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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow Talks The Dark Side Of Nick & That Sexcapade With Phyllis!

Photo: CBS

When Nick Newman (Joshua Morrow) goes bad … he certainly does it with plenty of gusto! Over the last week, viewers of The Young and the Restless were left stunned when it turned out that this one-time do-gooder, turned heel, but not without purpose.  After constantly ending up on the short end of the stick, and after his father Victor’s (Eric Braeden) dirty machinations to take away Nick’s son, Christian, (yes, we know Adam is the bio-dad) and gain custody of the little boy for himself, Nick was left devastated vowing to not let anything like this happen again.

With revenge on his mind, Nick set out a plan that no one got wind of.  He leaked documents of Newman Enterprises … he masqueraded around town as the “dead” J.T. Hellstrom (Thad Luckinbill) … he opened his own company to take away his father’s business …  and that is just for starters.  Now back with the love of his life, Sharon (Sharon Case), once she was clued in on what Nick was doing their relationship seemed on the rocks.  So, what was Nick to do?  Have sex with Phyllis (Gina Tognoni)!  These two former lovers commiserate over their current relationship woes, while being turned on by how Nick pulled the wool over everyone’s eyes.

Michael Fairman TV sat down with Joshua Morrow, who we consider one of the true MVP’s of daytime drama, to dish on all the latest twists which have pulled Nick to the dark side.  In addition, what it means for the future in his relationship with Sharon, for that undeniable chemistry Nick has with Phyllis, and how that “J.T.” mask scared the pants off four women he cares about without him even knowing why!

Candid with that razor-sharp wit, here’s what Joshua had to say about what has gone down, and what’s to come!

So, things take a shocking turn when Nick has now donned a prosthetic mask that looks just like J.T …

JOSHUA:  Yes, this unbelievably non-creepy looking mask, too. (Laughs) 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

However, are you and Thad Luckinbill the same height? (Laughs)

JOSHUA:  No, Thad is taller at least by an inch!  I did not think it was much of an issue, but it was very technical how they had to shoot that.  It was a fascinating process to watch.  Thad shot his scenes first, and then I came in and did mine.  They imposed my face onto his, and my face is longer and fatter.  Since Thad is taller, he had to stand with his legs spread a little bit to get down to my angle.  Then, I had to do my scenes in the angle he was originally staring at Victor with; which is why in a lot of the scene I was staying as still as possible. The way the scene was written kind of helped with what we were trying to do technically, in that; Nick was calm and matter-of-fact, and laying out his threat to Victor.

What was your reaction when they first pitched this story point to you that Nick would be masquerading as J.T. with a mask on?

JOSHUA:  I remember when Mal Young (EP and head writer, Y&R) first told me about it.  I just thought it was the most ridiculous thing.  I am like, “What?”  I didn’t know if it was going to work, but when we got down to it, I could not believe how incredible it looked on the reveal.  It was a real testament to our crew, Mal, and Patty Denney in make-up, and everyone who brought it all together.

Did you ever figure out how Nick knew where to get a prosthetic mask made to look like J.T.? (Laughs)  I was like, “Boy, is he resourceful!  Who knew that Nick Newman would know where to shop for this!” (Laughs)

JOSHUA:  I think he googled it! (Laughs)  It’s amazing what you can google!

I would have loved to have added in the scene where Nick is on his laptop thinking hard and typing away feverishly in the search field, “Where to get prosthetic masks.”

JOSHUA:  He would have to have found a way not to leak that.  People would come by at his work and go, “Why are you looking up masks, Nick?”  Meanwhile, he is getting multiple bids from the mask companies. (Laughs) 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

When you watched the scene back; what did you think of it?  On top of that reveal, you then launched into this intense monologue.

JOSHUA:  I thought the scene was beautifully lit and the alleyway looked awesome.  Props did a great job of making it look seedy and dark.  It took a longtime to shoot.  A lot of people were caught up in what was actually happening, but if you add up in words how much I had to say, it was an unbelievable amount of talking.  It was essentially a five-page monologue.  I studied it so much and rehearsed it so much, that I was starting to lose my voice from it.  However, it worked and we did it in one take, which I was pretty happy about it. 

Were you and Eric Braeden joking between takes when it had to do with Nick and his “J.T.” mask?

JOSHUA:  We made some jokes initially, but because there was so much material, that whenever any of us has something like that to do with that amount of work, you want to try and be as professional as possible to let them get through it anyway they can.  Eric is obviously is a pro.  He understood what I was having to do. 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

It was a great monologue you were given and delivered, especially when Nick pointed out to Victor, that in Victor’s eyes, Nick was his ‘underachieving son.”  Y&R has never really explored how Nick was not the shining bright star in the family that Victor wanted him to be, and how Victor heaped much of that praise on Adam, for he was more “Victor-like.”

JOSHUA:  Well, he was supposed to be the apple of his father’s eye, and that was what was so disappointing.  A lot of people have said that, and I don’t think you can fault Victor for that.  He had all these grand plans for Nick, but Nick has just flat out said: “I am going to do what I want to do.”  He has done that his whole life.  It’s not what his dad wanted.  It wasn’t that Victor was disappointed in who he had become, he was disappointed that Nick was not willing to accept the path that Victor planned out for him. I understood what Victor had gone through over the years with Nick.  In terms of the monologue, it was a great speech.  I thought it was well-written, and the fact that Victor has always been supportive of Adam as opposed to Nick, while Adam has done way more horrible things than Nick has.  Nick never really understood that.   I thought the scene worked, and it’s a really cool story to tell.  I get that a lot of people may not dig it, but this is the most fun I have had on Y&R, since they initially paired Nick with Phyllis.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Last week, many fans took to social media and were outraged going, “How can Nick do this to his sister, Victoria?”

JOSHUA:  I remember saying that to Mal.  I said, “I don’t have a single problem with any of this, but Victoria is his best friend.  She is this person that he will do anything to protect.  The two of them have gone to each other about everything.  So, how does he do this to her?”  Mal sold it to me by saying, “All Nick is doing is teaching Victor a lesson, and he believes that because Victoria is so close with him that eventually she will come to understand.”  Nick knows he is going to hurt her initially, but the hope is that he can sell her on this, and make her join him.  I was really hoping for a lot more scenes where they are heartbroken with each other.  Those would have been interesting to play, but Nick has been so driven in his plan, and that is a lot of what I have been doing, while Victoria is fighting on the other side.  We will see what happens, but there is beauty in conflict that hurts.  That is ultimately what this is going to boil down to.  Nick is not going to be too hurt by what is going on with his dad, but he should be demolished to see what his sister is going through.  Hopefully, they will touch on that.

It all comes back to Nick losing custody of Christian as the tipping point.  That was followed by a scene of Nick just looking in the mirror, which foreshadowed that a dark side of Nick will emerge.  So, what is Nick’s ultimate plan?

JOSHUA:  He wants to destroy Victor, even though he got his son back.  Victor crossed such a line with him.  After everything Nick had gone through with Christian and Adam, he realized that is father is not just controlling, but this is an evil bastard who would do something like this.  Nick made a vow, “I am not going to let him do this to anyone ever again that I care about.”  That is what it is rooted in.  That he wants to destroy Newman Enterprises that is just a side of it.  Nick just really wants to hurt his dad in the worst possible way, and you do that by taking the thing that matters the most to him … his business.  I don’t think Nick fully realized the scope of it.  He thinks he can just move everything over to his new company and lead the fight in that direction.  I don’t know how far he has thought ahead, but he knows what he wants to do right now, and how he is going to do it.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Does Nick feel “power” now?

