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TV Guide Canada : Soapers of 2007

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Soapers of the Year 2007

By Nelson Branco

It’s official — 2007 was one wacky mess. Nevertheless, here are the MVPs who made it all worth it. Plus: Soaps’ Hall of Shame!

Cameron Mathison takes a dip on 'DWTS'

Soap Opera Digest has named As the World Turns the best soap opera of 2007 – and really, where do you go from that? The 2007 Daytime Entertainment Emmys? I don’t even want to talk about it.

Despite being a proud yearbook fan of the “best and worst” tallies annually, for the first time I’ve decided I’m not participating in that foolish game of hyperbole, which doesn’t teach the industry a single thing in the end. They’re all in denial, anyway — fools!

Really, even if I wanted to, where would I start? Fans know what went wrong and, occasionally, what went right — usually by accident, thank you very much — this past year in soaps. I don’t need to point it out, but I will give props to the real-life people who made it all bearable, even if just for a moment.

Inspired by Entertainment Weekly’s brilliant annual issue dedicated to the best in entertainment, I thought this was the perfect unique way to chronicle what was the wackiest year in daytime and focus on the positive without pouring salt on our painful wounds. We’re troopers — aren’t we? God bless us, no one else would endure all of this crap if we weren’t true fans and believers in the genre.

And to ensure that I’m still a fearless bitch, there’s a Hall of Shame category for those who enjoy or dabble in such accountability. Fasten your seatbelts … it was a bumpy year! 2008 — hurry!


One Life to Live’s Ron Carlivati, headwriter

God exists — and his name is Ron Carlivati. Can we just clone him already? Seriously though, thank you Mr. Carlivati for inspiring me to believe in soaps again and giving me back my favorite soap of all time when I haven’t cared about Llanview in more than 10 years. I chew and savour every morsel you serve up — without ever fast-forwarding a second of the magic you’ve delivered in this perfect storm called daytime.

Thank you for raising the standards of writing to an art form — mainly through honest and realistic storytelling, unadulterated imagination, inspiring humanity, and pulsating romantic passion. Folks, meet the next Douglas Marland — and I’ve never compared anyone to the man who is arguably the greatest headwriter to have lived, next to Irna Phillips.

ABC better be paying you your weight in gold; you deserve every penny and then some. I’ve never been this impressed by a new headwriter in such a short time — in two episodes to be exact — ever. While B&B may be the Desperate Housewives of daytime, OLTL is the Brothers & Sisters of soaps. That’s the only way I can describe this brilliant show.

You’re the future, salvation, and messiah of this dying genre. There’s no one more talented in daytime than Mr. Carlivati. And oh yeah, props for proving that a headwriter can be as handsome and sexy as his cast. Who’d have ever thunk that was possible? Why aren’t you on the ABC hunk calendar? I’d hang you on my wall.


The fans

Why do we endure this wacky medium five times a week, we sometimes ask? If the world were made of soap fans, there’d be no wars. A big shout out to theenevelope.com posters — you should be running this show. Plus, thanks to reality shows like I Wanna Be a Soap Star, we’re actually responsible for casting on daytime — cool. I suggest two new spinoffs: I Wanna Come Back to Soaps and I Wanna Be a Soap Writer — Give Me A Shot!

Van Hansis and Jake Silbermann (Luke Snyder and Noah Mayer, ATWT)

For courage, truth, commitment, and rising above sloppy writing. You guys are history, whatever happens.

Patrick Mulchay (writer, B&B)

You’re the best soap dialogue writer in the biz – thanks for bringing magic to what was B&B’s worst year ever. In addition, the 5000th episode was genius; if we only knew that was the beginning of the end.

Eva Demirjian and David Gregg (publicity, B&B)

Besides the spectacular 20th anniversary celebrations and subsequent yearbook, thank you both for being true professionals — and for being grateful for any word of mention — good or bad. You can’t take the kudos without the criticisms, and you guys get that. And I was hard on your show this year.

You guys are so classy: you’re the only PRs who actually connect with me after each story runs — and ensure that your stars behave like them. (Jennifer Gareis sent me flowers after I praised her work — when does that happen any more? Not in this business, that’s for sure!)

In this world, it seems you only hear from PR when you complain about a show or actor; but rarely are you ever thanked for paying attention to the good stuff. You two professionals could easily traverse into the film and prime-time TV world without missing a beat. Simply, Eva and David are class acts. And you won’t find sexier or nicer publicists in this business; they’re stars in my eyes.

