Victor always knows best (or at least thinks he does), doesn't he? Although I had already guessed the hand that he and his security team had played in the cover-up of how Ashland had died, I'm not sure how to feel about it now that the truth was revealed this past week. My first reaction was similar to how Victoria reacted when she learned the truth -- that it was the smart move to make because no one would believe he was killed in "self-defense." But was he truly killed in self-defense?
Sure, Ashland was behaving erratically, and even violently, toward Victoria when he visited her that night. And, sure, he even said a few things that indicated his intention may have been to kill her. But when Nick showed up during Victoria and Ashland's argument, Ashland wasn't physically attacking Victoria when Nick punched him and knocked him to the ground (where he received the deathly blow to his head, courtesy of the fireplace hearth that he landed on). In fact, Victoria had left the room to call for help when Nick punched Ashland out of anger.
So, although Nick's intention was not to kill Ashland, and although Nick couldn't have predicted that Ashland would have hit his head like that, Nick was not acting in self-defense when he attacked Ashland. Regardless of his intention, though, Nick is responsible for Ashland's death. Victor may have done his son a huge favor by having his security team remove the body and stage a car accident for the police to find because Nick surely would have been dragged to court on charges of manslaughter (at the very least). Given the tumultuous relationship between the Newmans and Ashland Locke, it is likely that Nick could have even been charged with murder if his father hadn't covered up the unintentional crime.
Victor also did his children a favor by not telling them the truth right away because their actions that night will go a long way toward convincing the police that they are innocent of any wrongdoing. Since they believed that Ashland had gotten away from the house on his own and then gotten in a car accident, Nick and Victoria had no reason not to tell Chance everything that had happened when he questioned them. But now that they know the truth, will they be able to keep it a secret and continue to deceive the police?
Nick is certainly upset that Victor took it upon himself to take charge of the situation behind their backs and not give them a choice in how they handled their own fate, but I am not so sure that he is upset enough to confess everything because that would put both him and his father in legal jeopardy. Victoria seemed resolved to keep Victor's secret and go along with the lie, but the true test of her (and Nick's) resolve will be revealed in the next episodes as they face Chance, who showed up just as Victoria was on her way to confront Victor about the cover-up after Nick revealed the truth to her.
Chance has certainly been adamant about not letting Ashland's death be swept under the rug as a simple car accident. This is the most police work we've seen him doing since the new actor took over the role! It has been a good way to ground him as the character, since that has been such a big part of who Chance has been over the years. I have been enjoying his scenes with Kevin, too, and hope we see them working together on more cases in the future (when Greg Rikaart isn't busy over on Days of our Lives, of course -- his character is so much fun over in Salem)! I want to root for Kevin and Chance in their investigation, but I also hope that Nick gets away with killing Ashland; so, I'm a little torn on this one. But Nick definitely won't get away with it if he keeps telling everyone about the cover-up!
Nick confided in Sharon this week so now she is also complicit in the cover-up (if he and Victoria decide to keep Victor's plot a secret). Sharon seemed fine with that, though, and was happy to be a shoulder for Nick to lean on, even if it is to her detriment. The writers are doing a great job of raising the stakes and getting so many characters involved, which has me excited to see what happens next! Sally and Chloe are on the case to find the truth so that they can get the scoop for Newman Media, which could be an interesting wrinkle. And I am sure that Adam will continue to try to dig for the truth, too, now that his curiosity is piqued by the ongoing police investigation into what should be a simple open-and-shut case. I am very curious to see how he may factor into the endgame of this plot!
And judging by the "Next Week on Y&R..." preview at the end of Friday's episode, it looks like Nikki is going to try to rope Abby into the conspiracy next by asking her to influence Chance into dropping the investigation altogether! I'm looking forward to Abby being brought into this storyline, and it's been nice to see Kevin and Chance more again this past week as they investigate, so I'm definitely ready to go along on this ride! It will be interesting to see how long the writers drag this out and whether or not the police ultimately learn the real truth. Might we be seeing Nick facing a court battle in the near future for trying to get away with murder if he (and Sharon, and Victoria, and Nikki) continues to keep Victor's cover-up a secret, only to ultimately be caught in the lie?
Speaking of characters who might be facing a court battle for murder, Phyllis had better keep her temper in check when it comes to Diane, or things could escalate quickly. I don't think Phyllis will start plotting Diane's murder, of course, but with the way she keeps losing her temper any time Diane is around, I could see her ending up in a similar situation and killing Diane in the heat of the moment. Thankfully, though, I don't think the writers would bring Diane back from the dead only to kill her off again -- especially with how much fun drama her return has brought to the show!