JOSHUA:  Yes, and it’s a power rooted in the fact that; he still believes he is doing it on his own terms, and is coming from a good place, even though he can’t see the darkness that is slowly creeping in; which I think thematically is really cool.  That is; this fight to remain true to himself, but this pull to this dark element that his father is always preaching and really living. The question is: can Nick still maintain this path he wants to go on without doing what his dad has had to do?  That is what we will see play out.

Nick is now a man full of surprises.  Last week, we also learned that he has started his own company to go toe to toe with Victor … “Dark Horse”.  In the process, he is trying to sway family members to join him.  How is that working out for him?

JOSHUA:  His ultimate goal is to take Newman Enterprises, which was supposed to be this family run company; where everyone was participating, and bringing all their specials skills and qualities that they have, but it really just became that everyone is under Victor’s thumb.  Nick wants to do the same thing, but let people be who they are, and bring those things that you are good at, so they can be successful together.  He is trying to sell them: “Do this with me and I will let you be you, and you can go as far as you want to within the company.”  It’s very idyllic.  Now whether it’s doable, who knows?   Nick approaches everyone in his family to “Please join my side.”  It’s basically creating this line in the sand, that either you are with Nick, or against him.  It’s that simple. It’s sort of what Victor does, but Nick does it with a smile. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

What about his mother, Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott)?  That puts her in a tough position to choose between the man she loves and her son.

JOSHUA:  Nick was really counting on Nikki to be on his side, but Nikki chose Victor.  Nick instantly thought that everyone would join him, and that is not the way it panned out.  I still don’t’ think he sees the errors in his ways, in the way he went about this, and that is probably due to his ego, and his drive getting in the way of that.  Abby (Melissa Ordway) joins him, and Noah, eventually.  No one else is his family does.  He thought Victoria would jump on it, but she says, “No.”  Victoria is finally promised Newman Enterprises and that leads her to say that, and that kind of sets up a cool conflict for Nick and Victoria moving forward as to business people and competing in the same space.  His main ally is Jack (Peter Bergman) and Jack is going to join Nick to take on Victor.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Are you concerned about the fan backlash to your character, who was always the “good guy”?

JOSHUA:  I don’t care that people don’t like it.  What I do care about is that they don’t give the story a chance and they make it personal if they say, “You are incapable of handling a story of this magnitude.” We are in the business of entertaining people, and sometimes it hits you positively, and sometimes it hits you negatively. Some of the best films I have ever seen, I couldn’t stand the way it was going down, but if it hits you, if it makes you think, if it makes you see people evolving, then it’s interesting, and that’s kind of what has happened with Nick.  It’s time for him to do something!  He has been sitting on Sharon’s couch and trying other businesses, but at his core, he knew it would eventually lead back down to something like this; doing something on his own terms, which is exactly what he wanted.

Let’s talk about Sharon.  Were you surprised that the show put Nick and Sharon back together so fast back in late March of this year, coming on the heels of Chelsea (Melissa Claire Egan) leaving Nick?

JOSHUA:  I was really shocked.  But, we are all so unbelievably protective of our characters, and while telling these stories, we are trying to tell them as true as possible to them.  This happened so fast with Sharon that it felt to me like, a matter of convenience.  Melissa Claire Egan (Ex-Chelsea) left and created this kind of void.  At the end of the day, Nick and Sharon love each other, they always have.  It doesn’t not make sense to put them together.  I just thought the timing of it seemed quick and it kind of questioned what Nick and Chelsea were building towards; which I thought would have been an amazing situation.  However, when Adam was never around, it lost some of the weight that it would have had.  A lot of weight, actually, and then Missy decided to leave, which about killed me.  She turned into my best friend here.  I love her, and I completely supported her decision, but, what do you do?  You can’t just have characters running around alone all of the time.  Nick and Sharon will always find their way back to each other.  The timing and the pacing is completely up to the writers and the producers.  I will tell what ever story they want me to.

How did you feel about the arbitration scenes? I thought everyone was great in them from: Christian LeBlanc (Michael) to Eric, Melody, Sharon, you, and Lauren Woodland (Brittany). Victor and Michael went for the jugular delving into the mental state of Sharon. That ultimately played a major factor in Victor being awarded custody of Christian, and not Nick.

JOSHUA:  Weren’t those scenes good?  They seemed so real!

Then came the scenes where they take Christian from Nick.  Those were so incredibly sad, and watching you as Nick break down in tears is always heart-breaking.   It was one of your best performances.  How were those for you to portray?

JOSHUA:  It was sad, and it is very difficult to do.  Playing these kinds of scenes with these children hits me extra hard.  I love kids.  My whole life I wanted to be a teacher, or a coach.  My dad was a teacher.  I started to coach U8 Soccer when I was twelve-years old.  I love being around children.

Photo Credit JPI Studios

Why do you think that is?

JOSHUA:  I don’t know, but I like watching them, teasing them, and that’s why I coach.  I create these relationships with these little kids and they just mean so much to me.  I know at my core I was meant to be a dad, and a coach.  They bring these kids on our show, and you tell these very emotional stories, and you just fall in love with them. They are hard stories to tell when you remove kids from parents.  I have dealt with it now several times.  They are good stories to tell, well-written, hard to do, but I am always so impressed with the material kids are given – they are often very mature-type storylines, and to watch them tell them makes you swell with pride.  Now, that scene in particular with Christian, all that kid has to do is lay on my shoulder, and just that moment alone makes me tear up.  It’s like he could feel the magnitude of what was happening.  If you notice in the scenes we do, he rarely just lays on my shoulder and like melts into you, and that’s what happened in that moment, and it just crushed me.  As an actor, you are still trying to remember what you are doing in the scene, but it was hard to do   I love that little boy!  We would play in his the dressing room with trucks, and he sees me and he walks out and puts his arms out.  It’s not hard to peel him away from the teacher, and he just lays in my arms and talks. I love him, but I feel that way about: Hunter King (Summer), and Robert Adamson (Noah), and Alyia Alyn Lind (Faith), and Camryn Grimes (Mariah), too!  I truly treat them as if they were my kids, and if they need anything I would be there for them.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Right now, Sharon is not happy with this new Nick!

JOSHUA: Nor, should she be.

Of course, now there is major trouble in the relationship, right after Nick proposed to Sharon and she said “Yes.”

JOSHUA:  After this incredible move by Nick, she lights into him about it. He goes, “How can you not be happy about this?” (Laughs)  She just stares at him.  I love the balls of Nick to just say that!   It was just a subtle, great moment from Sharon. (Laughs)

Sharon along with Nikki, Phyllis and Victoria buried J.T. in the ground after Nikki smashed him with a poker.  Nick doesn’t even know this has happened and he is scaring the wits out of these women!

JOSHUA:  What Nick doesn’t know, and I am sure all the fans are screaming; is what all these women know.  They think that they killed J.T, and Nick has been essentially terrorizing them without knowing it with this dead body.  He doesn’t know what is going on.  He is like, “What is wrong with you guys?” (Laughs)  So, maybe when it all comes out, Nick will go, “Oh, maybe that wasn’t the best tactic I should have taken.”  Right now, they are staring at Nick like he has a second head going: “How can you put us through this?” The women are giving Nick “Halloween eyes”, and he keeps going, “I just don’t get why everyone has a problem with what I did.” (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Nick and Phyllis have sex after he pulls off the first part of his master plan.  So, how would you describe what happened that in essence beelines him to his old flame?

