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|Daniel Goddard as Cane Ashby|
|The Young and the Restless|
|Portrayed by||Daniel Goddard|
|First appearance||January 12, 2007|
|Created by||Lynn Marie Latham|
|Aliases||Phillip Chancellor III|
|Residence||1101 Lavetta Terrace|
Genoa City, Wisconsin
|This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (September 2012)|
|Daniel Goddard as Cane Ashby|
|The Young and the Restless|
|Portrayed by||Daniel Goddard|
|First appearance||January 12, 2007|
|Created by||Lynn Marie Latham|
|Aliases||Phillip Chancellor III|
|Residence||1101 Lavetta Terrace|
Genoa City, Wisconsin
Ethan "Cane" Ashby (born Ethan Atkinson) is a fictional character from the American CBS Daytime soap opera The Young and the Restless. Daniel Goddard has portrayed the character since his debut on January 12, 2007. The actor was fired in 2011 and rehired that same year after viewers campaigned for his return.
Former head writer and executive producer Lynn Marie Latham created Cane in a 2007 storyline establishing him as the son of legacy characters, Jill Abbott and Phillip Chancellor II. Maria Arena Bell later rewrote his backstory in 2009, creating a new family around him, casting soap opera veterans Tristan Rogers and Genie Francis to portray the characters parents.
In 2007, Daniel Goddard debuted on The Young and the Restless as Cane Ashby, an Australian bartender in search of his birth family. Goddard originally auditioned for a role on As the World Turns as Brad Snyder (Austin Peck). Though he was not cast in the part, Barbara Bloom, the senior vice-president of CBS Daytime, recommended Goddard to The Young and the Restless's head writer and executive producer Lynn Marie Latham. After testing for the part of Cane for Latham and casting director Karen Rea, Goddard received the role. The Australian actor auditioned with an American accent, but when the show found out about his Australian background, that influenced Cane's backstory. "The concept of Cane was that he was given away at birth," Goddard said. "So he could have been from Mongolia. It just worked out luckily for me that I was the right person for the job." Since the producers could not understand the actor's real Australian accent, Goddard "Americanized" it while portraying the character.
In 2011, Goddard was fired from the series and the character of Cane was killed off in the February 2 episode. There were rumors that Maria Arena Bell got rid of the character because he was created by her predecessor, Latham. The show denied this. Soap Opera Weekly reported another rumor regarding the firing, saying tension between the actor and his co-stars resulted in Goddard's firing. Cane's death caused a "massive outcry" from viewers. Fans campaigned for the actor's return by sending emails and making phone calls to CBS and Sony. As part of the campaign, a group of viewers paid for a plane to fly over CBS Studios with the message, "Y&R Fans Want Daniel Goddard As Cane Ashby". The plane flew over the building for about an hour. "When they started their campaign to bring Cane back, I wrote on my Facebook page that I never expected this," Goddard said. "I have the greatest fans. There are no ifs, ands or buts about it. One of my fans coined Goddard's Family of Fans and that's what it is, GFF." The series rehired Goddard, revealing within the storyline that Cane's death had been faked and his twin brother, Caleb, was the one who died.
Goddard described Cane as a "typical Australian, working-class kind of guy who mined opals, raised goats, then went off for travel and adventure to sort of find himself." The character's initial story positioned him as the love interest of Adrienne Frantz's Amber Moore and the son of Jill Foster Abbott and Phillip Chancellor II, Phillip Chancellor III.
William J. Bell created Phillip Chancellor III in 1976. From that point, he stayed a part of the show's storylines until the character was killed off in 1989. In 2007, former head writer Lynn Marie Latham rewrote the birth of the character by establishing that Katherine Chancellor (Jeanne Cooper), Jill's enemy and Phillip II's wife, switched their child with another, hours after his birth. The character was brought back to the show as an adult named Cane Ashby.
