Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Colleen Zenk in SUMMER STOCK 2010

I hate the thought of no more Barbara and Henry once As The World Turns goes off the air. This romance was one of the best of the "cougar" storyline trends this year, including Jackie and Owen of The Bold and Beautiful and Erica and Ryan of All My Children.

However, Colleen Zenk is still going strong as she will be singing in "Summer Stock NYC: A Celebration of the Broadway Musical", opening on July 16th. Check the Collaborative Arts Project 21 link for more information.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Kimberly McCullough on FAKE IT TIL YOU MAKE IT

Kimberly McCullough (Robin, GH) appears on tonight's episode of Jaleel White's Fake It Til You Make It. You can find the series on Hulu.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Television Review - The 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards

When I first heard about the star line-up announced in the press (names such as David Copperfield, the Osmonds, Cirque de Soleil, etc.), I feared that the 2010 Daytime Emmy Awards aired on CBS would be too Vegas-oriented and not enough about daytime television or the soaps. My concerns were valid, except that it was even worse than I had expected.

When David Copperfield did a cheesy magic trick revealing Regis Philbin as the host of the show…only to lead up to Regis beginning to regale the audience with the ten zillionth Susan Lucci joke ever told (Yes, she won an Emmy already, folks…so let’s move on!), I knew that this would set the tone for the rest of the evening.

Best Supporting Actress - Julie Pinson. I really thought Arianne Zuker had the best shot for the award this year; so I was surprised by the Pinson win but not really upset. I have no idea what any of the actors submitted for reels this year, but from what I saw of Julie Pinson on ATWT this year, she was always bringing in solid performances. Particularly from Brad’s death to Liberty’s battle with cancer, Julie was knocking it out of the park. So I can’t complain about her win. Her dress, on the other hand, is a different story, but that’s for another blog review at another time.

American Bandstand Tribute - Well, American Bandstand was actually a daytime show; so I have no problem with the tribute. But how cool would it have been to see talented singing actors from daytime get a chance to take part rather than all the Vegas lounge lizards? Jonathan Jackson, the Daytime Divas, Kurth and Taylor and Nadia Bjorlin are just a few people I could name from daytime that could have had a chance to showcase themselves. Particularly since the soaps are mostly too broke to pay for song rights, this would have been a special treat for soap fans nowadays.

Rachael Ray - When Ray enthused how the Daytime Emmys was one of the best shows she’d ever seen, I wondered if perhaps she should get out of the kitchen for a night or two, let a relative do the cooking for a change...and she should actually watch some good TV and see the error of her ways.

The Lion King - Did I accidentally switch onto the Tony awards and not realize it? How is this relevant to the Daytime Emmys?

Best Supporting Actor - Billy Miller. My choice was Jonathan Jackson, but Billy Miller is also terrific. This was probably the closest out of all the races this year.

Best Game Show - Cash Cab. I don‘t really watch game shows, so I‘ll just have to trust in the greater minds of the voting committee.

Best Talk Show - The Doctors. I don‘t really watch talk shows, so I‘ll just have to trust in the greater minds of the voting committee.

By this time, I was thinking that if I were a nominated actress on a soap opera; and that if I had spent hours giving a powerful performance on television, submitting a reel, spending time with my stylist, picking a dress, getting my makeup done, dealing with countless interviews, et. cet. -- only to find that most people were only going to see me on those paparazzi websites where you have to pay money just to see a close-up of a picture…I would be really ticked off.

Best Younger Actor - Drew Tyler Bell. Like everyone else, I don’t get it either. Drew Garrett was robbed.

As the World Turns tribute - Like everything else about this show, this was too rushed. A little less Las Vegas and a little more relevance about what the awards ceremony was about, please. Was this disrespectful to a classic soap opera that deserved a decent memorial? Absolutely, but probably no more offensive than what happened to Guiding Light at the Emmys last year.

Best Talk Show - Ellen DeGeneris. The first prediction I got right. Hey, she’s Ellen.

Best Younger Actress - Julie Berman. The second prediction I got right. Julie consistently gives solid performances on GH, whether she’s doing a comedy scene with Kristen Storms or a hot love scene with Dominic Zamprogna. In this case, the right one won.

