B&B’s Patrick Duffy Chats with Soaps.com About Sheldon The Crab!
Two old friends debating topics of the day.
As previously posted on Soaps.com, Patrick Duffy (Stephen, B&B) has been filming short videos entitled, “Patrick Duffy & The Crab.” So far there are three in the series in which the iconic actor talks to his good friend Sheldon (who just so happens to be a crab) about eating a dime, Facebook and having a threesome with Courteney Cox.
These absurdly funny videos will leave you scratching your head wondering what it is you just watched, but as I learned when I recently had the pleasure of talking with Patrick, that’s exactly the point.
When asked what the videos are all about, Patrick likened them to “The Muppet Show.” “I sort of feel about the crab the way I feel about Miss Piggy and Kermit. In other words, I don’t want to think about the hand up there. I’m in love with Miss Piggy and Sheldon Krab has been my friend for as long as I can remember, and so based on that, my son and his wife, who are both writer/producers, decided to film the relationship of Patrick Duffy and his best friend and that’s what we decided to do and we are treating it strictly as that. We are just best friends. I’m not putting myself in the same category as a film star going on ‘The Muppet Show,’ but we’re treating it as that kind of relationship and it’s very interesting when you think that way and put subject matters, like a conversation about a threesome, when not only is a threesome a bit of an iffy proposition, but when one of them happens to be a crustacean it really changes the dynamics,” he chuckled.
Watching Patrick seriously debate issues with said crustacean is what makes the videos so hilarious and I wondered if while taping, he found himself breaking at the absurdity of it all. “Not while we were taping them so much. I mean there are a few outtakes I think, but sitting down and reading the scripts for the first time, it was, you know I’m sixty years old, I’m so out of the relevant loop that even the subject matters, I would listen to myself saying it and I’m thinking, ‘What am I talking about here?’ And my son would say, ‘Don’t worry Dad. This is great stuff,'” he laughed. “And then I just trusted him, both him and Emily Cutler, his wife. Then we actually sat down and started filming with Sheldon, it was, inside my mind, I’m always thinking while I’m working, inside my mind I’m going, ‘This is funny to just not play it as funny at all.’ I just love it.”
Since B&B has helped promote the videos by posting them on their website, Patrick expressed his gratitude towards his Daytime family. “I must say I’m so grateful to The Bold and the Beautiful people because they got on board with it. They don’t have to do that. They don’t have to say boo about these things, but they thought it was cute enough to give us a little bump and it’s much appreciated and here I am speaking to you because of it.”
While his son, Conor Duffy, and daughter-in-law, wrote, produced and directed the series of videos, the crab itself has been in the family for some time, as he starred in a play written by Patrick’s other son, Padraic, at his theatre company Sacred Fools.
As for the voice of Sheldon The Crab, although you may think you recognize it, Patrick prefers to keep the actor’s identity a secret. “I like the mystery, but most people go, ‘I know that voice.’” Even though they want to keep the anonymity of the actor in tact, Patrick assured me “He’s totally up for just being that voice." He then added, "He’s under the couch in the most ungodly positions to get his hands up there and he is actually the crab. He’s not just doing a voiceover.”
There have only been three videos posted so far, but Patrick let me know there were at least three more to come. While there has been tons of speculation online as to what these videos are actually about, with some people believing they are an advertisement for something, Patrick relayed that isn’t the case and he’s happy that most people are taking them for what they are, which is, “Just a bizarre piece of reality, with Sheldon The Crab as viable as Patrick Duffy.”
“We have no hidden agenda here,” he stated. “What we’d like to do, it doesn’t cost us more than just renting equipment to film them, so we’d like to just continue to do them and plunk them out there and keep the mythology alive.”
Part of that mythology involves creating a whole back story for Sheldon complete with mock production shots of Patrick and Sheldon performing various stage plays together, including works by Noel Coward, Eugene O’Neill and Shakespeare, with Sheldon playing Ophelia to Patrick’s Hamlet. Sheldon Krab (yes spelled with a K) even has his own Facebook page where you can see these photos.
As for B&B, Patrick can again be seen as the Logan patriarch Stephen on June 24 and 25. When asked how he feels about just popping up here and there on the soap, Duffy replied, “I enjoy it very much. I live in Oregon and it’s the perfect way to stay in touch. My children and grandchildren are all here in Los Angeles, so every once in awhile Brad (Bell, Head Writer/Executive Producer) will call, 'Are you available?' I’ll say yes and all of a sudden there’s an episode with me in it and I come down. I love working with the cast. John McCook (Eric) is like an instant best buddy. I love all my children and Susan (Flannery, Stephanie) and I go all the way back to ‘Dallas’ days and [it’s nice] to pop in for one or two episodes and then go back to the ranch. It’s the perfect life. I would actually, I’m not campaigning for it, but I’d like to be as much involved in the scripts as they want me to be, of course. It’s prefect for me.”
However, it’s not all talking with fake crabs and B&B for this actor, as Patrick is currently shooting a Hallmark Channel movie in Los Angeles and will be part of an untelevised panel at the TV Academy dedicated to television fathers in honor of Father’s Day.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the “Patrick Duffy & The Crab” videos here and here and if you’re on Facebook, friend Shel Krab, if only to see the fantastically humorous still shots of him and Patrick in their theatre productions. You won’t be disappointed.
- Lori Wilson