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‘EastEnders’ Beloved June Brown Passes Away at 95

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Actress June Brown, who for over three decades played Dot Cotton on the long-running UK soap, EastEnders has died.

Brown, passed away yesterday on April 3rd at the age of 95.  No cause of death has been reported.

Back in 2020, Brown decided to quit EastEnders after no longer getting as much story.  June first joined EastEnders in July 1985, as the mother of criminal, Nick Cotton.  She left at one point for four years between 1993-1997 and took six months leave in 2012, but throughout the soaps run remained popular.

The BBC twitter Account posted on Sunday, “We are deeply saddened to announce our beloved mother, June, passed away very peacefully at her home in Surrey on Sunday evening, with her family by her side.”

In a statement, a rep for EastEnders shared: “We are deeply saddened to announce that our beloved June Brown, OBE, MBE sadly passed away last night. There are not enough words to describe how much June was loved and adored by everyone at EastEnders, her loving warmth, wit and great humour will never be forgotten. June created one of the most iconic characters in Dot Cotton, not just in soap but in British television, and having appeared in 2,884 episodes, June’s remarkable performances created some of EastEnders’ finest moments.”

June also racked up some awards for her performance of Dot through the years: She was a two-time British Soap Awards winner, recipient of their Lifetime Achievement Award and earned a BAFTA Award nomination for her work.

So, did you watch June on EastEnders? Saddened by her passing? Comment below.  

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During last week’s Oscar telecast, I clocked the vocabulary-challenged Laverne Cox and her colleagues use the word “iconic” over 40 times, often describing people under 30. Well, folks, here’s the passing of an icon who earned the title. June Brown was a staple in British acting, always good for a laugh or a cutting remark. She’ll be missed.

Brilliant character and fantastic actress. Dot, Ethel and Lou Beale, powerhouses of EastEnders and Albert Square R.I.P.

What about Walford’s “Powerful P Troika” of Pauline, Peggy and Pat? Eastenders has never been the same since they lost the late Wendy Richard and Barbara Windsor, not to mention, the still much alive and kicking Pam St. Clement! I loved it when those three deeply-determined dames mixed it up, which was pretty much constantly! As for Miss Brown, I’ll never forget her skillfully oddball portrayal of that scary-looking, bible-spouting, chain-smoking Dot Cotton. Such a dichotomy….on one hand an extremely pious, disciplined Christian whose hair rollers always seemed to be wound far too tightly and on the other hand, a total nicotine fiend completely reliant upon her copious consumption of daily smokes. A true exercise in contradictions….At first, Dot was an extremely brittle, unlikable character, but with time, June Brown made her not only viewer-friendly, but actually beloved, by infusing her with a simultaneous sense of dark humor and vulnerability. She will be missed!

Excellent analysis, Shay. Yes, the days of Peggy, Pat and Pauline mixing it up in various combinations were glorious. And June Brown had that skill that’s hard to come by in making Dot beloved without changing the fundamentals of her personality — just giving the character more depth than the script’s words conveyed.

Thank you, hollyoaksboi! Yes, June Brown had that most special ability to make Dot even at her worst and sometimes hateful self to be not disliked but rather pitied…until later when she became a much more lovable and sympathetic figure for the viewer. (How could she not be when she so suffered over such a reprehensible reprobate son like Nick Cotton? He was the worst of the worst!) I’ve always wondered if Dot was originally envisaged by her creators as smoking like a chimney or if Miss Brown’s own self-proclaimed love of the ciggies brought that particular aspect to her purely peculiar character??? As far as those “glorious” days of the “Walford Three,” I have to admit I was pretty partial to the punch-packing Pat and Peggy when they fought over the affections of that cad, Frank Butcher!!!! It was such a sight to see the diminutive Babs Windsor holding her own against the more physically formidable Pam St. Clement….they certainly gave Krystle and Alexis a run for their money in the catfighting department! Later, it was that shared history which made Peggy’s swan song all the more poignant when she decided to end her own life after receiving her dementia diagnosis and who was there to comfort and guide her to the afterlife but her longtime frenemy, Pat??? Such a touching ending to Miss Windsor’s larger-than-life character whose eternal catchphrase,“Get outta my pub!” still resonates to this day! (And how ironic that we actually lost that British acting legend to the same malady which afflicted her famous Eastenders’ persona….) Alas, that sad scenario was the last I actually watched in its entirety…I still read in the UK press of the goings-on in Walford, but as with so many of the soaps here “across the pond,” I am content to keep my nostalgic memories of the superb storylines and classic characters of the past and ignore the less superior state of the present.

It can’t be overestimated how much of a British institution this actress and her character were. If you said to anyone in the UK…”She’s just like Dot Cotton,” they knew exactly what you meant. And getting a BAFTA nomination would nearly be like getting an Oscar nomination … for working in a soap. She was an amazing character actress and will be much missed.

Most people won’t remember, but June Brown gave a deliciously self-centered turn as Viloet Leyton, Louisa Trotter’s (Gemma Jones) aspirational mother in the two season British series The Duchess of Duke Street (on PBS in the States 1977-1978). That series is available to stream on BritBox.

Thanks for the tip, Kit. I have never seen that and will have to look it up. Raise a glass to June Brown while watching!

It’s available on Amazon Prime.

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The Young and the Restless Renewed for Four More Years at CBS

Congratulations are in order to the cast, crew, creatives and fans of CBS’ The Young and the Restless. On Wednesday, the top-rated daytime drama was renewed by the network for four more years.

