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B&B Writers: Brad Bell, Patrick Mulcahey & Tracey Ann Kelley Chat On First GLAAD Media Award Nomination!

Courtesy/CBS

Courtesy/CBS

The Bold and the Beautiful’s executive producer and head writer, Brad Bell, and two members of his writing team, who are  part of the LGBT community, Patrick Mulcahey and Tracey Ann Kelly, spoke with On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman for an exclusive interview at FrontiersLA.com  about their GLAAD Media Award nomination for the writing and the portrayal of the “My Two Moms” storyline, a first for the soap in its 26-year history!

Creating the story of same-sex parents Karen and Dani, played by Joanna Johnson and Crystal Chappell, and their accepting daughter, Caroline played by Linsey Godfrey, and the lack of LGBT representation on network soap operas, are just some of the topics covered in the interview.

B&B will be competing with Days of our Lives in the Outstanding Daily Drama Series category which will be handed out in ceremonies in Los Angeles on April 20th.  Here now are some excerpts from the interview with Brad, Patrick, and Tracey, as we take a look at how writers construct an important story of our time and raise awareness for the masses at home.

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick on how the storyline of “My Two Moms” came into being:  “This all came from Brad, although we talked about, ‘Is this the time?’  I don’t know about anybody else, but we would bring in gay characters on the soaps in the 80’s and 90’s and they would come in for five days and weep and then someone would love and accept them, and then they would go away forever.  I am sick of that, and I never wanted to do that.  Brad seemed to never want to do that, either.  So the trick was to find the right core family member – so it’s a familial story, yet a social story. I do remember nagging Brad going, ‘Why is Caroline’s name ‘Spencer’?  Where is her father?  If her mother’s name is ‘Spencer’?  Finally Brad said, ‘She’s got two mothers!'”

Brad on if it bothered him that a soap about the fashion industry never had a gay character on the canvas: ” I think it bothered all of us and it bothers me, and it still does.  There are certainly, as you point out in fashion, room for more gay characters.  It’s something I really look forward to doing, especially with Joanna who is so talented in many ways, but she really has been unavailable to us for much of this story, which at times is frustrating, but she is hard at work producing the new primetime series, The Fosters!”

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick and Tracey if they are frustrated not seeing more gay characters represented on daytime soaps: “I identify with the characters we have on our canvas … with Taylor, Brooke with Eric, for example.  To me, it’s about what we say all the time.  I honestly believe it, ‘Love is love.’  When we are in the middle of writing people’s relationships and their tangled defenses, fears, and desires to belong, I feel right at home in that milieu.  Also, there is an awareness of our audience.  The pedigree of soap operas is about heterosexual romance, and that is what the audience sort of clamors for.  If we had a different dial of audience, we might choose to show the characters differently, but we have the audience we have.  We like to keep them happy, and have fun with them.”  TRACEY:  “I was personally thrilled to see my life portrayed on the show that I worked for.  I was deeply gratified to see my life, and my daughter’s life, portrayed on daytime television.”

Brad’s initial reaction to the writing team receiving their first GLAAD Media Award Nomination:  “It was great and so exciting!  I was so happy for everyone involved.  I am proud of the story.  I felt we built the story to Bill Spencer Jr’s (Don Diamont’s) reaction of his sister’s sexuality.  We knew that Bill’s father was ignorant and oppressive.  So we wondered if Don Diamont’s next generation Bill would feel the same way?  As it turns out, he was mature and evolved enough that if you fight nature it’s no good for anyone.  It seems with Bill readily accepting his sister, and her relationship with another woman, we were trying to lead by example for any of the viewers who are not on board, and hopefully change their way of thinking by watching Bill and how he dealt with the situation.”

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick on if there might ever be an evolution of a daytime gay soap:  “I wonder if there is another evolution to come?  Remember back in the days when the interracial romance was taboo?  You could have black characters, and you could have white characters, but the audience wasn’t ready for it and all the b**s.  I wonder if that is going to happen with gay characters on daytime right now, because they will only be able to interact romantically with each other.  Can you imagine three main gay characters on one show on maybe an hour soap?   I can’t!  So there is going to be this ghetto, until somebody breaks convention and creates the genre of Gay Soap.”