At this point, the show was becoming so rushed that even Regis and Susan Lucci couldn’t keep up, failing to finish their silly little insert between commercials.

Best Directing - General Hospital. Absolutely the right show to win. I’ve only been consistently watching GH since the Carnival storyline but I find that I can’t miss a day of GH. The characters and stories grabbed me and grabbed me good, taking me from one fascinating storyline to the next. Kudos! Not so happy about the ridiculous Cirque du Soleil dance during the presentation however. A dancing crab hands an envelope to Wayne Brady...and it makes you wonder why the daytime industry is no longer respected. Go figure.

Life Achievement Award - Agnes Nixon. The one part of the evening done right.

Best Game Show Host - Ben Bailey. Again, I never watch game shows, so I can’t really comment about this.

Best Writing - Bold and the Beautiful. Maybe the episode submitted had good writing, but the show overall has not impressed me with such over this last year. My jaded opinion is it was a shout-out for CBS airing the Daytime Emmys at all.

Best Talk Show Host - Mehmet Oz. Don't watch, can't comment. You know the drill.

As Regis Philbin mispronounced Vanessa Marcel’s name...and Vanessa staggered her way to the podium, I wondered if the actors all had a little too much fun at the blackjack tables. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. I know, I know…

Best Actor - Michael Park. For me, the most predictable award. Park did a good job as Jack mourned for Brad’s death and blamed himself. Also, an ATWT sympathy award.

Best Actress - Maura West. I thought it would go to Crystal Chappell...but it was a nice little tribute to ATWT for both of the lead categories to win. Certainly a better tribute than anything the actual ceremony came up with for the canceled soap.

Best Show - Bold and the Beautiful. Why? Because of Betty White? B&B occasionally has really great moments...but the show is not consistently as good as GH.

Every year, there have been the same old concerns about how the Daytime Emmy Awards are going to be shown...or even if they will be shown at all. But I have to ask just how low does the industry have to stoop to be seen on a network? When daytime is selling its soul to Las Vegas, I wonder what’s the point. When neither the E Channel (airing a Cameron Diaz documentary) nor SoapNet (airing a GH rerun) can scrape up enough pennies just to do a little piddling red carpet pre-show, I have to wonder if the whole format should be majorly overhauled. For me and my soap buddies, our red carpet show consisted of frantically looking at all the hastily-taken pictures tweeted by websites that are actually concerned about the state of daytime. Let these folks like Roger Newcomb and Damon Jacobs of We Love Soaps or Soap Opera Source possibly band together next year and air both the pre-show and the actual ceremony on the internet itself. These people actually care that the actors are seen, know what the fans want and will treat the soaps with the respect that they deserve. I’d much rather settle with that than to see more televised Daytime Emmy shows like the one that aired last night.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Get your Pre-Daytime Emmy Fix

If you are now just waiting through the day like I am to see the Daytime Emmys, you can get your fix early.

Check out the videos of the stars on the red carpet at the Pre Party MIX at Mandalay Bay last night on YouTube, parts one and two.

Damon Jacobs at WE LOVE SOAPS has a ton of interviews up from the Daytime Entertainment Creative Arts Emmy Awards.

During the show, there's tons of live blogging parties on Twitter, Facebook and multiple websites. So pick your poison and have it. Let's just hope there are plenty of other televised Daytime Emmy shows to come in the future.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Interview with Patsy Pease

Don't miss the upcoming OutTakes interview with Patsy Pease (Kim, Days of Our Lives) on Tuesday, June 29th (7 pm PST / 10 pm EST). I'll be opening up the show to callers about 15 to 20 minutes into the show. Call (347) 989-0605 to talk with Patsy.

If you want to ask a question, make sure and press "1" when the phone message gives you the option to speak to the host and be in the queue. Otherwise, I will be assuming that you are calling in only to listen to the interview by phone.

