One Life to Live
One live to Live logo.png
One Life to Live title card, circa 2013-present
Created by Agnes Nixon
Written by Ron Carlivati
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of episodes 11,096 on ABC
Executive producer(s) Doris Quinlan (1968–77)
Joseph Stuart (1977–83)
Jean Arley (1983-84)
Paul Rauch (1984–91)
Linda Gottlieb (1991–94)
Susan Bedsow Horgan (1994–96)
Maxine Levinson (1996–97)
Jill Farren Phelps (1997–2001)
Gary Tomlin (2001–02)
Frank Valentini (2003–12)
Jennifer Pepperman (2013)
Location(s) New York City , New York (1968-2012)
Stamford, Connecticut (2013)
Running time 30 minutes (19681976; 2013)
45 minutes (19761978)
60 minutes (19782012)
Original channel ABC (1968-2012)
TOLN (2013)
Original run ABC Television
July 15, 1968 – January 13, 2012
TOLN/Prospect Park
April 29 - August 19, 2013
Related shows All My Children
The City
General Hospital

Template:Italic title

One Life to Live (often referred to as OTLT) is an American television soap opera that aired on ABC from July 15, 1968 to January 13, 2012 and has aired on TOLN from April 29 to August 19, 2013. The show was created by Agnes Nixon. It takes place in a town called Llanview, Pennsylvania. One Life to Live was very different from all other soap operas. It shows a lot of diversity; the rich and the middle class, black and white, Jewish and Catholics. One Life to Live was the first soap opera to have a black couple. The main families are the Mannings, Lords, Cramers, and Buchanans. Very popular storylines that are associated with One Life to Live are Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), prostitute housewife (played by Emmy award winning Judith Light), teen homosexuality, drugs, and sexual transmitted disease (stds).

It still aired on ABC at 2 pm eastern, and 9 pm eastern on SOAPNET.

On April 14, 2011, ABC announced that it canceled One Life to Live after almost 43 years due to low ratings. ABC sold the rights of One Life to Live to Prospect Park on July 7, 2011, but on November 23, 2011, the project was shelved. The show taped its final scenes for ABC on November 18, 2011, and its final episode on the network aired on January 13, 2012 with a cliffhanger. On January 16, 2012, the following Monday, ABC replaced One Life to Live with a short-lived talk show called The Revolution, which lasted until July 6, 2012. A year later, One Life to Live taped its first scenes for Prospect Park on March 11, 2013, and aired its first TOLN episode aired on April 29, 2013. The season finale aired on August 19, 2013.

The One Life to Live series finale on ABC marked a second anniversary on January 13, 2014, a third anniversary on January 16, 2015, a fourth anniversary on January 13, 2016, a fifth anniversary on January 16, 2017, and a sixth anniversary on January 13, 2018.

One Life to Live marked a 50th Anniversary on July 15, 2018, and its final episode on ABC will mark a seventh anniversary on January 13, 2019.

In December 2016, ABC regained the rights of One Life to Live after Prospect Park's lawsuit against the network was dismissed.


Impressed with the ratings success of NBC's Another World, ABC sought out Another World writer Nixon to create a serial for them. Though Nixon's concept for the new series was "built along the classic soap formula of a rich family and a poor family," she was "tired of the restraints imposed by the WASPy, noncontroversial nature of daytime drama."[1] One Life to Live would emphasize "the ethnic and socioeconomic diversity" of the characters in its fictional setting.[1] Nixon would go on to create All My Children in 1970 and Loving in 1983.

The initial main titles of the series featured the image of a roaring fireplace, a visual representation of the originally proposed title — Between Heaven and Hell — ultimately changed to One Life to Live to avoid controversy.[2] One Life to Live's first sponsor was the Colgate-Palmolive company, who also sponsored The Doctors. ABC bought the show from Nixon in December 1974 when they purchased all stock to her Creative Horizons, Inc. The show was originally a half-hour serial until it was expanded to 45 minutes on July 23, 1976, and to one hour on January 16, 1978.[3]

Series history

One Life to Live is set in the fictional city of Llanview, a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1] The show continually centers on the wealthy, WASP Lord family, with the working-class Polish American Woleks, the less wealthy Irish Catholic Rileys, and the African-American Grays present at the series inception.[1] One Life to Live has been called "the most peculiarly American of soap operas: the first serial to present a vast array of ethnic types, broad comic situations, a constant emphasis on social issues, and strong male characters."[1]

From the debut episode, One Life to Live centered on fictional character Victoria "Viki" Lord (originated by Gillian Spencer), portrayed by six-time Emmy winner Erika Slezak for longer than any other One Life to Live series actor, from March 1971 through the series finale January 13, 2012.[1] Long-suffering heroine Viki weathered love and loss, widowhood, rape, divorce, stroke, and breast cancer, and was plagued by dissociative identity disorder (or DID, once known as multiple personality disorder) on and off for decades. Viki also had heart problems and received a transplant from her dying husband Ben Davidson (Mark Derwin). Featured male protagonist Dr. Larry Wolek also appeared at the debut episode and for 36 years, played from 1969 until the character's last appearance in 2004 by Emmy-nominated actor Michael Storm.

