THE STORY: A pretty young woman arrives in town whose at-first-glance harmlessness is quickly revealed to be a thin veil for a scheming sociopath. She is pining after "the man who got away" and is hellbent on getting him any way she can. She’s a lethal mix of Little Debbie and Lizzie Borden, unhealthy amounts of saccharine mixed with dead-eyed lunacy. With gleam in her cuckoo for cocoa puff eyes, she embarks on a reign of terror of blackmail and personal vendettas. The she-devil tangles with an older woman who know her evil ways and does her damndest to banish the rivals for her insane affection. She even uses a pregnancy to try to snare her quarry. Her delusions grow just as fast as her enemies list until they’ve had enough….
The evil on a stick chicka I am referring to is not One Life to Live’s kewpie doll psycho Stacy Morasco (Crystal Hunt), but rather the thoroughly unbalanced, off the wall Nora Fulton from The Edge of Night.
Portrayed with gleeful menace by Catherine Bruno, Nora was one of the most unhinged villainesses ever, and her murder was one of the most satisfying deaths in soap opera history. Nora’s demise was also the last great murder mystery penned by EON’s legendary head writer Henry Slesar.
A few podcasts ago I mentioned that Stacy is a low-rent version of EON’s Nora to our Daytime Confidential listeners who might remember how she stormed through Monticello like Sherman through Atlanta, with the knowledge that a great many of our listeners had no idea to whom or what I was referring. With Stacy possibly heading the way of Nora (hey, all the threats these days of killing her aren’t being made for nothing!…I hope), it seems a most appropriate time to show how a good murder mystery episode is constructed especially compared to that hot mess airing over on All My Children.
I’ve long wanted to share this great episode of EON specifically with DC’s audience as another example of why Edge of Night was such a brilliant show, but the most of the online videos were of pretty bad quality. However thanks to PHLTVRips, the complete episode of "The Murder of Nora Fulton" is here for your viewing pleasure! No set up here is needed. Slesar’s sharp, economical but naturally paced writing reveals all the motives and relationships you need to know about what is going on through clean cut dialogue and character interaction; even the most mundane conversations are loaded with clues and motives.
Nora doesn’t even make her appearance here until the middle of the second part, but by the time she sweeps into the Whitney mansion you get a true sense of how much this woman is hated! Not only is Nora batshit crazy not unlike Stacy, there is quite a bit of General Hospital’s Claudia Zaccara (Sarah Brown) juiced up in there, too! After 25 years, Slesar’s magnificent writing and vivid characters still stand up with the best to them. Friends, this is how its done.
Note: some parts of the video are dark. Part 1 is above; Parts 2 and 3 are below. After the "Who Killed Adam/Stuart?" shit storm, Chuck Pratt needs to be watching this, too.
Dang, I still want that penthouse!