05/13/1985 at 01:00 AM EDT
NBC (Monday, May 13, 9 p.m. ET)
Spectacular! The mother—though no doubt unwed—of nighttime soaps returns. Ryan O'Neal's character has been killed off. Mia Farrow's has been dumped in a ditch, pregnant, and catatonic for 20 years. Then Mia's daughter, Marguerite Hickey, comes to town. "That," says one of the nine returning cast members, "is going to stir up a lot of old secrets." Stir them, slice them, dice them, Cuisinart them. What comes out is a sinfully rich dessert. Though at first you need a family tree to figure out who's who, it doesn't take long to get to know all the Peyton players. The old cast and new fit together well. Flashbacks in moody sepia to Mia and Ryan before they were stars are a kick to watch. And the plot is still filled with scandal. What's fascinating about Peyton Place is that, unlike its children Dallas and Dynasty and the rest, greed is not the one-size-fits-all motive. Sex is. Peyton Place comes from a simpler, sexier American era, and it's still tremendous, engrossing fun to watch. Do not miss it.