Saturday, January 28, 2023

Y&R Report (Saturday, January 28, 2023): 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.

Hi fans,
The writers have turned Jack Abbott into a fool with no backbone.  Is he so naive as to think that all the drama surrounding Diane Jenkins is over for good?  Didn't he notice how suspicious Nikki was about her stolen diamond necklace?   Doesn't he realize that Diane is a never-ending source of trouble and that she always will be?  Even Diane herself was less confident than Jack that they were out of the woods.
Have we really seen the last of Jeremy Stark?  It seems as if they ended his storyline abruptly and haphazardly.  Was the storyline so unpopular with audiences that they wanted to end it quickly?  Will Jeremy return after Jack and Diane are exposed as the real thieves?
I really miss Doug Davidson as Paul Williams, but I don't blame Doug for being finished with the show, especially after he was treated so shabbily.  Doug was hurt recently when someone on Twitter wondered if Paul Williams should be killed off, since he is not seen anymore.  
Now that Rey Rosales has died in a tragic car crash, it seems that Chance is the only police detective in Genoa City?  Chance certainly didn't do a very good job in his investigation into the death of Ashland Locke, and he has also bungled the investigation into Nikki's stolen necklace.  No wonder he's considering quitting the police force altogether.

I truly enjoyed the episode celebrating Tracey Bregman's 40 years as Lauren Fenmore on Y&R.  It was wonderful to see all the old flashbacks as she reflected on her life with family and friends.  The only thing I missed was a flashback of Lauren and Michael's wedding.
I also watched Tracey's appearance on The Talk.  Christian LeBlanc, who plays her TV husband, Michael Baldwin, made a surprise appearance.  He presented Tracey with a replacement for her Daytime Emmy, which was destroyed in a house fire.

Phyllis has been running into Tucker McCall quite a lot lately.  She doesn't like him, but that could change.  I still wonder if something is eventually going to start up between those two now that Ashley has returned to Paris for the time being?  Does Tucker's heart really belong to Ashley.?  I can't figure that guy out.  He's very complex and there are so many sides to him.  He's a scoundrel, a real snake-in-the-grass.  Yet, he can cry like a baby over Ashley and enjoy playing with his grandson, Dominic.  Nevertheless, he's completely untrustworthy.

Kyle is behaving as foolishly as his father, Jack.  He is putting his mother, Diane, and his dislike of Adam Newman ahead of his regard for Summer.  He just has to please Victor and get the dirt on Adam.  It seems that everyone just bows down to :"The Moustache.'  They are all so eager to do his bidding, especially Michael Baldwin, his lackey lawyer.  Just once, I'd like someone to turn Victor down or tell Victor that they can't meet with him right away.  The man is a total control freak.  He is determined to bring Adam back into the family business whether anyone else likes it or not.  Nikki advised him against reinstating Adam.  She pointed out that everything in the Newman world was relatively peaceful and that a shakeup would only cause problems.  Victor told her that he always considers her opinion.  As we know, however, in the end, Victor only listens to those who agree with him.  He only does what he wants.

In my previous Y&R Report, I opined that the show needs a shakeup.  Well, there has been one of sorts.  Anthony Morina has decided to resign as executive producer of The Young and the Restless, just as he is about to face trial by jury in March of this year.  Morina is dealing with a sexual harassment lawsuit brought forth by Briana Thomas, a background actress, who played a barista at Crimson Lights in 2018 and 2019.  The actress alleges that she was fired because she rejected Morina's advances.
So, what does the departure of Anthony Morina mean for the show.  Well, it means more control for head writer Josh Griffith.  Morina will not be replaces and Griffith, who is has been co-executive producer, will become the sole executive producer.  Time will tell if this will be beneficial to the show.


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:
l recently spoke to longtime Y&R viewer Helen in Scarborough, Ontario.  Helen had some interesting observations.  Here they are:

* Have you noticed that Y&R has reduced the number of sets on the show?  For example, Sharon's home has not been shown since Rey died.  I really like that place, but Sharon spends all her time in the coffeehouse.  She practically lives there these days.  Victoria's house hasn't been shown lately either.  Nor has Nick's.  Are these cost-cutting measures?  Most likely.

* When Chance came to search Jeremy Stark's suite, he was alone.  He had no backup.  That is not standard police procedure, especially when confronting a potentially dangerous criminal such as Stark.

