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Edge of Night (EON) (No spoilers please)

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Another performer who appeared on The Edge of Night has passed away. Chevi Colton played THREE roles on the show:
Gigi Magagnoli (a major role in 1962), 1979's Mrs. Fenner, and 1980's Dr. Buckley. She passed away last Monday (the 24th).

Her late husband, Joe Silver, also appeared on the show and other soap operas.

Ms. Colton also appeared on Guiding Light in 1992.

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Seems to me (in hindsight) that the show really suffered a lot after Tony Craig (Draper) left, because Draper & April were really in the "heart" of the storyline from about 1978 until their departures.   I've been watching the Margo Dorn storyline on You Tube, followed by Kirk & Emily Michaels, followed by the Clown Puppet, and then of course there's Dr. Bryson.   It's amazing how much of those stories are centered almost entirely around the lives of April and Draper.

 

Back in the day, I thought April and Draper were kinda "goody-goody", and were therefore fairly dull.   But in hindsight they aren't that way at all.   Draper is fairly flawed (too much pride, too resentful of Margo's presence in his life), and April is downright MEAN sometimes -- sarcastic, cutting, and impatient.   They definitely weren't traditional hero and heroine material.  And they were very good foils for Sharon Gabet's manipulative Raven character.   She sees them as soft, weak, and vulnerable, and she bats her eyes, smirks and tries to run all over them, which usually results in them raising their voices too loudly, rolling their eyes, and throwing her out on her tail.  

 

Once April and Draper were gone, Slesar seemed to position Miles and Nicole in the roles of the "young married centerpiece couple".  But they really ARE awfully goody-goody, and they don't have the biting interactions with Raven that characterized April and Draper's relationship with her.   Just something missing from thenceforth onward.         

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On 12/13/2019 at 6:53 PM, Broderick said:

Back in the day, I thought April and Draper were kinda "goody-goody", and were therefore fairly dull.   But in hindsight they aren't that way at all.   Draper is fairly flawed (too much pride, too resentful of Margo's presence in his life), and April is downright MEAN sometimes -- sarcastic, cutting, and impatient.   They definitely weren't traditional hero and heroine material.  

This is an excellent point that really made me reflect on that period of EON.

 

I enjoyed the sophistication of Miles & Nicole, Sky & Raven, and Mike & Nancy Karr as married couples without the burden of young children during the Slesar period.  There was no need to explain that the kids were upstairs with a nanny while Nancy was off investigating a plastic surgery clinic or Sky needed to ski in St. Moritz.  Eventually Jody and Kelly became de-facto dependants, and of course Jamey returned and Raven had more kids.  However, I think it was radical to have that many couples with no kids.  It was as if the entire cast were the subjects of  Roy Lichtenstein's "I can't believe I forgot to have children" painting.

 

I also totally agree that April was a great heroine.  She was never a shrinking violet.  She held her own against Emily and she was vital in solving many of the mysteries.  I enjoyed how bitchy April became at Raven during Draper's murder trial.  For too long she had put up with Raven being inappropriately flirty with her step-brother Draper and dropping off Jamey at all hours so she could go to the disco.  She knew Raven only wanted Jamey for the money and April was there when Raven gave him up to the Scott's because she felt ill-suited for motherhood.  There's a great scene where Mike, April, Nancy and the others are convening at the penthouse for lunch during the trial, Raven tries to barge in to grab a sandwich (from Margo's comedic maid) while garnering some sympathy/guilt and April unloads on her in a very satisfying way.     

 

I am not as much of a fan of Draper's mostly because he was never able to have the gravitas in courtroom scenes like Mike.  I cannot recall a single cross examination or closing argument from Draper that became as iconic as Mike's cross examination of Serena Faraday or his closing in Logan's murder trial.  It may be unfair to compare the two because Draper wasn't given the same opportunities in the writing of the scripts at the time.  However, I have doubts that Tony Craig could carry it off.  In my mind he was always an Adam Drake/Logan Swift-substitute (without the charm or Geraldine connection) and the need for Mike to continually have a younger associate became null as there were fewer trials in the later years (a huge loss in storytelling in my opinion, I liked the pattern of the police working the mystery and the solution coming during the trial).

