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Who is/was the biggest hack writer on soaps??


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Oh and whoever was writing ANC when it became the Cambious Hour and tried to rip off Sex & the City

Not fond of Bell on BB, he needs to step down and bring in some new blood, the show has become a big 1/2 of Jerry Springer with it's repetative semi incestuous stories.

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Sheffer, without a doubt. Pissy doesn't have a creative bone in her body, but at least she knew how to revamp (ie, "steal") stories that had once been good and fit them around the characters. Sheffer wrote one story, thought his **it didn't stink, and kept on rewriting it. (It really kind of worked to his advantage, since he could write a satisfying conclusion anyway.)

And McTrash is right up there with him. What she did to GL alone (in like 12-18 months) was criminal.

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My bad, I read the thread as biggest hack, not realizing it was limited to writers

She was considered the de facto headwriter of OLTL throughout most of 1999, after Pam Long was fired by ABC and until Megan McTavish got there (Harding Lemay was her writing consultant during this time, too). So she actually counts here.

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I wouldn't include Lynn Marie Latham, because she does have some really strong work under her belt, I just don't think she's built for daytime. Perhaps, she also picked the wrong soap (probably because Y&R is the highest rated). I didn't find her that bad at PC. I'd say Hogan Sheffer is overall mostly bad and David Kreizman I found dreadful on GL, ATWT and AMC.

Latham can do well when she is creating her own stories and characters, but when she comes into an established show like Y&R or KL she always imposes her own vision/style whether it is appropriate for the show or not... I find it irritating. I do think she has some talent, but she is up her own ass a bit.

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Tom Langan.

I've watched Days of our Lives, on and off, practically my entire life. There were times when I didn't pay close attention to it or watched in dribs and drabs because of school or work or raising kids. The first time I voluntarily turned the show off was during Tom Langan's stint. The whole thing just offended me.

YES, I forgot about Langan. Langan to me is worse than Sheffer actually. I'm watching 99 DAYS right now and it's legit on fire and amazing, and it's depressing as hell knowing in a few short months Langan will take over and it'll all go to hell. His DAYS was the dumbest, most pointless hour of television and in some ways I don't think DAYS ever fully recovered from what he did to it.

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Latham can do well when she is creating her own stories and characters, but when she comes into an established show like Y&R or KL she always imposes her own vision/style whether it is appropriate for the show or not... I find it irritating. I do think she has some talent, but she is up her own ass a bit.

I haven't seen any of LML's work before, but it's always fascinating to me to see how many detractors she has for her work on KL & Y&R, but when it comes to her show Homefront, the praise is near universal (I still have yet to see it, and I really want to). Then again, that could just prove your point: it was her show from the beginning (although a lack of network/production interference during HF could have something to do with it, too).

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I did like some of LML's work on KL. Season 10 was amazing, not just for a show in its 10th season but in general. The Murakame storyline (Abby invents a fake company with a name she picks out of a phone book to buy out her business partners who don't know there is oil under the property they own) I lurved, it was a true return to form for the type of storyline that made KL popular in the first place. The Val/Gary/Jill storyline (Jill tries to kill Val and makes everyone think Val was committing suicide) was creative as hell and very addictive, it dragged out the first 2/3 of the season and I didn't even mind. And the beginning of the Paige/Greg romance was just classic soap. That was LML at her finest to me. But there were far more misses than hits to me, and worse, she permanently changed the TONE of the show. In one interview she spoke about the famous season 6 finale where a woman shouts, "Harry go they wanna take the babies!" while holding her baby, and Latham was LIVID that they had allowed the actress to be yelling in the baby's ear and how she found it totally distracting and how she would never have written it that way. You can poll 100 KL fans and I don't think any of them had that reaction to that scene.

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I liked her Knots run overall, but the show lost humanity - characters like Val and Mack were destroyed. The Murakame story just made Abby into a cliche villain, which is one of the reasons Donna Mills left.

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I liked her Knots run overall, but the show lost humanity - characters like Val and Mack were destroyed. The Murakame story just made Abby into a cliche villain, which is one of the reasons Donna Mills left.

Val was destroyed yes, but Mack was destroyed even earlier to me. I really only like him in season 4. When he became obsessed with Wolfbridge he irritated me but under Latham he became unbearable. I'd argue Karen was ruined as well. She became reactionary under Latham, and actually antithetical to the unique, awesome character Karen was in the early seasons. Some of that was Michele Lee's influence tho -- apparently she despised the pill addiction storyline (which I LOVED) and said never again. Unfortunately that gave us Saint Karen the Judgmental.

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I didn't think she was destroyed but I thought she became one-note. I also hated the decision to give Meg to Karen and Mack - it gave no storyline (one or two attempts by Greg to get custody don't count). I don't understand why Greg couldn't raise Meg and still be a playboy. It's a soap, it's not real life - viewers weren't going to call social services. I really hated Greg's child being given away.

The focus shifting more towards corporate stories worked, and they seemed to truly know the best for Nicolette Sheridan (who was, IMO, pretty damn bad in her first season, the last of the more character-driven Knots). That, along with some fun characters like Anne and a genuine wit and sophistication in the show's production at this time, sort of helped hide the damage, but they did gut most of the longstanding characters and relationships.

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I say always how willing I am to go along with a writer's vision for a particular show so long as that vision entertains me. True, the Lechowicks' take on KNOTS was different from everything that had come before. For whatever reason, though, I enjoyed it. Not that it was perfect, mind you. But I adored the show just the same.

LML at Y&R, OTOH...that was a disaster waiting to happen. I could see that almost from the beginning.

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I do think it's sort of easy to point the finger at them, since Joan Van Ark and John Pleshette hated them.

As flawed as their work was, you can see how they did hold some of it together, compared to the hell that was season 13.

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Pamela Long on OLTL

I cannot go along with that if only because it was the very last time I couldn't wait to see what would happen next. (In a good way, lol.) Todd faking DID was dumb, because it seemed cruel to Viki; and Barbara Graham's story would have gone more smoothly, I suspect, had JFP not cast Sonia Satra in the role. But everything else (and Georgie Phillips' murder in particular)? Exciting. At least to me. Plus, between Clint and Lindsay's marriage and rumors of John Loprieno returning, it felt as if the Buchanans were poised to make a comeback and by someone who, unlike Michael Malone, would know how to write them. In the end, I just think it's a shame that JFP had other ideas in mind.

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I do think it's sort of easy to point the finger at them, since Joan Van Ark and John Pleshette hated them.

To be fair, detractors, including JVA and JP, have their point. You put an episode of the Lechowicks' time against Peter Dunne's and there's really no contest.

As flawed as their work was, you can see how they did hold some of it together, compared to the hell that was season 13.

And in the end, that is what counts. No matter how bad things got at KNOTS under the Lechowicks, S's 13 and 14 trumps all that and more.

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