Saturday, December 23, 2017

Y&R Report (December 23, 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, we know that Nikki always returns to Victor.  So, it's not surprising that she's doing it again.  This time, according to Soap Opera Digest, not only will Nikki go back to the Big Man, but the two will prepare to renew their wedding vows on a special episode airing on Christmas Day, Monday, December 25th.  It seems like a charade to convince people that the two have truly reconciled, especially on Nikki's part.  The intriguing question is whether Nikki's feelings for Victor will resurface and they will sincerely get back together.  Deep down, Nikki loves Victor, in spite of his ruthlessness and controlling ways,  She also enjoys being lady of the manor at the Newman ranch. (By the way, Meloday Thomas Scott, who plays Nikki, has lost weight and looks great).

The Abbotts certainly had a miserable Christmas Eve dinner.  Jack and Ashley could not let go of their differences over Jabot, even for Christmas,  Their behaviour was so petty that even peacemaker Traci left the table in disgust.  Jack is Scrooge of the Year for 2017.  He couldn't put business on the back burner.  He was so miserable and cruel that he informed Ashley that he planned to use the fact that she was not a biological Abbott against her in order to retain his position as CEO.  This year, Jack put business ahead of everything else, including Christmas and his family.  

Ashley hasn't fared much better than her brother,  She is the one who brought the CEO issue to the forefront.  As much as she keeps insisting that she did it for the good of the company, she has admitted to guilty feelings.  That's because she realizes that she craves the power and influence that goe along with a CEO position.  At least she finally came clean with Ravi.  She finally admitted to his face that he was just a distraction to her and that she "may have" used him.  She tried to soften the blow by telling him that he's handsome and intelligent.  Despite being used and unappreciated, Ravi intends to remain at Jabot.  Nevertheless, it was unethical for Ashley to have had an intimate relationship with a subordinate and its time for Ravi to move on to a better relationship.

Two of Genoa City's most prominent citizens are now wealthy men of leisure.  Nick Newman and Billy Abbott are both gainfully unemployed.  What does Billy do all day?  Well, for one thing, he kisses Phyllis in elevators.  He also sends Phyllis flirty messages while she is speaking to a client or attending a board meeting.  That suits Billy Boy fine.  I don't he wants to work hard.  At heart, he's an irresponsible playboy.  He doesn't really want to settle down, either with Phyllis or Victoria.

As for Nicholas Newman, he spends his days venting his wrath against his father.  He has a great deal of anger inside of him.  He'll probably be working again before Billy.  Perhaps he should run Chancellor Park.  That would make him happy.

Scott sure was jealous when J.T. became friendly with Abby.  Abby accused J.T.,  a married man, of hitting on her.  Abby's reacted quite strongly to J.T.  Maybe she was guilty because she's involved with Scott Grainger, who's two-timing Sharon.

J.T. later denied to his ex-wife Victoria that he had been hitting on Abby. Then he revealed to Victoria that he was separated from his current wife, Mackenzie.  I was not surprised about that since it opens up new storyline possibilities and allows J.T. to remain in Genoa City.  It also creates an opportunity for Mac to come back.  Kelly Kruger, one of the four different actresses who have played Mac over the years has told Soaps In Depth that she'd love to portray Mac again.

Princess Victoria was very sympathetic and kind to J.T.  She invited him to spend to spend Christmas with her family and told him that no one should have to spend Christmas alone.


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

My email address:

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

Well the new head writer (Mal Young) is definitely moving things along quickly, like they do on Coronation Street, where he used to be in charge.  During the transition from the old format to this new one, they are overlooking some plot elements and moving on without explanation.  Ashley's treatment of Ravi is one example.  I don't recall her ever musing about what kind of relationship they would have or even that he must surely have known that because of all the differences (age, status, culture, boss/subordinate) they could never be more than friends with benefits.

I never thought the separation between Nikki and Victor was handled realistically and now the re-establishment of their marriage is being handled even more ridiculously.

Hilary is certainly lining up her ducks and will eventually pull the trigger on one or a few of them . . . Cane, Jack, Devon, are a few in the running.  We shall see which one presents her with the best options for making it to the top.

The J.T., Billy, Victoria thing is struggling to get off the ground.  Amelia Heinle (Victoria) looks much older than Thad Luckinbill (J.T.).  It must be awkward working together (Amelia and Thad's real life marriage broke up).  If the storyline doesn't fly, I guess Reed and J.T. can just move on together.