The apparent murder of Marco Dane (Gerald Anthony) by Victoria Lord and the ensuing prostitution storyline of Larry Wolek's wife, Karen Wolek (Judith Light), in 1979 garnered widespread critical acclaim and several Daytime Emmy Awards. The 1980s brought great ratings success and rose to prominence Viki's sister, Tina (originally and last played by Andrea Evans), and the Buchanan family. In the 1990s, the show introduced one of the first married interracial couples in soap operas with attorneys Hank and Nora Gannon (Nathan Purdee and Hillary B. Smith respectively), and the story of the involvement of Viki's estranged brother, Todd (Roger Howarth), with the rape of Marty Saybrooke (Susan Haskell), called "one of the show's most remembered and impactful."[4]

One Life to Live celebrated its 40th anniversary in July 2008 with the return of several former cast members[5] and by revisiting notable plot lines from its past.[6] "Deceased" characters and even creator Agnes Nixon appeared in a storyline in which Slezak's Viki dies and visits Heaven, an homage to Viki's 1987 heavenly trip.[5][6][7][8] Daytime Emmy-nominee Andrea Evans and others returned for a tribute to Tina Lord's famous 1987 plunge over the Iguazu Falls[5][6][7][8] and the 1990 royal wedding in fictional Mendorra.[9][10] And like the 1988 Old West storyline in which the character Clint Buchanan steps back 100 years in the past, on July 21, 2008, Robert S. Woods began an extended storyline in which his character Bo Buchanan finds himself transplanted back into his own past—specifically 1968, the year of the series' inception—witnessing his family's back-story unfold.[5][6][7][11] Soap Opera Digest subsequently named One Life to Live their "Best Show" of 2008, calling it "the year's most compelling" series and citing a myriad of story lines the magazine found "heartbreaking," "stunning," and "gripping," as well as complimenting its risk-taking and "diverse and talented" cast.[12]

On August 4, 2009, it was announced that One Life to Live, which taped in New York City, would move from ABC Studio 17 at 56 West 66th Street to Studio 23 at 320 West 66th Street, Manhattan in early 2010. This studio was made available by the move of sister serial All My Children to a production facility in Los Angeles, where that series began taping on January 4, 2010.[13][14] The new studio was 30% larger than One Life to LiveTemplate:'s previous one, and both One Life to Live and All My Children were to be taped and broadcast in high-definition (HD) after their moves.[14]

On October 8, 2009, ABC announced that it had postponed the transition to HD for One Live to Live, citing the economic climate at the time, though an ABC spokesperson stated that they "...will re-examine it next year."[15] On December 6, 2010, One Life to Live became the fifth daytime serial to broadcast in the 16:9 widescreen picture format but still not in true HD, after Days of Our Lives, The Young and the Restless, and fellow ABC soap operas All My Children and General Hospital, though those series are produced in high-definition.[16] ABC's picture disclaimers at the start of the program list it as being aired in "digital widescreen" rather than HD. The September 17, 2010, series ending of As the World Turns left One Life to Live as the last remaining American daytime serial being produced in the New York City area as well as the only one produced outside the Greater Los Angeles area.

Rumors about a potential cancellation of One Life to Live arose from TV Guide Canada in late 2009, after ABC announced that it was moving All My Children from New York City to Los Angeles.[17] One Life to Live's lone presence in New York among the ABC soap operas, along its non-transition to HD and its struggling ratings, made it a program at risk of cancellation. The article from TV Guide Canada also pointed that once One Life to Live is cancelled, some of the actors could be offered to join the cast of All My Children in Los Angeles.[17] In May 2010, rumors of possible cancellation of not only One Life to Live, but this time of also All My Children and General Hospital, resurfaced when Disney–ABC Television Group officially announced that it was shutting down SOAPnet, effective in 2012. After a failed attempt to give Aisha Tyler a talk show in 2009, ABC restarted auditioning a few pilot shows as candidates for its daytime lineup. At this point, All My Children had the lowest ratings so rumors began heating up in March 2011 about the show's demise, with hints that One Life to Live was safe for a while longer.[18] However, early in April 2011, rumors suggested that both All My Children and One Life to Live were in danger of cancellation.[19]

