Love boat? It was more like a love-fest when the cast members of "The Love Boat" reunited on "The Talk" on Tuesday.
In fact, they were greeted by a group of super-fans — and by super-fans, we mean the "Talk" hosts dressed as characters from the iconic '80s series. And while they all looked pretty fabulous, a (temporarily) bald Julie Chen stole the show as Captain Stubing.
Gavin MacLeod, who played the Captain during the show's ten-season run, was first on stage, but he was soon joined by co-stars Bernie Kopell (who played Dr. Adam "Doc" Bricker), Ted Lange (bartender Isaac Washington), Fred Grandy (purser Gopher Smith), Lauren Tewes (cruise director Julie McCoy), and Jill Whelan (Vicki Stubing). Plus, Charo!
MacLeod started out by waxing poetic about his former TV family. "It was a gift to work with them," he told the hosts before adding, "They all had a specific talent."
But it wasn't always smooth sailing for the cast. Tewes was so broke when filming began that she had to borrow money to replace a tire so she could make it to the set, and Grandy wasn't sure it was even worth the effort.
[Related: 'The Love Boat's' Final Journey Turns Tragic]
"I didn't think we'd even get through the pilot," he quipped. "Critics hated it. They said it would sink like the Titanic." So what saved the show? In a name: Aaron Spelling. "He was the only guy… who really knew how all of you would bond with the show and create an iconic status," Grandy explained.
In fact, even MacLeod admitted that when his agent approached him with the script, he said, "It sucks. Do you want to read it?"
Listen to the "Love Boat" theme song right here:
Yet "The Love Boat" went on to become one of the most famous shows in history, and turned its actors into bona fide stars worldwide. So what have they been up to since the series ended? Pretty much everything you can think of.
Kopell, now 80, is still acting, and just guest starred on "Raising Hope." Lange is also still in Hollywood, directing syndicated sitcoms "The First Family" and "Mr. Box Office" — oh, and he's also written 23 plays. Tewes works as a sous chef, Whelan hosts a podcast, and MacLeod just penned a memoir entitled "This Is Your Captain Speaking."
And last but not least, Grandy served as a U.S. congressman for eight years before becoming president and CEO of behemoth charity Goodwill Industries and teaching public policy at the University of Maryland. (We know; this list makes us feel like we're kind of lazy too.)
The reunion concluded as any should — with original vocalist Jack Jones performing the "Love Boat" theme song and the cast popping countless bottles of Champagne. Okay, actually just the first part... but you never know what happened backstage.
"The Talk" airs weekdays at 2 p.m. on CBS.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Fred Grandy
- Lauren Tewes
- Gavin MacLeod