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The Jacob Young and Karla Mosley Interview – The Bold and the Beautiful

Courtesy/CBS

Courtesy/CBS

Back in March of this year, The Bold and the Beautiful dropped a major bombshell, and even if you guessed the secret, you never thought the daytime drama series would actually go through with it … but they did!  It was revealed that the character of Maya Avant (Karla Mosley) was actually a transgender woman.  The shocker came when Maya’s younger sister Nicole (Reign Edwards) arrived in Los Angeles, and was armed with some information she was going to use to her own advantage.  Nicole confronted Maya about it, and informed her she knew that Maya was actually born as her brother, “Myron!”

Actress Karla Mosley, who for two years played Maya without this back-story of her character, learned back in December of last year that series EP and head writer, Brad Bell had this planned for her, and that the long running soap opera was going full force with this story of love and acceptance for this under-represented segment of our population on television … the transgender community.

But Maya’s story is so much more complicated than just even having all the people she knows, and or loves, find out the truth she took great pains to hide!  Maya is deeply in love with Rick Forrester (Jacob Young), and he is deeply in love with her.  However, while on a trip to Big Bear, Rick proposes marriage to Maya.  Before Maya accepts Rick’s proposal, she decides to disclose her truth so that there are no secrets between them.  Maya knows first-hand that lying to Rick does not sit well with the Forrester CEO. In fact, Maya blew up his marriage to Caroline (Linsey Godfrey) after his then wife was found out to be locking-lips with Rick’s arch-enemy and half-brother, Ridge (Thorsten Kaye).

On-Air On-Soaps sat down with two of daytime’s finest actors, the recently Daytime Emmy nominated Young, and the engaging Mosley, to get their thoughts and a preview of what is to come in this on-screen love story that will continue to shed light, compassion, and understanding for those who have struggled, or faced prejudice when striving to be their authentic selves.    

MICHAEL:

Did you anticipate such fervor in the mainstream press when the secret came out on air that Maya was born a man named “Myron”, and was in fact, transgender?

KARLA:

Courtesy/CBS

I really didn’t.  I knew the work we were doing was important, but I really didn’t realize how big this was for daytime television in general: to have a character who is a regular series character, and who is not the butt of a joke, and who happens to be transgender.

JACOB:

Nothing really shocks me in daytime, but I thought immediately it was brilliant, and then I thought, “Oh crap!  What if they can’t execute this the right way,” and then I got concerned.  I wanted to make sure of the educational aspect of it, and that it was just coming across well.  When you have someone playing this, and someone as talented as Karla, she can probably make anything work even if they weren’t telling it right.  Karla has definitely put in her two cents worth, for sure.

KARLA:

It’s so interesting.  There are things I wouldn’t have stood up for, for myself, but because I knew of its importance for the transgender community, I was like, “No, we cannot do that.”   I have had to be more firm on things than I have been in the past, because you want to tell the story, and you want to tell it right.  We are all committed to that.

MICHAEL:

Was there a concern of, “Will we look like buffoons?  How will we make this story work, because this was not originally part of Maya’s story previously? “

KARLA:

Courtesy/CBS

When the first episodes aired, of course, I was holding my breath with the reveal, but it was really the follow-up episode, where we had those long four days in between, because we were pre-empted for March Madness Basketball … that was insane!  That was really the episode that I felt was so important, because everyone was waiting for an explanation.  I was thinking, “Please make this not be awful! (laughs), and in fact, let it be good.”   I think the writers really did a fabulous job, and the whole team, with the two key episodes.

MICHAEL:

What does Rick truly feel for Maya at this point, now that he knows her secret past?

JACOB:

He really loves her.  You will see … expect the unexpected!

MICHAEL:

Your characters are both so bitchy and awful to other people! (Laughs)

KARLA:

Courtesy/CBS

It has been great awful!

MICHAEL:

Did the two of you not laugh when doing these types of scenes, in particular where you literally have this takeover of the Forrester mansion, displacing people, and then taking down the picture of the matriarch of the Forrester clan (Stephanie Forrester) above the living room mantel, and replacing it with one of Maya?

KARLA:

Of course, there is this huge ridiculous portrait of me hanging over the mantel, and Rick is making people wash Maya’s feet, and that’s what I love about it.  Their love for each other comes from them both being victims in life.  They are such open-hearted people, who then have had to guard their hearts from being disappointed.  But, they are also connected, because they are assholes! (Laughs)

JACOB:

They value each other that way!  (Laughs) You know what I think is funny, that after all the antics they pulled; Eric (John McCook) comes in and says to Rick, “You should have the house!”  I read that in the script, and laughed, and laughed, and went, “What?”  Eric is like, “I will go live in the guest house, son.”  (Laughs)  Rick is being rewarded for being a jerk!

MICHAEL:

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Karla, what can you say about Jacob’s incredible performances this past year, in which he received a Daytime Emmy nomination in the Outstanding Supporting Actor category, and being his main scene partner throughout a good portion of it?

KARLA:

I think as actors you get something that pushes you to the next level, and pushes you even deeper to where you can go, and that’s what I see when I look at Jacob’s work.

JACOB:

We have good days, and bad days, and not with every material are you going to have that connection that Karla is talking about.  The episode I submitted for the Emmy, had where Maya busts open the truth about Caroline (Linsey Godfrey) and Ridge (Thorsten Kaye), and in that same episode, Rick also found out that Ridge was going to be made CEO.  It was a double-whammy that hit him, and so Rick was like an emotional basket case.

KARLA:

You saw the rage that was there, but you saw the years of their relationship, and his love for Caroline, and the betrayal by his father.  You saw all of that, and that is not an easy balance to find and yet make the character sympathetic.

JACOB:

Courtesy/CBS

It was just before the Emmy calendar year cut off, and thank God I got it in, where I had an episode that had all that emotional material in it.   I was thankful that I had it, and so grateful and honored to be recognized by my peers.

MICHAEL:

Karla, let’s talk about the interview you did with Janet Mock on her TV show, So Popular.  She was coming at you to see if you knew your stuff, and if you could handle her questions.  Being transgender herself, it was like Janet was putting you through your paces going: “You’re going to play this character?  Let’s see if you get it!”

KARLA:

She was so tough, and she was coming at me.  Janet is amazing!  I have her book up in my dressing room.  She and Laverne Cox (Orange is the New Black) are my new idols.  I was so honored to be on Janet’s show.  It was really nice to have a conversation with her that wasn’t in sound bites.  So often we get a minute or two to tell our story, but here we actually got to have a conversation, and I had to think.  I knew I would have to show up and know my stuff, and speak honestly, because I knew Janet was not going to have it any other way.  I have to say afterwards I got a tweet from Laverne Cox who said, “I am watching Janet’s show and I really enjoyed your interview.”  And I said, “Thank you so much!”  I am jumping up and down, and my mother said, “What is wrong with you?  You never get like this!”  And I answered, “Because I feel I am sitting at the ‘cool girl’ table at school right now!”  Laverne said, she thought I handled it with care, and so to hear that from both of those ladies was a really shining moment for me.

MICHAEL:

One of the first things Janet asked you was that you, Karla, are not transgender, and why do you think B&B had you play transgender instead of hiring a transgender actress to play this kind of key role?

