Monday, March 5, 2007

Soap Star #4 Updates: DAYS Scribe Judges, This Time YOU Decide

More on SoapNet's 4th season of it's popular reality show I WANNA BE A SOAP STAR: The show will continue in it's successful format, and with popular host Cameron Mathison, but will feature a new judge at the table with consummate soap insider Michael Bruno, and veteran actress Debi Morgan ("Dr. Angie Hubbard," ALL MY CHILDREN, "Dr. Ellen Burgess," PORT CHARLES, GENERATIONS, BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL, etc.), new DAYS OF OUR LIVES (and AS THE WORLD TURNS turn-around magician) Hogan Sheffer.

Sheffer (seen right), a large personality with a colorful vocabulary to boot, should make for some interesting TV, without a doubt, and the way he'll gel personally with equally large personalities Bruno and Morgan is an uncertain prospect at best. However, Sheffer's inclusion as a judge, a first for any soap head writer as well, will be particularly interesting this season as the winner and audience knows that the prize of a 13-week contract with DAYS, and where that small stint has the potential to go long-term, will ultimately fall into the hands of Sheffer himself.

What will not fall into Sheffer (or any of the judge's) hands is the selection of this season's winner. Following significant fan outcry from last year's selection of Mikey Jerome as show winner, fans will, for the first time in the show's history, now be the ones who select the winner from the show's two finalists.


Anonymous said...

As a reality show producer, I have often thought that the "it" missing from SOAP STAR, one of SoapNET's better original programs, was the lack of the audience's ability to choose the final winner. This is a de rigeur aspect of every other major reality "talent" show out there right now, and I often wondered what the investment, outside of any surface entertainment value, can be gained from an audience that has increasingly felt dissatisfied with the ultimate selection after every season since the first (I'm not sure if that speaks to the first season's winner's talent or the newness of the whole thing at the time). When the winner was not the finalist the audience was rooting for, the message boards made clear that there was a strong suspicion that the decks were stacked based on whatever direction the show wanted to go with a a specific the last season's case, the winner's role ended up being a heavy for a mobster. Given that fact, there was strong skepticism, founded or not, that the other, female, finalist was even considered for it. This audience participation change should be interesting.

k/lennox said...

I can tell you where my investment started to falter and that was with the way the winners were ultimately used for their 13-week run. The first season's winner, Mykel Jenkins was by far the most talented of the winners so far, but for whatever reason (and I think the fact that he was black played a large part), GH never found anything for him to do until, literally, the last few days of his contract, when he played heavily leading up to his character being revealed as evil, and then being killed. It was very strange. Season Two winner Alec Musser is more attractive than talented, but being hot is apparently enough. He is still sucking up air on-contract (more than a year later) on AMC, a show that has fired not one, but TWO beloved veterans recently for "budgetary" reasons, despite not having a storyline or love interest...simply a mandate to walk around 1/2 dressed on a regular basis. Score one for hot blonde men, perhaps, but not for the audience, who found a lot of the other contestants more interesting that season. Season Three winner Mikey Jerome, was also attractive, and also of limited talent, and ALSO selected by the judges as the ultimate winner. He is NOT still on contract at OLTL, but the 13-week stint that resulted was a waste of both the limited talent he did have (which, coupled with his looks, could have buoyed him along for enough time under different circumstances) and OLTL viewers' time. I suspect that the addition of both a sitting head writer to the judge's table AND the inclusion of audience participation in who the ultimate winner will be should bode well for both viewer satisfaction but for the long-term chances of the winners as well. I'll watch!

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