatchTV for the price of $15 per month.  However, the service will be included as part of AT&T's wireless plan.

WatchTV offers over 30 live TV channels from networks such as CNN, Animal Planet, A&E, the Food Network and others.  It will soon add BET, Comedy Central, Nicktoons, Teen Nick and VH1.
In addition, WatchTV allows access to 15,000 television shows and movies-on-demand, as well as premium channels and music streaming options.

Uber driver was streaming Hulu prior to fatal self-driving crash in Arizona

On June 22nd, police in Tempe, Arizona provided evidence showed that the "safety driver" of a self-driving Uber was streaming a television shown on her phone right up to the time of a fatal accident last March.  According to the police report, the crash was "entirely avoidable."  The driver, Rafaela Vasquez was apparently not paying enough attention when she hit a 49-year-old pedestrian, who was crossing the street at night.

The Tempe Police Department obtained records from Hulu, a popular online streaning service, which should that Vasquez was playing the TV talent show The Voice at a time that coincided with the time of the crash.

- Joanne

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Y&R Report (June 23, 2018): The Latest on The Young and the Restless

Hey Y&R fans, every second Saturday TV Banter discusses the latest happenings and provides commentary on your favourite daytime drama. Note to U.S. readers - SPOILER ALERT: Here in Canada, I watch the show on Global TV which is one episode ahead of CBS.  I will inevitably refer to incidents you haven't seen yet. Read at your own risk.  If you are the curious type, though, you may prefer to discover some things in advance.

Could  J,T. Hellstrom be alive?  It isn't logical.  He had no pulse and he was buried in Chancellor Park by four women, namely Nikki, Victoria, Sharon and Phyllis.  Thad Luckinbill, who portrayed J.T., has completed his stint on the show.  Yet, we all know that it's not unheard of for "dead" soap opera characters to turn up alive   There's also a a loose end concerning J.T.  He was supposed to have a heart condition caused by an electrocution.  He was seeing a cardiologist.  Was that just thrown into the storyline for no reason, or will it have some relevance to the storyline?  Did the writers simply change their minds and drop the matter?

For now, let's assume that J.T. is really and truly dead.  So, who has been threatening Princess Victoria and Newman Enterprises.  Who has been using J.T.'s credit card?  Who has used that card to send packages containing Newman documents to Victoria's office?  What's going on here?  As far as we know, no one except the quartet of women, knows that J.T. is dead and buried.  Could someone be trying to frighten Victoria enough so that she will reveal the truth about J.T.'s disappearance?

The circumstances of the departed Mr. Hellstrom's death and burial are still haunting the four ladies involved, especially Victoria.  None of these women will find peace until they own up to what happened.  There's no escaping it.  There are those, such as Nick Newman. Victor Newman and Paul Williams who will not let the matter rest.  However, would any of them try to scare Victoria into admitting what really happened?  I wouldn't put it past Victor to torment and scare his own daughter.

Victoria is really living in a pressure cooker. She also has to deal with her son Reed's devastation over his father's absence.  As for Sharon, her future marriage to Nick will never succeed as long as she's keeping a horrendous secret from him.  The wedding may never even take place if Nick discovers the truth before the nuptials.  All four women are living under pressure, continually trying to cover up their dark secret.  This can's go on.  Something has got to give.

Isn't Nikki the jealous one?  It looks as if she's not over Arturo.  She just can't let him go.  It was hard not to notice the look of disapproval and annoyance on her face when she saw Arturo dancing the salsa with Genoa City's Latin lover.  Melody Thomas Scott is a pro at putting that expression on her face.  It's the same look she had on her face at Nick and Sharon's wedding.

I am very disappointed that Mishael Morgan (Hilary Curtis) is leaving Y&R.  I think she adds pizzazz to the show and many fans will miss her.  As for her character, I really don't want anyone else to play the role.  I don't think she's going to be replaced.  My sense is that Hilary and her baby will die tragically.  She and Devon are blissfully happy right now and all of Hilary's dreams seem to be coning true.  On a soap, that usually means disaster is about to strike.

Having said all that, a few questions remain.  Without Hilary, what will happen to GC Buzz and The Hilary Hour.  Will Mariah take over the show and will it be renamed The Mariah Hour.  No, that won't work.  Mariah is okay as a "second banana" or a co-host.  However, she doesn't have Hilary's pizzazz, her energy, her personality.

