The Young and the Restless’ Gloria Fisher Abbott Bardwell, played by fan-favorite Judith Chapman, has been rich and she’s been poor. The bad news for Gloria is that she’s currently the latter, but the good news for YR fans is that Gloria being in dire financial straights has resulted in some emotionally-packed and entertaining scenes.
Judith Chapman — Performer of the Week
Recently, Gloria sparred with Phyllis (Michelle Stafford) over her lack of employment in which Chapman displayed Glo’s charming bravado. However, in scenes with daughter-in-law Lauren (Tracey Bregman), Gloria let her façade crumble, showing true vulnerability. Chapman’s recent performances have earned her Soap Hub’s Performer of the Week honors for YR.
First, Gloria made her grand entrance into the Grand Phoenix where she complimented Phyllis on her hotel and announced she was looking for a job. Gloria pitched herself as a frontwoman for the Escape Club, a new hot spot at the Phoenix. Phyllis and Gloria played cat-and-mouse as Gloria tried to make herself look like a desirable candidate. As Phyllis is in the power position, she had the final say — and her answer was no. Gloria knew she was down but not out.
“Gloria wants a job” may not sound like the most compelling drama in the history of soaps, but Chapman took that logline and the words in the script and spun them into gold. Gloria opened her heart up to Lauren, hoping and praying and needing her daughter-in-law to give her a much-needed break.
She explained to Lauren that she is desperate for a gig to pay off some bills and “nobody is willing to give me a chance.” Lauren, not without compassion, firmly explained to Gloria that she’s burned too many bridges for anyone to get into business with her. Chapman, her voice quivered, as Gloria said if she hears one more time someone say they’ll keep their eyes and ears open she’ll explode!
Glo admitted to having made mistakes but professed that she had changed and noted those mistakes helped enable her to survive. This is one of the things fans love most about Gloria — she is a survivor! Next, Glo pulled out all the stops by using the “f” word — “family.” We couldn’t see Lauren saying no to a non-family member — let alone her husband Michael’s (Christian Jules Le Blanc) mother.
Against her better judgment, Lauren informed Gloria that she was thinking of promoting Sally, which would create an opening for Lauren’s executive assistant. Even Gloria realized that that might not be the best fit, but then, she hastily assured Lauren that she’d do her job and would do it well. “I just need a chance to get back on track and earn a paycheck,” Gloria said.
Lauren agreed to think about it (how could she not?), but one thing that requires no thinking at all is that Chapman knows how to make Gloria compelling. The actress takes the words on the page and taps into her character’s vulnerability, making her relatable to audiences.
Is it any wonder that Chapman has appeared on six daytime dramas, including YR, (seven if you count her taking Gloria briefly over to The Bold and the Beautiful)? Here’s hoping we continue to see the talented actress on a regular basis. After all, soaps need “have not” characters to balance all the millionaire folks. The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS. Check local listings for airtimes.