Jump to content


Welcome! Please take a second to register.


Photo

Successful Characters with No Family or Ties to Canvas


  • Please log in to reply
92 replies to this topic

#21 y&r_fan

y&r_fan

    Veteran

  • Members
  • 2,733 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:21 PM

Y&R

Nikki Reed
Victor Newman
Diane Jenkins
Neil Winters
Sheila Carter
Ryan McNeil
Michael Baldwin
Phyllis Summers
J.T. Hellstrom
Brittany Hodges
Raul Guittierez
Bobby Marsino
Amber Moore

B&B

Taylor Hayes
Sheila Carter
Lauren Fenmore
Amber Moore
Deacon Sharpe
Dayzee Leigh

Edited by y&r_fan, 05 February 2013 - 10:22 PM.

  • 0

#22 DeeeDee

DeeeDee

    Lifetimer

  • Members
  • 14,267 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:35 PM

Y&R

Brad Elliot

Andy Richards

Nina Webster

Steve Connolly

Steve Lassiter

Leanna Love

Mari Jo Mason

Julia Newman

Lynne Bassett

Tim Sullivan


  • 0

#23 DRW50

DRW50

    Lifetimer

  • Members
  • 53,667 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:40 PM

What this should tell someone who writes for a soap is that you don't need to be someone's fifth cousin twice removed to be able to have an impact on a show. Viewers don't care about that garbage. It's just a way for a writer to wink at their cleverness, not a way to integrate a new character. If anything, family ties can choke more than strengthen.



Edge of Night is probably the best example of a show that brought in a ton of important characters without family ties. 

 

Adam Drake 

 

Nicole Travis 

 

Miles Cavanaugh 

 

Draper Scott 

 

Bill Marceau 

 

among many others I'm forgetting


  • 0

#24 VirginiaHamilton

VirginiaHamilton

    Riff-Raff's Boo

  • Members
  • 3,608 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:42 PM

OLTL's Evangeline Williamson


  • 0

#25 katie_9918

katie_9918

    Contract

  • Members
  • 523 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:45 PM

Meta Bauer. She was used to help bring a family in to GL, a family that probably kept it on the air for most of its 70+ year run.


Very true. Though listeners (yes, you read that right) didn't know it at the time, popular Jan Carter (who'd gotten herself in a big pickle with Ted White) did turn out to be Papa and Mama Bauer's lost daughter, Meta. But both the Bauers and Jan Carter were reasonably established (for a 15-minute radio show) before the connection was revealed.

Or so my grandma told me, anyway.
  • 0

#26 ellabelle

ellabelle

    Veteran

  • Members
  • 1,407 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:46 PM

On AMC:

Adam Chandler - he was initially there on his own. Stuart and Ross came along later, IIRC.

Dimitri Marick - yes he eventually had a brother and a long-lost son, but he did well as a stand-alone character.

Tom Cudahy - I think his brother was on the show for a while in the 70s, but he was a stand-alone character for most of his time on the show.

David Hayward - he was eventually given a mother and some long-lost relatives, but he made quite an impression on his own.


  • 0

#27 Michael

Michael

    Mr. Bad Media Karma

  • Members
  • 1,025 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:10 PM

Nicole on Days is a really strong example. She has been given family members, but none of them were really long-term or important (shuddering at Taylor 2.0), and Nicole has always been THEIR link to the show, not vice-versa.

 

Chloe Lane is another Days example. She turned out to be the long-lost child of Craig and Nancy, but they weren't exactly core characters, and she's remained important for several years.

 

  • 0

#28 SoapSurvivor

SoapSurvivor

    Recurring

  • Members
  • 150 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:16 PM

Nicole on Days is a really strong example. She has been given family members, but none of them were really long-term or important (shuddering at Taylor 2.0), and Nicole has always been THEIR link to the show, not vice-versa.

 

Chloe Lane is another Days example. She turned out to be the long-lost child of Craig and Nancy, but they weren't exactly core characters, and she's remained important for several years.

 

 

I'm shocked DOOL got this right, considering their need to tie Daniel to every character on the show.  And although John came on as Roman he eventually became a stand alone character married to another stand alone character (Marlena) and they were the center of the show.   Will not mention that John is a Dimera now.


  • 0

#29 katie_9918

katie_9918

    Contract

  • Members
  • 523 posts

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:42 PM

 
I'm shocked DOOL got this right, considering their need to tie Daniel to every character on the show.  And although John came on as Roman he eventually became a stand alone character married to another stand alone character (Marlena) and they were the center of the show.   Will not mention that John is a Dimera now.


Yeah, but how long did it take to figure out that John was a DiMera?

