Sunday, December 30, 2012

You'll Eat It and You'll Like It

“It’s much more interesting for the audience if no one is a super couple and there’s always the possibility that one [or both] legs of that couple could be wooed by someone else, and then it becomes a triangle.”

– Ken Corday tells viewers what they should want as oppose to what they actually want in an interview with Soaps in Depth

Okay. The first thing I’m going to say is that this is going to be brief. The only thing I'm going to touch on is the quote posted above.  I already feel like retyping that quote took up far more time than this show deserves from me right now.

It goes without saying that whenever Corday does an interview or releases a statement, there’s no guarantee that my skin won’t break out into hives. Corday has sort of become Yul Brynner's Rameses in The Ten Commandments. Hear me out. Moses (Sony?) keeps asking Corday to let his people (the cast, crew, and whichever writers still give a shit) go. Give them their creative freedom. Whatever. Corday, with his stubborn refusal, is holding onto this show with a cold, unfeeling death grip. Who’s feeling the wrath of the soap gods? The viewers. We’re getting all sorts of shit thrown at us, and Corday is just watching it all happening. Is he senile? Is he surrounded by idiots who are whispering things in his ear to get the show they want to get, fuck the rest of us? Is this a refusal to admit defeat? Is it all of these things?

Okay, Mr. Corday. Wise sage of soaps. Riddle me this: If the one constant in any love story on your show is that “one [or both] legs” of a couple can be wooed (“Wooed”? Really?) by someone else, why the fuck should I be investing my time and emotion into any romantic story you’ve decided to throw in my face whether I want to dodge it or not? Who wants to ride shotgun to the other shoe that’s perpetually waiting to drop? How and why am I supposed to care about who Sami decides to spend time with at the next Horton Square event when there’s a ninety-nine percent chance that she’ll be thinking about someone else or fretting over her choice within the hour? Aside from the most obvious reasons, how could I possibly scrape together even a shred of interest in a triangle between Daniel, Jennifer and Chloe knowing that Chloe is only appearing for a limited time only? Gosh, Mr. C. I wonder how that one is going to end.

A romantic triangle in the hands of talented writers and actors can be a thing of beauty. For some TV watchers it can be the catalyst that gets them hooked on watching a show. I’m a sucker for triangles when done well. A show like The Vampire Diaries isn’t exactly my thing, but I find myself tuning in to watch the dynamic between Stefan, Elena and Damon. I was never a fan of Dawson’s Creek during its original run, but, almost fifteen years later, I find the Dawson/Joey/Pacey triangle compelling and incredibly well-executed (By the way – if you want to see one helluva triangle blow-up, track down the Rashomon-esque episode “The Longest Day”, then come back and let me know your thoughts). Both of those triangles were powerful enough to sweep so many characters on canvas into the eye of their hurricanes. There was (or will be, in the case of TVD) a ripple effect. No matter which direction everyone ended up going in after the winds died down, there was still plenty of soapy drama to be had. It wouldn’t all come to an end once a chosen path towards the immediate future was made. Some of the damage was permanent and some of it would be able to repair itself over time. 

Remember these guys? Turns out they were kind of ahead of their time.

If there are no consequences, no casualties, and no rewards to be had when choices are made and the dust settles, then what was the point of the story?  And if there's no end to the storm in sight, what then?  Where's our reward?

"Here we go again, kiddies.  For the 476th time this hour, our number one Billboard chart-topper, "The Ballad of Dawson and Joey".  Honestly, do you have any idea how exhausting it is to exist on your periphery?  To witness this perpetual dance that you two have?  One week you're soulmates.  The next you're giving each other up for the greater good.  Do you think it's possible that sometime soon you could make up your mind, please?"  

- Pacey tells Dawson and Joey what everyone was thinking by the time three and a half seasons had rolled around. Namely that viewers were getting sick of their bullshit.

When it comes to Days (in its current state) and the powers that be who are running the ship straight into an iceberg, I’d like to take one particularly sharp corner of one of their triangles, and stick it up their –

Oh, sorry. I promised this post was going to be brief, didn’t I?

Let me end by asking you a couple of questions if you're up to it. What did you think of Ken Corday’s latest interview? I only touched on one little quote, but there were quite a few nuggets in that thing that might have inspired a choice word or two from you, kind and gentle reader.  What was/is your favourite daytime or primetime triangle, if you have one? What do you think makes a good triangle?


