Friday, September 27, 2013

Today in Soap Opera History (September 27)

1965: Four new daytime soap operas premiered - NBC's
"In history, a great volume is unrolled for our instruction, drawing the materials of future wisdom from the past errors and infirmities of mankind."
― Edmund Burke

"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...

1962: Primetime serial THE NURSES premiered on CBS.  The was titled was changed to THE DOCTORS AND THE NURSES a year later.

1965: NBC premiered two new Ted Corday daytime soap operas, MORNING STAR and PARADISE BAY. Both shows ran until July 1, 1966. Watch an episode of each below:

1965: THE NURSES premiered on ABC. The show, set at Alden General Hospital, was a daytime continuation of a serialized primetime CBS drama THE DOCTORS AND THE NURSES. Mary Fickett starred as Liz Thorpe with Melinda Cordell as Gail Lucas. Other cast members included Claudia McNeil, Lee Patterson, Nicholas Pryor, Paul Stevens, Arthur Franz, and Lesley Woods. The soap ran until March 31, 1967.

1965: ABC premiered NEVER TOO YOUNG, a daytime soap geared toward a teen audience. Dack Rambo and LEAVE IT TO BEAVER's Tony Dow were among the stars. The series featured several musical guests who performed at The High Dive, including: The Castaways, The Sunrays, Marvin Gaye, Johnny Rivers, Mel Carter, Freddie Cannon, and the Ramsey Lewis Trio.

1979: On AS THE WORLD TURNS, Chris, Nancy, Bob, Dana, Tom and Barbara arrived to see a Joffrey Ballet benefit performance in Oakdale with guest conductor Ian McFarland (Peter Simon). The scenes were shot on location at the Ed Sullivan Theater, current home to THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN. Backstage Ian told Dana (Deborah Hobart) he felt completely destroyed without her. During the performance, Ian collapsed. Joffrey dancers Starr Danias and Gregory Huffman are featured.

1984: On SANTA BARBARA, Mason (Lane Davies) accused Kelly (Robin Wright) of having a case of "divided loyalties."

1985: On GENERAL HOSPITAL, Frisco (Jack Wagner) and Robert (Tristan Rogers) plotted an undercover plot for Frisco in order to avenge Josh's death.

1989: Derya Ruggles aired the final time on DAYS OF OUR LIVES as Robin Jacobs.

2004: On PASSIONS, the face of Alistair Crane (David Bailey) was finally revealed. After five years of only hearing Alistair (voiced by Alan Oppenheimer) or seeing body movements (performed by Bill Dempsey), viewers finally got to see what Alistair looked like. Unfortunately, Bailey would die just two months after this first scene with Katherine Crane (Leigh Taylor-Young) aired. John Reilly would subsequently step in to play the role of Alistair.

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in this item.

2007: DirecTV announced they would provide an All-Access Pass to PASSIONS to view all new episodes on the Official PASSIONS website at for a monthly fee.

2009: DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES' sixth season premiered. The main mystery of this season was surrounding new neighbor Angie Bolen and her family.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Peter Simon
Peter Simon (ex-Ed, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Scott, SEARCH FOR TOMORROW; ex-Ian, AS THE WORLD TURNS) - 70
A Martinez (ex-Ray, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Roy, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Cruz, SANTA BARBARA) - 65
Shaun Cassidy (ex-Dusty, GENERAL HOSPITAL) - 55
Christopher Cousins (ex-Cain, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Colin, AS THE WORLD TURNS; ex-Greg, ANOTHER WORLD) - 53
Patrick Muldoon (ex-Austin, DAYS OF OUR LIVES; ex-Richard, MELROSE PLACE) - 45
Gwyneth Paltrow (Holly, GLEE) - 41
Anna Camp (Caitlin, THE GOOD WIFE; ex-Sarah, TRUE BLOOD) - 31
Derrell Whitt (Will, THE BAY; ex-Lucas, SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES) - 25

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. I wish there were one major You Tube Channel dedicated to Vintage Daytime Drama serials. Like a digital aggregator where one can find links to clips and episodes of all the network daytime dramas and audio clips of radio soaps as well. Interviews and specials, etc. Just so that we could find them all in one place.

    I feel like I've said this before (LOL).

    Of course, I bet companies like PGP/Telenext, whatever will deny permission for episodes, yadda yadda yadda but one can dream, right?

    1. I don't know how many of the old episodes are digitized and ready for the web. Most of the old P&G episodes available are just master tapes sitting in a warehouse at this point.

    2. Still, even if you left out P&G soaps (would be a big chunk), it would be cool to be able to see and hear clips of some of the more obscure serials, that had much shorter runs.

  2. I recently watched many of them that were digitized at the Paley Center in NYC. Ellen striking Franny Brennan was one I had been wanting to see, and it was available, as were several from 1968 involving Lisa, Claire, Michael Shea, and one from 1975 involving Susan's attempt at being reinstated at Memorial, and Nancy's concern that Jennifer going back to school would take her away from caring for a toddler Franny.

  3. The episodes at the various museums and similar places around the country are about it other than what Soap Classics managed to encode during the time they had licensed the episodes (they also worked with P&G to digitize eps during the old P&G AOL Soap Channel days).

    1. Too bad they didn't continue now, they might have made significant headway.

  4. Wow! Four soap operas debuted on the same day in 1965!