DC #292: Victoria Rowell Interview, So Hot It Couldn’t Wait For the 300th Episode


(Editor’s Note: This episode of Daytime Confidential featuring Victoria Rowell [ex-Drucilla Winters, The Young and the Restless] was set to air as our special 300th episode however, after completing the interview, we realized we couldn’t sit on it. Download it now to find out why!)

From her unforgettable debut in 1990 as Drucilla Barber, the street smart niece of Mamie the Abbott maid on The Young and the Restless, through today as a world-recognized advocate for foster children and a New York Times Best Selling author, few actresses in the history of daytime television have made the kind of impact of Victoria Rowell. Who better then than Rowell to help Daytime Confidential celebrate our 300th episode?

Rowell speaks to Luke and Jamey from Atlanta, GA, where she is busy doing press for her hugely successful memoir The Women Who Raised Me, as well as writing her juicy first novel–Secrets of a Soap Opera Diva.

Rowell talks about the experience of being out on the road for the past 17 months "pressing flesh" with the droves of fans who have adored watching her on the big (Distinguished Gentlemen, Eve’s Bayou) and small screen (Y&R, Diagnosis Murder) for the past 25 years.

She talks passionately about her work with foster children via the foundation she started almost 20 years ago, the Rowell Foster Children’s Positive Plan (RFCPP). She elaborates on how her other passion, ballet, helped her carve a niche for herself in the world as a 17-year-old girl, fresh from the foster care system and why the RFCPP strongly utilizes the arts to teach its students discipline.

Rowell then provides a revealing and sometimes shocking glimpse into her time on The Young and the Restless, where she rose to fame as the insurmountable Dru. She remembers how it felt to work with the legendary Bill Bell, whom she shares she was as "thick as thieves" with. She tells how the daytime pioneer allowed her to help shape many storylines for the Barber-Winters family over the years, including Dru’s ballet storyline, the Congressionally-recognized foster care storyline which helped win Bryton McClure (Devon) the Emmy, and how that spirit of collaboration and trust died with Bell.

She reveals how it feels to have never won the Emmy herself (she was nominated twice and boasts 11 NAACP Image Awards) and why she feels a "gang mentality" exists among much of the cast of daytime’s number one show in terms of Emmy voting. She tells how on set popularity is measured above actual talent when it comes to making the all-important list of pre-nominees.

Rowell goes on to respond to remarks made by former Y&R costar Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott) in an interview with TV Guide Canada’s Nelson Branco. Rowell reveals just why she feels Bergman is absolutely right, she wasn’t "playing with a full deck", but, not in terms of her sanity, in terms of onset equality.

She talks about what it was like working opposite Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Newman) and why an onset violation resulted in Sony Pictures Studios (which co-owns the CBS soap with Bell Dramatic Serial Company) having to get involved to facilitate an apology.

She answers a Daytime Confidential reader’s question about why Lily (Christel Khalil) doesn’t seem to have her mother’s spirit and responds to questions about when and if she will ever return to Y&R. It’s only fitting that this, our 300th episode, is Daytime Confidential’s most revealing, poignant, jaw-dropping, interview ever.

To register for the Sail The High Seas with Victoria Rowell Cruise, visit Advantage International or call 877-238-6843 to speak with Gene or Ja-Vonne Harley. The Sail The High Seas with Victoria Rowell Cruise takes place May 3 – 10, 2009.

Visit these Victoria Rowell related links:
Victoria Rowell Official Website l Rowell Foster Children’s Positive Plan l Advantage International

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58 Responses

  1. Profile photo of Jillian Bowe
    Jillian Bowe

    BRAVA!!! BRAVA!!! God I loved that interview and I came back at the right time. I do wish I was able to submit questions to her but it was GREAT! What a classy lady. I would’ve LOVED to see a Victor/Dru storyline romantic or otherwise. It would’ve been GREAT! Victor couldn’t pull the mess he did now on her!

  2. Profile photo of daisyclover1938
    daisyclover1938

    Great Interview!! WOW – I’ve always appreciated Ms. Rowell as an actress, and it sounds like she’s a pretty spectacular woman!! I love her honesty! She’s confident, talented, intelligent, and gorgeous! She’s a great role model for everyone :)

    **and it was a thrill hearing you guys ask my question :)

    ***good luck trying to top this for your 400th episode :)

  3. Profile photo of soapjunkie88
    soapjunkie88

    Wow, I was speechless about what she had to say about Michelle Stafford. That’s really disgusting! And Ms. Rowell is right, when she tells that this has nothing to do with acting.

