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Daytime Royalty Interview with Shawn Christian; Kate Mansi's K20 Birthday Benefit
Topic Started: Sep 22 2013, 03:06 AM (5,555 Views)
Romancer66


granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 02:16 PM
Romancer66
Sep 26 2013, 01:35 PM
I think MA got better material during the third run than he had at the beginning of his second run, for the most part. And he ran with it, all the way to an Emmy nomination and a PRISM award. Some may have resented or disliked the PTSD angle, but MA still sold it. Meanwhile, despite all his time on the frontburner, SC has never struck me as being especially charismatic. He's a very average, generic soap hunk-type, at least when he's playing Daniel, and the character would have to be twenty times more awesome than he is to justify all the insane propping. Daniel isn't particularly smart, brave, or generous; he doesn't have a strong moral compass; he's not all that faithful or loyal as a lover or a friend; he seldom reaches beyond what's comfortable or beneficial to him personally to help someone else. At best, he's good at his job and he can be kind when it doesn't cost him anything. At worst, he's self-righteous, judgmental, hypocritical, and self-serving. Not a dyed-in-the-wool villain, perhaps, but not a rootable hero, either. And I absolutely despise him with Jennifer because together they're self-righteousness in stereo. And self-righteousness is a quality I dislike in all characters, whether they're heroes, villains, or vacuous blanks like Daniel.
"Charismatic" is perception. That's how I see SC and why I've always enjoyed Daniel to a degree.

If I didn't have the background with Jack from the 80's, I don't know what I would think of the character based on his last run. I know MA got an Emmy nomination, but I thought the PTSD material was overwrought, and the performances not stellar -- not that I would expect anyone to be able to hit that kind of melodrama, not well-grounded in story, out of the park.

Jack and Daniel are both flawed characters. Neither character's flaws elevate the other.
Agreed. One viewer's "charismatic" is another's "wet mop."

The PTSD scenes were too few and far between to constitute great story, but I was still favorably impressed by MA's work in them because he was tapping into facets of Jack that hadn't been seen before or hadn't been seen in years. And I liked seeing Jack in dramatic rather than comedic mode, the way he was for too much of his second run. The potential for so much more was there, but it failed to be capitalized on.

Jack and Daniel are indeed flawed characters. The problem for me is that Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show, while Daniel's are always glossed over or blamed on someone else. If the show would let him own them and let others admit them instead of fawning over him in such a sickening, sycophantic fashion, I might find him infinitesimally less repulsive.

Or not. I suspect the character's pretty much past saving for me.
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granolagirl
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Not here for St. Jack of the Immaculate Redemption

Romancer66
Sep 26 2013, 02:35 PM
Jack and Daniel are indeed flawed characters. The problem for me is that Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show, while Daniel's are always glossed over or blamed on someone else.
I disagree.
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annie21


^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
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granolagirl
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Not here for St. Jack of the Immaculate Redemption

annie21
Sep 26 2013, 02:51 PM
^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
It's still a blanket statement. And Jack, a rapist, hasn't had to face that past in decades, so no. I don't think Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show.
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lysie
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annie21
Sep 26 2013, 02:51 PM
^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
I don't know about granolagirl, but I still wouldn't agree. Personally, I think that the perception of the show's portrayal of Daniel is very similar to my perception of the portrayal of Jack on the board.
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Romancer66


granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 02:44 PM
Romancer66
Sep 26 2013, 02:35 PM
Jack and Daniel are indeed flawed characters. The problem for me is that Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show, while Daniel's are always glossed over or blamed on someone else.
I disagree.
Daniel is never held accountable for his actions or mistakes. It's always someone else's fault--Lucas's, Chloe's, Philip's, Nicole's, even Jennifer's--when something goes wrong in Daniel Land. Salemites all line up to tell him how he's just the bestest guy evah, always the martyr, the victim, the one more sinned against than sinning. He's got the biggest, most abject, most obsequious fan club in town, so I don't feel obligated to become a member. I'll stick with supporting characters who aren't as smarmy or hypocritical.
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Romancer66


granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 02:53 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 02:51 PM
^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
It's still a blanket statement. And Jack, a rapist, hasn't had to face that past in decades, so no. I don't think Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show.
Jack had other flaws than being a rapist, and those got pointed out continually. I'm still waiting for someone who's not Lucas, Anne, or JJ to call Daniel out on his not-so-pristine past and present--and have it actually stick, rather than be instantly retracted when the caller-out falls in love or lust with him (hi there, Nicole!)
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annie21


lysie
Sep 26 2013, 02:53 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 02:51 PM
^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
I don't know about granolagirl, but I still wouldn't agree. Personally, I think that the perception of the show's portrayal of Daniel is very similar to my perception of the portrayal of Jack on the board.
Well, that's a different issue, lol.

