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The Melissa Archer Interview – One Life to Live

© JPI Studios

© JPI Studios

Natalie Buchanan had endured so many setbacks and so much sadness in her young life that it’s hard to imagine that there is more just around the corner.  But there is.  After all this is soap opera, and One Life to Live. Actress Melissa Archer has been winning raves for over eight and half years as Natalie, the feisty, take-no-prisoners, and loveable young heroine.  Melissa’s strength and raw vulnerability make Natalie’s perils ring true to our hearts, no matter how outlandish they may be.  Take a look at her current state of affairs.  Natalie is still getting over the loss of her husband Jared, who was shot to death by the evil Mitch Laurence.  In retribution, Natalie stabbed Mitch.  Her one time beau, John McBain covered for her, but all went awry when somehow with the machinations of an evil police commissioner, (thanks, Dorian!) Mitch got away.  And now this week, his reign of terror goes to new levels of debauchery!

In this On-Air On-Soaps interview, Melissa fills us in on tomorrow’s road to disaster as several of your favorite residents from Llanview are involved in a car crash that is set to change the course of many lives. So, how does Melissa feel about a re-teaming with Michael Easton (John) in the romance department, and the strange, yet loving relationship between sisters, Jessica and Natalie, and working with her on-screen mom, the legendary Erika Slezak?  Her answers may surprise you.  And in Melissa’s opinion, of all of Natalie’s moments, (and there are plenty) which one did she think she hit out of the ballpark?  A Soap Opera Digest winner for Outstanding Newcomer in 2003 and a winner for Favorite Triangle in 2005, could this be the year that Melissa scores a Daytime Emmy nomination for Supporting Actress?  We shall see.  But in the meantime, here are the thoughts from one of daytime’s most compelling young actresses on her juicy role.

MICHAEL:

There is so much coming up for Natalie, but I wanted to go back a bit in time to when Jared died, and those incredible performances you gave at the graveside.  Were those hard to pull off, or do you love getting the chance to emotionally go there?

MELISSA:

Thank you.  It’s a double-edged sword.  It’s hard, but I think that is what is so gratifying about it.

MICHAEL:

It brought us back to a few years before when Natalie thought John was dead, and viewers witnessed your gut-wrenching performances.  And now Jared is gone.  What goes on in Natalie’s mind, in terms of handling all the loss and grief?  It’s almost too much for one person to go through in such a short time frame.

MELISSA:

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It’s funny, outside of Natalie looking at it. She has had so much tragedy with the men in her life.  Most of them come back, though. (Laughs)  Imagine it actually happening to a human being who would actually lose so many people in such a short time in their life. It’s a little heartbreaking for that person.  I think that is the thing.  For each love interest and new found thing in Natalie’s life, she took from what she had with the old and you have a growth, and you bring that into the new relationship.  You are going through the process all over again. Then with that person dying, it’s a whole new tragedy in itself. Then of course, how do you deal? That is the next question.

MICHAEL:

How was working with John Brotherton (Ex- Jared)?

MELISSA:

Amazing!  He was awesome.  He is a nice guy, professional and positive, and it was nice to work with him.

MICHAEL:

Now we come to what looks like, or shall I say certain signs are pointing to, a re-emergence of the Natalie and John romance. Why do you think Natalie and John work so well together?  Do you and Michael Easton talk about how that relationship comes across on-screen?

MELISSA:

I don’t know that we have really discussed how it comes across on screen, but yeah, I think it was always an interesting story.  I think what made it so interesting for so long is that they never, until the very end; they never had a committed relationship.  So there was this wanting, and wanting, that built for so long.

MICHAEL:

Natalie is always compelled to help John!  But this time the stakes are very high.  Jessica is in big trouble.

MELISSA:

Courtesy/ABC

Definitely!  She is determined to help John and it’s double sided, but she is more determined to help her sister.  Natalie knows John is the person who is going to help her, and not only that, but she had the guilt associated with the fact that John has been covering for her stabbing Mitch.

MICHAEL:

Yes.  Natalie did stab evil Mitch, and John seemingly will do anything to keep Natalie in the clear of any crime.

MELISSA:

Yes, and this is a little payback to him to say, “Thanks, and let me help you now.”  I think that is the relationship they have had for a really long time.  One helps the other, and they have always had a friendship.  Even though they have not been in each other’s orbit there is always this care for one another.

MICHAEL:

How is Michael Easton to work with?

MELISSA:

I love working with Michael.  He is fabulous, hard-working, and I like what he brings to the story.  He has a very interesting character to play.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

He is not your typical soapy actor.  When something happens to John it’s so devastating to watch because of the way Michael plays him.  The character is very contained.  So those big emotional moments are wonderful to see.

MELISSA:

I think that is what makes him so interesting, because it’s not the typical character.  And, as the character is challenged, it’s challenging for those involved with John.  The goal sometimes for Natalie is to reach the underside of what he hides.  I sometimes think that is a big drive for her.  John is so quiet.  I think Natalie appreciates that to some degree, too.  I think because of where Natalie is in certain points of her life and because she is a feistier character, she could relate to certain things with him that other people couldn’t.