JOSHUA:  Well, it’s go-time!  At his core, he just loves to take his clothes off! (Laughs)  So … what happened was … everyone is not happy, of course.  Nick comes home and sees that Sharon has removed her ring.  She is not home, and he assumes she is not willing to forgive him, and she took the ring off, and it’s over.  So, he leaves and is assuming they are on a “break”.  Then, he runs into the ‘electric hotness” that is Phyllis, who always gets to Nick.  She is upset about Billy (Jason Thompson) and his gambling.  They are both not happy, and they have had a couple of drinks.  They go to their foreplay which is video games.  Nick and Phyllis have always related with video games.  They are talking, and I think what ultimately happens is Phyllis is turned on by the things Nick has done, because he had outlined exactly what he did to Victor.  Phyllis has a quality in her that responds to that.  She finds it very sexy that Nick would go to these lengths and the way that he did it.  It’s definitely not propinquity, but something happens.  So, they decide to have some good ole’ sex right on the counter on the kitchen.  Good place to have sex … it’s really comfortable. (Laughs)

How does Nick feel about it when they are done?

JOSHUA:  Nick is a lot of things, but monogamy is not his greatest quality.  He feels bad about it, but if you look at Nick and Phyllis’ history, Nick has generally turned to her when he in trouble, heartbroken, confused or sad, and Phyllis seems to pull him out of that with her body.

I foresee a lot of scenes of Nick and Phyllis dancing around what happened, shooting each other weird, or frightened looks back and forth between them, especially when Sharon or Billy are in a room with them. 

JOSHUA:  Yeah, they both understand the situation.  Nick loves Sharon, and Phyllis loves Billy. They both know it was mistake; a one-shot deal between them, and they agree to keep it a secret. 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

But … it is really ever over with Phyllis?

JOSHUA:   It’s never really over with Nick and Phyllis, unless someone cuts Nick off in traffic when he is in the mode of: “I’ve got to go see Phyllis! She will help me!”  Neither one of them wants to turn the page on Billy or Sharon.  They make this pact, and they are going to try to move on and pick up the pieces.

Will Phyllis come over to work with Nick at “Dark Horse?”

JOSHUA:  He does approach Phyllis about coming over to work with him, and he says, “Remember, what we did with our clothes off?  Should we do that with suits and briefcases?” (Laughs)  No, but seriously, she declines.  Phyllis says she is really happy with what she is doing, and she also says, it’s not the best thing for them to be doing, since they just had sex with each other, and they are going to try and forget about it and move on, and that they should not be around each other every single day.  Phyllis is right. They should not be around each other every single day, because ultimately they will just start having sex again.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Do you think Nick getting custody of Christian back happened to quickly?

JOSHUA:  No, I don’t. Victor clearly had some other issues going on, but I don’t think you could make a believable case that Nick should not have this little boy.  No sane judge, no lawyer, would make that decision.  I think once cooler heads prevailed, and that Victor is not exactly healthy, they saw that Nick should raise Christian.

Does Nick know what is physically wrong with Victor?

JOSHUA:  He knows Victor is having some kind of side-effect from the stroke.  I don’t think he knows the extent, or that he is being treated by Dr. Nate Hastings (Brooks Darnell).

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Would that be a game-changer for Nick, if his found out his dad was very sick and fighting for his life?  Would Nick even care at this point?

JOSHUA:  Well, outlining the story it just can’t be this one note: Nick is going to destroy his father for the rest of his life. There has to be some way for them to reconcile. Maybe, it is over Victor’s health.  That would make a lot of sense to me.  I don’t know how it is going to all play out, but I don’t think it makes a lot of sense for Nick and Victor to hate each other for the rest of their lives.  Eric and I have such great scenes together, and there are nice moments when we are allowed to be father and son.  I love the story and I hope that they don’t cut it off, but the writers will have to come up with some way to bridge that gap.

They have to redeem Nick, too.

JOSHUA:  Yes, they can’t just let him be fingers in the air, and “I’m the man, and everyone else can go screw themselves.”  That being said, I am really looking forward to the struggle of that happening.  It’s a story I am looking forward to telling.

You always said in past interviews that you liked playing the hero.

JOSHUA:  Yeah, and even when I was young I wanted to be a fireman.  I was obsessed with the idea of rescuing people.  I just wanted to save people.   Nick does have that quality.  He does want to protect his family and fix things for everyone.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

However, it must be so nice and refreshing for Nick to have a dark side, finally!

JOSHUA:  It sounds crazy to say, but having some darkness to play is refreshing. It’s given me a whole new lease on life around here.  I am coming up on my 25th year on Y&R, early next year.  Six months ago, I was thinking “I am done at 25 years.  I just don’t think I can do it anymore.  It’s been a great run.  I’ve said everything I can say.”  But honestly, this story has given me a new energy about it that I don’t see that happening.

What did you think of: Nick and Phyllis having sex?  His motives for masquerading as J.T.?  Creating his own company to take down Victor?  Do you like the darker side of Nick? Have you enjoyed the performances in this storyline from Joshua?  Comment below!

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Tina
Tina

Nick and Phyllis need to stay away from each other. It’s obvious that nick belongs with Sharon and Phyllis really does belong with Billy, although I don’t think Sharon should forgive nick easily. Nick repeatedly crosses the line over the years with Sharon wear as Phyllis truly just made a terrible mistake. Phyllis and billy could and should overcome this.

Samantha
Samantha

I always loved phylis and Nick together

Ray
Ray

Love Phyllis and Nick together. They are the best. Love the old Nick but he is even better as new Nick that can stand up for himself and his family. Not Mal Young, Nor Amelia Nor Thad will ever convince me to believe JT changed over the years to be as he was to Victoria. Thad are Amelia are both Talented, Amazing performers but put in Outstanding jobs with what they were given; but in the end; anyone that knew these characters of Victoria and JT always loved them as a couple and could always see and feel their love for each other. Sorry, JT was always too Nice a guy, always to the rescue of a woman. He would never ever consider hurting that Special one.

James R. Poissant
James R. Poissant

The dark side of Nick was great until he had sex with Phyllis. That’s when I felt let down by the character. The names I was calling him when the deed was done can’t be printed here.

Karen
Karen

I have loved watching Josh play Nick’s dark side. His scene with Victor when he brought Christian’s things to the club was phenomenal. I am on Team Nick but I am furious with him for having sex with Phyliss. Hoping Summer is successful in her plot.

Kimmie Walter
Kimmie Walter

Nick needs to stay far away from Phyllis!! Philly is too hot to be messing them up!! Angst is one thing.. sick of the third party person in that relationship. Stay away from my girl Phyllis!! Let her be happy with Billy!! ❤️

Sarah
Sarah

Sex with Phyllis ruins Dark Nick for Me. I hope Nick and Sharon are able to work it out.

