Jump to content
Announcement: New Memberships Suspended

As The World Turns Discussion Thread


edgeofnik

Recommended Posts

  • Members
22 hours ago, bboy875 said:

At some point when they confirmed Roger was coming back, Pam Long told Digest that Blake was supposed to be a brand new character, & she wanted her to have a big secret from her past. But the strike hit before she knew what she wanted the secret to be, and the scabs introduced her.

Thanks..interesting!

 

20 hours ago, DanMan869 said:

Yes! I forgot about Shanks, Marx, and Bloom all having hairy chests. I don't think the viewers were given as many opportunities to see them as Hensley's though!

What is interesting is that Hensley looked like a real guy with a farm boy body...not the sculpted and or overly worked out bodies considered as hunks in soaps and media now.

 

I thought Hank was good looking and hot..but really, really bland and boring...(and yes, his lover's name was "Charles" and Hank said it a million times!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 12.7k
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • P.J.

    667

  • Soapsuds

    1199

  • DRW50

    2466

  • DramatistDreamer

    1516

Top Posters In This Topic

Posted Images

  • Members
1 hour ago, Mitch said:

Thanks..interesting!

 

What is interesting is that Hensley looked like a real guy with a farm boy body...not the sculpted and or overly worked out bodies considered as hunks in soaps and media now.

 

I thought Hank was good looking and hot..but really, really bland and boring...(and yes, his lover's name was "Charles" and Hank said it a million times!

I agree with you Hank was boring and bland. I thought he had zero personality.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
57 minutes ago, Soaplovers said:

Was Hank boring because of the acting, writing,  or all of the above?

 

 

I think it was really a problem with the writing. Brian Starcher never necessarily set the show on fire, but... he wasn't given all that much. Hank was a talk-to--a supporting player--from beginning to end. Add to that his frequent mentioning of the ailing-but-invisible Charles and there wasn't much else available to work with. I just think, "don't tell us, show us!" I think had Marland been daring and actually brought Charles onto the canvas it might have opened things up for Hank to grow as a character and be able to take more than a supporting role. Then again, Marland may have been that daring, but P&G said "hell no, we're not bringing a character who's supposedly dying of AIDS to Oakdale!" I think doing so could have been a great "teaching" moment and given a name (soap?) actor the chance to play a sympathetic role for 3-6 months, indirectly "teach" the citizens of Oakdale a few things, and then pass away. I think it would've been something great for the show, for America, and, well, for the character of Hank. Woulda-coulda-shoulda.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Yes, Hank never had a personality. 

 

I would guess Marland never really intended for Hank to have a personality. He was there to try to encourage acceptance of homosexuality and nothing else was going to be allowed in that era. Hank having a lover who was dying of AIDS, and last being seen holding his hand was as far as they would be able to go.

 

In the 1991 or 1992 AIDS Ball, a letter is read from Hank, praising the late David Stewart for his AIDS research, and obliquely references how special David was compared to many other people who treated AIDS and people who had died of AIDS in the early years (ie, queer men) as bad and wrong. That was the most aggressive I can ever remember Marland's social issue plotting ever being...I can imagine all the friends or lovers he thought of in those moments. 

Edited by DRW50
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Who was the first onscreen character to have AIDS on a soap? Was the character heterosexual or homosexual? I ask because it seems like Daytime TV was very conservative in who the genre chose to represent certain aspects. Jessica Blair (Y&R) a straight White woman was portrayed in a very sympathetic light. Stone (can't remember his last name/GH), a straight White man, who was cast as a hearthrob, was also portrayed in a very tragic and sympathetic light. "Charles" preceded both characters, in the '80s when the virus was highly stigmatized and even cast as a type of moral judgement on certain people, chief among them gay men, and minorities soon after-- unless he was a star basketball player like Magic Johnson, which didn't come along for another two years after the AIDS storyline on ATWT. As tame as the story seems today, Y&R and GH may not have decided to write their own stories had ATWT never written one, maybe?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
8 minutes ago, DramatistDreamer said:

Who was the first onscreen character to have AIDS on a soap? Was the character heterosexual or homosexual?

I think it was Dawn on Another World in 1987. She was straight. The story was that a few years before, she had been in a bad car accident and needed a blood transfusion. Her mother, who was a prostitute and who had AIDS but didn't realize it, donated blood and that's how Dawn contracted it.

Edited by AbcNbc247
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
18 minutes ago, DramatistDreamer said:

Who was the first onscreen character to have AIDS on a soap? Was the character heterosexual or homosexual? I ask because it seems like Daytime TV was very conservative in who the genre chose to represent certain aspects. Jessica Blair (Y&R) a straight White woman was portrayed in a very sympathetic light. Stone (can't remember his last name/GH), a straight White man, who was cast as a hearthrob, was also portrayed in a very tragic and sympathetic light. "Charles" preceded both characters, in the '80s when the virus was highly stigmatized and even cast as a type of moral judgement on certain people, chief among them gay men, and minorities soon after-- unless he was a star basketball player like Magic Johnson, which didn't come along for another two years after the AIDS storyline on ATWT. As tame as the story seems today, Y&R and GH may not have decided to write their own stories had ATWT never written one, maybe?