The link to the OutTakes Blogtalkradio station is here.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

OutTakes Interview with James Reynolds

Come chat with James Reynolds (Abe, Days of Our Lives) on Friday, June 25th (7:00 PM PST/10:00 PM EST) as we talk about his upcoming projects with Cape May Stage, his acting career, DAYS and more.

The "OutTakes" Blogtalkradio channel is at this site with a call-in number at (347) 989-0605. If you register with Blogtalkradio, you can also participate in the chatroom. The interview will be available for playback both on the Blogtalkradio link and on the player button here on the blog.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

James Reynolds at Cape May Stage

While soap opera fans are most familiar with James Reynolds in the role of "Abe Carver" on Days of Our Lives, some may not know that he also has a prolific career on stage as both actor and director. Co-starring with Lissa Layng, James will be appearing at Cape May Stage, NJ, in Oliver Hailey's And Where She Stops Nobody Knows on Monday, July 5th.

Stay posted for James Reynolds' Blogtalkradio interview with "OutTakes". Date and time TBA.

Also, check out the Cape May Stage press release below for more details about the play and cast.


And Where She Stops Nobody Knows
by Oliver Hailey

Cape May, NJ – Cape May Stage, as part of their ongoing commitment to quality theatre, is proud to announce a one-night limited engagement of Oliver Hailey’s unpublished gem And Where She Stops Nobody Knows. Part of Cape May Stage’s inaugural Second Stage Broadway Series, this underperformed treasure stars Cape May Stage favorites, husband and wife team James Reynolds and Lissa Layng, both of Days of Our Lives fame. This seldom-seen offering will be performed Monday, July 5th at 8:00pm at the Robert Shackleton Playhouse at the corner of Bank and Lafayette Streets in downtown Cape May.

And Where She Stops Nobody Knows received its premiere at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles in the summer of 1976, and has been seldom revived since. Billed as “a pas de deux”, Hailey’s two-actor play follows the life of “She” (Layng) from an infant who hates her mother’s milk to an elderly woman reflecting on the triviality of life. Reynolds plays “He”, cycling through a dizzying 27 different characters throughout the piece, matching the rapid fire of Hailey’s language while creating both conflict and resolution for Layng’s character. She says, “One man, one woman – that was [God’s] idea of Paradise – and also mine.”

She is a cynic, disillusioned with life from an early age by interactions with everyone from her adoptive parents to cannibals, including several misdirected dances with love along the way. “People like you are why we have Nevada,” He says, playing a police officer who has pulled her over for speeding just inside the Arizona border. Pleading to be taken to jail, She responds, “There’s so little tolerance out here, anyway.” Her love life leaves her unfulfilled, eventually coming to the determination that “All great romances are terminal.” And Where She Stops Nobody Knows is simultaneously insightful and moving, funny and poignant – the inspection of a life fraught with futility and tempered with humor.

Reynolds and Layng have taken time away from their duties as the artistic directors of the much acclaimed Fremont Centre Theatre in South Pasedena, CA, to appear together in this show. Both agree it has been one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences of both their personal and professional lives – a feeling that shines through and embraces the audience during performances. Says Reynolds, “It has been our good fortune to have presented a number of the great Oliver Hailey’s plays and of course those of Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey. Where She Stops Nobody Knows is a whimsical play about a woman who searched all of her life for love and adventure. Performing this with my wife Lissa is ideal because we found love and the search for adventure continues.”

Lissa Layng was last seen at the Robert Shackleton Playhouse in A Woman of Independent Means. Her role as Bess in that show has garnered universal praise, from “Pick of the Fringe” at the 2005 Vancouver Fringe Festival to “Best Production of a One-Person Show” from the Valley Theatre League. Other stage credits include Fog of War and the musical comedy Much Adieux at the Whitmore/Lindly Theatre. Layng was also chosen One of the Top Ten Actresses in LA by and received the DramaLogue Critics Award for her performance in the Los Angeles premiere of Station WVIP. Television credits range from guest starring appearances on Family Law, Unsolved Mysteries and Days Of Our Lives. She is co-artistic director of the Fremont Centre Theatre with her husband James Reynolds, where they received the Red Carpet Award from Women in Theatre, and the Gold Crown Award from the Pasadena Arts Council.

