Luke: Wait. You want to operate on Noah today?
Reid: I want to be drinking a beer back in Texas, but I’m prepared to operate.
Luke: But he just had lunch. You — you can’t eat and then go under anesthesia.
Reid: Really? I hadn’t heard that.

— Luke and Reid

Coping with the End of ATWT | Making Your Voice Heard

This post is by request from a Reid Oliver Facebook follower who asked just how LuRe fans go about expressing their feelings about the end of ATWT and the ending for Luke and Reid. What follows is an updated version of the Campaign thread, which was designed to promote a LuRe vs Nuke endgame.

So, if nothing else, that is something to keep in mind. For anyone thinking TPTB completely ignored “the fans” – I don’t think they did, or we would be watching goofy Luke fly off to LA with Noah this week while Reid….well, who knows what they would have done with Reid then. However, where the storyline appears to be heading reflects a brand of “creativity” that many of us might quibble with.

At this point, as mentioned on the hotline post, there is not much we can do with respect to what airs over the next three weeks, but there several things we can do to make our opinions heard about how it plays out, how the characters of Luke and Reid end up,  the messages being sent to viewers and the GLBT community, and more.

If you’re reading this post, then chances are Luke and Reid have touched you in some way.  Rather than merely venting with likeminded fans, you can channel your energy to make our collective voices heard.

For starters you can:

  • CALL the Hotline while it is still open
  • Send EMAILS & TWEET – to the soap press, mainstream arts press, gay press, and last but not at all least, to TPTB
  • Continue to VOTE in the polls (especially on the SOS/SID/SOD magazine polls)
  • DONATE to Doctors without Borders or Vermont Shakespeare Company or the Walnut Hill School for the Artsor pick a charity that you think represents how you feel about Luke and Reid.
  • At this point, there are not many places where you can send POSTCARDS to, but I am a sentimental fan of the postcard campaign and will try to bring that information over from for anyone interested in sending snail mail to the soap magazines or any other appropriate addressees (I’m open to suggestions here).
  • COMMENT where you are able to and interested. This could be on threads like on AfterElton’s GOOL and liveblog pages, Soap Opera Source Pulse, or public boards like Soap Central (holy cow! the number of views on these threads is HUGE, and they keep starting new ones!) and TWOP . There are likely to be interviews post-endgame (Michael Fairman has teased about one with Eric Sheffer Stevens) which will be very well-read by fellow Lurians among others. I will post links to articles when they are made available. There are also open threads on a interviews by Greg Hernandez, Nelson Branco, and Michael Logan, among others.
  • SPREAD THE WORD. Let any fellow Lurians know via Facebook, LJ, other fan sites and plain old-fashioned word of mouth.

I’ll also selfishly suggest:

  • Join in the TRANSCRIPT projectyou don’t have to type anything up and you don’t even need to have English as your first language. The full-episode transcripts already exist online – they just need to be edited down to the LuRe scenes. So you just need to be willing to watch clips while reading/editing down the transcripts.
  • Contact me if you’re interested in doing transcript or recap TRANSLATIONS. This had never really occurred to me before it was suggested on Facebook, but I’d estimate 20-30% of LuRe fans are international, so it’s a great idea, if there’s interest.
  • Post a message on the tribute/venting page(s). You can start with: Celebrating Luke and Reid, Van and Eric. Other pages will be added as spoilers do/do not pan out and the show ends.

There is a fantastic page started by Bittersweet Berlin on Facebook with many more additional ideas. I will bring those ideas over to this blog if I can find anything intelligent to add – for now, Bittersweet sums it up beautifully.

CALLS

As long as the hotline is open, we can continue to call.  Calling takes an effort and many companies weigh calls more than emails which are easier to send.

If you’ve never called before, don’t worry about feeling shy! We ALL feel dorky (just think of it as the attack of the LuRe nerds!). But the reps would love to hear different voices babbling about the awesomeness that is LuRe, so new voices will make a disproportionately great impact. If you are a nervous (first-time) caller, it’s okay to say so – it will win bonus points that you’ve gone out of your comfort zone. At least a few of the reps have been LuRe-d in and will likely be sympathetic! If it helps, write down a few notes to remind yourself of the points you’d like to cover. More info on phone calls can be found here.

POLLS

You can vote Daily SID and Weekly SOD for our Favourite Actor and Couple. You can also vote daily in the SOS Pulse every Friday through Monday. If you want to be amazed how much difference a few impassioned fans can make, think about this: LuRe have been giving Carbo a run for their money most weeks on the SOS poll (the only cross-show poll among the major polls); Crystal Chappell has been around soaps forever, and she alone has over 18,000 followers on Twitter. Everyone in the soap industry knows it, so for a couple like LuRe to capture #1, it’s an impressive feat.

Also, this week’s poll on TV Guide Canada’s Soaps home page asks “For the future sake of soaps, who should be fired next?” with As the World Turns head writer Jean Passanante in the running (currently a VERY distant third place behind ABC’s honcho Brian Frons and GH headwriter Robert Guza).

