Guiding Light (known as The Guiding Light before 1975) was a CBS network soap opera created by Irna Phillips which first began as a NBC radio serial on January 25, 1937 and moved to CBS radio on June 2, 1947.
It began airing on CBS television on June 30, 1952 although it continued to be broadcast concomitantly on radio until June 29, 1956.
The series was expanded from 15 minutes to a half-hour in 1968 (and also switched from broadcasting live to pre-taping around this same time) and then to a full hour on November 7, 1977. The series broadcast its 15,000th CBS episode on September 6, 2006.
On April 1, 2009, it was announced that CBS had canceled the series after a 72-year run due to low ratings. The show taped its final Procter & Gamble scenes for CBS on August 11, 2009 and its final episode on the network aired on September 18, 2009.
The series has had a number of plot sequences during the series' long history, on both radio and television. These plot sequences include complex storylines and different writers and casting.
1930s and 1940sEdit
"Guiding Light" was created by Irna Phillips, who based it on personal experiences. After giving birth to a still-born baby when she was 19 years old, she found spiritual comfort listening to the radio sermons of Preston Bradley, a famous Chicago preacher and founder of the People's Church, a church which promoted the brotherhood of man.
These sermons originated the idea of the creation of "The Guiding Light" which began as a radio series. The original radio series was first broadcast as 15-minute episodes on NBC Radio, starting on January 25, 1937. The series was transferred to CBS Radio during 1947.
"The Guiding Light" was broadcast first by CBS Television on June 30, 1952. With the transition to television, the main characters became the Bauers, a lower-middle class German immigrant family. These episodes were also 15 minutes long.
During the period from 1952 to 1956, the show existed as both a radio and television serial, with actors recording their performances twice for each day that the shows were broadcast. The radio broadcast of "The Guiding Light" ceased production during 1956, ending this overlap.
The show ranked as the number one-rated soap opera during both 1956 and 1957, before being replaced during 1958 by "As the World Turns". After Irna Phillips was transferred to "As the World Turns" during 1958, her protege Agnes Nixon became head writer of The Guiding Light.
The first television producer of The Guiding Light was Luci Ferri Rittenberg, who produced the show over 20 years.
Agnes Nixon relinquished her role as chief writer during 1965 to work for the series "Another World." On March 13, 1967, "The Guiding Light" was first broadcast in color and on September 8, 1968, the program was expanded from 15 to 30 minutes.
The 1960s featured the introduction of African American characters, and the main emphasis of the series shifted to Bill and Bert's children, Mike and Ed; the character of Bill Bauer was written out in July 1969, presumed dead after a plane crash. The show also became a bit more topical during the 1960s, with such storylines as Bert Bauer's diagnosis of uterine cancer in 1962.
A number of new characters were introduced during the mid- to late 1960s, perhaps most notably Dr. Sara McIntyre, who remained a major character through the early 1980s.
Much of the story during the first half of the 1970s was dominated by Stanley Norris' November 1971 murder and the ensuing trial as well as the exploits of villainesses Charlotte Waring and Kit Vested.
Charlotte (played by Victoria Wyndham and Melinda Fee) was murdered by Kit (Nancy Addison) on August 26, 1973 and then Kit herself was shot by Dr. Joe Werner (Anthony Call) in self-defense on April 24, 1974, after she had attempted to poison Dr. Sara McIntyre.
A pivotal character, off-and-on, until the spring of 1998, Roger Thorpe, was introduced on April 1, 1971. The role of Roger was originally proposed to be blonde, fair-skinned preppy type, a man who was dating his boss's daughter Holly. Ultimately, Michael Zaslow, a dark haired actor with a more ethnic appearance, was hired for the role instead by long-time casting director, Betty Rea.
Pressured by newer, more youth-oriented soap operas such as All My Children, Procter & Gamble hired head writers Bridget and Jerome Dobson during 1975, who started writing in November 1975. The Dobsons introduced a more nuanced, psychologically layered writing style, and included timely story lines, including a complex love/hate relationship between estranged spouses/step-siblings Roger and Holly.
They also created a number of well-remembered characters, including Rita Stapleton, whose complex relationships with Roger and Ed propelled much of the story for the remainder of the decade, Alan Spaulding, and Ross Marler, both of whom remained major characters into the 2000s.
The decision was made during the fall of 1977 to reintroduce the thought-dead character of Bill Bauer, in a major retcon. The other characters thought that he had died in an airplane crash in July 1969, but he was said to actually be alive. (Many viewers who had also paid attention to the show and story line back in September 1968, remembered that Bill was told he would only have nine more years to live.)
One of the problems with this return is that the Dobsons seemed not quite sure what to do with his return. Although it was shocking, at first, to many of the characters, Bill himself ended up being charged for a murder of a man in Vancouver (Mike got his father off for the crime, proving that it was an accident, rather quickly and by April 1978 Bill had left town, again. Although Bill returned briefly in November 1978, April 1980, and then again in July 1983 and in flashbacks in November 1983.)
Bill's return introduced the audience and the Bauers to another character that stayed on the show until September 1984, Hillary Kincaid, R. N. (Bauer), Bill's daughter (and thus Ed and Mike's half-sister; Bill had accidentally killed the man that Hillary originally thought was her father, but was actually her step-father) and she becomes a nurse at Cedars and a major character.
Surprising many viewers, Jerome and Bridget Dobson killed the show's young heroine, Leslie Jackson Bauer Norris Bauer in June 1976. Lynne Adams was reported at the time to want to leave the role and the Dobsons decided against recasting the part. Leslie was killed by a drunk driver. Her father, Dr. Steve Jackson, remained on the show for the remainder of the '70s, serving as a senior physician at Cedars and as a friend and companion to Bert Bauer.
In November 1975, the name was changed in the show's opening and closing visuals from "The Guiding Light" to "Guiding Light." On November 7, 1977, the show expanded to a full hour and was broadcast from 2:30 to 3:30 pm daily.
