Thursday, August 23, 2007


Currently, on the official PGP/ATWT Board, a user has put up a poll: Do you like baby storylines?

As of this writing, almost twice as many people have voted "no," as "yes."

Now, personally, I happen to like baby and kid stories. I like babies, I like kids. My 1980 intro to watching daytime may have been (cliche alert) Luke and Laura, but I still remember the Monica/Alan/Rick/Alan Jr. story that was running concurrently just as vividly.

Over the years I've enjoys James and Barbara's battle over Paul ATWT), the friendship of pre-teens Michelle, Bill and Ben (GL), Edmund, Maria and Kelsey's struggle over little Sam (AMC), the four L-named (Leslie, Lance, Lori, Lucas) parents of Brooks Prentiss (Y&R), the Mary Vernon/Mary Karr baby-switch of OLTL, among others. (About the only kid story I could never stomach was GH's Robin, and that was because every character on the canvas was so busy showering her with love, adoration and disproportionate worship, I figured she didn't need me).

But there is a subset of baby/kid storylines that I can not watch anymore. The Dead Baby subset.

Don't get me wrong: I loved BJ's heart (GH), Edmund's fire (Ryan's Hope), and the three dead tot Johnnys of ATWT, AMC and Loving (note to self: don't name baby Johnny, it doesn't seem to end well).

But that was all before I had kids of my own.

My oldest son was born at roughly the same time as Jessica lost little Megan on OLTL and Amber her unnamed son on B&B. And suddenly, watching a mother grieve for her child just wasn't my definition of That's Entertainment.

Since then, no matter how well done they may have been, I haven't been able to bring myself to view parents lose their child, be it real: Emily and Gwen on ATWT, Cassie on GL, or presumed: Rosanna and Jennifer on ATWT, Lizzie on GL, Bianca on AMC. (A few years ago, my husband told me he was saving DVDs of Anna and David on AMC mourning Leora because they were good and I would want to watch them someday. I haven't yet).

Daytime's most coveted demographic is women 18-34. Many of those women, I presume, have children.

So my question to you today is: Do you like dead baby stories? Are you a mother yourself? Did you find your opinion changed when you had children? And if you don't have children, how do you feel about those stories?

Let me know in the Comments below!


Oakdalian said...

These days, it's hard to feel for either the child or the parents when stories like this are so manipulative and often free of a real payoff at the end. Plot for the sake of plot. I was disinterested in Gwen and Jennifer's baby switch on ATWT, until the scene when Carly had to tell Gwen her baby died. It was just that underwhelming. For me, there are some stories that shouldn't be told unless writers are willing to explore the psychological effects on the characters. JJ's kidnapping was only a tool in redeeming Carly and getting her with Jack again. How much do you want to bet that JJ will never go to therapy or have residual trauma from his experience?

Kelly said...

I hated that ATWT killed off little Jennifer Stewart Ryan. It was horrible, especially considering all Emily had been through. Plus, a baby with Paul and Emily would have had years of story, not to mention the most awesome soap genes ever with grandparents like Susan and Barbara and James. And speaking of, I would love if it James really had her and she was very much alive.

Esther said...

Awesome points oakdalian.

I don't have children. I hate dead baby stories. Maybe if they did them the way oakdalian wants it done, it would at least be interesting. Unfortunately, they aren't.

mimac7283 said...

I hate dead baby storylines and I've given up watching many soaps when they start this storyline. I usually return after they're over yet it is annoying that we constantly get them!

schiffeg68 said...

So my question to you today is: Do you like dead baby stories? Are you a mother yourself? Did you find your opinion changed when you had children? And if you don't have children, how do you feel about those stories?

I can't say I like them, but in certain instances they do move story foreward in new directions. Baby deaths are a real life happening, and even though soaps are fantasy, they like to tell real stories. I don't see how soaps can be called drama if you don't include them. That said, it's also important not to overdue. Too many baby deaths are nothing but depressing.

I am a mother of two teens and I've never had to endure the death of a child and Lord willing, never will.

chris said...

I really don't care for them. I love as the world turns but it got intense and down right gruesome with all the deaths and strife. I got to the point where I would be in a bit of a mood after watching it! Barbara(who I loved to hate when she was evil)...I thought she was going to just have a break down after Paul. That Jennifer died was intense enough...Hal passing away was unaviodable...Gwen's baby dying did propel story, but it was still very sad, as was Emily loosing her baby. So now, Gwen has a misscarriage!? Jst not sure what the point of making her pregnant in the first place was. I imagine this may somehow tie into her brother and his girlfriend expecting a child but I'm not sure. Just seems like way too much unfortunate drama.

MissT said...

No more dead babies! I was heartbroken when Gwen's son Billy died. Paul's daughter Jenny shouldn't have died either. Will & Gwen fans finally got the baby story they wanted for them and now Gwen & Will are going to lose that child too. No more! Give Will and Gwen a baby of their own. The Munsons need a future generation.

Anonymous said...

