The sign of a doomed relationship

In the real world, the fact that ‘he’ is your uncle would be enough for anyone to realize that dating him is a really REALLY bad idea… for those who DON’T think of it as a bad idea? There are one of two explanations

1 – You’re waiting for a call from the ‘Springer’ show. Good luck as a headlining guest and remember: when the bell rings, you don’t HAVE to fight your sister just because she’s stolen your uncle boyfriend. Break the chain!

2 – You’re a soap character and as long as you can rule out a blood link with your hottie uncle, it’s all good!

If a familial relationship isn’t enough to end a relationship in the reel world, the fact that Mr. Wrong repeatedly brags to your father (his brother) about how hot the sex with you is, and how he’s using you to make your daddy angry, should be. The Bold and The Beautiful’s Steffy Forrester has GREAT hair… but it would be nice if there was something in her head besides hair follicles! What is the point of her becoming involved with Rick again, other than to prove that she’s crazy – and not good can’t-wait-to-see-what-she’ll-do-next crazy, either?

How do you know that the man you’re in love with, uncle or not, is WRONG for you? That’s EASY! When HE says:

Rick: (Sneers)

Ridge: All right… (Sighs) I’m all yours. What’s on your mind, Ricky boy?

Rick: Oh, nothing much, really. I just came here to give you these designs and to make you squirm a little bit more. It’s kind of becoming my favorite pastime.

Ridge: You got something to say, say it. I’m all ears.

Rick: I kind of feel bad for you. I mean, I’ve got your little girl wrapped around my finger, and it’s eating you alive. There’s just nothing you can do, kind of like there was nothing I could do when I was a kid growing up and you were hurting my mom over and over again, making her life a living hell. It’s payback time, Ridge. It’s time that you know how it feels, how I felt, watching someone I loved get tortured endlessly by a man who had no idea who in hell who he wanted to be with. Do you think your daughter would like a little torture, a little “naughty” torture in the bedroom, hmm? What do you think? I think it would drive her wild. Do you, too?

Ridge: Still that angry little boy, huh?

Rick: Oh, Ridge, this has nothing to do with anger. This is way beyond anger. I hate you. I hate you, and I have never hated anybody in my entire life.

Ridge: And you want to get back at me?

Rick: No, I want to put you in a psychological trap, like the one I was in when I was a kid and the one you’re in right now.

Ridge: Steffy’s gonna see right through you.

Rick: Oh, no, she won’t. Steffy is not your little girl anymore. I own her. Do you hear what I’m saying to you, Ridge? I own her. And there’s not a damn thing you can do to change that.

Ridge: Keep talking, Rick.

Rick: Oh, I will. You ain’t heard nothing yet.

And he continues with:

Ridge: You got more you want to lay on me, Ricky boy?

Rick: More? Hell, Ridge, I’m just gettin’ started. See, you need to understand that this is the changing of the guard. You’ve been the big man around here since you hit puberty– women falling at your feet, women swooning. “Ridge Almighty.” But not anymore, because your beautiful, sophisticated, smart little girl Steffy has fallen for me. (Laughs) How delicious is that? She worships me, Ridge. She would do anything for me, anything I ask. I may not have your rugged cheekbones, your award-winning smile, but I got it where it counts, and Steffy knows it.

Rick: (Chuckles) Ridge, can you believe this? The irony in this situation that–that Steffy has fallen madly in love with me of all people? And you hate me more than anybody else in this entire world. And I have Steffy eating out of my hands. And if you keep fighting us, if you make us miserable, I will take her the hell away from here, and you will never see her again.

Ridge: Oh, please, keep talking.

Rick: See, my marriage to Steffy– it’s not about two people in love. It’s about revenge. It’s about revenge for the years of pain that you have inflicted upon my mother and me. So when I’m saying my vows in your little destiny-westiny spot on the beach, I’m not even gonna be looking at my bride. I’m gonna be looking at you, poncho, and the pain etched in your face as you say “bye-bye” to another daughter.

Rick: Ugh, that arrogant look of yours– it just makes me sick.

Ridge: I’m arrogant?

Rick: You know, Ridge, I want to talk to you about something. See, I’m not– I’m not really happy with the way you treat the president of this company. Like, when I walk into a room, I don’t want you to say, “Oh, hey, little Ricky boy. How are you?” No, I want you to act like the president just walked into the room, ’cause you’re gonna treat me with respect. When I’m married to Steffy, I’m gonna be able to make her something that you’ve never been able to– a real Forrester, something that you have been pretending to be your entire life. Isn’t that right, “Marone”?

Ridge: Oh, don’t stop.

Rick: Oh, believe me, I’m not–

Ridge: Come on, you’re just getting wound up here.

Rick: Yeah, exactly.

Ridge: Keep going.

Rick: I’m not gonna stop. You ain’t ever gonna get me to shut up, Ridge. I’m gonna throw this in your face for the rest of your life. You’re gonna hear about us all the time. You’re gonna have a front row seat on holidays and–and–and birthdays and my favorite– my favorite– Valentine’s Day. I had an idea. You know what we should do? We should double date. You and my mom and Steffy and I, we could head up the coast. We can get two cabins right next to each other. I got to– I got to warn you, though. If my cabin’s a-rockin’, don’t come a-knockin’, ’cause you know what we’re gonna be doing? We’re gonna be making little Ridgies. I can see the steam comin’ out of your ears.

