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Y&R's Doug Davidson v. Nelson Branco?!!


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On 6/25/2021 at 10:13 AM, DramatistDreamer said:

It might not have been so bad if the industry had mix of good journalism right along beside the gossipy fare but there was never a good journalistic sector (and there were issues worthy of investigation and exploration), so the trash floated to the top and that flotsam  was the only thing people could see. It's no wonder soaps ended up getting so little regard.

not all together true: soap opera weekly (full disclosure: i was an occasional contributor) was the first publication to treat soaps as an industry. yes, there were the ‘beauty tips from soap stars,’ but there were also serious actor profiles (the best by laura fissinger, who had written for rolling stone), interviews with head writers and executive producers, and insightful commentary by editor-in-chief, mimi torchin (who once wrote something that so irritated ken corday that he denied access to days…). 

 

of course, after the magazine was sold (around 2000, as i recall), things devolved. but the early years, they were something. 

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1 hour ago, wonderwoman1951 said:

not all together true: soap opera weekly (full disclosure: i was an occasional contributor) was the first publication to treat soaps as an industry. yes, there were the ‘beauty tips from soap stars,’ but there were also serious actor profiles (the best by laura fissinger, who had written for rolling stone), interviews with head writers and executive producers, and insightful commentary by editor-in-chief, mimi torchin (who once wrote something that so irritated ken corday that he denied access to days…). 

 

of course, after the magazine was sold (around 2000, as i recall), things devolved. but the early years, they were something. 

 

I shouldn't be judging by today's standards, where there are all kinds of scholarly think-pieces. I'm still hoping for a Ken Burnsian type of documentary series, or at least a Television In America type of series, which gives a robust insight that can't be so easily dismissed by people outside if the genre. 

The soaps have, even at their height of popularity, not gotten the measure of respect that they should have gotten. JMO, but I didn't see any if those publications helping in that regard.

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On 6/25/2021 at 3:58 PM, Roman said:


dude. don't make me LOL like that. LOL!!! but you are so right. Doug has been whining about this for years now. here's a thought....HE CAN'T ACT!!! 

 

lol! I'm glad you might have chuckled. LOL. Doug is such a whiny bitch. I'm so tired of him. Like the whole "look at Doug, Lauralee and Tricia Cast on swings". It read of "LOOK IT'S ME DOUG! DON'T FORGET ME! INVITE ME BACK!"

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Not that Doug is entirely innocent but this mistreatment of vets with no fan loyalty is disturbing. It does remind me of when Hogan Sheffer insulted Eileen Fulton at her 70th Birthday party telling her to know her place after publicly commenting about the lack of Lisa with lots of ATWT fans online  agreeing she should’ve kept her mouth shut and should be punished for her comments. Ugh. 

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1 hour ago, soapfan770 said:

It does remind me of when Hogan Sheffer insulted Eileen Fulton at her 70th Birthday party telling her to know her place after publicly commenting about the lack of Lisa with lots of ATWT fans online  agreeing she should’ve kept her mouth shut and should be punished for her comments. Ugh. 

 

Wow, I had heard about other things after ATWT's cancellation, but not about this. 

Although, I have respect for human life and it is always sad when a human being passes from this earth, the hagiography surrounding Sheffer, particularly his work on ATWT, after his passing is an aspect that remains mystifying to me. He always came off as flippant about these shows. It seemed like he was only interested in doing well enough to position himself to move onto something "better". When it became obvious that time wouldn't come, the work got even more sloppy.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, DramatistDreamer said:

 

Wow, I had heard about other things after ATWT's cancellation, but not about this. 

Although, I have respect for human life and it is always sad when a human being passes from this earth, the hagiography surrounding Sheffer, particularly his work on ATWT, after his passing is an aspect that remains mystifying to me. He always came off as flippant about these shows. It seemed like he was only interested in doing well enough to position himself to move onto something "better". When it became obvious that time wouldn't come, the work got even more sloppy.

