Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dear Mr. Guza (and Producers and Frons)

Dear Mr. Guza.
Hear My Plea.
You need to shape up and listen to me. 

Nice heading, isn't it? I'm thinking since you might have taken a gander at the latest ratings, you just might want to listen to someone who's been fighting for this show for as long as they can remember.  What in the HELL is going on? We know for a fact you know how to tell a story. I saw it when the Cassadines were introduced. I seem to remember a blip or two on the radar where I was entertained for a long while. Somewhere over the years you lost your drive, imagination and perhaps your will to tell tales that take some creative juices. What do I see now? 
Plot Driven stories... one major event (ie: Toxic Balls, Carnival, Metro Court, Intervention, Michael Prison, Moca Franco)... cast put into different rooms, the beginning told, maybe the middle and usually no ending. The day to day stuff? We get 2-3 cast members in a room talking and talking about the same events over and over again. I understand the shift to block taping was done by production to save money. I get that. Other shows manage to block tape and not make it look like the actors came on different days to visit one other actor in a room.  Editing is an area I can't even get into or I'll pass out from anger.  Shoddy, shoddy shoddy. When Joe Schmo can realize that the continuity is lost in a one hour block, you've got a problem. 


I don't know if I can forgive you for the mess you made when you had gold (Vanessa Marcil) sitting in your hands and it took you months to get her into any meaningful story. Characters start something then it sputters out. A lot of us lose interest. Other characters disappear from canvas--or are on canvas and never seen. (Matt, Terrell...Maya...Mayor Floyd, Taylor)  Beloved vets are shoved to the background and pivotal people are killed off or put off the show in favor of newbies that never take off. (Logan and Cooper anyone??)
Stunt casting, stunt "events"-- just plain stunts are the way you like to go. We've seen Sonny struggle with his "mob" lifestyle for so long now, no one cares anymore. There have been numerous things that were supposed to "change Port Charles forever" that never did. Nothing has changed in Port Charles in so long we are TUNING OUT. 

Are you noticing?? DO YOU CARE?? When the head of Daytime goes out and says that GH is saved because it "pulls in the ratings that The Young and the Restless" does, who does he think he's kidding? We can read the numbers. We actually are pretty savvy with statistics, despite our rep for being less than intelligent and bored out of our minds.  One Life to Live is beating you in total viewers and household ratings. This is a soap with hardly any of your big PR or any chance at all for survival. They are gaining people by word of mouth and penning great stories. That's how it's done. 

But, why am I telling you? Don't you know this? I know you've been around the block a few times. Your wife is a writer too. I'm not even sure what to do anymore. I can't keep blogging and tweeting and keeping up my end of things when the show is just plunging into a dark hole of repetitive crap. I can't watch the same characters do the same things day after day. Can't do it. Can't wait for months for things to happen anymore. Can't hope that maybe that one show will continue to have a stellar run over weeks when that spark lasts maybe two episodes tops.
Please understand we don't want more killings without motive. No more bombs or baby deaths without a reason. Weaving a story takes so much more than giving us "an Event".  Many of us have been with this show for 10, 20, 30 and more years. GH will be 50 very soon. Don't blow it. Please. You have AWESOME actors. Don't waste them. Don't let more of them walk out the door in favor of a lot of filler people that may or may not work out. Please get back to the basics of soaps: Generational families and damn good stories.


Thank you.
Sincerely, The Girl who likes Lobsters xx WubQueen Karen.

22 comments:

CJ said...

Thank you Wubs for stating the desperation so many of us feel. Kudos to you for all you have done for the soap genre and for the respect you have always shown the fans.

kdmask said...

Thanks :) It's such a struggle lately. I love the website, I love the people I've met over the years. It hurts me SO MUCH to love OLTL over GH!!!
I just needed to vent tonight. I was wishing Guza was sitting across from me. LOL

Anonymous said...

Well said. There's nothing else I can say.

Mamaspat Ole said...

Thank you Karen for caring so much for GH.You hve always had the class and dignity as long as I have known you and thats a long time.Even though I don't watch GH anymore you compelled me to write in to Anne Sweeney.My daughter who is a diehard GH fan said I'm staying Mama till the bitter end.I just turned it off and started watching OLTL and AMC so my hat is off to you for telling it like it is girlfriend.Thanks !!!!!!!!!

Wanda said...

Thank you. I have been watching GH for most of my life & I am 47. The ONE time I left was when they *killed* Robert & Anna. I felt like those two deserved so much more. Anyway, your words epitomize what we all are feeling....stories are just that... STORIES... not events. It takes more than one hour, or even a week, at times, to tell a good story. It's why we watched so faithfully for almost 50years. We love those stories; those characters. GH has been blessed with so much talent through the years. Now... we rarely get to see that talent. Wake up, before it's too late.

skeebob said...

Bravo. Brah-vo.

Guza and Fronz and Phelps - I know she's mostly a figurehead, but I assume she does still make some decisions - have destroyed this show. If OLTL has a smaller budget and just as many restrictions placed on them, if not more, and they can turn in entertaining, smart episodes almost every day, then why can't GH?

kdmask said...

Wanda, we are about the same age. I sometimes feel like I'm just stupid for keepin' on with it all! Thank GOD the actors are so great on the show. I was waiting for the "Intervention" -- now I'll wait for "Helena" to come. Sigh.
I wait to see a DAY not a "show"..;/

Andrea said...

You hit the nail on the head. I have been writing the same thing to Frons, Guza and ABC for YEARS. They just dont want to listen. It is just so frustrating to watch GH die this slow and painful death.
I hope someone up thereat ABC decides to not let ABC go soap free and make the necessary changes and saves our soap!