There's case for him not counting, due to all the different ways different Days writers tried to make him more important, but still...
  • 0

#30 Skin

Skin

    I will remember the real Babe, the ideal flawed good girl

  • Members
  • 3,238 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 12:01 AM

Brenda Barrett


  • 0

#31 Nothin'ButAttitude

Nothin'ButAttitude

    I's married now!

  • Members
  • 2,991 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 12:07 AM

My girl Felicia Gallant. Like her best friend, Cass, who was aforementioned, Felicia stayed on the show for two decades driving story with her family only being there for awhile. She's truly a survivor.

I'd add Annie Dutton of GL on the list. Though she became the town pariah, she lasted longer than most soap characters could imagine.

Olivia Spencer on GL.
  • 0

#32 VirginiaHamilton

VirginiaHamilton

    Riff-Raff's Boo

  • Members
  • 3,608 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 12:14 AM

Brenda actually came to the canvas as Julia's spoiled brat of a little sister.  I'm not sure who was the first Barrett to hit the PC canvas, though: Julia or their father, Harlan. 


  • 0

#33 AdelaideCate007

AdelaideCate007

    Veteran

  • Members
  • 2,529 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 12:19 AM

I think it was their father, then Julia came soon there after. Brenda showed up like two years after that.


  • 0

#34 y&r_fan

y&r_fan

    Veteran

  • Members
  • 2,733 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 01:46 AM

B&B

Darla Einstein
Connor Davis
Grant Chambers
Ashley Abbott
Owen Knight
  • 0

#35 jfung79

jfung79

    Veteran

  • Members
  • 1,907 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 05:20 AM

I would dispute that shows tie in too many characters to family these days.  There are still many characters who are not tied to families.  Many of the examples given above are recent.  Another recent example would be ATWT's Reid Oliver.  Another recent example is the OLTL characters who were moved to GH.  They are not GH long-lost relatives as far as I know.  A more past example that will always be a favorite of mine is Eddie Silva on ATWT.  I agree with Cass and Felicia on AW mentioned above (and Wallingford) -- who became a "family not related by blood" all on their own.  The good thing with Reid is they had him interact across the canvas.  If you bring in a new character, regardless of whether they are family or not, they need to not be on a story island and need to interact with the characters who are already there -- but not in a "you can't get away from this new guy" way, rather with a natural buildup.

 

Also I would dispute that it is inadvisable to bring in many new characters as "long lost" or distant relatives.  I don't feel it is overdone at all.  Part of the appeal of the soaps is the family connections, particularly when there is history behind it and it isn't just made up on the spot.  Even stuff that is made up, though, can be powerful.  Thinking of the Ward family on GH and Justus being Edward's grandson, when he first came on.  Thinking of the tragic story of Bradley Ward, who was never even a character on the show.  Thinking of Mary Mae, played by Rosalind Cash, who made such an impact in two years.  That was really compelling writing by Claire Labine and it in no way would have been as good without being tied intimately to Edward Quartermaine.

 

Also the revered Doug Marland is famous for bringing in relatives so it is ironic that soap writers are being bashed in this thread for bringing in relatives.  Also it seems contradictory to say that the Bauers sustained GL, starting with Meta as a new character, and at the same time say they shouldn't be bringing in too many relatives.  So their adding to the Bauers was a good thing but adding to other families is a bad thing?

 

The problem with soaps is if they go too far away from family in my opinion, not if they have too much family.


Edited by jfung79, 06 February 2013 - 05:45 AM.

  • 0

#36 DRW50

DRW50

    Lifetimer

  • Members
  • 53,667 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:16 AM

Also it seems contradictory to say that the Bauers sustained GL, starting with Meta as a new character, and at the same time say they shouldn't be bringing in too many relatives.  So their adding to the Bauers was a good thing but adding to other families is a bad thing?

 

Yes. The Bauers were new at the time, and Meta was also new, or fairly new. They could build each other up.

 

Soaps that do ZOMG LOOK THIS IS A LONG LOST RELATIVE!! for no apparent reason rarely get any story out of this. The worst offender for me will always be the gimmicky garbage of David being Bo's son on OLTL.

 

 

Thinking of the Ward family on GH and Justus being Edward's grandson, when he first came on.

 

That was twenty years ago. In more recent years you've had Emily's long lost twin (was there any reason?), Ethan as Luke's son (why???), Sam as Alexis' daughter (does anyone care?), Sabrina as Juan's cousin, etc.


Edited by CarlD2, 06 February 2013 - 07:23 AM.

