Long-time vet responds to suggestion that his character be killed off

Posted Sunday, January 15, 2023 1:26:29 PM
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The suggestion that The Young and the Restless permanently write off an off-screen character has generated a strong response.

Don't look now, but the suggestion that The Young and the Restless should consider killing of a character isn't sitting well with some fans.

First, let's start by saying that there is no indication that Y&R is planning to celebrate its 50th anniversary by knocking off a character. Could they? Sure, anything is possible. Has any sort of official announcement been made? No. At least not yet.

How did all of this unsubstantiated chatter about a Genoa City resident meeting their maker get started? Earlier this month, Soaps suggested that "The Young and the Restless should run out Paul Williams for its 50th anniversary." Wait, what?! The rationale was that if Y&R has no plans to ever bring the character back to the canvas, then there is no reason to have the character doing his best impersonation of Fievel the Mouse -- you know, being somewhere out there. Paul's constant MIA status is potentially holding up possible story for other characters.

The character most being held back, it would seem, is Paul's wife Christine, who has been seen on-screen as recently as this month. Not every story has to involve both spouses, but there's not a whole lot of soapy story potential for Christine without her husband. Will Paul be explained as being at the dry cleaner? Getting the oil changed on his car? Does the show not mention Paul at all to avoid the awkwardness of him not being around?

It seems unlikely that Y&R would recast the role of Paul, played for 40 yearsplayed by Emmy winner Doug Davidson until he was taken off contract in 2018 -- ironically just a matter of months after that milestone 40th anniversary. Davidson's most recent Y&R appearance was in 2019. After agreeing to drop to recurring status, Davidson hinted that his character might have been killed off had he not agreed.

"After I finished, I went to his office. Mal [Young, Y&R's then-executive producer] told me he was taking me off contract and that he preferred no one knew because it wouldn't do me or them any good. He'd rather use me [in a recurring capacity] than hiring somebody nobody knows. I thought that was the nicest take it or leave it I ever heard. And if I didn't agree they would probably kill me off or something like that. I did agree to go on recurring," Davidson said at the time.

Now that killing Paul is being talked about, Davidson calls it "hurtful."

"I get the absence isn't explained and [killing Paul] would stop the questions, but it's hurtful," Davidson shared in a Twitter post. "In addition, not sure what it buys you story wise. But not my call."

Fans have already come up with scenarios that explain what Y&R could get story wise from Paul's death. Christine could get back together with Danny Romalotti. Michael Damian made a yearend visit to Y&R and has hinted on social media that he is ready to return sooner rather than later. Other suggestions involved romances with Jack and Nick, both exes of Christine's nemesis Phyllis Summers.

While the discussion of Paul being killed off has generated a lot of buzz, it should be noted that fans have come out in force on social media to ask that Paul not be killed off. The outpouring of love put Davidson at a loss for words. "I don't even know how to thank you all for all the love. Just know I am sending all my love back. You all are so amazing," Davidson wrote.

Should Y&R write off Paul Williams permanently? Why or why not? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.

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