While watching Nikki gaze through the pictures of her family in her photo album, I realized that these wonderful classic episodes of The Young and the Restless are just like watching snapshots of our beloved characters at different points of their lives. These terrific memories have been stored away on film, just as the photos were in Nikki's album, for us to see again and to be reminded of some of our happiest times. Viewing a soap story from the past can even have the power to transport us back in time to a different world when we were younger and braver. For instance, when One Life to Live's Viki was in the hospital while giving birth to her first son, I was also in the hospital, delivering my first son. Do you remember where you were when Neil regained his sight in time to see Devon in bed with Hilary? What about when Devon's hearing was restored?
These many weeks of classic episodes have been a wonderful reminder of all the spectacular performances we have watched throughout the years. And the episodes coming up this week will be about the award-winning moments in the past from some of our favorite actors. But let's look at the future, shall we? Congratulations to our Y&R Daytime Emmy nominees! Jason Thompson! Mark Grossman! Bryton James! Christel Khalil! Sasha Calle! Elissa Kapneck! Eva LaRue! Jeffrey Vincent Parise! You all deserve to win, and I hope you do. (Maybe there will be a tie in the Outstanding Supporting Actor and the Outstanding Guest Performer categories so they can all win!) And I will also be crossing my fingers for Y&R to win for Outstanding Drama Series during the Daytime Emmy Awards telecast on June 26th.
It's remarkable that Y&R had outstanding performances by three guests, and they were all terrific. While her appearance was brief, Elissa Kapneck's stint as homeless mother Sasha with her infant daughter, Joy, was powerful and gave Nikki the chance to spread the "joy" to this family during the holidays. I loved seeing Eva LaRue as a character other than Maria on All My Children, and she was terrific as Lola's mom, Celeste. When she first arrived in town, it looked as if Celeste was going to be paired up with Jack, but it never happened. That really was a missed opportunity, since Jack needs a new lady in his life, and Celeste could fit the bill. Jack's been alone long enough. And the diabolical if somewhat inept kidnapper Simon was wonderfully played by Jeffrey Vincent Parise. Any of these actors could deservingly grab that coveted statue for Outstanding Guest Performer.
At one time, Lola Rosales and Kyle Abbott were so sweet together, and they appeared to be the fairytale couple that one can only dream about -- until Kyle decided that he really wanted Summer, after all. Sasha Calle was so convincing as Lola, who was willing to let her man marry her rival after Summer saved Lola's life by donating part of her liver to the saucy chef. As she lay in her hospital bed, Lola sobbed when she believed that her dream life with Kyle was over, which turned out to be true later, although she couldn't have possibly known that then. Ms. Calle's performance was heartbreaking, and she could possibly snag the win for Outstanding Younger Performer.
Adam Newman has proven to be one of the most complex characters on Y&R throughout the years, since he can be different shades of grey, depending on the actor playing him. Mark Grossman has most certainly put his own spin on Adam by turning his grey a little darker, maybe a charcoal grey, while still cherishing the loves of his life, Chelsea and Connor. Mark's Adam has shown that, like his father, he will do anything, even if it means going to extremes, for his family. Adam also had no qualms about risking his father's life by altering Victor's medication when he wanted to get a little payback for what he perceived to be Victor's disloyalty. Adam is definitely a chip off the old block, which is why Mark Grossman has a legitimate chance for winning as Outstanding Supporting Actor.
Also in the Outstanding Supporting Actor category is Bryton James, whose portrayal of Devon Hamilton has been spot-on throughout the years. The adopted son of Neil and Drucilla Winters has grown and flourished in Genoa City, since Devon always had Neil's loving advice and wisdom to guide him throughout the years. Once Neil was gone, Devon realized he had lost the father who had always supported him and who had given his unconditional love to his son, even throughout the most trying times. I will never forget the Neil/Hilary/Devon triangle had created a lot of heartache and bitterness between father and son, but that couldn't even destroy their love for each other. Devon bid his father a loving goodbye, which earned him the nomination for a Daytime Emmy Award.
Lily Winters Ashby also had to say farewell to the father she adored, which was very difficult for her to do. As Lily, Christel Khalil was in tears when she cried and said that she just wasn't ready yet to say goodbye, and the viewers knew that her tears were not only meant for Neil but also for the awesome Kristoff St. John. While life can imitate art, the opposite was true, since Neil had to leave us when we lost the brilliant Mr. St. John. So, Lily, Devon, the entire Y&R family, and even we fans grieved, and Lily's tears were a symbol of the loss that we felt. After already losing her mother and her marriage to Cane, Christel Khalil showed just how much Lily was alone, and she truly deserved the nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress.
