Dear Soaps, In response to your...

Dear Soaps,
In response to your question last week about who should play the new Dixie on All My Children, I've got two terrific ideas. How about Another World alum Jensen Buchanan (ex-Vicky) or Grace Phillips? Both actresses played Sarah Gordon on One Life to Live, and they both have the right feel and tone to play Dixie's vulnerability and toughness. Either would be a terrific addition to the show. &#151 Tom

Dear Tom,
Barring the possibility that Krystal's prison friend, Di, is actually Dixie with a new face, Buchanan and Phillips are excellent choices to take on the role. Here are a few more actresses our readers would like to see play JR's doting mom:

"How about casting General Hospital's departing actress Tamara Braun (Carly) to play Dixie? Although she's not really old enough to be JR's mother, I think she would be great oppo read more

Dear Soaps, I just started watching...

Dear Soaps,
I just started watching As the World Turns, and I'd like to know how Barbara Ryan went from being a doormat to being fully unhinged. &#151 Mama

Dear Mama,
You can blame Barbara's irrational behavior on her ex-husband James Stenbeck. He's been cruelly manipulating Barbara to carry out his evil schemes for more than two decades. Over the years, poor, sweet Babs has morphed into a psychotic and overprotective mother who will do anything for the love of her children. Her latest acts include hiring a hit man, planting evidence, confessing to a murder she didn't commit and lying about her health, all in the name of protecting her kids. Can Barbara ever regain her sanity? Let us know what you think.

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Dear Soaps, Has there ever been...

Dear Soaps,
Has there ever been another character like General Hospital's Jason Morgan, who suffers from amnesia and never got his memory back? &#151 Mary

Dear Mary,
Guiding Light's Reva Lewis, played by Kim Zimmer, got pretty darn close. Zimmer decided to leave GL in 1991 and, to facilitate her exit, her character developed postpartum depression and drove off a cliff. When the actress returned four years later, we learned that not only had Reva survived the crash, but also that she had been living in a small Amish community as Rebecca, and had no recollection of her past. Her memories came rushing back, however, when she nearly drowned in the local swimming hole.

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Dear Soaps, Isn't it kind of early...

Dear Soaps,
Isn't it kind of early for Whitney to be going into labor on Passions? It seems like just a couple of weeks ago she found out that she was with child. &#151 Maria

Dear Maria,
Actually, Whitney found out she was pregnant last September, though she didn't start showing until just a few weeks ago. She's sabotaged her own health &#151 and the baby's &#151 by starving herself and refusing to take her prenatal vitamins. All this self-destructive behavior stems from Whitney's agony over being pregnant with her brother Chad's child, and the guilt she feels for claiming that Chad's half brother, Fox, is the father. Yikes.

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Dear Soaps, I read that the actor...

Dear Soaps,
I read that the actor who played Edmund Grey on All My Children was fired. What happened? &#151 Patty

Dear Patty,
The official word is that the unexpected departure of John Callahan, who played Edmund, was "story line-dictated." But unofficially, there seems to be an alarming trend of firing middle-aged actors who have been working on their soaps for so long they just cost too much to keep. In the past two years alone, we've witnessed the exits of One Life to Live's James DePaiva, Guiding Light's Grant Aleksander and As the World Turns' Benjamin Hendrickson and Larry Bryggman. Callahan wasn't too pleased that his character literally went up in flames on his last day. He would have preferred that Edmund still be breathing when he departed Pine Valley.

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Dear Soaps, On One Life to Live,...

Dear Soaps,
On One Life to Live, did Bo ever have a girlfriend who worked in a mine? &#151 Karen

Dear Karen,
Sure did. Georgina Whitman, a beautiful scientist played by both Nana Tucker Visitor and current OLTL star Ilene Kristen, created sparks with Bo more than 20 years ago. Georgina spent her time underground searching for a cheap fuel alternative. Ever the faithful boyfriend, Bo offered to test the combustible resource, and he nearly blew himself up in the process &#151 twice. As you can imagine, things cooled down considerably between the couple after his brushes with death.

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Dear Soaps, While watching a recent...

Dear Soaps,
While watching a recent episode of Guiding Light, I was pleased to discover that Jeffrey plays in a band. Was that really him singing? Where can I get copies of his music? &#151 Sean

Dear Sean,
You better believe Bradley Cole performs his own tunes on the show, and he's even released several albums, including the most recent, In Our Time. (CDs are available at his website, But that on-screen jam session almost didn't happen. In an exclusive interview, Cole told us why, at first, he didn't want to bring his love of music to his day job.

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Dear Soaps, You asked last week...

Dear Soaps,
You asked last week who we think killed Phillip on Guiding Light. The juicy suspect is Alexandra. She must've gunned him down for sending her to prison. The question is, would her brother Alan forgive this "Spaulding-eat-Spaulding" offense and cover up for her? &#151 CJ

Dear CJ,
Alan often encourages behavior that puts the Spauldings on top, but considering that Phillip is his son, blood ties or no, this would be unforgivable. While Alexandra has committed some despicable acts in her life &#151 from blackmail to bribery &#151 she's never stooped as low as murder. Still, it's an interesting theory. Here are a few more our readers suggested:

"I'm not sure who did it, but it's a woman and she's left-handed. I've been watching closely to figure out who among Springfield's women are southpaws, but it's not easy." &#151 Psinger

"I thi read more

Dear Soaps, I heard that General...

Dear Soaps,
I heard that General Hospital is recasting Carly. Is it too far-fetched to have Cynthia Preston, who just left the show, play the part with a change of hair color? She already has great chemistry with the GH cast! Thanks. &#151 Val

Dear Val,
Cynthia Preston as Sonny's estranged wife? Viewers might not be able to forget that the actress just ended her run as Sonny's crazed nemesis, Faith. But there's nothing wrong with keeping Preston in the ABC daytime family. All My Children has been on the prowl for a new Dixie, and since the last actress to portray her, Cady McClain, is staying with As the World Turns (she returns to Oakdale April 29), Preston could take over as JR's presumed dead mother. (God knows he needs her!) Who's your vote for the next Dixie? Let us know.

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Dear Soaps, Re your question in...

Dear Soaps,
Re your question in last week's Ask Soaps about Holden's job on As the World Turns: The show periodically refers to his training horses for a living. As for what horses and what he is training them for, that remains typically nebulous. &#151 Barbara

Dear Barbara,
Maybe Julia hooked up with Holden to snag free pony rides for JJ.

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