Suzanne Somers: Where's the Thighmaster queen now?

In the late '70s, Suzanne Somers became a household name. Starring opposite the late John Ritter and Joyce DeWitt in Three's Company, Somers received big laughs from audiences. According to Somers herself, after starring in five seasons of the successful sitcom, she requested pay equal to that of her male costar, Ritter. Instead, she was let go. That wasn't the end of her career, however. In 1991, Somers went on to play TV mom Carol in Step by Step for a total of 160 episodes. And besides being a sitcom staple, Somers also popularized the iconic Thighmaster, cementing her status as a pop culture icon.

Still, that was in the '90s. You probably haven't heard much else about Somers or her career recently. Why not? Let's find out.

She was kicking cancer's butt

In 2000, Suzanne Somers was diagnosed with breast cancer. Despite being told she would die if she didn't have surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation, Somers rejected her doctor's recommendations. In an interview with The Truth About Cancer, she explained, "The idea of putting chemical poison into my body to cure me just doesn't make sense." 

At the advice of another doctor, she did eventually decide to undergo radiation. Despite being cancer-free these days, she still wishes she had done things differently. "I really don't think I would've done radiation," she said. Somers now believes that any and all of her health problems can be attributed the aftereffects of radiation. Of course, hindsight is 20/20. Somers added, "We do the best that we can with the information we have at the time and that's what I knew at that time."

Although Somers has not had a reoccurrence of cancer, she did have a scare in 2008. She detailed her horrifying experience to Entertainment Tonight, saying she was misdiagnosed and had to spend nearly a week in the hospital. Doctors told Somers she was riddled with cancer. They believed they had found a large mass on one of her lungs that covered the entirety of her liver. They also informed her that she had an innumerable amount of masses in her chest. As if that news weren't bad enough, they also diagnosed her with pneumonia and a blood clot. Thankfully, Somers' doctors were wrong — her health problems were actually related to black mold in her rented house, which was much easier to treat.

She makes ample time for her family

Somers is all about quality family time — especially meal time. Seemingly always one to look at the glass half full, Somers explained in an interview with that being unemployed for so many years afforded her the opportunity to take cooking lessons. "Preparing a meal for my family or close friends is the best gift I can give them. I love the entire process and devoting time to it, and it pays off in their reactions," Somers said.

In addition to cooking with her own children, she enjoys spending time with her six grandkids. Whether they're roasting marshmallows over the large fire pit at Somers' home or laying down a beat on Indian drums, she's enjoying being a grandma. No matter the activity, food and family remain a consistent theme in Somers' life. Somers also routinely shares photos of her family on Instagram. In one post, Somers along with her husband, children, and grandchildren, are seen flashing big smiles and enjoying a crab feast or, as she calls it, a "traditional Crab Lunch."

Nevertheless, they weren't always a big happy family. In a synopsis of her book, After the Fall, Suzanne Somers detailed finding peace with husband Alan Hamel and their blended family, which included children from his previous marriage and one child from her's. This was especially difficult because their children wanted nothing to do with with their step-parent nor step-siblings. And now? Somers wrote, "Today … I have the happily blended family I've always dreamed of."

She's too busy getting busy

Suzanne Somers spends a lot of time with her kids and grandkids, but that doesn't mean she neglects her husband. Quite the opposite, in fact. In an interview for Today, Megyn Kelly asked Somers for some pretty personal clarification: "You talk openly about keeping love alive, and I hope this isn't too intimate but, like, what you claim in this book is that you guys are still 'together' every day — is that true?" 

Somers replied, "He's an animal," referring to her husband. She explained that they're both hopped up on hormones so the increase in libido is essentially a side-effect, albeit a positive one. "Sometimes I'm not awake for it though," she added while laughing.

Although Somers was trying to paint a picture of her husband's insatiable lust, some were offended. She later apologized for her off-color joke in a statement to People and clarified her intention was not to make light of what could be a serious issue. All jokes aside, Somers is extremely happy with Hamel.

In an interview with Today, Somers admitted the last time she spent a night apart from Hamel was nearly four decades ago. She added, "We're kind of addicted but, how great?" For a couple that's been together for 50 years, that's no easy feat.

She's focused on her "great passion"

She may be passionate about her husband but she also feels quite strongly about her work. In 1999, Somers released her very first book, Suzanne Somers' 365 Ways to Change Your Life. This book ended up being the first of many. The release of Two's Company in late 2017 marked Somer's twenty-sixth book. That's right, 26 books in 18 years! Well, that explains why you haven't seen her starring in sitcoms lately. 

On her eponymous site, Somers explained her love of penning books, saying, "Writing is my greatest passion because I can share the things that matter most to me with all of you."

While you could write Somers off as a has-been of sorts, is that really fair? She's made a legitimately successful life for herself outside of acting and she's still at it even in her seventies. Even with a thriving writing career, she somehow finds time for additional business ventures.

