Monday, August 19, 2013

Today in Soap Opera History (August 19)

1953: Arthur Tate wanted to leave town on SFT. 1996: Nathan
Hastings died on Y&R. 1996: Frankie Frame was brutally murdered
on AW. 2008: Robin clashed with Robert on GH: NIGHT SHIFT.
History is not melodrama, even if it usually reads like that.
-Robert Penn Warren

"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...

1953: On SEARCH FOR TOMORROW, Arthur (Terry O'Sullivan) told Nathan he planned on leaving Henderson and was going to forget about Joanne Baron (Mary Stuart).

1976: On DAYS OF OUR LIVES, Valerie (Tina Andrews) was unhappy with her parents.

1981: Kin Shriner aired for the final time as Jeb Hampton in TEXAS.

1981: On GENERAL HOSPITAL, Noah (Rick Springfield) served dinner to his special patient, Bobbie (Jackie Zeman).

1985: On DAYS OF OUR LIVES, Victor (John Aniston) invited Kim (Patsy Pease) to move in with him.

1987: On RYAN'S HOPE, Ben (James Wlcek) showed up at the church just as Lizzie (Catherine Larson) was about to walk down the aisle to marry John Reid (Jason Adams).

1996: On THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, Nathan Hastings (Adam Lazarre-White) died in the hospital after being struck by a car. Before succumbing to his injuries, Nathan talked to his son, Nate Jr. (Bryant Jones), one last time, then asked his estranged wife, Olivia (Tonya B. Williams), for forgiveness. The character of Nathan, first called "Kong," was created by William J. Bell in 1984. Prior to Lazzare-White, the character had been played by actors Forest Whitaker, Nathan Purdee and Randy Brooks.

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in this item.

1996: On GENERAL HOSPITAL, Robin (Kimberly McCullough) and Jason (Steve Burton) made love. It was also Stone's birthday.

1996: On ANOTHER WORLD, Frankie Frame (Alice Barrett) was brutally murdered. Before she died, Frankie tried to leave a clue about the killer's identity.

Margaret DePriest was ANOTHER WORLD's head writer at the time.  Jill Farren Phelps had resigned as executive producer on August 4th, and would be replaced by former NBC vice president Charlotte Savitz. In an interview with TV Guide Magazine in August 2012, Phelps (now executive producer of THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS) declared she was not responsible for Frankie's death.

"Look, I'm sorry I killed Maureen Bauer on GUIDING LIGHT all those years ago," Phelps said, "but I am not responsible for the death of Frankie Frame on ANOTHER WORLD! That was not my doing and I am tired of taking the heat for having killed a character when I didn't!"

This seemed to conflict somewhat with what Phelps said at the time.

”I am not going to claim absolutely no responsibility. The truth of the matter is the fans have to understand that Frankie did not die to make way for Robert Kelker-Kelly to come in. That is not the truth. What is the truth is that up until now, AW did not enjoy the kind of financial freedom the other shows do. There are so many beans in the jar, and people do have to go to make room for other people. It is not true that I did not like Alice; it is true that I like everybody to get an A story, and I get stymied when I find myself up against something I don't quite understand."

1998: On ALL MY CHILDREN, Trevor (James Kiberd) convinced Derek (William Christian) to let him look at Jim's safe deposit box.

2004: Actor Remo Pisani, who played Speed Taft in THE EDGE OF NIGHT, died at age 85.

2008: On GENERAL HOSPITAL: NIGHT SHIFT, Robin (Kimberly McCullough) clashed with her stubborn father, Robert (Tristan Rogers), over his medical treatment.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Jill St. John (ex-Deanna, EMERALD POINT N.A.S.) - 73
Jonathan Frakes (ex-Tom, THE DOCTORS; ex-Sandy, PAPER DOLLS; ex-Damon, FALCON CREST) - 61
Peter Gallagher (ex-Chuck, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Sandy, THE O.C.) - 58
Adam Arkin (ex-Mark, KNOTS LANDING) - 57
Darby Hinton (ex-Ian, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 56
Paul Satterfield (ex-Spencer, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Pierce, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; ex-Paul, GENERAL HOSPITAL) - 53
Frank Rossi (ex-Michael, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Dino, ALL MY CHILDREN; ex-Dino, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 53
John Stamos (Connor, NECESSARY ROUGHNESS; ex-Carl, GLEE; ex-Blackie, GENERAL HOSPITAL) - 50
Kyra Sedgwick (ex-Julia, ANOTHER WORLD) - 48
Kevin Dillon (ex-Lonnie, 24) - 48
Matthew Perry (Mike, THE GOOD WIFE) - 44
Tracie Thoms (Tracie, BANDWAGON) - 38
Callum Blue (ex-Zod, SMALLVILLE) - 36
Court Bauer (Former Writer, WWE, ECW) - 35
Melissa Fumero (ex-Adriana, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Adriana, ALL MY CHILDREN; ex-Zoe, GOSSIP GIRL) - 31
Erika Christensen (Julia, PARENTHOOD) - 31
Tammin Sursok (Jenna, PRETTY LITTLE LIARS; ex-Colleen, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Dani, HOME AND AWAY) - 30
Trent Baines (ex-Macca, HOME AND AWAY) - 29
Micah Alberti (ex-Jamie, ALL MY CHILDREN) - 29
J. Evan Bonifant (ex-Lucas, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Al, ONE LIFE TO LIVE) - 28
David A. Gregory (ex-Ford, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Kyle, DECEPTION) - 28

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to submit a piece of soap opera history for this daily column, please email it to [email protected].


  1. Wow, a real joyous day in history! A reminder of how sometimes the people behind the scenes have no idea what is working with the audience.

    1. And sometimes the priorities are very out of whack. No matter who was responsible for cutting actors on AW in 1996, it still happened and not long after the show spent a fortune on fancy new sets. They looked great but I would have rather had the actors stay on the show in the old sets.

    2. I can't thing of anything positive that came out of JFP's tenure as AW's executive producer. She tried to turn the show into something it wasn't and ended up destroying it in the process. Whether she accepts responsibility or not she is absolutely responsible for what happened to Frankie.....and nothing, not even a soap, can survive without a heart.

  2. I bet if both maureen and frankie were NOT killed off regardless of whos ti blame..both AW & GL would still be on the air. The fans felt their voices were not heard and stopped wsting droves...both characters were fan real members of the family

    1. thommthomm, that's a good point. It's all water under the bridge now. The bottom line was the shows lost two key characters.

    2. It makes me wonder whether Y&R has been experiencing a similar effect after killing off so many of its popular characters over the last several years (John Abbott, Brad, Colleen, Cassie, etc.)
      Seems that there are too few characters to root for on this show now.

  3. If John Abbott and Liz Foster had not been killed off they would have added so much depth and history to the story of Katherine Chancellor's death.