Noah was back with a whole new look, and he probably noticed right away at Victoria's wedding that pretty much everyone he knew had already been coupled off. Well, except for Jack, of course. Shoot, it's just a shame that Noah hadn't brought his ark, so he could line them up two by two. Even the ones who weren't with a plus-one for the nuptials had a special someone at home, just waiting for their loved one's return. But Noah was focused on the very lovely lady that he had once cherished -- Tessa. However, Noah was savvy enough to realize that the dark-haired beauty was still with his sister Mariah, so he acted the friend to Tessa as he insisted that she could turn to him anytime, day or night. Preferably night, I'm sure, but that would probably only happen in his dreams.
It was somehow appropriate that Noah made his appearance just as his Aunt Victoria was marrying her man, so that Victoria and Ashland could spend whatever was left of his life together. (But knowing the soap gods, it's possible for a cure to suddenly appear out of thin air to ensure that his life could be a very long one.) So, Noah played it solo at the wedding when Ashland and Victoria joined together in sickness and in health (how fitting for this pair) to love and cherish until death do them part, which could be sooner than later depending on those finicky soap gods -- and the writers. But didn't Victoria look gorgeous in Sally's creation?! I was surprised and even a little touched when I saw Victoria hug the feisty redhead. Everyone's been figuratively beating up on Sally, so that was nice to witness.
Well, Victor sure did his darnedest to make sure that Victoria's marriage would be a happy one by putting Gaines on ice. Yeah, just as Nick had done, Victor locked the greedy, vindictive con man in a room so that he couldn't spread his own poisonous truth to ruin Victoria's life. Man, what was Gaines thinking going after the man meant to be the son-in-law of Victor Newman?! Better men than he have tried to cross the Mustache and have failed. Just ask Jack. As Ashland said, Gaines had all the money he could ever have wanted. First, not even including the past monthly payments, he got that hefty down payment from Ashland followed by a huge payoff from Victor to keep quiet, which, of course, he didn't do. Then Billy gave him a big chunk of change, too. But it just wasn't enough.
But at least Billy had some sense to finally let his vendetta against Ashland go by claiming that he destroyed the video sent by Gaines right in front of their eyes. But unless Ashland and Lily actually saw Billy hit the delete button, they don't know for sure that he sent it to the trash. Besides, with today's technology, that video wasn't gone for good, anyway. Billy could still retrieve it to deliberately wreck his ex-wife's future with the man she loved. Yet Billy called a truce, and Lily was very proud. I sure hope he meant it, but Billy's been known to be somewhat unscrupulous before. However, Billy sounded sincere, which he should be, since he would risk losing both his love, Lily, and the mother of his children, Victoria, if he pulled a fast one all for the glory of his career.
And after some romantic lovemaking, Billy announced to Lily that he had a good and bad idea for the story that he felt would work for both Victoria and for ChancComm. His brainstorm was to make Ashland the good guy and Gaines the bad guy (you know, the "good and bad" part of his idea) and spin the story in a way that Ashland would come out smelling like a rose. The story would focus solely on Gaines's past cons and fast money-making schemes, which would pile all the negativity on him. And sure, on paper, it sounds like a great idea; however, once the lid of that can comes off, the public would ask a lot of questions of how Ashland was put in that situation in the first place. Lily was wary of the story, also, which could turn around and bite them in the rear -- and it probably would.
However, Billy might have decided not to run the story once Victor announced that he intended to take Billy Boy Abbott and ChancComm down. How was Billy supposed to protect Gaines from Victor when he couldn't even protect himself? So, Victor declared that it was war and recruited Adam to join in on the fun. But you know that Victor's real prey was Billy, not ChancComm, because he had nothing against Lily. However, the best way to get Billy was to go after his beloved company, too, and Victor and Adam had Newman Media, which could be utilized for the fight. Billy then became concerned about stopping Gaines from ruining Victoria's life with his video, but if he had tried to do what was right by his ex in the first place, Victor would have had no reason to go after him again.
