What’s wrong with Guiding Light is that the venerable 72-year old soap, which got its beginnings in radio before making the move to television in 1952, was recently canceled by CBS. Despite this sad and discouraging news, this show is currently what is right about the state of soap operas today. Incredibly well-written and amazingly well-acted, this is what soaps should strive to be, slices of daily life with fascinating, angsty, interesting, slightly out-there twists and turns thrown in for fun. It recently won Daytime Emmy Awards for Best Writing and Best Show in 2007, despite low ratings. You don’t see a different character dying every other day, flying off cliffs on motorcycles or being shot in the head in order to harvest organs for comatose spouses, young children aren’t needlessly put into dangerous situations, hospitalized with life-threatening viruses or kidnapped by crazed parents before being locked in a burning building and people don’t wear Armani and Prada to sit around the house. Tornadoes, earthquakes, blizzards and hurricanes don’t descend on the town on a daily basis so that supposedly tormented soulmates can have sex in a shed as the storm rages around them, and the fictional town of Springfield doesn’t lie conveniently equidistant to the beach, the mountains, New York City, Darfur and some island where everyone goes for a quickie divorce (and by quickie, I mean 2 hours from departure to return).

And despite having a time when GL attempted to keep up with the GH’s and AMC’s with some outlandish storylines (Reva’s cloning, anyone?) and ever declining ratings, the current regime has refocused the direction of the show with emphasis placed on the return of Phillip Spaulding (the fantastic Grant Aleksander) and the slowly burgeoning romance between Olivia Spencer (daytime powerhouse Crystal Chappell) and Natalia Rivera (daytime newcomer Jessica Leccia), affectionately nicknamed Otalia by their massive legion of fans. Unfortunately, like so many things that finally find their feet and begin to rebound time just ran out on the show. CBS had hinted to both viewers and Procter & Gamble Productions, which owns and produces the show along with As The World Turns, that GL would escape cancellation then inexplicably turned around and gave it the axe. Apparently there’s another talk show out there that just MUST see the light of day…

Luckily PGP is not ready to put GL to rest just yet and is looking into its options to keep this slice of television history on the air, whether taking the DirectTV route that Passions followed a few years ago, or making the jump to other mediums, like the Internet.

Whatever the outcome, I urge anyone who is a soap opera fan to search out this hidden gem and give it a try. It’s what soap operas were originally intended to be.

If you’re already a fan of Guiding Light, please let TPTB know how you feel about the cancellation. It’s never too late to save this show. Here’s a list of addresses:

Brian T. Cahill, Sr. V.P., Managing Director for TeleVest Daytime Programs
Procter & Gamble Productions c/o Televest
World Wide Plaza
825 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY 10019

Greg Ross
Vice President, Media and Programming
Procter & Gamble
One Procter & Gamble Plaza
PO Box 599
Cincinnati, Ohio 45201-0599

Barbara Bloom, Sr. Vice President
CBS Daytime
7800 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Richard Mensing, Jr., Vice President
CBS Daytime
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

Nancy Tellem, President
CBS Entertainment
7800 beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Leslie Moonves, President
CBS TV
7800 beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Executive Producer
Ellen Wheeler
C/O Guiding Light
CBS-TV
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

Headwriters
Jill Lorie Hurst
C/O Guiding Light
CBS-TV
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

Alan Lafley
CEO, Proctor and Gamble
1 P&G Plaza
Cincinnati, OH 45201

The Press:
Soap Opera Digest

Carolyn Hinsey
Columnist, Soap Opera Digest
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Lynn Leahey
Editorial Director, Soap Opera Digest
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Stephanie Sloane
Editor, Soap Opera Digest
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Danielle McClure
GL Editor, Soap Opera Digest
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Soap Opera Weekly:

Lynn Leahey
Editorial Director, Soap Opera Weekly
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Mara Levinsky
Editor, Soap Opera Weekly
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

Meredith Miller
GL Editor, Soap Opera Weekly
261 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016

EMAIL

The Press

* Michael Logan at TV Guide
in care of Rich Sands… Rich.Sands@tvguide.com

* SOD Sound Off:
sodsound@sourceinterlink.com

sodopinion@aol.com

* SOW Public Opinion:
spwpubop@sourceinterlink.com

tellus@primedia.com

* SID
cbsmail@soapsindepth.com

Miscellaneous

Sarah Lee at Suite101.com
sarahlee22@juno.com

Sheri O’Shea on the New VR
latherup@thenewvr.com

Cast email addresses per GL Fan Club:

Cast emails

The phone numbers are:

Guiding Light- 866 – 695 – 1859

CBS in New york: (212) 975-4321
CBS NY–FAX: 212-975-4516
CBS in LA (Les Moonves): 213-852-2345

CBS Audience Services: 212-975-3247

E- Mail: audsvcs@cbs.com

Letter Rip: gl@cbs.com

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