KARLA:

Courtesy/MSNBC

That was one of the first questions I asked, too.  I called my friends and I asked, “Why me?”  Like I said during the Janet Mock interview: “Why me?  Why this body?”  And I think there are plusses and minuses to both, but I think one of the assets is that people in the audience have known Maya, and they have loved her, or loved to hate her.  Now just like with any other disclosure or coming out process, there is another emotion that comes up from some viewers, such as, ” I don’t like her now.”  We are then forced to look at why?  What is causing that?  Is there some latent prejudice that I am not aware of?  And that is what has been so incredible on social media is to really process this with people. Why are you not wanting to look at this storyline … or … what nerve is this touching upon?  Even if they don’t understand, that it’s touching upon real things in them … we do!

MICHAEL:

Jacob, what did you think about how Maya went about disclosing her truth to Rick?  What did you  think of Rick’s reaction?

JACOB:

I think she waited too long, but at the end of the day she was still forthcoming and truthful.  I think Rick’s reaction was refreshing.  A step in the right direction.

KARLA:

Courtesy/CBS

She is the same ‘cuckoo pants Maya’ that we have always known, and so that doesn’t change.  It just deepens what we know about her.  But I did read in a chapter in Janet Mock’s book about disclosing to her then fiancé, Aaron.  I have some passages that I will go back to when I need a refresher.  Kate Bornstein is also amazing, so I have been watching some of her talks.  Thank goodness for the internet.   There is so much there, and just listening to people’s stories.  We don’t have to go very far to hear people talking about this subject.   People are waiting to be heard for years, and now they will be getting to be heard, and I hope this storyline on B&B will help with that.

MICHAEL:

Let’s talk about the ‘elephant in the room’ storyline-wise!  The fact that Maya supposedly had this baby with ex-boyfriend Jesse!  Weren’t you concerned as to how they were going to make sense of this?

KARLA:

Of course!  The baby makes sense to me.   Jesse (Ricky Paull Goldin) helped her to transition.  She was helping him raise his child.  It also made sense why they both went to jail, and in this mysterious unknown way; why she would have risked so much for him if she had his child.  That was always one of the things that sort of bothered me.  If she had this child that she was so in love with, why would she risk everything to do something illegal with Jesse?  But, if that was funding her transition, then that makes a lot of sense.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/CBS

Remember Maya’s humble beginnings?  When Rick found her all raggedy at the mission in downtown Los Angeles? (Laughs)

JACOB:

From rags to riches!  Rick has had a history of that, like with Amber (Adrienne Frantz). She was from the trailer park! (Laughs)  She was also, at times, compassionate and lovely, and was all about him.  Rick needs somebody that is there supporting him.  He doesn’t view that he can be alone with his company …he has to have that person in his life that has his back.

MICHAEL:

What does Rick think of ex-wife Caroline at this point?

JACOB:

That she’s a liar, but there was definite love there.  If he wasn’t in love with her, he would not have been so devastated.

KARLA:

There is a part of Maya that worried that if Rick knew the truth about her, he would go back to Caroline, and that was scary for Maya.

MICHAEL:

Who has been the bigger bitch in your estimations … Caroline or Maya?

KARLA:

Courtesy/CBS

I don’t know if people remember how awful Caroline was to Maya, but they do remember Maya being awful to Caroline, because she did it in such a public way.  Caroline almost had Maya thrown back into prison.  I mean, that was awful.  Maya just broke up her marriage. (Laughs)

JACOB:

And Caroline never said Maya’s name correctly…

KARLA:

Uh-huh, she called her “Myrna”!

MICHAEL:

Karla, what can you say about working with Reign Edwards (Nicole)?

KARLA:

She is amazing.   I call her my 18-year-old teacher.  She is so good.  Both Karla and Reign, and Maya and Nicole, have a great balance.  Reign is so grounded and fabulous.

MICHAEL:

What did Lawrence Saint-Victor (Carter) do when he found out Maya was going to be revealed to be a transgender woman?

KARLA:

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

He fell out of his chair.  We were all in the make-up room, and everyone was trying to guess Maya’s secret.  Lawrence actually guessed-it, and then we left the room.  I was not going to say it in front of everyone.  So I said to him, privately, “You guessed it!”  He said, “I did?”  He was then texting me all night.  People would guess that theory, but not actually believe it would be true, and that happened a lot.

JACOB:

I would go, “What is this secret?”  I was thinking … was she born a man?  Just as a guess.

KARLA:

I knew a few months before, but poor Jacob was one of the last to know.  It got around the set to everyone, but Jacob!

JACOB:

Ed Scott, our producer, at the end of a tape day came to tell me.  I looked at him and said, “You’re joking?”  I said that because I can never take Ed seriously.   He is so damn serious all the time, and so you never know because his jokes are as serious – you know two-bit comedy! (Laughs)  He then goes, “No.  I’m not joking!  It’s fabulous!”  I then said, “I guessed it!  I knew it!”  So I guess, somehow instinctively I knew.

KARLA:

I think most people who guessed it did not think we would really go there, but what else could it be?

JACOB:

Courtesy/CBS

The only other one that I kept thinking was that Nicole was Maya’s daughter.  That is so classic soap opera.

MICHAEL:

I thought that as a possibility, too!  But then I thought that Maya would have been way too young to have given birth to Nicole.

JACOB:

No, I did the math.  It would have been OK! (Laughs)  But that would have been too obvious, but everyone was shocked, but in a good way.

MICHAEL:

This reveal has been one of the best laid shockers on a daytime drama series!  But Karla, what was your family’s reaction to the news when you told them about the character twist?

KARLA:

My husband Jeremiah was like, “Oh, Oh OK.”  He couldn’t really wrap his head around it.  I told him the day that Brad Bell told me.  I thought, you know, maybe I should run this by my partner, and let him know.  He did watch the reveal episodes, which was great.  He has been totally supportive.  Now my mom first went, “Why?” (Laughs)  But, my mom has also been so supportive, and she actually went with me when I taped the episode on Janet Mock’s show.  Originally, I told my mom that she can’t tell anyone, because she is a talker, and everyone at church watches the show, so I told her she can’t tell anyone.  But I told her she can talk to Jeremiah!  So they have had conversations on their own, I know it.  (Laughs)  My mom is always skeptical at first, and then she comes around, and she is the biggest fan.  Now she is texting me all the time going, “I think this is great, Karla!  I think this is wonderful.”  I think that is the best thing about being a parent is that your kids can open your mind.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/CBS

Karla, what kind of emails, tweets, letters are you getting from the transgender community who have begun to follow Maya’s journey on B&B?

KARLA:

Through Twitter people are saying, “You’re telling my story, and these are conversations I’ve had.”   I got a tweet the other week where someone said, “My friend’s mother hadn’t spoken to her in 20 years, because her daughter is transgender, and after watching B&B, she made a call to her.”  It’s amazing, and that’s why we’re here.

JACOB:

You can’t deny there is such an impact with some of these storylines on the soaps.  I can’t tell you when I did the cancer storyline on All My Children how many people reached out to me.  How many people said they had gotten through whatever it is we are going through at that time, because of watching the show.  Some families don’t know how to deal with it, and so they saw a family coming together, and being loving on TV.  It’s important what we do here.  We have a responsibility to tell these stories the right way, and to be compassionate about it.  I think it’s brilliant.

KARLA:

I think what Jacob is saying is so important.  It’s not only Maya’s story, but we are also seeing Nicole, Rick, and Carter, and the people she works with, and who she loves, and their responses.  So even if people have trouble relating to what Maya is going through, they might be able to see themselves in the reaction of the other family members, and friends.  Someone recently said looking at Carter’s reaction, especially initially, it was so emotional.  I think we can all understand all the varied reactions he was having, and yet he, and Maya are working through it, and are still in the same room together as uncomfortable as it is.

