Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Whatever happened to Mary Crosby after she shot J.R.?


"My only regret is that Daddy isn't here to share the tremendous joys of my life right now.  But other than that I am very clear on his death.  Daddy died while he was still very much a man, while he still had control of the lives of the people he loved."

Mary Crosby spoke those words in an interview with McCalls magazine in 1980.  She was only 20 years old at the time and riding high as a star on the wildly popular prime time soap opera, Dallas.  Bing Crosby never lived to see his daughter's television stardom.  He passed away 42 years ago, on October 14, 1977.  The 74-year-old collapsed and died instantly.after suffering a massive heart attack near the clubhouse of a golf course in Madrid, Spain

 After Bing's death, his eldest son, Gary, wrote a very critical book about his father, entitled Gong My Own Way.  In Gary's memoir, the legendary crooner was depicted as cold, distant and physically abusive.  Gary's younger brother, Philip Crosby, strongly defended their father.  He said that Bing had been a "great father" and that Gary's claims were exaggerated.

Bing was larger than life and he left an indelible mark on his family.  As Mary stated, he had control of the people he loved.  He was very patriarchal and held to strict standards of morality.  In a 1977 interview with Barbara Walters, Bing declared that he would disown his only daughter if she lived with a man outside of marriage.  At the time, 17-year-old Mary was "damn near living with," as she put it, singer-songwriter Eb Lottimer.  Soon after Bing's death, Mary and Eb moved into a mountaintop home in Malibu, California.

Mary Frances Crosby was born in Los Angeles, California on September 14, 1959.  She is the only daughter of famed entertainer Harry Lillis "Bing" Crosby and his second wife, retired singer-actress Kathryn Grant.  Bing's first wife, singer, danger Dixie Lee, died of ovarian cancer in 1952 at the age of 42, leaving him a widower with four sons.  In 1957, he wed Kathryn.

Mary, the couple's second child together, was a precocious child.  At the age of two, she became one of the youngest children in the United States to pass the Red Cross beginner's swim test.  By three, she could read and write. She received her Actor's Equity Card at the age of four and made her stage debut with her mother in a Bay area production of Peter Pan at six.  She entered the University of Texas at Austen.when she was just 15.

Mary made her first professional appearances in in he father's popular Christmas TV specials, along with her siblings (Bing had four sons with is first wife, Dixie Lee (1909-1952) - Gary, Philip, Dennis, Lindsay - and two sons with Kathryn Grant (1933- ) - Harry Crosby III and Nathaniel.  Of her relationship with her dad, Mary told People magazine in 1980, "He just didn't know what to make of a girl in the family.  She reminisced about how "he used to take me to ball games and fishing and hunting."

Below is a photo of Bing and Kathryn and their three children.  Mary is seated to the right of Bing.


In 1967, Mary made her acting debut as "Joan" in a episode of The Danny Thomas Hour, entitled "The Demon Under the Bed" (Season 1, Episode 5, Air Date: October 9, 1967).  She was 8 years old at the time and appeared along with her father.  In a rare television dramatic role, Bing played a fading film star Charlie Castle, who was faced with losing his voice.  It is interesting to note that Dynasty star Joan Collins also appeared in that same episode.

By 1978, Mary had a guest spot in an episode of Starsky and Hutch.  She followed that with the role of Patricia North in the 1978 television miniseries Pearl, a war epic surrounding the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and starring Robert Wagner, Angie Dickinson and Dennis Weaver.   Then came an appearance on an episode of the crime drama CHiPs entitled "Pressure Point" (Season 2, Episode 16, Air Date: January 20, 1979).

Mary regretted her next career choice, a role in the 1979 miniseries Brothers and Sisters.  In 1980, she told People magazine, "I did a horrendously awful series for NBC, which bombed.  People wouldn't even let me read for parts for six months afterward."  However, the experience helped to pave her way to success. When her career stalled, she contacted Dallas producer Leonard Katzman, whom she has credited for rescuing her career and helping her establish her own identity. 

Yet, despite being the daughter of Bing Crosby, Mary was not that well known before Dallas and was even confused with actress Cathy Lee Crosby, co-host of That's Incredible! (no relation).  Although she was originally hired for seven Dallas episodes, "they liked me so much that I was lucky to stick around for a year and a half.  It changed my life in a wonderful way."

From 1979 until 1981, Mary Crosby portrayed Kristen Shepard, the conniving sister-in-law/mistress of ruthless Texas oil baron J.R.. Ewing (Larry Hagman).  Mary's character will be forever enshrined in television history as the one who shot J.R.  The "Who Shot J.R." cliffhanger was a marketing bonanza.  There were 'Who Shot J.R." T-shirts and buttons and there were bets on who committed the dirty deed.

On the evening of November 21, 1980, millions of Dallas viewers around the world sat glued to their television sets to find out the answer to TV's  greatest "whoduunit."  They wanted to know who had gunned down the villainous J.R. and left him for dead on the floor of his office.  The unknown assailant turned out to be Kristin, who had shot him in a fit of anger and later claimed to be pregnant by him.  In the October 1981 season opener of Dallas, Kristen's dead body was found floating in the Ewing family's swimming pool at their Southfork Ranch.

