How the Internet is Eating TV Alive

“The Online Omnivore”

by Eternalendrea

TV vs internet picIn general, the Internet has been of tremendous service, and its impact on the television industry is no exception. The advent of YouTube has allowed fans to easily rewatch beloved clips and listen to the music of their favorite shows. Online message forums have made it possible for these enthusiasts to correspond with one another all over the world and share opinions and ideas about their common love on a scale never before imagined, let alone realized. The truly die-hard have even invested their time and talent into the writing of fan fiction, or simply “fanfic”, fictional prose set in the universe of a particular program. All of this, being online, makes the passion of a fan base apparent to everyone, thus increasing a show’s exposure and making it more likely that its audience will grow. It’s hard to argue that this is anything but a great boon.

But perhaps there really can be too much of a good thing, and the once-benevolent Internet now threatens to devour the entire television industry and absorb it completely. Alas, this is no exaggeration. Television shows are increasingly being made available online, not in individual scenes or songs, but as whole episodes to be watched in front of a computer monitor rather than a television screen. There could be no more perfect example than the recent broadcast of the Daytime Emmy Awards, which last week were streamed live over the Internet rather than actually aired on a real network. This marked the first time, ever, that the Emmy’s were not made available via television. It’s a usurpation of TV’s domain unparallelled in history (even television’s rising to prominence over radio can’t compare, as people still listen to the radio), and an unconscionable overstepping of the Internet’s bounds.

And who is driving this slow but inexorable move to the online realm of cyberspace? Primarily the young, and its easy to understand why. Young people are practically married to their computers already, relying mostly on them for their news and passive entertainment. Watching shows online is only natural for them; they do everything else in front of their PC’s, why not this as well? But the inexperience of youth is a poor guide in understanding one of the fundamental, essential lessons of life: There is a place for everything, and everything ought be kept in its place.

In her book “I’m Just Saying”, TV soap star Kim Zimmer (Echo DiSavoy of One Life to Live and Reva Shayne of Guiding Light) touched on this issue when she worried about a Guiding Light special being planned for the benefit of Hurricane Katrina victims, and which would feature the show’s actors speaking directly to the audience. Zimmer was so upset about the plan to air this “episode” on television that she initially refused to be a part of it, rightly observing: “If the episode airs in the Guiding Light time slot, I am no longer Reva Shayne – I’m Kim Zimmer.” But she saw how things changed when the producers modified their plans, and decided instead to make this special an online-only installment. It was amazing: What would have broken the fourth wall on television and threatened “Guiding Light”’s suspension of disbelief, made for a fitting and touching extra for fans (or simply victims of Hurricane Katrina) who cared enough to look it up on the Internet. The problem was solved, and Zimmer withdrew her objection, happily participating in the project.

We do well to learn the lesson Kim teaches us (or perhaps learned for herself): TV and the Internet are not one and the same, and they shouldn’t be interchangeable. What works on one doesn’t necessarily have any place on the other. If we allow these separate and disparate media to merge, we risk losing the unique artistic possibilities inherent in each. Let’s allow television and computers to work together; we don’t need either one trying to annex the other.

Comment, subscribe (upper right-hand corner), and let’s dish, discuss, and commiserate!

As we LOVE hearing what you have to say, so please comment! Let’s get a discussion going!

 

Stay Soapy,

The 2014 Daytime Emmys: Preliminary Thoughts

Hey, Soap Fans!

OK, so here’s what we at LTAS are thinking about last night’s Daytime Emmy’s:

1. If, God forbid, they broadcast them online again next year, some technical glitches need to be worked out.

2. Red Carpet hosts: Um, we’re confused. Why did they know nothing about their subject matter. They had us thinking Maura and Tyler were a couple for a second! Too much frenetic energy–they needed to take it down at least two notches. The red carpet is not a good place for controversial jokes about rape and race. It’s a place for light, superficial banter about clothes and brief questions about stars jobs and maaaaaaaaybe some personal stuff. Also, the switching back and forth between the two sets of hosts left us feeling exhausted. The order of hot messiness goes in this order. Brittany Furlan, Lauren Elizabeth, Meghan Rosette, and Jessica Harlow. The last three weren’t even really hot messes, they just didn’t know their material. I can sort of see why the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences hired them–their huge social media followings. But that is only half the necessary equation! They would have had to know about soaps too! Oh, well. They’re young women, we shouldn’t be TOO, too hard on them. 