If you're saying that people on this board prop Jack to the high heavens and give him a free pass on all his shortcomings, then that's an interesting perspective. While I do see some tendency to explain or justify Jack's darker side here, I will just say that in my view many are doing so by using actual history to shore up their viewpoints (something the show too often doesn't bother with).

On the other hand, I don't think I'm alone in saying I wish the show would explore that darker side of Jack's nature -- to get his old flaws out in the open and maybe even add some new ones. Similarly, i'm not the first to say that the show should just go with Daniel's flaws instead of glossing over them.

If only the show didn't choose the shallow and superficial route every time, things would be a lot better all around, imo. :)

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annie21


granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 02:53 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 02:51 PM
^Even if she removed the word "always" from her statement?
It's still a blanket statement. And Jack, a rapist, hasn't had to face that past in decades, so no. I don't think Jack's flaws are always acknowledged on the show.
Okay, I understand that. I would agree that in more recent returns Jack was written in more comic mode. The show's writers just haven't been interested in exploring the character's deeper, darker layers -- or revisiting his dark and distant past in more than a passing way (like now).

In that sense, the same could be said for pretty much any long-term character, whether they're "good," "bad" or somewhere in between. Even Caroline, even Kayla, have their "darker" sides and their flaws that sadly have not been touched on for a very long time.

But at least they're on the backburner or off the show. Meanwhile, Daniel has been on our screens almost every week -- and some weeks almost every day -- for well over a year now. He's been front and center in story after story. And yet, honestly, going by what the show is telling me, I would not be able to cite a single flaw or mistake that the writing has acknowledged about him. When he does try to give a token acknowledgement to being less than perfect (e.g., about Nicole or Chloe), he's quickly overridden by the likes of Maggie, Maxine, and others.

No, he hasn't raped or killed anyone that we know of, but that doesn't mean that Daniel hasn't made serious ethical missteps. We would never know that by what the show is telling us.


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granolagirl
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Not here for St. Jack of the Immaculate Redemption

The writing for Daniel is problematic. The writing for Jack is also problematic. For me, it is not a zero sum game where one is at the expense of the other.
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annie21


I think where it gets tricky is when they use something about Jack to try to prop up Daniel. It's happened more than once.

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granolagirl
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Not here for St. Jack of the Immaculate Redemption

But as you say, the writing for Jack as someone who abandons his family, etc., is longstanding and predates Daniel.
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annie21


I don't recall saying that, lol.

In any case, I can agree that in general the writing for the show is problematic and has been for a long time.



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granolagirl
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Not here for St. Jack of the Immaculate Redemption

annie21
Sep 26 2013, 10:13 PM
I don't recall saying that, lol.

In any case, I can agree that in general the writing for the show is problematic and has been for a long time.



Sorry, I guess that was another Jack fan in the thread. It's been kind of a pile on, so I apologize for not being able to keep track.

I just feel like sharing that Matt Ashford is the only actor I have ever made an effort to see in person, and I generally consider myself a fan of the character. But all this discussion makes me want is never, ever see him show his face in Salem ever again.
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Keith
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granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 10:30 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 10:13 PM
I don't recall saying that, lol.

In any case, I can agree that in general the writing for the show is problematic and has been for a long time.



Sorry, I guess that was another Jack fan in the thread. It's been kind of a pile on, so I apologize for not being able to keep track.

I just feel like sharing that Matt Ashford is the only actor I have ever made an effort to see in person, and I generally consider myself a fan of the character. But all this discussion makes me want is never, ever see him show his face in Salem ever again.
This discussion didn't make that happen for me, but it did reinforce it. What good could come of a Jack come back with these writers anyway? Let Jack stay dead. And I've thought that since MA's last exit was announced.
Edited by Keith, Sep 26 2013, 10:48 PM.
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annie21


Keith
Sep 26 2013, 10:44 PM
granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 10:30 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 10:13 PM
I don't recall saying that, lol.

In any case, I can agree that in general the writing for the show is problematic and has been for a long time.



Sorry, I guess that was another Jack fan in the thread. It's been kind of a pile on, so I apologize for not being able to keep track.

I just feel like sharing that Matt Ashford is the only actor I have ever made an effort to see in person, and I generally consider myself a fan of the character. But all this discussion makes me want is never, ever see him show his face in Salem ever again.
This discussion didn't make that happen for me, but it did reinforce it. What good could come of a Jack come back with these writers anyway? Let Jack stay dead. And I've thought that since MA's last exit was announced.
I'm not sure that's what granolagirl meant with her reference to the "pile on," lol.

