HomeTVAll My ChildrenATWT’s Marie Masters on Soaps: “I Don’t Think The Rest of The Shows Have Long to Go” Jamey Giddens September 16, 2010 35 Comments In an interview with Cincinnati.com, As The World Turns veteran Marie Masters (Susan) admitted she doesn’t feel the six remaining daytime soap operas in production have very many tomorrows left for people to tune in for. “I don’t think the rest of the shows have long to go. People have moved on,” she said. Procter and Gamble spokesperson Jeannie Tharrington blamed soap opera viewer erosion on various other entertainment options for viewers. The world has changed radically since “The World” started spinning stories in 1956 sponsored by Oxydol or Duz detergents, notes P&G spokeswoman Jeannie Tharrington. “Not only are a lot of women not home anymore, there’s also competition from cable, DVRs and online videos like YouTube,” she said. With ratings for Days of Our Lives once again in the toilet, constant rumors about the state of the ABC Daytime soaps and The Bold and the Beautiful having shed a significant amount of viewers in the U.S. in recent years, it’s not a stretch to say Masters and Tharrington are onto something. So what’s the answer? We’ve all taked ad nauseum about how our soaps can be saved, but one has been cancelled every year for the past three years. We want to hear from DC readers. Tell us in the comments. How can soaps be saved? 35 Responses TV Gord September 16, 2010 I wish I had an answer, but I think most of the remaining soaps are doomed. I can see a time when only Y&R and GH are left (and I don’t watch either). I work at a radio station where our daytime talk shows have recently started compiling condensed “best of” shows to run on the weekend, which saves money and cross-promote each other. Since Saturdays in prime time TV have been a wasteland of reruns and abandoned dramas from many years now, I wonder if condensed episodes of the soaps might make a difference. Former fans might tune in out of curiosity and possibly be tempted to sample the full weekday episodes. My underlying suspicion, though, is that the networks are looking forward to dumping the soaps altogether. They’ve allowed the quality of most soaps to drop to the point where viewership is at a cancellable level, and (literally) that’s all she wrote! I agree with Ryan-Scott…OLTL is likely the next to go. AMC still has Lucci, but if she retires next year (as I suspect) when her memoir comes out, I think AMC will be equally vulnerable. Log in to Reply MLB September 16, 2010 10 years is probablay streching it, five for sure. They’ll probaly be replaced with game shows and news/talk programs. It’s a shame. There is a place and audience for the genre, but I think producers have pretty much given up. The main reason most soaps suck is because as so many people have pointed out, bad writing. I grew up watching all the CBS soaps and I think they hit there peak in the late 80s and 90s. Storylines developed slower and were coherent. Sure they aged characters, but not foolishly. Now, actors who are supposed to be mother and daughter or father and son look to close in age. Also, soaps lost what many viewers liked about them, the over the top campiness. And they no longer write classic archetypes like the villian and villianess, the characters people love to hate. The Roger Thorpe’s, Shelia Carter’s, Phyllis Ramolletti,Abbot, Newman’s, Vicky from AW, Carley Tenny’s, of the world. I could go on and on. But, one thing is clear, soaps have lost there way and I don’t hold much hope for their future. Log in to Reply Smitty September 16, 2010 I think the answer is to employ writers and producers who have a vision and care and understand daytime. By this you hire folks who are willing to write for more than just anglo-saxons. The way these shows are being run is not working. We need to see storytelling for much more diverse casts. By diverse I don’t mean just black and white. I am talking Black, brown, asian, gay, bisexual, and all that. With that and going back to basic storytelling and quit all the gimmicks. We want simple love stories, multigenerational storytelling and diverse stories on our screens. These simple things can lead to more buzz and increased viewers. Keep it simple and tighten up those casts. Log in to Reply Marland Fan September 16, 2010 They have to bring in some new blood. The shows keep hiring and rehiring the same old writers who recycle the same old stories. Bring in an outsider with a fresh perspective, that hasn’t been inside the daytime “bubble” for decades. Log in to Reply dang90210 September 16, 2010 How to save soaps 1. fired