Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Tropical Storm Emily Joins Tempestuous Emily Club with Stewart, Quartermaine, Bishop, McLaughlin & O'Brien

Just like tropical storms and hurricanes, famous soap opera women named Emily tend to be unpredictable and even dangerous--and fun to follow!

Since 1953, Atlantic tropical storms have been named from lists originated by the National Hurricane Center. The original name-lists featured only women's names, but in 1979, men's names were introduced. Of course, in the soap opera world, the best dramatic, tempestuous and unpredictable characters are almost always women.

In honor of Emily the Tropical Storm, here are our five favorite soap opera women named Emily (characters and actors).

1. Emily Stewart
Emily Stewart is a woman with many talents, including being a newspaper mogul and high class prostitute. Played (over the years) by Janine Sagan, Pat Reynolds, Jenny Harris, Marissa Morel, Colleen McDermott, Melanie Smith and Kelley Menighan Hensley, she churned up AS THE WORLD TURNS from April 1972 to September 2010, and made a brief appearance on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS in March 2007. Over the years, she's been kidnapped and also locked up in an asylum.

2. Emily Quartermaine
Emily Quartermaine can be seen as Russian nobility "Slumming it" as a Doctor in Port Charles. Played by Amber Tamblyn and Natalia Livingston, she made waves on GENERAL HOSPITAL from January 1995 to June 2009. She's a princess and a rape victim and almost everything in between. She was held hostage at one point and, ultimately, she ended up being strangled to death. And (of course) she has a twin.

3. Emily Bishop
Emily Bishop has had many careers on many different tracks, has survived a few murder attempts and marriages, and has even won a labor dispute. She's been played by Eileen Derbyshire since the 1960s and is something of the eye of the CORONATION STREET storm. She's had two husbands, not including (of course) the one she jilted at the alter. It's interesting to note how she describes her own personality: "I've always wanted to be stormy, passionate and tempestuous. But you can't be. Not when you're born with a tidy mind." Don't let her fool you.

4. Emily McLaughlin
Emily McLaughlin played Nurse Jessie Brewer on GENERAL HOSPITAL from April 1963 to February 1991 (Read up on GH history here). She isn't just a founding cast member--she is the woman who spoke the daytime phenomenon's first line. A staunch advocate for working actors, she successfully pounded ABC management into submission in the sixties and won billing for actors on daytime serials for the first time.

5. Emily O'Brien
Emily O'Brien played Jana Hawkes Fisher on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS from May 2006 to May 2011. She was nominated for three Emmy Awards and yet was rather perfunctorily written out of the show this past spring. Emily's portrayal of Jana's violently spiraling path of destruction was, well, crazy. Convincingly crazy. Even by soap standards. Futhermore, no one quite seems to know for sure what she is up to today. The last we heard of her was this disconcerting private message:

"It has been bittersweet saying good-bye. I love the Y&R family very much, but at the same time I knew it was my time to go. I have NYC on my mind and other projects I am hoping to experience."

If Emily does threaten New York City, she is forecast to do so on or around August 10. You can get the latest updates here.

Who has been your favorite soap opera Emily?


  1. I loved Emily Stewart, especially all the trouble she got into in the '80s with Melanie Smith in the role.

  2. I miss Emily Stewart!

  3. Perhaps not my favorite, but there was the beloved "Aunt Emily" on "The Brighter Day," well known for her lace collars and played by Mona Bruns.

  4. Melanie Smith was great as Emily - who can ever forget when Paul shot James...or Emily dancing with Brock (I believe I am remembering the character's name correctly!). Kelley Menighan Hensley also was brilliant as Emily. That is one daytime part which was blessed with brilliant actresses!