Monday, October 20, 2014

Today in Soap Opera History (October 20)

1930: Painted Dreams premiered. 1987: GH's Duke &Anna
were married. 1994: AMC's Edmund faced tough questions from
the press. 1998: Y&R's Sharon was hit by a car.
"History cannot give us a program for the future, but it can give us a fuller understanding of ourselves, and of our common humanity, so that we can better face the future."
― Robert Penn Warren

"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...

1930: The soap opera was born! Irna Phillips’ radio soap Painted Dreams premiered on WGN Radio in Chicago. The show is widely recognized by broadcast historians as the very first soap opera. The show ran on WGN and later CBS Radio until July 1943.

Click here to read Rob Wargo's in-depth feature from the 80th anniversary of Painted Dreams in 2010.

1951: CBS debuted its eye logo. You can view photos of the Eye logos throughout the decades at

1978: On Another World, Jamie Frame married Blaine Ewing at Justice of the Peace Bellamy's living room in Ogden.

1980: Kin Shriner debuted as Jeb Hampton in Texas.

1980: On Another World, Russ (David Bailey) assured Tracy (Janice Lynde) they would have a child someday. Just a few months later, Tracy died in a car explosion meant for Russ.

1983: On Knots Landing, the lawyers for Val (Joan Van Ark) and Gary (Ted Shackelford) argued heatedly over the divorce settlement when Val interrupted and told them she only wanted the house and the car, nothing more. William Devane made his first appearance as Greg Sumner in this episode.

1987: On General Hospital, Duke Lavery (Ian Buchanan) and Anna Devane (Finola Hughes) were married in a traditional Scottish ceremony..

1989: Vincent Irizarry aired for the final time as Scott Clark in Santa Barbara.

1994: On All My Children, the press wanted Edmund (John Callahan) to reveal why he got into an altercation and hit Del Henry (Winsor Harmon).

1995: Actor Christopher Stone died at age 53. He played Bill Horton on Days of our Lives and Dave Stratton in Dallas.

Barbara Berjer
2002: Actress Barbara Berjer, beloved for her work on many daytime soap operas, passed away at age 82. She had lived in her native Seattle for a year before she died of pneumonia while on a trip to New York City.

Berjer's daytime roles included Bridget Connell in Another World, Barbara Norris in Guiding Light, Claire Cassen on As the World Turns, Ms. Spence in All My Children, Irene Eagon Wheeler in The Edge of Night, and Lynn Franklin in From These Roots.

1998: On The Young and the Restless, having belatedly joined her husband, Nick (Joshua Morrow), on a business trip in Denver, Sharon Newman (Sharon Case) was shocked when she overheard him and Grace Turner (Jennifer Gareis) talking about their lovemaking session prior to Sharon's arrival. Emotionally distraught, Sharon exited the hotel, wandered the dark city streets, and was hit by a car.

Thanks to FoxCrane for sending in the item above.

2003: On The Bold and the Beautiful, Stephanie (Susan Flannery) went to the foundry and wanted Nick to explain to her what happened to Ridge. Nick assured Stephanie that her son was a hero. Nick suggested that maybe Stephanie and Brooke could help one another deal with their grief. Stephanie admitted that it took losing Ridge to realize how much Brooke loved him. Meanwhile, Brooke joyfully threw her arms around Ridge but wondered how he got out alive. Anna recounted how she rescued Ridge through a hatch at the bottom of the furnace. Brooke thanked Anna for saving Ridges life and her own, then Brooke and Ridge shared a kiss.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
William Christopher (ex-Father Tobias, Days of our Lives) - 82
Sandra Dickinson (ex-Debbie, Casualty) - 66
William Russ (ex-Tucker, The Young and the Restless; ex-Burt, Another World) - 64
David Henesy (ex-David, Dark Shadows; ex-Student, Another World) - 58
Viggo Mortensen (ex-Bragg, Search for Tomorrow) - 56
Yvette Nipar (ex-Sandy, General Hospital; ex-Sasha, Days of our Lives) - 50
Snoop Dogg (One Life to Live guest star, theme song singer) - 43
Dannii Minogue (ex-Emma, Home and Away) - 43
Gillian Jacobs (ex-Adele, The Book of Daniel) - 32
Rose McIver (Tinker Bell, Once Upon a Time; ex-Holly, Shortland Street) - 27
Cooper Guynes (ex-Kyle, The Young and the Restless) - 14
Oliver Guynes (ex-Kyle, The Young and the Restless) - 14

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to submit a soap history entry for this date or a future date, email [email protected].

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