I think that baby stories are good if they are done right because if you think about it in a soap opera baby's eventually become center storyline characters. The baby's history and how they were conceived or by who?? comes into play as you all know. I also think that each main power couple on the show such as Will Gwen must have atleast one biological child to keep stories going. I understand drama is important to soaps but there's other ways in a pregnancy story to develop drama without killing an innocent baby. Each baby story has to have some drama but a biological child especially for the young Munsons has SO MUCH POTENIAL in the future of the baby and for other storylines. I also think that too many times writers kill off babies thinking it will create drama but they forget about how personal and hurtful those stories actually are to the viewers.
Back to Will and Gwen let them be for heaven sakes! They deserve one child of their own I don't care if they adopt 5 other children afterwards but give them one PLEASE by killing another baby and having Gwen in again such turmoil isn't soap drama it's cruelty and there are tons of viewers and Willen fans that will turn their backs on ATWT if there is not a happy ending here with Will and Gwen and a child of their own. Also on a side note get rid of Alison she's a waste of air space- put her back with Aaron, let her fight with Sofie...I don't care just get her away from Willen and give the young super couple happiness of their OWN in the end because the story and the show will, I promise you, benefit from it. If there isn't a happy biological baby story ending for Gwen and Will then congrats writers you have once again destroyed not only great storyline opportunities but a young love story with two fantastic actors on top of that.


atwtfan12 said...

I am very angry that ATWT is killing Gwen and Will's baby! This is unfair and unbelievably cruel to kill another one of Gwen's babies and I will never forgive the show for doing this! I am done with this horrid show now! If ATWT thinks that Will and Gwen fans are going to be happy with them losing their own child so that they can create some new child between Will and the meth head porn star, they are crazy! We want a child that is biologically Will and Gwen's, not Will and some other girl's. We wanted the child that already existed, that they were already having! To kill Their baby, just so they can create some alternative kid that won't even be Gwen's is beyond sick and cruel! Gwen doesn't deserve this. She doesn't deserve to be cut out of her own baby story. She should be the biological mother. If she isn't, if this new baby isn't both hers and Will's, if it's Will's with the porn star instead then I'm done with this show! Why would the writers think that Will and Gwen fans would ever like this story? There was nothing wrong with the story and baby they were already having. That was the baby and story we wanted. This show is cruel, sick, and twisted!

sugarplum said...

Very well said atwtfan12.

I know many people who watch ATWT and after hearing the news of the miscarriage most of them have decided to quit watching. The Will and Gwen baby story that we all wanted is being taken away so why watch?

I'm going to hang in a little bit longer to see if the writers fix their mistake. If there's word that there will be a new baby AND that the new baby will be the BIOLOGICAL child of BOTH Will and Gwen then I'll keep watching and I'll let the others who have quit know that they should come back.

Bella said...

I'm not a mother and I hate dead baby stories.

The thought of watching Gwen and Will lose the miracle child that they wanted and loved so much is unbearable. I am sure the scenes will be very well done due to the talents of Jennifer Landon and Jesse Soffer but I will not be watching. That's not entertainment.

It's time for Gwen and Will to be blessed with another miracle, a healthy baby of their own that LIVES. Now that's entertainment!

ATWT Fan said...

I also will not be watching Will & Gwen lose their miracle baby. As a Will & Gwen fan, all I have ever wanted was for them to have a baby of their very own. You give it us and then take it away a month later. Then you expect us to watch a new character with no ties at all to anyone on the show have a baby. Sophie should have lost her baby not Gwen. The writers at ATWT are cruel and heartless to do this to not only Will & Gwen but to their fans.

The only way that I will watch in the future is if I hear that Will & Gwen are expecting another baby of their very own. I will not accept anything else but for them to have a biological child of their own before Jennifer & Jesse vacate the roles of Will & Gwen. If you give that story, then I will once again start watching and become a happy viewer.

alexs said...

the writers made a huge mistake by killing Jennifer Stewart Ryan, after all the hell that Paul, Emily and Pem fans had been put thru, killing little Jenny was simply cruel, and shortsighted, it turned off many Pem fans that felt used and insulted. this travesty needs to be corrected, Jennifer Ryan should be brought back into Paul and Emily life, and the show canvas, really, with parents like Paul and Emily, and with James, Barbara and Susan as grandparents, Jennifer Ryan should have been the show golden baby, no other baby offers so many stories opportunities for years to come.

Angelica said...

I am so upset that they made my favorite couple lose their baby. All I have ever wanted as a Willen fan was for them to have a baby of their own. The writers dangled it my face for a month then snatched it away. I'm sorry but if anyone should have lost their baby it should have been Sofie. Sofie has no ties to the show nor does anyone care about this character or her baby whereas the Willen baby had ties to a character (Barbara) that has been on the show for 30 yrs. As far as I am concerned Sophie can go jump in a lake and drown.

All I can say is the writers better fix their mistake by giving Will & Gwen a biological baby of their own pronto. As a fan, I will not accept anything else. I would have been fine with other options of them getting a baby if GWen had not gotten pregnant. But now that she was, it is their own bio baby or no baby at all for me. This needs to be fixed pronto before you lose more viewers than you have already have by making this horrible decision to kill off yet another Munson.

stargirl618 said...

I don't like dead baby stories either. I don't like that Gwen has suffered two losses and has been told twice that she can't have children.

As for GL's Lizzie, I don't think she deserves to know that her child is alive. She didn't seem to care about her when she was alive (leaving her in a car while it was cold and being used as a weapon to entrap a man). Sarah is better off - all she has to do is find out that Coop is her real daddy (they never had a paternity test).