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THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS: Neil’s Loved Ones Mourn

Photo: CBS

What viewers saw on Thursday’s and Friday’s episodes of The Young and the Restless was in essence beloved castmates and friends going through cathartic moments themselves as the lines blurred between reality and fiction, and how could it not.   Y&R lost Kristoff St. John back in February and promised the audience that it would honor the character of Neil, and his portrayer in fitting tributes for all he has meant to the daytime drama series.

Neil’s memorial service aired on Thursday.  In it, St John’s longtime friend, Stan Shaw, presided over the service as the reverend.  One by one the key characters in Neil Winters life gave their eulogies and paid tribute to this man.

As Lily (Christel Khalil) tries to get up to speak, she breaks down as she cannot bring herself to address those in attendance.  So, Malcolm (Shemar Moore) steps up and reflects on how different his brother was then him, and brings up their rocky relationship.  Malcolm wishes he could tell his brother how much he helped him become the man he is today. As he cries, he tells Neil he misses him, loves him, and prays to God that he knew.

Photo CBS

Then, it was Victor Newman’s (Eric Braeden) turn.  He struggles to contain his emotions and hold back the tears, but it’s no use.  Victor loved Neil and respected him.  He saw him as a son, and said that Neil was one of the few men he trusted.  Victor said that Neil was a good man, a good friend, and member of the family.  With tears streaming down his face, Victor says. “I shall miss you my friend.”   Next, it’s Jack’s (Peter Bergman) turn to speak and he talks about the lives Neil saved which included his own.

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When Devon (Bryton James) takes to the podium he poignantly says that Neil was his father, the one he never had, and was also his best friend.  Devon reminisced how when he came to Genoa City he had a chip on his shoulder, but Neil never gave up on him and it meant everything in the world to him.  In heartbreak, Devon says he doesn’t carry Neil’s DNA, but he can hear Neil’s voice calling him “My man.”  When he finishes, he turns to Neil’s picture and casket and signs “I love you” to him.

When Lily still cannot get up to speak, she asks Cane (Daniel Goddard) to please go up to the podium.  Cane speaks to his regret for the times he let Neil and Lily down more than once, Neil was a role model for Cane on how to be a father, he confesses. Cane brings up Neil’s strength when he lost the love of his life, Drucilla.  He says Neil passed that spirit and strength to Lily.  Cane encourages Lily to speak.  Lily finds the strength through her tears, as she cries, she says how she has now lost both her parents and she feels so alone.  Lily cries that Neil should have had more time on this earth.   She looks to all Neil’s friends and family and says they all have to be there for each other now to honor him, and that they owe him that.  She turns to his casket in tears and tells her father she loves him.  As the service ends, Devon thanks everyone for coming.  At the end of the episode, Lily and Devon hold hands and look at the portrait of their father.

On Friday, Neil’s family and friends gathered at Devon’s penthouse and try to lighten the mood through their tears to celebrate Neil’s life.  Ana sang, everyone joined in, jazz records (Neil’s favorites) were played, Malcolm toasts his brother, and Sofia mourns the father of her child.  Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott) tried to figure out how she will go on without her good friend, who shared her addiction and understood her.  Jack embraces Malcolm and says “We both lost our best friend.”  As friends exit the penthouse, it eventually ends up just being the family. Malcolm sets up a photo with everyone as a family memento with Neil’s photo in a frame with them.  Sofia (Julia Pace Mitchell) and Malcolm announce they need to head to the airport to get on their flights, but before he leaves Malcolm hugs Devon, then Lily.  Later, back at her home with Cane, Lily tells Cane that she is ending their relationship, while Devon is sitting and crying at the penthouse when Elena (Brytni Sarpy) arrives.  He breaks down.  The episode featured retrospective clips of characters illustrating the traits of Neil featuring St. John.

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Y&R brought all of its viewers to tears with his send-off for Neil Winters; which in turn honors Kristoff.  The eulogies delivered with such emotion, sadness and heart by Eric Braeden, Bryton James, Christel Khalil, Daniel Goddard, Peter Bergman, and Shemar Moore were heartbreaking.  As we watched Genoa City mourn, we mourned.   Neil was such a part of our viewing life, as much as Kristoff was part of so many of our personal and professional lives.

So, what did you think of the funeral episode and its aftermath on The Young and the Restless?  Were you moved to tears and then some? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

 

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Jamesj75
Jamesj75

Okay, I have really enjoyed these tear-jerking episodes, but one critical observation…

There was no scenery left after Shemar Moore’s performance: he chewed it ALL up!

Violet Lemm
Violet Lemm

Jamesj75
He was great. I swear, this man gets better and better. Do you watch him on S.W.A.T? It’s a really good show. When not in “cop” mode, it shows his loving and compassionate side that Malcolm was known for.

Jamesj75
Jamesj75

Hi Violet: I haven’t seen him in S.W.A.T., but I do know what a great actor he is. One thing I will never forget about him: He is the one who presented/announced the Emmy Award to Susan Lucci for her lone win, and he was so classy and so enthusiastic for Lucci.

