Rebecca Herbst offers insight into her alter ego

What do you like the best about the character of Liz? “I like that most of the time, especially over the past few years, Liz puts her children first. She definitely is mama bear when it comes to her boys and she works her tail off to be a great single mom. She’s done it for years and years on her own and I think that’s her best quality, that she loves her boys fiercely and will do anything for them.”

What do you dislike about her? “Well, I dislike that she sometimes forgets how people have hurt her and she moves past that really quickly instead of holding people accountable. Especially with Nikolas — Nikolas has done some pretty shady things with Liz, and yet she still invites him into her life.”

What family member is Liz closest to? “Her brother [Steve] and her Grams, Audrey. Audrey was always there for her and welcomed her into her home when she showed up in Port Charles and was really instrumental in helping her raise her children.”

What do you consider Elizabeth’s signature storyline? “The Liz and Lucky romance. I think that’s what got most of the viewers hooked on Liz, was that very sweet and innocent relationship that she had with Lucky. It was true soap opera romance. The writers did such an amazing job. Back then, we had Michele Val Jean [on the writing team], who took such great care of Elizabeth and wrote for her beautifully. That storyline was precious.”



Who would she be most likely to turn to for advice? “I think Terry — but if she was in trouble, she would go to Laura. She and Laura have a special bond that can’t be broken. They’ve been through hell and back together, with the ‘deaths’ of their sons, Liz dating and marrying Lucky. If it was work drama, she would go to Terry; if it was personal, she would go to Laura.”

What was the happiest time in her life? “I think there were a few times. I think she was the happiest being a teenager with Lucky; I think Lucky really showed her love for the first time. I don’t think she received that unconditional love from her parents and Lucky really showed her what love is and embraced her. So, as a child, Lucky was a really bright spot in her life. And then there were some brief moments where she was especially happy with Jason. Jason took care of her, protected her and I think she really loved that because she was not protected by her parents. She felt very safe with him, even though that was short-lived. But the longest time that she was the happiest was with Franco. There was not really drama between Liz and Franco; any drama was happening around them. The two of them were solid for many, many years, so I think that was her longest period of happiness.”



What was the worst time in her life? “Definitely the rape, way back in 1998. That was the most difficult time in her life because she had just arrived in Port Charles, she was a child, that happened to her and she didn’t have adult support, mainly from her parents. All of her support came from Lucky, but her sister kind of abandoned her, her parents abandoned her and then that happened and there was no resolve from it.”

How do you imagine Elizabeth spends her down time? “Probably much like how I spend my down time, which is taking care of the kids, cleaning, laundry. I think she’s probably super-busy taking care of her home and is probably just constantly picking up after her children [laughs].”

What life event had the biggest impact on Liz’s evolution? “Not to be redundant, but when she was raped. She came into Port Charles this snotty little rebel child and that event changed her life forever.”

Not that she’s had that many careers, but what has been your favorite job of hers? “Oh, I love that she’s a nurse! I think that shows her caring and compassionate side. That really suited her personality and at times it can redeem her when she makes really stupid life decisions or lets people back into her life. It’s nice to see her in a very human form, and nursing brings that out in her.”

Who do you think Liz admires or would consider a role model? “She admires Laura, definitely. Laura has been a rock in Elizabeth’s life. Bobbie is another one. Bobbie has also been super-instrumental in Elizabeth’s growth and has been there for her.”

What three words would best describe Elizabeth? “Compassionate, trusting — to a fault — and maternal.”

What Elizabeth storyline or era would be fun to get to do all over again? “Maybe the era with Jason, because that was always a stop-and-start sort of relationship/storyline. To be able to really play that out and see a relationship form between the two of them and have there be some sort of longevity to that would be fun, and I know a lot of viewers would enjoy seeing that.”

If your character could go back in time and change one decision, what would it be? “The decision to sleep with Nikolas! That was kind of a big mess-up for her. It was not the best time in her life and I know that she probably regrets that to this day.”



How would you sum up the way Liz has evolved in the years that you’ve been playing her? “Well, coming into Port Charles as this bratty little rebel child, she has definitely grown into a more consistent and confident woman. I think when she first came to Port Charles, she didn’t value relationships, because that wasn’t modeled for her, and now she does, because she’s been loved by Lucky and Jason and Franco. She understands the value of relationship and I think that’s probably her biggest growth.”


Would you live in your character’s house? “I love her kitchen, love how they did that. Is it really conducive to having three children? Probably not! Otherwise, Elizabeth’s style is not like mine, at all. I have a little more color in my house; her house is very neutral. I love a pop of color! And I decorate for the season, so I get new pillows and bedding out for every season and like to switch it up. Elizabeth’s house always just kind of stays the same.”

Would you wear Elizabeth’s wardrobe? “Most of the time, no. If Elizabeth isn’t in scrubs, she’s in some kind of heel, and that is not me. I do not wear heels on the regular. My style is a little more casual, with baggy T-shirts and yoga pants. I like to be comfortable. I wear a lot of baseball caps; I’m not doing my hair every morning and putting a full face of makeup on. I do like when she gets in dresses; I like dresses, too, so that’s something I can relate to. But she is always in heels, and when I’m in my house, I’m a barefoot girl, which Elizabeth is not.”

Which character from Elizabeth’s past would you most welcome returning to the canvas? “I really loved having Rebecca Budig [ex-Hayden] on the show. Aside from me, personally, absolutely loving Rebecca and having a friendship with her and how every time I got to work with her, I had a great day, I think Elizabeth also really enjoyed having a sister and having that family connection. It was nice because they didn’t start out as friends but they build a friendship and a relationship. I would really love to have her back.”



What do you miss about the Franco/Liz dynamic? “I definitely miss that Elizabeth could completely let her guard down with Franco. She doesn’t have that availability with her other people in her life; she’s always a little guarded. But with Franco, she could say whatever she wanted to say, there was no censoring, there was no hiding her feelings, she could be completely honest. That was a really beautiful dynamic between the two of them, that they were that comfortable with each other.”

What relationship of Liz’s would you like to see further explored? “The Elizabeth/Sam relationship. Kelly [Monaco, Sam] and I have been friends for a gazillion years and she and I work really well together. Outside of being personal friends — I absolutely love her and we just have a really nice, easy, respectful working relationship and Sam and Liz have so many layers to their friendship. They’ve bounced back and forth from being friends enemies to friends but I think they really get each other and really understand what the other is going through. If I had my druthers, I would definitely keep Sam and Liz more in each other’s orbits, for sure.”

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