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Marla Adams Talks Her Final Scenes As Dina Mergeron, The Alzheimer’s Storyline, and Her Touching Farewell

Photo: CBS

Today on The Young and the Restless marks the end of the enduring run of Marla Adams in the role of Dina Mergeron. In story, Dina passes away from complications from Alzheimer’s disease. It’s a storyline that started four years ago when the CBS Daytime drama brought back the character and Adams; and one that has deeply affected many in the viewing audience who have also had their own personal experience of losing a loved one to this dreadful disease.

If you have not seen today’s episode yet, you may not want to read any further, but needless to say, make sure you have the hankies ready for Dina’s final moments with her children and how she leaves this earth, which will be remembered for quite some time to come.

Marla originated the role of the rich and spoiled Abbott matriarch back in 1983 and portrayed the role on and off for what amounts to five decades. Her classic scenes with Jerry Douglas (Ex-John), Eileen Davidson (Ashley) and so many more from the iconic soap, always made for great and complex stories.

 

With this her final airdate on Y&R, it also puts an exclamation point for Marla on an incredible daytime career having also appeared on: The Bold and the Beautiful. Capitol, Days of our Lives, Generations and The Secret Storm

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Adams in this very special conversation where she shared with us how it was to play these heartbreaking last scenes, the importance of the ‘teardrop of love’ necklace to the story, how Y&R gave her the most overwhelming and beautiful send-off, and her ‘thank you’s’ to all of you, who have been her extended family and are sad to see her go. She is one-of-a-kind …and now, here’s Marla.

Photo: Getty

Marla, I am so glad we have the opportunity to chat in this full-circle moment as you have brought the character of Dina to a close.

MARLA:  It’s such a joy to talk to you.  It seems like yesterday and an eternity as well.   I thought of you so much, and I remember talking to you specifically with all of the different interviews over the years, when I was at the studio.  But I will always remember the interview you did with me and Beth Maitland (Traci), my darling soul sister, and you talked to me about your mother who has since passed on from Alzheimer’s.  I’ll never forget what you had to say all those months ago

Photo: HallmarkChannel

Yes, and when as audience members we watch these stories unfold with characters we have loved, or watched on our screens for years, and there is a death, we feel connected to them as well.  And in this case, as a child who has lost a parent to Alzheimer’s, like many in the audience, you ask yourself first, “Can I watch this?” It hits very close to home, but I’m sure when people watch today’s episode of Y&R and see Dina pass away, they will be extraordinarily moved.

MARLA:  Oh, my gosh.  Wait until you people see Friday’s show.  I know they will be moved.  They should be!  I’ve got friends who I’ve already said to, “Get your Kleenex box out.”  It’s so beautiful what happens at the end of the episode.

Courtesy/CBD

How did you feel about playing Dina’s final scenes?

MARLA:  It was wonderful because it showed her lifetime of sorrow and regret, and what was so wonderful was the fact that the hero of the whole thing is the kindness and respect that she really did have for her whole family.  They had the most beautiful sendoff for me.  They sent me a limo!  I went to the studio, and dear Patti Denney (Make-up artist, Y&R) was there, of course with all kinds of makeup and everything else, and she looked like she was entering the ER room for Covid-19, because of all the safety protocols we must have.  It was unbelievable, the kindness that was served to me.  After we finished taping my final scenes, I came back to the soundstage and they totally surprised me.  Dear Tony Morina (executive producer, Y&R) and Sally Sussman (Ex-head writer, Y&R) were there, and Tony spoke about me, and so did my Y&R extended family and on-screen children: Peter Bergman (Jack), and Beth Maitland, and Eileen Davidson, and much of it was put on tape (see excerpts in video below).  Afterwards, Tony gave me beautiful flowers.  I was driven back home after this, and I felt really special, and it was just amazing to me. I had written Josh Griffith (Current head-writer and co-executive producer, Y&R) a ‘thank you’ for writing the show with his wonderful people, but I never heard back, but when I walked in my apartment, the phone was ringing.  Guess who?  It’s Josh!  He said, “I waited until I knew you would be home to thank you,” and I felt so lovey-doved up, I couldn’t believe it.  I want to read something to you that I received in the wonderful flowers that came the next day from CBS Daytime executive Margot Wain and others.  The flowers were so big that they didn’t fit on the bar!  The card read: “Thank you for bringing the amazing force that is Abbott matriarch, Dina Mergeron to countless fans of The Young and the Restless.  Your vast contribution to Y&R and CBS for more than five decades is unparalleled.  We are forever grateful for all you’ve brought to Y&R as both a consummate professional and a cherished co-worker.  All our best wishes.”  I was just so touched by the sentiments.

