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When "Another World" was created by Irna Phillips in 1964, daytime TV
was considered the lowest of mediums for actors to appear in. This
well-written soap started off slowly but eventually grew into one of
the biggest trend-setters of the late 60's and 70's. It featured a
veteran cast of stage and prime time TV actors, as well as some with
film experience as well. Actors who normally turned down roles on soaps
were soon courted and cast by the producers based upon the extreme
quality in writing and the show became one of the top rated shows of
the early 70's. Originally surrounding the saga of the middle-class
Matthews family, it was obviously a rehash of the same themes of Irna
Phillip's "As the World Turns" and their core Hughes family. The couple
of Mary and Jim Matthews were often compared to Nancy and Chris Hughes,
and Aunt Liz was definitely a variation of the Claire Lowell character.
Even vixen Rachel had routes on "ATWT", compared to the trouble-making
Lisa Miller who married that shows young intern Bob Hughes, while
Rachel would marry Russ Matthews. By the time the show entered the
early 70's, the writers changed directions, and Rachel slowly became
the show's leading character, reformed by the love of a good man, Mac
Cory. (The change in actresses playing Rachel obviously had a lot to do
with this----the original Rachel, Robin Strasser, went on to play
another notorious villianess, Dorian Lord, on "One Life to Live", while
stage actress Victoria Wyndham took over the part and softened up
While most of the major characters in the Matthews family would be recast multiple times over the next 18 years, it would be Rachel and Mac Cory who took the show to its greatest fame of the mid 70's. By this time, core supercouple Steve and Alice were separated by his apparent death, and Alice was recast because of apparent backstage squabbles. Mary Matthews met an untimely death, and Rachel's oft-married mother Ada became the show's truth-telling matriarch. As played by Constance Ford, Ada was one of the show's most beloved characters, and until her death in 1992, Ford remained the show's longest running cast member. All you have to do is see her as the evil mama in "A Summer Place" and various other films of the early 60's to see how versatile an actress she was. While Liz Matthews was recast many times, it was Irene Dailey's performance which got this character her most memorable scenes and won Tony Award Winning Dailey an Emmy. Liz was the last of the Matthews on the show, last seen at the show's 30th anniversary in 1994. Another acclaimed performance was Beverlee McKinsey's Iris, who played the spoiled daughter of Rachel's husband, Mac (played by stage vet Douglas Wattson). I never saw McKinsey as Iris, although I did witness her incredible talent as the original Alexandra Spaulding on "Guiding Light".
I did not start watching "Another World" until 1993 when two glamorous actresses, Linda Dano, and Anna Stuart, joined the show as two female characters who were focuses of many story lines for the show's remaining run. As flamboyant Felicia Gallant, Linda Dano was an instant scene stealer; Her on-camera pool fight with a young Faith Ford (Julia Shearer, Liz Matthew's granddaughter) was one memorable sequence, as was her on-screen friendship with Steve Schnetzer (Cass) and the lovable Brent Collins (Wallingford). Collins was the very first little person on a soap with a contract and gave a performance so touching that the memory of his on-screen warmth brings on tears of sentiment. Anna Stuart, as the originally snooty Donna Love, added a complexity to what would have otherwise been a stereotypical snob. By showing her pain from childhood memories, Stuart made Donna one of the most memorable vixen/heroines on the show, as well as daytime. (As of July 15, 2003, both Dano and Stuart are working on ABC soaps and are still the epitome of glamour and beauty).
During her heyday on "Another World", Cecile DePoulignac (Susan Keith, Nancy Frangione) was one of the most memorable vixens on daytime; Sadly, the show's later writers turned her into a caricturature of what she had been, ruining many of the great moments she had earlier. The deaths of Hugh Marlowe (the finale Jim Matthews), Douglas Watson, Brent Collins, and Constance Ford saddened even the newest viewers, but such memorable character performers as Kate Wilkinson (as the wise mother of Donna's true love Michael Hudson), Barbara Berjer (as the delightful Scottish woman who raised Donna's daughter Vicky), and Sloane Shelton (as the woman who helped Rachel over her mother's death) helped viewers deal with the loss. Such nasty villains as Carl Hutchins (the delightful Charles Keating), Reginald Love (John Considine), and Grant Harrison (Mark Pinter) were perfectly used to cause problems for all of the major characters, but Victoria Wyndham's over-the-top Justine Harrison (Rachel's evil look-alike) turned some viewers off even with her Grimm Fairy Tale type storyline.
