Okay....does Ken Corday own stock in Source Interlink or something? Soap Opera Digest has named the virtual trainwreck otherwise known as Days of Our Lives as the Most Improved Show of 2008.
In a year that saw more envelope-pushing drama for NBC's sole soap opera behind-the-scenes than anything we've seen on our screens this year, the magazine decided to name Days Most Improved? Uh, hello, have they been watching a little show called The Young and the Restless? You know, the one whose leading man they put on their cover each week? Breathe Roger, this week it's GH's manufactured "couple" JaSam.
Forget for a second the shameful shenanigans that transpired behind-the-scenes, the allleged scabbing, the actors allegedly hijacking scripts in violation of the WGA Minimum Basic Agreement, the reported blatant neglect from top executives, the firing of two of the genre's most popular stars ever, Drake Hogestyn and Deidre Hall, triggering a chain reaction that now has the mainstream press saying the soap opera is truly over, and lets just focus on what we saw on our screens, which was absolutely nothing.
The magazine cites 2007 stories such as "Smarmy Jeremy" and "Nick's Quickie Marriage to China" as reasons for why they named Days most improved. I see, so "Theo, the Occasionally Autistic Child", "Chloe and Nicole Becoming BFFs ", "The Many Loves of Samantha Brady" and "The Molly Burnett Hour, with Special Guest Star Deidre Hall" were so much better than those aforementioned 2007 stories?
This designation isn't just a slap in the face to The Young and the Restless, but to all of the other soaps still fighting to stay on the air, save for One Life to Live, who they named Best Show of the Year and we can see that logic, rapemance or no rapemance.
Even Guiding Light was better than Days this year. As much as I hate GL's new production model, I firmly believe Ellen Wheeler, who unlike Ken Corday didn't inherit the show she is wrecking, is trying to save her soap opera, as misguided as some of her attempts may be.
Wheeler isn't just stringing GL along so she can cash a check. She was an Emmy-winning actress who, from all accounts, earnestly decided she wanted to direct and produce (What I wouldn't give to see Marley McKinnon in Oakdale right about now and Wendy Riche in Peapack).
The only thing Wheeler inherited was a mess, because even though I lament her, I have always maintained Guiding Light was in major trouble long before she stopped playing Marley and started shadowing Chris Goutman. I will even go further to say Guiding Light's actual storylines this year were 10 times better than Days of Our Lives, so how again is Corday's show Most Improved?
I have been watching Days of Our Lives all my life, it is hands down my favorite soap opera of all time and I can't even get through an episode—and this was the case long before the firings of Hall and Hogestyn— and you're telling me it's took more steps to better itself this year than General Hospital, Y&R, GL or All My Children? This declaration is akin to giving the Enron executives an award for Most Scrupulous Corporate Leaders of the Decade.
I am sorry, but daytime is dying, at the end of the day, if I was the editor of the magazine the mainstream press still considers to be the industry bible, and still runs to for quotes, even on stories they don't break, I would much rather say I tried my best to tell the truth and shame the devils who are wrecking it, than to continue blatantly allowing them to use the pages of said magazine to spin half truths and/or strong arm actors during tense contract negotiations, then go on to further insult their readers intelligence by naming what was hands down the worst soap opera this year, Most Improved.