MICHAEL:

In a recent interview I did with Erika Slezak, (Viki) for Advocate.com, I asked her about working with you as her on-screen daughter.  I want to read to you what she had to say and get your comments.  Erika stated, “I think Melissa is one of the best actresses we have ever had on our show.  I know Melissa personally, and I know what she does on-screen and it’s riveting.  I adore that child and I think of her as my own.  Now I think she lives on another planet, but I have told her that.  She cuts through all the nonsense and gets to the heart of who Natalie is.  She has passion and she is the sweetest goofball.”

MELISSA:

I love her! (Laughs) It’s funny, because I have always felt like Erika is a part of my family.  I know it’s television, but Erika has always been so wonderful about taking me under her wing.  I always feel like I can go to her for anything, and she is fabulous to work with.  She is a giving actress, but it’s more than that.  I feel I can learn so much from her, and I appreciate what she brings to the table in helping me, and her professionalism.  It’s so awesome to have that opportunity to work with her!

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

Would you agree with her goofball comment?

MELISSA:

Yes. Absolutely!

MICHAEL:

We love that about you!  How are you a goofball?

MELISSA:

I am goofy!  I am kind of random and I say silly things sometimes and I act crazy (in a good way), sometimes.  I have a different way of thinking at times. (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Tomorrow on OLTL, there is a huge car collision. Natalie has already taken off for Llantano Mountain to try and save Jessica from the clutches of Mitch Laurence, and she is on her way up there with Brody and John in tow.  You are driving the car?

MELISSA:

I am driving the getaway car and it was fun.  I will be honest. I was hoping because there was a remote involved, that we would be driving the getaway car.  I thought it would be so cool, as it is in the movies. 

MICHAEL:

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Will Natalie be donning an incognito Chauffeur’s hat?  After all, our three heroes are trying to out-run the cops!

MELISSA:

Yes.  At some point in it, yes I do.  It was a lot of fun to tape this.  Even though it wasn’t driving on the road, it was still really exciting.  They have the car moving, as if you are really moving.  But I will tell you; I thought I would be a much better pretend driver! (Laughs)  I know how the car feels when I am driving, and how much the wheel turns. But, I guess it depends on the vehicle.  For the getaway, this was more of a rugged SUV vehicle.  So I guess I thought the wheel would be tougher.  I kind of thought the wheel would not turn as much, and production had to tell me that I had to move the wheel more because it looked like I wasn’t doing anything.  I thought I was being really cool! (Laughs) And I was bouncing it too, since it’s a rugged SUV.  So I thought it would bounce more than it would shake.  Apparently, it did not read well, so we had to change that. (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

You went on location for these exterior scenes. Where did you shoot them?

MELISSA:

The location was the loading ramp outside of the building formerly known as All My Children’s studio, where we are moving to this month.

MICHAEL:

This crash involves many people!

MELISSA:

It is going to involve many people and in reading the scripts, it was kind of exciting. Listen, we are very lucky. We have an amazing production team to make things look as good as they do. When I first read it I was like, “How are they going to do it in the studio?”  They were able to just pull it all off with stunts, and pyrotechnics, and so much more.  It was so cool and looks amazing to me!

MICHAEL:

Once the car accident happens, can we expect a big moment between Natalie and John?  That is what we have heard and long time fans have been begging for. But it seems that Natalie gets very close in proximity to John, and in her delirium thinks she is kissing Jared?

MELISSA:

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We can say that there is a major moment the week of February 8th for anyone who ever loved John and Natalie.  It’s totally unexpected.  Yes, she thinks she is kissing Jared.  She does not realize what she is doing in the midst of it, but at some point she does.

MICHAEL:

Is Natalie in physical danger?

MELISSA:

Natalie is in physical danger from the car crash.  I am trying to get to Jessica and that is the initial goal. There is something major that happens to them.  The car crash happens, and the stakes were already high, because we have to get to Jessica.  Then this collision happens and then it throws everything off course. Then the stakes are magnified.

MICHAEL:

How do you like the real possibility of working with Michael Easton again in an on-screen romantic relationship with John and Natalie?  And wait….there is another huge complication, John’s current girlfriend, Marty!  I see a triangle!

MELISSA:

Oh yeah! And of course, there is the issue of Marty.  To have a triangle is exciting!  They are fun to play.  I have been in quite a few triangles: Evangeline/John/Natalie, and then the John/Natalie/Cristian, and then Cristian/Jen/Natalie, and at the beginning there was the Jessica/Seth/Natalie triangle.

MICHAEL:

So of all those triangles, what was your favorite to play?

MELISSA:

I think the longest was Evangeline/John/Natalie, and I thought that was a lot of fun. I also would have to say I enjoyed the Cristian/Natalie/John triangle because it was kind of nice to be the apex!  I will say that, too. (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

February sweeps seems to be can’t-miss soap opera television at One Life to Live. There is this big issue of Mitch.  Did you ever take issue, as an actress, of trying to justify Mitch’s actions?  Some of it just seems so ridiculous, out there, and borders on absurd!

