Caroline Rhea warms up for her new talk show. Rosie O'Donnell's replacement answers some silly questions
Caroline Rhea
Credit: Caroline Rhea: Carlo Dalla Chiesa/Corbis Outline

Daytime-TV fans used to a whole lot of Rosie will see a new Rhea of light when O’Donnell’s fill-in host officially takes over the Queen of Nice’s show with her own yapfest, ”The Caroline Rhea Show,” Sept. 2. ”You wouldn’t believe how many people ask me if the show is still gonna be called ‘The Rosie O’Donnell Show,”’ says Rhea. Uh-oh, if she thinks that’s stupid, wait till she gets a load of this interview.

— Okay, Caroline, let’s start with the important stuff. You hosted ”The Sexiest Bachelor in America” pageant, which leads me to wonder, would the sexiest bachelor in America really bother appearing on ”The Sexiest Bachelor in America”?
I have never been ignored by a larger group of men at one time. To make the assumption that all of them were interested in women was very wrong.

— How do you think the sexiest bachelor in America would fare against other sexy bachelors from around the world?
Well, the sexiest bachelor in America was very furry, and he sucked in his stomach in the bathing-suit competition more than anyone I’ve ever seen — even more than at a bridesmaid’s fitting.

— Seeing as how you’re Canadian, maybe you can answer this for me. Why exactly does Corey Hart wear his sunglasses at night? And an answer of ”so I can, so I can” doesn’t count.
I heard him play at McGill University when there were, like, 20 people in the room, and I thought, He is gonna be a big star. I thought it would’ve lasted longer, though.

— So, let’s be honest — are you just doing this whole talk-show thing so you can start your own magazine?
I’d like a pop-up magazine with 45 articles on Russell Crowe. I’m like a teenager. I’d have ”Teen Beat” if I could, for grown-ups.

— You appeared briefly in ”Meatballs III.” How much will you pay me to suppress that information?
I’ll pay you as much as you want — in Canadian. There were topless water-skiers in it and my mother said, ”Isn’t it a shame you can’t water-ski?” I was, like, Beach Girl No. 4.

You were also on ”Hollywood Squares” for several years. How did fellow squares ALF and Dweezil Zappa handle your departure?
Probably through a lot of therapy.

— Did Coolio ever invite you up to his box to check out his ”secret square”?
No, but Coolio was excellent at that game and people loved him. It was one of the strangest things. It was like, ”the gangster rapper for the block, please.”