Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

True Confessions of a Card-Carrying Former Soaps Addict

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

True Confessions of a Card-Carrying Former Soaps Addict

Article excerpt

I was a freshman in college when I got hooked on the folks of

Pine Valley. Like others in my sorority, the noon hour watching

ABC's All My Children was as much a part of our core schedules

as Anthropology 101.

What happened to Tara, Philip, Erica and Chuck was the subject

of endless fascination. Adding fuel to that was the fact one of

our Tri Delta sisters had married the actor who played Chuck at

the time. She got her own show business moment as the star of

Nancy , a short-lived sitcom about the president's daughter. Her

husband continued as Chuck, then moved on to commercials.

All My Children was never really the same after that. The love

affair between Tara and Philip, a central part of the

story-line, suffered from a key casting change when Karen Lynn

Gorney left the show. (Her day in the spotlight came as John

Travolta's love in Saturday Night Fever.) Even toward the end,

Erica Kane kept things lively.

Sometime in my 20s, there was another brief fling with a

daytime soap. This time it was Another World and the era of

Rachel and Mac. Again, the allure was a starcrossed-lovers plot.

Meanwhile, a young actress named Susan Sarandon played it to the

hilt when she was struck down by kidney failure. I can still

remember the jaundice.

Other big screen stars with soap opera pasts include Tommy Lee

Jones, Demi Moore, Ray Liotta, Christopher Reeve, Christian

Slater and Morgan Fairchild.

Lack of time and other priorities kept me from getting hooked

again. And years of previewing shows without commercials has

made me impatient at every break these days. But I understand

why people tune in. And why these serials have remained so

popular since the radio days of the 1930s when Procter & Gamble

was principal sponsor.

Part of it is quality. In the early 1970s, All My Children was

fetching TV drama filled with intrigue, strong characters and,

for the first time, social issues like abortion, battered women

and the feminist movement. Judging by a recent episode, the hot

topics these days are homelessness and drug abuse. Still,

relationships are at the fore. …

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