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Huntress

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  1. On November 21st, Unter uns held a big anniversary party celebrating 25 years on the air. All current and several former cast members were in attendance. Petra Blossey said Goodbye on Instagram: ––– Since the soap year 2019 is almost over and previews are available until December 27th, it's time for a little retrospective. Current soap schedule: 2.10 pm Rote Rosen (ARD) 3.10 pm Sturm der Liebe (ARD) 5.00 pm Herz über Kopf (RTL) 5.30 pm Unter uns (RTL) 7.05 pm Alles was zählt (RTL) 7.40 pm Gute Zeiten, Schlechte Zeiten (RTL) Gute Zeiten, Schlechte Zeiten (1992-present, RTL) Total episodes in 2019: 251 (#6667 to #6918 [#6749, #6750 and #6751 were shown as a 90 minute episode on the same day]) Current cast: http://www.soapsworld.de/gute-zeiten-schlechte-zeiten-gzsz/besetzung Contract arrivals: Patrick Heinrich as Erik Fritsche (May 2019-present; recurring previously) Nils Schulz as Robert Klee (March 2019-present) Gisa Zach as Yvonne Bode (January 2019-present) Annabella Zetsch as Brenda Schubert (September 2019-present; recurring previously) Contract departures: Maximilian Braun as Luis Ahrens (August 2017-June 2019) Eric Stehfest as Chris Lehmann (December 2014-March 2019) Lea Marlen Woitack as Sophie Lindh (March 2014-February 2019) Unter uns (1994-present, RTL) Total episodes in 2019: 249 (#6016 to #6265) Current cast: http://www.soapsworld.de/unter-uns-uu/besetzung Contract arrivals: Josephine Becker as Leni Schäfer (April 2019-present) Contract departures: Petra Blossey as Irene Weigel-Küpper (November 1994-July 2019) Linda König as Larissa Huber (April 2018-October 2019) Astrid Leberti as Andrea Huber (April 2017-August 2019) Alles was zählt (2006-present, RTL) Total episodes in 2019: 249 (#3094 to #3343) Current cast: http://www.soapsworld.de/alles-was-zaehlt-awz/besetzung Contract arrivals: Alexandra Fonsatti as Chiara Nadolny (November 2019-present; recurring previously) Birte Glang as Lena Öztürk #3 (February 2019-present) Amrei Haardt as Nathalie Reichenbach (April 2019-present) Ron Holzschuh as Niclas Nadolny (November 2019-present; recurring previously) Contract departures: Franziska Benz as Michelle Bauer (February 2016-September 2019) Madeleine Krakor as Steffi König (October 2018-November 2019) Maike Johanna Reuter as Pauline Reusch (October 2017-April 2019) Freundinnen (2018-2019, RTL) Total episodes in 2019: 72 (#87 to #159) The final episode aired on April 12th, 2019. Alles oder nichts (2018-2019, Sat.1 + Sat.1 Emotions) Total episodes in 2019: 57 (#48 to #105) The show ended its run on Sat.1 on January 2nd, 2019 (episode #48), and the remaining episodes were shown on Sat.1 Emotions. The final episode aired on March 22nd, 2019. Herz über Kopf (2019-present, RTL) Total episodes in 2019: 86 (#1 to #86) The first episode aired on August 26th, 2019. Rote Rosen (2006-present, ARD) Total episodes in 2019: 240 (#2801 to #3041) Current cast: http://www.daserste.de/unterhaltung/soaps-telenovelas/rote-rosen/darsteller/index.html Sturm der Liebe (2005-present, ARD) Total episodes in 2019: 233 (#3065 to #3298) Current cast: http://www.daserste.de/unterhaltung/soaps-telenovelas/sturm-der-liebe/darsteller/index.html Lindenstraße (1985-present, ARD) Total episodes in 2019: 44 (#1701 to #1745) Current cast: https://www1.wdr.de/daserste/lindenstrasse/personen/aktive/index.html The show will end its run in March/April 2020.
