Thinking Fans Comment Update Aug. 9: Fabobug appreciates Passions’ honest eccentricities … Jonnysbro wishes the cast well … Cherry Ames, with mixed feelings, says the likes of Passions will never pass our way again … and more. See Comments below.
By Marlena De Lacroix
I don’t have the chance to say good-bye to Passions because I don’t have Direct TV to watch the last episode. But I did it in my own way by browsing the list of August 9 auction of Passions props and memorabilia here on icollector.com. To my knowledge, there’s never been an online auction like this of props and costumes from a soap. Considering the intensity of fans’ love for soaps, I can’t think of anything else that would be more of a sure thing.
I sniffled mightily as I went through the items of two favorite characters, Tabitha and Timmy: Tabby’s framed picture of her adorable daughter Endora; the actual paws of Fuzzy, Timmy’s largely unseen cat who menaced him from offstage a la “Fang” from the old Soupy Sales show, and course Tabitha’s collection of fabulous gauzy skirts and beaded shawls, all purchased I’m sure at the very best of California New Age clothing stores.
But I was unprepared for actual tears brought forth by the sight of Tabby’s and Timmy’s bicycle built for two, which I remember from the first episode (Timmy fell off into the lake). And the item I remember best from the show and most want for Christmas: Timmy’s and Tabby’s actual Martimmy shaker.
Now I know a lot of you hated Passions, but I thought (and regularly wrote) that the first two years of the show were a hoot and a treasure trove of creativity and imagination. From Tabitha’s peeks into her magic bowl and warnings about her unseen collaborators — Our Friends in the Basement — to Timmy’s fantasies of being everything from a World War 1 doughboy to Rasputin’s butler, the misadventures of that ersatz mother and son brought me more genuine laughter and sheer joy than anything I’ve watched in my many decades of soap viewing. Marlena personally prizes originality and humor in all writing. Sadly, there’s not much of either in soap scripts of today!
How much do our favorite soap characters mean to us? Viewing Tabby and Timmy’s props and memorabilia in the auction list, I was surprised to feel almost as bereft and lonely as when I cleared out my own parents’ apartment of many decades recently. As everyone who ever read a Marlena column in SOW knows, I especially loved and adored Timmy and the late actor who portrayed him, Joshua Ryan Evans. As you know, Josh died in 2002 after heart surgery, so tragically, at the age of 20. I still really miss the super-talented, show-biz loving kid.
When I first met him at a public appearance at Rockefeller Center, he was the tiniest person I had ever seen — literally knee high. He was 18 years old. I interviewed Josh, and found him to be a normal American teenager, listening to his music, doing his homework, thinking about his adult life to come. I’ll never forget how serious he was about learning the art and craft of acting, a career he was already pursuing with great joy.
He spoke knowledgeably and with admiration of one of history’s most famous little people, General Tom Thumb, P.T. Barnum’s prize attraction. Josh had played him in a 1999 TV movie called P.T. Barnum, and thus felt he and the General were kindred souls. The General lived to age 45, Josh explained matter-of-factly, as if he knew he shared the same destiny. Sadly, Josh left us much sooner.
After the interview, he gave me one of NBC’s specially designed Martimmy glasses, a souvenir of Passions. It will always be one of my most prized possessions. Sell it at auction? Never! It’s priceless!
P.S. What props/and or costumes would you like to buy from your favorite soap if they were available? Tell Marlena.