Photo: CBS

I also want to share something with you.  When it was revealed in the promo that came out last week that this would be your last show, I received so many notifications on social media, saying, “Oh, my God!  We love Marla!  You have to interview her!”  You are loved by the Y&R fans.  I hope you know that!  They’re sad to see you go, because you’re a legacy character to them, and soap fans have deep connections to characters that have been on their favorite soaps for decades.

MARLA:  Five decades!  My God!  I’m eighty-freaking-two.  I can’t believe it.

Courtesy/CBS

In story, Jack was on a mission to get the ‘teardrop of love’ necklace back to Dina before she died, hoping that she would have one last moment of lucidity and would recall it and it would hopefully make her happy.   He moves heaven on earth to get it, and does, and brings it to her and viewers saw her reaction. 

MARLA:  The necklace had never been anywhere before in story except recently, but I said to myself that I would play it ‘quietly and graciously’, because it made for such a beautiful moment for Dina with her children.

Courtesy/CBS

For Dina, the necklace was a symbol of remaining connected to her family and her children, even when she was not with them all of those years.  In your final scenes, Dina had these moments to say goodbye to each of your children.  Do you remember looking at Eileen, Traci, and Peter taping those highly emotional beats?

MARLA:  Yes, they were so there for me.  They are an extended family that is so precious to me, and playing this iconic character has been, too.  I remember when Sally Sussman told me a few years ago, “ I’m going to bring you back on The Young and the Restless, but you’ve got Alzheimer’s,” and I said, ‘What!?  You’re bringing me back so you can kill me off?’ and she said, “Oh no, it’ll be about a year.”  That dissolved into four years, and now five decades had passed and I was still on Y&R.  I am beyond grateful.

Courtesy/CBD

As an actress, was it hard to play Dina’s final moments when she goes to the light to join her beloved, John?

MARLA:  It was heart-wrenching for me.  In the story, Dina died when she went outside and to the front door of the Abbott home.  They did not tell me before-hand, and that’s why it was so wonderful.  I hope they came in for a closeup of that because I had no makeup on, it was beautiful, and then, Dina said, “Oh, John.”  I’ve done everything from movies, to daytime, to nighttime, to Broadway, but that was the iconic moment for me, to do this gig with wonderful, wonderful actors and friends, and to do this particular storyline.

Photo: CBS

It was 1983 when you first appeared on Y&R.  And through the years, Dina did not do such great things! She had an affair with Brent Davis who was the biological father of Ashley that caused such a rift between mother and daughter for years.  She abandoned the Abbott children and walked out on them and her marriage to John, and that’s just for starters! Dina was a complicated character. Did you love the fact that she could be very selfish at times?

MARLA:  You think?  That’s why I loved her.  Of course!  I can be very selfish, too.  You have to be selfish if you’re an actor, good God. (Laughs).

Courtesy/CBS

It was great that The Young and the Restless brought you back four years ago so that through the telling of the Alzheimer’s storyline that Dina was able to somewhat repair her relationships with her children.  Obviously, over the last many months the audience could not witness the more day to day progression and toll the disease took on Dina and her family in its final stages, but unfortunately with the way COVID-19 has affected shooting daytime soap operas, and all of our lives, including safety protocols, I am sure plans had to be altered,

MARLA:  Of course.  As an actress, this was the most important role of my life, and to have her final moments spread out in one day really is because of all of the fans who have been writing in and wanting to see Dina again,

Photo: CBS

People were rooting for you to win the Daytime Emmy back in 2018 when you were nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. That must be a nice moment to carry with you from playing Dina’s final storyline.

