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Actress Abby Dalton (1932-2020)


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The actress Abby Dalton, who played the romantic interests of Jackie Cooper and Joey Bishop on television sitcoms and Jane Wyman's daughter on the drama "Falcon Crest," has died in Los Angeles at the age of 88. Her family announced that her death occurred on November 23, 2020 after a long illness.

Who Was Abby Dalton? Wiki, Biography, Age, Family, Career, Husband,  Children, Cause of Death, Tributes, Instagram, Net Worth | wikibiouk.com

Born Gladys Marlene Wasden in Las Vegas on August 15, 1932, Dalton appeared in numerous television episodes and early independent films directed by Roger Corman, including "Rock All Night" (1957).

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In "Duel at Sundown," a 1959 episode of the ABC Western "Maverick," Dalton guest starred as Carrie Christianson -- a young woman who caused a conflict between Bret Maverick (series star James Garner) and her gunslinger boyfriend (played by Clint Eastwood).

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Also in 1959, Dalton became a regular in the CBS comedy/drama  series "Hennesey," in  which Cooper starred as the title character. He played a U.S. Navy physician stationed in San Diego. She co-starred as Lt. Martha Hale, a registered nurse who became Hennesey's love interest. Dalton earned a 1961 Primetime Emmy nomination for her performances. The series ran from 1959 to 1962.

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In the fall of 1962, Dalton joined Season 2 of NBC's "The Joey Bishop Show," which changed its original format. The sitcom began with Bishop as the non-married assistant to a press agent in Los Angeles. But when Dalton joined the series, Bishop played her husband, a TV talk show celebrity in New York City. From 1964 to 1965, the series aired on CBS. 

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From 1981 to 1986, Dalton played Julia Channing Cumson, the troubled daughter of powerful northern California vintner Angela Channing ( Wyman) on "Falcon Crest." Through the years, Julia was sentenced to prison for murder, dispatched to a mental institution (from which she escaped) and wound up in an Oregon convent.  

Falcon Crest" Perilous Charm (TV Episode 1986) - IMDb

Dalton's playboy son Lance Cumson on "Falcon Crest" was played by Lorenzo Lamas, whose parents were the actors Fernando Lamas and Arlene Dahl.

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In 1989, Lamas married Dalton's actress-daughter Kathleen Kinmont. They divorced in 1993, but continued to co-star for a time in Lamas' syndicated drama series "Renegade," which aired from 1992 to 1997.

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Dalton was a frequent guest and/or panelist on television network game shows, including "Password," "The Hollywood Squares," "The Match Game" and "The $25,000 Pyramid" (pictured below).

Pyramid Game show bonus round -- The $25,000 Pyramid -- Abby Dalton #2 -  YouTube

 

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The lovely Abby Dalton has left the stage. She was a mother, a wife, an accomplished actress and beautiful friend. #FalconCrest
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She was wonderful. Funny, kind, & of course, gorgeous. She will be missed. RIP #abbydalton #FalconCrest
 
 

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Very sad to learn of the death of the fabulous Abby Dalton with whom I was fortunate enough to work with on #FalconCrest She was always SO much fun and a terrific talent. Condolences to all her family and friends
 
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27 minutes ago, Hibi said:

I remember her from the Joey Bishop show and her many tv appearances. Wasn't Hennesey about a talking basset hound or beagle? I vaguely remember that. Sad to hear this.

You're thinking of another Jackie Cooper sitcom -- "The People's Choice," which co-starred Patricia Breslin. Cooper's character had a basset hound named Cleo whose thoughts could be heard by the viewing audience. The series ran on NBC from 1955 to 1958.

Mary Jane Croft, a longtime Lucille Ball co-star on television, provided the voice of Cleo.

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I always enjoyed watching Abby Dalton.  She was quite attractive and seemed so down to earth in interviews or game show appearances I remember seeing.  I wonder if she'll be included in the 2020's "TCM Remembers" tribute when it comes out in a couple of weeks.  It seems she didn't have much of a big-screen career, even though she was fairly well known.

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About five years ago I posted a detailed appreciation of Abby Dalton's work on Falcon Crest on the IMDb message board for FC. Unfortunately those boards were taken down and I did not copy and paste my tribute on to one of my blogs. But I will mention some of the key points I remember writing about her.

First, Falcon Crest had a lot of talented people in front of the camera...old time movie stars and rising young stars, a lot of European stars in guest roles, and some memorable child actors and teens. Jane Wyman was queen bee and it was her show without a doubt. But Abby Dalton was the one to watch, especially during those first four seasons.

FC ran for a total of nine years, producing over 200 episodes. Abby Dalton's character Julia Channing began as a wobbly drunk in the first season. She was meant to be a bit unsteady, living in the shadow of her mother Angela (Wyman) and trying to steer herself and a mentally ill sister named Emma (Margaret Ladd) to some normality. However, when the show returned for a second season Earl Hamner (creator of The Waltons and Falcon Crest) and his writing team decided to do a year long mystery where someone was killing people in the valley and the killer was revealed in the season 2 finale, commonly referred to as a cliffhanger.

They threw viewers off track by having Abby Dalton's character Julia involved in a near fatal car crash mid-season, where it seemed the killer wanted her to die as well. That was a huge red herring because Julia staged the car crash, to deflect suspicion and in a climactic showdown at the end of the second season she was revealed as the mastermind. She went on a killing spree and killed two more people in the finale, one of them being Lana Turner's character. It was a huge episode.

Season 3 saw Julia apprehended and sent to prison. We watched how her rich mother tried to pull strings to give her preferential treatment in prison, which only backfired and caused Julia to be abused in prison. Abby Dalton did excellent work that season. The character was now a victim, but of course still a killer. At one point she escaped from prison, and went off to kill her mother to make her mother suffer the way she had. There was another showdown-- it took place at a remote cabin and the cabin caught fire. Both Abby Dalton and Jane Wyman turned in excellent performances. You just couldn't help but feel sorry for Julia, despite her homicidal tendencies. Credit Abby Dalton who made what should have been a very unsympathetic character someone viewers still found sympathy for...

She returned in season 4 and this time she was out of prison for good, on some technicality. They put her in a very dark storyline involving Neo Nazis. It was rather far-fetched but again Abby Dalton delivered the goods...Julia was brainwashed by the Nazi cult and again we were meant to feel sorry for her. 

In season 5, we found out Julia had an illegitimate son (Ken Olin) who was the new priest at the local church. And then she was caught in an earthquake with her family. She did the first half dozen episodes of season 6 before departing. But when they wrote Julia out, the writers did not have her reunite with her ex-husband (handsome John Saxon). They had her become a nun and go off to a convent in Oregon! Oh, I should add, she became blind due to an injury in the earthquake. So she was a blind nun at the end!

Only on a nighttime soap opera could one character go from being a mass murderer to a nun! NOBODY else would have been able to pull that off, except for the super talented Abby Dalton. She made it all so believable. She had the most challenging role on the series and she always delivered. Such a versatile lovely lady.

The good news is that the first four seasons of Falcon Crest are on DVD and also can be streamed on Amazon. Those are the best seasons, largely because of the main storylines involving Abby Dalton.

This wonderful one-minute clip shows her extraordinary work on Falcon Crest. I hope I've done well by her in writing this.

 

 

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1 hour ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Yes,  Audrey Dalton and Abby Dalton were very different looking. 

Different but both very attractive.

Audrey Dalton is still with us.    (Audrey born in 1934,  Abby in 1932).

Audrey Dalton

 

Damn right here, TB. Both being VERY attractive, alright.

(...or as that old saying goes..."Wouldn't kick either one of 'em out'a bed for eatin' crackers!")  ;)

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15 hours ago, midwestan said:

I always enjoyed watching Abby Dalton.  She was quite attractive and seemed so down to earth in interviews or game show appearances I remember seeing.  I wonder if she'll be included in the 2020's "TCM Remembers" tribute when it comes out in a couple of weeks.  It seems she didn't have much of a big-screen career, even though she was fairly well known.

I doubt it.

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21 hours ago, TopBilled said:

About five years ago I posted a detailed appreciation of Abby Dalton's work on Falcon Crest on the IMDb message board for FC. Unfortunately those boards were taken down and I did not copy and paste my tribute on to one of my blogs.

 

 

Actually some of the old IMDb boards were archived. Here is Falcon Crest's.....https://www.filmboards.com/board/10081858/

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1 hour ago, CinemaInternational said:

Actually some of the old IMDb boards were archived. Here is Falcon Crest's.....https://www.filmboards.com/board/10081858/

I just found a comment I wrote about Abby Dalton, in the thread called Why Did Abby Dalton Leave the Show?

She's definitely one of my favorites. She was handed some tough storylines but she did them all like a pro. The character of Julia probably evolved more than any other on this program.

In the thread called Were any of the actors worthy of an Emmy award, I wrote:

I think Abby Dalton (Julia) should have been nominated, too. She had one of the more difficult roles on this show-- she turned out to be a killer but still had to elicit audience sympathy, because she was a victim of her mother's on-going manipulations. Her last episode-- I think she went off to a convent-- was very touching. She truly took her character in several different directions and not once did it feel contrived or unrealistic (even if the plots sometimes seemed that way).

In the thread 20 TV shows that ran too long:

I feel 'Falcon Crest' went into decline after the fifth season. Season 1 it was still trying to find itself. But seasons 2-5 were truly spectacular with strong writing and sharp performances. After Abby Dalton leaves at the beginning of season 6, it goes downhill for me. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Our management team gave everyone a $100 Amazon gift card.

I used it today to purchase seasons 1-4 of Falcon Crest on Prime, so I could stream the episodes featuring Abby Dalton.

It had been years since I watched some of these. The production values are superb and the performances are excellent.

This afternoon I watched a season 1 offering called "Tony Comes Home." This was John Saxon's first guest appearance as the estranged husband of Julia (Abby Dalton) and father of Lance (Lorenzo Lamas). A reviewer on the IMDb called it the show's first perfect episode and I totally agree. There's a devastating moment at the end where Julia realizes she cannot run off with Tony and that her mother Angela (Jane Wyman) will continue to dominate the family and control their lives. 

Abby Dalton gives a heartbreaking performance as a woman yearning for what she needs, but tormented by the circumstances of life with her mother. The romantic moments between her and Saxon earlier in the episode are tenderly portrayed. 

At one point Wyman's character Angela says Julia is not strong and her other daughter Emma (Margaret Ladd) is troubled. Later Julia becomes the much more troubled daughter. She will pay a huge price for not having the courage to get away from her mother.

I'm enjoying my time back in the Valley with the Channings, Cumsons, Agrettis and Giobertis.

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On 12/1/2020 at 10:29 AM, jamesjazzguitar said:

The other day I saw Abby Dalton on an early episode of The Rifleman. 

Here is a photo from that:   Rest in peace, Abby.

The Rifleman - One Timers Only D - 1 of 4 pages

 

One of the B.EST.. ...BEAUTIFULLEST SMILES.. In Show- --Buisness ..

🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈

 

 

 

 

 

Im Personally Particularly Fond of Her in the Plainsman ..

🌈🌈

. ... ..

Side Note,.

(For AnyOne Interested)

 

 

That Guy..  ... on the Left "of" Madam Dalton.. ...

.

Is Still Alive ..

🌈🌈🙏🌈😊😌😊😊😊

_

P.S.

 

 

..

And Changing Gears a Bit..

(Which ill jump a bit +more into in its own thread in a little bit or so ..

 

 

Happy Birthday,.

..

To Madam Pamela Austin ..

😊☺️😊😊😊😊😊😊😊🎆🎇🎈🎇🎆🎆🎆🎇🎇🎇🎆🎁🎆🎇😊😊😊😊😊

Don-Murray-as-Wild-Bill-Hickok-and-Abby-Dalton-as-Calamity-Jane-in-The-Plainsman-1966.jpg

the-plainsman-1966-film-d61fc42c-7b21-47ed-848f-15978b7e06c-resize-750.jpg

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Just now, Aritosthenes said:

One of the B.EST.. ...BEAUTIFULLEST SMILES.. In Show- --Buisness ..

🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈

 

 

 

 

 

Im Personally Particularly Fond of Her in the Plainsman ..

🌈🌈

. ... ..

Side Note,.

(For AnyOne Interested)

 

 

That Guy..  ... on the Right "of" Madam Dalton.. ...

.

Is Still Alive ..

🌈🌈🙏🌈😊😌😊😊😊

_

P.S.

 

 

..

And Changing Gears a Bit..

(Which ill jump a bit +more into in its own thread in a little bit or so ..

 

 

Happy Birthday,.

..

To Madam Pamela Austin ..

😊☺️😊😊😊😊😊😊😊🎆🎇🎈🎇🎆🎆🎆🎇🎇🎇🎆🎁🎆🎇😊😊😊😊😊

Don-Murray-as-Wild-Bill-Hickok-and-Abby-Dalton-as-Calamity-Jane-in-The-Plainsman-1966.jpg

the-plainsman-1966-film-d61fc42c-7b21-47ed-848f-15978b7e06c-resize-750.jpg

 

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