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Was Dorothy Lyman Really One Of the Biggest Soap Opera Actresses Ever?

All I know her from is "Mama's Family." Was it true that she was one of the best soap actresses ever?

by Anonymousreply 2307/31/2020

She also directed a bunch of episodes of The Nanny.

by Anonymousreply 107/30/2020

[quote]Was it true that she was one of the best soap actresses ever?

She was good, but I don't know if she was one of the best ... certainly one of the most unique, though.

by Anonymousreply 207/30/2020

She was also Candice Bergen's sister-in-law.

by Anonymousreply 307/30/2020

[quote] most unique

There are no grades of unique. You are either unique or you are not.

by Anonymousreply 407/30/2020

No but she was one of the first actresses to portray a character in a comedic sense.

by Anonymousreply 507/30/2020

[quote]There are no grades of unique. You are either unique or you are not.

The Grammarist: So many people treat unique as a comparable adjective suggests that the word has gained a secondary definition. In addition to being the only one of its kind, the word could also be defined as very remarkable or unusual.

by Anonymousreply 607/30/2020

Editor, soap thread!

by Anonymousreply 707/30/2020

[quote] the word could also be defined as very remarkable or unusual

I'll be in the cold ground before I recognize Missoura.

by Anonymousreply 807/30/2020

She burned bright and burned fast on All My Children, winning back to back Emmys, one for supporting and one for lead. She stole the spotlight for a couple years and viewers reveled in her tacky fashions and wisecracks. She was close to the hottest super couple of the day, Jenny and Greg, and had plenty of story. The writers clearly loved writing for Opal Gardner.

by Anonymousreply 907/30/2020

Seems her daughter is doing well.

by Anonymousreply 1007/30/2020


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by Anonymousreply 1107/30/2020

She played a rich sophisticate on Another World prior to her AMC stint as trashy Opal Gardner, so she did have range.

by Anonymousreply 1207/30/2020

Her turn as Opal was one of the best in Daytime history.

She fully committed to what on paper was a ridiculous character - tacky, racist, white trash, pushy, vindictive - and blazed through AMC when it was near its creative peak (1982-3). She could've just winked at the audience or played it totally campy but she instead played the character with empathy and with heart. And she had fabulous chemistry with the two actors who played her children and with just about everyone else.

Jill Larson was popular in the role too. But she played Opal as merely zany. It was a very surface performance and Opal had been shorn of all her bad characteristics by then.

by Anonymousreply 1307/30/2020

Good point about her being totally committed to the character andli not playing her for camp. In some ways she would have fit in on a more "realistic" soap like Eastenders in her prime. AMC in its prime had a lot of colorful, funny characters, but there was always a realness about most of them.

Even with Erica -- while she was campy and over-the-top, whatever you think of her acting, Lucci always delivered her lines like she meant them and not like she knew they were camp and was winking at the audience. That and her relationships with Mark and Mona helped keep her a bit more relatable.

I liked Larson's Opal, but she really was a different character. For her first story line they had her scheming with Palmer to break up Tad and Dixie and you could see she was trying to channel original Opal a bit more. I think within a year she had evolved into a wacky lovable character and she did have good chemistry with Tad, Palmer and Erica . She could deliver a good performance when given good material, but Opal of the 1990's was nothing like Gardner's Opal.

by Anonymousreply 1407/30/2020

She played the mother of an HIV positive teen (played by Chad Lowe) on "Life Goes On" - it was a recurring role that lasted two years.

by Anonymousreply 1507/30/2020

Dorothy Lyman never had a problem doing daytime, even after Mama's Family.

All My Children called her every year to see if she was interested in coming back. But AMC would not accommodate her request to direct every now and then.

NBC Generations came calling (being run by her old AMC producer) and offered her the part of Rebecca, along directing stints on the show. By then the show was on its last legs and got cancelled within months of her joining the show.

AMC gave up on Lyman and finally cast Jill Larson - which Dorothy Lyman was thrilled about. The two were old friends, having grown up together in Minneapolis, and Jill was Dorothy understudy in a play. And Dorothy directed Jill in a off-broadway show.

by Anonymousreply 1607/30/2020

Just don't call her "Dot" me.

by Anonymousreply 1707/30/2020

I remember reading that carol burnett saw Dorothy Lyman on AMC called her up and told her she was pay her ten times what she was making on AMC to join mamas family.

by Anonymousreply 1807/30/2020

R18 I don't think Dorothy made ten times the amount - in fact she said was taking a pay cut leaving AMC to do Mama's Family

For awhile she was doing both AMC and Mama's Family at the same time.

by Anonymousreply 1907/30/2020

So why isn't she another Genie Francis if she was so good?

[quote] carol burnett saw Dorothy Lyman on AMC called her up and told her she was pay her ten times what she was making on AMC to join mamas family.

No, Carol said she'd pay her ten dollars to join Mama's Family

by Anonymousreply 2007/30/2020

One of her first episodes where she meets the formidable ErIca Kane on a lazy summer day at the Martin house.

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by Anonymousreply 2107/31/2020

She was better as Naomi

by Anonymousreply 2207/31/2020

R21 's clip led me down a rabbit hole...

Did Brandon love Erica at all with any real intention of leaving his wife for her, or was she just another 5'2' supermodel that he wanted to have some fun with before he moved on to his next conquest? The actor was still hot, but he seemed to age about 20 years in the ten years between Petticoat Junction and AMC.

The Brooke recast, while not Nina 2 recast bad, just does not work.

I can kind of see why Palmer was not a fan of St. Cliff.

by Anonymousreply 2307/31/2020
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