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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Y&R Report (July 19, 2014): 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.

So Supergirl Summer is a married woman now.  It was so touching when her two daddies, Jack and Nick walked her down the aisle.  It's amazing how she just fell in love with Austin so fast.  Then, soon after her beloved shot the Chief of Police, she stood with him in a church saying wedding vows in front of an enthusiastic clergyman.  Summer and Austin's story is just so romantic.  Maybe someone should write a song about it.  How about "He Shot the Police Chief but he did not shoot the Deputy . . . ?"

They're going to have build a Heartbreak Hotel in Genoa City.  Devon, the unhappy billionaire would be the first to check in.  Neil, Summer and the Cricketmeister will eventually follow.

As I've mentioned before, I really enjoy Ray Wise's performance as that snake, Ian Ward.  He's really amusing.  He just appears out of nowhere and upsets everyone.  I think he's going to find out Sharon's secret before Victor does.  Mariah will learn what Sharon did and inform him.  Then he will blackmail Sharon.  I predict that Sharon is Mariah's biological mother and Cassie's twin.  My guess is that Ian took Mariah away when she was a newborn without Sharon's knowledge.  Sharon doesn't know she gave birth to twins.

I also think Billy is the father of Victoria's baby, simply because they are not together.  If they were still together, Stitch would be the father.  I always ask myself what would create the most conflict and the greatest complications.  In true soap opera fashion, Billy will probably find out he's the father on the same day his divorce Victoria is final.

Traci is back and she has organized a dinner party.  I always enjoy those Abbott gatherings.  I wish that the patriarch of the family, John Abbott, hadn't been written out of the show.  He should be three at the head of the table, making speeches and toasts.  It's also too bad Eileen Davidson isn't back yet as Ashley.  However, I 'm looking forward to her return in early September.  I'm confident that she will get to the bottom of the Stitch mystery.


Here is a mixed bag of comments from Y&R viewers with my replies.

From regular commentator CC in Etobicoke, Ontario, who is definitely not a fan of Hunter King (Summer Newman):

I think the actress who plays Courtney would have made a better Summer. Perhaps the Courtney character was created for her as she may have been a runner-up for the Summer role.

Although the Summer/Austin storyline is so predictable it presents many options for the future, maybe even that they leave town for a long estrangement from their families I hope.
That would at least give them a chance to recast.

The lamest of all storylines is the Neil/Hilary/ Lily/Devon thing.

Actually, CC, I don't think Kelli Goss, the actress who plays Courtney, would have made a good Summer. She seems to have a bit of an edge, a toughness about her. She doesn't appear to be as vulnerable and naive as the Summer character.

The Neil/Hillary/Lily?Devon storyline is not my favourite but I think that there have been much worse ones in the history of the show.  For example: How about Kevin wearing a chipmunk mask and robbing banks? That was so forgettable that it's unforgettable.  Actually, it would be fun to make a list of the worst storylines. Readers, your contribution are welcome.  Let me know some of your worst storylines on the show and I will publish your comments.

From Fifi in Collingwood, Ontario:

There are a lot of various shades of blond on Y&R right now.  Summer, Courtney, Kelly, Sharon and Abbey.  It's a good thing Chelsea and Victoria provide some contrast.

Yes, Fifi, there are a lot of blonds on the show right now.  You can add Cricket, Traci and Nikki to the list too.  By the way, Nikki's hair was blond when she was a child.  If you want to check it out, Melody Thomas Scott appeared in a 1964 Alfred Hitchcock film called Marnie.  She was about 8 years old at the time.

From Patsy in Sarasota, Florida:

I have barely been watching Young and Restless. It seems so stupid as so many storylines are ridiculous. Stitch being so secret. A new Phyllis is too much for me ... Need Michelle Stafford back. And Adam lurking in the electronic shadows. What the heck. Summer marrying the criminal. What the heck. Too many story lines that are a bit ridiculous. That is my opinion.... Do like the new Billy.

Well, Patsy, I find some of the storylines ridiculous too.  As some viewers have pointed out, it often seems as if the writers are making it up as they go along.  The Stitch storyline is driving me crazy.  They have taken far too long to reveal his secret and the identity of the person he murdered   Although Kelly confided to Jack about the murder, the identity of Dr. Stitch's victim was not revealed to television viewers.  Perhaps the writers are figuring it out themselves now.  It feels as if they decided out of the blue to make Stitch and Kelly brother and sister.  Now. perhaps, they are trying to decide who the victim should be.

