Chemical Reaction
By: Tony Calega
Soap Opera Weekly Magazine
July 25, 2000

Passions' TC and Eve had the perfect soap opera marriage – until her tawdry past came back to haunt her. Now, the beleaguered Eve – who used to bake cookies, prepare romantic meals and tend to her patients at the clinic and hospital – spends most of her time trying to keep her secrets buried. Meanwhile, TC, a coach at Harmony High, continues to view Eve as the perfect wife. Offscreen, things are less complicated for the actors who play Eve and TC, Tracey Ross and Rodney Van Johnson. We posed the following questions to both actors, separately.

What do you remember about your first scenes together?
TRACEY ROSS: It was obvious that he has a great sense of humor.
RODNEY VAN JOHNSON: The first scenes I had with her were unbelievable. I knew about her from Star Search. I was pretty much in awe of her. I was like, "You're Tracey Ross!" I was telling her for that time in the African-American community, she was like IT!

What is a word or phrase that no one would use to describe your co-star?
TR: Introverted.
RVJ: Evil. There is never anything bad coming out of Tracey's mouth.

What is a word or phrase that no one would use to describe you?
TR: Cruel.
RVJ: Serious.

What subject do you know the best?
TR: Classic literature.
RVJ: I know all subjects. I know everything.

What subject does your co-star know the best?
TR: How to be entertaining.
RVJ: She knows a lot about everything. Tracey reads a lot. She knows a lot from reading, and I know a lot from hard knocks.

What song would best describe your characters' relationship?
TR: Tainted Love.
RVJ: Puppy Love. There are a lot of feelings that we still have from when we were kids.

If the world ended tomorrow, what would you regret not having done?
TR: Whatever I could have done to make it not end, so that my son's life could go on.
RVJ: Man, I just had a son, and that question was posed to me last year. I said, "To leave this earth without having a child." I would honestly say that now, there is nothing. I mean, having my son has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. I'm content. If the world ended tomorrow, I would die a happy person. That would be my epitaph.

What would you say, besides the obvious, is the biggest difference between men and women?
TR: Men require action and challenge, women don't. Men are always looking to overcome the bad guy; Mother Nature put that there, so it must serve a very important purpose.
RVJ: We see things in fantasy and they see things in reality. Men don't really see what is going on until it is actually brought up to our faces and spelled out for us.

If you could live someone else's life for a day, whose would it be?
TR: (Laughs) Eva Tamargo Lemus (Pilar).
RVJ: Sidney Poitier, because he'd be the person that I would like to pattern my career after.

With which three people in history would you like to have a conversation?
TR: Jesus Christ, Ayn Rand and Thomas Jefferson.
RVJ: God would be the first one. My grandfather, who was very instrumental in my life and my father.

What do you miss most about being a child?
TR: When you're a kid you're so in the moment. You can look at a blade of grass, watch an ant crawl on it, and you're nowhere else but there. That's impossible to do as an adult, so that's what I miss.
RVJ: There is no responsibility when you are a child. I miss that.

What makes you see red?
TR: I hate when any group or politician asks you to do something for "the children." I feel that's manipulative, and that it never is about the children.
RVJ: Ignorance and hate. Any racial statement that is derogatory, whether to my race or any other race, is not acceptable to me.

If you weren't an actor, what would you be?
TR: An astronaut.
RVJ: I would be running and high-jumping in the Olympics and probably be a commentator somewhere.

Under what word would we find you in the dictionary?
TR: The first word that comes to mind is meddlesome (laughs), which doesn't sound very complimentary, does it? I find myself always wanting to straighten things out for people.
RVJ:Passionate I know that is a pun on Passions, but I am very passionate about everything that I do, whether it be driving to the store or learning my lines.

What would the title of your autobiography be?
TR: The Adventures of Tracey Ross.
RVJ: Here He Is. He's Having A Great Time. Don't You Want To Join Him?

What is your wish for the new millenium?
TR: That all people take responsibility for their actions.
RVJ: For my son to see a very loving and colorful world, and to be very happy.