Obviously, Christian belongs with Nick and Sharon.  It's hard to believe that a judge would have awarded the child to Victor, although Nick didn't do himself any favours by flying off the handle.  Nicholas Newman should really learn to control his temper.  He needs anger management.  Sharon, on the other hand, presented herself quite well at the custody hearing.  She was calm and composed when grilled by Michael Baldwin.  Why does Michael always come running at Victor's beck and call?  He didn't feel pleased about the outcome of the hearing.  He even admitted that he felt like he had lost, despite winning temporary custody of Christian for his ruthless client.

Even in his weakened condition, Victor Newman  continues to stir the pot.  Good on Princess Victoria for supporting her brother rather than her daddy, but she needs to do more.  Nick has decided to stand up to his father and he's all fired up.  It's time that Victoria did the same instead of just standing by while "The Moustache" does his dirty work."

I'm afraid, however, that Nick is in for a couple of huge disappointments.  It seems to be a given with the Y&R writers that Victor always wins.  Over the years, he has had setbacks and he has spent time in prison, but he always comes out ahead  Why should it be any different this time?  Nick's second major disappointment will occur when he discovers what four important women in his life have done to J.T.

It doesn't appear that Kyle has gotten over Summer.  He still wants the Snowflake. However, the Snowflake is more focused on her mother's boyfriend, Billy Abbott.  He's more of a challenge to her because he's forbidden fruit.  This new devious Summer knows Billy's weaknesses and is determined to break him down.  She is taking advantage of Billy Boy's gambling addiction.  Even though he anguished over his addiction problem to her, she still mentioned hosting another poker game to


If you have any comments on Y&R, please email them to me with "Viewer Forum" in the subject line. I will be happy to publish your comments and reply to them  You do not have to use your real name. 

My email address:

I received  an email from Kelly in San Francisco, California, a Y&R viewer since 1976.  Kelly made the following comments:

So sick of the feud between Victor and Nick.  My children's father died tragically. This has been going on way too long, torch boy Nick!  Getting tired of all the fighting.  Life is too short.

I sympathize with you, Kelly.  I can understand why you are sick and tired of the feud between Nick and Victor. I would be too if I had gone through a traumatic experience such as yours.  The problem is that soaps thrive on conflict.  That's why couples rarely remain happy on daytime dramas.  When there are no problems and everyone gets along, there is not much storyline.  That doesn't mean, however, that there can't be some lighter moments.  With all the tension, Y&R can always use more humour.

 I.suppose the writers could tone down the Nick/Victor feud a notch or two.  Perhaps they will, eventually.  Right now, however, the Christian custody case is front and centre and it affects so many characters and relationships on the show.

Victor will always cause trouble.  Even if he reconciled with Nick, he'd be feuding with others, but maybe you don't mind that as much.  I have surmised that it's the father/son conflict that you dislike.
The Victor/Jack feud has been going on longer.

Have you noticed the change in Kyle lately?  Suddenly he's very sweet and supportive to Jack.  He's right by Jack's side, helping him to find out the truth about his biological father.  You should be pleased about that, Kelly.

Regular Y&R viewer, Helen in Scarborough, Ontario, has suggested the reason why the writers have done away with Kyle's hostility toward his father.  According to Helen, the writers didn't want two major father/son feuds and they realized the Victor/Nick feud was about to break wide open with the custody case over Christian.

I would like to thank regular reader, Fifi in Collingwood, Ontario,for alerting me to the Internet rumours regarding Jack Abbott's biological father.  According to spoilers, Jack's father will turn out to be Albert Miller, who also happens to be Victor's father.  It makes sense to me because Jack's father has to have some significance and I think Jack's paternity has to be linked to Victor in some way.  It has to have some significance or what's  the point?  If Albert is indeed Jack's dad, that means that Victor and Jack are half-brothers and that Kyle is Victor's nephew.

I don't think Philip Chancellor is really Jack's father, even though Dina claims that he is. Remember that Philip's body has not been exhumed and his DNA has not been matched to Jack's.  I think that's just a red herring to deter us from Jack's real father, Albert Miller, who was played by George Kennedy.  George Kennedy died in 2016 at the age of 91,  He appeared n Y&R briefly back in November of 2003,

George Kennedy

There could, however be a twist in the plot.  Perhaps Jack will turn out to be John Abbott's biological son after all.  Maybe Tracy isn't John's biological daughter.  That's possible, but I still think Albert Miller will turn out to be Jack's daddy.

