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Y&R’s Jason Thompson Delivers The ‘Power Performance of the Week’

Courtesy/CBS

It was Jason Thompson’s (Billy) time to have a standalone episode on The Young and the Restless and this past Tuesday, Thompson shined in a performance that took an emotional toll on his character of Billy Abbott and for many in the viewing audience.  The last time we saw Thompson given anything near this; was actually his first episode on The Young and the Restless when Billy was hovering between life and death and as he confronted his family, they did not hear what he was saying to them.

Now in September of 2019, Billy has been overcome with grief over the death of his daughter Delia and getting revenge against Adam (Mark Grossman) that he developed an alternate personality who is the tough guy who would do things Billy in his right mind could never set out to do.

Photo: JPI

In the episode, Billy (who is still in a cabin) admits to Victoria that what Chloe said about him is true . He lured Adam to the route where Delia died and tried to kill him.  Billy reveals that there is a whole other Billy who takes over, who wants to punish people, and does some very bad things.  Victoria urges Billy to confront that part of himself.  Since he has not eaten in several days, she leaves him behind at the cabin to go bring him back some food.  And thus ,the standalone episode begins to really kick-off.

Alone, Billy closes his eyes and in tears, sees a more grown up version and vision of Delia.  But she is not happy with him.  While she says she understands why he went after Adam the first time after her death, she does not understand why years later he is still trying to kill him.  Delia explains that going to heaven is beautiful; but he will never be reunited with her if he continues to have malice in his heart and soul.  Billy is devastated that his beloved daughter, who he grieves so much for, is disappointed in him. But then, so too is Jack!

Next, Billy envisions Jack (Peter Bergman) in the cabin with him, and Jack really hits Billy below the belt and tells him what a miserable failure he is and calls him “weak”.  We then see the character switch and the gum-chewing alter ego pushed to the brink and so that Billy fights back.  Jack continues to barrage Billy and then Billy shouts, “Screw you, Jack!”  Billy thinks Jack’s jealous of him. Jack hollers, “Who are you!? Pick one and be done with it.”  It was a difficult to scene to watch, because Billy while battling his demons, he is hearing such terrible things inside himself from those he loved; like his older brother.

Photo: JPI

Then, comes his mother, Jill (Jess Walton)! All of a sudden she appears and is also extremely hard on Billy, and she tells her son that Victoria can do better than him, and that as a partner for Victoria he is an absolute dismal failure.  Jill really kicks him by saying that he always ends up back in the gutter with a mountain to climb.

All of a sudden, an evil Phyllis (Michelle Stafford) emerges in front of Billy.  She really plays up his addiction to gambling, entices him to a poker game and he loses, which further sends Billy spiraling.  He becomes more agitated as she laughs in his face.  Next, Adam appears shouting at Billy, “What is going on in your skull?”  Billy replies, “I’m not a monster.” Adam says, “Neither am I.”  Then, viewers see Adam strangling Billy, but then it is revealed that Billy is being strangled by the alternate version of himself in a fight for power and control.

Photo: JPI

Just then, Victoria (Amelia Heinle) returns as Billy battles with himself and remembers those who just ‘visited’ him.  Billy comes up with the inner strength to throw off the alter and not give in.  Finally, Billy punches him and the alternate Billy sort of melts away. Billy confesses to Victoria he doesn’t want that part of himself to ever return, and if there is anything good left in him it is because of her.

Throughout the hour, Jason Thompson illustrated once again why he is one of the finest actors in the genre, delivering an extremely complex performance and taking the gut-punches thrown at him by the other actors through their characters while taking the audience along with him and Billy’s inner struggle.  Whether you like the storyline, or not, you cannot take away from what Thompson did through his work in a performance that could have easily been just as powerful in a stage play in a theatre, as it was on TV.

What did you think of Jason’s ‘Power Performance of the Week”? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Tani SterlingGeorge JoyceViolet Lemm2TraceyShay Recent comment authors
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Molly
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Molly

Jason did an absolutely stunning job. I loved the whole thing. His scenes with Victoria were amazing too.

