December 21, 2009By Marc Wilkofsky Posted: Dec 21, 2009
The cancellation of AS THE WORLD TURNS has hit home with scores of people, and those likely include fans of GUIDING LIGHT, who have walked the road ATWT viewers are about to traverse and can sympathize with them. This multigenerational show has changed lives, and those lives will have to change around its ending.
Millions have chosen to care about at least one, two or a few of the show's characters, and they're all due to be decimated next fall, after delighting viewers who have spent an enormous amount of hours watching them. So this is just another way ATWT is more than "just a show."
Oakdale's many characters have been powerfully written, whether old or new. These days, I am intrigued by the fact that two strong-willed women love Craig, a villain who has committed despicable acts, and that a look he gave one of them stopped his wedding to the other. I'm pleased to see Tom Pelphrey (ex-Jonathan, GL) doing a fine job as the mysterious Mick, and Terri Colombino has been wonderful in her moving portrayal of the recently widowed and still saddened Katie.
Yes, daytime's LIGHT was turned off and the WORLD will stop turning, but there is a fact that can ease our own sadness. Countless shows get only four or five final turns at bat when the ax comes down; ATWT is getting more than 150 episodes to bring it home. So despite CBS' unfortunate decision, there's a lot to be thankful for, as the show was given a huge amount of time to wrap up its storylines, even more than GL received. It's not like the show is already off the air (which non-soap viewers might believe upon hearing the news); there are many months to go.
Another network, NBC, made a savvy choice by airing THE SING-OFF the week after GLEE's fall season finale. The hype for this series is not unfounded: If you like Fox's GLEE, this competition among a capella groups is absolutely worth watching. The multi-group opening number (with dozens of singers beautifully taking on David Bowie's "Under Pressure") was one of the best I've seen on a reality competition program, and each installment has featured another memorable opener, along with extremely engaging performances. In lieu of instruments, the groups have produced complex vocal arrangements and have shown how fun singing a capella can be. Tonight's the finale, and I'm hoping Voices of Lee — a highly talented co-ed group that happens to be the most like TV's most popular glee club — wins. Whatever happens, it should make for a couple of hours of true, just-plain-different entertainment, which is always welcome.