Here’s “yet another nail in the coffin of daytime soaps,” said Michael Starr in the New York Post. CBS has canceled Guiding Light, “which has aired, in one medium or another, for 72 years”—the last episode of the “veteran” soap opera will air Friday, Sept. 18. (watch a clip from 1985) Guiding Light isn’t the first, and probably won’t be the last, soap killed off by declining ratings.
It was a good run while it lasted, said Meg James in the Los Angeles Times. Guiding Light was the “longest-running drama in television history,” and the “fictional town of Springfield and the show” helped launch the careers of many actors, such as Kevin Bacon, James Earl Jones, and Calista Flockhart.
But it’s really “no wonder that CBS has finally decided to turn out the Light for good,” said Lynette Rice in Entertainment Weekly. It was the beginning of the end when Guiding Light—in a “desperate” attempt to save money and lure in viewers—started “going gonzo with its low-cost, hand-held camera work.” (watch a clip from 2009) That “tactic” backfired, and only alienated “its already anemic fan base.”
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
- How Israel's hawks intimidated and silenced the last remnants of the anti-war left
- This 1,600-year-old Viking war game is still awesome
- The fascinating political evolution of Paul Ryan
- The secret to handling pressure like astronauts, Navy SEALs, and samurai
- 10 things you need to know today: August 21, 2014
- It's time for the police to rethink 'shoot-to-kill'
- Is the Christian music industry liberalizing on gay marriage?
- 4 things NASA can teach you about a good night's sleep
- What you need to know before you support the police in Ferguson
Subscribe to the Week