MICHAEL:

Final thoughts: Jacob, is Rick going to continue to be an asshole? (Laughs)

JACOB:

Courtesy/Pop

Yes, (pauses) but whom he is going to be an asshole to … that is the bigger question!

MICHAEL:

And Karla, where do you hope Maya’s story eventually goes?

KARLA:

I keep saying, I can’t wait till we get to the point where we are past the shock, and where Maya is just living her life as a model, or whatever career path she has chosen.  And, we get to just go back to the ups and downs, and the craziness of Maya Avant, who also happens to be a transgender woman.

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DEH
DEH

Jacob played today’s episode so tenderly and loving I forgave Rick all his transgressions. And damn right Caroline was nastier than Maya. I can’t wait to watch now as the fallout from $$$ Bill’s tabloid reveal.

The Substitute
The Substitute

So tell us all your bullying other family members is ok? The politically incorrect story makes me sick!

Eileen Hargis
Eileen Hargis

Jacob and Karla are knocking it out of the park! Emmys for sure!!!!

Rose
Rose

Jacob’s a long way from Lucky on GH. I think he and Karla are both doing a great job. The main detraction has been their asshole antics, I don’t care for what baggage reasons. Their characters, if any, should know how that feels.

tara
tara

Or J.R. on All My Children. He is so different and still gorgeous.

sarah
sarah

this storyline has been handled well I think they really I feel wanted to show respect to the transgender community & tell a beautiful love story. Thats what they are doing so well

Phyllis Scott
Phyllis Scott

Karla and Jacob indeed deserve the Emmy. The last time I cried over fictional material was Imitation of Life. I’m like: where are these tears coming from? I was witnessing what true love means: acceptance and value. And when Maya started out the door only to be drawn back into Rick’s arms by: “please don’t leave me”–why, how more poignant can you get?

sarah
sarah

thats exactly what happened for me when I was watching. Karla Mosley & Jacob Young were amazing & the dialogue just spectacular it was absolute soapy goodness

Patty
Patty

I totally agree ! I can’t remember when a storyline touched my heart like this one. I felt real pride when Rick’s love shined through. Bravo B & B !! I can’t wait to see what developes. Hopefully, this will cause Spencer Publications to crash and burn while Forester shines brighter than ever. Then Bill will finally get what HE deserves !!!!! Happy to hear that Steffy is returning. Love to see Steffy and Rick take Forester, along with Maya, to the next level. Still hate Ridge and Carolyn ! I don’t care how much of “mommy’s make-up”, you put on her, she still looks about 17.

elm51
elm51

wow – oh yes that scene had me in tears also – well written & phenomenally executed by karla & jacob!

Eliza
Eliza

Nothing against Karla or Jacob but this story was bad from the very beginning. Maya used recordings of Oliver against him, she showed up at a meeting and blindsided Rick about Caroline and Ridge. Rick turned into a major bully who walked over everyone including Aly who already had mental issues. The most insensitive part being when Maya had Aly rub her feet. Rick’s acceptance speech at the end of the Monday’s (the 18th) episode was a joke. All that about wanting to be accepted for who he is, not what his name is. Maya is a gold digging, manipulating liar who deliberately withheld the truth from Rick until she was sure he was going to marry her. And his name, who he is, the money and the life style was all that mattered. This story was suppose to build support and sympathy for Maya because she is transgender but BBell picked the wrong character for that. She is still a gold digging, manipulating liar.

It was and still is a badly written PSA that BBell can never do right. Had it not come out about Bruce Jenner, there would be no transgender story. Rick’s daily harping about Maya’s honesty and how she would never lie to him, yada, yada, yada one knew that something was coming. Then I read that it was decided early on that Maya would have a secret and the stories about Bruce dropped the idea in Bell’s lap.

I have nothing against transgender people. Had Bell brought on a new character with that secret of being transgender, it could have worked. But he backed the wrong character and expected everyone to suddenly like and sympathize with Maya. It didn’t work.

Diane
Diane

I agree 100% Eliza..

lisa from boston
lisa from boston

I absolutely agree. I no longer watch this show. Bringing a true Transgender woman on as a character would have been a breakthrough in daytime soap operas but suddenly deciding to make a lead character a transgender is just plain insulting. I’m sure Mr.Bell had to think of how to make the love scenes work between the actors……since Karla Mosley isn’t a true transgender. Anyone think of that? There was no past indications Maya could be hiding something like being transgender. Bruce Jenner took the headlines…so Bold & Beautiful had to hone in?. But the Transgender storyline aside, the other main characters are so idiotic. Who the hell is writing the dialogue for these characters? Mr. Bell, you are ruining a good soap opera. Go back to what you know best….living off your parents money

sarah
sarah

Correction it didn’t work for you & yes there are people who agree with you by a majority dont

Eliza
Eliza

You cannot say a “majority” because there is nothing to indicate either way. I know many people who don’t like this story period. And those who aren’t happy with the fact that it was Maya who was chosen as the transgender. And if anyone involved with the show were really honest, they would have to admit that they do get tweets or whatever saying how bad this story actually is. It’s all a bunch of PR to make people believe that it’s been widely accepted, well liked and received.

Transgender surgeries can cost from $50,000 to $100,000. According to Karla’s response, she suggests that Myron/Maya was breaking the law with boyfriend Jesse to get the money for the surgeries. It’s tied in with her response about the baby that wasn’t really her’s. There are probably hundreds if not thousands of people out there, stuck where Myron was at. They don’t have the financial means to get the surgeries but they aren’t out there breaking the law to get it either.

My point is that this story was a poorly conceived idea just as poorly written with the wrong character to play the part. It was taken out of the media in a knee jerk reaction and it’s an insult to anyone who has gone through it. Maya’s history on the show is that her every move was planned, including finding a rich husband and living the high life. Gold digging. Manipulating. Liar. And then they just threw in a transgender story on top of it.

rose
rose

Agree about Maya. But without making a list, Caroline’s not been angel either. And Rick’s just a first class jerk. I don’t care about his emotional baggage. This is something both he and Maya have in common, but it doesn’t make how they’ve acted right. Just the opposite, they should have been more sensitive as to how it feels. Think all three actors have been exceptional throughout, though.

AJ
AJ

I watch the Rick and Maya episodes only because I have watched Jacob over the years as Lucky, Jr Chandler. He is a superb actor. I never warmed up to him as Rick Forrester until he first got with Maya – they were cute. Rick and Caroline matured together until her betrayal with his arch enemy. I was all team Raya right up until the moment they started bullying Aly and Ivy. I am still a fan of Jacob, but I FF through his scenes with Maya now. And no, I find nothing moving and noteworthy about bullies finding love.

elm51
elm51

michael as usual thanks for another awesome interview………………….

Ms Red
Ms Red

I think the storyline of transgender is terrible I will stop watching B & B. Ive been watching for quite some time now. Y’all couldn’t find another storyline. Its terrible. Everything up to now I could deal with its disgusting. What’s the purpose its enough of that foolishness going on. Ok. It exists so what. I’m done. You all need to do better than that. It was cool but now. BAD TASTE.

