Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Entertainment Weekly: SOAPS, SORAS AND SEX

Last week on Days of our Lives, the bitchy fallout continued from Sami’s plan to make her husband, EJ, pay for his affair with the young and nubile Abigail. Alison Sweeney, the actress who plays Sami, is 37 years old. James Scott, who plays EJ is 35, and Kate Mansi, who plays Abigail is 25.

Here is where it gets interesting, however. All three characters were born on-screen. Sami in 1984, EJ in 1997 and Abigail in 1992. This should make them 30, 17 and 22. (Abigail may be legally corrupting a minor, but Sami is the one doing some serious cradle robbing!)

Welcome to the wonderful world of Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome, known to fans as SORAS.  DOOL’s current triangle may be a pretty bad offender in that regard, but it’s hardly the worst ever. Check out some of soaps’ most mathematically challenging cases of SORAS ever in my latest piece for Entertainment Weekly at:

And, as an exclusive bonus, check out what Eileen Davidson had to say about playing EJ's mom, Susan, in my book, Soap Opera 451: A Time Capsule of Daytime Drama's Greatest Moments:

Tom Langan, who was the Co-Executive Producer at the time, told me they were going to try to get somebody to play the part of Susan.  I suggested that I play it.  She was supposed to be really different from Kristen.  (Headwriter) James Reilly put in the Elvis stuff.  He created the rough sketch, and I filled it in.  We added a padded suit, false teeth, contact lenses, and we tried out some wigs.  But, I created her personality.  I had a lot of input.  Susan was supposed to be insecure, from a small town, not very worldly, basically kind of ignorant.  She had an innocence.  I based a lot of it on innocence, not necessarily ignorance.  But, she was very intelligent in a certain way.  She was good at getting what she wanted.

(At first), they only had Susan in mind, and they really didn’t know for how long.  James just kind of took off.  He’s brilliant. The whole story was brilliant, with the teeth falling out at the wedding (below), all those things he wrote were so funny.  He took inspiration from me, I took inspiration from him.  For Susan’s different hairstyles, I watched Eight is Enough – which is strange because Dick Van Patten is now my father-in-law – but, one of the characters on the show, I don’t remember which daughter it was, wore her hair in pony-tails on each side of her head, and up high.  I was looking for different crazy hairstyles for Susan.  I was looking for anything and everything.  I would add things like Susan screaming at the vampire movie with popcorn in her mouth. 

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