First, weighing in on two cable movies, one of which thoroughly chilled me and another that left me cold.
These days, a lot of TV actresses are taking on dual roles: The Vampire Diaries' Nina Dobrev (Elena/Katherine), Ringer's Sarah Michelle Gellar (Bridget/Siobhan) and The Lying Game's Alexandra Chando (Emma/Sutton). But back in 1963, Patty Duke was all on her own as identical cousins Patty and Cathy Lane on The Patty Duke Show. "We didn't have digital anything," recalls Duke, 64. "We'd [shoot] the Patty side first, then everyone would stand in place while I sneaked off and came back dressed as Cathy. In postproduction, they would actually split the celluloid."
Tonight Duke is returning to TV for a guest appearance on Hawaii Five-0. It's a role she couldn't turn down. "I play a woman in the second stage of Alzheimer's whose son was involved in a nefarious deal with gold coins in the ocean," says Duke, who took home the best supporting actress Oscar for The Miracle Worker in 1962. "McGarrett [Alex O'Loughlin] and Lori [Lauren German] come to inform my character that her son is dead and find that I'm living 20 or 30 years in the past. In her head, [her] son is still a boy coming home from school any minute for a sandwich."
Question: Can you remember the name of a TV show from the early to mid-'90s that featured a Southern family — a single mother and her children? I believe the name of the show was the characters' last name. The oldest daughter used to sit by her bedroom window and talk to the "man in the moon." The mother was played by an actress who reminds me a lot of Park Overall.
Answer: That I can, Carrie. You're thinking of The Torkelsons, which debuted on NBC in September 1991 and became Almost Home before it left the air in July 1993.
Set in Pyramid Corners, Okla., the series focused on young Dorothy Jane Torkelson (Olivia Burnette) and her family, who were a blue-collar clan and forever cash-strapped because the man of the house had bailed on them. Connie Ray played mama Millicent, and Aaron Metchik, Anna Slotky, Lee Norris