In 1991, Mary reprised her role as Kristen on the final episode of the original series.  The episode is entitled "Conundrum" (Season 14, Episode 22, Air Date: May 3, 1991).  In the episode, a drunk and dejected J.R. is shown what the world would be like if he was never born.  In this alternate universe, Kristen is a con artist who appears to J.R. in a vision.   Of her character, Kristen, Mary told People magazine that "Kristen was really a high-class whore, but my parents taught us that we should play whatever was offered and learn from every opportunity."

After the death of Kristen, Mary left Dallas with the hope of using her Dallas stardom to catapult her career to greater heights.  It never happened that way.  In an exclusive interview with Britain's Daily Mail online , Mary admitted that after Dallas, "I made that classic mistake - having my 15-minutes of fame and thinking I could afford to wait around for more arty roles.  So I put myself out of commission and waited for work that was less available to me."

When her run on Dallas ended, Mary guest-starred on such TV series as Hotel (three episodes, 1984-1985),  In the Heat of the Night (1989), Murder, She Wrote (two episodes (1991-1992), Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (1993), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1994), Burke's Law (1995) and Dream On (1995).  From 1995 to 1996, Mary appeared as Claudia Van Eyck in three episodes of Beverley Hills, 90210.  She also appeared as Alya Ransom  in a 1997 episode of Orleans and as Sheryl Weathersby in a 1997 episode of Mike Hammer, Private Eye.

Mary starred as Karen Lancaster in the 1985 ABC miniseries Hollywood Wives and she portrayed Isabel Hazard in the 1986 American Civil War miniseries North and South, Book II.  She also appeared in television movies such as Men Who Hate Women & the Women Who Love Them (1994) and Sharing the Secret (2000).

Mary Crosby has been married twice.  Her first husband was singer-songwriter Edmund "Eb" Lottimer (born June 21 1951), whom she wed at the age of 19, on November 24, 1978.  They married in a non-sectarian ceremony of their own design and her mother did not attend because, according to Mary, she was performing in a play.  The marriage ended in divorce in 1998.

Mary with Eb Lottimer
In 1998, Marry tied the knot for a second time with Mark Andrew Brodka, a California attorney specializing in real estate and personal injury law  Mary and Mark wed at the Crosby family ranch with 60 people in attendance.  The couple have two sons, Brent and Christopher, and Larry Hagman, who walked Mary down the aisle at her wedding, was named their godfather.

Mary and Mark reside in Malibu, in a rustic area above Pacific Coast Highway.  In 2013, they tentatively settled a long-running law suit with their neighbour, Susan Demers.  In 2010, Brodka  began the litigation process by suing Demers, a horse trainer, and her friend, Martha Gwinn.  The law suit concerned Demers' right of to travel across their land to reach a federal park in order to ride horses there.

END NOTES

* In 1980, Marry Crosby appeared as Kristen Shepard in an episode of Knot's Landing, a spin-off of Dallas.  The episode is entitled "Kristen" (Season 2, Episode 5, December 18, 1980).  In the episode, Kristen arrives in Knot's Landing following her arrest for drug possession.

* Mary's first husband, Eb Lottimer, became a fairly successful actor, director and writer.  He has made appearances on many TV series and is known for writing and directing the 1998 indie film Divorce: A Contemporary Western, which is a somewhat autobiographical work about his breakup with Mary.  More recently, he played a bank manager in the 2015 film Sicario and an Air Force colonol in the 2017 film The Space Between Us.  Eb hasn't remarried.

* All of Bing Crosby's sons with Dixie Lee have passed away. Singer/actor Gary Crosby died of lung cancer on August 24, 1995.  He was 62 at the time of his passing. Philip Crosby, also an actor and a singer, died of a heart attack on January 13, 2004 at the age of 69.  Philip battled alcoholism throughout his life.  Sadly, Lindsay and Dennis Crosby both committed suicide.  Lindsay died on December 11, 1989 at the age of 51.  Dennis died on May 4, 1991.  He was 56.

* On October 17, 2000, Mary's mother, Kathryn, married Maurice William Sullivan.  On November 4, 2010, Kathryn was seriously injured in a car accident in the Sierra Nevada.  Her 85-year-old second husband was killed in the the single-vehicle wreck on U.S. 50 east of Placerville, California.

* Mary remained friends with Larry Hagman, who also lived in Malibu, until his death of cancer in 2013.  She told the Daily Mail that "Dallas was a different life, and such an incredible experience, but the greatest gift from the experience was Larry and his wife, Maj."

Below is a 1980 press photo of Mary with Larry Hagman.



Mary Crosby in 2014

SOURCES: McCalls, "My Father, Bing Crosby," by Sheila Weller, July 1980.  Patch, Mary Crosby, Malibu Neighbor Settle Long Running Lawsuit, by City News Service, Neighbour, March 15, 2013; People magazine, "Mary Crosby, Bing's Little Girl, Creates a Family Flap Over Her Plans to Marry Her Live-in Boyfriend," by Alan Markfield, November 13, 1978; People magazine, "She Shot J.R.!," by Sue Reilly, December 8, 1980; Daily Mail, "Exclusive: The 'Dallas' actress 'Who shot J.R. - Mary Crosby (daughter of Bing) - reveals how producers tricked the cast by having everyone shoot the show's most famous episode," by James Desborough and Emma Paterson, November 20, 2015; International Movie Data Base (IMDb.com); Wikipedia


- Joanne

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Y&R Report (October 12, 2019): 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. 

