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As The World Turns Discussion Thread

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1 hour ago, adrnyc said:

Again, as someone else pointed out to me, I'm still fairly new to the board. And what I'm saying is: from a new person's perspective...y'all seem to really focus on the negative around here instead of the positive. For one day, could we champion the show we love rather than pick it apart? Is that too much to ask? I suppose for people who are like that in their daily lives, it might be.

 

 

There are plenty of threads (not just ATWT's thread) where I discuss things I like about ATWT, in particular.  We've spoken at length about the "warm feeling" of the episodes where characters gather for holidays, weddings, funerals, picnics and other events.  

Here is one where I compare ATWT and Y&R and why as a theater person, I loved ATWT, in particular.

 

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/49109-soaps-that-were-filmed-in-new-york/?do=findComment&comment=1279586

 

Here's another post where I lament the fact that there aren't enough episodes posted on You Tube that show just how juicy certain storylines were and how I'd pay money to see them in their entirety again.

 

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/37693-as-the-world-turns-discussion-thread/?do=findComment&comment=1279682

 

This post is actually by @DRW50 who is very complimentary about a particular aspect of the show, complete with a clip to illustrate.

 

Here's a post where I talk about how ATWT has some of the nimblest actors in daytime and would do very well in a live broadcast.  Granted this is more classic ATWT but it is a reference to how talented these actors were that they could transition to a live performance in front of cameras.

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/49517-which-daytime-dramas-would-be-great-if-they-had-to-go-live/

 

A lot of compliments about The Willows episodes.

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/37693-as-the-world-turns-discussion-thread/?do=findComment&comment=1294789

 

I've also made "positive" posts about things such as how talented I thought the direction was by people like Maria Wagner.  No one really talks about directors but a bad director can really botch a well written scene. 

I've also posted previously about how much I enjoyed the "roving" camera technique that appeared to be unique to ATWT in the 1980s.  I don't have time to dig but I discussed how the technique was employed and how challenging it is to pull off and perhaps that's why it isn't done anymore.  

 

Not too long ago, we discussed how progressive the Susan and Dan Open Marriage storyline was, especially for the 1970s.  In many ways, far more progressive than what is illustrate on today's soaps.  And unlike the Newman Y&R storyline, ATWT handled their with more realism and thought.

 

There are many positive posts about ATWT, not just in this thread but in other threads (you'll even find some in Y&R's thread), if you care to truly search.

Just because you don't see them in a passing glance, doesn't mean they don't exist.

If you're looking solely for the negative in things, I guess that's what you'll get. 

I don't think people should have to justify how much we cheerlead.  There are plenty of messageboards that do that.

As I said, I enjoy this particular board because we can post critically and understand that, in general, we enjoyed the show.

Having to continually post what is deemed an acceptably positive post, requires a kind of spoon-feeding that I think you won't find here.

 

Edited by DramatistDreamer

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Thanks for finding all those posts. I know at the time someone felt the comments about the clips were negative (the 79-80 clips) but I did try to view each one fairly and enjoyed many of the moments. I just wish that more were around.

 

I'll admit I can be overly critical of the show, and certainly I probably sound like I don't enjoy the Marland era as I often seem to go on about one point or another. But it was that era which hooked me on the show, and I love it. 

 

I'm not able to be very balanced about anything from about 1996 on, because for me, bar certain stories and characters, ATWT died after 1995. If others are upset by that, I respect their opinion, and they may just want to put me on ignore.

Edited by DRW50

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46 minutes ago, DramatistDreamer said:

 

 

There are plenty of threads (not just ATWT's thread) where I discuss things I like about ATWT, in particular.  We've spoken at length about the "warm feeling" of the episodes where characters gather for holidays, weddings, funerals, picnics and other events.  

Here is one where I compare ATWT and Y&R and why as a theater person, I loved ATWT, in particular.

 

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/49109-soaps-that-were-filmed-in-new-york/?do=findComment&comment=1279586

 

Here's another post where I lament the fact that there aren't enough episodes posted on You Tube that show just how juicy certain storylines were and how I'd pay money to see them in their entirety again.

 

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/37693-as-the-world-turns-discussion-thread/?do=findComment&comment=1279682

 

This post is actually by @DRW50 who is very complimentary about a particular aspect of the show, complete with a clip to illustrate.

 

Here's a post where I talk about how ATWT has some of the nimblest actors in daytime and would do very well in a live broadcast.  Granted this is more classic ATWT but it is a reference to how talented these actors were that they could transition to a live performance in front of cameras.

