For Valentine’s Day, 5 Soap Couples Who Were Really Super

By Patrick Erwin

I  want to observe Valentine’s Day by discussing some of my favorite soap couples. I know soaps are famous for their “supercouples,” those pairs that keep coming back to each other through sleet, snow, and psychotic ex-spouses. Most shows have had these grand couples:  Luke and Laura,  Bo and Hope, Josh and Reva, and so on. But I’d like to honor Another Worldfive couples that had the most impact on me — the ones that moved me, made me laugh, made me sigh and made me believe in love — or as Marlena would say, l’amour!

Rachel and Mac, Another World:  Mac and Rachel were one of the most believable stories ever to play out on our screens. A theater director I worked with once said the magic of any performance was when you really believed, and I really believed that Mac and Rachel were real people. When Douglass Watson’s Mac looked at Victoria Wyndham’s Rachel, you saw not only love and passion, but Mac’s deep respect for Rachel as a person; he was caring and concerned even when they were fighting, or divorced, or with other partners. So much of who Rachel became, especially after Mac’s death, was a result of his love for her. As a bonus, this couple had perhaps the most tantalizing spoiler of any couple: Beverlee McKinsey as Iris, Mac’s manipulative daughter.

Quint and Nola, Guiding Light: I just loved everything about this couple. Nola was so unconventional in every way — and so was Quint. If you were a bit of an oddball like me, Nola’s quirkiness was very appealing — and when wonderful things happened to her, you felt like you’d been invited along for the ride. Quint and Nola’s pairing was out of a Jane Austen novel, with Quint being Nola’s Mr. Darcy (she even called him Mr. McCord at first). Nola was full of fantasies and dreams, and Quinton managed to bring those dreams to life for her. These two broke each other’s defenses down, and really complimented each other – never forcing the other one to change. For my money, their wedding, with them floating away in a hot air balloon,  was the most romantic event I’ve ever seen on daytime. 

John Dixon and Lucinda Walsh, As The World Turns: ATWT has a lot of other strong couples that I’ve loved over the years, like Kim and Bob, Tom and Margo, Holden and Lily, and even Jack and Carly (the first few hundred times, anyway). But I really loved John and Lucinda because they were so well suited for each other. Individually, they were strong, manipulative people who were emotionally damaged, but together, they exuded real caring and warmth. And heat — their bickering was intelligent and sexy. Their mutual mistakes may have split their marriage apart, but these two never lost their love or affection for one another.Lane Davies, Nancy Grahn

Mason and Julia, Santa Barbara: One of the smartest, most complex pairings ever assembled in daytime. I think my favorite time for this couple was in the beginning, when Lane Davies played Mason. Nancy Lee Grahn was superb as Julia, and these two were equals, going head to head as often as they went heart to heart. Nothing was ever simple, or neat, or prepackaged with these two. Their smooth repartee masked the complicated, emotionally volatile feelings that Mason and Julia had about each other — and themselves. And like John and Lucinda, these very smart people generated a lot of heat around each other.Noah and Julia

Noah and Julia, All My Children: I’m always bored by stories where the writers heap one misery after another onto a character or couple. I came to love Noah and Julia in spite of this because even when things were bad, there was a real, quiet warmth to the scenes these two shared. A big deal was made about the historical nature of the story (soaps’ first interracial supercouple), but that seemed so irrelevant. They just clicked — Noah’s intensity meshing nicely with Julia’s high-spirited nature. Neither half of the couple was exactly a saint — Noah had been up to no good in his offscreen past, and Julia was originally brought to town as a man-stealing hussy who had just left an older — and married — boyfriend. But these two saw the best in each other — and brought the best out in each other. As much as I love that Angie and Jesse are back on AMC, I wish they’d reach once more into their past and bring back Noah, too!

Those are my favorites — I’d love to hear yours! And I wish all of you a sweet and romantic Valentine’s Day!


