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This Is Your Life Nikki Newman! What Did You Think Of Melody Thomas Scott’s 40th Anniversary Y&R Standalone Episode?

Photo: JPI

This week on Wednesday, The Young and the Restless longtime fans were taken on quite a walk down memory lane reliving the life and times of Nikki Reed Newman (and of course there were various other married names along the way).

In a special standalone episode devoted to Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki) who, on February 20th, actually celebrated 40 years to the day that she graced our screens as a young Nikki.  Now in 2019, Nikki is in jail awaiting trial for the murder of J. T. Hellstrom.  In the event she is sent away for good, she has photos delivered to her jail cell in order to write a letter all about her life to her grandchildren, as we, the viewers, go on a look back of the loves of her life, the friendships she made, and the battles, especially with booze, she has struggled with along the way.  When she begins to put her thoughts down on pad and paper Nikki says, “This is my life story.”

From there the episode featured so many wonderful retrospective clips that have never been seen again or seldom-seen, which made all the better than the usual clip show   At the beginning we throw it way back to when Nikki was a tormented young girl and how her sister Casey (Roberta Leighton) warned Nikki about their drunken and estranged father, Nick Reed, and his sexually abusive past. Nikki flashes on how she killed her father in self-defense after he attacked her.

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Next, Nikki recalls meeting Paul Williams (Doug Davidson) and sneaking around together in the high school locker room and even how she got herself stuck in that cult,, the New World Commune! Then, Nikki fesses up about her marriage to Greg Foster (Wings Hauser), and how she sabotaged it, because she was bored and looking for adventure.  Later, Nikki reveals how she came into her own at of all places the strip club, The Bayou and show she has no regrets stripping.  Of course, this is where she met the love of her life, Victor Newman, and she shares the unbreakable bond she has with this man for decades

Nikki then talks about her addiction to alcohol, and wonders if the addiction was inherited from her father, or if it began with her back injury from falling off a horse, and taking pain pills. She then flashes to discussing recovery with Neil the late Kristoff St. John).

In tragedy, Nikki remembers the heartbreaking death of her child with Jack (Peter Bergman), and later her grandchild, Cassie.  When speaking of death, Nikki recalls the shock of losing her dearest and most beloved friend, Katherine Chancellor (the late Jeanne Cooper), who she says was like a “second mother, mentor, confidante and best friend all in one.”

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Finally, Nikki recalls a moment where she was pondering if life was worth living after believing Victor was dead.  But that moment turned to pure joy when she shared an emotion reunion with Victor when he turned up alive.  When the episode came to its conclusion, she signs her letter, “All my love, Nikki’, as she looks out from her jail cell wondering what her fate could be.

The episode was written by ousted head writer (and former EP) Mal Young, who delivered a tribute to an iconic character befitting of Thomas Scott’s status with the series.

So, what did you think of Melody Thomas Scott’s Y&R 40th anniversary episode? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.  But first, watch the last retro clip featuring Nikki and Victor at the end of the episode and then into Nikki’s final moments reflecting in her jail cell.

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Michael Teale
Michael Teale

This was a beautifully done episode! Loved it!

James R. Poissant
James R. Poissant

I loved all the flashbacks.

M. B.
M. B.

Fantastic! We need more episodes like this and while we’re at it, can we get 1970s episodes streaming somewhere? I’d pay for that!

Soapqueenforever
Soapqueenforever

Love, love, loved it!!! Wonderful episode. Melody Thomas Scott is like fine wine. She keeps on improving with age. Doing Davidson as well. Now we have to how long Ma Barker and her posse will remain in jail. I wonder if Victor’s money will help this time. He might need it for himself if he plans on going after Phyllis. It’s starting to get interesting again. And Meya getting the cuffs slapped on her from her own hubby. Rey isn’t going to know which way to turn with both of his “women” in the big house.

Soapqueenforever
Soapqueenforever

I obviously meant to say Doug Davidson. Sorry about the typos. That’s what I get for trying to do this without my reading glasses. As the old saying g goes tune in tomorrow.

Kevin C
Kevin C

LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it…It was so nice seeing all the old scenes and how Y&R use to be…and YES the beautiful background music which I so miss and long to return to the show…

Damien
Damien

The classic background scores heightened every scene back then.
Nothing like today. Miss those too!

Kevin C
Kevin C

Damien, I agree with you 100%…I so appreciate your support…

rose
rose

As a relative newcomer to Y&R I loved it. It was great to roll back time to see past highlights of Nikki, Victor, Jack, and especially Katherine. Wouldn’t mind it if I could do that myself once in a while.

Boop
Boop

I enjoyed the trip down memory lane.

scoobydum
scoobydum

Loved the flashback with Neil Winters. I had forgotten they both had a bond over both being alcoholics.

Momo
Momo

I liked it. I enjoyed the flashbacks, many I hadn’t seen as I didn’t start watching until 2008. Loved seeing Katherine and Neil. Really nice tribute to Mel and Nikki.

