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B&B's John McCook Chats On His Final Scenes With Susan Flannery & Eric's Life Post-Stephanie!

Photo Credit: Gilles Toucas

While Susan Flannery is garnering all the attention as she and her long running character, Stephanie Forrester get set to depart The Bold and the Beautiful after 25 years, its time to shine some light on the other half of the duo that will remain behind!

TV Guide spoke to John McCook (Eric), one of the core four of B&B, to discuss life post-Stephanie for the patriarch of the Forrester clan.  Plus, how with Flannery’s exit (which will honor the character in a profound way), it will push McCook in new story directions, which indicate that exciting times are ahead as an actor for this soap veteran.  But before any of that occurs, circle November 9th, 12th, and13th on your soap viewing calendars, as that is when Stephanie’s big goodbye party comes to fruition on-air!  Here now are a few excerpts from the interview below with John McCook!

John weighing in on how Stephanie’s imminent death is also Eric’s story too:  “It is! When I first heard Susan was retiring from the role, I went to executive producer Brad Bell and said, “What will we do? How do we handle this? What’s going to happen to me?” (Laughs) Because, as an actor, it’s all about me, of course! But Brad is using this great loss to refocus B&B in a new, really exciting direction. Of course, right now everyone is watching how Stephanie deals with this as the days tick down but in time it very much becomes Eric’s story and I’m really excited to have it. This is a huge change for our show and for me, personally. Eric has kind of been in Stephanie’s shadow in recent years, even in business. (Laughs) Even in mourning! She won’t even let him grieve the way he wants to grieve. She’s running everything from the catbird seat, telling everyone how to be sad! But, yeah, Eric will be getting his power back.”

John on how it was to film his final scenes with Susan Flannery:  “She’s been my TV wife for 25 years, almost as long as I’ve been married to my real wife (actress Laurette Spang), so we couldn’t help but go to a really emotional place. After all, we’re not only losing each other as characters but as actors, too, and we indulged all those feelings. As usual, Susan was a titan. It was huge thing to play. It was dramatic. It was beautiful. Eric and Stephanie are just so wonderfully amused with each other because they’ve survived as a couple. They’ve hurt each other, offended each other, stepped in shit together all along the way, but somehow they’ve managed to build a wonderful life and create a marvelous family. And their love endures, stronger than ever. It’s such a dark and awful thing to have Stephanie die but we’re bringing the light to every scene. Usually on soaps, you’re pulling up a chair at the hospital bed. This is so much better than that. There will be no deathbed for this exit!”

Are you looking forward to seeing the final scenes between B&B’s Stephanie and Eric? What would you like to see happen to Eric after Stephanie passes away? Let us know your thoughts!

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Iakovos
Iakovos

If Brad Bell is serious about taking the show in a new direction, I better not see Eric renewing vows with Brooke or Donna. And let’s not rush him into someone’e arms with any haste. Please let him grieve, hit bottom and come back, or discover something new about himself, focus on a strong business story. Run for public office. Reconnect with his children. Let him sing… literally! This man could be so better used and I will go into this dark time — saying goodbye to Stephanie — believing Eric (and McCook) will be treated well.

kay/kay
kay/kay

Hey he is going to have to have about two chins removed for him to be a hunk that the actor and the character thinks he is. Never have liked this actor he gives me the creeps just like Jacob Young. Yuck!

Jesse
Jesse

I am very excited about the new direction this show will be forced to take. Things happen, people retire, characters die. Ronn Moss and Susan gave 25 wonderful years to this show, and they chose to leave. It’s now time to move on, as we all have to in life when things happen. Personally, in 2011, I lost my two older brothers, both to cancer, within a month and a day of each other. You can NEVER imagine, or prepare, or fathom such a tragedy hitting your life until it happens. But when it does, you have to cope, and deal however you can. This is a SOAP, folks. In the grand scheme of our lives, it is a half an hour a day of fluff that doesn’t matter. It is an escape, a diversion. People work hard to bring us this little escape, so just go along for the ride. Whoever Eric ends up with…whoever Brooke ends up with…remember…it does NOT affect your life. Watch the show, enjoy it, and then go back to your own life, and cherish your spouse, enjoy your children, love your family, appreciate your friends. THAT’S what matters. People are dying on the east coast due to major storms. What happens on this show is insignificant to your life! Put it in perspective, enjoy what they do, and keep living!

