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Friday, March 17, 2017

Flashes of the Past: Ryan's Hope on AM New York

An interesting and old episode of "A.M. New York" had the cast of "Ryan's Hope" as guests. The show aired on Tuesday, November 27, 1979 and was posted on YouTube in January. I'm linking it below and writing my thoughts about it.

Here is the embedded video, which is under 55 minutes long.

This is an interesting heirloom from soap opera past and has both serious and silly segments. The hosts were named Janet Langhart and Clay Cole, but since I am unfamiliar with them, and had to trust the subtitle. Claire Labine introduced much of the cast and they took a mini tour of the sets. They were in Roger's apartment, one of the restaurants and Ryan's Bar. Since they were in the midst of doing Siobhan and Joe's wedding, and some of the cast were in bridal clothing. Unlike many soap opera behind the scenes discussions, this show actually spoke to Claire Labine, Paul Avila Mayer and producer Ellen Barrett. (Her name recently started appearing in the closing credits of "The Doctors" from 1973.) They talk about the writing process and the typical day at the studio. Helen Gallagher and Bernie Barrow (Maeve and Johnny) were interviewed at the bar, and Helen didn't use her Maeve accent, so they both sounded like the native New Yorkers they were as Helen is from Brooklyn and Bernie from Manhattan.

The costume director, Bill Kellard, spoke to the hosts about the clothing for the wedding. It was mentioned how Siobhan had a Victorian style wedding even though the character is nontraditional and works at Planned Parenthood. The dresses the actresses were wearing for the wedding were made with fabric that was era specific, so alterations were needed. What was funny was that the guys were in casual clothes still. Randall Edwards, Karen Morris Gowdy, and Sarah Felder were all in their fancy dress.

What amused me was the discussion of Roger's apartment and how the bed was in the living room. It was a studio apartment, so isn't that normal? (The same could be said for Jack's apartment, though Jack wasn't "bad" in the way that Roger was.) Ron Hale, Earl Hindman, and John Gabriel (Roger, Bob, and Seneca) were interviewed together Daniel Hugh Kelly (Frank) was only spoken to in the restaurant like Richard Muniz (Joe).

In the silly portion, they had the hosts instructed by Randall Edwards (Delia at this time), directing them in the art of the love scene.  The show ended with both Helen Gallagher and John Gabriel performing songs in Ryan's Bar. Since I'm posting this on St. Patrick's Day, appropriately Helen Gallagher sang "Danny Boy."

The majority of the cast at the time was involved though this probably was done after Mary was killed off for good as emotional scenes had been taken the previous day. This was a very entertaining way to spend time reminiscing with the Ryans of "Ryan's Hope". Thanks goes to the person who posted this on YouTube for sharing this rare treat.

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