Fans have mixed feelings about the pairing of Billy and Phyllis on The Young and the Restless – and for good reason.
Phyllis (Gina Tognoni) is married to his brother, a brother Billy (Jason Thompson) adores and admires. Their relationship ceased being on the down-low when Billy’s mother Jill (Jess Walton) caught them in the act. When Jill confronted her son’s lover yesterday, it was a chance for fans to feel a catharsis as Jill voiced their thoughts during a searing argument. These two Emmy-winning actresses made the most of it!
The Heart of the Matter
Jill made sure they quickly got past the fruitless denials and into the meat of the situation. Enjoying the clarity that comes when you’re an observer and can see the big picture, an upset Jill asked Phyllis why they gave in to their baser instincts? Was it revenge against Jack? Phyllis voiced the audience’s thoughts – how can Jill judge her? It’s because Jill knows firsthand the fallout that happens after something like this.
When Jill slept with Jack while married to his father, she caused irrevocable harm. Then, she said something that hit home, that couldn’t be argued: “I wanted better for my son.” That stopped Phyllis cold. She admitted she loved Billy, and he loved her. The pain she was in was palpable. But it didn’t stop Jill from digging deeper. She wanted to know how Phyllis saw things playing out.
Phyllis insisted they would take their time. After she leaves Jack, she and Billy will slowly start being seen in public. Jill was incredulous at her naiveté.
“Pain is all you’re going to have. Pain for you and all the people you love,” declared Jill in an impassioned speech. “There will be no happy ending for you and Billy; just the destruction of the Abbott family. Jack will never recover from this betrayal. Billy won’t be able to deal with the loss. They’ll be torn apart. And ultimately they will hate you… and Billy too.”
An Offer She Can’t Refuse
Jill proposed one ray of hope. “Stay away from my son, return to your husband and never tell anyone about this conversation,” she stated firmly to a devastated Phyllis. If she doesn’t, Jill will tell everyone. “You are ruining his life,” she added. “Billy will never be right for you. End this. Or I will.” Jill then walked out as Phyllis dissolved into tears.
Behind the Scenes
Soap Hub reached out to the episode’s writer, Susan Dansby, to find out what went into creating this compelling drama
“It takes a village. Start with Chuck [Pratt Jr., the head writer] and Tracey [Thomson], who put those two characters in that room at this time to have that particular conversation. Add in our fabulous continuity producer, Elizabeth LeBrun, who refuses to allow us to forget any element of the characters’ history.
“Then there’s Natalie Minardi Slater who wrote the breakdown [the episode’s roadmap from which the script is written]. Nat’s been on Y&R longer then any other breakdown writer, and lives and breathes these characters. Brent Boyd, our editor, is a punch-up genius who always makes me faster and funnier. The producers and director pull it all together. But the real credit goes to [actresses] Jess and Gina, who had the courage to trust the words, and turn them into the best kind of drama.”
So what about her part? “Honoring the work of those around me by stepping up, and doing my best to write scenes that make you feel something.” She certainly succeeded.
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