Saturday, November 11, 2017

Y&R Report (November 11, 2017): 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 fans, another restaurant has been torched on Y&R.  The show certainly has a history of burning down eateries and nightclubs.  I have compiled a list of them.

* Gina's restaurant was set on fire by Kevin Fisher in 2003.  Kevin locked Colleen Carlton inside, but J.T. Hellstrom rescued her.

* In 2012, Gloria's popular Genoa City nightclub, Gloworm, burned to the ground.

* In 2015, there was an inferno at the Top of the Tower Halloween gala.  In 2017, just two years later, another restaurant went up in flames, also on Halloween.

I realize that Y&R is a soap and it can't be completely realistic, but the The Underground fire story had more holes in its plot than a piece of Swiss cheese.  First of all, why did Dina wander into Nick's restaurant?.  Why would she choose to go there?  I realize she has some form of dementia, but why couldn't the writers have come up with another arsonist or another reason for the fire.

I understand why Billy was chosen to be the hero, the one who rescued the teen brigade from the inferno.  He's been such a jerk and so reckless that the writers probably wanted to redeem him in some way.  They wanted to demonstrate that he does have some good qualities.

Although Billy managed to save the kids, he got left behind as The Underground collapsed.  His situation became dire and he firefighters declared that he was in danger of losing his leg.  Then, Jack insisted on going in to help his wayward brother.  There is no way, absolutely no way, the responders would have allowed Jack to enter such a dangerous place.  Then, miracle of miracle, Jack walked out with Billy and neither was seriously injured.  In fact, Billy was not even rushed to the hospital (Can you still hear that Hallelujah Chorus?).  Much to Princess Victoria Newman's  disappointment, the unlikely hero was sturdy enough to embrace Phyllis.   However, he was was later seen with crutches.

Of all Victor's children, Victoria is the most like her father.  When Billy hugged Phyllis after surviving his ordeal, the Princess was not a happy camper.  She coolly thanked him for rescuing her son, Reed.  Then, without skipping a beat, she fired him as her right-hand man at Brass & Sassy.  I don't think Billy would have wanted to work at Newman anyway, given how he feels about his former father-in-law and Victor wouldn't have wanted him there either.  Yet, Billy wasn't even given a choice.  One of the reason's Victoria threw him under the bus was to please Daddy.  Another reason, of course, was that he chose Phyllis over her.

Victoria made a huge power play by putting Brass & Sassy under the wing of  Newman Enterprises again.  It was the only way she could save her precious company.  She has really aligned herself with Daddy this time, hasn't she?  However, she was tough, with Victor.and made several demands on him before she would return to Newman Enterprises.  She is now Chief Operating Officer. of Newman, although you can be sure that "The Moustache" will always have the final say.  The announcement of Victoria's appointment as C.O.O. was an absolute fiasco as Newman Enterprises' ties to the sex trafficking ring were revealed.  It was a public relations disaster for the Princess.

I had to laugh when Abby bragged to Scott that she was a good judge of character.  Really, Abby?  Is that why your boyfriend was involved in a sex trafficking ring and you didn't have a clue?  You and Paul Williams should star in a new show called The Young and the Clueless.

I'm not really surprised that Juliet died in childbirth.  New head writer Mal Young obviously wanted to remove her from the storyline.  That was the quickest and easiest way to do it.  However,Juiet did give birth to a son, who may or may not be Cane's biological child.  Now that she's dead, we may find out some secrets that Juliet left behind.  At the moment, it seems as if Cane and Lily will reconcile and raise the baby, whom Lily named "Sam" after Cane's late twin sister, Samantha.

It also seems that Mal Young is purging Y&R of characters he think fit into his storylines or the direction he's taking the show.  The departure of Laur Allen (Juliet Helton) was really abrupt.  I think most viewers, including myself, thought Juliet would stay around a while and continue to complicate the lives of Cane and Lily.  She would probably still be a member of the cast if Sally Sussman were still the head writer.

It looks as if Zack is on his way out too.  He sure surrendered Abby to Scott without much of fight, didn't he.  Was that a way to quickly get rid of him too?  It also seems as if Graham didn't fit into Mal's plans either.  He may be back, though.  Who knows?

So, Noah has agreed to be manager of Top of the Tower.  Victor offered him the job. but Aunt Victoria talked him into it.  It may not be a corporate position but once again, he's allowing himself to be sucked into the orbit of Grandpa Victor.  No good can come of that for Noah because he's going to be under Victor's control.  Poor Noah!  He just can't do anything right and his luck is as bad as his judgement.  Just think of his last three girlfriends: Courtney, an undercover cop, was murdered before their wedding ceremony, Marisa, the former girlfriend of a drug lord, chose to live in Spain with her daughter and his current girlfriend, Tessa, is more attracted to his sister, Mariah than to him.  Yikes!  Noah's record in the romance department has been egregious and he's going to have his heart broken again when he finds out about Tessa and Mariah.

It seems as if the whole Newman family, except for Nick, is under Victor's thumb again., I expect Nikki to return to him eventuallyn too.  She always does, even though she tries valiantly to resist.  As for Nick, it will be fascinating to see how he'll occupy himself now that he doesn't have The Underground anymore.


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 some comments from Helen in Scarborough.  Here is what Helen had to say:

Message to Mal Young:  You suck!

Zack's final confrontation scene with Scott featured Scott as Batman, Dina as Batgirl (hiding in the car) and Zack as The Joker.  All we needed was Robin, the Boy Wonder.  How about Noah for the part?

Helen also thinks that Juliet's father may turn up to cause problems for Lily and Cane. After all. Cane phoned him twice and there may be a reason for that.  Even though he didn't express any interest in Juliet or his grandchild, that could change.  Perhaps he'll try to get custody of the child, especially if Mr. Sato, not Cane, turns out to be the father.