As for the new Billy, I haven't warmed to him.  It's probably because I wish Billy Miller were still playing the role.  I also want Michelle Stafford back as Phyllis.  However, neither one will be returning to Y&R anytime soon.  At least Eileen Davidson is coming back as Ashley.  I'm happy about that.


Steve Burton (Dylan McAvoy) and his wife, Sheree, recently welcomed their third child, a daughter.  The latest addition to the family was name Brooklyn Faith.  The Burtons also have a daughter, Makena Grace (born 2003), and a son, Jack Marshall (born 2006).


Stitch:  I saw how hurt you were when Billy was professing his undying love for Victoria.  Now, you can deny it all you want but you have feelings for Billy - which puts us in a similar position.

Chelsea:  You have feelings for Billy too?


Which deceased character do you miss the most? free polls 

That's all for now.  Don't forget to check out the next edition of Y&R Report on Saturday, August 2, 2014.

- Joanne

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Legal and Lawyer Shows Quiz


If you like to watch legal eagles on television, then TV Banter has the perfect quiz for you.  If you want to test your knowledge of  courtroom justice as portrayed on television, then try this test.  Are you ready for the verdict?


1.  What was the name of the Los Angeles law firm in the popular series L.A. Law?

A.  Martin, Becker and Steele

B.  McKenzie-Brackman

C.  Dawson-Mckenzie

D.  Dawson, Steele and Becker

E,  Brackman-Becker  

2.  What is the last name of TV's Judge Judy.

A.  Sheridan

B.  Steinberg

C.  Schultz

D.  Sheindlin

E.   Silvers

3.  Was every episode of the Perry Mason series (1957-1966), starring Raymond Burr, filmed entirely in black white?

A.  No. One episode was filmed in colour.

B.  Yes, they were all filmed in black and white.

C.  No, two episodes were filmed in colour.

D.  No, three episodes were filmed in colour.

E.  No, one episode was filmed partially in colour.

4. On Perry Mason, in "The Case Of The Dead Ringer," which character has a look-alike?

A.  Della Street

B.  Paul Drake

C.  Lieutenant Arthur Tragg

D.  Hamilton Burger

E.  Perry Mason

5.  Boston Legal, which aired on ABC from 2004 to 2008, was a spin-off from which other legal drama?

A.  L.A. Law

B.  Law and Order

C.  The Practice

D.  Ally McBeal

E.  Damages

6.  What was the name of William Shatner's character on Boston Legal?

A,  T.J. Hooker

B.  Alan Shore

C.  James T. Kirk

D.  Paul Lewiston

E.  Denny Crane

7.  In which city did Law and Order take place?

A. Chicago

B. New York City

C.  San Francisco

D.  Los Angeles

E,  Boston

8.  Not all TV legal series are dramas.  Night Court, a highly successful legal comedy, aired from 1984 until 1992.  What was the name of the eccentric judge who presided over the Manhattan night court?

A.  Thomas J. Anderson

B.  Joseph Simpson

C.  Harold T. "Harry" Stone

D.  Robert J. Briggs

E.  Edward S. "Ted" Connors

9.  Who starred in the late 1960s legal drama, Judd for the Defense?

A.  Jack Klugman

B.  Robert Young

C.  Jack Webb

D.  Carl Betz

E.  Karl Malden

10.  In which city did Judd for the Defense take place?.  If you know this, you really know your television legal shows.  This is your bonus question so give yourself an extra point if you answer it correctly.

A.  Houston

B.  New Orleans

C.  New York City

D.  Washington, D.C.

E.  Philadelphia

11.  Who played the role of Jess Brandon on Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law?

A.  Burt Reynolds

B.  George Kennedy

C.  David Soul

D.  Joseph Campanella

E.. Lee Majors

12.  What was the name of the nosy, gossipy secretary on Ally McBeal?

A.  Margaret Holmes

B.  Elaine Vassal

C.  Nell Porter

D.  Rose Cummings

E.  Jane Bronson

13.  On Ally McBeal, who played Larry Paul, the attorney who moved into Ally's former therapist's office? He eventually became Ally's boyfriend.

A.  Rob Lowe

B.  Paul Rudd

C.  Robert Downey, Jr.

D.  Charlie Sheen

E.  Paul Reiser

14.  In which television courtroom drama series did Robert Reed of The Brady Bunch have a regular role?

A.  The Defemders

B.  Judd for the Defense

C.  Petrocelli

D.  Matlock

E.  Judging Amy

15.  Here's one for U.K. TV fans and other fans of British television.  What was the name of the long-running British series about a London barrister played by actor Leo McKern?