MELISSA:

It’s a funny thing. You have heard strange stories in real life where you are kind of dumbfounded these things can actually happen, but they do.  And to say that this one man can get away with so much, yeah maybe, but you have to take into account the place where it’s happening.  It’s happening in Llanview!  And in Llanview you can do many things. (Laughs)  And what I like about Mitch is that he is the bad guy who never dies and comes back.  I think that is what is great about Mitch.  He is always there to haunt and bring about great story.  He gets away with so much, and that is what makes the stakes so high of, “Oh, my God! How did he come back from the dead?  I thought he was dead this time.  And now look what he is able to do?”  And it is believable in a way because he has a cult and he has a lot of followers.  You hear about this in other states, where the law enforcement is involved in the cover-up.  So is this completely inconceivable?  No, its not!  It can happen.

MICHAEL:

How is working with Roscoe Born as Mitch Laurence?  Natalie had had quite a history with this evil incarnate.  She was married to him at one point in time!

MELISSA:

Roscoe is amazing!  He is able to deliver every single time.  I feel his job is one of the hardest because he has to play not only evil, but also a cult leader.  So he has scriptures and all sorts of stuff he has to pull off and come across like he is so evil.  And truly, Roscoe is a very nice man, and a pleasure to work with, and very funny.  He is so good at what he does.

MICHAEL:

Ok, Melissa, but do you guys ever chuckle in rehearsals?  It’s so twisted!  I mean there were many group and family scenes where Mitch just pops up.

MELISSA:

Sure, oh yeah!  The first day he came back on the show this time, Mitch steps into the doorway of the greenhouse and his line was like, “Daddy’s home.”  It was so eerie!

MICHAEL:

What about when Mitch popped out of Jared’s casket at the funeral?  It was funny, sick and twisted all rolled in to one and there you were playing it for all its worth and delivering another Archer bravura performance!

MELISSA:

It was an interesting thing.  As an actress, I felt that for Natalie to be able to make this higher stakes for her, she would have to have the hope that Jared was not really dead and this was all a bad dream.  Because for her, it’s obviously happened some other times to several other men on the show that have died, who ended up not being really dead.  But she believed as this casket was opening that it was Jared, and that everything was going to be OK.  And then of course, when the casket is fully opened and out comes Mitch, it’s this shock and horror and almost like speechlessness.  Natalie goes to say something, but it’s like, “I can’t even believe this is happening.  How did this happen?  Mitch is supposed to be in prison!  What is going on?”

MICHAEL:

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I thought it was good that this time when Mitch came back to the show, head writer Ron Carlivati and OLTL executive producer Frank Valentini, changed Mitch back to the cult guy with his minions.  It stayed true to the original origin of the character.  Now, what about Mitch’s daughter and your sister, Jessica?  I mean after all, Jess’s alter ego, Tess, tried to kill Natalie, but somehow they worked through that.  Now, of course, Natalie is trying to save the poor girl before Mitch erases her memories with electro-shock therapy. It seems like no matter what Natalie and Jessica go through they somehow end up still being sisterly. (Laughs)

MELISSA:

I think that is the best part of Natalie and Jessica.  They have always had such an interesting relationship; going from Natalie pretending to be her friend to revealing that she is not a nice person, and then trying to throw her off the stairs, and then later, somehow finding a way to not only become sisters, but friends. They have their moments, like when Jess was Tess, and Natalie did not like Tess, and Tess did not like Natalie.  There were obviously problems there, and yet at the same point in time, she was able to recognize it was Tess and still love her sister and come out of it having a relationship with her. What is cool about it is even though Natalie did not grow up with Jessica; the sisters have a lot of what you hear people say about what it was like growing up with a sister.  You can love each other to death, and then kill each other the next day.  I think there are more loving times between them then not.  But, I think that they have had their problems.  I like playing both ends.  That is what makes it so real and relatable, except when they want to kill each other.  They use bombs and secret rooms! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Since the time you premiered on One Life to Live, what scenes stick in your mind as the moments you are most proud of playing Natalie?

MELISSA:

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There have been moments where I thought, “Wow, I did a really great job,” and then there have been other times later on where I felt I did a better job.  I think I feel I have grown as an actress.  But I think I am most proud of the storyline with Jared dying.  I think it’s been most gratifying for me with my work.  I felt really good about my performance.  I can’t say that I felt I loved it every single time, but I put my heart and soul into it, and I really liked it.

MICHAEL:

I also thought it was very poignant how Charlie and Natalie would bond together and help each other through Jared’s death.  Most touching was when he came to the grave and held Natalie.  How is working with Brian Kerwin (Charlie)?

MELISSA:

Working with Brian is great, too.  He has a way about him that is so natural.  He has a likeable quality, not only his personal self, but as his character.  And even when Charlie does wrong he is a likeable guy.  I think it was really, really nice that Ron wrote us having that connection over Jared’s death.  And it’s not each of them grieving on their own, but also to find comfort in one another.  I found it a nice touch.

