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It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas... or Hannukkah?

We here at Brothers & Sisters sure do take the holidays seriously.  There are something like four or five Secret Santa gift exchanges going on (one of those is a Secret Satan), Christmas trees have been erected, menorahs adorn the hallways, everyone is giddy and gay and fat. We’re working like little elves in Robbie’s Secret Workshop getting ready to deliver a beautifully decorative episode entitled “Light the Lights,” airing this Sunday at 10pm, written by two wonderfully talented new writers, Cliff “The Hamburger” Olin and Pete “The Toad” Calloway.   In return, we just ask that you’ll continue to vote for us for the People’s Choice Award because Dave is starting to really get desperate.  It was rumored that he was seen yesterday soliciting votes from senile senior citizens in Toluca Lake during one of his runs to Coffee Bean for Berlanti. 

In other news, we had to talk Oscar down from the roof of the Zorro parking structure after his beloved USC Trojans suffered a devastating loss at the hands of the Bruins. He even called in sick this morning muttering something about firing Kiffin (none of us knew what that meant.) Luckily, he was able to get his spirits up and was here to proof part of our latest script written by new writer Sherri Cooper-Landsman and David Marshall Grant.

Ok, ok, now for the good stuff.   So, after looking through all your comments in search of your Frequently Asked Questions, we’d like to take a moment to answer a few of them.  And here they are --

1) When will we be able to watch the episodes online?!

Ahhh, the million dollar question.  Trust us folks, we are doing all we possibly can on our end to make this happen.  We’ve begged and groveled and waited. And waited.  Polished our shoes and cleaned behind our ears so that our little step-child of a show could get the love, respect, and recognition it deserves.  But there is light at the end of the tunnel.  I’ve heard whispers that sometime after the New Year, our show will be adopted into the abc.com downloadable episodes family.  They like us, they really like us.

2) Will Scotty and Kevin ever get back together?

I’ll admit it. I’m a member of the I Heart Scotty club. So if it were up to me, Kevin and Scotty would be this century’s Luke and Laura.  They’d ride off into the sunset in Kevin’s BMW and live happily ever after.  But this is TV.  This is a drama.  So all good things must come to an end.  That’s not to say they won’t run into each other again.  It’s a small small world, L.A. is.  But for now, Kevin will romance and be romanced by some surprising characters that I’m sure you will all love.

3) Who reads this blog, besides us, I mean - does JRB read it? Any of the crew? Any of the cast members?

We do read the blog, the crew reads the blog, I’m sure some of the actors have read it once or twice.  Maybe.  Probably. (Hi Sarah Jane!) It’s as entertaining for us to read your comments as for you to read our blog.  So yes, we love the feedback, the comments, the controversy.  Bring it.

4) What is the age order of the siblings?
Drum roll please…

Sarah – 39
Kitty – 38
Tommy – 36
Kevin – 34
Justin – 26

5) Can you explain the notes process? Is it done electronically? Are they handwritten? Who gives them? Etc, etc...

I'd turn this over to Oscar, but he's too busy being depressed and slamming his head against the keyboard (someone mentioned the Bruins).  What he'd say though, is that the notes process is primarily conducted via conference call, with someone – usually Dan Silk – transcribing the notes on a computer.  The studio and network execs will give notes such as wanting a certain storyline paid off sooner, or requesting that a character's motivation be clearer, or even just complimenting a job well done (we like those). The writer will then take those notes and figure out how to apply to them to the script, either by tweaking dialogue or rewriting entire scenes.  Once that's done, they're given to Oscar to release as "revised pages." You know, when he's not throwing things or crying softly behind closed doors.

Loose Change:
Robbie stood in the hallway today, asking us for our hall passes...   Dave the PA handled the most massive lunch order of the series so far. To the surprise of many, he came back error free. Sadly, Ken Olin nearly died of hunger waiting for it to arrive. He was also highly irritated that there were no napkins in the kitchen, yelling, "What am I supposed to do? Wipe my hands on Splenda packets?!?"... David Marshall Grant is eagerly awaiting the opening of the new on-lot Starbucks like the lady in the Mervyn's commercial, "Open, open, open..."  Brian, the new assistant, keeps asking for a copy of the "gay agenda." No one has the heart to tell him...  Cliff and Pete have begun breaking their next episode...  Show Progress:  113 shooting, 114 prepping, 115 writing, 116 breaking (whew). 

