Before I get to the main event regarding the much ballyhooed resurrection of the lost Spaulding heir, a little housekeeping is in order.
First, no matter what one may think of the current state of Guiding Light or its prospects for survival, one cannot fault CBS for not marketing the high holy hell out of the return of Grant Aleksander and the character of Phillip Granville Spaulding. GL/Phillip/Aleksander has been everywhere: print ads and a steady barrage of television commercials have been broadcast non-stop, right down to a live interview with Sarah Bibel on Fancast.com. Internet advertising has been almost overwhelming.
Think I'm exaggerating? Consider that the publicity has run so deep and so wide that outlets as disparate as TVGuide.com have featured two video packages to The Wall Street Journal's financial/investment website MarketWatch.com have featured Aleksander/GL related material. Hell, all that was missing was a Super Bowl commercial; given how ubiquitous the marketing has been, no doubt CBS would have run one had it broadcast the game! I don't believe I have seen this much publicity for a soap since the heydey of General Hospital's Luke & Laura or, more recently, Susan Lucci's reported pay cut. READ MORE
Funny how the universe sometimes lines up and minds think alike, isn't it? Guiding Light is in the thoughts of a lot of people these days. Bloggers, soap journalists and industry watchers — not to mention the writers, cast and crew of GL — are all on pins and needles about this 72 year old institution. The writing has been on the wall among commentators on the Internet and in the soap press for some time regarding GL's maybe/probably/likely cancellation, which would essentially signal the final march along daytime's trail of tears as the end of the genre.
The signs are obvious and ominous: GL has been hovering at a 1.5 rating for the last few months, a situation exacerbated by a genre-crushing free fall in advertising revenues, which have in turn led to massive budget cuts by the networks for all the shows. If GL doesn't get its act together by the Ides of April, as our own Jamey Giddens so aptly put it, the oldest series on broadcast television will bite the dust. However, there is hope. As has been reported here, Guiding Light needs the minimum of a steady 1.8 rating to avoid getting the ax.
Back to minds thinking alike: Just as I was finalizing this list, Mr. Giddens posted his "Top 10 Last Ditch Stunts To Save Guiding Light," followed by Spauldingfield's awesome GL promo posted by Luke Kerr. Because of their excellent efforts I almost decided to not post these recommendations, but the situtation at Guiding Light is so important to those of us who love the show that I felt it was more important to contribute to the call to keep GL on the air and risk repetition than not do so. Therefore, consider these considerations an addition to their efforts. GL needs viewers not tomorrow, but today and here are ten reasons to tune in right now! READ MORE
Two weeks ago we broke the news of Guiding Light cleaning house of its younger cast and the exodus begins today. According to the newest print edition of Soap Opera Digest, John Driscoll who portrays Henry Cooper "Coop" Bradshaw is officially leaving Guiding Light. Coop's exit is storyline dictated and will involve Phillip's triumphant return.
A Guiding Light spokesperson confirmed the character's exit and also put to rest rumors of Caitlin Van Zandt (Ashlee) and Bonnie Dennison (Daisy) leaving. No official word on Kane Manera (Grady) or E.J. Bonilla (Rafe) just yet, but I have a strong feeling the Aussie is next. Keep your eyes peeled to Daytime Confidential for all the latest updates on this developing story.
In the current issue of Soaps In Depth, Beth Chamberlain (Beth) encourages Guiding Light fans to not be so quick to judge her May/December pairing with Coop (the reportedly soon-to-be-out John Driscoll).
"Beth and Coop have only aired a few times. That's kind of like the first page of a book. I'm not sure how you judge an entire book by the first page."
I have to say I couldn't agree with Chamberlain more. I think Beth and Coop are smoking hot, but then I have always preferred watching sexylicious Cougars catch younger stud prey on daytime as opposed to the current overused trend of watching 40-year-old men being paired with prebuscent girls.
So what do you think, is the Coop and Beth pairing hot or not-so-hot?