Valerie Bertinelli: If 'Hot in Cleveland' came back, 'I would be there yesterday'

Raechal Shewfelt
Editor, Yahoo Entertainment
Valerie Bertinelli talks about the Food Network at the Winter 2019 TCA Tour on Feb. 12 in Pasadena, Calif. (Photo: Amanda Edwards/Getty Images for Discovery)

Valerie Bertinelli’s heart never really left Cleveland.

The actress and Food Network personality says that sitting and drinking coffee alongside co-stars Betty White, Jane Leeves and Wendie Malick on their kitchen set for Hot in Cleveland was her favorite time of the day during the five years, 2010 to 2015, that they worked together on the TV Land sitcom.

“I mean, if Hot in Cleveland came back, I would be there yesterday,” Bertinelli tells Yahoo Entertainment. “I miss that show so much.”

Bertinelli says that, just like fans, she’s looking forward to seeing reruns of the show, now airing at 6pm ET weeknights on getTV. For newbies, the comedy depicts three friends from Los Angeles who find themselves in Ohio after their plane to Paris makes an emergency landing there. They decide to stay after realizing that they’re considered much hotter there than back in California. White plays their cranky landlord.

Valerie Bertinelli, left, stars alongside Betty White, front, Wendie Malick, back middle, and Jane Levee in Hot in Cleveland. (Photo: getTV)

Bertinelli says that, in real life, the TV legend is all the good things that we’ve heard about her. White’s “constant wit” is what her co-star remembers most about working with the 97-year-old actress.

“I mean, we all know Betty’s funny, obviously, but there was such an ease to it. I know people think I’m crazy when I say this, but she literally glowed,” Bertinelli says with a laugh. “She’s not of this world. She’s just got this beautiful glow aura about her, just because she’s such a kind, sweet soul. And I just adore her.”

The Hot in Cleveland stars continue to stay in touch, mostly with texts. Bertinelli believes the womens’ adoration of one another is much of what makes the show.

“Well, besides Betty White — let’s state the obvious here, everyone loves watching Betty — I just think the rapport and the love that all four of us feel for each other, it just so natural, it just shines through,” Bertinelli says. “You can see how these characters love each other no matter what, no matter how stupid they get. I think it’s just the way we feel about each other, and plus, the writers happen to write some really, really funny shows. I mean, the writers on this were just beyond funny.”

Bertinelli’s impressive list of TV credits includes a second iconic show: The original One Day at a Time, a Norman Lear series about a divorced mom raising two teen daughters, one of which was played by Bertinelli.

Netflix rebooted the show in 2017, this time focusing on three generations of a Cuban-American family living in the same home. Although it was canceled this year after three seasons, Pop TV announced in June that it was picking up the reboot for a 13-episode fourth season in 2020.

Bertinelli says she was happy to hear the news. She hasn’t yet appeared on the new One Day at a Time (like original One Day at a Time costar Mackenzie Phillips has) but she’s open to it, because she really likes the series.

“It’s an amazing show. The women that are doing it are really so talented, and it’s got a lot to say,” Bertinelli says. “You know, just like One Day at a Time back in the ’70s [and] ’80s, it was really, currently topical for that time, and I think that they’re doing a great job of staying topical for this time and really shining a light on things that we need to look at. And keeping it funny at the same time.”

She hopes an appearance on the show is in her future.

“Oh, we’ve been trying to work it out. Just between my schedule of doing Valerie’s Home Cooking and Kids Baking Championship, I always seem to be doing those when those guys go back in season,” she says. “So we’re just trying to figure out the schedules, but I would do it in a heartbeat.”

As Food Network fans know, Bertinelli spends most of her time these days on cooking shows. She has one of her own, Valerie’s Home Cooking, which just finished its ninth season. But she’s still around for the ongoing new season of Kids Baking Championship, which she hosts with Duff Goldman, and to guide the competitors on the new Family Restaurant Rivals, which debuts Aug. 19.

Be sure to watch it for ideas on what to snack on while watching those Hot in Cleveland reruns.

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