I had the fabulous honor to sit between two of the classiest and funniest women ever to grace the daytime television screen, DAYS OF OUR LIVES stars Peggy McKay and Louise Sorel. Please join me to read the highlights from this illuminating and hysterically funny interview. And press here to watch the complete video.
We Love Soaps: For you, Louise, how have the fans been greeting you?
Louise Sorel: They waved a lot. They said, “Welcome back,” which is very nice to hear. It’s kind of taken me by surprise. Rather than saying, “What are you doing here?” I saw something on the internet, our fans are very ferocious. And I saw something, a slam, and I thought, “I don’t need to read this."
We Love Soaps: Do fans every blur the lines between fantasy and reality? Do they ever say personal things to you because of Vivian’s actions?
Louise Sorel: Nah. But it did happen to an actress I know who was hit across the face with a woman who was wearing a ring. There are certain types of characters, even if they’re mean, that people don’t want to tangle with. They’re a little uncomfortable with coming at them. And I don’t really invite that level of attack.
Peggy McCay: I had a fan in New York when I did a soap. I had 500 letters a week, and I would sit there and answer them. This girl sent me a letter and said she was having a baby and going to name it after Vanessa [Peggy’s character on LOVE OF LIFE] and would I pay for the hospital bill. I had letters at that time who believed it was real. They would warn me that so-and-so was coming [on the show].
Louise Sorel: Okay, you reminded me of something. When I was on SANTA BARBARA there was a period where [Augusta] went blind. It was very funny stuff they wrote. However, I actually got a letter from the White House, from the Reagan's, who wrote to say how sorry they were for my blindness. I was so stunned I gave it to NBC and there was a bit of a reaction from the White House, and NBC had printed it out in the papers or something. I had that for a long time, I don’t know what happened to it.
We Love Soaps: [To Peggy] What kind of reactions do you get at these events?
Peggy McCay: They’re very happy to be here for one thing. And the enthusiasm they have about it says to you that, “We’re real people out there watching this story.” Some of them came from Australia just for this! So it’s nice. I enjoy seeing them.
We Love Soaps: Do people mistake you for Caroline?
Peggy McCay: When I came on the show they gave me a dark blue crepe outfit with pleats, and a crocheted collar, and a cameo. I said to the wardrobe man, “Is that for me?” He said, “Yeah.” Oh no, that’s not me. They keep trying to make me Betty Crocker. I said, “This just isn’t good. Let me buy my own wardrobe.” And that’s what I did.
We Love Soaps: You two seem like you’re pretty good friends.
Peggy McCay: We like each other. I talked to you on the phone a couple of times. I called Drake Hogestyn, I called Deidre [Hall]. When you work so long...I really feel bad about that.
We Love Soaps: About Deidre?
Peggy McCay: Yeah. It is a big shock. Maybe they’ll do one of those things and back they come. I died and was resurrected.
We Love Soaps: Twice! One time, our friend Vivian poisoned Caroline and almost brought her to her death.
Peggy McCay: You did that to me?
Louise Sorel: Have we met?
Peggy McCay: I’m not going to talk to you anymore [laughs].
We Love Soaps: Here’s the deal. In 1993, when Vivian started playing with Chinese herbs, she brought Caroline this close to death, Vivian poisoned her. I don’t remember why. Before she went after Carly and the grave she went after Caroline.
Louise Sorel: Maybe I need Aracept...And a little Namenda to go with it. I purposely poisoned you? I would never do that.
Peggy McCay: You were running around doing nice things like that.
We Love Soaps: But she was hopped up on Chinese herbs at the time. And she buried Carly too.
Louise Sorel: I remember that, but I don’t remember poisoning you. I’m sorry!
We Love Soaps: I’m going to ask you Louise, if you could describe Peggy in five words, what would those be?
Louise Sorel: Absolutely adorable and full of love. Well, that’s six words.
We Love Soaps: How about you Peggy, to describe Louise in five words?
Peggy McCay: Chic. Elegant. And smart. Sharp. She knows humor extremely well.
We Love Soaps: DAYS is the only show to rise in ratings over this past year. Why do you think that has led to the rise this past year?
Peggy McCay: I think it’s the writers. The head writer returned to the show, the people she got to write has changed some of the quality of the show. And our new producer Gary [Tomlin] is devoted to the show. We had a very good producer [Ed Scott] from YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS and I don’t know why he’s no longer here. He was doing a good job. But I’m so happy, and Gary is wonderful.
EDITOR'S NOTE: To read my complete interview with Louise Sorel click here.
**Thank you Crystal Aminzadeh of Shine-On Media for these pictures of Damon with Peggy and Louise.
Damon L. Jacobs is a Marriage Family Therapist practicing in New York City, and the author of "Absolutely Should-less: The Secret to Living the Stress-Free Life You Deserve". He has started blogging again at www.shouldless.com..