Dear Soaps,
On Guiding Light, did Beth ever "die"? People at work try to tell me this all the time! — Laurence

Dear Laurence,
Do soap characters ever really die? Seriously, in 1986, when the popular Judi Evans, who most recently played Paulina on the canceled Another World, decided to leave her Emmy-winning role, the show handled Beth's exit in a most interesting way. The character of Professor Blackburn kidnapped Beth. Soon Blackburn turned up dead but there was almost no sign of Beth. Phillip's father, Alan, who had never really approved of Beth, didn't want his son to suffer the burden of not knowing what happened to his beloved, so he fabricated evidence to make it appear Beth had also died. It probably wasn't a huge shock for Alan when Beth returned in 1989, in the form of its current portrayer, Beth Chamberlin, alive and well. (DD)