"The Great Victor Newman" has resigned as CEO of Newman Enterprises.  He has decided to hand over the reigns of the company to his daughter, Princess Victoria Newman.  He has told Victoria that she "is a Newman and she is tough."  Everything is coming up roses for Victoria.  Her life is a bowl of cherries right now.  She's got everything she ever wanted.  She's now CEO of Newman Enterprises and she has a happy family life with Billy Boy Abbott.  Billy is behaving in a more stable manner and he is getting therapy.  These are heady days for the princess, but it can't last, though.  Nobody can be blissfully happy for too long on a soap.  There are bound to be clouds on the horizon.  Already, Victor has demanded to know why Billy tried to run over Adam.

Victoria finally stood up to Daddy and she actually threw a letter opener at that infernal portrait of her father.  There may be a reason why Victor gave in so easily to his daughter's ultimatum that she would cut him out of her life if he did not allow her to remain CEO of Newman Enterprises.  Yet that portrait remains on the wall as a reminder of Victor's power and control.  Victoria may be sitting in the CEO chair for now, but the battle is far from over.  Her position is not as secure as she thinks it is.

Adam is still poses a big threat to Victoria's happiness. He may be back in Las Vegas, but he won't stay there.  I wouldn't be surprised if he attempts to bring Victoria down and unseat her as head honcho at Newman.  Of course, Phyllis will encourage him to do so because she is just thirsting for revenge against Victor and his family.  There's also the mystery surrounding Chance.  We don't know what is going on with him and why he was hanging out in Vegas with Adam.  We don't know why he challenged Mrs. Chancellor's will either.  We don't even know where Chance is right now.  Has he been kidnapped?  Has he been forced to do things against his will?  Also, who knocked out Cane after he attempted to locate Chance?  Did Adam have anything to do with it?  There are so many questions, but we should have some answers soon.

It's difficult to imagine Victor on the sidelines. Don't expect him to give up all his power and influence.  He lives to be in control.  He won't be able to simply retire and travel around the world with Nikki.  Remember when he asked if he would have to play golf now.  That was hilarious.

Lola and Kyle have been doomed from the start.  It's obvious that they will not survive as a couple. I can already see trouble in paradise.  Theo has been hanging around Lola and he seems to want to win her trust and make her like him.  I don't think Lola would betray Kyle, but Theo the Troublemaker is out for revenge.  He may set Lola up and trick Kyle into believing that Lola is having an affair with him or else Lola's s sympathy for Theo will drive a wedge between her and Kyle.  Either way, Summer will be waiting in the wings.  Snowflake is definitely not over Kyle and the two have been quite close lately as they work together at Jabot. Meanwhile, the previews have shown us that Lola may be pregnant.  If so, will she lose the baby and blame Kyle for it?

Jack has appointed Billy Abbott and Kyle to be joint CEOs of Jabot.  He will probably come to regret asking those two to share running the company.  It probably won't work out because Billy and Kyle each have their own ideas and neither one wants to be upstaged by the other.  Kyle may try to get along with Billy, but both men are competitive and both want to call the shots.  Neither wants to answer to the other.  So, it appears that Jack made an error in judgement.  He should have just appointed one of them to be in charge or he should have remained CEO himself.

Dina hinted that she once had a romantic connection with Genoa City newspaper publisher Stuart Brooks. Longtime Y&R viewers will remember Stuart, who was  portrayed by Robert Colbert.  He was the patriarch of the Brooks family, one of the original families on the show. Stuart died and Colbert left Y&R in 1983.  I wonder why the writers have made a connection between Dina and Stuart.  Could it be that they had a secret child together, an unknown sibling to Jack, Ashley and Traci?  By the way, Robert Cobert is now 88 years old and retired.


Robert Colbert as Stuart 

CAST NEWS
Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe) expecting first child



Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe Mitchell is pregnant with her first child.  The baby is due in March of 2020.  Elizabeth married husband Rob Meder in a beachside wedding this past summer.  They became engaged last Christmas Day.

Elizabeth announced the good news by posting a picture of an Instagram photo of her baby bump with the caption, "No, that's not a belly full of bagels, it's a belly full of bagels and a baby!"


Y&R REPORT READERS' POLL

Sharon and Rey are on the verge of getting back together again.  Rey obviously wants her back.  However, Sharon is taking her time.  She doesn't want to rush back into the relationship. Should the couple reconcile?  Are they right for each other.  Respond to the poll below and let me know.

Should Sharon and Rey get back together?

Yes, they make a good couple and they make each other happy.
No, it would be a mistake because Adam will always come between them.
No, Sharon should take some time for herself and not be involved in a relationship for a while.
Sharon should get back together with Nick. They make a better couple and they have a history.
Sharon should find someone new.
I don't know.
Other
Please Specify:
Created with SurveyMaker


MESSAGE FOR TORONTO AREA VIEWERS OF Y&R

The eighth annual annual Toronto OpportunitiTea high tea in support of the March of Dimes Canada will take place at the Royal York Hotel on December 8th, 2019.  The event features Kate Linder (Esther Valentine) and her actor friends from The Young and the Restless.  For more information on this event, click on the link below.  I will be attending.



Readers, I would appreciate your feedback

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:  jmadden16@yahoo.ca


That's all for now.  Please remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, October 26, 2019.  A Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian readers (Monday, October 14th).


- Joanne

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Internet TV Digest #13

    

This is the 13th of an occasional feature on TV Banter called Internet TV Digest.  Internet TV Digest contains recent news, information and discussion about online television.