 

It's about personality cults. A lot of people are suckers for people who have funny quips in interviews. Many journalists, like Carolyn Hinsey and Michael Logan (he of the leather jacket headshot) also saw themselves as above soaps and as cool, and he played into that because he clearly hated soaps. These same cultists followed him around from soap to soap, to diminishing returns. The last being Y&R, where his groupies worked with the fawning groupies like Branco and the Daytime Confidential hacks, and a few bloggers and others who were also trying to push more legacy hypes like Tom "cut the crap"  Casiello, who was supposed to be a tie to Marland because he had an old ATWT story outline, or something (I can't remember anymore).

 

I still have bad memories of how the Sheffer personality cult infested soap magazines and to a lesser degree some of the boards then (as so many fans loved Hunt Block's Craig). Magazines that I used to have some semblance of respect for, like SOD (I had given up SPW by then, mostly), praising the "comedy" of Jack being raped by Julia. 

 

There was a real toxicity and cruelty in the soap genre and the journalists and wannabe journalist fan sites that covered it in the '00s. In some ways it prefaces what we would see in politics and online with things like Gamergate. 

 

I miss the soap genre with all my heart, but as I type this out I realize for the first time what a bullet we dodged by not having to see just how incredibly vile and terrifying everything would have gotten if more than 4 bare bones soaps had managed to make it through the '10s. 

Edited by DRW50
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14 minutes ago, DRW50 said:

There was a real toxicity and cruelty in the soap genre and the journalists and wannabe journalist fan sites that covered it in the '00s. In some ways it prefaces what we would see in politics and online with things like Gamergate. 

The blogging culture of the mid-2000s was so incredibly toxic (Perez Hilton, Gawker, etc.), and the soaps had their own low-rent-grifter version of that. Looking back and you’re right: things really went off a cliff in the whole culture around then.
 

It was also a time when a cult of masculinity was driving a lot of “quality” pop culture (with the white male antihero ascending with Sopranos, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, etc.) And so many in soaps had an inferiority complex about it, and Hogan was overpraised for “giving men their dicks back.” Even if you believed male characters deserved more complexity, that’s such a fücked-up statement. Yet so many journalists were like, “Thank God a visionary like Hogan has come to save us!”

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5 minutes ago, Faulkner said:

The blogging culture of the mid-2000s was so incredibly toxic (Perez Hilton, Gawker, etc.), and the soaps had their own low-rent-grifter version of that. Looking back and you’re right: things really went off a cliff in the whole culture around then.
 

It was also a time when a cult of masculinity was driving a lot of “quality” pop culture (with the white male antihero ascending with Sopranos, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, etc.) And so many in soaps had an inferiority complex about it, and Hogan was overpraised for “giving men their dicks back.” Even if you believed male characters deserved more complexity, that’s such a fücked-up statement. Yet so many journalists were like, “Thank God a visionary like Hogan has come to save us!”

 

And now they are trying to bring Gawker back...

 

Yes, "men with balls," or whatever the hell the quote was, when that was the last of the problems with Tom as a character by that point. 

 

The end result of this was storylines like Marshall Travers raping Jessica and being hurriedly killed off because of fan confusion and anger (noticeably the same 'journalists' who loved Hunt Block's Craig had little to say here). And Jessica and Margo fighting over that Doc sleaze soon after. 

 

The likes of Hogan, Guza, JFP, Logan, Hinsey, etc. could never get past their inherent disdain for and shame for soaps, shame that they had to cover or work in the genre. And this shame and self-hatred helped to kill the work of generations of artists. 

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Diminishing returns is an apt description.

It's more sad than anything. The fact that people couldn't check their egos long enough to see what damage was being done. Soap fans were terrified of losing these shows, which is understandable but fawning over mediocre at best writing and incredibly toxic writing at its very worst, only helped hasten the demise of this genre, by not demanding better. And nobody please tell me that soap fans didn't have that type of power. We're all acquainted with at least one story of an actor or storyline that got scuttled because of fan outcry.

It's never good to be that desperate.