The renewal will bring Y&R through the 2027-2028 television season, and brings the series through its 55th season. The Young and the Restless has continued to remain the #1 daytime drama for over 36 years and is CBS’ longest-running series.

In a statement, Amy Reisenbach, president of CBS Entertainment shared, “The Young and the Restless has been a staple of daytime television for over 50 years, and it is with great pleasure that we will continue that legacy at CBS,The talented cast and writers deliver compelling performances and stories on a daily basis and have provided iconic moments that have kept the show on top of the ratings and thrilled generations of fans for over five decades. We look forward to seeing what new creative twists and turns they have planned for the folks of Genoa City.”

Photo: JPI

According to CBS, Y&R is averaging 3.50 million viewers this season. The series is also the #1 daytime program among African American viewers. Full episodes of the series are streaming on Paramount+ and CBS TVE.  The soap opera airs weekdays at 12:30-1:30 p.m. ET/11:30 a.m.-12:30 p..m. PT.

Y&R notables are also celebrating anniversaries in 2024 including series icons: Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki Newman) for 45 years this month, and Eric Braeden (Victor Newman) for 44 years. In April, the show will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Nikki and Victor’s wedding, which aired in April 1984 and was one of the highest-rated episodes in the history of the show.

Photo: JPI

Other notable cast anniversaries in 2024 include: Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott) at 35 years and Joshua Morrow (Nicholas Newman), Sharon Case (Sharon Newman) and Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Summers) all at 30 years.

Photo: JPI

The Young and the Restless debuted on March 23, 1973 and the show celebrated its 50th anniversary season in 2023. Y&R was co-created by the late William J. Bell and Lee Phillip Bell. At present, Josh Griffith currently serves as the series executive producer and head writer.

Share your thoughts on the news that Y&R had been given a four-year renewal by CBS and will continue on with the lives of the people you love in Genoa City through its 55th season via the comment section below.

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Kimberlin Brown ‘Killed-Off’ as Sheila Carter on The Bold and the Beautiful in Shocking Twist

The Monday, February 26th episode of CBS daytime’s The Bold and the Beautiful brought with it the apparent end to one of the all-time villains of soap opera.

In story, Steffy Forrester (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood) was being stalked by Sheila (Kimberlin Brown) in the dark. Eventually, Steffy stabs Sheila in the heart with a knife and she apparently dies.

Speaking with TV Insider, Brown admitted that it is extremely hard to leave a now iconic role she made soap-famous since 1990 on first The Young and the Restless and then The Bold and the Beautiful.

Photo: JPI

Kimberlin expressed: “It’s a tough place for me to be in right now; I’m not going to lie about this. I guess if anyone were going to take Sheila down, I’m happy it’s Steffy. I just wish that no one was taking Sheila down.”  Three time Daytime Emmy-winner, Jacqueline MacInnes Wood expressed: “It’s bittersweet because I absolutely love working with Kimberlin; she is just the consummate professional.”

Courtesy/CBS

However, the stabbing is vindication for Steffy as Wood related, “This is her moment. How long has it taken Steffy to take her down and it’s finally happening, so it’s going to be a big shock.”

As to her B&B death scene and to her future plans, Brown revealed, “Laying there on that floor when the paramedics pronounce the time of death, my eyes were closed and you’re holding your breath so it doesn’t look like you’re breathing. It was just like, ‘Wow, OK, I guess we’ll have to see what might come next for me.’”

Courtesy/CBS

If this holds up and Sheila is “dead” dead, it will open up the story and trouble in the marriage of Finn (Tanner Novlan) and Steffy, because ultimately, Steffy killed her husband’s biological mother.

Photo: JPI

This is leading many to believe this move will bring Steffy back together with Liam (Scott Clifton) while Finn and Hope (Annika Noelle) draw closer. Is that part of the reason for Sheila’s death? Stay tuned.

What do you think about The Bold and the Beautiful killing-off Sheila Carter and Steffy to be the one who put an end to her life? Comment below.

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Daytime Stars We Lost Remembered in 2024 SAG Awards In-Memoriam Tribute

On Saturday night at the 30th annual SAG Awards streaming on Netflix, several stars from the world of soap opera were remembered in a very moving In-Memoriam segment.

Honoring those actors we lost this past year, and set to the song “How do I Say Goodbye” by Dean Lewis, the screen was filled with so many heartbreaking losses.

Those who were remembered in the tribute included: Bill Hayes (Doug, Days of our Lives), Ellen Holly (Carla, One Life to Live), Nicolas Coster (Lionel, Santa Barbara et al), Tyler Christopher (Nikolas, GH, Stefan DAYS), Billy Miller (Billy, Y&R and Drew, GH), Sharon Farrell (Flo, Y&R), Arlene Sorkin (Calliope, DAYS), Kamar de los Reyes (Antonio, OLTL), Jeffrey Carlson (Zoe/Zarf, AMC) and Mark Goddard (Ted, OLTL).

Photo: ABC

Other notable stars who passed away and were included in the tribute were: Chita Rivera, Andre Braugher, Suzanne Somers, and Matthew Perry.

Before the video package was played, actress Naomi Watts took to the stage and shared, “We have lost so many extraordinary actors in the past year, but because they touched the world with their talent, we all share their loss. To those of us who worked with them, alongside them, we feel their loss and their absence deeply.”

Photo: Netflix

She added, “Of course their memory will live on in our recollections of the precious time we shared together — and through their work, their performances captured in countless frames of images, ever ready to dance across the screen and come to life again, if only for a while.”

What did you think of the In-Memoriam Tribute at the 2024 SAG Awards and seeing a lot of familiar faces being included who represent the soaps? Comment. below.

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