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November 21, 2014

'Guiding Light': Top 10 Moments in Series History

by AOL TV Staff, posted Sep 14th 2009 6:00AM


Narrowing down the classic moments from 72 years of 'Guiding Light' to a top 10 list was a herculean task. Some of the leading contenders we considered included Bert blasting Ed, Roger chasing Rita in the Hall of Mirrors, Nola's movie fantasies, the India/Alexandra confrontations, the Springfield blackout, Ross' election night and, well, you get the idea ...

Read on as we count down our Top Ten list to see if the ones that made the final cut are among the 'Light' scenes that you'll remember best. -- By Michael Maloney


Narrowing down the classic moments from 72 years of 'Guiding Light' to a top 10 list was a herculean task. Some of the leading contenders we considered included Bert blasting Ed, Roger chasing Rita in the Hall of Mirrors, Nola's movie fantasies, the India/Alexandra confrontations, the Springfield blackout, Ross' election night and, well, you get the idea ...

Read on as we count down our Top Ten list to see if the ones that made the final cut are among the 'Light' scenes that you'll remember best. -- By Michael Maloney

10. Olivia falls in love with Natalia (2009)
After striking out in love with many men, Olivia Spencer (Crystal Chappell -- forget the nomination -- somebody just give her next year's Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress!) embarked on a journey that explored her feelings for Natalia Aitoro (Jessica Leccia). Fans showed their support of the pair by flooding the Internet with video tributes to the couple. 'Guiding Light' may be headed to that great soap in the sky, but so is one of the last taboos on TV thanks to the romance known as "Otalia."

9. Meta recites Rev. Rutledge's sermon (2000)
Meta Bauer, played by soap legend Mary Stuart ('Search for Tomorrow'), recalled a classic Christmas sermon read by Rev. Rutledge (Arthur Peterson) back in 'Guiding Light''s radio days: "There is a destiny that makes us brothers. No one goes that way alone. All that we bring into the lives of others comes back into our own." Stuart's earnest and heartfelt delivery struck an emotional chord in viewers old and new.

Reva and Josh on Guiding Light8. Josh and Reva finally reunite (1995)
Viewers who endured the silly "Reva the ghost" storyline were awarded a big payoff when Josh (Robert Newman) and Reva (four-time Emmy winner Kim Zimmer) shared a flesh-and-blood reunion on the Spaulding jet. "It's me, Bud," Reva said. "This time, I'm real." Reva and Josh quickly butted heads, however -- and great dialogue, superb acting and directing combined to create an instant classic.

Plus: Interview with 'Guiding Light' leading lady Kim Zimmer



7. Vanessa embraces Matt after the Springfield Fire (1995)
Long before cougars were in vogue, blueblood Vanessa Chamberlain (Maeve Kinkead) fell for lower class hottie Matt Reardon (Kurt McKinney). She wanted -- no, needed -- to keep the affair quiet. However, upon learning that Matt survived a blaze that tore through Springfield, Vanessa hugged her lover and didn't care who saw it. Just as well since plenty of people witnessed the duo's public embrace.

6. Maureen Reardon Bauer dies (1993)
Maureen Bauer's (Ellen Parker) official cause of death may have been due to injuries that she sustained in a car wreck, but viewers knew that she really died of a broken heart upon learning of hubby Ed's (Peter Simon) affair with Lillian (Tina Sloan). Lillian embarked on the uncharacteristic fling after going through a health crisis. Parker scored a Daytime Emmy for her heartbreaking portrayal of a betrayed wife.

5. Alexandra divorces Roger (1991)
Alexandra Spaulding (Beverlee McKinsey) reclaimed her independence on a warm July night by dumping her cheating husband Roger at the country club in front of family and friends. A barely restrained Alex coldly stated: "You're fired, Roger. From the company. From the marriage. From this club. From the entire town if I can manage it. I'm sure everyone will find the air a little sweeter without the stench of your presence!" Bravo!

4. Phillip takes over Spaulding Enterprises (1988)
It was an "inside job" when favorite son Phillip Spaulding (Grant Aleksander) tossed his own domineering dad Alan (Chris Bernau) out of the family company, burning every bridge he had in the process. "You try to disown me now, Dad," a drunken Phillip rhetorically challenged after he'd accomplished his goal. Alas, Phillip knew deep down that while he'd won the battle he'd never win the war with the Spaulding patriarch.

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3. Bert encourages a paralyzed Josh (1984)
Executive producer Gail Kobe and head writer Pamela Long incorporated actress Charita Bauer's real-life limb loss from a blood clot into the show. "Josh, we're at the beginning!" her character, Bertha "Bert" Miller Bauer, told a physically and emotionally crippled Josh Lewis (Robert Newman) as she wheeled herself into Cedars' therapy unit. Bert may have lost part of her leg, but the Bauer matriarch clearly proved that she still had a strong heart.

2. Jennifer Richards testifies (1981)
Head writer Douglas Marland told the tale of a mother taking a murder rap to save her daughter on three different soaps. His 'Guiding Light' version climaxed when Jennifer Richards (Geraldine Court) tearfully testified that she killed Lucille Wexler (Rita Lloyd) in self defense because Lucille wanted to keep it a secret that her daughter Amanda was really Jennifer's. Trivia note: CBS pre-empted this key scene with news of President Reagan's shooting. It was soon inserted into a flashback so viewers could see it.

1. Roger rapes Holly (1979)
Controlling Roger (Michael Zaslow) forced himself on his estranged wife Holly (Maureen Garrett), who later filed charges against him. The tale then took a few sudsy turns -- Holly was jailed after shooting Roger when she learned he planned to skip town with their daughter. Roger faked his death and eventually became a government agent. But 'Guiding Light' had kept it real by bringing the social issue of marital rape to the public eye.


OK, 'Guiding Light' fans: What was your favorite moment from the soap's 72-year run? Post about it in the comments!

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Lee

Don't blame CBS, blame P&G - they axed Guiding Light and As the World Turns - boo.

December 23 2010 at 6:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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