Internet TV Digest

What's coming to Netflix this October

Netflix has a history of adapting Stephen King's horror novels and is ready to launch another.  On October 4th, it will release In the Tall Grass, a film about two little children who go out into a field of grass and are unable to find their way out.  It stars Patrick Wilson, Laysla De Oliveria, Harrison Gilbertson, Avery Whitted and Rachel Wilson.

On October 4th, Netflix will also release Season 5 of Peaky Blinders, a British crime drama starring Cillian Murphy.  The series premiered on the BBC in September of 2013.  It is primarily set in Birmingham. England and it follows the exploits of the Shelby crime family in the aftermath of World War I.  In Season 5, Cillian Murphy's character, crime boss Thomas Shelby, is headed for Parliament.



Another October 4th Netflix release will be Season 1 of a science fiction series called Raising Dion.  It is about an eight-year-old boy who discovers he has superpowers.  It is up to his widowed mother, Nicole Reese (Alisha Wainwright), to raise her superhero son Dion (Ja'Siah Young) properly and help him deal with his special gifts.  The series is based on the 2015 comic and short film of the same name.  Raising Dion will run for nine one-hour episodes.

Ja'Siah Young as Dion in Raising Dion

Weekly episodes of Rythm + Flow will begin on October 9th.  This three-week event is the first of its kind for Netflix. It is the streaming service's first genuine competition and first hip hop competition.  The series features Cardi B, Chance the Rapper and Tip.

Coming for Halloween will be a Netflix film titled Eli.  It is the story of a boy receiving treatment for a life-threatening disease, an auto-immune disorder.  The boy discovers that the house where he's living isn't safe.  Eli's release date is October 18th.

The Laundromat, a film starring Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, Jeffrey Wright and Sharon Stone, is a comedy about insurance fraud in Panama City.  It is also set to be released on October 18th.

On October 25th, Netflix will release Dolemite is My Name, a film starring Eddie Murphy.  Eddie has the role of an eccentric character in this biographical comedy.  He plays filmmaker Rudy Ray Moore (1927-2008), best known for portrayal of Dolemite in his stand-up comedy routine and in the 1975 film Dolemite.

Amazon frozen out of new Disney streaming service

The forthcoming Disney + streaming service recently released its list of supported platforms.  Fire TV Sticks and Cube and other devices were conspicuously absent from the list of the new service's supported devices.  Amazon fans will also be disappointed that the Fire tablets are excluded from the list, since Amazon Fire TV is a convenient way to watch streaming content on your television.

Disney has offered no explanation as to why it omitted Fire TV devices., although Amazon and Disney have an uncomfortable history.  Disney + is scheduled to launch on November 12, 2019, so there is time to rectify the situation.  If that doesn't happen, iPad may be the only tablet that Disney + works on.

SOURCE: Tom's Guide (www.tomsguide.com/news), "House of the Mouse Turns on Amazon")


Netflix stock prices dropping

"The only price dropping as fast as new streaming subscription deals from Disney and Apple is the stock price of streaming giant Netflix."

- George Manessis
CNBC, September 24, 2019

On September 20, 2019, Netflix (NFLX) shares dropped more than 5 per cent, to close at $270.75.  This occurred after Nexis CEO Reed Hastings conceded that his company will face stiffer competition with the November launch of Apple TV Plus and Disney Plus.  In a speech at the Royal Television Society Conference in  Cambridge, England, Hastings stated, "While we've been competing with many people in the last decade, it's a whole new world starting in November . . . between Apple launching and Disney launching, and of course Amazon's ramping up."  "It'll be tough competition," he declared."  "Direct-to-consumer (customers) will have a lot of choice."  Hastings also mentioned NBCUniversal's Peacock service, set to premiere in April 2020, as a potential rival


Reed Hastings

SOURCES: CNBC, September 24, 2019; Variety, September 20, 2019


What is Pluto TV?

Pluto TV is a live TV streaming service.  As of March 2019, it is owned by Viacom. Pluto offers more than 100 channels and thousands of free movies.  It doesn't cost anything.  So, what's the catch?  Well, the price is right as long as you can tolerate the 30-second ads which interrupt your viewing at inopportune times, such as during a crucial scene in a film.  Not only that, but there can be four of those commercials in a row.  Somewhere along the line, there is a price for every streaming service.

SOURCE: Digital Trends (digitaltrends.com), September 10, 2019


- Joanne

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Y&R Report (September 28, 2019): 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, Victor really isn't dead (no surprise).  Victoria was arrested for his supposed murder after being set up by Adam.  Mishael Morgan is back, but not as Hilary.  There is a lot happening in Genoa City. as we head into autumn.

Victor Newman has cheated death before and Y&R would have been crazy to kill off such a popular character.  The plot is somewhat convoluted, though.  One thing really bothers me.  If Nikki and most of the Newmans were in on Victor's plan, why did they behave as if they really believed he was dead, even when they were alone and Adam was not around?  At least we know why Dr. Nate's tablet came into play.  Adam used it to set up Victoria.

