- Nov 16 2008, 01:09 AM
I often wonder what it must be like for a person who started watching Days after 1999. It must be like a completely different experience. The show must have a completely different identity for them.
I think it is too. Although I remember parts of the possession storyline, the secret room, Sami/Austin/Carrie and such, I wasn't truly invested in DAYS as a fan until right around, or a bit before, the John and Marlena wedding. That had to have been mid-99.
In my experience on this forum, I think there's a lot of people yearning for that early 90's identity of DAYS, but I know my cousin and I (who are both turning 20 and have the same viewing history) more so want that 1999 - 2001 era back. Or what is sometimes referred to as "Langan's reign of terror" around here - I loved all the stories then, and I admit that would be my total DAYS ideal. Coronation, Princess Gina, the teen scene, Kate/Victor, Vivian, baby switch, Stefano etc. were all great for me and an absolute joy to watch. The funny thing is that there's a large number of "80's characters" who weren't even around for ANY of that shit....I had no idea who Steve, Kayla, Anna, and for the most part, Tony, even WERE, yet they still told good story. It's weird to me now that in the late 2000's the show has tried to redefine itself with 80's characters after such a huge time gap, and maybe that's causing the problem. It's 2 steps back. The show today, with the mix of characters seems like this weird blend of growth (characters like EJ SORASed on the scene) and DAYS long forgotten past (Steve and Kayla). I'm not opposed to people coming back, in fact I love it if done right as it shows DAYS rich history, but how effective are returns with almost 20 year gaps? The more I think about it, the more I feel like Steve and Kayla's return was COMPLETELY unnecessary as they seemed to fuck the canvas up.. I can't put my finger as to why, but there's something that's dated about them and I feel it every time they're on my screen. They aren't classic DAYS to me, or any of my generation. I felt myself trying to buy into the "ooh, 80's DAYS awesomeness!" craze when they came on, but it didn't work because obviously I'm way too young to know that era. Maybe they as a couple defined the 80's, but for me, John and Marlena defined the 90's and they are a much more central couple in terms of recent(ish) history.
So, yeah, it is a completely different experience. And I think I can say that objectively with my exposure to DAYS pre-1999, and becoming an actual invested fan that same year. There's such a huge difference, and I think for a lot of the younger viewers, if the 1999 - 01 teen scene/coronation/princess Gina doesn't define DAYS for them, the craziness of JER's serial killer storyline definitely does. This fan base is just impossible to please....you have all different groups wanting different things. I think the younger people are more likely to drop the show, but the older viewers aren't, so it's probably best to try and appease the MOST invested fanbase than trying to entice newer viewers who are going to be unpredictable with their viewing patterns.