Nikki
Nikki

I really liked the story until Monday. Rick who wanted children, Rick who had the truth with-held from him. This was a lie through omission. Maya getting her feet rubbed, that picture taking his grandmothers place & now Rick the bully wants sympathy. In real life that whole damn family would turn their heads on her and all of a sudden all this love PLEASE if the story was more to reality and less to B.S. it may be good. And Aly already having mental issues & lets not forget Caroline who because she kissed Ridge twice this little jerk put Maya up in a pent house & treated Caroline like dirt. I’m sorry I really don’t care for this pity Rick & Maya crap at all. Back to Y & R for me.

Diane
Diane

I agree 100% Nikki..

OB
OB

I can’t forget how she called Rick’s ex-wife a lier. She need to pay the piper for keep the true for Rick

omaoftwo
omaoftwo

Appears to be some prejudice and phobia towards the transgender community. Tsk tsk and shame on y’all. I’ll admit there are times I want to reach in the TV and choke “Rick” and “Maya”. More so Rick for how he treats everyone. Making Ally rub Maya’s feet, really?! Maya should have absolutely refused! As far as the transgender storyline goes I have to applaud B&B and the actors! And I stand up and applaud the fact Rick was so accepting of Maya for the woman she is and always has been. I just hope Maya and Nicole can move forward with their relationship. Karma is a #itch Wyatt lol. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned…

Eliza
Eliza

There is absolutely no prejudice towards the transgender community. The injustice is the way Bell picked a manipulating, lying gold digger to play the transgender. It’s all about the shabby way Bradley Bell threw this story together without thinking it through.

There is a lot of prejudice against gays, transsexuals, transgenders and it is because most people don’t understand them or the whys. And Brad Bell picked the worst character on B&B to play that role. If his goal was to gain understanding and sympathy for those communities, he should pick someone who didn’t start out as a gold digging, manipulating liar such as Maya.

Transgenders are NOT gold digging, manipulating liars but Maya is. There is a huge difference.

LB
LB

I sincerely wish people would stop saying that those who do not like Rick and Maya aren’t accepting people , and are prejudice against the transgender population… WAKE UP !! people are disappointed in this storyline because they hate this coupling period! These characters bring out the worst In Each other . Maya became a self righteous big headed snob once she blew up Rick and Caroline’s marriage and Rick became a vindictive ,hateful loner of a weirdo. So after months of the same repetitive dialogue of how honest and full of integrity ,keeping it real Maya is we are all to believe Rick who has known this character of Maya and was intimate with her doesn’t blink or bat an eye to her Reveal??? Come on what a big heaping load of crap!!! Shame on Brad Bell and the what do you call them, writers? To take an important subject like being transgender and give it to characters to whom people feel no attachment or caring for. They lost their viewers attention because of the dislike of these characters , it clouded it all. Now are they going to throw a lot of characters under the bus so the viewer should feel sympathy for these two??? Good luck with that one. They should have kept it real! The viewer would have learned so much more. Before anyone immature comments on this and says “what would you have like to happen ?for Rick to hit or beat Maya… Of coarse not moron but for sure a huge disappointment in not being told such a reveal that could affect the person you care about. Also the endless comments how Ricks character hates to be lied to… ? The character of Maya thoughtfully choose to keep information from him even when she knew how he would feel , um I’d call it lying to save yourself … How fake was this story !!!Ugh what a disappointment of a show ..boo and a big thumbs down to the Bold and Beautiful :0(

lisa from boston
lisa from boston

May I ask how you derived at this opinion of what is being written is somehow prejudice and phobic against the Transgender community? The brass at B&B stated they wanted to raise awareness on social issues and decided to take on Transgender. 2 months ago it was a 7 day PSA stint on Alcohol addiction – last year it was mental illness. 2 years ago it was Cancer. These social issues are real and exist in thousands of people’s lives but B & B just scratches the surface. Whatever story is making headlines, Bell latches on and squeezes out an episode or two and just when you think you can get something out of the storyline, its over. No past, an unclear present, and no future. Keep watching B & B, this show has all the ear marks of prejudice and phobia. I would have applauded louder then thunder had Karla Mosley been a true Transgender.

Alice Langley
Alice Langley

Its easy for him to forgive a real woman playing a transgender but could he actually play opposite a real male to female transgender ? The answer is no ! So what are they trying to prove . Will that transgender nick hook up with brooke? The answer is no ! Kelly is not having it .

Nikki
Nikki

Nobody is being prejudice here omaoftwo. The two actors we’re nothing less than fantastic but the ending was extremely weak. Maybe you want to believe they all sat holding hands singing Kum-by-ah but the soaps are trying to hit as close to reality as they can bringing forth subjects that are happening in the world today. That said with all the games Maya has played remember how she told Carter how she would love to live on the hill & be a Forester & not a week ago her sister was telling her to not tell Rick because it was nice living the life-style they we’re living. Caroline (after kissing Ridge twice) wanted to make her marriage work. Rick humiliated her in front of everyone when he got the job by picking Maya to be by his side & Maya humiliated Caroline by outing her in a board meeting. I’m sorry I would like to see all three of them tossed out on their ass but lately Eric is a gutless wimp who should be out with them. Stephany’s picture should be put back up, Eric needs to take back his house, kick Brooke back to her lab. and let Ridge take over.

Frances
Frances

I like you Nikki!

Nikki
Nikki

I like you too Frances. I guess my views are pretty much to the point but O.M.G. What happened to Eric? He tells Ridge “I’m your Father” but he lets that little punk (Rick) tell Ridge over & over that he’s not a true Forester. Rick says he & Myia could adopt kids, well the way he treats Ridge shows he’s not to good with adoption they (kids) wouldn’t be real Foresters! As far as blaming Ridge for breaking up Brooke & Eric, Ridge was her first love, nobody twisted her arm and she’s been married to all the Forester men. Wow nuff said she needs to get back to her lab.

Betty Dean
Betty Dean

I think that it is a great story. It is what’s happing the world today. I think they are both great actors. I was disappointed that the story was changed, I wanted to see how far they would take a couple married to a black

Alice Langley
Alice Langley

This is soap opera fairytales . In the real world a real man wants a real woman . Theres no shortage of women in this world. No disrespect to transgenders but you cant trick strait people into being with you . The first thing to share is hi im a transgender and how do you feel about dating someone born of the same sex ?

Nick Heyward
Nick Heyward

I’m enjoying the storyline, and I do have many transgendered friends. Hardly any of them are following this for some reason, maybe you just already have to be a soap fan! But the writer’s have really dropped the ball on some potential dramatic moments. The speculation on the IMDb board has some better plot twists ideas than we’re actually getting! The slow build up was filled with filler dialogue, such as – “Have you seen the way that Rick is treating Allie and Ivy? Something’s got to be done about this!” repeated over and over again in different ways!

As to Maya being an unsympathetic trans character, well she has sympathy for her hard life but I like that they didn’t make her “with a heart of gold”, she’s mean and spiteful and flawed just like any other character, in essence, equal! But she needed a public revealing and comeuppance like she did to Caroline. The show is getting a little too “educational” when they could still do the same thing WITH drama. Ridge doesn’t tell Nick that Rick has used a gun on his wife recently? Nick and Ridge could have run to save Maya! But no, Nick came across as flat as Nancy Reagan stepping on the set to deliver an anti-drug message.