The writers seem to be doing an about-face where Adam, Theo and Summer are concerned, or at least they are showing another side of those characters.  They are trying to present this trio of troublemakers in a more sympathetic manner, probably so that they will become more popular with viewers.  Now that Adam knows that Victor is still alive, he is suddenly very contrite.  He regrets what he has done and doesn't think he's worthy of being a father to Connor.  As for the Snowflake, she is truly grieving her grandfather's "death" and is very vulnerable (She was not told that Victor is still alive because the rest of the family thought she might reveal the truth to her mother, Phyllis).  Theo opened up to Summer and told her about his childhood and the death of his father.  All of that is probably good because no one is one-dimensional.  It's about time those characters showed a more human side.  Nevertheless, I still can't warm up to Theo.

Regular readers will know that in the August 17th edition of Y&R Report, I wrote about speculation that Mischel Morgan was returning to The Young and the RestlessSoap Dish cited a "reliable source" who stated that Mischel would be returning to the show.  It was not known in what capacity she would be returning since her character, Hilary, was definitely dead, not presumed dead.  Well, the source was indeed "reliable" and Mischel is back, but not as Hilary.

Y&R frequently resurrects characters from the dead and uses four methods to so: The first method is that the character somehow survives, although considered dead by other residents of Genoa City.  For example, Adam survived an explosion and J.T. survived being buried alive.  The second method is that the dead character has an identical twin, as in the case of Mariah being Cassie's twin.  The third method is that the dearly departed faked his or her own death.  Examples of this are Victor pretending to be dead in order to bring down Adam and Chloe alive in the coffin at her own funeral. The fourth method is the look-alike method.  That's what the writers have done with Mischel Morgan.  They've changed her hairstyle and voila, a Hilary look-alike.

Mischel's look-alike character is a lawyer named Amanda Sinclair, who is involved in the challenge to Devon's multi-billion dollar inheritance from his grandmother, Katherine Chancellor.  Amanda's personality seems very different from Hilary's, although the two are dead ringers.  It remains to be determined if viewers will warm up to Mischel's new character.

I am not a big fan of look-alike characters, but there was not much choice in finding a way to bring Mischel back.  Hilary was as dead as a doornail and a long lost identical twin would have been worse than a look-alike in this instance. Perhaps the writers should not be so fast to kill characters off, unless it's absolutely necessary to a storyline, or unless the actor dies in real life like Jeanne Cooper (Mrs. Chacellor) and Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters).  It is very common for actors whose characters have died to return after some time off.  It would be much better for those characters to leave town or to write them out in some other way so that there will be an opening for them to come back as the same character.

Devon doesn't think it's a coincidence that a Hilary look-alike was sent to his place and has vowed to get to the bottom of it.  Will he eventually fall for Amanda because of her resemblance to his late wife?  Even if he doesn't, Amanda's presence is bound to cause enormous difficulties for him and his girlfriend, Elena.  This could lead Elena to knock on Dr. Nate's door.  In fact, I think it's inevitable that Nate and Elena become a couple.  That leaves Abby out in the cold.  With her poor judgement in men, she'll probably hook up with Theo.  He doesn't want to settle down either.

Something strange is going on with Philip Chancellor 1V, better known as Chance.  Why is he suddenly challenging Katherine's will and Devon's inheritance?  Is Chance really doing this or is somebody else behind it?  What has happened to Chance anyway?  He was a disciplined soldier, a straight arrow.  Has he changed?  Why was he involved with Adam in Las Vegas?  Chance's grandmother, Jill, has not been able to contact him.  Jill does not believe that his bahaviour has changed.  She is convinced that he is still decent and trustworthy.

Chamce may show up in Genoa City and we will get some answers.  If he does return, I wonder if a different actor will play the role.  John Driscoll was the last actor to portray Chance (from 2009 to 2011).  For those of you who don't remember or haven't been watching the show for long, Chance is the son of Nina Webster and Philip Chancellor III.  I also wonder if Nina (Tricia Cast) will also return to GC since head writer Josh Griffith likes to have familiar faces on the show (I doubt it, though).

Chance's lawyer, Amanda Sinclair, has claimed that Mrs. Chancellor actually bequeathed a great deal of her fortune to Candy Cane Ashby.  That doesn't necessarily mean, however, that Chance won't show up eventually.  If he doesn't show up, I think it's poor writing.  Why mention Chance so often if he is not going to be be in the picture?  Why not show his face.  At the very least, viewers are owed an explanation as to what happened to him.

John Driscoll

Tricia Cast in 

Faith Newman may come from a very wealthy family, but she hasn't exactly had a very stable childhood.  Her parents, Nick and Sharon, have ridden a merry-go-round with their myriad spouses and significant others.  Now Faith has been sent away to boarding school, just like her father, Nick, her Aunt Victoria and her Uncle Billy.  When she returns, she will look about 20 years old.  She will probably be spoiled and bitter..  I wish Y&R would keep the same Faith, Alyvia Alan Lind, and let her grow up naturally.  I doubt they'll do that, though.  They are in a hurry to make her an adult for storyline purposes.

Nick Newman has to be one of the biggest losers at love.  His romance with Chelsea seems to be over because he did not tell her that Victor was still alive.  As for Chelsea, she appears to be more sympathetic toward Adam lately.  Maybe both Chelsa and Sharon will find themselves competing for Adam's affections.


CAST NEWS

Christel Khahlil is back as Lily Winters


Great news for fans of Christel Khalil.  She's returning to Genoa City as Lily.  In the summer of 2018, Christel decided to cut back her appearances and was dropped to recurring status.  Since then, she has appeared in some episodes related to the death of her TV dad, Neil Winters (Kristoff St. John).and tributes honouring Kristoff.  She also played the role of Iris in sequences from Traci Abbott's novel.

