Another Life (1981 TV series)

Another Life is an American television soap opera produced and broadcast by The Christian Broadcasting Network from June 1, 1981 to October 5, 1984. It was co-created by Roy Winsor and Bob Aaron, and ran for 875 episodes. It attempted to combine standard afternoon intrigue with religious overtones, as many characters were portrayed as born again who relied on the power of prayer to solve their problems. Set in the fictional east coast town of Kingsley (ostensibly thought to be in Virginia), the show was taped in CBN’s hometown of Virginia Beach, Virginia.[1]

American television soap opera
Not to be confused with Another World (TV series).

Another Life
Genre Soap opera
Created by Robert Aaron
Gerard Straub
Lloyd Watson
Roy Winsor
Composer Brent Havens
Country of origin United States
Original language English
No. of episodes 875
Original network CBN
Original release June 1, 1981 (1981-06-01) 
October 5, 1984 (1984-10-05)

. . . Another Life (1981 TV series) . . .

Through its run, Another Life revolved around the Davidson family – local anchorman Scott Davidson, his wife Terry who works as a nurse (Mary Jean Feton), daughter Lori (Jeannette Larson and later Debbie McLeod), and teenage son Peter (Darrel Campbell). Although they sometimes struggle with their faith, they stick by their principles, show compassion towards their fellow man – most notably next-door neighbor Liz Cummings (Carolyn Lenz) who lives with her alcoholic and adulterous husband Jeff (Tom McGowan) and their daughter Jenny – and eschew revenge to those who have caused them grief.[2]

Wealthy businessman Charles Carpenter (Randy Kraft) attempts to control every situation with his power and influence, and holds a grudge against the Davidsons, particularly after Scott investigates a crime story involving a mob gang which has connections with Kingsley’s upper-crust which includes the Carpenter family. Charles’ daughter Miriam Mason (Ginger Burgett[3]) also holds a grudge against the Davidsons, and files an adultery case against daughter Lori who is accused of having an affair with her husband Paul, a lecturer at the local college. Although it was later proved that Lori was innocent, Paul and Miriam get a divorce, with the latter losing custody of their son – although it is often hinted that Paul does indeed have feelings for Lori. Charles would later date Terry Davidson’s half-sister, the equally nefarious Nancy Lawson (Nancy Mulvey) who also clashes with the Davidsons and uses her charms to lure wealthy men into relationships with her, but never appears to hold down a steady career.

Russ Weaver (Christopher Roland), a pre-medical student who is about to propose to Lori, finds himself tangled with the drug ring when he is left with a huge debt after paying his girlfriend’s medical bills following a serious car accident the couple are involved in. He is also torn between Lori and fellow student Becky Hewitt (Sue Scannell) who is Lori’s best friend. Unknown to Lori, Becky slept with Russ after the latter grew frustrated with Lori’s refusal to have sex with him due to her beliefs. Lori would later catch the attention of Ben Martin, a handsome but older doctor who attends to Lori after her accident, and this infuriates Russ even after she breaks up with him. Russ’s father is later revealed to be Vince Cardello, a member of the local mob.

Russ and Becky secretly marry shortly after she becomes lead singer of the rock band Summerwind. The lead guitarist and founder, Phil Hayes (Scott R. Brown), falls for her, thus creating tension in her relationship with Russ. Becky later becomes pregnant by Russ, but miscarries due to Summerwind’s hectic schedule. After discovering Russ had cheated on her with another student, and that their wedding is not legal, Becky leaves Russ to pursue a solo singing career in New York.

The Davidsons are also close friends of the Redlons, an African Americans family which includes the deeply-religious Ione (Edye Byrde) and her son Gene (Eddie Hailey) who is Scott’s colleague, and involved in a custody battle with his ex-wife Carla (Elain Graham) over their son Jimmy who is often stuck in the middle; the situation is not helped when Carla puts her singing career before her family. Jimmy is hospitalized following a drug overdose, but refuses to name his dealer. Scott and Gene realize there is a connection between the mob and drug ring and both vow to investigate, leading to their dismissal at work after their TV station receives threats.[4]

Following the Cummings’ departure from Kingsley more families are featured, including the Prescotts and the Phillips.

In a nod to how The Secret Storm began its story, Scott and Nora are killed in a car accident on New Year’s Eve.[5][6]

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. . . Another Life (1981 TV series) . . .

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