Heather and Lucy will be arriving in Genoa City

Vail Bloom (Heather)

Lily Brooks O[Briant (Lucy)

Daniel Romalotti's life is about to get more complicated.  He is going to be reunited with his family next month.  Vail Bloom will reprise her role as Heather, which she played from 2007 to 20010.  16-year-odd newcomer Lily Brooks O'Briant has been cast in the role of Heather and Daniel's daughter, Lucy Romalotti.  Although this is Lily's first daytime role, she was a regular on the Netflix comedy The Big Show Show.  She also played the lead role of Ella in the 2022 Apple+ series Life By Ella.
Leave it to meddling Phyllis to ask her to come to Genoa City without Dannie's knowledge.  Daniel will obviously be torn between Heather and his old flame, Lily.  Everything will depend on how well-received Heather and Lucy are by fans.  If they turn out to be popular, they will stay a while. Will Heather be jealous of Lily?  Will Lucy turn out to be a teenage troublemaker? Will she seek attention.  Will she resent Lily. Stay tuned!


Jeremy Stark, played by James Hyde, has been arrested.  His stint on Y&R may have come to an end.  We don't know yet if he'll be back.  It may never be revealed that he was set up by Jack and Diane.  Stark may never return.  What do you think, fans?  Are you satisfied with how his storyline was resolved?  Do you think Jack and Diane should get away with setting him up?  Respond to the poll  below and let me know.

Do you think Jeremy Stark is gone for good? free polls

That's all for now.  Don't forget that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, February 11, 2023.

Take care,
- Joanne

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Are there too many streaming services?

Many Baby Boomers have fond memories of watching The Ed Sullivan Show with the whole family on Sunday nights.  Those days, of course, are long gone, never to return.  We now have an almost infinite choice of programming, which we can view at our convenience.  There is more available than we'll ever have time to watch.  Is there a glut?  Is this too much of a good thing?

When streaming first started, Netflix led the way.  It was, and still is, the giant among streaming services.  However, in recent years, its supremacy has been challenged by several other streaming services.  They've been popping up like weeds.  Netflix's strongest challenger is Amazon Prime.  There is also Disney+ and NBC's Peacock network.  Most people only subscribe to one or two of those services.  However, there may be a program you really want to watch, but it is not available to you.  You may find that some of your friends are discussing a program that is on Prime, but you don't subscribe to Prime, so you can't join in the conversation.

There are so many TV shows and so many movies available through streaming services that they've become like a  smorgasbord, a buffet with so many choices that we don't know where to start.  We want to taste everything, but we can't or we will have a severe case of indigestion.

Traditional network programming is almost unwatchable now because of the ridiculous number of commercials and interruptions.  I have to PVR most of the shows I watch so that I can fast forward past the commercials.  It's the only way to escape the deluge of advertising.

There was a time when watching television brought families and friends together in their living rooms.  Now many people are watching shows or movies in their own little world.  In a sense, they are isolated.  Where will it all end?  We never used the expression "binge watching" until streaming came along.

- Joanne

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Y&R Report (January 14, 2023) 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.

Hi fans,
It's 2023 and I am back after a Christmas and New Year break.  I hope your holidays were better than than those of some of the citizens of Genoa City.  For many in GC, Christmas and New Year's were not very joyous this year.  To be honest, I was disappointed in holiday episodes.  I missed the usual Abbott and Newman family celebrations.  
New Year's was not much better.  Billy and Lily were miserable.  Sally felt ill and Nick ended up spending New Year's Eve at the coffee shop.  There just didn't seem to be a festive atmosphere.

I did enjoy seeing Michael Damian as Danny Romalotti again.  I also enjoyed his rendition of "Auld Lang Syne" along with Traci, Lauren and Michael Baldwin.  Unfortunately, there is not much more that I have liked about the show recently.  Maybe it's the couples that they are bringing together.  I just can't get excited about Sally and Nick or Jack and Diane or Sharon and Chance or Abby and Devon.
It seems to me that Y&R needs a shake-up.  It needs a new set of writers and some fresh storylines.  For example, it's ridiculous to have Jack Abbott assisting Diane in a crime.  He approved of her plan to rob Nikki's jewels so that she can convince Jeremy Stark that she is on his side.  Why would Jack be so spineless as to commit a crime for Diane's sake, especially given her dubious past?  Is he so smitten with her that he is blind to her duplicity?  Doesn't he realize that Diane is just going to spiral from one crisis to another?  He's intelligent enough to know that Jeremy Stark can't be trusted.  Maybe nothing will satisfy the criminal.  After the theft, he will demand more and more from Diane to prove her loyalty.  Don't expect him to leave town any time some.
I'm having second thoughts about the Diane storyline.  When Diane returned to Genoa City, I thought it was a good idea.  It really added spark to Jack's storyline.  Unfortunately, the writers have gone off on a tangent, especially with Stark, portrayed by James Hyde.  He seems to be playing games with Diane.  Hyde is a good actor, but it just seems as if he's been thrown into the storyline.  In fact, it's unclear what Jeremy really wants,  He's rejected a great deal of money.  Why wouldn't he have just taken the money and run. Is it Diane herself that he wants?  In a preview, Stark was shown making a play for Diane.