An airdate for Christel's return has not been announced yet.  However, now that Mishael Morgan is back, although not as Hilary, it will be wonderful to see both of them together.  Lily is really going to freak out when she see's Hilary's look-alike.  Also, it will be interesting to see what will happen if Cane inherits all that money from Katherine.


Former General Hospital star coming to Y&R



Jeffrey Vincent Parise (ex-Carlos Rivera on General Hospital) is coming to Y&R.  He has been cast as Simon Black, a dangerous strange who will stir up trouble in Genoa City.  The mysterious Simon come to Geona City to settle some unfinished business.  That certainly sounds ominous.  I wonder if Victor.is his target.

Parise, 48, is a native of Indianapolis, Indiana.



Beth Maitland (Traci Abbott) back on the show's opening credits


Beth Maitland (Traci Abbott) certainly has an expanded role on Y&R these days.  Traci  recently completed a novel and decided against having a romance with Cane Ashby.  Now Jack has asked her to write a book on the history of the Abbott family. Now Beth is back in the show's opening credits.  Her face now appears during Y&R's opening theme.  Beth expressed her delight about this on Instagram when she wrote, "So excited to be back after over two decades in the opening credits."


Y&R REPORT READERS' POLL


Mishael Morgan

How do you feel about Mishael Morgan's return as a look-alike character?  Are you happy that's she's back, even though she's not playing Hilary?  Respond to the poll below and let me know.

 Are you pleased that Mishael Morgan is back?

Yes. It doesn't matter to me that she's not playing Hilary.
Yes. I am pleased that she's back, but I much prefer her as Hilary. At least she's back.
No. I am not a fan of Mishael. I haven't missed her on the show.
No. I like Mishael but I only want her back as Hilary,
I need more time to see what I think of Mishael's new character.
Other
Please Specify:


Readers, I would appreciate your feedback

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:  jmadden16@yahoo.ca


That's all for now.  Please remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, October 12, 2019.



- Joanne

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Whoa! Keeping up with Joey Lawrence


Joey Lawrence is a former teen heartthrob whose heyday was in the 1990s.  He was included in TV Guide's list of "TV's 25 Greatest Teen Idols" (January 23, 2005 issue).  He has been a presence on American television for over 35 years.

Joey was born Joseph Lawrence Mignogna Jr. on April 20, 1976 in Abington, Pennsylvania and raised in nearby Philadelphia.  He is the son of Donna, a personnel manager and former teacher, and Joseph Lawrence Mignogna, an insurance broker,  Joey has two younger brothers, Matthew Lawrence (born February 11, 1980) and Andrew Lawrence (born January 12, 1988), who are also actors.  Joey and his siblings are of Italian and English ethnicity.  When Joey began acting, he changed his surname to "Lawrence," his middle name at birth.  The rest of the family followed suit.

Joey Lawrence began his career as a child star in the 1980s.  He got his start in TV commercials for such products as Cracker Jack, Chips Ahoy!, Rice Krispies and the Smurf video game for the ColecoVision game system.  He also appeared in a Buckle Up Seat Belt public service announcement.

Joey appeared in a 1982 episode of Diff'rent Strokes entitled "Big Brother" (Season 5, Episode 4, Air Date: October 23, 1982).  At the age of five, he performed the song "Give My Regards to Broadway" on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.   At the age of six, he moved to Los Angeles and became a regular on the TV comedy Gimme a Break!.  He played adorable moppet Joey Donovan on the series from 1983 to 1987.  His younger brother, Matthew, portrayed Matthew Donovan in 18 episodes of the show, from 1986 to 1987.

Joey on Gimme a Break!

At 14, Joey was cast in the NBC sitcom Blossom.  For five seasons, from 1990 to 1995, he played Joey Russo on the series, co-starring with Mayim Bialik, who portrayed his TV sister. The show was a huge hit and Joey shot to fame as a teen idol, appearing on the cover of numerous fan magazines.  While on Blossom. Joey also popularized the catchphrase "Whoa!."  During an appearance on HuffPost Live, he revealed that he first used "whoa" as a joke. "That word was great," he declared.  "It's so weird that word has transcended 20 years."


Joey Lawrence (far right) and the cast of Blossom

In 1994, at the age of 18, Joey Lawrence graduated from Abington Friends School. a Quaker-run prep school founded in 1697.  It is located in suburban Jenkintown, Pennsylvania (just north of Philadelphia). That was no small accomplishment since the young actor had spent so much of his life on television sets.  In a People magazine article, he lauded his "wonderful" tutor, Miriam Richards, who "constantly communicated with the school and made me feel like Abington was a major part of my life."  By following AFS's curriculum, Joey was able to remain a student there from kindergarten to graduation.  He later attended the University of Southern California.

From 1995 to 1997, Joey starred in the sitcom Brotherly Love, along with his real life brothers, Matt and Andy Lawrence.  Joey played Joe Roman, who returns to Philadelphia a year after his father's accidental death, to claim his share of the estate - a car customizing business.  He finds himself reunited with his two half brothers, 15-year-old Matt (Matthew Lawrence) and seven-year-old Andy (Andrew Lawrence).

