Star Tracks: Monday, May 16, 2016 42 years, 2,191 covers and 55,436 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Renée Zellweger on Her Return to Hollywood: 'I Craved the Creative Process Again'
- Read the Cover Story: The Gosselins 10 Years Later: 'So Much Has Changed'
- The Easiest Ways to Decorate for Fall from the New Target Catalog
- It's a Boy! Guy Pearce and Carice van Houten Welcome Son Monte
- Natalee Holloway's Mom Is Still Seeking Justice 11 Years After Daughter's Disappearance in Aruba
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- September 13, 1993
- Vol. 40
- No. 11
Protean Brian O'Connor of Shining Time Station Is the Most Charming Good-for-Nothing on Kid TV
It wasn't the usual shoppers who were storming this actor with the endearingly droopy mug. The frantic fans were kids who had come for an appearance by the man they knew as Schemer, the leisure-suited lout from PBS's award-winning Shining Time Station. A mixture of characters both human and animated, the whimsical sitcom tackles topics from the environment to the election process. But it's Schemer's passion for nickels that tickles the tots. "The kids love me," says O'Connor, 40, "because I'm selfish and stupid."
Or maybe they love him because he has an affinity for offbeat TV. O'Connor is also the cocreator of MTV's You Wrote It, You Watch It series and host of VH-l's gossip game show, Rumor Has It. His urge to entertain started in Lynnfield, Mass., he says, where he spent his teen years, the third child of five, in a high-spirited Irish Catholic family. "In our house," he says, "if you have a big nose like mine, you laugh about it—or you're told about it." The high—and low—point of his high school drama career was playing Peter Pan in the senior play. "They kept screwing up the pulley system," he says. "I made crash landings."
In 1975, O'Connor left the University of Massachusetts (from which he later graduated) to pursue acting. In 1986 he landed an actress: wife Jane Brucker, who attests to her husband's rapport with children, including their 3-year-old daughter, Sally. "He's not someone who as soon as he gets off-camera says, 'Gel out of here, you rotten kids,' " Jane reports. "He can be really goofy as well as profound." Kind of a Renaissance cutup. "I can lie, I can cry, and I can fall down," says O'Connor, extolling the joys of Schemer-ing. "To me, that's what acting's all about."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!