Happy Holidays!
Gladys and Oscar


Thank you Gladys for this wonderful blog and answering some of our most FAQs. And tell Oscar we feel sorry that his team lost. He should call up Ausiello over at TVGuide to mourn together.

As for the Kevin & Scotty storyline, it's so true that no matter how big L.A. really is, it's actually quite a small world, and you will eventually bump into the person you are destined to bump into. I hope Kevin & Scotty will, if not be lovers, be friends and help each other out; although, I'd prefer they end up as the ultimate loving couple (but that is just my fantasy for them). I'm still on the "I <3 Scotty" bandwagon, and I hope others here are on it as well.

And thank you, thank you for telling us the age of the siblings. This has helped us tremendously. I think the ages have been debated back and forth to death between fans and now we have something concrete as proof. Too bad, because the arguing was kinda fun. Oh well...lol...

So, question, can you explain ABC's weird treatment of repeat episodes? First it's episode 3 on Dec. 3rd, then we get episode 5 on Dec. 24th. It's like they are only focusing on the better episodes.

Oh, and hi to all you lovely crew people and creators and actors reading these comments. We fans of B&S; love you!!!

Yes, I'm a loser, but your blog totally makes my day.

Yeah, want to know about the repeat order too. I know the show had creative problems the first two episodes.

But I loved "An Act of Will."

Will Matthew Settle ever reprise his role as Jonathon?

Just wanted to let you all know how much I love the show and blog. I enjoy all the behind the scenes info each of you provide. Very interesting to read (at work of course).

I dont know who the shows main demographics are (I'm guessing mostly women) but I was pleasntly surprised to find out that my 29 year old nephew also loves your show. And,yes he is straight.

Happy Holidays!

Oscar, keep your chin up. all the Trojans at school have distracted themselves from the devastation by studying for finals... (haha right..), you can do the same! throw up your cardinal and gold with pride and immerse yourself in your job. haha!

Maxine: I appreciate your comments on current gay charaters on TV. Tell me, which of these are recuring, most-episode charaters? I hate when they haul out the gay storyline/character for ONE episode (better than nothing I guess). If there are any gay teenagers who happen to see this comment, PLEASE watch the new season of "Real World". Great gay roomie - Davis - good role-model without ever being preachy.

I love this blog! Thanks!

Sally field is excellent as Nora and I'm glad she got the part, but I'm curious as to what happend with Betty Buckley. Thanks!

Also, wanted to share with you...saw in the news this morning that Mary Cheney (Dick's gay daughter) is PREGNANT! & due in spring. Perhaps B&S; execs can try to sign Mary up for a 1-show cameo...Mary's character meets Tommy Walker at the infertility clinic...they could lunch, swap stories...Art imitates Life! Or Life merges with Art! At least imagine the BUZZ & controversy & BIG Neilsen numbers!! .... Here's hoping "Light the Lights" attracts this kind of large audience. It's all good. Happy Holidays! Cheers! Finally, a new show Sunday night! Great weekend everybody & Sun. eve icing on the cake!

Gosh. Sarah and Kevin have a five-year age-difference and they both, er, had Tucker. That's...somewhat possibly creepy. Still, thank you for clearing that all up!

And do tell Brian they won't give out the "gay agenda" until he pays off his membership at...I'm sorry. I don't feel like doing stereotypically gay jokes today. Just insert gay joke of choice here, okay?


You know what's creepy... Kevin taking Sarah out as his date for senior prom. She's like 23, and he's like 18...now that's kinda freaky.

To all the crew,

Keep up the good work!! When is hiatus and when will you be coming back in to work?

