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The Best 70s Daytime Soap Operas

Updated October 4, 2019 3.0k votes 525 voters 29.0k views23 items

List RulesDaytime soap operas that aired on television during the 1970s

70s television was filled to the brim with some of the top soap operas to ever air on television. Shows like "As the World Turns," "Another World," and "Guiding Light" were the highest rated soap operas of the decade, continuing their success after decades of being on the air. This list of the best daytime soap operas that aired during 1970 to 1979 has been voted on and ranked by the community. 

The 70s saw the introduction of many new soap operas. Some of them became huge hits that lasted for many years, such as "The Young and the Restless," "Ryan’s Hope," and "All My Children." Others didn’t enjoy the same level of success, including "Bright Promise," "Somerset," "A World Apart" and "How to Survive a Marriage." "Love is a Many Splendored Thing" ended its run in 1973 after being on the air since the mid-60s. The top daytime soap operas saw about 10 million viewers an episode.

What are the best daytime soap operas from the 1970s? Vote up the best 70s soaps below.

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  • 1
    160
    54

    Another World

    Victoria Wyndham, Constance Ford
    Another World is an American television soap opera that ran on NBC for 35 years from May 4,...  more

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  • 2
    121
    42

    Ryan's Hope

    Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett
    Ryan's Hope is an American soap opera created by Claire Labine and Paul Avila Mayer,...  more
  • 3
    131
    58

    All My Children

    Cameron Mathison, Michael E. Knight
    All My Children is an American television soap opera that aired on ABC for 41 years, from...  more

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  • 4
    117
    55

    The Edge of Night

    Martin Sheen, Marcia Cross
    The Edge of Night is an American television mystery series/soap opera produced by Procter &...  more
  • 5
    107
    54

    One Life to Live

    Hayden Panettiere, Kourtney Kardashian
    One Life to Live is an American soap opera broadcast on the ABC television network for more...  more
  • 6
    84
    52

    General Hospital

    Brandon Barash, Norma Connolly
    General Hospital is an American daytime television medical drama that is listed in Guinness...  more

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  • 7
    106
    78

    Dark Shadows

    Alexandra Isles, Grayson Hall
    Dark Shadows is an American gothic soap opera that originally aired weekdays on the ABC...  more

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    #114 of 329 The Greatest TV Dramas of All Time#204 of 277 The Most Overrated TV Shows Of All Time

  • 8
    89
    64

    Days of Our Lives

    Galen Gering, Suzanne Rogers
    Days of Our Lives (NBC, 1965) is an American daytime soap opera created by Ted and Betty...  more

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  • 9
    79
    58

    Search for Tomorrow

    Susan Sarandon, Viggo Mortensen
    Search for Tomorrow is an American soap opera that aired on CBS from September 3, 1951 to...  more

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  • 10
    83
    64

    Guiding Light

    Hayden Panettiere, Matt Bomer
    Guiding Light is an American television soap opera that is listed in Guinness World Records as...  more
  • 11
    79
    63

    As the World Turns

    Julianne Moore, Sarah Hyland
    As the World Turns is an American television soap opera that aired on CBS for 54 years from...  more
  • 12
    75
    67

    Somerset

    Sigourney Weaver, Ted Danson
    Somerset is an American television soap opera which ran on NBC from March 30, 1970, until...  more
  • 13
    56
    49

    Love of Life

    Dana Delany, Christopher Reeve
    Love of Life is an American soap opera which aired on CBS from September 24, 1951, to February...  more
  • 14
    69
    82

    The Young and the Restless

    Ashley Jones, Adrienne Frantz
    The Young and the Restless is an American television soap opera created by William J. Bell and...  more

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  • 15
    59
    70

    Love Is a Many Splendored Thing

    Susan Lucci, Donna Mills
    Love Is a Many Splendored Thing is an American daytime soap opera which aired on CBS from...  more
  • 16
    44
    54

    The Secret Storm

    Joan Crawford, Roy Scheider
    The Secret Storm is a soap opera which the CBS television network transmitted from February 1,...  more
  • 17
    50
    63

    A World Apart

    Susan Sarandon, Susan Sullivan
    A World Apart is an American daytime drama which ran from March 30, 1970 to June 25, 1971 on...  more
  • 18
    37
    70

    How to Survive a Marriage

    Armand Assante, Ken Kercheval
    How to Survive a Marriage is an American soap opera which aired on the NBC television network...  more
  • 19
    15
    37

    Where the Heart Is

    Rue McClanahan, Marsha Mason
    Where the Heart Is is an American soap opera telecast on the CBS television network from...  more
  • 20
    36
    75

    The Doctors

    Alec Baldwin, Kathleen Turner
    The Doctors is an American television soap opera which aired on NBC Daytime from April 1,...  more

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    #21 of 55 The Best Daytime TV Shows#41 of 51 The Greatest Soap Operas of All Time

  • 21
    20
    66

    Return to Peyton Place

    Mary Frann, John Hoyt
    Return to Peyton Place is an American daytime serial which aired on NBC from April 3, 1972 to...  more
  • 22
    8
    37

    The Best Of Everything

    Susan Sullivan, Geraldine Fitzgerald
    The Best of Everything is an American daytime soap opera which aired on ABC from March 30,...  more
  • 23
    3
    41

    Bright Promise

    Dabney Coleman, Coleen Gray
    Bright Promise is an American daytime soap opera that ran on NBC from September 29, 1969 to...  more