Your comments are very thought-provoking, CC.  Let's start with head writer Mal Young.  First of all, a correction.  Mal Young was not in charge of Coronation Street.  He was executive producer of another popular British soap - The EastEnders.  Yes, he is moving Y&R along at a faster pace.  I appreciate that, but sometimes, as you pointed out, there are missing elements or explanations for certain actions.  You mentioned Ashley's treatment of Ravi and her sudden decision to admit to him that they had no future together.  Mal Young obviously didn't want them together.

Another example of a missing element:  Why didn't Kyle support Jack Abbott in the Jabot board's vote on whether to remove Jack as CEO of the company?  That came from nowhere.  There had never been any indication that Kyle had any grievance against his father.  Will we eventually get an explanation?

I love your comments about Hilary.  Yes, the flamboyant host of The Hilary Hour is definitely keeping her options open as to whether reunite with Devon or start something up with Jack or Cane.  Hilary is pragmatic.  She'll do what suits her purposes.  To continue with your "lining up ducks" analogy, it would really "ruffle Lily's feathers" if her arch-enemy, Hilary, became involved with Cane.

Now to your remarks about J.T., Billy and Victoria.  Amelia Heinle is 44 years old  Thad Luckinbill is 42 years old.  So, so she is three years older than Thad.  I have to say that Thad has aged well.  He doesn't look much older than he did when he left the show in 2010, seven years ago.

It certainly must be difficult and heart-wrenching for Thad and Amelia to work together again. Some of the lines they have to say to each other must hit close to home.  They met on The Young and the Restless and their characters married on the show.  On March 3, 2007, they married in real life.  They have two children together (a son named Thaddeus Rowe, born November 2, 2007, and a daughter named Georgia March, born December 17, 2009).  Thad also became a stepfather to Amelia's son from her first marriage to actor Michael Weatherly.  On March 1, 2017, two days before their 10th wedding anniversary, Thad filed for divorce, citing "irreconcilable differences).  I'm not certain whether the divorce is final.  It has only been about ten months since Thad filed, but I guess a quickie California divorce can go through that fast.

Actually, CC, I am pleased that Thad Luckinbill has returned to the show.  I think his storyline has great potential.  It has just begun and needs time to develop.  In my opinion, this storyline has great potential and will succeed if the writers handle it well.


Melissa Ordway (Abby) gives birth to baby girl

Melissa Ordway (Abby Newman) gave birth to a daughter, Sophie Jolie, on December 9, 2017.  Melissa and her hubby, Justin Gason (ex-Ben, Days of our Lives), were expecting their baby to arrive in mid-January.  However, the couple  received an early Christmas gift.  

Sophie Jolie Gaston weighed 5lb,, 5 oz.  She is the second child for Melissa and Justin.  They adopted a daughter, Olivia, who is almost 2 years old.  Olivia will now be a big sister.

It will be interesting to see how the early birth will impact Melissa's character on Y&R.  Abby is in the middle of a big storyline and she is involved in a love triangle along with Scott Grainger and Sharon.


Instead of previews.("Next on The Young and the Restless . . . "), the show now has summaries of past episodes ("Previously on "The Young and the Restless . . . ").  I don't feel strongly one way or the other.  I lean slightly toward the previews or "teasers" for the next episode.  However, the summaries of past episodes probably suit Mal Young's faster-paced writing better.  What do you think?  Respond to the poll below.and let me know.

Do you prefer previews from the next episode of Y&R or scenes from previous episodes?

I prefer previews from the next episode. It' more fun to get a glimpse of what will happen next.
I like the scenes from previous episodes. They help me catch up on things I may have missed.
I like them both equally.
I can do without either.
I don't care.
Please Specify:
Quiz Maker

That's all for now.  I wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, whatever you celebrate.  I',m looking forward to watching the Christmas Day episode of The Young and the Restless.  The next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, January 6, 2018.  We'll see what the New Year will bring to Genoa City.

- Joanne

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Y&R Report (December 9, 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.

Scott Gainger cannot have it both ways.  He wants a relationship with Sharon, but he can't keep away from Abby.  He claims it's just a physical attraction with Abby and that he wants to make things work with Sharon.  However, when Sharon finds out, I doubt she'll see it that way.  She's really going to be heartbroken after expressing so much faith in him.  In a conversation with Mariah, she declared that Scott would never let her down or hurt her.  Is she ever in for an unpleasant surprise!

Y&R head writer Mal Young is highlighting an Alzheimer's storyline because his own mother died of the disease.  It obviously affected him deeply and he feels that the story needs to be told through Dina Mergeron.  It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but I can certainly understand Mal's motivation.  Marla Adams is really doing a fabulous acting job as Dina and I expect her to win a Daytime Emmy, or at least receive a nomination.

