The place to keep up with all the trials and tribulations of the current and former residents of the city of Monticello from the classic daytime drama-The Edge of Night
Forward by William Joseph Reynolds-
Edge’s Super Fan as described by Mental Floss Magazine
Between 1956 and 1984, there was a unique daytime drama called ‘The Edge of Night.’ Based on the CBS radio version of ‘Perry Mason,’
the show did not follow the typical soap opera format. There were no ‘Who’s the Daddy’ story lines’. Nor were there doctors stealing kisses from their nurses, while performing delicate surgeries. ‘Edge’ was a mystery-oriented, crime drama, and as such, boasted a large percentage of male viewers. Some of the show’s more celebrated viewers were the poet P.G. Wodehouse, the composer Cole Porter, and the legendary actresses Tallulah Bankhead and Bette Davis. The latter sent a telegram, congratulating the cast and crew, after the airing of the climatic conclusion of the Keith Whitney/Jonah Lockwood storyline.
The show aired live on CBS from April 2, 1956 – November 28, 1975. It switched networks, to ABC, on December 1, 1975 with a masterfully written 90 minute episode. There it remained, until its final airing on December 28, 1984. Putting together a half-hour of mystery and melodrama, every day, for more than 28 years, was a complex task, to say the very least. But, the show’s close-knit cast and crew met the challenge.
I was born three weeks after the show’s April 2, 1956 debut, but I didn’t start watching until January 1964, when Monticello patriarch Winston Grimsley stood trial for murder. I was a faithful viewer for the next (almost) 21 years.
The hardcore viewers of the show rejoiced, in August of 1985, when reruns of the show’s final 3 1/2 years, began airing on the USA television network
In more recent years, these shows were made available on AOL and other internet viewing venues.
And, the show, that would not die, has generated a new generation of fans, joining the ranks of ‘honorary citizens of the Midwestern city of Monticello, USA,’ who, like me, were devoted to the show. Soap opera online communities, and pages on social networks, are filled with interactions between fans, who relive the kidnappings, murders and trials that were part of their everyday lives in Monticello, USA.
I have been privileged to share my memories of the show in a book, before an annual meeting of the American Popular Culture Association, in a magazine that detailed the ‘History of the American Television Soap Opera’ and I have even spoken at one of the show’s most fondly remembered on-location sites. Over the years, I have been honored to meet and become friends with some of our celebrated cast, and for scores of people, who, like me, rushed home from school, to get their daily half hour dose of murder, mystery and mayhem.
I have seen the devotion that ‘Timmy Faraday’ has for the show. It is genuine, and he has meticulously crafted a story that will live up to the high standards of a show, its cast and crew. Fans of the show, young and old alike, will enjoy this updated version of a daytime television classic. We may have left Monticello, on December 28, 1984, but I know, I am anxious to return to meet our old favorites and how they, and their children, meet the challenges of living in this not so typical Midwestern city.
William J. Reynolds
Edge Super-Fan,’ as described in the Sept/Oct 2011 issue of Mental Floss magazine, in their article, the History of the American Soap Opera.’
Featured contributor to ‘Survival of Soap Opera: Transformations for a New Media Era,’ University of Mississippi Press, hardcover – Dec 2010. Paperback March 2012.