James Reynolds was last seen at the Robert Shackleton Playhouse in his one-man show, I, Too, Am America. He is well known for his portrayal of Commissioner Abe Carver on NBC’s Days of Our Lives. As a two-time Emmy nominee, Reynolds has won admiration from fans and critics alike with his commanding presence and nuanced performances. He has guest starred on such series as Seinfeld, Highway to Heaven and Hart to Hart. In addition to his television career, Reynolds also makes time for his role as co-artistic director of the Fremont Centre Theatre, which he runs with his wife, actress Lissa Layng. Reynolds has also lent his considerable talents to directing and has helmed productions of The Tangled Snarl and Murder Me Once, which was named “Critic’s Choice” by the Los Angeles Times and Backstage West. Aside from his artistic endeavors, Reynolds remains committed to his charity work for such organizations as Ronald McDonald House and the USO and, with Ms. Layng, finds deep fulfillment in giving back to their local and national communities.

Part of Cape May Stage’s inaugural Second Stage Broadway Series, And Where She Stops Nobody Knows will run Monday, July 5th at 8:00pm at the Robert Shackleton Playhouse at the corner of Bank & Lafayette Streets in downtown Cape May. Tickets are $50, and include an after party at the Wine Bar at the Washington Inn, Cape May’s new hip, relaxing, contemporary meeting place at the corner of Washington and Jefferson Streets. There, you’ll have a chance to mingle with the stars of the show, while enjoying delicious complimentary finger foods and a well-stocked cash bar. Call (609) 884-1341 for reservations and information or visit the theatre’s website,

Cape May Stage’s Second Stage Series is presented through the gracious support of Chris and Dave Clemans.

Jon Lindstrom film premiere

If you're already gearing up to miss your favorite As The World Turns actors, a lot of them will still be pretty busy this summer with their own projects. As per the Philadelphia QFest website, Jon Lindstrom (Craig) will be starring in "You Can't Have It All", premiering at the festival on July 8th and July 10th. Check out the link for a film synopsis. I sure hope this film makes it to other cities because I want to see it!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Daytime Emmy Awards or Viva Las Vegas?

Commentary about the Daytime Emmys in Las Vegas, published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

It’s the first time any Emmycast has been staged somewhere other than the traditional broadcast hubs of New York and Los Angeles, notes executive producer David McKenzie of Associated Television International. Las Vegas seems an ideal alternative, he adds.

“Think of all the game shows that have come to Las Vegas,” McKenzie says. “Think of all the actual games in Las Vegas — and all the slot machines that are tied into game shows,” plus “all the talk shows that come into Vegas.” Add glitz and glamour worthy of any soap opera diva and it adds up to “a fairly cool marriage” between the Daytime Emmys and this year’s Vegas setting, he maintains.

That setting will be reflected in a “very Vegas-themed show,” McKenzie promises, with a large local contingent appearing on the telecast — including such Strip fixtures as Blue Man Group, Cirque du Soleil, David Copperfield, Marie Osmond, “Jersey Boys” and “Lion King” cast members and the “Jubilee!” showgirls, all of whom are scheduled to appear.

Even more Vegas types, from Cher to Barry Manilow to Garth Brooks, are expected to make taped contributions as part of the show’s tribute to “American Bandstand” and original host Dick Clark, according to McKenzie. (Other familiar faces taking part in the Clark tribute include Chubby Checker, Tony Orlando, Frankie Avalon and the Spinners.)

“I think Las Vegas is a great place to host award shows — and do any TV shows,” says McKenzie, whose previous made-in-Vegas productions include the “World Magic Awards” and “Masters of Illusion.” Overall, “It’s a good trend,” he comments — one McKenzie says he expects will continue.