When they were back home, Lily questioned why Victor had threatened Billy so openly, when normally, he would just shoot him an icy glare. Was Victor giving them a chance to prepare for the battle, or was he using the warning to distract them. Yeah, Victor normally likes to catch his opponent off guard with a sneak attack, so they never see him coming. Lily and Billy suspected that his strategy was to misdirect them so that they wouldn't look too closely at what had happened to Gaines. Billy noted that Gaines still hadn't put the video out on social media, so they decided to find out what had happened to Jesse and to become a threat to crush the competition, Victor and Adam.
Yes, Adam was back in his daddy's good graces, and Victor's face beamed enough to light up the wedding ceremony whenever he talked in Italy about how pleased he was with his youngest son. Victor even spread his joy in his pride and joy to his daughter by telling her that Adam had saved the day -- and her wedding. Victoria was so pleased that her big day had gone off without (too much of) a hitch that she ignored the fact that her father was all about Adam again. So, the happy family celebrated with a special breakfast out on the palazzo terrace, all in harmony. Everyone but Nick, that is, who was still sulking about Ashland marrying his sister. It was amazing that Nikki could stomach her food, since Adam sat next to her during the breakfast. Things have changed.
It's great to have soap couples who have been happy together forever, but not every single one of them. Victor hasn't made Nikki mad enough to start drinking again in ages. I can remember when, at one time, Nikki and Neil were taking turns falling off the wagon. (I still miss Neil and Kristoff St. John!) But no, Nikki has stuck to her sobriety for ages, and while that's admirable, it can also be a little dull. Plus, I have read that Melody Thomas Scott loves playing a drunk Nikki. And while there's been some angst in other couples' lives, there's been nothing earth-shattering to really impel us to watch. There's just been a lot of almosts. Nick and Phyllis with Jack wishing and hoping. Rey and Sharon with Adam and Sharon both wishing and hoping. It's time to shake things up.
Okay, all Nick had wanted was for Victoria to invite him to her wedding, which she eventually did, so that he could witness his sister marry the man that she loved. And when he received the invitation from her, albeit not enthusiastically or even voluntarily, Nick refused to go. Hey, that's on him. Nick had the chance to be in attendance with Phyllis to show his support of his sister on her big day, and he blew it. And then Nick threw a tantrum when he felt that Victor had left Nick out of the plot to stop Gaines, even though he had included Adam. Hey, maybe Nick could join Gaines in his pity party. Poor me. Sure, Victoria had felt betrayed, but she'd get over it. Nick just needed to give her a little time and space. So, again, Nick felt like the outsider of the Newman family.
Nick hit the nail on the head when he observed that Phyllis was using his anger and frustration with his family as a reason to gripe again about the Newmans. Give Phyllis the ball, and she'll run with it. So, she ripped Victoria apart along with the rest of the Newmans, whom she believed had always supported Victoria 100%, no matter what. Oh yeah, Red was definitely green with envy. Although Nick and Phyllis were still together, they haven't exactly been on the same page about pretty much anything lately. Jack was still sitting on the sidelines, hoping to get his shot to play again. Speaking of Jack, I don't really get his hostility toward Sally, especially since he's usually a kind and gracious man. You'd think that he would wish her well, since he admired her tenacity, anyway. But no.
Phyllis and Nick appeared to be on even rockier ground when, after he dashed off to confront his father, she sought solace from Jack. While she talked about Nick and his family, Jack insisted that Phyllis get rid of the "self-blame," because he felt that she had matured a lot from the old days, when she would seek out any excuse to go after the Newmans. Jack was obviously still crazy over his Red, and Phyllis still cared so much about him. Phyllis could talk to Jack in a way that she never had been able to with Nick. Jack didn't judge her the way that Nick tended to do, and Phyllis was so touched that she laid her head on his shoulder, which Sally saw, so she took a picture. Oops, I guess Jack should have been a little nicer to her and should have complimented her on her lovely dress.
