Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Today in Soap Opera History (April 29)

1980: EON's Raven finally arrived to see her sick son. 2009:
DAYS' Mia met Will's friend, Tad.  2013: The online versions of
All My Children and One Life to Live premiered.
"The whole past is the procession of the present."
- Thomas Carlyle

"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: Radio soap opera One Man's Family premiered on Los Angeles, Seattle and San Francisco stations. The popular series went nationwide a year later and ran until 1959.

1940: Young Doctor Malone aired for the first time on CBS Radio, having moved from the Blue Network.

1974: Radio soap opera Sounds of the City premiered.

1980: On The Edge of Night, Raven (Sharon Gabet) finally arrived at the hospital to see Jamey.

1981: On General Hospital, Alan Quartermaine exchanged threats with his cousin, Alex.

1983: Kathy Bates debuted on All My Children as Belle Bodelle, a prisoner who beat up Erica Kane.

1999: On Another World, Rachel (Victoria Wyndham) fell while climbing the clock tower.

2003: Actor Larry Weber died at age 84. His soap opera roles included Clarence Bailey on Guiding Light, Burton Canfield in Texas, Barney Dancy on The Doctors, Tony Vincente in Search for Tomorrow, Peter Ames on The Secret Storm, Austin Johnson in The Edge of Night, Eliot Clark on The Brighter Day, Chris Kendall in Valiant Lady and Richard Rollins on Love of Life.

William J. Bell
2005: Legendary writer and producer William J. Bell died at age 78 from complications of Alzheimer's disease. Bell began his soap opera writing career working at Irna Phillips' show The Guiding Light earning $75 a week. He then moved over to As the World Turns, and later co-created Another World in 1964 and Our Private World in 1965. In 1966 he became head writer at Days of our Lives, and remained in that position until 1975. He co-created The Young and the Restless with his wife, Lee Phillip Bell. The show, which premiered in 1973, eventually made it to number one in the ratings in 1988 and has remained there ever since. The Bells would also create The Bold and the Beautiful, which debuted in 1987.

2009: Brendan Coughlin debuted on Days of our Lives as Tad.

2013: Prospect Park's All My Children premiered via The OnLine Network on Hulu, HuluPlus and iTunes. The web series of AMC ran for 43 episodes before Prospect Park suspended production.

2013: Prospect Park's One Life to Live premiered via The OnLine Network on Hulu, HuluPlus and iTunes. The web series of OLTL ran for 40 episodes before Prospect Park suspended production.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Kate Mulgrew
Joseph R. Sicari (ex-Freddy, General Hospital) - 75
Richard Kline (ex-Mark, The Bold and the Beautiful) - 70
Gavan O'Herlihy (ex-Preston, Twin Peaks) - 60
Kate Mulgrew (ex-Mary, Ryan's Hope) - 59
Leslie Jordan (ex-Brother Boy, Sordid Lives) - 59
Susan Pratt (ex-Claire, Guiding Light; ex-Barbara, All My Children; ex-Charlotte, As the World Turns; ex-Elizabeth, Loving; ex-Annie, General Hospital) - 58
Eve Plumb (ex-Dora, Days of our Lives; ex-June, All My Children; ex-Jan, The Bradys) - 56
Jack Armstrong (ex-Carson, Days of our Lives; ex-Wally, Guiding Light; ex-Chad, The Bold and the Beautiful; ex-B.D., Eden; ex-Kevin, One Life to Live; ex-Greg, All My Children) - 56
Paula Cwikly (Writer, The Young and the RestlessDays of our Lives; As the World Turns; Sunset Beach) - 53
Uma Thurman (ex-Rebecca, Smash) - 44
Tyler Labine (ex-Dave, Invasion) - 36
Bre Blair (ex-Elena, Undressed) - 34
Michael May (ex-Chuck, One Tree Hill)  - 15

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. What ever became of Sounds of the City?

    1. I've read many stories about the show starting and as it was going on but never anything about it ending. I'm assuming they ran out of money because it seemed to do okay in the ratings. Would love to know more about it though.

  2. April 29 (1983) was also the culmination of the "patient on the third floor" and Mark Evans storyline on Guiding Light. Amid the bloodshed and carnage, Amanda celebrated her birthday and Quint and Nola got engaged.