  2. Now it's official: Petra Blossey, the last remaining original cast member, has left Unter uns after 25 years. In July 2019, Blossey's alter ego Irene Weigel-Küpper left to visit her daughter Anna in Japan. On the episode dated November 28th, 2019, Irene's husband Robert (Luca Maric) and foster-daughter Sina (Valea Scalabrino) impatiently await Irene's return at the airport. They are shocked when Irene eventually "returns" – in a coffin... Petra Blossey debuted as Irene Weigel on the show's 1st episode on November 28th, 1994. Born in the former German Democratic Republic, Irene, née Schwarz, fled to West Germany in the 1970s, moved to Cologne, and married master baker Wolfgang Weigel. They had three children: Chris (aged 19 at the show's debut), Till (aged 16) and Anna (aged 12). Back then, the extended Weigel family also consisted of Wolfgang's mother Margot Weigel, Margot's sister Sophie Himmel, Irene's brother Dr. Olaf Schwarz, and Olaf's daughter Antonia Schwarz. These characters were gradually phased out over the years, with only Till remaining on the show (after a recast). Olaf departed in 1995, Antonia and Chris in 1997, Margot died off-screen in 2006 (the actress passed away in 2005), and Sophie died off-screen in 2012. Till left in 1996, but returned in 2000. Anna originally left in 2004, returned as a recast in 2006, and received a third recast in 2009, with the final actress leaving in 2014. Over the past 25 years, Irene lived through a lot of trials and tribulations: She became pregnant with a disabled baby, but suffered a miscarriage. She was hit on by a lesbian friend of hers. She lost her memory and had amnesia, not recognizing her entire family, for months. Wolfgang left her for a younger woman, but returned to Irene after a while. In 2009, Wolfgang died of a heart attack. Irene was heartbroken for months, but found a new love in stubborn handyman Robert Küpper, whom she eventually married. For years, Irene battled Wolfgang's illegitimate son Rolf Jäger, who terrorized the neighborhood with his sick antics. On the other hand, she gladly took in Wolfgang's illegitimate daughter Sina who appeared in town after Wolfgang's death. Irene was a tower of strength for every neighbor of the apartment house Schillerallee 10. According to an extensive interview, Petra Blossey decided to quit Unter uns at her own request. She taped her final scenes in April 2019 and moved back to her native Potsdam (near Berlin) to be with her family. --- In other news: After being with the show for roughly one year, Madeleine Krakor is leaving Alles was zählt. The red-haired actress debuted in the contract role of Steffi König in Oktober 2018. Steffi was a boring character from the get-go. She became Ingo's (André Dietz) new girlfriend of the year and was only obsessed with becoming pregnant – but Ingo is infertile. When she met her former crush Sören, she had a one-night-stand with him. Of course she became pregnant by him, and now Steffi's leaving town with Sören. In turn, actress Franziska van der Heide has been cast in the new contract role Ina Ziegler. Van der Heide is best known for her stint on GZSZ where she played streetkid Mieze on contract from 2013 to 2015. In a first press release, Ina is said to be the sister of an established character. She is also a professional cook. (And she will probably also only last a year on this incestuous show.) Seriously, AWZ has been so boring for ages. Apparently they can't afford more than 16 regular cast members – but instead of using all of them, only ~ 8 of them get frontburner storylines while the others are just filler material. In addition, recurring actors Alexandra Fonsatti (Chiara) and Ron Holzschuh (Niclas) are featured more than most regulars. Why they don't drop all this dead weight and hire some new fresh faces is beyond me.