Billy Abbott is another truly complicated character -- although maybe not quite as dark as Adam -- and Jason Thompson has been amazing in putting his own spin on a character that had already earned wins for previous actors for Daytime Emmy Awards. Billy Abbott always seems to have an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other, and he tends to brush the angel off while heeding the advice from the devil. Billy has his demons, and most of them have been lurking within, as he demonstrated in the clip where the good Billy that Victoria loved was battling for control over the bad Billy, who was out for revenge on Adam. Jason Thompson shone during that time, which could very well give him the win for Outstanding Lead Actor.
Up until a couple of years ago, for four or five years, I was honored to be a member of the Soap Central team that would make predictions for who would win the Daytime Emmy award in each category, based on the episodes that the actors had submitted. At the time, those complete episodes would be sent to each member of the team, and we would pick which actor or actress we thought would win, as well as our choice for Outstanding Drama Series. It was a tad competitive, but I truly enjoyed seeing the choices made from the other members of the prediction team. And I loved it when one or more would agree with my choice. It was so much fun.
Sadly, now that we can only get short clips from the submitted episodes, we are no longer able to do the predictions. If we are able to get full episodes again down the road -- and I know that Soap Central's top soaper Dan J Kroll is actively petitioning for this -- hopefully, we can offer our predictions again. We loved making them, and the fans loved reading them, since we would always explain why we would make the selections that we did. It was all harmless fun that can hopefully be restored in the future.
My best and favorite year for Daytime Emmy Awards predictions was 2014. Y&R was truly "outstanding" in 2014, since the soap won that year for Outstanding Drama Series. And after two previous wins, Billy Miller won again as Billy Abbott on Y&R. I knew he would. There was no doubt in my mind. As I viewed his submitted episode, I watched as he had a catch in his throat when Billy talked about the loss of his darling Delia, and I knew at that moment that he would win. Billy Abbott was filled with angst, guilt, sorrow, and anger, and Billy Miller was able to successfully convey it all. Plus, my mother and I were (and still are) both huge Billy Miller fans, so we were thrilled when he won the award for Outstanding Lead Actor for that year and for that storyline.
I also was positive that Amelia Heinle would win in 2014 for the same storyline, and she even submitted the same episode as Billy Miller, because it was that great. As I stated at the time of my prediction, Victoria "had me spellbound and crying in almost every scene she was in" during the hit-and-run tragedy, and the episode she submitted "showcased all the emotion, heartbreak, and guilt Victoria had suffered," because she mourned the stepdaughter she had loved, worried about her husband, and also felt guilty about indirectly being the cause of the hit-and-run accident, since she was the one who had asked Billy to stop at the store for ice cream on his way home. Amelia Heinle was fantastic, and I was so thrilled when she won for Outstanding Supporting Actress.
And I predicted that Hunter Haley King would win for Outstanding Younger Actress in 2014, when Summer learned (erroneously) that Nick was not her biological father. Of course, we all know now that she is; however, Summer was truly devastated when "she found out that the dad who had always called her his 'Supergirl' was not really her dad in blood." Summer was totally lost and felt that her world had been shaken down to the core, which was why Hunter Haley King deserved the win that year. 2014 was an awesome year for Y&R in winning Daytime Emmy awards, and hopefully, 2020 will be another outstanding year for Y&R. Good luck!
Nikki was looking at pictures in the photo album of her children at various ages in 1996, because Nick was getting ready to marry Sharon. During the last couple of weeks, the classic episodes have been all about the love and romance between two people, and it was all so sweet, highlighting the glamorous weddings at a time when non-weddings are more of the norm for soaps. Couples are lucky if they can walk down the aisle these days! In the last six years, Nick and Sharon were in the middle of exchanging their vows twice, when first, Phyllis awoke from her coma and stopped the wedding, and second, Sharon learned shortly before saying "I do" that Nick had cheated with his redheaded ex once again and confronted him at the altar. That sure put a damper on things.
Some of these past classic episodes have been reminders that, whenever Nikki is around, Victor and Jack seem to play tug of war with her, like two dogs with a bone.
Maybe it's time for Daniel to return to Genoa City. Hmm...Daniel, Lily, and Billy. Wouldn't that make for a fun triangle? Add Cane to the mix, and the three dashing guys could all be pursuing the lovely lady.
Michelle Stafford somehow managed to pull off looking absolutely gorgeous, even dressed in an apron. Even though Phyllis was very obviously pregnant, she really was stunning in her all-white attire.
With The Bold and the Beautiful resuming production, hopefully, Y&R will be making new episodes in the very near future, also. The writers should seriously consider including COVID-19 in the new stories, since that would be based on reality and also since the soaps are always searching for new topics for storylines. Y&R will need to adjust the way the episodes are being filmed by limiting the number of cast and crew per scene, anyway, which would mirror the hardship that we've all had to bear throughout this time. And this also may allow the opportunity for more of the romance and less of the sex to shine through during this difficult time. While tragedies such as hurricanes and tornadoes only hit certain areas of the country, the pandemic has affected everyone all over the world, and may we all stay strong to beat this enemy!
Until next time, please stay tuned.
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