The series during the 1970s emphasized the Bauers and the Spauldings. Several notable characters were introduced.
Bridget and Jerome Dobson assumed the head writing duties of "As the World Turns" in late 1979. Former actor Douglas Marland, assumed the head writing reins of "Guiding Light" in 1979. He introduced many new characters, including the Reardon family. During May 1980, the show won its first "Outstanding Drama Series Daytime Emmy."
One of Marland’s most remembered stories featured the character of Carrie Todd Marler, played by Jane Elliot. Carrie was diagnosed with multiple personalities. Marland had barely delved into her psychosis when Elliot's contract was abruptly terminated by Executive Producer Allen M. Potter in 1982. As a result, Marland resigned in protest.
During the early 1980s, the show began to emphasize younger characters more, as an attempt to compete with the younger-skewing ABC serials.
A number of longtime characters were eliminated during this time, including Ben and Eve McFarren, Diane Ballard, Dr. Sara McIntyre, Adam Thorpe, Barbara Norris Thorpe, Justin Marler and Steve Jackson. Actress Lenore Kasdorf quit the show in 1981 and producers decided not to recast the role of Rita Stapleton Bauer, given how popular Kasdorf had been.
The Bauer family matriarch, Bertha "Bert" Bauer, died in March 1986, following the real-life death of Charita Bauer in 1985. The character was said initially to be visiting Meta Bauer for several months until a tribute episode could be constructed where the characters could mourn Bert's passing on screen.
An ever more complicated storyline emphasized the Bauer, Spaulding, Reardon, and Raines families.
Pam Long, actress and writer for NBC's Texas from 1981 to 1982, became head writer during 1983 and reemphasized the series on Freddy Bauer Phillip Spaulding, Mindy Lewis and Beth Raines. She also introduced characters Alexandra Spaulding (portrayed by actress Beverlee McKinsey of "Another World" and "Texas" fame) and Reva Shayne (played by Kim Zimmer).
The ratings in the mid- to late 1980s were solid and healthy. Pamela K. Long returned for a second head writer stint from 1987 to 1990.
The characters of Roger Thorpe and Holly Norris returned to the series during the late 1980s. Maureen Garrett reprised her role of Holly #2 in 1988, followed by Michael Zaslow as Roger in 1989.
With the new decade, the series' storytelling transitioned from Long's homespun style to a more realistic style with a new group of chief writers.
The Bauer, Spaulding, Lewis and Cooper families had been established as core families, and most major plot developments concerned them. The show generally held on in the middle of the pack as far as ratings went throughout the decade.
The show suffered major character losses mid-decade, including the car accident death of Maureen Bauer and the exit of Alexandra Spaulding from the story. As the decade progressed, the program developed a series of outlandish plot twists seemingly to compete with the serials Passions and Days of Our Lives.
In an attempt to revive the series, the character Reva Shayne was brought back to Springfield during April 1995. She'd been presumed dead for the previous five years, after having driven her car off of a bridge and into the water off the Florida Keys. Later that July, antiheroine Tangie Hill (played by Marcy Walker, who declined to renew her contract) was eliminated after nearly two years with the show in favor of the full-time return of fan favorite Nola Chamberlain, played by Lisa Brown.
During January 1996, soap opera veteran Mary Stuart joined the cast as Meta Bauer (though referred to many times over the years, the long-running character originally played by Ellen Demming had not been seen onscreen since 1974); the character remained on the show until Stuart's death during 2002.
In January 1998, Bethany Joy Lenz came to the show as "Teenage Reva Clone". Producers were so impressed with her acting and attitude during her three-week role as "Teenage Reva Clone" on the show that she was re-hired later that year in the contract role of "Michelle Bauer Santos" on the daytime serial. From 1999-2000.
The 2000s began with the division of the show into two locales: Springfield and the fictional island nation of San Cristobel. In Springfield, the Santos mob dynasty created much of the drama. Meanwhile, the royal Winslow family had their own series of intrigues with which to deal.
During 2002, however, San Cristobel was eliminated from the series and the mob's influence in the story was subsequently diminished and, with the departure of character Danny Santos during 2005, eliminated altogether. Also, "Guiding Light" celebrated its 50th Anniversary as a television show on June 30, 2002.
During 2004, former director and actress Ellen Wheeler (Emmy Award winner as an actress for the series "All My Children" and "Another World") took over as executive producer of "Guiding Light." She and writer David Kreizman made numerous changes to the sets, stories, and the cast.
Several veteran actors were eliminated, mainly because of budget decreases. Because of the lack of veteran influence, Wheeler reemphasized the youth of Springfield, especially the controversial pairing of cousins Jonathan and Tammy.
During 2006, an episode featured character Harley Cooper gaining heroic abilities. The episode was semi-continued in an 8-page story in select Marvel Comics productions.
The series had its 70th broadcast anniversary during 2007. The anniversary was commemorated with the initiation of website FindYourLight.net and a program of outreach, representing Irna Phillips' original message.
There was also a special episode during January 2007, with current cast members playing Phillips and some of the earlier cast members. The series also introduced special beginning credits commemorating the anniversary.
Despite low ratings, the show won 2007 Daytime Emmy Awards for Best Writing and Best Show (sharing Best Show with The Young and the Restless).
End of SeriesEdit
On April 1, 2009, CBS announced that it would not renew "Guiding Light" and the last broadcast date would be September 18, 2009.
Procter & Gamble initially announced that they would attempt to find another outlet to distribute the series, but later admitted that they had been unsuccessful in doing so, and that on September 18, 2009 after 57 years on television (preceded by 15 years on radio for a total broadcast history of 72 years), the series would end its broadcast history on CBS.
During the final weeks of the series, numerous characters from the series' past passed through Springfield one last time, culminating with Ed and Holly, who impulsively embarked on an unspecified journey together.
Alan Spaulding suffered from fatal heart failure during the final week, but not before resolving conflicts with many former adversaries, including Jonathan. Alan's death brought the characters together in a way that could not have happened while he was still alive.