Jess Walton to return as Jill, at least for a bit

There is some good news for fans of Jess Walton (Jull Atkinson).  Jill will be back in Genoa City next month. Her first screen appearances will be on Friday, July 13 (CBS) and Thursday, July 12 (Global TV in Canada. According to Soap Central, there is no word yet as to to how long she will stick around.  Her recent appearances have been short ones.  So, this may just be another quick visit.

It should be fascinating to see how Jill reacts Billy's new position as CEO of Jabot and the revelation that Jack is not John Abbott's biological son.  I'm sure she'll find time to spar with Esther, as usual.

Doug Davidson celebrates 40 years of playing Paul Williams on Y&R

Congratulations to Doug Davidson for portraying Paul Williams for forty years.  In those four decades, we've seen Paul change from a reckless young man to a private detective to Genoa City Police Chief.  We've seen his romances and his marriages to Lauren (Tracey Bregman), Isabella (Eva Longoria) and Christine, a.k.a. Cricket (Lauralee Bell).  He may be clueless as a police chief, but Doug Davidson is a great guy in real life with a terrific sense of humour. (I have seen him a few times in person).

Here's what his Y&R television wife Lauralee Bell, the Cricketmeister herself, wrote to her TV husband on Twitter.

"Happy 40 Y&R Doug!  You make the show better, you make hard scenes easy but just listening to you, you are one of my closest friends & should be so proud of all your accomplishements!"


Now that  Mishael Morgan is leaving The Young and the Restless, should her Hilary character be written out or should she be replaced with another actress?  What do you think, fans?  Respond to the poll below and let me know.

Now that Mishael Morgan is leaving the show, should a new actress replace her as Hilary Curtis?

Yes, definitely. The role of Hilary is too important to the storyline.
No, the character should be written out of the story.
I don't know.
Please Specify:
Created with PollMaker

That's all for now.  I'm looking forward to some summer fun on Y&RPlease remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, July 7, 2018.

- Joanne

Monday, June 18, 2018

When Colour TV was a Big Deal

Yes, Virginia, there was a time when colour television was a very big deal. It was new, special and exciting.  If your relatives happened to own a colour TV, you would look forward to watching your favourite show in colour whenever you visited their home.  Hotels and motels had signs advertising the fact that they provided colour television for guests.

After World War II had ended, television engineers and executives returned quickly to a task that had begun well before the war.  Their goal was to broadcast television signals in colour.  By 1950, two companies were competing furiously to be the first to create colour TVs. They were the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) and RCA. CBS researchers, led by engineer Peter Goldmark, created a mechanical colour television system based on the 1928 designs of Scottish engineer John Logie Baird (1888-1946).  On October 11,1950, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) endorsed CBS's colour television technology as the national standard. It approved the CBS Field Sequential System, which was authorized for broadcast after November 20, 1950.  The RCA system was not approved due to low picture quality.

On October 17, 1950, RCA,filed a suit in the Federal District Court in Chicago to halt color television broadcasting by CBS.  On May 28, 1951, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the FCC ruling, approving the CBS system.  However, RCA had succeeded in delaying the launch of the CBS system for seven additional months.  During that time, more black and white sets were sold that could not receive the CBS signals.

On June 25, 1951, CBS began broadcasting in colour on five east coast TV stations.  The first commercial CBS colour program was a star-studded variety show simply called Premiere. It was broadcast from CBS-TV's Studio 57 in New York City.  The show began at 4:30 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time and lasted a full hour. It featured Arthur Godfrey, Ed Sullivan, Garry Moore, Robert Alda. the New York City Ballet, Isabel Bigley, Sam Levenson, George Balanchine and others.

Premiere was was hosted by Patty Painter, a former Powers model who was known as CBS's "Miss Color Television."  Painter, whose real name was Patricia Stinnette, was described in the New Yorker (August 11, 1951) as a woman who had "sat or stood in front of CBS experimental color cameras holding up scarves, apples and other colorful objects so that technicians and engineers can observe how the tints reproduce on the screen."  She had to wear "violent colors" and her ashbond hair "was "tinted a different color sometimes as often as three times a week."

In New York, former U.S. First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and American businessman Baruch were among those who watched Premiere on colour receivers at CBS headquarters.  Unfortunately for CBS, very few viewers were able to watch the history-making broadcast in the comfort of their homes.  Most Americans owned black and white sets and only people in certain U.S. cities were able to watch the show.   Premiere was carried in New York by WCBS-TV as well as by CBS affiliates in Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington D.C.

