Days look numbered for long-running TV soaps

By Yvonne Tahana

 Days of Our Lives . Photo / Supplied
Days of Our Lives . Photo / Supplied

Like sands through the hourglass, time is running out for two of New Zealand's longest-running soaps.

But plans by Television New Zealand to pull the plug on afternoon dramas Days of Our Lives and Young and the Restless are not going down well with fans.

Both shows are scheduled for termination at the end of next month.

Dannevirke retail manager Lorraine Scott-Wilson - who goes home most lunchtimes to catch the scandalous goings-on in Genoa City, Y&R's fictional backdrop - says she became hooked as a young mum 30-odd years ago.

Mrs Scott-Wilson, 64, is trying to drum up support on community forums on Trade Me, and has been seeking advice from fans who campaigned to keep Coronation Street when it was threatened.

She has also contacted Sky Television to see if it would be interested in picking up the shows.

It isn't.

Other fans have also started Facebook campaigns to save the serials.

TVNZ spokeswoman Megan Richards said the shows had been on air for decades, but ratings had been dropping off.

"We can no longer justify the cost of buying it, when we have others available. Let's face it, 30 years is a tremendous run."

Ms Richards said she wouldn't talk about exact ratings or costs for commercial reasons.

"We understand that there are faithful fans that have been watching for some considerable amount of time but there are also those that are saying to us they would appreciate something fresh after such a long period."

She would not say if replacement shows had yet been finalised.

Mrs Scott-Wilson says she will continue to fight for her soaps, because they know the art of romance and how to tell a great story.

"I come home from work and I relax. It takes you away from your trials and tribulations. Okay, you don't remember what was in it five minutes after it's finished, but it's great fun.

"Some of the characters irritate me ... but they pick up on topical subjects - at the moment it's drink driving."

They also added a touch of glamour to lunchtimes and offered a little eye candy to boot, she said.

"You sit there and think 'I'd love that dress.' There's some real dishes there too. Bobby Marsino - from Young and the Restless - is very attractive.

"Bobby's a bit tangled up with the Mafia. He's trying to go straight, though, with his new wife, who's pregnant. Who wants to miss that?"

Elderly people would get the shock of their lives, come November, she said.

- NZ Herald

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