Celebrating accomplishments

I watched the “Tub Talks” video with Damon Jacobs and his guest, Roger Newcomb.

Because of course I did! I met both of them during my trip to NYC and to Guiding Light in 2008. It’s really hard to wrap my head around the fact that it will soon be 15 years since that trip!

This blog has, on numerous occasions, referred to articles and videos by both, but I wanted to say in words how much I appreciate the work and accomplishment of both.

I am convinced Roger Newcomb just didn’t sleep for several years! His ability to maintain We Love Soaps as the huge repository of information that it was (and remains) was beyond impressive. The fact that he and his team were able to create the Indie Soap Awards and keep its momentum is just beyond impressive. Somewhere in there, he found time to help P&G/Televest/Telenext get episodes on DVD.

I was convinced that Roger would someday be our generation’s Doug Marland – his ideas and responses to so much so often paralleled my own thoughts on those subjects! I was so grateful to participate in the survey and voting for the 50 Greatest Actors survey.

I’ve already expressed to Damon how much I appreciate all of his work, including his books, his work in psychotherapy, and his advocacy with harm reduction and PreP. He’s an excellent writer, as his 50 Lessons for 50 Years blog shows.

But in the most recent stretches of the pandemic I was reading/rereading some of Damon’s interviews for We Love Soaps. They were all well done and entertaining to read at the time they were published, but I guess when I reread those pieces – well, as the kids would say, they hit differently.

Many of those were able to get under the mask and get to the very real thoughts of that performer, giving us a real look at them, not the filtered glimpse we usually see where the reader often gets more of the character than they do the artist.

To see them together again was a joy. There is just entirely too much here to discuss, so just watch:

PS: Roger is so not joking about Kim Zimmer and football. When I was on the Guiding Light blogger trip, we had time on our schedule for Kim and went to her dressing room. Before I could even *see* Kim, I heard her talking to Roger about their football rivalry!

I hope the idea of a book isn’t just the seed of an idea. There should absolutely be a We Love Soaps book. We’re losing a bit of history every day. As I’ve said before, it was my dream for a long time to write an oral history of Guiding Light, but I didn’t have all the ducks lined up to do so; I so hope this happens.

And while the genre itself has gotten smaller over time, it’s great to see so many success stories from the soap world and the soap press/blog world that was happening back in the mid aughts. Jamey Giddens is writing for DAYS! Sara Bibel’s been at Y&R for a minute now! I mean, Tom Casiello is running out of media platforms to pwn and master! And Elana Levine did a phenomenal job with Her Stories, giving us a book that both gets factual accuracy and details as well as the context of why it mattered – and still matters.

(All in addition, of course, to the great work soap academics, including Elana, Sam Ford and Lynn Liccardo, have been doing for years!)

So here’s to all those accomplishments!

One thought on “Celebrating accomplishments

  1. I, too, enjoyed their tub talk. I could have listened to them talk for several hours. It was quite fascinating hearing some of their stories. But it was also frustrating when they went off on tangents and didn’t finish their stories completely. Such is the nature of conversation. I’m quite guilty of going off on tangents when I chat with people.

    I would certainly love to read Roger’s We Love Soaps book. I’m sure he has lots more fascinating stories to tell. I never realized Roger didn’t have a journalism background. You really wouldn’t have known that from the great work he did with that site.

    I do wish Roger had offered some explanation why he quit doing the we Love Soaps site. I visited it daily for many years (loved the Soap History column), so was very disappointed when it just withered on the vine.

    James – thanks for the great comments, agreed on all fronts! Roger did a great job (as did Damon). I wish I’d had a conversation with Roger about the end of We Love Soaps, but I have to assume there was a definite diminished return on investment – at the end it was the This Day in Soap History posts and a few PR releases from the remaining shows. My little site here was a thin shadow to WLS, which was just so great during its tenure.

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