Cane debuts as an Australian in search of his birth mother. During that time, Goddard did not want to know the real motives of his character because he did not want that to influence his performance. After the reveal that Jill is Cane's mother came to light, his views changed. "Now, I welcome the information because it adds more color to my portrayal," he said. The initial lack of information made playing Cane difficult since there was an amount of ambiguity over whether he was a good, bad, or in between character. The ambiguity deepened when Goddard read the script revealing that the DNA test performed for Jill and Cane came back negative. "I had never gone to Lynn to ask what's going on," Goddard said. "But I went to her then and said, 'I can play anything I need to, but just answer this one question- am I really Jill's son?' And she said, 'Yes, you are.'" A second test later reflected that. Though the maternity question was cleared up, more ambiguity about Cane's intentions appeared as the character received a phone call from his uncle Langley that hinted towards Cane scheming against Jill and Katherine. The original intent of the call was to show that Cane wanted what was owed to him after being given away. The writers changed directions after the popularity of the character grew. Goddard said he felt the phone call was resolved within the story when Cane sent money to his uncle as part of taking care of him.
The writers detailed Cane as a smart, loyal, and moral survivalist with an edge. They showed that edge during the character's reaction to Amber's betrayal. After that relationship ended, the writers planned on pairing Cane with Michelle Stafford's Phyllis Summers. A scene aired between the characters in the same episode as Cane and Amber's break up. The popularity of Phyllis with Nicholas Newman halted the plans for the pairing. Cane was instead written into a romance with Christel Khalil's Lily Winters. Viewers felt the character lost some of his edginess when paired with her. "I can say, as an actor, that Cane has lost a certain amount of edge, a certain amount of his dynamic," Goddard said. "But at the same time, it's been replaced with a level of compassion, understanding, tolerance, romance, and love...all the things that daytime is really about at its core."
Goddard compared the romance between Lily and Cane to Lady Chatterley's Lover since both characters grow and learn from the relationship. The storylines designed for them included the controversy with the gap in the character's ages, a miscarriage, and a quadrangle with Chloe Mitchell and Billy Abbott. Within the quadrangle story arc, Chloe tricks Cane into thinking they conceived a child together. To make the story work, the writers scripted Cane as less intelligent, a strategy they used previously with the Amber storyline. To keep the character from looking bad, Goddard said he made acting choices to justify Cane's actions. Despite the lessening of the character's intelligence, Goddard said he liked the story because of the originality of the plot. Love triangles and questioned paternity happen regularly in soap operas, but he felt that head writer Maria Arena Bell managed to make those conventions fresh and new.
In 2008, Bell took over as head writer of The Young and the Restless. A storyline she readdressed was the phone call Cane received from Langley. In her revised version of the story, Langley is really Phillip Chancellor III, portrayed by Thom Bierdz. The show kept secrecy around the twist by sneaking Bierdz in to shoot scenes and asked that he not tell anyone of his return. Goddard told Soaps In Depth he liked the story twist because it added another dimension to Cane. "This change will allow another metamorphosis to begin, another development and evolution of Cane..." he said. "Cane has always been a three-dimensional character, but now you will see a fourth dimension, because you will finally find out where he's coming from and who he is."
In January 2007, Cane was a bartender at Indigo, Neil Winters' nightclub in Genoa City, Wisconsin. An Australian national, Cane remained in the United States beyond the expiration of his visa, and he was fearful of being deported.
Shortly thereafter, he became involved with Amber Moore, who first used him to make Adrian Korbel jealous. She later found out that Cane was trying to find his birth mother. He was adopted by a woman named Violet Montgomery, who died shortly after, and then he was raised by Violet's brother, Langley Ashby, who lived in Canberra, Australia. At the same time, Amber was also trying to track down Jill Abbott's lost son, Phillip Chancellor III, who actually was switched with another child by Katherine Chancellor shortly after his birth in 1975. She realized that Cane might be Jill's son, and she tried to capitalize on that by marrying him. Amber and Cane went to Las Vegas where she got him drunk and tricked him into thinking that they got married. It was revealed in February 2007 that Amber's suspicions of Cane being Jill's son were correct. Jill and Cane shared a tearful reunion. Additionally, the revelation that Cane was the true Phillip Chancellor III prevented his deportation; since he was born in Genoa City, he was a native-born U.S. citizen.
