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What Were Five Times Soaps Went All Sci-Fi On Us? Think Clones, Aliens, Satan & Passions!

Courtesy/CBS

Courtesy/CBS

Now over the decades devoted soap viewers have been put through the ringer with some very implausible plots.  However, while some have been “out there,” some have been quite entertaining and memorable.  And yes, there are those that are remarkably unmemorable, as well.

In a hilarious tribute to the five times soap operas went sci-fi insane, SYFY Wire has posted a hysterical look into these storylines which include: The Reva/Dolly clone story on Guiding Light, Marlena’s possession on Days of our Lives, Casey the alien from Lumina on General Hospital and so much wackadoodle from the defunct Passions that you will have a great chuckle when you go through the review in the video.

So soapers, check out this video ditty to kick your 4th of July holiday weekend off after the jump!. Then in the comment section below, let us know which of all was the zaniest, most outlandish sci-fi stories of them all on the soaps represented here in this video, or not, is your all-time favorite!

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Jay
Jay

No Dark Shadows?

Christy
Christy

Dark Shadows was all reality – in the realm of Collinswood that is. Port Charles and The Edge of Night were in betweeners. Passions was a whole other world to itself. Regular soaps are more “realistic” for the most part…. Except when there’s a crystal lovin’ – not from this world – alien hiding in your garage that your child is secretly feeding and becomes friends with.

Or when you and some people you know go down under… And live in a place called The Lost Underground City of Enterna.

Or when you go thru a time travel vortex next to a ranch fence to Texas in the 1960s and people you know from the future and there in the 60s but they’re other people.

Or when you go back in time 100 years so the 1880s and meet your wifes great grandma who is the spitting image of your wife.

Or when you go to heaven and get to see and talk to all your old friends and relatives and you get to come back even if you were there for days. Oh, and you get to do this three different times in 1987, 2008 and 2012.

Or when you’re possessed and you levitate over your bed.

Or you control machines that do fantastically evil things – like a satellite that can brainwash people. Or a device that can freeze the whole world of at least downtown in New York state.

But otherwise normal.

😀

Mary SF
Mary SF

And all that crazy, silly stuff that Passion was and is being laughed at now was the reason NBC cancelled one of the best all time soaps Another World for— Big Sigh

Alan
Alan

ANOTHER WORLD was always a pretty classy show but that Jordan Stark/The Lumina Foundation storyline was a real stinker.

Celia
Celia

You’re right. “Passions” was not worth losing “Another World”, my grandmother’s favorite soap.
As an adult I can laugh at “Passions”, but, in retrospect, as a thirteen-year-old, and through High School, it was so much fun. The ridiculous, unfathomable stories, made it all that more attractive.

jaybird369
jaybird369

Celia…more and more, Passions used to make me LOL…most of the time anyway. As far as I’m concerned, as a duo, Timmy and Tabitha were COMIC GOLD…MORE LOL!!!!! Liz (Eve’s sister) was clearly disturbed and unhinged…but ENTERTAINING AS HELL!!!!! Edna (the mother of that WHACK-A-DOO Beth) was (among other things) bitchy, cranky, foul-mouthed, mean and ornery…and a LOL RIOT!!!!! My dear, I could go on and on here……….

Later, my friend.

su0000
su0000

A colne- possession- alien- time travel- etc //
I MISSED IT !! all of it.. I MISSED THE GOOD STUFF!
Now, that is fun great soap !!!

A1,0000 times better than than the crapola now, for sure..
Imagine– actually having fun watching a soap- AWESOME!
All we have is doom&gloom and 8 months of Morgan died !

I would pay for some outlandish sci-fi , anything but Morgan is dead..

jenny
jenny

my picks:

1. Marlena possessed by the devil DOOL

2. Casey the alien GH

3. Marlena kills half of Salem then they all are alive DOOL

4. Viki travels back in time to the Wild West OLTL

5. The Ice Princess freezes Port Charles GH

dmr
dmr

Oh, I remember watching Marlena being possessed, Casey the Alien, and Viki traveling to the Wild West.

