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Erica Kane: The Iconic Soap Opera Character

Erica Kane: The Iconic Soap Opera Character

Erica Kane is a fictional character from the American ABC Daytime soap opera All My Children. The character was portrayed by actress Susan Lucci from her debut on January 16, 1970, until the last broadcast television episode on September 23, 2011.

Erica is considered to be the most popular character in American soap opera history. TV Guide calls her \”unequivocally the most famous soap opera character in the history of daytime TV,\” and included her in their 2013 list of The 60 Nastiest Villains of All Time.

Erica’s storylines have involved her multiple marriages, affairs, divorces, feuds, rivalries, friendships, family drama, business ventures, and personal struggles. She has been a model, a disco owner, a television personality, an author, and a businesswoman. She has also dealt with issues such as addiction, abortion, rape, and kidnapping.

Erica’s character was created by Agnes Nixon, who also created All My Children and other soap operas. Nixon said Erica was inspired by her own experiences as a young woman who wanted love, independence, and fame. Nixon also used the model of the Erica character to create Rachel Davis on Another World, another popular soap opera heroine.

Susan Lucci was cast as Erica after auditioning for the role in 1969. Lucci said she was drawn to Erica’s complexity and ambition. Lucci became one of the most recognizable and celebrated actresses in daytime television, earning 21 nominations for the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. She won only once, in 1999, after the 19th nomination; her long-awaited victory became a historic moment in television history.

After All My Children was cancelled by ABC in 2011, Lucci continued to act in other TV series, such as Devious Maids, Army Wives, and Hot in Cleveland. She also hosted a true crime series called Deadly Affairs. She was expected to reprise her role as Erica on Prospect Park’s online revival of All My Children in 2013, but the appearance never came to fruition due to the show’s second cancellation.

Erica Kane remains one of the most iconic and influential characters in American television history. She has been praised for her complexity, charisma, glamour, and resilience. She has also been criticized for her selfishness, manipulation, and immaturity. She has inspired many other soap opera characters and influenced popular culture in various ways.

Some of Erica’s most notable storylines include:

  • Her affair with Nick Davis, which led to her first divorce from Jeff Martin and her abortion of their child. The abortion was later retconned into a miscarriage and the child was revealed to be alive as Josh Madden.
  • Her marriage to Tom Cudahy, which ended when she cheated on him with his brother Sean. She also became addicted to painkillers and was kidnapped by a drug dealer.
  • Her rivalry with Brooke English, which began when Brooke married Tom after Erica. They competed for men, jobs, and social status for decades.
  • Her marriage to Adam Chandler, a ruthless tycoon who manipulated and controlled her. She eventually left him for his brother Stuart, who was kind and gentle.
  • Her romance with Mike Roy, a spy who faked his death and returned years later. She married him in a fake ceremony to protect him from his enemies.
  • Her marriage to Travis Montgomery, the father of her daughter Bianca. They divorced twice and had a tumultuous relationship.
  • Her discovery that she had another daughter, Kendall Hart, who was conceived when Erica was raped by Richard Fields. Kendall initially hated Erica and tried to ruin her life, but they later reconciled and became close.
  • Her marriage to Dimitri Marick, a European aristocrat who owned a castle. They had a passionate and stormy relationship that involved kidnappings, amnesia, and presumed deaths.
  • Her relationship with Jackson Montgomery, Travis’s brother and Bianca’s uncle. They had an on-and-off romance for years and finally married in 2005. They divorced in 2007 but remained in love until the end of the show.
  • Her support for Bianca, who came out as a lesbian in 2000. Erica initially struggled to accept Bianca’s sexuality, but eventually became her biggest ally and advocate. Bianca gave Erica two grandchildren, Miranda and Gabrielle.
  • Her feud with Kendall’s husband Zach Slater, who blamed Erica for his brother’s death. They had a mutual distrust and animosity that sometimes turned violent.
  • Her involvement in the Satin Slayer murders, which targeted her friends and family. She was accused of being the killer, but it was later revealed to be Alexander Cambias Sr., Zach’s father.
  • Her kidnapping by Jane Campbell, a woman who had plastic surgery to look like Erica and took over her life. Erica escaped and confronted Jane, who confessed that she was obsessed with Erica and wanted to be her.
  • Her launch of a new talk show called The Diva Diaries, which showcased her life and opinions. She also wrote an autobiography called All My Life, which became a bestseller.

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