My thoughts: While I'm happy to know that the Daytime Emmy Awards managed to squeak its way on broadcast television again this year, I'm annoyed by the "Viva Las Vegas" domination that I predict is going to overwhelm the ceremony. I'd rather see tributes to Helen Wagner(Nancy Hughes, ATWT) and Frances Reid (Alice, DAYS) rather than to have to sit through lounge acts and Cirque du Soleil. Maybe next year, the awards should just be a web presentation since it seems like all things are going Internet now. At least keep the Daytime awards with daytime!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

John Callahan in TV Movie on SyFy

See the preview of Dinocroc vs. Supergator, with John Callahan (Days of Our Lives, Reality Bytes and The Bay) playing "Charlie Swanson". Airing on the SyFy Channel on Saturday, June 26, 9:00 PM and Sunday, June 27, 1:00 AM.

Behind the Scenes at The Bay

Check out "THE BAY The Series" Facebook page to see photos behind the scenes of Gregori J. Martin's new web series, THE BAY, starring Mary Beth Evans.

Stacy Haiduk Let Go from Y&R

Breaking news that Stacy Haiduk (Patty/Emily) has been released from The Young and The Restless. I think this is a travesty. It was bad enough that she never got a much-deserved Daytime Emmy Nomination. Now she is being punished for a badly written storyline that she did her best to make work. Despite the silliness of the double clone storyline on Y&R (Patty/Emily and Lauren/Sarah), Stacy gave chilling performances as Patty, making me really glad that I was not Jack Abbott.

Don't let this talented actress get the shaft.

Go to Stacy's website to campaign for her to stay.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Daytime Emmy Predictions

I'm not very skilled at the guessing game of the acting reels and the backstage politics behind the scenes where the Daytime Emmys are concerned. I can only pick what I would do if I were a judge.

Outstanding Drama Series - General Hospital. The Kristina abuse storyline was incredible. Even this storyline with Michael in prison is good, despite the Drew Garrett firing. Good actors and great writing. This gets my vote.

Outstanding Lead Actress - Crystal Chappell (Guiding Light). The Natalia/Olivia romance, along with all the residual popularity from "Venice" and "Days of Our Lives" has made her a very hot property this year.

Outstanding Lead Actor - Michael Park (As the World Turns). A shout-out to him, both as a tribute to the ATWT cancellation and the storyline of Jack's guilt after his brother's death.

Outstanding Supporting Actress - Arianne Zucker (Days of Our Lives). She was incredible with the whole Sydney kidnapping storyline. Even if the perils of Sydney have been dragged out far too long, it's not Arianne's fault. Give the woman an Emmy.

Outstanding Supporting Actor - Jonathan Jackson (General Hospital). He killed it as Lucky with the whole Lucky/Liz/Nikolas triangle. This was not the clip he submitted. Even so, he gives his all to every scene.

Outstanding Younger Actress - Julie Marie Berman (General Hospital). Dante and Lulu have been rocking ever since they had their first scene of dialogue.

Outstanding Younger Actor - Drew Garrett (General Hospital). A sympathy shout-out for his unfair firing.

Outstanding Drama Series Directing Team - General Hospital. Great show, great directing.

Outstanding Drama Series Writing Team - As the World Turns. Let's face it. All the soaps in this storyline have had pretty laughable writing this last year. So ATWT gets the sympathy vote.

Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show - The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Hey, it's Ellen.

Outstanding Informative Talk Show - Dr. Phil. Hey, it's Dr. Phil.

Outstanding Talk Show - The View. Hey, it's the View.

OK, I'll be honest. I don't watch talk shows much.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Eric Roberts joining Y&R

As per Hollywood Insider, Eric Roberts will be joining The Young and The Restless. He will begin filming on July 12, playing Adam's attorney. After James Franco's recent appearance on General Hospital, it seems that film stars making appearances on the soaps is becoming more and more prevalent. The prolific film star (and also Julia Roberts' brother, by the by) has recently been in the series of Heroes and Crash.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Theater Review - Class

By Charles Evered
Directed by Roy Steinberg
Cape May Stage - Cape May, New Jersey

A young woman walks into an acting class studio, sloppily dressed, donning sunglasses...eager to study with one of the most well-respected acting teachers around. Elliot, said teacher, immediately takes a dislike to her, giving her plenty of rejection and attitude from the very start. Thus sets the scene for the conflict and self-discovery for both characters throughout Class.