MICHAEL:

What does Natalie think of Marty?

MELISSA:

In one way, I feel like even though Natalie is trying to be the adult, and it’s a fact of life, it’s always hard when you see someone you were involved with move on, even if you are emotionally over that person.  I think that Natalie has grown up herself, so I don’t think that the animosity is there. Just as John and Natalie have not been in each other’s orbit, neither have Marty and Natalie for a long period of time.  There is not a lot of animosity there, but I think Natalie might feel at times a little threatened by Marty.  I am not sure if she even realized that.  I don’t know if she recognized that she feels threatened.

MICHAEL:

It will be interesting to see how this plays out; when John and Natalie reconnect and Marty is on the outside for a minute.

MELISSA:

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I think that is why I like this triangle as well.  I feel Susan Haskell brings a lot to Marty, not only the way she plays it, but how it is written for her.  I think it just aired recently, where Natalie went to therapy with Marty, and it was interesting.  Susan really played the part of being the therapist trying to help this person, but also the moments where we see what Marty may have actually been thinking.  I saw the show where Marty was talking to her therapist.  The therapist was saying to her, “Well, maybe it’s because she was talking about your boyfriend.”  And I liked the way she played it because, again, it wasn’t a person recognizing that they feel threatened.  Now, it brings a cool dynamic between these two women in that they are trying to be adult about this. But, they are really feeling something else.  Then eventually, the question becomes, “How long are you not going to be an adult about it?”

MICHAEL:

So, can we then expect a complex human triangle?

MELISSA:

It’s hard to say how it will play out, but I think it’s going to play out interesting, because Marty, with her psychological background, is trying to have a grasp over her feelings and be the bigger person.  And Natalie usually struggles with that stuff, in general. (Laughs)  It will be interesting to see if it will become catty or not.  It’s a soap, and that makes it fun to always see a little cattiness!

MICHAEL:

When fans meet you, what do they say to you the most?  Do they tell you who they would like Natalie paired with romantically?

MELISSA:

It varies.  I still hear people say that they want Natalie with Cristian.  So I think that is what makes soap fans so great.  It’s not just one thing.

MICHAEL:

What can we tell Natalie fans to look forward to in February?

MELISSA:

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We have seen Natalie grieving, then driven by revenge, and now she is driven to save her sister.  Then something happens with the crash that alters her reality.  Something unexpected is going to happen with John, and when that happens, things change even more.

MICHAEL:

So, is Natalie finally moving through her grief and ready to move on?

MELISSA:

I don’t think Natalie is over her loss for Jared.  I think she is struggling on how to deal with it as I think anybody would in that situation. In February, it becomes trickier. You will see her struggling with all of her feelings, and desperately trying to pinpoint what is real and what is not.

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Wonderful interview..love getting a small peek into Melissa’s mind…Adore her and Natalie and can not wait to see what they are up to next.

Thank you for a great interview! I’ve loved Melissa Archer ever since she set foot in Llanview. I fell in love with Natalie and Christian but when John McBain entered the scene, I knew they were done. Melissa and Michael Easton have such chemistry…they sell a love story like no other pairing on the show. I have patiently waited for a John and Natalie reunion and it sounds like it may be on the horizon. Kudos to Melissa for doing such a remarkable job with her role!

Loved the interview! Melissa is such a class act! I love her! And, I agree that I think the Jared death story is among her best work. She really knocked every scene out of the park. I am personally thrilled that she and Michael Easton are working together again. They have special chemistry and I love the connection between John and Natalie. I have waited – impatiently – for a reunion and I sincerely hope that OLTL will not disappoint me!

Great interview! Love Melissa. I loved and enjoyed her with John Brotherton(Jared). I miss Jared and Natalie. Natalie’s true soulmate and love of her life!

Great interview, Melissa has always been my favorite actress and I am so happy she is finally getting some long overdue praise. I love her Natalie and Michael Easton’s John together and so happy and thrilled they are going back to them.

I simply adore Melissa. I don’t think she’s ever received the recognition for her acting that she derserves. I would love to see her win an emmy this year. I am so excited to see John and Natalie together again. I have waited for a reunion for a long time and I’d have to be honest enough to say if I don’t get one this time, I’ll quit watching for good.

Thanks for the interview! I love Melissa and Natalie is my favorite character. Great interview.

Thanks for the MA interview. Love Natalie Buchanan Banks. MA has been doing some great work and brings so much energy to the roll. Also, thanks for the pretty, pretty pictures. Jared and Natalie are missed and those pictures are gorgeous.

Thank you so much for the fabulous interview with MA. As always you seem to know exactly the questions I would like to ask if given the opportunity and get straight to the heart of the character. Natalie is such a fascinating character and has a rich and complex history with so many other characters on the show, it’s really fun to hear Archer’s take on things.

So excited to see John and Natalie reuniting on screen. They are amazing together. So glad Melissa is getting much deserved praise for her acting. She is the best.

