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March 1983 article on cable soaps


DRW50

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Interesting article. Thanks, Carl! You don't happen to have the one on "The Catlins," do you? I seem to recall in one of the June 1983 SODs there was an article on the show's arrival. Or maybe I'm thinking of one of the other soap magazines.

I found the points regarding "Another Life" made by Hummel fascinating. The Lori attempted rape episodes are on youtube and it is a rather jarring experience. The incident isn't sugar coated and it's clear Lori was lucky to get away from savage Blue, played by Chandler Hill Harben. I hadn't consider the implications of this story especially in the era of Luke & Laura.

As you can tell from the preview, "Lone Star Bar & Grill" didn't premier until June 1983. I wonder why it was postponed? Anyway, Falken Smith seems to suggest it would be more movie of the week than true soap. I love how she was trying to change the definition of soap. Paul Klein, who was behind the "Romance" series, called his storials, combination of 'story' and 'serial.' Klein went on to be a major part of Playboy TV.

The overwhelming reference to fantasy surprises me, but doesn't surprise me at the same time. In the final script for 'Eden,' two of the most sexual scenes are fantasies of Francie Richardson. I understand one purpose of soap is to provide fantasy, but I think the shows took this too literally. Falken Smith indicates a very sexual fantasy on Buddy's part in 'Lone Star' when in fact the encounter is more platonic. I wonder if the writers were afraid to have the characters go too far so they had all the sex stuff play out as fantasy. Either way, it doesn't sound like it utilized the medium.

I read one there were 120 episodes of "Loving Friends..." but I don't know if that is correct. I don't know about 'Loving Friends...' but Eden's final episode was taped in December 1982, but didn't air until August 1983. 'Loving Friends' was probably wrapped well before Cali Timmins first appeared on 'Ryan's Hope' even if the episodes continued to air. I think Showtime stopped airing Loving Friends in November 1983.

It was interesting to hear Marland say they were playing with time on 'Eden' as Richard Backus said Marland was so strict about the passage of time on 'As the World Turns.' The incident Marland describes involving the young woman falling into the pool and losing her top made me laugh. Maybe it plays out better onscreen. 'Eden' sounds like it may have been very dark, and moody based on the plot and the description of the sexual situations Marland gives here.

I believe that it Wendy Barry (Shelley Novak) and Grant Wilson (Biff Lewis) featured in the snapshot from 'Eden.'

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As always dc I feel like I've watched these shows from your descriptions! Thanks so much. Have you ever seen any of the Lone Star show?

I didn't realize there were possibly that many episodes of Loving Friends.

I don't have any magazines on The Catlins right now but hopefully I will at some point.

I think I've asked this before but do you know if Klein was involved with the Playboy Channel's "Eden"? That was a slightly uneasy mix of continuing drama and anthology.

What you say about fantasy sequences and overusing them just because of the new freedom you have is very interesting. I sometimes feel like Marland spend the early 80's getting some of his wilder soap ideas out of his system before he became much more traditional.

I wish these shows had been more popular (I wonder which one was most popular). It turned out to be such bad timing - right in the face of the AIDS epidemic and the increasing "family values" nonsense. If they'd started a few years earlier who knows what might have been.

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No. I haven’t seen any of ‘Lone Star Bar’ and the information was harder to come by so I stopped looking for it.

I don’t think Showtime aired all the episodes. The show was also produced for a Canadian channel. For Showtime, I was having trouble finding listings for Loving Friends after November 1983. By the time Showtime aired the final episodes of ‘Eden,’ 54 half-hour episodes of ‘Loving Friends’ had aired on Showtime. Tom Hallick says he appeared in 123 episodes of ‘Loving Friends.’ Maybe the show produced 130 episodes? This would be a six month order.

It’s not likely Paul Klein was involved with ‘Eden.’ He was in on the ground floor of Playboy, but wasn’t there long. I only learned of the Playboy connection while searching for articles from 1983 on Showtime and soaps. One article mentioned how he moved from working on ‘Romance’ to creating similar material for the early days of Playboy. A quick google search of Klein says he left Playboy around the time cable got in trouble for breaking decency laws.

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I'd thought of posting this in the main forum but since it was is all defunct soaps (and for me this IS the main thread) I posted here. Glad you got to read it. I was surprised that any magazine even went into any detail. I wish there was more out there. At least there seems to be more for New Day in Eden.

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Marland was at 'Guiding Light' during most of the planning of 'Eden.' There's an article from October 1981 where a Showtime executive said Marland would be fleshing out the plot soon. At the time, Marland was at 'Light' and would stay there until September 1982. Marland left 'Light' because of his fight with EP Allan Potter regarding Jane Eliot's termination. In turn, Marland hired Eliot to appear in the eight hour long installments of 'New Day in Eden.' In the other thread, I mentioned the film date listed on the final script states the show was set to wrap production on December 15, 1982.

I would suspect Marland joined 'Loving' after he left 'Guiding Light,' which would be September / October 1982 at the earliest and December 1982 at the latest. There was a DEcember 1982 interview with Marland talking about joining Nixon on her new project. The People's Magazine article about 'Eden' was written when 10 episodes had aired. Episode 10 aired December 14th. The final scripts would have been written by because Marland says he planned to leave the show with the identity of the serial killer unrevealed. So maybe there were two months of overlap with 'Loving' / 'New Day in Eden.' Besides the possibility of some reshots in order to resolve the plot, Marland was done with 'Eden' in December 1982.

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