Daytime Soaps Heating Up
Posted by Tommy Garrett on Jul 15, 2007, 19:59
Daytime television spends a lot of money promoting their summer storylines. Usually however they tend to fall flat, but this year NBC and CBS are flying high. ABC is having a hard time getting their new storylines to take hold with the fans. "One Life To Live" is having the hardest time, after the Virginia Tech University shooting, they had to abort a storyline which had a similar plot.
It was the right thing to end the storyline in midstream but since then, the show is having a tough time hitting its mark. "All My Children" goes in and out of the same storyline, but having Erica Kane fall in and out of love with an actress and character both over sixty seems useless at this point. Susan Lucci is playing the role the way she did forty years ago and unfortunately the show is writing it the same way. She's a grown up, "All My Children!" "General Hospital" at least revived the "Luke and Laura" rape storyline of over twenty five years ago, but having Lulu, the daughter of the fabled supercouple find out about this horrific event was a bit sick. Had Genie Francis been in the storyline, it would have made more sense. It was Laura's trauma after all.
NBC is really showing they are the peacock network this summer. "Days of Our Lives" has incorporated their show's history to explain the hatred over the decades between the DiMera family and the Bradys, with James Scott and Allison Sweeny both doing Emmy worthy work. Also, they still have the major figures on the canvas that we care about. Bringing actor Joe Mascolo back to the front burner for this storyline adds a richness to the plot that really has an emotional pay off. Then there is "Passions." I have never found this show entertaining, maybe I was missing out. I have been watching it the past few months and although the acting is not the best and I am not really a fan of James Reilly's work. I have been stuck to the couch watching it lately. What a wonderful bunch of plots that all culiminate into the fight over good versus evil. Reilly has the entire show's plots tied together brilliantly. And aren't the witches a hoot? Juliette Mills as "Tabitha" is the best. I am sorry to see NBC let this show go from it's daytime lineup to add more of the dying Today Show to it's daytime schedule.
CBS is doing a great job, most especially "As The World Turns" and "The Bold and the Beautiful." Jennifer Landon's work this past week is surely to put her in line for her third consecutive Emmy nomination and possible win. The writing was sharp and crisp and Landon's portrayal of two roles, that of Gwen Munson and the psychotic Cleo is simply riveting. Jesse Soffer plays Will Munson has grown as well. And the most talented Grayson McCouch has taken Dusty Donovan to a place that no other actor could. Dusty isn't a bad guy, but after sleeping with his girlfriend's younger sister, he's not a good guy either. Grayson McCouch however is a talented guy and also deserves to be rememebered come Emmy nomination time in January.
"The Young & the Restless" may have flopped a bit with bringing the character of Jana back on the canvas. Greg Rikaart is excellent as Kevin Fisher, but wouldn't it had been better to have him obsess over his first nemesis Colleen Carlton, instead of making her an ally and friend? Or what about Lilly Winters Romalotti, who he was most obsessed with when he came on the show? Instead it's back to a character the fans never liked or cared about. While "The Bold & the Beautiful" has revived yet again the Stephanie Forrester vs Brooke Logan feud. Katherine Kelly Lang is always forgotten by her peers during Emmy season, but why? As vile and slutty as Brooke Logan is, the actress is able to make the viewers have sympathy for her character over and over again. The train wreck that is Brooke Logan is about to lose her kids Hope (whose father is Brooke's first son in law) and RJ (Stephanie's grandson), but I find myself rooting for Brooke to win again. Only because of Kelly Lang's brilliant portrayal of a heroine and a home wrecker.
Lets hope that ABC manages to find the right mix between teen angst and their historical characters on their soaps. Rating the best. "Days" gets 3 of 5 stars, "Passions" gets 4 of 5, "Y&R" gets 2 of 5, "B&B" 4 of 5, but ATWT knocks the ball out of the ball park and gets 5 stars plus another 2 for creativity. Loved the hillibillies from Oakdale going to Branson Missouri with the psycho Cleo in tow.
My friend Adrian Grenier, the star of HBO's "Entourage" was seen recently over on the set of "Y&R" at CBS. No, he's not making an appearnce on the number one soap. He and the "Entourage" team did some filming on the set while they were dark for a few days. Look for Vince to make a visit to the set of "Y&R" on an upcoming episode of his hit HBO series.
Next week, another writer will do the column, when he discusses my new book to be released in two weeks.
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