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Viewing Single Post From: SOD Best & Worst -- 2004
Mason
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BEST SHOW YOU'RE NOT WATCHING


GUIDING LIGHT


The massive transformation that GL has undergone over the last six months far exceeds the "Most Improved" tag. Byzantine plots, gone. Ill-conceived characters, axed. What remains is a show so riveting and well-defined, we can't understand why more people aren't watching.

Here is what they'd see: Springfield's grief over the death of Spaulding scion Phillip is giving way to a well-plotted whodunit. Dinah's return rocked the lives of dad Ross and archenemy Cassie. True love couldn't keep Gus and Harley together, but they are slowly discovering that they can't live apart, either. Bill and Olivia are grappling with marriage and love (in that order), while Danny struggles to move on (finally) without Michelle. Witty and affecting dialogue says it all, as beloved vets (like Holly, Blake and Reva) mesh with fascinating newcomers (like Sebastian and Jonathan).

But no one story - or character - dominates the scene. GL invests in people, not plot. Heroines like Cassie, Reva and Harley are seductive, maternal, vengeful and occasionally peacemakers; heroes such as Josh, Gus and Danny are complex and often dark. They are real people who make real mistakes, but all have an underlying nobility. The scoundrels - Alan, Lizzie, Dinah, Jonathan, Sebastian - can commit the most devilish of deeds, yet retain vulnerability and humanity.

The show's commitment to focusing on core families whose lives and shared pasts are intertwined makes Springfield feel like a real town. In short, GL has all the elements you want in a soap. The only thing missing is you.
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SOD Best & Worst -- 2004 · Soap Opera History & Discussion