J.T. Hellstrom (Thad Luckinbill) is returning to Genoa City

Thad Luckinbill

Blockbuster news for fans!  Thad Luckinbill is reprising his role as J.T. Hellstrom on The Young and the Restless after an absence of seven years.  Luckinbill portrayed J.T. from 1999 until 2010. 

In March of 2007, Thad married his Y&R castmate, Amelia Heinle (Victoria Newman).
They have two children together, a son and a daughter.  However, Thad filed for divorce on March 1, 2017, citing irreconcilable differences.  Their Y&R characters, Victoria and J.T., also wed.  They had a son named Reed, but the marriage didn't work out.  J.T. then married Mackenzie and the couple made a fresh start in Washington, D.C.  Meanwhile, Victoria tied the knot with Billy Abbott three times (their first marriage in Jamaica wasn't legal).

The last we heard, J.T. and Mackenzie were expecting a new baby and had moved to Poland.  An unhappy Reed ran off to live with his mother in Genoa City. When J.T. returns, it will be interesting to see how her interacts with his ex-wife, Victoria, and their teenage son, Reed.

Thad Luckinbill will return to Y&R just in time Geona City's Christmas and New Year's festivities. His first appearance is scheduled for Tuesday, December 12 (CBS) and Monday, December 11 (Global-TV).


* Jill (Jess Walton) will return to Genoa City in December.

* Justin Hartley ex-Adam Newman and star of This is Us, wed his long-time girlfriend Chrishell Stause on October 28, 2017.  The ceremony took place in Malibu, California.


Mal Young

In an interview with Soap Opera Digest, Y&R's head writer, was asked about his vision for the show.  Here's how he replied:

My overall vision is to keep it fresh, never rest on our laurels. My mantra is, “What is good is today’s show,” and the minute the viewers watch that, it goes into the history archives and they’re saying, “But what next? And what’s next?” And that’s our job, to keep the viewers guessing and enthralled and entertained and surprised. Not just to do what everyone thinks a soap should do, and fall into the same old tropes. I think our job is to constantly question where we’re going with the show and keep it feeling contemporary and exciting and entertaining. 

How do you like the job Mal has done so far?  Do you think he's taking the show in the right direction?  Respond to the poll below and let me know what you think.

Are you pleased with the work of Y&R's new head writer, Mal Young?

Yes, I think his writing has been crisp and fast-paced.
No, the writing has been a disaster since he replaced Sally Sussman.
It's too early to judge. I want to give him more time.
I don't know.
Please Specify:
make a quiz


The sixth annual Y&R OpportuniTea with Kate Linder (high tea in support of the March of Dimes) will be held at the Royal York Hotel on December 3, 2017.  Kate (Esther Valentine) will be joined by Christian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin), Abhi Sinha (Ravi Shapour) and Daniel Hall (Scott Grainger).  For more details, click on the link below.

That's all for now. Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, November 25, 2017.  The November Sweeps are underway.  I am looking forward to the return of J.T. and Christmas and New Year's in Genoa City.

- Joanne

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Growing Pains Quiz


Growing Pains, an American situation comedy, ran from 1985 to 1992 on the ABC network.  The show centred on the affluent Seaver family.  The series featured Alan Thicke as Dr. Jason Seaver.  Seaver, a psychiatrist, who moved his office into the family home after his wife, Maggie, returned to work.  Joanna Kearns played Maggie, a newspaper journalist who later became a television reporter.  Their children were Mike (Kirk Cameron), Carol (Tracey Gold) and Ben (Jeremy Miller).  A fourth child, Chrissy, was born in 1988.  From 1988 until 1990, Chrissy was played by Kristen and Kelsey Dohring.  Ashley Johnson took over the role in 1990.  

Why not test your knowledge of Growing Pains by answering the quiz below.  Good luck!

Growing Pains Quiz

1.  Where did the Seaver family live?

A..  Boston, Massachusetts

B.  San Francisco, California

C.  Long Island, New York

D.  Hartford, Connecticut

E.  Seattle, Washington

2.  What was the name of the theme song from Growing Pains?

A.  "We Are Family"

B.  "Together"

C.  "All of Us"

D,  "As Long as We've Got Each Other"

E.  "Our Time"

3.  What was Maggie Seaver's maiden name?

Maggie Seaver (Joanna Kearns)
A.  Mahoney

B.  Malone

C.  Ryan

D.  Roland

E.  Findlay

4.  What was Mike Seaver's middle name?

Kirk Cameron (Mike Seaver)
 A.  Thomas

B.  Douglas

C.  Stephen

D.  Adam

E.  Aaron

5.  What was the nickname of Mike Seaver's best friend?

A.  Boner

B.  Skip

C.  Ace

D.  Sparky

E.  Spanky

6.  Tracey Gold (Carol Seaver) suffered from which affliction?

A.  cancer

B.  bipolar disorder

C.  drug addiction

D.  anorexia

E.  dyslexia

7.  Which of the following actors did not appear on Growing Pains?

A.  Brad Pitt

B.  George Clooney

C.  Leonardo DiCaprio

D.  Matthew Perry

E.  Dick Van Patten

8.  In season 4, Carol's boyfriend, Sandy, lost his life.  How?

A.  drug overdose

B.  lost control of his motorcycle

C.  died in an airplane crash

D.  epileptic seizure

E.  was killed in a drunk driving accident

9.  Who was Annie?

A.  a cousin  of the Seavers

B.  a cheerleader who liked Mike

C.  Maggie's boss at the television station

D.  an old friend of Maggie's

E.  Jason's sister

10.  In Season 7, why did Carol want to come home from college so often?

A.  She was homesick.

B.  The dorm was noisy and she couldn't concentrate on her studies.

C.  Her roommate's behaviour was causing difficulties for her.

D.  The students in her dorm were snobby.

E.  She didn't like the food in the cafeteria.  She felt ill after eating there.

11.  Who played PTA President Mrs. Hinkley in an episode of Growing Pains entitled "The Seavers vs. The Cleavers" (Season 1, Episode 16, Air Date: January 28, 1986)?

