On Notice

It pains me to write this.

The malaise I talked about a month ago has not gone away, even though I honestly think the show is better now. There are more stories going on, new pairings are being tested, it is more consistently paced, stories seem to have beginnings, middles, and ends. Characters aren’t been wasted on propping up someone else.

But there is an overall flatness to the show that I find uninspiring. Under Hogan, the good parts were so good it made the bad parts so much more frustrating, incredibly so. But it also made criticism, and fanwanking, more fun. I used to have a nearly inexhaustible appetite to discuss the show, and that is no longer the case.

So I’m giving it until the end of sweeps. I’ll make a pledge not to fast-forward, and keep an open mind about every storyline (even Chan). I’ll enjoy Phillip—Higley has done wonders with him, showcasing his relationship with his father, giving him a business-rivalry storyline, and testing him with different actresses. (Hogan’s treatment of Phillip was one of his biggest failures.) I’ll enjoy snarky John, and Tony and Anna’s rivalry. I’ll remain hopeful for some emotional fallout for Steve and Kayla, maybe a new storyline for Nick.

But if I still feel this way at the end of the month, it may be time to pull the plug.

I really hope it doesn’t come to that. Days, consider yourself on notice.

11 thoughts on “On Notice

  1. That is sad to hear maryp, but I totally get where you’re coming from. I did a catch-up yesterday watching 6 weeks worth of shows in a few hours – skipping much, obviously – and I do agree that it’s got better, but still it hasn’t sucked me fully back in. I watched much larger chunks of the episodes from the last week and a bit than I did of the many weeks previous, and I do think they’re in a more promising position now, but I’m not seeing anything excitingly sweeps-like coming down the pike either.

    We shall see.

  2. Well, as you know, mp, I’m in the same boat. Days has sweeps to give me a reason to really care what the heck is going on in Salem. I’m not saying that I’ll quit completely on June 1 if I’m not feeling better about the show, but I’m not going to make any great efforts to keep up with it either. I’m enough of a SN and MBE fan, that I’ll keep up with their story as long as they are around, but I don’t have that same attachment to the rest of Salem.

    It saddens me because I don’t want to not watch the show. I want to be excited about it like I was in large stretches of 2007 and even early 2008. So, here’s hoping we can all find that happy place again.

  3. I’m going to have to think about your comment that under Hogan the good parts were so good the bad parts seemed even worse. I honestly can’t recall anything he did that was so good that it outweighed the horrific mistakes and missteps he made–but then, I’m not a Chick fan😉 (On point with your recent post about how rape couldn’t kill EJami but boredom can, it’s just all the more clear to me that once 12/29 happened, there was never any going back. I always hate to isolate that one Event, because EJ did so many, many other awful things–also lazy writing, IMO–but it’s certainly true that I can apparently get past evil but not being bored.)

    I think GhostofMaxine really nailed it the other day on TWoP about why so many people are depressed, discouraged and tuning out–on TWoP at least, many of the posters are dedicated Steve and Kayla fans, and those two have been put through the wringer in ways that are out of character for them, with Kayla being marginalized and de-brained and Steve, well, Steve also being not-so-smart. When S & K and/or Chick are your favorite couples, I can totally see why the show right now would be too depressing to watch. Since my favorite character is Philip, I have nothing to be too upset about right now, unless Higley screws me with the Phorgan pairing I do not want–therefore, it will happen.

  4. That seems like a healthy decision.🙂 I’m too hung up on getting some kind of resolution for S&K to just walk away, but it’s been a couple months since I watched the rest of the show regularly. I’ve tuned in a couple of times for Tony and Anna, but other than that, I don’t feel like I’m missing anything. Which is sad.

  5. I hear what you are saying, Paxton, but I watched faithfully and excitedly last year even when S&K (or at least K) were offscreen for 6 weeks, or otherwised mostly backburned. Even then, I was interested in the other stories to at least one degree or another. And, I honestly believe that if the other stories on the show were interesting, I’d still feel pretty good about the show despite the craptasticness of the S&K storyline.

    I guess I can’t say that my issues with the S&K storyline don’t affect my feelings about the rest of the show, but it really is more than that, at least for me. I was a pretty ardent EJami fan, but they do nothing for me now (at least most of the time). I never loved Chick like others do, but Chan does less than nothing for me. I adored Stax, but now I’m even finding them to be a bit of a snooze. The only bright spot for me is Philip and Morgan (which you hate, so there you go).

    But, I’m hoping that things will somehow pick up during sweeps because I’d like to care about the whole show again.

  6. esp, I think it’s easier to deal with backburnering, though, than it is to deal with character destruction. Not that I’m trying to tell you how you feel! I hope it’s not coming off that way. I’m just saying that for me, for example, it was easier to deal with Philip not being on than it was to have him declaring his adoration for Belle. I would rather not see a character I love than watch him or her do things I hate or that, to use your term, make no [expletive deleted] sense. Like Kayla leaving the gun under Ava’s pillow, which is the single most blatant “destroy a character for a plot point that we could have easily gotten around some other way” device I’ve seen on this show. And like I said, I’ll be joining everyone’s funk if Philip and Morgan hook up.

    I wholeheartedly share your hope that things improve, and ITA that even if there is no couple I care about I can still find the show enjoyable if the stories are good. . . although not as enjoyable as when they give me a couple I love, which, I’m still waiting for this decade.

  7. Well, for whatever it’s worth, I rather enjoyed today’s show. Well, except for Chan, of course. But the rest was pretty good. Hopefully that’s a sign of things to come.

    And, Paxton, I get what you’re saying and you’re not wrong. I’m sure some of my issues with the show are carryover from my issues with the Steve and Kayla storyline. And watching character destruction is more difficult than having them backburned.

  8. Thanks for all your input, everyone! For me, it is not any one couple or storyline, though the death of Chick and the storyline for S&K have certainly not helped my enjoyment of the show. It really is a writing issue, and Higley’s style doesn’t work as well for me. The best way I can sum it up is to say it lacks depth.

    But Phillip’s storyline has been very enjoyable, and Chan aside I also enjoyed today’s episode. I’m ready to give the show every chance.

  9. Ah, the fair-weather fans return. Yes, DOOL can be tedious, but I wil cut them some slack now as they transition back to a new (old) headwriter.

    The worst development of late is the overuse of the “cliffhanger scene”. The show had gotten away from that somewhat, but now every episode seems to have 8-8 scenes where someone gasps or says something (faux)dramatic. Most of the time, it’s nothing big.

    Oh well, still no word on a renewal beyond March 2009, so that’s not a good sign.

    I watched when I could from 1975-1985 (school vacations, between college classes). I have seen almost every episode since I got my first VCR in 1985, missing only 2-3 each year due to preemptions or VCR failure. I never FF (although Touch The Sky was tempting). I don’t get all the “ship”-ing that swoons so-called “fans”. I don’t bounce around to multiple soaps, nor do I ever watch the show live since I can watch all 34 minutes of content in, well, 34 minutes.

    The only thing that will stop me from watching is the final NBC cancellation.

  10. Good for you, SanDiegoinExile, and thanks for commenting.

    I want to stay in it to the end, I really do! There’s something home-like about it, since I grew up watching Days. I have every hope that the new writer will improve as she goes along.

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