Today in Soap Opera History (January 12)

1981: Primetime soap Dynasty premiered on ABC.
1993: Maureen Bauer died on Guiding Light.
2009: As the World Turns Luke and Noah made love.
2012: One Life to Live's Viki gave a speech for the ages about
beloved canceled soap Fraternity Row.
"The present contains nothing more than the past, and what is found in the effect is already in the cause."
― Henri Louis Bergson

"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...

1967: The character of Hope Bauer, who crossed over from The Guiding Light, appeared on Another World for the final time. Elissa Leeds played the role on both shows.

1976: Days of our Lives stars Bill Hayes (Doug) and Susan Seaforth Hayes (Julie) appeared on the cover of TIME magazine. Read the article here.

1981: Melinda O. Fee debuted as Mary Anderson in Days of our Lives.

1981: On Guiding Light, Jennifer Richards (Geraldine Court) was upset when her attorney, Mike Bauer (Don Stewart), convinced a judge to give her a second trial.

1981: On The Edge of Night, Molly Sherwood (Laurinda Barrett) confessed to two murders.

1981: Primetime soap opera Dynasty, created by Richard & Esther Shapiro and produced by Aaron Spelling, premiered on ABC as a three-hour event.

1983: On General Hospital, Rick (Chris Robinson) and Lesley (Denise Alexander) walked in on Blackie's (John Stamos) frat party gone wild.

1984: On Days of our Lives, Julie was jealous when Foxy Humdinger (Diane McBain) visited Doug.

1984: On One Life to Live, David (Michael Zaslow) visited Simon and told him he knew that he was President Guerrero's son.

1985: On Berrenger's, Julio searched for a way to finish the Julian Morrell dress order with his sister Ana's help, Cammie dated John, Gloria prepared for the hospital benefit fashion show, and Melody undermined Shane's chances of being named president. Meanwhile, Danny pressured the Treasury Department to cut through red tape to let in a Hong Kong shipment.

Thanks to Jennifer for sending in the clip above.

1989: On Ryan's Hope, Pat (Malcolm Groome) asked Faith about Grace's father.

1989: Darlene Conley debuted as Sally Spectra on The Bold and the Beautiful.

Thanks to Matt for sending in the item above.

1993: On Guiding Light, Maureen Bauer died at Cedars Hospital following the car crash she had after a confrontation with Ed (Peter Simon).

2006: Actress Anne Meacham died at age 80. She played Louise Goddard on Another World from 1972 to 1982.

2009: On As the World Turns, Luke Snyder (Van Hansis) and Noah Mayer (Jake Silbermann) made love for the first time.

2012: On One Life to Live, the residents of Llanview prepared to watch the final episode of Fraternity Row, the fictional soap-with-a-soap that was canceled after 43 years.

Below is Viki's speech from the episode about soap fans. "When a show has been lucky enough to be on the air as long as Fraternity Row has been on, these families become an extension of our own."

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Scottie MacGregor (ex-Tammy, Love of Life) - 91
Ron Harper (ex-Peter, Generations; ex-Charles, Loving; ex-Baxter, Capitol; ex-Taylor, Another World; ex-Andrew, Love of Life) - 80
Oliver Platt (ex-Oliver, The West Wing) - 56
Jason Harper (ex-Gavin, Undressed) - 42
Kieron Richardson (Ste, Hollyoaks) - 30
Naya Rivera (ex-Santana, Glee) - 29

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

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