 

Cindy Parker on AMC and Dawn Rollo on AW (both straight women) had stories running around the same time - Cindy's ran much longer and was given more prominence. This was late 1987.

 

Loving had AIDS research references in 1983 and 1984 - not sure if any patients were shown.

 

I think that Jessica's story on Y&R started around the same time as Hank's arrival in Oakdale, although I don't know if Bill Bell always intended her to have AIDS. She always had a secret and was always desperate to reunite with Cricket, though.

 

HIV-positive gay men who were occasionally seen friends of women named Lucy debuted on GH in 1994 and GL in 1995. 

 

The one soap that I remember letting viewers see a gay man onscreen actually dying of AIDS, in the hospital, grieving and frightened, was a man Julia cared for on AMC in 1995. It didn't really get much mention - I didn't even know about it until I saw the episodes. 

Edited by DRW50
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
18 minutes ago, DramatistDreamer said:

These networks and soap production companies didn't seem to have much confidence thst anyone but a straight White person could garner much compassion from daytime viewers, from the sound of things, irrespective of show or network, it seems.

 

In a way, I get where TPTB were coming from.  At that time, the general public knew so little about AIDS, and they understood even less.  Most just assumed that gays and POC were the only ones susceptible to it.  But, by showing that, in fact, ANY one, even a straight white man or woman, is susceptible to contracting AIDS, they were able to better inform viewers the realities.  Otherwise, if they show a gay person or a person of color dying from the virus, they run the risk of reinforcing viewers' misconceptions, which (as recent events have shown us) is something you DON'T want to do during a public health crisis.

 

As wonderful as that "Designing Women" episode about the AIDS crisis was (and still is) to watch, I think it misses something by having a gay man be the one who ultimately succumbs to the virus, despite the fact that AIDS first showed up in the LGBTQ community and that they were hit hardest by it (especially during the Reagan administration).  Linda Bloodworth-Thomason did her best to tell her audience the truth about the virus, but I always worry whether the story's outcome (namely, a gay man has contracted AIDS; and now, a gay man is dying from it) actually opened the minds of any real-life Imogene Salingers out there.  I think many, if they're even watching at all, reach the conclusion that "they still got what they deserve!" and think no more of it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
20 minutes ago, Khan said:

 

In a way, I get where TPTB were coming from.  At that time, the general public knew so little about AIDS, and they understood even less.  Most just assumed that gays and POC were the only ones susceptible to it.  But, by showing that, in fact, ANY one, even a straight white man or woman, is susceptible to contracting AIDS, they were able to better inform viewers the realities.  Otherwise, if they show a gay person or a person of color dying from the virus, they run the risk of reinforcing viewers' misconceptions, which (as recent events have shown us) is something you DON'T want to do during a public health crisis.

 

As wonderful as that "Designing Women" episode about the AIDS crisis was (and still is) to watch, I think it misses something by having a gay man be the one who ultimately succumbs to the virus, despite the fact that AIDS first showed up in the LGBTQ community and that they were hit hardest by it (especially during the Reagan administration).  Linda Bloodworth-Thomason did her best to tell her audience the truth about the virus, but I always worry whether the story's outcome (namely, a gay man has contracted AIDS; and now, a gay man is dying from it) actually opened the minds of any real-life Imogene Salingers out there.  I think many, if they're even watching at all, reach the conclusion that "they still got what they deserve!" and think no more of it.

 

Definitely understandable and I thought about that.

One never knows how others will perceive something.

Norman Lear and Carroll O'Connor thought most Americans would find Archie Bunker repulsive and were shocked at the reception he got. So you just never know and in the case of daytime soaps and that mythical Midwestern housewife, the stakes must have seemed too high.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
4 hours ago, Soaplovers said:

Was Hank boring because of the acting, writing,  or all of the above?

 

 

Well..lets just say most of Marland's "good" male creations were, staid, white bread,and humorless  and Hank did not differ in that area. He was oddly interested in about EVERYONE's problems... from drama queen Babs, to drab and depressing Iva, to the teenagers (and yes, he thought HONESTY was the most important part of ANY relationship.) But he was a token gay so he was like all the token black characters who came before him...as if the show said..."See, we have ONE" and didn't bother to expand on that.

 

I know it was the height of the crises but for once I would have liked a gay character who wasn't HIV positive or had a lover dying.  A character who had a least an implied sex life and who would say, "I practice safe sex and get tested regularly."  I think that having a dying partner off screen was an easy way to make him sexless and "safe." 

