Hello, Hearties! Happy #WonderWednesday! If you’ve been following social media or the news, then I know this is a bit of a sad day. But let’s not focus on the negative. Let’s send up some prayers, be cautiously optimistic, and distract ourselves with some fun pleasantries.

And, if you were here last Wednesday, then you might be expecting those pleasantries to come in the form of part 2 of that hilariously unique interview with Ben Rosenbaum (Mike Hickam) and Andrea Brooks (Faith Carter). Well, expect no longer, because here it is! As a continuation of their same-day birthday celebration, here are Ben and Andrea answering the questions about themselves. (If you need a refresher, look at last Wednesday’s post where “the birthday twins” answered questions for each other to see how well they know each other. Hilarious!) I won’t keep you waiting any longer. Here they are!

 

Ben’s responses about himself:

1. What has been your most embarrassing moment on set?
Andrea’s answer was very generous and kind. Honestly we work on a very fun and friendly set so I don’t find myself getting embarrassed very much, but every year some new member (or members) of the crew mistakes me for a background actor and tells me I’m not allowed on some part of the set with the other principle actors. It’s always pretty funny to me. Hickam flies below the radar.

2. What is your favorite part of being your character? Most challenging part?
Again, Andrea is incredibly generous and kind. Hickam gets a lot of great little moments, often comedic, and I love peppering those into the show. I just love being on set working with this cast and crew! It’s a fun group and we don’t take ourselves too seriously.

3. If you could write one storyline for your character, what would it be?
Hickam gets a bonk on the head, and when he comes to he sees and hears everyone in Hope Valley like he’s watching a musical. I can’t claim that idea, they did it on Scrubs to great effect, but I’d love to see it with our cast!

4. What is your favorite place to eat?
“Ben loves 33 Acres in Vancouver! We both love the number 3 for a lot of reasons!”

Andrea is absolutely right! I love this spot and I love their name!

5. What is your favorite non-WCTH project you’ve been in?
“Ben has done a lot of theatre throughout his career. I imagine his favorite non-Hallmark related project would be something from the stage. Also- He worked on American Horror Story! That’s pretty neat!”

True! I’ve loved every play I’ve been in!

6. What is your favorite movie?
This is the only one where Andrea was way off, but I’m the one who feels wrong. I’m embarrassed to admit I had to Google Errol Morris when I saw Andrea’s answer to this question…

As I said in my answer for Andrea, my favorite movie (when forced to choose one) is The Shawshank Redemption.

7. What is your favorite vacation spot or activity?
“I can see it now! Ben… in Spain… surrounded by amazing architecture… while playing chess… with an espresso in hand.”

That sounds pretty great! Sign me up for that trip!

8. Who calls or texts first to wish the other Happy Birthday?
I’m still going to say Andrea here.

9. What is your hidden talent?
Again Andrea was SUPER kind and generous. I’m far from a chess expert. I’m a decent juggler, and Hrothgar (Ned Yost) is a fantastic juggler!

10. If you could give one piece of advice to anyone, what would you say?
Work hard and be kind.

 

Andrea’s responses for herself:

1. What has been your most embarrassing moment on set?
I think I somehow already managed to cover this in my last response about Ben. That just goes to show who’s the more embarrassing person out of the two of us!

2. What is your favorite part of being your character? Most challenging part?
I love getting to work on a show with so many good friends. It’s wonderful being able to play a character over such a long period of time. I love seeing all of our characters grow, and change with each passing season. Working on two shows simultaneously can result in a bit of a scheduling challenge, but I’m not complaining! 🙂

3. If you could write one storyline for your character, what would it be?
I’m just going to copy/paste Ben’s response because I think this is a BRILLIANT idea!

“I am envisioning an episode in which an outbreak of some illness renders many in the town out of commission—including Dr. Carson! Now Faith has to rally the healthy members of the town and organize the medical response to save the day!”

4. What is your favorite place to eat?
Ben’s right! Coffee shops are my go to (especially if they sell fresh almond croissants).

5. What is your favorite non-WCTH project you’ve been in?
Supergirl!

6. What is your favorite movie?
I love old Hollywood films. I have a poster of Mildred Pierce in my wall, so I’ll go with that.

7. What is your favorite vacation spot or activity?
Ben is pretty spot on with this one! I love to relaxing on beaches AND I love crazy adventures!

8. Who calls or texts first to wish the other Happy Birthday?
I think it’s fair to say we are both pretty on top of this. It’s fair to say that neither of us will ever forget the other one’s birthday!

9. What is your hidden talent?
I speak French… But building battle bots is now officially on my bucket list.

10. If you could give one piece of advice to anyone, what would you say?
Always be kind!

 

A million thanks to both of you! It has been so much fun seeing a different side of your personalities…even if the other person had made it up. 😀 It’s obvious you’re very good friends, and that makes you being birthday twins all the better.

And the rest of you, have a good day. Good luck with the rest of your week! Come back on Friday for Andrea/Faith’s turn at #FlashbackFriday. I have an idea of my pick, but what Faith moment is your favorite? Let me know! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Let me guess, you were chopping onions when that scene popped up too, right? Because I refuse to admit how much it affected me…oh, okay, you twisted my arm! I’ll say it! Oh my goodness! That was so beautiful! Was it in any spoilers, because I hadn’t seen it. I remember thinking, “Huh…they didn’t do ‘time with Jack’ this week.” Then when Bill told Elizabeth that Jack’s hard work in the Northern Territories was paying off, I thought that was how they were doing it this week. When Elizabeth told Baby Jack she had someone special for him to meet, (and I love that she called him “Smiley”,) I was completely clueless. My eyes were glued to the tube, wondering who on earth it could be. I think I even held my breath because when Sergeant came into the frame, I gasped, and didn’t have much air to take in. So we still got our time with Jack, and I sincerely hope we SO many more seasons so we can see little Jack become best friends with his daddy’s horse. And one more note: did you notice that the music playing in the background during her ride was the same cue from the Season 3 memory montage when Jack had pneumonia? I found that very poignant!

Quick little in-between observation I thought was so hilarious: when Florence, Ned, and Molly were clucking like chickens in the street, Florence called Lucas’s music “quite provocative” while simultaneously tugging down on her overcoat. The very mention of said tunes make her feel immodest. Such a perfect gesture loaded with subtext. I was reminded of Scarlett O’Hara saying of Rhett Butler, “He looks as if he knew what I look like without my shimmy.” Then all 4 present quickly look at Abigail, because, of course, it’s up to her to solve the issue. 😀

Carson and Faith: wow, that’s opening a can of worms, isn’t it? I can tell from the posts and comments I saw on the main page. First of all, I guess that crosses Dr. Shepherd off the list of Elizabeth’s potentials, unless the plot line takes a SEVERE turn! Personally, I was never actually gunning for #TeamInfirmary, but I thought they’d be cute if the story went that way. I saw lots of people saying they couldn’t feel the chemistry. No, they may not be electric like Jack and Elizabeth were, but it’s a totally different circumstance. He’s a widower, completely out of practice, and treading very carefully, even in the risk-taking. Faith has had her share of romantic disappointment in the past, and probably not wanting any repeats. They’re also both sweet, quiet, private people, and that’s exactly how I saw them play it out. Besides, give the man some credit. He surprised her with a picnic! Gotta count for something! And them playing out that chemistry gave us some really great scenes. We got poor Hickam caught in the middle of their fishing expedition (for clear communication). Not only was that a hilarious scene with Ben’s flawless facial expressions going back and forth, but it was also an awesomely rare time when we get the birthday twins onscreen together. The other is behind-the-scenes. If you saw this on social media, you’ll know what I mean. Paul made Martin Cummins (Gowen) jump out of his skin at his trailer on his birthday. Martin said of himself, “I have a very long memory.” So he hid behind the infirmary door, and scared Paul half to death while he was filming the scene where Carson asks Faith to take a risk. Classic prank war! 😀

I also saw some say the kiss was too soon. That’s interesting…I hadn’t really thought about it. When I did, here’s what I came up with: things were already turning that direction in Season 5, so it’s not brand new. They’re also a couple in the supporting cast, so there’s not going to be as much buildup. And with the protesters raising their signs that Elizabeth shouldn’t have a new love interest right away, we need SOME fresh romance. Plus, I think we should be happy things are moving quickly with a couple when so many others (who shall remain nameless ) have been dragged through molasses. 😉

I’ll end with Bill. Man, I lost my breath with him too, but for different reasons. I was so surprised when he body slammed that judge against his own bookshelf, but I guess I shouldn’t have been. That’s our Bill: Fighter for Justice and Protector of Hope Valley! Jack Wagner said on Home and Family that he checked with the actor to question him being alright with the shove, especially since he’s older. Apparently, to Jack’s pleasant surprise, he was all in, and very committed to making it a good scene.

Go from being the one in charge to the one the bullets are charging at! That whole interchange was so funny! I’m sure it was funny to Bill as a character, being shot at AFTER announcing his identity. But good for him for taking the time to restore Jeremiah’s confidence in his guiding abilities, especially when he’s in such a rush to catch the gun runners. Hey, those words ended up being instrumental in saving his life! I doubt Jeremiah would have stepped in otherwise. Best line of the episode that he said? “Come on, boys! It’s a long ride to jail!”

Well, I liked it. I hope you did too! Leave a comment, and tell me what you thought. I would truly love to read what you think. I hope this gave you something fun to read on this cloudy and rainy #MondayMusings (at least in Texas). Have a good one, and I’ll see you Wednesday for Part Two. “Of what”, you ask? Come find out! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Hi, everyone! Welcome to a very special day, because…IT’S FRIDAY!!! And as we’re celebrating the birthday week of two very special people, I thought a #FlashbackFriday was in order. Today we’ll spotlight Ben, then next Friday we’ll take a look at an Andrea moment.

So today, let’s travel back in time, all the way back to Season 2. Which episode, you ask? Answer: S2E6 “Awakenings and Revelations”, when dear sweet Hickam builds Rosemary her rustic stage in the woods so she can impress Lee into building a theater in Hope Valley. Hickam really is a puppy dog when it comes to Rosemary’s beckon call. He’s so willing to do anything she requests. You can tell he’s scared to death! Lee has just gotten to town, and Hickam hasn’t had the job at the sawmill very long. Everyone is still basically on trial, and he doesn’t want to lose such a coveted job. When Rosemary insists she doesn’t want Lee to find out the surprise, poor Mike looks like he’s about to be sick! He says, “Yeah, me neither.” He sits up a little straighter when Rosemary promises she won’t let Lee fire him, but he’s still shaky. However, resistance IS futile. Hickam realizes this when they strike hands on the bargain, (him very reluctantly,) and he says, “Miss Rosemary, you are one hard woman to say ‘no’ to.” Good thing he didn’t see Lee coming out of Abigail’s with Jack, or he may have dropped dead from a heart attack then and there!

She lied! Rosemary lies to the man! She specifically says, “It’s just this one favor.” That’s NOT true. Hickam gets roped into being her stage hand too! Literally! He has to draw the curtain open. And start the music on the Victrola. And applaud on the sidelines while the sparks fly between Rosemary and Lee. You can see his trepidation as he timidly parts the curtain, and confesses his involvement. I can only imagine the character’s relief when Lee says he’s not upset; like an anvil had been lifted off his back. Thank heaven Lee is empathetic to the situation of trying to deny Rosemary anything! At least they’re warmer than Rosemary is in that strapless gown. You can see her breath the entire scene! I don’t know how she kept herself from shivering!

Well, Hearties, it’s short and sweet today. Have a lovely weekend! Maybe this has inspired you to revisit an old episode or two. And of course, enjoy the newest episode coming our way soon! See you Monday! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Hello, Hearties! Happy Wednesday, and welcome to #WonderWednesday! I’m SO glad you could join us, because this is a VERY special post! As most of you know, Sunday was the birthday of not one, but two of our wonderful and talented stars: Ben Rosenbaum (Mike Hickam) and Andrea Brooks (Faith Carter). If you’ve tuned in to the blog in the past year, you know I like to spotlight the stars for their birthday. Well, last year, I didn’t find out about these two until their birthday had passed. 🙁 I vowed I would blog about them the following year, and here we are! But even better, we get to hear from THEM! Ben and Andrea generously gave of their time, and consented to a special interview with me so I could REALLY highlight them! Then Ben, brilliant man that he is, had the idea that they should answer for each other, and see how well the “birthday twins” know each other. So without further ado, may I present Ben and Andrea, and their “knowledge” about one other!

 

Ben [writing about Andrea]

1. What has been her most embarrassing moment on set?

Andrea is a pretty cool cat who’s not easily embarrassed in my experience… which is good because a lot of her scenes are with Paul Greene who has the energy of a mischievous puppy on set and loves pranking people! Andrea is super fun and can hang with the goofiest, but she’ll always snap back to professional mode when she’s needed in a scene.

2. What is her favorite part of being Faith? Most challenging part?

From the beginning I think Andrea’s favorite part of playing Nurse Faith was portraying a woman with a strong sense of purpose and the drive to help others. I remember Andrea telling me early on that when she got the role she jumped right into researching period accurate medicine to bring authenticity to her performance; so much so that I think I remember her telling me she made herself a little queasy in the process! She’s a dedicated actor!

3. If she could write one storyline for her character, what would it be?

I am envisioning an episode in which an outbreak of some illness renders many in the town out of commission—including Dr. Carson! Now Faith has to rally the healthy members of the town and organize the medical response to save the day!

4. What is her favorite place to eat?

Matchstick coffee is a favorite spot for food and coffee. It’s a double whammy.

5. What is her favorite non-WCTH project she’s been in?

Andrea is currently on another SUPER successful series right now, so she’s living the actor dream of balancing two awesome jobs at once! Super Girl takes place in a world with super heroes and is set in the present day, so it obviously makes for a pretty different experience playing in that world. Very cool to get to do both!

6. What is her favorite movie?

Andrea and I have a lot of shared interests, so I’m going to assume she and I have the same favorite film: The Shawshank Redemption. That’s obviously not a family friendly movie recommendation, so don’t rent that one with your kids!

7. What is her favorite vacation spot or activity?

Andrea is a very well-traveled individual. She has a genuine wanderlust and interest in seeing new lands and cultures (i.e. backpacking across a foreign country), but I know she’s also happy to be relaxing in the beauty of some tropical island on a beach…

So I’m going to say her ideal vacation would be climbing a volcano immediately followed by a visit to the hot springs and a stay at the beach in Costa Rica.

8. Who calls or texts first to wish the other Happy Birthday?

Definitely Andrea. I’ve resorted to texting her in advance so I’m not always coming in second, but on the actual day she still beats me to it every time.

9. What is her hidden talent?

She’s super smart, so I’m going to say she builds battle bots and operates them in amateur underground robot combat tournaments. That’s just a guess, but it sounds like it might be right… right?

10. If she could give one piece of advice to anyone, what would she say?

“Don’t go swimming within 30 minutes after eating!”

 

 

Andrea [writing about Ben]

1. What has been his most embarrassing moment on set?

Well… This definitely does not count as an embarrassing story for Ben, but it involves both of us (and it’s embarrassing for me). This one time after work, a group of the cast mates were hanging out. While on route to our next location, I almost walked directly into a huge pole. By this I mean… I was literally inches away from smashing my face and causing some serious damage. Ben swooped in like Superman and stepped between the pole and myself. THANK YOU BEN!

2. What is his favorite part of being Mike? Most challenging part?

Ben is an extremely talented actor and he has impeccable comedic timing. I know for a fact that he has a lot of fun with the humorous Hickam moments.

3. If he could write one storyline for his character, what would it be?

It would definitely involve Hickam saving the day!

4. What is his favorite place to eat?

Ben loves 33 Acres in Vancouver! We both love the number 3 for a lot of reasons!

5. What is his favorite non-WCTH project he’s been in?

Ben has done a lot of theatre throughout his career. I imagine his favorite non-Hallmark related project would be something from the stage. Also- He worked on American Horror Story! That’s pretty neat!

6. What is his favorite movie?

I feel like I should know this answer. I’m going to make an educated guess and say an Errol Morris documentary? Thin Blue Line perhaps?

7. What is his favorite vacation spot or activity?

I can see it now! Ben… in Spain… surrounded by amazing architecture… while playing chess… with an espresso in hand.

8. Who calls or texts first to wish the other Happy Birthday?

I’ll give this one to Ben. He wished me a happy birthday a few days BEFORE March 3rd. Next year I’ll message him a week before, and I’ll win.

9. What is his hidden talent?

Ben can juggle!! He’s quite good. Just ask Hrothgar (aka the fabulous Ned Yost). Ben is also an expert chess player. Seriously. You should challenge him.

10. If he could give one piece of advice to anyone, what would he say?

“Go for it!”

 

Thank you both SO MUCH! All the #Hearties hope you had incredible birthday celebrations…besides an incredible WCTH episode. Well, they didn’t too badly, don’t you think? Next week we’ll find out what the other thought, and hopefully discover the real answers. This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom! 

Well Hearties, I don’t know about you, but I was VERY pleased with last night’s episode! Baby Jack, (mine, not Elizabeth’s) was up at 2:00 this morning, so I thought, “Why not?” I was going to be up anyway. And I loved it! Last week’s episode felt slightly stiff; I’d call it introductory, like they were dipping their toes in to test the uncharted waters. But this one felt like a classic WCTH episode, and included everything it should: an impeccable blend of storylines from the town and from the school, highlights on pretty much all the main characters, a new character in town to spice things up, and just the right amount of mystery and intrigue; not to mention a great cliffhanger to keep us craving more. And, there was a lovely little sprinkle of Elizabeth talking to Jack to keep his memory alive. There were also, in my opinion, more in-depth connections between characters. It was, in word, pretty much perfect.

I only had one complaint about the entire thing, and it’s very minor. It’s the “vegetable” of today’s post. I would have preferred that Timmy had said “bicycle” instead of “bike”, but that’s it! Speaking of Timmy, hasn’t he grown! Wow! Amazing what time does! His uncertainty in his abilities reminded me a lot of his struggle in Season 4, when he was scared to play the piano in front of everyone. But once again, Elizabeth worked her magic, and helped him succeed! Very cleverly too, I might add. You know, I think I’ve said this before, so forgive me if I repeat myself. As devastated as I am that we lost Jack, it does actually help the plot historically. If Jack was still alive, it would be harder for Elizabeth to keep her teaching career after Baby Jack was born, especially since Jack was a full-time Mountie. But now, she needs to keep working to support her son. Even if she does have a widow’s pension, she’ll need the money. So it fits, and we can keep having plots like this one.

Since I brought him up, I love our “time with Jack” that we’ve had at the beginning of each episode, even the Christmas special. They’re really doing a fabulous job to make sure Jack is not forgotten, and they’re really reflecting Elizabeth’s healing process. I love it when she says she could remember “the joy in your love” not just the “grief in your passing”. And of course, she’s making sure Baby Jack becomes “a man of honor and integrity, with the capacity for eternal love.” My favorite line of that sequence is “Here you are: part him, part me, all you!” That just about sums up children, doesn’t it?

There was a new title sequence! Oh my gosh! I was completely taken aback! But I liked it. New theme for new beginnings. Also, Abigail is much more attractive when she’s genuinely smiling, and given her matriarchal role in so many areas, I like her being introduced with her hair pinned up. That’s just me though. Now the question is, will it change further on the episode that introduces Mountie Nathan?

Okay, time for the new man! Goodness, he’s a slippery fish; pun intended! He kept us guessing the whole time, didn’t he? Elizabeth’s line rings very true: “I don’t know what to make of him. By the looks of it, neither do you.” Calling himself “a rogue and a scoundrel”, and suggesting “a tar and feathering is in order”; implying he doesn’t speak French to Rosemary, then speaking “impeccable” French to the mysterious female caller from New Orleans; insisting to Bill that his intentions in Hope Valley are “honorable”, but hiding guilty expressions in the shadows and secret money in the ice. Whew! What a roller coaster. And his introductions were all done very well. The first one with the coin and the scoundrel bit, then him basically handing Elizabeth a job on a platter with no knowledge of her, (and sticking his foot in his mouth in the process, then him balking at talk of San Francisco with Fiona, THEN the French with Rosemary. That’s a lot of introductions, and a lot of mystery! I honestly cannot wait to see more!

Speaking of foot in mouth, good for Carson acknowledging and rectifying the situation with Faith. His conversation with Lee was classic “married guy gives advice to guy who’s been single too long.” Lee’s reactions were flawless! His laughter at the “rookie mistakes”, beautiful! Then he shows just how much he knows by saying that “one of the perks of marriage” is getting to eat his wife’s leftovers. 😀

I’ll end with a quick note about Henry and Abigail, and Jesse and Clara. Believe it or not, I actually wish Henry HAD asked Abigail to dance, but his hesitation made for good drama. And Jesse, I think he’s got the Almanzo syndrome from Little House on the Prairie: his pride is hurt because his lady is earning money to help their life get started. He seemed okay with it by the end, but we’ll see…

Well, those are some of the Hooked Heartie’s reflections on last night’s episode. Of course I couldn’t do them all, but that was most of them. Hope you all don’t chew your nails into stubs waiting for the next one. Just remember, we’re in this together! Love to you all! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!