Steve
Steve

Eterna! Eterna! Eterna!
The wardrobe for the lost city under Llantano Mountain added to intrigue. Add to that Viki’s prolonged heaven dream and Clint’s trip back 100 years were totally over the top!

Alan
Alan

ONE LIFE TO LIVE had some of my favorite sci-fi storylines: Viki goes to Heaven; Clint time travels back to 1888; the underground city of Eterna; Bo and Rex time travel back to 1968; Professor Delbert Fina uses his magical remote control to show Rex and Gigi what really happened in the basement the night “Gigi” died. The least successful sci-fi story on OLTL was Bo trying to find a way to extract the mysterious solarimite to power Georgina Whitman’s prototype car.

PASSIONS was unlike anything seen on daytime since DARK SHADOWS thanks to James E. Reilly’s wild imagination. The Vincent storyline that played prominently during the show’s last few years on NBC was totally original.

Shay
Shay

@Alan….Thanks for your “Ryan’s Hope” reply….Alas, “Aristotle Benedict White” came before my regular viewing days of this soap, but I’m sorry I missed him given that he was played by Dynasty’s Gordon Thomson!!! (I looked it up….) I think I randomly caught that Delia/King Kong thing simply by happenstance….and I recall reading about it, too! By the time I really began watching this show in the mid-80’s, it was mainly comprised of days filled with more down-to-earth Irish-American references like “Danny Boy,” and corned beef and cabbage, along with those second-generation characters of Rick, Ryan, Johnno, Katie, Ben and Maggie, plus that fabulous villain, Max DuBujack!!!! With plenty more of real-life NYC-style embellishments thrown in for good measure! As for Delia’s ESP? You know, that deliciously daffy dame was always such a hot mess with her many meltdowns that in retrospect they all sort of meld into one big incomprehensible impression in my mind…when did her intuitions actually start becoming reality???…Was there a major storyline attached to this particular talent or was it just sprinkled throughout the series???? Regardless,I truly treasure the inspired insanity that Ilene Kristen brought to that role—still love her!—although I can vaguely visualize GH’s Robin Mattson briefly portraying Delia when I first checked into this soap on a daily basis ala VCR. (P.S. I’ve always thought a tongue-in-cheek run-in at Port Charles’ Kelly’s between these two actresses would be a total treat….”Dueling Delias!”)

Alan
Alan

I don’t remember all the details of Delia’s ESP (we didn’t have a VCR back then so I would flip back and forth to the soap with the most interesting storyline) but I recall it having something to do with her playing the stock market and later it was revealed that she was reading the cosmic forces that she believed dictated Maeve’s likes or dislikes on any given day. I think the plot was dropped fairly quickly and never referred to again.

The Meritkara mummy storyline was a pretty atypical story for RYAN’S HOPE but I was a teen back then and was totally into the whole Faith was a reincarnation of Meritkara, the curse that was killing people connected to the mummy, and the seal on the tomb that was supposed to reveal the location of a “River of Gold” that the show never got around to pursuing.

Barbara from Atlanta
Barbara from Atlanta

And this type of plots are a part of the reason that soaps are in such bad shape these days. I rarely watched Guiding Light after Reva was cloned. Likewise, I permanently turned off Days when Marlena became “possessed.”

Cheap, gimmicky plots that insult the viewer’s intelligence.

I realize that all soaps have plots that really stray from day-to-day experiences. It is one thing to give us a plot where one woman has a relationship with every male member of a family. It is another to have the heroine kidnapped by aliens who take her to an unknown planet.

IMO, the main thing soaps have going for them are the relationships of the characters. By airing five days a way for decades, the shows have one advantage over every other type of show (or even a movie) —- The viewers can get to “know” the characters and want to keep up with their “friends.”

Clones, aliens, devils, “towering infernos”, etc. are the type of plots that only work in HUGE budget films that are gone in 2 hours of viewing. The soaps have no business pursuing these types of story lines as they don’t take advantage of the formats strengths. Moreover, the soaps don’t have the budgets to make these type of plots remotely attractive — They just look cheap because the show doesn’t have the huge budget to make it look even remotely “realistic.”