A quick note about ABC ratings (for the last week: NOV. 7 - DEC. 3). ABC as a whole dropped off some ("Dancing with the Stars" and "Lost" are done for the season, DH was a repeat). ABC still had the #1`show w/ "Grey's". Then, the movie "Polar Express", then "Ugly Betty". It is worth noting "Ugly Betty"'s ratings are strong and improving (up from the last couple weeks). "B&S;" did poorly. It was a repeat & we've had so many interuptions in the schedule that maybe people haven't incorporated this show into their Sunday night routine. Or don't know it's on...Hopefully this will change next week, & B&S; pulls in great numbers with "Light the Lights", but I have to say promotion is DISMAL. Capital "D"! If this show got HALF the promos I've seen for "Daybreak" or "Big Day"...!?? Why can't ABC advertise the hell out of this holiday episode - go all out! -so we can truly gauge what audience is out there. I believe this show can reach more than the current 16 million viewers or so it's drawing per new show. With all the talk of politics, this is first & foremost a show about family. The undercurrent of love the siblings share is what bonds & binds us to the show. And I think it's the message of family that will keep viewers coming back when this war finally leaves the front pages of newspapers. Wars and elections come & go, I know that sounds crass, but family is for keeps and transcends all the other stuff.

Hi everybody. Always fun reading you here. Okay, Gladys, about the Magic-of-Kevin-and-Scotty being GONE, Done, OVER . . ... I love living in their

eyes’s gazing into each other –
I could spend a lifetime there.

And personally was looking forward to meeting WA-AH-Ly Wandell with wife Bertha. . . ...

but hope never dies

Then I’m easy to please as long as Kevin is on the screen.

I know a nineteen year old and an eighty year old who watches. This show defies age limits, don’t you think? Age is way overrated. My heart feels just as young as when I was . . . well, younger.

Can't something be done about getting JRB and/or some of the actors on Craig Ferguson, Ellen, Jay Leno? Would love to see them as themselves. Someday, I expect to see them all on Oprah.

Kevin and Scotty have to get back together, if only so that they can stroll hand-in-hand wearing matching t-shirts that read, respectively, "Hottie Scotty Wants My Body" and "Kevin is My Heaven."

Hahaha, bigsister, that's a great idea for a t-shirt design if Kevin & Scotty do get back together (yes, I still want them back together eventually as the ultimate gay couple). I think having them wear those quoted shirts would be a very cool idea. Are the creators/writers taking notes on this? :)

Finally. Some good news. Thank you. I think I can hold the new epsidoes in my TiVo until I've seen the missed one now. Thank you for finally answering the question and offering some hope.

you guys are posting so often in the blog, you make me sooo happy :D
Scotty has to come back, otherwise I'll have a seizure. And nobody can imagine the infinite smile that comes to my face when I read other comments and people say they want Scotty back :) I'm so happy nobody has forgotten him. I hope that Kevin goes through another relationship (or two,okay, I can be flexible) but ends up with Scotty in the end *sigh* so romantic :)

"But for now, Kevin will romance and be romanced by some surprising characters that I’m sure you will all love."

That's code for: a parade of straight actors will play Kevin's love interests seeking critical acclaim and bigger roles.

I don't know what the thinking is in having Scotty depart so soon either. What I think must have happened is: The storyline "arc" for the first season was probably already in place before Scotty was cast (I'm speculating here, don't hold me to anything!). My guess is Scotty was supposed to be a character who's purpose was to, more or less, introduce the idea that Kevin was a gay man, Kevin's uncomfortableness being "out", showing public displays of affection, etc. In other words, Scotty was not supposed to take on the life & the affection we feel for him. What couldn't be anticipated by writers creating a storyarc for main-character Kevin was that the CHEMISTRY between Scott & Kev would be so....winning and subtle and....alive! & playful (God, I'm gushing)...the sparks and little endearments that happen BY ACCIDENT due to casting were not foreseen... Taking the "gay issue" or sexual orientation off the table, Scotty & Kevin simply had (have)the most interesting, most nuanced & recognizably human interaction than any other couple on the show (this does not include the sibs as a whole: they are all these things in the small ways they play off each other). That's my theory. Who knew Luke MacFarlane would - through his own sweetness & strength of character - make Scotty the caterer become much more than he was supposed to be.

Or, it's code for: "We want to flesh out Kevin's personal life on the show and will hire actors who fit the roles created, irrespective of their sexual orientation."

But then again, I'm one to wait and see before I judge.

Wonderful episode and blog!

I think you should include the Whedon kids in your "Bio"s...they are part of the family after all!

Great show, great blog. On the one hand I cant wait for Sunday but on the other after Sun. we have to wait till Jan. sheesh. But on this Kevin/scotty topic im kinda glad they broke up, I love Kevin but honestly at this point from what iv seen of his character Scotty could do better.

