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The Best of Everything 

Based on the novel and 1959 motion picture of the same name, this daytime soap focused on three career girls, who became friends at powerful Manhattan publishing company Key Publishing. ... See full summary »
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1  
1970  

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Geraldine Fitzgerald ...  Violet Jordan (1970) / ... 114 episodes, 1970
Katherine Glass ...  Kim Jordan (1970) / ... 114 episodes, 1970
Gale Sondergaard ...  Amanda Key (1970) / ... 112 episodes, 1970
Patty McCormack ...  Linda Warren (1970) / ... 111 episodes, 1970
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Storyline

Based on the novel and 1959 motion picture of the same name, this daytime soap focused on three career girls, who became friends at powerful Manhattan publishing company Key Publishing. April, Linda, and Kim soon discovered that achieving "the best of everything" was a difficult prospect, as they faced failed romance, life-threatening intrigue, and bitchy publishing magnate Amanda Key in the Big Apple. Written by Mark Faulkner <mtfalknr@cc.memphis.edu>

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Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 March 1970 (USA) See more »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Based on Rona Jaffe's novel this weekday drama debuted on 30 March 1970 and was set in New York City. See more »

Connections

Follows The Best of Everything (1959) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pre-teen recollections of The Best Of Everything TV soap
31 August 2010 | by sandor20032000See all my reviews

I followed this short-lived serial for most of its 6-month run on ABC back in 1970 - and it's amazing how TV soap watchers from that era still remember it as fondly and curiously some 40 years later. I recall "The Best Of Everything" being preempted or cut into a few times so local ABC news affiliates could update viewers on such life-changing events taking place in the real world (Vietnam War, Kent State shooting), not just an alternate world in Manhattan we watched through the eyes of this show's ingénues: Linda Warren (former child actress Patty McCormack), April Morrison (Julie Mannix) and Kim Jordan (Katherine Glass). Patty McCormack was Oscar-nominated for her dead-right portrayal of cold-blooded pig-tailed murderess Rhoda in "The Bad Seed" in the mid-50s. But as career girl Linda on TBOE, the producers saddled the young actress with a hackneyed love triangle that went nowhere. It kept Patty's alter ego too low-key and forgettable, rather than letting Linda be written as a soap vixen variation of devious Rhoda, all grown up and taking New York and its men by storm. Married Mike Carter (Jean-Pierre Stewart) had fallen for Linda, but was obligated to his needy, bitter wife Anne (Diane Kagan), who had some rare, incurable disease and/or was wheelchair bound (yet may have been faking it to keep Mike and Linda apart). Linda was often featured in the office scenes at the Key Publishing Company with her fellow stenographers: blonde, perennially rattled April and cool, upbeat Ginnie Curtis (Gwen Mitchell), an attractive young black woman who lent a sympathetic ear to her troubled co-workers. I don't recollect her having a storyline of her own, but she always wore groovy hair pieces and miniskirts. The company's steno pool was supervised by a tense older gal, Kate Farrow (Me'l Dowd), who was often at odds with the other women - since they brought their ongoing personal baggage to the office daily, getting little work done. April was having a shameful fling with playboy Dexter Key (James Davidson), son (or was he the orphaned grandson?) of wealthy, imperious Amanda (Gale Sondergaard, movie actress who won the first Best Supporting Actress Academy Award given - she was 71 when TBOE aired). April became pregnant, but no marriage proposal from Dexter followed - just panic. I remember finding April's character a bit strident, but maybe it was just Julie Mannix's tight hair bands and overbite that distracted me. And I suspect April lost the baby after a car accident, or perhaps after a confrontation with Dexter's nasty mommy. Details are sketchy on that one - the same set-up of sorts was used in the 1959 movie "The Best Of Everything" (also based on the novel by Rona Jaffe), where in the film version, April impulsively jumped from a speeding car and subsequently miscarried her love child fathered by Dexter. Several characters lived and intersected in the same apartment building owned and managed by kindly Violet Jordan (veteran movie actress Geraldine Fitzgerald) and her husband Joshua, while their young daughter Kim was either in college or grad school. She had a crush on tenant Eddie Perrone (Victor Arnold), a doctor at the hospital with whom she shared space in a basement room, which they had converted into a small laboratory. Eddie thought Kim was a nice kid, but he had eyes for wispy April, while April was headed for hard times with callous Dexter. Dexter had a free-spirited and outspoken sister, Joanna (Bonnie Bee Buzzard), who was usually at odds with the rest of her ruthless, pretentious kinfolk. Also in the Jordan's building lived an unhappily-ever-after married couple, Barbara and Ken Lamont (Rochelle Oliver and Barry Ford) and their young son Johnny. Barbara sank into a severe depression as her rocky marriage fell apart, though neighbors in the building tried to rally her sullen spirits, with little success. Ken eventually moved out and planned to divorce Barbara and seek custody of son Johnny since Barbara could barely function with her persistent melancholia. It was here where the story gets moving: Kim moves on from her infatuation with doctor Eddie, and begins dating a guy from the wrong side of the tracks, blonde motorcycle-riding tough guy Randy Wilson (Ted LePlat, a dancer on "Where The Action Is" a few years prior). At first the easy-going Jordans are nervous for their only daughter, but Kim's warmth and optimism turns Randy around, and he opts to leave his old street gang behind. Enter the unforgettable villain Squirrel (effectively realized by Gregory Rozakis, who portrayed a similarly sinister role in the Charles Bronson film "Death Wish"), a sadistic punk who vows vengeance against the Jordan family, blaming Kim for Randy's defecting from his gang, a dangerous group of dope peddlers and thugs. Inside the Jordan's apartment building one day, Squirrel slips into the basement laboratory and plants a box of chocolates laced with LSD. Unfortunately, little Johnny Lamont stumbles upon and consumes the drugged candy, has a horrible reaction and is hospitalized, sending frazzled mother Barbara further off the deep end. Meanwhile, the police suspect Kim is responsible for making the illegal drugs and for causing Johnny's condition. Randy confronts Squirrel and vows to rat him out to the police to save Kim from blame. But then Randy dies in an accident while riding off on his motorcycle to incriminate Squirrel (or did Squirrel's thugs run him off the road, or rig the brakes on his bike?). Kim finally realizes Squirrel's true colors and crimes, but is beaten up, stabbed, and left for dead outside a deserted storefront by Squirrel and his henchmen before she can expose his reign of terror, clear her name, and avenge Randy's death. Whew! So much for living in Manhattan in 1970. Memorable show and great cast. It deserved a happier ending.


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