Nick demanded to know why Victor had included Adam in his plans to stop Gaines; however, he had completely left his older son out of the loop. Victor said that he was only shielding Nick, who had made it very clear that he did not support Victoria's wedding and would not help to protect Ashland. However, Nick saw it as Victor preparing for the next battle of turning one family member against another and resented that Victor had excluded him. Nick pointed out that he had done what Victor had wanted by digging up the dirt on Ashland, but that "no good deed goes unpunished." Victor stressed that he knew that Nick had wanted to patch things up with Victoria, and he didn't want to interfere with that. So, in a way, Nick was leaving Phyllis out, just as his dad was doing to him.
Then Nick not only left Phyllis out mentally, but also physically, when he decided to travel back with Noah to London to get away from his family and to clear his head. What? Noah's leaving so soon? That's too bad, since he's one of the few who can be really considered one of the young and the restless. Anyway, even though Nick claimed his problems were all on him, Phyllis still felt the rift between them was all her fault, because, you know, in her mind, everything is all about her. Nick was already fed up with his family, but he looked quite peeved when Phyllis let him know that she had been running to talk to her confidant, Jack, about their problems. That bugged Nick -- and rightfully so.
But wait...Noah wasn't so gone, after all, when he returned home to Genoa City with Nick. Sharon was absolutely surprised and delighted. But as much as his parents tried, Noah refused to speak of his life in London and of the reason for his return. Sharon was concerned that something or someone had chased him away from London, and from the way he talked to Tessa in Italy about how he had never found anyone else who could relate to him as she had when they were together, the someone may have been a lady. And just as Mariah turned to the baby to help her adjust to her mixed-up feelings, Noah seemed to be doing the same with Tessa. With Mariah's mental confusion, Noah may try to slip in to recreate the love triangle with the siblings and Tessa, minus the right angles.
Man, what is the deal with Jack? Any issues he had once had with Sally were personal, not professional. Jack had always seen that Sally was very talented, ambitious, driven, and a true go-getter. So, did he expect her to sit on the sidelines and expect her success in fashion to come to her? In such a competitive field, Sally needed to do whatever she legally could to get her creations out in the public eye. But, by constantly being rude to her about her tactics in her profession, Jack was flirting with danger, since Sally already had a beef with Phyllis. It seemed he was darting over to join Red on Sally's target with his nasty and hurtful words. Sally overheard Jack and Phyllis talk about flying back together on his jet, which gave her even more ammunition against the pair. Bull's-eye!
When Sally wanted something, she had no problem going all out to get it, and her next target was Adam. However, one reason that Adam was no longer attached was due to Melissa Claire Egan's maternity leave -- and the fact that Chelsea had framed Adam for poisoning Rey. Chelsea had finally crossed the line with that stunt, and Adam hadn't been so quick to forgive her, or they might still be together. But Sally being Sally wouldn't take no for an answer, which Adam understood, since he was an all-or-nothing type of guy himself. He knew that Sally wouldn't be satisfied with just one night and would want more, which he wasn't ready to give. Sally just hoped that when he was, Adam would want to be with her. But I don't know...Chelsea might have something to say about that.
How dare Lauren expect Chloe to reveal all her business strategies to her and to get Lauren's approval before taking any action at Newman Media?! Didn't Lauren get the memo? Fenmore's and the Newman Media fashion line are competitors. Chloe should have taken Sally's side more, but I realize that it was because Lauren was family. Still, this was business, and Chloe was right that, as a new company just starting, they needed the publicity that Sally had created with the dress switcheroo. Lauren felt betrayed by Chloe, which was absurd. Why should Chloe be expected to give more loyalty to Fenmore's than to her own company? Lauren also resented Sally because she was an enterprising and even pushy force of nature, which is exactly the type of person that a new company needs.