Mr. Fairman, I like your site and visit it frequently. However, we definitely have different opinions on the need to honor or celebrate these types of plots. The only way they should be remembered is as the type of story NOT to put on a soap.

rose
rose

I remember Casey, the alien. I’m a big sci-fi fan, but even this story seemed strange on GH at the time. But lets don’t forget vampires and Lucy as the slayer along with Caleb/Michael Easton, Livvie/Kelly Monoco, and Rafe. Another plus is that Anna Devane was in both.

Beth
Beth

All My Children was a very down-to-earth show (as much as any soap could be), but even they visited the Twilight Zone when they had Erica Kane’s previously-thought-to-be aborted fetus implanted in Greg Madden’s wife, where she gave birth to Josh Madden. What a disastrous storyline.

Casey the alien on GH was pretty out there, and I remember it well. I’d also add the Ice Princess storyline, which was out of comic books, not a daytime drama. It gave us great Luke and Laura and introduced us to Robert Scorpio, but it was way out there.

Steve
Steve

Erica’s unabortion may be the worst soap storyline of all time! Not sure if Agnes lost veto control at that time.

That storyline and those poisonous pancakes started a downward spiral the show never recovered from.

Jamesj75
Jamesj75

This clip was indeed entertaining! And I can’t argue with the choice of Passions, given its bizarre, unbelievable plots throughout.

As a soap purist, however, I am no fan of sci-fi plots as a rule because they defy logic and reason. Some would argue that soaps in general defy logic and reason. Great storytelling is no easy feat, which is why some soap scribes succumb to strange, suffocating scripts (including trying to make a hero out of an abusive, foul-mouthed crime boss/murderer) — yes, I managed to squeeze in an anti-Sonny rant! — and also why some writers explore science fiction. And then when the storyline has run its course, things go back to normal, almost as though the characters (and viewers) experienced a bad dream.

I am indeed a fan of some science fiction, but I don’t want the genres of soaps and science fiction intersecting. Put another way. I like chocolate and I like nuts, but I don’t like nuts in my chocolate (insert double entendre here). So no Snickers (or snickers) for me!

All that being said, I did enjoy the Eterna storyline (briefly mentioned in above clip) on OLTL!

Ashleigh
Ashleigh

“BAR BAR OF THE BLACK LAGOON” ON As the World Turns, when somebody sent Barbara, Lily, and Emily, (I think) to some place in Sweden where some mad scientist doctor did experiments on them to make them old. “DOCTA VESTON IS A CHEENIOUS!!!” As stupid as it was, we were glued to our tv in my house!!

Reed
Reed

Since I’m 90+ episodes behind on GH and testing the limits of my DVR, I can’t weigh in on anything current, but well said by a number of you already–no church and state and no sci-fi with my soaps! Having just binge watched 5 seasons of House of Cards, focus on great story telling and turn in strong performances and you’ll keep us watching. These shows are on thin ice as it is without another Ice Princess story line…although that’s about when I started watching. There’s so much savvy, enthralling television being done, so tap into that renaissance before you go all “Port Charles” on me and I wake up one day to find my show is now all about vampires. (Alas, I still hung in to the bitter end, but today I wouldn’t subject my DVR to that.) There’s just too much good stuff out there competing for our attention, so don’t you dare do it (going sci-fi), just stick to the formula! Sure, improve the wheel if you can, just don’t try to reinvent it.

nicholas
nicholas

Days of our lives was so good this week . please watch the replay and tune back in . This soap is finally taking a turn for the best .

Jimh
Jimh

Another World did a stupid story about a gorilla in love with Cass…it wasnt sci fi but just as dumb!

Shay
Shay

And how about when Ryan’s Hope went all “King Kong” with Delia (though not in the form of Ilene Kristen..) being kidnapped by a primate suitor??? For a soap that was generally quite rooted in reality, that storyline was truly out there….

Alan
Alan

Jim: The Carolyn the gorilla thing paled in comparison to the Jordan Stark/Lumina Foundation story that had 1880’s scientist Jordan Stark time travelling to 1990’s Bay City because the soul of his dead love was inside Amanda Cory and he needed to make love to Amanda in the secret garden on the Cory estate that housed a tear in the time/space continuum so that his lover could take control of Amanda’s body and they could be reunited.