A.  Annette Funicello

B.  Barbara Billingsley

C.  Patty Duke

D.  Doris Day

E.  Donna Reed

12.  In an episode entitled "Jealousy" (Season 1, Episode 3, Air Date: October 8, 1985), Jason was jealous of Fred Mathis, played by Tom O'Rourke.  Who was Fred?

Alan Thicke (Jason)

A.  Maggie's old boyfriend

B.  Maggie's boss

C.  Maggie's co-worker

D.  the Seaver family's next-door-neighbour

E.  Ben's teacher

13.  In a 1985 episode of Growing Pains, Jason embarrassed Mike at a concert.  Who was performing the concert?

A.  Elton John

B.  Billy Joel

C.  Tom Petty

D.  Bruce Springsteen

E.  U-2

14.  In the episode "Charity Begins at Home"  (Season 1, Episode 17, Air Date: February 18, 1986), Ben gave Jason a very expensive birthday present, causing speculation as to how he could have afforded it.  What was the gift?

Jeremy Miller (Ben Seaver)

A.  season's tickets for the New York Yankees

B.  a painting

C.  a set of golf clubs

D. a gold watch

E. a fancy camera

15. The late Dana Plato of Diff'rent Strokes fame, appeared in a 1985 episode of Growing Pains.  What part did she play?

A.  a Madonna look-alike

B.  a shoplifter

C.  a friend of Carol's

D. a wealthy classmate of Mike's

E. Maggie's niece

16.  In the final season of the series, when Tracey gold suffered from anorexia and had to take a leave of absence, how was her character, Carol written out of the show?

A.  Carol was taking a break from her studies to travel around the world.

B.  Carol and a friend were working in California for six months.

C.  Carol was in Africa, doing humanitarian work.

D.  Carol was in London, England, pursuing her college studies abroad.

E.   Carol was teaching English in Hong Kong for six months.


1.  C

The Seaver family lived at 15 Robin Hood Lane in Huntington, Long Island, New York.

2.  D

The theme song from Growing Pains was "As Long as We've Got Each Other."  It was written and composed by John Bettis (lyrics) and Steve Dorff (music).

3.  B

Maggie's maiden name was Malone.  Her full name was Margaret Katherine Malone Seaver.

4.  E.

Mike Seaver's full name was Michael Aaron Seaver.

5.  A

Andrew Koenig  (Boner)

Mike's best friend was Richard Milhous "Boner" Stabone.  Andrew Koenig played the role of Boner for four seasons, from 1985 until 1989.  In a February 1, 1989 episode entitled "Semper Fidelis," Boner decided to drop out of college to join the Marines.

Andrew Koenig, the son of Walter Walter Koenig (Chekov on Star Trek), took his own life in February of 2010.  He was 41 years old and his body was found in Stanley Park in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

6.  D

Tracey Gold suffered from anorexia. Her illness forced producers to write her out of a large amount of the show's final season.  Tracey told the Los Angeles Times that the last season was like a blur to her and that she can't even recall the episodes.  "They said, 'We've been canceled.  You can come back for the last episode,' but I was still very, very sick and an insurance risk."

7.  B

George Clooney never appeared on Growing Pains.

Brad Pitt appeared in two separate episodes of Growing Pains, the first time in a 1987 episode, "Who's Zoomin' Who" (Season 3, Episode 9, Air Date November 10, 1987), in which Carol had a crush on him.  He appeared on the show for a second time in 1989 episode entitled "Feet of Clay" (Season 4, Episode 14, Air Date. February 8, 1989) when he portrayed musician Jonathan Keith, Ben's favourite rock star.  Maggie arranged a meeting between the true, but Keith turned out to be a disappointment.

Brad Pitt (right) with Jeremy Miller (Ben) in 1989 episode

Dick Van Patten of Eight is Enough fame, appeared in an episode entitled "Fortunate Son" (Season 4, Episode 16, Air Date: February 22, 1989).  Dick played Nick Simpson, Mike's bigoted boss, who openly displayed a preference for white employees.

Kirk Cameron with Dick Patten

In the show's fourth season in 1989, Matthew Perry, of Friends fame, played Sandy.  Sandy was a personable college student with whom Carol was smitten.

Matthew Perry as Sandy

In the seventh and final season of the show., Leonardo DiCaprio joined the cast as a homeless teen named Luke Brower.  Luke was taken into the Seaver home.

Leonardo DiCaprio on Growing Pains

8.  E

Sandy died after being injured in a car accident while driving under the influence of alcohol.  He was taken to hospital and was apparently on the road to recovery.  However, two scenes later,, the Seavers learned that he had passed away due to internal injuries.

9.  B

In the episode entitled "Long Day's Journey Into Night" (Season 2, Episode 3, Air Date: October 28, 1986), Annie,(Kate Boyer,) was a cheerleader who befriended Carol in order to get to know Mike better.

10.  C

Carol wanted to come home from college so often because of the behaviour of her roommate, Brianne.  Brianne was always bringing boys into the room, who left it untidy.  She also allowed them to sleep in Carol's bed, leaving Carol with no place to sleep.

11.  A.

Annette Funicello, star of the original Mickey Mouse Club in the 1950s and several "Beach Party" movies of the 1960s, played the role of PTA President Mrs. Hinkley in the 1986 episode.

12.  C

Fred was Maggie's co-worker with home she was working late at the office.

13.  D.

Jason embarrassed Mike at a Bruce Springsteen concert. in an episode entitled "Springsteen"  (Season 1, Episode 2, Air Date (October 1, 1985).