After months of cancellation rumors, ABC announced on April 14, 2011 that it would not renew both All My Children and One Life to Live due to low ratings, with All My Children ending after 41 years on September 23, 2011, and with One Life to Live ending after 43 years on January 13, 2012. ABC cited "extensive research into what today’s daytime viewers want and the changing viewing patterns of the audience."[20] The network stated it was replacing One Life to Live with a new production entitled The Revolution, which would focus on health and lifestyles.[21] While the cancellations of both soap operas were announced on the same day, One Life to Live was to remain on the air four months longer because its replacement would not be ready until later. In response to the cancellations, vacuum cleaner manufacturer Hoover withdrew its advertising from all ABC programs out of protest.[22][23][24]

The final episode aired on January 13, 2012, with villainess Allison Perkins (Barbara Garrick) narrating her views about the people of Llanview. During the last minutes of the episode, Todd Manning (Howarth) is put under arrest for the murder of twin brother Victor Lord, Jr. (Trevor St. John). The show ends with the discovery that Victor Lord, Jr. is still alive and has been kidnapped by Perkins. Perkins closes the 43-year-old soap opera by throwing the script of One Life to Live at Victor saying to him: "But why spoil what happens next. You of all people should know things are rarely what they appear". The decision to conclude One Life to Live with an open-ended story is because the serial was supposed to continue on another network at the time the last scenes were taped (see section below).

On the day of the final episode, The View hosted a tribute to One Life to Live where several actors were invited including Erika Slezak, Robert S. Woods, Robin Strasser, Hillary B. Smith, Kassie DePaiva, James DePaiva, Andrea Evans, Judith Light and the show's creator Agnes Nixon.

The departure of One Life to Live ended a 62-year history of daytime television soap operas taped in New York which started in 1950 with the CBS's daytime drama The First Hundred Years.[25]

Cast and characters

File:OLTL ABCD Finale.png

The season 44 (2011–12) and official ABC Daytime finale cast photo of One Life to Live.
Front row (l-r): Portrait of Philip Carey, Patricia Elliott, Hillary B. Smith, Robert S. Woods, show creator Agnes Nixon, Erika Slezak, Jerry verDorn, Melissa Archer, Ilene Kristen
Second row: Peter Bartlett, Shenell Edmonds, Eddie Alderson, Austin Williams, Farah Fath, John-Paul Lavoisier, Kassie DePaiva, Roger Howarth, Kristen Alderson, Michael Easton, Mark Lawson, Bree Williamson, David A. Gregory
Third row: Lea DeLaria, Josh Kelly, Terri Conn, Shenaz Treasury, Andrew Trischitta, Ted King, Florencia Lozano, Sean Ringgold, Kearran Giovanni, Kelley Missal, Lenny Platt, Nic Robuck.

Template:Main article The show originally concentrated on the wealthy, WASP Lord family, the less wealthy Siegels (among the first attempts to showcase either an interfaith marriage or Jewish character on daytime television), the middle-class Rileys and Woleks, and the African American Grays.[1] Heiress Victoria Lord and her extended family remained a prime focus until the series ended. Over the years many other families were introduced, most notably the Buchanan and the Cramer families, who intermarried with the Lords and also remained a fixture on One Life to Live until its end.

Several actors performed on One Life to Live for 20 years or more, including Erika Slezak, Michael Storm, Robert S. Woods, Philip Carey, and Robin Strasser. Actors from the series who went on to greater fame with their prime-time television, feature film or theatre work include Tommy Lee Jones, Al Freeman Jr., Laurence Fishburne, Judith Light, Phylicia Rashad, Blair Underwood, Marcia Cross, Roma Downey, Mario Van Peebles, Jessica Tuck, Ryan Phillippe, Hayden Panettiere, Nathan Fillion, Renée Elise Goldsberry and Tika Sumpter.


