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Steve Frame
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People always talk about bad dialogue. The average viewer could care less about the bad dialogue. Back in the 70's on Y&R, the dialogue was so bad even the actors made fun of it.

Janice Lynde once told an audience at a fan gathering about it. One of the fans asked why so many of the actors often had pained expressions on their faces. She said it was their way of not laughing at some of the lines they had to say. They looked that way from trying not to laugh.

The stories were great but the dialogue was awful. Kay Alden was one of the dialogue writers back then. She has grown a lot.

But the show was very popular. Most of the actors were good but they weren't great.

The stories are what drew them. And how they cared about the characters. Also the show offered something for all viewers. It was balanced. Even minor characters meant something to the audience because William J. Bell designed it that way.

For years soaps thrived with bad dialogue, less glamourous sets, less expensive wardrobes, etc. All that doesn't matter to the average viewer. The Secret Storm at the height of it's popularity spent at the most $50 on a performers full wardrobe. today I have read they spend into the upper hundreds at times on one outfit that you may never see again.

If the shows worked to balance the stories, perk up the stories, feature characters that the audience loves and has a connection with, and give all ages something to relate too - then the shows would do better. They are not going to soar like they once did but they might be able to hold onto the audiences they have.

Plus the fans have got to change too. They have got to learn that their fave can't be on 5 days a week and everything can't revolve around them.

The soaps need to stop spending so much money on stuff that doesn't matter too. Cut back on the expensive wardrobes and the like. Cut the writing staff - I know they will have to fight the WGA on that. They created these big writing staffs in the 80's with some of their bargaining tools. Before that there were smaller staffs and less people to interfere with the story from the way the headwriter designed it.

With budgets tight they don't need the big staffs they have. Why is it always the actors that the fans identify with that have to pay or are the ones that are cut to save money. Cut some of the writing and directing staff and put that money into using more sets to make the stories more believable.

The stories are where it is at. And the way those stories are executed and with the characters they use.
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