Wednesday, July 29, 2009

News Round-up: Rinna Out, Jensen, Otalia, Odds

TV Guide Network Shakes Up Red Carpet Hosts: Rinna Out
TV Guide Network is shaking up its red carpet coverage, replacing hosts Lisa Rinna and Joey Fatone with DANCING WITH THE STARS judge Carrie Ann Inaba and The Bachelor host Chris Harrison.

Rinna and Fatone joined TV Guide Network in August 2007 as the faces of the network's red carpet coverage in Hollywood. As the channel looks to revamp under its new ownership of Lionsgate and JP Morgan, it is seeking to change its public face. That strategy includes acquiring off-network series such as Ugly Betty, developing original programming, which TV Guide Network President Ryan O'Hara says is forthcoming, and changing up its talent roster.

Adults getting more 90210 airtime?
Look for both of the senior Wilsons and Kelly to have amped-up storylines in the fall — a bold stance for a CW show with an explicit mandate to attract younger viewers.

Betting opens on EASTENDERS whodunnit
EastEnders' 'Who's the Daddy?' storyline surrounding Heather's pregnancy has spread to the betting world. Cheese-loving Heather Trott's (Cheryl Fergison) shock pregnancy in the BBC soap has sparked the show's latest whodunnit and the market has today been formed as to the perpetrator.

Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) ranks at 5/1 and Darren Miller (Charlie G Hawkins) stands at 6/1. Garry Hobbs (Ricky Groves) and Vinnie Monks (Bobby Davro) are 8/1 shots, while Vinnie's son Callum (Elliott Jordan) is the rank outsider at 16/1.

UGLY BETTY's Ashley Jensen is expecting
According to People, the British actress and husband Terence Beesley will welcome their first child sometime in the Fall.

Otalia: Why That Damned Kiss Is So Important
Lana M. Nieves writes: "The kiss is important for so many reasons. It's important because we still have a don't ask/don't tell policy in our military. It's important because young people who question their sexuality harm/kill themselves at an alarming rate. It's important because children being raised by same-sex parents have a right to see that they're every bit as normal as everyone else. It's important because there is so little in the way of happy endings in real life these days, that we need every reminder we can get that they are possible, and not just for Christian, white, upwardly-mobile, heterosexuals."


  1. I can't believe in 2009 that CBS is practicing selective censorship with its soaps. Why shut down the natural progession of a storyline that has garnered attention and kudos from critics, fans, and gay advocates? Way to let Guiding Light die without even the dignity of allowing the storylines to play out as originally intended. Shame on CBS.

  2. Rikita,

    It's not CBS. P&G/TeleNext made the decision to not show same-gender sex.

  3. Kudos to you Lana!! We really need happy endings..Live is short and reeality every single day is more of violence, hate, sadness, and no respect for others opinions, or lifestyle..
    This story line is so important to many people..have touch so many others and we all deserve a good kiss and a happy ending.

  4. The importance of the kiss is all of what was written and more. It is an affirmation to so many people who are same sex couples, or have parents, children and family members or friends who are same sex couples that their love is true, and real. It is also a very good educational tool for those who doubt this. They can see the progression of this particular relationship from friendship to being "in love" and that being in love if you are gay/lesbian naturally leads to a physical relationship, just like heterosexual relationships. This story is written and acted so well that hopefully it will help others see that it's not so different after all. And for those who don't want to see it...they can change the channel.

  5. Spencer,

    P&G also own how do you explain Nuke's kisses? Do they require something of WOMEN that they don't require of men maybe?

  6. Nuke fans mounted an international media blitz when they were "banned" from kissing for seven months. One difference is that Nuke were happy, living together, and kissing OFFscreen. If the story had called for them not to kiss, maybe fans could have been patient but that's not how they wrote it.

    I have to believe though, with the phenomenon that is Otalia, that somebody, somewhere, will do the right thing before GL goes off the air. It would be a huge disservice to fans, and also to the show itself, if they weren't together in some capacity and we didn't see them kissing and more.

  7. Roger can tell you how long P&G held off between Nuke kisses...and even longer on Nuke sex (which, to this day, is only implied).

    I have experienced an evolution on these issues. During the days of the Nuke kissing ban, I grew increasingly unfuriated...many of the same sentiments Lana expresses.

    But in the case of Nuke, it got so bad that P&G had a telephone referendum, where the forces of Rev. Wildmon dialed in and the forces pro-Nuke-kissing needed to dial in in retort. P&G was the timid company.

    But my evolution is this: These soaps exist to sell soap to Aunt Mildren in Peoria. (Yes, I'm stereotyping, but bear with me). What is left at home during the daytime--those all important "live views" (watching soaps) is mostly older women viewers and homemakers. Homemakers often (not always) come from a more traditional family mindset.

    P&G is terrified that those women might abandon Dawn and Tide and what have you.

    Even on Y&R, where we ostensibly have 2.5 gay men now, the representation of their sexuality has been ... chaste. No on-screen kissing (just implied kisses).

    My evolution? I realize now that soaps are sort of the last bastion of "traditionalism". With this audience, the teachable value is more "slow and steady". Too rushed, too overt, and we'll lose the GLBT-positive feature of these portrayals and stories.

    I now believe we viewers need to let this unfold slowly over time. The day WILL come! But let's let the mainstream/traditional audience catch up.

  8. Luke and Noah met on June 1, 2007. They shared their first kiss August 17, 2007, and their second kiss a month later. By then they were definitely a couple. Luke became paralyzed so they put off affection. By Christmas, they had a BEAUTIFUL episode where they declared their love for each other and the camera panned to mistletoe instead of showing their kiss. What show does that for young lovers?