So, Chloe warned Sally upon her return that trouble was brewing because Lauren had learned of their "scheme," and Sally regretted that. But Lauren arrived and accused Sally of stealing her designer's dress, which Sally denied. Come on, Sally had given the other dress back to Victoria before the wedding, and Victoria was the one who had made the choice. Lauren was just being a sore loser. And Adam was right -- Lauren may win the next round. If a man had taken the steps that Sally did to get her dress seen, everyone would have patted him on the back. But then again, in a way, this new feud reminds me of when Victor would go against Jack in a business deal. Or against anyone else, for that matter. Lauren just needs to put her big girl panties on to fight another day.
Okay, Mariah seemed better in that she realized that she was still obsessed with "Bowie" and that she was finding it hard to break the connection between them. She acknowledged that to both Abby and Devon, too, so she appeared to be on the right track in trying to move on. And Mariah was happy to see Tessa after she returned home, so that was good. It was time for the Baby Dominic Crew to work together toward giving him a wonderful life without his daddy at home. Abby sure was missing Chance and her good friend and superb chef, Lola. Yeah, I knew that it would be awhile before we saw Lola again once she left. Best of luck, Sasha Calle!
But Mariah proved that her head was clear when she apologized to Tessa for unilaterally deciding that they should have a baby, when that decision was for both of them. The time alone had really done her some good. Mariah was back on board with being a part of the Baby Dominic Crew, and maybe one day, she will even be fine with the name not being the Baby Bowie Crew. While Mariah loved the gondolier teddy bear that Tessa had gifted her, she requested to give it to Dominic and wanted to do it then and there. Tessa was quite surprised, since Mariah had just visited the little one, but Mariah insisted, so there was still work to be done. Okay, baby steps...and yes, that is a pun.
In the meantime, while Abby waited for word from Christine about Chance, Ashley tried to prepare her for news that might not be good -- and it wasn't. Christine related that Chance's location had been hit by a bomb and that there were no survivors. But Abby felt in her heart and soul that Chance was not dead. Okay, we all know what that means. Everyone will believe that Chance is dead, and once Abby has finally moved on and has adjusted to life without her husband, he will miraculously return, in true dramatic soapy fashion, expecting for his life to be just as it was when he left. Hey, that's the classic soap opera twist.
After years of non-wedding after non-wedding after non-wedding, it was nice to see a lovely lady dressed in a gorgeous gown actually get to walk down the aisle to join her man, who both then made it through the entire ceremony, getting to say their vows and finish their "I do's." This has become such a rare occasion on soaps since the days of the grand wedding affairs done for Luke and Laura on General Hospital and Cliff and Nina on All My Children. (Although it was cool that Peter Bergman got to take part in the latter celebration as well as this most recent one with Ashland and Victoria.) The setting was beautiful and gave a glamorous illusion of actually being in Italy, which made it that much more spectacular. Well done, Y&R!
When Nate asked her to dance, Sally politely refused and acknowledged that the only thing sadder than being alone was to be a third wheel. And that's so true. And, as Jack pointed out, nothing can make one feel more alone than being around a couple in love.
Elena looked lovely in her dress of the soft, pastel colors of pink and blue adorned with a shimmering silver pattern. It was no wonder why Nate couldn't take his eyes off her, although he looked pretty dapper himself.
It was weird to continually hear a crowd of people's voices in the background while only seeing two or three people around at any one time. Where on earth were all the other people hiding?
Chelsea and Adam were finding that it's hard for a split couple to raise a kid. It just takes a lot of communication, compromise, patience, and understanding and to always put the child's needs first. Some parents tend to forget that last part.
The lovey-dovey atmosphere in Italy followed Victoria and Ashland home, where Victoria only wanted to discuss her desired romantic honeymoon spot. What?! Tuscany practically shouts both romance and desire. Shoot, the honeymoon could have been included in a Tuscany wedding package, just like for a Las Vegas Elvis wedding. I should know, since my husband and I were married in Vegas by Elvis, and although it's not quite the same thing as Tuscany, it was still so romantic -- and fun!
Until next time, please stay tuned.
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