Cane and Amber got used to being married, and they eventually moved onto the Chancellor estate. Kay also offered an executive position to Cane in the construction division of Chancellor Industries, which he happily accepted. Later, Cane got suspicious over his marriage to Amber. He realized that his signature on the wedding certificate did not look like his own, though Amber claimed it was due to how drunk he was that night. After contacting Amber's former mother-in-law, Brooke Logan, and asking questions about her history with Amber, he eventually realized the truth: the marriage was invalid. Cane wanted nothing to do with Amber, and he claimed that she only ever wanted him for the Chancellor money. Before asking her to sign the papers invalidating their marriage, Cane had sex with Amber and then rejected her, hoping to make her feel his pain. Amber, meanwhile, actually fell in love with Cane during the marriage, and she was devastated at his rejection.
In September 2007, Cane shared a kiss with the recently-divorced Lily Winters, and he also began a flirtation with A.D.A. Heather Stevens. Cane and Heather mutually decided to be just friends, citing no chemistry as the reason. Cane did feel the chemistry with Lily though, and he want to romantically pursue her. When he found out how much younger she was compared to him, he decided against romancing her. The two continued to be drawn to each other until they decided to not let their age gap be an issue for them. Cane and Lily started dating, despite Lily's father, Neil Winters' disapproval. Cane planned to move into a condo when he found out that Lily was planning to move out of her house as well. Cane wanted to ask Lily to move in with him, but he was skeptical about Neil's approval. During this time, Lily became pregnant with Cane's child, but she miscarried early on. Cane and Lily continued to see each other, and they each professed their love for one another on several occasions. They were in a committed relationship and started living together in the house that Cane bought for them. In August 2008, Cane proposed to Lily by giving her a fortune cookie with a ring inside, and Lily accepted.
Cane spent an evening drinking with an old friend from Australia, and he ended up getting drunk and passing out in Chloe Mitchell's car. Chloe took advantage of the situation by tricking Cane into believing that they had sex. Even though Chloe was pregnant before pulling her scheme, a DNA test showed that Cane was not excluded as the father of her child, much to her enjoyment and Cane and Lily's horror. Upon this revelation, Lily moved out of the house.
In early October Cane met his half-brother, Billy Abbott, who returned to Genoa City to work at his family's company, Jabot, while keeping contact with House of Kim, where he worked overseas, via satellite. Because Cane might have been the father of Chloe's baby, Lily urged Cane to marry Chloe to be there for his child. In September 2008, it was revealed that Chloe lied about her identity all along. Her real name was Kate Valentine, and she was in fact the daughter of Katherine Chancellor's longtime maid, Esther Valentine. This revelation enraged Cane, who realized that Chloe lied to him since the start of the whole fiasco. Jill urged Cane to consider getting a good lawyer with the ultimate goal of getting an annulment from Chloe.
Cane began to grow closer to Chloe over the prospect of them having the baby. After a fight between Chloe and Lily, which resulting in Chloe falling from a ladder, he made it clear to Lily that Chloe and the baby were his first priority. Lily agreed that that was where his priorities should be, and she told both Cane and Chloe that she would keep her distance. While Chloe was in the hospital because of the fall from the ladder, Billy found out that he was the father of her baby, not Cane. Billy decided to let Cane raise his baby because he did not think that he was father material. Lily then became intrigued by a mystery man online by the name of Sonny, who just happened to be Billy.
Billy also later took over Jabot in a coup ran by his brother, Jack Abbott, and he ousted Cane out. Lily fell for Billy, and they had an affair. Billy questioned Chloe about the paternity of the baby, and he calculated that the baby was his from the timing of their first meeting. However, he kept it a secret to everyone except his brother, Jack. He wanted Lily, and he decided to forget Chloe and let Cane raise his child since he was the better man. Cane and Chloe become more of a family discussing the baby's nursery. However, Cane was not aware that Chloe fantasized about Billy and their baby on a regular basis.
Cane discovered that Lily and Billy were on their way to a Valentine's Day rendezvous in the mountains. He was upset, and he started reminiscing over his and Lily's love affair. He started to panic, and he rushed to the Cabin to stop them and tell Lily that he loved her. Chloe arrived at the cabin just as Billy told Lily that he fathered Chloe's baby. Then, Chloe went into labor, and Billy and Lily helped her deliver the baby. Cane arrived and professed his love for Lily just as the baby was born. She was given the name Cordelia Katherine Valentine Ashby, or Delia for short.
