November is sweeps month on TV, which means every show pulls out all the stops to bring the drama, surprises and fun. Fans of Revenge got a great sweeps surprise during the primetime soap’s November 17 episode, when Lydia, who was presumed dead in a plane crash at the end of the first season finale, returned to get her own revenge on the Hamptonites who wronged her. Amber Valletta gives a wonderfully campy performance as the scheming seductress and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for her character (who appears to have an infinite amount of lives). The episode also featured the “East Montauk Farmer’s Market,” complete with the “Shelton Dairy Farm.” Let me know if you’ve heard of either of those.
Hamptons resident Alec Baldwin’s November felt like a real-life sweeps event. After he testified against his alleged stalker, Genevieve Sabourin, the Canadian actress was found guilty and sentenced to seven months in prison. But the drama didn’t end there for Baldwin, who was suspended from his MSNBC series Up Late With Alec Baldwin after supposedly hurling anti-gay slurs at paparazzi when they wouldn’t leave his family alone. Though Baldwin insisted he didn’t mean his words as hate speech, he apologized to anyone he offended and reasserted his support of the gay community, despite criticism from gay media advocacy group GLAAD. It was later confirmed by MSNBC and a spokesman for Baldwin that Up Late won’t return. Here’s hoping Baldwin and his family can have a peaceful holiday with baby Carmen.
After months of speculation, production company Prospect Park has confirmed that All My Children, the canceled ABC soap that had been revived for Hulu earlier this year, will not be returning. The news will no doubt disappoint fans of Long Island fave Susan Lucci, who didn’t appear in the show’s Hulu run but hadn’t ruled out a future return to her legendary role of Erica Kane. Lucci can currently be seen on Lifetime’s Devious Maids, which was renewed for a second season, to debut in 2014. Interestingly, Devious Maids had another All My Children/Hamptons connection in Paula Garces, who played ill-fated maid Flora. Garces appeared in the All My Children reboot as FBI agent Lea Marquez. Garces, who recently announced that she’s pregnant, also co-starred in The Maid’s Room, a Hamptons-set thriller that was featured in October’s Hamptons International Film Festival.
East End regular Natalie Portman reprised her role as beautiful science whiz Jane Foster in Thor: The Dark World, which surpassed the original Thor’s box office sales within its first two weeks. The film reunites Portman with co-star Chris Hemsworth as the titular demigod in a high fantasy adventure to stop worlds from colliding and causing a universal apocalypse. Don’t worry, though; it’s pure popcorn cinema and makes for a great date movie. Thor: The Dark World also stars scene-stealer Tom Hiddleston as Thor’s black sheep brother Loki, Sir Anthony Hopkins as their father Odin and Rene Russo as their mother, Friga, who gets much more to do than in the first film, where her role was little more than a cameo.
Hamptonite Matt Lauer spoke with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford last week about the mayor’s admitted use of crack cocaine while on a drunken bender. Ford appeared to be quite defensive toward Lauer, who questioned why voters would still want him in office. Lauer was also sporting his still-developing beard, which he pledged to grow as part of “Movember,” a yearly movement to help raise awareness for men’s health issues.
In an exciting bit of theater news, North Fork teen Ella Watts-Gorman has been cast as Louisa in NBC’s upcoming live telecast of The Sound of Music. The television event, which airs on December 5 at 8 p.m., features an all-star TV/Broadway cast, with country pop star Carrie Underwood as Maria von Trapp, Stephen Moyer as Captain von Trapp, Audra McDonald as Mother Abbess, Laura Benanti as Elsa Schrader and Christian Borle as Max Detweiler. For the uninitiated, The Sound of Music made an icon out of Sag Harbor’s Julie Andrews.
Finally, news anchor and Hamptonite Katie Couric will join Yahoo News in 2014 as a global anchor. Couric is expected to become “the face” of the Yahoo News network. But she will continue to host her syndicated talk show, Katie, so you can still look forward to her after General Hospital.
That’s all for this month, folks. As the von Trapp family singers would say, “so long, farewell”—but I’ll see you in December!