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Nov 26 2008, 09:56 AM
Nov 26 2008, 02:39 AM
Thom Racina sucks, and his writing is so 80's that it wouldn't translate well into today's soap opera environment. But, in a way, DAYS is still stuck in the 80's with the whole supercouple bullshit (not trying to offend any fans), but supercouples are extremely limited, and storylines for couples like that tend to be extremely farfetched. Racina is a fan of farfetched stories. DAYS was creatively the biggest GH rip-off of the 80's, but while GH outgrew that supercouple stuff and progressed into a more contemporary show, DAYS had tried too hard over the years to recapture that supercouple heyday of the 80's, and it just gets tiring after a while.

I don't get the argument that 80's DAYS was "campy". Yes, there were wacky sci-fi plots but the show was overall pretty grounded and character-driven. They integrated subjects like child abuse (Shane/Kim/Victor), adultery (Victor/Shawn/Caroline/Bo), adoption/spousal abuse (Steve, Adrienne, Duke, Jo) into major long-term plots. Gimmicks like the "Three Prisms" were used to set-up ensemble adventures but the stories weren't about the gimmicks. Also, the supercouples worked precisely because the writers weren't obsessed with them and were careful to develop strong individual characters. Many of the most compelling 80's relationship (Stefano/Tony, Bo/Victor, Bo/Roman, Jack/Steve) were non-romantic in nature. Anderson/Racina's writing may have been "campy" at a superficial level but it had too much depth to be compared to the LCD idiocy of JER, Langan, SSM and Tomlin.
I totally agree. I loved a lot of the stuff from the '80s and am a supercouple fan.

But I did not watch soaps for about a 15 year period until 2006. I was/am a HUGE fan of shows like Angel, Veronica Mars, Alias, and House MD. So it is not like I am stuck in a box wanting only a certain kind of show or writing. Why I loved these other shows mainly has to do with the sharp characterization and well-developed characters. Yeah, I really have nothing in common with a vampire like Angel but his need for redemption and self-acceptance is something we can all identify with. And as much as I would have loved to be like Sydney Bristow kicking butt on Alias, it was seeing her struggles with family situations and self-identity that made her so relatable to me as a character.

And I would say that the most interesting relationships on House are the non-romantic ones (House/Wilson and House/Foreman).

I watched Y&R for a few weeks last year because a roommate at the time was a huge fan. After 3 weeks, though, the majority of the characters all seemed to be kind of the same to me - nothing particularly compelling or unique. You could have substituted any of the women for another in the respective storyline and it would have seemed to have worked to me.

That is great that they want to bring up a new generation on Days and I understand why. But, IMO, I have seen very little character development, let alone consistency or relatability, in any of the younger characters. If they really want to end with a bang by just relying on the younger characters, they need to seriously focus on fleshing out the characters on a consistent basis. Putting them in compelling non-romantic relationships is a one way to do that.

Oh, and I think the Jack and Steve relationship was one of the most interesting relationships on the show - and the fact that the characters were played by two incredibly talented actors who owned their characters was a huge part of it. When I watch some of their old scenes together, I just can't imagine that kind of material being done on the show today, in particular because it is two male characters rather than a romantic relationship. I would say that most of the stuff done in that storyline would easily stand up with anything on prime time drama today.


Edited by Ives, Nov 27 2008, 12:08 AM.
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Thom Racina Interview · DAYS: News, Spoilers & Discussion