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GH In The News: The PC Press Club

Well apparantly Chew & GH MAY be doing primetime episodes on Tue, Sep 16.

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Well apparantly Chew & GH MAY be doing primetime episodes on Tue, Sep 16.

 

It would be great news for GH if true, though I doubt it and I wish the show deserved it more right now.

 

I have no fucking idea how they could justify a primetime episode of The Chew, though.

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It's funny that a primetime GH episode is what got me into this show in the first place. Maybe it's a sign that a primetime episode will break my bad habit.

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I really, really don't want GH to go on primetime. You KNOW it's gonna feature all singing Kiki. Some people know I still watch this! What if they see it on tv! No bueno.

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In regards to a primetime episode, there were discussions about airing one back in Sep 2012,  then again in Apr 2013, but both instances involved plucking a regular episode and simply airing it at 10 as opposed to 2pm.   In regards to Apr 2013, at one point an episode was tentatively slotted in place of a Castle repeat, but  ABC ultimately went with the Castle repeat.  

 

That said, the fact that the network paid for RP & KSt to attend the Summer TCA speaks volumes about the support being given to the show.  Additionally,  the show is clearly doing an uncharacteristic slow-burn to a Nathan & Maxie pairing.  So if we do actually get a primetime episode,  I expect those two to be front and center.

Edited by Tiger.
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I really, really don't want GH to go on primetime. You KNOW it's gonna feature all singing Kiki. Some people know I still watch this! What if they see it on tv! No bueno.

 

Hahahahaha!* You are absolutely right, Uncle Frank would do this. Thanks for articulating the fear I should've known to have.

 

I cannot imagine why they think Nathan and Maxie are some super-hot pairing to promote in primetime or the TSAs, but I guess slim pickings will do that.

 

(* - there was a GIF here but it didn't work so instead I said 'hahahahaha')

Edited by jsbt.
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Oh dear lord...

http://daytimeconfidential.com/2014/07/16/tca-scoop-abcs-paul-lee-general-hospitals-cartini-reinvented-daytime-soaps/

 

 

“Part of [the reason for the show's growth] is those showrunners are so good,” said Lee. “They’ve really, I think, reinvented daytime soaps. They had the advantage of pulling in some various strands from the other two soaps,and [GH] is the only one that we play in the afternoon, but I think General Hospital’s story is one of the great success stories of the past couple years and I think those showrunners, as well as the talent, [get] the credit for it. There are some things we could do beyond that, but right now we’re focused on making it the best show we can make it, and they are.”

 

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That is one weird quote.  I'm confused how Ron and Frank taking their formula from OLTL (a show the network canceled) and applying it to GH is a "reinvention" of any kind.  And "various strands from the other two soaps"?  Does that refer to those soaps' viewers who might have jumped over to GH or the scuttled crossover characters from OLTL? 

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That didn't make sense to me, either. Any OLTL references had to be erased, and I don't think random mentions of Corinth (?) and Mike looking like Dahlia's whatever-he-is-to-her is exactly using "various strands from the other two soaps."

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If by reinvent they mean hire a million characters, write stories as if you have ADD and constantly call back to dead soaps - then yeah they reinvented the daytime soap.

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Is Paul Lee, the current or incoming Entertainment President?

The above statement makes no sense & doesn't answer anything. Lee gave a basic vague statement & then said Cartini are safe. It's like he's restating a poor 2-4 sentence synopsis given to him by GH for the TCAs.

Devils advocate: Why would you change management if you are planning on shutting soaps down in a year? You wouldn't.

Edited by BestestAuntEver.
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Paul Lee has been the president of the ABC Entertainment Group since 2010.  He was at ABC Family before that.  He's primarily responsible for the primetime schedule (and is routinely mocked during upfronts and the like by the television critics I read).

Edited by TeeVee329.
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Thanks. Maybe he's mocked because he can't make a coherent thought.

Everything I've heard is that ABCD is trying to get out of the soap business & the above statement does nothing to disprove it.

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Paul Lee is infamous for using nonsense buzz words to describe ABC shows during his upfront presentations.  Like, one year, every show was "delicious".

Edited by TeeVee329.
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Devils advocate: Why would you change management if you are planning on shutting soaps down in a year? You wouldn't.