  1. Every time KC opens his mouth, I cringe. I just know that he's going to do several things: 1)demonstrate that he's the last person who should represent Days, 2)show us that he's so out of touch with Days' audience that he's not even in this galaxy, 3)try to tell the audience what they should like instead of giving them something want, 4)tell the audience who they should be rooting for, 5)justify his latest string of bad decisions, along with that of his minions, 6)promise excitement and change that he's never going to deliver on. KC didn't disappoint on any of those scores in his recent interview with SID or in the 2013 preview in SOD.

    I'm left to wonder if TPTB are not only not making an effort to provide the audience with good storytelling, but actually trying to get the show cancelled? If so, they should pat themselves on the back. They're getting Days there fast. In an environment where soaps have to FIGHT to survive, Days is barely wimpering - it's like they're not even trying anymore.

    Are they so bewildered by the daunting task of recovering Days from the massive hole that successive writing regimes have dug for the past several years that they just don't do anything? Do they not care anymore? Are their egos so big that they can't admit their mistakes and try to correct them? Do they even realize how out-of-touch they are with the audience? Have backstage politics and favouritism paralyzed this show in any efforts to save itself? I doubt we'll ever know the real answer, but I suspect that it's a combination of all these factors and perhaps several more that no one suspects.

    Days motto seems to be, "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again." Well, that's okay sometimes, but there are times that things don't succeed the first time because they're a BAD IDEA that's never going to work, no matter how hard you shove it in your audience's face. Days is caught in some sort of bizarre loop where they just keep trying the same mundane, boring crap over and over again and are clueless why it's not working. They love a particular story, character, or couple, so why doesn't the majority of the audience feel the same way?

    The credo to know and write FOR YOUR AUDIENCE is especially important here. One of the essential problems at Days is that they don't have a clue what their audience wants and they don't respect their audience - unsuccessful stories, couples, and characters are pushed again and again while stories, characters, and couples that provoke a spark of interest are abruptly halted, all the while the viewer's intelligence is insulted on a daily basis. Not a good way to maintain the audience's good will or their continued viewership.

    It makes me very sad to sad to say it - Days has been a part of my life since I was a child in the 80s - but Days' future is bleak if they continue to put their fingers in their ears while they chant "la, la, la" and ignore the desire, amongst a large portion of their audience, for intelligent storytelling, driven by compelling, complex characters. Ignore the audience and the audience will return the favour by turning the channel to a show that can deliver on what they want.

  2. My favorite triangle right now is Bill/Eric/Sookie (True Blood) but there is a lot going on there and major out comes to Sookies choice in men every season that will effect everyone on the show. There's a lot of reason these three make up my favorite triangle (especially given the fact I don't like triangles lol)

    First of all there is MAJOR chemestry between Sookie and both of her triangle men. One of the leading vampires, I mean men, IS the actresses own real life husband so the chemestry there was well there :) but to find an equal chemestry with another actor made this triangle amazing even tho the triangle stays a constant on the show season after season I find myself compelled to watch and enjoying watching Sookie no matter which vamp she's hanging all over at the moment.

    Also the "good" saintly one of the triangle is the one that the two vamps are fighting for... SOOKIE! She is the only one pure of heart and soul. Ya for one second you might think that Bill is good but there is always evil at play with both men in the triangle and our job as viewers choosing a side is to pick the lessor of two evils! But the woman of the triangle is the good character not eithe of the men.

    Also Sookies choice in men does not make any of the other characters happy. Matter of fact everyone other character has disastrous consequences based on Sookies constantly changing whim of which vamp she should be with. Every character is involved in all storylines not just the triangle but definitely not seperate from he triangle. It makes a viewer want to use that Time old classic saying, "Choose wisely" dear Sookie.

    With all that being said I'm not sure if Sookie should even be with EITHER of these vamps lol and neither Ido any of the townspeople. Even new characters brought in (like the fairys) will argue that Sookie needs to stay away from BOTH her vamps. No one is choosing one vamp over the other and telling her how good one vamp is over the other... Nope they are both vamps, both evil, both will suck the light out of our good fairy and every character will tell Sookie just that.

    So what makes a good triangle? Onions! Cuz there are too many layers to even explain but there's a few of the layers of this awesome ongoing triangle for you to sink your teeth into :)

    Rose (Ducky)

  3. Seriously, KC? The audience loves triangles? He can take his triangles and shove them squarely up his ass. I know that I don't speak for the entire audience, but thanks to Days' ill-conceived, poorly executed, and predictable love triangles over the past several years, I've grown to loathe them. Of course, on a good soap, I can tolerate a love triangle, provided that it's well-written, believable, romantic, balanced, characters maintain their integrity to make it work, and that there is or has been some payoff for both sides of the triangle.