Alexandra is especially distraught about Alan's death, but was pleased when Fletcher Reade came to the Spaulding Mansion after Alan's service, and convinced her to accompany him to Europe. Beth and Phillip have grown closer and decided to remarry; Mindy Lewis returned to Springfield for good, and she and Rick also became fonder of each other.
Reva and Josh had a discussion, and agreed that they each had their respective problems that they need to solve. Josh told Reva that he was leaving Springfield for a job for the next year, but proposes that he return one year from that date and, if by that time, she wants to reunite with him, she should meet him at the lighthouse and, if she is not there, he will assume she is not interested.
The final episode is pleasant, featuring many of the characters gathering in the park for a large picnic. Toward the end of the episode, it jumps forward one year, by which time, Phillip and Beth have reunited, as have Rick and Mindy. Olivia and Natalia, happy with their new baby, pick Raphael up, as he returns from the army.
The episode concludes with Josh arriving at the lighthouse (as promised) and finding Reva there. They declare their undying love. James, Ashlee and Daisy leave Springfield and relocate to Santa Barbara, California. Josh asks if Reva is packed, to go on an adventure. The two grab the luggage, and with Reva's young son, they climb into Josh's pick-up truck.
Josh says to Reva, "You ready?" She replies "Always." As the truck drives away with the lighthouse in the background, "The End" appears on the screen before a final fadeout. The song heard playing in the background during the final scene is "Together" by Michelle Branch.
The final episode also included the original tag line (with some revision) printed on the screen with the words: "There is a destiny that makes us FAMILY" (replacing the word 'brothers'), as well as quick film clips of each of the show's title cards and announcers during the six decades it was on television, leading to the show's former long-time beginning announcement: "And now, The Guiding Light".
|Grant Aleksander||Phillip Spaulding||1982–84, 1986–91, 1996–2004, 2009|
|Murray Bartlett||Cyrus Foley||2007–09|
|Robert Bogue||A.C. Mallet||2005–09|
|Jeff Branson||Shayne Lewis||2008–09|
|Mandy Bruno||Marina Lewis||2004–09|
|Crystal Chappell||Olivia Spencer||1999–2009|
|Jordan Clarke||Billy Lewis|| 1974–76 |
1983–86, 1989–93, 1996–98, 1999–2009
|Bradley Cole||Jeffrey O'Neill|| 1999–2002, 2006 |
|Daniel Cosgrove||Bill Lewis||2002–05, 2007–09|
|Bonnie Dennison||Daisy Lemay||2007–09|
|Justin Deas||Buzz Cooper||1993–2009|
|Frank Dicopoulos||Frank Cooper||1987–2009|
|Marj Dusay||Alexandra Spaulding (#2)||1993–97, 1998–99, 2002–2009|
|Morgan Englund||Dylan Lewis (#1)||1989–95, 1997, 1999, 2002, 2006, 2009|
|Maureen Garrett||Holly Reade||1976–80, 1988–2006, 2009|
|Elizabeth Keifer||Blake Marler||1992–2009|
|Jay Hammer||Fletcher Reade||1984–98, 1999, 2009|
|Jessica Leccia||Natalia Aitoro||2007–09|
|Karla Mosley||Christina Boudreau||2008–09|
|Robert Newman||Josh Lewis||1981–84, 1986–91, 1993–2009|
|Michael O'Leary||Dr. Rick Bauer||1983–86, 1987–91, 1995–2009|
|Tom Pelphrey||Jonathan Randall||2004–09|
|Ron Raines||Alan Spaulding||1994–2009|
|Marcy Rylan||Lizzie Spaulding||2006–09|
|Lawrence Saint-Victor||Remy Boudreau||2006–09|
|Nancy St. Alban||Michelle Santos||2000–05, 2009|
|Peter Simon||Ed Bauer||1981–84, 1986–96, 2002–04, 2009|
|Paul Anthony Stewart||Danny Santos||1998–2005, 2009|
|Krista Tesreau||Mindy Lewis||1983–89, 2004, 2009|
|Gina Tognoni||Dinah Marler||2004–09|
|Caitlin Van Zandt||Ashlee Wolfe||2006–09|
|Kim Zimmer||Reva O'Neill||1983–90, 1995–2009|
|George Alvarez||Ray Santos||1999–2009|
|Nicholas Reese Art||Zach Spaulding||2002–09|
|Kim Brockington||Dr. Felicia Boudreau||2002–09|
|Orlagh Cassidy||Doris Wolfe||1999–2009|
|Beth Chamberlin||Beth Spaulding||1989–91, 1997–2009|
|Tyra Colar||Leah Bauer||2009|
|Carey Cromelin||Wanda Hite||2009|
|Robert Danza Jr.||Jude Bauer|
|Olivia Dicopoulos||Maureen Reardon||2009|
|Arielle Fleischer||Clarissa Marler||2006–09|
|Peter Francis James||Clayton Boudreau||2003–09|
|Patrick Gilbert||Robbie Santos||2009|
|Kathryn Hall||Emma Spaulding||2004–2008|
|Alexa Kaplan||Sarah Randall||2009|
|Maeve Kinkead||Vanessa Chamberlain||1980–87, 1989–2000, 2002, 2005–09|
|Kurt McKinney||Matt Reardon||1994–2000, 2005–09|
|Narlee Rae||Clarissa Marler||2009|
|Arielle Renwart||Leah Bauer||2006–09|