  • 0

#37 SoapSurvivor

SoapSurvivor

    Recurring

  • Members
  • 150 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:28 AM

I would dispute that shows tie in too many characters to family these days.  There are still many characters who are not tied to families.  Many of the examples given above are recent.  Another recent example would be ATWT's Reid Oliver.  Another recent example is the OLTL characters who were moved to GH.  They are not GH long-lost relatives as far as I know.  A more past example that will always be a favorite of mine is Eddie Silva on ATWT.  I agree with Cass and Felicia on AW mentioned above (and Wallingford) -- who became a "family not related by blood" all on their own.  The good thing with Reid is they had him interact across the canvas.  If you bring in a new character, regardless of whether they are family or not, they need to not be on a story island and need to interact with the characters who are already there -- but not in a "you can't get away from this new guy" way, rather with a natural buildup.

 

Also I would dispute that it is inadvisable to bring in many new characters as "long lost" or distant relatives.  I don't feel it is overdone at all.  Part of the appeal of the soaps is the family connections, particularly when there is history behind it and it isn't just made up on the spot.  Even stuff that is made up, though, can be powerful.  Thinking of the Ward family on GH and Justus being Edward's grandson, when he first came on.  Thinking of the tragic story of Bradley Ward, who was never even a character on the show.  Thinking of Mary Mae, played by Rosalind Cash, who made such an impact in two years.  That was really compelling writing by Claire Labine and it in no way would have been as good without being tied intimately to Edward Quartermaine.

 

Also the revered Doug Marland is famous for bringing in relatives so it is ironic that soap writers are being bashed in this thread for bringing in relatives.  Also it seems contradictory to say that the Bauers sustained GL, starting with Meta as a new character, and at the same time say they shouldn't be bringing in too many relatives.  So their adding to the Bauers was a good thing but adding to other families is a bad thing?

 

The problem with soaps is if they go too far away from family in my opinion, not if they have too much family.

 

Long lost relatives are fine if it makes sense.  Like Melanie on DOOL if she had turned out to be Nicole's daughter, the way the story was set up and with everyone's past it would have made sense.  Making Melanie turn it to be Carly and Daniel's was a plot device because it seemed like Carly and Daniel would be endgame.  Then furthering it by finding out that Daniel was Maggie's egg baby was a stupid way to tie Daniel and Mel to the canvas which was un-needed.


  • 0

#38 JackPeyton

JackPeyton

    Star.

  • Members
  • 17,621 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 07:29 AM

Mel is so annoying because she didnt need to be made into Maggies granddaughter, they had that relationship. They needed her and Maggie to help Daniel, truly for no reason. Ugh still mad about that.


  • 0

#39 frequentsoapfan

frequentsoapfan

    Lifetimer

  • Members
  • 5,024 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:12 AM

What this should tell someone who writes for a soap is that you don't need to be someone's fifth cousin twice removed to be able to have an impact on a show. Viewers don't care about that garbage. It's just a way for a writer to wink at their cleverness, not a way to integrate a new character. If anything, family ties can choke more than strengthen.

Yep and most of the time those contrived family connections flop or they are tied to nobodies, And it makes it harder to pair people off.


  • 0

#40 marceline

marceline

    This is not some one way mirror

  • Members
  • 8,964 posts

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:57 AM

Also the revered Doug Marland is famous for bringing in relatives so it is ironic that soap writers are being bashed in this thread for bringing in relatives.  Also it seems contradictory to say that the Bauers sustained GL, starting with Meta as a new character, and at the same time say they shouldn't be bringing in too many relatives.  So their adding to the Bauers was a good thing but adding to other families is a bad thing?

 

The problem with soaps is if they go too far away from family in my opinion, not if they have too much family.

 

There's nothing wrong with bringing on new family. That's a great way to build connections and hopefully show new layers for existing characters. I do think that current writers have used that tactic way too much in the recent past. They use family ties as a crutch to try to force us to care about characters instead of putting in the time to develop a backstory and motivation that matters.

 

Yes, soaps are about family but it's long past time for soaps to catch up with the rest of television and accept that the concept of family doesn't have to be limited to blood ties. For me the best ensembles shows are made up of families of choice but it take time and effort to create relationships that resonate and current writers don't feel like doing that so they just pull another sister/brother/cousin out of the box and throw them on the canvas. Or worse yet, they retcon somebody's parentage so we can shoehorn them into a position of importance they didn't earn and create quickie drama and conflict. *waves at Greenlee/Damon (AMC) and Natalie/Rex (OLTL)*.

 

Also sticking with cliche blood ties is a convenient way to limit real diversity of the canvas. I don't just mean racial/ethnic diversity either. It stifles the chance to branch out to characters of different economic and religious backgrounds or even just diversity of viewpoint. If everyone grew up together, then there's a degree of shared experience and the backstory writes itself until Lazy Writer decides to retcon it.


  • 0




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users