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Passions Article

Shirley's Opinions

By Shirley

5/30/05 - 6/3/05

I can't believe it. Oh, not that I shouldn't have suspected something like this would happen, but there wasn't a clue to alert us about it, so it came as a complete surprise. But wouldn't you know something like this would happen at a time like this? We have been begging the writers to give us some pay offs for all our years of faithful watching, even though we complained our heads off about the lack of originality, the sophomoric dialog, the never-ending story lines, and the frustration we felt at all of it. They finally seemed to hear us, realize they had to reward us with some reveals and get some of the stories tied up for once, and the first big day was to have been this past Friday, and we were in heaven with the anticipation of learning one of the big secrets, finally! But I guess it just wasn't to be. I got a little worried when I saw tennis was on Friday morning, taking up the whole block from 10 am to 1 pm, but the guide said both NBC shows would be on at their regular time here on the West Coast, so I took them at their word and let my excitement grow. I turned to my local channel at one o'clock and found tennis was going on, so I assumed it was just a little overtime and the shows would be on shortly. However, the usual crawl across the bottom of the screen wasn't there, the one that advises us that the show will be shown in it's entirety at 1am or whatever, so I began to worry. Turns out neither show was on after all, because there was a rain delay during the tennis match and they decided to shove our shows out in favor of sitting around waiting for the rain to stop in France! Not even a word on our station here about what was going on, just tennis all afternoon. A quick inquiry to our local station's program manager brought me the news that the shows had been postponed until Monday, setting us a day back in getting the answers to some of our long-held questions but they hadn't felt the need to let us know with a crawl this time.

I have watched soaps for more years than most of you have been alive, I bet, and so I am aware that we are considered to be one step up from the Trekkies on the fan usefulness scale, but this was really the straw that broke the camel's back for me. Would they have been so cavalier had it been an NFL football game that they decided not to show so the tennis rain delay show could go on? Heck, no! Sports enthusiasts are considered too valuable to the sponsors or whomever, and no one has forgotten the Heidi brouhaha from the sixties, so there is no way they would ignore them and let them miss their "big game". Some prime time shows might be pre-empted for something "really important", but it wouldn't happen for tennis, and God forbid the half hour paid commercials should be cut off! No, it's only the soap fans that they feel they can push around this way, and I really resent that a lot. OK, I understand that earth shattering news takes precedent, and I can put up with a pre-emption for that, but when they break in to the show to tell us over and over that it's raining outside? Silly as it sounds, it happens here in California every time we get a good rain going. And we all know that when the Michael Jackson verdict comes out everything will be pushed aside so the announcers can sit there all afternoon and evening talking over and over about the verdict, the jurors, the defendant, the name it, they'll talk it to death, needlessly, and make us miss the show we love to watch. You and I know that a crawl across the screen would be good enough until the evening news and the inevitable night time talk fests about what happened and what it means for the world at large, etc, but it simply won't happen that way. It will become the biggest news of the millennium, and it's all we'll hear about for days afterward. And we have a big case in this area that also went to the jury on Friday, so we are doubly cursed. A man who killed or had his daughter kill his nine children, some he had with his own daughters and a niece will find out at some point soon whether he is guilty or not, and while he will be allowed to go back to his cell and spend the rest of the day in peace and quiet, we will be inundated with reporters all wanting to get their twenty-five cents in.

What I wonder about is, why do they think we are so easy to dismiss as unimportant? Why is it whenever someone runs a red light, or a strange object is found in a roadway (and turns out later to be nothing more than a doodad from a child's toy), or a stray suitcase is found at the airport that it is perfectly fine to cut into the soaps and spend time yakking about what isn't important in the least? Why are we soap addicts so disrespected? I don't think I'll ever figure that one out, but what I do know is, any network that treats it's soap viewers as well and with as much consideration as they do their prime time and sports show watchers will have their soaps watched by more and more people. It's only human nature to go where you know you're wanted and to stay away from where you're not.

After all that, I have to say this past week was a pretty good one, building up a lot of excitement as it went. It looks like Luis and Sheridan may be kaput, Theresa finally decided to do the right thing, although it's killing her to do it, and Katherine is about to find out what was under that darned gazebo. Beth feels she's won, but Dottie has the new DNA test results and is frantically trying to reach Sheridan and tell her about them, so we know Beth's joy will be short-lived. Now, the only dark spot on the week is the incessant ramming of Ned and Fancy down our throats, which I find annoying. I don't like either of them, they are too much in love with themselves and clueless to what they are doing to everyone around them since they just don't care, and they are not the kind of people I would have anything to do with in real life. I really have no desire to deal with them in fantasy land, either. Boooor-r-r-r-ing!!!!! They may get better, but it's hard to see how at this point. Last but not least, we have Whitney still determined never to tell Fox and Chad the truth, causing Fox to become a mean, vindictive, sabotaging fiend, something he never showed signs of before, and Chad to become obsessed with using the baby to get Whitney back. UGH!! I've told you my views on that whole thing already so I don't have to do it again, but let me just say it isn't sitting any better with me now than it did when he started it. It's just too gross to think about. As much as this story disgusts me, however, is how much I am really beginning to like the rest of them so far. Just knowing that some of the secrets are going to be revealed soon is enough to keep me watching for now, but God have mercy on them if their hype about all this is destroyed by stupid "secrets" that don't live up to the promise they have given us. I guess we will begin learning those answers Monday, unless the jury comes in, so we just need to sit back and wait, and hope it turns out as good as they made it sound. But I have to tell you, if the verdicts in the two trials we are going to get soon out here are more exciting than the secrets they are supposed to reveal on the show, it might be the end of it, once and for all. Disappointment is not something that keeps viewers coming back for long, after all.

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