  1. A few of my other favorites:

    Doug & Julie from “Days of our Lives”
    Liza & Travis from “Search for Tomorrow”
    Raven & Skye from “The Edge of Night”

  2. My favorites:

    Roger & Holly from “Guiding Light”
    Alan-Michael & Eleni from “Guiding Light”
    Jack & Mary from “Ryan’s Hope”
    Mel & Dorian from “One Life to Live”
    John & Natalie from “One Life To Live” (pre- Dena Higley)
    Max & Gabrielle from “One Life To Live”
    Kevin & Lucy from “General Hospital”
    Scott & Lucy from “General Hospital”
    Jack & Jennifer from “Days of Our Lives”
    Nico & Cecily from “All My Children”

  3. I’ve never really watched soaps just for couples (I love character!) and really detest the cute little internet names attached to certain pairings nowadays, but for me, it will always be Luke and Laura. Watching them fall in love is how I fell in love with soaps. There was just something about the way they looked at one another, and oh, the adventure! How I miss being on the run with them.

  4. My All-Time Faves:
    Jack & Jennifer (Days of our Lives)
    Frisco & Felicia (GH)
    Ned & Lois (GH)
    Nico & Cecily (AMC)
    Kevin & Lucy (GH)
    Jenna & Dean (Another World)
    And even though they were incredibly dysfunctional, my absolute all time fave were probably Sonny & Brenda from General Hospital

  5. My favs:

    Jenny & Greg (AMC)
    Angie & Jesse (AMC)
    Luke & Laura (GH)
    Nikki & Victor (YR)
    Margo & Tom (ATWT)
    Neal & Scott (ATWT)
    Nola & Quint (GL)

  6. I’m with you, Bryon. It’ll always be Luke & Laura for me! I was already a diehard soap viewer when they came along, but they took me to a level I’d never been before or since.

    Some other faves:
    Fletcher & Claire (GL)
    Rick & Mindy (GL)
    Joe & Viki (OLTL)
    Steve & Liza (SFT)
    Lee & Sunny (SFT)
    Steve & Carrie (SOMERSET)
    Snapper & Chris (Y&R)
    Brad & Leslie (Y&R)
    Joey & Eileen (AW)
    Jay & Frannie (ATWT)
    Craig & Sierra (ATWT)
    Tom & Margo (Gregg & Hillary – ATWT)
    Doug & Julie (DOOL)
    Mike & Trish (DOOL)
    Tony & Renee (DOOL)
    Roman & Marlena (Wayne & Deidre – DOOL)
    Bo & Hope (DOOL)
    Adam & Nicole (EON)
    Steve & Deborah (EON)
    Gavin & Jody (EON)
    Rick & Lesley (GH)

    This is fun…I could go on, but I don’t think anyone wants to read pages and pages 🙂

  7. My all-time faves:
    1. Tad & Dixie, AMC
    2. Cliff & Nina, AMC
    3. Roger & Holly, GL
    4. Greg & Jenny, AMC
    5. Josh & Reva, GL

  8. miketom765 says:

    Jax and Brenda Gh
    Ned and Lois GH
    Dinah and Hart GL
    Noah and Julia amc

  9. It always has to be the couples that years later I remember skipping school or work to watch, or I would race back to the TV to start watching the soap again because I hear they’re coming back with the original stars (and I pretty much watched all the soaps):
    Luke and Laura — GH
    Nina and Cliff — AMC
    Angie and Jessie — AMC (yeah I’m watching now)
    Bo and Nora — OLTL
    Nick and Sharon — Y&R
    Kay and Rex — Y&R
    Maureen and Ed — GL
    Jack and Jennifer — Days
    Rachel and Mac — AW
    Vanessa Bruce — LOL
    Mike and Nancy — EON

  10. Alexis and Diane, General Hospital. What a treat to see such a great female friendship on daytime! They aren’t jealous of each other, they wouldn’t steal each other’s man and they genuinely respect each other’s intellect, even when adversaries. Now, if we are talking shoes or designer dresses, all bets are off! You go girls!

    Marlena says: I’m very suspect of this latest GH friendship. There have been many friendships among females on the show but Mr. Misogynist Guza isn’t exactly a feminist. I suspect Alexis and Diane’s friendship has a lot to do with the lack of viable male love interests for either (who’s older than them on the show? Edward? Dr. Ford?… Oh yes, Luke. And Jerry, the criminal! Women, let alone women over 40, rarely get love interests or much airtime on soaps these days. Plus Guza has to give story to Tracy and Monica also.