A.  The Barrister 

B.  The Law of Wimpole Street

C.  The Courtroom

D.  Rumpole of The Bailey

E.  London Legal 


1.  B

The law firm on L.A. Law was McKenzie-Brackman.

2.  D

Judge Judy's formal name is Judith Sheindlin and she is a retired Manhattan court judge.  Her reality-based court show premiered in 1996.  She adjudicates actual small claims disputes within a simulated courtroom setting.

3.  A

Only one episode of Perry Mason, "The Case of the Twice-Told Twist," (Season 9, Episode 21, Air Date (February 27, 1966) was filmed in colour.  It was about a car stripping gang and its plot was influenced by Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist.

4.  E

Perry Mason faces his look-alike seaman in the courtroom

In "The Case of the Dead Ringer" (Season 9, Episode 26, Air Date: April 17, 1966), Perry Mason has a look-alike.  Raymond Burr plays a double role as Mason and a nomadic sailor.  The merchant seaman disguises himself as Mason in an attempt to frame the attorney for bribery.

5.  C

Boston Legal was a spin-off of The Practice, which aired from 1997 to 2004.  Both series were created by David E. Kelley.  Kelley, who worked for a Boston law firm, also created Ally McBeal.

6.  E

William Shatner as Denny Crane on Boston Legal

The name of William Shatner's character on Boston Legal was Denny Crane.  Denny was a prominent attorney for over fifty years.  He boasted that he never lost a case and never would.  At one time, Denny had had a romantic relationship with Shirley Schmidt (portrayed by Candice Bergen).  Shirley was his partner in the law firm Crane, Poole & Schmidt.

The Denny Crane character  first appeared in Season 8 of The Practice in 2004 and then on Boston Legal in Seasons 1-5 from 2004 to 2008.  He was a good friend of fellow lawyer Alan Shore, played by James Spader.  The two men shared drinks and conversed at the end of many episodes.

7.  B

Law and Order ran for 20 seasons, from 1990 until 2010.  It originally aired on NBC and then in syndication on various cable networks.  The series was set and filmed in New York City.

8.  C.

Harry Anderson as Judge Harold T. (Harry) Stone

Night Court's unconventional judge was named Harold T. "Harry" Stone.  Judge Stone, who liked to perform magic trips was played by actor Harry Anderson, a real life magician.

9.  D

Carl Betz, best known for his portrayal of Dr. Alex Stone on The Donna Reed Show, played a vivacious F. Lee Bailey-type attorney named Clinton Judd on Judd for the Defense.  The series aired from 1967 to 1969.

10.  A.

Judd for the Defense was set in Houston, Texas.

11.  E

Arthur Hill (left) with Lee Majors

Lee Majors played Jess Brandon on Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law.  The series starred Arthur Hill as defence attorney Owen Marshall and Majors as his law partner.  It aired on ABC-TV from 1971 to 1974. During the show's final season in 1973-74, Majors played both Jess Brandon and Steve Austin in The Six Million Dollar Man, which became a huge hit.  He left Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law to concentrate on his role as the bionic man and was replaced by David Soul.  In February of 1974, Soul, who had already appeared twice in guest roles on the show in 1971 and !972, joined the cast as Ted Warrick. At the end of the season, Owen Marshall finished its run and David Soul went on to television stardom on Starsky and the fall of 1975.

12.  B.

Jane Krakowski as Elaine

The busybody secretary who annoyed lawyer Ally McBeal (Calista Flockhart) was Elaine Vassal.  The role of Elaine was played by Jane Krakowski.  Note: Ally McBeal aired from 1997 until 2002 and Krakowski appeared in all 112 episodes of the series.

13.  C

Robert Downey, Jr. and Calista Lockhart

Robert Downey, Jr. played the role of Larry Paul on Ally McBeal beginning in 2000.  In April of 2001, however, Downey was fired from the show after being arrested in Culver City, California in a drug-related incident.

14.  A

E.G. Marshall (left) and Robert Reed in The Defenders

Robert Reed starred alongside E.G. Marshall in The Defenders.  The courtroom drama series ran on CBS from 1961 to 1965.  Marshall and Reed played father-and-son defence attorneys who specialized in complicated legal cases.  Some of the defendants included civil rights demonstrators, a doctor charged with mercy killing and neo-Nazis.  E.G. Marshall played attorney Lawrence Preston and Robert Reed played his son, Kenneth Preston.

15,  D.

