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Night and Day, Kevin Dobson Could Clean Up

January 13, 1991|LYNDA HIRSCH

"Knots Landing" star Kevin Dobson has a double-header on his hands with Monday's "The Soap Opera Awards." He not only is scheduled to co-host the show with NBC's Robin Mattson ("Santa Barbara"), he is up for an award as best nighttime hero, voted for by readers of Soap Opera Digest.

"Of course I would like to win. If I don't, I can take it. But I sure hope they don't give the award out too early if I lose. That might be a problem."

"I was glad when they asked me to co-host," Dobson said. "But I'll tell you. I mean, this is two hours. How much can you stand of me at one time?" he said with a chuckle.

"There are so many awards out there. Some of them don't mean anything. But the ones from Soap Opera Digest are special, because the fans vote on them. Not just a fan or two, but any fan who wants to vote can."

Dobson, who first became known to TV audiences in 1972 as Telly Savalas' sidekick on "Kojak," reflected on the prospect of winning awards.

"I used to think it was all about winning trophies. Once I started to really work as an actor I started to set all these goals for myself. Get this part, try for that award. I finally realized that is not what it is about."

What is it about? "Doing the best work you can. Being happy in your surroundings. I will stay with 'Knots Landing' as long as they want me. If I was not doing the work on 'Knots Landing' I would be doing something similar somewhere else. I feel comfortable with the show.

"Right before 'Knots' I had a show called 'Shannon,' " he said. "I was the star. So it was my responsibility. I was working 15, 16 hours a days, five sometimes six days a week. On 'Knots,' story lines shift. Sometimes I am the heavy, other times I'm hardly around. That is OK with me. It gives me a chance to take my kids to school and coach my son's Little League team." Dobson and his wife of 21 years, Susan, have three children.

It also gives him the chance to be involved in a variety of charities. Dobson is a celebrity who spends a lot of time doing what is called good works, although he is reticent to talk about most of them. Dobson is not one to brag, but he does work with the United Negro College Fund, and drug and alcohol education programs.

"The Soap Opera Digest Awards" airs Monday at 2 p.m. on NBC. "Knots Landing" airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on CBS.

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