In 2002, the popularity of antihero Todd Manning (Roger Howarth) prompted ABC to market a rag doll of the character, complete with his signature scar.[26][27] First offered for sale on April 29, 2002, the doll was pulled on May 7, 2002, after a backlash begun when The Jack Myers Report "harshly criticized the network's judgment" on creating and releasing a doll based on Manning, a character who had notably been convicted of rape in 1993.[26][27][28] The New York Times later quoted then-ABC President Angela Shapiro stating, "I was insensitive and take total responsibility for it. I should have been sensitive to the history of the character and I wasn't."[26]

Shortly after receiving a March 2005 GLAAD Media Award for its coverage of LGBT issues,[29][30] One Life to Live was met with criticism when married district attorney Daniel Colson (Mark Dobies) was revealed to have murdered two people to cover up the fact that he was secretly gay.[31][32] GLAAD itself criticized the storyline "for reinforcing the idea that being gay is something to be ashamed of," while TV Guide noted "It's hard to disagree with those who say that's a lousy representation of gay folks."[31] Executive Producer Frank Valentini defended the story, saying, "This is a story about the harsher side of intolerance and about one man not being true to himself. There are going to be meaningful, frank discussions that come out of this."[31] Then-head writer Dena Higley explained, "The number one rule of soap opera is never cut drama. Daniel being gay and keeping that a secret is a dramatic story."[31]

In June 2009, actress Patricia Mauceri (a performer on the series since 1995) was replaced in her role as Latin matriarch Carlotta Vega, reportedly after voicing personal religious objections to a planned storyline in which Carlotta would be supportive of a gay relationship.[33][34][35]

Historical storylines

Prospect Park

Unsuccessful revival attempt

On July 7, 2011, ABC announced that it had licensed the rights to One Life to Live and All My Children to television, film and music production company Prospect Park, allowing both series to continue producing new first-run episodes beyond the conclusion of their television runs on ABC, with the series moving to a new Hulu-style online channel currently in development by Prospect Park; as a result of the company's acquisition of the two soap operas, One Life to Live and All My Children, would become the first soap operas to transition their first-run broadcasts from traditional television to internet television.[36]

On September 16, 2011, executive producer Frank Valentini was retained by Prospect Park for that serial as well as All My Children when both shows would move to The Online Network.[37] On September 28, 2011, Prospect Park confirmed that One Life to Live would start on its The Online Network internet channel in January 2012, but without specifying the exact date.[38] On September 30, 2011, it was announced that head writer Ron Carlivati would be also heading to the internet version of the show.[39]

Since the agreement made between ABC and Prospect Park was not limited to internet television and did allowed One Life to Live to be broadcast on traditional television, there was an announcement on August 3, 2011 about a possibility of One Life to Live airing on a cable channel.[40][41] On October 5, 2011, the project to bring One Life to Live to cable was reiterated in a New York Times article, where it was revealed that Prospect Park planned to first air episodes on The Online Network, then make them available on television on demand and, then weeks later, on cable television.[42]

On November 23, 2011, Prospect Park officially suspended its plans to continue the show after its run on ABC.[43][44] Reasons given by Prospect Park included funding problems and poor negotiations with the unions representing the cast of One Life to Live. WGA and AFTRA, which respectively represent the writer and the actors, have expressed disappointment over Prospect Park's decision.[45] Though not one of the reasons given by Prospect Park, suggested that the company's lack of success in finding a cable network to carry the show may have been instrumental in the company's decision to not pursue the project.[46]

Despite its fruitless attempt to save the series, Prospect Park had succeeded in retaining 13 actors to sign for the online venture, compared to only two actors for All My Children. Matriarch actress Erika Slezak (Victoria Lord) was among the 13.[47] The 12 other actors were Melissa Archer (Nathalie Buchanan), Kassie DePaiva (Blair Cramer), Michael Easton (John McBain), Shenell Edmonds (Destiny Evans), Josh Kelly (Cutter Wentworth), Ted King (Tomás Delgado), Florencia Lozano (Tea Delgado), Kelley Missal (Danielle Manning), Sean Ringgold (Shaun Evans), Andrew Trischitta (Jack Manning), Jerry Ver Dorn (Clint Buchanan) and Tuc Watkins (David Vickers).[48]

2013 revival

File:OLTL Cast 2013.png

The new cast of Prospect Park's One Life to Live revival.
(l-r) Jerry verDorn, Kassie DePaiva, Melissa Archer, Robert S. Woods, Andrew Trischitta, Laura Harrier, Tuc Watkins, Erika Slezak, Josh Kelly, Florencia Lozano, Kelley Missal, Robert Gorrie.