14.  E.

Ben gifted Jason with a fancy camera.  He obtained the money by asking the neighbours for money for the needy.

15.  A

Dana Plato as Madonna look-alike

In an episode entitled "Mike's Madonna Story" (Season 1, Episode 6, Air Date: November 5, 1985), Dana Plato portrayed Lisa, a Madonna look-alike whom Mike fell for.

16.  D

Carol was in London, England, pursing her college education abroad.


* Canadian-born Alan Thicke died on December 13, 2016. of aortic dissection (a serious condition in which the large blood vessel branching off the heart rips apart) while playing hockey with his son Carter.  He was 69 years old at the time of his passing.

* Kirk Cameron (born October 12, 1970) married actress Chelsea Noble on July 21, 1991.  They have six children and Kirk is active as an Evangelical Christian.

* Jeremy Miller (born October 21, 1976) is married to Joanie Miller and has three stepsons.

*  Joanna Kerns (born February 12, 1953) has been married twice.  She was married to Richard Kerns from 1976 to 1985.  They have a daughter, actress Ashley Cooper Kerns.  Joanna wed her second husband, Marc Appleton in 1994.

*  Tracey Gold (born May 16, 1969) married Roby Marshall in 1994.  They have four sons: Sage Gold (b. February 16, 1997), Bailey Vincent (b. March 4, 1999), Aiden Michael (b. May 9, 2004), and Dylan Christopher (b. April 1, 2008).

* 166 episodes of Growing Pains were produced.

*  There have been two Growing Pains TV movies: The Growing Pains Movie (1970) and Growing Pains: Return of The Seavers (2004).

- Joanne

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Internet TV Digest #5

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


Netflix cancels production of House of Cards

Kevin Spacey

Fans of House of Cards may not be able to watch any new episodes of the show.  On October 31, 2017, Netflix suspended production of the sixth season of the series.  The cancellation comes amid revelations of sexual harassment allegations involving the shows's star, Academy Award-winning actor Kevin Spacey.

Netflix and Media Rights Capital issued a statement that production was being suspended "to give time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew."  Production of the sixth season had recently gotten underway in Baltimore.

Barbra Streisand brings concert special to Netflix

Barbra Streisand

Legendary singer Barbra Streisand brings her Barbra: The Music . . . The Mem'ries . . . tour to Netflix in a concert special that was filmed last year in Miami, Florida.  The Streisand special begins streaming on November 22, 2017.

Amazon's numbers show substantial growth

Amazon Prime reported that its membership increased a whopping 59 per cent in the third quarter of 2017.  According to a November 2nd article by Casey Coombs of the Puget Sound Business Journal, Amazon only began reporting its subscription fees in it 2016 report under pressure for openness from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.  The company still declines to disclose how many members it has.

Amazon ascribed its strong third-quater profit partly to Prime Day, the 30-hour July sale for Amazon Prime members.  It showed a 60 per cent increase over last year.

What's new on Netflix in November?

Alias Grace (available November 3rd)

Alias Grace is a six-part television adaptation of Margaret Atwood's novel of the same name.  If you have enjoyed Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, you will enjoy this.  I  have already watched it here in Canada on CBC-TV.  It is gripping entertainment.  Written and produced by Sarah Polly, Alias Grace is a psychological dramatization of a 19th-century murder mystery involving an Irish immigrant maid.  Sarah Gadon simply shines in the lead role of Grace Marks.

Mudbound (available November 17) 

Mudbound, an adaptation of a Hilary Jordan's novel, explores the relationship between white landowners and black sharecroppers in the Mississippi Delta following World War II.  The film received rave reviews at the Sundance film festival, especially for its stars, Cary Mulligan, Jason Clarke and Mary J. Blige.  Director Dee Rees is being touted for an Oscar nomination.

Godless (available November 22)   

Godless is an seven-part Western series from co-creator and executive producer Steven Soderbergh.  It takes place in a frontier town where all the men have perished in a mining accident.  The women are left to fend for themselves and they must uphold law and order.  It stars Downton Abbey's Michelle Dockery in a completely different role.

Links to Internet streaming articles and information
Internet, TV Providers focus on new video packages as 1 million Canadians watch unlicensed content on Android boxes

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Y&R Report (October 28, 3017): 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.

On October 25, 2017, Mal Young officially replaced Sally Sussman as Y&R's head writer.  I have to say that the most recent episodes of the show have been chaotic and uneven.  I'm going to cut Mal some slack for the time being, since the show is in transition from one head writer to another.  However, his grace period will have to come to an end at some point.

I know Mal's very experienced and that he's produced several good TV shows in the United Kingdom, including the popular British soap EastEnders and the medical drama Doctors.  However, I don't expect him to have the same  knowledge of the history of The Young and the Restless that Sally Sussman has.  Sally has moved on though, and it's now up to Mal to maintain the integrity of the show.  I just hope he focuses on the relationships of the characters, as Sussman did.  What most fans don't want is a return to storylines involving look-alikes, fires and explosions.  (Online spoilers say that there is going to be a fire at The Underground).

I'm hoping for the best, but I'm already disappointed at what's been done with Scott Gainger.  Scott is an experienced journalist who has been in war zones.  He has been taken hostage.  So, why would he behave so helplessly after waking up in a motel room with the blood of the murdered Natalia on him.  He acted as if he'd never faced a difficult or dangerous situation before.  Instead of remaining calm and composed, he whimpered and begged Victor Newman to come to his rescue.  In other words, Scott wimped out.  This is not the Scott Grainger we have come to know.  Why has his character been changed?  Also, why didn't Scott immediately suspect Zack of drugging him?  Weren't there security or video cameras that would have shown Zack slipping the drug into Scott's beer?  What about Clueless Paul Williams?  Not surprisingly, the inept Genoa City police chief was unbelievably easy on Zack when he questioned him.

