Although the lengthy writers' guild walkout has been over for nearly three months – about as long as the impasse actually lasted – its repercussions continue to be felt in shows today. In the realm of daytime dramas, one of the most controversial strike-related issues has arisen in NBC's Days of Our Lives
As a result of the scribes' strike, which lasted from early November of 2007 up to nearly the halfway point of February this year, Days of Our Lives
has witnessed a massive overhaul of its writing team, which now has a new (though not so new) head writer in the person of Dena Higley.
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First, a refresher on the tumultuous staff dismissal that led to Higley's resumption of the post she'd already held years before. Back at the start of February, in what Soap Central reported as probably a first in the history of daytime programming, Days of Our Lives
fired its entire writing team. One of those writers shared his thoughts on why they were summarily released by the show.
"I could probably launch into an essay about the inner workings of a television show… the secret cabals and the back alley strike deals that were made," Tom Casiello said on his personal webpage. "I could potentially try to analyze the whole situation, try and find out how a writing team that started out the year doing strong [in the ratings], then ended up in LAST PLACE (due to dictates from the higher-ups) then somehow managed to come back and end the year in fourth place in Households and 1st place in the 18 - 24 demographic were all summarily kicked out at once."
During the strike, Higley, who had already previously served on the Days of Our Lives
writing team for 19 years beginning in 1985, returned to the soap to fill in as head writer. She had been at the helm of the writing pool for ABC's One Life to Live
since 2004. Late last month, Higley was officially named head writer for Days of Our Lives
, heading a group made up of co-head writer Victor Gialanella and dialogue writers, Rick Draughon and John S. Newman, both of whom have also previously served on the Days
writing staff. This is the second time Higley has held the post, having been Days
head writer for three months in 2003.
-Rosario Santiago, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Source: Soap Central
(Image Courtesy of The ABC)