The ‘Guiding Light’ Goes Out

The ‘Guiding Light’ Goes Out

The end of an era – a 72-year era – comes Friday (check local listings for time) when CBS airs the series finale of Guiding Light, the longest-running daytime soap in history.

The show’s cancelation is sad because it’s another sign of the rapid decline of the whole daytime drama genre, and, for a lot of us, because Guiding Light is a part of our personal histories.

I started watching the soap with my grandma when I was in junior high. She passed away last week, so the GL finale is extra moving for me. It sparks memories of a lot of great afternoons, when I couldn’t wait to get home from school and see what the Spauldings and the Bauers were up to, alongside my grandma. And I’m sure that’s true for a lot of viewers, past and present, who’ve been regular viewers of their favorite soap as they watched with their mom or their grandmother or another loved one. It’s sad that there’s now one less opportunity for future viewers to bond in that same way with their loved ones.

I’ll definitely be watching tomorrow, as TV land says goodbye to the town of Springfield, and its citizens. Will you?

In the meantime, a few tributes to Guiding Light from around the Web …

– AOL TV has a top 10 moments in GL history list, as well as an interview with GL Emmy-winning diva Kim Zimmer.

Beth Chamberlin, who plays GL heroine Beth Raines, recalls how emotional she was shooting the finale, and says she doubts there’ll be another soap with Guiding Light‘s longevity.

– A quiz about Phillip Spaulding, one of the show’s most beloved male characters, played by Grant Aleksander. has the recipe for the show’s famous Bauer Burgers. has a stellar, photo-filled “Guiding Light‘s Best Moments” feature: part one, part two and part three.

– A list of GL‘s famous alumni, which includes Kevin Bacon, Hayden Panettiere, Taye Diggs and James Lipton.

– Some random Guiding Light trivia.

– A CBS news clip recalls the storied life on GL‘s Reva (Kim Zimmer), which has included nine marriages, cloning, time travelling and returning from the dead.

– CNN has a story on how GL‘s demise is just the latest sign that the entire daytime soap genre is rapidly declining.

– One of the show’s oldest fans, 94-year-old Scotia, NY resident Nathalie Vaughan, was only 22 when the show started.

– And no trip down Guiding Light memory lane is complete without a clip of Reva’s classic “slut of Springfield” rant in the water fountain.

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