Ja
Ja

It’s all stupid, the newman’s have not been a family in forever god just let them be !! You keep sorry actors like tessa and Kyle and gloria and Jill they all need to go . You let the best go the last Adam that was on and Chelsea and the last Billy, sage , and Michelle Stafford you need to pay them more and fight to keep the greats !! The story line is getting way off script from the cliff hangers from ages ago . Lilly in jail really ? She has to pay cause no one does fans are saying ?? Really? What about sharon burnt down Victor’s house ,took a baby , killed sage by rushing after her , so much crap ! Nick for killing the girl off the roof that his daddy helped.him out of and so much other crap . They want vic to pay for whatever especially his kids but yet they don’t mind taking his money , using his name, wanting his help when they get in trouble and ect …

Tani Sterling
Tani Sterling

With all due respect to the writer, Gloria and Jill may have diminished roles, but keep them. They are some of the very best!

Annis
Annis

Love the new nick but why did he have sex with phyllis? You are ruining the storyline. Don’t let hilary leave the show.

JANIE
JANIE

I AGREE…..THE SEX WITH PHYLISS ON THE KITCHEN COUNTRY WAS SO UNCALLED FOR. JEERS TO THAT SCENE. HE IS ENGAGED TO SHARON. FOR ONCE LET NICK AND PHYLISS BE LOYAL TO THEIR SIGNIFICANT OTHERS.

Violet Lemm
Violet Lemm

First of all I have always loved Nick and Joshua Morrow. He usually can do no wrong ,in my eyes. Nick feels so strong about what he’s doing to Victor, which I am all for, but I am afraid it’s all going to come back to bite him in the ass! With very little family support, especially from the ones that mean the most,I think will bring out his so-called dark side, even more so, in trying to prove that he is right. I hope it works out, and Nick at least gets to keep Christian, if and when Adam comes back.

bunnyluv
bunnyluv

I actually like dark Nick. Deleted the episode he slept with Phyllis, not a fan at all. I would love to see he and Sharon be a power couple.

Soapluv
Soapluv

Phyllis is a better partner for this stronger, tougher Nick. She can support him in business and emotionally a lot better than Sharon. I like this lighter, happier Sharon but, she’s fragile and convenient, not fierce and powerful. Nick does not have time for Sharon’s doubts and fears while he fights Victor. Either strengthen Sharon and make her a support to Nick or, give him Phyllis to work by his side and help make his company stronger like she did for Fenmore’s and Jabot. He needs more help than Abby and Noah and Jack who ALWAYS loses to Victor.

Phyllis and Billy are done. They have not been viable since he started colluding with Summer. Summer has power over Billy, the addict. He is in destructive mode, Summer is a wrecking ball who shares and understands his gambling obsession so their affair is inevitable – especially after Billy finds out Phyllis slept with Nick and he will because Kyle knows.

Bring on Phick!

Jeanne
Jeanne

It’s funny because you talk about how great Phyllis can be for Nick but nothing about what Nick can bring to Phyllis.
Basically the story of their relationship. Phyllis gave Nick everything and he gave Sharon eveything. Thanks but no thanks.

Phyllis and Billy are NOT done and I know they will reunite soon.

Ray
Ray

I’m with you. Phyllis and Nick. They need to bring Dylan back for Sharon. Nick with Phyllis can stand up anyway to both Victor and Nikki. A Good Man fighting for his life and Family needs a good Strong Feisty Woman by his side. That for Nick is Phyllis 100%. Sharon is weak, whiny and can’t ever make her mind up. I don’t think Nick nor Phyllis has ever gotten over the fun and love they shared together. Joshua is amazing, Gina is the very Best of the 3 actress to be Phyllis. More BEAUTIFUL, yet every bit as Scheming as the Stafford one. Gina is Phyllis and Awesome as her.

Celia
Celia

I don’t know, Ray..”.firstly, nuPhyllis does not depict the true Phyllis….albeit Michelle’s Phyllis was going towards the path of righteousness, a character does not change so drastically overnight.
Gina Tognoni is not Phyllis no matter how TPTB try to mold her into the character.
I remember perfectly how Phyllis’ and Nick’s relationship came to be….. through deceit and lies.
Nick and Sharon ( a couple I have wanted together forever) should not remain together after what he did….but, picking up where he and Phyllis left off is a worse tragedy.
I still cannot accept Gina as Phyllis……can’t stand nuPhyllis–I vehemently protest—wrong age; considering she is the mother of a son in his late thirties and a grandmother. Too young to play Phyllis.
Perhaps, this is what she and Nick do need….get back together and destroy each other….that’s what they deserve.
Summer is a carbon copy of her mother….uses people with one idea in mind. Get what she wants.
Billy is no better. Weak men have no business being part of a true, meaningful relationship. These writers ( all soaps) tear characters to death as the worst beings crawling on their bellies, and then expect us to accept their resurrection and transformation into good, honest, moral people. I don’t think so.
Such phenomenon will only happen when elephants nest in trees.
But, it’s a soap, right?…. Still not buying it.

Momo
Momo

Nick has a long history of being a cheater. I had hoped he had changed, but apparently not. Sharon will not be happy! Billy shouldn’t be surprised. Phyllis cheated on Jack with him.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Scott (ATWT Fan)

Joshua Morrow has been rocking this storyline. This is some Emmy-worthy material he has been given, so I hope he considers himself for an Emmy in 2019. He is a leading male and should be treated as one. My friend, who isn’t very pro-soaps, even says Joshua is a fantastic actor! I’m here for Josh getting to bring this storyline to life!

Ray
Ray

Yes. Josh is Great. Every time Sharon gets all falling into place, she starts whining and can’t stand on her own two feet. Phyllis needs a real man like Nick; Not a lying gambling man as Billy. The strong and the weak in Phyllis and Nick equals out to perfect mate. Nick can lean on Phyllis when he needs, she can on him, with Sharon, it is always about her. Nick and Sharon are Fun together. They Live.

Timmm
Timmm

People ride GH for its camp but a JT mask? Remember when Y&R told stories with class and very little props? I love the camp over at GH but on Y&R, I just dont recognize the show. Why? Besides the mask, Nick finally stood up to the Stache and he gets ridiculed by his Mom, Vickie sticks by Victor and Sharon runs like her hair is on fire! So Nick thinks Sharon left him so he runs to “The Smirk” for a night of disgusting sex! Nick CANNOT love Sharon. What a slap in the face to SHICK fans! Sharon may be keeping a major secret from him but it has nothing to do with sex! They are just making Nick into “ADAM LITE!”

Other problems?

Who is Billy Abbott?

Who is Jack Abbott?

What a cheap ass way to get rid of Ashley!

And killing off Hillary, why? You want diversity? Okay, fine, hire good decent actors who can act. The lady who portrays Hillary is good. Why not send her off for a return someday? No, they wont kill off Devon who sucks in so many languages but cuts Hillary? I have NO feelings for their loss or Hillary’s death because the dude who plays Devon is horrible, Hillary was a horrible person and this guy who plays Nate is all body and no acting chops whatsoever!

Arturo is on contract now. Glad to see an actor succeed but what is his purpose? Like Ravi, a good actor with no real connections to the show or strength as an individual to turn heads.

Lastly, just like over at GH, Y&R HAD a good Alzheimer story and they just keep draging it out way too long. Then, also, you wont see the characters all week and then they pop in and your supposed to feel for them? I want the characters around but either use them or lets wrap it up!