  3. This situation is similar to what the German soap "Unter uns" faced in the summer of 2009. Back then, the show suffered from low demos and was rumoured to be canceled. Instead, broadcaster RTL slashed the budget, fired a few cast members, and decided that production would shut down twice each year for roughly 4 months (December to February and June to August) to save costs. From then on, they filmed 7 to 8 episodes a week so that the show could still run through the whole year. Before each hiatus, all the cast members were released from their contracts and had to register as unemployed (in Germany, you receive ~ 60 percent of your former salary for at least a year if you're registered as unemployed). Departing cast members were usually written out before a hiatus, so that most of the cast returned when filming resumed. In the meantime, they could pursue any other project they wanted to (doing primetime guest spots, playing theater, etc.) In 2016, they reduced the hiatus to 2 months in total and went back to filming 6 episodes a week. 10 years later and UU is still on the air. This year, they've managed to increase their demos quite nicely. So not all hope is lost
  4. This is the new intro for Unter uns which will debut during the anniversary week later this month. Again, there will be two different versions. The show's logo and the theme have been updated once again. Version A: Jens Hajek (Benedikt Huber) –Antonia Michalsky (Saskia Weigel Huber) – Benjamin Heinrich (Bambi Hirschberger) – Tabea Heynig (Britta Schönfeld) – Kai Noll (Rufus Sturm) – Jakob Graf (Luke Färber, new contract role) – Josephine Becker (Leni Schäfer) – Milos Vukovic (Paco Weigel) – Timothy Boldt (Ringo Beckmann) – Isabell Hertel (Ute Kiefer)
  5. The Thomas/Gabriela wedding storyline happened in the summer of 2005, shortly after Taylor had returned. Antonio Sabato was also added in the summer of 2005 – they brought him in as a person from Taylor's past, then he kissed Brooke, and eventually he was interested in Bridget. I thought Dante only had chemistry with Felicia but that Dante/Felicia/Bridget triangle story went nowhere and was dropped in late 2006. In turn, the Megan/Massimo storyline happened in the spring of 2006 😉
  6. On November 28th, 2019, Unter uns celebrates its 25th anniversary. The official press release says: * Barbara Prakopenka played Kira Beckmann on contract from 2012 to 2014. ** Andreas Büngen played Jan Gräser on contract from 2002 to 2009. The wedding was filmed at the same castle that was used as the setting for Verbotene Liebe from 2003 to its cancellation in 2014. There's also going to be a funeral as pictures from the filming have leaked online. There's still speculation that Irene may only return as a corpse... However, Benedikt could also be the dead person as his ex-wife Andrea (Astrid Leberti) and his son Valentin (Aaron Koszuta) are rumoured to attend the funeral. Official Contract Cast during the 25th anniversary: Josephine Becker – Leni Schäfer (2019-present) Sharon Berlinghoff – Vivien Köhler (2018-present) Petra Blossey – Irene Weigel-Küpper, née Schwarz (1994-present) Timothy Boldt – Ringo Beckmann (2012-present) Andrea Brix – Roswitha Küpper-Pütz (2016-present; recurring previously) Claudelle Deckert – Eva Wagner, formerly Weigel (2001-2006; 2008-present; recurring otherwise) Jens Hajek – Benedikt Huber (2016-present) Benjamin Heinrich – Benno "Bambi" Hirschberger (2013-present) Isabell Hertel – Ute Kiefer, formerly Kern, Weigel, Fink (1995-present) Tabea Heynig – Britta Schönfeld, formerly Sturm (2010-present) Luca Maric – Robert Küpper (2015-present) Yannik Meyer – Conor Weigel (2018-present) Antonia Michalsky – Saskia Huber, née Weigel (2017-present) Alexander Milo – Jakob Huber (2017-present) Patrick Müller – Tobias Lassner (2006-present) Kai Noll – Rufus Sturm (2003-present) Ben Ruedinger – Till Weigel #2 (2000-present) Valea Scalabrino – Sina Hirschberger, née Uhland (2010-present) Lars Steinhöfel – Ingo "Easy" Winter (2005-present) Milos Vukovic – Paco Weigel (2000-present) 1. Kira, Ringo, Easy and Tobias; 2. Paco, Tobias, Jan and Easy, 3. Sina and Robert, 4. Till, Ute and Conor
