Today in Soap Opera History (November 2)

1977: Ryan's Hope's Jack and Mary were locked in a storeroom.
1979: As the World Turns' Lisa wanted Hester to be fired.
1990: Guiding Light's Holly revisited the past with Roger.
2009: One Live to Live's Kyle called off his wedding to Nick.
"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again."
― Maya Angelou

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1931: Myrt and Marge premiered as a primetime soap opera that followed the lives and escapades of two chorus girls. Creator Myrtle Vail (Damerel) pitched the idea to the Wrigley chewing gum makers, naming her lead characters Myrtle Spear and Marge Minter. Myrt and Marge became the first radio series Wrigley sponsored. The show moved to daytime in January 1937 (a few weeks before The Guiding Light premiered) and ran until 1942. Vail revived Myrt and Marge as a syndicated series from 1946-1947. You can listen to the very first 1931 episode here.

1964: British soap Crossroads premiered on ITV.  Set in a fictional motel near Birmingham, England, the show was originally broadcast between 1964 and 1988. The series was revived by Carlton Television in 2001, but was again axed in 2003.

1970: On Another World, Steve (George Reinholt) met Alice (Jacqueline Courtney) for dinner and revealed he had a surprise waiting for her when she returned to Bay City.

1977: On Ryan's Hope, after the Ryan's locked them in the storeroom, Jack (Michael Levin) fought with Mary (Kate Mulgrew). Later, Mary left Jack speechless when she told him that she and Tom had never been lovers.

1979: On As the World Turns, Lisa Colman (Eileen Fulton) wanted her fiancé, Bennett Hadley (Doug Higgins), to fire his maid, Hester Pierce (Ann Stanchfield). He gave Hester the night off instead.

1979: On Guiding Light, Lucille (Rita Lloyd) worried about what Ben (Stephen Yates) might tell Amanda (Kathleen Cullen) about his "accident" at their house.

1981: As the World Turns debuted its "The World Turns On and On" opening, by Jack Cortner for Elliot Lawrence Production. ATWT used this opening until February 2, 1993.

Thanks to Na'Vell for sending in the item above.

1982: British soap opera Brookside premiered on Channel 4. The show, set in Liverpool, ran for 21 years until November 4, 2003. There were 22 seasons and 2,915 episodes.

1984: Actress Sharon Gabet gave birth to her first child, one week after the announcement about The Edge of Night being canceled. Gabet had to shorten her maternity leave in order to tape her final scenes as Raven opposite Larkin Malloy's Sky.

1990: On General Hospital, Felicia (Kristina Wagner) was admitted into GH, where she and Frisco (Jack Wagner) prepared for the birth of their child.

Thanks to Enrique for sending in the item above.

1990: On The Young and the Restless, Olivia Barber (Tonya Lee Williams) continued to try to reach out to her sister, Drucilla (Victoria Rowell).

1990: On Guiding Light, Holly Lindsey (Maureen Garrett) rehashed the past with Roger Thorpe (Michael Zaslow), and admitted that she couldn't hate him anymore.

1995: On As the World Turns, Barbara (Colleen Zenk) admitted to her husband, Hal Munson (Benjamin Hendrickson) that she had an affair with Evan Walsh; Damian (Paolo Seganti) retrieved his son from Damian's "mother," who jumped to her death; Jeremy (Eric Duane) told Dani (Ashley Williams) about the argument between Barbara and Nikki; Barbara talked to Kim (Kathryn Hays) about her predicament; Jeremy told Nikki (Jordana Brewster) that they could no longer see one another; and Orlena (Lynn Milgrim) asked Lisa (Eileen Fulton) to look after Damian and hinted that Eduardo's death may have been caused by something other than John's negligence.

2000: On EastEnders, it was Guy Fawkes Night, and the residents of Albert Square had gathered at The Queen Vic pub before the traditional fireworks display was to start. But Peggy Mitchell (Barbara Windsor) had another kind of fireworks in mind as she maneuvered to publicly shame both her husband, Frank Butcher (Mike Reid), and her nemesis, Pat Evans (Pat St. Clement), by reading Frank's "leaving letter" out loud -- thereby exposing their extra-marital affair to everyone assembled, including Pat's husband, Roy (Tony Caunter).

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in the item above.

2008: Popular Televisa telenovela Fuego en la Sangre finished its original 200 episode run.

2009: On One Life to Live, Dorian (Robin Strasser) scheduled several same-sex weddings in Angel Square Park, including hers with Amelia (Tia Dionne Hodge), in order to win the LGBT vote in the Llanview Mayoral race. During the event, Kyle Lewis (Brett Claywell) called out his wedding to Nick Chavez (Nicholas Rodrigue), and reunited with Oliver Fish (Scott Evans).

2010: Former Search for Tomorrow and Dirty Sexy Money star Jill Clayburgh died at age 66.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Rachel Ames
Rachel Ames (Audrey, General Hospital; ex-Audrey, Port Charles) - 86
Stefanie Powers (ex-Jane, Doctors) - 73
Kate Linder (Esther, The Young and the Restless) - 68
Lauren Vélez (ex-Elena, Ugly Betty) - 51
Sean Kanan (Deacon, The Bold and the Beautiful; ex-A.J., General Hospital; ex-Deacon, The Young and the Restless; ex-Jude, Sunset Beach) - 49
Brian Lima (ex-Charlie) - 48
Samantha Womack (Ronnie, EastEnders) - 43
Marisol Nichols (ex-Heather, GCB) - 42
Bren Foster (ex-Quinn, Days of our Lives; ex-Tony, Home and Away) - 39
Randy Harrison (ex-Justin, Queer as Folk) - 38
John Pickard (ex-Dominic, Hollyoaks; ex-Dominic, Hollyoaks Later; ex-Neil, Grange Hill) - 38
Vanessa Ray (CeCe, Pretty Little Liars, ex-Teri, As the World Turns) - 35
Guy Kent (ex-David, Passions) - 28
Lindze Letherman (ex-Georgie, General Hospital) - 27
Katelyn Tarver (ex-Mercedes, The Secret Life of the American Teenager) - 26

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to submit a soap history entry for this date or a future date, email


  1. Guiding Light was incredible in 1990. Some of the best television made_ daytime and nighttime. Michael Zaslow & Maureen Garrett were breathtakingly brilliant performers.

    1. You'll get no argument from me on that one! GL in the early 90s had some brilliant writing and performing at that time.

    2. These Roger-Holly scenes are mesmerizing. So much history, and incredible nuanced performances. With today's shorter scenes, I often wonder how much of the greatness from the past could have even happened in today's soap world. I'd like to think talents like Zaslow and Garrett would sparkle in any format.

  2. Also, on November 2, 2001 Deacon and Brooke slept together on B&B for the first time, conceiving Hope.