    Like everyone else, I’ve wondered if he’s headed towards a lesbian relationship with Alexis and Diane. Yes, yes, I know they each have had major relationships/marriages with men before. Would ABC Daytime try an older female romantic couple? Could be very interesting!

  11. I had some real doozies in my time. Of course, I loved the staples of L&L, Mason & Julia, Beth & Lujack, Margo & Tom (Marx/Bailey version), Bo & Nora, Greg and Jenny, Cliff & Nina, Ridge & Caroline, Roman or John with Marlena and of course, Roger or Fletch with Holly.

    BUT I also loved some weird ones, lol. I loved Rick and Ginny on GH, Craig and Samantha on ATWT, Edmund or Tom with Brooke on AMC, Leigh and Jack on RH, Chris & Derek on Edge and Hogan with Liza (only Sherry Mathis) or Patti.

    There isn’t anyone I care about right now, I don’t think. No one writes romance well anymore…maybe Angie and Jesse will be if they don’t screw that up.

  12. What a great topic!!
    Like many others above, I usually appreciate the soaps more for the characters than the supercouples. But my personal favorites would be:

    5. Kimberly & Shane (DAYS) – Hokey, romantic, complex, fascinating. How long has it been since you’ve seen an adult well-written romance between an spy and an ex-hooker?

    4. Alan & Monica (GH)- Like a 30 year car crash. They loved, they hated, they fought cancer, they fought each other. Riveting!

    3. Cass & Felicia (and Wally) (AW) This threesome, and tragically, later just a couple, brought fun, friendship, and laughter to daytime. The love, loyalty, and tenderness they demonstrated for each other is unrivaled in daytime today.

    2. Dorian & Vicki (OLTL) – Has there ever been a better love story told? Like peanut butter & jelly, one simply is not as good without the other. This pivotal 30+ year “love” story demonstrates how we ALL have good and bad, light and dark, love and hate within us. There has never been better chemistry, except for…

    1. Doug & Julie (DAYS) – My first experience watching a “super couple” in action. Their love and affection on and off screen brought romance, chemistry, and tortured love to new heights. There are some teams that illuminate the screen in ways that makes everything else in the room come to a standstill. These two continue to demonstrate this power today EVEN from the backburner.

    Honorable mention – I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I LOVED Tabatha & Timmy on Passions. Guilty pleasures are still pleasures!

  13. I’ve watched soaps for decades, and the first couple I really liked was Jax & Brenda. They were the anti S&B, and I hated the way Brenda was written when she was with Sonny. At that point, I would have been thrilled if they’d paired Brenda up with Mickey Mouse. As long as it wasn’t Sonny, all was cool.

    My all-time favorite couple though was Jax & Chloe. He was always rescuing Brenda, or even V, but here was a woman that was classy, smart, independent, funny, strong, had the guts to start her own company and so much more. She was a true heroine, but of course that didn’t last long before Guza and gang made her a “tragic” heroine. It’s not often you see a couple comprised of two decent people who are doing the best they can. Unfortunately Jax was ruined as a character when he left her without ever checking in while she was suffering from a brain tumor. Cliche I know.

    I also loved Chloe with Stefan, but when JFP came in as the new exec. prod., she had no use for either character and eventually wrote them off.

    Since then I just haven’t cared enough to get involved. Characters and storylines are rewritten for the sheer sake of convenience so what I see today won’t be true tomorrow anyway. Give me a book any old day.

  14. horselover says:

    GH’s Robert & Holly
    AMC’s Greg & Jenny
    DAYS Steve & Kayla
    AMC’s Phil & Tara
    GH’s Rick & Lesley

  15. I’ve had many favorites over the years. But the ones who had the greatest impact on my life (and helped form my ideas of what romance is and what enduring love should look like) were from my earlier days of soap watching.

