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'Guiding Light' replacement: Why can't the 'thirtysomething' guys come to the rescue?

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It seems all but certain that CBS will replace Guiding Light with a game show — and that would be sad, even though I have nothing against the Pyramid or any other 1970s-era, Dick-Clark-hosted game that may be repurposed for daytime. I just think (no, wish) that the networks would use the opportunity to rethink the soap opera genre before kicking it to the curb. And it’s not like some potential solutions are completely out-of-the-reach! Why, CBS may have an alternative right in its own backyard: The network has already made a deal with Marshall Herskovitz and Ed Zwick (thirtysomething) to develop a fall series about a happy union called, simply, A Marriage. Since I see that confection lasting all of maybe two weeks on a network that has made its mark with bloody, action procedurals like CSI and Criminal Minds, I’d like to offer up a better use of time for two of the greatest producers alive.

Granted, it’s a total pie-in-the-sky, never-gonna-happen proposition, but a girl can certainly dream: Imagine if the ailing genre wasn’t considered such a ghetto for class acts like the thirtysomething creators, and these two scribes actually jumped at the chance to bring their brand of angst-filled chick lit to the daytime screen. Expensive? Hell, yes! But what soap fan wouldn’t set their TiVo to a revamped (see: much cheaper and more drawn-out) version of, say, Once and Again (below)? Heck, even having Herskovitz and Zwick consult on a new daytime drama (one they conceptualized, of course) is better than nothing at all. Whaddya say, ladies and gents? Start the petition drive now!

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