Cane planned to stay in the family that he created with Chloe, despite his love for Lily. Lily pushed Billy and Chloe to tell Cane the truth. Chloe eventually did, but Cane decided to fight for custody of Delia, who he claimed as his own, threatening both Chloe and Billy as to their parental rights and qualifications. Cane asked Lily to marry him, and she accepted, yet he still intended to fight Billy for paternal rights to Delia.
At Lily's urging, Cane decided to drop the paternity suit. He declared his love for Lily again, and they got married. Following the wedding, Cane recalled his telephone conversation years earlier with a man named "Langley", regarding their joint plan to con Jill and Katherine. The man bore a startling resemblance to the supposedly deceased Phillip Chancellor III. On June 10, 2009, it was revealed that "Langley" is indeed Phillip, and that he was still very much alive, unknown to everyone except Cane. Therefore, Cane was not really Jill's son.
Nina Webster Chancellor, who was Phillip's wife at the time of his supposed death, began a background research on Cane, as part of her efforts to adapt Katherine's memoir into a screenplay. Her suspicions about Cane continued to grow, and she eventually ordered the exhumation of Phillip's body for genetic testing. When it was discovered that Phillip's casket is empty, and, in fact, never contained a corpse at all, Nina demanded that Cane submit to DNA testing to verify his status as Jill's biological son. Upon learning of Nina's demand, Cane retrieved a vial of blood marked "Langley" from a carousel of vials that he hid in a freezer for use in DNA testing.
On July 2, 2009, Detective Paul Williams revealed to Nina that the blood given for the test to confirm Cane's identity had blood cells which had burst, meaning that it had been at one time frozen. When confronted, Cane revealed that he was not actually Phillip Chancellor III. Everyone was furious, except for Katherine, who simply wanted to know why he had tricked them all. When asked why he did it, the real Phillip appeared before Cane to answer the question. Lily and Cane then broke up after Lily found out that Cane lied about being Jill's son and pretending to fathered Chloe's baby in order to continue with the ruse.
Lily was then diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Her uterus was taken out during a surgery to remove the cancer, but the doctor was able to harvest two of her eggs. Lily reunited with Cane while continuing with cancer treatment. They decided to continue their plan in starting a family, and they pursued surrogacy options. Mackenzie Browning, a friend of Lily's, agreed to act as their surrogate, and she became pregnant with Lily and Cane's twins. Soon after, Cane got arrested by an immigration officer, who planned to deport him, now that the news was out that he was not Phillip Chancellor III.
Despite all of that, Cane was there for the birth of his and Lily's twins, Charlie and Mattie, who were born on June 25, 2010. He also remained determined to help Lily overcome her cancer, so they could both be there for each other and their children. Cane was overjoyed when Traci Abbott Connolly, Colleen Carlton's mother, agreed to be the twins' godmother. Lily and Colleen were best friends, and Colleen had fatally drowned just a few weeks before, leaving Lily beside herself. Cane became a rock for Lily as she overcame her cancer. Soon, they began living a happy life with the twins.
Weeks into Lily's remission, Cane began to be blackmailed by the crime family he turned in while in Australia. Cane embezzled money from Tucker McCall's company with the reluctant assistance of Sofia Dupre, Malcolm Winter's fiancée. Malcolm was Lily's biological father, although his brother, Neil, raised Lily as his own daughter. In addition, Cane's birth father, Colin Atkinson came to town to help Blake, the leading person blackmailing Cane. Soon, Colin, without telling anyone that he was Cane's father, began romancing Jill Abbott Fenmore. Despite Jill and Cane's lack of a blood or legal relationship, Cane did not want Colin to go anywhere near her. Quickly, Colin and Jill became engaged, and at the same time, Tucker discovered the embezzlement and fired both Cane and Sofia from his company. Lily confronted Cane about what was going on, and he came clean to her, except for the truth about Colin being his father. He tried to convince her and the kids to skip town with him, but Lily adamantly refused, saying that Cane needed to own up to his problems. Lily then kicked him out of their home.