|Gil Rogers||Hawk Shayne||1985-92, 1995–97, 1999, 2002, 2004–06, 2008, 2009|
|Jennifer Roszell||Eleni Cooper||1995–2002, 2006, 2009|
|Tina Sloan||Lillian Raines||1983–2009|
|Cally & Brooke Tarleton||Hope Santos||2009|
|Jacqueline Tsirkin||Emma Spaulding||2008–09|
|Miles Williams||R.J. Jessup||2004–09|
|Mary Kay Adams||India von Halkein||1984-1987, 1990, 1998-1999, 2002, 2005|
|Millette Alexander||Sara McIntyre||1968–1983|
|Terrell Anthony||Rusty Shayne||1986–1989, 1990, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2005, 2006|
|Kevin Bacon||Tim (TJ) Werner||1980–1981|
|Scott Bailey||Sandy Foster||2003–2006|
|Frank Beaty||Brent Lawrence||1995-1996|
|Gregory Beecroft||Tony Reardon||1981–1985|
|Nancy Bell||Susan Bates Spaulding||1995-1996|
|Paulo Benedeti||Jesse Blue||1997–2000|
|Barbara Berjer||Barbara Thorpe||1971-1981, 1995-1996|
|David Bishins||Daniel St. John||1990–1992|
|Tammy Blanchard||Drew Jacobs||1997–2000|
|Hunt Block||Ben Warren||1997–1999|
|Matthew Bomer||Ben Reade||2001–2003|
|Joseph Breen||Will Jeffries||1987-1989|
|Kimberly J. Brown||Marah Lewis||1993–1998, 2006|
|Lisa Brown||Nola Chamberlain||1980–1985, 1995–1998, 2009|
|Ryan Brown||Bill Lewis III||1998–2001|
|Rebecca Budig||Michelle Bauer||1995–1998|
|Bryan Buffington||Bill Lewis III||1989–1998|
|William Bumiller||Sean McCullough||1998-1999|
|Laura Bell Bundy||Marah Lewis||1999–2001|
|Gregory Burke||Ben Reade||1989-1996|
|Warren Burton||Warren Andrews||1983–1987|
|Nadia Capone||Francesca Vizzini||1991|
|Jean Carol||Nadine Cooper Lewis||1988–1995, 2003, 2006|
|Keith Christopher||Wyatt Sanders||1995–1996|
|Carolyn Ann Clark||Leslie Ann Andrews||1981–1984|
|Marsha Clark||Hillary Bauer||1978–1984|
|Bradley Cole||Richard Winslow||1999–2002|
|Signy Coleman||Annie Dutton (#2)||1998–1999, 2003|
|Joan Collins||Alexandra Spaulding (#3)||2002|
|Jennifer Cooke||Morgan Richards Nelson||1981–1983|
|Suzy Cote||Samantha Marler||1989–1992|
|Kathleen Cullen||Amanda Spaulding||1979–1983|
|Amy Cox Ecklund||Abigail Blume Bauer||1995–2000|
|Barbara Crampton||Mindy Lewis #4||1993–1995|
|Russell Curry||David Grant #2||1995-1996|
|Patti D'Arbanville||Selena Davis||1998–2000|
|Allison Daugherty||Rae Rooney||1989-1990|
|Ruby Dee||Martha Frazier||1967|
|Lynn Deerfield||Holly Reade||1970-1976|
|Michael Dempsey||Alan-Michael Spaulding||2005–2007|
|Elizabeth Dennehy||Blake Marler||1988–1989|
|Leslie Denniston||Maeve Stoddard||1985–1988|
|Kassie DePaiva||Chelsea Reardon||1986–1991|
|Mark Derwin||A.C. Mallet||1990–1993|
|Michael Dietz||Alan-Michael Spaulding||1996–1997|
|Taye Diggs||Adrian "Sugar" Hill||1997|
|Ellen Dolan||Maureen Bauer #1||1982-1986|
|Aubrey Dollar||Marina Cooper||2001–2004|
|Hilary Edson||Eve Guthrie||1992–1995|
|Beth Ehlers||Harley Cooper||1987–1993, 1997–2008|
|Jane Elliot||Carrie Marler||1980–1982|
|Morgan Englund||Dylan Lewis||1989–1995, 1997, 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009|
|Ethan Erickson||J. Chamberlain||1996–1998|
|Carl T. Evans||Alan-Michael Spaulding||1987-1990|
|Judi Evans||Beth Raines #1||1983–1986|
|Geoffrey C. Ewing||Griffin Williams||1995–1998|
|Joel Fabiani||Roger Thorpe||1992, 1994, 1995|
|Kristi Ferrell||Roxie Shayne||1984–1988|
|Michelle Forbes||Dr. Sonni Carrera-Lewis/Solita Carrera|| 1987–1989|
|Nicole Forester||Cassie Winslow (#2)||2005–2008|
|Paula Garces||Pilar Santos||1999-2001|
|Maureen Garrett||Holly Reade||1976–1980, 1988–2006, 2009|
|Brian Gaskill||Dylan Lewis #2||2007–2008|
|Jennifer Gatti||Dinah Marler #1||1986–1987|
|Stephanie Gatschet||Tammy Winslow Randall||2002–2007, 2008|
|Ricky Paull Goldin||Gus Aitoro||2001–2008|
|James Goodwin||Johnny Bauer||1986-1990|
|Janet Grey||Eve McFarren||1976–1982|
|Frank Grillo||Hart Jessup #4||1996–1999|
|Ann Hamilton||Mindy Lewis #3||1993|
|Jay Hammer||Fletcher Reade||1984–1998, 1999, 2009|
|Melissa Hayden||Bridget Lewis||1991–1997, 2009|
|Aaron Hart||Jude Bauer||2005–2007|
|Rick Hearst||Alan-Michael Spaulding||1990–1996|
|Peter Hermann||Michael Burke||1997–1998|
|Marshall Hilliard||Hart Jessup||1995–1996|
|Rebecca Hollen||Trish Lewis||1982–1984|
|Scott Hoxby||Patrick Cutter||1993–1995|
|Mart Hulswit||Ed Bauer||1969–1981|
|Crystal Hunt||Lizzie Spaulding||2003–2006|
|Doug Hutchison||Sebastian Hulce||2004–2005|
|Fiona Hutchison||Jenna Cooper||1992–1994, 1996–1998, 2006, 2009|
|Brody Hutzler||Zachary Smith||1996-1997|
|Vincent Irizarry|| Lujack Lavonczek|
Nick McHenry Spaulding
|Jessica Jimenez||Catalina Santos||2000–2002|
|James Earl Jones||Dr. Jim Frazier #2||1966|
|Melina Kanakaredes||Eleni Cooper #1||1991–1995|