On January 7, 2013, Prospect Park made an official statement about its plans to restart production of One Life to Live and All My Children as web series.[49][50][51] The two soap operas will serve as anchor shows for The Online Network (Prospect Park's new online channel that was supposed to be launched during the original attempt in 2011).[49][51] Prospect Park inked deals with SAG-AFTRA and DGA.[49] Prospect Park confirmed that former coordinating producer, Jennifer Pepperman has signed on as the new executive producer for the web reboot of One Life to Live.[49] Creator Agnes Nixon will work as consultant for the new web series.[49] On January 13, 2013 it was confirmed that soap opera writers Thom Racina and Susan Bedsow Horgan were named as the new Head Writers of One Life to Live.[52] On April 9, 2013 it was reported that Horgan citing "personal reasons" has stepped down as co-HW, leaving Racina as OLTL's sole HW.[53]

On January 22, 2013, Prospect Park released a full cast of the reboot of One Life to Live who signed on, which include Melissa Archer (Natalie Buchanan), Kassie DePaiva (Blair Cramer), Josh Kelly (Cutter Wentworth), Florencia Lozano (Tea Delgado), Kelley Missal (Danielle Manning), Erika Slezak (Victoria Lord), Hillary B. Smith (Nora Buchanan), Robin Strasser (Dorian Lord), Andrew Trischitta (Jack Manning), Jerry verDorn (Clint Buchanan), Tuc Watkins (David Vickers) and Robert S. Woods (Bo Buchanan). Recurring actors who have signed on are Sean Ringgold (Shaun Evans), Shenaz Treasury (Rama Patel), and Nick Choksi (Vimal Patel)[54]

Production of One Life to Live began on February 25, 2013[55] with taping of new episodes beginning on March 18, 2013.[56] The series premiered on April 29, 2013 at 12PM Eastern[57] The revived One Life to Live is a 30-minute program taped in Stamford Connecticut.[55] It is available on Hulu and Hulu Plus as well as various iTunes applications including iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.[55]

On May 17, 2013 The Online Network announced that All My Children and One Life To Live will no longer air five days a week together, due to viewer ratings that have been seen as certain patterns that resemble more closely the typical patterns of online viewing rather than how one would watch traditional television. Starting May 20, 2013 All My Children and One Life To Life will be presented in a new schedule, with AMC airing on Mondays and Wednesdays and OLTL airing Tuesdays and Thursdays. The recap shows MORE All My Children and MORE One Life To Life will also combine together as one show airing on Fridays. The following day on May 18, 2013, both shows were noticeably missing from the FX Canada website and schedule, and subsequently were available on iTunes Canada, it was later revealed that FX Canada dropped "All My Children" and "One Life To Live" due the reduction of episodes, the carriage agreement called for four episodes a week of both shows. With the reduction, FX Canada has said "the agreement is no longer valid."[58][59] On May 20, 2013, the first episodes of the new All My Children and One Life To Live were available worldwide on The Online Network's YouTube page, TOLNSoaps.[60]

On May 24, 2013 in a press release Prospect Park announced through Agnes Nixon that Racina will be out as head writer of One Life to Live and replaced by current script writers Jessica Klein and Marin Gazzaniga.[61][62]

On June 5, 2013, due to a labor dispute with the I.A.T.S.E. All My Children and One Life to Live were forced into an early hiatus with the writers, directors and editors still working; there were talks of production being moved out of state, but those plans were later shelved.[63][64] On June 20, 2013 a deal was reached between Prospect Park and the Union and taping will resume on August 12, 2013.[65] On June 25, 2013, TOLN stated that there will be a scheduling switch for One Life to Live and All My Children. Starting on July 1 (Monday) all episodes of the week for both shows, will be released on Mondays.[66]

Beginning July 15, 2013, All My Children and One Life to Live will air for a 10-week limited engagement on the Oprah Winfrey Network Monday through Thursday at 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM.[67]

On August 1, 2013, it was revealed that One Life to Live's first-season finale aired on August 19, 2013.[68]

On September 3, 2013, a report from the Los Angeles Times stated that One Life to Live's second season will be put on hold while Prospect Park deals with its lawsuit against ABC over loaned to General Hospital's treatment of One Life to Live characters, when they crossed over in 2012.[69] In December 2016 the lawsuit was dismissed, with the rights to the series reverting back to ABC.[70]

Transition to General Hospital

On December 1, 2011, two weeks after One Life to Live finished taping its final scenes,[71] ABC confirmed that former executive producer Frank Valentini and head writer Ron Carlivati would assume the same roles on General Hospital effective January 9, 2012.[72]

Several former One Life to Live actors - Kassie DePaiva, Roger Howarth, Michael Easton, and Kristen Alderson - moved with Valentini and Carlivati and reprised their characters on General Hospital.[73] With the exception of DePaiva, all of these actors were eventually put on contract and stayed permanently with the show. On May 9, 2012, Florencia Lozano joined the cast, reprising her One Life to Live role of Téa Delgado in a recurring capacity.[74]