Barabra Bloom who never watch soaps cause if she did she would fight hard for the 2 P&G soaps 2. Promotions i feel like CBS don’t know how to promote there show everytime i watch a soap on CBS there a primethime comm. come on make me so mad 3. Brian Frons need to stop bring writers that dont know the show history he also dont need to hire writers that destroyed a cancel show Log in to Reply SoapFan75 September 16, 2010 I honestly have nothing to offer on how soaps can be saved because I do not think they can be. Really as a viewer I am only tuning in for sentimental reasons and that is only frequently. I grew up on soaps and shared viewing with my mother and grandmother who are no longer here. But it is a chore to watch these shows nowadays. With budgets cut on every show what or who can you add to draw viewers back in? GH has brought back their “big name” and so far the audience response ratings wise is subpar. Which I fully expected. I mean bring Roger H. back to OLTL as a last ditch effort to save it but I doubt they will see any significant ratings increase. Marie is on point, most people have moved on. Soap viewing used to be passed down from generation to generation. But that no longer exists for the most part. I just came across the PC podcast Jamey where you all discussed the country club argument episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey and like you I have never been more glued to an hour of television in a long time. These are the new soaps. They kinda just snuck up on us and the dinosaur that is daytime television and are taking away their viewers. I would rather watch reruns of this show than any of the soaps today. It is hard to try and come up with ways to save daytime when obviously they do not want to save themselves. I mean, why would you hire inept showkillers like Chris Goutman and Ellen Wheeler to run your shows unless you wanted out of the business. I call b.s. on P&G saying yesterday that they wanted a few more years with ATWT but CBS cancelled it. Please they wanted out. Right now it is just a race to see if DOOL or OLTL will be the one cancelled next year. Bad writing like that on Guiding Light through the end of the show, ATWT, and now DOOL, AMC and OLTL are just going to continue. All they are doing is recycling “hacks.” Who would hire a Jean Passante, David Kreizman or Dena Higley if you are trying to save your shows? And don’t get me started on the plot point drivel we get on B&B and Y&R. We also get bad casting decisions for perhaps egotistical purposes and it is almost like they want to drive the viewers away. If I didn’t know better I would think this is one of those satirical comedies “How to Kill Soaps in Three Years Without Really Trying.” Sorry Jamey but I think all we can do now is just wait out the inevitable cancellations. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 I stil say making big cuts to the casts and staff is the way to go. Obviously, the producers and headwriters on soaps do not know how to manage a budget or make the best decisions on casting/recasting (case in point: Y&R). As I’ve said, if they want to save themselves, they need to put people that don’t have prominent storylines and never will on recurring. Cut people who are dead weight and aren’t legacy characters or the most popular or exciting characters. To me, the recurring role of John Aniston’s Victor says it all. He is not on contract, but has had storylines off and on for years now. Why not do that with actors on soaps? The older ones should take a page from him and do that. Peggy McKay could be taken off contract, right along with Josh Taylor and, sadly, James Reynolds and possibly Renee Jones. I’m still wondering if Abe and Lexie will ever have a storyline again, so that’s my logic. Same goes with Y&R. They need to make cuts at all the soaps. Keep cutting, get rid of more than one or two characters, and have the bravery to actually fix a show before it’s too late. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 SoapFan75: You are right on the money. As much as I’d miss it, I kind of would see Days cancellation as a relief. If they are going to continue to destroy soaps with bad casting and bad writing and even bad acting, then forget it. I have no sympathy for the soap writers and producers anymore. They don’t know what they are doing anymore. Sure, they have some good storylines sometimes, but overall, the soaps are trainwrecks. And I completely agree about Dena Higley. She is so uncreative and incompetent it’s not even funny. What did she do to convince them to hire her? She’s the one they got rid of in 2003 to try to save the show with James Reilly’s writing. Good grief, these people are SO stupid. She’s a lot like Maria Arena Bell. She was a breakdown or script writer and then eventually (unfortunately) found her way to headwriter. Bad move on Days and OLTL’s part. Log in to Reply craigcp September 16, 2010 If they wanted to save soaps they would have made changes. They are doing their job. Destroying the soaps one by one and nothing is going to stop them. I don’t even think the networks themselves are going to be around much longer. I have ordered HBO, Showtime and 200 channel, now I’m part of the problem. Log in to Reply Belinda September 16, 2010 Soap fans have NOT moved on. We are right here! TPTB may have moved on, by trying to force the soaps to be like primetime or cable offerings they have ignored what the actual, real life fans they have left loved in the first place! We did not move on. They left us behind and refuse to look around for a way to reverse the demise because it would require them to admit they made wrong decisions, turned too far away from the daytime seriel mode, and lost generations of fans by trying to be something they are not and which we do not want. Wake up. The soap fans have not moved on. They have left us wanting more, just not more of the heaving drivel they insist on regurgitating to us. Log in to Reply alstonboy4315 September 16, 2010 The answer is SIMPLE!!! Bring on some talented NEW writers who have innovative ideas and stop CENSORING every freaking thing!!! Bring on more gay, African American, Hispanic, Asian and other minority characters, and stop writing the same TIRED old storylines year after year!! Focus on ALL generations, not just those under 30!!! Also, get rid of these horrible casting directors, like Judy Blye Wilson, who bring on all these mediocre/crappy actors who end up turning sugar into SHIT!!! It doesn’t matter if he or she is pretty, are they an ACTOR????? And by actor, I mean someone who can chew gum and walk at the same time, not the hair models that I see on most of the soaps these days!!!!!!! Yes, it’s very simple—but of course, NOBODY will ever do it. She’s right. Soaps are doomed unless they evolve. People have moved on, and will not come back unless there’s something worth coming back TO. And more will CONTINUE to move on!!!!!!!!!!!!! Log in to Reply chip88 September 16, 2010 The five day format seems obsolete. I have a dvr and fast forward through commercials, but two years ago when both GL and ATWT were set to record, I had a hard time keeping up with the episodes. There is so much repetition in the daily format and plenty of filler. I will miss my shows, but that was a lot of time to invest. I have wondered if they had been able to cut GL to two eps a week and ATWT to three, or both back to 30 minutes and had them share the time slot if they cold have created tighter stories that viewers would have been more interested in following. Teen soaps like DeGrassi have tightly written (albeit silly) episodes with a great mix of kids and adults. There is also fairly steady turn in the cast which keeps it fresh. I think most younger viewers really don’t see themselves or any similarity to their lives on daytime soaps. Why would they watch? I don’t advocate turning longtime characters over, but I know that in the course of a couple of years my circle of friends is fairly organic. It would be nice to really see the movement of people on the shows and see how lives can still connect even with distance involved. People laugh at Desperate Housewives and the like, but they successfully exaggerate family situations that viewers can identify with -and they do it in one hour a week. You get a lot of punch in those 42 minutes. Story lines can stretch 23 weeks in prime time, but in daytime, 23 episodes covers about one month. Yet a story can last for months and months and months in daytime. Do you need to wade through 250 espisodes and still not have star crossed lovers together or a plot revealed? That is a lot to ask of today’s viewer. Finally, they just look fake. There is a daytime look. While each show has its own feel, mostly they feel flat and unrealistic. When networks tout that their soaps are in HD, I think, so what? Will I enjoy a show more when I can see more clearly that the wood paneling is faux? When they film outdoors it looks very amateurish, did anyone see Jack and Carly’s wedding? All those shadows and wash outs? If you can’t do it right, then don’t do it. ATWT and GL aren’t the only ones with those issues either I have a client who is a DOOL fan. I’ve seen enough to know that they don’t do any better. There is going