Monday, July 21, 2014

Today in Soap Opera History (July 21)

"History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies."
- Alexis de Tocqueville

"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: Actor Les Damon died at age 54. His soap roles included Ed Palmerlee in The Edge of Night, Jim Lowell in As the World Turns, and Bruce Banning on The Guiding Light.

1966: On Dark Shadows, Carolyn found out about Roger's accident but refused to believe Burke was involved.

1972: Victoria Wyndham made her first appearance as Rachel in Another World. She replaced Robin Strasser in the role (Margie Impert had replaced Strasser originally but didn't work out so Strasser returned for a few months.)  Strasser's Rachel was torn between Steve and Ted so she decided to take Jamie out of town for a week. In Wyndham's debut, Steve came to Washington to see Jamie. Rachel returned to Bay City a few days later. Wydham would play the role until NBC aired the final episode of the show on June 25, 1999.

Charles Durning debuted in the same episode as a recast Gil McGowan. He played the role four months before Dolph Sweet took over.

1978: Rita Lloyd debuted as Lucille Wexler in Guiding Light.

1980: On The Edge of Night, "Kirk" (Tony Craig) and Emily were in danger at Playland Amusement Park.

1980: Texas actor Jerry Lanning debuted on Another World as Justin Marshall. Stephen D. Newman aired on AW for the final time as Mike Marshall. Mike called his children before he shot himself. He was only able to reach Paige's answering machine (Paige's voice was the first appearance by Texas actress Lisby Larson in the show).

1986: On As the World Turns, Frannie (Julianne Moore) broke down over her grandfather's (Chris Hughes) death.

1987: James Acheson debuted Jack Deveraux in Days of our Lives. He lasted three months in the role.

1988: On Days of our Lives, troubled teenager Eve Donovan (Charlotte Ross) was feeling insecure about fitting in and making new friends at school when Harris Michaels (a very young Steve Burton) approached her. What Eve didn't know is that Harris had just made her the object of a bet that he could score with "hooker chick."

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in the item above.

1989: Sherry Stringfield debuted as Blake Lindsey in Guiding Light.

1997: On Days of our Lives, Laura (Jaime Lyn Bauer) tried to convince Marlena (Deidre Hall) that the man with Kristen was not Roman.

2008: On One Life to Live, Clint and Rex found themselves in 1968.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Patricia Elliott (ex-Renee, One Life to Live) - 72
Jordan Clarke (Colonel, Venice; ex-Billy/Tim, Guiding Light) - 64
John Martin (ex-Bill, Days of our Lives; ex-Hank, Sunset Beach; ex-Frederick, The Young and the Restless; ex-Jon, General Hospital) - 63
Jack Stehlin (ex-Davis, General Hospital) - 48
Ali Landry (ex-Amur, The Bold and the Beautiful; ex-Kenzie, Sunset Beach) - 41
Chrishell Stause (Jordan, Days of our Lives; ex-Amanda, All My Children) - 33
Vinessa Antoine (Jordan, General Hospital; ex-Evi, Haven) - 31
Vanessa Lengies (ex-Sugar, Glee) - 29

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you have a tip on a bit of soap history on this date or future dates, let us know. Send an email to [email protected]


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Roger, Bo was with Rex when they both time-traveled to 1968 on OLTL back in 2008, not Clint!

    1. Stop your obsession with correcting him over every little thing. Your whole life is soaps.

  3. Vicky Wyndham Is Fabulous. I Still Miss Her & Her Iconic Presence Today!

    Brian :-)

  4. Vicky Wyndham Is Wonderful!

    Brian :-)