A wonderful interview! Melissa deserves all the recognition for her acting of late, she has been fantastic. Great to see her front and center again. I am absolutely loving the John, Natalie and Brody scenes; their chemistry is fabulous together and they play off one another so well. Sure hope we get John and Natalie back together, they light up screen and bring out the best in the characters and actors.

Melissa Archer and Michael Easton are AMAZING together! I loved Christian and Natalie at one time UNTIL Michael Easton came on screen and they were it for me! John and Natalie are true soulmates and simply belong togehter. I am soo hoping for a reunion, and it sounds like it is coming. Thank you, RC!! Just do my pretty Jolie justice!!
Melissa deserves a ton of praise as does Michael Easton! I LOVE THEM TOGEHTER!!

Its past time for Melissa to receive a Emmyy Nod! Melissa is doing awesome work in this Mitch SL. Iam very please with this interview, its always great to see the real Melissa shining thru!

Thank you for this interview. I absolutely love Melissa Archer! I’m not a soap watcher but I flipped threw the show one day, saw her and was hooked! She just has amazing chemistry with everyone. There’s just something about her that fascinates me and I can’t get enough.

What a fantastic interview!!! Loved Melissa as Natalie on OL and I am really looking forward to see what happens in February. I truly hope that it leads to my fab couple (john/nat) being reunited and having a committed relationship without any outside interference.

Thank you for a wonderful interview. Natalie is my favorite character and Melissa is my favorite actress. She is the reason I watch OLTL and look forward to her scenes. Here;s hoping she is nominated for an Emmy this year. I also hope Natalie and John will be together again.

Another great interview, Michael. I go along with your fans.I also love John and Natalie’s chemistry. Michael Easton portrays the strong silent type and Natalie bounces right off the screen. Melissa has really grown as an actress over the last few years. You love to look at her combustability. But she is truly beautiful. I know something is coming up tomorrow after watching today.There are at least three cars heading for a collision. There should be some exciting days ahead. Go get that looney Mitch! I still think that obsolete contraption he is using to repress Jessica’s memory is hysterically funny,,,,,,

Thanks for sharing this interview. Melissa You are such an amazing actress!!! Even though I didn’t like the Natalie/Jared paring, I thought you did an amazing job with his death and the scenes leading up too his death. Especially the ones w/ John(Michael Easton)!!! I love the fiesty Natalie…and John always knows how to bring that out in her. 😉 Your chemistry w/ ME always rocks the charts and I think that’s why your one of the most poplar couples on daytime. 🙂 I cannot wait to see what the two of you do with this next storyline….I have no doubt you will both give 110% and it will be AWESOME!!!!

Thank you for the great interview with Melissa Archer. She is a wonderful actress and a class act. She and Brian Kerwin have been particularly phenomenal in the aftermath of Jared’s untimely death. And thanks for the Natalie/Jared pictures. “Jarlie” will always hold a special place in my heart, as they brought me back to watching a soap after several years of “soap retirement.” Melissa and John Brotherton (another class act) never disappointed me in two plus years, and I thank them both for giving their all and making me believe that Natalie and Jared are the loves of each other’s lives. Natalie will eventually move on to another relationship, and Jared did die onscreen…but hey, it’s a soap, strange and wonderful things happen; so part of my heart will always hope that JB will someday bring Jared back for his Sparky.

bring on jolie again i loved them can’t to see them together again.

Thanks for the interview. Love Melissa and am excited about what is gonna happen next.

I enjoyed reading MA’s interview & found it very interesting. I am overjoyed to hear that it is a very good possibility that there will be a reunion of some kind between Natalie & John McBain. The chemistry they have is over the top & I can’t think of any other couple that I love seeing in a scene better than the two of them. John comes alive so when he is with her…….. & vice versa. Someone mentioned that Jared was the love of Natalie’s life but I can’t see how they could say that. Maybe because they were just an ordinary couple & obviously there wasn’t the passion between them that there always was with her & John. There is no one that she’s ever been with that has brought the feistiness & fierce passion out in her the way that John McBain was able to. Also no one has made him lighten up the way Natalie has & still seems to. You hardly ever see him smile except when in her presence. They are one heck of a sexy, romantic couple & I hope they will finally get to where they are in the same place @ the same time so they can have the type of relationship that they were cheated out of in 2007!! Please bring it on MA & ME, make Nat & John shine!

I am a John and Natalie fan. I love MA, she is my favorite soap actress.

What a nice article. I loved Jared and Natalie but I am really starting to like John and Natalie alot. I think she has chemistry with everyone.

I know I defintely enjoyed this interview with Melissa Archer! She;s one of my favorites. And I am so hoping that we longtime fans get a reunion for Natalie and John. The chemistry with her and Michael Easton is absolutely incredible! These two melt my screen. Please, OLTL, give your fans a John and Natalie reunion!

I hope that natalie and john are going to get back together . Aubrey and Joey she is not a match for him he belong with kelly . I am tired of this tess wish she was gone and jessica was back with brody and not with ford.