Zack is a sleaze, but is he actually the big boss of the sex trafficking ring?  After all, if Zack were the Big Kahuna, why would he have been the one to drug Scott right out in the open?  The really big guns keep a lower profile than that.  We don't really know who has been on on the receiving end of all Zack's phone calls.  It certainly hasn't always that goon Leon.  So, who is Mr. Big, if it's not Zack?

We finally know what's wrong with Princess Victoria.  Her Brass & Sassy face mask is toxic.  She's in a state of panic - not about her health, but about her company. With Victoria, her company and Daddy Victor always come first.  Did you notice how Victor was the first person at her bedside when the sleeping princess awakened?

Here's the question: Brash & Sassy did not approve a toxic chemical for its product.  It is assumed, therefore, that the company must have been sabotaged.  If so, who's responsible for the sabotage?  It would have to be a vengeful person with an axe to grind against Brass & Sassy.  The following suspects come to mind:

1. Gloria (Judith Chapman): Gloria, as long-time fans remember, was involved in a tainted Jabot face cream scandal about ten years ago.  That's why suspicion may fall on her, but this time she seems innocent.  When Billy confronted her she behaved as if she knew nothing about it and phoned Jack to find out if he we was involved.

2. Cane (Daniel Goddard) also has a grudge against Brass & Sassy, but I don't think he had anything to do with the toxic face mask.  He's got too many other problems in his life with Juliet, Lily and the twins.  His reputation has been tainted enough already without having him tainting a Brass & Sassy product.

3. Juliet (Laur Allen):  Some have pointed the finger at Juliet. After all she worked at Jabot and she is vindictive enough to do so.  Also, she has a real grudge against Brass & Sassy and she must resent the fact that Lily has been given her former job.  She's not trustworthy her at all and she'd probably stop at nothing to trap Cane or to get revenge on Victoria, Billy and Brass & Sassy.  However, Juliet is quite occupied these days with a troubled pregnancy.  She has Cane wrapped around her little finger anyway.

There is another possibility that is much more plausible.  What if it wasn't sabotage? What if it wasn't event intentional?  What if the face masks were poisoned out of sheer negligence?  Well then, the culprit would be none other than (drum roll) . . . Billy Abbott.  Yes Billy Abbott, the King of Carelessness, the only executive who could get caught spying on a rival company and then unwittingly cause his own company to produce a toxic product.

It was Billy's fault.  Online columns and spoilers point to Billy as the guilty party.  He, of course, didn't order toxins into the product.  However, he rushed production of the masks because he was so determined to bring down Jabot.  He told the factory manager to cut corners in order to get the masks on the market as soon as possible.  Sloppy work at the factory resulted in the toxic poisoning.

Victoria isn't the only possible victim of the poisoning.  Remember that Brass & Sassy brought in people to try out the product.  Neil Winters was one of them.  Billy has been in hot water many times before, but this could take the cake. Not only that, but he is currently on the receiving end of Phyllis' anger and she gave him the boot.  There was just no way it could last.  As Phyllis pointed out, Billy's priorities are Victoria, Brass & Sassy and getting revenge on Jack.  There is no way a woman like Phyllis would be content to play second fiddle to all that.  She's too far down Billy Boy's list of priorities.

Two of the woman at the ritzy Florida hotel with Dina were the real-life mothers of Esther Valentine (Kate Linder) and Lauren Fenmore (Tracey Bregman).

What is wrong with Abby?  Could this character actually have poorer judgement than Cane? (I didn't think that was possible).  How can she keep reconciling with Zack after the way he behaves.  The guy broke up with her via a cell phone message, for heaven's sake. 

Hey Lauren, tell us how you really feel about Sharon being your son Scott's girlfriend?

Ashley and Jack sure made a fast road trip from Genoa City, Wisconsin to Florida, didn't they?


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 Fifi in Collingwood, Ontario:

There seems to be a double standard on soaps that it is okay for a woman to slap a man hard across the face.  In other words, it's okay for Phyllis to slap Billy, but Billy would never slap Phyllis.  Violence of any kind is not acceptable.  

Also, I have noticed that of late, Gina Tognoni (Phyllis) is becoming extremely animated in her scenes and overusing her hands.

Yes, Fifi, you are absolutely right about the double standard.  What's good for the gander, however, is not always good for the goose.  It should not be considered acceptable behaviour for a woman to slap a man in the face if she is angry with him.  Unfortunately, both female and male characters in Genoa City accept this as justifiable.  The male characters don't seem to protest, seemingly condoning it.  They act as if they deserve it.  By the way, not only did Billy receive a slap from Phyllis, but Gloria also slapped him in the face when he accused her of helping Jack sabotage Brass & Sassy with the tainted face masks. 

As for Gina Tognoni becoming extremely animated, I have noticed that too.  I realize that her scenes with Billy are quite intense and emotional.  I've been trying to decide if she has been overacting or it's just in Phyllis' nature to be over the top.

Here are some questions and comments from regular contributor CC in Etobicoke, Ontario:

Do you think Graham is giving Dina some kind of happy pills?  

How involved do you think Victor is in Victoria's business downturns, or the things happening around Abby and Zack's relationship?  He is so slick and sleazy.  Even if his involvement boarders on illegal, he'll still get out of it.

The time has come for Nick to find out that Christian is Adam's child.  Enough already.

You've asked some good questions, CC.  No, I don't think Graham drugged Dina or brainwashed her.  I think her erratic behaviour is the result of early dementia or Alzheimer's Disease.  Graham, of course, is aware of her condition.

I think Victor is involved in some way in what is happening with Abby and Zack.  I wouldn't put anything past him and he seems to dip his hands into almost every bit of dirt.  He certainly would prefer Abby with Scott rather than Zack.