|Lenore Kasdorf||Rita Bauer||1975–1981|
|Billy Kay||Shayne Lewis||2000–2003|
|Harley Jane Kozak||Annabelle Reardon||1983–1985|
|Sophia Landon||Diane Ballard||1977–1981|
|Sharon Leal||Dahlia Crede||1996–1999|
|Bethany Joy Lenz||Michelle Santos #3||1998–2000|
|James Lipton||Dr. Dick Grant||1953|
|Nia Long||Kat Speakes||1991–1994|
|David Andrew Macdonald||Edmund Winslow||1999–2005, 2008–2009|
|Marko Maglich||Johnny "Dub" Taylor||1984–1985|
|Kevin Mambo||Marcus Williams||1995–1998|
|Amelia Marshall||Gilly Speakes||1989–1996|
|Stephen Martines||Tony Santos||2003–2005|
|Lauren C. Mayhew||Marah Lewis||1998–1999|
|MacKenzie Mauzy||Lizzie Spaulding||2000–2002|
|Lindsey McKeon||Marah Lewis||2001–2004|
|Rachel Miner||Michelle Bauer||1989–1995|
|Wendy Moniz||Dinah Marler #3||1995–1999|
|Kelly Neal||Sid Dickerson||1994–1995|
|Alexandra Neil||Rose McLaren||1987-1989|
|Roger Newman||Kenneth Norris||1970-1972, 1973-1975, 1998-1999|
|Tom Nielsen||Floyd Parker||1980–1985|
|Christopher Norris||Rebecca Nash||1992|
|Patrick O'Connell||Neil Everest||1989-1990|
|Thomas O'Rourke||Justin Marler||1976–1983|
|Petronia Paley||Vivian Grant||1992-1997|
|Hayden Panettiere||Lizzie Spaulding||1996–2000|
|Ellen Parker||Maureen Bauer||1986–1993, 1997, 1999, 2004|
|Dennis Parlato||Roger Thorpe #2||1997-1998|
|Ashley Peldon||Marah Lewis||1989–1991|
|Denise Pence||Katie Parker||1977–1985|
|Christopher Pennock||Justin Marler||1990–1991|
|Jeff Phillips||Hart Jessup||1991–1992|
|Cindy Pickett||Jackie Marler||1976–1980|
|Christina Pickles||Linell Conway||1970–1972|
|George Pilgrim||J. Chamberlain||1996|
|Mark Pinter|| Mark Evans|
|Victoria Platt||Vicky Spaulding||1998-2000|
|Katell Pleven||Dana Jones||1989-1990|
|Toby Poser||Amanda Spaulding #2||1995–1998|
|Susan Pratt||Claire Ramsey||1983-1986, 2000-2002|
|James Rebhorn||Bradley Raines||1983–1985, 1989|
|Susan Douglas Rubes||Kathy Grant||1952–1958|
|Jennifer Roszell||Eleni Cooper||1995–1999, 2001–2002, 2006–2009|
|Katie Sagona||Tammy Winslow||1997-2002|
|Saundra Santiago||Carmen Santos||1999-2000, 2001-2003|
|Sonia Satra||Lucy Cooper||1993–1997|
|Geoffrey Scott||Billy Lewis||1993–1994|
|Jocelyn Seagrave||Julie Camaletti||1991–1994|
|Monti Sharp||David Grant #1||1992–1995|
|John Wesley Shipp||Kelly Nelson||1980–1984|
|Kimberley Simms||Mindy Lewis||1989–1992, 1997|
|Peter Simon||Ed Bauer||1981–1984, 1986–1996, 2002–2004, 2009|
|Michelle Ray Smith||Ava Peralta||2005–2008, 2009|
|Jimmy Smits||unknown character||1983|
|Mira Sorvino||Julie Camaletti||1991|
|Brittany Snow||Susan 'Daisy' Lemay||1998–2001|
|Leonard Stabb||Hart Jessup||1993|
|Sherry Stringfield||Blake Marler||1989–1992|
|William Bell Sullivan||Gary Swanson||1989-1990|
|Terrell Tilford||David Grant #3||1998-2001|
|Paige Turco||Dinah Marler||1987–1989|
|Michael Tylo||Quint Chamberlain||1981–1985, 1996–1997|
|Richard Van Vleet||Ed Bauer||1984–1986|
|Jordi Vilasuso||Tony Santos||2000–2003|
|Jerry verDorn||Ross Marler||1979–2005|
|Helen Wagner||Trudy Palmer||1952|
|Christopher Walken||Michael 'Mike' Bauer||1954–1956|
|Marcy Walker||Tangie Hill||1993–1995|
|Cynthia Watros||Annie Dutton||1994–1998|
|Marty West||Shayne Lewis||2003–2004|
|Michael Wilding Jr.||Jackson Freemont||1985–1987|
|Billy Dee Williams||Dr. Jim Frazier #1||1966|
|Michael Woods||Jim Reardon||1983–1985|
|Laura Wright||Cassie Layne Winslow #1||1997–2005|
|Ramy Zaza||Jeffrey Morgan||1997-1998|
|Ian Ziering||Cameron Stewart||1986–1988|
Deceased Cast MembersEdit
|Actor||Character||Duration||Date of Death|
|Anthony Addabbo||Jim Lemay||1999-2000||October 18, 2016|
|Nancy Addison||Kit Vested||1969–1974||June 18, 2002|
|David Bailey||Alan Spaulding||1979||November 25, 2004|
|Daniel von Bargen||Joe Morrison||1993||March 1, 2015|
|Patricia Barry||Sally Gleason||1985-1987||October 11, 2016|
|Charita Bauer||Bert Bauer||1950–1984 (1950-1952, Radio only; 1952-1956, Radio and Television; 1956-1984, Television only)||February 28, 1985|
|Charles Baxter||John Brooks||1954-1955||April 9, 1998|
|Ed Begley||Rev. Dr. Paul Keeler #1||1952||April 28, 1970|
|Ralph Bell||Brandon Spaulding||1983||August 2, 1998|
|Paul Benedict||Mr. Pratt||1999||December 1, 2008|
|Joan Bennett||Herself||1982||December 7, 1990|
|Barbara Berjer||Barbara Norris #2||1971–1981, 1995-1996||October 20, 2002|
|Christopher Bernau||Alan Spaulding#1||1977–1984, 1986–1988||June 14, 1989|
|Zina Bethune||Robin Lang||1958||February 12, 2012|
|John Boruff||Henry Benedict #2||1962-1966||January 12, 1993|