TALKING POINTS (for letters, emails, postcards, calls)

Really, anything you say (the more positively phrased, the better, though I realize that may be difficult) is good. Using your own words is even better. Some of the key points to draw out:

  • If you are a LONG TIME VIEWER – soaps value loyalty
  • If you are a converted Nuke fan
  • If you were introduced to ATWT
  • If you have taken action as a result of watching Luke and Reid (especially if this is unusual for you) – whether it’s rearranging your schedule to watch, following Luke and Reid beyond watching on-air airings via YouTube or fansites, donating to DWB, participating in the Endgame campaign, etc.
  • Explain why this story has stood out for you – the LRO site alone has over 55,000 posts on it and they do not all consist of "squee!! faint* – if you’ve read an article or post somewhere that captures your thoughts, paraphrase – it’s hard to imagine anyone making plagiarism claims about this!
  • If the storyline has affected you or in any way made an impact on your life
  • If you have an interesting story (lot of internationals!) about how you were introduced to Luke and Reid or how it’s affected to you, share it – stories are easy to remember and easy to convey

CAMPAIGN SLOGANS

Somehow the campaign slogans seem outdated now. But in case you’re looking for something catchy to add to the ends of your messages:

  • LuRe: Hook, Line, and Sinker we’ve been LuRe-d in
  • Luke and Reid belong together – forever and for always
  • Luke and Reid: LuRe-d us in till the end.
  • Luke and Reid belong together – it ain’t brain surgery

EMAILS

There are several categories for emails now. The more customized you make your message, the more likely it is to be picked up in a letter to the editor. But customization is also time-consuming, so it is up to you to decide whether you’d like to do a big email blast with a standard message, or tailor a few more targeted ones.

TPTB

We can complain about the writers and the writing, but ultimately the writers work for the producers who work for the network and P&G. SOMEWHERE in that chain is an organization and individuals who could have changed the direction of the storyline chose not to whether due to fear of public outcry, lack of creativity, or other.

Right now, TPTB are already done with ATWT and it’s not clear if they will even get any messages as the ATWT offices are officially closed. However, there are still a few channels to try:

  • atwt@cbs.comlike the official hotline, until it stops working and we start getting bouncebacks, the emails are going somewhere; it can’t hurt to try
  • CBS web contact form: http://www.cbs.com/info/user_services/fb_global_form.php  P&G’s web comment form: http://show.custhelp.com/app/ask
  • ABC web contact form: http://abc.go.com/site/contact-us. This may seem like an odd choice, but one of the head writers, Jean Passanante has already been hired by ABC to work on their soap, One Life to Live. So while she (and her bosses) may not get messages sent to CBS, it is possible that they will be heard at ABC. I haven’t heard anything yet about where Christopher Goutman and others have ended up, but will share if I hear anything else.

SOAP OPERA MAGAZINES

It’s okay to send the same email to all the magazines. Don’t forget to ask to see Luke and Reid ON THE COVER! We haven’t seen one featuring them as a couple yet, and we’re running out of time. If featuring Luke and Reid would make you buy the magazines, let them know! The magazines tons of emails, so you should definitely use a meaningful subject line that references Reid, LuRe, Luke and Reid and/or ATWT.

Individual emails probably have a better chance of being published than a group email (same message, separate emails) because no one wants to publish something someone else might publish. But for those of you who don’t have time for all that cutting and pasting (*raises hand*) here is the complete list all strung together for easy use. You can use the links below to send a mail to all of the above addresses; you may want to put them into the BCC line of your email (more likely to get published if they cannot see just how many others received the email!).

MAINSTREAM AND GAY PRESS

I will eventually get around to a separate post on this, but by focusing on the soap industry, we are getting our message across to a limited audience. If we we really want to be heard, there are hundreds of additional media outlets who have not even thought about covering this story to date.

If you’re interested in getting started, take a look at The Luke and Noah Wiki. As much as LuRe and Nuke fans disagree about who is Luke’s OTP, there is no question that LuRe would not exist without the path being laid by Nuke and faithful Nuke fans.

When Luke and Noah stopped kissing (and were waiting, and waiting, and waiting to consummate their relationship), Nuke fans launched a massive campaign including the famous Hershey’s Kisses, but also grassroots letter-writing. If you follow the above link, you will see a list of media outlets they contacted – a great place to start.

Or you can send your email to your local paper’s arts section – the thoughts of a long-time viewer can be a good local “hook” to get considered for publication.

CONTACTING VAN AND ERIC

I have been told that Van does read his ATWT fan club email, so you can try him direct at: Vanhansis@officialatwtfanclub.com. Although Eric also has an official ATWT fan club email address, he has admitted in an interview that he doesn’t check it.

Eric has specifically asked for well wishes in lieu of presents and fan mail and has not designated an address for receiving such messages. We do believe he is occasionally checking in with the Doctors Without Borders campaign page, so that may be the best way to get a message to him.

If you are on Facebook, Van has an official page, though you need to be Friended to view the contents. As I understand it, sometimes it takes multiple tries, and he typically batches them and does a large bunch every few weeks. (Having had my  friend requests ignored twice, though, I am developing a complex and am feeling a bit like a stalker, so you may need to rely on others for your info on what’s happening over there).

TWEET

Twitter is world wide. It’s not a post card or letter and costs nothing extra. If you are on twitter, include #LuRe And #ATWT to your tweets to try to get them on the trending topics list = #TT. I’m a complete Twitter newbie otherwise, so if you know more than I’ve written here, please comment below or let me know and I’ll update this post.

You can also tweet: @SoapDigest, @SoapOperaNetwrk, @SoapOperaSource, @WeLoveSoaps, @SusanDansby

Luke and Reid belong together. Forever and always. It ain’t brain surgery.

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