In the wake of this past week’s drama on the top CBS soaps, “The Young And The Restless” and “The Bold And The Beautiful” there’s been more drama on my social pages than on these damn shows. This was all because I had an opinion on the recast of Ridge Forrester.
Many of you had been asking what I thought of this hyped up recast and I waited until the debut of Thornsten Kaye as the NuRidge to give it. I simply didn’t think this recast was going to fly with the worldwide fansbase that Ridge Forrester has had for 25 plus years now. And I thought this guy should have been given a new character because it was simply hard to see him as Ridge after Ronn has played him for so long. It was disrespectful to the role and to Ronn on so many levels.
Also, as a longtime viewer of soaps it was a major insult to recast such a character that we have grown up with and loved as a family member for so long. This is the foundation on which soaps are built on. We as soap fans look forward to seeing some of these characters and invest our time into them only for the networks to take them away and replace them with actors who will work for less money.We are starting to see this more and more now especially with the CBS soaps. Just this week it was announced that Michael Muhney who plays Adam Newman, Billy Miller who plays Billy Abbott and Michelle Stafford who plays Phyllis Newman have all exited from “The Young and The Restless due to contract disputes or recasts.
These actors have won or were nominated for Emmys and are beloved staples of our everyday soap fantasy fix. A lot of soaps are using popular actors who are out of work from cancelled shows like “One Life To Live” and “All My Children” to sustain their ratings and capitalize on those cancelled show’s fansbase.
This crossover has been successful for General Hospital who took on a few actors from “One Life To Live” but General Hospital still have veteran actors that are staples of their show like Tony Geary aka Luke Spencer. There are just some actors that you don’t replace.
With only four soaps on the air now, more and more changes are being made to them and we wonder about their future now? I felt that “The Bold And The Beautiful” was being very risky playing with their small cast to begin with because it’s the only half hour soap and the only one with a massive worldwide audience as the “Most Watched Show In the World.” There were only four original characters and two of them left over a year and half ago when their contracts were up for negotiation. It seemed like the producers just didn’t care about those core characters anymore and was favoring the younger storylines.
Now I understand you must keep new blood flowing on these soaps to sustain longevity into the future, but not at the expense of the core of what has made that show what it is. That core is what fans look to and cling to everyday and when it’s gone so are the viewers. I don’t think soaps are something young people are into today, not like they were when I was a teenager. There are just too many choices on the Internet and teens today are not loyal to anything because they have so much available to them. Thus not the case when I was a teen.
My mom watched soaps, so I did also and these characters became part of our family. Since Ronn’s left B&B I have had countless emails from many older viewers crying to me about missing Ridge. I’ve seen them cry to Ronn in person and ask him to come back to the show. So to recast this kind of character will break a lot of hearts. But producers will continue to cut actor’s pay and threaten recasting them until these shows are unrecognizable and become different shows. No wonder so many soaps have declined and gone off the air? Producers underestimate what viewers really want and what they will put up with.
Boring recycled storylines with new characters aren’t working for many of us and it’s insulting to our intelligence. After 25 years of following Brooke and Ridge he breaks up with her over a text message? Brooke married Ridge’s father, two of his brothers and he forgave her, but just couldn’t take it anymore over a text message?
Then Ridge doesn’t attend his beloved mother’s funeral? It’s so not Ridge and such bad storyline. But the producer writers didn’t put much thought on how it would make the viewers feel. They didn’t think Ridge was important anymore and thought the show could survive just fine without Ridge. It’s only after a year and a half that they suddenly decide Ridge is so important that they must bring him back and go in a new direction with him? Still not clarifying anything about what he’s been doing in Paris and why he didn’t attend his mother’s funeral?
Ridge could have been in an accident that left him without his memory and disfigured his face, which would have made way more sense to these issues than a text message and not attending his mother’s funeral.
So the producers and writers obviously didn’t put much thought into this character and I doubt they will now. Because I still am not seeing it in the writing. These shows are now becoming a waste of my time and unbearable to watch now.
They should be called ‘The Blind And The Boring” and “The Yawn And The Repetitive.” If this is what producers keep doing the future of soaps will surely become extinct.