Goodbye to As The World Turns: The Story of Luke & Noah (Part Three)


As The World Turns gay kissThis week after 55 years on-air the CBS soap As The World Turns ends and to mark the occasion we’ve commissioned a special feature, written by fan Andy Eldridge, looking at the soaps most popular storyline of recent years; he romance between Luke Snyder and Noah Mayer.



As The World TurnsThis week after 55 years on-air the CBS soap As The World Turns ends and to mark the occasion we’ve commissioned a special feature, written by fan Andy Eldridge, looking at the soaps most popular storyline of recent years; he romance between Luke Snyder and Noah Mayer. This is the second part of Andy’s look at the story of Luke (Van Hansis) and Noah (Jake Silbermann), dubbed ‘Nuke’ by fans, you can read the second part by clicking here >>

Months later, Luke and Noah’s relationship would get their first conflict. This conflict came in the shape of an Iraqi citizen by the name of Ameera Ali Aziz. Ameera approached Noah while trying to locate his father. She explained that the colonel befriended her family while he was on tour in Iraq and he kept in contact with them over the years, often sending money. Noah was very surprised to learn that his father would be so generous since it completely contradicted the man he knew. Ameera wanted the colonel’s help in staying in the United States since she feared she would be killed if she returned to Iraq. Luke and Noah befriended Ameera and even invited her to stay at the farm until they could figure out how to help her. After failing to obtain a student visa, Noah figured the only way to keep her from being deported was to marry her. Although Luke was not entirely happy with the situation, he gave the marriage his blessing since the boys were looking at this as a situation to save a human life.


It came as a surprise to nobody that the following months would put a strain on Luke and Noah’s relationship. Noah, having been warned by the ICE that he would be thrown in jail if it were ever discovered that his was a marriage of convenience, became paranoid about spending time with Luke. This cycle just repeated itself over and over for quite a while until Ameera eventually developed a crush on Noah. She even went as far as to make a pass on him but Noah gently informed her that nothing could ever happen between them. On this same day, and after a much-publicized campaign by Nuke fans to get ATWT to stop censoring the boys’ romance, Luke and Noah kissed on screen for the first time in several months.


Eventually, the boys discovered that Colonel Mayer had escaped from jail. They were even more shocked after discovering that he had kidnapped Ameera. The colonel was planning to return her to Iraq since a political group was interested in her return. Noah and Luke tracked them down to New York. As Noah tried to reason with his father, Luke, Lucinda and the authorities managed to stop the colonel’s boat before he could get away. Thinking Noah had betrayed him, Colonel Mayer jumped overboard to evade capture and he was declared dead. Ameera was later released and she moved to California to stay with a friend of her family she knew. The Ameera story was never a well-written story and the conflict seemed extra sad for such a young couple but Luke and Noah did have some sweet moments here and there.



With Ameera gone, the relationship between Luke and Noah was suffering even worse. Noah felt like he could have prevented his father’s death and when that failed, he briefly pulled away from Luke. After some pain and tears of the relationship being over, Luke eventually agreed to give Noah space as he mourned for his father and tried to sort out his life. By mid-summer, the boys were reunited by, of all people, Cyndi Lauper during her “True Colors” concert tour.



Unfortunately, there was one catch. Noah had already enlisted in the military while he was broken up with Luke because he thought the stable environment would be good for him. After reuniting, Luke tried to talk Noah out of leaving but it was to no avail. Desperate, Luke went to the army recruiter’s office and introduced himself as Noah’s boyfriend – thus, outing Noah. Noah’s recruiting officer was willing to ignore what he had just heard but it soon became apparent to Noah that he was joining the army for the wrong reasons and he was released. Soon after, a forgiving Noah returned to Luke and his old life on the Snyder farm.


While the writing on ATWT had often seemed sloppy and frustrating at times, Luke and Noah’s popularity seemed to increase every month. By this point in their story, they seemed larger than life. I was (as I am still today) flooded with thankful emails from loyal viewers who discovered the boys on YouTube. Every week, I got at least 100 hundred messages in my inbox from new viewers telling me how much they loved the boys. All of these notes were fun to read. However, the notes that got to me the most were more personal and heartwarming. It seemed that every day I heard from several gay viewers who were going through their own personal struggles. After watching Luke and Noah together, they had renewed hope for their own future. Some of them remarked that they now had the courage to be themselves. They now knew that eventually, they would find their own Luke or their own Noah. One memorable message I got was from a boy who told me that he asked his father to watch one episode of Luke and Noah together. After it was finished, the boy came out to his father. There were times I got messages from closeted viewers who, despite being too scared to come out to their families, they felt a sense of relief knowing they were not alone in the world. Watching Luke and Noah gave them hope that despite all odds, they would one day find true love. As these kind of heartwarming messages became more frequent, I truly got the sense of just how much impact this soap couple was having on people. When I first set out to upload the ‘Nuke’ story, I did it for entertainment purposes. It never dawned on me at that time they would be more than just entertaining. They were truly touching people’s lives.


Back in Oakdale, Luke and Noah’s lives went through a calm period. Eventually, Luke received a letter from his birth father, Damian Grimaldi. Damian had sent his son a portion of his trust fund. Remembering how cruel Damian was when Luke first came out, Luke decided he wanted nothing to do with this money. However, after some discussion with Noah and Lucinda, Luke decided to put the money into a good place and use it to open a foundation for sick children. Lucinda brought in a man who she thought would be the perfect person to act as director of Luke’s foundation: His name was Brian Wheatley, a business man from Chicago who had extensive experience working in non-profit organizations.


After being introduced to the boys, Brian was hired. However, after witnessing some affection between Luke and Noah, Brian advised Luke that it might not be such a great idea to be so “open” in the company of investors who would be looking to get involved in their organization. This caused a rift between Luke and Brian but they agreed to continue in business together just as Brian was attempting to romance Lucinda. Meanwhile, Luke bumped in to his former best friend and high school crush, Kevin Davis. Kevin informed Luke that he was running for student class president at their university. Luke found out that a gay pride film festival Noah was planning on campus was in danger of being cancelled if Kevin won the school election. So Luke decided to run against Kevin himself. During the campaigning, Kevin’s tactics of buying students votes with beer and using his manager to post an offensive video of Luke online got Luke very angry. He became furious when Kevin’s “crew” kidnapped Luke’s friend Alison and humiliated her inside their dorm room. By this point, Luke was filled with so much rage that he decided to win this election even if it meant cheating. This came as a disappointing shock to Noah who always thought of Luke as the most honest person he knew despite any odds that came his way. After Casey helped him stuff the ballet box, Luke won the school election. But the ploy was quickly discovered and after Noah refused to lie to the dean about it, Luke was kicked out of school. Seeing that Luke had turned into a virtual stranger to him, Noah ended their relationship and left the farm. Another painful breakup and conflict had revealed itself to the boys and work had to be done to right the ship.



Part Four will follow tomorrow. You can post your thoughts and comments on the story of Noah and Luke, and your memories of As The World Turns below. However, ATV Today has a strict editorial policy and will WILL NOT publish anything of a homophobic nature.