Tani Sterling
Tani Sterling

It was fun and delightful! Paul was the one who gave me pause and think: how could the writers ever had even a small thought of removing him from the cast.

The writing for Paul and his role were never attacked properly. Hope his reappearance will give him the storyline deserved.

General Hospital

GH’s Steve Burton and Maurice Benard Deliver “The Power Performance of the Week”

Last week, as General Hospital aired the final episodes they had in the can, prior to the coronavirus TV production shutdown, viewers of the series were left with a one-two punch of gut-wrenching performances from Daytime Emmy winners, Steve Burton (Jason) and Maurice Benard (Sonny)

Burton, also received great news last week, when he found out he was again Emmy-nominated in the Lead Actor in a Drama Series category, while Benard, told fans he did not submit himself in the competition this year, when they were wondering where his name was in the list of the finalists in the category.  However, Maurice won last year for the second time in his career, for Outstanding Lead Actor.

Courtesy/ABC

Now on last Tuesday and Wednesday’s episode of the ABC daytime drama series, Jason was trying his best to break it to Sonny that Sonny’s dad, Mike (Max Gail) is not going to get any better as he continues to decline from Alzheimer’s disease, and that Mike is waiting for Sonny to let him go.  Sonny is devastated sitting with Mike watching him being completely unresponsive.  He tell Mike he will be back to see him tomorrow, as he leaves Mike reaches out his hand slowly.

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Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst) has just told Jason that she believes the signs are all there that Mike is on his final decline and battle with Alzheimers. Mike is unresponsive, not eating. and slipping away quickly. She believes he wants to let go, but is holding on for Sonny’s sake, something that tears through Jason.  Knowing Jason was told something by Elizabeth, Sonny asks what it is.  That is when Jason tells Sonny he thinks Mike is waiting for Sonny to let him go.

An overcome Sonny tells Jason that he worries that Mike might still want to fight, but for what? He is a shell of himself and has no memories.  It is then that Burton as Jason, in a touching performance, tells Sonny what he’d want if he were in Mike’s place. Jason reflect that he wouldn’t want machines keeping him alive or his kids having to go through what Sonny is having to deal with right now   Jason goes on to say that even when Sonny put walls up between himself and Mike through the years, that Mike never stopped trying to break them down.

Photo:ABC

Once Jason leaves, with tears running down his cheeks, Sonny sits with Mike trying to come to terms with what he must do now.  Will Sonny let Mike die and spare his father any further misery … or will he try to prolong whatever time Mike has left?

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DAYS Stacy Haiduk and Linsey Godfrey Deliver 'The Power Performance of the Week'

These scenes for anyone who has endured or lived through losing a loved one battling through Alzheimer’s and having to make a life and death decision, and the emotional turmoil and sadness it causes a family, could feel the pain and heartbreak played  by Burton and Benard. That is why Michael Fairman TV gives Steve and Maurice the honors of The Power Performance of the Week.

Watch a few scenes from part of Steve and Maurice’s ‘Power Performance’ below

Then let us know, what did you think of Steve and Maurice’s performances in the Alzheimer’s storyline? Comment below.

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All My Children

ABC and PEOPLE’s ‘The Story of Soaps’: What Was Your Review Of It?

Tuesday’s night airing of ABC and PEOPLE’s two-hour special The Story of Soaps featured many notable daytime and primetime soap stars, past and present, clips from backstage to classic memorable moments, and some participants who were providing commentary on the erosion of the daytime soaps in our culture.  Still others, maintained and realized that everything today is serialized from the news we watch, to some of Netflix’s most binge-watchable series, and of course, the birth of reality-programming.

Throughout the airing of the special, The Story of Soaps was trending on Twitter and social media either at the #2, #3 or #4 spots for the entire duration of the broadcast presentation, and the cancelled and beloved All My Children was also at one point trending.

However, known soap writers, journalists, ardent fans, and actors of the genre, were all on Twitter last night live-tweeting their thoughts as the special went down, and there was definitely mixed reactions and reviews, when all was said and done.

What the special did not shy away from, but tackled, was Luke’s rape of Laura at the campus disco on General Hospital. and how that moment now, as Genie Francis (Laura), so eloquently put, would be considered as ‘date rape’ in our culture.  The series even included a pivotal moment where Laura addresses Luke (Tony Geary) about the rape years later, after helping Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst) through her rape ordeal.

John Stamos (Ex-Blackie Parrish, GH) got a bevy of “Right On’s!” for his comment that the soaps do not get the credit that they deserve and clearly came through as one of the soaps greatest supporters, as did former The Doctors and Knots Landing star, Alec Baldwin.

However, throughout the two-hours, Andy Cohen’s commentary was thread throughout; mostly citing soap’s demise and the creation of reality-programming and his “Real Housewives” franchise, that the special touted as the new soap operas.  It continued on the narrative that people preferred to see real-life drama then made-up drama on a fictional soap.  And while, that has been a trend in American culture for decades, the commentary came off as often out of place in a celebration of the soaps; and bringing in a lot of negativity to the special that soap fans were tired of hearing.

