“One Life” Plans 40th Anniversary Bash

Tuesday, June 10, 2008 2:48 AM| By Scotty Gore

(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “One Life to Live” plans to celebrate their 40th anniversary by honoring the past.

With “One Life to Live’s” 40th anniversary fast approaching on July 15th, Head Writer Ron Carlivati assures fans that they won’t be disappointed with the tribute to honor the venerable daytime drama’s enduring legacy. In an interview with TV Guide, Carlivati states that “Our 40th anniversary deserved more than just a clip montage–we’re retelling classic stories.”

The homage to Llanview’s history begins on July 21st with reincarnations of three of “OLTL’s” most memorable storylines from the 1980s. In the first tribute, town heroine and leading lady Viki Davidson (Erika Slezak) becomes a victim of a horrible car crash, which results in her having an out-of-body experience. While unconscious, she dreams she is in heaven for a second time. In 1987, Viki imagined she was at the pearly gates while undergoing brain surgery. Unlike her last visit, however, heaven has become much more modernized. According to Carlivati, when Viki’s arrives in heaven, she finds herself in an elevator, stopping at each floor in a high-rise building. Along the way she encounters several deceased friends and family members. Among them are the spirits of her daughter Megan Gordon (Jessica Tuck), the husband that gave her his heart, literally, Ben Davidson (Mark Derwin), her good friend Mel Hayes (Steven Markle), and her colorful former father-in-law Asa Buchanan (Phil Carey). Viki even encounters “OLTL” creator Agnes Nixon while in heaven.

In the second story, Carlivati plays tribute Tina Robert’s memorable plunge over Argentina’s Iguazu Falls by having a horrified Tina look on as dastardly Carlo Hesser sends her daughter Sarah over a waterfall. But will Tina’s ex-husband Cord Roberts (John Loprieno) be able to save them before it is too late?

And then there was the time in 1988 when Clint was knocked unconscious and imagined he was living in 1888? Well, Carlivati states that the third story will consist of Bo and Clint being hit by lightning, and are transported to 1968, the same year “OLTL” premiered. In addition, Bo has become Asa, while Rex has become a younger version of Bo. While the first two stories will last for two days (July 21st-22nd), this one will last for several weeks. Carivati hints to TV Guide that, if “they are unable to find their way back to the future, Rex will be drafted and sent to Vietnam.”

While Jessica Tuck, Mark Derwin, Phil Carey, and Agnes Nixon are reporting returning for only two episodes (July 21-22), the returns of Stephen Markle and John Loprieno are expected to return to Llanview are expected to last awhile longer. Markle first appears as Mel’s spirit on June 30th, when he pays Dorian a visit. Loprieno is rumored to first air in early July.

In other casting news, Dorian’s favorite physic Madame Delphina returns to give the Cramer women some surprising insight into their futures on July 1st. It remains to be seen if Lea DeLaria will step back into the role, or if it has been recast. DeLaria originated the role in 1999. And Tess, the alter ego of Jessica Buchanan, returns to seek revenge on Jessica’s enemies starting June 27th.

And, in minor casting news, look for Alison Raimondi to portray a ‘New Mother’ on June 24th.

“One Life to Live” airs weekdays on ABC and weeknights on SoapNet. Check local listings.

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