Quick Take With Jess Walton (Jill, Y&R)

Why do you think Jill offered such a high-level job to Billy? “She was throwing him a lifeline, for sure, and she also wanted to stay in close communication with him. She really does believe in him and she’s hoping he’ll just snap out of his craziness if he has the right job with the right power and feels a sense of himself. She always thinks she can fix him and she’ll never give up trying.”

There’s no mistaking how much Jill adores her son but she doesn’t hesitate to use tough love with him. “Jill does have that soft side. She loves Billy fiercely but she’s also quick to anger and to control [laughs]. She can be brutally honest with him but it’s all out of love.”

Jill has always believed that only Victoria can make Billy happy. Does Jill still feel that way or does she think the Billy/Victoria ship has sailed? “You know, Jill has always been fond of Victoria, but she’s never been that great to Jill. Victoria never really gave Jill the time of day. I think for now, Jill has given up on the Billy/Victoria thing.”

Why do you think Jill really wanted Lily to be at Chancellor Communications? “Jill really did think that Lily would be good for the company because she’s so down-to-earth, while Billy is so heaven bound. Jill really thinks that they’ll create a nice balance for each other and be good for Chancellor.”

Why did Jill put Lily on an equal footing with Billy instead of being her boss? “Jill thinks that if Billy goes off the rails again, it’d be disastrous for Chancellor. She wants Lily to be a safety rail, so Jill had to give them both equal power. Isn’t that interesting? I just came up with that a second ago. Lily is earning her money already.”

In theory, Jill has given them full autonomy, but not really. She still can overrule them, right? “Absolutely. She could fire them, although I’m sure they probably have contracts. Jill is still traveling all over the world on business, so they do need to have autonomy. Again, that’s why Lily is there, so when Jill is gone, Billy won’t destroy everything.”

Is there a part of Jill that thinks Billy and Lily could make a romantic match? “I don’t think that’s uppermost on Jill’s mind, but then again, she’s fond of Lily and has given up on Victoria.”

If this all works out on a personal level, Lily could be Jill’s daughter-in law again. I’m sure that would make Jill very happy. “Yes, it would! If Billy is happy, then Jill is happy.”

How much do you love working with Jason Thompson (Billy)? “Very much. He’s amazing, that guy. He gets so much dialogue every single day and he’s so on top of it. He really gets to know the meaning and subtleties of what he’s saying. I have so much admiration for that kid. I feel super- comfortable with him.”