On April 18, 2013, after Prospect Park had announced they would be reviving the series, Prospect Park filed a lawsuit against ABC, alleging ABC failed to honor its part of their licensing agreement. Among the issues named in the lawsuits included ABC's alleged attempts to sabotage Prospect Park's revival of the soap by killing off One Life to Live characters loaned to General Hospital (Cole and Hope Thornhart), failure on ABC's part to consult Prospect Park on storylines involving One Life to Live characters (breaking up popular One Life to Live couple, John and Natalie to pair Michael Easton's John McBain with former Port Charles love interest, Kelly Monaco's Sam Morgan, the death of Tea Delgado's baby and the subsequent switching of her baby with Sam Morgan's live baby, orchestrated by Howarth's Todd Manning), as well as claiming one One Life to Live character, Tomas Delgado, was actually General Hospital character, Lorenzo Alcazar.[75] Effective immediately, the three One Life to Live characters bound to contracts with ABC were to exit the show, and the three actors who played them, Kristen Alderson, Michael Easton and Roger Howarth were rewritten back onto the General Hospital canvas playing new characters, while Howarth also crossed his character of Todd back over to One Life to Live for its inaugural season.

On September 3, 2013, Prospect Park announced that production of One Life to Live would be on hold until their litigation with ABC is settled.[76]


Throughout the show's history, the plot lines of One Life to Live have been established as existing in the same fictional universe as other ABC-owned daytime series, in particular Agnes Nixon's All My Children, which premiered in 1970. As noted from time to time in both series, fictional Pine Valley—the setting of All My Children—is located in Pennsylvania near One Life to LiveTemplate:'s Llanview. Over the years, many characters have crossed over from one series to another in both short appearances and extended runs.[77] As early as 1968, General HospitalTemplate:'s Dr. Steve Hardy appeared in Llanview to consult on Meredith Lord Wolek's blood disease as a means to lead General Hospital viewers to the new series; similarly, One Life to LiveTemplate:'s Dr. Larry Wolek visited All My Children shortly after its premiere in 1970.[77]

In 1979, when Viki Riley was on trial for the murder of Marco Dane, she was defended by Pine Valley attorney Paul Martin. Two characters that also appeared on All My Children are Sadie Gray (Lillian Hayman), when she sang for the wedding of Dr. Frank and Caroline Grant, and Delilah Buchanan (Shelly Burch), when she designed a special dress to be worn by Erica Kane (Susan Lucci).

In 1999, Daytime Emmy Award-winner Linda Dano[78] returned to One Life to Live as Gretel Cummings, a character she had previously played on the series from 1978 to 1980.[79][80][81] In a 2000 move of network synergy designed to "entice viewers to tune into soap operas that they might not have usually watched," then-President of ABC Daytime Angela Shapiro orchestrated Dano's concurrent appearance as Gretel on the three other ABC daytime dramas at the time — All My Children, General Hospital, and Port Charles — in an extended crossover storyline[77] which was the first time a daytime character had ever appeared on four series.[79][82][83] Gretel's search for the child she had given up for adoption takes her to All My Children, where she discovers in 2000 that her own birth mother is Pine Valley's Myrtle Fargate.[84] Following clues to Port Charles and General Hospital, Gretel finally finds her daughter back in Llanview on One Life to Live: Skye Chandler, herself a former All My Children character who had relocated to One Life to Live in 1999.[77] Skye's adopted All My Children father Adam Chandler appears on One Life to Live in 2001, and Gretel initially identifies Skye's biological father as Alan Quartermaine of General Hospital. Both women subsequently appear on that series, with Skye moving to General Hospital full-time in 2001 and Gretel returning to One Life to Live until 2004, making some appearances on General Hospital later in 2002 and 2003.

A December 30, 2003, visit by One Life to LiveTemplate:'s Paul Cramer to his estranged secret wife Babe Carey on All My Children[83] ultimately leads to an extensive 2004 "baby switch" storyline which features crossovers of over 20 characters between the two series. With his sister Kelly desperate for a child to save her marriage after miscarrying her own, Paul finds himself delivering the babies of both Babe and her friend Bianca Montgomery during a rainstorm and subsequent flood in nearby Pine Valley on March 24, 2004. Paul stages a crash with his MEDEVAC helicopter; he takes Babe's son for Kelly,[77] gives Bianca's daughter to Babe, and tells Bianca that her baby had died in the accident. Unaware of the child's origins, Kelly brings Babe's infant back to Llanview, passing him off as her child with her husband Kevin Buchanan. Months later, Babe discovers that her daughter is really the grieving Bianca's, but remains silent and allows Paul to manipulate her. Meanwhile, a devastated Kelly discovers that Paul had stolen her son from his mother and, desperate for cash, he blackmails Kelly by threatening to reveal the secret to Kevin. Bianca's daughter is returned to her for Christmas 2004, and once Kevin learns the truth, he and Kelly return Babe's son as well in 2005.[85]

While One Life to Live was off the air from February 2012 to March 2013, the characters of Todd Manning, Starr Manning and John McBain moved to the setting of General Hospital, Port Charles, New York.


The show aired on ABC Daytime for the entirety of its original television run.

  • July 15, 1968 – July 23, 1976: 3:30–4:00 pm (2:30–3:00 pm, CT/PT)
  • July 26, 1976 – January 13, 1978: 2:30–3:15 pm (1:30–2:15 pm, CT/PT)
  • January 16, 1978 – January 13, 2012: 2:00–3:00 pm (1:00–2:00 pm, CT/PT)

The show aired on Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes during its revival.

  • April 29, 2013 - May 9, 2013: one new episode a day, Monday through Thursday.
  • May 13, 2013 - June 28, 2013: a new episode each Tuesday and Thursday.[86]
  • July 1, 2013 - August 19, 2013: two new episodes every Monday.[87]

Reruns of the show aired on OWN from July 15, 2013 to September 2013.

  • July 15 – August 2, 2013: 2:00–4:00 pm (1:00–3:00 pm, CT/PT)
  • August 5 – September 6, 2013: 1:30–2:00 pm (12:30–1:00 pm, CT/PT)

Opening Title Cards

One Life to Live title card, circa 1968-1973

One Life to Live title card, circa 1973-1980

One Life to Live title card, circa 1980-1984

One Life to Live title card, circa 1984-1991

One Life to Live title card, circa 1992-1995

One Life to Live title card, circa 1995-2004

One Life to Live final title card, circa 2004-2012


Current contract cast members

Actor Character Status
Melissa Archer [88] Natalie Buchanan 2001-2012, 2013-
Corbin Bleu [89] Jeffrey King 2013-
Kassie DePaiva [88] Blair Cramer 1993-2012, 2013-
Robert Gorrie [88] Matthew Buchanan 2013-
Laura Harrier [88] Destiny Evans 2013-
Josh Kelly [88] Cutter Wentworth 2010-2011, 2013-
Florencia Lozano [88] Téa Delgado 1997-2000, 2002, 2008-2012, 2013-
Kelley Missal [88] Danielle Manning 2009-2012, 2013-
Ron Raines Carl Petersen 2013-
Paolo Seganti Arturo Bandini 2013-
Erika Slezak [88] Victoria Lord 1971-2012, 2013-
Hillary B. Smith [88] Nora Buchanan 1992-2012, 2013-
Robin Strasser [88] Dr. Dorian Lord 1979-1987, 1993-2000, 2003-2011, 2013-
Shenaz Treasury [88] Rama Patel 2011-2012, 2013-
Andrew Trischitta [88] Jack Manning 2011-2012, 2013-
Jerry verDorn [88] Clint Buchanan 2005-2012, 2013-
Tuc Watkins [88] David Vickers 1994-1996, 2001, 2002, 2003-2006, 2007-2012, 2013-
Robert S. Woods [88] Bo Buchanan 1979-1986, 1988-2012, 2013-

Recurring cast members

Actor Character Status
Peter Bartlett [90] Nigel Bartholomew-Smythe 1991-2012, 2013-
Alice Callahan Kate Lane 2013-
Nick Choksi [88] Vimal Patel 2010-2012, 2013-
Ryan Cooper Bruce Hunter 2013-
Jenni Farley [91] Nikki 2013-
Elijah and Isaiah Ford [92] Drew Buchanan II 2013-
Barbara Garrick Allison Perkins 1986-1987, 2001-2003, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013-
Patrick J. Gibbons [93] Sam Manning 2010-2012, 2013-
Jessie Malkouti [94] Dusky 2013-
Amber Skye Noyes Michelle McCall 2013-
Sean Ringgold [88] Shaun Evans 2006-2012, 2013-
Finn Robbins [95] Liam McBain 2013-
Marnie Schulenberg Jo Sullivan 2013-