In 1951, there were already millions of black and white TV sets (half of them RCA) and few color sets.  When colour television production was discontinued during the Korean War (1950-1953), CBS faced further setbacks and challenges.  These factors contributed to the failure of the CBS system to win acceptance.  RCA had time to fill the void and was able to produce colour television based on Alfred Schroeder's 1947 patent application for a technology called shadow mask CRT.

In late 1953, the FCC approved the RCA compatible system, an analogue colour television.  This system, commonly known as the National Television System Committee (NTSC), was used from 1954 until it was replaced by digital conversion.  The first colour television sets for this system went on sale to the public in March of 1954 and they featured a 15-inch screen. (On March 15, 1954, Westinghouse offered a colour TV for the sale price of $1,295, the equivalent of almost $12,000 in 2018 dollars.  On March 25, 1954, mass production of the RCA Victor model CT-100 began.  It was marketed as "The Merrill" and it cost $1,000.)

In his article for ("March 25, 1954, RCA TV Get the Color for Money"), Randy Alfred describes RCA's CT-100 as "the first color-TV set for consumers."  It offered low quality at a high price and was "destined to become a costly classic."

1954 RCA Victor first colour TV

Colour television was such a hot topic in 1954 that it was mentioned in an  episode of I Love Lucy entitled "The Charm School" (Season 3, Episode 15. Air Date: January 25, 1954).  In the episode, Ricky Ricardo. his friend and landlord Fred Mertz and a guest named Bill Hall (Tyler McVey) have a discussion about whether whether colour TV will catch on.  Here is the dialogue:

RICKY: Do you think colour will take?

BILL: Colour?  Some people think that's it's, uh, just around the corner.  Others feel it's going to be a year or two.

Below is a photo of Bill, Ricky and Fred (Lto R) conversing at the Ricardo's apartment.

In 1956, Perry Como's program and Dinah Shore's program were broadcast in colour.  An ad promoting the two singers' shows blared, "Here they come on NBC in a blaze of Color! . . . and it's like meting them for the first time."

Below is a Perry Como colour TV ad.

When colour television was first introduced, TV sets were regarded as important pieces of furniture.  Colour sets were too expensive for many people to afford.  As a result, the market for colour was limited.  During the 1950s, only small  number of scheduled programming and some specials were broadcast in colour.  Yet, once colour sets became more affordable, the audience increased.  The RCA standard with its compatibility with existing black and white sets was more marketable.  Few people wanted one box for black and white and another for colour in their living rooms.

By 1955, colour sets with 21-inch picture tubes were available. During the early 1960s, popular television series such as BonanzaWalt Disney's Wonderful World of ColorThe FlintstonesThe Jetsons and The Ed Sullivan Show were aired in colour.  It wasn't until 1965, however,  that the majority of American commercial networks broadcast their prime time shows in colour.

In 1966, NBC announced that all of its new programming would be in colour. The other networks followed suit, and  by the end of that year, all prime time network shows were aired in colour.  However, most daytime, local and educational programming remained in black and white for a few years longer.  By 1972, sales of colour TVs in the United States finally surpassed those of  black and white.  By the mid-1970s, black and white broadcasts were a thing of the past.


* An episode of Dragnet that aired in December of 1953 was the first commercial television program on colour film.

* The first national colour broadcast in the United States was a live telecast of the Rose Bowl Parade, on January 1, 1954.

* The first colour broadcast of a U.S. president occurred in June of 1955: President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

* The first cartoons broadcast in colour were The Flintstones and The Jetsons in the fall of 1962.

* On August 11, 1951, CBS broadcast the first baseball game in color.  The game, between the Booklyn Dodger and the Boston Bravss, took place at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, New York.  Red Barber and Connie Desmond delivered the play-by-play commentary.

*  From 1969 to the early 1970s, CBS's Field Sequential colour television technology was used to broadcast the Apollo moon missions.

"CBS Color Television Chronology" by Ed Reitan; and Wikipedia;
"March 25, 1954, RCA TV Get the Color for Money" by Randy Alfred,, March 25, 2008 "History of Color Television -Who Invented Color TV"
"Who Invented Color Television" by Mary Bellis, Thoughtco., November 23, 2017
"From Miss Claire Brown, 6/25/51 . . .Re: Color TV" by Howard Blumenthal, Digital Insider, July 18, 2012
The New Yorker, August 11, 1951, page 20


If any readers have stories about the earlier days of colour TV, please write me about them and I will publish them.  I would  also like to hear from millennials.  What was your reaction when you first viewed a black and white TV show, if you've ever seen one at all?