to have to be a radical change in how these shows are crafted if any of them are to survive. Take a cue from prime time, you need a core group of characters you see in nearly every episode, but in a balanced way. Can you imagine any prime time soap, or any prime time show, where you didn’t see all the characters every week? Maybe someone has less going on every now and then, but they are basically always on. Daytime should be the same. On ATWT we should have seen all the contract characters at least once during the week, every week doing something. ATWT suffered from telling most stories too fast while still trying to use the old format of spending scene after scene with the same characters repeating all the actions. You would turn off the episode and think, nothing really happened and yet I think they resolved that plot line. Meg’s plot to frame/kill Emily is a great example. All that time spent with Meg and Barbara, Meg and Emma, Meg and Paul, Meg and anyone and always the same dialogue. Then without warning, when she has a gun on Emily, Paul had figured it out and had Emma on his side hiding with him at Fairwinds? And all of that last part happened off camera? How does that happen? Weeks of crazy meg and methadone, and poof – over. They kept telling non stories. Think you can’t pack a punch with fewer scenes, check out Mad Men. Their stories take months, even seasons to tell, but each scene counts and propels the story forward in an important way. On daytime there is this alternate reality where too much happens like it is underwater. They think we have all day for Jack and Carly to have the same argument for most of an episode, and then have it again the next day, and then a few days later. The writers at ATWT could write dialogue, some of the best that was out there. What they needed was a good dose of restraint and editing. As for who might be next to go, I’ve felt that OLTL was the Sophie’s Choice over at ABC a couple of years back and their ratings and the upcoming demise of soapnet isn’t going to help either. While I suppose the big NBC announcement about the investment of HD equipment at DOOL is supposed to make everyone feel better about their long term prospects, I think it will be a toss up between them who survives the next year. The only thing in their favor is that new programming is risky. I’m sure the suits will be watching the ratings for The Talk on CBS. If it can be like Deal and be in the neighborhood of the soaps they replaced and are cheaper to produce then the other serials will start to fall like a house of cards. Years ago I really loved Capitol on CBS. They cancelled it and replaced it with B&B in the mid 80′s. When they pulled the plug on that show it had a 5.2 share rating. Today, Y&R is the highest rated daytime serial and has a 3.5 ratings share. Times have changed, and the chances of anyone at the networks really taking the time to figure out how to fix these shows if very unlikely. No matter what they do, they are still going to be extremely expensive to produce and they will still be chasing that ever elusive 18-45 female demographic that doesn’t seem interested in the format. I think it is sad because the connection of these characters in a multigenerational way suggested stability and offered some comfort. The reality is that todays viewer has a very different expectation when it comes to entertainment. It has to be new, loud, fast and over the top. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 AlstonBoy: I’m sorry, but I have to disagree with you about hiring new people. They need to make cuts, not add more characters! Granted, for example, they might get rid of Mac, JT, and Jana on Y&R, and hire a minority actor in Nate. Hell, they could make HIM gay for all I care, and put him with Rafe. I just don’t think it’s realistic to expect them to hire a bunch of new actors. To me, it’s more realistic to start making cuts to the casts on each show. Whether they make the right cuts remains to be seen. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 I agree, Alston, about the crappy casting directors. Y&R is a prime example. I’m sorry, but the recast of Diane with Maura West is one of the worst recasts I have ever seen. The Heather recast was awful, right along with the Malcolm one and going all the way back to Victoria. Have they ever heard of hiring people who actually LOOK like the old actors/actresses? I mean, don’t get me wrong, the soaps have done that before (prime example being Alicia Coppola to Robin Christopher), but one after another? Come on now. And I STRONGLY agree about constantly showcasing people under 30. Focusing on the freakin’ MTV demo is not going to help these shows to survive. What’s hard is trying to figure out what the biggest demo is who actually watches soaps. They should focus on that demo. Do they want to focus on legacy characters to attract and possibly bring back people who watched with their mothers/grandmothers, or do they want to attract new viewers, which I believe is not the way to go. Sadly, the generational thing with mothers/grandmothers is a small audience indeed, and is dwindling fast, I’m sure. Log in to Reply capwell September 16, 2010 They really cannot be saved. The culture has changed, and TV viewing habits are not what they were 20 years ago. Also, the TV audience has shrunk. Only the top primetime shows get more than 10 million viewers now. Log in to Reply angrierblackerman September 16, 2010 Here’s a radical idea. Put them on in Prime Time. I don’t mean on cable, soapnet, etc. I mean put the shows on in Primetime as a little experiment and see if people will watch them. A more realistic option would be for them to go to a half hour format. Log in to Reply Parrothead September 16, 2010 If the remaining soaps want to survive then they need to LISTEN to the remaining fans & ask them what they want to see. The should also get ahold of Doug Marlands version of how not to ruin a soap & follow it. They need to hire people who can act & not just look pretty, that’s what turned people off the most is they hire people who can’t take what’s written down on paper & make you believe what they’re saying. They need to hire new writers who won’t put out the same old tired storylines, they’re not working anymore. Listen to the fans & the actors who’ve acted these roles for years, they know the characters better than the writers do & if you get a bunch of people saying that this character wouldn’t say or do this, then they wouldn’t. If they’re going to write a story for gays/lesbians, afro-americans, asians or any other story, first check facts & make sure it’s done correctly & that that’s what they’d do or say & if you’re going to write it COMMIT to it & don’t do it half-way. Log in to Reply Ryan-Scott September 16, 2010 A good start would be to change up just about all of the head-writer and executive producers on the remaining 6 shows. Fire Bloom and Frons too. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 I agree, Ryan-Scott. Firing all the headwriters (except for Kay Alden and Brad Bell at B&B, in my opinion), would be the best thing to ever happen to soaps, but it’s not going to happen. The networks don’t care enough to get rid of them. Firing Bloom and Frons would make sense too. NBC has no daytime head and they are doing better than the other networks. That’s one bright spot at that disaster of a network, although Days is kind of a disaster itself right now. Frankly, I would be happy to get rid of Hogan Sheffer and Paul Rauch at Y&R and Dena Higley at Days. I guess we can wish, can’t we? Log in to Reply Ryan-Scott September 16, 2010 You’re right Marie. 10 years at best for the rest of them. My money is Days going next or OLTL or AMC. Log in to Reply RCLGuard September 16, 2010 I’ve said it before and i’ll say it again. Soaps need to go from 5 days a week to 1 hour/1 day a week like Desperate Housewives, Brothers & Sisters, etc. Cut the cast to only the favs and focus on them. And for f*ck sakes….start putting out DVDs of old storylines. That’s a surefire moneymaker. Log in to Reply Nathang1983 September 16, 2010 RCLGuard, I can’t see the soaps going to one day a week at all. That’s why they need to make casting cuts and other cuts (whatever those may be). They need to save money, and the execs are certainly not going for more spending as the soaps bleed viewers left and right. I do think the DVD thing is a good idea though. They should release “The Best of” DVDs and see what happens. If they can release books continuing storylines for Days, then they could probably do that. Log in to Reply siomonstuart2003 September 16, 2010 [quote=Smitty]I think the answer is to employ writers and producers who have a vision and care and understand daytime. By this you hire folks who are willing to write for more than just anglo-saxons. The way these shows are being run is not working. We need to see storytelling for much more diverse casts. By diverse I don’t mean just black and white. I am talking Black, brown, asian, gay, bisexual, and all that. With that and going back to basic storytelling and quit all the gimmicks. We want simple love stories, multigenerational storytelling and diverse stories on our screens. These simple things can lead to more buzz and increased viewers. Keep it simple and tighten up those casts.