Soaphound
Soaphound

Timmm, is it just me or does this Nate character always look like he’s trying to pass a gall stone? Guess his meager bag of actor’s tricks has already been exhausted. We need him why, exactly? And I agree the Abbotts have been treated appallingly. Makes me sad to watch my favorite family in tatters. You know you’re in trouble when you’re rooting for Kyle to unseat perennial weakling Billy. And Nick an Phyllis behave like animals..shame on them!

jaybird369
jaybird369

Soaphound…oh, I agree. To me, NuNate ain’t cutting it for me. BEYOND BLECH!!!!!

Later.

Vanessa
Vanessa

Nick and Phyllis were HOT AS HELL! I was so thrilled that they had sex. I can not wait to see them share knowing glances and looks.

I also love that Nick asks her to join Dark Horse.

Keep up the Phyllis and Nick interaction! That’s what got me to tune back in.

Soapluv
Soapluv

Amen and Hallelujah! Leave that boring, whiny Sharon and let’s have some Phick heat and winning for a change.
Some Billy and Summer forbidden sex and rock and roll is probably next up and I’m here for it‍♂️

Ray
Ray

Amen. Love my Nick and Phyllis Nick with Sharon is like being at deaths door.

dmr
dmr

Josh, your first reaction to the mask storyline and its reveal was spot-on: “most ridiculous thing.”

K.Morrow
K.Morrow

Nick (Joshua) is smart, witty, handsome & honest… (Is that all son?….Love dad)

Eve Walsh
Eve Walsh

I have also been waiting for a s/l that takes Nick in a new direction. There have been too many stories that are stale and underuse JM and his acting range. I agree the reunion with Sharon was forced; it seems like there are only two or three romantic possibilities for him-Sharon, Phyllis or his brothers castoff. Cast a new dynamic, challenging woman for him.
I like the show lately, esp Dark Horse and Hevon. I have watched for awhile and I love the families. Bringing back Malcolm and Adam could add to the momentum.

Meg. Reddekopp
Meg. Reddekopp

The omly thing I did not like was Nick and Phyllis ,I hate her .Although I love Gina Still miss her Kelly and every one from O L T L .but I cannot stand Phyllis near Nick .I found Chelsea boring with him ,I only like him with Sharon Didnt like him with Avery either l,Love Sharon with Nick and M M s Adam .Not Dylan ,Scott was fine Didnt Like Abby with Scott ,by I love her with Arturo,Anyway I do like Nicks story as long as they keep him with Sharon !

Violet Lemm
Violet Lemm

Loved the Fri show today, at least the part at T.O.T,T with the Newmans and Abbotts, especially Nick and Billy’s little push and shove, and Nick’s parting “shot” at Billy.I was really cheering him on. Billy is going off the deep end again, as Nick said, always ruining every good thing he gets his hands on. I really like Billy, and wonder why they always make him such a screw-up. He will get it for sure from both Nick and Phyliss, after he defiles their baby girl. That’s one little snowflake that melted a long time ago!

Yaya
Yaya

If they do Phick again, I am done. Phyllis is not strong, she’s just a psycho that has borderline personality disorder and Nick is histrionic. JM knows how to put his foot in it in an interview because from what I can gather, he really does not like his co-star Sharon Case, he goes over and beyond to praise his other female co-stars, he appears a bit delusional when he thought Chelsea and Nick had a great situation; they had no chemistry, Nick and Sage: absolutely no chemistry. Nick and Phyllis: no chemistry with high vomit rates. Nick and Avery: some chemistry with no long term potential. It probably would have been best if JM did leave. I enjoyed the Memories Back to the 90s, but frankly his personality as a person makes me now not interested in anything he does with y&r. At this point he has become a PR nightmare for me. It has made me less likely to tune into the show although I do agree that they rushed the Shick reUnion too fast. Christian being returned back to Nick was too fast. There was a lot of drama that could have played out of that had he not been putting Saint nasty Sage on the pedestal. They should allowed him to go about 8 months before he received Christian back and then blast him with Public humiliation by outing him on GC Buzz reporting he was NOT the father…Two years later, bring Adam back with a long custody battle with him permanently losing custody rights and only having a transitional period of visitation. Then Nick should go to Sage’s grave, curse her, and tell her that she, was never the love of his life, that she was just a rebound play from Sharon lying about Summer’s paternity, and he got caught up and trapped into marrying her because of the baby that really never was his in the first place.

Cynthia
Cynthia

Yeah, i don’t like how JM said he doesn’t care what people think…I agree he thought he had Chelsea were a great couple, on what show. They were so boring…….Sharon Case makes JM’s character relevant………The chemistry between Sharon and Nick is off the charts…All of Nick’s other partners are boring……I don’t know what the beef is between he and Sharon Case, everyone is talking about it..What’s his deal?
I found Ph-ick sex scene disgusting, and deleted it..I was cheering Nick on for going after Victor until his disgusting sex act with Phyllis…Now I hope Victor wipes the floor with him… Set Sharon free, she deserves better than loser Nick!

Yaya
Yaya

I do not know what the deal is because they (Sharon Case & JM) were close and vacationed together with his wife. I don’t mind dark Nick; I think that is a great idea and I do not mind an edgy Sharon, but I am sick of people listening to JM for storyline ideas; none of the work. I am tired of Mal; UK soaps are different from US soaps-he needs to get with the US program real fast!

juli
juli

Nick and Phyllis are a perfect match

Mary young
Mary young

To me nick is just as important as Eric Braden he has grown into the show as his son and sons have there own ideas about there futures so let this new side of nick grow a change is as good asa rest

JANIE
JANIE

FRANKLY I ABSOLUTEY THE NEW DARK SIDE OF NICK AND HIS NEW BUSINESS VENTTURE DARK HORSE. I HOPE HE FINALLY PUTS NEWMAN ENT. IN THE GROUND. I HAVE NEVER BEEN OVERJOYED WITH NICK…HE NEVER STAYED WITH ONE VENTURE FOR VERY LONG. NOW HE HAS A REAL PURPOSE IN LIFE AND I’M LOVING THIS STORYLINE. AS FOR NICK AND PHYLISS…..NO NO NO! PLEASE WRITERS DO NOT GO THERE AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!

Didi
Didi

People need to lighten the hell up on Josh. He’s an ACTOR. God forbid he wants good story. Just because he doesn’t want to be “sitting on Sharons couch” doesn’t mean he doesn’t love Sharon Case. He obviously does, I’m sure she is like a sister. But think about it. Their characters have been back and forth with each other for practically the whole 25 years he’s been on the show. Same story over and over. What would you feel like if you were in your job for 25 years and you never had new challenges? I wanted Adam to come back more than anyone, but it’s clear now Mal isn’t going to do that. Instead he’s giving Nick Adam’s story and Josh has better material and story to do. I’m happy for him as an actor and you should be too. He’s waited long enough for some fun. Good luck Josh!

JKJ
JKJ

It’s time for Nick to grow up and not be so wishy-washy. Looks like he’s headed that way. Hope he finally gives it to Victor. Tired of Victor getting by with everything.

Donna
Donna

I think phyllis should go back to back. And back should find they made a mistake with the DNA results. Happens alot. He SHOULD be back at jabot with phyllis by his side and Billy exposed for his gambling and money loss and the jaboat!

ALEXA
ALEXA

The chemistry that Nick and Phyllis had was when Phyllis was played by the fantastic Michelle Stafford! I don’t see any chemistry at all between Nick and the current Phyllis! I would like to see Nick remain with “the love of his life” Sharon for awhile and see Phyllis back with Jack who I think is the true love of her life… I am enjoying the new smarter Nick and hope that he can succeed without being as ruthless, not caring who he hurts, egocentric and vile – like Victor! I want Nick to succeed because he is still filled with the light that is missing from his father!