Leo McKern as Rumple

Leo McKern played London barrister Horace Rumpole in Rumpole of the Bailey, a series that ran from 1978 until 1992.  The character of Rumpole, a sort of British version of Perry Mason, was created by John Mortimer, a barrister and writer.

 - Joanne

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Y&R Report (July 5, 2014) 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.

Well, folks, it's a summer of madness in Genoa City.  Let's discuss some of the recent happenings.  I've been trying to figure out Stitch and Kelly's complicated past.  Are they really brother and sister?  It didn't seem that way earlier.  What's going on here?  The plot is getting more and more convoluted. Are the writers just making it up as they go along?

Let's see now . . . Kevin Fisher, the ultimate computer geek, has discovered that the real Benjamin Rayburn was killed in a car accident.  Then who the heck is the man called "Stitch?"  Is he an alien from another planet?  If he turns out to be the father of Princess Victoria's baby, will the the unborn child be part alien?

All kidding aside, who then is the mysterious "Stitch?"  Is he a total fraud, an impostor, a con artist?  Has he stolen the deceased Rayburn's identity?  One thing is certain.  He must really be a doctor or at least have extensive medical knowledge - even if he used false documentation to obtain his position at the hospital.   He's also a junk food junkie so he obviously hasn't been trained in promoting nutrition and healthy eating habits (couldn't resist that one). It seems that Dylan, who is supposedly Stitch's best friend, doesn't really know much about him.  He obviously has little knowledge of his army buddy's background.  Why hasn't he noticed that something is off about his pal?

If Stitch is an impostor, then who is Kelly?  Since Y&R wants us to keep tuning in, I think we're going to have to wait awhile before the truth is revealed about Dr. Stitch's identity and the nature of his dirty deed.

Neil Winters married Hillary Curtis and it was a farce of a wedding.  They even had to ask some random couple in the park to be witnesses.  During the ceremony, Hillary had a flashback of herself kissing Devon. She hesitated for the longest time before she could mouth the words "I do."  That was an obvious red flag. Neil should have noticed that something was wrong right then and there. He may be an astute businessman but he's not very wise in matters of romance.  He may have graduated from Stanford University's School of Business but he definitely needs more education in affairs of the heart.  For a person who professes to be such an ardent supporter of marriage, Neil certainly hasn't gone about it the right way.  He has a very poor matrimonial record, although not too many soap characters have better ones.

Perhaps Leslie should thank her lucky stars that she chose not to wed the unfortunate Mr. Winters.  She is probably better off with new hubby Dr. Barton Shelby.  So far, I'm impressed with Barton and I like his personality.

Meanwhile, Devon is depressed about losing Hillary to his father.  He has hit the bottle in an attempt to drown his sorrows.  It seems that his money has brought him nothing but misery.  He is truly the "Unhappy Billionaire."  There was even a scene where he walked on the ledge of the Athletic Club building.  No, he didn't try  to jump.  Instead, he through money down to the street below.

The marriage of Hillary and Neil has about zero chance of survival.   I don't give it very long at all.  Another travesty is the quickie wedding of Supergirl Summer and the troubled Austin Travers.  Boy, she sure falls in love fast!  I wonder if Summer and Austin's union will last longer than Neil's and Hilary's.  Austin is gong to get the third degree from Supergirl's  two daddys, Jack and Nick.  Then there's her controlling Grandpa Victor.   Austin may end up wishing he'd gone to prison instead.

Okay fans, how do you like the new Billy Abbott?  I am not impressed with him at all. Burgess Jenkins just doesn't do it for me - at least in the part of Billy.  I even think David Tom was better.  To be fair, Jenkins has just started and I should give him some time to grow into the part.  He may improve but he'll never really be "Billy Abbott" for me.  The problem is that no one measures up to Billy Miller in the role. That's why he recently won a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama. By the way, The Young and the Restless was a big winner at the big awards gala, which, unfortunately, was not televised.  The show was unable to secure a broadcaster and was streamed online instead.  Y&R won a total of six awards including best drama series.  Amelia Heinle (Victoria Newman) was chosen Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role while Hunter King (Summer Newman) received the nod for Best Younger Actress.  Y&R's writing team was honoured with an Emmy as well as the special episode that paid tribute to the late Jeanne Cooper.

Alas, I don't think Billy M. will be returning to Y&R anytime soon and there are rumours that he is close to signing a contract with General Hospital.

