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Irna Phillips as a Storyteller & Mentor

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I have to disagree with you about P & Gs mandate...while I am sure they told the Dobson's to demphasis the "older," folks I dont think they wanted to mess with really, even more so then Bert Bauer, their main and most famous matriach. (and look at Bert Bauer, she was going strong even as Pam Long dismantled her family.) It was the Dobson's all the way...even when they wrote for her she was just sitting there and had three lines. Wagner quit about a week before the 25th anniversary and the Dobson's were soon fired after that. Maclaughlin stayed on but was bumped to recurring later. Lisa had been defanged before the Dobson's and writer's turned her into a dithering busy body and the Dobson's

amped that up, making her a total ditz...( I remember an interview at the time where Fulton said she complained and complained that Lisa was anything but stupid, so she had to play it like a ditz.) The Dobson's had been writing for the show for almost two years when she quit, they had her marry Whit MColl. Okay, I am embarrased that I know this stuff.

I think the Dobson's get this great reputation from their work on SB, and since I never watched that show I am sure it is true, however, they just werent a fit for ATWT. The characters they brought in, besides Jame Steinbeck (who may have been brought in by someone else) and most notably Margo, went nowhere, (Cricket??? Brad??? Even Lyla was kept on by Marland well past her expiration date.) Though I have to say, I did like their second go around much better, but the show became more cartoony (the Bull in the ring, John's faked death, Craig, Betsy, Steve) and may have appealed to my high school mind better.

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I have several sources that state Helen Wagner did quit in 1981 and not 1980. As Mitch said it was just a few weeks before the 25th Anniversary that occurred on April 2, 1981.

Soap Central has her last appearance in April 1981. I think she actually quit in March as stated a few weeks before the 25th, but had taped one episode that probably aired in April.

I agree that she quit because she had not appeared at all.

I also agree with the P&G mandate. I remember that so well. P&G was caught up in the youth craze that was attacking soaps at the time - thanks to Gloria Monty and Luke & Laura.

As stated one of those mandates was to get rid of Mandel Kramer and replace the Chief at Monticello Police force with a younger man. In came Dennis Parker as Derek Mallory who was younger and sexier. Several P&G shows got rid of older characters at that time.

And Mart Hulswit was hit hard because Daytime TV I think it was revealed he was fired for 2 reasons - he was balding and had put on weight.

The youth craze was eating up soaps at the time. If they weren't copying GH and Luke & Laura they were copying movies (i.e. SFT copied The Blue Lagoon with the Brian & Suzi story).

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Someone uploaded part of the 1992 GL Primetime Special, which celebrated GL's then 40th year on television. Anyway, starting 7 minutes and 30 seconds into this clip, they speak about Irna Phillips. Charita Bauer speaks, Agnes Nixon, Ruth Warrwick speaks, speaks, and William J. Bell speaks.

I wish this entire special was up and notjust this part...

Agnes said she learned by writing scrips from Irna's outlines and then Agnes would write the "narration."

William J. Bell says he wouldn't be on television if it weren't for GL and Irna, he doesn't speak about Irna's mentoring though.

Agnes said she thinks GL was Irna's favourite show, but we know that distinction probably belongs to ATWT.

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