Cosmetics and beyond

In an interview with Eluxe Magazine, Somers spoke about the start of another career and passion, recalling, "I was always uncomfortable being a celebrity, which gave me great tables in restaurants and lots of fan mail; that was not me, though I love my fans and hearing from them." What is more "her"? Health. Somers explained that she uses her clout these days to get the best of the best when it comes to health care specialists. Of course, she doesn't just keep that information to herself. Instead, she passes the knowledge onto others for, as Somers put it, "the greater good." Somers even said that influencing others to be more health-conscious provides her the "most satisfying feeling of accomplishment."

Suzanne Somers doesn't just impart her knowledge of health via her books, however — she also has her own line of healthy products. "I have been intimately involved in every single one of my 'SUZANNE Organics' products, from organic skin care, hair care, and cosmetics," she told Eluxe. Since she was a child, she had a love for makeup and has dubbed her organic products her "little children." Somers even posted her own makeup tutorial on YouTube featuring the organic line. She also shared her bare face with the camera. Not every celebrity would have the courage to do that, that's for sure!

She briefly came back to TV

Somehow Suzanne Somers still found time in her incredibly busy schedule to come back to television. No, she didn't return to acting. She did, however, join the cast of Dancing With the Stars in 2015, the show's twentieth season. Although she was voted off in week five, Somers proved a woman in her late sixties could compete. 

In an interview with Eluxe, Somers said Dancing with the Stars "is not for the faint of body. It is seven days a week of intensive rehearsals, wardrobe fittings, interviews, and preparation for the big show day, which is live' … no going back. Whatever happens is what the audience sees." Despite the grueling process, Somers admitted, "I love live television. It stimulates something in my body that makes me all wiggly." 

Three years prior to dancing her way back onto TV, Somers also hosted her own talk show. Although the show only ran for one season with 16 episodes, Somers interviewed the likes of Larry King, Fran Drescher, and Kathy Griffin. When she wasn't interviewing celebrities, she used her platform to do some good for her guests. Providing everything from anti-aging tips to relationship advice, Somers passed on tons of knowledge to her audience. Somers also got personal with her viewers, sharing details about her breast cancer diagnosis and various other health concerns. 

And in one episode, Somers even let cameras on to her property to share more devastating news. This time it wasn't health-related, but still just as personal.

"Gone in nine minutes"

Standing beside the rubble and charred debris of her Malibu home, Suzanne Somers explained the devastating effects of the 2012 California wildfires on The Suzanne Show. "This house was gone in nine minutes," she said, stunned. Fortunately, no one was home at the time of the fire. Her positivity shined through when she discussed her home. "We'll rebuild and I really think that we'll learn something great from this," she said, adding "What else can you do with a tragedy but look for the opportunity to grow spiritually and emotionally?" 

Somers did rebuild, although differently than her neighbors. She decided to have her home rebuilt with fire-resistant and mold-resistant materials. It's not hard to understand why, though she explained on her show, "I want to build a house that, if it comes, I can have a somewhat peace of mind that I could save my house." 

Money can't buy happiness but, at least in this case, it can buy a little peace of mind.

She's living large in Malibu (again)

Somers invited Entertainment Tonight to tour her fully rebuilt home in Malibu, California. Somewhat scant in furnishings, Somers' home is gorgeously minimalist. Upon entering, you can immediately see the Pacific Ocean through giant panoramic windows. 

Seven years after the wildfire completely destroyed her home, Suzanne Somers is proud of the rebuild. "I just thought 'This is me,' it's glamorous, it's grown up," she explained. It's easy to see why she loves it — vaulted ceilings, a great view, and even a large kitchen perfect for cooking with her family. Although she doesn't drink much, Somers' home also contains a sleek black bar. Of course, Somers also has an exercise room that is home to several Thighmasters (and Buttmasters). No surprise there, right?

Did she kill her career?

While most of Hollywood's actors and actresses seem to lean left when it comes to politics, Somers has taken a different stance. In an article for The Washington Times in 2014, Somers wrote, "In Sausalito [California], everyone was a hippie liberal, so I was a hippie liberal, too." Although that's no longer the case for Somers, she's also not a Republican. "I am an independent who believes in fiscal responsibility," she wrote.

According to Somers, her husband is also an independent. "Like me, he listens to everyone … he respects their opinions — regardless of how radically different they may be from his own," Somers explained. Her article ended on a strong note with Somers writing, "We are in desperate need of leaders who will bring us together and talk to each other, so we can all begin to talk to each other once again."

Does Suzanne Somers think Donald Trump fits the bill? Pretty much. In an early 2018 interview with TMZ, she said she was happy with, and about, Trump. She even attributed an improved economy to his presidency. With a laugh, she noted, "And now my career is over!" Although many do not share her opinion on Trump, it's hard to picture her career ending on that basis alone.