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Ode to Guiding Light

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Now readers, if you've never watched this Soap Opera or any for that matter, than please forgive me for going off the track of Film and Food. But I felt I owed a place of honor on my blog to this television institution which showed its very last episode on September 18, 2009 after 72 years of being on the air.

Sadly, Guiding Light was so much apart of my formative years, that I feel I have more memories of these characters, than I do of my own life. I started watching ever so faithfully, when I was 12 years old and saw just about every episode for 25 years.

In the beginning, I would race home from school to catch it. My first paycheck from my after school job, went to the purchase of a VCR. It's pathetic to admit, but I actually remember crying if the electricity went out for some reason or my VCR didn't record an episode. Looking back, I'm sometimes ashamed of the amount of time I spent watching soaps, GL in particular. I still need the escapism found in movies, TV and books, most of us will admit that; but for me, the medium of telling stories through daytime serials brought with it a sense of satisfaction that I have yet to find again.

 

My earliest memories are of Kelly and Morgan (the red haired Morgan) falling in love at Laurel Falls. Annual Bauer BBQ's, A crazy Amanda Wexler, who retreated back into childhood complete with a big, silly bow in her hair and a ever present rag baby. Then, GL moved into it's heydays with focus on the teenage years of Phillip, Beth, Rick and Mindy's friendships and romances. Although, I think I may have loved the old movie quality of Nola and Quentin's Jane Eyer like storyline, even more. 

 Anyone even remotely acquainted with the show, will agree the most important moment was the day Reva Shane stormed in to Springfield and the whole Lewis/Shane clan saga was slowly revealed to us riveted viewers. To this day, their history seems like gospel, okay, maybe gospel is taking it too far, but if feels like a universal story, not unlike Gone With The Wind or Camelot.
Ver Dorn
Clarke
The Men: I've always said (and I'm still looking for him) that my ideal man would have the humor and bigheartedness of Billy Lewis (Jordan Clarke), the sophistication of Alan Spaulding (Ron Raines), the adventuress spirit of Fletcher Read (Jay Hammer), the good looks and patience of Josh Lewis (Robert Newman), the earnestness of Ed Baurer (Peter Simon) and the solid sexiness of Ross Marler (Jerry Ver Dorn). In addition, throw in a little Rick Hearst, Micheal Tylo and Justin Deas for good measure!


Ehlers
The Women: Some stellar actresses have graced this sound stage. It's really the women that keep you glued to a Soap. It becomes vital that you see each one through crisis after crisis. Through changes of love, hate, death, rebirth, births, careers, and most importantly wardrobe!
 

 Reva (Kim Zimmer) is just Reva - no words can describe her, but I do wonder if she's counted how many thousand (perhaps millions) of tears she actually shed over the years.

Harley (
Beth Ehlers) was tenacious and raw and adorable.

Wright
Chamberlain
Cassie (Laura Wright) was a beauty with so much spunk and true grit.

Beth (
Beth Chamberlain) took us for a roller coaster ride over the years; sometimes sympathetic and weak, then she'd be devious and self-centered, other times just a mess and sometimes powerful and maternal.

Holly (Maureen Garrett) was one of the most elegantly, naturally, sexy women I've ever seen.

Garrett
Dinah (
Wendy Moniz/Gina Tognoni) made you cheer her on through every self-destructive antic.

My sister will kill me if I leave out her favorite - Blake (Liz Keifer) who never stopped making mistake after
mistake, yet we forgave her again and again.

I also really loved the first Alexandra Spaulding (
Beverly McKenzie) and I still miss Nola Reardon-Chamberlain (Lisa Brown). Some young actresses like Melina Kanakaredes, Brittany Snow, Hayden Panettiere and Nia Long got started on Guiding Light and went on to be amazing prime time and movie actresses.

In the end, the show was a mere shell of itself, so little happening, such cheap production value. I felt glad that it was being given a final send off before its original magic completely disappeared.

To the viewers delight, Philip and Beth and Rick and Mindy all reunited with marriages for both couples. Billy and Vanessa also made one last trip down the aisle. Alan's double dealings were finally put to rest for eternity and most importantly Reva and Josh rode off together into the sunset.


 RIP GL.

Much Love,


LL








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is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.
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Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?
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