Tuesday, January 18, 2011

By Alina Adams

Part #4

Part #3

Part #2

Part #1

Last week's episode of Another World Today (Part #1 and Part #2) featured Dean Frame and GQ Todd, both single fathers in the midst of trying to get their biological children back from their respective adoptive parents, comparing notes on their experiences.

While GQ has been forced to go to court and prove his fitness to raise his son, Dean has, more or less, been encouraged to reclaim his daughter. Granted, there are key differences in their situations - GQ's child was adopted by strangers (on a whole other soap!) while Dean's is being raised by relatives. Also, GQ's ex-girlfriend voluntarily gave their baby up for adoption, while Dean's wife died and, grief-stricken, he willingly abandoned his child.

But, to GQ, an African-American, there seems to be an even more basic reason for the differences in attitude.

The scene between GQ and Dean in AWT: Part #1 is the reason both cases are happening concurrently.

In the initial outline written prior to AWT's launch, the custody battle for Hudson was scheduled to take place prior to Gregory's death, with Dean's unfolding later.

However, as both stories kicked off, we were, to put it bluntly, stunned by the differences in Facebook and Message Board comments, and especially in the bi-weekly poll numbers, when it came to whether or not GQ should get Hudson v. Dean and Lori Ann.

The fans were clear: They vehmently wanted Dean to return and claim his daughter from Frankie and Cass (even before he was back on the canvas), and they thought Hudson was better off with GL's Rick and Mindy Bauer, some even arguing that Allie had made the decision to give her son up - GQ should have no say in the matter.

When it comes to this or that voting, it's difficult to suss out the nuances and motivations behind people's opinions. Which is why we've decided to open up a thread, here and in the forums listed above, to hear your views in detail. Why do you think there was such a difference in fan opinion when it came to Dean and GQ's positions?

PS: For those who wrote to ask whether the baby photos representing Hudson is of one of my kids, the answer is - yup, you got me. Here is a recent snapshot of all three of mine - can you guess which one is "Hudson Lewis Bauer?"


Alina Adams is the author of the SCRIBE Award winning As The World Turns tie-in, The Man From Oakdale, now available in paperback!


marknsprmo said...

I don't read the facebook stuff but I have thought that most people on the 451 board are in favor of GQ getting his baby back. I am not a big fan of voting although I frequently do, because voting can be scewed by people who vote multiple times. I am not going to spend my day voting hundreds of times...... But am glad to voice my opinion.
I do want to comment on two things though.

One is the love/hate relationship between minorities in general and
soaps. I believe that if one counted all the minorities that watch daytime as a single unified group, they would be the majority of viewers. I believe studies have shown that a very large number of black women watch daytime. As well as gay men. I am sure the hispanic community has a large percentage as well. The problem is we are counted by the bean counters as seperate individual groups and not as a whole. Our voices would be heard more loudly if we had somehow a group voice. I think there should be more diversity in all daytime. There ought to be racial, social-economic, sexual orientation, physical capability and religious diversity on soaps, just as there is in America in real life. The stories would certainly benefit and be less retreads if there were more groups because each group brings something different to the table.

the second thing I wanted to discuss is that maybe Dean is just more popular with the audience because he was a tv character and GQ came along during the written version. The predjudice in this particular case may be that we have an image and a sense of knowing Dean more than we do GQ....
Just a couple of thoughts.

C. said...

For me, this is not a matter of race.

I did not like Mindy's treatment of Allie - all but forcing her to turn GQ in, and there is no one that Allie can tell about it. However, I also did not like GQ's treatment of Allie at the very beginning before anyone - including Allie - found out she was pregnant.

The whole "don't tell anyone about us because I don't want anyone to ruin it" came across to me like it was not a matter of race but a matter of GQ sending mixed signals. They met up, he said he "needed" her, they had sex, and THEN he says he wants to hide THEM.

Allie is already feeling like both of her parents resent her for ever being born, and then GQ pretty much does the same thing. IMO, she won't bond with Hudson because she felt carrying the pregnancy to term and giving birth was her punishment and that she deserves no better than what she has, which is EVERYONE turning on her and saying she's a bad person.

I've asked myself if I would have liked GQ's treatment of Allie any better if he were white... and there was no racial element to it. The answer is no. I would not have.

As for Dean wanting Lori Ann back... I beg to differ in the whole "everyone wants him to get his daughter back". Frankie doesn't, but she is also acting like someone who has already lost so much.

As for the "babyproofing" issue... Dean is willing to ask for help. GQ is not. At least that is how he has come across thus far. Dean has asked Cass and Frankie for help. GQ has behaved like he knows better than the Bauers how to raise his son, even though he has not asked for help in how to prepare living space for a very young child.

From what I have understood of GQ's character, he WON'T ask for help and IMO that will be his downfall. Will race be part of that? I know plenty of people of all ethnic groups who won't ask for help. IMO, that is GQ's problem.

As for me personally? Umm... if anyone assumes I'm white... sorry, wrong answer.

Alina Adams said...

We had a post on Facebook suggesting this was more an issue of gender than race.

Check it out at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Another-World/307355595460?ref=search&sid=13800416.3728872026..1 and tell us if you agree.

Also, if you're having trouble posting on the message board today... I'm going to assume that, along with Twitter, all technology is currently against me.