Cameron Mathison (Ryan Lavery, AMC; Dancing With the Stars)

To be honest, I’ve never been a big fan, but after your Dancing With the Stars stint, I can’t think of a better soap ambassador — or superman — than you. You simply stole my heart. If only Ryan was as inspiring, then we’d have a real show on our hands. ABC should have given you a break and not have worked you so hard; they needed the press — and win. Canadians rock, eh?

Alison Sweeney (Sami Roberts, Days)

For being a team player by dealing with one of the biggest sells in soap history (EJ raping Sami), and for being one of the most underrated actresses in the business — and for helping your show and network by hosting The Biggest Loser when you should show no allegiance this stupid network.

Ed Scott (Co-executive producer, Days)

Days may just have shot at survival now. Good work; Y&R’s loss is the entire industry’s gain. But I won’t stop praying at night just in case.

Drake Hogestyn (ex-John Black, Days)

If everything’s on the up and up, thank you for taking a big hit for the team — and being the most-buzzed-about exit in the history of soaps. We’re still guessing — who knew you were so fascinating?

Robert Guza and Jill Farren Phelps, GH: Night Shift

For showing us the future of daytime and delivering the most racially diverse cast in a long while — and producing two shows with very limited resources.

Ellen Wheeler and David Kreizman (executive producer/headwriter, GL)

Your epic 70th anniversary celebration was extraordinary. And that’s about it. Oh, and you pull off one of the biggest Emmy upsets — ever. You were blessed this year — not necessarily because of your work, but for thinking outside of the box! Pass that Emmy around, indeed. Oh, and build a few houses on top of that! Focus, people!

Tuc Watkins (David Vickers, OLTL)

The most adorable and charming man in the whole world. I just love him and want to take him home. John Brotherton has nothing on you, sexy guy! Please stay, please? I want Tuc in every colour, style, and shape in my closet. I’ll even settle for a knockoff.

Phil Carey and Stuart Damon (ex-Asa Buchanan, OLTL; Alan Quartermaine, GH)

For invigorating their shows with their exits; and still managing to stir up trouble without the paycheck. Classic leading men… you don’t get better than these two rascals. I’d love it if Carey won an Emmy this year.


Brian Frons, president of ABC Daytime and president of SoapNet

You’re place in heaven is reserved Santa Barbara-style for hiring Ron Carliavti as OLTL’s headwriter; you are a hero. And, also, for firing AMC scribe Megan McTavish; OLTL’s headwriter Dena Higley, natch; and greenlighting GH: Night Shift. Love you and hate you at the same time — but despite the madness, I trust your vision. But stop firing vets like Jackie Zeman!

Tom O’Neil, award show activist — theeenvelope.com

For forcing NATAS to see the errors of their ways — with mainstream attention and urgency.

Victoria Rowell (ex-Drucilla Winters, Y&R)

For being the first person to see what Lynn Marie Latham was capable of and was destroying — and wanting no part of it. The bravest soap star that has ever lived. Bar none, you’re missed. Heck — I will apologize, if no one else will — you deserved better.


Alicia Minshew (Kendall Hart, AMC)

For carrying the entire show; and proving once again that Erica Kane’s offspring are always more talented. Well, except for Colin.

Jon Hensley (Holden Snyder, ATWT)

The most underrated actor on soaps; and a big thanks for being solely responsible for making Holden Snyder soaps’ only real man. Luke is one lucky stepson! Let’s hope you take home an Emmy in 2008 for all your efforts and hard work! Also, which 1980s soap hunk has aged better than Hensley?

Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke Logan, B&B)

For finally letting go.

Jennifer Gareis (Donna Logan, B&B)

For bringing back classic, authentic — and campy — soap acting back to where it belongs. Who knew? I’m still shocked at how fierce you truly are. Speechless, really. And you’re stunning to look at it in such an awkwardly and captivating way; where did you come from?

Deidre Hall (Marlena Black, Days)

For bringing truth and originality to a show completely devoid of it.

Kirsten Storms (Maxie Jones, GH)

Biatch — I would never think of crossing your fierceness; and as a gay man, I have to admit, you turn me on in a bad way down there.