Shay: Don’t forget Aristotle Benedict White’s search for the tomb of Meritkara, the mummy who was a previous incarnation of Faith Coleridge. Or Delia’s bout of ESP!

Eric1972sea
Eric1972sea

Poor James E. Reilly died not long after Passions was cancelled by Directv. He probably lost his will to live after not having a sci-fi storyline to write.

Rodd
Rodd

Too stupid for words! LOL!

rebecca1
rebecca1

LOL!!!! I thought the compilation was absolutely hilarious! And in the midst of real life drama, big or small, it only reinforced for me how such escapism, is, just that! Hahahha…to see these people, LOL, singing, dancing, talking to aliens in such wry, campy style is too fun. I really wish they had pursued Michael Easton’s Caleb on GH (I love a good-looking vampire!) rather than the stuff I find intolerable like Michael forgiving Sonny or almost every single person in AJ Q’s family putting him down when he was alive. Some of the emotions and reactions that are supposed to be realistic are just non-relatable to me.

I personally think there’s plenty of room for real life drama…friendships, family, romance…with a little alien (ala the gorgeous Casey) thrown in!

Kudos to SYFI Wire for taking the time to gather such “ancient history” and compile such a hilarious clip and “tribute” to the crazy soap genre, such as it is/was.

blake
blake

You just had to remind us of Reva’s clone, didn’t you? She also walked through a painting to a past life, and I think the other characters jumped in there too lol. Guiding Light really jumped the shark with Reva’s over-the-top stories. When they lost Cynthia Watros’ Annie they felt they had to make up for it, and it backfired. Even the replacement Annie was a bad recast and couldn’t pull off the crazy stories like Watros.

Allen Saint James
Allen Saint James

Soap Operas are fantasy fiction. end of story
When these stories are well written and acted they can be fully engaging and create the kind of drama you dont see much of these days. I like the stakes high.

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS OF OUR LIVES: Lucas Says Goodbye To Salem, While Julie Recalls Coming Back To Town

In a very touching episode of Days of our Lives, Tuesday brought with it an emotional goodbye from exiting fan favorite Bryan Dattilo (Lucas), and the soap paying homage to Susan Seaforth Hayes’ 50th anniversary to the day as Julie.

It begins in Horton Town Square where Julie next to the plaque dedicated to her grandparents, Tom and Alice Horton, has a flash back to phone call with Tom five decades ago.

Meanwhile, now broken up with Chloe, and ready to leave Salem to be with his daughter, Allie, Lucas tells Will he is leaving and that he is happy Will and Sonny found their way back to each other.  The two hug it out, and tell each other how proud they are of one another.  Next, Lucas goes to visit his mother, Kate.  In a touching exchange played by Dattilo and Lauren Koslow, viewers were treated to Kate’s pain of the mistakes she made as a mother, and Lucas being forgiving of her.

At Doug’s Place, Julie and Abigail try to figure out how to bring down Stefan and Gabi.  Julie promises to not tell anyone that Abigail is not mentally ill saying. “Your secret is safe with me.”  Next, Chloe happens upon the scene and Julie quickly sees Chloe break down in tears.  She then reveals to Julie, that she and Lucas broke up.  Julie gives Chloe a tissue and some words of advice – the gospel according to Julie – that they were not meant to be, and that Chloe will find true love. After all, after Julie’s other failed relationships, once she was with Doug she found her soulmate, so she knows it can happen.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Julie flashes back to speaking with Alice when she worries that Tom would not want her to return to Salem.  For Julie had been in San Francisco, and where she brings up putting her son up for adoption, but how she later raised him and how happy that Eli is her grandson.  She even recalls when JJ got her and other ladies in Salem accidentally high on pot-filled donuts!

When Lucas turns up at the Horton’s everyone is saddened and shocked that he has decided to depart Salem   Julie says Salem will always be his home.  JJ hands Lucas his ornament now, breaking the Christmas tradition early.  Lucas hangs his ornament in another emotional moment.

