It wasn’t until the spring of 1989 with the premiere of NBC TV’s Generations, the first daytime serial in which one of the two major families were Black, then Allen settled down for a substantial two-year run. It was the support of this vanguard series and her continuing efforts to expand the opportunities of minority actors that Allen appeared on the floors of Congress and saw her impassioned testimony published in The Congressional Record. Soon after the demise of Generations, Allen embarked upon what promises to be the extended run of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.
The NBC soap was the first to feature a Black family from its debut.
Generations is an American soap opera that aired on NBC from March 27, 1989, to January 25, 1991. The show was groundbreaking in that it was the first soap opera to feature from its inception an African-American family.
Marla Adams (Helen Mullin)
Anthony Addabbo (Jason Craig)
Jonelle Allen (Doreen Jackson)
Jack Betts (Hugh Gardner)
Taurean Blacque/James Reynolds (Henry Marshall)
Sharon Brown/Debbi Morgan (Chantal Marshall)
Patricia Crowley/Dorothy Lyman (Rebecca Whitmore)
George Deloy (Rob Donnelly)
Elinor Donahue (Sylvia Furth)
Rick Fitts (Martin Jackson)
Vivica A. Fox (Maya Reubens)
Bruce Gray (Phillip Webb)
Lynn Hamilton (Vivian Potter)
Ron Harper (Peter Whitmore)
Andrew Masset (Trevor McCallum)
Joan Pringle (Ruth Marshall)
Gail Ramsey (Laura McCallum)
Barbara Rhoades/Linda Gibboney (Jessica Gardner)
Richard Roundtree (Dr. Daniel Ruebens)
Kelly Rutherford (Stephanie “Sam” Whitmore)
George Shannon /Robert Gentry (Jordan Hale)
Nancy Sorel (Monique McCallum)
Kristoff St. John (Adam Marshall)
Robert Torti (Lt. Kyle Masters)
Joseph Whipp (Charles Mullin)
Her most notable roles are Lucinda Cavender, the vampire witch in the horror-comedy film The Midnight Hour, and the flamboyant and outspoken Doreen Jackson on the NBC soap opera, Generations.
However, now Daytime TV is recognized by the IMAGE Awards (I believe) and I hope that Generations helped in making that change. I know that it gave larger storylines of color, as opposed to the three or four actors that were represented before. The wonderful late Judi Ann Mason and the award-winning writer Michele Val Jean were a part of that creative team. Although in fairness All My Children had wonderful storylines for us before Generations.”
GENERATIONS ~ The Original Cast
GENERATIONS Memorabilia Courtesy of Ryan Rong