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In a lighting rod moment, Cohen stated: “I know Susan Lucci doesn’t agree with me, but I think that the Housewives have replaced soap operas because truth is stranger than fiction. Soaps became kind of unnecessary because you could do it with real people, and they’re writing the drama themselves.”

The special did also address the cancellations of All My Children and One Life to Live, (which many were not sure they were going to do – given this special was airing on ABC), where One Life’s leading lady and six-time Daytime Emmy winner, Erika Slezak (Ex-Viki) said what we all wanted to sa ywhen the ax fell on the towns of Llanview and Pine Valley, “People were horrified”.

Clearly, OJ Simpson and his murder trial and reality-programming were also given a chunk of time to show where the once mighty landscape of daytime soaps which once had 13 shows on the air, dwindled town to 4.  But, it would have been nice to see more time spent on how in this day and age, the people in this current landscape of the genre work so hard to get episodes done at an unbelievable pace, and how in that climate the performers still deliver gut-wrenching performances.

Photo: ABC

Former Loving, OLTL and Breaking Bad star, Bryan Cranston, did point out how the once powerful soaps, just don’t have the dollars they used to, and need to, to help with production costs and their taping schedule.

Viewers were reminded of soaps’ socially relevant storylines including hankie-inducing moments from: Robin (Kimberly McCullough) and Stone’s (Michael Sutton) HIV/AIDS storyline on General Hospital, to Billy Douglas being a gay teen coming out on One Life to Live, played by a young Ryan Phillippe.

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There also did not seem time spent on the contributions of William J. Bell; one of the most prominent writers of the soap genre of all-time.

For many commenting on social media last night, there seemed to be a feeling of some glaring omissions of participants who could speak on this genre, who have been in the trenches as soap producers, soap writers, pundits, actors, and more, who were not included in the special.

So, what was your review of The Story of Soaps? How would you grade it? Do you feel it accurately reflected the history of the genre?  Were you happily surprised,  or when it came to the end where you over it, or somewhere in between? Sound off in the comment section below.  Below are some tweets from notables who have worked as an actor, a writer, and a journalist in the soaps.  

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Stacy Haiduk and Linsey Godfrey Deliver ‘The Power Performance of the Week’

Fans of Days of our Lives knew when the mother of all showdowns was going to go down, it would be the payoff they had waited for – the rightful bio-mom would finally hold her baby in her arms!

In emotional and top-notch performances from Stacy Haiduk (Kristen) and Linsey Godfrey (Sarah), Kristen finally comes face-to-face with baby Rachel, who Sarah had kidnapped, although Sarah believed for so long that she was raising her daughter, MacKenzie.   When she learned the bombshell truth, that the child was not hers and that her baby died, she took off with the little one to Europe.

On last Tuesday’s episode, an overwrought and pissed Kristen tells Sarah: “Where the hell do you think you’re going with my baby?”  Sarah calls the child her daughter.  Trying to reason with her Kristen knows Sarah loves Rachel.  Then, Sarah goes on how she was there from the beginning and helped the baby through cancer.  Kristen knows and appreciates that, but also says it should have been her that was doing all of that, and all of those moments and more were stolen from her.

Sarah calls out Kristen and says she is incapable of being a good mother. Cornered Sarah says she will scream if Kristen tries to take Rachel out of her arms.  Kristen relates that her baby is alive and she’s so very sorry that her joy is Sarah’s mourning. Kristen truly thanks Sarah for everything she’s done the entire time to raise her little girl,  But, she asks Sarah to please hand over her child.  Sobbing, Sarah finally does just that.

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Next, Brady (Eric Martsolf) and Xander (Paul Telfer) show up at the scene, and for the first time, Brady and Kristen hold their daughter. Their joy turns to more sorrow when they realize Kristen can never go back to Salem. If she does, she will be sent to prison for stabbing Victor (John Aniston).   When Brady agrees to disappear with her, Kristen won’t  let him do that.  Brady says that if he has to let her go to protect her and their child, he will step aside.  In another heartbreaking moment, Brady tells Rachel he loves her and says his heart will be with her, always.  Kristen promises to give her the life she deserves and the two say goodbye!

Later, Sarah returns to Abigail and Chad’s apartment where she tells Rex (Kyle Lowder) what happened and that she handed over the baby. She cries as Rex holds her as Xander (Paul Telfer) arrives, and Sarah is not-to-pleased to see him!

All complex emotional scenes, that is why Michael Fairman TV names Stacy and Linsey are Power Performances of the Week.  Let us know what you thought of their big scenes via the comment section below.

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Video du Jour

It’s “Villains Week” on Y&R an that means some Sheila Carter, David Kimball, and Isabella Brana, Check out the promo from CBS Daytime here.  Leave A Comment

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Power Performance

Steve Burton as Jason & Maurice Benard as Sonny

General Hospital

Airdate: 5-19/20-2020

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