 

 

Would they really cancel GH without a viable replacement? 

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Paul Lee is an idiot.  He has publicly stated that he makes decisions based on what his wife wants to watch.  In fact, he cancelled Reba McIntire's show Malibu Country in favor of that insipid show about the aliens, even though MC was cheaper, brought in higher ad revenue, and had better ratings in a lower HUT timeslot.  

 

Allegedly Mrs. Lee watches GH.  

 

As for Paul Lee talking about Cartini re-inventing GH, I think he is talking about the way they produce the show and the budget.  Phelps  notoriously ran way over budget and it took some crafty accounting, at the direct expense of O LTL & AMC,  to make it look not so bad.  Valentini has a much lower budget than Phelps did and he is bringing the show in under that budget.  

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Would they really cancel GH without a viable replacement?

 

"The Chew" and "The Revolution" were both extremely half-baked when the axe fell on AMC and OLTL.

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Frank brings GH in under budget and he and Ron did, in that first year-plus, help to turn the buzz around about GH and soaps - as did some other big factors, like the complete collapse of Frons's big plan to revolutionize the daytime line-up with The Chew and The Revolution. The Chew survived but I'm not sure you can make a case for it thriving, really. But when their GH fired on all cylinders creatively, it went well. It was going so well that the network was looking at reviving AMC and OLTL in some limited capacity, which is where the PP feud came into play last year. And they did reinvent the show from the Guza model - I mean, whether it's good (as it was the past) or it's bad (as it is now), can any of us say it's remotely recognizable next to Bob Guza's show today? I look at Roger Howarth and Michelle Stafford getting the lion's share of screen time this week and I'm like, 'what is this?'

 

I think GH is probably still coming in at cost and the right numbers for ABC, which is why they remain officially behind it, riding that recent wave of popular sentiment that helped save the show two years ago. The problem isn't the numbers, or at least I personally would not make the argument that GH is a numbers loser myself - the problem for me as a fan is simply that, creatively, the show is now a complete fucking mess.

 

The larger issue, I think, is that despite Valentini bringing GH in at cost and having that wave of sentiment still somewhat behind the show, ABC's support is, as others have said, extremely superficial. They're only doing this until they can find something else that's both more cost-effective and legitimately profitable. I don't believe the network has any true long-standing support behind the show, beyond how long it can take them to mount a show they think is ready - a year, two or three years. They are speaking to the popular sentiment but they'll shaft GH sooner or later.

 

I can't make a judgment on that, either, personally. I think for better or worse the team at GH is doing everything it can to keep the show on the air, even when I hate what they do. I don't think it really matters that much what stories they tell, at least in the eyes of ABC. To the network, with the daypart struggling, it's about the numbers and the money and coming in under a bar.

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how long it can take them to mount a show they think is ready - a year, two or three years.

 

I wonder how long they'll develop something to take GH's place. One reason The Revolution was so terrible was that the show was all over the place; it didn't know what it was supposed to be or who it was for. The Chew had its mission—a show about food—from the get-go. It still had growing pains, but all shows do.

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“They’ve really, I think, reinvented daytime soaps.  They had the advantage of pulling in some various strands from the other two soaps,"

 

Maybe reinvented this show to something unrecognizable, but not reinvented daytime soaps as a whole.  How?  By taking to a ridiculous level the silliest of soap tropes (the invincible cartoony villian, back from the dead characters)?   That doesn't really count.

 

By bringing in characters from other soaps?  Nope - crossovers have been done a lot.  Just for example: Anna resurfaced on AMC, the Skye character cycled through the ABC soaps, Port Charles had to have crossovers (obviously). 

 

"and [GH] is the only one that we play in the afternoon"

 

Is ABC playing other daytime soaps at times other than the afternoon, somehow?  This phrasing just makes no sense. 

 

But, yeah, that probably has a lot to do with it.  Soap fans have far fewer places to turn now.  A campy trainwreck is still better than the wall-to-wall talk shows and re-runs that otherwise comprise daytime tv.

 

 

There are some things we could do beyond that, but right now we’re focused on making it the best show we can make it, and they are.”

