Bernie Kopell shut down when 'The Love Boat' ended

"I said, come on, wake up, there's life that's still going on."

When a successful show ends, there are a few people who can take the news hard. Of course, fans are bummed out about never seeing any new episodes of their favorite show again. However, the cast and crew are most affected by the change.

This was the case for The Love Boat actor Bernie Kopell, who played Dr. Adam Bricker and is one of the few cast members who appeared on every episode in the show's nine seasons. There are a few reasons why the actor shut down when The Love Boat ended.

Before snagging this crucial role in his career, the writer and actor went through a bit of discouragement when he couldn't find gigs. Kopell also had an agent that would often send him to audition for roles that were already filled. To survive in Los Angeles, he had to drive taxis and attempt to sell vacuums.

Life started to take a turn for the best when he got a minor part on a CBS daytime soap opera called The Brighter Day. The role was the beginning of his successful acting journey that spans fifty-plus years.

The Love Boat was the longest-running role Kopell had, providing him with the opportunity to live the Hollywood dream. Yet, when it ended, reality became different. In an interview with The Television Academy, he detailed how rough it was for him to move on for a while.

"I shut down when it was over. It was actually 13 years because we did ten years and then three two-hour specials," he began. "You think this is going to go on forever. I mean, they flew us, first class, all over the world on 747s."

Kopell spoke about the perks of being on a show like The Love Boat. He said the cast had particular advantages when flying. They didn't have to wait in lines to be checked in and were taken to first-class lounges. He joked that since they weren't treated like regular passengers, they probably could've gotten away with murder. All of that changed when the show ended.

"And then you come down to the real world, and it's a very different place. So, I shut down for a while," the actor revealed. "And then, I started doing plays. I said, come on, wake up, there's life that's still going on. So it can be a challenge when something like that ends."

He also spoke about how some actors can't find the motivation to keep going after a show goes off. "There's a list of people that when their shows go off, they go off. But being a mature adult, I said, okay, it's time to move on. That's over with."

Kopell said that The Love Boat is a gift that keeps giving and will always be a part of him. Even though it took him some time to move on, his success continued.

He even appeared on eight episodes of CBS' sitcom B Positive in 2021.

Watch The Love Boat on MeTV!

Sundays at 5 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
 
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
Close

14 Comments

cns220 2 months ago
Don't forget, he was Darren's co worker & neighbor on That Girl!
Moverfan cns220 2 months ago
I think you mean Don. The only Darren I ever saw on TV was on Bewitched.
bagandwallyfan52 2 months ago
Bernie Kopell was a great bad guy on
GET SMART WHERE HE PLAYED
SIEGFRIED THE TOP MAN AT KAOS.DON
ADAMS WAS ALSO WONDERFUL AS
MAXWELL SMART.
cperrynaples 2 months ago
Fun Fact: Bernie was the only Get Smart performer who was in the Steve Carrell movie!
tootsieg 2 months ago
Thank you for the enjoyable article. I often wondered how one goes from a job with perks beyond your wildest dreams to what to do after the bubble bursts.
NickG 2 months ago
So after Love Boat he did or didn’t try murder? He was also very good on Get Smart.
MrsPhilHarris 2 months ago
He was on That Girl and Doris Day too.
KendallMarine 2 months ago
One of my all time favorite shows. My wife and I watch often on Pluto TV. They have their own channel where you can stream the show 24/7.
Rick 2 months ago
"acting journey that spans fifty-plus decades"

Wow, after 500 years I'd shut down, too.
justjeff Rick 2 months ago
You caught that too, eh? Bernie must be SO tired...
mpatrick Rick 2 months ago
I thought the same thing, Rick. I plan to retire after 400 years.
Moverfan mpatrick 2 months ago
Just make sure you don't set that in stone--when you get to 350 years, you may feel differently.
Runeshaper 2 months ago
I'm sure it's tough to move on when consistency falls out from under you. I'm glad Bernie did though (-:
Michael 2 months ago
Get Smart, When Things Were Rotten, That Girl, The Doris Day Show, The New Temperatures Rising Show. And a host of guest roles.

He even played Woody's agent in Bound for Glory.

He had a lot of success.
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?