Right now Bill’s my hero for having the guts to print the truth as would happen in real life. This IS what happens when someone sets out to deceive others, Maya needs to pay for it. (Not with her life of course.)

sarah
sarah

I really like this storyline so of course I want to defend it because they have really done a great job of it so far this really could have been a mess used purely as a ploy to get Rick & Caroline back together but its not even in that direction. It seems to me that some people are purely disappointed with this storyline because Karla Mosley isn’t transgender and they didn’t use a typical nice girl character to tell this story with. Which is a problem for me as being legitimate criticism because no one is truly nice on this show yes Ivy is borderline that character but besides her not really they all have been bullies and hurtful at one point so for me that is just so whatever to criticize. As for the fact that Karla isn’t transgender the problem with that is it implies that people can only be characters that match up with there own gender identity either being cis or trans woman/man and sexual orientation. which is crazy so many amazing actors don’t follow that kind of logic when auditioning for different roles. Also need I remind people that whilst the role of Nick is at the moment being the support for maya and giving a better perceptive on being transgender to the rest of the character on the show it has been confirmed that this character is here to stay so when all is said and done we will most likely see a huge amount of character development and no doubt we will see a romance unfold (My money is on it being Ivy but who knows). So if your waiting for them to pair a transgender actor playing a transgender character with someone on the show it will happen eventually. Another point to add of course is the back story I always felt that this would be the biggest struggle with this storyline moving forward and I do wish they had spend more time on telling it from start to finish incorporating what we already know but we have heard bits here and bits there and it all totally fits but I want to see Maya sit down and tell her whole back story because it fits for me they explained it clearly but on a soap it does need to be repeated a few times because people can sometimes miss it and they haven’t done that with her back story really.

Anna
Anna

At least they are consistent.

Last one to know on the cast: Jacob

Last one to know in his family: Rick

davlestev1
davlestev1

LOL…AND THERE YOU HAVE IT…next major storyline….

Frances
Frances

Ok. Transgender storyline aside for a moment, what I can’t forgoet is that Rick was actually messing with Maya at the same time he was accusing Caroline of of infidelity with Ridge. Caroline and Ridge were only looking at each other. True they did have a couple of kisses when Rick started whining but Rick and Maya were already sleeping together. It’s hard to accept these “truths” not coming to light. Maya and Rick may love each other, but she is a manipulator and golddigger and he is a liar. Eric needs to get some spine. Didn’t have any when Stephanie was alive and still don’t. I miss Stephanie a lot. She was something else. What about Brooke breaking up Stephanie and Eric? I miss her. And her portrayer.

Patty
Patty

Here is hoping that Ridge is on the 1st jet back to Paris !!! Shame on Liam…will he ever man up ??? Always following the crowd. After what Bill did to Maya, Liam owes Maya and Rick —-big time !!!!

mariette
mariette

Maybe Caitlyn Jenner can visit Maya as an old bosom buddy…and they can have a cat fight over Rick. Something Dynasty-like for kicks.

jaime
jaime

I’m disgusted! Having watched months of bullying shameful behavior we get just shameful whitewashing of it all and now a reward for the two contemptible bullies. Add to that we now face denigration of the victim of bullying! This is not politically correct just a producer horning in on the Jenner story dispute how inconsistent the writing and characters are treated. Turning the channel and the dvr!

Kenny
Kenny

Have Karla and Jacbob been written out of their parts now that Forerester has a new CEO?

Grand Hotel

Denyse Tontz and Lincoln Younes Preview Forbidden Romance & Intrigue As ‘Grand Hotel’ Premieres

When Grand Hotel opens its doors to its audience tonight on ABC (10PMET/PT), it will have a very familiar feel to soap fans for several of its series regulars and its executive producer all come from the world of daytime or serialized storytelling.

Executive Producer, Eva Longoria (Ex-Y&R, Desperate Housewives, Devious Maids, Telenovela) brought to the screens a provocative drama with Miami Beach as its backdrop of the last family-owned hotel (by the Mendozas) with a contemporary take of an upstairs/downstairs story of 2019.

Former General Hospital’s Bryan Craig plays Javi, who is joined by two other soap notables; former All My Children reboot star, Denyse Tontz (Ex-Miranda Montgomery) and Australian-born actor, Lincoln Younes (Ex-Casey, Home and Away) who’s characters are interlocked in some very sexy and mysterious ways.

Tontz, plays Alicia Mendoza the strong-willed daughter of the Mendoza clan, who is fresh out of business school… and who will make a huge discovery about her dad, but is also set to embark on a romance with a new staff hire!  And that staff hire is Danny played by Younes, whose character Danny is not who he says he is at all … and he has one goal in my mind which brought him to the hotel … but things get complicated for him when he feels a massive attraction to the hotel owner’s daughter … Alicia!

Michael Fairman TV took part in a press roundtable discussion with Tontz and Younes to get some teasers of what’s to come when Grand Hotel premieres.  Here’s what they shared in some questions posed by us and others below.

Photo: ABC

Danny and Alicia definitely have an instant attraction in the season premiere. Where can you tease that it might go?

LINCOLN:  Well, it can go in a number of directions, but hopefully towards a positive one.  They each have their own motivations for why they’re at the hotel.

DENYSE:  Alicia’s main goal, or at least from the beginning, is to prove herself, just having graduated business school and sort of step into her mother’s shoes a little bit. She’s had a lot of pressure on her for most of her life to sort of fill that role and keep the family together.  I think it’s really tough to have to juggle that and the desire to explore this potential romance with this person who is so intriguing to her.

LINCOLN:  I think with Danny, his reasons are kind of unknown as to why he’s at the hotel.  He comes in as a new employee, but there is something off about him.  It is complicated by the arrival of Alicia and the chemistry the kind of ensues between them.  I think that’s kind of the interesting thing to watch is them navigating their priorities and their initial motivations with the inevitable chemistry and dynamic that has appeared.

Photo: ABC

The main family in Grand Hotel is Hispanic.  And what is intriguing about the premise is that their ethnicity is not the backdrop of the story, it’s just who they are.  Would you agree?

LINCOLN:  Eva is kind of a trailblazer in that way because this is about the story of a family, and a hotel, and the guests, and the employees, and the employers, and all of the different things these people go through.  It’s not so much the color of their skin and their background.  I think as soon as you take away the magnifying glass of how a person appears and really look at what is going on inside, that’s a step in the right direction.

DENYSE:  I think that even though we are really a diverse cast and crew, that really has nothing to do with the actual premise of the show, and I think that’s really cool even to just see that.  To just play a character who happens to be Hispanic, and that’s not the central theme of this character, I think there really are no stereotypes that are perpetuated in any way.

LINCOLN:  It’s the perfect melting pot of culture, and the fact that it is set in a hotel where anyone from any part of the world can come into, it creates this show that I don’t see anything like this on TV, and that’s very exciting.

Do you see Danny and Alicia as a duo to root for with their dysfunction and all throughout the series?

DENYSE:  I think there is this sort of allure to the forbidden romance aspect of it all.

LINCOLN:  They have these obstacles in front of them.

DENYSE:  But you want it to happen. (Laughs)

LINCOLN:  You want it to happen, and it’s just against all odds.  That complicates things.

Photo: ABC

You have such a great cast to work with; chief among them Demián Bichir, Roselyn Sanchez (Devious Maids)!

DENYSE:  Oh man, working with Demián and Roselyn and Eva Longoria was a dream.  They’re each so special in their own way.

LINCOLN:  Three powerhouses.

