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.
Wow! There have been big changes on the since Josh Griffith replaced Mal Young as head writer. Summer has transformed herself into the patient and devoted wife of Kyle. Billy Boy Abbott is about to propose to Princess Victoria and Jack is back in the driver's seat at Jabot. Lily is going to be released from prison and she wants to start a new life without husband Cane. There is a new Dr. Nate Hastings. Two members of the Rosales family are leaving - Arturo and Mia. I won't miss Arturo much, but I will miss Mia's antics. Although she's a pain, she can also be funny and feisty, Deep down, she's vulnerable and insecure. By the way, in a previous edition of Y&R Report, I predicted that Mia would actually be having a baby and that Arturo would be the papa. I wonder if those two will go off into the sunset together.
Although it seems as if The Young and the Restless is raiding the cast of General Hospital, Y&R is taking back two actors who left the show for GH - Michelle Stafford (Phyllis) and Greg Rikkart (Kevin) - see "Casting News" below. There is also a rumour that Billy Miller (ex-Billy Abbott) will also return to Y&R. It's just speculation, although and I doubt it will happen. Most viewers have gotten used to Jason Thompson in the role of Billy by now.
The show has gotten raunchier since Griffith took over the reins., especially where Nick Newman is concerned. Nick has become downright sleazy. He has all that money and the treasured "Newman" name. Yet, he is very unhappy and empty. His life is shallow. As for his sister, Princess Victoria, she dipped into the sleaze in Las Vegas with rocker Brandon Rose of the up-and-coming band Bloody Thorns (Where did they ever get those names?).
What's going on with Victor Newman? Why was he in Las Vegas and why did he pay for the services of a psychiatrist? He urged Nikki to be patient and told her that everything would be revealed in due time. Victor has a history of pulling disappearing acts. This one must be related to Adam. Victor has probably tracked Adam down. That makes sense since Y&R has cast Mark Grossman as the new Adam. Could it be that it's the younger Newman who requires psychiatric help? Has Adam had more facial surgery? He couldn't have escaped the explosion unscathed.
Thanks to Traci, we finally know what's wrong with Candy Cane Ashby. The Australian keeps messing up because he has low self-esteem. He doesn't feel he's worthy of Lily, partly because he's the son of a criminal - Colin Atkinson.
I'm looking forward to the opening of Devon and Abby's new restaurant. It should be fun. Speaking of Devon, his storyline is becoming more interesting. I can see him in a love triangle with Jett's niece, Elena, and Dr. Nate.
Just as Gina Tognoni is leaving the role of Phyllis, her character has reached a low point. Her relationships with Billy and Nick fell apart. She's was ousted as CEO of Jabot by the Abbots. Her attempt to blackmail Jack into letting Lauren take back Fenmore's failed miserably.
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Shocker! Gina Tognoni is out and Michelle Stafford is back as Phyllis
In a surprising casting change, Michelle Stafford will be returning to the role of Phyllis Summers on The Young and the Restless. According to Daytime Confidential, Michelle could not reach a contractual agree with General Hospital, where she played the role of Nina Clay. Y&R reportedly jumped at the chance to get her, which left the current "Phyllis." Gina Tognoni out in the cold.
Gina Tognoni took over the role of Phyllis from Michelle in 2014. She received an Outstanding Lead Actress Daytime Emmy in 2017. On her Instagram post, Gina graciously thanked Y&R viewers for their love and support. She wrote that she is "beyond grateful for the creative experience that The Young and the Restless has given" her. Gina will surely get other acting roles, but she will be missed by Y&R fans.
Greg Rikaart is returning as Kevin Fisher
Y&R has confirmed that Greg Rikaart is returning to the role of troubled Kevin Fisher. Greg originated the role of Kevin back in 2003. He received the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in 2005. In 2017, however, he was taken off contract. After his departure from Y&R, Greg played Leo Stark on General Hospital for about a year.
So, how will Kevin's return to Genoa City affect Y&R's storyline? Well, the details have not been revealed yet, but I expect that his reappearance will be linked to Adam's imminent return. When we last saw Kevin, he had moved to Portland, Oregon with the presumed-dead Chloe Mitchel (Elizabeth Hendrickson) and their daughter, Bella. There is no indication that Elizabeth will also be returning as Chloe. She is currently portraying Margaux Dawson on General Hospital; but with the way Y&R has been snatching actors away from GH, one never knows.
Y&R REPORT READERS' POLL
Fans, how do feel about the return of Michelle Stafford as Phyllis? I feel ambivalent. I am delighted that Michelle is returning, but I'm sad that her return has necessitated the departure of Gina Tognoni. Gina has been terrific in the role. Let me know what you think by responding to the poll below.
That's all for now. Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on April 27, 2019. I'm looking forward to the week of tribute to Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters), beginning on Thursday, April 25 on CBS and Wednesday, April 24 on Global TV in Canada. Thankfully, a new actor will not be taking over the role of Neil. Neil's death will be revealed and a funeral will be held for him on April 25 on CBS and April 24 on Global TV. Kristoff's longtime real life friend, Stan Shaw, will play the pastor presides over Neil's funeral. In 1979, the two starred together in the TV miniseries Roots. The non-scripted tribute episode to Kristoff will take place on Monday, April 29th with Shemar Moore (Malcolm Winters), Victoria Rowell (Drucilla Winters, Mishael Morgan (Hilary Curtis Hamilton, Christel Khalil (Lily Winters Ashby) and Eileen Davidson (Ashley Abbott).
To all who celebrate, I wish you a Happy Easter and a Happy Passover.