Charles Evered’s story is a fascinating one which could really come alive if opened up for film. I loved the story and the characterizations, even though the dialogue seemed a little heavy-handed from time to time. With only two characters in a play, the action could have easily become stale but under Roy Steinberg’s solid direction, this was never the case. While there is room for improvement, overall the play was very enjoyable.

Although Thaao Penghlis has not been on stage since his successful run on different television shows such as General Hospital, Days of Our Lives and Mission Impossible, you would never know it. He was completely commanding on stage as Elliot, the brilliant acting teacher who had known better days. Wrestling with self-loathing and bitterness, the character has a quick wit and an amusing charm which keeps the audience in his corner, despite his intimidating presence, sadistic remarks and addiction to “the drug of control“. I suspect that quite a few successful actors have had such a figure in their lives: an instructor who would torture as well as inspire. I never knew whether to expect Elliot to purr out a cruel comment, roar with indignation at some slight or show a surprising amount of sympathy and vulnerability. This always made him an exciting presence to watch.

There is no question that Heather Matarazzo is a fine actress in film, particularly in the roles of Welcome to the Dollhouse and The Princess Diaries. However, on stage, she was a mixed bag as the student, Sarah, the sci-fi film queen who longs to be taken seriously. Following in the footsteps of Marilyn Monroe (who also desired to be seen as a real actress rather than as just a “dumb blonde” comedienne), Sarah through persistence and humor wins Elliot over into taking her on as a pupil. As her whip-cracking teacher points out, she is too concerned with being a likeable personality, relying more on humor and self-effacing charm to get the part rather than doing the real work of breathing life into the character on the page. Unfortunately, the same could be said of the actress who played her. The charm and humor took Matarazzo a long way but not quite far enough.

The set perfectly evoked the feeling of a small acting studio, complete with the wooden boxes, ramshackle desk and chair, along with the costume rack and props. Cape May Stage is a fairly intimate theater (much like the black box stages of New York City) which aided in the set's realism.

In the end, this play was about courage…whether it is the courage to perform a monologue for a brutally honest acting teacher, the courage to deal with failure and mistakes of the past and move the hell on anyway or even the courage to face death. In Elliot and Sarah's case, they surprisingly found the strength they needed from the most unexpected place: each other. A tried and true formula? Yes, but one that works, especially for this piece.

Vote for Drake Hogestyn!!

Actor Drake Hogestyn (John, Days of Our Lives) has submitted his audition tape for Oprah's "Your Own Show" contest. Go see it at the link. He now has 55,456 votes. Still, he needs to get to at least a million to get a good shot. I think he would be fabulous with his own health show. So vote, everyone...VOTE!!!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

MISS BEHAVE Launch Party

From the press release:

"After nearly two years of development, pre and post production, the highly anticipated teen online soap opera, Miss Behave, will globally launch on Thursday, June 24th, both on their official home, and the web network"

"Leading the cast of Miss Behave is seventeen year old actress, recording artist and executive producer Jillian Clare, most recognized from her award winning performance as pre-teen Abby Deveraux on NBC's Days of Our Lives. Joining Jillian are Trevor Nelson (portraying older sibling Billy), plus best friends on and off screen Brett DelBuono and Jenna Stone. Rounding out the series regular cast is Marco James, Bianca Magick and Daytime Emmy winner Darin Brooks, now starring on Spike TV's Blue Mountain State. An elite group of other recognizable names guest star throughout the series including ex-Days of Our Lives stars Patrika Darbo and Jacee Jule plus Brendan Robinson from ABC Family's new hit Pretty Little Liars.

A full scale premiere and launch party is slated for Wednesday evening, June 23rd with red carpet arrivals beginning at 6:30 pm. The VIP party is scheduled from 7-9 pm, with general admittance at 9, followed by the screening of the first two webisodes at 9:30pm and a special musical performance by Kim DiVine ( following. The event will then switch to party mode as DJ Kyle Kaplan (10 Things I Hate About You) spins us to the midnight hour."

