FYI -- The first fifteen episodes of Texas
are now available online at AOL Video. Proctor & Gamble has made them available along with episodes from some of its other soaps like Another World
I've watched the first five episodes from August of 1980 and I have to say that the show holds up remarkably well after 26 years.
The biggest shock to me was to see just how much soaps have changed (for the worse) since 1980. Based on the evidence from Week 1 of Texas
, soap writing in 1980 was much more intelligent, the characters were much more realistic and the dramatic situations sprang from actual character motivations instead of springing out of nowhere.
Also, it's fascinating to see just how long
scenes were back then. For Week 1, scenes last anywhere from five minutes to 10 minutes. You would think this would produce a lot of "ums" and "ahs" from the actors but the Texas
cast breeze through the scenes with a minimum of stammering. Contrast that to today's soaps where the scenes are shorter but the actors can't seem to get through them without stammering.
It was great to see Beverlee McKinsey again and, now that all the controversy about whether a mellower Iris was a good idea or not has faded with time, it is possible to enjoy her performance for the great portrayal it is. Jim Poyner was my favorite Dennis so it was nice to see him again. Apart from McKinsey and Poyner, I would say that the early standouts among the women are Carla Borelli as Reena and Lisby Larson as Paige and the early standouts among the men are Phillip Clark as Ryan and Jerry Lanning as Justin.
The storylines were pretty good for Week 1 -- Iris and Alex Wheeler come face-to-face after 25 years, the Marshall family deals with the suicide of family patriarch Mike Marshall and Ryan Connor casts his restless gaze on Ginny Marshall for the first time. There were some clunkers too -- the Dennis Carrington/Dawn Marshall pairing is dull and chemistry free and a very young Catherine Hickland is wasted in the Courtney Marshall/Kevin Cook adulterous love affair (he is Reena's husband at this point.) (My negative opinion of the latter may be a result of liking Hickland so much as Lindsay on One Life To Live
where she gets to raise hell!)
I'll post more thoughts when I get done with Week 2 . . .
Edited by miliosr, Sep 1, 2006 @ 12:55 PM.