    Thank you guys so much for the interview for her. It was really great! And I’m so glad you guys couldn’t wait … because I think we couldn’t either. =)

    And even it’s originally the 292. Episode … we take it as the big 300 (!!!) So congratulations!

    In the end I only will say that I hope Sony, Maria Arena Bell, Hogan Sheffer or somebody wakes up and begs this brilliant actress to come back.

  4. Profile photo of Chrystie-Delancey
    Chrystie-Delancey

    I’m just as stunned as the rest of you! Wow! Great interview. Thanks for sharing!

    Her words about Peter Bergman bring it full circle for me. I remember when Victoria and Peter and others from Y&R were on Soapnet, I could just sense the tension between Victoria and them. While she did great work on Y&R, I bet she enjoys her life more now. Nothing worse than being in a hostile work environment.

    I had no idea that the African-American actors were treated differently as far as hair/makeup/wardrobe went – that is just unacceptable.

    Great words about Eric Braeden. I really like him. I like how he is German but yet he tries to reach out to Jews (I read it on a health magazine and I am sorry I am not wording this very well at all).

  5. Profile photo of Dax
    Dax

    Excellent interview… But, I can’t help but worry that this interview is going to prevent the powers that be at YR from inviting her back. Very brave, though!

    I would love to see her back as Dru!

  6. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    I love Victoria Rowell candor. I glad she is honest about the industry in a whole about African-Americans in soaps and entertainment. I didn’t know about Peter Bergman thoughts about VR. I think I may don’t like Jack anymore. I would be very piss if someone spit on me. I glad she did work on the scenes though. I hope that she come back to Y&R or another soap like OLTL or GH.

    siomonstuart2003

  7. Profile photo of Jorpa
    Jorpa

    I posted this on the TFO forums:

    LOVED the interview! Great show guys! Jaw dropping to say the least…

    I can’t believe VR dissed Christel Khalil like she did. She never mentioned her name while raving about Davetta Sherwood. Come to think of it, she never did answer the question about how Drucilla would’ve handled the Lily/Chloe situation. As much as I love Michelle Stafford and Peter Bergman, my views of them are changed. I’ll never look at them the same. Especially Michelle. That was just downright rude of her the way she handled the spitting. Right now I want her to come back just for the bitch slapping of PB. LOL

    I will be looking for her books.

  8. Profile photo of Melodie
    Melodie

    LOVED THIS PODCAST!!! As much as I loved and respected Victoria before, I love her even more now! I, like the rest of y’all, couldn’t believe what happened with Michelle Stafford! That was a real shock! What happened was truly dis-re-Damn-spectful! There really nothing else to say. I had heard things about Peter Bergman before so that wasn’t quite the shock as Michelle was.

    What I loved the most about this interview was hearing Victoria talk about the backstage element of the storylines. I LOVE how she understands the fans! She really understands what many of us say all the time. It kinda felt like she was inside my mind when she was talking about that! Great Podcast Y’all!

  9. Profile photo of DramaFanatic
    DramaFanatic

    I found the interview highly unprofessional of Rowell. I mean calling Bergman a schizophrenic and poking fun at Christel Khalil? Give me a break. What does she have to gain by saying all of this?

    Also, Y&R did not hit #1 when she joined, nor did it hit #1 when Bergman joined. The show was #1 before both of them joined. She seems really driven by her ego.

  10. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    I don’t believe it is ego, but she is being honest about how she was treated on the show. I do like Christel Khalil, but the show writes her like a “white girl” and a black sista wont talk like that or let people run over her. I do believe that if Kim Zimmer is outspoken, it is ok, but if a African-American actress, who is great by the way, speaks out about the treatment and dismally of her character and her is wrong. I do agree that the industry is racist or old school and needs to evaluated about diversity in the industry and the treatment of AAS. I believe that AA is responsible for Y&R being number one in the ratings for over 18 years in the roll and we, as fans, not be treated fairly included in the industry is atrocious. I love Victoria Rowell and love her honesty and wish her the best and they need to bring her back or another soap, pick her up.

    siomonstuart2003

  11. Profile photo of YandRviewer
    YandRviewer

    I’m sure my opinion wont be popular but I listened to the podcast and I had mixed reviews. I definitely enjoy Victoria rowell (VR) as an actress and enjoyed her interpretation of Dru. However, there is always more then one side to a story and I was reminded of that loud and clear in this interview.

