Who says cliffhangers only happen on Fridays? Viewers gasped at the end of today’s episode of The Young and the Restless when they saw J.T. Hellstrom (Thad Luckinbill) peering into the Abbott cabin where his ‘killers’ are hiding out!
Luckinbill told TV Insider that newly-installed head writer Josh Griffith approached him about coming back to finish the storyline and answer the question once and for all as to whether or not J.T. survived being clubbed over the head and buried alive!
For starters, the actor addressed concerns many viewers had that J.T. becoming an abuser seemed out of character.
He felt that he could handle the material, keeping the integrity of J.T. intact along the way. “I knew I could ‘massage’ angles, things that were too strong for the character, and in places where it might have been softer, I could try to amp it up,” Luckinbill says.
The primary motivation Luckinbill used to show J.T.’s anger was the pain he felt over Victor’s (Eric Braeden) inadvertent role in the death of Colleen (Tammin Sursok; Lyndsy Fonseca), who’d been J.T.’s love for years.
“That relationship was a big part of what I used to justify where the character was. Other things came to light that I didn’t even know about. Even in this next round of me being there, it’s really clever what Josh [Griffith, head writer] has come up with.”
The story called for Luckinbill to play an abusive character towards his ex, Victoria (Amelia Heinle), who happens to be played by the actor’s real-life wife.
“To be honest, I don’t know what I would have done it with anyone else,” the actor says. “Amelia’s a great actress.”
There’s no telling how long Luckinbill’s set to stick around this time. Hopefully it’ll be long enough to exonerate Victoria, Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott), and Sharon (Sharon Case!) if, that is, they live long enough! Stay tuned to find out!
The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS. Check local listings for air times.