2 hours ago, Faulkner said:

The blogging culture of the mid-2000s was so incredibly toxic (Perez Hilton, Gawker, etc.), and the soaps had their own low-rent-grifter version of that. Looking back and you’re right: things really went off a cliff in the whole culture around then.

 

Good point about the parallel universes of trashy blog culture. I would also add that while other entertainment had at least, the appearance of balance with the traditional media (arts and entertainment sections of newspapers, etc.), the soaps seemingly became utterly reliant on those toxic blogs, that often seemed like the only game in town. The one or two blogs that tried to do good quality, comprehensive coverage found it tough sledding and are no longer active.

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13 hours ago, soapfan770 said:

Not that Doug is entirely innocent but this mistreatment of vets with no fan loyalty is disturbing. It does remind me of when Hogan Sheffer insulted Eileen Fulton at her 70th Birthday party telling her to know her place after publicly commenting about the lack of Lisa with lots of ATWT fans online  agreeing she should’ve kept her mouth shut and should be punished for her comments. Ugh. 

 

Wait, what?

 

I know that Sheffer severely diminished the vets' presence on the canvas and basically treated them like irrelevant under-fivers, but I had never heard about him being despicable enough to tell a beloved vet to "know your place."

 

What happened there?

 

As for fans being vile enough to call for her punishment...UGH. Younger viewers, no doubt, who did not care about the vets or the show's legacy. 

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, DRW50 said:

 

And now they are trying to bring Gawker back...

 

Yes, "men with balls," or whatever the hell the quote was, when that was the last of the problems with Tom as a character by that point. 

 

The end result of this was storylines like Marshall Travers raping Jessica and being hurriedly killed off because of fan confusion and anger (noticeably the same 'journalists' who loved Hunt Block's Craig had little to say here). And Jessica and Margo fighting over that Doc sleaze soon after. 

 

The likes of Hogan, Guza, JFP, Logan, Hinsey, etc. could never get past their inherent disdain for and shame for soaps, shame that they had to cover or work in the genre. And this shame and self-hatred helped to kill the work of generations of artists. 

 

Absolutely. These people harbored a lot of shame about working in the soap genre, precisely because it was what they sneeringly referred to as a 'woman's genre.' The misogyny was rampant. They were obsessed with focusing the show on unappetizing anti-heroes (as opposed to making an ensemble) because they thought they were The Moment and it made them edgy writers. JFP in last week's Locher podcast was still waxing lyrical about wanting to be a producer like Steve Bochco (talk about 80s throwback). They all wanted to be on Primetime or premium cable and were highly resentful that their 'talents' were not recognized and limited to this so-called girly genre. 

 

And when TPTB despise the project they are working on, it seeps out of the pores of the show. Pretty soon that disdain for the show, and its fans, trickles down to the cast who feel low down the acting totem-pole and start to resent it, too.

 

I appreciate that some of the soaps have calmed down on the 'Men with balls' stuff a little bit these days. However, the funding on these shows is so severely curtailed that it is hard for crew and cast to feel valued by their network and therefore confident about the genre.

Edited by Cat
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Cat said:

JFP in last week's Locher podcast was still waxing lyrical about wanting to be a producer like Steve Bochco (talk about 80s throwback). They all wanted to be on Primetime or premium cable and were highly resentful that their 'talents' were not recognized and limited to this so-called girly genre.

amazing how, in her own words, jfp explained perfectly the whys of how she inflicted so much damage on the soaps she led, which i’ll post on the dedicated thread. so many issues have been raised on this thread, i’m having trouble keeping track of who said what where.

On 6/26/2021 at 9:34 PM, DramatistDreamer said:

I'm still hoping for a Ken Burnsian type of documentary series, or at least a Television In America type of series, which gives a robust insight that can't be so easily dismissed by people outside if the genre. 

and yet, this is what’s in the works… the tone is a bit, muscular, shall we say. 

 

https://www.tuneintomorrow.tv/

 

i, too, would love an comprehensive consideration of the soaps. the issue creeps into so many discussions,  i thinking it might be time for a separate topic to talk about how it could happen — or not — there are a lot of obstacles. 

Edited by wonderwoman1951
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