Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Just because the skating season may technically be over, doesn't mean the conversation needs to stop.

2-time Olympic Champion Dick Button likes to say that a great figure skater is one who has changed the sport (though he doesn't clarify if it's for the better or worse).

By that criteria, who are the 15 Most Influential Skaters From the US?

Go to and check out the list, then tell us if you agree!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Actor, writer, director and all around character Matthew Cowles died last week.

Though best known for his role as Billy Clyde on All My Children, he also appeared on Loving and The Bold & the Beautiful, as well as movies like Shutter Island and The World According to Garp, the mini-series Lonesome Dove and, like any NYC actor worth his salt, all the Law and Orders.

He is survived by his wife of thirty years, The Good Wife's Christine Baranski.

To watch Matthew's last ever Billy Clyde-related interview, check out the MORE AMC we filmed last summer at his home:

Our condolences go out to his wife and daughters. (And to his devoted dog, Guadalupe, who kept such a close eye on him all during the filming.)

Friday, May 23, 2014


My daughter and a host of other kids reacts to MacDonald's new mascot, for "New York Magazine." Mine is the first one in the clip, with the long, dark hair.

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Edited to add: An Affair of the Heart is now available on iTunes, Amazon, Vudu, Google Play, XBox and Playstation for rental or purchase.

Originally posted on 12/23/13

When I worked for ABC Daytime, As the World Turns and Guiding Light, All My Children and One
Life to Live, or the Daytime Emmy Awards, my favorite part of the job was always those occasions when I could watch the fans interact with the actors.

The thing about making a soap is that you do it pretty much in isolation. No studio audience, no curtain call.  The process is so time-consuming and all-encompassing, that it's easy to forget there are actual people out there watching it.  You're too busy focusing on just getting the product out there on time.

That's why fan club events, award shows or even random encounters on the street were such a thrill.  They reminded me why we were working so hard.  It was to make the fans happy.

That feeling of joy that fans get from interacting with their favorite stars permeates the documentary, An Affair of the Heart, "an up close look at the man, his music, and the fans he inspires."  That man being Rick Springfield.

Like any longtime General Hospital viewer, I was, of course, familliar with his work as Noah Drake.  And like anyone who was alive with ears in the 1980s, I had heard "Jessie's Girl."

But, that was the extent of my knowledge about him.  I had no idea that Rick had such a devoted fan following, with people traveling all over the country to see him live as often as once a month.  I didn't know about the Rick Springfield cruises, and I was only vaguely aware that he'd written a New York Times best-selling memoir.

While I found all the above interesting during my viewing of An Affair of the Heart, what moved me the most were the fans' stories.  The woman who found strength while recovering from heart surgery due to Rick's music... and the one who used his album to help deal with her agonizing anger following a gang rape. I loved the stories of friendships formed from a love of Rick Springfield, and the boy who was invited up on stage as a toddler to sing along - and now plays guitar on some tour stops.

As a soap fan, I would have liked to see some classic GH scenes, but there is an interview with Rick's longtime friend, Doug Davidson (Paul; Y&R), as well as a sit-down with Jaclyn Zeman (Bobbie; GH) on the DVD extras.

All in all, An Affair of the Heart is a very pleasant surprise in the rock-doc genre, definitely worthwhile for fans of Rick, music in general and/or GH.

In fact, it's so good that I am raffling off a FREE copy.  To enter, just email with the subject line: Rick Springfield.

Or, if you can't wait, buy your copy at the link below:

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Because I am a geek AND because I inherently distrust anything presented as true by the media, I've done my own research and come up with these two lists:

10 Surprising Movies Based on a True(ish) Story (The Amityville Horror? Arsenic & Old Lace? Psycho? The Blob???)

10 Musicals You Didn't Know Were Based on a True(ish) Story (Chicago? Kinky Boots? Sweeney Todd?)

Click on the links to find out which parts are true, and which are... true(ish)...

Friday, May 09, 2014


What baseball players were such huge "All My Children" fans that they invited Susan Lucci to throw out the first ball?

Which NFL vets brought their talents to a pair of P&G soaps?

Who were the very different on-ice greats to grace "The Young & the Restless?"

What Olympian sped through "Santa Barbara" and which Summer Games Gold Medalist had the longest-running soap role of any athlete?

Find out all of the above and more in my round up of Top 10 Sports Stars to Appear on a Soap Opera.

And if that's not enough, also check out 10 Football Players Who Hit It Big on the Small Screen.

Thursday, May 08, 2014


The 1980s weren't just the golden years of daytime soaps (Luke & Laura on the cover of "People!") and nighttime soaps ("Who Shot JR?"), they were also prime-time for glossy, glitzy, decadent mini-series (plus a couple that actually had something serious to say).

Nowadays, when people talk about binge-watching, they mean on their own schedule.

But, thirty years ago, binge-watching meant clearing your social calender and committing to two (sometimes three) hours a night, for a week or more.

And then talking about it at the water-cooler the next day. (Or, in my case, at school.) VCRs were just becoming ubiquitous, so there was the slight possibility of spoilers. But most people watched live, and it became a countrywide event.

What was your favorite miniseries of the 1980s? Check out this round up I wrote of The Original Binge-Watching: Top 10 TV MiniSeries and share your thoughts in the Comments!

Wednesday, May 07, 2014


OUT Magazine has a cover story on Matt Bomer this week, so, for fun, I thought I'd put up Matt's first interview ever, that I did for the official Guiding Light website when he joined the cast as Ben Reade in 2001. Enjoy!

Introducing … Matthew Bomer!

A round-up of answers to the usual questions from one of Guiding Light’s newest cast members.