Ridge: (Sighs)

Rick: And the veins bulging in your neck. You want to punch me, don’t you? Go ahead. Hit me. Hit me! What’s wrong? You chicken? (Clucking) Come on, Ridge! What’s the matter with you? What, are you getting a little green in the gills? You comin’ down with something? You better not be. You need all the strength that you can get, ’cause you got to be able to walk your little daughter down the aisle on our wedding day. We’re gonna be one, big, happy family. And I can’t wait to put that ring on Steffy’s finger, ’cause then we can go off to the honeymoon, and that night is gonna be the greatest night of Steffy’s life… Dad.

Guiding Light leading daytime’s echo chamber

Ellen Wheeler wants to Save Daytime (Thanks LizDC at the Official GL board for posting the link.  There are so many issues with this article, but this line in particular caught my eye:

The stereotypical soap viewer is the older housewife, but the shows have historically picked up a lot of fans on college campuses. With its face-lift, Guiding Light is banking on pulling in a whole new generation of viewers. “I do think if you were flipping through the channels you wouldn’t say, ‘Oh, this is a soap opera, I’m not going to stop,’ ” says Wheeler. “You wouldn’t know what it was.”

Here’s the problem… most of us STILL don’t seem to know what GL is.  The show bears little to no resemblance to the GL of even a decade ago.  It has little resemblance to a reality show. It feels more as if the show is a documentary about insane people blowing around some small town pretending they’re soap characters.  I miss daytime.  The REAL daytime.  I began watching daytime with my grandmother – anyone I’ve every spoken to about watching soaps began watching with one of those ‘stereotypically older viewers’ that daytime now laments and discounts.

Those S.O.V’s were daytime’s best kept secret – their most reliable recruiting tool.  I loved almost all daytime storylines, and didn’t care if there were hormonal teens or hot young adults on air.  I loved the family interactions interspersed with outrageous behavior (which did not include: demonic possession, time travel, cloned dead wives, space travel, alien life forms, witches, living dolls, or much of any of the other much which has creeped into daytime storytelling.  If daytime fans wanted that, Dark Shadows would still be on air.)

Outrageous behavior,  in the early days, was ‘stealing’ a husband or wife, or DAYS’ Julie stealing from department stores.  It’s hard to believe how the definition of outrageous has changed.

The interviewer goes on to add:

The actors generally approve of the reality-style shooting, which leads to a fresher kind of acting. “It’s less like shooting a play,” says Murray Bartlett, who plays Cyrus the Australian jewel thief. “Now you can lose yourself in the environment. It feels more intimate, and you can hopefully be more subtle.”

Could someone reconcile the writer’s (not the actor’s) comment with this:

Carolyn: Can you give me an example of what you’re talking about?

Actor: Getting changed in the backseat of a car without the windows tinted on a busy street while trying to run lines with the actor in the car with you, because you don’t have any other time to rehearse. Holding your own lights. Stuff that’s just laughable. And they want a good product from this? The system is there for a reason, so people are taken advantage of and exploited. We all need to have our jobs respected…  Read the full transcript HERE

How is it that the soap press can tell what a complete disaster filming in Peapack is but the author of this article sells the ‘new’ GL as inventive?  The author can’t be a fan of daytime.  I know daytime is considered fluff but I wish those outside the genre would ask some seriously tough quesions of soaps Executive Producers and Writers.  Doing a puff piece on it is a waste of time and leaves fans feeling even MORE frustrated.

Where is the discussion about RPG (Gus) and BE (Harley) and the others (like Laura Wright, ex-Cassie) who have jumped ship because of low morale after the Wheeler team took over?  Where are the comments about the actors who are afraid of speaking up out of fear or retaliation? Why haven’t there been any comments that the ratings keep sinking, and fast, even for the new format? 

Everything about daytime is superficial now.  That includes the articles written about daytime.  GL’s Bartlett may indeed enjoy the new filming setting, at least until the fall chill and winter months set in.  I’m waiting to see what the show does then.  If the soap press, who is presumably closer to the actors and actually talks to more of them, is to be believed, all is not well in the city and state of Peapack, New Jersey. 

The interviewer talked with Wheeler about the storylines she didn’t like and got rid of but you didn’t ask her about the GL history she knows, loves, and what has she done to try to build on what once worked, what she’d like to do to return to the style and level of writing that kept fans tuned in.  If Wheeler’s done so and I’ve missed it, someone let me know!  What I also find interesting is that daytime execs use to ‘blame OJ’ (or the OJ trial) for the decline of soap ratings.  Mechling’s article goes all the way back to the 1992 introduction of MTV’s ‘Real World’. 

Well hells bells, COPS was introduced in 1989, Springer took the air in 1991, what other ‘reality’ show dealing with human relationships can we blame?  Enough with the excuses.  The problem for daytime, in my opinion, is that writers and producers have spent more time focusing on gimmicks.  They’ve decided that the familial relationships developed with longtime favorite characters were ‘too old-fashioned’.  They’ve killed off both. 

Daytime is notorious for following bad leads (both inside and outside of the genre) – Marlena’s possession on DOOL and then the introduction of ‘Passions’ has turned into a host of ‘supernatural’ storylines across daytime for some time and has only recently seemingly ended.  Siblings and parents share lovers more intimately and often than ever before.  Misattributed paternities are the norm, not the exception, and with such, there’s no longer a stigma on dating someone who was once your father or brother (Ridge and Bridget, BnB). 

Oh.Snap!  Great!  Now I’m wondering why I’m still watching daytime.  I have to go and consider the point… I’ll see you next blog… maybe…