DC’s Top 10 Male Entertainers of 2011


No. 10:  Scott Clifton, The Bold and the Beautiful

Our fondness of Scott Clifton goes all the way back to his debut role in daytime as Dillon Quartermaine on General Hospital. We enjoyed his performance as Schuyler Joplin on One Life to Live, but wish the character hadn’t ended up in such a state of disarray. When he arrived at The Bold and the Beautiful in 2010, Clifton quickly established Liam as one of B&B’s must watch next generation.

However, it was in 2011 that Clifton’s Liam was really front and center. Whether being told lies by Amber (Adrienne Frantz), falling head over heels in love with Hope (Kim Matula) or manipulated into marriage by Steffy (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood), Liam was one in-demand man.  While we didn’t buy Liam’s turn-on-a-dime willingness to abandon Hope in favor of Steffy, Clifton did his best to sell it to viewers. 

It wasn’t just opposite the young adult cast that Clifton excelled.   He held his own with The Bold and the Beautiful’s heavyweights and even did some of the heavy lifting in scenes with other B&B veterans.  We can’t wait to see what 2012 holds for this talented actor.

No. 9: James Scott, Days of Our Lives

James Scott has been helping drive story on Days of Our Lives since his SORASed EJ arrived in Salem in 2006. Since then, he’s both impressed and disappointed us, as his acting choices swung like a pendulum between emotionally powerful to over-the-top. In 2011, Scott seems to have found much more of a balance. With Taylor, (Natalia Livingston) we caught a glimpse of EJ’s softer side. With Nicole, (Arianne Zucker) he conveyed EJ’s humor and passion. Not unexpectedly, Sami (Alison Sweeney)–the mother of his children–brought out both the best and worst in EJ, which was right up Scott’s alley. Delivering a convincing performance during the Fake Rafe (Galen Gering) storyline proved more challenging for Scott than Alison Sweeny. While not his best work, Scott was successful in avoiding many, but not all of the opportunities to detour into the over-the-top world, of which he's been a victim in the past. Through everything Scott still maintained EJ’s devilish bad boy persona he's perfected.

As 2012 dawns, we look forward to seeing whether-or-not Scott will be able to continue walking the fine line he balanced in 2011.

41 Responses

  1. Profile photo of Duchess
    Duchess

    So happy to see Billy Miller on the list! While I know he’s destined to go on to big things away from daytime I selfishly want him on Y&R until the end and hope that he will stay if they keep giving him outs. I was crushed when it was announced that he was leaving so I was thrilled when he ultimately re-signed with the show. He and Amelia Heinle are pure magic together and Villy is the only thing that made Y&R worth watching for me this past year. Love them!

  2. Profile photo of alstonboy4315
    alstonboy4315

    Steve Burton did produce some pretty powerful performances in 2011, but for the most part, it still seems that he’s not emotionally invested in the show that much anymore. He often seems bored, disassociated and even irritated. I saw that during the “fantasy/flashback” scenes with Stuart Damon in which Monica was imagining how life would have been had Jason become a doctor. It seems like Steve is counting down the months/years until he can retire from GH and move on with his life……

    And John Paul Lavoisier is a great guy and I enjoy his acting, but I don’t think he’s in ANY way strong enough to stand alongside the likes of Darnell Williams and Anthony Geary. He excels at comedy and can do drama in SMALL doses, but I was never completely BLOWN away by any of his performances.

    And THANK you so much for including Jonathan Jackson on this list. As I have said a thousand times before, no man can cry as beautifully and convincingly as JJ! His tears are like raindrops from heaven…..

    I agree with the rest of your choices, but feel that Darnell Williams and Anthony Geary should have been higher on the list than Jacob Young, Trevor St. John and Roger Howarth. Those two men gave some of the most gripping performances of 2011, bar none.

  3. Profile photo of ChrisGa
    ChrisGa

    Agree about JPL; he’s turned into one of my favorite actors in the last year after really stepping it up and letting go of all that mugging he relied on. I do enjoy Billy Miller despite the fact that he too does his share of mugging and I often find him a little overrated. That said, since he’s been back after the mini-hiatus I think he’s turned in his absolute best work to date. Of the others on the list, I’ve never understood the love for James Scott beyond his obvious physical attributes(which admittedly I appreciate to a great degree); I don’t watch DAYS regularly but I do tune in occasionally and his work is, as mentioned, somewhat over-the-top and a bit hammy(I have the same opinion of Daniel Goddard–gorgeous, but as someone else said, the less clothing and the less talking the better). But then again, ALOT of the acting(with the exception of Alison Sweeney, Ari Zuker, and the great Suzanne Rogers) on DAYS borders on cringeworthy at any given point in time.

  4. Profile photo of EricasEvilTwin
    EricasEvilTwin

    I guess this list shows why daytime is in big trouble. JPLs acting makes me think he has tourettes without the cuss words – all those ticks and twitches drive me crazy. Jacob Young – totally over rated. JJ – a one trick pony who does the crying thing well, but chews a ton of scenery in the process.

    Seeing them on the list with people like DW is a mockery.

    The only person that immediately comes to mind as missing is Jerry Ver Dorn. Thought he had an amazing year.

  5. Profile photo of ChrisGa
    ChrisGa

    [quote=EricasEvilTwin]I guess this list shows why daytime is in big trouble. JPLs acting makes me think he has tourettes without the cuss words – all those ticks and twitches drive me crazy. Jacob Young – totally over rated. JJ – a one trick pony who does the crying thing well, but chews a ton of scenery in the process.

    Seeing them on the list with people like DW is a mockery.

    The only person that immediately comes to mind as missing is Jerry Ver Dorn. Thought he had an amazing year.[/quote]

    Yes, you’re right Jerry Ver Dorn did deserve a spot on this list. Much like co-star Florencia Lozano, he’s been bringing it for the better part of the past two years. I never hated Clint Buchanan more than I did about a year ago. And I’ve never loved Ver Dorn’s work more than I have in the last few years.

  6. Profile photo of jphelps
    jphelps

    This shows what a bad year it has been for soaps. JJ is again overrated and Steve Burton could not even get himself up for scenes with Stuart Damon. IA Jerry Van Dorn belongs on here. I hate what they have done to Clint Buchanan but JVD is terrific. I think Don Diamont as Bill Spencer has had a good year also. I might have put Michael knight on here this year. I think he had a good year with Tads surprise romance with Cara and Dixie’s return. I also love Peter Reckell who no one ever gives kudos to but he is consistantly solid every year.

  7. Profile photo of liason4real
    liason4real

    I totally agree with TSJ and RH in the #1 spot since the Todd vs Todd story was like a car accident that you just could not help but watch!

    SBu and JJ in their story with Jake’s death left me livid that Becky Herbst aka Liz Webber was absent most of the time and Liz is the one that raised Jake on a day to day basis!

    JPL ticks and facial expression give me a headache!

  8. Profile photo of soapbaby
    soapbaby

    I completely agree with EET and jphelps. JVD is absent whereas Jacob Young and Steve Burton are present? Seriously?! JY is completely overrated and Steve Burton brought little to the table (and I normally like him.) I also would have included Mark Lawson who gave wonderful performances all year and Chandler Massey because Will is the single best character on DAYS. Although not leading men, I rather enjoyed performances by Michael Easton and Tuc Watkins. I hate Victor and Adam Newman as characters but I think Eric Braeden and Michael Muhney are very good actors.

  9. Profile photo of GH LOVER
    GH LOVER

    I think Steve Burton did wonderful work this year w.what they gave him..
    JJ does tend to over cry but no one can say he can’t act. w/Jake’s death SL he was amazing along w/Steve and Tony they really did good work even w/weak writing that dominated GH all year…

    I liked the two Todds SL both TSJ and RH did fine work w/It

  10. Profile photo of Soap_Stud
    Soap_Stud

    I applaud this list. I am thrilled Jacob Young was recognized, as well as James Scott and JP! I see these three actors as the next generation of soap stars. I love that they are in the same company as daytime legends Darnell Williams and Tony Geary.

  11. Profile photo of Virgo28
    Virgo28

    You can’t have a list of good male soap actors without Michael Muhney ( Adam Newman) from the Young and the Restless. I love him hate him and can’t get enough. he is a great actor and should be number 1.

  12. Profile photo of Kristismom
    Kristismom

    JPL annoys me, but I cannot say that I found him as bad as most people say he is. Thank God that he can at least attempt to act since his screen partners FF and the kid that plays Shane are not any better than AT (Jack). That said, he had more chemistry with Aubrey than he ever had with St. Gigi of the Lipgloss. (But maybe that is because I am an ATWT viewer and I am used to seeing TC with AP, the King of the Hammy Tics).

    Someone needs to wake SB from the coma he has been in for the last ten years. JJ needs some Prozac, and JS needs some Ritalin.

    RH is sunshine, lollipops and goodness. Too bad it is too little, too late for OLTL. : (

    Peace,

    Tiana61578

  13. Profile photo of keanna
    keanna

    I also agree with this list from top to bottom. JPL, in my opinion has improved alot in his performances. SB and JJ do great with what’s given to him. I think MEK of AMC could’ve gotten some consideration, too.

  14. Profile photo of Carol2
    Carol2

    Billy Miller is very good at making faces but I’m not sure about his being a match for Braeden and Bergman being some kind of a test – Braeden phones it in and Bergman has been weak for years. The real test for me with Miller is that I still don’t buy that he’s playing a character. Billy is just an empty vessel, as is Victoria. Not one of their stories has ever made sense and this story has repeatedly made Victoria look stupid beyond words, and totally irrelevant. Billy also has little to no connection to anyone in his family, from the Abbotts, to Jill. What we have is two adults – one of them middle-aged – who jump up and down and mug over the schemes of an old man. Fun stuff.

    “2011 was the year of John-Paul Lavoisier!”

    No wonder OLTL was canceled.

  15. Profile photo of
    matealestlmo

    Once again, the DC gang showing their overt favoritism of ABC stars while leaving CBS and NBC in the dust is too appalling to even comment on. You guys should be ashamed of yourselves.

  16. Profile photo of Carol2
    Carol2

    [quote=soapbaby]I completely agree with EET and jphelps. JVD is absent whereas Jacob Young and Steve Burton are present? Seriously?! JY is completely overrated and Steve Burton brought little to the table (and I normally like him.) I also would have included Mark Lawson who gave wonderful performances all year and Chandler Massey because Will is the single best character on DAYS. Although not leading men, I rather enjoyed performances by Michael Easton and Tuc Watkins. I hate Victor and Adam Newman as characters but I think Eric Braeden and Michael Muhney are very good actors.[/quote]

    I thought Jacob Young drastically improved when he shared scenes with Cady McClain and David Canary and Alexa Havens.

    Many of the men on the list I would say are very good at ACTING and PERFORMING, but they are not very good at working with scene partners and sharing chemistry. I saw little of that this year with Geary or Jackson. Others on the list I would say just give the impression they are waiting for the day to be over – JPL, TSJ, Burton, etc.

  17. Profile photo of snizzle
    snizzle

    Horrible list. I have a feeling the only reason CBS stars JY, BM, and SC were selected is because they are former ABC performers. If any BB actor deserves mention this year it’s probably Don Diamont. I also agree with the other posters that Jerry Ver Dorn also deserves a mention for his work this year.

  18. Profile photo of stoney07
    stoney07

    MEH…I agree, Michael Muhney should be on the list. He’s been great this year, with all the Sharon crap, and then the scenes when he finds out she’s really alive. The scene in the jail where he sets up the wedding and then leaves her at the “altar” as some sort of sick revenge. The scenes where he throws the memory card into the river. I just loved all of it. Michael Muhney was BRILLIANT and he’s continuing to deliver solid performances. And who can forget those expressions when he learned that Sharon had “died”. He looked completely BROKEN. He wasn’t over the top, but his face looked like he’d seen a ghost.

    JPL…ugh. I’m so sick of OLTL I could scream.

    The two-Todds thing was “okay” for me…but it wasn’t the second coming of Jesus Christ like everyone is trying to make it. I do think Roger Howarth and Trevor St. John are great actors, but #1???? IDK…

    I know we are in the season of bash everything Y&R related (notice even the compliments are surrounded by insults), but there’s no denying that Y&R still has one of the greatest casts in daytime AND primetime. Even with bad material, they STILL deliver. And why was the “Myanmar” story even mentioned for Billy Miller? He was ASTONISHING in the whole Baby Lucy story. When he pounded his fist on that table (and screwed up his hand) I was RIVETED…not because I knew he’d really injured himself, but because he made me feel what he felt. It’s just frustrating sometimes because I feel like a lot of the negativity for Y&R is unwarranted. I’m as frustrated with MAB as anyone else, but geesh..the show is improving (tho I still hate Angelina)…but there’s no optimism because it’s just always negative. I’m over it.

    Anyway, I’m going to repeat one more time…I still hate One Life to Live. I find it incredibly contrived, too fast, too complicated, and just plain silly. General Hospital is not great right now either. The Young and the Restless is not that good…but it’s improving. B&B needs to stop showing the same 4 characters everyday, and if they did that and actually balanced thes how, to ME, it would be one of the best in daytime. Days is pretty good to me right now. But those are my opinions…and I’ll duck now to avoid those missiles from the OLTL fans….

  19. Profile photo of Ryan-Scott
    Ryan-Scott

    Real men DO cry and sensitivity is sexy. All I have to say.

    Oh and that I also think Jerry ver Dorn and Peter Reckell should have been on the list.

    Also, I’m glad Billy Miller was on it.
    On MY list Josh Kelly would have been in there too but that’s my list. :)

  20. Profile photo of jphelps
    jphelps

    I want to clarify I did not dish JY but JJ

    I think Jacob Young did wonderful work towards the end of AMC and his work with Canary all these years has been a joy to watch. Jonathan Jackson excels at weepy monologues but whoever said he doesnt gel with screen partners has it right. I think thats where Genie Francis’s presence helped.without her his Lucky was kind of vapid and cold,

    I also want to credit James Scott who can chew a lot of scenery normally but this year he carried DOOL. I thought the Taylor story was dreadful but I actually liked a lot of his scenes with Natalia which I am sure is unpopular here. while not the best actress, she has a knack for bringing out humanity in her acting partners same as Kimberly McCullough can and GVs Lucky did without it seeming too campy or corny. He and Ari Zucker ar e just pure dynamite together and Ari seems to gel with everyone. I have never seen a thing between he and Alison Sweeney to each his own. I do think he is fabulous with Renee Jones and Lauren Koslow and Joe Masculo and the young boy that plays Johnny.

  21. Profile photo of Katiebug9624
    Katiebug9624

    No I agree with you I was actually starting to like James Scott and Natalia together until they fired her and brought on Tamara Braun (who I normally like) I just didn’t buy her in the role nor did I like her chemistry with EJ.

  22. Profile photo of ldylkng
    ldylkng

    Darnell Williams, Billy Miller, Jerry Ver doran, Anthony Geary, Christian leblanc,Michael knight, Ricky Paul Golddin, Eric Braeden and who casting have totally been blinded to, TOM PELPHREY!!

  23. Profile photo of Scout
    Scout

    I’m just trying to wrap my mind around how Y&R is improving. Really? ‘Cause I see nothing but a big smelly crapfest on my screen every day. And Billy Miller’s on this list? I guess rolling your eyes, bearing your teeth and squeaking out lines in that annoying little I’ve-been-a-bad-boy voice passes as acting.

  24. Profile photo of Chelley62
    Chelley62

    Scott Clifton over Michael Muhney? REEEEEEEEEEALLY? The only thing that Scott Clifton excels at is looking constipated. I can’t believe he’s even on the list! No Michael Muhney????!!! WTH? No Don Diamont? What is wrong with you people!?

  25. Profile photo of marknsprmo
    marknsprmo

    Thanks for an honest and varied list this year. It is nice not to see the usuals on it. I do notice that the list is a little heavey with scenery chewers. That used to be the job of the supervillan and the women of soaps. Nowdays I guess even the heros can get in on the action.
    I have a small list I would like to put out there of men who gave intelligent and thoughtful performances that while not over the top, I enjoyed.
    1 Doug Davidson. I think something snapped in this man and he has become a very good actor. Someone should notice it and utilize this.
    2 John Aniston. Are you kidding? Becoming a leading Love interest at his age? Not to mention all of those snide remarks he perputrated on Chloe this year! I miss chloe for Victor’s humor.
    3. Peter Reckell. Ok he has had to spend alot of time this year as a member of Salem’s dumbest. And had to rescue the damsel Hope one too many times. The last few months though, the return of the romantic Bo and Hope and exploring their long relationship has been marvelous. There was one day at the Horton house when they were unpacking the Christmas ornamants and came across Zack’s bulb (the boy they lost), the scene was as fresh as the day they lost him. You could feel how much this loss cost these two people. This scene was about as real of a scene as I saw this year on tv.
    4.Joseph Mascalo. For years the over the top villan. He drove story hard and fast. But this last few years there has been a shift in power and Stephano is becoming an old man. He is going to die sometime and he feels it. The actor puts that out there at every given moment. When he rushed into EJ’s hospital room and thought he was losing him and reverted back into Italian instead of English just like an old imigrant would do under duress. His tete a tetes with EJ where he is training the boy to follow him in business and expand the family. He doesn’t forget about his diabetes even when it isn’t in the script. Sometimes his energy level just isn’t what we expect from Stephano. And then he goes and does something kind or romantic. Yeah someday Stephano’s gonna die and Joe M is gonna play it to the last. That will be some shakespearian worthy death scene.

  26. Profile photo of Cyberologist
    Cyberologist

    marknsprmo IA John Aniston should be on the list; I tuned in big time for his & Maggie’s story.

    Scott never would have gotten his emmy if he was still stuck in the writing of Dillon on GH.

  27. Profile photo of ChrisGa
    ChrisGa

    [quote=soapbaby]I completely agree with EET and jphelps. JVD is absent whereas Jacob Young and Steve Burton are present? Seriously?! JY is completely overrated and Steve Burton brought little to the table (and I normally like him.) I also would have included Mark Lawson who gave wonderful performances all year and Chandler Massey because Will is the single best character on DAYS. Although not leading men, I rather enjoyed performances by Michael Easton and Tuc Watkins. I hate Victor and Adam Newman as characters but I think Eric Braeden and Michael Muhney are very good actors.[/quote]

    Glad you mentioned Mark Lawson, who I never thought of as much more than eye candy but his work during the paternity storyline–especially having to give Liam up–was heartbreaking and award-worthy. On the other end of that storyline, Michael Easton has turned McBain into one of my fave characters on OLTL; he started out the year railing on Natalie and Brody about the one-night stand, was the ONLY male on the canvas that actually had palpable chemistry with Gina Tognoni’s Kelly, and delivered some of the funniest reaction shots on daytime(in fact, any scene between Easton and Ilene Kristen was absolute gold for me). On top of that, his recent eps with Florencia Lozano have been refreshingly straightforward and rather nice after having to watch Lozano work with Trevor St.John on autopilot for alot of the last year or so.

    Agree with you too about Braeden and Muhney; I despise both of those characters to no end but there’s no faulting the talent involved(though many would probably disagree with the Braeden part of that statement). As for Tuc Watkins, I have yet to understand the appeal; he’s another actor that’s very nice to look at but David Vickers is just a cartoon for me and there’s nothing in his performance that changes that for me.

  28. Profile photo of soapbaby
    soapbaby

    @ldylkng – Vincent Irrizary definitely deserves a spot on this list! No matter how dastardly David behaved, I always rooted for him! A credit to Irrizary’s great ability. Also, I was pleasantly surprised by his chemistry with Lindsay Hartley (Cara) and platonic chemistry with Debbie Morgan (Angie.)

    @ChrisGa – Mark Lawson deserves a best supporting actor emmy for his work in 2011 (as if emmys matter anymore!) I totally see why you are not a fan of Tuc Watkins and David Vickers-Buchanan has been overexposed (although Watkins was recurring) but I liken Tuc Watkins to Ilene Kristen because so many of his performances made me smile despite being annoying! With the “Save Fraternity Row’ story, he was great.

  29. Profile photo of liason4real
    liason4real

    I would add the actors that play baby Liam Buchanan and Cameron Webber to this list. Cameron gives some of the best “bitch please” looks on all of daytime! As for baby Liam, the soulful looks that he gave out won me over hands down!

  30. Profile photo of BillyMillerFan
    BillyMillerFan

    Thanks for putting the amazing Billy “Killer” Miller on this list!!! He absolutely broke my heart along with Amelia Heinle during the baby Lucy storyline and managed to even make this awful Myanmar story bearable. He can really do it all making me cry one minute and laugh the next and making me feel for Billy no matter what he does. No wonder Victoria took him back so quickly because who could resist that charm. I have watched Y&R forever but I realized this year especially that without Billy and Amelia and “Villy” I might not have reason to watch anymore because of the awful stories and characters I don’t care about. So hopefully Killer Miller won’t be going anywhere anytime soon!!!

  31. Profile photo of dede261
    dede261

    Where is Michael Muhney on this list. I cannot take you guys seriously after this. MM is consistent, the man gives 1OO percent all the time. His scenes with Sharon’s death and the memory card were fantastic.

  32. Profile photo of shilo0854
    shilo0854

    OK I have no real issue except for 2 and that is Jonathan Jackson and Tony Geary. JJ was crying in just about every scene even when is was not sad. Tony sorry but Luke was one of those characters that irritated me when he raped Laura then married her and had kids. Luke does what Luke wants not really a big family man and same with Luckless.

  33. Profile photo of soapmeup
    soapmeup

    I can’t believe a few of these people even made it to the list.
    I see some that can’t act their way out of a paper bag.
    I also see a few that I think are very deserving, such as RH and TSJ.

    I don’t understand how Michael Muhney didn’t make it onto the list.

  34. Profile photo of soapmeup
    soapmeup

    It doesn’t matter if he does his own bragging or not.
    This poll is about TALENT and MM has it in spades. (IMO) As far as I can tell from following the guy on twitter and other sites he is about as down to earth as they come. The guy is one of the most humble actors I’ve ever seen. He should have made that list!

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