I just love Melissa, she is a real good actess. I don’t miss a day of one life to live because i can’t wait for John to find out that Natalie’s baby is his One life to live could not of found a better person to play Natalie. Natalie deserves to be happy and her and John look good together. I love you girl keep up the good work.

THAT IS WHY SHE NEEDS TO BE ON GH WITH MICHAEL ASAP WITH HIS HAMILTON FINN CHARACTER!!!!! THEY NEED TO BE RE-UNITED ASAP JOHN&NATALIE ARE THE LOVE OF EACH OTHERS LIVES & COMPLETE & UTTER SOULMATES!!!!!!! JARED ABSOLUTE NOT I HATED HIM SOOOOO MUCH & WAS SOOOOOOO WRONG FOR MY NATALIE! I WAS SOOOOOOO HAPPY WHEN HE DIED & WAS OFF THE SHOW!!!!!! NOW ME&MA NEED TO BE ON GH TOGETHER HIS HAMILTON FINN CHARACTER ALONG/WITH WHOEVER CHARACTER SHE WOULD PLAY. IT NEEDS TO HAPPEN NOW ASAP!!!!!!!!!!

Just finished rewatching the last few seasons of OLTL and damn Melissa is an amazing actress. I was happy to find this article and read her thoughts. Jared’s death really was some of her best work on this show and Jared/Natalie was definitely missed. I love seeing relationships in soaps that are built on so much love and trust and free of ridiculous internal drama. They always had each other’s backs and supported each other and it was surprisingly realistic for a soap romance.

Interviews

The Bold and the Beautiful’s Kimberlin Brown Teases to Fans: “There’s Something Coming Up, But It’s Not What They Think”

Sheila Carter (Kimberlin Brown) is now a married lady! Yup, after a small, very small intimate ceremony she married Deacon Sharpe (Sean Kanan) on recent episodes of The Bold and the Beautiful.

Deacon’s daughter Hope (Annika Noelle) showed up for the nuptial to support her father, but Sheila’s son, Finn (Tanner Novlan) happened by Il Giardino, to pick up some food only to stumble upon his mother’s wedding, causing more trouble in his marriage to Steffy (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood).

All of this, after Deacon figured out that Sheila didn’t really die at the hands and butcher knife of Steffy, back in February of this year, but it was really her lookalike Sugar who had plastic surgery to look like Sheila many years ago ( one of Sheila’s more heinous acts) who was killed. Thus, setting the stage for Sheila’s return.

Photo: JPI

Kimberlin Brown visited You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel for an exclusive livestream one-one-one chat where a myriad of “Sheila-esque” subjects were discussed.  Here are a few of the more intriguing excerpts below.

After Kimberlin was informed she was exiting the show, did she have any idea, if or how, they were going to bring her back via the Sugar connection? Brown shared “I didn’t. As a matter of fact, when Brad Bell (executive producer and head writer B&B) called me asking if I would come back to the show, I said, ‘Well, how are you gonna pull this one off?’ And he goes, ‘we’re researching it right now.’ So, I guess that’s where their research took them to Sugar, and Sugar was on The Bold and the Beautiful at one time with me as well. Remember, when we had all of the Forrester boys, and we were holding them against their will and and at the foundry? Robin Mattson played that part brilliantly, and then back on The Young and the Restless is when she ‘unfortunately’ had the surgery to look like Sheila, unbeknownst to her.”

Photo: JPI

With Sheila being married to Deacon, does she think it will last more than a month, before her vendetta streak against others takes major hold of her? Kimberlin weighed-in, “I think for the first time in Sheila’s history, she has found a man who truly does love her. And yes, she does love him. Sheila desperately loved Eric Forrester too, but there were too many people around her that would never allow that to happen. And even though there are people around Deacon that prefer that this doesn’t happen, he’s actually stood up to them and said, ‘No, this is who I want to be with. She makes me happy. There are a lot of things that  make me a little crazy, but I go crazier when she’s not there’.  Sheila has finally found true love, I believe, and it’ll be interesting to see if she can hold onto it, and it’ll be interesting to see if a good man in her life can truly make a difference in hers.”

Photo: JPI

Everyone has waited and hoped, that when Lauren makes cross-over appearances to B&B she will bump into Sheila, but still years later that has never happened. Brown feels it’s just a matter of time, sharing, “I believe that they will cross paths one day. It’d be too good to not have that happen. Tracey Bregman and I, really did create something fabulous together. It was at the time, villain against really not a good girl, but a girl that never wanted what she had until Sheila wanted it. So it’s definitely a storyline that I think could resurface, there’s no doubt about it.”

Photo: JPI

Finn’s adoptive mother Li played by Naomi Matsuda may not be what she appears to be either. Might we look forward to the two moms going at it again?, Kimberlin teased, “Working with Naomi Matsuda is great. She’s fun a lot of fun to work with. But let me tell you what, Li has a mean streak. She really does. I have a feeling it may come out, or it may not, but she’s no angel herself.  She may be one calling the tea kettle black, you know?”

