Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Today in Soap Opera History (January 28)

1980: ATWT's Barbara told Tom about the son she gave away (Paul).
1980: EON's Margo needed surgery to survive.  1994: AMC's Brooke
had a nightmare. 2004: John Clarke ended his DAYS run.
"Maybe if people started to listen, history would stop repeating itself."
- Lily Tomlin

"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...

1972: On ANOTHER WORLD, Ada (Constance Ford) promised Rachel (Margie Impert) she wouldn't do anything foolish with what Ernie left her. Impert did not work out in the role of Rachel, and Paul Rauch brought Robin Strasser back to the soap for four months until Victoria Wyndham was hired. Read our interview with Robin Strasser here where she recalls her experience working with Constance Ford.

1980: On AS THE WORLD TURNS, Barbara (Colleen Zenk) confessed to Tom (Tom Tammi) that she had a son with another man three years earlier and gave him to Claudia Colfax and her husband, Raymond, to raise.

1980: On THE EDGE OF NIGHT, surgery was Margo's (Ann Williams) only hope to survive.

1980: PEOPLE magazine published a story about SEARCH FOR TOMORROW consultant Dr. Anthony Moulton:

As the soap opera's medical adviser for the past five years, Moulton, 34, is on call to explain the possible dramatic repercussions of various diseases. He once wrote a 15-page report to the show's producers on the aftereffects of a mastectomy. Recently they wanted to know what complications could strike a little girl with pneumonia so that a nurse could save the child's life. When Moulton's advice is needed right on the set, which happens every three months or so, he has gone on camera himself (at union scale of $250 a day).

He often portrays an anesthesiologist or junior surgeon, leaving the medical heroics to the series stars. Once Moulton's hands were filmed sewing up an incision (actually a surgical cap) while an actor portrayed intense concentration for facial closeups. "The first few times on camera," allows Moulton, "I was much more nervous trying to fake an operation than I am doing the real thing."

1985: On SANTA BARBARA, Veronica was in grave danger from Peter.

1985: Actor Dennis Parker, best known to soap fans as Police Chief Derek Mallory on THE EDGE OF NIGHT, died at age 38.

1987: On RYAN'S HOPE, Delia (Ilene Kristen) prepared her new boutique Deja Vu for its grand opening.

1993: On DAYS OF OUR LIVES, Doug (Bill Hayes) and Julie (Susan Seaforth Hayes) moved to Switzerland.

1994: On ALL MY CHILDREN, a distraught Brooke (Julia Barr) had a nightmare which included an older Laura, her daughter that was killed by a drunk driver.

2004: Original cast member John Clarke aired for the final time as Mickey Horton on DAYS OF OUR LIVES.

2009: ITV aired the 7,000th episode of CORONATION STREET.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Renne Jarrett (ex-Eileen, LOVE OF LIFE; ex-Phoebe/Bebe, THE EDGE OF NIGHT; ex-Shirley, THE INNER FLAME) - 78
Alan Alda (ex-Arnold, THE WEST WING) - 78
John Beck (ex-Bruce, PASSIONS; ex-Sam, DAYS OF OUR LIVES; ex-Mark, DALLAS; ex-Sam, FLAMINGO ROAD) - 71
Harley Jane Kozak (ex-Annabelle, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Mary, SANTA BARBARA; ex-Brette, TEXAS) - 57
Keith Hamilton Cobb (ex-Damon, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Noah, ALL MY CHILDREN) - 52
Terri Conn (ex-Aubrey, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Katie, AS THE WORLD TURNS) - 39
Daniel Manche (ex-J.J., AS THE WORLD TURNS; ex-Tom, ONE LIFE TO LIVE) - 21

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 always hoped that ATWT would play the beat at some point where Paul found out (I don't think he ever did) that Barbara had given him up and that he'd been abused by Raymond Colfax.

    Maybe Paul did know (not sure) but I don't remember it ever being addressed.

  2. You bring up a good point. I do not remember if that was played out at some point (you would think that James will later use that information aganist Barbara).