Wednesday, August 15, 2012

50 Greatest Soap Couples: #12 Tom & Margo From AS THE WORLD TURNS

COUPLE: Tom Hughes & Margo Montgomery
RANK: 12
Tom: Justin Deas, Jason Kincaid, Gregg, Marx, Scott Holmes
Margo: Margaret Colin, Hillary B. Smith, Ellen Dolan, Glynnis O'Connor
YEARS: 1980-2010

Margo was a nurse when she arrived in Oakdale.  She quickly became involved with the newly married James Stenbeck.  Tom had moved to Sweden to investigate Stenbeck (Anthony Herrera) after Barbara Ryan (Colleen Zenk) dumped him at the altar to be with James.  When Tom returned he became entangled in Margo's life in many ways, including forcing her mother, Lyla, to reveal that John Dixon was Margo's biological father.  Tom began dating Margo's aunt, Maggie, but his attraction to Margo would soon become strong.  Margo eventually freed herself from the clutches of James and got to know Tom better while working at his family's law firm.   It wasn't long before they began a series of adventures around the world while investigating the notorious Mr. Big (Brent Collins) and his connection to James.  On June 1, 1983, Tom and Margo called their friends and family to the park for an impromptu, come-as-you-are wedding which was both funny and poignant.

Tom and Margo would face many obstacles from third parties, their jobs and their children over the years.  Some of the most memorable storylines involved the secret of Adam's father (Adam didn't learn Hal was his father until he was a teenager), Margo's rape, and Tom's affair with Emily.   When AS THE WORLD TURNS ended in 2010 Margo and Tom were still happy and together, swapping houses with Margo's sister, Katie.

Tom and Margo are special in multiple ways.  First, no other soap opera couple that viewers saw fall in love and get married actually stayed together as long as they did without getting a divorce (on screen).  They had been married more than 27 years when ATWT ended.  Second, no other supercouple combination survived this many recasts and remained popular.  Depending on which ATWT fans you talk to you might hear Deas/Colin, Marx/Smith, Holmes/Smith or Holmes/Dolan as their favorite Tom and Margo.

Both Deas and Marx won Emmy Awards for their work playing Tom (Deas also won five other Emmys for his soap work).  Holmes received four Soap Opera Digests Awards nominations as the longest-running actor in the role.   Smith garnered three Digest Award nominations for her work on ATWT (and later won an Emmy for her work in ONE LIFE TO LIVE and an Indie Soap Award for her work in VENICE).  Dolan won the Digest Award in 1993 as Outstanding Supporting Actress and received an Emmy nomination that year as well.

If all that weren't enough, Deas and Colin were married in real life in 1988 and are still together to this day.

From Patrick Erwin (A THOUSAND OTHER WORLDS): Two characters that have stayed compelling through multiple actor changes. Tom’s structured, slightly stuffy lawyer and Margo’s headstrong, impetuous nature played wonderfully together. Tom’s patience and deep love for Margo kept them together when Margo made all the wrong decisions for all the right reasons.

Tom, Margo and Mr. Big (1982) 
"If You Say My Eyes Are Beautiful" (1986)
Margo's rape (1993)
Tom and Margo struggle to keep the truth about Adam a secret (1996)

Share your thoughts on Tom and Margo in our Comments section below or on our message board.

- 50 Greatest Soap Opera Actors: The Complete List
- 50 Greatest Soap Opera Actresses: The Complete List
- THE COMPLETE LIST: 25 Biggest Blunders In Daytime Soap Opera History


  1. They were great. I'm surprised they're this high. That said, I much preferred Margaret Colin and Justin Deas as Tom and Margo.

  2. Great job guys to put Tom & Margo with Justin Deas and Margaret Colin.

  3. Adore Tom and Margo - both Justin and Margaret and Scott and Ellen!!! Very happy they made the list!

  4. Going to make my guess for the top ten:
    10) GL Ed & Maureen
    9) RH Jack & Mary
    8) DOOL Doug & Julie
    7) AMC Angie & Jesse
    6) AMC Erica & Jackson
    5) AW Mac & Rachel
    4) GL Josh & Rive
    3) Y&R Niki & Victor
    2) AW Alice & Steve
    1) GH Luke & Laura

  5. Dolan/Holmes were the longest running pair, so they have my heart.

    Meanwhile, don't forget the groundbreaking story in 1992 where Margo was raped by a man with HIV and the impact it had not only on the couple, but the town.

    They also each had a child by someone else and their love (and marriage) survived - and thrived.