Michael Teale
Michael Teale

Having watched Thursday’s funeral episode, where I’m sure I’m not the only one that cried my eyes out and then watching Friday’s episode where I couldn’t help but remember all the times and stories of all things Neil, I was grateful that Y&R did this. These shows were much more difficult to watch and get through, more so than when Jeanne Cooper died. Here’s what I’m really hoping: that Y&R will submit these episodes for Outstanding Drama Series Emmy next year. While these episodes are not typically what a show would submit when going for a Daytime Drama Emmy award, these episodes were so well done from the writing, to the camera work, the directing, the producing and lastly, the acting, which was something that the cast didn’t have to work hard at when these shows were taped. They were so eloquently done and sublime, something you rarely see on TV anymore. Kristoff got his start in this business when he was a young boy from being on ‘Roots: The Next Generation’ to ‘Bad News Bears’, a show that I vividly remember watching back in the 1970’s (as a side note, I remember a conversation that I had with Kristoff years ago when I had a twitter account and I told him that I remember him from that show), to his many other roles on TV and in movies to his breakout role on NBC’s ‘Generations’ to the role on Y&R as Neil Winters that really catapulted him to fame. A role that won him two Emmy’s and numerous NAACP Image Awards. But those accolades almost didn’t come to fruition after he and Victoria Rowell (Drucilla) made a huge statement and stink about there needing to be more diversity on daytime television. His and Victoria’s stance could have easily destroyed their careers but it didn’t. It actually helped the industry to become more diverse on camera as well as behind the camera. I remember when Shemar Moore came on to Y&R as Malcolm as an absolute unknown having only been in the modeling industry before starting his acting career. I truly believe that Kristoff made him understand that being humble along with understanding that respect is earned, not given. With that sage advise, it propelled Shemar into a movie and primetime career having starred on CBS’s ‘Criminal Minds’ and currently on ‘SWAT’. Shemar has no ego and I believe that Kristoff had a role in shaping who Shemar is as a human being and as an actor today. Shemar made that clear in the two episodes he appeared in this past week. Kristoff is well respected in this industry and you certainly saw that with the many tributes that came in after he passed away. But most importantly, Kristoff was a husband, brother, uncle, friend but more importantly, he was a father to Lola and Paris as well as his late son Julian. Kristoff was never able to get over the loss of Julian when the demons of mental illness… Read more »

Tani Sterling
Tani Sterling

Thank you Michael. Your review is so kind and well received!

Kevin C
Kevin C

Very well said Michael…LOVED all the shows featuring Kristoff…

Grand Hotel

GRAND HOTEL Finale: How Sky Died, Paternity Game-Changer, And Another Mystery Begins

ABC’s Grand Hotel ended its season with several plot twists that kept the hour soapy drama in a fast and furious pace to give viewers the answers they had been waiting for, and if the show was picked-up, a cliffhanger with multiple suspects who could be responsible for this new crime.

If you have not watched the finale and intend to, do not read any further, spoilers contained herein:

Danny is finally revealed to Santiago and Gigi to be the brother of the deceased Sky.  Alicia decides to help Danny figure out what happened to his sister on the night she died in the hurricane.  Through flashbacks, we learn that Sky discovered the suicide note that Beatriz had written inside a closet full of jewelry while on a date with Yoli.  Sky used the Intel in it to blackmail Gigi, but Gigi says she does not have access to that kind of cash.   The letter contains the damaging proof that Mrs P and Santiago had a child together, Jason.  Santiago did not know.  To make matters even worse in current time, Santiago just made Gigi’s daughters: Carolina and Yoli part of his new will.

It seems that Mrs. P and Gigi kept the secret of Jason’s paternity and did not want to come out.  Helen put the hotel on lockdown, leaving Sky trapped and having to go through the only available exit to get out of the hotel, which led her into the night and the hurricane.  There, Gigi confronts her at gunpoint. However, there is a scuffle, and lo and behold, Mrs. P husband’s, Malcolm steps out of the shadows after overhearing that his wife had an fling and child with Santiago and clubbed Sky in the back causing her death.

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After Gigi admitted to Santiago, while he was trying to push Danny over the hotel balcony, that she did not kill Sky, Gigi eventually reveals who it was, leading Danny and Alicia to later head to the hospital where Malcolm is dying.  Alicia confronts Mrs. P about her lies and how she hid Jason’s paternity from him and Santiago.  Meanwhile, Danny decides not to tell Malcolm’s family that he killed his sister, because as Danny says, “the universe had already found another way to punish him” – and with that – a few moments later, Malcolm dies.

Photo: ABC

Now that Santiago had learned that he is the bio-dad of Jason, he won’t forgive Gigi, who clearly does not want Jason getting more of the pie than her daughters if Santiago were to have the opportunity to adjust his will.  Meanwhile, Santiago has finally blackmailed Mateo out of his job at the hotel, but Mateo does not want the evidence on the flash drive Santiago has in his possession to come out of the deed that he has done.  Mrs P. also gets into a very intense phone conversation with Santiago and they agree to meet downstairs at the hotel.