[/quote] Smitty, you are on point with you statement. Soap needs to be more diverse and be original with the storytelling and not the same old stories back to back. Smitty, yo Log in to Reply siomonstuart2003 September 16, 2010 Look at Betty White. She is hotter than ever and she is way over the demo, LOL. Not throwing shade. Love Betty White. Brad bell was an idiot for killing her off. Log in to Reply dkp September 16, 2010 I think for most of these soaps, if not all it’s too late. They should have made big changes and adapted 10-15 years ago. Even if they are all really written, there simply isn’t enough people home during the day willing to way soap operas. So many more options. Soaps should have moved to primetime cable & cut to 30 minutes 10-15 years ago, when they were all strong enough to survive a move & cable would have taken them, now ratings are too low & too far gone. While primetime network is declining, primetime cable for the most part is not. ABC screwed up when launching SoapNet, they should have moved their soaps exclusively to Soapnet and stopped airing them on ABC when they launched that channel. All they did was fracture the audience. Their soaps were never going to grow on ABC when you could watch on Soapnet (and now online), and Soapnet was never going to draw enough airing only soap re-runs. And they should go to 30 minutes, cause your never going to convince new viewers or old ones to start watching a show that’s an hour long show five days a week, especially when most soaps aren’t even consistently good and so many programing options our there. All the European soaps are 30 minutes. Racheal Ray, she became famous selling the idea that even the most busy family can cook a dinner in 30 minutes. What are top two scripted primetime shows in viewers 18-49? The Big Bang Theory and Two and Half men, 30 minute sitcoms. A 30 minute show takes MUCH LESS time commitment for a viewer and much easier to convince to someone to check out. And speaking of The Big Bang Theory, that leads me to promotion. You rarely see soaps promoted in Primetime. A couple weeks ago, a was watching a rerun of King of Queens on TBS, and it was the episode where Kevin had a dream about being on Y&R. That and when DAYS stars went on Friends was probably the last time we’ve seen soap stars guest star on Primetime shows. CBS’s Big Bang Theory is a HUGE hit among younger viewers and exploded in popularity last season, why not have a few Y&R or B&B stars guest star on there for an episode or two & then show promos for those soaps during it? Log in to Reply Llanview76 September 16, 2010 Angrierblackerman, I’ve thought about that too…like back in the 70′s didn’t they show Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman and SOAP at about 10:30 pm after the news? Of course would they have a hard time running against Letterman, and Leno? Would they have to be shown in syndication? I mean it’s a good idea, but would it work? And I also agree with having saved GL and ATWT by slicing them back down to a 30 min serial. I wish they would have done that with ONE LIFE, but a P&G hour might have attracted some of their viewers…why not watch two soaps for the hour of one, right? Speaking of ONE LIFE…I pray to God it doesn’t end…I would miss Viki most of all. However, I have a feeling that after having seeing some of the “What If…” series, that if a ONE LIFE cancellation took place we could see some of the characters being scattered to the wind blowing them into Pine Valley and Port Charles. Would that be a last ditch effort to preserve the remaining two ABC sudsers populating the canvas with Llanviewites interacting with the likes of Erica Kane, Tad Martin, Luke Spencer, and the like? Erik Log in to Reply david46208 September 17, 2010 1. Scrap them and start over again from scratch. I’d take the creators of Buppies, Diary of a Single Mom, Empire, and The Bay and retool these web series for daytime and place them on cable or network TV if they would have them or just the web. Since they know how to work on small budgets with minimal sets and would not have to pay actors large salaries this could work. You’d also cut the soaps from 60 minutes back to 30. 2. Have fresh writers create true American televnoela’s using the American soap format and original plots unlike the translated Latin versions. Each soap could last for about 6 to 9 months with a beginning, a middle, and an end. This means that every year the networks would get a slew of new soaps.(I’ve got 8 story bibles for 8 different soaps already written to follow this format). 