DENYSE:  Yeah, three powerhouses and very different.  They each have their own way of approaching a scene.  Demián is mostly a movie actor, and it really shows in the way he approaches scenes, and the way he is not glued to the lines, and it’s kind of cool to watch him and learn from him in that way.  He’s so funny too.  He makes it a really comfortable environment, and you feel safe to try stuff.   Eva … same thing.  She has a clear vision for what she wants.  She can direct in such a way that I think a lot of directors can’t, because she has been on the other side of the camera, and she has got a really good perspective.  I think she’s really great at articulating what she wants you to do.

LINCOLN:  Yeah, she’s very meticulous.  I think the thing about all of the people who you’ve just mentioned is that they all have levity.  They are all very specific, but they are all very authentic.  That carries through in both their acting and how they carry themselves off set.  That was really great to kind of learn from them.

Photo: ABC

Many in the cast are from daytime dramas, or soap operas previously, including both of you!  Was that a coincidence in the producers casting choices, you think?

LINCOLN: I think, just knowing Eva so well now, and Brian and Ben, the creators behind it, they searched long and hard for the people they wanted to play the roles.  So, it might just be a happy coincidence.

When the scripts came out, how did the cast handle the twists?

LINCOLN:  There was a lot of speculation going on.  There was a lot of gossiping on set and off set.

DENYSE:  Lots of gossiping, stealing scripts… a lot of bombshells though.  There really is no shortage of plot twists.  A lot of these characters you think are going to start out a certain way, and then you find yourself completely changing your opinion of them halfway through the season. Without giving too much away, nobody is really who they appear to be.

Photo: ABC

How do you both feel about the fact that the wait is over and Grand Hotel is finally premiering?

DENYSE:  It’s super exciting.

LINCOLN:  It’s very surreal.  This is my first American show, so I have no idea what to expect.  I just go to Denyse for advice.  I’m like, “What do I do?”  (Laughs).  It’s all very exciting.  I think when you love a project; there is another element when it is released to the public.  Everyone on the show loves it.  Everyone is so passionate about it.  So, I just hope that the audience feels the same and that we get to keep doing it.

So will you be checking out Denyse, Lincoln, Bryan, Eva and more on Grand Hotel?  Share your thoughts via the comment section below. But first check out this promo for the kick-off tonight!

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General Hospital

GH’s Cynthia Watros Talks On Taking Over The Role Of Nina & Ingo Rademacher Dishes Jax’s New Love Interest

Today on June 3rd, Daytime Emmy winner, Cynthia Watros is set to begin taping all-new episodes of General Hospital as she steps into the role of Nina Cassadine, last played by Michelle Stafford, who has left the ABC daytime drama series and headed back to The Young and the Restless to reprise her signature role of Phyllis Summers.

Watros, best-known for her delicious portrayal of Annie Dutton on Guiding Light, and who was last seen on daytime on Y&R, is back to the grind of the soaps taking on the complex Nina.  Add to that, it is clear that GH is setting up a potential love triangle, or new love interest for her, now that Jasper Jacks is back in Port Charles with GH fan favorite Ingo Rademacher returning to the show.

Last month on the recent GH Nurses’ Ball episodes, we saw Nina (then Stafford) lock eyes with Jax, and the two demonstrated an instant attraction to each other.  Add to that in story; Jax was revealed to be the new 50 percent owner of Aurora Media, which Nina’s Crimson Magazine falls under, putting them in each other’s path in more ways than one.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Cynthia and Ingo along with other members of the media at last week’s ABC Summer Press Roundtable junket, and here were some intriguing and insightful moments from the conversations below.

When we asked if Cynthia had a conversation with Michelle Stafford on taking over the role of Nina, Watros responded: “I did.  We had lunch together, and I have to say, Michelle is an amazing, lovely, giving woman.  Just to be able to sit across from her and talk about Nina and to talk about the show, I was just in awe of her generosity.  I will always be a fan of Michelle’s.  She actually reached out to me and said, ‘If you ever want to call or text…’ and I said, ‘Let’s have lunch!’  So, we found and afternoon and spent like three hours just talking about it.”

Photo Credit: ABC

Since Watros has brought the cray-cray to her best known role of Annie on GL and is so adept as an actress to go from that to playing grave reality, Cynthia weighed in on how she sees Nina and the challenges of being a recast in a soap role: “Nina has all of this stuff that I can’t wait to play.  She’s got stuff that she hasn’t explored for a long time because her life is going pretty well right now.  What happens though when your life doesn’t go really well?  You start exploring those things that you thought were sleeping a little bit, you know, that weren’t necessarily bubbling up to the surface.  So, I like it all: when a character’s life is going well and when a character’s life is not going well. Because I’m playing Nina now, it’s going to be different.  It’s going to be challenging.  It’s the first time I’ve ever taken over a role that someone else has played.  I don’t want to totally go off, so people go, “Wow.  Nina’s totally different,” but of course, I want to make it my own.  Again, I’m an actor who likes to use all of the tools.  I like it all … the funny, the not so funny, the playful, and the crazy.”

As to the timing of Watros returning to the soaps at this time in her life … and how it went down that she landed her new gig at GH, she revealed: “It sounds not very dramatic, but I got a phone call.  Just a phone call asking, ‘Would you be interested?’  Guiding Light will always be in my heart because I had such a good time doing Annie, and I was on Young and the Restless and Another World for half of a second.  So, daytime has always been in my life and in my world.  My last show was in Atlanta, and my daughters were in high school in LA, and it’s hard to go back and forth for them, for me, and for my life as a mom.  So, I kind of took my acting and said, ‘Well, I’m going to slow it all down until they graduate high school.’  They graduate high school June 2nd and I start GH June 3rd.  So, it just seemed like it just made sense.”

Photo: ABC

As to what the future holds for Nina as she takes over the role, Watros shared: “I can tease that I get to play with this guy (Ingo) a lot, and Nina is trying to find a stronger role in the magazine where she is really going to step up in making that a success and her love for the magazine , and trying to navigate her relationship with Jax.”

Cynthia will also get to work with Nina’s present love interest, James Patrick Stuart (Valentin), which the actress is also excited about:“I have to say, I have not met him, but I have been watching the show, and he is just phenomenal.  I love his character.  I love how he is this sort of like bad guy, but it seems like the women really dig him.”

Watros says she is excited to work with Maura West (Ava), Laura Wright (Carly), and Billy Miller (Drew) from the cast.  She has previously worked with Laura and Billy in her soap career. As to her nerves for her first week at the ABC studios where GH is taped, Cynthia shared that she is: “Less nervous, more excited. I feel like a 20-year-old back in soaps.  I remember Kim Zimmer (Ex-Reva, Guiding Light) back in the rehearsal room, and I was off script, and she was on the show for a long time before me, and I was new. I was yelling my lines, and she goes, ‘Excuse me! Can you tell this actress not to act so early in the morning?’ (Laughs) I feel like I’m going to do that again.  So, I’ve got to tone it all down.” (Laughs)

Photo: ABC

For Ingo, he certainly has a view as to how Jax fits into the canvas of Port Charles: “Jax is to me, and I’ve only just been able to put it into words now that Captain America came out, but he’s ‘Captain America’.  He’s all about fairness.  If he sees a bully, he will stand up for the person who is being bullied.  So, that’s who he is.  He’s the white knight.  He’s the person who will always do the right thing.”