  7. What a surprise 😒 On AWZ, Franziska Benz departs the show on September 9th, 2019, when her character Michelle Bauer is killed off. During the premiere of the figure skating show, Michelle gets attacked by an assassin and is fatally wounded. Michelle was introduced in February 2016 as Simone Steinkamp's niece. A successful figure skater, Michelle was Marie Schmidt's biggest rival on the squad. Other storylines included her troubled relationship with her estranged father Vincent Thalbach, who turned out to be a drug lord. Michelle experienced a downward spiral in 2018, feeling that nobody really cared about her, but she was eventually rescued by Maximilian von Altenburg who gave her new courage to face life. Michelle went back to normal and even became friends with her former nemesis Marie. She found her one true love in Moritz Brunner (Tijan Njie) and competed for the main role in the figure skating show, successfully outdoing Chiara Nadolny. Following Chiara's failure, Susanne Gebhardt, Chiara's coach, snaps and hires an assassin to take care of Michelle. ––– On GZSZ, former recurring star Annabella Zetsch (Brenda Schubert) has been placed on contract and reappears on today's episode. Brenda was introduced in the summer of 2018 as a classmate of Luis Ahrens (Maximilian Braun) whom she blackmailed with a video showing him masturbating. Brenda's bullying almost drove Luis into suicide. She was eventually punished for her actions and departed in October 2018. In April 2019, Brenda reappeared for two episodes where it was revealed that Brenda is Robert Klee's (Nils Schulz) daughter. She apologized to Luis, but disappeared again. Now Brenda moves in with Robert and his new girlfriend Nina (Maria Wedig), Luis's mother. In a press release, she's described as having become a new person who has learned from her past mistakes. ––– On UU, fans are worried about Petra Blossey (Irene Weigel), the show's only remaining original cast member, who hasn't been seen on-screen in weeks. In July 2019, Irene went to visit her youngest Anna in Japan, but so far there's no news of her coming back. The 63-year old actress even missed the annual fan event in August, and has posted cryptical posts on Instagram. The show celebrates its 25th anniversary in November 2019. So far, it has been revealed that a wedding will take place (most likely that of gay couple Easy and Ringo) and that former contract star Barbara Prakopenka (Kira Beckmann) will return for a guest appearance. Prakopenka starred as Ringo's twin sister from 2012 to 2014 and has since moved on to a successful primetime career. ––– RTL's new daily crime drama "Herz über Kopf" debuted on August 26th, 2019 at 5 pm. So far, the show has only attracted a meager 0.5 million viewers with a market share of 6%. Official promo: ––– Flashback: GZSZ – Episode Count October 1993 This is the month where the Panty Hose Murderer storyline began and the first two murders, Hilda and Yasemin, took place. For a half-hour show, the show had a large cast back then, but every character had its purpose and was involved in at least one storyline. A total of 18 episodes aired this month. No new episodes on 10/19/1993, 10/21/1993 and 10/22/1993 [reasons unknown] 01. Frank-Thomas Mende (Clemens Richter) : 11 ** Hannelore Minkus (Beatrice Zimmermann) : 11 ** Michael O. Rüdiger (Matthias Zimmermann) : 11 04. Angela Neumann (Vera Richter) : 10 ** Sandra Keller (Tina Ullrich) : 10 ** Udo Thies (Dr. Michael Gundlach) : 10 ** Victoria Sturm (Milla Engel) : 10 08. Andrea-Kathrin Loewig (Iris Gehbauer) : 9 ** Claudia Weiske (Elke Opitz) : 9 ** Hans Christiani (A.R. Daniel) : 9 ** Sali Landricina (Peter Becker) : 9 ** Saskia Valencia (Saskia Rother) : 9 13. Gerd Blahuschek (Hartmut Söllner) : 8 ** Heinke Hüttmann (Karin Becker) : 8 ** Lisa Riecken (Elisabeth Meinhart) : 8 ** Mirjam Köfer (Diana Richter) : 8 ** Timmo Niesner (Tommy Walter) : 8 ** Wolfgang Bahro (Dr. Jo Gerner) : 8 19. Alexander Kiersch (Patrick Graf) : 7 ** Andreas Elsholz (Heiko Richter) : 7 ** Fenja Rühl (Barbara Wiebe) : 7 22. Carolina Squella (Nicole Ehlert) : 6 ** Ines Victoria (Yasemin Mutlu) : 6 ** Marcus Ulbricht (Tobias Gericke) : 6 25. Julian Scheunemann (Charlie Fierek) : 5 ** Michael Trischan (Jürgen Borchert) : 5 27. Christiane Reiff (Gerda Becker) : 4 ** Matthias Matz (André Holm) : 4 ** Robert Schröter (Jack) : 4 30. Alexander Eisenfeld (Olli Engel) : 3 ** Dagobert Walter (Mario Münster) : 3 ** Debora Weigert (Hilda Berg) : 3 ** Werner Kanitz (Erwin Becker) : 3 34. Peter Zintner (Heinrich Rother) : 2 35. Christoph Piesk (Oswald Löpelmann) : 1 ** Constanze Roeder (Mrs. Rother) : 1 ** Jochen Senf (Dr. Dietrich Romberg) : 1 ** Walter Jacob (Rudolf Söllner) : 1 CONTRACT ARRIVALS *: Wolfgang Bahro (Dr. Jo Gerner) [02/03/1993] Saskia Valencia (Saskia Rother) [03/08/1993] Mirjam