3. Cut the cast of each remaining daytime drama down to the top 15 most important characters and air them as a 1 hour weekly primetime series on cable or the web network or both. 4. Take the remaining soaps and air them at night between 6-8 as lead-ins to the prime series. This might also mean chopping them back to 30 minutes each on their given network. Log in to Reply ChloeLiz September 17, 2010 I remember coming home form school just to see Y&R and OLTL. The stories were well written and well acted. You could feel all their emotions the love, hate, passion, the brilliant cat fights that left you holding your cheeks because you felt it too. What makes me mad is that they have the same conversation in every episode for weeks. They move at a snail’s pace so if I miss this weeks episode I need not be worried cause i’ll get highlights the next week. What happened to missing a day and scrambling to call all your friends to find out what you missed cause you know it was big. Soap fans are still here we’re just tired of the same crap every year. We want fresh stories not this week the SL is on Days, next week in GH and OLTL at the same time. If a storm, baby napping or serial killer is one the loose in one soap I just take bets on how long it would take the other soaps to be “creative” and “borrow” the SL or TWO. I think our soaps can be saved by creativity, firing the hack for writers and spreading the wealth around aka equal on screen time for the actors. Log in to Reply ldfarre September 17, 2010 I have been an avid fan of GH since 1965. I love this show. However, as I agree with most of you, the writers are to blame. I’m sure with budget cutbacks they are not able to hire people who are able to write a good storyline. I really don’t think they (TPTB) $) really listen that much to the fans as you can tell by the outcome of so many soaps. I work days but I DVR GH everyday and never miss an episode. I have been disappointed in some of the S/L’s lately, especially the Brenda return. I have read some of the remarks that some of the actors have said and they don’t seem real happy about the S/L’s either. But it is a job. With everyone so unhappy I can’t see how they will last either. That’s really sad. One suggestion I have for GH. It’s called General Hospital for a reason. Why can’t they write the show to include more S/L’s focused on the hospital, patient situations and such? Like ER. They started to do it awhile ago and then dropped it to focuse on the mob. Log in to Reply siomonstuart2003 September 17, 2010 [quote=david46208]1. Scrap them and start over again from scratch. I’d take the creators of Buppies, Diary of a Single Mom, Empire, and The Bay and retool these web series for daytime and place them on cable or network TV if they would have them or just the web. Since they know how to work on small budgets with minimal sets and would not have to pay actors large salaries this could work. You’d also cut the soaps from 60 minutes back to 30. 2. Have fresh writers create true American televnoela’s using the American soap format and original plots unlike the translated Latin versions. Each soap could last for about 6 to 9 months with a beginning, a middle, and an end. This means that every year the networks would get a slew of new soaps.(I’ve got 8 story bibles for 8 different soaps already written to follow this format). 3. Cut the cast of each remaining daytime drama down to the top 15 most important characters and air them as a 1 hour weekly primetime series on cable or the web network or both. 4. Take the remaining soaps and air them at night between 6-8 as lead-ins to the prime series. This might also mean chopping them back to 30 minutes each on their given network.[/quote] Agree, David. something has to be done to save the industry. Log in to Reply Cyberologist September 17, 2010 [quote=Marland Fan]They have to bring in some new blood. The shows keep hiring and rehiring the same old writers who recycle the same old stories. Bring in an outsider with a fresh perspective, that hasn’t been inside the daytime “bubble” for decades.