I know this was announced a few months ago, but it really took this long to hit me.
After 54 long years on the air – after marriages, divorces, deaths, births, baby switches, broken engagements, affairs, mental breakdowns, comas, and so much more – As the World Turns has been canceled. This is a fact that is made even more sad because it’s sister soap, Guiding Light, ended its historic 72-year run in September.
I started watching As the World Turns when I was 12. It was always close to me.
ATWT is one of the few soaps with so many vets and older characters – Dr. Bob (Don Hastings), Kim (Kathryn Hays), Nancy, Lucinda, Lisa and Barbara – and, especially in the last year, they have been utilized.
Bob’s health crisis mystery combined with Kim’s heart attack was so sweet.
Lisa didn’t get much airtime. But Barbara (Colleen Zenk Pinter) has been canoodling with three (or two, depending on how you look at it) men, two of which are young enough to be her son.
We even got a double dose of Nancy this year. The scenes where she gave Casey her engagement ring from Chris to give to Ali were wonderful.
They intermingled the two generations (Ali/Bob/Kim during Bob’s health crisis; Mick and Barbara). They told stories about family, love, hate, and of course, returning from the dead.
Now, I’m not saying that ATWT is perfect. There have been many stories that they didn’t do very well. Heck, people went from the Nuke fanbase in droves to support One Life’s gay couple, Kish (which has even been called “Nuke done right”).
When Guiding Light went off the air, it felt like a family member died. But there was always ATWT to carry on the legacy.
When GL was cancelled on September 18, 2009 until September 17, 2010 when ATWT has its final air date, ATWT is the longest running soap opera currently on the air. And yes, 54 is not as long as 72, but the cancellation of ATWT has been felt just as hard, if not harder.
Soon, ATWT will join the ranks of GL, Passions and a horde of other canceled soaps, the third in the last few years. As the World Turns has been a staple of history. I will never forget watching the Walshes, the Snyders, the Hughes, the Stewarts, the Stenbecks, and every other family and character to blow through Oakdale.
Here’s to another nine months of wonderful storytelling and the history that will unfortunately be coming to an end. I am not quite happy with CBS for their decision, but what can you do? I will never forget the memories, no matter what.
Even after 9/17/10, you can help keep the world turning within yourself.