Köfer (Diana Richter) [03/24/1993] Timmo Niesner (Tommy Walter) [04/02/1993] Dirk Meier (Florian May) [04/13/1993] Ines Victoria (Yasemin Mutlu) [04/26/1993] Udo Thies (Dr. Michael Gundlach) [04/27/1993] Victoria Sturm (Milla Engel) [04/29/1993] Andrea-Kathrin Loewig (Iris Gehbauer) [05/05/1993] Matthias Matz (André Holm) [06/11/1993; recurring previously] Fenja Rühl (Barbara Wiebe) [07/05/1993] Michael O. Rüdiger (Matthias Zimmermann) [07/19/1993] Michael Trischan (Jürgen Borchert) [08/03/1993] Gerd Blahuschek (Hartmut Söllner) [10/28/1993; recurring previously] Marcus Ullbricht (Tobias Gericke) [10/28/1993; recurring previously] Heinke Hüttmann (Karin Becker) [11/02/1993; recurring previously] Hannelore Minkus (Beatrice Zimmermann) [11/05/1993; recurring previously] CONTRACT DEPARTURES: Suzanne Ziellenbach (Lilo Gottschick) [04/08/1993] Natascha Pfeiffer (Marina Geppert) [04/16/1993] Thomas Gohlke (Karsten Richter) [04/16/1993] Marie-Christine Herriger (Julia Backhoff) [04/26/1993] Johannes Baasner (Dr. Frank Ullrich) [04/28/1993] Dirk Meier (Florian May) [09/02/1993] Ines Victoria (Yasemin Mutlu) [10/26/1993] Mirjam Köfer (Diana Richter) [11/23/1993] Timmo Niesner (Tommy Walter) [11/29/1993] Marcus Ullbricht (Tobias Gericke) [12/17/1993] * The show only received detailed closing credits beginning with episode 350 (10/08/1993). Before episode 350, the cast was listed alphabetically with only the performers' names appearing and no distinction between main and guest roles was made. For example, in some episodes actor Zsolt Bács-Bayer was listed first in the credits despite only appearing sporadically in a C-Story – but since his last name begins with a "B", he was always listed first. In many episodes, several performers were even missing from the credits. Beginning with episode 350, character names were added to the credits (although only first names and in some cases, only their last names, for example "Dr. Gundlach" or "Mrs. Meinhart"). Finally, guest and recurring performers were divided from the main cast with an "And" credit. Thus, contract arrival dates for performers who debuted before episode 350 are their first appearances. They were all listed as contract roles in episode 350, and Bahro, Valencia, Köfer, Niesner, Meier, Victoria, Thies and Sturm were added to the opening credits in episode 272 (06/14/1993). The only actor who is still on the show as of today is Wolfgang Bahro as Dr. Jo Gerner.
  8. The strange thing is that both Saul and Darla were not added to the opening until 1993. Darla was bumped to recurring in 1996 and was removed from the opening with the December 1996 update. Saul must have been taken off contract in 1995 (months before the actor's death). A few other short-lived contract roles weren't added to the opening at all during the first few years of the show. From 1993 on, I think every contract role appeared on the opening at least for a short while, even some of the child actors (the pre-Jacob Young Rick and the pre-Jennifer Finnigan Bridget). They started updating the credits more often with up to 4 different versions each year.
  9. If I remember correctly, Jessica Walter was dumped because she was too expensive. She was supposed to return for guest appearances later on, but that never materialized. Lori was part of the main cast until the season 3 finale and returned for a single guest appearance in the season 5 premiere where she had like 3 or 4 lines. I don't remember Ryan claiming to live at Melrose Place – and I watched every single episode of that rotten show He was shown to be living at an apartment complex, but it wasn't Melrose Place.
  10. Same here. In season 1, they teased this Kelly/Brenda/Ryan triangle for weeks which eventually went nowhere and the juiciest part (Brenda hooking up with Ryan) happened off-screen. When Brenda was out of the picture, Kelly finally slept with Ryan, but then the story was dropped and in season 2, Ryan was paired with Naomi's sister Jen (whom I found more interesting than any of the teens except Naomi and Adrianna). Kelly continued appearing as a supporting character in Silver's story but apparently left town without an explanation (and left Silver living in her garage). But that was 90210's biggest mistake... dropping interesting stories left and right, and repeating the same boring stuff (triangles and more triangles) every other week. The writers really thought their audience was stupid and not able to remember things that happened two episodes ago.
