Successaphobia, n.,  pronunciation: (suhk-ses a foh-bee-uh)

Definition: disorder shared by daytime writers, producers, and network executives that leads them to fear, and therefore sabotage any possible success.

Sure, there’s a lot to like about daytime, and much of the time, I love it.  It’s just that there are times when I can’t help but wonder why writers spend so much time doing everything RIGHT, only to turn around and throw it all out the window.  The worst thing a soap fan can do is admit loving their respective daytime shows.  The writers, producers, and network suits hear it.  Successaphobia kicks in and spells a sure end to the clean storyline telling that made you, oh so foolishly, believe that this time would be different.

Case in point?

OLTL.  Hunt Block as the crude and hate inspiring Det Ramsey, as dirty a character as any soap fan (or writer) could imagine.  Whether you loved to hate, or simply hated the guy, he was fun. Fine, he was fun for me because he tormented Johnny Boy McBain and that’s always a good time in my book.  Even still, watching characters band together to find out his secret, throwing a character from the past – Tina Lord – into the mix as a partner in crime, watching the Buchanans lose their family company, watching Dorian Lord gloat about her inevitable victory, watching Tess’ resurgence… you name it, and OLTL had it going on.  So where did the writers go wrong?  Who decided that fans were having ‘too much’ fun?  Storylines that made sense came to a screeching halt and we were then force fed a diet of Marcie’s baby blues, time travel, Todd keeping his rape victim captive and deceived, Blair bedding Morbid McBain, and a psychotic break from a genuine ‘war hero’ who then takes a child hostage.  (What do ABC writers have against war heroes?  GH used a character who was an Iraq Veteran to further a serial killer storyline, later finding another suspect, but infuriating fans in the process).

As for OLTL, what I once expressed as unbridled enthusiasm has turned into dismay.

I’m sorry for picking on OLTL because it’s not alone.  It’s all of daytime.   While it’s always been the case that daytime television by definition requires periods that are ‘down time’, it’s a labor intensive genre, the ‘down’ times are displacing the ‘up’ times more frequently than before and are lasting longer.

What should happen (and would be more likely to draw viewers in):

*  Instead of praising the man who continues to sleep with and emotionally abuse her daughter, BnB’s Brooke should be ripping his head off.  She should be plotting how to take every dime he has, leaving him destitute and sorry for the way he’s treated Bridget.  How about a little corporate intrigue with a smart woman in charge, or women who at least aren’t selling their souls just to get laid?

Wouldn’t it be worth it to watch Jackie’s jaw drop when she realizes that Brooke is not only NOT smitten with her morally challenged idiot of a son, but that she’s willing to destroy the Marone clan to protect her daughter.  Given the level of disrespect Jackie has shown Bridget, I’d say she has it coming.  Wouldn’t it be worth it to watch Jackie’s anger grow, only to realize there’s nothing she could do about Brooke stripping the Marone clan of everything?

I realize that’s asking a lot from Bold and Beautiful writers, but aren’t fans worth it?

* Instead of sitting at Kate’s bedside, swearing vengeance on the person who nearly killed her on their wedding day, GH’s Kate and Sonny should be off on some romantic honeymoon. I want a location shoot and lots of sweet and romantic scenes (save the sex scenes, I don’t need them.  We need romance in daytime.)  The most frightening moment Kate and Sonny should be facing is the alliance that has seemingly been forged between Carly and Olivia.  Instead, with the exception of Carly, every woman Sonny’s loved is either dead or in some sort of danger.  No woman should be forced to spend even a moment’s notice with the guy. No fan should be forced to watch another Corinthos bride be taken down by one of his enemies.

* GL’s Cassie will be packing things up and leaving town soon.  To Nicole Forester, Cassie’s portrayer, I wish you nothing but joy with the impending birth of your child, and best wishes in your marriage.  My fondest wish, at this point however, is that Cassie was taking Rafe, Natalia, Cyrus, Grady, Daisy, Jeffrey, and a host of other characters with her!

Even more?  I’m starting to wish she’d take Bill Lewis, too.   The way he treats Lizzie is just not cool.  She ran to him without a thought for herself (sadly) when she heard about Max, and still he treats her like garbage.  Isn’t Bill a little young to tell a woman to just focus on ‘looking pretty’!?!?  Just when I think the writers can’t stun me any more than they already have.

ATWT… Wait… I actually don’t have anything bad to say about the show!  MOLY!  I’m sure I’ll find some frustration with the show when the writers come up with more ridiculous reasons for Nuke to sit in the shadows while every other Oakdale resident finds love, but I’ll take what I can get from the show, for now.  While I’m primarily a Luke fan, I realized how much I missed Noah until he returned… little cutie pie.

Between DOOL and ATWT, right now, I actually have something to watch.  YnR doesn’t suck so much either, right now… but give all three shows a chance, they’ll be back in suck rotation… SOON!

Successaphobia is a real bitch.

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