For more than 40 years, All My Children's Erica Kane has slapped, clawed and connived her way into our hearts. It all began in 1970, when a fresh-out-of-college Susan Lucci landed the role of the soap's villainous vixen. Since then, Erica has done just about everything—organized a prison escape, exposed a Nazi and tackled taboo issues like alcoholism and anorexia. She even had the first legal abortion on daytime television.

"When I started playing Erica, she was a 15-year-old bad girl in town, and the fact that people got her at all, even then, was amazing to me," Susan says. "Pretty soon people were saying 'Erica's a role model,' and that amazed me. But it had to do with her being independent, not taking no for an answer, standing up for herself, having a career and a family and all those things."

After four decades of playing our favorite femme fatale, Susan says she's not ready to retire her just yet. "Frankly, I haven't been able to walk away from Erica Kane. I love playing her," she says.


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