    Am I enjoying the EJ/Sami/Rafe barely-there triangle? Hell no! And that doesn't just come from me speaking as a long-time Ejami fan, it comes from me as a long-time Days viewer. I've seen plenty of love triangles over the years, but this might be one of the worst I've ever seen.

    First of all, it's not even a triangle. The person in the middle, Sami, is all about Rafe - she thinks about him, wants to be with him, and harkens back to their "storybook romance." In September, she dropped EJ like a hot potato as soon as Rafe grabbed her like a caveman and slobbered all over her. Since then, through the dialogue and actions of the characters, it's been made pretty clear that Sami loves Rafe, Rafe loves Sami, EJ loves Sami, and Sami ?s EJ. She does not spend any time thinking about EJ, pursuing him, or wanting to be with him. The only indication that she even cares for EJ is that she no longer treats him like something that got stuck on her shoe. That's not balanced.

    Sorry, but as a young female with intelligence, education, and self-esteem I find it hard to believe that Sami is so hot and bothered over a douchebag like Rafe - a man who berates her, threatens to take away his "love" and "protection" if she doesn't conform to his expectations, takes her self-esteem and pummels it into the ground, and wouldn't know romance if it hit him smack in the face. Meanwhile, the handsome and refined EJ, who admires her, promises and demonstrates unconditional love, boosts her self-esteem, and is incredibly romantic, languishes, his love unrequited, as he plays the third wheel in this triangle.

    Sure, EJ and Sami have done horrible things to each other, but neither of them is a victim - they were on equal footing, even when they were opponents. Sami is never on equal footing with Rafe - she worships and conforms, while he holds the upper hand & molds her to suit. Although many of the things that Ejami have done to each other are as far from romantic as possible, the subjugation of Sami under the neanderthal paw of Rafael Hernandez is no more so.

    In terms of character integrity,Samantha Gene Brady has to contort herself into a pretzel to fit with Rafe. Around him she becomes an insecure, vapid twit, desperate to please him in any way necessary to get a pat on the head for her good behaviour, much like a dog. Well, SGB, for the 16 years before Mr. Hernandez entered Salem, was smart, calculating, independent(despite a fixation w/ men), and NEVER a twit. I could say a lot more about the damage to SGB,but that's another discussion.

    After nearly 7 years of ups and downs, EJ and Sami have never been a bona-fide couple. It's been teased over and over and over again, then yanked away. On the other hand, Sami and Rafe had 3 uninterrupted years, albeit boring and mundane like the pairing itself, of bona-fide coupledom. So, to start up this ridiculous and worn-out triangle again at whiplash speed in August, when Ejami were on the verge of finally getting some time together as a couple, was a very poor choice. Add to that the unbalanced and Rafe-centric writing of this triangle and you've got a recipe for alienating a rather large share of the audience. Good job, guys.

    This triangle is definitely not "well-written" for all the reasons above and because it's seemingly been composed of nothing but a continuing loop of the same scenes and conversations over and over again.

    1. AMEN! I agree with every single word!

      Fantastic blog Diggy! It was pretty short for you :P

    2. Great great great post Krista, exactly what i think you are just spot on, it is not even funny.

      p.s: As for triangles i enjoyed..
      Well hard to say; my favorite tv couple ever was Logan and Veronica from Veronica Mars and thank god the headwriter did listen mostly to the audience when he ditched dull 'good' Duncan but yet he screwed up with the introduction of Piz 'nice' Piznarki..And although the show was cancelled..too soon, at the end of the day he got it when in the last scenes of the show beautiful and complex was a really well written tv show, far more superior than any daytime soap operas imho just did express that Veronica and Logan belong together no matter what.
      On this show triangles did not work for me because Veronica and Logan were just 'it' and just nothing else could measure up. They were just made for each others despite everything even often despite themselves..

      A believable triangle..maybe Cappie/Casey/Evan on Greek, it was a well written triangle, with flesh out, strong, flawed three characters where the girl had strong chemistry with both..sometimes i wanted her with both at the same a way my perfect solution would have been a it is what is a good triangle in my book, when i can see the one in the middle with both sides.

  4. What Krista said!!! Goes double for me.

  5. I didn't hear his interview but the quote is enough for me to comment on...honestly, Corday is crazy, that just sums it up. Who says something like that? Time is the a good indicator of success and clearly whatever Corday and company has been doing is not working whatsoever! I have stopped watching, took it off my DVR and I feel free. I am exhausted over the BS with these stupid story-lines, ridiculous triangles and a complete lack of respect for the fans.

  6. Days needs to let Will and Sonny be a true romantic couple again.We need more than baby drama and scheming!