Rex and Katherine: This coupling proved that on The Young and the Restless (as in life), love can blossom even under the strange circumstances and at any age.
How Did Rex and Katherine Meet?
It’s been said that hell hath no fury as a woman scorned, and Jill Foster Abbott was a woman who felt particularly slighted. Not only did Katherine Chancellor’s efforts to gain custody of Phillip III result in Jill’s utter humiliation, but the “old battle-axe” had actually won temporary custody of the child that Jill had birthed!
Now she schemed to get even. But how would she ever be able to inflict on Katherine the embarrassment and the heartache that had been heaped upon her? Enter Brian Romalotti, a vagrant who frequented the sprawling Genoa City recreational area.
In Brian, Jill saw the possibility of the ultimate revenge. She would act as Svengali to this broken-down man by arranging a new coiffure, dressing him in finery, and reintroducing him to society – and all the new and improved “Rex Sterling” would have to do in return was court the very wealthy Katherine…
It was a proposition that Rex readily agreed to. Once he was cleaned up and acquainted with Katherine – who found him imminently charming – Rex also took the opportunity to reunite with his children, Danny and Gina.
But while Gina was more welcoming of her father, Danny immediately warned Katherine that she was involving herself with a con artist who had served time in prison. To compound Rex’s troubles, not only had he truly fallen in love with Katherine, but he suddenly found himself the object of Jill’s affections as well!
When Rex tried to renege on the bargain that he and Jill had struck – and then charged an engagement ring meant for Katherine to her credit card – Jill retaliated by presenting Katherine with her “wedding gift” – a box of receipts detailing every expense that Jill had covered when the money had supposedly come from Rex.
With his back against the wall, Rex confessed all. Later, in a bid to prove his sincerity, he promised that if she agreed to go through with the wedding, he would sign a prenuptial agreement that guaranteed him only one dollar should the union end in divorce.
When he signed on the dotted line, Katherine revealed the engagement was very much back on! The eventual ceremony proceeded without interruption, but just as soon as the couple had been declared Mr. and Mrs., heavily pregnant attendee Nina Webster – who would soon join the Chancellor family as Phillip’s bride – went into labor.
The Sterlings delayed their honeymoon and spent their wedding night pacing the halls of the hospital awaiting the arrival of Nina’s child, Phillip Robert Chancellor IV.
Jill: More Revenge
Over the next few years, the duo delighted in their unorthodox union, which included jaunts around town astride Rex’s motorcycle and harmless pranks and games of one-upmanship. It was a far cry from the dreary, loveless marriages that Katherine had become so accustomed to and her new carefree existence as Mrs. Sterling was exactly the tonic she desperately needed.
But the revelry was soon brought to a screeching halt. Thanks to the machinations of Clint Raddison – a former cellmate of Rex’s – Katherine found herself abducted and replaced by a near-identical looking hash-slinger named Marge Cotrooke.
Marge liquidated Katherine’s assets, sold the mansion and company, and drove Rex away with her smoking and drinking – vices that Katherine had long since conquered.
In his desperate hour, a now single Rex turned to Jill. And when her efforts to win back her former husband, John Abbott, failed, Jill agreed to marry him.
But who should greet them on their wedding night but the genuine Katherine, freshly sprung from captivity. Though she tried to play it cool, Katherine was admittedly, “seething” that the man she loved had been “going down the garden path with that SLUT!”
In time, Katherine and Rex reunited – but only after she had publicly revealed that his marriage was invalid and he, in turn, faked a heart attack to gain sympathy.
Their second The Young and the Restless wedding was even more lavish than the first and it was punctuated by a pre-vows duet of Katherine’s favorite song, I’m Gonna Live Till I Die.
Afterward, they weathered Katherine’s breast cancer diagnosis and her successful treatment. And though Katherine had feared the disease would part her and Rex, it would ultimately be an act of generosity that would prove fatal.
The Bitter End
Though it took some persuading, both Katherine and Rex agreed to Esther Valentine’s request that they switch roles with her. For one day, they served and Esther ruled.
The gentleman caller that Esther had been so desperate to impress with her charade wound up being a con-artist too. When he was found out, he attempted to rob the Chancellor estate’s safe and wound up shooting Rex dead! The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS. Check your local listings for airtimes.