    On Valentine's Day, ATWT has a special episode for the lovers of the show. 11 other couples were featured and all kissed at the end of their segment. Luke and Noah had a great segment which ended in a hug.

    By then it was obvious somebody, somewhere was not allowing kissing to take place. It wasn't story dictated as they were living together by then.

    Fans organized a huge media blitz. I was personall interviewed by NPR (twice), several radio programs, the Associated Press (which ended up in 300+ newspapers), was on cover of the Life section of USA Today and much more. And that's just me.

    After seven months, Nuke was finally shown kissing near the end of April 2008 (it had to be taped not long after the media blitz really hit).

    Since then, Luke and Noah have kissed more than any other couple on ATWT, even though many are just pecks on the lips. There is much affection.

    They have had sex once, I didn't mind how it was done, but not again and we've never seen them in bed together. Paul and Emily opened Monday's show 95% naked with Emily's legs in the air so the double-standard continues.

    At this point, what do these shows have to lose? GL is already going off the air and, unfortunately, ATWT may not be far behind. Now is not the time to worry about offending a few people. I believe the buzz generated would create new fans that would replace anyone who left in a huff, and probably younger and more demographically appealing fans.

  9. Roger writes: "At this point, what do these shows have to lose? GL is already going off the air and, unfortunately, ATWT may not be far behind. Now is not the time to worry about offending a few people. I believe the buzz generated would create new fans that would replace anyone who left in a huff, and probably younger and more demographically appealing fans."

    This is why I do not think it is the SHOWS (or CBS, which I think is more willing to take the buzz) is P&G (even if they now wear a "TeleNext" cloak).

    It is not the SHOWS that are keeping them timid. It is their fear of affecting Pringles sales.

    Outside of daytime, I'd be a lot more angry. My favorite primetime shows these days are True Blood, Brothers and Sisters....neither of which shy away from....anything.

    But I admit I am tolerant of an approach that more gently introduces this whole "gay" idea to Aunt Mildred. If she keeps watching--if she doesn't turn off the show in disgust--she may experience some growth of tolerance and understanding.

    To achieve that goal, we have to keep Aunt Mildred from turning the channel. And that is where the "kid gloves" strategy might work.

    And for those of us who can't stand it, there's always slash fiction :).

  10. Mark, I understand the need to take the full audience into consideration, but I feel the networks, producers, writers, EVERYONE, severely underestimates their audience. Harding Lemay said the same thing in his interview with us. They have what I call a New Yorkers view of the midwest and south and, sure, there are closed-minded people there as well as here in NYC, but I don't think it's nearly as bad as they assume. It's just frustrating for me that we can see elevator sex with Katie and any man on ATWT but not Luke and Noah. Someone has to be the first, and when they are, I seriously doubt that many people will tune out or people will stop buying Pringles. But everyone is afraid to try. And Y&R will barely even show a hug! I am very much looking forward to how OLTL portrays Kyle and Fish.

  11. I agree. I can't wait to see the soap that finally lets go and depicts same sex at the same level of opposite sex.

    My fear, of course, is that our current crop of soaps will expire before that day.

    We'll see!

  12. Okay, but these days there are a lot more people home during the times of soaps!! Hospitals and businesses are letting people work their own hours! When I was working (Last 20 years) I have always been home during the hours of my soaps. I worked in a hospital and worked either early morning & second shift!! So, P&G has got to realize that there are more and more "different" people @ home different hours!! I have not even got into the advent of DVR's!!

    I had actually stopped watching soaps for a bit of time . . . I got bored watching straight people have their lives and people like me have NONE!! I even stopped watching Bianca on AMC because of how they treated her & did not even watch the last fiasco with Reese!!

    But Otalia brought me back to Guiding Light . . .Mostly because of the story but also because of the actresses and their chemistry!! Jessica Leccia, but especially Crystal Chappell!! She opened her arms to a whole new legion of fans and has embraced us!! I love hearing stories about fans meeting her in Peapack, NJ!! Thank goodness there will at least by Venice The Series . . .Thanks to Crystal, Kimmy, Hope and so far a fantastic line-up of actors, inlcuding Crystal Chappell, Jessica Leccia and Hillary B Smith and who knows who else (can't wait to find out . . .But wait is good--Right?? :-) :-) Or so I was told by Hope!! I can't wait for it to begin and in the meantime we have the teasefest on Twitter finding out bits and pieces!! Thank goodness it is a web series . . .Therefore no network involvement just a bunch of fantastic people!!

    But come on . . . The natural progression of a relationship had ground to a HAULT!! The only kiss we have had was sort of gorilla kiss and that was to open the eyes of Nat before the revelations of love were said.

    I guess what I am saying . . . It is frustrating! To see a beautiful relationship begin and then skid to a stop!

    In this day and age it seems the only way to not alienate people is to murder, mame, lie, cheat and get divorceses!! Yes, reality TV! I personally dislike it. To me it is lazy TV viewing. I LOVE stories and mysteries!! I LOVE thinking! I know--Weird right!!

    It is scary that LOVE scares people!! It shouldn't!! I think some people would rather see people tear each other apart than love each other! I happen to like love!! Just wish TV wasn't so scared of it!! Who knows what would happen with more love and less violence???? :-) :-) :-) I know crazy!! Really we do not bite and we even buy stuff!! Really!! :-) :-) :-)

  13. Great points! It's really when you think about what IS acceptable on soaps (mobsters and criminals rule) versus what isn't acceptable in terms of gay storylines.