  11. Haven't done this in a long time... Preview Pics August 2019 Unter uns 01. Andrea (Astrid Leberti) accepts Rufus's (Kai Noll) marriage proposal 02. Leni (Josephine Becker) tells Paco (Milos Vukovic) that she is his daughter 03. Andrea tells her father Robert (Luca Maric) that she wants to leave Schillerallee (which she eventually does) 04. Ringo (Timothy Boldt) and Easy (Lars Steinhöfel) spend a nice holiday together 05. Ute (Isabell Hertel) comforts Benedikt (Jens Huber) after Andrea has left town with their newborn baby 06. Vivien (Sharon Berlinghoff) suffers from exam anxiety 07. Eva (Claudelle Deckert) is shocked when Till declares war on her 08. Jakob's (Alexander Milo, right) colleague Samuel (Alexander Koch) shows his true colors 09. Having returned from rehab, Larissa (Linda König) tells her father Benedikt that she wants to keep her distance 10. Saskia (Antonia Michalsky) and Paco argue about Paco's attitude towards Leni 11. Till (Ben Ruedinger) is not impressed by Rufus's advice 12. Dream sequence: Ringo dreams that Britta (Tabea Heynig) treats him like a puppy Alles was zählt 01. Lena (Birte Glang) apologizes to Alexander (Ralf-Maximilian Prack) for not having enough time for him 02. Nathalie (Amrei Haardt, left) is shocked that Isabelle (Ania Niedieck) has contacted Finn's father without his knowledge 03. Simone (Tatjana Clasing) has to live with the fact that her long-kept secret has been revealed: Vanessa is not Richard's daughter 04. Moritz (Tijan Njie, left) can't deal with Niclas's (Ron Holzschuh) behavior 05. Lena tries to seduce Marian (Sam Öztürk) 06. Vanessa (Julia Augustin) starts an argument with Simone 07. Dream sequence: Jenny (Kaja Schmidt-Tychsen, right) dreams that Deniz (Igor Dolgatschew) has an affair with Marie (Cheyenne Pahde) 08. Jenny finds out that Deniz has indeed slept with Marie and Vanessa comforts her sister 09. Michelle (Franziska Benz) is disappointed when Niclas doesn't want to give her the lead role in his musical 10. Steffi (Madeleine Krakor) and Ingo (André Dietz) plan on adopting a child 11. An unhinged Susanne (Hanne Wolharn) has manipulated Michelle's skates 12. Richard (Silvian-Pierre Leirich) and Jenny avoid Simone Gute Zeiten, Schlechte Zeiten 01. Robert's ex Kerstin (Charlotte Sieglin, right) tries to breed discord between Robert (Nils Schulz) and Nina (Maria Wedig) 02. Toni (Olivia Marei, left) and Shirin (Gamze Senol, middle) argue about Erik as Sunny (Valentine Pahde) tries to intervene 03. Yvonne (Gisa Zach, left) and Laura (Chryssanthi Kavazi) are confident that Laura's condition will soon improve 04. After Robert has decided that he needs to leave for South Africa, he and Nina agree on having a long-distance relationship 05. Yvonne and Philip (Jörn Schlönvoigt) are worried about Laura 06. Shirin and Toni come to Erik's rescue 07. Lilly (Iris Mareike Steen, right) is annoyed by Emily's (Anne Menden) selfish actions 08. Toni and Erik (Patrick Heinrich) can't hide their feelings for one another 09. Katrin (Ulrike Frank) is back in town and is greeted by her best friend Maren (Eva Mona Rodekirchen) 10. Emily feels pressured when Paul (Niklas Osterloh) wants to start a family with her 11. Yvonne and Felix (Thaddäus Meilinger) wait for news about Laura 12. Shirin and John (Felix von Jascheroff) plan on helping Erik getting back on track