- Joanne

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Y&R Report (June 9, 2018): The Latest on The Young and the Restless

Hey Y&R fans, every second Saturday TV Banter discusses the latest happenings and provides commentary on your favourite daytime drama. Note to U.S. readers - SPOILER ALERT: Here in Canada, I watch the show on Global TV which is one episode ahead of CBS.  I will inevitably refer to incidents you haven't seen yet. Read at your own risk.  If you are the curious type, though, you may prefer to discover some things in advance.

Summer Newman is back in town and boy, does she have Attitude with a capital "A."  She is not just brash and sassy,  She is rude and insolent.  She is obsessed with expensive sports cars and was charged with stealing her married ex-boyfriend's fancy Italian roadster.  Soon after she arrived in Genoa City, she was arrested and jailed for felony auto theft. When confronted by her shocked parents, she denied stealing the car and claimed that her ex-boyfriend gave it to her so that she would not tell his wife about the affair.

Summer is definitely out of control. During her absence from Genoa City, "Supergirl" has transformed into "Superbrat."  She has become the very epitome of the spoiled, rich girl.  The only problem is that she's not a "girl" anymore.  She's a woman.  She's an adult who refuses to accept responsibility for her actions.  As Summer loves to point out constantly, Phyllis, Billy, Nick and Sharon haven't t exactly set a good example for her.  However, she can't keep using her parents' hypocrisy as an excuse for her own poor choices.

Mama Phyllis is very disturbed by Summer's attitude and she is sincerely concerned about her daughter's recklessness.  That's because she realizes that Summer has been acting like she did at that age.  What goes around, comes around, Phyllis.  However, an Internet spoilers reveals that something happened to Summer while she was away that may have caused this dramatic change in her behaviour.  According to the spoiler, our favourite little "Snowflake" will confide in Billy about what transpired while she was globetrotting.

The writers are having a lot of fun with Mariah's distaste for Summer.  Here are some memorable lines that were spoken when Summer showed up at Devon's "Hot Summer Nights" event and Mariah reacted to her return to town.

TESSA: So that's "Snowflake,"huh?

MARIAH:  Thank God no two are alike.

SUMMER (After ex-boyfriend Kyle tells her he's not interested in her anymore): There's not even one part of you glad to see me?

MARIAH:  No one even noticed you were gone, "Snowflake."

SUMMER; Look, I'm sorry  to burst your "sad, lonely girl" bubble, but I'm not "Snowflake" anymore.  I'm more of a cyclone or a tsunami.

MARIAH: Oh, natural disaster. - that works.

Of course, Grandpa Victor is Summer's greatest enabler.  He has already enforced his bratty granddaughter's egregious behaviour by allowing her to choose a car from his "fleet."  Summer's wish is his command.  She just has to ask and Victor will grant her anything her little heart (and I mean "little") desires.

Speaking of "The Moustache", I wish Nikki and others would stop using his childhood to justify his ruthless ways.  Yes, Victor was sent to an orphanage and he had an extremely difficult childhood.  Yes, he felt alone and abandoned.  Yes, he had to scratch and claw his way to success in business and he had to do it on his own.  However, that doesn't give him a free pass to walk all over people and manipulate them.  He needs psychiatric treatment to help him get over the traumas of his youth.

Summer is not the most popular person in town.  So Phyllis asked Kyle to spend some time with her. because she thinks that Summer could use a friend.  Kyle declined.  She dumped him for Luca and he won't go near her with a ten-foot pole.  Summer is going to turn to someone for understanding and sympathy.  It looks as if it's going to be Billy.

Who Jack Abbott's biological father?  If it isn't Victor, then whom?  There would be no conflict or no impact if Jack's father turned out to be just anybody.  Maybe there's another twist in the plot.


If you have any comments on Y&R, please email them to me with "Viewer Forum" in the subject line. I will be happy to publish your comments and reply to them  You do not have to use your real name. 

My email address:

Regular contributor CC in Etobicoke, Ontario is definitely not a fan of Hunter King (Summer Newman).  She wrote the following email expressing her feelings about Summer's return to Genoa City.

If Hunter stays too long, that might be it for me!

CC also wrote:

Summer is a major turn-off.  She will be the undoing of Billy and Phyllis, who are already coming undone, and Nick and Sharon.  Suits me fine.  I hope she doesn't stick around longer than the summer.