The evening that Jill and Colin were to be married, Cane was shot by Blake in the chest after they engage in a fight on the steps of the church. Cane was there to try to stop Jill from marrying his father. Colin originally ordered Blake to make sure that Cane didn't interfere with the wedding, but Blake took matters into his own hands. Then, Blake fell down the stairs of the church, and he broke his own neck. Cane was alive for a few moments, and but then he was pronounced dead by a paramedic with Jill, Colin and Lily all crying over his body.
After Cane's death, Colin and Jill's marriage seemed to be going on fine. Colin admitted to Jill that his daughter, and Cane's sister, Samantha, was also shot to death back in Australia. He thought that this thought would help console Jill over Cane's death. Colin was also comforting a distraught Lily. Interestingly enough, Lily became involved in a number of mysterious events that seem to involve Cane. For example, after her ex-husband, Daniel Romalotti Jr. visited, and Lily kissed him goodbye, Lily got a text message suggesting that it was too soon for her to be kissing other men. Lily then found a message written on the condensation of her window. A number of these moments led Lily to believe in an afterlife in which Cane was communicating something to her. Her aunt, Olivia Winters, her dad, Neil Winters, and Daniel, all suggested several times that Lily should see a psychiatrist, and Lily reluctantly agreed.
However, soon Lily saw Cane again, but this time after he vanished, there were actual footprints left in the ground. She began to see Cane more often, and on May 18, 2011, the twins' eyes followed Cane in the room. She began to realize that Cane might not be a figment of her imagination. On May 23, 2011, it was revealed that the character was not actually Cane, but Cane's identical twin brother, Caleb Atkinson, and he was plotting to help his father, Colin, take the twins away from Lily and take them to Australia to raise them as Atkinsons. However, Caleb and Colin's plan seemed to be going in the wrong direction as Lily ended up admitting to her father that she was losing her mind, and she admitted herself to a psychiatric hospital.
Then, Caleb and Cane's mother and Colin's ex-wife, Genevieve Atkinson, came to Genoa City to help with Caleb's plans. However, it appeared that Caleb was actually against his father's plans, as he confided to his mother about what was going on. It was then revealed that Caleb was actually the real Cane. Back in February, Caleb Atkinson came to Genoa City to help Colin. The night Cane was shot, it was actually Caleb who died. Cane was now alive and well and pretending to be Caleb, all the while trying to protect Lily and the twins from Colin. The night that Colin tried to put his plan into action, Cane sabotaged him and saved his babies and Lily. Eventually, Colin found himself hanging from a balcony of Genevieve's home, and Genevieve didn't hesitate to push him off, leaving him badly injured. When Lily found out that Cane was really alive and lying about his death the entire time, she could not forgive him and refused to let him near the twins.
Cane repeatedly tried to win Lily back, explaining to her that his father was a dangerous man, and he only lied about his death in order to protect his family. Still, Lily did not understand his reasoning, and she continued to push him away from her. Once Jill found out about Colin's scheme and that he was really Cane's father, she became extremely upset with the two Atkinson men. To make matters worse, Jill found out that Genevieve and Colin were never legally divorced, meaning that her marriage to him was invalid.
Cane decided to stay in Genoa City to further protect Lily, although she didn't want him to, as long as his parents were still in town. Colin was arrested for trying to kidnap his grandchildren, but he was given diplomatic immunity and was free to roam Genoa City after he was released from the hospital. Also, Genevieve bought the McMillan Estate from Gloria Bardwell, showing Cane and Colin that she had no plans of leaving herself. Cane got his old job back as a bartender at Jimmy's Bar, and he had the misfortune of being at work while Lily came in with her ex-husband, Daniel Romalotti, and on July 7, 2011, the two kissed as Cane looked on. Jill began to warm up to Cane, who apologized to her several times for making her believe that he was dead. He consoled her over her heartache over Colin.