Before they were stars

Actor Character Year Range
Reiko Aylesworth Rebecca Lewis 1993-1995
Tom Berenger Tim Siegel 1975-1976
Yasmine Bleeth Lee Ann Demerest 1991-1993
Jonathan Brandis Kevin Buchanan 1982
Dixie Carter Dorian Cramer 1974
Marcia Cross Kate Sanders 1986-1987
John Cullum Artie Duncan 1969
Roma Downey Johanna Leighton 1988
Julia Duffy Karen Wolek 1977
Nathan Fillion Joey Buchanan 1994-1997, 2007
Laurence Fishburne Josh Hall 1973-1976
Faith Ford Muffy Critchlow 1983
Barbara Garrick Allison Perkins 1986-1987, 2001-2002, 2003, 2008
Richard Grieco Rick Gradner 1986-1987
Tommy Lee Jones Dr. Mark Toland 1971-1975
Joe Lando Jake Harrison 1990-1992
Judith Light Karen Wolek 1977-1983
Colm Meaney Alf 1987-1988
Hayden Panettiere Sarah Roberts 1994-1997
Jameson Parker Brad Vernon 1976-1978
Ryan Phillippe Billy Douglas 1992-1993
Phylicia Rashad Courtney Wright 1981-1983
Elisabeth Rohm Dorothy Hayes 1997-1998
Brandon Routh Seth Anderson 2001-2002
Jessica Tuck Megan Gordon 1988-1992
Blair Underwood Bobby Blue 1985-1986
Casper Van Dien Ty Moody 1993-1994
Mario Van Peebles Doc Gilmore 1982-1983
Nana Visitor Georgina Whitman 1982

Celebrity guests

Guest Year
Joyce Brothers 1972
Hazel Scott 1973
Walter Slezak 1974
Sammy Davis Jr. 1979
Bill Anderson 1980s
Arlene Dahl 1980s
Hugh Downs 1980s
Peabo Bryson 1985
Frank McCourt 1987
Beach Boys 1988
Ivana Trump 1990s
Kurtis Blow 1991
Dr. Ruth 1992
Reba McEntire 1992
Robin Leach 1992
Bill Medley 1994
Darlene Love 1994
Marsha Mason 1994
Little Richard 1995
Erykah Badu 1997
Kortney Kayle 2001 [96]
Charles Busch 2001
Paul Taylor 2004[97]
Simply Red 2004
Dr. Travis Fox 2005
Jai Rodriguez 2005
Mary J. Blige 2006, 2008
Marysol Castro 2006
Lifehouse 2006
Tito Puente, Jr. 2006
Jeannie Ortega 2006
Lauren Flynn 2007
Nelly Furtado 2007
Joy Behar 2007
Elisabeth Hasselbeck 2007
Timbaland 2007[98][99]
Keri Hilson 2007[99]
OneRepublic 2007[99]
Puddle of Mudd 2008[100]
Snoop Dogg 2008[101][102]
Plain White T's 2009[103]

Deceased cast members

Actor Character Date of Death
Gerald Anthony Marco Dane May 28, 2004
Jonathan Brandis Kevin Buchanan November 12, 2003
Phil Carey Asa Buchanan February 6, 2009[104][105]
Keith Charles Ted Clayton July 1, 2008
Jack Crowder Lt. Jack Neil October 9, 1991
Augusta Dabney Helena Ashley February 4, 2008
Ted Demers Daniel Wolek January 1, 2001
Avril Gentles DuAnn Demerest November 21, 2001
Anthony George Will Vernon March 16, 2005
Bernard Grant Steve Burke June 30, 2004
Ernest Graves Victor Lord June 1, 1983
Lillian Hayman Sadie Gray October 25, 1994
Dorrie Kavanaugh Cathy Craig Lord December 31, 1983
Lee Patterson Joe Riley
Tom Dennison
February 14, 2007
Nat Polen Dr. Jim Craig May 3, 1981
Clint Ritchie Clint Buchanan January 31, 2009[106][107]
Esther Rolle Sadie Gray November 17, 1998
Byron Sanders Talbot Huddleston November 12, 2001
Rebecca Schaeffer Annie Barnes July 18, 1989
Jeremy Slate Chuck Wilson Sr. November 19, 2006
Shepperd Strudwick Victor Lord January 15, 1983
Kellie Waymire Emily Haynes November 13, 2003
Michael Zaslow David Renaldi December 6, 1998



The show aired on ABC Daytime for the entirety of its original television run.

  • July 15, 1968 – July 23, 1976: 3:30–4:00 pm (2:30–3:00 pm, CT/PT)
  • July 26, 1976 – January 13, 1978: 2:30–3:15 pm (1:30–2:15 pm, CT/PT)
  • January 16, 1978 – January 13, 2012: 2:00–3:00 pm (1:00–2:00 pm, CT/PT)

The show aired on Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes during its revival.

  • April 29, 2013 - May 9, 2013: one new episode a day, Monday through Thursday.
  • May 13, 2013 - June 28, 2013: a new episode each Tuesday and Thursday.[108]
  • July 1, 2013 - August 19, 2013: two new episodes every Monday.[109]


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  92. ^ Introducing...
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  102. ^ One Life to Live recap (5/9/08) -
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