As I've mentioned, it appears that Billy's carelessness resulted in the toxic face masks.  On the surface, it doesn't seem likely that Victor would have any involvement  in Victoria's business downturns.  He knows how much Brass & Sassy means to his daughter.  Why would he want to sabotage his own daughter's company?  Why would he want to hurt her?  That wouldn't make sense, would it?  However, Victor is n ordinary father,  He is another kettle of fish.  He always has an agenda and as you put it, he's "slick and sleazy."  The fall of Brash & Sassy would bring Victoria right back into Victor's orbit.  He would be able to control her more.  She may even go begging to him for money to stave off lawsuits and avoid bankruptcy.  Another scenario is that if Victoria's company collapses, she may return to work at Newman Enterprises in some capacity, or perhaps Victor would agree to finance Brass & Sassy if it became part of Newman Enterprises again.  Of course, Victor would not allow Billy Boy to work at Newman.  That would be a plus for "Moneybags" because it would prevent his princess from working with that "punk" and "playboy."

I agree that it's about time for the truth about Christian's paternity to come out.  Like you, I feel like exclaiming "enough already!"  However, I'm afraid we're going to have to wait a bit longer for the secret to come out.  The writers are focusing on too many other storylines right now, especially the Dina/Graham saga and the sex trafficking ring storyline.  Remember that Victor knows the truth.  If he really wants to hurt Nick, he can always tell him.  That would destroy Nick's relationship with Chelsea.  He'll never forgive her for not telling him.  Given Victor's mean-spiritedness and his desire to "teach Nick a lesson."  I wouldn't put it past him to divulge the secret.

I received some comments and observation from longtime Y&R viewer Helen in Scarborough, Ontario.  Helen calls Michael Baldwin a one-stop attorney and the most versatile lawyer on the face of the Earth.  There isn't an aspect of the law that he doesn't deal with - criminal law, wills and estates, divorce - you name it, Baldwin does it.  He appears to be the only lawyer in Genoa City right now.  Once in a while, Leslie makes an appearance, as she did with Juliet's lawsuit against Brass & Sassy.

Here's what Helen would say to Jordan: "You are such a cool dude, but please get your love life in order.  Make up your mind about Hilary.  Do you really want to be with her, or is she just your second choice after Lily?

Helen has the answer to why Abby went back to Zack again.  It was that forest of multi-coloured balloon he brought her.  Those balloons would sweep any woman off her feet.


Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters) troubled over loss of son

There has been concern about the mental health of Y&R's Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters).  On Sunday, October 22nd, there were multiple reports that the actor had been hospitalized and placed under psychiatric care, after allegedly threatening to kill himself with a gun.  His ex-wife, Mia St. John, set the record straight in an interview with ET.  Mila aaid that "inaccurate and fabricated iinformation" had been reported with regard to her former husband and reports that he had allegedly threatened to shoot himself.  She acknowledged that Kristoff was distraught over the suicide of their son, Julian, almost three years ago, and that his heart was broken.  According to Mila, however, an incident occurred that "pushed him to the breaking point, but was not accurately reported.  She asked for the public's thought and prayers and declared that our society needs to take mental health more seriously.


Max Shippee

What's going on with Graham Bloodworth?  Have we seen the last of him.  Has he taken off for good?  Has he just given up?  What do you think?

Has Graham (Max Shippee) really gone for good?

Yes, there is not much more they can do with his character?
Are you kidding? He'll be back. He hasn't given up so easity. He wants Dina's money.
No, but he may be gone for a while. If so, he will return at some point.
I don't know
Please Specify:
read more

That's all for now.  The next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday. November 11, 2017.  Don't miss it!  The November sweeps will be in full swing.

- Joanne

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Questions linger over the 1985 New Year's Eve plane crash that killed singer Rick Nelson. Was foul play involved?

Singer Ricky Nelson, 45, and six others, including his fiancee, Helen Blair, 27, lost their lives in a plane crash on December 31, 1985 - New Year's Eve.  The other victims were band members Bobby Neal, 38 (guitarist), Patrick Woodward, 35 (bassist), Rick Intveld, 22 (drummer), And Chapin, 30 (keyboardist) and sound technician/road manager Donald "Clark" Russell, 35.  There were two survivors: pilot Brad Rank and co-pilot Ken Ferguson.

On December 26, 1985, Nelson and his Stone Canyon Band set out on a three-stop tour of the Southern United States.  After performances in Orlando, Florida and Guntersville, Alabama.  On that fateful December 31st, Nelson and the band boarded a plane for a New Year's Eve extravaganza at the Park Suite Hotel in Dallas, Texas,  They never reached their destination.  The plane crash-landed northeast of Dallas, in a farm pasture near the small town of De Kalb Texas.  Below is a photo of the crash site.

Their plane was a private jet, leased by Rick Nelson.  The fourteen-seat aircraft was originally a 1944 Douglas C-47, converted to a DC-3C in 1959.  It was once owned by the wealthy Du Pont family, one of America's most prominent industrialists since the 19th century.  At one time, it also belonged to rock and roll star Jerry Lee Lewis.  The plane, however, had a history of mechanical problems.

 Almost 32 years after the crash, questions remain unanswered and much remains unclear.  I recently received an email from Katherine, who describes herself as a "Big Fan of Ricky Nelson."  Katherine is very disturbed about the lingering questions surrounding the deaths of Nelson and six others.  She believes that Nelson's children and the families of the other victims deserve to know the full truth about the cabin fire.

Katherine wrote the following to me regarding regarding the New Year's crash :  She raises some questions that deserve to be answered:

A saboteur could have easily boarded the plane prior to takeoff (they would have had to know when takeoff would take place) and frayed the wiring on the heater.  Any fire would then burn evidence of tampering.  Two scenarios could be someone who had a grudge against Ricky Nelson or someone insanely jealous of his fame.  Someone knew of his touring schedule and I find Christmas Eve suspect.  Why was Ricky Nelson not with his family for the Christmas holidays?  This bothers me to no end.  If true someone killed Ricky Nelson, his financee and band members.  That is serious.  Why kill the others too?