    The best thing is: the ended their story the way they lived...making out on the floor. :)

  6. I loved Tom amd Margo back in the day with JD/MC. I was devestated when MC left, but HBS was just too awesome a recast to be sad for very long. Again I hated it when JD left and honestly I liked GM and the other Tom recasts, but none really had the same energy as JD. There was another guy that played Tom opposite HBS, though he was only in the part for like a week before GM took over the role. ED will always be Maureen Bauer to me first and Margo second.

    My guess for top ten...

    1) Luke and Laura
    2) Victor and Nikki
    3) Roger and Holly
    4) Josh and Reva
    5) Erica and Jackson
    6) Bo and Hope
    7) Mac and Rachel
    8) Cruz and Eden
    9) Jesse and Angie
    10) Maeve and Johnny or Mary and Jack


    Lucky and Elizabeth
    Blair and Todd

  7. My top 10 predictions
    10 Victor and Nikki
    9 Roger and Holly
    8 Mac and Rachel
    7 Todd and Blair
    6 Cruz and Eden
    5 Doug and Julie
    4 Josh and Reva
    3 Angie and Jesse
    2 Bo and Hope
    1 Luke and Laura

    with my favs--Kim and Shane missing :(

  8. BEST COUPLE EVER!!! ...loved every iteration, except for when Jason Kincaid played Tom in 1984 & when Glinnis O'Conner played Margo in 1993-4)! My absolute favorite soap couple by far!

    Fell in love with their original love story as a teenager and followed them through the ages. Thought I'd never be able to adapt as different actors left, but I give great credit to Douglas Marland for keeping them rootable as a couple with each 80's recast. They were sadly underutilized after the year 2000, but when they got screen time they shined!

  9. When I started watching ATWT around 1989 or 1990, I immediately became a fan of Tom and Margo. I loved them. They had so many problems but also had humor and best of all, we saw the minutia of their daily lives, including childcare, working late, takeout. They were just so real.

    Around 1996 or 1997 Tom and Margo just began yelling all the time, they both became very dour characters, and I washed my hands of them.

    When I got to see more old episodes I was blown away by Gregg Marx/HBS together, especially their work in the miscarriage storyline that so enraged viewers at the time. And in their earlier time together, when Marx and HBS were allowed to have comedy and laughs, they were just as good.

    Colin/Deas don't do that much for me but I will always have a soft spot for early Holmes/Dolan and for HBS/Marx.

  10. JD/MC were when Tom and Margo really became "noticed" as a force to be reckoned with on ATWT and daytime in general: Great chemistry and incredible energy. They were really fun and seemed to bring out the best in each other during some of their more "whimsical" storylines (like the "puzzle"). I liked many of the recasts, but JD/MC were, to paraphrase Katy Perry, like "fireworks"! :-)

  11. BTW I don't remember the exact SL but the "puzzle" was when they had to make moves to free themselves. Die hard Tom and Margo fans will know what I'm talkin' bout, Willis! LOL

  12. Ahh, time honored couple, but I saw all the recasts this my order of the many different recasts...

    4. Holmes\Dolan (Dolan's acting style was more fun & quirky as Maureen Bauer, I loved her as Mo...but Margo not as much.)

    3. Deas\HBS & Holmes\HBS

    2. Deas\ the time I was devastated when Margaret left, didn't think possible of a recast and recast became my favorite Margo, more then Margaret.

    1. Marx\, sexy, chemistry oozing. This was for me the best "Tom & Margo" and GM was SOOOOOOOOOOOO Sexy..more sex-up "Tom", love GM's when he first came on with the beard...yummy!

    PS...Tom Kincaid...thank GOD he was short lived, ATWT usher him out in hurry...not Tom at ALL!

  13. I loved Colin, Deas, Smith and Marx. I never cared for Dolan and Holmes, especially Dolan. So good as Maureen on GL but not Margo to me.

  14. Ellen Parker was best loved Maureen Bauer. Never cared for Marx as Tom, but I did like Holmes/Dolan, although my faves are still JD/MC because that was when my friends and I really noticed that Tom and Margo was smoking! Nice trip down memory lane.

  15. Yes! Only couple I have every loved no matter who played them! But I am a bit partial to HBS and GM.

  16. I wouldn't doubt that Nick & Sharon have to be in there somewhere. They were pretty prominent from 1994 into the next decade, with their marriage lasting over ten years.

  17. Scott Holmes' Tom Hughes is probably my favorite soap opera actor/character of all time...Despite the fact that he was given so few chances to shine for so long. But very glad to see this couple on the list, as one of the longest-running soap couples who--once they got together in the early 1980s--never left each other's sphere, even if they had a few spats every now and again.