Now off the air with original episodes since 1999, "AW" has returned on SoapNet as of July 1 2003, starting with 1987 episodes. Viewers will get to see a few years of Douglas Watson and Brent Collins and a few more of Constance Ford, but there are also many memorable performances coming up. Viewers of "General Hospital" will recognize Denise Alexander and Chris Robinson (Lesley and Rick Webber) reunited as Mary McKinnon and Jason Frame; Soon, "GH's" future Stavkros Cassadine (Robert Kelker-Kelly) will be on as the original Sam Fowler, while "Guiding Light's" Ricki Paul Goldin will be on as Dean Frame. Anna Stuart's Donna will return in a year and a half. By this time, the new Iris (Carmen Duncan) will be on, and Irene Dailey's Liz will have returned from a year and a half hiatus. "Another World" via SoapNet is taking old viewers down memory lane, while new viewers will get to see what they missed all along.
I'm not the typical soap opera watcher, if there is such a thing. I'm a male between the ages of 18 and 49 which is precisely the demographic NBC was seeking when they canceled Another World on April 12, 1999. Even though I'm not a woman, I suspect that age was more important to the suits. The network brass stated that the 35-year-old serial no longer fit their profile. Why? because it had too much class? Thanks to my beloved Grandmother, I started watching Another World back in the fall of 1968. The show was 30 minutes long and in black and white. (It may have been in color but our TV was B&W.) I was just a kid. Most of the time I didn't quite know what characters were talking about. However I knew the faces and I knew who everybody was. So I stopped arguing for cartoons and watched Another World every day. Back then it started at 3:00 and I was home from school in time to see it. Whoever thinks the soaps are trash obviously never watched AW. The acting was excellent, something that never changed from 1968 to 1999. I've seen just about all of the other soaps since 1968. I have to say that none of them ever equaled Another World's caliber. The stories were very much like real life except with much more bad luck. The characters from Rachel Davis and Walter Curtin in the 60's and 70's to Lila, Cameron, Cindy and Paulina in the 90's, were always striving to get to their own "another world". A place, in their minds, that they thought they ought to be. Their perception of the world around them was colored by their preconcievd emotions and aspirations. The best example of this, in my opinion, was the Walter/Lenore storyline which played out over four years and included a murder trial, the birth of a baby,and the value of material possessions versus truth and respect between a husband and wife. There was so much history in the show. NBC just threw it away like an old shoe. In an era where hundreds of channels are available, NBC canceled the one show which would have kept me watching NBC no matter how many choices I had. But no more. In September I will be put in charge of a "people-meter" to measure and inform the neilsen ratings people on what I watch. I'm told that I'll represent 250,000 viewers. I don't know how that can be considered accurate, but that's how the ratings people do it. Bad News for NBC and Passions. They have both just lost 250,000 viewers in the "good" demographic.
Someone could make a great deal of money if they were to transfer the Another World series on DVD. There are very loyal fans out here. I started watching Another World when it fist started and it is the only soap that I have ever followed devotedly. !Please!, !Please!, someone release the whole series. I feel crestfallen yet again with the unannounced, whoops it is no longer being carried by Soap Net, gone again!!! I never understood why this soap that won many awards along the way was cancelled. It is typical of a network to try and fix something that is not broken! AND, did I not recently hear that the soap that replaced ANother World is gone Kaput. Why not bring Another World back, starting with some old story lines to catch new viewers up to speed. If not, the concept of DVDs would have me at the store standing in line to buy the entire series!! A fan to the end...shimanc
I recently found soap-net on my TV and was so excited to see that they are airing old episodes of Another World. I tape each show and watch them over and over, especially the "Snow Flake Ball" episodes. What beauty and glamor they showed! I've been watching Another World since the very beginning as a small girl because it was on when i got home from school and the maid was watching as she ironed shirts. I also learned how to iron as well! I always loved the show because it had an element of mystery about it. Now that I'm older, it's so refreshing to see a show that stays with the real problems and emotions of it's characters rather than the silly, off the wall, fantasy driven plots of the shows now. The shows today seem to be competing to see which is the most surreal, racy, and ridiculous. Take me away to Another World anytime.