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/49517-which-daytime-dramas-would-be-great-if-they-had-to-go-live/

 

A lot of compliments about The Willows episodes.

https://boards.soapoperanetwork.com/topic/37693-as-the-world-turns-discussion-thread/?do=findComment&comment=1294789

 

I've also made "positive" posts about things such as how talented I thought the direction was by people like Maria Wagner.  No one really talks about directors but a bad director can really botch a well written scene. 

I've also posted previously about how much I enjoyed the "roving" camera technique that appeared to be unique to ATWT in the 1980s.  I don't have time to dig but I discussed how the technique was employed and how challenging it is to pull off and perhaps that's why it isn't done anymore.  

 

Not too long ago, we discussed how progressive the Susan and Dan Open Marriage storyline was, especially for the 1970s.  In many ways, far more progressive than what is illustrate on today's soaps.  And unlike the Newman Y&R storyline, ATWT handled their with more realism and thought.

 

There are many positive posts about ATWT, not just in this thread but in other threads (you'll even find some in Y&R's thread), if you care to truly search.

Just because you don't see them in a passing glance, doesn't mean they don't exist.

If you're looking solely for the negative in things, I guess that's what you'll get. 

I don't think people should have to justify how much we cheerlead.  There are plenty of messageboards that do that.

As I said, I enjoy this particular board because we can post critically and understand that, in general, we enjoyed the show.

Having to continually post what is deemed an acceptably positive post, requires a kind of spoon-feeding that I think you won't find here.

 

 

First of all, thanks for responding!  

 

I'm not sure why you think I would expect to find people talking about ATWT on a Y&R thread. It would never occur to me to go there - I don't watch Y&R. So, that's great, that people champion ATWT in a non-ATWT thread! However, as I only look at the ATWT thread, you can understand that I wouldn't come across that. 

 

And you're putting words in my mouth. I'm not a pollyanna who doesn't like critical debate. What I've been trying to say is that on this particular ATWT thread, things have been pretty negative lately. And when I try to throw some positivity in, I get attacked. It's very telling of the type of people on this board and you're correct, it's probably not the place for me.  Message understood. 

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I admit I'm more critical of the Marland years.. but he did seem to do well with this show better than he did on GL.  I think due to the fact that GL was a more emotional show while ATWT always seemed to have a more contained, yet beautiful, element to it.  I noticed differences between his GL and ATWT when he was head-writing it (GL seemed to have a little more emotional fire under his pen than ATWT did) so I give him credit for trying to adapt to the DNA of both shows.

 

I think it was Eileen Fulton that said when Marland wrote ATWT, it was like an elegant painting especially around the holidays.  

 

I was rewatching the Emmy live/Paley center (not sure which it was) interview she did years ago. and she was asked to give her thoughts on certain head-writers.  She liked the Dobson's, loved Marland, wouldn't comment on Sheffer at all, and said that Lorraine Broderick was a great person that never got a lot of her ideas approved.. and Fulton said a writer is paid to write and to not interfere with their process (even saying directors also shouldn't be interfered with either.. wonder if that was a subtle dig at Goutman).  So if anything, the theory fans had with interference wasn't a theory at all.

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3 minutes ago, Soaplovers said:

I admit I'm more critical of the Marland years.. but he did seem to do well with this show better than he did on GL.  I think due to the fact that GL was a more emotional show while ATWT always seemed to have a more contained, yet beautiful, element to it.  I noticed differences between his GL and ATWT when he was head-writing it (GL seemed to have a little more emotional fire under his pen than ATWT did) so I give him credit for trying to adapt to the DNA of both shows.

 

I think it was Eileen Fulton that said when Marland wrote ATWT, it was like an elegant painting especially around the holidays.  

 

I was rewatching the Emmy live/Paley center (not sure which it was) interview she did years ago. and she was asked to give her thoughts on certain head-writers.  She liked the Dobson's, loved Marland, wouldn't comment on Sheffer at all, and said that Lorraine Broderick was a great person that never got a lot of her ideas approved.. and Fulton said a writer is paid to write and to not interfere with their process (even saying directors also shouldn't be interfered with either.. wonder if that was a subtle dig at Goutman).  So if anything, the theory fans had with interference wasn't a theory at all.

 

Fulton's full interview (it's over two hours long) is on the EmmyTVLegends website. I just watched it a few days ago and she's very lively, with some great anecdotes. She's extremely candid about several eras of ATWT. I believe the interview was done in 2005 when Sheffer was still in charge. Probably before his departure was announced or she wouldn't have been so careful what she said about him.