Beth Ehlers (Irna Phillips, GL)

Your best performance yet — and kudos for helping provide the heart and soul to GL’s spectacular 70th anniversary tribute. If you’re nominated, hand in a Harley scene and your turn as Irna, and the Emmy is all yours.

Catherine Hickland (Lindsy Rappaport, OLTL)

Joan Crawford, anyone? Eat it up and good, because it’s being served to us on a silver platter with unapologetic infectious aplomb. Classic performance and star turn. It doesn’t get better than this, kids. Pay attention.

Robin Strasser (Dorian Lord, OLTL)

I hate the fact that you only have one Emmy; you should have six, damn it. One of daytime’s most treasured resources — and one of soaps’ most underrated thespians. When Dorian’s onscreen, I’m in an constant state of shock and awe. Thanks to Strasser, David and Dorian’s May-December romance doesn’t require any stretch of the imagination.

Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki Newman, Y&R)

For turning out one brilliant performance after another during Y&R’s worst year ever. And outshining your co-stars — which is no easy feat.


Austin Peck (Brad Snyder, ATWT)

A revelation. If you ever needed to believe in miracles; let me present you the sexy and charming Mr. Peck — finally. Yummy; he’s the next Tuc Watkins. What are Carly and Katie thinking? You’re chasing after the wrong man!

Kyle Lowder (Rick Forrester, B&B)

Beautiful, sexy and soulful – he’s daytime’s McDreamy and McSteamy rolled into one soapy package. Memo to Ashley: you’re a moron.

Alley Mills (Pamela Douglas, B&B)

She’s quite possibly the most exciting actress next to Susan Flannery (Stephanie) on daytime. Let’s hope B&B doesn’t screw it up — but we’re not holding our breath.

Carolyn Hennesy (Diane Miller, GH)

For breathing life into Port Chuck.

Greg Vaughn (Lucy Spencer, GH)

I’ve never said this before, but have always known it to be true — Vaughn is one of the most beautiful men ever to engrave his flawless angelic face on daytime. This year, besides being robbed of an Emmy nomination, one of God’s greatest facial masterpieces proved that as much as Julie Marie Berman is Anthony Geary’s daughter, he is every inch Genie Francis’ son. Bravo! As far as I’m concerned, Liz is the biggest idiot in the entire soap planet.

John Brotherton (Jared Banks, OLTL)

OLTL hasn’t seen a newcomer like this since Jessica Tuck (ex-Megan); I don’t know what’s left to say, but I just can’t keep my eyes off of him — and he’s not even my type! Oh-so-talented, dirty sexy, and boyish — a dangerous mix, indeed. OK, maybe you are my type. Pay attention, daytime: this is how you cast a newcomer. And enjoy it while you can; Brotherton will be a big star one day, and you can take that with you to the banks.

BethAnn Bonner (Talia Sayid, OLTL)

The next Sarah Brown. Move her to the frontburner stat — hell, she even makes me like Antonio — and I can’t stand the character.

Daniel Goddard (Cane Ashby, Y&R)

You’re too damn sexy and talented to be on this show. And I am sorry for the soap wasting your sweet kisses on two of the most untalented and unattractive wannabe actresses on daytime. Hook a brother up, Y&R!



Lynn Marie Latham? Is this who you have decided to go down with? Really? Seriously? Where’s the compassion for us, who have to watch this unbearable madness? As anyone who was in the press room at the Emmys knows, LML is a delusional wackjob — and has turned the entire cast into zombies! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: William Bell is rolling upside and down in his grave 24-7. Is nothing sacred anymore? P.S. a memo to the Y&R cast: stop defending her; you’re not that believable as actors. It’s pathetic when you do it and no one buys it.


For firing OLTL’s Nathaniel Marston (ex-Michael), who was doing his best work in his career for his off-screen, alleged behavior. If only Hollywood was so righteous. This reactive corporate decision has not been addressed properly in the press yet until now — it’s disgusting, actually. What happened to being loyal and supportive in this soap family of ours? C’mon — we’re a better industry than that.

Where do you begin to get off with drawing lines between personal and professional boundaries? If the man has a substance abuse or emotional problems, you are legally bound to give him the help he needs — without him losing employment. Michael was arrested for perjury — how easy would it be to send him to jail while Marston figures out his life instead of hiring some nobody in his place. It’s acting, people — no one is running for president here. And how do you explain keeping Kirsten Storms (Maxie, GH) after her DUI and arrest, and not him?