What do you think about the tension between Nikki Newman and the Cricketmeister? I have to say that I'm on Cricket's side.  Nikki seems to be taking over.  I can really  understand why Christine thinks she is usurping her place as Paul's wife.  The revelation that Paul and Nikki have a son together has made it even more to difficult for The Bug to accept Nikki's interference.


Regular commentator, CC from Etobicoke, Ontario, checked in to say that she thinks "Stitch" was driving the car that killed Ben Rayburn.  She hasn't worked out the rest of the story yet.  CC has also not taken to Burgess Jenkins as the new Billy Abbott.

Another regular, Helen from Scarborough, Ontario has checked in too.  Helen is "not crazy about the new Billy" either.  However, she found David Tom's voice very irritating and is glad not to have to hear it anymore. She is also definitely not a fan of Devon.  "Devon, take your billions and be gone!" Helen declared. As for Paul Williams, she thinks that the Clueless One really knows how to cry and that he is the best male crier on TV.  I have to agree wholeheartedly with that.


If you are a Michael Muhney fan and you think there's a chance that he'll return to his role as Adam, I'm sorry to say that it isn't in the works - at least according to Michael's mother. She held a Q&A session on Twitter and addressed speculation that the hands seen playing Adam Newman were those of her son's.  On June 17th, Muhney's mom tweeted, "I hate to dash anyone's hopes. but those aren't Michael's hands on Y&R."

Robert Grant, who portrayed the son of Mrs. Chancellor's longtime lawyer, Mitchell Sherman, will be appearing on Y&R for a few episodes this month.  He'll reprise the role of David Sherman, also an attorney. The younger Sherman will provide legal representation for the Newmans.  He'll probably defend Nikki in that lawsuit Ian Ward has launched against her.

Robert Grant

Robert Adamson (Noah Newman) and Linsey Godfrey (Caroline on The Bold and the Beautiful) are the parents of a brand new baby girl named Aleda Seren Adamson, born on June 12, 2014.  Hey, doesn't that sort of make Nick and Sharon grandparents?

Robert and Linsey


Nikki (upon being told that Victor and Nick are plotting to bring down Ian Ward):  "I already have one son (Dylan) in the hospital."

That's all for now.  Don't forget that the next addition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, July 19th, 2014.   

- Joanne

Monday, June 30, 2014

TV Trivia For You #3

Here is the third installment of  TV Triva For You from TV Banter .  The first installment appeared on this blog  on June 14, 2012.  The second installment appeared on February 6, 2013. 

Marisa Tomei with Jason Alexander as George Costanza

that Academy Award-winning actress, Marisa Tomei, appeared as herself on Seinfeld? She guest-starred in a 1996 hour-long episode of Seinfeld entitled "The Cadillac" (Season 7, Episode 14, Air Date: February 8, 1996).  Tomei was well known at the time because of her role in the 1992 film My Cousin Vinny for which she was awarded an Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

"The Cadillac" was co-written by Jerry Seinfeld himself.  In the episode, Elaine's friend, Katy, informs George Costanza that she knows Marisa Tomei and that she could set him up with the actress.  George is astounded by that revelation and becomes obsessed with the idea of meeting Tomei.  The only drawback is his engagement to Susan.

Heyyyy! . . . The Fonz almost had another name

DID YOU KNOW that Henry Winkler's famous Fonzie character on Happy Days was originally going to be called Arthur Marsciarelli or "Mash" for short?  The show's creator, Garry Marshall, is of Italian descent and his family's original name was Marsciarelli.  However, Garry's late father, Anthony, anglicised the name to Marshall before Gary was born.

As it turned out, by the time Winkler (who is Jewish, not Italian) was cast in the part, CBS had a highly successful series called M*A*S*H.  The name of the Happy Days character was, therefore, changed to Arthur Fonzerelli or "Fonz" for short.  It's rather fortunate that the name change occurred.  "The Mash" just wouldn't have sounded as cool as "The Fonz"  and Henry Winkler may never have caught on as well with the fans. Remember that Fonzie was not originally intended to be a major character on the show.  Winkler's performance was so good that audiences wanted more of The Fonz.

David Gregory

DID YOU KNOW that the longest running American television series is Meet the Press?  Meet the Press has aired on NBC for 66 seasons, since November 6, 1947. The weekly news and public affairs program has long been a staple of the network's Sunday morning lineup.  Through the years, the show has had 11 moderators and has undergone various changes.  Meet the Press is currently hosted by David Gregory and there has been speculation that the venerable series could be in serious trouble.  It has recently struggled in the ratings and that does not bode well for its future.

DID YOU KNOW that the original title of Ellen DeGeneres' television comedy series was These Friends of Mine?  These Friends of Mine premiered on the ABC network in 1994.  By the show's second season, Ellen's popularity was on the rise and she was clearly the star of the series.  Accordingly, the title was changed to Ellen to better reflect the leader character and to take advantage of Ellen's growing star power.

- Joanne

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Y&R Report (June 21, 2014): 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.

Until a recent turn of events, the outlook seemed extremely dire for Paul Williams, the beloved but clueless Genoa City police chief.  Paul was on death's doorstep.  His condition had deteriorated so rapidly that his brother, Father Todd, gave him the last rites.  Suddenly, however, Paul's chances for survival have improved a great deal. He has a liver donor - his own son, Dylan.  Dylan has decided to risk his own life in order to save Paul's, especially after learning that Williams is his biological father. Don't worry, fans.  Genoa City's top cop will pull through because, as far as I know, Doug Davidson, the actor who portrays Paul, is not leaving the show.  I've seen Doug in person and he has a great sense of humour.  He's probably been laughing and joking between all those tragic and tense scenes involving his character.

So Dylan is the Son of Clueless.  I'm surprised that Victor "Moneybags" Newman is taking it so well.  I expected him to be more upset at the revelation that his "beautiful Nikki" and Paul Williams share a son.  My guess is that Christine (alias Cricketmeister or The Bug) is not going to deal with the news of Dylan's paternity so well.  Cricket has already displayed some jealousy where Nikki is concerned. She is not going to be pleased that her husband has a son with Mrs. Newman, particularly since she is trying to conceive a child with Clueless.

So Supergirl Summer thinks she's in love with Austin.  I think she's headed for the Heartbreak Hotel.  At least she'll be happy when her mother, Phyllis, finally comes out of that coma.  She will not look like Michelle Stafford anymore because, as most of you know, Michelle has joined the cast of General Hospital.  The new Phyllis will be Gina Tognoni

What did you think of Stephanie Lemelin in the role of Dr. Stitch's ex-wife, Jenna? So far, I'm impressed. She may make a really good addition to the cast.  How about Billy and Chelsea in their disguises - Chelsea with the large glasses and Billy Boy in that fedora!


Y&R viewer Helen from Scarborough, Ontario, thought that Austin would be one to donate a part of his liver to save Paul.  It didn't happen that way.  Helen's hunch was wrong.


Young actress McKenna Grace is leaving her role as Faith Newman because she has been cast in a movie, Russellmania, which will be filming in Vancouver.  Her last appearance on Y&R will be on McKenna, who will turn eight years old on June 25, will be replaced by former Faith, Aly Lind.  Aly, who left the show appear in the movie Blended, a romantic comedy starring Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler, will return as Faith starting June 26 on CBS (June 25 on Global TV).

McKenna Grace

BREAKING NEWS . . . I've just learned that Eileen Davidson is returning to her role as Ashley Abbott. She has signed a long-term contract with Y&R and will be returning to the show on a full-time basis. That's delightful news for Eileen's fans, including myself.  I've been hoping she would return.  The writers will certainly get her involved in the Dr.Stitch storyline.  That should be so much fun to watch.  Maybe she'll eat hot dogs in the park with the not-so-good Dr. Stitch 'em up.

Eileen will begin appearing on the show in early September.

Eileen Davidson


Are you pleased about the return of Eileen Davidson as Ashley? free polls 

If you are planning to watch the 41st Annual Daytime Emmys tomorrow, June 22, be advised that it will not air on TV because a deal to air the show could not be reached with any network.  My understanding is that the program will be livestreamed on the Internet at  As far as I'm concerned, this is a big disappointment to daytime television fans.

That's all for now.  It should be a very interesting summer in Genoa City.  We'll see Gina Tognoni as Phyllis and a new Adam (or possibly the return of Michael Muhney, which seems doubtful).  Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear on Saturday, July 5, 2014.

- Joanne

Thursday, June 19, 2014

You Wanted to Know . . . what the "B" stand for in Lincoln B. Hayes of The Mod Squad?

1971 photo of Clarence Williams III

Has anyone ever looked cooler in shades than Clarence Williams III as Lincoln B. Hayes in The Mod Squad?  The man was born to wear sun glasses.  Speaking of the Linc Hayes character, a reader wants to know what the "B" stands for in his full name.  I am most intrigued by the question and I have done some investigating.  So far, a definite answer has eluded me.  I do, however, have a theory.  "Lincoln B. Hayes" could be a combination of the names of two U.S. presidents - Abraham Lincoln (16th President of the United States) and Rutherford B. Hayes (19th President of the United States).  By the way, the "B" in Rutherford B. Hayes stands for "Birchard."

