Fans knew there was more to Claire Grace than met the eye as soon as the character debuted on THE YOUNG & THE RESTLESS, but the revelation that she could be Eve, the baby that Cole and Victoria thought had died years ago was quite the shock!
“I’m always diving into the history to find something that’ll spark a story for now because I always think that’s much more satisfying for the audience, especially our long-term audience,” headwriter and executive producer Josh Griffith told Soap Opera Digest of the twist, “if there’s something that we can just hook to the past so that they go, ‘Oh wow. I remember that and I thought that was over and done with,’ as opposed to always bringing in something new.”
Looking for someone from Victor and Nikki’s past to return with a grudge against them led the scribe to Eve Howard, but as she was dead, Griffith found himself intrigued by this baby that had died. “As I got deeper into the story, I said, ‘Well, it’s kind of interesting if it’s a sister, it’s a woman, and what if she raised this child to believe she had been abandoned by the Newmans and she had literally spent 26 years grooming a psychopath?’” he recalled. “I found that fascinating. I said, ‘But she’s got to be redeemable; the child has to be redeemable. She has to have been totally manipulated, but the aunt can be bat*** crazy as we want!’”
Having seen what Hayley Erin had done as Kiki on GENERAL HOSPITAL, Y&R reached out to the talented actress even though she’d previously played Abby on the soap. And while her initial Zoom reading went well, something was missing. However, after one note from Griffith, Erin adjusted her performance and it was pitch-perfect.
Claire went from helpful and happy to cold and calculating in an instant, and when she learned how her Aunt Jordan had stolen her from the hospital, her character changed yet again. “We really tried to make it so you never saw this coming,” Griffith declared. “I thought the other crucial moment that Hayley did so brilliantly was the moment where Claire realized that her aunt had lied to her and then you saw all the hurt and you saw 26 years of betrayal. When I saw that, I said, ‘Okay, she is absolutely redeemable.’”
Keep watching Y&R to see how the storyline continues to unfold but first, share your opinion about Claire in our online poll below!