Bob Guza (Headwriter GH)

Raping Jax? Give back your Emmys. As usual, TV Guide’s Michael Logan is right on this one — sorry fans! It worked with OLTL’s Todd Manning because it was perfect karma, not that I’m suggesting rape is any way an act of justice, but you have to admit the dramatic irony was brilliant, and OLTL played all the beats of this controversial storyline. Jax? Who’d ever even want to sleep with him to begin with? Is there a less sexy guy or intellectually challenged “hero” in daytime than this Aussie punk?


For canceling Passions and then in the same merciless and calculating breath threaten Days’ future — two years in advance. Shame! I’m no fan of Passions, but you sent the entire industry into a tailspin because of your lack of tact, foresight and hope. It was clearly a deliberate act of hatred and malice. It’s over, we know; we get it — but have some decency, people. The people at Days — and their families — deserved better. And so do the fans.

Bradley Bell (executive producer/headwriter, B&B)

Ridge and Brooke, again? You are clearly and unapologetically intent on destroying the heart and soul of your show – sweet, beautiful yet misguided Brooke Logan – that you miraculously managed to salvage in the past few years, aren’t you? I simply DO NOT know how Katherine Kelly Lang puts up with this misogynistic crap. Enough; move on! Ridge and Brooke do not love each other, so stop selling it like it’s destiny. That ship sailed a long time ago, when Ridge dumped Brooke for Taylor when she came back from the dead.

It’s beyond insulting, really — and borders on such profound sexism that books could be written about this incestuous mess you call a love story. Even your characters know better. Move on; we all have. And don’t even get me started on wasting daytime’s best talent, Lesli Kay (Felicia), and blundering Kyle Lowder’s (Rick) sensational debut by saddling the stud with a lightweight. Do better, because Brad, you are better than this.

Megan McTavish (ex-headwriter, AMC)

AMC may not still be must-see TV, but it sure is a nicer and realistic place to visit since the biggest hack in the biz got booted. You had your 15 minutes, so move on and stay away from soaps for … ever.

Ken Corday (executive producer, Days)

I love, love, love headwriter Hogan Sheffer — so this pains me to say, but I blame executive producer Ken Corday for compromising Hogan’s talent and essentially passive aggressively forcing him to write that EJ raped Sami (people, GH’s Luke and Laura worked once; and that was enough). Simply put, this storyline was sloppy, contrived and masturbatory territory only designated for amateurs; Hogan knows better, and I hate that Corday turned one of soaps’ best new talents into a puppet, and to be frank, a bitch — after he left ATWT refusing to compromise with his head held high. Let Hogan go so he can give us what he was meant to — perhaps on Y&R; now that’d be perfect karma.


Lynn Marie Latham, executive producer/headwriter, Y&R

Do I have to explain this? Thought not. There are not enough blank screens in the world to do justice to the infinitely cruel injustices she’s made us suffer through. Be gone, already!


The worst show in the history of television —ever! Enough said.


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I agree with some of the stuff he's said (LML, McTavish, KKL's perfomance), but B&B hasn't been good this year? :rolleyes: And Kyle Lowder is a huge talent? :rolleyes: again!

But, I AM curious to see Ron Carlivati, how hot can he be? Nevermind, I did, meh lol.

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Somebody wants a date with Ron Carlivati!

And Jon Hensley. And Greg Vaughan. And John Brotherton. Damn, Nelson, step off! Leave some of the ladies some leftovers.

I don't agree with everything he said, but I agree more than I disagree.

Big fat WORD to his comments to Sony/Y&R about hiring "that whack job" LML.

...to Daniel Goddard "for the soap wasting your sweet kisses on two of the most untalented and unattractive wannabe actresses on daytime." Ouch but WORD!

... for recognizing that Jennifer Gareis is not Vanessa Redgrave but IS perfect for her role as Donna.

... for defending Brooke Logan because Lord knows I have a hard enough time nowadays.

... for referring to Megan McTavish as "the biggest hack in the biz." PREACH IT!

...And calling out NBC for trying to destroy Daytime in one fell press conference.

I am still WTF-ing over his big-ups to Guza, JFP and Frons's "vision." I mean WTF? Seriously, WTF? What. The. F*ck?

But I can forgive because, on the whole, this is a great, satisfying read. Sorry for not being high-brow. I like TV Guide Canada's coverage because at least this dude says what he thinks, even when he's thinking with his d*ck. Unlike hacks at other places *cough*Hinsley*cough* who have their column dictated to them by the network suits.