Update on Clarence Williams III

Clarence Williams III starred with Peggy Lipton and Michael Cole as a trio of hip undercover cops in in the popular TV series The Mod Squad (1968-1973). Williams was born in New York City on August 21, 1939 and is now 74 years old.  He recently played the part of Maynard in the acclaimed 2013 film The Butler. According to, his most recent television roles include appearances in the comedy crime-drama Memphis Beat and in the crime-drama Justified. He played a character named Leroy Hitch in an episode of Memphis Beat entitled "I Shall Not Be Moved" (Season 1, Episode 8, Air Date: August 10, 2010).  He also portrayed Mr. Jones in an episode of Justified called "Long in the Tooth" (Season 1, Episode 4, Air Date: April 6, 2010).

Clarence Williams was married to Gloria Foster, a distinguished stage and screen actress, probably best known for her role as Oracle in the 1999 film The Matrix. Gloria passed away on September 29, 2001 of complications from diabetes.  She was 67 years old at the time of her death and was in the midst of filming The Matrix Reloaded.

Williams and Foster wed in 1967 after appearing together in the 1964 movie The Cool World.  The couple did not have any children and divorced in 1984.  They remained on friendly terms and it was Clarence who announced his ex-wife's death.

Gloria Foster made two guest appearances on The Mod Squad.  She portrayed Jenny Wills, a blind friend of Linc Hayes, in two episodes of the series - "A Hint of Darkness, a Hint of Light" (Season 1, Episode 18, Air Date: February 11, 1969) and "Return to Darkness, Return to Light" (Season 2, Episode 23, Air Date: March 17, 1970).

Below is a photo of Gloria and Clarence Williams III in the 1970 episode of The Mod Squad.entitled "Return to Darkness, Return to Light."

TV Banter readers: If anyone can shed anymore insight into the mysterious "B" initial in Lincoln B. Hayes, please share your knowledge with the rest of us and leave a comment.  You are welcome to join in the banter.

- Joanne

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Goodbye to the Brady Bunch's Alice: We'll miss Ann B. Davis

She was already a big star when she joined The Brady Bunch, won a couple of Emmys with The Bob Cummings Show, and I knew that this was someone I wanted to pay attention to but she had a wicked sense of humour.

I remember watching from behind the camera when she was rehearsing one of the scenes for The Brady Bunch and I was laughing along with her timing and stuff. Well, apparently, I was messing up her timing so she turned around and said, ‘Barry, comedy is not funny.'  I was crushed.  I thought, ‘Oh, my gosh. I’ve upset her. A little later I went over and said, ‘Excuse me. What did you mean when you said that comedy was not funny?’ and she said, ‘Oh, I was just kidding with you.'

- Barry Williams (Greg Brady on The Brady Bunch) reflecting on his former Brady Bunch co-star, Ann B. Davis.

Ann B. Davis, best known as Alice Nelson, the devoted housekeeper to television's Brady family, died recently at the age of 88.  She passed away on June 1, 2014 at a hospital in San Antonio, Texas after suffering a fall in the bathroom of her home. She hit her head and never regained consciousness.

Ann Bradford Davis was born in Schenectady, New York on May 5, 1926.  Her parents were Marguerite (née Stott) and Cassius Miles Davis.  She had an identical twin sister named Harriet and an older brother, Evans.  When Ann was a toddler, the family moved to Erie, Pennsylvania.  She grew up in Erie and graduated from Strong Vincent High School in 1944.

Ann originally intended to become a doctor and enrolled as a premed major at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.  However, she became influenced by her brother, who was the lead dancer in the national company of the musical Oklahoma for a time.  She decided to study theatre instead and graduated with a degree in drama and speech in 1948.  The aspiring actress worked in theatre for several years before achieving success on television.

From 1953 to 1954, Davis appeared as a musical judge on ABC's Jukebox Jury, hosted by disc jockey Peter Potter.  The premise of the show was that a panel of celebrities discussed new records and voted on whether they would be a hits or misses.  After the first month, the title of the program was changed to The Peter Potter Show.

Ann's big breakthrough on TV was her role as Charmaine "Schultzy" Schultz on The Bob Cummings Show. The series ran from 1955 to 1959 and Bob played a professional photographer Bob Collins.  Her character, Schultzy, was bachelor Bob's loyal assistant.  Schultzy had a crush on her boss but he was busy photographing beautiful models.