3. We loved Kathy Griffin but would liked to have seen more of her. The Gellar/Lucci joke was a liiiiiiiitle cringeworthy, but we see what you were trying to do, KGriff. And most we liked it.

4. Congrats to Y&R for all your wins!

5. Yay for OLTL’s win for best direction.

6. Our fave quotes [sorry I can’t find the names of two of the people who said them]:

a. “Here’s to a resurgence of the soap genre!” –Eric Martsolf

b. “…and to our dedicated and fiercely loyal fans…” –OLTL director

c. “Ernesto, baby! I love you” –a Latin gay man thanking his partner live onstage

 

Stay Soapy,

Akbi Khan

 

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Eulogy for Gabriel Santiago-Drake

Gabriel Santiago-Drake’s tiny body held a mighty spirit. He was taken from his mother’s womb too early, a predicament that science still struggles to find treatments for. But his lineage, one of tenacity and bravery, on both the Santiago and Drake sides, were in his favor. And so he survived that initial trauma. Upon entering this world, he was confined to a tiny incubator and tethered to wires and cords. He couldn’t feel the loving touch of his devoted parents, who never left his side. Despite these denials and burdens, baby Gabriel fought. He fought simply to stay alive and he succeeded until the struggle was too great for his miniscule organs and body parts. We who watched him marveled at his strength and will long carry with us, in addition to the memory of his short life and how much he was loved by so many, the memory of his strength and will to live. His survivors, Sabrina Santiago, Patrick Drake, and Emma Drake, in addition to many other family and friends who loved him, can take solace in the fact that he is out of pain and no longer suffers. He is in a glorious heaven, where one day his grieving loved ones will be reunited with him.

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Akbi Khan

Soap Recurring Themes #12

Someone takes a hostage.

That hostage is almost discovered about a million times.

For example, two people will come up to the Quartermaine boat house, where many-a-hostage have fought for their lives after being put there by Heather Webber or her ilk. One of the two characters will say as they approach the boathouse something like, “Wait–did you hear that?” And the other character will say, “It was probably just those old raccoons again! Let’s get outta here!” The first character reluctantly agrees, and the hostage, screams for their attention to no avail. And we viewers are like, “Come on! S/he [the hostage] is right in the there!”

Part of why we love our soaps–the suspense!

Can anyone think of some good examples from their favorite soaps?

Stay soapy!

 

Your Blog Editor,

Akbi Khan

Missed Your Soap/s Yesterday; June 10th, 2014?

Photo on 5-20-14 at 6.21 PM #2

General Hosptial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rM5foLe2I4g

Days of Our Lives: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-9tSccR9Ws

The Young and the Restless: http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_young_and_the_restless/video/nhNpLNOH7KDuc3yf78f4I_sKd7mE_EpU/the-young-and-the-restless-6-10-2014/

The Bold and the Beautiful: http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_bold_and_the_beautiful/video/

Sorry the links aren’t working, my fellow soap fans! I’m not sure what the issue is! Will work it out with my tech guy today.

As always, stay soapy!

Your Blog Editor,

Akbi Khan

Missed Your Soaps Monday, June 9th, 2014?

General Hospital, 6-9-14: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN3bqJXV8NI

Days of Our Lives, 6-9-14: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B2kz5iQ5y4Q

The Young and the Restless, 6-9-14: http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_young_and_the_restless/video/dVp_YfSvfo_BNnUTSf_RcqNDtxy_NaNn/the-young-and-the-restless-next-on-y-r-6-9-2014-/

The Bold and the Beautiful, 6-9-14: http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_bold_and_the_beautiful/video/713368D3-E190-BF4D-C290-72EF238006B0/the-bold-and-the-beautiful-next-on-b-b-6-9-2014-/

Stay Soapy!

Your Blog Editor, Akbi Khan

Soap Recurring Theme #11

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Character A calls character B and says something like, “I really need to talk to you. Call me.” Hangs up.

Character A shows up wherever Character B is and says, “You sounded so urgent on the phone….”

I think we’ll all heard this exact interaction or some form of it a million times. Love it!

 

Can anyone think of recent or especially significant examples. I bet you Sonny will make such a call to Ava when he tells her he knows she killed Connie!

 

Comment, subscribe (upper right-hand corner), and let’s dish, discuss, and commiserate!

Stay Soapy,

Your Blog Editor, Akbi Khan