MARLA:  Yes, and I should have won!  Eric Braeden (Victor, Y&R) was furious. (Laughs)  He said, “What do you mean, darling, you should have won!  Goddammit!” He’s a wonderful man and a good friend.  He came to pick me up several times to go to the studio for my last few shows, and that’s the kind of mensch he is. So, I feel just so blessed and I feel great love and loss.  I would like Dina to come back as a ghost, but I have no idea, if that will happen or not. But if the fans would be interested in seeing Dina as a ghost … make sure to write in to the show and tell them!

Courtesy/CBS

Speaking of the fans that have followed you for decades on Y&R, what would you want to say to them now that Dina has passed on?

MARLA:  Thank you, from the bottom of my heart for all of the love, the support, and the chance to play Dina out… and I’m thankful that you cared, and loved her, up till the end.

So what did you think about Dina’s final moments on today’s Y&R? Will you miss Marla Adams?  Share your thoughts via the comment section below.  But first check out the special behind the scenes tribute for Marla, followed by The Michael Fairman Channel’s interview with Marla and Beth Maitland from Y&R’s 45th anniversary celebration referred to during the above conversation.

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Nancy TevesjenMark WFrances GrunoJoyce Recent comment authors
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Michael Teale
Guest
Michael Teale

Alzheimer’s has affected my family as well. So, watching those final scenes on todays episode were very hard to watch but it was beautifully done.

Kay
Guest
Kay

Jerry Douglas should do a guest appearance and take her into the light it would be fitting

Kay
Guest
Kay

Ok so I guess he is good

Laura P.
Guest
Laura P.

A Great and beautiful actress! The final episode was amazing and sad and beautifully done

Violet Lemm
Guest
Violet Lemm

It was as sad as expected but was disappointed because of all the hype concerning the necklace, we still don’t know why it was so important to Dina.

beverley
Guest
beverley

Marla Adams is an outstanding actress. She portrayed her role with grace, perfection, warmth, and passion. It was an honor to have her grace our home . We are devoted and loyal fans of the Y&R forever and hope that we will see Dina again.

Joyce
Guest
Joyce

A marvelous portrayal of alzheimer disease. Having close family members with this dreadful disease, it was amazing to watch her portray so accurately, even to the smallest detail,the exact behaviours of those suffering from this dreaded affliction.Bravo to Marla Adams. Bring her back in some form as she deserves many encore performances- perhaps as a guardian angel! Thank you Marla.

Glenda Robinson
Guest
Glenda Robinson

Love her and she is such a good actress.bring her back as a ghost

Marlene Lanham
Guest
Marlene Lanham

The show was fabulous, tearjerker
I hate “Dina” is gone. Loved seeing her.
As for the ghost scene, I liked when John came back. I think it would be great.
That particular storyline was well done❤️

Frances Gruno
Guest
Frances Gruno

I love the Abbott family. Dina should win an award for her acting. Sooo sorry she’s gone & I was so happy she remembered Traci. A lot of tears but the acting was nothing less than FANTASTIC!

Mark W
Guest
Mark W

I think what made this storyline even more dramatic as it came to a close is how they had to deal with Marla from a distance because of Covid which puts a bit of history in the story. A lot of fans feared Marla would be unable to return for this story closure, but much to our delight, she did. I was so delighted that Dina got her atonement and that unlike what they did on “The Bold & the Beautiful” with Stephanie’s mother (played by Betty White), you could see the genuine love and respect that Dina had regained… Read more »

jen
Guest
jen

Just watched the episode…I have been putting it off. It was heart wrenching just like I knew it would be. I love this character. Please bring her back as a ghost, but please a funny one, I can’t take the sad stuff!!

Nancy Teves
Guest
Nancy Teves

I was so happy when Marla won her Emmy. I had been hoping she would would win it for a few years . Finally! She so deserved it. What a story line and what a performance. I have been watching Marla and living Marla since she appeared in the Secret Storm. Loved her even when I hated her character-that’s how good an actress she is. Thank you Marla for your outstanding body of work. Love your part in Splendor In The Grass..Hope to see your heavenly self on Y&R. Miss you.

