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Deconstructing Y&R: Viewers Cheer As Phyllis Slaps Summer

August 20 - 24

Image: Jill Johnson/JPI

The pace has slowed, which is more comfortable, but the dreary atmosphere following Hilary’s death never really left. The show has even felt boring at times as we’ve seen too many scenes of the same thing, whether it be Summer hitting on Billy and being rebuffed, or Lily and Cane going over her situation. Phyllis’ slap heard ‘round the world more than delivered huge drama for Friday’s episode, but overall Y&R needs to pick up a bit. We need to see more writing for the veterans, such as Lauren, who shared an intriguing conversation with Kyle this week. Given that the show will soon be down two dynamic women (Hilary and Ashley, as Eileen Davidson’s departure looms), a story for Lauren might help fill that significant void. Thoughts:

Making contacts

In the last Deconstructing Y&R, Rey’s arrival provided hope for a jumpstart in the JT storyline. So far that hasn’t happened as he’s kept a low profile as he watches and makes initial contact with the Genoa City residents on his evidence board. It’s interesting that he’s already won Sharon’s trust, and some viewers are noticing chemistry between the two – good to know in case Nick and Phyllis’ secret comes out.

It also came out that Rey is Arturo’s brother, and that they have a good deal of tension between them, which made for an appreciably testosterone-filled scene or two. I just wish there was a fiery woman to deal with the hot-headed brothers rather than Abby.

In related commentary, Victoria’s stress is suddenly a thing, and Nate, who had spent all of two minutes around her, expressed concern – insert eyeroll. I enjoyed Victoria shouting at him to back the hell off, as his unsolicited advice (to almost everyone he encounters) has become very irritating. Hey, someone needed to tell him. Of course, it wasn’t going to be left at that. Nikki made the gasp-worthy move of telling Nate about Victoria’s abusive past with JT and dragging him over to Newman Enterprises. Um, wasn’t she furious with Victor for sharing details of Victoria’s situation without permission? Anyway, Nate offered to give Victoria a physical, but he and Nikki were shown the door. Interestingly, it was thrown in there that Victoria’s been going to therapy all along…offscreen.

More: Lauren Woodland’s latest Y&R return

Risky business

Neil tried to pick up with Ashley after their night together, but she was focused on her efforts to bring down Billy, and when they finally discussed how to proceed, it was just the opposite of romantic. Meanwhile, Ashley was clearly irked by Jack’s inability to sway Nick to cancel Billy’s leases, as well as his remarks about them being on the same side, given that his blood Abbott clause is causing her no end of grief. That said, it’s not looking good for Billy at this point as Nick raised the rents on his boutiques, Kyle and Ashley now know about his shifty Jaboat invoice, and Kyle also learned that he lost Jaboat in a poker game. Not to mention Kyle told Phyllis that Billy couldn’t keep his hands of Summer…perhaps a hint that their close encounters could be turned around on him. Yike.

More: Interview, Noah Alexander Gerry on Charlie’s troubles

The slap heard ‘round the world

In a super satisfying and dramatic turn of events, Kyle filled Phyllis in on Summer’s agenda where Billy was concerned, Summer’s plane ticket was discovered, and Phyllis went in on her daughter, resulting in one of the soapiest confrontations ever. Phyllis screamed and roared deliciously and called Summer’s every bluff where Billy was concerned, while Summer threw Phyllis’ past transgressions up at her to a point where smarter human beings would never dare go. To the delight of many, after Summer announced she wouldn’t back off on pursuing Billy as she was too close to the ‘prize’, and called her mother ‘old’, Phyllis hauled off and smacked her. Summer, outraged, declared that Phyllis had crossed a line and renewed her vow to bed her mother’s boyfriend. Oops, but she forgot who she was dealing with – Phyllis shed a few tears before making a call that resulted in Summer being lured to Jaboat and set adrift. Gloria, who mentioned Summer needed a ‘time out’, would be impressed. While the knock-down, drag-out fight between Summer and Phyllis was epic, and a payoff for watching Billy white-knuckle his way through each uncomfortable encounter with Summer, who was relentless, the issue remains that Summer’s anger toward Phyllis was non-existent when she left town, and was created solely for the purpose of this plot. Also, the lack of any conscience or remorse on Summer’s part along the way is a huge reason why this story hasn’t worked for so many. Viewers reacted to the Phyllis/Summer clash:

More: Find out if Y&R airs Labor Day

This is my opinion. Please visit the comment section to share your thoughts.

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