Make sure to read the entire interview and candid conversation at FrontiersLA.com.  What do you think about Brad, Patrick, and Tracey’s comments?  What are your thoughts on the “My Two Moms” storyline?  Do you think there might ever come a time when we see a daytime network television gay soap opera? What do you feel about the representation of the LGBT community in daytime?  Weigh-in!

 

 

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Perla
Guest
Perla

Very good interview.

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

The storyline on B&B is a complete joke now you see them now you don’t good excuse Brad for the actress Joanna Johnson not being available then don’t start something you can’t finish but typical of B&B. I do not watch Days but I hear from others for B&B to even be in the running against Days is another big joke.

Iakovos
Guest
Iakovos

I would feel better about this recognition and cheer loudly if the My Two Moms story was even close to the front burner. Points for trying, Mr. Bell.

Maggie
Guest
Maggie

There should be some consistency on the show, when it comes to the two moms. I think Brad Bell
had the right idea !

ADAM
Guest
ADAM

Nominated for what? This storyline quickly was pushed to the backburner. If they are aware that this soap takes place in the fashion world and in LA then maybe they need to add more gay characters. Complete joke to be nominated for a soap that has no gay characters.

bc
Guest
bc

It does not appear to be organic whenever hollywood creates majority of its lgbt storylines. It feels like it’s written for publicity and awards from lgbt groups. It would be organic if those lesbian chars from b&b were from the fashion business. But they’re not. Wasn’t joana’s background what made brad bell write the lesbian chars? Doesn’t joana have an adopted African american child and other adopted children who are racial minorities? They really should have cast caroline w/ a racial minority actress if joana’s background was used to create this storyline. But the old caroline was always described as… Read more »

Sasha
Guest
Sasha

I am very happy to see LGBT representation on B&B and I think it is fabulous to see a child that has two moms or two dads and it be a normal situation. I am also glad Bill was accepting of the relationship and did not go ape shit. I would love to see more of Danielle too!

Breaking News

AW and OLTL Alum, Robyn Griggs Dead at 49

In more heartbreaking soap news this weekend, Robyn Griggs had lost her battle with cancer.  The actress, best-known to daytime viewers as Stephanie on One Life to Live and Maggie on Another World, passed away at age 49.

The news came on Saturday via Griggs’ official Facebook posted, where in a statement it noted: “Hi everyone, With a heavy heart, I am saddened to announce Robyn’s passing. However, she is no longer suffering and would want us to remember that and the good memories. I will never forget how open she was to telling her story, and accepting of me helping her tell it. She wanted to help people and spread the word of her story to do it. I was honored to do so. RIP my friend, I love you and smile when I think of you.”

Photo: RGriggsFacebook

From 1991-1992, Griggs found her first soap success playing the part of One Life’s Stephanie Hobart.  Later, in 1993-1995, she played AW’s Maggie Cory.  Robyn was also a singer and signed a recording deal with RCA Records.

Robyn had been battling stage 4 Endocervical Adeno cancer.  Back on July 7th, Griggs had taken a turn for the worse, sharing on Facebook, “Unfortunately, I have 4 new tumors …2 new tumors on my liver, one on the abdominal muscle, and a large one on the right side lymph node.” On August 11th, her father shared Robyn was put into hospice care.

Share your remembrances and condolences for Robyn Griggs Riley and her loved ones in the comment section below.

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Breaking News

Anne Heche, ‘Another World’ Alum and TV and Film Star, Dead at 53

Following a catastrophic brain injury from crashing her car into a home last week and suffering severe burns, actress Anne Heche has been declared brain-dead at the age of 53.

In a statement from a rep for Heche’s friends and family, they expressed: “Today we lost a bright light, a kind and most joyful soul, a loving mother, and a loyal friend.  Anne will be deeply missed but she lives on through her beautiful sons, her iconic body of work, and her passionate advocacy. Her bravery for always standing in her truth, spreading her message of love and acceptance, will continue to have a lasting impact.”