Interviews

Jordi Vilasuso Previews His New Role Of Rey On The Young and the Restless

He’s played a young man growing up in a Mafioso family, a well-respected doctor, and a brother with a questionable past and future during his daytime career, but now Jordi Vilasuso takes on a mysterious new role on the top-rated The Young and the Restless, who we only know thus far by the name of “Rey”.

When Vilasuso debuts on tomorrow’s Friday, August 16th episode of the CBS daytime drama series, viewers will start to see just how his new character unveils itself, while we get to see one of our favorites back in action.

From his roles on Guiding Light, All My Children, Days of our Lives and his primetime and movie roles, Jordi brings his unique charm, acting chops, and sex-appeal to every role he plays.

Michael Fairman TV chatted it up with Jordi for this tease of what’s to come when he hits Genoa City, what it has been like working with his new co-stars, nabbing this sought-after role, and reflecting back on the journey that got him here.  Check out what he shared below.

When the news broke that you were coming to Y&R, fans of the genre were really excited.  I thought it was a great testament to you.

JORDI:  It’s great.  I mean, the way that the show has announced me and has been pushing me… from the promo that was just released this week, to my discussions with Mal Young ((EP and head writer, Y&R).  Everybody has just been asking me if I’m good, and the network is really responding to my work.  Because, you never know, right?  You put it out there, but when you get that feedback, it’s like, “Okay.  I’m doing the right thing here.”  There’s been a lot of reassurance, which is always great for people to get in a workplace.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Do you feel pressure now to deliver to Mal and to the audience?

JORDI:  Of course.  I always do.  What do they say?  Innocence is bliss?  Naiveté is bliss?  I didn’t know what the hell I was doing when I first walked on to Guiding Light!  It’s such a great place to be in as a young kid.  I was just like, “I’m an actor.  I’m going to create a character…”

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

And you won an Emmy!

JORDI:  And I won an Emmy … and then it’s “I’m going to go be a star, and I’m going to be in a pilot.”  I signed with a huge agency, and it was fantastic, and then reality sets in.  You get a couple of notches on your belt, and you get kicked in the ass a bit.  You learn, and then you crawl out of there, and you gain a lot of character doing that.  Really, in the last couple of years I’ve seen there are reasons for all of this stuff.  The lens that I’m looking through now is that of a father.  I just want to give them tools that can help them deal with life.  If they want to become actors, awesome.  Go for it.  I will support them.  Whatever it is they want to do, there are going to be ups and downs, and that’s all part of the journey.  For me, I think God has been molding me into the kind of man that I’ve always aspired to be.  .

From the Y&R promo this week, it looks like Rey is looking into what happened to J.T. (Thad Luckinbill)? 

JORDI:  Yes.  That has been revealed in the promo.  Rey is getting to know the heavyweights in town, and asking a lot of questions.

Speaking of heavyweights, what was it like working with Eric Braeden (Victor, Y&R) for the first time?

JORDI:  It was cool.  There was a little bit of that being in “awe” of him.  I never worked with him, but I always saw him on the cover of magazines.  I heard he’s very warm and open with other actors, which I got.  Playing with him on set, he kind of goes off the page a bit, which is fun.  After talking to him for about a minute, I felt like, “Okay, I get who this guy is.”  He’s very professional.

Will your new character be connected to anyone in Genoa City?

JORDI:  You never know.  It’s a soap!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

I would assume if you’re on the number one soap, Rey might have a lover interest.  Who would you like to be in a romantic story with, if they should write it?

JORDI:  All of the women! (Laughs)  All of them have so much to offer from Tracy E. Bregman (Lauren), to Sharon Case (Sharon), to Melissa Ordway (Abby).  I know I may be a little bit cryptic, but I have to say, everybody has been extremely lovely to work with.

What can you say about the character in a broad stroke?

JORDI:  I think Rey knows what he wants.   He is very serious about his work, and he has a lot of ways of working through different situations.  Whether it’s a smile or knowing something about you that you may have not known… he may bring you into his orbit in that way.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

He’s a mind reader!?  (Laughs) 

JORDI:  He can really read people, I think!  He’s very adaptable.  He can be put in any situation and have a conversation with anyone.  From Victor Newman, to Sharon, to Michael… he can talk to whoever is thought of as having the most status.  He has that knack.

Is Rey street smart, or intelligent smart?

JORDI:  I would say both.  I think Rey grew up very quickly, and I think a lot of that is street smart.  I wouldn’t say he is an intellectual philosopher.  I would say he leans more towards street smart for sure.

Were you informed on what the long term trajectory of your storyline would be on Y&R? Other actors on the show have talked about how Mal Young tells them where the character is going, so it better prepares them when they are doing their scenes.

JORDI:  Yes.  I found out on a Tuesday that I got the job, and I was asked to come in on Wednesday to wardrobe, and start work on Thursday, and I did four shows that week.  I sat down with Mal for an hour.  I had only met him at the screentest and there were a lot of heavyweights there up for this part.  He told me about his history, where Rey came from.  He showed me what he was doing on the show, how he was trying to change things, and some really exciting things that he was doing.  Mal was an open book, and then he did break down what he saw as the next couple of months for my character would be, which I fell in love with. I was like, “Yes! This is so cool.  This is a meaty story.  This has roots in a lot of things that I can pull from, that I am passionate about, and that are meaningful   I felt in a sense, that it was collaborative.  Even though he is steering the ship, he was interested in what I had to say as well and very open to questions.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

How does Rey stack up against your other daytime characters: GL’s Tony Santos, DAYS Dario, and AMC’s Griffin?

JORDI:  Man, it’s so funny, because somebody actually had sent me some clips of Tony the other day, and I was like, “Oh my God, that was crazy long ago!  Look at the clothes!  It was so mafioso,” but it was so cool and so fun.  There only will ever be one Tony Santos.  Then you go to Griffin Castillo who was a doctor and just starting to open up to Kendall (Alicia Minshew) and get that whole romance kicking on All My Children.  And as for DAYS Dario… God bless Dario … that poor guy.  What can I tell you about Dario?  He just couldn’t seem to make it work in Salem.  He couldn’t find his way, so he said, “You know what?  I’m going to run away!”  So, he just ran away, and who knows maybe he’s in Mexico running from the law, where I guess he resides now.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

You were recently at the All My Children and One Life to Live reunion event.   What did the fans say when you got to inform them that you were coming on to The Young and the Restless?

JORDI:  They were so happy for me.  There was a lot of joy and a lot of happiness.  That was the one thing that I got from it.  I think they get what the business that we are in, which I really appreciate.  It’s such a hustle.  You wait for that other gig to come down, and when you get it, it’s a great moment to share.  They get it.  A lot of that empathy was shared from the fans, and I really, really appreciated that.

Your former AMC co-star Rebecca Budig (Ex-Greenlee) was there, too.  How was it seeing her again?

JORDI: I did see her, but just for a second!  I think she was so caught up with seeing everyone. She’s beautiful!  She hasn’t aged.

When do you think viewers will know what Rey is up to in Genoa City?

JORDI:  Sooner rather than later.  We have very good pacing for his entry on to the canvas.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

We are wondering if Rey might be an adversary to Nick.  Did you know Joshua Morrow (Nick Newman) before you came to Y&R?

JORDI: I wonder of Rey and Nick will be nemeses too!  But no, I didn’t know Joshua.   He’s such a dude’s dude.  From the get go, he said, “Do not look at me when you’re on set, and are you ready for my breakfast order?”  (Laughs)  I kind of bowed down and said, “You know, you’ve been on this show for twenty years.  Are you a vegetarian, or can I throw some ham in your omelet?”  (Laughs)

So, are you excited to see what goes down when Jordi debuts tomorrow on The Young and the Restless?  Do you hope Rey is on the right side of the law? Which woman in Genoa City do you think would make a good romantic pairing for the guy? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

Executive Producer Frank Valentini Talks Returns, Exits, And Previews The Drama This Fall On General Hospital

Surprise returns, a wedding, a heartbreaking social issue storyline, romance, and heavy drama are all ahead this fall on General Hospital.

Executive Producer Frank Valentini sat down with Michael Fairman TV during the ABC TCA 2018 Summer Press Tour All-Star Reception to answer our rapid fire questions throughout the bustle of the industry event.

Valentini previewed what’s ahead in and around Port Charles for several characters and duos as the summer comes to a close, and a new season marks new beginnings.  He also addressed the recent cast exits that have seen fan favorites departing the ABC daytime drama series.

Now, as viewers will witness this week, there is some major distress ahead for several key characters that will play out over the next few months.

Here’s what the showrunner had to say about some hot topics that fans have been buzzing about, and more below.

Genie Francis (Laura) is coming back to the show, after all the uproar and demand for her to return.   You said there will be major story for her when she is back.  Is that true?

Photo: ABC

FRANK:  Yes, and we are very excited that she is coming back.  And yes, we have actually two big stories for Genie, and there is a little bit of overlap in them. When she comes back she jumps right into the big story, and the audience will know what the story is when they see her return. 

Chloe Lanier (Chloe) just wrapped up an incredible run on the show.  How do you feel about her departure from GH?  Did you know she was only planning on staying for a few years? 

FRANK:  We all knew that it was for a limited time. Nelle has sort of wreaked havoc on anyone she possibly could, and left in a big way and helped kick-off another big story with some other fan favorites including: Michael (Chad), Lucas (Ryan Carnes) and Brad (Parry Shen), and Bobbie (Jackie Zeman) and Carly (Laura Wright), and the Corinthos family.  So, that’s another fun thing to look forward to.  Chloe is just a tremendous young actress.  We all remember her from the 52nd anniversary episode, which was the Luke (Tony Geary) episode, which revealed the origin story. Chloe just really stood out to us, and we brought her back.  Everyone loved working with her and she is a great friend. 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Did you have any trepidation about doing another baby switch storyline?

FRANK:  Never, never!   This one has a twist on a double twist.  It’s a triple-axel! It will be gut-wrenching, for sure.

Then, Dominic Zamprogna (Ex-Dante) left GH.  How do you feel about him deciding to leave the show?

FRANK:  I love Dominic.  In fact, we just had dinner together a few weeks ago.  He is a great actor, but he wanted to try some other stuff.   We wish him all the best.  And you never know … the door is always open. 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Fans on social media have been commenting how the Drew/Sam/Jason triangle featuring: Billy Miller, Kelly Monaco ,and Steve Burton had started, and then was just kind of dropped and has not been playing out on-air.  Have you made the decision to not play that triangle?

FRANK:  No, we are definitely playing it.  There are many iterations:  Drew and Sam are connected through their children, and their love, and the history that they have.  And as well, Jason and Drew being brothers, and that Jason and Sam have their own history, as well.  There’s way more to come! 

Fans have commented, “What happened to this story?”

FRANK:   It’s a big show with a big cast.  Everyone takes a turn stepping forward, and then stepping back.

Courtesy/ABC

You brought on Elizabeth Hendrickson (Margaux) as a potential love interest for Drew?

FRANK:  Yes, and I knew her work from All My Children and The Young and the Restless, and she is a phenomenal actress and we are really lucky to have her.  Margaux has got the flash drive with Drew’s memories on it and that is an important piece of information to have.

Peter August aka Henrik Faison (Wes Ramsey) is still on the canvas.  Is your plan to have Peter create more havoc in Port Charles?

FRANK:  Wes Ramsey is a phenomenal actor.  I think he did a phenomenal job when Peter was kidnapped and tied-up.  It’s not easy to be in scenes where you are tied-up for almost four weeks, and to act, and to stay present in the stage of being a hostage.  I just though he knocked it out of the park  He is Robin’s (Kimberly McCullough) brother, he is Anna’s (Finola Hughes) son and with whatever is going to happen with Maxie, they are connected.  He is Maxie’s brother-in-law and baby James’ uncle.  There is a lot of story there.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Finola Hughes is back after taking some time-off.  Now, Anna and Finn’s (Michael Easton) relationship will be further explored as they now fight a common enemy.  What can you share about this duo?

FRANK:  Finola had a mini-vacation. She is incredibly hard-working, and we try to make sure actors’ have enough time in their personal life to have fun, and go on vacations, and be with their family. This was something we were able to work out story-wise.  But also, Hamilton will be involved with his family and there is some story there and also as you see, when Finola came back we launched into a big story with them.  There is so much to explore in their relationship. For Anna, she has only had two great loves in her life, Duke (Ian Buchanan) and Robert (Tristan Rogers).  So for her to open up her heart to someone else is a big deal, and we will explore that as well, and what that means.

Michelle Stafford (Nina) has been delivering in scene after scene as the grieving sister, following the death of her brother, detective Nathan West.  What is in store for her Nina and her relationship, Valentin (James Patrick Stuart)?

FRANK:  Valentin and Nina are separated right now, and that is never going to sit well with Valentin.  He is going to do everything in his power to try and win her back.  That will not only be fun to watch, but it will be interesting and full of twists, as well.

Courtesy/ABC

Chase (Josh Swickard) and Maxie seems like they could make for an interesting pairing. Will you explore that at this point?

FRANK:  There is a lot of potential with Maxie, but I don’t think Maxie is ready to be in a relationship.  She has tons of story with Lulu (Emme Rylan), and as well with her parents, and there will be lots of other fun things going on with her, but I don’t see a romance right now being front and center in her life.

Daytime Emmy winner, Lexi Ainsworth (Krstina) is coming back to GH.  Fans had been calling for her return.  Why the decision now to bring her on to the canvas?

FRANK:  We love Lexi!  Her parents are two of the most important people on the show, Sonny (Maurice Benard) and Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn).  It just seemed like a no-brainer, and she was available. We have a really fun story for her, as well.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, there is no Parker (Ashley Jones) in Kristina’s life, right now?

FRANK:  We will see as we go along, and we will uncover the truth about that relationship, as well. 

You brought one of the finest actresses in Tamara Braun back to GH.   Do you plan on utilizing her more … and will Kim be driving story?

FRANK:  Kim is going to have a very big story this fall.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

What can you share on the future of Julian (William deVry) and Alexis?

FRANK:  They will be part of the Kim story as well, and their own story.  Alexis is going to be involved in different stories that will culminate in a story of her own, as well

Patricia Bethune was great as Nurse Mary Pat as Carly’s nemesis at Ferncliff.   She is an amazing character actress.  Did you plan on keeping her around as long as you have?