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Kyle Lowder? I wanted to start watching B&B this year, but I can't stand the guy. It pains me to watch him. Yuck.

I agree with everything else, especially everything about the biggest daytime killer LML, and the best HW in the last few months Ron Carlivati.

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I agree about Cavali, OLTL is about as interesting as it gets on ABC. The Marice storyline is fierce and I think overall he has done a good job with his characters. So Kudos to him.

Cameron Mathison as the MVP of AMC? Eh. Sweeny does deserve her props though. Even though I feel that overall her quality has declined over the years I think she does deserve credit for making Days watchable during a period where it was so bad that I wanted to quit watching. But balance is always good. Sweeney needs time to regroup and comeback to make intriguing and naunced performences again. It seems the last year has caught up with her and burned her out.

I have to say that I don't think Alicia was spectacular in the Crash storyline. I thought she did a relatively good job however I don't feel that it was enough to praise her as the best actress from AMC this year. She was good but I felt that MCE was good too. Lish doesn't deserve all the credit their.

Diedra and Catherine were awesome in their scenes. Totally deserved.

Peck has been in the business for over 12 years. How embarrasing to be called "the next big thing" after being in soaps for years.

Biggest word to GV. I completely agree that Lucky is his mothers' son. However Bergman is proving to be Carzilla's she beast clone and it doesn't get any better with her phoning in the majority of her scenes.

Seriously NM was awesome in his role. He was great and he was a riveting performer. I see no reason to fire him if he is doing a damn good job with his work.

This guy needs to see what B & E have done to AMC and re-think his statement. AMC is free falling to the bottom of the soap list and no one can stop it.

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Lowder has been getting abysmal screentime ever since the summer was over. It's about one or two episodes a month - exactly what he derseves. DOn't let him keep you from watching: as Branco put it, it's "Desperate Housewives" for daytime TV although I always think of it as "Melrose Place with the Forresters". :lol:

As for TVGuide.ca yearly list: Say what you want about Nelson who speaks his mind but he's getting things right for 75+% of his choices and seems totally independent. I can't believe some of his choices like Kyle Lowder but basically only because he's hitting nails all around like McTavish, the fan comment, LML and so on...

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First it was Kirsten's first offense and Marsten's what? 3rd? He should of never returned when they canned him the first time. The boy needs serious professional help for whatever he has - and if he's on meds - he needs to take them.

What is it that they say - do the crime - do the time. I see Marsten's doing hard time for putting people in the hospital. Kirsten wasn't even in the courtroom when her sentence was handed out.

Both should be punished for their crime, no doubt but Marsten's on his second chance with ABC - he blew it.



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Branco gets some of it right and at least he appears to be somewhat independent.

However, his shout out to that son of a bitch Brian Frons, JFP and Guza for their 'vision'? It is called ageism and focus groups Nelson, nothing more, nothing less. May they all lose their jobs to 29 year olds come 2008! And excuse the hell out of me but he makes the firings of Phil Carey, Stuart Damon and Jackie Zeman seem like nothing! For that Branco loses major points.

Cameron Mathison? Kyle Lowder. I need a drink!

I'm still surprised at the resistance to B&B, not that I'm dissing OLTL because it has improved 100%. It's just that I think B&B gets a harder time from the soap press, who knows why, but it has improved by leaps and bounds with Kay Alden back! She should have gotten an MVP, she's made B&B watchable again. And I agree, it's 'Melrose Place with the Forresters'

Aside from all that I'm glad he called LML on all her sh*t, I hope she's outta there!

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But isn't that what this little exercise is anyway? Besides, where did the best and worst actor lists come from? :rolleyes:

As far as his take on my baby, ATWT :D, Jon Hensley may be the most well preserved Reagan-era soap hunk, but I think he underplays his role to the point that Holden might as well still have amnesia. Hansis and Silbermann aren't elevating the show to new heights either. The guts to put a gay love story in soaps is not equivalent to flawless execution. Silbermann is wooden like a log cabin, but people are so darn happy to see gay characters that everything they do is like, totally kewl. If Victoria Rowell gets props for leaving a bad situation, why not Cady McClain?

Who asks whether anyone would sleep with GH's Jax? I didn't think real words could come together to form that question! :lol:

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