However, as Santiago walks through the dark halls, out of the shadows gun shots are fired, and he is left bleeding out on the floor.  Did Gigi, Mateo, Helen or even someone else shoot him?  Maybe Carolina and Yoli’s father is the culprit, who is said to be returning home after finding out his daughters are now in Santiago’s will and who has no love lost for the guy!

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In other stories, Javi was seduced by an older woman who turned out to be an alcoholic and Ingrid’s mother, a pissed Ingrid then hooks up with Mateo.  And  finally, as Danny goes to the ocean to say goodbye to his sister Sky by throwing her lighter into the sea, Alicia asks, what he is going to do next?  He says, he will return home to Chicago, but at that point the two of them share a passionate kiss.

Throughout the episode, the emotional heart of it was played to perfection by Lincoln Younes as Danny, who as the brother trying to avenge his sister’s death, played all the beats of his story arc.

So, what did you think of the Grand Hotel finale? What did you think of who was revealed to have killed Sky? Who do you think shot Santiago? Comment below.

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Recaps

THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL: Thomas Goes Over A Cliff! If He Survives, Will They Redeem Him?

Now here’s a ‘cliff’-hanger moment for a Friday soap, that brought with it what could be a game-changing moment, certainly for the relationship of Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) and Ridge (Thorsten Kaye), and what looks like for Thomas Forrester (Matthew Atkinson).  For months, Thomas had become more obsessed and unhinged over keeping Hope (Annika Noelle) from her child Beth and away from the man she truly loves, Liam (Scott Clifton).

Many of Thomas’ acts have been truly despicable.  But now after a wake-up call conversation with his son, Douglas, and an attempt to set things right with Hope, who wants nothing to do with him, things take a turn when at Steffy’s,  Hope screams at Thomas to stay away from her. He tries to explain he just wants to talk to her, but she wants nothing to do with him.

We then see Brooke making it to the house, and seeing the ensuing argument,  She fears the worse and becomes in-between her daughter and her stepson, as Ridgeis also heading to the house to make sure nothing happens between Thomas and Hope.

But then, in a push/pull moment, Thomas goes over the cliff.  Brooke is mortified. And from the promo for next week’s B&B, Thomas is unconscious and might not make it, as Ridge sits by his bedside.

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So, what is this twist all about? Either, Thomas choreographed the fall to gain sympathy and knew exactly what he was doing, or it was an accident, that might look like an attempted murder for now, and that will cause trouble between Brooke and Ridge, but also, and perhaps through testing in the hospital it might reveal, Thomas had a brain tumor causing him to act erratically?  Or, could it be that on Friday’s episode Thomas truly had a quick come-to-Jesus moment and had already realized the horrors of his way and was truly trying to set things right?  Or, could someone sneak into hospital room and snuff him out with a pillow? Many theories!

Now watch below the final moments when Thomas takes a major tumble and next week’s promo for B&B.  Then, weigh-in: What do you think the show will do with the character of Thomas now? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS OF OUR LIVES: John ‘Unmasks’ Kristen In Great, Soapy Cliffhanger

If you caught Thursday’s episode of Days of our Lives, head writer Ron Carlivati and company served up a juicy, soapy, delicious reveal to the duped folks of Salem! The backdrop? Of course, … John (Drake Hogestyn) and Marlena’s (Deidre Hall) surprise wedding anniversary party where at the same location a year ago all hell broke loose … as it has now a year later!

In story. after putting all the pieces together in a montage of flashbacks and moments, John Black is the guy (and Kristen’s ex) who figures that Kristen (Stacy Haiduk) is at the Jarlena party in disguise, but as who?  Through recalling … what “Nicole” said to him, what Abe (James Reynolds) mentioned to him – that since Nicole (Arianne Zucker) came back to Salem she’s been like another person – and Kate (Lauren Koslow) mentioning how Maggie swore she saw Kristen, not Nicole, when Maggie went off the wagon, but no one believed her, things were coming clear to John!

And that to the fact that Eli (Lamon Archey) received a call from Xander (Paul Telfer) who swears he has been working for Kristen DiMera, and Hope (Kristian Alfonso) reporting that bit of news to John, he is hit with the major revelation.  After touching speeches by John …and as Marlena delivers hers about the man she loves, the duo share a kiss, but then John stops “Nicole” and Brady (Eric Martsolf) from leaving the party!

Photo: JPI

What happens next is soap gold! John grabs “Nicole” and rips her hair and mask off.  Next, Kristen flips back her hair and reveals herself to the party-goers and it looks like it’s curtains for Kristen … as everyone is stunned by the bombshell and we fade to black.  The pick-up of this great cliffhanger was today (Friday), more on that later.

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Watch the final moments of Thursday’s DAYS as John “Unmasks” Kristen! Then let us know what you thought of the major moment via the comment section below.

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