Here is what the public does know and what remains unexplained.  It is what concerns me the most.  On May 28, 1987, The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released the findings of an 18-mont investigation into the crash.. The board found that the reason for the occurrence of the fire was "undetermined."  It concluded that, although a definite cause was still unknown, the crash was most likely due to a fire caused by the plane's cabin heater "acting up."     

The following is from the NTSB report:

NTSB Identification: DCA86AA012.

The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 29185.

14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation

Accident occurred Tuesday, December 31, 1985 in DEKALB, TX

Aircraft: DOUGLAS DC-3, registration: N711Y

Injuries: 7 Fatal, 2 Serious.

At 1708:48, while cruising at 6000', a pilot of N711Y advised ATC, "I think I'd like to turn around, head for Texarkana here, I've got a little problem." He was provided a vector & advised of closest airports. Shortly after, he stated he would be unable to reach the airports. At 1711:49, he said there was smoke in the cockpit. While landing in a field at 1714, the aircraft hit wires & a pole then continued into trees where it was extensively damaged by impact & fire. The crew egressed thru the cockpit windows. The passengers did not escape. During flight, the crew was unable to start the cabin heater, despite repeated attempts by the captain. Smoke then entered the cabin. Fresh air vents & cockpit windows were opened, but smoke became dense. The crew had difficulty seeing. The oxygen system & hand held fire extinguishers were not used. Fasteners for the heater door were found unfastened. Examination indicated the fire originated in the aftcabin area, right hand side, at or near the floor line. The ignition and fuel sources were not determined.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:

Contributing Factors

Investigators initially speculated that the "free-basing" of cocaine, which involves the heating of the drug with a flame, may have ignited the fire.  However, even though toxicology tests revealed traces of cocaine in the bodies of several of the passengers, including Rick Nelson, no evidence of drug use during the flight was found, nor was any drug-related paraphernalia discovered after the crash.

We do not know for certain whether the plane was on fire before it crashed.  There have been conflicting reports.  Witnesses have claimed that the plane appeared to be on fire before it crashed, but Jim Burnett, then-NTSB chairman, stated that although the plane was filled with smoke, it landed and came to a stop before it was consumed by flames.

We do know that when questioned by the NTSB, pilots Brad Rank and Ken Ferguson delivered conflicting accounts of key occurrences.  Co-pilot Ferguson claimed that the cabin heater was acting up after the plane took off.  Ferguson stated that Rank kept going to the back of the plane to see if he could get the heater working properly.  "I was getting nervous.  I didn't think we should be messing with the heater en route," declared Ferguson.  After the plane crashed, Ferguson and Rank escaped by climbing out of the cockpit windows and they suffered from severe burns.  Although they shouted to the passenger cabin, there was no response.  According to Ferguson, Rank instructed him not to tell anyone about the heater.

Brad Rank, however, had a different version of the story.  Rank stated that he was checking on the passengers when he noticed smoke in the central part of the cabin, where Rick Nelson and Helen Blair were situated.  Although he never mentioned that the heater had been malfunctioning, Rank claimed that he went to the back of the plane to check on it.  There was no smoke and he found the heater to be cool.  He then activated an automatic fire extinguisher, opened the cabin's fresh airlets and returned to the cockpit.

We do know that there was negligence on the part of pilot Brad Rank.  He was excoriated by the NTSB for not following the inflight checklist, opening the fresh air vents rather than keeping them closed, not providing the passengers with directions on how to use supplemental oxygen and not attempting to put out the fire with the handheld fire extinguisher in the cockpit.  The NTSB stated that while these measures may not have prevented the crash, they would have increased the likelihood that some of the passengers would have survived.

Although the plane crash took place over 30 years ago, some questions remain unanswered regarding the deaths of Rick and the others.  The most important question is why, according to the report, was the reason for the occurrence "undetermined."  Whether there was foul play or not, the families of the victims deserve more answers.  As Katherine pointed out to me, there is no statute of limitations on murder.  Even though there is no concrete evidence of foul play, there is foul air.  It needs to be cleared.

- Joanne

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Y&R Report: (October 14, 2017): 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.

It was Ashley Abbot's moment in the spotlight, her time to shine,  She won the prestigious Innovator of the Year Award.  Unfortunately, the evening ended in disaster for the Abbott family and friends.  Dina spilled the beans about Ashley's true paternity and Graham unmasked himself.  He expressed his contempt for Ashley, Jack and Dina and blamed Dina for breaking up his family and causing financial difficulties for him and his mother.  Not surprisingly, he was escorted out of the premises.  The party was ruined and the guests promptly left the fancy soiree at The Top of the Tower.

Graham's next move was to confront Dina and argue with her.  She collapsed and fell to the floor.  Graham was callous enough to just leave her there.  He even put the DO NOT DISTURB sign on the door and walked away.  That reminds me of the time years ago when  Jack Abbott left Victor lying on the floor and also walked away.  Victor had had a heart attack after a shouting match with Jack.
The Newman family is a never-ending source of scandal and controversy for Hilary Curtis, Genoa City's resident gossip monger.  When Nick asked to appear on her show, The Hilary Hour, she couldn't wait to sit down with him.  She and the entire Newman clan were stunned when Nick announced that he intended to donate $500 million to charity, the money that he was awarded as a result of the lawsuit against Victor.

Nick is trying so hard to assert his independence from his overbearing father.  Although he should have done it years ago, I give him credit for finally attempting to break loose.  I wonder if it's possible for him to ever be free of Victor's control.  He has rid himself of Victor's money, but money is just one of Victor's tools for controlling people.  He has many other ways of manipulating his family and anyone else who stands in his way.