    So, my list::

    Cruz and Eden (Santa Barbara)

    Mac and Rachel (Another World)

    Doug and Julie (Days of Our Lives)

    Adam and Nicole (Edge of Night)

    Sky and Raven (Edge of Night)

    Mike and Nancy (Edge of Night)

    Grant and Reena (Texas)

    Mark Wheeler and Ruby Wright (Texas)

    Steve and Carolee (The Doctors)

    Greg and Jenny (All My Children)

    Jack and Mary (Ryan’s Hope — when Kate Mulgrew was playing the role)

    Phillip and Beth (Guiding Light — but only when Pam Long was writing their love story)

  16. Kudos for including John & Lucinda. They were a dynamic match thanks to Larry Bryggman and Elizabeth Hubbard’s forceful interpretation of Doug Marland’s writing, and they never get recognized in analyses like this.

  17. Donna Nicholson says:

    Steve and Kayla of Days is the most romantic super couple ever.

  18. Steve and kayla

  19. johnsonlovin says:

    Steve and Kayla!!!!!

    Yeah, they’re my most absolute favorite ever … they ooze chemistry, have sensuality, are so touchy feely … they are the whole package. I can’t get enough of them … then or now!

  20. Some personal favorites (since I started watching the soaps nearly 25 years ago), and listed in alphabetical order according to the soap.…

    Jack and Carly (“As the World Turns”)
    Roman and Marlena (“Days of Our LIves”)
    Robert and Holly (“General Hospital”)
    Mallet and Harley (“Guiding Light”)
    Bo and Nora (“One Life to Live”)

  21. Steve and Kayla – DOOL

  22. Steve & Kayla (Days of Our Lives) are tops for me. But, I also liked:

    Mason & Julia (Santa Barbara)
    Eden & Cruz (Santa Barbara)
    Beth and Phillip (Guiding Light)

  23. Steve & Kayla, Days
    Holly & Robert, GH
    Bo & Hope, Days
    Jenny & Greg, AMC
    Beth & Lujack, GL

  24. Steve and Kayla
    The absolute best of all time!!

  25. Leslie - L2PSANDK says:

    Steve and Kayla (DOOL)
    Angie and Jesse (AMC)
    Julia and Mason (SB)
    Rachel and Mac (AW)
    Bo and Hope (DOOL)
    Eden and Cruz (SB)
    Doug and Julie (DOOL)

    These couples epitomize chemistry, sexiness, love, and steadfastness. For all of these couples, I just love them because of their devotion to each other, the bond they share or shared, and the fact that most are still together (or back together) on the shows where they shined the brightest.

  26. My favorite super couples of all time are:

    John and Marlena, Days
    Cruz and Eden, Santa Barbara
    Mason and Julia, Santa Barbara
    Bo and Hope, Days
    Ryan and Vicki, AW
    Jake and Vicki, AW
    Sami and Lucas, Days (not really a super couple but still one of my favorite couples)

  27. There is only one supercouple for me and that is John and Marlena!

  28. John & Marlena, DAYS

    Basically, yeah…

    I also love Ric & Alexis, Don & Marlena, Robert & Anna…

  29. No other soap couple has captivated me the way Day’s John and Marlena have. I just saw them together once and I was totally obsessed, and still can’t get enough of them! They have an overload of sexual chemistry and all the other kinds of chemistry! Deidre Hall and Drake Hogestyn are simply gorgeous together! Best eye-candy in daytime!

  30. John & Marlena (DAYS)
    Bo & Hope (DAYS)
    Ridge & Taylor (B&B)
    Hal & Margo (ATWT)
    Craig & Sierra (ATWT)
    Danny & Cricket (Y&R)
    Victor & Ashley (Y&R)
    Mack & Karen (Knotts)
    Greg & Page (Knotts)

  31. 5?


    Cruz and Eden. Class issues, humor, true love conquers all and something weird with a shark. Also the only love triangle I ever bought into with Robert Barr.

    Mason and Julia. The intellectuals supercouple.

    L&L2 but only with JJ. Back when it was fresh. After Liz’s rape when Lucky was so so so good with her and all of the kids were complex and interesting as any adult.

    Stee and Kayla who I so vividly remember rooting for passionately and skipping school for key moments.


    Jake and Paulina two imperfect characters played by wonderful actors who understood about grayscales and nuance. And the pairing was perfect.

  32. John and Marlena! (DAYS)

  33. John and Marlena ~ Days of Our Lives

  34. John & Marlena are tops on my list. I love the angst and drama they’ve experienced through the years (and their passionate love scenes don’t hurt either!)

    I was also a Mason & Julia fan. Their cerebral romance had me hooked from day one.

  35. Steve and Kayla ,Days.
    Tony and Anna, Days.
    Bo and Hope, Days.
    Tad and Dixie, AMC.
    Jesse and Angie, AMC.

  36. Steve and Kayla. I couldn’t believe I came back to soaps after 16 years. But only a couple who had captured my heart and imagination like them could bring me back. Even though the storylines don’t measure up like the ’80s, Stephen and Mary Beth still bring so much chemistry and talent that I am loving the intensity and fun of Steve and Kayla even more now.

  37. John and Marlena (DOOL) are it for me and have been for over 20 years!

    In the past I liked:
    Kim and Shane (DOOL)
    Julia and Mason (SB)
    Clint and Viki (OLTL)

  38. John and Marlena from Days are the best ever!

  39. SteveandKayla Fan says:

    Steve and Kayla – Days
    Bo and Hope – Days

  40. KaylaSteve Fan says:

    Steve and Kayla – Days of Our lIves
    Bo and Hope – Days of Our Lives

    Marlena says: Hmm, do I see a pattern here? How bout two supercouples, one soap? BTW, Marlena always hated the term ‘supercouple.’ It was invented in the 80’s solely to sell magazines. As far as I’m concerned every couple is super, both in real life and on soaps.

  41. Thank you so much, Patrick, for mentioning Noah and Julia. They were the first soap couple I ever watched from the very beginning, and they have remained one of my favorites even fourteen years later. I too would love for them to bring Noah back, but Brown & Esenstein would have to go first!

    Most of the great supercouples aired long before I was old enough to know what a soap was (thank goodness for YouTube!) But Robin and Stone are my only other favorite couple whose story I was lucky enough to watch unfold every day. And like Noah and Julia, their story still captivates me to this day.

    Now if only Soapnet would re-air their story, I’d be a happy lady indeed!

  42. John and Marlena- Days of Our Lives
    Brenda and Jax- General Hospital
    Dru and Neil- Young and Restless

  43. My old time favorites were Penny and Jeff, Betsy and Steve, and Craig and Sierra, all from ATWT. My favorite now is Carly and Jack on ATWT.

  44. Steve and Kayla (Days)
    Anna and Duke (GH)
    Anna and Robert (GH)

  45. John & Marlena, Days
    Eden & Cruz, SB
    Ryan & Vicki, AW
    Cass & Kathleen, AW
    Josh & Reva, GL
    Mason & Julia, SB
    Bo & Hope, Days
    Shane & Kim, Days

  46. John and Marlena Black (DAYS) are my all-time favorite soap couple. Nothing beats their chemistry and their love story has stood the test of soap opera time.

    Others I’ve enjoyed along the way…

    Noah & Julia (AMC)
    Bo & Nora (OLTL)
    Simon & Katie (ATWT)
    Dorian & Vicki (OLTL)

  47. I love Steve & Kayla and have since 1986. I think the Patchman is one of the most interesting characters ever written on daytime and Kayla one of the most honorable female characters.

    My other all time favs would be Bo & Hope.

  48. Michele Reilly says:

    John and Marlena Evans Black are my favorite couple and have kept me watching Days since 1986!

    Also a big fan of:

    Donna Hudson and Matt Cory (AW)
    Kim and Shane (Days)
    Doug and Julie (Days)

  49. Let’s see…

    AMC: Greg and Jenny

    Santa Barbara: Cruz and Eden

    GH: Luke and Laura (no longer too wild about them because the rape bothers me at this point in my life).

    Days: Steve and Kayla

    Bo and Hope

  50. These couples had the biggest impact.
    Jenny and Greg (AMC) ~ how I got hooked
    Bo and Hope( Days) ~ I wanted to be her
    Eden and Cruz (SB) (you couldn’t have gotten better)
    Reva and Joshua (GL)
    Steve and Betsy (ATWT)
    Cord, Tina and Max (OLTL)
    Vicki and Ryan, Vicki and Jake (AW) ~ I still miss them!
    Holly and Robert, Brenda, Sonny and Jax (I had a tough time deciding)
    Ridge and Caroline (B&B) ~ when I actually cared
    Lauren and Paul (Y&R)

    We should do couples that should have been couples but shows missed the boat! (ie. Gilly and Alan-Michael)

  51. 1. John and Marlena DAYS (The only soap couple that has kept my attention for longer than a few years – Their chemistry is unbeatable and their story is like no other)
    2. Cass and Kathleen AW (My heart is still broken over them)
    3. Claire and Fletcher GL (Short but oh so sweet!)
    4. Annabelle and Tony GL (The story was rather silly but they had great chemistry and how could you not love Mrs. Piper?)
    5. Perry and Nancy AW (Perry was a tortured soul and Nancy a spunky girl next door, they were sweet – I stil hate Vicky for pushing him off the ladder and killing him)

  52. Steve & Kayla (DOOL)
    Jake & Vicki (AW)

  53. Sean & Tiffany — GH
    Kevin & Lucy — GH

  54. Christine B. says:

    I have loved many couples but my two favorites are John and Marlena (DAys) and Jax and Brenda (GH).

  55. Mason and Julia tops my list Marlena. They were truly outcast when it comes to respect mainly because of being over shadowed by Cruz and Eden. I like Cruz and Eden, but I LOVED Mason and Julia. Nothing came easy for them. I also loved Gordon Thomson as Mason. I would agree Lane did a great job, but I think Gordon, although a little old for the role, was equally as wonderful.

    I’m going to add my derailed pick of John and Evangeline. I think this couple was heading for super couple status if their story would have continue. Renee Goldsberry did the unthinkable, she made Michael Easton’s “John McBain” likable and believable as a sexy lead. Those two were hot and sexy and the chemistry between the actors were explosive.

  56. While we’re on the subject of supercouples, I’m about ready to stop watching ATWT because of their blatant homophobia. On this week’s Valentine’s episode, Luke and Noah were the only couple who did NOT share a kiss.

  57. Mason & Julia, SB
    Ted & Laken, SB
    Pearl & Courtney, SB
    Keith & Gina, SB
    Lionel & Augusta, SB
    Cruz & Eden, SB
    Brick & Amy, SB
    Greg & Emily, SB

    Mac & Rachel, AW
    Cass-Felicia-Wally-Lily, AW
    Jake & Paulina, AW
    Ryan & Vicky, AW
    Jake & Vicky, AW
    Cass & Frankie, AW

    I will second the above comment about Liz & JJ’s Lucky, especially when the dialogue was written by Patrick Mulcahey.

  58. Hi Patrick…

    This is a great question. I am wracking my brain…

    5. Cruz Castillo & Eden Capwell [SANTA BARBARA]
    4. Roger Thorpe & Holly Lindsey [GL, 1989-96]
    3. Tony Reardon & Annabelle Sims Reardon [GL]
    2. Richard & Cassie Winslow [GL]
    1. Brandon “Lujack” Luvoneczek & Beth Raines [GL]

  59. Robert & Anna GH Luke and Laura GH ,Danny and Michlle GL,Zach and Kendall AMC, Robin and Patrick GH, Robin and Stone GH, Austin and Carrie Days of our lives, Nick and Sharon Y& R, Cruz and EDEN SB, Jackson and Erica AMC, Nick and Emily GH, Dillon and Gerogie GH, Bo and Hope Days,

  60. Hey Patrick this is a hard question for me as I only have a list of three, which I’ve noted chronologically. There are a lot of couples I’ve enjoyed over the years, like Mac and Rachel, but since I never saw their early relationship I don’t feel right putting them on my list.

    1. Steve and Kayla on Days — The first couple I ever watched on a soap that I chose to watch and wasn’t forced by a babysitter to view. Due to time slot, I only could see Days when school was closed, I was sick or able to watch at someone else’s house who taped it.

    2. Mason and Julia on Santa Barbara (specifically when Lane Davies was Mason). They were the couple I was most excited to watch after school, but I seldom got to see full episodes as school ended after 3 in the afternoon.

    3. Blake and Ross on GL – The first couple I saw from the beginning of their romantic relationship and was able to watch episodes in full.

  61. My first soap love, The Edge of Night,had one of the most enduring and real couples ever-Adam and Nicole.She was so elegant yet vulnerable-had more perils than any soap heroine-and he was (in the best sense) so masculine and determined and between them, they were shear magic.
    I would echo the comments made about Courtney and Reinholt as Another World’s Steve and Alice and also Quentin and Nola on GL. Can’t really quibble with any other couples mentioned here either.

  62. Patrick:

    Fabulous piece and fabulous responses. For me, Valentine’s Day notwithstanding, the timing of this piece is perfect; I just came across a 1992 essay by Diana Reef titled, “The Siren Call of the Super Couple: Soap Operas’ Destructive Slide Toward Closure” published in “Contemporary Soap Opera Criticism,” ed. Suzanne Frentz,
    I did want to comment on a couple of the comments, in particular, James, who said: “I’ve had many favorites over the years. But the ones who had the greatest impact on my life (and helped form my ideas of what romance is and what enduring love should look like) were from my earlier days of soap watching.” This is the real power of soap opera couples made up of characters as complex, flawed and idiosyncratic as those of us watching – like the couples Patrick and many others listed.
    Which brings me to “The Siren Call of the Super Couple” and Byron’s comment that he “never really watched soaps just for couples (I love character)” In her essay, Diana Reef talks about how the super couple phenomenon, beginning with Luke and Laura, “create(s) serious storyline problems for producers and writers.”
    For those who want to read the whole piece, I’ve included a link, but according to Reef, the love of a super couple is “so perfect that they are incapable of having romantic feelings for anyone else under any circumstances. In addition, the two have no personal flaws or idiosyncrasies that could interfere with their perfect love. Only an evil, outside force could disturb their relationship.” The problem super couples create for storytellers is that, “as characters, therefore, they are unchanging in a narrative form that emphasizes evolving characters and relationships” and “as ideals, super couples bring closure to a relationship in a world that is based in continuing expectations of change.”
    Those of us who think about soaps agree that so much of what’s gone wrong has been the abandonment of character for plot. And plot requires closure. I don’t think it’s too far a leap to speculate that the move from character to plot began with the advent of the super couple that began in the early 1980s. That the 80s were the glory days of soaps is at the very least, ironic. But fixing soaps requires first understanding how and why things have gone so wrong.

    Of course, soaps are nothing if not ironic; in fact, experiencing the full emotional impact of soaps requires a high tolerance for ambiguity. And that brings me to two couples and a super story from ATWT: Tom and Margo; Hal and Barbara. This story resonated for me because even though everyone knew that Tom and Margo were each other’s true love and belonged together, at the same time, I always felt that Margo could have just as easily been happy with Hal. And vis versa, even though Benjamin Hendrickson once told me that he believed that Barbara was Hal’s true love. That Barbara had a previous relationship with Tom, and hated Margo because she had an affair with James Stenbeck, only deepened the relationships among the characters. And the real power of character-based storytelling is that even with the sad passing of Benjamin Hendrickson, that history could easily be revived should the TPTB at ATWT be so inclined, were that it be. p/Reep.pdf

  63. Marlena and I are so simpatico! Steven Frame and Alice Matthews and that deliciously nasty and manipulative “girl from the wrong side of the tracks” Rachel was the very first soap story I became addicted (cringe) to. They were sort of the precursor to Luke and Laura. My friends and I skipped school the day Steve and Alice remarried. What a couple and Rachel was the quintessential bad girl/schemer. When she sent those baby clothes to Alice-what a moment! Daytime hasn’t seemed the same since.

    Marlena says: Right on Cherry! So glad you remember the true greatness that was Agnes’ Another World!

  64. No one mentioned my ALL time favorites on any soap, Jake & Megan (OLTL). I absolutely adored them. When Megan died I remember driving to work crying and telling myself over and over, “It’s only a soap.”

    As for other couples since I only currently watch AMC (30+ yrs!!) & OLTL and used to watch GH, I can only comment on ABC soaps.

    1- Greg & Jenny (AMC)- they were the first couple I fell absolutely in love with.

    2- Nina & Cliff (AMC)- My grandmother loved them, so when I went over her house during the summer I started watching and they lured me in.

    3- Roger Howarth’s Todd & Blair (OLTL)- the early years- the chemistry, writing and acting was amazing!

    4- Jax & Brenda- IMO Ingo is one of the sexiest men alive & his character was never better than when he was with Brenda. (I don’t watch now & stopped about 8 yrs ago, so I can’t comment past that)

    5- Robin & Stone- Theirs was one of the sweetest love stories.

    TPTB Missed the boat- Tad & Simone-she was funny, sexy and a great character and really brought out the fun in Tad and MEK. I thought they would have been absolutely great together

  65. Boidiva02 says:

    My Top 10 Soap Opera Supercouples:

    1. Luke and Laura—GH—The All-Time BEST EVER!

    2. Brooke and Adam-AMC–I loved this couple because on the surface they hated each other but deep down there was love there—and nobody could level Adam like Brooke could with a look or a sideways glance–she could get to the heart of him

    3. Stone and Robin- GH

    5. Vicki and Ben- OLTL

    6. Angie and Jessie- AMC

    7. Frisco and Felicia-GH

    8. Bo and Nora- OLTL

    9. Marty and Patrick- OLTL

    10. Tea and Todd- OLTL

  66. Mason and Mary /Santa Barbara/

  67. My Favs
    1.)Josh and Reva GL–There chemistry is unmatched!
    2.)Gary and Abby KL
    3.)Michael and Donna-AW
    4.)Cass and Frankie AW
    5.)Marlena and John DOOL
    6.)Shane and Kimberly DOOL
    7.)BO and Nora OLTL
    8.)Marlena and Roman DOOL

  68. I started watching GH in 1975, and the other soap I mention I started in 1981! Here are some of my all time favorites:

    Jason and Sam
    Luke and Laura
    Sonny and Brenda
    Lucky and Liz
    Robert and Anna
    Stone and Robin
    Spinelli and Maxie
    Frisco and Felicia
    Alan and Monica
    Jax and Carly
    Patrick and Robin

    Bo and Hope
    John and Marlena
    Doug and Julie
    Steve and Kayla
    Will and Sonny
    Ej and Sami
    Jack and Jen

    Josh and Reva

    Ridge and Brooke

    Todd and Blair
    Bo and Nora
    John and Natalie
    Cord and Tina
    Clint and Vicki

    Leo and Greenlee
    Jessie and Angie
    Tad and Dixie
    Bianca and Maggie
    JR and Babe
    Greg and Jenny

    Jack and Carly
    Luke and Noah

    Victor and Nikki
    Nick and Sharon

    If I had to pick a top 10 though, it would be:
    1.Jason and Sam-GH
    2.Luke and Laura-GH
    3.Sonny and Brenda-GH
    4.Bo and Hope-DAYS
    5.Josh and Reva-GL
    6.Lucky and Liz-GH
    7.Todd and Blair-OLTL
    8.Robert and Anna-GH
    9.Victor and Nikki-Y&R
    10.John and Marlena-DAYS

  69. Mine are:

    – Bo and Hope
    – Mike and Carrie
    – Kristen and Brady
    – Marlena and John

    Guiding Light:
    – Nick and Mindy
    – Holly and Roger
    – Ed and Maureen
    – Bill and Vanessa
    – Buzz and Nadine
    – David and Kat
    – Gilly and Hamp
    – Blake and Ross
    – Blake and Alan-Michael
    – Harley and Mallet
    – Buzz and Jenna
    – Jenna and Roger

    – Todd and Blair

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