Now that Jax has big time ownership in Aurora Media and thus Crimson, does he see the sparks flying with Nina? Ingo reveals: “Yeah, basically he walks in, and she goes, ‘What are you doing in my office?’ and he goes, ‘Actually, it’s my office.’  When I heard about him doing that magazine, I was a little surprised because that’s usually much too small for Jax.  He’s more of a Richard Gere in Pretty Woman character, corporate leader, takes corporations apart, sells pieces … this is, I think really for his daughter, Josslyn (Eden McCoy).  He’s thinking about the future.  Also, to keep him busy in an actual job that he might be good at.   I think it’s a big change in lifestyle for him where before it was about businesses which were much more global.”

Photo: CBS

As to what is behind Jax’s attraction to Nina, Ingo summed it up by sharing: I think Jax is attracted to Nina the first time he sees her.  I have a feeling he already knew who she was the first time he sees her at the Nurses’ Ball, because he’s been studying Aurora Media before purchasing it.  He’s done his background work, and to piss off a Cassadine is just a bonus.  Also, I think what is interesting for Nina’s character is the two different guys.  She’s engaged to this more mysterious character, and then, you’ve got this jolly, upfront one going, ‘Hey!  How’s it going?  Everybody having a good day?’ (Laughs)  He’s very confident as well, but in a different way.  I think it’s nice for the story for Nina to be tugged between two completely different men.”

So, excited to see the debut of Cynthia in the role of Nina? Are you up for a triangle between Jax/Nina/Valentin? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.  But first, watch Cynthia’s Emmy-winning moment as Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her work on Guiding Light.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Arianne Zucker, Stacy Haiduk & Paul Telfer Talk On Masks, Villainy & Their Wildest Storyline Yet

Take three great actors, add a prosthetic mask into the equation, and let them have at it! That’s just what NBC’s Days of our Lives is in the midst of serving up to its fans with this latest plot device and twist.  Last week, it was revealed that the nefarious Kristen DiMera (Stacy Haiduk) is alive and well and pretending to be Nicole Walker (Arianne Zucker) donning a mask, a voice alternating device, and some other body tweaks!  The goal …  to be with Brady Black (Eric Martsolf) and she will do anything to accomplish that!

Enter Xander (Paul Telfer) who has been in the thick of the plot being the only one we know of, so far, who knows that Kristen is parading around as Nicole.  They hatch their next moves inside a room at the Salem Inn.  They even went so far as to set it up to appear that Nicole’s daughter, Holly was killed, so she could blame Eric (Greg Vaughan) and cause a break-up of the long-suffering lovebirds and play it off as she needs to be consoled by Brady!

Michael Fairman TV chatted in an entertaining and wickedly funny interview with Arianne Zucker, Stacy Haiduk, and Paul Telfer to get the lowdown on what happened when they learned they would be wearing or working with a mask, how they pulled off the emotions in the storyline twist, and what to look forward to from here.  Under the clever pen of head writer, Ron Carlivati looks for the hits and twists to keep coming as this storyline continues to rock the world of Salem for some time to come.  Here’s what Arianne, Stacy, and Paul had to say about their latest on-screen predicaments and schemes!

Ari, at what point did you know that you really weren’t Nicole … and that you were Kristen playing Nicole?

ARIANNE:  I actually didn’t find out until a little bit after the van went off the road in the storyline; thinking it was Holly who was killed.  Sometimes, the less I know makes it fresher, and I think if I had known before those scenes, and the scenes with Eric (Greg Vaughan), and when I first came back, I would have had a little too much Kristen on my mind, and I don’t know if I could have been as raw as I felt in those scenes.  So, anyway that’s my long explanation.  I found out after I started back on the show! (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Additionally, did you have a conversation with Stacy about certain mannerisms hat Kristen has if you’re “masquerading” as Nicole?

ARIANNE:  Our co-executive producer, Albert Alaar had talked to me about watching Stacy because everything was happening fast.  Stacy and I really hadn’t had a chance to even talk to each other even from the last round of me being thereI remember Stacy was inundated with dialogue up the wazoo when I came back for that twelve-episode arc.  So, because of all of that, Albert said, “Watch Stacy! Watch her mannerisms, watch what she does,” and then I’ll throw a little Ari in it.  I just hope that I do as good of a job as Stacy does.

Paul, you and I talked about this on the NBC ‘Inside Salem’ podcast, when we played back for you (for the first time) the clip of Kristen taking off her Nicole mask.  Xander had the perfect set-up line for the reveal: “The part of Nicole Walker is being played by Kristen DiMera!”  Did you not have a good laugh doing that scene?  How did you get through doing that moment?

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

PAUL:  Oh, yeah, I was laughing my ass off the whole time.  This is an insane storyline with masks and doppelgängers.  But, it looks great on-screen, and that way it’s edited.  So, I was really happy.

STACY:  There was one moment when Nicole would hold steady to unfold the neck.   So, Ari started that to the point where I’m pulling it off completely.  I think it’s cool.  It’s “Mission Impossible”.  How nice!

PAUL:  That’s what I going to say.  If Tom Cruise can make a hundred million dollars doing this stuff …

STACY:  … then, we can do it!

ARIANNE:  Right?  We can make a quarter of a quarter of a quarter of a quarter of that.

STACY:  We’ll make it look good!

What is the real deal between Xander and Kristen?  They are conspiring and in cahoots, but there’s this underlying sexual tension between them.  I think Xander respects Kristen in a way, because she can one-up him!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

PAUL:  I think every character who Xander has interacted with who isn’t a member of his family, he’s trying to either get something from, or get into bed with, and he can’t really do either with Kristen, because she’s crazier and more dangerous that he is up until this point.  That’s certainly the way that it feels.  The way Stacy plays it, she is not to be messed around with. Honestly, I think that turns him on.

STACY:  Yeah, there you go.  That sounds good. (Laughs)

PAUL:  I mean, it makes sense.  Just like, “Wait a minute.  This is a bit spicier than I’m used to,” so, he’s excited, but at the same time he knows which side his bread is buttered on, and he doesn’t want her to murder him!  (Laughs)

STACY:  Well said.  I like that. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, what does Kristen think of Xander at this point?

PAUL:  That, he’s a useful idiot.

STACY:  She actually needs him to go out into the world because she can’t leave.  When she does, she has to leave as Nicole, and then it becomes a whole other storyline.

PAUL:  It’s fun because Kristen is actually the boss, and Xander is convinced that they’re actually partners and that becomes our whole dynamic where she’s treating him as her lackey, but he’s like, “No, we’re partners, because I know your secret.”  Then, it becomes kind of a bargaining chip between the mask and all of that.  It’s so crazy because certain evil characters when they come back, they have to come back in disguise; whereas Xander’s always quite happy to be just jogging through town square with his shirt off after holding someone ransom or kidnapping a baby like, “Ah, whatever.”

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Arianne, it’s been awhile since you got to play the villainess side of Nicole, and with this return to DAYS you get to play that side of her as well, even though it’s really Kristen. Do you enjoy playing the bad girl?

ARIANNE:  Stacy and I were just saying today that you have these conversations about the villain character, (and Paul, I’m sure you’ve felt a lot of this too) people hate you or they love to hate you, and you’re like, “Hey, it’s a good thing because I’m doing my job if you hate me,” but in order for the storyline to move, you’ve got to have a villain.  Nicole used to be kind of villain-ish but playing someone like Kristen who is such a valued villain on this show is just … oh, my God!

Stacy and Paul, what do you think is the most heinous thing your characters have done so far?