When: Wednesday 06/23/2010
Where: Cinespace – 6356 Hollywood Boulevard
Media Check-in: 6:00 pm
Red Carpet Arrivals: 6:30 pm

Peter Reckell in VENICE

See my DAYS OutTakes article about the latest news of Peter Reckell (DAYS) joining Crystal Chappell's web series, Venice, for its second season.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

DAYS OutTakes

While OutTakes is a blog that is meant to be primarily about theater, television and film actors...along with book reviews, theater reviews, soaps in general, etc., I have to admit I'm also a diehard Days of Our Lives fan. And with the way things have been lately on that show, when I mean die hard, I mean DIE HARD. If I haven't quit yet with all of the stuff that's been done over these last few years to annoy me, then I'm probably in for life or until cancelation. Whichever comes first.

That being said, I also like to follow the cast members, not just the present ones but the ones from way back. Waaaaay around 1980. So I decided to start a second blog called DAYS OutTakes...which is just focused on that show. Since I've watched the show ever since my Kindergarten years (I think?), I have a pretty solid knowledge of the show and respect for all the actors involved with it over the years.

So check out DAYS OutTakes for hopefully some interesting discussions about what's going on with that crazy soap opera.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Soap Opera Book Alert

I should say books alert as there are two soap opera related books coming up which I look forward to.

As reported by the website WE LOVE SOAPS: "The Survival of Soap Opera: Transformations for a New Media Era" which is now available for pre-order at Edited by Sam Ford, Abigail De Kosnik and C. Lee Harrington, the academic book, from University Press of Mississippi, is officially out on December. A number of wonderful soap journalists and critics also contributed to the book.

As reported on Sheri Anderson's FACEBOOK page: The past DAYS headwriter will be penning three Days of Our Lives novels. Sourcebooks, Sony Pictures and Corday Productions are all collaborating to launch "Days of Our Lives Publications." Already, executive producer Ken Corday's memoir has been released through them. The first novel penned by Sheri Anderson will be entitled "Secrets, Scandals and Lies, Vol. 1", expanding on the past characters of John and Marlena. While I admit that I would rather see these characters on my screen and I would love to see Sheri writing on DAYS again, I am looking forward to seeing her work in fiction. She was one of the best writers for DAYS; her characters still resonate today, as can be seen with the hopefully-soon-to-be reunion of Shane and Kim Donovan.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Rue McClahanan: Golden Girl

Today, I am particularly saddened to hear about the death of my favorite Golden Girl: Rue McClanahan.

While Rue was a multi-talented actress with an IMDB credit list that goes on forever, she is most well known for that classic television show, THE GOLDEN GIRLS. During my college years, every day I had a break from about 10 to 11 AM where I would grab some breakfast from the Student Center, make my way to my dorm room and hunker down to watch reruns of this wonderful show. I loved this sitcom for so many reasons. It was always entertaining, dependably funny and occasionally incredibly poignant. What a treat it was to see a hit show, starring four women who were considerably over the age of 30...beating the odds in a medium that had always been youth-obsessed.

While I loved Rose and Sophia and Dorothy, Blanche Deveraux (played by Rue) had my heart. I always loved Tennessee Williams; and Blanche was perhaps a character that Williams would have written had he taken a steady dosage of Prozac. Determined, adventurous and funny, she was an older woman who was more sexually voracious than any teenager. Even when insufferably self-absorbed, she was always a good friend to her roomies. The stuff of television fantasy? Sure. But television fantasy at its best.

Quite a few years ago, I rubbed shoulders with Rue at The Players here in NYC. She would attend poetry readings, speak at events and perform in readings. Like so many millions of others, I approached her the first evening I saw her at the club and told her what a fan I was of her work. She was gracious and thanked me. When I later heard from a close source that she stopped going to the club because she was tired of always being bothered by fans, I felt appropriately chastened for not just leaving the poor woman alone.

Still, I wish I could have known her better. Having read her autobiography, “My First Five Husbands…and the Ones Who Got Away,” I knew that she was a woman of grace, tenacity and humor. I would encourage you all to read this book as it shows how much more Rue was than just that Southern Belle with the biting humor and raging libido. She was also a great actress and a wonderful lady.

Rue…I’ll miss you.