Will, I think you hit the nail on the head. Luke MacFarlane and Matthew Rhy as Scotty and Kevin respectively do have great on-screen chemistry. I think that is why we have fallen for them as a couple and have a hard time dealing with the fall out of their relationship because we want to see them get through all the turbulent times...the ups and downs that relationship offers.

IMHO, I think it's Luke MacFarlane that really made for that lasting impression on us. I think if it were any other actor, we probably wouldn't care.

If you don't give me Scotty back, then I'll have to insist on Emily Van Camp as Rebecca.

Scott, gay actors are unlikely to get the part of Kevin's love interest. Right now gay roles are big for straight actors that want to turn heads and recieve critical acclaim.

Casting directors and producers are less careful in selecting parts for gay characters unlike for black, jewish, asian characters etc.

Hey guys, I'm just a big fan of the show, and now a big fan of the blog :) I just thought I'd share, haha.

Bring back Scotty! :)

Come on you guys - I love the show and I ask again - how old be Cliff Olin? I remember when Patricia Wettig was on Rosie a few years back and said he was 16. So at most he's like 23 or 24. Young for a writer, yes? Not to say he can't write but aren't there writers clamouring out there without the last name of Olin?
I'll give you a Canadian nickel if you actually publish this.

I haven't watched the show until tonight. Once again I have to see one more Jewish person in the media become "Christianized" to be more acceptable to the general populace. It is extrememly drifficult to see. There ARE tho9se of us (many) who are proud and happy to be of the Jewish faith (not just a culture) and fight every day to maintain our identity. Christmas is a wonderful time for many people and I wish them all a very happy holiday. Shame on you for finding it necessary to make a religion less (without any knowledge of it) just to fit you script.

I just watched Holiday Lights and was wondering what the name of the Yiddish song was? Where can i get the words?

What was that song that was playing in the background over the past couple minutes of this episode? I was a female vocalist and very haunting -- beautiful song!

Ok, I am going to change the subject a bit from Scotty and Kevin. My thoughts tend to go more towards Holly. Does anyone dislike this character as much as I do? I don't dislike her because she is the "other woman", I dislike her because her character is just annoying.
The character of Holly holds no interest for me. I don’t find her in any way interesting. She is just boring and annoying. Out of all the characters on this show she seems the most one dimensional to me. The sad other woman who keeps trying to hang on to something she could not completely have in the first place. I wish they could do something to either develop this character further into someone we can at least somewhat relate to and have interest and empathy for or just get rid of her altogether. It just feels like the character of Holly is mostly a vehicle for producer Ken Olin to create work for his wife. I vote to either do something to beef up this character or just phase her out and let us see the development of some of the other characters like Tommy and Sarah.

A better question than the ones asked above is why there are commercials after every scene. I love the show, but have felt increasingly bothered by the constant commercials;it takes away from the show- there had to be at least 8 breaks tonight. Is it really necessary to have breaks every 5 minutes?

What were you thinking? Last night's Xmas-Chanukah episode was a travesty! Uncle Sol just happens to have a yamulka in his pocket, recites a borucha incorrectly, and sings an inappropriate song. Mom is a liberal humanist who gave up Judaism but celebrates a christian holiday. Her granddaughter tries out Chanukah, but loves Xmas best. You made a joke out of Chanukah by playing with it. Very bad taste!

Thank you for a show that is current,believeable, loving, thought-provoking,sensitive, educational and so very entertaining !!!Great cast. I look forward to every episode.For your demographics: I am a married for 46 years, woman of 66 with 4 children who sees our relationships in every episode. Finally, a show that realates to real-life drama. Thanks.

Thanks for the great show. It is about time someone picked up my emotions since the end of Six Feet Under.

There is no other show around - cable or traditional tv - where the writing shows such intelligence, and the actors have such a gift for its delivery. Last night's show was tops - I would like to have Saul's dinner speach and song on tape - it was the most moving bit of television in a while.
I just voted in the PCA survey - everyone reading this blog should do the same.

Great show Sunday night! Loved how you incorporated both Jewish and Christian traditions. After every episode I am so dazzled by the caliber of your entire staff. The writers, actors, directors, set designers, costumers are ALL top-notch. You expect the veteran actors to blow you away, however, even the new-comers are fabulous. The little girl that plays Paige is simply fantastic.

