ANOTHER WORLD aired its final episode on June 25, 1999, after a 35-year run. Here’s a look back at the beloved NBC soap.
Premiere Date: May 4, 1964
Finale Date: June 25, 1999
Created By: Irna Phillips and William J. Bell
Overview: Viewers were introduced to the denizens of Bay City in the wake of the death of William Matthews, who left behind wife Liz, two children (Susan and Bill), brother Jim, sister-in-law Mary, and their offspring Pat, Russ and Alice. After a slow start, the show caught on with fans via the wildly popular triangle of Alice, Steve and Rachel (played first by Robin Strasser, then by Victoria Wyndham). Rachel evolved from bad girl to heroine, falling in love with wealthy Cory patriarch Mac (much to the chagrin of his scheming daughter, Iris) and the Corys remained a centerpiece of the series until it was axed by NBC as Procter & Gamble (which owned AW, AS THE WORLD TURNS and GUIDING LIGHT) began to divest itself from the soap biz.
Gold Standard: AW won one Daytime Emmy for Drama Series, one for Writing, and nine acting prizes, including two Lead Actor trophies for Douglass Watson (Mac).
Swoon Worthy: Popular Bay City pairings included Steve and Alice, Mac and Rachel, Sally and Catlin, Cass and Frankie, Vicky and Ryan, and Jake and Vicky.
Famous Alumni: Amy Carlson (Josie, 1993-98), Morgan Freeman (Roy, 1982-84), Kelsey Grammer (Dr. Canard, 1984), Jackée Harry (Lily, 1983-86), Anne Heche (ex-Vicky/Marley, 1987-91), Ray Liotta (Joey, 1978-81), Lindsay Lohan (ex-Alli, 1996-97), William H. Macy (Frank, 1982), Rue McClanahan (Caroline, 1970-71), Brad Pitt (Chris, 1987), Ving Rhames (Czaja, 1986) and Kyra Sedgwick (Julia, 1982-83).
First Things First: AW was the first show to incorporate crossover characters from another show (GUIDING LIGHT’s Mike and Hope Bauer, from 1966-67) and, beginning on May 24, 1967, the first sudser to transition from live broadcasts to videotape. On January 6, 1975, when it expanded from 30 to 60 minutes, it became the first soap with regular hour-long episodes. It expanded again, to 90 minutes, on March 5, 1979, becoming the first soap to do so (it reverted back to an hour on August 4, 1980).
Spin Cycle: AW generated two spin-offs, SOMERSET and TEXAS. SOMERSET, which lasted from March 30, 1970 to December 31, 1976, incorporated the AW characters of Sam, Lahoma, Missy and Ricky. (During its run, it was called ANOTHER WORLD: SOMERSET, and AW was titled ANOTHER WORLD: BAY CITY.) TEXAS, the first soap to debut at 60 minutes in length, featured AW characters Dennis, Kevin, Reena, Striker and Victoria in addition to Beverlee McKinsey’s Iris, the show’s centerpiece.
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