Celia
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Celia

I have been very vociferous about my intolerance of Thompson in the role of Billy Abbott…hardly ever held back.
WOW!! If I could only eat my words about his acting prowess, I would—- He gave me the goosies with that performance—not only was his acting, as the lost, confused desperate and helpless father, man, brother, friend and ‘husband’, superlative; but, by Jove( LOL), Thompson looked as pained as his heartfelt performance. His delivery was top-notch, his expression was unmistakably en pointe …..his eyes hungry and hopeless !!
Fantastic show of talent, Jason….Encore, s’il vous plait!!

Kay
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Kay

Nothing that has went down is his fault he plays what Is given to him !!! We really need including myself to stop blaming and attacking actors for what comes on screen they are doing their job

Kay
Guest
Kay

I will always support him he got a raw deal at GH because nobody could accept the character of Robin leaving they took that out on Jason he did not deserve that abuse so let’s support him now he has poured his soul into making Billy his own

Shay
Guest
Shay

@Kay…I agree Thompson was treated oh so shabbily by GH, and not just at the very end of his contact. His character’s downfall began a rapid descent when Patrick was paired with that ludicrous babysitter in a plucked-from the Disney Channel storyline that was force-fed on the audience throughout one of the worst couplings ever to materialize in Port Charles. Not only was the actress in question absolutely horrible, but the entire scenario made Patrick look utterly ridiculous…..especially when he was far more logically suited to Robin’s BFF, the Lovely Liz, or later, presumed widow, Sam…both of these ladies were… Read more »

Lew S.
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Lew S.

I totally agree Celia. I hated the idea of the DID storyline at first, but end result was great! Billy met his demon and battled it! Now, the next storyline with Victoria being arrested for Victor’s supposed death – we know he ain’t dead, got a not again response. She just went through this with J.T.! Give the girl a break! As always, good post Celia!

Celia
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Celia

Thank you, Lew…..your posts are none too shabby, my friend!! LOL. It has nothing to do “taking direction” as Kay suggests, but rather my antipathy for Jason; which is never fair. I simply am not a fan of the actor. I won’t hide that fact—- However I will give one his/her due when deserved. I have never seen so much emotion emanate from Jason’s pores, as it were. Harry described Billy’s inner turmoil succintly and with heart. His dueling “selves” had to make an appearance in order to save Billy—-or who was truly locked inside—-the climactic emergence was painful to… Read more »

Harry
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Harry

Jason Thompson was nothing short of brilliant in playing the internal conflict which exists between his dueling selves. Not only was his acting spot on, the writing and direction was as well. At one point Billy was battling (wrestling) with Adam and the camera pans from behind Adam’s head, and suddenly it is evident that Billy was mirroring Adam’s every move. In fact, it looks like Adam is a mirrored reflection of Billy. Then Adam dissolves into Billy and it becomes clear to the viewer that Billy is really wrestling with himself. This is a case where great acting merges… Read more »

Kay
Guest
Kay

Well said agree I think he is dealing with his own guilt

Sharon Elliott
Guest
Sharon Elliott

Jason’s performance was riveting. Best daytime performance in years. Writing was much better than usual for all the characters involved. Peter Bergman also stood out.

Elm1951
Guest
Elm1951

Jason’s acting was extraordinary – that was so Emmy worthy!!!!

Sandie
Guest
Sandie

Total awesome and believable. He owned his character.

Dollys
Guest
Dollys

Absolutely amazing , 1st class acting.,

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

I was against Thompson taking the role of Billy. BUT, seeing how bad Miller was on GH, bad writing or not, Jason Thompson now fits the role as a more mature William Abbott. Great job on your standalone episode my friend!

SALLIE GUTMAN
Guest
SALLIE GUTMAN

Great performance..I hope he is recognized at Emmys…he is the best Billy..hope he stays..

JKJ
Guest
JKJ

Thompson is a good actor, but still would like to see Billy Miller return to the role. Hopefully this story line is finally OVER. Enough already!!!

Gayle
Guest
Gayle

Jason Thompson is incredible as Billy Abbott! Please do not bring back Billy Miller even though I love him.

Tracey
Guest
Tracey

Jason did an extremely wonderful job….I like his performance and how he acts!!! His character is very emotional and lovely! His scenes with Victoria and the kids are very real..he acts like they are a happy family and that is acting with your real feeling!! Jason Thompson’s character of Billy Abbott is done with extreme love, passion, and finesse!!

