When I was a kid, I used to watch soap operas with my late grandmother during the summers. She was into the ABC triple threat of All My Children, One Life to Live, and, of course, General Hospital. What the shows lacked in storytelling craft, they made up in earnestness and the fact that they were always consistently there every day. I mean, there's something to be said for a bunch of people showing up every day to try to entertain you.
My grandmother would sit on the couch, completely immersed in each program, hardly saying a word. But once in while, a man would say something mean to a woman or tell her a bold-faced lie, and my grandmother would mutter, in a Thai accent, "Go to hell!" TV doesn't really get more interactive than that.
While I don't watch soap operas anymore (I mean, c'mon, I turned on the TV one time and some creepy old lady was talking to a creepy dwarf—WHAT?!), I did follow in the news the story of Noah and Luke on As the World Turns.
Dubbed "Nuke" by fans, the duo came out as gay gay gay gay gaaaaaaaaaay on the show last year and shared two on-screen kisses. The storyline was hailed by GLAAD as "the first depiction of a gay male couple's romantic relationship on daytime television in the genre's 60 year history." While their interactions have been ridiculously melodramatic and unintentionally funny from the clips I saw online, I wonder how something like this would've affected me as a kid and whether my grandmother would sit there in stunned silence or mutter, "Go to hell!"
According to The New York Times:
Since September, the couple has not kissed again, prompting viewers like Roger Newcomb, the organizer of an online fan campaign, to wonder in an interview with the Associated Press, "Why they have to be censored or treated differently?"
"Valentine's Day featured fantasy sequences involving several of the show's couples. All the stories ended in a kiss, except for Luke and Noah's. They hugged. That's when the campaign started," the AP reported earlier this month.
Well, yesterday CBS caved to the pressure, and Nuke had another man-on-man kiss:
Wowsers! If this had happened in the 80s, I would've beat off to As the World Turns instead of the beach volleyball magazines I bought at the grocery store. (Seriously. I bought beach volleyball magazines—'cuz, you know, I was really into beach volleyball.)
[Addendum @ 5:47PM: I originally posted the first kiss by accident, so I have now replaced it with the third and correct kiss to which this post refers.]