Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Today in Soap Opera History (July 18)

1986: A gang member terrorized Another World's Victoria.
1986: Guiding Light's Alan revealed himself to be alive.
1986: As the World Turns' Chris Hughes passed away.
1997: Days of our Lives' Kristen brought Roman to Marlena.
"History is a vast early warning system."
― Norman Cousins

"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...

1934: Actress Darlene Conley was born. Best known for her many years as Sally Sprectra on The Bold and the Beautiful, she also played evil Rose DeVille on The Young and the Restless in the late '70s (running a prostitution and baby selling business in a story involving Nikki) and again in the mid-'80s (when she stole Nina's baby, revealed years later to be Ronan). Conley also had roles on Days of our Lives, General Hospital and Capitol. She died January 14, 2007.

1941: CBS Radio aired the final episode of soap opera Life Begins, which had premiered on January 22, 1940. Bess Flynn was the writer and also starred as Martha Webster, a housekeeper for the Craig family.

1972: Mark Tapscott debuted as Bob Anderson in Days of our Lives.

1973: On The Doctors, Carolee Simpson (Carolee Campbell) talked with Dr. Althea Davis (Elizabeth Hubbard) about problems she was having with Steve (David O'Brien) and his mother, Mona (Meg Mundy).

1973: Suzanne Rogers taped her first episode as Maggie in Days of our Lives. The episode didn't air until August 20 thanks to Watergate pre-emptions.

1974: On Another World, Liz Matthews (Irene Dailey) broke down when she told Vic and Lenore that Alice had been committed.

1980: On Guiding Light, Nola Reardon (Lisa Brown) talked with her mother, Bea (Lee Lawson), about wanting more out of life.

Thanks to Jennifer for sending in the clip above.

1984: On Days of our Lives, Bo Brady (Peter Reckell) and Hope Williams (Kristian Alfonso) continued to secretly see each other, while she lived with Larry Welch during Bo's investigation.

1986: On As the World Turns, Chris Hughes died in his sleep. Actor Don MacLaughlin, who had played Chris since the show's first episode in 1956 had died on May 28, 1986 at age 78.

1986: On Another World, a gang member named Aces with a grudge against Jake (Tom Eplin) terrorized Victoria (Ellen Wheeler) when he mistook her for Marley.

1986: On Guiding Light, an alive Alan Spaulding (Christopher Bernau) shocked the guests at a masquerade party when he was unmasked.

1988: Another World debuted a rock instrumental theme during the end credits.

1988: On General Hospital, Sean Donely (John Reilly), Colton Shore (Scott Thompson Baker) and Felicia Jones (Kristina Wagner) realized that CNALBEL was also WSB agent LeBlanc.

1995: On One Life to Live, Blair (Kassie DePaiva) told Todd (Roger Howarth) he would make a wonderful father.

1997: On Port Charles, Lucy Coe (Lynn Herring) promised Rex Stanton (Wayne Nortrhop) that she would not reveal any of his secrets if he agreed to stay in Port Charles.

1997: Josh Taylor, who had played Chris Kositchek on Days of our Lives from 1977 to 1987, returned to the show a decade later in a different role, Roman Brady. Confusing matters for viewers was the fact that Chris had been friends with Roman and Marlena, even serving as a groomsman in their 1984 wedding.

1997: On Another World, Nick Hudson underwent hypnosis to remember what happened the night Toni Burrell (Rhonda Ross) was raped. His memories sounded like a confession.

2010: Actor Larry Keith, best known for his role as Nick Davis on All My Children, died at age 79.

2011: On All My Children, Erica Kane's look-alike, Jane (also played by Susan Lucci), listened as Erica's recorded memoirs began to play. As flashbacks played, Erica talked about Mona, her marriages, Bianca, her turbulent relationship with Kendall, the impact that Myrtle had on her life, and Erica's long career.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
James Brolin (ex-Robert, The West Wing) - 77
Jonelle Allen (ex-Doreen, Generations) - 73
Audrey Landers (ex-Afton, Dallas; ex-Joanna, The Secret Storm; ex-Connie, Search for Tomorrow; ex-Heather, Somerset) - 61
Anne-Marie Johnson (ex-Dr. Patel, Days of our Lives) - 57
Elizabeth McGovern (Cora, Downton Abbey) - 56
Jensen Buchanan (ex-Vicky/Marley, Another World; ex-Vicky, As the World Turns; ex-Melissa, General Hospital; ex-Sarah, One Life to Live) - 55
Susan Marie Snyder (ex-Julie, As the World Turns; ex-Laken, Santa Barbara) - 53
Wendy Williams (ex-Phyllis, One Life to Live) - 53
Grant Bowler (ex-Mason, GCB; ex-Connor, Ugly Betty) - 49
Natasha Williams (ex-Nurse Kennedy, EastEnders) - 46
Valerie Cruz (ex-Grace, Nip/Tuck; ex-Isabel, True Blood) - 41
Eddie Matos (ex-Ricky, Port Charles; ex-Peter, General Hospital; ex-Charlie, The Bold and the Beautiful) - 41
Kristen Bell (ex-Gossip Girl, Gossip Girl; ex-Elle, Heroes; ex-Veronica Mars, Veronica Mars) - 37
Chace Crawford (ex-Billy, Blood and Oil; ex-Biff, Glee; ex-Nate, Gossip Girl) - 32
Ambyr Childers (ex-Colby, All My Children) - 29

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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