Brotherly Love only ran for two seasons, but it made an impression on millennial viewers who watched reruns of the show on the Disney Channel.  Below is a photo of the three Lawrence Brothers in their Brotherly Love days - Left to Right: Matthew, Andrew and Joey.




From 2005 to 2006, Joey Lawrence had a recurring role as Brett Mahoney in Half & Half, a comedy about two half-sisters who share the same father, but are very different.  They live in the same apartment building and regularly have disagreements.

In 2006, Joey teamed up with professional ballroom dancer Edyta Sliwinska and appeared on Dancing with the Stars.  The pair finished third in the competition.  Joey told People magazine at the time that after the gruelling dance rehearsals, "I wake up and the balls of my feet are on fire."

In 2007, Joey portrayed a character named Clay Dobson co-starred in three episodes of the crime series CSI:NY.  From 2010 to 2015, Joey and Melissa Joan Hart starred in the family sitcom Melissa & Joey.  Melissa played Melanie "Mel" Burke, a local politician and Joey portrayed Joseph "Joe" Longo, the man whom Mel hires to be her family's nanny.  After four seasons and more than 100 episodes, ABC cancelled the popular series.



Since 2017, Joey has had a recurring role on Hawaii Five-0 as escaped criminal Aaron Wright.

Joey Lawrence has been married twice.  He wed Michelle Vella in 2002.  They divorced in 2005.  On July 3, 2005 Joey married Chandie Yawn-Nelson, whom he first met during a 1993 vacation at Disney World in Florida when they were teenagers.  The duo set up an ice cream date back then, but since they were only teens, they went their separate ways.  Joey told People magazine that, "Being the cheesy romantic that I was, I said 'Hey look, there's the Disney wedding chapel!  Maybe we'll get married there one day.'  Long story short, we did!"  Their 2005 nuptials took place at Disney World.


Chandie

The couple have two children, a son named Charleston "Charli" Lawrence (born May 10, 2006) and a daughter, Liberty Grace Lawrence (born March 4, 2010). " Liberty" is a name that Joey has always liked and "Grace" is after his grandmother.

In recent years, Joey Lawrence has fallen on hard times.  He and his family have gone through some dire financial circumstances.  In March of 2018, The Blast reported that Joey and his wife Chandie had filed for bankruptcy.  The Chapter 7 bankruptcy case was reportedly settled on April 6, 2018.  According to court documents obtained by US Weekly, the couple sold "items of clothing, accessories and furniture prior to bankruptcy."


END NOTES

* In May of 1994, Joey Lawrence was designated as one of People magazine's "Most Beautiful People in the World."

* Joey is a musician.  In 1993, a song called "Nothin' My Love Can't Fix," from his eponymous debut album, reached number 19 in the Billboard Hot 100 and number 13 in the UK Singles Chart.  In 2017, Joey and his two brothers, Matt and Andy, formed a band called Still Three.  They released a single called "Lose Myself."





* Joey shaved off his thick, long locks to play a police officer in the 2006 horror film Rest Stop.  Soon after, he appeared on Dancing with the Star and its producers liked the Mr. Clean look.  "People either love it or" he told People magazine in 2006.  "But I like it, so who cares."

* Joey supports the March of Dimes charity.

* Joey made a cameo appearance in a 2006 advertisement for Ice Breakers gum, featuring sisters Hillary and Haylie Duff.

Joey Lawrence

SOURCES

Us Weekly, "Joey Lawrence and Wife Sold Clothes Before Filing for Bankruptcy," by Sarah Hearon, March 9, 2018; People magazine, "Whoa, it's Joey!," by Monica Rizzo, November 13, 2006; People magazine, "Class of '94, by Michael Lipton, June 27, 1994; The List, What ever happened to Joey from Blossom?; by Ariel Karline; TV Guide.com, Celebrities: Joey Lawrence; Wikipedia; International Movie Data Base (IMDb) 


- Joanne

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Y&R Report (Saturday, September 14, 2019): 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 can't be true!  Victor Newman hasn't really breathed his last, has he?  Did the invincible man meet his match in his own son?  Stop right there!  Don't worry, fans!  Victor is not really dead.  We have not seen the last of "The Moustache."  Eric Braeden's character is far too popular for the writers to just kill him off.  Y&R would not alienate its viewers by making such a move.  As far as I know, Eric Braeden has not announced that he is retiring or leaving the show.  I think Victor's "death" is part of a scheme cooked up between Dr. Nate, Nick and Victor himself.  Dr. Nate probably figured out evil Adam's game from the results of  Victor's blood test.  They know he's tampered with Victor's medication in order to have his father incapacitated by the extra side effects.

Victor has been distrustful of Adam. He wants to protect himself and the rest of the family from his wayward son's diabolical attempt to bring down the Newman clan.  Victor will likely show up in some hidden location watching Adam's every move  like a hawk.  He'll have the upper hand as long as Adam believes that his father has died.  The reason I think Nick knows what's going on is that he warned Adam about what he would do if autopsy linked him to Victor's death.

We all know that this Adam plot has a lot of holes in it.  Granted, this is a soap opera and it's not expected to be realistic, but have some respect for the intelligence of viewers.  There is no way Phyllis could have hacked into Victor Newman's medical records in two seconds flat.  Also, who was that woman who brought extra doses of Victor's medication to Adam?   A rogue nurse?  A rogue pharmacist?  A rogue doctor?  Supposedly, Adam payed her off handsomely, but how easy would it be to find a health professional who would take a risk like that?

Adam's reaction to Victor's supposed demise is puzzling.  He hasn't exactly been as cool as a cucumber and he's not shouting with glee, but neither has he displayed a great deal of remorse or grief at his father's "death."  He told Phyllis that he didn't intend to kill Victor, only to incapacitate him..  Isn't that bad enough?  He must have realized that his actions could have led  to the death of a vulnerable man with a blood disease.

Snowflake certainly had a fan in Zoe.  The upstart young blonde was determined to be a social media star, "an influencer," just like her idol, Summer Newman.  Perhaps Summer should have been flattered to be so admired.  However, she just seemed annoyed whenever Zoe fawned over her.  Her attitude toward Zoe was very condescending, while Zoe was not exactly thrilled that her idol constantly spurned  her.  Methinks that Snowflake Sr. underestimated the deviousness of Snowflake Jr.

Zoe is very cunning.   She goes after what she wants and tries to stop anyone in her way, even her idol.  That makes her dangerous!  She demonstrated that by spiking the drinks at the Grand Phoenix party.  Summer has never done something that wicked.  Sharon and Devon could have died.  Although Paul and Rae arrested Zoe, Clueless and Company did not get the goods on her.  It was Phyllis who provided the evidence by recording an incriminating conversation with her.  Zoe didn't seem too upset about going to jail.  She was more concerned about her status on social media.  That's probably the last we'll see of her, at least for now.

Since when did Chelsea and Lola become singers?  We don't know, but there they were backing up Tessa when she sang opening of the Grand Phoenix Lounge.  Chef Lola is amazingly talented, isn't she?  Her career certainly fast.  In almost no time flat, she's gone from running a food truck to being a gourmet chef.  She's made it look easy, too.

I must say, the Y&R writers have a fixation on rising from the dead.  In addition to all the characters they've resurrected, they have named a hotel after a phoenix, a mythical bird that rises from the ashes.

It's interesting that both Jack Abbott and Sharon left town town to find themselves and its no surprise that they ran into each other.  Jack is taking a page from Victor's book.  He's heading out on the road to figure out what's missing from his life.  One answer is obvious for Jack.  He needs to find the right woman.  He doesn't have a very good record with relationships.  Neither does Sharon, for that matter.  However, the two had a heart-filled and friendly conversation about their failed relationships.


VIEWER FORUM

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:  jmadden16@yahoo.ca

I received an email from regular contributor CC in Etobicoke.  Here's wat CC had to say.

Hi Joanne

Just saying
Curious minds are wondering . . .
After Adam stole Dr Nate's iPad to get info on Victor's illness and treatment, and then was confronted by Nate, the whole thing was just dropped.  No mention of him reporting it, replacing it etc.  The powers that be must think the audience members are lame.  On the other hand, perhaps it will be resurrected when Adan's actions to seek revenge on Victor come to the fore.

They should't underestimate our intelligence.  However, as you say, the missing tablet may come to the fore later on.  Still, I wouldn't necessarily count on that happening.  Remember when it was revealed that J.T. Hellstrom was taking medication for a heart condition and he was seeing a cardiologist?  I thought that might be further involved in the plot but it was never mentioned again.

Longtime Y&R viewer, Fifi in Collingwood, Ontario. had some comments about the show.  Fifi is not impressed with the storylne about Adam messing with Victor's medication.  She told me that she doesn't enjoy watching it and fast forwards past those scenes.  She fears that it will put similar ideas into the heads of mentally unstable people and impressionable youngsters.  Fifi feels the same way about Zoe spiking the drinks at the Grand Phoenix party.


CAST NEWS
Melissa Claire Egan in Hallmark Christmas TV movie


Fans of Melissa Claire Egan (Chelsea Lawson) will be interested to know that she will starring in a new Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Christmas television movie.  It is called Holiday for Heroes and is scheduled to air on November 8th.

Holiday for Heroes is the story of a woman who becomes pen pals with a soldier.  They write to each other until they eventually meet in person.


Kate Linder (Esther) has role in true crime film



Kate Linder (Esther Valentine) has a role in a feature film and she won't be wearing a maid's uniform.  Nor will she holding a duster.  This time, Kate will appear in a burglary drama called Echo Boomers.  The film is based on a true story about five unhappy post-graduates who deal with a unfair economy by robbing from the wealthy and giving to themselves.  It stars Lesley Ann Warren, Oliver Cooper, Michael Shannon and Patrick Schwarzenegger.

Echo Boomers will be released in 2020.


Y&R REPORT READER'S POLL

Y&R's head writer, Josh Griffith, has been very active in bringing back several familiar faces to the show.  We've seen the return of characters such as Chelsea and Kevin and Michelle Stafford is playing the role of Phyllis.again.  Of the returning actors, which one pleases you the most?  Respond to the poll below and let me know.

Several actors have returned to Y&R recently. Which one are you the most pleased about?

Melissa Claire Egan as Chelsea Lawson
Michelle Stafford as Phyllis Summers
Greg Rikaart as Kevin Fisher
Elizabeth Hendrickson as Chloe Mitchell
None of the above
I don't know.
Other
Please Specify:
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That's all for now.  Please remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, September 28, 2019.  As the autumn leaves begin to fall in Genoa City, Wisconsin, we will watch the latest happenings on Y&R.


- Joanne