Since Victor has taken the money from Nick's bank account, I wonder how it will be given to charity.  It's money Nick Newman doesn't have anymore.


Kevin Fisher may be a tech whiz, but even he couldn't remove such a huge amount of money as $500 million dollars from a bank account so easily.  Wouldn't the bank investigate?

Why is Brash & Sassy so strapped for cash?  Why did Princess Victoria have to take a bridge loan from Neil and Devon?  What happened to the $500 million.she received from the lawsuit against Victor?  Ooops . . .we're not supposed to ask that.  It's too logical and it interferes with the storyline.

Crystal was introduced to Zack.  So, why didn't she identify him to Paul Williams?

Why was Alice allowed to escape from her hospital room?  Why wasn't there a police guard?


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 on Cane and Juliet from regular correspondent CC in Etobicoke, Ontario.

I feel it was pretty clear from the beginning that Juliet was setting Cane up, although it is still a mystery as to why.  I agree with your suggestion that she may have had to provide Mr. Sato with a favour to seal the Asian deal.  However, I think the writers have left the possibilities open to anything when it come time to wind up that storyline.  It's a mystery to me Juliet she targeted Cane because as far as concerned he doesn't have the traits of someone special.  She must know something we don't.  Just some food for thought.

Well, CC, I have been suspicious of Juliet from the beginning.  I really think that she has deceived Sugar Cane Ashby big time.  Why did she target Sugar Cane?  She probably sensed how naive he is. She realized how easily he would fall into her trap, which he did.  Juliet's calculations were right on the money

I think Cane and Lily will eventually reunite, although it may take a while.  The writers brought Juliet into the picture to stir things up between them.  After all, couples cannot be happy for too long on a soap.  Cane may even marry Juliet when his divorce from Lily is final.  It won't last, though, when he finds out that she has duped him and played him for a fool.

Fifi from Collingwood is curious as to why Graham turned out to be Brent Davis' stepson rather than his biological son.  She feels that there must be a reason and that it may have something to do with the fact that if Brent Davis were Graham's biological father, Graham would be Ashley's half-brother. Why else would the writers avoid making Ashley and Graham blood relatives if they weren't destined for romance?  That's a good question, Fifi.  It does seem unlikely right now.  After  all, Ashley seems happy with Ravi. She absolutely despises Graham and the feeling is mutual.  However, stranger things have happened on soaps.  Also, now that Graham's secret is out in the open, what happens now?  How do the writers maintain interest in this character and his storyline?  Furthermore, Ashley and Ravi are getting along quite well and are happy with the relationship.  Everything is going too smoothly.  There is bound to be a fly in the ointment at some point.  That's why an Ashley-Graham romance may happen, as far-fetched as it may seem right now.  It would be a surprising twist and I wouldn't rule it out.  Graham's image will have to be softened, though.  He will have to show a better side of himself and he and Ashley will have to find some common ground. Otherwise, the fans won't buy it.  Graham is such a scoundrel, it will be difficult to redeem him.

Here is a later email from CC in Etobicoke, Ontario:

I agree about Graham and Ashley as a possible romantic hookup in the future.  Hence, the stepfather angle.  I thought that would be a possibility when he first appeared.  One reason is that they have to wind up her "thing" with Ravi somehow.  Dislike often becomes love on soaps.

Thursday's episode (on Global TV Canada) was not as dynamic as Wednesday's.  I wonder if Dina will survive or if that is it for her and Graham will inherit it all.  The next episode should tell the tale.

That's very true, CC.  Dislike often becomes love on soaps.  I expect that to happen with Abby and Scott too.  As for Ashley and Ravi, I think he cares more about her than she cares about him.  She is probably going to break his heart, but not intentionally.

Dina will survive because in an interview with TV Insider, Marla Adams, who plays Dina, stated that "Graham comes back when Dina's in the hospital and apologizes."

Filomena from Woodbridge, Ontario likes the way Colin Atkins stirs things up.  He does indeed, Filomena.  The mischief-making Aussie, played by Tristan Rogers, paid a recent visit to Genoa City on a break from his travels with Jill.  He didn't seemed to be disturbed in the least by fact that his son Cane's life was in tatters.  It didn't appear to bother him that Cane was getting a divorce from Lily or that Cane had fathered a baby by an unknown woman.  In fact, he was overjoyed to meet Juliet and the prospect of having a new grandson.


Eileen Davidson (Ashley Abbott) injured in Florida

Eileen Davidson suffered an injury during a recent visit to Daytona Beach, Florida.  On Sunday, October 8th, the actress was in the Sunshine State to take part in the Ride for Children, which benefited Camp Boggy Creek.  She was riding a motorcycle behind Doug Danger,  a stunt performer and American motorcycle jumping world record holder.  Eileen shared posts from her trip and of her injury on Instagram. There was a photo of her foot in a cast with the caption "Florida gave me the boot"  and an indication that she had broken her toe.

Eileen's injury comes at a very busy time for her.  Her Ashley Abbott  storyline is front and centre on Y&R and she will appear on Days of Our Lives in November.  Her broken toe will have to be hidden or written into her scripts.


I've been wondering if the yearbook picture of Graham "Davis"  is actually a photo of a younger Max Shippee, the actor who portrays him.  What do you think, fans?

Max Shippe (Graham Bloodwrth)

Is the guy in the yearbook photo a younger Max Shippee (Graham)?

Yes, I think the guy in the yearbook is a younger Max Shippee (Grraham).
No, I don't think they are one and the same person.
Maybe. It's possible.
I don't know.
Please Specify:
Build quizzes

That's all for now.  The next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, October 28, 2017.  The November Sweeps are just around the corner.  There will be more excitement in Genoa City.

 - Joanne