 

In the interview she says her least favorite stories were the phantom fetus one, which she found to be totally preposterous and made Lisa seem stupid. And she did not enjoy the racism story where Lisa disapproved of Duncan and Jessica's marriage, which was done by Marland, wasn't it? She said she struggled with how to play it and how to justify Lisa's narrow-mindedness.

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3 hours ago, adrnyc said:

For one day, could we champion the show we love rather than pick it apart? Is that too much to ask?

Of course not

 

I recall being so excited for Doug Marland's return to the soap.  When OG Lily (Martha) appeared singing at a nightclub in Malta it was thrilling to think of the possibilities of how that character had changed.  As I recall, we saw Lily appear and she sang a song but, as an audience, we knew that something had evolved in Lily.  Then, there was the odd knowledge as a fan that Marland passed just as those early scenes were airing and it gave those episodes even more impact.

 

My other favorite memory is the reveal of Doug Cummings's liar.  The build up was done so well because it was a low key issue at first.  Kim had a fan and she would mention it or get a gift and then other characters would just move on with the story.  However, the cliffhanger reveal of Doug's room filled with pictures of Kim, while hearing her recording of My Funny Valentine, was so creepy that it has stuck with me.

 

Finally, when John Dixon humiliated Lisa while her face was shown in closeup on the screens in her own club.  Soaps by nature rarely allow male characters much catharsis but seeing John erupt was amazing.  His list of grievances and his tone allowed us to support John's moment of triumph and still feel sorry for Lisa.  As I recall, Bob's compassion toward Lisa was a high point of that episode.

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4 hours ago, JarrodMFiresofLove said:

 

My theory is that Eileen Fulton remained on the show because she loved playing Lisa and hoped that the next headwriter/producer team would value her. She was hanging in there and not wanting to just give up and walk away. But by a certain point (probably 2008) it was clear she was never going to be a relevant part of ATWT anymore. I looked at the cast totals using the link someone provided earlier and there were quite a few months under Sheffer and Passanante where she had 0 appearances or just 1 appearance. There is one month during Passanante's reign that she has 6 appearances which I think is the most she ever had in the whole decade. Six appearances during one month is not even two days a week.

 

My guess is she got to stay on contract, she was still given special billing and she probably was still paid her usual rate per episode but only when she worked (no guarantees and no salary increases). During 2010, the last eight and a half months of the show, she was only in 12 episodes. She only had one appearance in the show's last month. Lisa was definitely not relevant at the end; and this leads me to think that if the show had continued she would have been taken off contract at some point and been recurring. The only way she would ever have had substantial screen time again would have been if they killed Lisa off and she had a proper exit story.

 

 

Many people, from all walks of life, stay in jobs hoping that conditions there will eventually improve, or because of economic necessity. As she grew older, other acting opportunities would have been rare, so it makes sense that Fulton would choose to stay and ride out the storm. The baffling part to me has always been why the show kept her at all, and why TPTB did not eliminate Lisa completely during the Sheffer years instead of nominally keep the character around but "using" her in such a minimal and degrading way.

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24 minutes ago, vetsoapfan said:

 

Many people, from all walks of life, stay in jobs hoping that conditions there will eventually improve, or because of economic necessity. As she grew older, other acting opportunities would have been rare, so it makes sense that Fulton would choose to stay and ride out the storm. The baffling part to me has always been why the show kept her at all, and why TPTB did not eliminate Lisa completely during the Sheffer years instead of nominally keep the character around but "using" her in such a minimal and degrading way.

 

Probably when Bryggman left it saved her neck. They no longer had to pay him and if they were not offering Eileen any substantial guarantees and she was willing to do what they asked her, then I guess she was safe, even though Goutman and the headwriters were no longer committed to telling stories for Lisa. Most of her later years had her as a sounding board for grandson Casey or for Barbara; she wasn't even interacting much with Tom, Margo, Bob and Kim at the end.

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2 hours ago, JarrodMFiresofLove said:

 

Fulton's full interview (it's over two hours long) is on the EmmyTVLegends website. I just watched it a few days ago and she's very lively, with some great anecdotes. She's extremely candid about several eras of ATWT. I believe the interview was done in 2005 when Sheffer was still in charge. Probably before his departure was announced or she wouldn't have been so careful what she said about him.