Ann B. Davis with Bob Cummings

In 1960, Ann had a guest role on the Western series Wagon Train.  She portrayed Mrs. Foster in a episode entitled "The Countess Baranof Story" (Season 3, Episode 31, Air Date: May 11, 1960).

In the 1965-1966 television season, Ann B. Davis appeared on The John Forsythe Show, a short-lived situation comedy.  She portrayed Miss Wilson, a physical education teacher at the Foster School, a private San Francisco academy for girls that was inherited by John Foster (Forsythe), a retired U.S. Air Force Major. British actress Elsa Lanchester played the role of Margaret Culver, the school principal.

The John Forsythe Show only lasted one season and 29 episodes of the series were produced.  Below is a photo of Davis and Forsythe (back), with Elsa Lanchester (front).

From 1969 to 1974, Ann B. Davis played her best known role, that of housekeeper Alice Nelson on The Brady Bunch.  She was 42 when The Brady Bunch began its run and she soon became a hugely popular television star to a generation that did not remember her as Schultzy.  In her Archive of American Television interview, Ann stated, "I remember my first 'demographic report' on The Brady Bunch.' I was with a friend, who told her little girl, 'honey, you remember Schultzy?' The girl said, 'that's not Schultzy, that's Alice!'  I knew that we were coming along....  Today, people with three-piece suits and briefcases suddenly become twelve when they're walking by me. That just breaks me up and I love it!"

In 1976, Ann left Hollywood behind and moved to Denver Colorado to join Trinity School for Ministry, the Episcopalian community of Bishop William C. "Bill" Frey.  In 1996, she moved with Bill and his wife, Barbara, to San Antonio, Texas.  She sang in the choir and regularly attended Bible studies and the church's Wednesday morning service.

After leaving Tinseltown, Ann continued making television appearances.  From 1976 to 1977, she reprised her role as Alice Nelson on all nine episodes of the Brady Bunch Variety Hour and in the 1981 television movie The Brady Girls Get Married.  She also appeared as Alice in the TV movie A Very Brady Christmas.

In 1989, Ann joined Brady cast members Robert Reed (Mike Brady), Florence Henderson (Carol Brady), Christopher Knight (Peter Brady), Mike Lookinland (Bobby Brady) and Maureen McCormick (Maria Brady) on an episode of the sitcom Day by Day.  The episode is entitled "A Very Brady Episode" (Season 2, Episode 11, Air Date: February 5, 1989).

In 1990, CBS aired The Bradys, a one-hour drama series about the trials and tribulations of the extended Brady clan.  Ann B, Davis and all the members of the original cast, with the exception of Maureen McCormick, returned to their roles (McCormick was replaced by Leah Ayres).  The show received poor reviews and lacklustre ratings and it was quickly cancelled.

Ann B. Davis's last TV acting role was in a 1997 episode of the comedy Something So Right.  The episode was entitled "Something About Inter-Ex-Spousal Relations" (Season 1, Episode 23, Air Date: April 29, 1997),  She played a character named Maxine.  On September 26, 2004, Ann and her Brady Bunch castmates participated in TV Land's The Brady Bunch 35th Anniversary Reunion Special: Still Brady After All These Years.  It was hosted by Jenny McCarthy,

Ann B. Davis never married, nor was she publicly linked romantically with anyone. She immersed herself in her career and as she told the Chicago Sun-Times, "By the time I started getting interested (in finding someone), all the good ones were taken."

Nevertheless, fans will remember Alice's romance with Sam the Butcher, on The Brady Bunch.  Sam Franklin owned the local butcher shop and was portrayed by character actor Allan Melvin.  Melvin died of cancer at his Los Angeles home on January 17, 2008.  He was 84.


* Florence Henderson, who played Carol Brady, the mother of the Brady Bunch clan, and Ann B. Davis were great friends.  When Ann passed away, Florence wrote the following on Twitter: "I'm so shocked & saddened to learn my dear friend & colleague Ann B Davis died today. I spoke with her a few months ago & she was doing great."

* In 1994, Ann B. Davis published a cookbook titled Alice's Brady Bunch Cookbook.  Interestingly enough, Bishop Frey, in an interview with The National Enquirer (June 9, 2014), is quoted as saying that Ann was "an astounding woman with a great sense of humour, and the character she played on The Brady Bunch was very much who she is, except that she didn't exactly get on with children and she couldn't cook . . . when it was her night to cook, we often had to go out to a restaurant."

- Joanne