Beginning earlier this week, SoapClassics.com, the site that, over the past year, has been selling DVD sets of As the World Turns and Guiding Light, has been sending out the following message to customers:
Because our distribution license for As the World Turns and Guiding Light expires soon, these DVDs will no longer be available once our current stock runs out.
If you were planning to fill out your collection, or to give some of our DVDs for Christmas, please act quickly. Some of our collection is already gone, but many of our best titles are still available.
We are also offering, as a Christmas special, a beautiful boxed set of our best ATWT titles. This is the perfect Christmas gift for any ATWT fan (including yourself!), and will certainly become a rare collector's item. We have only a limited number of these.
I have to confess, I found the news rather disheartening. The optimist in me had been really hoping for Family Guy level sales, followed by the same kind of miraculous resurrection the FOX cartoon enjoyed (I wrote about it in more detail, here.)
Despite initial enthusiastic response from the fans, I started to suspect my dreams wouldn't come true almost exactly a year ago, when no hard numbers were forthcoming about precisely how many DVDs were being sold, and how many needed to be sold in order for the program to be considered a success.
Things got even worse in December of that same year, as the progress reports got progressively vaguer, and promises made were immediately backtracked (examples, here).
But, still, I clung to hope. And I'm going to continue doing so. Maybe this experiment didn't work out exactly the way that it's producers hoped it would. But, maybe there's another, better idea out there. And maybe, when it comes, we'll have real numbers to work with and the die-hard fans will be able to rally and demonstrate, without a shadow of a doubt, the true power of a soap viewer.
Even if this vehicle wasn't it, we've just got to try harder next time.