I'm a little disappointed in Phyllis, though, for not keeping her cool around Diane and for not at least pretending to abide by the truce she half-heartedly agreed to with her. Phyllis is a master manipulator, so I would expect her to not be so obvious about her continued hatred toward Diane while she is in the middle of plotting Diane's demise with Ashley and Nikki. If Phyllis were at the top of her game, she would have made good on that truce (at least for show) so that no one would suspect her when she carries out their plan to drive Diane out of town in disgrace.
I am loving Diane's return to the show, so I hope that Ashley, Nikki, and Phyllis' plan ultimately fails, but I am excited by the storyline in general. I am so thrilled that these three are working together against a common enemy, and I love it any time they are all together plotting! I have a feeling Ashley may be proven right in her concern over the plot that Nikki and Phyllis concocted involving Diane's position at Marchetti. I can already see the writing on the wall that the plan will likely go off the rails, and Phyllis will end up being the one that is disgraced and shunned by her loved ones instead of Diane. And I'm sure Nikki and Ashley will come away unscathed, leaving Phyllis to take all the blame.
I guess only time will tell if their plans go awry, but they are not off to a great start. It would be smarter if Nikki or Ashley were to do the dirty work in their plot because everyone will see Phyllis coming for Diane from a mile away. Summer already raised concerns about Phyllis wanting a job at Marchetti and wondered if her interest had to do with Diane working there now. Kyle and Jack will likely have the same reaction and be immediately suspicious of Phyllis's intentions -- especially if she keeps overreacting every time she comes in contact with Diane.
Diane keeps goading Phyllis into a fight any time Jack or Summer is around, and she is also an expert at making herself look like the victim where Phyllis is concerned. So, even though Phyllis may not have known that Jack and Harrison were at the park with Diane when she started berating her and yelling at her, she should have known not to let Diane get the better of her like that. Phyllis knows how sneaky Diane can be, so it was absolutely her own fault that she made a fool of herself in front of Jack yet again, pushing him further away from giving in to his love for her. Diane will likely be the victor in their feud if Phyllis doesn't control herself. Diane may even win Jack in the end (he does seem to be warming up to her quite a bit, doesn't he?)!
Perhaps Phyllis and Diane can take a page out of Devon and Nate's book to try to resolve their differences. It was nice to see these two seemingly find some common ground this week after battling it out over a mistake Nate made at work for most of the week's episodes. I was a little annoyed about their arguing again at first because I haven't appreciated the way Devon has been treating Nate in general at work. So, it was refreshing to see the two finally talk it out like adults and seemingly get over it. I was impressed by Nate admitting his mistake and by Devon's willingness to overlook it and recognize Nate's struggle with switching careers and not being in charge anymore in this new position he has taken.
I was not, however, very impressed or amused by Elena's reaction to Nate telling her that Imani had been an ally to him in his struggles at work with Devon. Her reaction to that is to accuse Imani of "fueling the tension between Nate and Devon"?! Really? I'm sure Elena is looking for any excuse to put down Imani in Nate's eyes because Imani has made it no secret that she would love to steal Nate away from her, but Nate didn't say or imply anything that should make Elena jump to that conclusion. I think Nate will come to see Elena in a different light if she lets her insecurities get the better of her like this. Imani might not need to do much to come between Nate and Elena if Elena does all the work for her!
Just as Phyllis should play it cool with Diane, Elena should play it cool with Imani and not react to her as a threat. The more confident that Elena is in her relationship with Nate, the harder it will be for Imani to split them up. If Elena were smart, she would work harder to befriend Imani because then it would also become more difficult for Imani to go after her man. Who knows -- maybe they could even form a real friendship over time and laugh about this one day. Probably not, though!
I'm still not sure who I'm ultimately rooting for in this love triangle because I think Nate has great chemistry with both of them, but, like Nate, I'm sure I'll eventually pick one of them! Hopefully this story doesn't lose steam while Imani is out of town, caring for her mother. Get well soon, Naya -- I hope we haven't seen the last of you!
I'll wrap up this week by adding that it was really nice to see Tessa and Mariah again (even if just briefly), and I hope that Tessa's recovery continues to go well now that she's undergone the surgery on her vocal cords. I've got my fingers crossed that the writers get back around to following through on the story for them to adopt a child and start a family. More of them, please!
Well, now that you know my opinions about this past week on Y&R, don't forget to share your opinions, too! I'll see you in the comments!
Until next time,
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