 

In the interview she says her least favorite stories were the phantom fetus one, which she found to be totally preposterous and made Lisa seem stupid. And she did not enjoy the racism story where Lisa disapproved of Duncan and Jessica's marriage, which was done by Marland, wasn't it? She said she struggled with how to play it and how to justify Lisa's narrow-mindedness.

 I watched that interview several times too and it's great. I laughed at the phantom fetus story and she said a woman from planned parenthood sent her a brochure and said " This is how it happened and now let's get on with it" I also loved the grandma clause story about how she was in the control room during filming of a scene with Barbara Berjer (Claire) and the guys were talking to each other and said " Do you realize she's now a great grandmother ?, We can't have that. We've just gotta kill her". The following week they hit her with a truck.....LOL. Eileen called up Irna and insisted on the grandma clause to prevent that happening to her. 

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1 minute ago, SoapDope said:

 I watched that interview several times too and it's great. I laughed at the phantom fetus story and she said a woman from planned parenthood sent her a brochure and said " This is how it happened and now let's get on with it" I also loved the grandma clause story about how she was in the control room during filming of a scene with Barbara Berjer (Claire) and the guys were talking to each other and said " Do you realize she's now a great grandmother ?, We can't have that. We've just gotta kill her". The following week they hit her with a truck.....LOL. Eileen called up Irna and insisted on the grandma clause to prevent that happening to her. 

 

What year did the phantom fetus storyline occur? Has such a storyline ever been done on any other soap?

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1 minute ago, JarrodMFiresofLove said:

 

What year did the phantom fetus storyline occur? Has such a storyline ever been done on any other soap?

I'm guessing maybe early 70's. 1970-1972

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Just now, SoapDope said:

I'm guessing maybe early 70's. 1970-1972

 

So was it a story Irna wrote, or someone else? I think the idea is interesting, but I agree that after a point it gets silly. A woman who wasn't really pregnant might think she's pregnant in the beginning but technology would cause the doctor to verify rather quickly there was no baby. What they could get away with in the early 70s they could never get away with now. And it was probably a real stretch for viewers then to accept it. The only way the story might work is if the the woman was held hostage, in some sort of drugged state and led to believe she was pregnant and had given birth. But to play this as a "straight" medical drama is ludicrous.

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6 hours ago, adrnyc said:

Ok - here's what I wanted to say: sometimes you guys make it sound as if you all hate As The World Turns. All I ever see are posts about what you don't like.  So I'm posing a challenge today: POST WHAT YOU LOVE ABOUT AS THE WORLD TURNS!!

 

ATWT in the 1950s, '60s, and '70s was astonishingly good and consistent in terms of quality, tone, and characterization. Oakdalians spoke and behaved like people you might actually know in real life, and had long, intimate, character-delineating conversations. It was subtle. This lured you in, forced you to pay attention, and got you emotionally attached to the Hughes and Lowell/Stewart families. Many long, drawn-out scenes had deep and powerful  subtext which would only be apparent to viewers who knew and understood the characters well. Storylines, while romanticized and occasionally melodramatic, were still grounded in reality. Family mattered, community mattered, relationships mattered. Multiple generations interacted with each other. The actors were chosen for their interesting screen presence and acting ability, not because they had six-packs or looked like Playboy bunnies in bikinis. We were presented with contemporary, adult material in a tasteful, thought-provoking manner. 

 

In the early 1980s, producer Mary Ellis Bunim and P&G tried to "youthify" and "modernize" the show, but only ended up decimating its core, destroying its tone and style and consistency,  and driving a huge portion of the loyal audience away. Thank God, Robert Calhoun replaced Bunim as producer, and Douglas Marland came aboard as head writer after a string of weak writing regimes. Core characters like Nancy and Chris Hughes returned full time, a sense of community and continuity were restored, and Oakdale felt like home again.

 

Towards the end of his run, some of Marland's work was weaker than usual, and I was never a fan of the Snyders, but I appreciated Marland's dedication to using the veteran, core characters and weaving history into his present-day stories. Even the "worst" Marland material was better than Passanante's ((ahem)) "best" work. 

 

I would say ATWT was great from 1956 to about 1980, and then again from about 1985 to 1992-3. After that, we had ups and downs, but for a good 32 years at least, it was a pleasure to visit Oakdale every day. I have many fond memories. The reason I bemoan the final decade of the show is because that is when it became clear the show would never again be the literate, polished, adult character study it was created to be. 

 

But it had been a class act for decades!

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