One obvious trend in daytime that emerged in the late 70s and early 80s was the habit of stealing storyline ideas from prime time television. As shows expanded (to an hour) and tried different themes and characters, daytime borrowed some stories from nighttime and tried them on for size. Viewers were less likely to see a character pouring coffee and talking in hushed whispers about marital discord, and more likely to see a character throwing a drink a la Sue Ellen Ewing and causing a scene. (Is that you, Reva Shayne?)
Daytime shows introduced characters and families that capitalized on the prime-time soap boom. The Buchanans on OLTL and the Lewises on GL seem to owe at least a partial debt to “Dallas”, while Alexandra Spaulding was daytime’s answer to Alexis Carrington on “Dynasty” (and a far superior version, too).
But the problem is, it’s now 2008 instead of 1978. And yet, we still have shows that seem to think we are dying to see rich, aging socialites, billionaire businessmen and over-the-top campy romance and catfights. That may have resonated in those 1980s Reagan years, but it’s about as fitting now as a bad toupee.