Anonymous said...

Karen, great job, and thank you for always being the "voice" of the fans. Sadly, Frons does not want to hear what the fans think- he only wants to tell us what we SHOULD think. We're supposed to want to watch television in the afternoon that tells us how to "improve" ourselves...I need an escape for a while each day- what I don't need is to here somebody tell me what is supposedly "wrong" with me- I have a mother-in-law for that!

Tabatha said...

It just feels like no one cares, like it's being done on purpose. SURELY NO ONE can be praising Guza's idea of 'storytelling'. So I don't understand the disregard and repetitiveness in the midst of painful, disgusted cries. I don't blame Guza solely, but I do feel that although he seemingly works under intense constraint and meddling, he doesn't even try to make due w/ what he does have.

Sick of the mindless, idiotic, repetitive 'mob pain' and boo-hoo's when shit is never done to provide solution. A show that once was a escapism, now drives me even more MAD than the bull I deal w/ on the regular... real life. The same lazy writing of Liz's ever-present WTD stories, Jason's pain and him never being accountable for anything, the big hoopla over Brenda's return that only equated DOG SHIT (including the kidnapping of a kid we never were attached to, nor is even her damn child), the unscathed Carly shrieking at anyone and anything, Michael's stupidity that only makes me want him back in jail to be re-raped, Mabby's snoozeville story centered around a person WE DO NOT GIVE A DAMN ABOUT - NOR GIVEN THE CHANCE TO CARE, the unnecessary and pointless killing off of Jake Webber - General Hospital/Port Charles GOLD - only adding speculation to an agenda, etc etc. I can go on and on.

Can anybody really pinpoint a year that started GH's demise? Everything is so messy...

david said...

Karen,

You seen a little frustrated. May I suggest that you go and read a book?

Dave

Aubrey said...

Well said, Karen, well said (as always).

I too have been watching GH for almost 40 years, and I can't seem to let go so I will probably be there until the bitter end. The demise for me started a long time ago when Sharon Wyatt & John Reilly were fired and given a pretty crappy exit, imo. There have been some great moments since then, don't get me wrong, but that was huge for me.

Anonymous said...

Ouch!! feeling the anger in some of the comments. Why put it into the universe to have that happen to Michael again?? I would just have to vomit if they ran that story again....But, I understand your point..I keep watching but only to see JJ.

Anonymous said...

Excellent. If only Guza would take this seriously. You are right---some of the best actors are on GH and they are being misused . Can we take more storylines in which Sonny and The Mob are the central characters? I don't want to hear another woman say "You are a good man,Sonny,its not your fault" again.Elevating Sonny to the romantic and tragic lead on GH is insane. I am bored. There is no"Love in the Afternoon" on GH...just gloom and doom and sleaze.I could go on ....
Thank you for your insights and your humor!!!

Ronn said...

Thank you for letter, its what us long time fans have been thinking. It seems that TPTB want the show to fail. If they write awful stories, then people will stop watching, then when they cancel it for low rating there won't be anyone watching to complain and they won't have to deal with the fall out.

Gary said...

Hmm, there's a few ways to ascertain when the destruction began. In general, the last time I REALLY, REALLY, REALLY loved the show in terms of gripping storytelling was back in the late 90s with the Carly-reveals-she's-Bobbie's-daughter storyline and Liz being raped. Then I'd skip ahead to 2002, which is when Bobbie (hard to believe it's been 9years) all of a sudden started to appear less on our screens. She really was/is -- as Tony Geary once said -- the heart and soul of the show, and after Roy DeLuca left, she only occasionally was given a VERY brief storyline (John Durant coming back, Lucas being gay, being sued for botching Durant's surgery, hiding Laura, a Rick Springfield flirtation...and lastly, Tony dying). Also in 2002, we saw Amy Vining for the last time. Then Lila died in 05. And the decimation of the Qs began. Also...I'd again go back to the 90s...to 1997, when the idiotic PORT CHARLES began and robbed us of Lucy Coe...and of course, she never DID go back to GH. And all of this doesn't even GET into the mob's increasingly TOTALLY laughable role in the show. Jason is a farce. I mute the set whenever he's on. Sonny is...never going to jail, so what's the point? The PCPD is a joke. It's just all so utterly stupid. So I guess what i'm saying is that it's been a STEADY slide since around '05, but it's been slipping gradually for about 12 years now.

Mamaspat Ole said...

I quit watching when they killed off Georgie and Alan.

Cosmoetica said...

31 years of watching and my all time fave GH scene was a few days before they killed off Geary's Bill Eckert (a far better character than Luke Spencer, that they turned into a 'pirate') and he was giving a talk to his son Sly (hello, bring that character back to bond w Lucky after Nik is gone) on life, death, and the meaning of the cosmos, at Bill's lighthouse home.

This was 1993. When have real convos like this been done since?

LindaV said...

Great letter, Karen! You hsve consistently kept up such an excellent and enjoyable website. I will watch GH to the very end and will be sad when it goes, but I still won't stop missing the good old days.

kdmask said...

HAHAAH David, is that you? My hubby? LOL!!!

italianoj said...

Karen please tell us you really sent this to the proper people. Is there a way we all can sign this if you haven't sent it yet? Please we are 1000% behind you. You are the greatest blogger out there. Please don't give up on your fans Karen. I look forward everyday to what you have to say. I had quit watching GH, but it was because of you I went back to One Life to Live and I haven't regretted one moment of it. Thanks again for all your hard work.

kdmask said...

I would send it but I honestly don't think anyone would read it!!

I think GH went down the tubes in 2003-- I have a whole banner on all the people that left that year. It was amazing.