After realizing that no one wanted him near them anymore, a distraught Cane decided to move back home to Australia, because that was what he thought that everyone wanted. When Lily found out that Cane was planning on leaving, she began to have second thoughts. After several of her friends told her that her twins needed their father, Lily found Cane at the airport, with the twins in tow, and the family of four reunited. Still, Lily made it clear to Cane that she still did not want to be involved with him, and she was only giving him a chance on behalf of their children. When Daniel found out that Lily was talking to Cane again, he tattled on her to her father, which angered Lily, causing her to lash out at Daniel and tell him to stay away from her. More and more, Lily warmed up to Cane, letting him come to their home again to visit the children and go on family outings with them.
Just as things started to get a little better with Lily and the twins, Cane found out that Katherine Chancellor had suffered a stroke and was hospitalized. Katherine was like a grandmother to Cane, and he visited her while she was unconscious at the hospital, continuing to be a support system for Jill, although she had recently reconnected with Colin after he filed for divorce from Genevieve. As Cane was leaving the hospital, he saw someone who looked like Billy Abbott taking off a surgical mask and leaving the hospital in another elevator. Cane followed the Billy look-alike back to a trailer, and he discovered that it really was Billy. A few months before, Billy left town to go to Hong Kong after both of his children, Delia and Lucy Abbott, were taken from him in separate custody battles, and he and his wife, Victoria Newman Abbott, were experiencing subsequent marital strife. When Delia was diagnosed with leukemia, Victor Newman found Billy in jail in Hong Kong and brought him back to Genoa City to see if he was a bone marrow match for his daughter. Upon agreeing to accept Victor's help, Billy made a deal with him: he had to keep his return a secret, he had to leave as soon as he was finished helping his daughter, and he could not go near his wife and Victor's daughter, Victoria, ever again. Therefore, Cane was the first person to unintentionally discover Billy's return.
Lily decided to push Cane out of her life when he began to sneak around again. He tried to explain but she basically told him to get lost. Further into October 2011, it is revealed that Cane had been working with Ronan Malloy to try and take down Colin. After more weeks of sneaking around and keeping everything from the other residents of Genoa City, Cane and Ronan finally prove that Colin had been trying to kill Genevieve. In the end, he set up a bomb at her house with plans to set it off while she was in it. However, the bomb went off while she wasn't home, and the only person who was hurt was Genevieve's alleged housekeeper, Myrna Murdock (really Patty Williams under an alias).
After the bomb at Genevieve's house, Lily came to realize that all of Cane's sneaking around was to lock up the man who attempted to kidnap their children earlier that June. Lily forgave him for all the things he did and let him back into hers and the twins' lives.
Since then, Cane went on a trip to Myanmar to help Billy. There, he was forced to help Jill and Victoria as they had gotten into trouble while desperately looking for Billy. On the way home, Cane revealed to Jill that Billy was alive and safe.
After reuniting with Lily and re-gaining her trust, Cane asked Lily to marry him during a walk at the park. Lily happily accepted. The pair married in France in front of their family, friends and children.
Cane Ashby's 2007 debut had positive and negative reviews. Soap Opera Digest praised the story as "a riveting tale". TV Guide Canada's Nelson Branco found the story unrealistic, but praised the addition of Goddard and Cane to the series. "A few eyebrows were raised when The Young and the Restless decided to rewrite history by bringing in Daniel Goddard to play Jill's 'real' son, Phillip Chancellor," Branco said. "But as romantic rogue Cane Ashby, the talented newcomer seduced us into suspending our disbelief- for now!" Soon after the character's introduction, Cane and Goddard became popular among viewers and gained praise from critics. He also became part of a successful pairing with Lily Winters, which gained "a very vocal, and loyal fan base".
In 2009, Maria Arena Bell altered Cane's backstory by revealing that Cane is not really Jill's son and was sent by the real Phillip Chancellor III to take care of his family. Soap Opera Weekly's Janet Di Lauro commended the change. "This story also breathes new life into Cane, who was becoming increasingly dull as a whitewashed, pompous do-gooder," she said. "Suddenly, he has his edge back." Soap Opera Digest gave the story a thumbs up and a thumbs down because, though it was an exciting twist, it happened too closely with the other Chancellor family rewrite undoing the mother and daughter relationship between Jill and Katherine. The magazine later named the story "Most Preposterous Plot Twist" of 2009 because the rewrite "was way out of sync with Y&R's usual authentic approach to storytelling."