In any case, I agree with you. Keith. And I've been saying the same thing for a while now. I wish the writers would stop bringing up Jack and using him for story purposes. I cringe whenever they have any character say his name. I wish they would stop.



Edited by annie21, Sep 26 2013, 11:17 PM.
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LanaluvsBroe
Member Avatar


annie21
Sep 26 2013, 11:13 PM
Keith
Sep 26 2013, 10:44 PM
granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 10:30 PM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 10:13 PM
I don't recall saying that, lol.

In any case, I can agree that in general the writing for the show is problematic and has been for a long time.



Sorry, I guess that was another Jack fan in the thread. It's been kind of a pile on, so I apologize for not being able to keep track.

I just feel like sharing that Matt Ashford is the only actor I have ever made an effort to see in person, and I generally consider myself a fan of the character. But all this discussion makes me want is never, ever see him show his face in Salem ever again.
This discussion didn't make that happen for me, but it did reinforce it. What good could come of a Jack come back with these writers anyway? Let Jack stay dead. And I've thought that since MA's last exit was announced.
I'm not sure that's what granolagirl meant with her reference to the "pile on," lol.

In any case, I agree with you. Keith. And I've been saying the same thing for a while now. I wish the writers would stop bringing up Jack and using him for story purposes. I cringe whenever they have any character say his name. I wish they would stop.



I wish they'd stop too but bringing up Jack or Chloe or any other 3rd party is about the only way they can give Dannifer story. Which in itself proves what a total failure they are as a couple.
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Romancer66


LanaluvsBroe
Sep 27 2013, 06:30 AM
annie21
Sep 26 2013, 11:13 PM
Keith
Sep 26 2013, 10:44 PM
granolagirl
Sep 26 2013, 10:30 PM

Quoting limited to 4 levels deep
This discussion didn't make that happen for me, but it did reinforce it. What good could come of a Jack come back with these writers anyway? Let Jack stay dead. And I've thought that since MA's last exit was announced.
I'm not sure that's what granolagirl meant with her reference to the "pile on," lol.

In any case, I agree with you. Keith. And I've been saying the same thing for a while now. I wish the writers would stop bringing up Jack and using him for story purposes. I cringe whenever they have any character say his name. I wish they would stop.



I wish they'd stop too but bringing up Jack or Chloe or any other 3rd party is about the only way they can give Dannifer story. Which in itself proves what a total failure they are as a couple.
If TIIC can't be bothered writing for beloved characters when they're actually on canvas, I'd just as soon they didn't exploit them or their memories when they're not. Especially if the only reason those departed characters are being brought up is so the current regime can prop their particular pets and give them even more story.
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LuLu2102


Great job with these interviews, and a really interesting discussion here. Lots of good points brought up.

1. I agree with the majority that Shawn Christian seems like a good guy. I feel kind of sorry for him, having to find motivation and depth in a character that's written so poorly. And I would find the OTT praising of him by almost every character on-screen embarrassing, and even annoying if I was having to portray him. It would have been interesting to hear what his thoughts were about the "rest" his character was given. I'd like to know his perspective on why the rest was necessary, and what changes he thought were made to the character when he returned (because I didn't see any).

2. Also agree with somebody upthread who said they enjoyed the brief moments he had commiserating with Jack. I don't dislike him at all when he's given light material and all I'm being expected to see him as is a regular guy who enjoys hanging out with his bros. I had a thought yesterday that it might have been interesting if Daniel had been the one to witness Jack have a PTSD episode and be totally freaked out and feeling in-over-his-head about it (rather than being a brilliant psychologist on top of everything else), and be in the position to make Jennifer understand exactly how dire the situation was. Or for Daniel to feel some real sympathy for Jack and for that the be the reason he was turned off to the dating game scenario.

3. Looking over people's comments about Daniel, I realize it's not Daniel himself that I dislike so much. It really is just the endless praising of him by almost everybody. Again, I can enjoy him as just a guy, but I don't see him as anything particularly extraordinary in any way, and I'm beyond tired of the writers telling me that he is constantly.

4. As for the Daniel vs. Jack stuff, and the point brought up that Jack gets propped on this board, that really got me thinking. I can only speak for myself, but I absolutely acknowledge Jack's faults. He has always been impulsive and short-sighted and proud, and at times so full of self-loathing that he pushes people away in a misguided effort to protect them from himself. None of that makes him someone I would want to date in real life. But for a fictional character, I think all of it makes him complex and compelling, infinitely more interesting to watch. Maybe that's what it boils down to for me: it's not that Jack is a "better" person than Daniel; it's that he's so much more interesting and engaging as a character. I would much rather watch Jack in Salem, re-establishing relationships with his friends and family, trying to overcome his past, making mistakes along the way, but growing in the process, than watch Daniel talk endlessly with everyone about how wonderful he his and how tragic it is that he and Jennifer aren't together, in between his weekly make-ups and break-ups with her.