Days Of Our Lives

Ron Carlivati Talks on the Creation, Scenes & Cast of ‘Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem’

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Days Of Our Lives

‘Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem’ Stars Talk the ‘Making of’ the Limited-Series & the Moments They Loved

Five of the cast members from Days of our Lives limited-series on Peacock, Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem, chatted with Michael Fairman as a wrap-up following the conclusion of the streaming of all five episodes.

Joining Michael in a special conversation on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel are: Eileen Davidson (Kristen/Sister Mary Moira), Charles Shaughnessy (Shane/Drew), Peter Porte (Kyle/Dimitri), Zach Tinker (Sonny) and Rob Scott Wilson (Ben).

During the conversation, the actors share stories of the making of the series, and give insight and behind the scenes tidbits on their scenes including: how Eileen and Lisa Rinna (Billie) played recreated the ‘Amsterdam’ showdown from their time together on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, but as their Days’ characters of Billie and Kristen, how Peter learned to do the Tango from Dancing with the Stars Louis Van Amstel and Lisa Rinna, plus the drag show scenes where Zach became “Sonny Delight”, and more.

In addition, Charles Shaughnessy talks on how the series harkened back to the 80’s and 90’s campy action-adventure heyday of and the opportunity to work again with Deidre Hall and Drake Hogestyn as John and Marlena, while Rob fills-us in on trying to keep it together when working in scenes with soap vet Adrienne Frantz, when Ben and Ciara find themselves at a swinger’s party.

The interview is filled with many laughs, and candid moments that fans of the limited series will enjoy, especially the intel offered up by the cast.

Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem continues to stream on Peacock! Make sure to check it out if you haven’t, or rewatch it a second, or third time if you want to see more series like this in the future.

Below check out the interview with Eileen, Peter, Charles, Zach and Rob and make sure to subscribe to the Michael Fairman Channel for more celebrity conversations.

Now, share your favorite moments from Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem, and this video interview, via the comment section here.

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General Hospital

MaxUpdatesGH & WWE Weighs-In On The Latest in Port Charles and ‘Friday Night Smackdown’

We have a new internet sensation in the form of 7-year-old Max, who posts his daily video recaps of episodes of General Hospital on Twitter and Instagram, as well as his weekly video recaps of WWE Smackdown.

In one of Michael Fairman’s favorite interviews for his Michael Fairman Channel of all-time, he chats with Max and the two find out they have a lot more in common then they knew – their love of soap operas and professional wrestling.  Some of the highlights of the interview occurred when Michael revealed to Max his time with the WWE.

Photo: MFTV Inc

During the fun conversation, Max reveals just who are his current GH favorites, his thoughts on what might happen with Jason (Steve Burton) & Carly’s (Laura Wright) pending nuptials and Sonny’s (Maurice Benard) ultimate return, and what he thought of the ending of the Peter August (Wes Ramsey) storyline, the return of Roger Howarth (Ex-Franco, now Austin) and just  how he goes about taping his daily recaps.

 

In addition, Max talks about his passion for the WWE and that he ultimately would like to become a pro wrestler. During his talk with Michael, the discuss some of their favorite wrestlers including: Sting, Ultimate Warrior, and Max’s favorite, John Cena. and the latest happenings on Smackdown heading into Summerslam with Sasha Banks vs/ Bianca Belair and Cena vs. Roman Reigns.

Later in the interview, Max’s mother, Sarah Tomlin, joins in the conversation and fill us in on how Max got started doing his on-camera updates, and just how smart this kid really is – he knows the storylines, the characters, the play-by-play, the moves, the moments on GH, etc.  We think he has could have a career as a pro wrestler, or a host on a top TV entertainment news show!

Watch this heart-tugging and hilarious interview with Max below. And make sure to “subscribe” to the Michael Fairman Channel, if you have not already done so for more celebrity interviews.

Then let us know in the comment section below, what was your favorite part of it … and if you are following Max on Twitter at @MaxUpdatesGH @MaxUpdatesWWE and on Instagram @Stomlin21.

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GH’s Kelly Thiebaud (Britt) chats with Michael Fairman about Britt being on the run with Jason, their burgeoning romance, working with Steve Burton and her other co-star and Britt’s diagnosis of Huntington’s Disease. .Leave A Comment

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Laura Wright as Carly

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Airdates: 9-9/10- 2021

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