Sally Spectra is not exactly thrilled about her impending motherhood.  She doesn't really want to deal with it.  However, as Chloe pointed out, Sally will have to face the situation.  She can't keep it on the backburner indefinitely.  So, what will she do?  Maybe she'll go away and have the baby secretly without telling Adam or Nick about it.  Then, she may let Tessa and Mariah adopt the baby.  The truth will come out eventually, especially since Sally will be giving birth to a Newman child.  It will be interesting to see how Victor Newman reacts when he finds out.  Victor doesn't like Sally, and he won't be very pleased when he learns that she has given birth to a Newman baby.  He thinks Newman' babieso are born with royal jelly.  They are tougher than other babies.

It's about time Abby vacated the Chancellor mansion.  She is an Abbott and a Newman, not a Chancellor.  By rights, Philip Chancellor 1V, also known as Chance, should be living there.  Speaking of Chance, it is obvious that he is becoming involved with Sharon.  Abby wasn't too please when she noticed how friendly her estranged husband is becoming with Sharon.  As I've mentioned before, I am not enthusiastic about the prospect of a Sharon-Chance coupling. 

Given Audra Charles' track record, I have to question Nate's judgement in hiring her to assist him at Newman Media.  What was he thinking?  According to an online spoiler, Nate's girlfriend, Elena, will be distrustful of Audra'a intentions. and who can blame her?  However, the real person Elena should be concerned about may be Victoria Newman.  


Michael Mealor (Kyle Abbott) is engaged

Michael Mealor (Kyle Abbott is engaged.  The Y&R actor's fiancĂ©e, Sasha, shared the good news on Instagram, along with photos and comments. Congratulations to the happy couple.

Eric Braeden has knee-replacement surgery

Eric Braeden (Victor Newman) is recovering from knee surgery.  On December 15th, Eric revealed on Twitter that he had undergone a medical procedure to replace his knee.  He said he was on the mend. Eric, who is a former soccer pro, said that three holes were found in his knee.

Y&R shuts down production every year at the end of December for a 2 1/2 week holiday break, so Eric didn't have to be concerned how his physiotherapy would affect his Y&R schedule.  He hopes to be ready to return by then.   Knowing Eric, I'm sure he will be ready.  According to a report in Soaps in Depth, a follower advised Eric to keep moving.  Eric replied, "I never stop moving!"  Doesn't he sound just like his Victor Newman character?

Special Episode Honouring Tracey Bregman (Lauren)

On Wednesday, January 25 (CBS), and Tuesday January 24th (Global TV), Y&R will air a special stand-alone episode marking Tracey Bregman's 40 years of playing Lauren Fenmore.  Bregman fans won't want to mis that!  Congratulations, Tracey!


Sharon Case

Conner Floyd (Chance)

Sharon, as we know, listens in to most of the conversations at her coffeehouse, Crimson Lights.  I think that's why she enjoys running the place so much.  Lately, she has become close with Chance (Conner Floyd), who seems to be spending a great deal of time in her establishment.  It looks as if she is going to become involved with him.  What do you think of that, fans?  What do you think of them as a couple.  Respond to the poll below and let me know.

What do you think of Sharon and Chance as a couple? free polls


I really need 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.  I really need your input.  I really need to hear your opinion.  I want to know if you agree or disagree with me. 

My email address:

That's all for now.  Please remember that the next edition of Y&R Report will appear in this space on Saturday, January 28, 2023.

Take care,


Saturday, January 7, 2023

Keeping up with Julie Kavner

If you've watched Rhoda, then you'll remember Valerie Harper's raspy-voiced TV sister, played by Julie Kavner.  That distinctive voice later catapulted Julie to more fame as Marge Simpson on the phenomenally successful animated series The Simpsons.

Julie Deborah Kavner was born in Los Angeles, California on September 7, 1950, the second daughter of David Kavner, a furniture manufacturer, and his wife, Rose, a family counsellor.  She attended Beverly Hills High School and then went on to San Diego State University, where she majored in drama, where she was cast in many productions, becoming known for her talent for improvisation and her ability to play bother comedic and dramatic roles.  She graduated from San Diego State in 1971, after which she held a day job as a typist at the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture.

Julie portrayed Rhoda's younger sister, Brenda Morgenstern, on the hit sitcom Rhoda.  Rhoda, a spin-off of The Mary Tyler Moor Show, followed Mary's best friend, Rhoda Morgenstern (Valerie Harper) after she left Minneapolis and retuned to her roots in New York.  It ran for five seasons on CBS, from September 9, 1974 to December 9, 1978.  It was Julie's first professional acting role.  She had originally auditioned for a guest role on Mary's show.  Although she made a good impression, she was not considered right for the part.  However, producer Davis Davis, her future romantic partner, recommended the 24-year-old for the role of Rhoda's sister on the MTM spin-off.

Julie's character, Brenda, was employed as a bank teller.  She lived ion her own in a studio apartment in Manhattan.  Brenda was a very insecure person and lacked self-esteem, much of it coming from a weight problem.  As a result, she had constant dating problems.  The part was created with Julie in mind.  

In 1979, Julie won a Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her portrayal of Brenda.Morgenstern.

Julie Kavner in 1974

During the run of Rhoda, Julie guest-starred in episodes of such television series as Lou Grant (1977) and Petrocelli (1976).  After Rhoda, she appeared in an episode of Taxi (1980).  She also appeared in some TV movies.  She played Janet Michaels in No Other Love (1979), Megan Brady in Revenge of the Stepford Wives (1980) and Laura Prescott in A Fine Romance (1983. 

Julie Kavner provides the husky, grating voice of Marge Simpson on The Simpsons.  Since Julie is not seen on the screen of the popular long-lasting animated series, some viewers may not be aware that it Julie's voice behind the blue-haired matriarch of the Simpson family.  She also voices other characters on the show, such as Marge's mother, Jacqueline Bouvier and Jaqueline's chain-spoking sisters, Patty and Selma Bouvier.

In 1987, Kavner was hired by director, producer and screenwriter James L. Brooks to join the stellar ensemble cast of The Tracey Ullman Show, a groundbreaking sketch program on Fox TV.  The show featured 30 and 60-sencod segments highlighting the dysfunctional Simpson family.  

Marge Simpson made her TV debut on the Ullman show short "Good Night" on April 19, 1987. Julie also voiced Marge Simpson in theatrical cartoons. After being featured on The Tracey Ullman Show for three seasons, the cartoon Simpson family were given their own series, which debuted on Fox TV on December 17, 1989. It is the longest-running animated television series in history.

Marge Simpson

Julie Kavner is an intensely private person.  She will not allow cameras to film her doing the voices for The Simpsons characters, and she rarely gives interviews.  Part of her contract specifies that she will never be required to promote The Simpsons on video.  In a 1989 Los Angeles Times article, Julie was quoted as saying, "I'm very, very private.  I don't like talking about myself to strangers.  :Particularly strangers with tapes going."  

When the cast of The Simpsons appeared in a 2003 episode of Inside the Actors Studio, Julie's castmates began speaking in character.  Julie, however, did not join them.  Halfway throw the show, she took a bathroom break and never returned.  "If I want to remain anonymous," she declared, "I have to keep my mouth shut."

Julie's long-time partner was TV producer David Davis.  Julie and David met on the set of Rhoda.  They were together for over forty years, from 1975 until his death on November 4, 2022.  He was 86 years old at the time of his passing.

David Davis' obituary in Vanity Fair called him "an architect of modern American television."  Brooklyn-born Davis co-created The Bob Newhart Show and Taxi.  He wrote and produced The Mary Tyler Moore Show and Rhoda.

David   Davis


* Julie Kavner is Jewish.  Although she was born and raised in Southern California, both her parents were from New York, and she sounds more like a New Yorker than a Californian.  That's why, according to NNDB (The Notable Names Database), she has a "naturally neurotic Brooklynese voce."  It's also why she fit in so well in New York roles.

In 1992, Julie took up residence in New York.  She may have returned  to California because her partner, David Davis, died in Los Angeles.

* Julie has frequently appeared in Woody Allen movies.  After watching her on Rhoda, Woody offered her a role in Hannah and Her Sisters (1986).  She then appeared in Radio Days (1987), New York Stories (1989), Alice (1990),  Shadows and Fog (1991) and Deconstructing Harry (1997).  She also co-starred in Don't Drink the Water, a 1994, made-for-television comedy film directed by Allen, and Deconstructing Harry, a 1997 black comedy, written, directed by, and co-starring Woody Allen.  Julie's appearance in Hannah and Her Sisters, boosted her career, which was on a downturn at the time.

Julie and Woody Allen

* When voicing Marge Simpson, Julie raises her voice an octave or two, and roughens it up a bit.  To play Marge's sisters, she lowers her voice an octave, and roughens it up quite a lot.  In addition to The Simpsons, Julie has performed voice-over work in films such as Dr. Dolittle (1998) and The Lion King 1 1/2 (2004).

* In 1992, Julie won a second Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Voice-Over Performance for voicing Marge in the season three episode of The Simpsons entitled "I Married Marge."

* Julie portrayed the mother of Adam Sandler's character in the 2006 comedy Click.

SOURCES Los Angeles Times, "Julie Kavner: a Private Person in Many Roles,"by Diane Haithman, June 15, 1989; Vanity Fair, "David Davis, Writer-Producer of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Taxi, and Oher Clasiics," Dies at Age 86," by Jordan Hoffman, November 6, 2022;  NNDB (The Notable Names Database): Julie Kavner; Wikipedia; Internet Movie Database (IMDb)

- Joanne