Well, CC, you've made it clear that you are not happy about the return of Hunter King to Y&R.  You say you may stop watching the show if she stays too long.  Obviously, her character isn't likable, but I'm glad that she has returned to the show.  She has livened things up and created a stir.

You are right that Summer will be the undoing of Billy Boy  and Phyllis.  She has already made a play for Billy, but he hasn't bitten yet.  The J.T. secret to will come between Nick and Sharon.  It isn't necessary for Summer to interfere with their relationship.

CC, I'm afraid this is the summer of Summer.  As for how long Hunter King is going to stick around, all I know is that she has signed a contract with the Y&R.  It may depend on her ability to  withstand the grind of appearing on two shows (She also stars as Clementine on the CBS sitcom Life in Pieces).

Another regular contributor, Fifi in Collingwood, Ontario, does not want Abby and Arturo together.  Fifi is not a fan of Arturo.  She describes him as "greasy" and she doesn't think that Abby Newman would fall for him.  In Fifi's opinion, Abby is better suited to Scott Grainger and she would like Scott (Daniel Hall) to return to Genoa City.  Daniel has been written out of the show and his last scene aired in January.  (By the way, have you noticed that Lauren and Michael haven't been shown much since Scott left, although Michael has recently become involved in the custody case between Nick and Victor, as Victor's lawyer).

I am in agreement with Fifi about Arturo.  I was disappointed when Daniel Hall left the show  and I would like him to come back.  At the moment Abby is upset with Arturo for not telling her about his affair with her stepmother, Nikki.  She doused him in cold water (Abby has got to stop throwing liquids when she's angry at someone.  Hasn't she learned from her experience with Victoria, when she threw a drink at her and caused her to have a concussion?).

Arturo later begged Abby to give him another chance and she refused. She may change her mind.  If not, Arturo will look elsewhere.  He may eventually hook up with Summer.  He danced with her at the "Hot  Summer NIghts" party and she flirted with him.  He appears to be her type and she appears to be his.  Arturo just can't stay away from those spoiled, blond Newman women from three generations - Summer's grandmother (Nikki), Nikki's stepdaughter (Abby) and Summer herself.

Here are some comments from Carly in Barrhaven, Ontario.

Y&R is ridiculous.  I fast forward scenes with Nick and Sharon and also ones with Hilary and Devon.  The new Kyle is a good actor.  Phyllis gets on my nerves being such a know-it-all.  Arturo is greasy.  I agree with Fifi about that.  I also agree with you about the park storyline {J.T.'s burial)..  So why do I watch that soap?

Actually, Carly, I like Nick and Sharon together.  It's unfortunate that Sharon's keeping the J.T. secret from him, but there has to be conflict in a soap.  As for Hilary and Devon, there won't be smooth sailing for them either.  I agree with you that Michael Mealor (Kyle Abbott) is a good actor, much better than the previous actors who have played the role of Kyle.  I have even warmed up to his character somewhat because some different sides to his personality have been revealed.  Phyllis gets on my nerves too.  As I've mentioned before, she's too overbearing, too much of a busybody.


Shocker!  Seems like Mishael Morgen (Hilary Curtis) will soon be leaving Y&R

It appears that Mishael Morgan (Hilary Curtis) has chosen to leave The Young and the Restless.  According to TVSource Magazine, Mishael has failed to reach an agreement in contract talks with the show.  A source has told Soap Central that "Morgan made the decision to walk away from television's top-rated soap."  Y&R has a policy not to comment on contract disputes and we don't know if the show will give her another offer.

Mishael has portrayed Hilary for five years, since June of 2013, and she received her first Daytime Emmy nomination a few months ago.  It is unclear what will happen to her character if or when she departs.  She could be written out, but she would have to leave town or die.  At this time, Hilary plays an integral part in the storyline.  So, maybe her role will have to be recast.  The question is: Can another actress portray Hilary as well?

On the other hand, given head writer Mal Young's penchant for writing character out abruptly, Hilary just may die or leave town.


Some viewers, such as CC in Etobicoke, Ontario, are not happy that the Snowflake has retuned.  What do you think, fans?  Respond to my poll and let me know if you are pleased about Summer Newman's return.

Are you pleased that Summer (Hunter King) is back?

Yes, she's really going to stir things up and Humter King is a good actress.
No, I don't think she is a good actress and I dislike her character.
I don't know.
Please Specify:
Created with Free Survey Maker

That's all for now.  Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, June 23, 2018.