Suzanne Somers is an American actress, author, singer, businesswoman and health spokesperson known for her roles on Three’s Company and Step By Step. She has developed a loyal fan following over her decades-long career due to her talent, entrepreneurial success, advocacy, and perseverance. Here’s an in-depth look at why Suzanne Somers is so beloved.
Her Acting Career
Getting Her Big Break on Three’s Company
Suzanne Somers is best known for playing the ditzy blonde Chrissy Snow on the hit sitcom Three’s Company from 1977 to 1981. She landed the role that made her famous after impressing producers with her comedic skills and bubbly personality in her audition.
Chrissy’s silly antics and memorable lines made her an instant fan favorite. Suzanne’s excellent comedic timing and her undeniable on-screen chemistry with co-stars John Ritter and Joyce DeWitt were integral to the show’s success. At the height of Three’s Company’s popularity, Suzanne became a household name.
Transitioning to Dramatic Roles
While Suzanne Sommers was typecast as a comedic actress after Three’s Company, she eventually branched out into more dramatic roles. Her first major dramatic part was playing an alcoholic in the 1981 TV movie She’s in the Army Now.
Suzanne then starred in a number of TV movies in the 1980s, showcasing her versatility as a performer. She often played complex characters dealing with serious issues like abuse, addiction, and illness. Her emotional yet nuanced acting demonstrated that Suzanne was far more than just a silly sitcom star.
Her Triumphant Return to Sitcoms
After a few years off the air, Suzanne Somers made a hugely popular comeback to sitcoms in 1991. She played Carol Foster Lambert, the lively mother and stepmother on Step by Step.
Suzanne’s gift for physical comedy and hilarious reactions shone through her performance as Carol. She and co-star Patrick Duffy developed an endearing sitcom partnership. Suzanne’s ability to balance humor and heart made Carol a standout character.
Her return to form in another hit family sitcom proved Suzanne Somers was a uniquely talented and captivating star. After Three’s Company, her role on Step By Step cemented her status as a beloved sitcom legend.
Her Success as an Author and Entrepreneur
Becoming a Bestselling Author
In addition to acting, Suzanne Somers is an extremely successful author. She has written over 25 books, mostly focused on health, wellness, aging, and her personal life. Her books feature her trademark humor and candor that resonate with readers.
Several of her books have become #1 New York Times Bestsellers. These include:
- Ageless: The Naked Truth About Bioidentical Hormones (2006)
- Breakthrough: Eight Steps to Wellness (2008)
- I’m Too Young for This!: The Natural Hormone Solution to Enjoy Perimenopause (2004)
Suzanne’s ability to communicate complex health issues in a down-to-earth, engaging way while drawing on her own experiences has made her books so popular. Her wisdom, positivity, and honesty leap off the page.
Launching Thriving Businesses
Not only is Suzanne Somers a talented entertainer and author, she’s also an incredibly savvy businessperson. She has started several successful health-related business ventures since the 2000s.
In 2003, she helped co-found the alternative medicine company ForeverHealth.com. She then launched her own lifestyle brand, SuzanneSomers.com, along with an online magazine called SUZANNELife.
In 2013, Suzanne debuted the SUZANNE Organics skincare line. Her high-quality, organic anti-aging products reflect her passion for health.
The creativity and zeal Suzanne brings to her businesses has made them flourish. Her branding power and business acumen are immense.
Her Health Advocacy
Battling Breast Cancer
Suzanne Somers faced a major challenge in 2000 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She decided to forgo chemotherapy and opt for alternative treatments like homeopathy and dietary changes. Suzanne also underwent surgery and radiation.
By remaining fiercely positive through her cancer battle, openly sharing her experiences, and advocating for alternative medicine, Suzanne inspired countless people. Her strength and optimism in the face of cancer won her much admiration.
Promoting Hormone Therapy
One of Suzanne’s defining causes later in life has been raising awareness about hormone replacement therapy for menopause and aging. After battling breast cancer, she learned about bioidentical hormone treatment and became a vocal proponent.
She touted the benefits of customized, plant-based hormone therapy in her books and interviews. Suzanne stood behind her controversial health beliefs despite facing criticism from some doctors.
Many women credit Suzanne’s hormone philosophy with helping them through menopause. Even those who disagreed with her appreciated her spreading knowledge to empower women.
Supporting Entrepreneurs and Alternative Medicine
In addition to sharing her own health views, Suzanne Somers has become a mentor for budding entrepreneurs, particularly women starting health-focused businesses. She offers them advice and encouragement based on her success.
