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7 April 2nd, 2013 B&B Writers: Brad Bell, Patrick Mulcahey & Tracey Ann Kelley Chat On First GLAAD Media Award Nomination!

Courtesy/CBS

The Bold and the Beautiful’s executive producer and head writer, Brad Bell, and two members of his writing team, who are  part of the LGBT community, Patrick Mulcahey and Tracey Ann Kelly, spoke with On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman for an exclusive interview at FrontiersLA.com  about their GLAAD Media Award nomination for the writing and the portrayal of the “My Two Moms” storyline, a first for the soap in its 26-year history!

Creating the story of same-sex parents Karen and Dani, played by Joanna Johnson and Crystal Chappell, and their accepting daughter, Caroline played by Linsey Godfrey, and the lack of LGBT representation on network soap operas, are just some of the topics covered in the interview.

B&B will be competing with Days of our Lives in the Outstanding Daily Drama Series category which will be handed out in ceremonies in Los Angeles on April 20th.  Here now are some excerpts from the interview with Brad, Patrick, and Tracey, as we take a look at how writers construct an important story of our time and raise awareness for the masses at home.

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick on how the storyline of “My Two Moms” came into being:  “This all came from Brad, although we talked about, ‘Is this the time?’  I don’t know about anybody else, but we would bring in gay characters on the soaps in the 80’s and 90’s and they would come in for five days and weep and then someone would love and accept them, and then they would go away forever.  I am sick of that, and I never wanted to do that.  Brad seemed to never want to do that, either.  So the trick was to find the right core family member – so it’s a familial story, yet a social story. I do remember nagging Brad going, ‘Why is Caroline’s name ‘Spencer’?  Where is her father?  If her mother’s name is ‘Spencer’?  Finally Brad said, ‘She’s got two mothers!’”

Brad on if it bothered him that a soap about the fashion industry never had a gay character on the canvas: ” I think it bothered all of us and it bothers me, and it still does.  There are certainly, as you point out in fashion, room for more gay characters.  It’s something I really look forward to doing, especially with Joanna who is so talented in many ways, but she really has been unavailable to us for much of this story, which at times is frustrating, but she is hard at work producing the new primetime series, The Fosters!”

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick and Tracey if they are frustrated not seeing more gay characters represented on daytime soaps: “I identify with the characters we have on our canvas … with Taylor, Brooke with Eric, for example.  To me, it’s about what we say all the time.  I honestly believe it, ‘Love is love.’  When we are in the middle of writing people’s relationships and their tangled defenses, fears, and desires to belong, I feel right at home in that milieu.  Also, there is an awareness of our audience.  The pedigree of soap operas is about heterosexual romance, and that is what the audience sort of clamors for.  If we had a different dial of audience, we might choose to show the characters differently, but we have the audience we have.  We like to keep them happy, and have fun with them.”  TRACEY:  “I was personally thrilled to see my life portrayed on the show that I worked for.  I was deeply gratified to see my life, and my daughter’s life, portrayed on daytime television.”

Brad’s initial reaction to the writing team receiving their first GLAAD Media Award Nomination:  “It was great and so exciting!  I was so happy for everyone involved.  I am proud of the story.  I felt we built the story to Bill Spencer Jr’s (Don Diamont’s) reaction of his sister’s sexuality.  We knew that Bill’s father was ignorant and oppressive.  So we wondered if Don Diamont’s next generation Bill would feel the same way?  As it turns out, he was mature and evolved enough that if you fight nature it’s no good for anyone.  It seems with Bill readily accepting his sister, and her relationship with another woman, we were trying to lead by example for any of the viewers who are not on board, and hopefully change their way of thinking by watching Bill and how he dealt with the situation.”

Courtesy/CBS

Patrick on if there might ever be an evolution of a daytime gay soap:  “I wonder if there is another evolution to come?  Remember back in the days when the interracial romance was taboo?  You could have black characters, and you could have white characters, but the audience wasn’t ready for it and all the b**s.  I wonder if that is going to happen with gay characters on daytime right now, because they will only be able to interact romantically with each other.  Can you imagine three main gay characters on one show on maybe an hour soap?   I can’t!  So there is going to be this ghetto, until somebody breaks convention and creates the genre of Gay Soap.”

Make sure to read the entire interview and candid conversation at FrontiersLA.com.  What do you think about Brad, Patrick, and Tracey’s comments?  What are your thoughts on the “My Two Moms” storyline?  Do you think there might ever come a time when we see a daytime network television gay soap opera? What do you feel about the representation of the LGBT community in daytime?  Weigh-in!

 

 

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  1. Perla says:

    Very good interview.

    Reply

  2. k/kay says:

    The storyline on B&B is a complete joke now you see them now you don’t good excuse Brad for the actress Joanna Johnson not being available then don’t start something you can’t finish but typical of B&B. I do not watch Days but I hear from others for B&B to even be in the running against Days is another big joke.

    Reply

  3. Iakovos says:

    I would feel better about this recognition and cheer loudly if the My Two Moms story was even close to the front burner. Points for trying, Mr. Bell.

    Reply

  4. Maggie says:

    There should be some consistency on the show, when it comes to the two moms. I think Brad Bell
    had the right idea !

    Reply

  5. ADAM says:

    Nominated for what? This storyline quickly was pushed to the backburner. If they are aware that this soap takes place in the fashion world and in LA then maybe they need to add more gay characters. Complete joke to be nominated for a soap that has no gay characters.

    Reply

  6. bc says:

    It does not appear to be organic whenever hollywood creates majority of its lgbt storylines. It feels like it’s written for publicity and awards from lgbt groups. It would be organic if those lesbian chars from b&b were from the fashion business. But they’re not. Wasn’t joana’s background what made brad bell write the lesbian chars? Doesn’t joana have an adopted African american child and other adopted children who are racial minorities? They really should have cast caroline w/ a racial minority actress if joana’s background was used to create this storyline. But the old caroline was always described as the classy char. At least she was classy for soap standards. There has never been a classy and rich racial minority char on b&b. That’s one of the many aspects of b&b w/c made me quit watching it. There are gay and lesbian chars on gh and amc and b&b and days who are majority white. Yet there is still such a lack of racial minorities who are leading chars. There are no Asian american chars on any of the day soaps! b&b already has lesbian chars and yet there are still no Asian american cast members. Yet the population of l.a. has more Asian americans than African americans according to pew research. Most lgbt storylines from hollywood are very preachy and screaming tolerance for gays. The lgbt storylines from hollywood feel very politicized and forced. There’s a romantic storyline on”carrie diaries” for 2 white gay guys of course. Ratings flop “carrie diaries” showrunner mentioned that she wrote
    a romantic storyline between 2 gay guys who are white precisely bec of
    issue of same gender marriage. Yet that tv show is set during a period where same gender marriage between 1.7% of american population is not even a political issue. That flop show is set during the 80s! How much more obviously political can hollywood get? Giggles.

    Reply

  7. Sasha says:

    I am very happy to see LGBT representation on B&B and I think it is fabulous to see a child that has two moms or two dads and it be a normal situation. I am also glad Bill was accepting of the relationship and did not go ape shit. I would love to see more of Danielle too!

    Reply

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