It's about time Ravi showed some gumption.  It's about time he stopped allowing himself to be used by Ashley Abbott.  We'll see what happens now that he's tendered his resignation from Jabot.  However, I wish he hadn't chosen to work for Newman Enterprises, a company headed by the unscrupulous Victor Newman.

Speaking of "Moneybags," he has certainly been busy man lately.  He's been spending all his time blackmailing and making bribes.  First he blackmailed Chelsea, implying that he would reveal Christian's real biological father if she didn't attend his tree trimming ceremony. (Chelsea's a fool for keeping the secret from Nick and putting herself in a position to be blackmailed by Victor - that's the way it has to be on a soap, though, to create conflict).  After blackmailing Chelsea, "The Moustache" turned his attention to Tessa.  He offered Tessa a bribe of $100,000 to find Crystal and leave town.  Tessa had the decency to turn down his money, but you can be sure that Victor won't give up.  He wants Tessa out of his grandson Noah's life and he isn't going to stop trying to make it happen.  He'll probably find out about Tessa and Mariah and tell Noah about it.

To top it all off, Newman Enerprises is the owner of the shell company that is planning to turn Chancellor Park into a development.  That's not surprising.  It's also not surprising that Nick vehemently opposes the development and is on a crusade to stop it.  This will bring him into further conflict with Victor.   

Princess Victoria has been behaving more like her daddy every day.  She supports Newman's involvement in the Chancellor Park development and defended it to Nick.  All that matters to her is business.  It seems that the power went to head when she became Chief Operating Officer (C.O.O.) of Newman enterprises.

Ashley is another character who has been given more power.  She has been trying to solidify her control at Jabot ever since she became temporary CEO of Jabot.  She would like her position to be permanent, so there is going to be quite a power struggle between her and Jack.  Ashley is already demanding that Billy, Abby and Traci take sides.  Traci, as usual is trying to calm things down .  She should win the Nobel Peace Prize.

Jack made an extremely hurtful remark to Ashley.  He said that John Abbott was his father, but not her's.  That was an incredibly cruel remark for Jack to make.  Where Ashley was concerned, it stung.  Her paternity is a very sensitive subject for her.  She adored John Abbott.


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

My email address:

Regular contributor Fifi in Collingwood had a few comments.  She has noticed a difference in the pacing of Y&R since Mal Young became head writer.  The show is definitely moving faster and there are more "before and after scenes" and less detail about what happened in-between.  

Fifi also commented on how quickly Dina's Alzheimer's has progressed.  At first, it was happening much more slowly.


Left to right: Sean Carrigan (ex-Stitch), Kate Linder, (Esther), Daniel Hall (Scott), Abhi Sinah (Ravi)

Here are some photos of Yours Truly with . . .

Sean Carrigan (Stitch)

Kate Linder (Esther)

Christian LeBlanc (Michael)

Abhi Sinah (Ravi)

Daniel Hall (Scott0

As is my report on the Y&R Tea for March of Dimes, which took place on December 3, 2017 in Toronto.

Kate Linder, as usual, was the driving support for the charity tea.  Kate likes to tell fans that if they want changes on the show or if they have suggestions to let CBS know.  She says that if enough people ask for something, the network will listen.  For example, many viewers wanted Esther's daughter to show up.  That's why Chloe appeared in Genoa City.

Sean Carrigan (ex-Ben "Stitch" Rayburn) made a surprise appearance.  He has been appearing as Coach Rafferty on American Vandal, a s true-crime satire on Netflix. I believe Sean has been dong some stand-up comedy in Toronto and I must say he looked fit and well.

Christian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin) showed up wearing Nick Newman's ugly Christmas sweater.  It was auctioned off to raise funds for March of Dimes.

Daniel Hall (Scot) auctioned off the shirt and tie he was wearing.  Daniel is a bachelor and he remarked that if he weren't an actor, he'd probably be a farmer.  He said he enjoys gardening.  By the way, Daniel thinks Scot really loves Sharon and that it's a physical attraction between him and Abby.

Abhi Sinah (Ravi) auctioned off a floral shirt he once wore on the show.  Some of my fellow Y&R fans have noticed a spark between Ravi and Phyllis and we mentioned it to him.

I really think that another female actor from Y&R was needed at this year's tea.  However, I guess it couldn't be arranged.  I hope that won't happen next year.