Photo: JPI

Fans of B&B have come up with many scenarios of where Sheila’s story is going, from an attempted murder mystery of her, to a plan to get Hope and Finn closer together to put the screws to Steffy. Kimberlin previewed, “There’s some big stuff happening on the show coming up that. I wish I could say more.  I got the script and when we were filming it, I was going, ‘Oh my gosh, this is just too good.’ There are a lot of characters involved in it. There’s something coming up, but it’s not what they (viewers) think.”

Photo: JPI

It’s clear that Finn wants to appease his wife, to stay away from Sheila, but seemingly can’t. “I mean, he definitely has Sheila in him. It is her son,” shared Brown.  But, I think it’s really difficult for him to be in that position. I believe that he wants to give Sheila an opportunity and wants to get to know her. He feels a pull towards her and being he doctor that he is, he wants to explore that and figure out why, be it good or bad. But, Steffy is just not going to allow that to happen. So for Finn to always being stuck in the middle is definitely going to cause conflict.”

Watch the full conversation with Kimberlin below.  Then let us know, based on Kimberlin’s comments, what do you think is the big story coming up on B&B she previewed? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Interviews

OLTL’s Erika Slezak Recalls Viki’s Breast Cancer Battle, Pays Tribute to Andrea Evans, and Shares Heartfelt ‘Thank You’ to Those Who Reached Out on the Passing of Her Daughter, Amanda

One of the all-time classic breast cancer storylines of the soaps was that of Viki’s on One Life to Live. Back in 2000 and into 2001, the character went through many trials and tribulations trying to face the disease, which again afforded the iconic Erika Slezak to be featured in another dramatic storyline, which at the same time helped so many female viewers.

As part of last week’s virtual event, Daytime Stands Up – A Benefit for Stand Up To Cancer – We All Have a Story, Slezak chatted with co-host Michael Fairman about her remembrances of the important storyline, the passing of her co-star, Andrea Evans (ex-Tina) to breast cancer, and took a moment to address the fans and those who reached out to her following the sudden death of her daughter, Amanda Davieback at the end of January of this year.

While Erika has still been in mourning, she took the time to be a part of the night and wanted to contribute her voice to the benefit, and we cannot thank her enough.

Photo: ABC

Speaking on how Viki dealt with her diagnosis of breast cancer, and at the time being in a relationship with a younger man, Ben (played by Mark Derwin), Erika shared, “It was a very good story to tell because Viki, who had always been strong and by herself and tough and ‘I can deal with anything’, suddenly couldn’t deal with it. She was afraid. There was the whole relationship with Ben that was going on, and she didn’t want him to be a part of it. So that was separate, and the day that Vicki checked into the hospital, the last shot was me sitting on the end of the bed, sort of my dangling my feet over it, completely alone because she didn’t want anybody else to know.”

“Ben was around in the hospital and eventually found out that she was there and wanted to be a part of her life. But she didn’t want it,” Erika added. “She couldn’t deal with it. It was a frightening thing for her because it had been caught too late to treat. She had to have a mastectomy and a reconstruction and she had never been faced with such a very personal trauma. I mean, yes, she had Niki and all the others (Viki’s alters), but this was a physical thing that she could not control. It was a very powerful story, I think.”

Photo: ABC

One of the memorable moments from the story was when Viki sang the Gloria Gaynor hit, I Will Survive. Slezak remembers, “That was at Crossroads. She was singing to herself, I Will Survive, and she was desperately trying to believe it, as we all do when we deal with something horrible.”

In tribute to her former co-star, Andrea Evans, who started on One Life to Live as a teenager in 1978 and who died in July of 2023 at 66-years-old, Erika expressed, “Andrea grew up so beautifully and she was so talented that the person that she really was, who was a a kind and loving woman, could play so many different levels of Tina. I had such admiration for her for that. It wasn’t in her nature to be Tina, but she played the hell out of it. She really did. Her first day on the show, her hair was down to the back of her knees. She was just a kid, and she grew up to be a wonderful woman.”

Courtesy/SRodriguez

Speaking emotionally about Andrea’s personal life, Erika recalled, “I think one of the proudest moments of her life is when she got her daughter Kylie, she was so happy. Audrey, Andrea’s mother, used to bring Kylie to the studio, all the way from California she would fly in. I first met Kylie when she was a year old.  I watched her slowly grow up and it was wonderful. Andrea was a fabulous mother. I never met her husband Steve. I wrote to him after she passed, and he wrote me back a very, very sweet letter. But when Andrea met Steve, it was like her life was almost complete, and then she had Kylie, and that was complete. And it is so, so sad that she died so young.”

Photo: JPI

During the conversation, Erika took a second to acknowledge all those who contacted her with their condolences, thoughts and prayers on the passing of her daughter, Amanda, sharing, “I thank all the fans and the people who have written to me. I’ve saved every single card. I’ve responded to every single person because the amount of people who reached out to me is just astonishing. I have a pile that it’s two feet high of cards and letters that people wrote to me. And I’m very, very grateful because this is the hardest thing that’s ever happened to me in my life.”