Suzanne has also become an advocate for alternative medicine approaches more broadly. She argues patients should have choices beyond standard treatments.
While alternative medicine is sometimes divisive, Suzanne makes thought-provoking points about its merits. She inspires open-mindedness and curiosity regarding non-traditional health options.
Her Perseverance Through Hardships
Overcoming Thyroid Cancer
In 2012, Suzanne Somers faced another grave diagnosis: thyroid cancer. She had surgery to remove her tumor and was declared cancer-free after radiation treatment.
Suzanne maintained a fighting spirit through this second cancer battle, stating she refused to live in fear. Her positive attitude and resilience helped her bounce back and regain her health.
Coping with Family Tragedy
Sadly, in the midst of Suzanne’s own health crisis, her stepson Bruce Somers Jr. committed suicide in 2013 at age 54. Speak openly about her grief, Suzanne shared that she believed Bruce was finally at peace after years of struggling with addiction and depression.
Losing her stepson was undoubtedly devastating. However, Suzanne found the strength to carry on and honor his memory while comforting her family. Her grace and empathy in the face of sorrow moved many people.
Staying Vibrant into Her 70s
Now in her mid-70s, Suzanne Somers remains lively, productive, and outspoken. She continues acting, runs her businesses, and advocates tirelessly for health topics she’s passionate about.
Though she has endured cancer, loss, and aging, Suzanne never loses her spark. Her vibrancy and determination at this stage of life are nothing short of inspiring. She embraces growing older with optimism and verve.
Suzanne’s perseverance proves she truly lives by her health philosophy of bioidentical hormone therapy and positive thinking. The hardships she has overcome only amplify her warm, vivacious spirit.
Her Unique Appeal and Legacy
What makes Suzanne Somers so beloved? While her girl-next-door persona, acting talent and business drive account for part of her immense appeal, her openness also endears her to fans.
Suzanne has offered candid glimpses into her personal life, health issues, and even her poverty-stricken childhood through her books and interviews. Her authenticity and vulnerability allow people to connect with her on a deeper level.
Additionally, Suzanne’s contagious optimism, self-assuredness and enthusiasm make her an inspiring role model for women over 50. She teaches by example that life can hold tremendous joy, purpose and success during and after midlife.
There is also no denying Suzanne Somers’ cultural impact. As the bubbly blonde in a groundbreaking sitcom, a multi-talented entrepreneur, and a devoted health advocate, she has left her mark on pop culture history. Suzanne Somers is truly one of a kind.
In conclusion, Suzanne Somers has earned widespread public affection over her 50+ year career for many compelling reasons. Her performing talents and sitcom stardom made her immensely popular initially. She then redefined herself as an author, businesswoman and passionate health spokesperson.
Suzanne has shown courage and grace in the face adversity. Her resilience and joie de vivre into her 70s continue inspiring fans. Throughout the ups and downs, Suzanne remains outspoken, authentic, whip-smart and driven.
She is a self-made woman who motivates others never to give up on themselves or their dreams at any age. For all these reasons and more, Suzanne Somers is a national treasure who will hold a special place in many hearts for decades to come.
Frequently Asked Questions
What TV shows is Suzanne Somers famous for?
Suzanne Somers is best known for playing Chrissy Snow on Three’s Company from 1977-1981 and Carol Foster Lambert on Step By Step from 1991-1998. These hit sitcom roles made her a household name.
How did Suzanne Somers overcome breast cancer?
When diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000, Somers rejected chemotherapy and instead pursued alternative treatments like homeopathy, diet changes, and hormone therapy. She also had surgery and radiation. Her positive attitude helped her beat cancer.
What kind of businesses has Suzanne Somers created?
Suzanne Somers co-founded the alternative medicine company ForeverHealth.com in 2003. She also launched her lifestyle brand SuzanneSomers.com, an online magazine called SUZANNELife, and her own line of skincare products, SUZANNE Organics.
What controversial health treatment does Suzanne Somers promote?
Suzanne Somers is an outspoken proponent of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy for women going through menopause and aging. This treatment remains controversial within the mainstream medical community.
How did Suzanne stay resilient when her stepson died?
When her stepson Bruce died by suicide in 2013, Suzanne focused on comforting her family while also speaking openly about her grief. She emphasized believing Bruce was finally at peace. Her grace and empathy through this tragedy were inspiring.