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Full Circle

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This was sort of a "companion" soap to The Clear Horizon debuting almost the same time and being cancelled on the same day. Its lead was played by Dyan Cannon who later became more famous in the 70s. It's opening and close use to be on Youtube and the old WOST site and was a simple but shimmering circle coming at you like the Warner Bros. logo in Looney Tunes. Here's what Matt P. Smith wrote in his guide to soap history:


June 27, 1960

last telecast

March 10, 1961


Crowder, Virginia

created by




production company


broadcast history


2pm - 2:30pm


This was the first brand new soap opera to premiere on CBS since the landmark premieres of As the World Turns and The Edge of Night 4 years earlier and, combined with The Clear Horizon which would premiere a few weeks later, part of an attempt by CBS to expand upon their successful soap opera line-up.

Full Circle could almost be considered a “star” vehicle because it primarily centered around lead character Lisa Crowder who was played by future film star Dyan Cannon. Cannon had earlier appeared (with much positive viewer response) in a guest appearance on the serialized anthology series For Better, For Worse which Circle then replaced on the CBS line-up. Scheduled after the power-house As the World Turns, its obvious that the CBS brass had hoped to lure viewers of ATWT to tune in to this series, but that didn’t happen. Circle folded in less than a year.

Another key character was drifter Gary Donovan who arrived in town at the start of the series and quickly became involved in the various troubles of the town’s residents. The primary trouble seemed to be the mystery about the unsolved murder of Lisa’s first husband. Meanwhile, Gary fell in love with Dr. Kit Aldrich. Lisa’s second husband Loyal Crowder (a descendant of the town’s – Crowder, Virginia – founder) was eventually arrested for the murder and Lisa eventually divorced him, had a few other brief romances (including one with Gary before he married Kit), and then married for a 3rd time before the series’ cancellation. It was replaced by the game show Face the Facts which couldn’t manage to hold on to ATWT’s audience, either, and was replaced after a few months with the game show that would become a staple on CBS after ATWT for most of the 1960s – Password.

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Apart from Ms Cannon (who spelt her name differently later on-'Dyan',the only other actor people might know is Jean Byron,who played the mom on "Patty Duke Show" a few years later.

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Schemering's book doesn't say much you don't already know, just that it aired at 2 PM on the East Coast, was written by Bill Barrett, produced by Norman Morgan, directed by Livia Granito and Bill HOwell.

Lisa Crowder - Dyan Cannon

Loyal Crowder - John McNamara

Gary Donovan - Robert Fortier

Carter Talton - Byron Foulger

David Talton - Bill Lundmark

Beth Perce - Amzie Strickland

Dr. Kit Aldrich - Jean Byron

Virgil Denker - Michael Ross

Ellen Denker - Nancy Millard

The Deputy - Sam Edwards

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CBS tried several shows at 2.00 to follow ATWT.For Better or Worse had preceded Full Circle in that timeslot and it lasted a year.Face the Facts was a shortlived gameshow that replaced Full Circle for about 6 months until Password finally gave CBS a hit in that timeslot.

The competition was Day in Court on ABC and Queen For A Day and then the Jan Murray Show on NBC.

The show was advertised with this tag line-"Meet Gary Donovan,restless wanderer.His only companions are romance and adventure."

Gary arrived in Crowder,Virginia and met Lisa Linda Crowder,a young woman in an unhappy marriage to the older Loyal.a descendant of the town's founder.He also met Dr Kit Aldrich,who fell for him.Gary became interested in solving the mystery surrounding the death of Lisa's first husband.He worked at Loyal's mill with Virgil Denker.

A deputy arrested Loyal for the crime and though he didn't go to jail,Lisa divorced him and went after Gary,who was on the outs with Kit.She also romanced musician David Talton,who married Chris instead.Both the married Chris and David and the dating Kit and Gary had rocky on and off romances over the months.Beth Perce was busybody character.

In 61,David and Chris were expecting,Lisa had married again to a character named Tony and Loyal,who was still running the mill after the arrest, looked to be ready for a new romance.

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