Mary SF
Mary SF

What a touching, well written and thoughtful post, thanks Jesse. It is amazing what we think is so important until real life gets a hold of us and reminds us what our true treasures are. It is a lesson most of us only learn when life has given us something beyond ourselves to deal with. Soaps and even bitching about them can be escapist fun at times, which we should enjoy, but if our blood pressure is going up because tptb aren’t writing things the way we want, then it perhaps time to turn off the television and find a more relaxing hobby. I only hope many will heed your sage advice because it is spoken from the voice of experience.

RICKIE
RICKIE

I agree. This show doesn’t do panoramic storytelling very well — they focus all their attention on one storyline at the neglect of others (e.g., Liam/Steffy/Hope). They desperately need to bring in new characters and drop a few more (i.e., Donna, Taylor, Oliver). If they really want to move forward, they need inject new life into this show instead of retreading the past.

Mary SF
Mary SF

If they are dropping characters they should drop Pam. This character is so annoying, adds no comic relief to the show at all. I have no idea why she is still there except to make lemon bars.

Mirko di Wallenberg
Mirko di Wallenberg

Not having seen this show since ages, well almost 10 years, the announcement of the death of Stephanie Forrester lured me back to catch that storyline and withness her death. Being a loyal viewer from day one at the end of the 80’s I left at the beginning of 2000 because I could not stomach the badly written storylines anymore around Brooke, Taylor, Rich, Eric, Stefanie, Sheila, Sally, Macy, Thorne… and all the others anymore! Over and over and over again the same endless drab, unfinished storylines, non saying episodes… you get it if you follow the show! I was for me a complete waist of time and energy! So did the show improve after ten years of non viewing? Boy oh boy was I in for a shock! That soap is even worse than I remembered. What is this??? A kiddie’s show for kids at lunch break? 90210? Degrassi High on Fashion? You have a few adults as frame and than you have dozens of juvenile characters prentending to be adults running around, kissing, breaking up, kissing again, breaking up again… in an endless cycle. And what has happened to the production side of the show??? Where is all the high glamour? The wealth and beautiful people? All gone into the desert never to be seen again! And then the main cast is looking so tired and bloated like Eric and Thorn! So on the one end you have a kindergarden show and on the other end a elderly nursing home show!!! This is just horrible to watch! Not even mentioning the storylines, if you can speak of storylines! They are complete devote of reality now! In case Stefanie is dying, ok, I accept that, but hey, did that women in her entire life of being rich and wealthy never had any friends and extended family of her own? Only the few cast members she says goodbye to??? And what nerves me is the lack of domestic staff! A women like Stefanie opens her own door??? So we assume that the mansion we always see from the outside in bird perspective is being maintained by Stefanie in an apron??? Where is the Stefanie in her diamond glittering dress from the first year??? Enough!!! Made my point. After Stefenie’s death I am out of her untill Brooke or KKL leaves the show say in 30 years time if I am still alive that is!

barb
barb

I feel like I just wasted 40 seconds of my life reading this 🙂

Mirko di Wallenberg
Mirko di Wallenberg

The waste of 40 seconds is nothing compared to the waste of 30 minutes each and every working day during 25 years watching the Bold and Beautiful so you should not complain!

Mark Y
Mark Y

I am looking forward to Eric getting his MoJo back and seeing where it takes him. B&B is not just about Stephanie. It’ll be fine without her (but I’ll certainly miss the character very much). Keep up the good work, Bell Family!

dawn
dawn

Just take him to a good place he is great he may end up with his sister-in-law,she is great as well that would be interesting just dont have him end up with some younger women again. Thats to boring!

barb
barb

This has been such a unique way to deal with the death of Stephanie. It is so much better than the hospital exit . Thankyou for that! It has been thoughtful as well as beautiful! We will miss this fine actress! I wish her well.

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