  12. Some casting and general news from the past few weeks: RTL has now officially cancelled its 4th daily soap "Freundinnen". The last new episode was shown on April 12th, 2019, and the last re-run was shown on June 28th, 2019. This fall, probably in September, a new daily soap called "Herz über Kopf" will debut at 5 pm. Until then, a reality format called "Meine Geschichte – Mein Leben" (My Story – My Life) airs in this difficult timeslot. The cancellation of "Freundinnen" has definitely helped UU's ratings: For months, the veteran show had been in a ratings slump due to its weak lead-in. On July 2nd, UU eventually reached its highest ratings of the year so far with a market share of 16.2% among the target audience. On the same day, AWZ also reached its highest ratings of the year with a market share of 17% among the target audience. On GZSZ, actor Patrick Heinrich returned to the show on May 2nd, 2019 in the role of bad boy Erik Fritsche – this time as a contract role. In 2018, Erik was introduced as Shirin's (Gamze Senol) husband who was just released from prison. Shirin hadn't told anybody about her husband's existence, not even her business partner John (Felix von Jascheroff) who was slowly falling in love with Shirin. When John and Shirin went to Mallorca to celebrate the birthday of John's siblings, the jealous Erik followed them and nearly killed John. He was sent to prison again. Now Erik is back in town and tries to prove that he's changed. Of course everybody avoids him, especially Shirin and John. Erik's working undercover for the police to bust another drug dealer – his own half brother – but the only person who knows this is cop Toni Ahrens (Olivia Marei). Of course Toni falls in love with Erik and tries to defend his actions. In turn, Maximilian Braun departed the show at the end of June 2019. Braun had played teenager Luis Ahrens for roughly two years. Even though he was a contract role, Luis only had one major storyline in 2018 when he was blackmailed with a video showing him masturbating, but for the most part he was just a supporting role and a sidekick for his mother Nina (Maria Wedig) and his best friend Jonas (Felix van Deventer). On UU, actress Josephine Becker joined the show in late April 2019 in the contract role of Leni Schäfer. Leni is a teenage girl who arrived at Schillerallee to find her biological father. Two men are put on her shortlist: Paco Weigel (Milos Vukovic) or Easy Winter (Lars Steinhöfel). The latter came out as gay in 2017 and has been in a relationship with Ringo Beckmann (Timothy Boldt) for a while now. Leni announced that Easy was her father, which strained Easy and Ringo's relationship. However, this month it is revealed that Leni was lying and that she knew all along that Paco is her true father. Paternity issues also play a role on AWZ where the history of the Steinkamp family is rewritten: Vanessa (Julia Augustin) finds out that Richard (Silvan-Pierre Leirich) is not her biological father! Her mother Simone (Tatjana Clasing) had an affair with Niclas Nadolny (Ron Holzschuh), and Niclas is Vanessa's real father. At the beginning of the show (in 2006), Vanessa fell in love with her best friend Ben, not knowing that Ben was the secret child of Richard and Nadja Roschinski. When the truth came out a while later, Vanessa wanted to commit suicide. The paternity reveal means that Vanessa and Ben aren't half-siblings after all. Hopefully, the show won't go down that route and pair up Vanessa and Ben after all these years. Also on AWZ, former UU actress Amrei Haardt joined the contract cast at the end of May 2019 as Nathalie Reichenbach, Isabelle's (Ania Niedieck) poor cousin. In turn, Ania Niedieck will be going on maternity leave later this summer. The blonde actress previously took an extended hiatus from the show after giving birth to her first child in 2016. Niedieck has been part of the contract cast since 2010. Original cast member Madlen Kaniuth departed the show on May 24th, 2019. The ginger-haired actress had played the recurring role of nosy secretary Brigitte Schnell since the very first episode in September 2006. Even though she never had a major storyline of her own, Brigitte was always involved in the lives of the Steinkamp family and had one night stands with several leading men.
