Daytime Soap Operas
2009 The Year That Was


Most Convincing Villains

  • CBS, Proctor & Gamble, and Les Moonves.

The Next Great Heroine

  • Days of our Lives’ Molly Burnett. Her Melanie has gone from a flighty, self-involved socialite to a young woman who tries so hard to give love and be loved, wearing her emotions right out there for all the world to see, and for Phillip to stomp on. You can’t help cheering for her.

The Should-be Indy Film Hero

  • Guiding Light and As The World Turns’ Tom Pelphrey. He had me rooting for a love affair with his cousin(!) and now I’m convinced he’s James Stenbeck, that he’s every bit as madly in love with Barbara as the forty or so years his senior James has always been. This guy is crazy-good.

Worst Character Assassinations

  • All My Children. Sharp, self-made tycoon Adam Chandler, turned to putty by a pretty psychopath??? Erica Kane sexually attracted to her grandson’s father, a nitwit among men??? The man we all know would lay down his life for any damsel in distress, Aidan Devane, kidnaps Kendall???

The Littlest Scene Stealers

  • General Hospital’s Molly, adorably smarty pants.
  • Days of Our Lives’ Sydney, the sweetest little baby face since Full House’s Michelle.

Best baby drama

  • DAYS’ Baby switch. At some point nearly half the residents of Salem were affected in some way by this story and in tears. Who needs a budget, when you’ve got all-encompassing, emotional writing like that?
  • ATWT’s Vienna miscarries and the actress proves she’s far more than the show’s prettiest face.
  • Y&R. Though the actual "switching" of the babies was hard to buy, it was worth it for one of the finest cliff-hangers in years when the plane’s going down and Adam holds up the note to Sharon that her baby’s alive.

Best Trend

  • Unlike short-sighted execs, actors are at least attempting to find a new venue for the soap genre via online series such as Wed-Locked, Venice, The Lake, and Gotham. And thanks to Twitter, and, Guiding Light and Another World continue to tell their stories, resulting in one of the best new couples of the year over at AW, Amanda and Kevin.

Worst Trend

  • Where’s the love? In the eighties every soap had at least three or four supercouples, and viewers tuned in purposely to see their favorites. At the moment, there’s maybe one or two true romances on any show, and for the most part those take a backseat to mysteries and action. Soap fans could care less who killed who, we’re much more into who kissed who, passion breeds passionate viewers.


  • AMC: Stuart murdered, all for a not so riveting who done it plot. Anything intimate between Ryan and Erica. He’s so not worthy.
  • ATWT: Cancelled.
  • BB: Owen and Jackie’s photo shoots. Their romance could work, but not without their dignity.
  • DAYS: John and Marlena’s whimper of an exit. Steve and Kayla vanish.
  • GH: Martha Byrne wasted in a short-lived, who cares, murder mystery.
  • GL: Cancelled.
  • OLTL: Jared’s senseless death.
  • Y&R: Devon has sex with his Aunt! Neil apparently more concerned that she’d been his girlfriend at the time, than that she’d always been Devon’s Aunt!


  • AMC: Zach moved to tears by Myrtle’s shattered picture.
  • ATWT: Kim at Bob’s bedside. Whenever Emma, not Janet, is in the Snyder Farm kitchen.
  • BB: Brooke, on horseback, interrupts Ridge and Taylor’s wedding.
  • DAYS: E.J. confronts Nicole with her pregnancy pad.
  • GH: Macho Men, Mac, Patrick, and Coleman.
  • GL: Every last minute we had in Springfield, from deaths, to weddings, to the final Bauer burger burning on the barbecue.
  • OLTL: Anytime David referred to Bo as Pa. Fish coming out and kissing his boyfriend on a regular basis.
  • Y&R: Cane, torn up over Lily’s cancer, sinks to the floor of the hospital corridor. Billy’s crushed face and voice when he heard Mac and Raul got engaged.

New Year’s Wishes

  • AMC: Be he younger, or older, a powerful, charismatic equal for Erica, one who would legitimately make her weak in the knees.
  • ATWT: If a reprieve is too much to ask, how about Noelle Beck is actually Rose, and gets a happy ending with Damian, while Martha Byrne rides off into the sunset on horseback with Jon Hensley.
  • BB: Sandy does something more unexpected than becoming psychotically attracted to Nick.
  • DAYS: Continue the brilliant blend of vets with newbies, and old fashioned take their time storytelling, that has made this soap the most refreshing surprise of the year.
  • GH: Discover some long lost Quartermaines and no longer be so mafia dependant for stories.
  • OLTL: A supercouple worthy, November sweeps wedding for Kyle and Fish, complete with a honeymoon.
  • YR: Reliquaries, paintings… please, once and for all be done with art theft, and for that matter, courtroom scenes, they’re all like watching paint dry, or like, say, months without Victor Newman due to a moronic behind the scenes power play.

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