|Don Briscoe||Unknown||October 31, 2004|
|Lydia Bruce||Alexandra Spaulding von Halkein||1984||May 7, 2008|
|Ed Bryce||Bill Bauer #2||1959-1963, 1965-1969, 1977-1978, 1983, 1986-1999||December 6, 1999|
|Robert Burr||Professor Blackburn||1986||May 13, 2000|
|Kay Campbell||Helene Benedict||1957-1964||May 27, 1985|
|Adolph Ceasar||Zamana||1984||March 6, 1986|
|Don Chastain||Pharaoh||1989||August 9, 2002|
|James Coco||Carlo Fontini||1986-1987||February 25, 1987|
|Whitfield Connor||Mark Holden||1955-1956, 1957-1961,||July 16, 1988|
|Linda Cook||Brenda Jensen||2003||April 12, 2012|
|Jeanne Cooper||Wedding Guest||2009||May 8, 2013|
|Geraldine Court||Jennifer Richards||1982||November 20, 2010|
|Augusta Dabney||Barbara Norris #1||1970-1971||February 4, 2008|
|Curt Dawson||Peter Chapman||1977-1980||January 13, 1985|
|Ruby Dee||Martha Frazier||1967||June 11, 2014|
|Lynn Deerfield||Holly Norris Bauer #1||1970-1976||November 11, 2011|
|Ellen Demming||Meta Bauer Banning #2||1953–1974||February 7, 2002|
|William Duell||Maurice||1999||December 22, 2011|
|Dana Elcar||District Attorney Andrew Murray||1962||June 6, 2005|
|Gwyllum Evans||Captain Dan||1986||March 18, 1990|
|Larry Gates||Harlan "H.B." Lewis||1983–1995||December 12, 1996|
|Robert Gerringer||Adam Thorpe #1||1970||November 8, 1989|
|Theo Goetz||Fredrich "Papa" Bauer||(1949-1952 Radio only; 1952-1956, Radio & Television; 1956-1972, Television only)||December 29, 1972|
|Nicolette Goulet||Dr. Meredith Reade Bauer||1987–1989||April 17, 2008|
|Ernest Graves||Alex Bowden||1963-1966||June 1, 1983|
|Margaret Gwenver||Dr. Margaret Sedwick||1982–2007||October 18, 2010|
|Richard Hamilton||Logan Stafford||1981||December 21, 2004|
|Timothy John "T.J." Hargrave||Timothy John "T.J." Werner #1||1975-1977||September 11, 2001|
|Kenneth Harvey||Dr. Emmett Sott #1||1976||June 6, 1979|
|Ben Hayes||Dr. Joseph "Joe" Werner #1||1966-1967||May 12, 1996|
|Benjamin Hendrickson||Silas Crocker||1982||July 1, 2006|
|Michael Higgins||Stanley "Stan" Norris #1||1970||November 5, 2008|
|Barnard Hughes||Dr. Bruce Banning #2||1961-1966||July 11, 2006|
|Casey Hutchison||Susan Prescott||1960-1985||March 2, 2015|
|Graham Jarvis||Charles Eiler||1971-1972||April 16, 2003|
|Bernard Kates||Ben Scott||1965-1968||February 2, 2010|
|Mandel Kramer||District Attorney Richard Hanley||1953||January 29, 1989|
|Paul Larson||Jack Haskell||1966||July 6, 1989|
|Frank Latimore||Dr. Emmett Scott #2||1976-1979||November 29, 1998|
|Rita Lloyd||Lucille Wexler||1978–1981||September 6, 2009|
|Larkin Malloy||Kyle Sampson||1985-1987||September 28, 2016|
|Joseph Maher||Whitney Foxton||1978||July 17, 1998|
|Paul McGrath||Henry Benedict #4||1967||April 13, 1978|
|Barney McFadden||Andrew "Andy" Norris #1||1975; 1996-1999; 2003-2006||March 9, 2006|
|Beverlee McKinsey||Alexandra Spaulding #1||1984–1992||May 2, 2008|
|Barbara Meek||Verne Garrison||1992||October 3, 2015|
|Herbert Nelson||Joe Roberts||1952-1955||July 19, 1990|
|Roger Newman||Kenneth Norris||1970-1975, 1998-1999||March 4, 2010|
|Alan North||Jack Bauer||1988||January 19, 2000|
|Carrie Nye||Carrie Curruthers, Susan Piper||1984, 2003–2006||July 14, 2006|
|Vince O'Brien||Grove Mason, "Pops" Cooper||1967-1970, 1989-1990; 1995-2009||June 19, 2010|
|Gerald S. O'Laughlin||Lt. Carl Wyatt||1965||July 31, 2015|
|Tom O'Rourke||Justin Marler||1982||September 13, 2009|
|Maureen O'Sullivan||Miss Emma Witherspoon||1984||June 23, 1998|
|Peter Pagan||Alfredo||1986||June 2, 1999|
|Robert Pickering||Michael "Mike" Bauer #5||1968||August 15, 1995|
|Nancy Pinkerton||Helen Kennedy||1985||March 4, 2010|
|Ed Prentiss||Richard Grant||1953||March 19, 1992|
|James Pritchett||Man in Emergency Room||late 1980s||March 15, 2011|
|Lester Rawlins||Henry Benedict #3||1967||March 22, 1988|
|James Rebhorn||Bradley Raines||1983-1985, 1989||March 21, 2014|
|Lee Reherman||Ralphie Sullivan||2000||February 29, 2016|
|Ethel Remey||Elsie Miller Franklin||1956–1957||February 28, 1979|
|Mel Ruick||Reverend Dr. Keeler||1953||December 24, 1972|
|Jack Ryland||Lt. Wally Campbell||1969||January 5, 2007|
|William Roerick|| Bruce Banning|
|November 30, 1995|
|Nick Santino||Father Soto||2002||January 25, 2012|
|Marian Seldes||Madame Ava||1998||October 6, 2014|
|Madeleine Sherwood||Betty Eiler||1971-1972||April 23, 2016|
|Ted Sorel||Eric Luvonaczek||1991-1992||November 30, 2010|
|Don Stewart||Mike Bauer||1968–1984, 1997||January 9, 2006|
|Stefan Schnabel||Dr. Stephen Jackson||1966–1981||March 11, 1999|
|Eugene Smith||William "Bill" Bauer #3||1964||October 1, 2012|