 

That being said, how lucky was Miles to inherit Margo's penthouse after April moved to London?  He was only tangentially related to the previous owners and he got a private elevator, tons of art, and a patio overlooking the entire skyline of Monticello.  Raven is remembered as a gold-digging social climber, but Miles landed way above his previous station by the end.

Edited by j swift

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Check out the very brief scene from 15:10 to about 17:10, from January 1980, where Henry Slesar takes the huge risk of effectively "spoiling" the entire storyline that he's crafted to last through the entire summer of 1980.    Over an innocuous game of Monopoly while Logan Swift is recovering from the flu, Draper and April discuss April's recent dreams --- she's in the hospital with a new baby named "Julia" (whose name she's unable to explain the origins of), a plaintive train whistle blows, a man appears with silver bracelets, and Draper disappears to some strange and faraway place where April is unable to locate him.  In this brief two minute scene, we are given a preview of Draper's arrest for Margo's murder (though Margo is still alive and well when this scene aired), the train derailment at Grant's Falls, Draper's "abduction" by Dr. Gault and Emily Michaels, and April's subsequent relationship with Logan while Draper is presumed dead.   This is definitely "high stakes spoiling" on Henry Slear's part, but he wraps-up the entire scene in such a vague and mysterious manner that it only leaves you WONDERING instead of truly "spoiling" anything at all.        

 

 

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23 hours ago, j swift said:

    

 

I am not as much of a fan of Draper's mostly because he was never able to have the gravitas in courtroom scenes like Mike.  I cannot recall a single cross examination or closing argument from Draper that became as iconic as Mike's cross examination of Serena Faraday or his closing in Logan's murder trial.  It may be unfair to compare the two because Draper wasn't given the same opportunities in the writing of the scripts at the time.  However, I have doubts that Tony Craig could carry it off.  In my mind he was always an Adam Drake/Logan Swift-substitute (without the charm or Geraldine connection) and the need for Mike to continually have a younger associate became null as there were fewer trials in the later years (a huge loss in storytelling in my opinion, I liked the pattern of the police working the mystery and the solution coming during the trial).

 

 

 

J Swift, as I'm re-watching the old episodes from 1979 to 1981, the word that keeps crossing my mind to describe Draper Scott is YUPPIE.   We see Logan Swift as charming and clever; Cliff Nelson is hilariously immature and theatrical; Miles Cavanaugh is smart, sincere, and dedicated;  Mike Karr is perceptive and intuitive, and provides the necessary "gravitas" to his courtroom scenes.   Schuyler Whitney, when he appears later, is a suave, sophisticated, worldly young tycoon.   Draper Scott provides another archetype entirely --- the fairly bland, handsome, upwardly mobile yuppie.

 

I'd never even heard the word "yuppie" in 1980, as the word didn't become fashionable until the middle-1980s, but obviously young, climbing urban professionals were a demographic that existed in 1980 (especially in the legal profession), and Henry Slesar put all the components in place for Draper.   We learned that Draper would ditch Monticello in a heartbeat, if he could secure a position with the prestigious, upscale Seward, Paxton, & Whiteside law firm in New York City, and, as we would expect, Draper throws a childish hissy fit when Margo Huntington denies him the opportunity to move.  He decides to live in a trendy home in the suburban utopia of Oakdale, and when he finds out that Margo paid $35,000 to make the house more affordable to him and April, he becomes offended and says, "By God, I'm going to pay for my OWN house for MY wife!"  For Draper, everything should be prep-school perfect, and when things don't fit his preconceived Ivy League whitebread notions of life, he's embarrassed by them.    ("Oh, April, don't tell these people about your premonitions; they're not interested!")  He's sheepishly ashamed of his father Ansel's tendency to rendezvous with attractive young starlets and wealthy widows.   Raven's fondness for utilizing sex as a bargaining tool --- well, that kind of behavior is just downright EMBARRASSING to Draper.  That doesn't fit into his ideal of how people should behave in the junior chamber of commerce.  

 

Yes, he could be dull as hell, but he provided a much-needed archetype on the show, and one that Slesar evidently loved writing for, because for long periods of time, Draper literally appeared in five episodes per week.   Maybe not so much for what Tony Craig brought to the part, but rather for the interactions generated by the other quirky characters when they played off the Yuppie.   I really feel that Henry Slesar lost some steam when his Yuppie (and by necessity of course, April) were removed from his canvas of characters.         

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