 

But then AMC who had a more conventional "hunk" guy play a gay guy, and who got much more publicity out of it then ATWT, also had a boring generic guy so it was baby steps. And really, Luke and whatishface bored the HELL out of me and gay viewers were acting like they were HOT and so so interesting. I think the only actual "sexual" gay character was GL's Olivia, but we all knew she was hot to trot and was bi and was a woman so I can see the suits thinking THAT was okay as she fullfilled their fantasies.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
8 hours ago, Mitch said:

But then AMC who had a more conventional "hunk" guy play a gay guy, and who got much more publicity out of it then ATWT, also had a boring generic guy so it was baby steps. And really, Luke and whatishface bored the HELL out of me and gay viewers were acting like they were HOT and so so interesting. I think the only actual "sexual" gay character was GL's Olivia, but we all knew she was hot to trot and was bi and was a woman so I can see the suits thinking THAT was okay as she fullfilled their fantasies.


Obviously don't want to stray too far away from ATWT on the ATWT thread but as a gay man AND a fan of soaps, I think soaps have been given a sometimes unfair hard time on how they write their gay characters - particularly gay men. They were mostly reflective of their times and their audience and while we can discuss whether they should have been bolder, earlier, we underestimate how the small steps strategy ended up working for them.
 

Anytime a show has tried to give a gay character something else than a very conventional relationship, fan reaction - in the gay community - has been very aggressively offended. While I disliked the OLTL Paul murder story and I understand why people were bothered by making his "gay" secret his motive for killing, I was pretty excited with OLTL's Daniel because here was a gay character that was *something else*. But I was fairly alone in that. Truth is most LGBT viewers wanted to see characters *like them* on-screen and weren't ready for their small representation to be as messed up and potentially unlikeable as some of the straight characters.
We see it from today's eyes where TV shows have started to give us a richer tapestry of LGBTB characters but I think we underestimate how much the hunger at the time was simply to see gay characters fall in love and settle and break stereotypes by being "boring". I think a gay character bed-hopping the way straight characters do would be received, fairly or unfairly, as an offensive stereotype.

So I honestly don't think ATWT has too much to be ashamed about on how it handled its gay characters *for the times they were respectively written*. They didn't write anything outwardly offensive (like AMC's Bianca constant victimization) OR fall too far in the other excess of becoming extremely preachy (like OLTL). Luke and his loves were mostly boring but Luke was boring and the show was pretty bad by the time he became a major character so in a way the fact he was an average character was a small victory in itself.
And boring as he was, he still managed to be one of the few "newer" characters that I wish I had seen what had happened to them over the course of the 11 years since.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

The main problem with the Daniel story was that not only was he a generic closet case murderer, but the only other gay character on the show was made to be his piece of ass and then shipped out as soon as the story was over. And there were no other gay characters on the show from that point on for years. 

Edited by DRW50
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members
15 hours ago, Mitch said:

Well..lets just say most of Marland's "good" male creations were, staid, white bread,and humorless  and Hank did not differ in that area. He was oddly interested in about EVERYONE's problems... from drama queen Babs, to drab and depressing Iva, to the teenagers (and yes, he thought HONESTY was the most important part of ANY relationship.) But he was a token gay so he was like all the token black characters who came before him...as if the show said..."See, we have ONE" and didn't bother to expand on that.

 

I know it was the height of the crises but for once I would have liked a gay character who wasn't HIV positive or had a lover dying.  A character who had a least an implied sex life and who would say, "I practice safe sex and get tested regularly."  I think that having a dying partner off screen was an easy way to make him sexless and "safe." 

 

But then AMC who had a more conventional "hunk" guy play a gay guy, and who got much more publicity out of it then ATWT, also had a boring generic guy so it was baby steps. And really, Luke and whatishface bored the HELL out of me and gay viewers were acting like they were HOT and so so interesting. I think the only actual "sexual" gay character was GL's Olivia, but we all knew she was hot to trot and was bi and was a woman so I can see the suits thinking THAT was okay as she fullfilled their fantasies.

Yes, yes, and yes, Mitch! All three of these hit the bullseye, IMO.

 

Oh--and as for Jake Silberman (who played Noah Mayer, Luke's boyfriend), I don't think he was a very interesting actor. The writing was basically there to bring this relationship life and potential interest, but Silberman was just so dull to watch. Van Hansis ticked two boxes for me in his portrayal of Luke Snyder: 1) he was a good actor, and 2) he is gay. Silberman ticked neither of those boxes and the on-screen relationship suffered because of it. Think of Carly and Jack, the show's central couple the last 10+ years: some of their trials and tribulations were really good, some were not so good, but what carried things through the entire time is that both Maura West and Michael Park made them INTERESTING because they were/are good actors. I think the fan boys out there WANTED Luke and Noah to be interesting, so they insisted they were. The storylines (some of which for Luke and Noah were admittedly quite lacking) were only able to take things so far. Together, Hansis and Silberman were not hot and they were not interesting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy