[My friend, LuAnne Cobb, spent a weekend, going to the AMC & OLTL studios in New York City (Nov. 20) as well as attending a fan event in Staten Island (Nov. 21). Here’s her recap and photos.]

By LuAnne

My friend Linda, who I met at Super Soap Weekend a few years ago, picked me up at Newark Airport. We immediately hopped on a train into NYC and then took a cab over to the All My Children studios in hopes of seeing a few soap stars.

We saw Melissa Claire Egan (Annie) and David Canary (Adam) from a distance. After David went in, one of my favorite veterans came out with a beautiful bouquet of roses – it was Julia Barr, who played Brooke English for many years. Julia told us she was there to film scenes for the AMC 40th Anniversary Special. She graciously stopped for a quick picture, and then went on her way.

Next we saw both Chrishell Stause (Amanda) and Ricky Paull Goldin (Jake). They stopped briefly to talk to us and signed some pictures. Chrishell was absolutely beautiful, and Ricky was looking pretty good too!

Linda and I then decided to walk over to the One Life To Live studios. We stayed for awhile, and finally were rewarded when down the street came Brian Kerwin, who plays Charlie. Brian stayed to talk and take pictures for about 10 minutes. He was so pleasant, and seemed genuinely happy to talk to us. It was a good day in NYC!

The next day, Linda drove us to the Uncle Vinnie’s Comedy Club in Staten Island for an AMC Fan Event.

Four of the nicest and most attractive men from AMC then walked on stage: Vincent Irizarry (Dr. David), Michael E. Knight (Tad) , Darnell Williams (Jesse) and Ricky Paull Goldin (Jake) were welcomed with thunderous applause, screams and whistles. It was awesome to see them 10 feet away!

The first part of the event was a question and answer session. The fans asked about many things, including the upcoming move to Los Angeles.

Vincent said that he would be commuting, at least for the rest of the school year so that his children can stay in their current schools. Michael and Ricky said they were moving to L.A. and Darnell said he was going, but he’s lived in NYC all his life and it would be hard to leave the city.

We found out that Jill Larson (Opal), who is a recurring player, was also moving. The fans were in agreement that the cast should come back to NYC for fan events. The guys answered questions for over an hour, then took a short break before meeting with the VIP fans.

All four of the actors took seats at long tables, and we were able to speak to each of them for a few minutes and get our pictures taken with them. Michael took the most time with the fans, even though he was sick. But they all seemed happy to be there and gave the fans what we came for – a great time!

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By Kimi

Yesterday’s anniversary show wasn’t anywhere near what I was expecting, and that turned out to not be such a bad thing.

Interviewing the show’s characters in documentary style was a great way to not only fill in blanks on old and new characters and story lines, but also gave the show a modern feel.  It probably also enabled them to show more flashes of clips throughout the show.

There were many moments that made me tear up, like Greg’s (Laurence Lau) admission that it’s hard to return to Pine Valley due to memories of first love Jenny (Kim Delaney), and some that cracked me up, like when Nina (Taylor Miller) declared her father Palmer Cortlandt (James Mitchell) was the reason she came to Pine Valley, and ultimately the reason she left with husband Cliff (Peter Bergman).  Anybody familiar with their love story had to LOL at that one. 

“Brooke who” coming from Erica was classic!  Watching Hayley (Kelly Ripa) comfort Adam (David Canary) over Stuart’s death was long overdue.

LOVED watching reflections on the lives of Mona and Myrtle by Erica (Susan Lucci), and her thoughts on daughters Bianca (Eden Riegel) and Kendall (Alicia Minshew). 

But Erica should have also mentioned her ONLY son Josh (Colin Egglesfield) during the “Loss” segment. 

I found the focus on baby Gabrielle strange considering how she was conceived.  I doubt Kendall would appreciate her sister predicting Gabby will be the strongest Kane woman of them all.

LOVED the quickie wedding flashbacks, ALL of them, along with all the Hubbard flashbacks.

Glad we got to see Hayley onscreen with her brother and chatting with Amanda (Chrishell Stause) during her interview.  Wanted more flashbacks of the Dillon clan though.

Ryan’s (Cameron Mathison) interview was a nice subtle segue way into Greenlee’s (Rebecca Budig) imminent return.  And it was great to finally hear straight from a Santos how much Julia (Sydney Penny) meant to them – but Edmond (John Callahan) doesn’t even rate an honorable mention by soul mate Maria?  Huh? 

Understandably, David (Vincent Irizarry) mentioned losing Babe, but not brother Leo (Josh Duhamel)?  No flashbacks either?  If nothing else why not at least try to capitalize on Duhamel’s current popularity.  Duh!

LOVED Brooke (Julia Barr) and Opal’s (Jill Larson) recollection of daughters Laura and Jenny, but how could Brooke not lovingly recollect Aunt Phoebe (Ruth Warrick) as well? 

Jacob Young is such an awesome actor, he made me feel JR’s pain all over again – but no mention of mom Dixie?  And Joe (Ray MacDonnell) and Ruth (Lee Meriwether) could’ve mentioned Grandma Kate, Philip and Tara.

My gripes?  Not enough homage paid to older story lines that got the show to the forty year mark.  I know Charles Pratt wrote these episodes and either he lacked knowledge of AMC history or intentionally highlighted his story lines and characters.  Or both.

Also, I thought Kendall and Zach (Thorsten Kaye) had already left town?

It was strange not seeing some originals like Alexa Havins (in my opinion, Babe’s most memorable story lines occurred during her run) and particularly, Marcy Walker’s Liza.  She played such a huge part in AMC history, its a shame that fans didn’t get to relive any of that via flashbacks or dialogue.

But it was the vets, some of whom aren’t even on the canvas, that really made me long for those two full episodes even more.  Nevertheless, this was a unique way to present forty years of All My Children history, and although there were holes, I enjoyed it.  Did you?

By Kimi

Just read the great news that Chrishell Stause (Amanda Martin) agreed to remain in Pine Valley on a recurring basis.  I was hoping for this since All My Children is moving to California soon. 

Once Thorsten Kaye (Zach) leaves (or rather, when AMC leaves Kaye behind in NYC) there will be a hard-to-fill hole where Zach and Kendall (Alicia Minshew) used to be. 

Thorsten Kaye as Zach Slater (ABC/Steve Fenn)

Thorsten Kaye as Zach Slater (ABC/Steve Fenn)

Now before Zendall fans start cussing me out, I’m not saying Amanda/Jake (Ricky Paull Goldin) will completely fill that void.  But since I care about this couple, for this fan it will help soften the blow.

I am also looking forward to Walt Willey’s (Jackson Montgomery) return.  It would’ve been dead wrong (no pun intended) to bring Greenlee (Rebecca Budig) back without her father.

Walt Willey  ABC/Yolanda Perez

Walt Willey ABC/Yolanda Perez

Hopefully, the new head writer will find a place for Jack on the canvas sans Erica Kane (Susan Lucci).  Its been a long time since I felt Erica deserved Jackson anyway, and she’s pretty much emasculated him as it is. 

I say bring back Brooke English (Julia Barr) permanently after the 40th Anniversary show, and hook Jack up with her.  That in itself would drive Erica crazy, especially if (when?) Ryan (Cameron Mathison) reunites with Greens (blech!)

Julia Barr

Julia Barr

I’ve also heard rumblings that Greg Vaughan (ex-Lucky Spencer, GH) could come to AMC as the new Jamie Martin, and that would work for me.  I felt he got a raw deal when they replaced him with Jonathan Jackson (who originated the role) on General Hospital.  But I am partial to Justin Bruening since he’s so easy to look at (and already in California), so maybe AMC can lure him back.  Too bad they killed off Babe (originated by Bruening’s wife, Alexa Havins).  Hey!  Maybe Krystal had triplets? 🙂

Don’t forget to check out The View this Friday (Dec. 11) as they “Celebrate All My Children” for an entire episode before the big move West!  Scheduled to appear are: AMC creator Agnes Nixon, Susan Lucci, Debbi Morgan (Angie), Michael E. Knight (Tad), Cameron Mathison, Rebecca Budig, Vincent Irizarry (David) and a surprise guest.