FRANK:  She is just a great actress and we really lucked out.  She played the balance of very deadly serious and dangerous, and also with a sardonic and sarcastic sort of comedic bent to it.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Let’s talk Liz (Rebecca Herbst) and Franco (Roger Howarth).  Is there a wedding? And if so, will it go off without a hitch?

FRANK:   There is a wedding coming in the fall.  And how could a wedding between Liz and Franco be anything but explosive and hilarious?  How funny was Roger Howarth in the remote scenes where they save Carly at Ferncliff, and he is sitting in the car and he says, “You knocked over my art supplies.”  I mean, that is pretty great stuff. 

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

You recently had OLTL fan favorite Patrick J. Gibbons (Ex-Sam Manning) on GH, in role of Wyatt … the scout who tripped upon Peter being held hostage in the cabin.   How was it working with him again after your time together in Llanview?

FRANK:  Patrick and his family are very good friends of mine, who I have always had a connection with. When the writers came up with the part of Wyatt, I thought Patrick would be perfect for it.  He was wonderful.   Patrick has the right amount of innocence. He has grown so much as an actor, and he is still only 11.  I thought he was phenomenal. He played the wonder and the dedication to the scouts and trying to figure it out in fear of Obrecht (Kathleen Gati).   I thought he did such a nice job,   He is a lovely kid.  I was so happy to reconnect with him.

You have recast Vinessa Antoine’s role of Jordan Ashford with Briana Nicole Henry. Vinessa has gone on to be the series lead in the upcoming Canadian TV drama, Diggstown.  Isn’t it always hard to recast a role?

FRANK:  It’s always hard to recast and we never take it lightly.  We always want to make sure we bring in somebody good.  Curtis (Donnell Turner) and Jordan are in a position in their story where it’s important to keep them on the canvas, and write –off the character of Jordan for a frivolous reason. We would not want to do that to the audience.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

The Alzheimer’s storyline is one of the important social and medical issues of our time to shed a light on.  Through Max Gail’s (Mike) performances, it has resonated so much to the audience.  Do you plan on continuing taking the viewers through the most difficult and tragic moments in the journey of someone who cannot escape this illness, and the toll it takes on its loved ones?

FRANK:  I think that Max Gail, like Vernee Watson (Stella), took us by surprise at how amazing they are. The Alzheimer’s story is very near and dear to all of our hearts.  We want to tell it in a way that is very realistic, but to also emphasis the hope and the family connection, and the love that is that family. Sometimes in the face of tragedy, it brings out the best in human beings.  There is something very uplifting about that, even though we are telling a very sad story.  Mike realizes that this family loves him, even though he has made mistakes. There is a tremendous amount of forgiveness and a tremendous amount of empathy and sympathy, and reconciliation in moving forward.  I think the relationship between Max and Sonny is played beautifully by Max and Maurice Benard.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

What is ahead for Ava Jerome (Maura West), now that the secret is out that the man she thought she could trust and who loved her, Griffin Munro (Matt Cohen) slept with her daughter, Kiki (Hayley Erin)?

FRANK:  Ava explodes over the next couple of weeks and has a major, major story. Maura West has never been better!

Photo Credit: JPI Studips

What is ahead now for Carly?  She holds the clue that there has been a switcheroo at Ferncliff involving her “therapist” Kevin Collins (Jon Lindstrom).  Will she be the one to figure it out? 

FRANK:  Carly will definitely be dealing with the repercussions from Ferncliff, and also some family situations, and also something big coming up with Sonny. She will also be helping Michael through his difficult time, because she is a good mother.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, what story are you looking forward to seeing play out?  Are you excited for the return of Genie Francis? What did you think about the EP’s thoughts on the departures, the returns, and the plans for the characters in Port Charles this fall? Comment below.

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General Hospital

Val Chmerkovskiy Talks On Judging DWTS Juniors & How GH’s Kelly Monaco Changed His Career!

When ABC’s Dancing with the Stars: Juniors premiere with a two-hour series premiere on October 7th, three notables will be behind the desk judging the competition as celebrity kids battle it out, and show their dance moves along with the pros they are paired with.

The show has cast: “DWTS: Athletes” champion and Olympic figure skater, Adam Rippon; professional dancer, Emmy-winning choreographer Mandy Moore, whose credits include “DWTS,” “So You Think You Can Dance” and “La La Land,” and professional dancer and “DTWS” pro Val Chmerkovskiy. to critique the competition.

This week at the ABC Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour All-Star Cocktail Reception, Michael Fairman TV caught up with Val to ask him about flipping the scenario, where this time he is a judge and not in the competition on the ballroom dance flooor, how he hopes to impact the kids in the running for the Mirror Ball Junior Trophy, and of course, for General Hospital fans, recalling his most memorable season and dance partner, Kelly Monaco.

As viewers remember, the duo lit up the dance floor when Kelly returned to the show (she won the 1st season) in 2012 for season 15.  That was the “All-Stars” season where she was paired with Val.  They took home third place.  Their friendship and chemistry was always much talked about, but it was Kelly who has had a great impact on Val as he notes below.  Here is what he had to share about his new gig and his time in the ballroom with Ms. Monaco!

How do you feel about being in the judges’ chair for the first time?

VAL:  I feel a great deal of responsibility.  I will be honest with these kids, and treat them with respect, and give them feedback that will better give them the ability to not just become better dancers, but better people.

At what age did you start dancing?

VAL:  I started dancing at 7-years-old against my will.  My brother, Maksim, started first.  We moved with my parents to America when I was 8.  They just didn’t have time to drive us to different places.  They were like, “Look, we’re going to work, so you go with your brother.” So, I started tagging along and it changed my life.  I thank my parents every day for that.

Courtesy/ABC

Between yourself, Adam Rippon and Mandy Moore, do you see yourself as the one being the critically hard judge on the kids?

VAL:  I think the approach to this is a little different.  Those that are judging are very passionate about the opportunity, and the last thing we want to do is patronize the kids, as well.  We want to tell them the truth.  I think people got it wrong with trying to shelter kids from honesty.  You can shelter them from dishonesty and brutally, but you can be honest with them.  Ultimately, my job is to give them constructive criticism. That is what I will do, and am currently doing,

With all the amount of seasons you have been on Dancing with the Stars, is it difficult to keep it fresh in the choreography and come up with new routines for partner, after partner?

VAL: Yes!  It is difficult. There are many times you to fall back into redundant type of choices, but ultimately that individual is that that new palette and new color that I get to paint with. So, every time I get a new dance partner, that partner provides me with all the inspiration I need to come up with something fresh.

Courtesy/ABC

What is your takeaway from your season dancing with General Hospital’s Kelly Monaco (Sam)?

VAL:  My takeaway is that she broke me into the mainstream.  She was my breakout season of Dancing with the Stars.  Kelly taught me a lot.  It was my third season on the show and I was really fresh to this industry and this town.  She always told me to, “Know your audience” and to know who you are talking to and you will always know the right thing to say.

Kelly is such a hard-worker and she really gave it a 110% in the competition with you learning the dance steps and battling it out with the other couples.  She’s a fighter who always perseveres. 

VAL:  She is from Philly and I am from New York.  I think there was that east coast connection between us.   Kelly is an incredible person.  We are great friends, and she taught me a lot, and I also in return, through dance, and through this show, was able to change her life in a lot of ways as well.

So, what did you think about the sentiments shared by Val on his former dance partner, GH’s Kelly Monaco? What do you think about the concept of DWTS: Juniors? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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