[/quote] Thank you My answer is the same as I’ve written for years I think they could be (have been) but I don’t really think they want to… There are many things the Executives/Writers can do to assist in saving this genre yet they steadfastly refused e.g. diversity is one African American were huge soap fans; I don’t have a link but I’ve repeatedly read this for decades…because they are basically all white most of us have booked and many got tired of waiting and won’t come back to the daytime soaps. …few to no African Americans are in top tier story (or marketed) not even my fav Minae Nojii who is Japanese… Women driven story lines they refuse to write them with the exception of a few soaps where I see women driving story nor to they promote /market women (for the most part) on GH where is the promo for the popular Robin/Patrick storyline? I missed it; I’m sure there is one…Elizabeth/Nik didn’t get a promo either to support their storyline…its been promo after promo with Sonny/Jason/Dante in them does Jax/Carly get promos or just “characters” getting promoed “outside of a pairing.” Hiring fired writers and executives who tank one show then go to the next tank that one then go to the next. They won’t stop hiring these people; I’m with Jamey on this one daytime is the only industry I know as well “that keeps re-hiring fired people.” Its a good ole’ boys network behind the seens unfortunately that has also contributed to its ruination. Brian Frons is single -handedly the worse thing to happen to ABC soaps they didn’t have a chance with his favoritism you can’t run a show like this. Yes times have changed soaps are dying however in my opinion they want it dead and are the chief architects of its destruction. This is just a few things IMO “they could have done to preserve the genre” but they steadfastly refused to do what fans have been asking / for decades. There are more but ~This oughta do~ Log in to Reply curacaoman September 17, 2010 [quote=david46208]1. Scrap them and start over again from scratch. I’d take the creators of Buppies, Diary of a Single Mom, Empire, and The Bay and retool these web series for daytime and place them on cable or network TV if they would have them or just the web. Since they know how to work on small budgets with minimal sets and would not have to pay actors large salaries this could work. You’d also cut the soaps from 60 minutes back to 30. 2. Have fresh writers create true American televnoela’s using the American soap format and original plots unlike the translated Latin versions. Each soap could last for about 6 to 9 months with a beginning, a middle, and an end. This means that every year the networks would get a slew of new soaps.(I’ve got 8 story bibles for 8 different soaps already written to follow this format). 3. Cut the cast of each remaining daytime drama down to the top 15 most important characters and air them as a 1 hour weekly primetime series on cable or the web network or both. 4. Take the remaining soaps and air them at night between 6-8 as lead-ins to the prime series. This might also mean chopping them back to 30 minutes each on their given network.[/quote] Log in to Reply Suspira44 September 17, 2010 Hi, I love all the comments – excellent. I write for another site (http://generalhospital.about.com), and I keep my readers laughing (or crying) as I trash the horrific writing on General Hospital. Plot holes abound. In the latest story arc, we have Lucky sitting in a public place talking about the fact that he’s undercover AND asking for important info that he needs for his undercover assignment to be sent to him via computer. Funny he didn’t bring it with him. The soap opera genre is far from dead. Practically every show on TV follows a soap opera format, with new shows all the time. Soaps have been in trouble before. Gloria Monty kept GH from being canceled; a new team put in place on some of these soaps can bring them back. I DO love the idea of prime time, too, but that means the shows have to compete with prime time. That means FRESH, ORIGINAL, NEW writers and a production team with VISION. Listen to the fans? I asked my readers how to save GH. Every single one of them said, bring back Kate Howard (Megan Ward). So why is she gone? More Quartermaines – so they put Monica on recurring. Less mob – now we have The Balkan. The show history – trashed. Luke slept with Holly while married to Laura. Kate was the love of young Sonny’s life, now it’s Olivia. And remember the Greek Cassadines?? One day they also became Russian so the writers could write some stupid plot about coins. Give me a break. Listen to the fans, raise the bar on the writing, experiment with things like prime time. If you keep doing what you’re doing, the result will be the same. Bad. Log in to Reply TV Gord September 19, 2010 I just saw a daytime promo that highlighted that they will be showing FOUR judge shows in a row starting at 2pm. Oh, joy… Log in to Reply crazy4otalia September 20, 2010 add all the gays and blacks etc you want still won’t help the ratings your not very smart if you think it will!!!! Log in to Reply Leave a Reply Cancel Reply You must be logged in to post a comment.