|Philip Sterling||George Hayes||1963-1968||November 30, 1998|
|Mary Stuart||Meta Bauer Banning #3||1996–2002||February 28, 2002|
|Lyle Sudrow||Bill Bauer #1||1952-1959||May 6, 2006|
|Elizabeth Swados||Gretel Halsey||1993, 1999||January 5, 2016|
|Wayne Tippit||Dr. Carl Richards, Alan Spaulding||1974, 1982||August 28, 2009|
|Ron Tomme||Mr McLaren||1989||January 29, 2005|
|Eugene Troobnick||Stavros Kouperakis||1991–1995||February 19, 2003|
|Sydney Walker||Dr. Bruce Banning #3||1970-1971||September 30, 1994|
|Ruth Warrick||Janet Johnson, RN||1953||January 15, 2005|
|Larry Weber||Clarence Bailey||1982||April 29, 2003|
|Kate Wilkinson||Viola Stapleton||1976–1981||February 9, 1993|
|Vince Williams||Hampton Speakes||1989–1996||January 6, 1997|
|Michael Zaslow||Roger Thorpe||1971–1980, 1989–1997||December 6, 1998|
|Ed Zimmermann||Dr. Joe Werner #1||1967-1972||July 6, 1972|
Unlike most popular radio serials transitioning to television, "The Guiding Light" had no difficulty holding onto its old listening audience and simultaneously earning a new television fanbase.
At the time, the show made its television debut (neither ABC nor NBC had broadcast programs on their respective networks at 2:30 p.m. Eastern/1:30 Central where CBS first placed "The Guiding Light").
However, six months into the run, the network moved the serial to a timeslot that gave it great popularity with its housewife audience: 12:45 p.m./11:45 a.m. It kept the new timeslot for the next 15 years and eight months, sharing the half-hour with its sister Procter & Gamble-packaged soap opera "Search for Tomorrow."
The Guiding Light handled the competition breezily, even against otherwise-legendary shows such as "Queen for a Day" on ABC (briefly in 1960) and NBC's "Truth or Consequences". Usually, "The Guiding Light" ranked second in the Nielsen ratings behind another serial "As the World Turns."
However, the year 1968 saw changing viewership trends that prompted CBS to expand its last two 15-minute daytime dramas, disrupting long-standing viewing habits.
"Search for Tomorrow" took over the entire 12:30–1/11:30–12:00 noon period with "The Guiding Light" returning to its first timeslot, 2:30/1:30, albeit in the now-standard half-hour format, on September 9.
This twin bill of expansions also caused the dislocation of The Secret Storm and the beloved Art Linkletter's House Party, as well as the cancellation of the daytime To Tell the Truth. The next 12 years brought several similar shifts around CBS' lineup.
The 1970s saw the popularity of "The Guiding Light" dip somewhat. The competition imposed upon The Guiding Light during this decade was from other serials such as The Doctors on NBC, but it still garnered decent ratings.
After four years, CBS bumped its timeslot up by a half-hour to accommodate Procter & Gamble's demand that "The Edge of Night" move to 2:30/1:30, a move that led to the end of that show on CBS three years later.
In the meantime, "The Guiding Light" stayed steadily on course against NBC's Days of Our Lives and ABC's "The Newlywed Game".
In late 1974, ABC replaced "The Newlywed Game" with The $10,000 Pyramid, which went on to garner strong ratings, but not greatly at "The Guiding Light"'s expense. Meanwhile, by fall 1975 (at which point the show had officially dropped the word "The" from its title, although it was still referred to as "The Guiding Light" on air for several years after), the impending departure of "The Edge of Night" for ABC (to say nothing of CBS' planned expansion of some serials) affected Guiding Light by pushing it back to 2:30/1:30 once more in December.
At that time, NBC still ran "The Doctors" in the 2:30 slot and ABC had a short-lived hit the next year with an updated version of the game show "Break the Bank." To complicate the picture further, ABC opted to make its first show expansions, that of "One Life to Live" and "General Hospital" in July 1976; each of those shows occupied one-half of a 90-minute block until November 4, 1977.
With this in mind, ABC and CBS acted to give a contending chance to both General Hospital and "Guiding Light" by expanding them to an hour in length. CBS did so first by expanding the show on November 7, 1977.
This gained particular importance when ABC finally added 15 minutes to both "One Life to Live" and "General Hospital" on January 16, 1978, so that "Guiding Light" straddled those two programs, as well as the first half of sister P&G show "Another World" on NBC.