    I thought it was interesting that VR was talking about her ups and downs with some of the actors and racial overtones she experienced on the show. Yet IMO she was just as guilty of perpetuating the same racial overtones and bias when she was asked the question about Christel Khalil’s portrayal of Lily in response to the Chloe sl. It was obvious that she preferred Davetta Sherwood (which is her opinion) but to actually take a jab at Christel Khalil (CK) with the “valley girl comment” and not even answer the question presented to her made me think to myself “how is that better then the treatment you complained about on Y&R”? Especially since she said that she saw herself as an advocate for the black actors on the show. It was a stereotypical comment in that being “a black female” you should act more like the character Dru. However, we all know that all different types of experiences shape the person you become, there isn’t just one way to portray a “black female”. I lost a lot of respect for VR in this interview only because more then half of her interview she was talking about how she was a voice for the black actors on the show and then she completely dissed Christel Khalil a younger actress in this business. I have never been one who looks kindly on people putting their own down. VR could have definitely handled this more professionally and the sad part was she didn’t even answer the question which was about Lily the character not CK.

    CK acts out what the writers have written. CK has even said in interviews that she would like for Lily to have more of an edge especially in this sl. However, I think its stereotypical that Lily should be a mini Dru. I like that Lily is not a cookie cutter of Dru but I also would love to see the writers give Lily more edge when needed. However, that’s in the hands of the writers not CK. We know CK doesn’t dictate the script. I think that VR is an accomplished woman and I wouldn’t belittle any of her success but I didn’t think her comments were any better then the mistreatment she experienced while on Y&R.

  12. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    hEY, FRAMADANATIC. I TOTALLY AGREE THAT SHE SPOKEN THE TRUTH ABOUT WHAT HAPPEN TO HER. I GLAD SHE WAS HONEST ABOUT DAYTIME AND LOOK AT THE RATINGS. i LOVE VR AND HOPE TO SEE HER ON THE SCREEN SOON.

    siomonstuart2003

  13. Profile photo of daisyclover1938
    daisyclover1938

    I didn’t think VR’s comments about the character of Lily were a big deal. She made it clear that she preferred Davetta Sherwood’s interpretation of the role & she felt that what DS brought to the role (through her own personal experiences) gave more depth to her performances compared to what CK brings to the role (at least that’s how I interpreted her comments.) Not only is VR entitled to her opinion, but what she said mirrors what a lot of fans have felt when comparing the two Lily’s.

    As for VR pointing out PB’s schizophrenic behavior… Considering the fact that he made derogatory comments about her to the press, I think her response was appropriate. What he said was unprofessional and no doubt hurtful, and she deserved a chance to respond.

    JMO

  14. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    I AGREE DAISYCLOVER1938. I THINK THAT CK VERSION IS A LITTLE BLAND AND DS WAS A FIREBALL OF LILY. i LIKE CK, BUT I WISH THE WRITERS WOULD GIVE LILY AN EDGE THAT IS NOT THERE NOW. I THINK SHE WAS SAYING WHAT MANY FANS WAS SAYING AND WAS NOT DISSING CK, BUT SAYING THAT LILY SHE HAVE DRU’S FIRE AND BALLS. I GLAD SHE SPOKEN HER MIND ABOUT THE BEHIND THE SCENES ON “Y&R” AND JUST SPEAKING THE TRUTH. I DON’T THINK THAT SHE WOULD LIE LIKE THAT.

    siomonstuart2003

  15. Profile photo of miajere
    miajere

    ITA daisyclover- Peter bergman should be held to the same standard in his interviews.

    I remember her radio interview after she left the show being much more passionate and outspoken…

    Great interview!!

  16. Profile photo of YandRviewer
    YandRviewer

    I stated that VR is entitled to her opinion about prefering DS version of Lily. However, #1 the question she was asked (i believe) was about the character Lily and how Dru’s guidance would allow Lily to handle Chloe more forcefully not about how CK portrays the character. Secondly, those of us that would like to see Lily slap Chloe across the face or have come back lines that really shutdown Chloe down isn’t the fault of CK…if it was written we would see it. I think that VR could have handled this and other portions of her interview more professionally but this really stood out to me considering the racial overtones she experienced on Y&R. Not all black women are like the character “Dru” nor should they be represented that way on Y&R.

  17. Profile photo of daisyclover1938
    daisyclover1938

    YandRviewer, you’re right, she didn’t answer the question directly but there could be another explanation for that. Maybe she isn’t familiar with the Lily/Chloe storyline, or maybe she is familiar with it, but felt that there was an overall “Lily problem” that was a bigger issue than the Lily/Chloe stuff.

    In my opinion, it’s partially the way they write Lily and partially what CK brings to the role. The Two Lilys is similar, imo, to The Two Victorias. The roles are being written differently, but the way that the actresses interpret the roles is what makes the biggest impact (and effects the writing). I also don’t necessarily think VR was saying one portrayal is more “black” than the other, but there’s really no way of telling for sure.

    BTW, I thought VR only indirectly answered my question as well, but it’s not a big deal. That may just be her style when being interviewed. She’s going to respond to a question by discussing what she feels strongly about, even if it isn’t a point-by-point response to what was asked. She does stay on topic however…

    YandRviewer, though I disagree with you on some points, I do understand what you’re saying…

  18. Profile photo of BigDede
    BigDede

    People need to realize that Lily didn’t grow up on the streets like Dru. She was born when both her parents were rich and most likely went to school with mostly white kids. Lily didn’t have to endure any hardships growing up, everything was handed to her on a silver patter. She traveled around the world with her mother for years living the life of luxery while watching her mother on photo shoots. So yes, it should be expected that Lily would have a valley girl type accent and that she’s not as hard as Dru since she has never had to fight for anything in life.

    Even after Dru became successful, she still fought for everything because that is what she was use to doing all her life. Fighting to be ahead. You can’t compare Dru to Lily.

  19. Profile photo of Dax
    Dax

    OK. Lily shouldn’t have a valley girl accent or even talk like Dru. In reality, she was taken to Paris as a child, and didn’t come back to the states until she was in her late teens. Therefore, if she were to have an accent of any kind, it would be a French accent. Also, when Lily underwent SORAS, she was introduced as a snotty bitch with behavioral problems. She was NOT a nice girl, at all. So, since day one, I never liked either actress in the role because the backstory didn’t match the casting.

  20. Profile photo of cheesehead91182
    cheesehead91182

    I think what she said about Crystal Kahlil was on point. Lily is now the only black female character on Y&R and she talks like a valley girl and in 6 yrs on the show has only dated white men. Sure Lily doesn’t have to be exactly like Dru, however Dru would not raise her daughter to be so removed from her own race. Look at Olivia, she didn’t have Dru’s attitude, but she didnt’ talk like a valley girl and wasn’t only interested in white guys. People can say that CK is just acting out what the wrtiers wrote and I don’t buy that for one second. When Davetta Sherwood was on Lily was like Dru and then when CK returned Lily went back to being the white washed valley girl. Lily is a pathetic reprsentation of black women, the girl acts more white than the white women on the show.

  21. Profile photo of season1217
    season1217

    First, their are two sides to every story and then there’s the truth. The way Victoria Rowell spoke was more in a tone of everyone is against me and I couldn’t have possibly done anything to warrant people not liking me or commenting on my sanity. And while her comments do make me look more suspiciously at Peter Bergman and Michelle Stafford, I think that there may be more to the story. Although, you spit on me and a fight is going to happen! I’ll forgive you, in Jesus’s name but, first, I’m going to beat you like a master that just caught his runaway slave!

    Second, everyone across the board has expressed there displeasure w/ Christel Khalil’s Lily and how much many of us would like for Davetta to return. But I take issue w/ “acting black”. Black is the color of my skin. I didn’t have to pass a test in order to be qualified to be called black. Everyone speaks and acts differently and just because your a black woman doesn’t mean you walk around w/ your hand constantly on your hip and rolling your neck. Lily wouldn’t be the only character in the history of soaps who has been bland, look at the crap the character of Bridget on B&B has put up with, and just because she’s black doesn’t mean that she needs to be written as the stereotypical black and sassy character. And just because Dru is her mother doesn’t mean that she needs to act more like her, look at Erica and Bianca on AMC. Bianca would never do the stuff her mother does and she has been knocked down more than her fair share of times. The problem w/ the character of Lily of late has been the writing and not necessarily the acting, maybe if they wrote Lily w/ a backbone than we could see what Christel can and cannot do as an actress. On that matter, I’m in total agreement w/ YandRviewer, but MsT05, you made a good point, about a good actor being able to bring depth to even the most slimmest of material given them.

  22. Profile photo of Chocolate-Mama
    Chocolate-Mama

    I loved the interview. And what I loved about it is there was no B.S. here. We all knew that something had happened behind the scenes on that show in regards to VR and the rest of the cast. Now we know. Just like we knew that something happened between Eric Braden and Peter Bergman all those years ago, when they got into that fist fight. And no one has yet to explain how two professional actors such as they, just suddenly come to blows.

    Having said that, I don’t want VR going back to Y&R. I mean the work environment is just way too hostile. Michelle Stafford was not trying to improvise worth squat when she spit on VR. That’s just obvious. I don’t necessarily think PB is a completely terrible person, but I did think it was ignorant of him to make those comments that alluded to her ‘being crazy’, instead of addressing what he was actually asked, which was VR’s concerns about the Emmy nominating process.

    Not a fan of the actress the plays Lily. While I don’t think her portrayal is totally unrealistic, given the character’s background and education, I feel absolutely nothing for her. I don’t care what happens to her, really, and I just would think that I should actually care about what happens to Dru’s daughter. So something is not right there, either with the actress or the writing.

    I will say one last thing: as an African American, I find that when the writing was actually good on these programs, I didn’t care that much about the lack of characters of color. Now I guess I notice it more. But at the same time, I think that stations like BET and TVOne, have enough clout to create their own soap operas. I just don’t think you can expect White writers to know, or care to write, for people of color at all, or at least properly. And I don’t think actors of color should wait around for them to do so. There’s enough clout out there to make their own programming. That’s really the lesson I got out this interview.

  23. Profile photo of season1217
    season1217

    Victoria Rowell has just done the impossible. She has turned me from a Jack fan into a Victor fan! Quick, someone look out the nearest window and tell me if you saw a pig fly by! I’ll look on The New York Times website!

  24. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    I am still a fan of Michelle Stafford and Peter Bergman and Victoria Rowell. I feel that VR was not treated fairly on the show and needs to be rectified. I feel that CK is being played as a “white girl”. I love Ck, but I do believe that writers don’t know how to write for her. I glad that VR spoke the truth and Y&R is number one because of African-Americans viewers. To disregard us as we are nothing is short of pissing off half your viewers who watch Y&R for years. I believe that she feels she was treated unfairly and if a she said her piece. I hope that she comes back or be on other soap.

    siomonstuart2003

  25. Profile photo of PrettyAsAPicture
    PrettyAsAPicture

    My first DC podcast. Great interview – very insightful questions and VR showed the interviewers and the listeners the respect to answer the questions thoughtfully and truthfully. Excellent all the way around!

    I bought and read VR’s book The Women Who Raised Me (it is a very well-written and informative book – I highly recommend it). I’m so looking forward to reading her other books, especially Secrets of a Soap Opera Diva.

    On the issue of the representation of AA women on soaps and in media in general, I have to say that I’m an AA woman who is closer to TLW’s Olivia – minus the sex with the sister’s and friend’s hubbies :) – than to either VR’s Dru or CK’s Lily. There is no one type of AA woman, so the fact that CK’s Lily isn’t as much like Dru as some would like doesn’t at all negate her representation as an AA woman, in my opinion.

    There are AA women who are like Dru, both versions of Lily, Yolanda, Tyra, Olivia, etc. No one of them is more or less AA than the other, just different.

  26. Profile photo of daisyclover1938
    daisyclover1938

    Victoria Rowell has just done the impossible. She has turned me from a Jack fan into a Victor fan! Quick, someone look out the nearest window and tell me if you saw a pig fly by! I’ll look on The New York Times website!

    Photobucket Image Hosting

  27. Profile photo of
    Equarter

    First and foremost, kudos to Jamey and Luke for, what is in my opinion, the hottest episode of DC ever. It’s rare for an actor of Victoria Rowell’s caliber to be so candid and real about her professional experience. It was an interesting look into an African American view of life behind the soap opera scenes.

    It’s always been known that she tirelessly tried her best to do good things for the show, but I could see how her aggressiveness could be misconstrued to look like she was after her own agenda to some. Her being very vocal to writers and producers could have caused bad blood with her co-workers. I admire her for taking the bull by the horns because in many cases it made Y&R the powerhouse. Say what you will about her supposed arrogance and ego but when the black characters started disappearing so did a lot of the audience.

    Her preference for Davetta Sherwood is no surprise and she made a good point that she doesn’t fit the mold of a child DRUCILLA would raise and that is why for a lot of the viewers the character is so dull and listless. Not to say that Christel Khalil isn’t a talent or should I say budding talent, It’s she doesn’t fit well with the character she’s portraying and the writing reflects what the writers are comfortable writing, a wish washy character. It’s the same lame treatment that Victoria Newman is now going through. Where is the strenght that used to reside in that character? Is this the same character that dared to slap her father? Hell No!

    I also wanted to touch the topic of her writing for the show. No show other than I think General Hospital has ever had a truly impactful black writer on staff. If I’m wrong please let me know. Seein the fact that Y&R is always heralded as the forerunner of bold progressiveness it seems disingenuous that at least trying her out as a writer would be out of the question. Meg Bennett, Jim Houghton are both actors now writers of Y&R, in fact, Meg Bennett played Victor Newman’s first wife Julia. If not in front of the camera at least bring Victoria’s passion to the writing team.

    As far with her comments about Peter Bergman, did she go to far? Maybe, but considering there are hurt feelings for a man she probably respected til that point, I think she was right to speak her mind on his public comments. Especially considering the fact that her experience and his are definitely not similar. She MADE that character pop Peter slipped into a role already worn and molded. Her comments about the rift with Michelle Stafford on the other hand was a bit much. As much as that was shocking and great exclusive for the podcast and fodder for me as a listener, It really signalled that as much as she protests that she wants to go back to Y&R, she in effect closed the door on her returning. It was not the best decision For Michelle Stafford to spit on another actress without her knowledge but showing Michelle’s ass to the public was uncalled for especially after she made that point that she wanted to continue the throughline of the story.

    I do believe that Peter Bergman and Eric Breaden can attest to the fact that things can get out of hand when the work spills over into real life. I just believe that she could have said but no say everything. It just dashed my hopes she’d come back.

    As for Drucilla being replaced, it happened once before. Kent Masters King did attempt to do the job but she fell flat. I do believe that C.K. and K.M.K. could have been a better match for mother and daughter but as different characters.

    Once again great interview. It was the highlight of my week. If this doesn’t get covered by the soap rags they will truly be O.O.T. (out of touch). D.C. has proven to be a force to be reckoned with, and, as far as soap power lists I think you’ll be shooting up that list real soon.

    Congrats
    Equarter

  28. Profile photo of ladyofthelake
    ladyofthelake

    I’m a fan of the actress and I like her work. I just don’t know what to make of this interview. She made some really good points, but other times it seemed she had an ego the size of six countries. I don’t think she’ll ever be on Y&R again. I think that door closed for good.

  29. Profile photo of dsrbroadway
    dsrbroadway

    So are there any outtakes where she reveals that she poops rainbows? I just wanted to check…

    While she has some good points that I’m sure are valid, I would love to know if Stafford and Bergman were given the opportunity to respond to her comments. While there’s no denying her talent and her popularity, there’s something to be said for an attitude that, at least in my mind, reeks of “could do no wrong” and “the whole world is against me”.

    I also wonder why she hasn’t clued herself into the fact that any award is equal parts material and self-promotion. Is it right? No. But that’s the way it is – it’s showbiz, Victoria. Buy some damned doughnuts, would it kill you?

  30. Profile photo of dtmh
    dtmh

    I could be wrong but isn’t CKLilly, Indian and not African-American. I could be wrong but I think I read that somewhere, so by dissing her a little in my eyes doesn’t contradict any of her comments related to race on the show. I do remember when the character was younger and had much darker skin, so it’s kind of like they wanted to whiten her when she returned and turned her into that Valley girl. So alot of the comments by VR actually make alot of sense now. First, I’m sure she’s a huge drama queen on the set but I’ve read of alot of actors either on Y&R or other shows for that matter who are as well so that can’t be the reason she’s not returning. I’m thinking it’s the actors who are opposed to her return are drama queen antics to keep her off of it.

  31. Profile photo of KingTV
    KingTV

    All I can say is F***ING WOW!!! This is one helluva great, juicy, funny, cool, entertaining, smart interview. Thank you Jamey and Luke for asking the questions we have all wanted to ask and for being as speechless as I was at some of her answers ( especially about Michelle Stafford, Peter Bregman and her entire experience at Y&R). It was truly eye-opening for me. I know that there are behind the scenes tensions and drama at all the soap operas and always has been (remember when Peter and Eric Braedon had a physical brawl on the set many years ago) but she really let us in on the inside workings of producing a soap opera. Ms. Rowell is a highly intelligent, well-spoken, eloquent speaker and she answered the questions with such detail and heart-felt passion. I was blown away by the 2 stories involving Stafford and Bregman. Having met both actors in real life and loving both of their characters, I was a bit dismayed at what Victoria was letting us know. I could hear Jamey and Luke’s jaws drop to the floor as mine did too. Also, her foster care work and her seemingly endless book tour show such respect and care for her causes in life. Her purpose in life is so much more far-reaching then just being an actress on a soap opera (not that there is anything wrong with that success). Also, I did not know how involved she was with her initial story line of Drucilla coming on a street urchin a la Eliza Doolittle and turning her life around through ballet. The fact that Bill bell trusted her to help create that s/l and the Devon foster care s/l, as well as write her ballet dialogue, help cast roles for that story and coreograph her own pieces is far beyond what is expected from an actor and not often asked. She really must have had Mr. Bell’s respect. She also validated what I think all fans feel, that Davetta Sherwood played the role of “Lily” so freaking well. She WAS Drucilla’s daughter and was delightful to watch, especially during her finding out that Malcom was her biological father. She also conveyed Drucilla’s intelligence, spunk, sass and personality with so much more depth and recognition then the current actress does. I do not want to disparage the current actress’s talent but she is no Drucilla. And how hilarious was Ms. Rowell’s comments on Neil’s 2 bedroom apartment when he is supposed to be an extremely well-compensated executive at Newman Enterprises. All in all, this was the best interview yet on DC and a fitting, incredible way to celebrate the 300th (unofficially) podcast. Great job!!

  32. Profile photo of siomonstuart2003
    siomonstuart2003

    Hey, Jamey, great interview. I was surprised about her candor of her time on Y&R and refreshing to speak honesty about what happen there. I don’t fault her for speaking her mind and saying what we all wanted to say, but couldn’t. I still love VR and the fact that she was honest about the situation without being smart is great. I wish her well on my endeavors and hope you get more interviews in the future.

    siomonstuart2003

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    silentsophi

    It won’t play..how do i get it to play. Y&R is so overrated! She should try days of our lives! I’m black and dang it I love my soaps and anytime they have a black or hell hispanic, chinese, middle eastern woman on the show even as an extra..I am so happy. Soaps don’t really represent the population well. Well maybe they do… in college i met girls from extrememly small country town in America with a black or multicutural population of 1 or 2.

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    Luke Kerr

    Update: In case you tried listening to the episode using the steaming icon here on Daytime Confidential there was an error with the streaming service provider that took it down for two days. You can now stream the episode again.

  35. Profile photo of Peachlollipop
    Peachlollipop

    I love Victoria Rowell and her portrayal of the character Drucilla. A few times her portrayal was a little over the top but this is indicative of soap characters/actors. I’ve caught Victor, Jill, Chloe and certainly Gloria do it. And some of the time our favorites border on brilliance like Drucilla, Kay, and Michael. With that said why is it others can speak their mind and some can’t?

    This woman has been on the big screen, the little screen (daytime and night time), she’s a writer, a dancer, the head of a charity, a mother, a wife and an award winner. So is she bitter about Y&R, or are the naysayers bitter about her achievements? I say it’s the naysayers who are bitter otherwise they would give the people what they want and hire Victoria back. Is she sporting a huge ego or is she rightfully confident? I say confident. Too often women of any color, but particulary Black women and older women have to TOOT their own horn to be appreciated. Trust me I’ve been there. She is deserving due to her accomplishments. I don’t see anyone disparaging the huge White male egos on Y&R (read Eric and Peter). I betcha nobody messes with them and they got into a physical altercation, probably one of the most unprofessional moves an employee can make but they’re still there and riding hide. If Victoria and Michele had gotten into a physical fight over the spitting thing I wonder what would have happened? You gotta wonder, why would Michele think something like that would be OK? Phyllis hated Christine, tried to kill her, but Michele never thought to spit in her face………….things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmm?

    Christal Khalil is not a good actress and Davetta Sherwood was only slightly better. Christal left to pursue a different career (I think it was medicine, can’t remember) and Davetta replaced her. Maybe Christal’s career change did not work out and she wanted to come back. I believe that Y&R replaced Davetta with Christal because of aesthetic (read tall, light skinned) reasons, and of course Christal had more time with the show.

    Our accents come from where we were raised/born, but our personalities, mannerisms, coloquialisms, beliefs and our very souls come from our parents, no matter what color you are, rich or poor, educated or not. Drucilla raised Lily practically by herself in Europe for about 10 years (in soap time). They left Wisconsin when Lily was like, five? So why the hell does she talk like a Valley Girl? Lily and Daniel were on the run in California for like what….2 minutes? So why the California accent? A good actress would get rid of that to play the part of Drucilla’s daughter. I think we can all agree that Drucilla is a formidable, strong, take no prisoners Black woman and would subsequently raise her daughter as such. So why is “Lily livered” Lily allowing the likes of Chloe to steal her man? This is what African American viewers are critisizing as is Victoria Rowell. Women of any color hate to admit this, but most of us grow up to be just like our mothers or at the very least a close facilime thereof. Davetta came closest to playing what Drucilla’s daughter would be like. The actress who is now playing Randi on All My Children would have satisfied Y&R and African American fans: (1) she’s light-skinned, blued eyed, tall and thin (2) she plays a not to be messed with character and (3) she’s a good actress.

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    busymama

    Wow! Seems like every article or interview I read/watch with VR, she is more and more egotistical. How many times does she say “I or ME” in this interview? It’s a well known fact she has never been a team player. Why would they want her back on the set? Sounds like she has burned a lot of bridges. I wish her much success and happiness, but shut up already LOL.

  37. Profile photo of alstonboy4315
    alstonboy4315

    Victoria Rowell has ALWAYS been my favorite Y&R actress, and she STILL is……..If the choice were to come down to the show deciding to keep Michelle Stafford and Christel Khalil on the canvas just to "keep the peace" and throwing a monkey wrench into the whole damn thing and bringing back Victoria Rowell, I would HAPPILY say goodbye to both Michelle and Christel.

    Victoria, in my opinion, has brought WAY more to the show over the years than Michelle and Christel COMBINED.

    Victoria is entitled to prefer Davetta to Christel, but I don’t. I think that Christel is a WAY better actress, and I suspect that Christel is not COMPLETELY black….and neither is Rowell, for that matter, so the whole "valley girl" comment was kinda’ tacky. Funny, but tacky. She insulted white people, and she also inadvertently insulted black people. I think that Lily speaking "valley girl" is due to the writers being out of touch with how black people speak and articulate themselves.  I agree that growing up around Malcolm and Dru, Lily should be a little bit more "urban", but I also feel that expecting black people to talk  "different" from everyone else is just another racial stereotype that has held us down—YES, I am BLACK— for DECADES!!!!

    Concerning Peter Bergman, I do get the feeling that he is just completely out of touch with reality. In his world, I am sure that everything is perfect. It must be nice to be able to live that reality, but out here in the real world, there is inequality, suffering and hardship….Maybe he doesn’t TRULY understand that because he has always lived such a charmed life.

    I haven’t read her books, but I will certainly write the brass at Y&R and ask them to reconsider their decision to keep Victoria–and Dru–off the canvas, because I feel that this decision is stupid. The show needs someone like her right now to keep Lily, Cane, Malcolm and Neil in their places, and I HATE the idea of Neil and Ashley becoming a couple. BLEECH!!!!

  38. Profile photo of alstonboy4315
    alstonboy4315

    And, concerning Victoria having never won an Emmy, I think that the DID deserve one, all THREE times she was nominated. However, winning an Emmy is based on MANY different variables. Sometimes, other actors just have stronger material.  It is not an ENTITLEMENT for anyone, no matter how talented they are, to win an Emmy. Look how long it took for Jeanne Cooper, Stuart Damon, and Eric Braeden to win their Emmys. I am sure that if Rowell had stuck around longer and been more charming, she would have EASILY gotten one EVENTUALLY. I think it has very little to do with her decision not to bring in doughnuts!!!! However, I feel her chances of ever winning one for Y&R are easily shot to hell now!!!

    I do feel that Victoria may have been a little bit too "outspoken" for her own good, and she may have rubbed people the wrong way.

    I also feel that asking the show if she could write for it could have EASILY come across as condescending and insulting to Lynn Latham and the other writers and producers. If I were a writer, I wouldn’t want someone coming along and essentially TELLING me that I don’t know how to do my job. I didn’t like Lynn Latham’s writing, but I also feel that sometimes actors need to let writers write, and writers need to let actors ACT without trying to step on their toes. />

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    MsT05

    Completely agree. People can insist that actors can only act what’s on a page but the reality is great actors create layers and depth to the material they are given – whatever it may be. While I like both CK and DS for different reasons, CK is on now and i’ve seen moments where a truly skilled actor would have given the material weight and she didn’t.

  40. Profile photo of MsT05
    MsT05

    Season1217, if I ever stop laughing at your runaway slave comment, I will agree with there being another side. Like I cannot say that I think MS’s issue is race, I think she just doesnt like VR.

    And, I agree Lily doesn’t have to be a mini-dru and as of now, writing, is the biggest problem with CKLily. Because I have seen CK grow and she’s added some depth to some scenes- just not consistently. Either way, the potential is there.

  41. Profile photo of acura222002
    acura222002

    KingTV you are right!!

    And how hilarious was Ms. Rowell’s comments on Neil’s 2 bedroom apartment when he is supposed to be an extremely well-compensated executive at Newman Enterprises.

    There is no way that an executive of any kind of company is going to live in an apartment with that “crappy” looking furniture!!! That is so ridiculous!!!! :jawdrop:

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