On another note....you have a great catch in David Marshall Grant. I'm not as familiar with his writing as I am with his acting. I sure hope he hasn't given up acting completely.

I though your Chanukah / Christmas episode was good, up to a point. I really liked the way Paige was conflicted about her religion. I resented, though, fact that Nora said about lighting Chanukah candles something to the effect that she doesn't believe in meaningless religious rituals. huh? is she saying Judaism is meaningless? because all these years she's been celebrating Christmas. what's the message, guys?

what was that fantastic quote that Sally Fields said about secular humanists? I'd love to put it in my blog. thanks!

I have to say that I am very thankful for this show. I am the middle of seven and can see my family like this...minus the mistress, minus the stress of day to day life, but for the most part US. I have the whole family hooked and yes we even call during the commercials to talk about what will/should happen next.
Sally Field is my mom's favorate actress,and frankly she is a little over the top as Nora's character...all in all, I love this show and it is getting up there in what I watch, just like Grey's did.
I voted for you guys and hope that you win over Ugly Betty (another good show, but not as good as yours)
Happy Holidays

Quick question, guys. Did the actor playing Cooper change?
Maxwell Cotton isn't credited in the latest episode (Light the Lights) and a certain John Berg is and there are scenes with the little dude. The only John Berg I could find (uncanny) is an old dude that did not appear in the episode ;)
Thanks for answering

I absolutely LOVE this show. My Mom and I watch the show evey week and too call eachother at commercial breaks. This is my first blog and of all the shows I have ever watched this is the one that has got me hooked. Everything about the show is wonderful, from the writing to the acting. The one thing that I find amazing is how pasionate and loyal(HooHoo..HooHoo)and serious everyone is about the show. I mean the people who were upset about Kevin and the Military guy hooking up. I mean gays in the military....yeah cause that's something rare. The question of religon? Both got props, relax! Kitty not being "REALLY" conservative, she's on a fake show that spews political mubo jumbo...does anyone ever really listen? And lastly yes I agree, Holly has got to go, sorry Mrs. Olin but the Mistress can't possibley come out on top, I mean if that's the case then I'll put back on my Scarlette Letter. Happy Holidays and a safe New Year to everyone at Brothers & Sisters and the loyal fans.
PS I voted for ya-duh!

Great Show. Really liked "Light the lights" If anyone knows the answer: What was the name of the song Ron Rifkin Sang after he lit the Candles? I liked it a lot. Thanks to everyone!

Can anyone tell me the name of the song at the end of "Light the Lights." It sounds very much like the Imogen Heap song "Hide and Seek." It was perfect for that point in the show...just wanted to know who it was :)

I liked the cover of Gordon Lightfoot's "Song for a Winter's night" at the end of the last episode. It sounded like Sarah McLachlan - was it her?

My favorite new show this year. Need to know exactly what Sally Field (Nora) said to her granddaughter about Santa. It was perfect, I didn't write it down, and I wish I had. Please, anyone? Thanks!

LOVED the Light the Lights episode! Who performed the song while Ron Rifkin was talking about the miracle of the oil and before the prayer? Please tell him his rendition of the prayer was beautiful and moved me to tears. What a wonderful episode!

Sue and Trenton, it was Sarah McLachlan, and it is on her Wintersong album.

I love this show and I hate the stop and go thing they are doing at ABC. I was so looking forward to watching it tonight. (Sun. 17 ET) I can't wait for the next episode.
Thanks for the blog because at least that way we know what's going on and that the show hasn't been cancelled.

B&S; is my new favorite show. I cannot wait till next new episode. The acting is superb from all Characters. Most notabley Matthew Rhys!!! Keep up the good work!! Hard Luck on the Golden Globes!! Best wishes on the People choice awards. I know this show will shine , come Emmy time!

I love this show!I love Kevin and Justin`s characters! Kevin is so clever and witty, and Justin ( aside from being the hottest guy ever)has a glowing charm about him. I just wish that he wasn`t always played as the loser of the family.I`m really hoping that Justin can give up his drug addiction,and Kevin will understand more about his relashionship with Scotty. But their both great actors!

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