Thursday, October 10, 2013

Today in Soap Opera History (October 10)

1975: OLTL's Tony and Pat got reacquainted. 1984: Springfield
mourned Beth Raines. 1995: Y&R's Victor Newman vowed to
prove his son's innocence. 2003: On PASSIONS, Death came
for Sheridan Crane.
"We should always be aware that what now lies in the past once lay in the future."
― F.W. Maitland

"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...

1932: General Mills-sponsored BETTY AND BOB debuted on NBC Blue radio. It was the first daytime show to be produced by Frank Hummert and Anne Ashenhurst. Married in 1935, the Hummerts became known as the "King & Queen of Soaps". BETTY AND BOB was the first true network soap opera on the air, using melodrama at its core.

1972: Victoria Thompson debuted as Janice Frame on ANOTHER WORLD.

1975: On ONE LIFE TO LIVE, Tony Lord (George Reinholt) got reacquainted with his ex-girlfriend and new editor of The Banner, as Pat Ashley. Pat was played by Jacqueline Courtney, who had departed ANOTHER WORLD in July after playing Alice Matthews for 11 years. Reinholt played Steve Frame on ANOTHER WORLD for seven years, and his pairing with Courtney as Steve and Alice was one of the most popular in soap opera history.

1975: Susan Oliver made her first appearance as the new Laura Horton in DAYS OF OUR LIVES, replacing Susan Flannery.

1977: On ONE LIFE TO LIVE, Dorian (Claire Malis) told Pat (Jacqueline Courtney) she thought she could use some extra help since she was working on so many different assignments. Dorian recommended Edwina Lewis (Margaret Klenck) for the job.

1979: On AS THE WORLD TURNS, John (Larry Bryggman) stuck his nose into Oakdale Memorial's search for a new Chief of Surgery.

1985: On GENERAL HOSPITAL, Ginny (Judith Chapman) was convinced her baby was dead.

1985: On KNOTS LANDING, Val (Joan Van Ark) told Gary (Ted Shackelford) she was naming her son Bobby after his late brother. The show never addressed the fact that Bobby Ewing's death on DALLAS was just a season-long dream that Pam had.

1986: On GUIDING LIGHT, family and friends gathered at Lillian's (Tina Sloan) house to mourn the loss of Beth Raines. Alexandra (Beverlee McKinsey) told Lillian she hoped Brandon (aka Lujack) was the angel that met Beth when she got to heaven.

1995: On ANOTHER WORLD, Vicky (Jensen Buchanan) told Paulina (Judi Evans) she was a fool if she let Jake (Tom Eplin) go.

1995: On THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, Victor (Eric Braeden) promised Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott) he would do everything in his power to prove Nick's innocence.

2000: Gene Palumbo, former head writer of GUIDING LIGHT, DAYS OF OUR LIVES and GENERAL HOSPITAL, died at age 54. He was also the co-creator of syndicated soap RITUALS. In our 2011 interview with Sheri Anderson, she discussed working with Palumbo on DAYS in the early 1990s: "Gene Palumbo and I were brought it to write a spinoff for Deidre [Hall] called MANHATTAN LIVES."

2003: On PASSIONS, Luis (Galen Gering) begged Death not to let Sheridan die. Death decided it could take both their lives.

2004: Former soap star Christopher Reeve passed away at age 52. He played Ben Harper on LOVE OF LIVE in the mid-1970s.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Peter White (ex-Linc, ALL MY CHILDREN; ex-Jerry, THE SECRET STORM; ex-Sanford, LOVE IS A MANY SPLENDORED THING; ex-Breslin, DALLAS; ex-Arthur, THE COLBYS) - 76
Larry Lamb (ex-Archie, EASTENDERS) - 66
J. Eddie Peck (ex-Jake, ALL MY CHILDREN; ex-Cole, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Hawk/Rick, DAYS OF OUR LIVES; ex-Tommy, DALLAS) - 55
Bradley Whitford (ex-Josh, THE WEST WING) - 54
Martin Kemp (ex-Steve, EASTENDERS) - 52
Sandra Canning (ex-Grace, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 48
Manu Bennett (Slade, ARROW; ex-Kirk, PARADISE BEACH) - 44
Mario Lopez (ex-Mike, NIP/TUCK; ex-Christian, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL) - 40
Jodi Lyn O'Keefe (ex-Maggie, ANOTHER WORLD) - 35
Dan Stevens (ex-Matthew, DOWNTON ABBEY) - 31
Aimee Teegarden (ex-Julie, FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS) - 24
Louisa Lytton (ex-Ruby, EASTENDERS) - 24

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. On the 2003 Passions clip: I think Galen Gehring is playing "Luis" not "Rafe" ;-)

    Hard to tell the difference at times .. lol!