"Another World" was the very first soap opera I have discovered in my lifetime. I remember when I was turning on the TV and surfing through basic channels one childhood afternoon, and there was the "Another World" opening theme with a beautiful, California-style theme playing, same with the closing theme. Then a few years later, I decided to start watching it, all the way until the airing surprisingly ended in June 1999. Shortly after that, I was so saddened, thinking "Why did this heart-warming soap opera end?" And "Why didn't it continue airing just like the other soap operas?" It used to air every weekday afternoons at 2:00pm right after "Days of Our Lives." Now, this other new lame soap known as "Passions" has taken over. Why? I still don't understand that. Whenever I think of "Another World," I also think of the really good old, addictive days and times of my life, when I had lots and lots of fun. Nowadays, things have unfortunately changed, ever since "Passions" was aired. How sad? Without "Another World," it is still not the same for me or part of my life. I now watch the other soap known as "Days of Our Lives," pretending that "Another World" would still air today. It will always be missed, until it returns someday. Maybe...
Another World. 35 years, 8891 episodes, so many stories yet to be told.
That sums up the Another World experience. Another World was and
to be a story of triumph of the human spirit. The main thing that sets
Another World apart from other daytime dramas is the fact that the caliber
of actors used were the finest stage actors of our day. Another World
became the breeding ground of many of the greatest talents known: Morgan
Freeman, Christina Pickles, Ray Liotta, Anne Heche to name a few.
Indeed, Another World set the standard by which all remaining daytime dramas attempted to achieve. We shall miss you, old friends, if for but a short while. All endings are nothing but new beginnings and that will be the same for the story of Bay City, Illinois. Somehow, some way, Bay City will return to daytime!
On May 4, 2009, in honor of "Another World's" 45th Anniversary,
TeleNext Media launched an officially-sanctioned continuation to the
beloved soap, "Another World Today" (http://www.AnotherWorldToday.com).
Presented in a multimedia combination of text and video clips, AWT picks up Bay City's story ten years after it went off the air, featuring favorite characters like Rachel, Felicia, Cass, Donna, Grant, Marley, Jamie, Amanda, Matt and more.
New episodes come out once a week on Mondays and, at the end, viewers vote on where they would like the story to go next! Experience it all from the beginning, or jump right into the latest installment at: http://www.anotherworldtoday.com/aw_today.html
This was such a great soap opera, with wonderful, talented actors breathing life into complex, terrific characters. I miss the marriages of Joe and Paulina, Jake and Vicky, and the romances of Amanda and Cameron, Cass and Lila, and many more. What would AW have been without Rachel Cory Hutchins, as played by the wonderful Victoria Wyndham? I wish that AW had brought back Iris, as played by Beverlee McKinsey in its final episodes, as they'd done with Charles Keating's Carl. I miss this soap, as I'm sure a lot of other people do. Daytime TV just isn't the same without it!
I really miss Another World. Of course - for me it was never the same after Mac Cory (Played by a great actor - Douglas Watson) passed away on the show (Mr. Watson passed in real life). Thank god they didn't just replace his character with another actor. He brought so much class to the show. It was a wonderful show - Passions is so terrible compared to it. I've missed it on the Soap Opera network - maybe I'll try to catch it. I still remember the episode when Rachel told Mac how she used to walk by this mansion when she was a small girl and wanted to live there. Mac bought it for her and turned it into the Cory Mansion - the scene for so many of the later shows. Great characters came and went. Remember the Cass / Celia / Kathleen story line? Awesome. Felicia came on - she was wonderful. Ada was always there backing up her once scheming daughter (Rachel). It was fun.
My nana started watching AW when she saw an ad for it while walking through Manhattan in the 1960s. She immediately became hooked. I started watching it in 1999 but then it was cancelled. Soon after, my nana and I began watching AW's replacement "Passions." That show was so disturbingly bad and the fact that that show replaced AW is truly a shocker. AW was a story with character and class. A story that men, women, young, and old could watch and relate to. Linda Dano was especially excellent. AW will sorely be missed and, sadly, Passions has neither the character nor the class that AW has. But then again, no soap did. I now watch OLTL and GH on ABC and they both are enjoyable though don't compare to AW. AW fans can take solace in Soap Net and when Passions is finally cancelled we eventually can take solace in the fact that we have killed the enemy.
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