Next, we see Lucas waiting for a taxi, with his suitcases at Horton Town Square,  He gazes at the Tom and Alice dedication plaque and says, “I’ll be back. someday.” Hankies!

Alone now with Julie, Doug brings out a cake celebrating how it is 50 years since Julie returned to Salem permanently.  Cue the montage … as Doug’s voice is heard singing “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World”, one of the duo’s signature songs, as clips of their love affair played throughout.  We fade to black.

DAYS honored Susan Hayes and gave Brytan Dattilo some heart-tugging moments as he left the canvas as the beloved Lucas.  So what did you think of the episode?  Sad to see Bryan exit?  Happy to see the show wrote in a way to honor Susan’s 50th as Julie? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Breaking News

Gilles Marini Talks The Return Of Ted Laurent, His Co-Stars: Kristian Alfonso, Lauren Koslow & Greg Rikaart On ‘Inside Salem: Days of our Lives’ Podcast’

If you caught this week’s episodes of Days of our Lives, you know that Ted Laurent (Gilles Marini) has resurfaced in Salem and had asked Hope (Kristian Alfonso) for protection from Stefan DiMera, who was responsible for his disappearance in exchange for information on Ben Weston (Rob Scott Wilson).

Now in the latest episode of Inside Salem: Days of our Lives Podcast, actor Gilles Marini chats it up with host, Michael Fairman on what to expect as Ted’s story brings with it many twists and turns; including a potential love triangle.

Marini reveals what he thinks Ted’s weakness ia when the guy has not previously been on the up and up, plus his thoughts on working with three of his co-stars and their characters: Lauren Koslow’s Kate, Kristian Alfonso’s Hope, and Greg Rikaart’s Leo, whom he has shared up to now most of his screen-time.

The talented actor who hails from France, also talks on some other highlights in his career, including one of his big breaks on the beloved ABC drama,  Brothers & Sisters working opposite Rachel Griffiths, and a host of award-winning actors, including Sally Field, and of course, his time on Dancing with the Stars where he became one of the most popular celebrity contestants on the series of all-time.

Later, in the podcast’s dressing room segment, Eric Martsolf (Brady) welcomes Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe) into his digs at DAYS, and then two tease some upcoming #Broe moments.

Check out this excerpt from NBC of Gilles interview below.  Then, make sure to head over to NBC.com to listen to the episode currently streaming there, and on Monday, looks for this episode to be available on all pod platforms, including iTunes for download.

Now, let us know what you think about Ted’s return to DAYS … and if you want him to romance Hope … become a good guy … or get his comeuppance … or all of the above …via the comment section below!

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Breaking News

Days of our Lives and General Hospital Receive Daytime Drama WGA Award Nominations

The nominations have been announced for the 2019 Writer’s Guild Awards for outstanding achievement in television, new media, news, radio/audio, and promotional writing during 2018.

Winners will be honored at the 2019 Writers Guild Awards on Sunday, February 17, 2019, at concurrent ceremonies in New York City and Los Angeles.

In the Daytime Drama category for writing, two soaps will face-off for the prize; NBC’s Days of our Livers and ABC’s General Hospital.  Here are the official nominated head writers and their teams.

Days of Our Lives, Head Writer: Ron Carlivati; Writers: Sheri Anderson, Lorraine Broderick, David Cherrill, Joanna Cohen, Lisa Connor, Carolyn Culliton, Richard Culliton, Rick Draughon,  Cydney Kelley, David Kreizman, David A. Levinson, Rebecca McCarty, Ryan Quan, Dave Ryan, Katherine Schock, Elizabeth Snyder, Tyler Topits.

General Hospital, Head Writers: Shelly Altman, Christopher Van Etten; Writers:Barbara Bloom, Anna Theresa Cascio, Suzanne Flynn, Charlotte Gibson, Lucky Gold, Kate Hall, Elizabeth Korte, Daniel James O’Connor, Donny Sheldon, Scott Sickles.

To check out all the nominations click here.

So, who are you rooting for to take the WGA Award; Days or GH? Comment below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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