How The Complete and Utter Destruction of Sharon Newman Parallels MAB’s Dismantling of The Young and the Restless


For a few months now, viewers of The Young and the Restless have been subjected to the once popular and beloved character of Sharon Collins Newman (Sharon Case) having decided to delve into an icky romance with her former father-in-law, Victor Newman (Eric Braeden). Fans have been none too amused over Sharon making this skeevy choice — to plunge head first into a relationship with a man she once considered a father figure. The plot twist has been all the more maddening, following years of Sharon's character being utterly assassinated, via one ill-conceived storyline and/or romance after another.  

Y&R Wins WGA Best Daytime Serial



Congratulations goes out to the writing crew of The Young and the Restless for winning the Writers Guild of America award for best daytime serial. According to Deadline.com, both the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAE) and the the Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) held their award ceremony simultaneously on their respective coasts, where Y&R's writing crew took home the gold. The following writers from the sudser scored a big win:

Amanda L. Beall, Tom Casiello, Lisa Connor, Janice Ferri Esser, Eric Freiwald, Jay Gibson, Scott Hamner, Marla Kanelos, Beth Milstein, Natalie Minardi Slater, Melissa Salmons, Linda Schreiber, James Stanley, Sandra Weintraub, Teresa Zimmerman.

Maria Arena Bell , along with Hogan Sheffer, were not listed because they were ineligible because of going fi-core during the 2007-2008 WGA strike.

As the World Turns: Finally Getting It Together


Perhaps someone passed along my Open Letter to Christopher Goutman. Perhaps Barbara Bloom took a good look at the plummeting ratings and decided that everyone should not lighten up after all. Perhaps head writer Jean Passanante took an extended vacation to Buenos Aires. Whatever has been happening over the last few weeks, let me step out on a limb and utter the words that many fans thought might not ever be said again or even believe: As the World Turns is, at long last, improving.

I fully expect the comments section to be full of invective and angry fist shaking about how ATWT is still "the worst soap on the air," how the vets are misused, and how the "Vortex of Suck" continues to, well, suck. In addition, the now well-documented list of the show's biggest defects remain stubbornly in place: warp-speed storytelling and the soul sucking semi-episodic structure continue to test the rapidly waning patience of the show's dwindling audience.

Having said that, it bears repeating that fans are a stubborn breed. We will praise shows, actors and performances we like, but we are quick to make our displeasure known when we feel things are not up to speed and falling apart. Once the latter narrative has been established it is very hard to turn the tide of opinion, even when a show starts to address its critics and make changes. Therefore, though the longstanding criticisms of ATWT are still valid, I think it is time to once again give credit where credit is due.

An Open Letter to Christopher Goutman



Dear Mr. Goutman,

If ever I was convinced there is a real world application of the phrase "an exercise in futility", this letter might qualify as proof of that concept. After all, you have been quoted in at least one now infamous interview that you do not listen to what fans have to say and that you follow your gut instincts about what you feel is best for As the World Turns as its executive producer. In many respects I applaud you for it. Vision, however forward thinking or flawed, indicates what might be called passion, which itself implies a belief in something. I think, in your own way, you really do believe in your show.

Savvy viewers (including those of moderate intelligence like myself) more than appreciate the fact that Procter & Gamble/TeleNext soap executive producers like yourself arguably have tougher rows to hoe than their counterparts. You have your corporate bosses at P&G to answer to, as well as another set of head honchos at CBS. Reports from the war front regarding the recent cancellation of ATWT's sister show Guiding Light exposed that often these two factions have differing agendas, which can only make your job that much harder to do in a climate of increasingly draconian budget cuts and free falling ratings amidst an ever shrinking — some openly say dying — genre with roots that can be traced back to Charles Dickens and beyond. No wonder you tune out the noise, if I may, to concentrate on one of the hardest jobs in all of television: producing 350+ hours of television every year.

Jeanne Cooper’s Marge Back to Being “Restless” Again

Now before you ask, no Aunt Maria and Uncles Hogan and Scott aren't channeling the late James E. Reilly. According to TV Guide, on March 26, The Young and the Restless will dedicate a special show around the hustling hash slinging waitress Marge (Jeanne Cooper). Marge will be exhumed for DNA testing. Kudos to the fab four over at Y&R for showing that young bucks in the industry aren't the ones that fans are clamoring to see and should be centered upon. Remember folks, do as our Uncle Jamey says: "VOTE WITH YOUR REMOTE," because this is going to be a episode you will not want to miss!

What’s Wrong With As The World Turns

ATWT


As the World Turns is something of a mystery to me these days. I haven't been blogging regularly about the show because, honestly, I am kind of flummoxed about what to actually write about from day to day.

I love ATWT. The show is blessed with some of daytime's strongest actors. In this age of massive cost cutting, ATWT found an arguably better production alternative than Procter & Gamble sister show Guiding Light. Speaking for myself, I find most days, most characters, most stories and most events to be sufficiently captivating to keep me coming back.

Nonetheless, something is badly amiss in Oakdale. The usual criticisms of ATWT are all-too-familiar: far too many recasts, underused vets, storylines that turn on a dime, compressed storytelling and ever shrinking production values to name a few. While those issues are real and important, they are only symptons of several larger problems that encapsulate the issues that I, other Daytime Confidential bloggers and commentators all over the internet have found themselves dismayed about over the last several months. After trying to put a finger on these issues while attempting to "figure out" what's going on at ATWT from a larger perspective, several things have jumped out as serious structural flaws, like a cracked foundation in a beloved old home.

Soap On A Rope

Ghosts of Soaps Past



Here lies the final resting place of the Great American Soap Opera
A good and constant companion to millions,
The genre lost its way toward its Final Fade to Black.
Neglect and misconception caused the genre's downfall,
But their collective memory shall live in our hearts. Forever.

Daytime O. Drama
1952 (or 1937) - 2010 (or 2015) — Depending on Who's Counting


Yes, my friends, it is time to put on your best Sunday black, sit Shiva if you are among our Jewish friends, remove all your jewelry if you are Muslim, burn those collections of Soap Opera Digest in a Shraddha ceremony for our Hindu cousins, and the rest of us heathens and infidels can cuss out Brian Frons, Barbara Bloom, Ellen Wheeler and Ken Corday in polysyllabic orgasmic fury. A flame in the wind has flickered its last, the bright promise of our date with life is forever gone. Today is no longer ours. Stick a fork in daytime soaps. They are done. I just have one tiny question:

Are soaps really dead?