Guiding Light: CBS Cancels Soap Opera But It May Be Saved

Guiding LightCBS has set an end date for its long-running soap opera Guiding Light. The ongoing serial is set to end after 72 years and more than 15,700 installments on television and radio. It’s listed in The Guinness Book of World Records as “The Longest-Running Television Drama,” a record that’s not likely to be beaten.

Light began as a 15-minute network program in 1952 and expanded to a half-hour in 1968. It became an hour program in 1977 and has continued at that length ever since.

Like all soap operas, Light’s ratings have been in decline for some time. Light and CBS’ other venerable soap, As the World Turns, have both been outshined by less expensive daytime options like Judge Judy and Dr. Phil.

Awhile back, CBS and producers tried to modernize Lights by integrating digital cameras as well as cut costs by downsizing crew sizes and production schedules. The changes weren’t a big hit with many viewers and apparently they weren’t enough to save the venerable series.

Should Guiding Light be cancelled?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

In a statement, Barbara Bloom, Senior Vice President, of CBS’ Daytime Programs, said “We thank the cast, crew and producers — past and present — who delivered this entertainment institution, the beloved characters and the time-honored stories to our audience every day for seven decades. It’s been a privilege to work with such an extraordinarily talented group of people.”

Though CBS has cancelled the series, there may still be hope. Procter & Gamble, the owner of the show, is exploring other possibilities for keeping it alive — including online or a cable outlet.

Brian T. Cahill of P&G’s TeleNext Media said, “We are working hard to find the show a new home, and we are exploring all our options to continue to bring loyal fans the characters and stories they love.”

For now, it looks like the series finale will be broadcast on Friday, September 18, 2009. CBS has yet to announce what will fill Light’s daily timeslot but possibilities include a revamped version of game show $25,000 Pyramid or talk shows led by Valerie Bertinelli, Leah Remini or T.D. Jakes.

60 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Stacey says

    I remember sitting watching the show with my grandmother who listened/watched it ’til the day she passed on (at 98 yrs old). I haven’t been able to watch EVERYDAY ’til episodes started being put on the CBS website. Now when I get a chance to wind down I sit and watch it on the computer, which is typically easier to do with a 4 yr old since he always has to have cartoons. It’s pretty addicting ’cause it always leaves you wondering what’s next. I am not really into much drama or soaps for that matter…but I love GL and I really wish they would keep it going! Oh, and Mallet (Rob Bogue)is hot! If he by any chance reads this, if it don’t work out with Mandy Bruno look me up! LOL

  2. says

    please don t cancel guidinglight i love this show i watch every day.on my dvr. i started watching when canceld another world in the 90s please reconsider. angie

  3. says

    I beg you please .please, don]t take guiding light off the air Iam 73 ysars old ny three daughter and grandaughters grew up watchingG,L with me andstill watch the show. my heart is broken,,,,when I am out I rush home to watch GL ,,,,please; please don/t rosemary….annapolis maryland

  4. burns says

    cbs has no business taking guiding light off of the air.There are still lots of people
    who love and watch the show.People in this world are always doing something stupid
    to cause problems for others,like people like cbs.

  5. susie says

    There are a lot of people who have had enough of game shows and talk shows. I never watch either! People like me who read love stories and watch soaps will not watch CBS! I will start watching ABC!!! My friends will do the same!! We have all talked about what we will watch and it want be on CBS! People that do not get on the net do not know you are taking their show off!

  6. says

    Please save the GL!! Me and my husband been watching it for 42 years!! I just can’t be without it! I just can’t watch any other Soap Opera it not the same as the GL! It’s the best Soap Opera that we have..

  7. Nancy says

    With the world in such a mess we need to have one thing thats been the same for years, and thats just plain good acting, we`ve all grown to think of these peole as part of our family you dont just snuff out our light. Please save our family!!!!!!!

  8. sue says

    Please do not take GL off! I watch everyday! My family and friends do also! We get on the phone and talk about whats going on GL!!! CBS is crazy for taking it off! They want replace it with anything I will watch!!!!!

  9. GiGi says

    Please reconsider taking this show off.
    These people are like family. Reva, Josh and I have grown into the mature years together. Phillip, Beth and Dr. Bower have grown up with my children. I have been a part of the audience since 1963.
    This show has kept up with the times of weird things that happen in our world during this age.
    Its a very good excape from my dull world into an exciting world of wealth, love, sex, lies, deceit and murder. Its all just a story line but it takes a good plot to keep intrest!!!! Keep it going another 72 years !!!!!!

  10. vickie says

    I have watched GL forever. I can remember watching when visiting my grandmother in the 60’s. Please find a way to keep GL on the air. If you absolutely can not keep it on the air I hope the writers will write story lines that let the viewers know what happens to each character. Don’t leave it up in the air that would be so cruel! I have never watched game show or talk shows so please find a way to keep GL alive!

  11. says

    I have watched GL for so many years, I can’t even remember . I am a fan and hope the show is not cancelled. It is the only Soap that I watch daily. We have enough Reality/Court/and Quiz shows, let us continue to have GL.

Leave a Comment

Your comment may need approval from a moderator before it appears. We review comments to weed out spam, duplicate postings and personal attacks. We welcome constructive discussion.