Violet Lemm2
Guest
Violet Lemm2

Yes Tracey,
As much as I love Billy Miller, no one played Billy Abbott as well as Jason. I liked him from the very beginning in this role, and thought his talents were so wasted on GH. He and Victoria look so right together, and it just doesn’t fit anymore when Victor calls him Billy Boy, although I do think he is getting a little more respect for Billy.

George Joyce
Guest
George Joyce

That was a very powerful episode. Jason/Billy did battle with his demons and the “evil Billy”. I loved the part where he strangled “himself” and the alter sort of melted away. Great job Jason!!

Tani Sterling
Guest
Tani Sterling

Behind in viewing as always. Violet is so correct when saying that “Billy Boy” doesn’t work any longer. The first preview I saw of Jason portrayed great gentleness. It was such an opposing character from the previous Billy. Is this the time writer’s are going to allow great shifts in character personas? So much has changed. I am somewhat appreciating “new Adam’s” acting, not his character. Did Victor learn something with his illness? In past times he often became the example of pure evil. There have been too many changes for me too quickly. Where is the rock that holds… Read more »

News

‘The Talk’ Returns as Sheryl Underwood Shares the ‘Trauma’ She Feels Over Incident That Led to Sharon Osbourne’s Exit

CBS’ afternoon series The Talk finally returned to the air, following the departure of Sharon Osbourne and the tense moments that went down on the March 10th episode between her and Sheryl Underwood.

Monday afternoon, co-hosts: Sheryl Underwood, Elaine Welteroth, Amanda Kloots and Carrie Ann Inaba along with diversity and inclusion expert, Donald E. Grant, were on the episode.  Grant, served as the moderator as the women discussed what happened when Osbourne came at Underwood when defending Piers Morgan’s remarks about Meghan Markle, eventually prompting an extended internal investigation by CBS.

Photo: CBS

On today’s episode, Sheryl Underwood shared: “I didn’t want to escalate things with Sharon, because I thought I was having a conversation with a friend, but also, I knew I had to be an example for others to follow. I didn’t want to be perceived as that ‘angry Black woman’, and that really scared me. I didn’t want to be that and I wanted to remain calm and focused. It’s difficult to go back to that day because I just feel the trauma. I feel fearful, a little apprehensive.”

Elaine Welteroth added, “When you go back and watch what happened in that episode, you will see two Black women walking the same tightrope that Black women are walking every single day in the workplace.  As Sheryl said, we knew we had to stay composed in that situation, even in the face of someone who was A, not listening, and B, who went off the rails into disrespect when we were maintaining our respect within the context of this very complex, charged, emotional conversation.  There have been a lot of false narratives that have been spun in the aftermath of what happened on that episode…this is the first time that I have had the opportunity to speak. And I think it’s really important that we have the opportunity to say that the false accusations that are swirling in the press that frame Sheryl and I as some kind of, you know, people who attacked a woman on air, and were part of some sort of, you know, conspiracy, that is absolutely, categorically false.”

Photo: CBS

She later added, “I just want to acknowledge you, Sheryl, on air for how you handled the situation. I think it’s important for people to really know the strength and willpower it takes to maintain that kind of composure in that situation. And I think for me, I was just really entering that conversation with the hope of finding a common ground and I didn’t feel like I was heard.”

In addition, Underwood wanted to go on record stating that while she had received text messages from Osbourne, she hadn’t replied to them because she wasn’t sure she was supposed to during during an internal investigation. Osbourne had said that she sent texts to Underwood and had apologized for her actions.

Sheryl shared: “I have never been through something like this. I didn’t know whether you were supposed to communicate or not communicate.  I have not spoken to Sharon, I haven’t had a phone call from her, ” However, Underwood expressed that if a friend were to come up to her and greet her nicely, she would do that same, “When you’re friends with someone, you stay friends,” she said.

So, what did you think about the sentiments shared by Sheryl and Elaine during The Talk? Was this episode helpful in shining a lot on racism, and successful in dealing with what transpired on March 10th with Sharon Osbourne? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Recaps

THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL: Don Diamont & Scott Clifton Shine In Father/Son Scenes; As Bill Watches Liam’s Meltdown Over the Accident that Killed Vinny

On Thursday’s episode of The Bold and the Beautiful, emotional two-person scenes were the order of the day featuring three-time Daytime Emmy winner, Scott Clifton (who may nab a nominations next year for this story) and longtime soap vet, Don Diamont.