Heche is legally dead according to California law, although her heart is still beating she has not been taken off life support in order to allow for organ donations to take place and to find the right recipients.

 

Photo: AHInstagram

Anne’s eldest son, Homer 20, said in a statement to PEOPLE on his mom’s passing:  “My brother Atlas and I lost our Mom. After six days of almost unbelievable emotional swings, I am left with a deep, wordless sadness. Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom. Over those six days, thousands of friends, family, and fans made their hearts known to me. I am grateful for their love, as I am for the support of my Dad, Coley, and my stepmom Alexi who continue to be my rock during this time. Rest In Peace Mom, I love you.”

The talented actress is best-known to soap opera fans for her Daytime Emmy-winning dual roles as twins, Vicky and Marley Hudson on Another World.  She had two sons, Homer with her ex Coley Laffoon and Atlas, 13, with actor James Tupper.

Throughout her career Heche appeared on TV shows and films includingL Men in Trees, If These Walls Could TalkDonnie BrascoI Know What You Did Last SummerSix Days, Seven Nights, and Gus Van Zant’s 1998 remake of Psycho. Back in 2020, Anne became a celebrity contestant on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars.

Heche’s stormy relationship with Ellen DeGeneres made headlines throughout her career, and today, DeGeneres shared: “This is a sad day. I’m sending Anne’s children, family and friends all of my love.”

Michael Fairman chatted with Anne back in 2020, in a memorable conversation for You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel touching upon her career start on Another World, being a champion for the LGBTQ community, her relationship with DeGeneres, the ups and down in her career, and her demons and childhood past.

You can watch the conversation below.

Now, share your thoughts, condolences, and remembrances for Anne Heche via the comment section.

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Breaking News

Anne Heche ‘Not Expected to Survive’; Suffered Severe Brain Injury From Fiery Crash

In just heartbreaking news, Daytime Emmy-winner, Anne Heche (Ex-Vicky/Marley, Another World), is not expected to survive after days in the hospital following being severely burned in a fiery car crash when her vehicle struck a home in Mar Vista, California last Friday.

According to family and friends of the motion picture and television star in a statement, “Unfortunately, due to her accident, Anne Heche suffered a severe anoxic brain injury and remains in a coma, in critical condition. She is not expected to survive. It has long been her choice to donate her organs and she is being kept on life support to determine if any are viable.”  Deadline notes, the actress will be taken off life-support.

The statement went on to say, “We want to thank everyone for their kind wishes and prayers for Anne’s recovery and thank the dedicated staff and wonderful nurses that cared for Anne at the Grossman Burn Center at West Hills hospital.  More than her extraordinary talent, she saw spreading kindness and joy as her life’s work — especially moving the needle for acceptance of who you love. She will be remembered for her courageous honesty and dearly missed for her light.”

There are plans for Heche to get an Honor Walk, which is a hero’s goodbye donor patients receive by hospital staff as they are wheeled into the operating room in their final journey.

Heche will be featured on Lifetime’s Girl in Room 13, set to premiere this fall in September. Lifetime’s Executive VP  and head of programming, Amy Winter, revealed earlier this week at the TCA press tour, “As many of you know, Anne remains in critical condition and all of us here at Lifetime are deeply concerned for her and everyone affected. This project is important to Anne, along with each and every one of us. We all sought to make a film that would bring attention to this appalling issue of human sex trafficking.”

In addition, TMZ had reported that following toxicology reports, Cocaine was found in Heche’s system following the crash. They also found fentanyl. However,  sources say fentanyl can often be used as a pain medication in hospitals, so there is no confirmation that it was in Anne’s system at the time of the crash.

Anne was an amazing actress with such a tortured life.  We send thoughts and prayers to all her loved ones during this difficult time.  Share your thoughts on the latest update on Anne in the comment section below.

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GH’s Nicholas Alexander Chavez (Spencer) talks with Michael Fairman immediately following his Daytime Emmy win for Outstanding Younger Performer in Drama Series. Leave A Comment
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