Thad Luckinbill returns as J.T. Hellstrom this coming week. I am looking forward to his reappearance in Genoa City.  What is the status of J.T.'s marriage to Mackenzie.?  It will be interesting to see if he will rekindle his romance with Princess Victoria and if he will have a good relationship with their son, Reed.  An online spoiler says that the princess questions why her former husband has returned to town.

What do you think about the return of J.T., fans?  Are you pleased about it?  Respond to this poll and let me know how you feel.

Are you pleased that J.T. Hellstrom (Thad Luckinbill) is returning to Genoa City?

Yes, I'm looking forward to his return. It should create some interesting storyines.
No, I can do without him on the show. I don't like his acting.
I'm not sure yet. It depends on the storyline.
Don't know
Please Specify:

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

- Joanne

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Five Reasons TV Ads Still Work

TV Banter presents a guest column today on TV advertising  Although I am not a fan of television commercials (I find the sheer number of them annoying and distracting), there is another perspective.  Here is a look at TV ads from the point of view of marketers and advertisers.  

- Joanne


By Abby Drexler

Having faced stiff competition from Netflix and various digital providers, the television industry has experienced seismic transition over the last few years. One thing that has not changed, despite the transitions, is that television still runs the world of advertisement. Television and the web work even better when combined. For this reason, advertisers are beginning to use integrated marketing strategies to connect with clients on each type of screen, from a 50-inch flat screen TV to the smartphone. Integrating television and print advertising plays a vital role in reinforcing the advertiser’s ad and maximizing its impact.

TV commercials offer fragmented attention span

A recent report by eMarketer indicates that almost 70 per cent of Americans use smartphones while watching TV. Television serves as a powerful tool that helps to catch the attention of consumers when introducing a new brand or product in the market. This is because a large segment  of the audience uses either a second or third screen, such as a mobile device or a nearby laptop when watching. They might as well search for the TV ad they've seen for a product that is relevant to them.

In addition, TV can bring a direct positive effect on the user engagement either via social or search campaigns. The collaboration of television ads and digital campaigns plays a vital role in boosting online conversion and assisting advertisers in tracking their TV commercial performance.

TV commercials address specific audiences effectively

Cable television has generated a wide range of channels that target a number of specific audiences. An extended TV ad should not run while major programs are running. These ads, instead, can be placed and timed to address a smaller set of the targeted audience. Targeting of video ads is the primary reason many advertisers choose the web as an alternative platform. The local digital publication can air ads that are targeted to local clients, as the niche sites run lucrative ad campaigns that benefit from intense viewer interaction on these websites. Once you combine a broad reach of television with the targeted scope of sites, you will have an effective marketing strategy.

Television prompts people to act

A survey done by Deloitte in 2016 revealed that 10 per cent of respondents went to look for the items online after seeing them on a television sponsorship advertisement. For younger TV enthusiasts, the trend was more pronounced as 24 per cent of the audience of age between 16 and 24 went to look for the items they had seen on television. On top of that, television programs and ads were among the top three reasons why people considered making impulse purchases.

TV ads still have a significant impact on the public since they attract a considerable number of viewers who watch for at least four hours a day. Although the online world has been mainstream for more than ten years, the majority of people spend some time on social media platforms as well. Marketers have found out that cross-pollinating the online world and TV might help them generate more effective ad campaign. Therefore, whether you intend to advertise your site or you need to increase ad income on your website, make sure you use television advertising to conduct an effective campaign.

TV ads demonstrate how the product is used

Even though text and immobile graphics might be combined to create a powerful and memorable ad, nothing surpasses television when it comes to demonstrating an item’s usage. Additionally, viewer’s engagement is better when they see someone describing how a product is used. The proliferation of “how to” ads demonstrated on TV is proof that the majority of people want to watch how things are done. Demonstration helps the advertisers to take advantage of the curiosity of viewers when ads show items being used.

Profit making and responsive

This is one of the most vital aspects of marketing. Marketers want to make sure that once they invest in a TV campaign, they are going to receive an income. Various studies have been carried out in the United Kingdom about return on investment to serve as evidence that TV advertising is more effective than other forms of advertising. The majority of marketers will, as a result, never consider reducing their TV ads since they understand the importance of TV as a marketing channel.

A superior experience is created for clients when multiple forms of advertising are well integrated with each other to help sway a purchase. However, the challenge that advertisers face while using TV ads is trying to track and measure various engagement activities with potential clients. Tracking the key performance indicators after a consumer watches a TV commercial is now easier since the advertiser has a variety of tools to help manage macro and micro conversions.

Abby Drexler is a contributing writer and media specialist for 007 Media Group. She often produces content for a variety of media and advertising blogs