 

Like making the stories make sense?  Not making so many characters loathsome?

 

I'd bet GH is safe for a while.  I picture the three big networks in a standoff, where each one would dearly love to slash costs by going completely soap-less ... but none wants to be the first to try it.  I think there's probably some recognition that a daytime line-up of back-to-back talk shows / "lifestyle" shows is a bit much  ... so they'll hold off for now.  Until the numbers make sense to them. 

 

 

Valentini has a much lower budget than Phelps did and he is bringing the show in under that budget.

 

 

I can't imagine how, when it sounds like the cast is ginormous!

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Phelps used actors way over their minimums on a regular basis. That adds up. And some of the big "events that will change everything" would be take hours of overtime to shoot. I remember reading about the Black and White Ball, how a bunch of actors slept at the studio because filming went so long. BH said all anyone wanted to do after that was take a shower and sleep. Hee.

 

I don't think Jill watched the budget that closely, whereas Frank watches it like a hawk and takes action the moment things look like they're approaching the limit.

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And they did reinvent the show from the Guza model - I mean, whether it's good (as it was the past) or it's bad (as it is now), can any of us say it's remotely recognizable next to Bob Guza's show today?

 

This I agree with, and I'll go on to say that - even with all its problems - I still prefer their vision of "General Hospital" to Guza's, with its interchangeable mob wars and its insistent, narrow focus on the Sonny/Carly/Jason trinity.

 

But reinvent the entire soap genre?  Noooo.  And it's pretty ridiculous that the quote gives off this air of, "Oooh, where have these creative geniuses been all our lives, with this fresh take on the material!" when these two were using the exact same model over at OLTL.

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I don't have huge problems with FV, though I wouldn't mind events where all of the cast had to interact every few month. My issue is with RC. I just don't think he "get" what General Hospital should be. Guza got GH during his first stint as head writer, though his second stint makes me think it might not have been him. My other thing, aside from Garin Wolf, he shouldn't had fired so much of the staff and replaced it with his own people, especially the writers. 

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The bottomline is that GH will remain on the air as long as it is the most economically viable option.  

 

The View is very expensive and is about to get a whole lot more so if Rosie gets what she wants.  My personally theory is that ABC is setting the new View up for failure and then they'll lame the blame at Rosie's feet, cancel it and replace it with a third hour of GMA.  

 

So I figure GH is definitely safe at least another three seasons.  They'll continue to cut the budget, and if ratings remain strong and it continues to be the most economically viable option, it will stay on the air.

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This I agree with, and I'll go on to say that - even with all its problems - I still prefer their vision of "General Hospital" to Guza's, with its interchangeable mob wars and its insistent, narrow focus on the Sonny/Carly/Jason trinity.

 

No, I completely agree. That being said, even just watching the old SoapNet reruns - where every single story came back to Sonny, Jason and Carly - the dialogue and character work was often vastly superior. Part of the reason Guza lasted as long as he did was because at his best (and even sometimes his worst), he and his longtime writing team had an ability to turn out daily scripts that at times rivaled primetime.

 

I prefer this GH, which at its best has a love for the whole show and all of its history. The problem with this GH is that that love does not translate to consistent quality, or to fair and equitable treatment of the right characters vs. the new team's personal obsessions, mishandling of the canvas, and their misguided belief that a contemporary audience requires these constant, jarring ellipses in storytelling and character or romantic development, while in reality it's just that Ron and Frank don't care to write or produce in-depth material between the big beats or for people who are not their favorite characters or actors of the moment.

 

I think both Ron and Frank know and love General Hospital. Their problem today is that their view of themselves and their superior, subjective vision of the show and what's best for it (and for soaps overall) has become bigger and more of a priority for them than General Hospital. There's a reason Ron has spent the last couple years in some kind of public siege mentality, as though he's fighting a personal war with social media.

Edited by jsbt.
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I think both Ron and Frank know and love General Hospital. Their problem today is that their view of themselves and their superior, subjective vision of the show and what's best for it (and for soaps overall) has become bigger and more of a priority for them than General Hospital. There's a reason Ron has spent the last couple years in some kind of public siege mentality, as though he's fighting a personal war with social media.

 

This. So much this. