One Life To Live: Bree Williamson as Jessica Buchanan
Bree Williamson was an acting newbie when she took over the role of Jessica Buchanan. She had her work cut out for her taking over for Erin Torpey, who played the role for 13 years. Williamson's resemblance to Tropey did help ease the transition. Her acting ability during the Dissociative Identity Disorder, where alter ego Tess emerged, earned her mad respect from fans as well as three Daytime Emmy Nominations. Ironically Williamson was once turned down for a job on OLTL because of her resemblance to Torpey.
The Young & The Restless: Jess Walton as Jill Abbott
If you have not been a viewer of The Young & The Restless for at least 30 years, you may not realize Jess Walton was a recast for the role of Jill Abbott. Brenda Dickson may have originated the role, but Walton brought the vindictive vixen to life. She was one of the first villainesses in daytime that you loved to hate. Although time slightly softened Jill, Walton still keeps that tough as nails spirit that genuinely speaks to Jill's character never losing the core of what makes this iconic woman tick.
Another World: Jensen Buchanan as Vicky Hudson/Marley Love
When fan favorite Anne Heche left the role of playing twins Vicky Hudson and Marley Love, it was unimaginable another actress would do the characters justice. However, Jensen Buchanan not only nailed it as the twins, but she also put her stamp on each one. She made Marley not as mousey while making Vicky more likable even when she was scheming. She even portrayed Vicky on As The World Turns for a short stint when AW got canceled but the character got killed when Buchannan did not want to sign a contract.
The Young & The Restless: Gina Tognoni as Phyllis Summers
Gina Togoni was no stranger to soap operas when she took over the role of Phyllis Summers. She was faced with a challenge, taking on the role previously played by the beloved Michelle Stafford. Being a pure talent that she is, Togoni was up for the challenge and likely the only other actress fans can see as Phyllis. Every aspect Togoni has brought to the character works from her body movements, facial expressions, even her voice says so much more than the words written on the page.
One Life to Live: Kassie DePaiva as Blair Cramer
Now, this might come as a shock to many soap opera fans, but Kassie DePavia was a recast. In fact, the original portrayer was half Asian, and the character got revamped when she was hired. DePavia molded the character, who soon became one half of the super couple Todd & Blair thanks to her chemistry with Roger Howarth. It is worth nothing DePavia could also be on this list for her portrayal of Eve Donovan on Days of Our Lives. She is full of talent and owns any character she plays.
All My Children: Alicia Minshew as Kendall Hart
Sarah Michelle Gellar may have originated the role of Kendall Hart, but Alicia Minshew is Kendall Hart. Even though the character was aged with Minshew, she still kept the core traits such as the complexity, anger and abandonment issues. It was the complexity of the character that drew Minshew to the role and helped her grow as an actress. Kendall Hart may have launched Gellar's career, but it was Minshew who turned her into a fan favorite. Plus, Minshew had fantastic chemistry with Susan Lucci; their scenes were perfection.