Welcome, Matt:
I’m from Texas. My dad was a Dallas Cowboy from 1972 to 1974. It was a very short time because he injured his knee and that was before they had good orthoscopic surgery. He’s in the shipping industry now.

Boot Camp:
As a kid, around sixth grade, I got into theater. It was sort of a niche I found. It was a way for me to have a blast and express myself. It also explained the way I behaved as a child and all the games of pretend I would play out in the backyard. It was something I was good at, whatever ‘good’ means. I started doing work at the Alley Theater, which is a regional theater in Houston. After high school, I started researching conservatory programs. I auditioned for a bunch of them, and I ended up getting into Carnegie-Mellon University. It was a very intense program. You ate, slept and breathed drama. You were there from eight in the morning until 11 at night sometimes, and it was drama all day long. You had to love it to be there.

It’s a Heck of a Town:
I had the opportunity to go to L.A. but — you know — I grew up outside of Houston, and L.A. kind of reminded me of Houston in a lot of ways, just this big, spread-out city. Besides, I knew New York was going to keep me on my toes. I was going to be working with and going up against people who really had a theater background. That was the hard dose of reality that I wanted and I felt like I needed. Of course, I did the whole dating-around thing when I first got to New York City. And then I was like, “Do I have the money to do this?” I’m actually really excited now because I finally have the money to take girls nice places.

First Soap:
I did a little stint on All My Children. I was Susan Lucci’s daughter’s ex-lesbian lover’s new fiancĂ©. Ian, I think his name was. Daytime really took me by surprise. I was used to this theater background where you get six weeks to delve into things. But at the same time, there was a great spontaneity to it, and you really had to be on your toes.

Musical Matt:
I was about to be in the musical, Thoroughly Modern Millie on Broadway in March. I did a lot of musical theater in college, like A Little Night Music by Stephen Sondheim. He’s the best. Sondheim writes for the character, which is so rare for composers these days. When you first read it, you’re like, “This is so difficult, how am I ever going to learn it?” But once you start getting a sense of the character it all makes sense.

Come into the Light:
I had come in for Rob Decina, who is an amazing (GL) casting director, for the role of Romeo Jones, and he kept me in mind from that time. So he gave me a call and he told me, “There’s a role coming up, I think you’re right for it. Can you come in?” And I was like, “Yes! Yes, I can!”

No, Thank You:
When I was doing my screen-test for Ben, A&E (network) came in to do interviews with all the guys up for the part. They were doing a behind-the-scenes about how you get a job. They shot all the guys, but I sort of backed down — humbly — because I knew I would be so nervous. I didn’t want to be followed around with a camera into hair and make-up and everywhere, I just wanted to stay in my room and focus. It was a good call, because a lot of things came together right for this part, and I just had a blast. I knew that no matter what happened, I just had a great time. This was something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and I was finally getting to do it, in some aspect.

The Scoop:
Rob told me that Ben was in a fraternity in Springfield U, and that the story would be really fun. The story is about him and Marah, and this competition he has going with his frat-mates. The writing of this character is so good and so strong. When I saw it, I was just pumped. I knew Ben had a bit of a dark side, but they just really gave me a nice place to start from.

Homework Helper:
I did so much research for this part! I bought the Guiding Light Scrapbook. I am caught up from 1957 to the present! Once I found out Holly was my step-mother, I did a lot of research, and then I was like, “Wait, does this mean I’m related to Roger Thorpe?” But then I found out I was Fletcher Reade’s son. So I found out about him, and how my mom died in a helicopter crash. I had a meeting with (Executive Producer) Paul Rauch today, and I was like, “So, let’s talk about my mother, Maeve, and my father, Fletch…” And he was all, “Whoa, how do you know all this stuff?”

Good Works:
I am interested in every charity I can help. Not to assume that I have any status or anything, but any way that this show provides me to let me use whatever spotlight I have to let me help other people, I’m just really psyched about doing it, because that’s the responsibility of putting yourself in the public eye.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014


My latest for

My 7-year-old daughter who, as we previously determined, is nothing like me in personality, also looks nothing like me. Which is why I can say, without a trace of self-interest, that she is a beautiful girl. She has luxurious black hair, olive skin, huge chocolate colored eyes, eye lashes that go on forever, and a perennial smile on her face–just like her dad. I constantly tell my daughter that she is beautiful. (My brother has dubbed her Beauteous Maximus, in Latin).

I know many beautiful women. Having worked in soap operas since 1994, I’d wager I know more beautiful women than most people. Every year, around Daytime Emmys time, I would leave the house feeling I looked my very best. I’d get to the venue and wonder why I bothered; I wasn’t in these people’s league. I wasn’t in their species. And yet, a majority of these stunning creatures all think there is something wrong with them. Usually because of a lifetime of hearing from well-meaning people–more often than not, moms and dads set the stage for what agents and casting director and “fans” finish–about how they could really stand to lose five pounds. Or get a nose job. Or straighten their hair. Or wear more make-up/different clothes/stand up straight/smile.

I also know women who would be considered objectively unattractive in the conventional sense. And yet their self-image is amazing. Because no one ever told them otherwise.

I know pretty girls, non-actors, regular people with many wonderful qualities, who insist they can’t get a boyfriend until their dress size is no longer in the double digits. And I know women who passed double digits in middle school who are happily married and can pass a mirror without wincing. Heck, they can pass a mirror without bothering to look in it.

Sure, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Except the beholder is usually the person themselves. Everyone else just follows along.

So I tell my daughter that she is beautiful. Because she is.

And I don’t tell her that she is smart. Because she is.

Read the entire piece (and don't skip the comments section where readers really go to town on me) at: