Who would have ever guessed when Eric Braeden stepped foot on The Young and the Restless set in 1980 that he’d still be there 36 years later? More importantly, who would have guessed he would still be in a sizzling front burner storyline?
German Roots During WWII
Braeden, the German actor whose real name is Hans Gudesgat, remembers the first years of World War II despite being a little boy at the time.
“It was a necessary war and it was a good war because Germany had succumbed to the mutterings of an utterly insane person — a German-first xenophobe that promised economic recovery and for the first five years he got,” he told The Sun-Herald in an interview. “It’s very comparable to what’s happening today in America because it’s a great country and it’s doing damn well — you know who were the first people he had put into camps? The journalists, so be aware of guys offering simple solutions to complex problems.”
Yes, Braeden is comparing Adolph Hitler to Donald Trump, the Republican presidential candidate who has banned various members of the press from attending his events if he doesn’t like what they right about him. Those he does allow, he keeps in a gated pen in the middle of his over-enthusiastic supporters.
Braeden even made his inferences very clear in the Sun-Herald interview.
“Yes, I’m talking about Adolf Hitler and Donald Trump,” he told the Sun-Herald. “So many people have escaped absolute desperation by coming to America —so, here we have the son of a rich man, a spoiled boy, and he finds the disenfranchised and panders to them, but people are starting to see through his bulls—. He’s going to make this country great again? This is the greatest (censored) country in the world.”
Braeden made sure to add that he does NOT think Trump is going to commit genocide like Hitler did.
A New Life in the U.S.
After the war, the actor made it to America and began an acting career as a young man. After appearing on such shows as Rat Patrol and Hawaii Five-O, he landed the role of Victor Newman, a man nearly as ruthless then as he is now. And, the rest, as they say, is history.
The Softer Side of Victor
When he wanted to extend his Genoa City stay, he asked Y&R creator and Executive Producer Bill Bell to give Victor a softer side. The tamer Victor came when he met stripper Nikki Reed (Melody Thomas Scott) and taught her how to be a lady. He then married her, and after several marriages and divorces, they’re still married today. How’s that for three decades of longevity.
All these years later, Braeden can happily say, “I love what I do.”
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