In story, Dollar Bill has done everything to protect his son by covering up all the evidence in his attempt to save Liam from surely a murder sentence and going to prison.

Courtesy/CBS

Bill’s theory: if anyone were to find out that Liam was driving Bill’s car when suddenly out of nowhere came Vinny (Joe LoCicero) – who Liam hates – and he hit him with the car and fatally killed the guy, they would think he had intent and motive. (However, to us there has to be more to the story! Did Vinny just randomly happen to be on the road that Liam and Bill were driving on and walking across it?)

At Bill’s place, Liam is agonizing as he keeps flashing back to the accident.  When Bill comes in from a morning jog, Liam is astonished that his father was out jogging, when they are in deep hot water for covering up their now hit and run.  Bill gets angry and tells him he actually went to see if there are were any cameras near the accident and he is happy to report there were none, so Liam is in the clear.  Therefore, Liam needs to keep his mouth shut and let this go and move on with his life and reuniting with Hope (Annika Noelle).

Not able to live with the cover-up, the lies, and what he did, Liam is insisting he has to go to the police, but Bill shouts: “You are not going to the police!” Liam goes on to his own subplot theory that they can say he hit an animal and then turn themselves in. Bill keeps firing back at his son, that he cannot do anything of the sort. He has done everything to protect his son in this mess and Liam could screw that all up with one wrong move.  Bill says, “All you have to do is…” and Liam fires back, “Pretend it never happened.”

It is then that Bill tells Liam that killing Vinny will haunt him whether he’s behind bars or a free man, and that he should opt for the latter.  Now unraveling, Liam’s convinced the police will figure out their cover-up. Just then, Bill pulls out a news report on his phone about the hit-and-run that has no leads and no ID of the body.  He assures his son there will never be any leads because he took care of everything.

Just then, Hope texts Liam wondering where he is for their lunch date.  Bill tells Liam to text her back saying something came up, he is in no condition to see anyone till he pulls himself together.  Liam texts back that he can’t make it.  When Hope texts back in response, “I hope you’re okay,” that sets up the end of the episode where Liam begins to hyperventilate and cannot catch his breathe, and is frightened and grief-stricken, and horrified at what he has done.  Bill comes to his aid and tells him he will not let anything happen to his son, and to dig deep to put this accident behind him.  Bill expresses that if Liam can’t do it himself, to lean on him.

However, Vinny was just ID’d in the hospital morgue by Finn (Tanner Novlan), so there’s that!

Kudos to both Scott Clifton and Don Diamont for the riveting scenes between father and son within the episode.

So, what did you think of Scott and Don’s performance? How will Bill and Liam be able to continue to cover-up the hit and run of Vinny? Share your thoughts in the comment section. But first, watch the final moments from the episode below.

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: “I’m Alexis Davis, and I’m a Fighter, and an Idealist, and an Advocate”; Nancy Lee Grahn Gives Masterful Performance In Special Episode

When you combine superb direction, writing, production, and acting in a special episode of a daytime drama, viewers can see and understand the thought and care that went into it.

This was more than on display during Thursday’s highly-anticipated ‘Alexis-Centric’ episode honoring the 25th anniversary of Alexis’ portrayer, two-time Daytime Emmy winner, Nancy Lee Grahn, on General Hospital.

Courtesy/ABC

In the story, symbolism was apparent and used for dramatic impact and it worked beautifully throughout, and best of all, Nancy received a script worthy of her immeasurable talents, and showed us once again why she remains one of the gold standards of our genre.  If you have not seen the episode DO NOT read any further as it contains spoilers.

It begins with an emotional Alexis looking at her mother’s watch which was still frozen from the time of her death.  While playing one of her mother’s records very loudly, she recalls Mikkos Cassadine kissing and dancing with her mom as a young Alexis (Natasha) looked on from the staircase.  When Sam asks her about it, Alexis shares that she sees the watch as sort of a representation for her own life being frozen over the last three years; which has included Alexis’ battle with booze taking over her life and her being disbarred, when being a lawyer was the way she identified herself and what gave her purpose.

