These Are My Children

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These Are My Children is an American television soap opera which ran on NBC from January 31, 1949 to February 25, 1949. The show was broadcast live from Chicago, Illinois, airing fifteen minutes a day, five days a week, at 5:00 p.m. EST. It is widely credited as the first soap opera broadcast on television.[1][2] It may be more accurately described as the first daytime drama or the first soap opera strip, as it was preceded by DuMont series Faraway Hill in 1946 and Highway to the Stars in 1947, both of which are described as soap operas but aired later in the evenings and broadcast only once a week.

Created by Irna Phillips and directed by Norman Felton, the show was based in large part on Phillips' early radio soaps Today's Children and Painted Dreams. Children centered on an Irish widow, Mrs. Henehan and her struggles to run a boarding house as well as help her three children and new daughter-in-law Jean. Critics were not impressed; Television World ended their review with: "There is no place on television for this type of program, a blank screen is preferable."

Phillips would go on to create many popular daytime dramas, and Felton produced primetime soaps Dr. Kildare and Executive Suite.

Cast[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Soap Comes to TV". Old Magazine Articles. 9 February 1949. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  2. ^ "On This Day: First TV Soap Opera Debuts". Finding Dulcinea. 31 January 2011. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 

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