You can watch the conversation with Erika below on the replay of Daytime Stands Up – A Benefit for Stand Up to Cancer. The six-time Daytime Emmy-winner appears at the 34:17 mark in the show. Below that is a playlist of scenes from Viki’s breast cancer storyline on One Life to Live.

Now let us know, what did you think of Viki’s breast cancer storyline? Erika’s words on the late Andrea Evans and her “thank you” to all for sending their condolences to her and her family during their difficult time? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

 

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Interviews

Y&R’s Eileen Davidson Talks on Ashley’s DID Storyline, the Challenges of the Alters, and Working with Trevor St. John

The Young and the Restless two-time Daytime Emmy-winning actress, Eileen Davidson, has recently been given the ball by series executive producer and head writer, Josh Griffith to tell the ltin the latest of Ashley Abbott’s emotional struggles. This time, Ashley has splintered into multiple personalities: Ash, Mrs. Abbott, and Belle.

Given Ashley’s history (which has included several mental breakdowns), Y&R has chosen to revisit her psyche in a brand new twist in 2024 by launching a Dissociative Identify Disorder storyline. When things spiraled downward to her marriage to Tucker (Trevor St. John), and a flashback to a car crash which took her unborn baby in 2003, Ashley began to hear voices in her head and her alters began to emerge.

Speaking live on a virtual appearance on Tuesday on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel, Davidson shared her thoughts on the storyline, how she crafted Ashley’s various alters and what she thinks of her co-star, Trevor St. John.  Here’s a few key remarks from the chat below.

Photo: JPI

Eileen talked about Ashley’s overall emotional make-up, explaining, “Everybody always talks about her being so strong and so together, and they don’t like seeing her weak. I’m like, ‘Ashley’s never been as strong and together. She’s had issues from the gate out of the gate … years … forever.’  She had amnesia. She had all sorts of issues. I love her fallibility and her vulnerability.”

Taking on the different personalities is a challenge, but Davidson pointed to one, in particular, that she feels is the hardest to play, “Ash has been the most difficult one,” explained the actress. “Because I didn’t want to do anything too broad and too ‘teenagery.’  So it was just trying to be honest about somebody who’s kind of young and sees the world in a certain way and is perhaps defensive and is an angry teen.”

Photo: JPI

However, embodying Ms. Abbott was a lot easier for Davidson. “It wasn’t hard for me to figure her out,” she expressed. “It was the very first time she was introduced on paper. She’s in Tucker’s hotel room. She’s breaks in. I’m like, ‘Okay. she’s sitting in the chair and it, it says kind of like a ‘Sharon Stone-type moment.’  I felt pretty comfortable embodying that in control, kind of toying with a man. She knows how to put on vulnerability and softness to get what she wants, but is always in control. And her ugly side shows more and more as the story has been coming out.”

The newest alter to emerge was Belle. Davidson shared how much she knew of the alter before she began playing her, stating, “They gave me southern, flirtatious, likes tequila, and always looking for a guy’ and I was off to the races. It’s been really, really fun for me. I didn’t want her to sound like she’s from the South completely, because Ashley is not from the South. It’s just a persona of how Ashley thinks a southern person sounds. So, she’s not playing a southern character. She’s playing a personality that thinks she’s southern. It’s very different.”

Photo: JPI

Currently, it looks like Tucker’s life may be on the line as Ashley’s alters want to get rid of him once and for all.  Eileen explained why, revealing, “The most fascinating thing about DID and what I kept trying to inject into the performance is these alters are created to protect somebody. They all believe they’re protecting Ashley. Ms, Abbott thinks the way to protect Ashley is to kill Tucker because Tucker’s caused Ashley so much pain. So I mean, from that aspect, it’s good daytime drama.”

A lot of times in DID storylines, a very traumatic event from the childhood is revealed which caused a person to fracture into a multiple personalties. When Davidson was asked if she thinks something will come to light that the audience never knew happened to Ashley, she responded, “You would think so, right?  I mean, why not? The one thing that’s true about Ashley is that she had a traumatic childhood. Her mother abandoned her when she was very young, and then found out in her early twenties that her father wasn’t her biological father. So, who knows what happened. Whether or not they choose to explore that, I’m not sure. You have to kind of keep reinventing things to keep them interesting. I think like that stands true for characters (on a soap) as well.”

Photo: JPI

Over the years, Eileen has worked with several leading men. When asked how she feels the dynamic is working with Trevor St. John, she enthused, “I love working with Trevor. I just told him you breathe fresh air into the scenes. We work well together. We don’t really know what the other one’s going to do (in a scene), but we play off of each other. There’s a huge trust factor and that has been there from the get-go. When I first started working with Treb, I told him, ‘We got lucky.’ When you meet somebody out of the the blue and you start working together, we just had something and it just worked beautifully. I always know that when I work with Trevor, it’s going to be a terrific experience.”

Photo: JPI

Watch the full conversation with Eileen below.

Now let us know, which of Ashely’s alters do you enjoy seeing the most? Do you think something happened to Ashley as a child that we never knew about that is causing her DID? Share your theories via the comment section below.

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