STACY:  The most heinous?  (Laughs). Wow.  You know what’s funny is that she’s done all of these things, and I don’t think she thinks what she does is bad.

PAUL:  It’s so funny because you totally would expect her to be like, “The other characters are evil.  We’re the good guys!”

STACY:  I mean honestly, so she kidnapped Nicole, and took her baby.  There’s Marlena and the window.  I mean, it’s hard when she’s done all of these crazy, horrible things.  I’ve just really enjoyed playing her because she’s smart, she’s sassy, she’s this brilliant, deviant person who just wants one thing, and there’s one thing on her mind, and everything else gets in her way.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Is the one thing Brady?

STACY:  Brady, Brady, Brady, and I think even Xander has to repeat it over and over again.  We were playing in rehearsal, and I think I had him do that.  I don’t remember the line, but I said something, and he goes, “Brady Black,” and I go, “Say it again,” just because I want to hear him say it again.  That’s her driving force.

What did Greg Vaughan and Eric Martsolf say when they found out about what the twist was?  Did you tell them?  How did they find out?

ARIANNE:  Well, Eric Martsolf always has a great chuckle.  He has a great laugh, and I think Greg Vaughan just stared at me for a minute.  Then, I told him about the mask process … about making the mask …. and how I thought I was going to pass out and die.  (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Is putting on the mask an extremely weird experience?  How long does it take to put on? 

STACY:  About an hour?  It’s quick, and I thought we were going to suffocate when we were under that because I’ve never done my whole face before, but I’ve done body things. Make-up department is like, “You’re going to be fine.”  It was heavy too, really heavy.

ARIANNE:  Yeah, and because it’s so heavy, after a while, it starts to pull your skin down a little bit, and you’re like, “No, no!” (Laughs)

Did anybody else go running around with the mask on?

PAUL:  Oh yeah.  Everybody!

I knew it!

ARIANNE:  How could you not?

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, what is the relationship between the real Nicole and Xander, which we saw play out before her death?

PAUL:  She’s my wife!

So, Xander sees Nicole as his wife?

PAUL:  I’m happy to give Xander’s perspective on Nicole, and then Arianne can feel free to correct it.  (Laughs)

ARIANNE:  Alright, that sounds good.

Photo Credit JPI Studios

PAUL:  The way I’ve tried to handle it over the years in our ins and outs of this failed romance is that they’ve saddled poor Arianne with: this psycho chasing after her, and kidnapping her and her baby, and whisking her off to foreign lands – and also to Nashville.  When Xander first came into town, before they decided to make him a total psychopath, it was all working nicely, and Nicole wasn’t really on the up and up with Xander, and she wasn’t really honest about what her intentions were.  Meanwhile, Xander was involved in all of this chicanery with Serena, so once that metastasized into full-blown evil, and Nicole was aware of this, it shifted from, “I just really wanted to take this girl to the movies,” to, “Well, I guess I have to kill her now.”  (Laughs)  So, I think he’s just been playing that out ever since.  “Well, if I can’t date her, and if she won’t love me, then I guess I just have to torture her for the rest of her days.”  I think now on the other side of her supposed death, I think Xander has probably reconciled that his twisted romantic notions, or torture, or whatever he was doing with Nicole, is probably over, and he’s moving on to greener, more alive pastures like Sarah.  To be fair, I do think they’ve purposely made it confusing.  Not just for the audience, but for us.  There’s a real sense of, “Am I playing this to Nicole as Kristen, or do you want me to play this just to Nicole?”  Very often they just go, “No, just play it to Nicole,” because it’s funnier if for Xander it just occasionally slips his mind because she looks just like Nicole.  I’m kissing her… like he’s just enjoying the fact that he can.  “I never really got to kiss Nicole much, but this is Nicole’s face, so I’m going to.”  (Laughs)

ARIANNE:  That’s hilarious.

Ari, what would you say is their relationship?

ARIANNE:  Well, I’m certainly not as long-winded as that.  (Laughs)

PAUL:  He’s a creep!

ARIANNE:  He is a creep.  What cracks me up coming from Nicole is, “Ew, what a jerk.  He’s so gross.  Yuck, yuck!”  Like, really?  You’re not going to make that one work, huh Nicole?  When you reach that far back to the history of Xander and Nicole, it doesn’t have a lot of depth for the two characters because the next thing you know he’s trying to kill her and Eric.  It’s like that scary online dating when you go on one date and it didn’t work out because that guy is going to kill you.

PAUL:  Xander is like the ultimate bad Tinder date.

ARIANNE:  Totally. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

That is classic.  The bad Tinder date.  That’s basically it.  Xander also apparently feels bad for Maggie (Suzanne Rogers) as she is having her bout with alcoholism.  Is that correct?

PAUL:  Yeah, I’m actually excited to see some of that stuff.  It was great doing it because I love Suzanne to bits.  I was very afraid of ruining Xander by making him too nice, but at the same time when I was first brought on to Days, I wasn’t offered a villain role originally.  Xander morphed into a more severe villain than I’d been led to believe he would be, and it happened quite quickly.  So, I’m actually quite happy to right the ship a little bit back towards he’s bad but he has some occasional glimmers of goodness in him.  So, Maggie really represents that because she’s actually quite nice to him and nurturing in a way that no other character on the show is.  When she has her dalliance with alcohol, he’s one of the few people who doesn’t judge her for it, and we finally get a little bit of Xander’s back story.  I’m actually excited to see those scenes because they felt nice to do, so hopefully they come across well.

Stacy, how did you track this storyline, when Arianne would be playing Kristen as Nicole? 

STACY:  Well if I didn’t get the script, I didn’t know about it.  So, if I wasn’t in the script that time, then I would be looking at Paul going, “What are we talking about?” and then, Ari had obviously already shot those scenes, so they were written for me, so I’m like, “What did I do?  What did I do?” It’s just scenes between Xander and Kristen at the Salem Inn.  Occasionally, you’d get somebody knocking at the door, but then I’d have to quickly put on my mask. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, Ari did you ever have to go to Stacy to get tips about Kristen’s past or anything?

ARIANNE:  It was all about the future moving forward.  I think old, former Nicole had some crazy similarities with current Kristen because it felt kind the same as pulling some things from what she used to do … you know, just a couple of crazy chicks in one crazy character. (Laughs).

The other big part of this is Rolf’s diary that Xander has in his possession.  Is Kristen in cahoots with him on that?  Is she trying to get that from him?

STACY:  I think she is.

PAUL:  Yeah, that’s when she starts to get mad at him; when she realizes that he’s not just being her underling and he’s off scurrying around with his own agenda in the meantime.

ARIANNE:  He’s manipulating and doing his own thing.

PAUL:  I use it to start manipulating Eve (Kassie DePaiva).

So, what would you say to the fans to look forward to?  “You never know who you’re talking to on DAYS?” “Gird your masks?”

ARIANNE:  I definitely think fans know that’s not Nicole the way she is.  And, you never know who is going to give you a shot in the butt and turn you into somebody else.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Well, that’s true.  You never know.  One day they’re going to tell you that you’re playing Julie today! (Laughs)

ARIANNE: “Today the character of Julie will be played by…”

STACY: “… you will never guess by whom!”

PAUL:  This was fun.  This is a fun way to do it.  Let’s all do all of our interviews together moving forward!

So, what have you thought of the plot twist? What do you think of the Nicole mask and the performances and comments made here by Arianne, Stacy, and Paul? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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