  13. Since there's not much going on with the daily soaps right now, I finally got around to watch a primetime series that first aired in 2016. "Ku'damm '56" is a mini-series consisting of 3 parts that takes place in Berlin in 1956. "Ku'damm" is the local name of "Kurfürstendamm", one of the most famous streets in Berlin. During the separation of Berlin, Kurfürstendamm was the main shopping area of West Berlin. The series chronicles the lives of Caterina Schöllack (Claudia Michelsen) and her three daughters Helga (Maria Ehrich), Eva (Emilia Schüle) and Monika (Sonja Gerhardt). Caterina owns a dance school, takes great pride in keeping a strict discipline and wants to marry her daughters off to wealthy men. However, nothing goes as planned. Her husband Gerd (Robert Schupp) has gone missing in WW2 and for years, Caterina has had a secret affair with Fritz Assmann (Uwe Ochsenknecht), a long-time friend of the family. Helga gets married to West Prussian Wolfgang von Boost (August Wittgenstein) who's about to become a district attorney. However, he is secretly gay and meets other men at night time. Helga doesn't understand why Wolfgang doesn't want to get intimate with her. Wolfgang visits Dr. Jürgen Fassbender (Heino Ferch) who tries to "cure" Wolfgang of his homosexuality. Because of the pressure, Wolfgang resorts to violence and hits Helga. In turn, Helga gets the chance to become a TV star when she is booked for TV commercial where she has to play the perfect 50s housewife. When Monika sees Wolfgang at a cruising park receiving oral sex from another guy, she and Eva tell Helga about her husband's secret desire, but Helga refuses to believe them. Eva works as a nurse at a mental hospital and Dr. Fassbender is her boss. Encouraged by her mother, she is determined to marry the much older doctor. However, Eva soon falls for Rudi Hauer (Steven Windolf), the husband of one her patients and a professional soccer player. Rudi wants to leave his wife Christa (Anne Werner) for Eva and tells her that he strives for a divorce. Christa commits suicide by jumping from a window. Eva is devastated, but then accepts Fassbender's proposal, to Rudi's horror. Monika is the black sheep of the family. At the beginning, she returns home after she had been thrown out of a housekeeping school because of indecent behavior (she was caught dancing in the rain only in her underwear). Caterina loses no opportunity to tell Monika how much she loathes her. Monika has little self-esteem. Caterina eventually tries to set her up with Joachim Franck (Sabin Tambrea), the son of a weathly business man. Joachim, however, is up to no good. He gets drunk and rapes Monika on their first "date". Afterwards, Caterina tells Monika to pull herself together. Caterina tries to blackmail the Francks so that Joachim will marry Monika, but the Francks twist the facts and declare that Monika seduced Joachim. Monika tries to commit suicide by drowning herself in a lake. She is rescued by her sisters at the last minute. Afterwards, she is given a job teaching at the dance school. Monika meets Freddy Donath (Trystan Pütter), a member of the dance school's resident band. When he takes her dancing, Monika discovers her love for rock'n'roll music – which her mother hates because she thinks it's vulgar and tasteless. Monika and Freddy take part in dancing contests and also start a secret affair. However, Joachim still pops up in her life. Joachim, who has narcissistic tendencies, is indifferent to life. He gets drunk and has a terrible car crash which leaves him with a broken knee. After recovering, he breaks with his father and wants to start a new life by becoming a novel author. Caterina is shocked when she learns that Gerd has been back in Berlin for years without telling her. He now lives in East Berlin and has started a new family. Monika and her sisters discover that her parents "stole" the dance school from a Jewish family that were sent to a death camp in WW2. When he came back to Berlin after the war, Gerd was full of shame and couldn't return to his former life. In the meantime, Monika finds out that she's pregnant – with Freddy's child. Urged by both Freddy and her mother, she thinks about having an abortion. During a subway ride, Caterina tells Monika that her real father is Fritz Assmann and not Gerd Schöllack. In the end, Monika decides to keep the child. The series ends with Monika leaving Berlin with Freddy. The series was so successful that a sequel was filmed: "Ku'damm '59" takes place in 1959 and also consists of 3 parts. Another sequel, "Ku'damm '62" will premiere in 2020. in 2017, Sonja Gerhardt was nominated for an "International Emmy" as "Best Actress" for her portrayal of Monika Schöllack. The sequel:
  14. Germany's "Lindenstraße" introduced Marek Zöllig played by Martin Walde in May 2016. He was the brother of regular character Nina Zöllig and was married with a child. A while later, Marek was revealed to be transsexual and gradually changed his appearance to eventually become a woman. The character is now known as "Sunny Zöllig" and is still a regular character as of today. Sunny has been in a relationship with bisexual Tanja Schildknecht for quite a while. Here's a gallery highlighting all the important moments in Sunny's life on Lindenstraße: https://www1.wdr.de/daserste/lindenstrasse/personen/aktive/rolle-marek-zoellig-100.html Sunny has just started her hormone treatment: Sunny is fighting for unisex bathrooms at the show's main restaurant: Sunny is worried about Tanja: Sunny receives a visit from her son:
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