1 9 5 8 (USA)
30 minute episodes
Airing on NBC between June and December 1958 as a short-lived replacement for Matinee Theater, Today is Ours holds the distinction of being the first TV soap opera to feature a divorcée as the romantic heroine.
Laura Manning (Pat Benoit, formerly of Mister Peepers), the assistant principal of Bolton Central High School, had to manage a single household with her 12-year-old son Nick (Peter Lazar). Her ex-husband Karl (Patrick O’Neal) loved her, but Laura was more attracted to architect Glenn Turner (Ernest Graves).
She had to juggle her romantic life with plenty of conflicts at school and home, ranging from Chester Crawley Sr, a parent who tried to bribe her into giving his spoiled son, Chester Jr, passing grades, to Nick playing hookey from school.
Meanwhile, Karl married New York society girl Leslie Williams (Joyce Lear), and his attention to her upset Nicky greatly.
Many other subplots were woven into the story, the most prominent of which was the turbulent relationship between Ellen Wilson (Chase Crosley) and Peter Hall (John McGovern).
The series was broadcast live from New York. In keeping with the soap opera genre, the dialogue was long, the close-ups frequent, and the production costs low.
NBC used Today Is Ours to introduce their forthcoming new drama, Young Dr Malone, weaving the threads of the two shows together to familiarise viewers with the characters of that show.
Nick “Nicky” Manning
Leslie Williams Manning