Overwhelmed and anxiety-ridden, Alexis hightails it to Kevin’s office for a therapy session knowing she is going to Pentonville in the morning to serve her sentence.  She says she does not know who she is anymore.  Then, Kevin asks her how she spent her day thus far.  She flashes back to lunch with the good men in her life, Finn, Valentin, Jax and Ned.  Valentin tells Alexis she is proud of her for honing up to her mistakes.

Back at the therapy session, Alexis she was an attorney who stood for something and her life has derailed, and that she was a fighter, an idealist, and an advocate.  She knows she has to find a purpose in prison to make it through the three-year term and asks Kevin to help her find one.

Kevin wants to go back to when she was a little girl and her memories that are flooding back to her of Mikkos and her mother.  Just then, the younger version of Alexis is huddled in the corner of Kevin’s office, an image of her from the past.  Alexis tries to come to terms with her father and the choice of dangerous men and relationships that have marred her own happiness  … recalling Julian holding a knife to her throat like Mikkos did to her mother. She says he was one of the toxic men in her life, but Kevin reminds her all of the men in her life were not toxic.

Alexis starts with Ned as one who was good for her saying he was always stable, but she ruined that by recently sleeping with him and putting a wedge in his marriage to her long-time friend, Olivia.

We then flashback to earlier in the day, where Alexis ends up in an almost confrontation with Olivia.  However, Olivia tells her she misses the Alexis Davis she used to be and to get her back.

Now back with Kevin, a guilt-ridden Alexis relays she feels responsible for Neil’s death.  Kevin interjects she is not, nor what happened with Julian.  When Kevin attempts to bring up Mikkos again, Alexis rejects it and is angry that he is making her problem about daddy issues; like so many other women.  She vehemently shouts that the men in her life do not define who she is.

Then, Alexis flashes back to hurtful memories she has buried of a young Natasha witnessing Mikkos calling her mother a “greedy little bitch”.  She recalls it was on Christmas Eve and that Mikkos stopped by to give them gifts. That is when he presented her mother with the watch.  However, things took an ugly turn when he tried to leave, and she threatened to tell Helena all about her and Natasha. Next, Mikkos slapped her and that is when the watch shattered. As all this was going down, a young Natasha watched from the stairs and was horrified that she couldn’t stop her father from beating her mother and remembers how helpless she felt.

However, Alexis reveals to Kevin she thought this would be the last of Mikkos coming by, but he returned on New Year’s Eve and her mother took him back into their lives.  Alexis is beside herself that she could not protect her mother, but Kevin reassures her to remember she was just a child.

Courtesy/ABC

It is then we come to the crux of the story.  Alexis looks over in the corner and sees her younger self crying. She goes to her younger self and tells her nothing that happened was her fault, and that their father was damaged and cruel. She tells the young Natasha this shouldn’t have been her burden to carry alone, and that she deserves to be happy. Then in the moment of strength and coming full circle, Alexis introduces herself to the young Natasha, “I’m Alexis Davis, a fighter, an advocate, and an idealist … and I will take care of everything from her on out.”  In that moment, Alexis embraced herself, and forgave herself, so she could move on with her life.

Alexis then flashes back to earlier that night, as the Davis girls gather for a faux graduation ceremony so Alexis could see Molly in her cap and gown and they hug. Back in her session, Kevin remarks that Alexis has repeatedly defined herself as a fighter, an idealist, and an advocate, and reminds her she has three daughters who have those qualities, and that all she needs to be is Alexis Davis.

Then, we get a heart-warming montage of Alexis though the years in honor of Nancy’s 25th anniversary with GH.

Courtesy/ABC

As the episode concludes, it is the next morning, and Alexis enters Pentonville and enters her jail cell. There she meets her fellow inmate, who is studying law books to prep for her upcoming parole hearing. Alexis introduces herself as “Alexis Davis” and as someone who can help her.  We then go back to her mother’s watch which now begins ticking at Alexis’ home.  The show fades to black.

Kudos to Daytime Emmy winner, Phideaux Xavier for his outstanding direction, head writers: Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor and script writer, Scott Sickles for the thoughtful episode, EP Frank Valentini and his production crew for putting it all together, and the one and only Nancy Lee Grahn for a performance that will be remembered as a classic.

Share your thoughts on today’s on Nancy’s ‘Alexis-Centric’ episode via the comment section below.

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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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Nancy Lee Grahn as Alexis

General Hospital

Airdates: 4-8-2021

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