Despite that General Hospital surprising all observers by skyrocketing from near-cancellation to the top place in the ratings with the various storylines, "Guiding Light" held its own while in direct competition with "General Hospital" still hit an upswing as the decade ended.
On February 4, 1980, CBS bumped "Guiding Light" down again to 3pm/2c and its sister P&G soap "As The World Turns" to 2pm/1c, in the midst of a major scheduling shuffle intended to give "The Young and the Restless" (itself now expanding to an hour length) a shot at beating ABC's "All My Children". NBC did the same with its soap operas as well with all three networks now going head-head in every time slot.
It remained in this time slot for the rest of its run in some markets, facing General Hospital and NBC entries such as "Texas" (a spin off of "Another World"), "The Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour" and "Santa Barbara", but none of these shows (not even General Hospital") had any significant impact on the ratings of "Guiding Light" at 3:00 pm during this period.
Overall, the first half of the 1980s saw a revival in "Guiding Light"'s popularity with a top-five placing achieved in most years and even a brief dethroning of then-powerhouse General Hospital from the #1 ratings spot for three consecutive weeks. However, as the decade progressed, the ratings slipped a bit, although it was still performing solidly.
In 1995, beginning with CBS flagship station WCBS-TV in New York, "Guiding Light" began airing at 10 a.m. Eastern time in several markets.
Its once-solid performance began to crumble by the mid-1990s when its ratings sunk as low as ninth place out of ten. However, during the controversial clone storyline in 1998, the ratings experienced a brief resurgence, moving up to fifth for many weeks that summer. Nielsen reported "Guiding Light" had 5 million viewers in 1999.
Daytime Emmy Awards
- 1980 Outstanding Daytime Drama Series
- 1981 Outstanding Writing for a Daytime Drama Series
- 1982 Outstanding Daytime Drama Series
- 1982 Outstanding Writing for a Daytime Drama Series
- 1982 Outstanding Achievement in Any Area of Creative Technical Crafts (Technical Direction/Electronic Camerawork)
- 1983 Outstanding Achievement in Any Area of Creative Technical Crafts (Lighting Direction)
- 1984 Outstanding Achievement in Design Excellence for a Daytime Drama Series
- 1985 Outstanding Direction for a Drama Series
- 1985 Outstanding Achievement by a Drama Series Design Team – Ronald M. Kelson
- 1986 Outstanding Drama Series Writing Team
- 1986 Outstanding Achievement in Hairstyling for a Drama Series
- 1986 Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design for a Drama Series
- 1987 Outstanding Achievement in Makeup for a Drama Series
- 1987 Outstanding Achievement in Hairstyling for a Drama Series
- 1990 Outstanding Drama Series Writing Team
- 1991 Outstanding Original Song: "Love Like This"
- 1991 Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 1992 Outstanding Original Song: "I Knew That I'd Fail"
- 1992 Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 1992 Outstanding Achievement in Graphics and Title Design
- 1993 Outstanding Drama Series Writing Team
- 1993 Outstanding Achievement in Multiple Camera Editing for a Drama Series
- 1994 Outstanding Drama Series Directing Team
- 1994 Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 1995 Outstanding Lighting Direction for a Drama Series
- 1995 Outstanding Achievement in Makeup for a Drama Series
- 1996 Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 1996 Outstanding Achievement in Makeup for a Drama Series
- 1996 Outstanding Live and Direct-to-Tape Sound Mixing for a Drama Series
- 1996 Outstanding Lighting Direction for a Drama Series
- 1998 Outstanding Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 1998 Outstanding Lighting Direction for a Drama Series
- 1998 Outstanding Original Song: "Hold Me"
- 2007 Outstanding Writing Team for a Daytime Drama Series
- 2007 Outstanding Daytime Drama Series (tie, with The Young and the Restless)
- 2007 Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 2008 Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction and Composition for a Drama Series
- 2008 Outstanding Achievement in Live & Direct To Tape Sound Mixing for a Drama Series
- 2008 Outstanding Achievement in Multiple Camera Editing
- 1983 Lifetime Achievement Award: Charita Bauer (Bert Bauer)
- 1984 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Judi Evans Luciano (Beth Raines)
- 1985 Distinguished Service to Daytime Television: Charita Bauer (Bert Bauer) *[posthumous]
- 1985 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Kim Zimmer (Reva Shayne)
- 1985 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Larry Gates (H.B. Lewis)
- 1987 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Kim Zimmer (Reva Shayne)
- 1990 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Kim Zimmer (Reva Shayne)
- 1991 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Rick Hearst (Alan-Michael Spaulding)
- 1992 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Maeve Kinkead (Vanessa Chamberlain)
- 1993 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Ellen Parker (Maureen Reardon)
- 1993 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Monti Sharp (David Grant)
- 1994 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Michael Zaslow (Roger Thorpe)
- 1994 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Justin Deas (Buzz Cooper)
- 1994 Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series: Melissa Hayden (Bridget Reardon)
- 1995 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Justin Deas (Buzz Cooper)
- 1995 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Jerry verDorn (Ross Marler)
- 1996 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Jerry verDorn (Ross Marler)
- 1996 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Kevin Mambo (Marcus Williams)
- 1997 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Justin Deas (Buzz Cooper)
- 1997 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Kevin Mambo (Marcus Williams)
- 1998 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Cynthia Watros (Annie Dutton)
- 2002 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Crystal Chappell (Olivia Spencer)
- 2003 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Jordi Vilasuso (Tony Santos)
- 2006 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series: Kim Zimmer (Reva Shayne)
- 2006 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Jordan Clarke (Billy Lewis)
- 2006 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gina Tognoni (Dinah Marler)
- 2006 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Tom Pelphrey (Jonathan Randall)
- 2008 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series: Gina Tognoni (Dinah Marler)
- 2008 Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series: Tom Pelphrey (Jonathan Randall)
- 2009 Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Jeff Branson (Shayne Lewis)
- Writers Guild of America Award (1980, 1992, 2005)
- Directors Guild of America Award (2005)