5. I'm also feeling torn about the frequent Jack mentions. On the one hand, I love hearing Sonny calling Jack "my uncle" and showing interest in his book. But it's also bittersweet because it only reminds me of the wasted opportunity the writers had to explore the Johnson family dynamic after all of these years. I mean, why do the writers only remember that Sonny is Jack's nephew now that Jack's gone? Why didn't we get to see any interaction between them when he was still here?
Edited by LuLu2102, Sep 27 2013, 11:33 AM.
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Romancer66


LuLu2102
Sep 27 2013, 10:52 AM
Great job with these interviews, and a really interesting discussion here. Lots of good points brought up.

1. I agree with the majority that Shawn Christian seems like a good guy. I feel kind of sorry for him, having to find motivation and depth in a character that's written so poorly. And I would find the OTT praising of him by almost every character on-screen embarrassing, and even annoying if I was having to portray him. It would have been interesting to hear what his thoughts were about the "rest" his character was given. I'd like to know his perspective on why the rest was necessary, and what changes he thought were made to the character when he returned (because I didn't see any).

2. Also agree with somebody upthread who said they enjoyed the brief moments he had commiserating with Jack. I don't dislike him at all when he's given light material and all I'm being expected to see him as is a regular guy who enjoys hanging out with his bros. I had a thought yesterday that it might have been interesting if Daniel had been the one to witness Jack have a PTSD episode and be totally freaked out and feeling in-over-his-head about it (rather than being a brilliant psychologist on top of everything else), and be in the position to make Jennifer understand exactly how dire the situation was. Or for Daniel to feel some real sympathy for Jack and for that the be the reason he was turned off to the dating game scenario.

3. Looking over people's comments about Daniel, I realize it's not Daniel himself that I dislike so much. It really is just the endless praising of him by almost everybody. Again, I can enjoy him as just a guy, but I don't see him as anything particularly extraordinary in any way, and I'm beyond tired of the writers telling me that he is constantly.

4. As for the Daniel vs. Jack stuff, and the point brought up that Jack gets propped on this board, that really got me thinking. I can only speak for myself, but I absolutely acknowledge Jack's faults. He has always been impulsive and short-sighted and proud, and at times so full of self-loathing that he pushes people away in a misguided effort to protect them from himself. None of that makes him someone I would want to date in real life. But for a fictional character, I think all of it makes him complex and compelling, infinitely more interesting to watch. Maybe that's what it boils down to for me: it's not that Jack is a "better" person than Daniel; it's that he's so much more interesting and engaging as a character. I would much rather watch Jack in Salem, re-establishing relationships with his friends and family, trying to overcome his past, making mistakes along the way, but growing in the process, than watch Daniel talk endlessly with everyone about how wonderful he his and how tragic it is that he and Jennifer aren't together, in between his weekly make-ups and break-ups with her.

5. I'm also feeling torn about the frequent Jack mentions. On the one hand, I love hearing Sonny calling Jack "my uncle" and showing interest in his book. But it's also bittersweet because it only reminds me of the wasted opportunity the writers had to explore the Johnson family dynamic after all of these years. I mean, why do the writers only remember that Sonny is Jack's nephew now that Jack's gone? Why didn't we get to see any interaction between them when he was still here?
Reading this post, I flashed back to my college days when I sometimes engaged in Role Playing Games with my friends on weekends--like Dungeons & Dragons, and all their variants. Game systems generally called for players to create characters, with abilities, quirks, advantages, and disadvantages, and "act" them for the duration of the session. All of us tended to find that characters who had flaws and handicaps, quirks and foibles, and things to overcome were far more interesting to play than straight-up paragons or characters who hadn't really been given any strong qualities, good or bad. That's kind of how it is with me and characters like Jack: they're flawed but compelling, and their struggles draw you in. They can convince you that, despite their past misdeeds, they honestly want to be better people, and so you become invested when they try and fail, when they try and succeed, or when they simply go about their lives, trying to do a little better than the day before. Willy-nilly, they make you care. And I care about Jack, even at his most exasperating, infuriating, and arrogant.

It's no secret that I dislike Daniel, and find it hard to care about him even when he's not being a douche. And I think that's because he doesn't have a strong enough identity. He's flat. He doesn't really stand for anything, and there's no redemptive journey for him to go on, no involving character arc, as there was with Jack, because we're constantly being told that he's perfect and doesn't need improvement or redemption. Dull for viewers to watch, and dull for an actor to play. Still, it's a paycheck. :shrug:
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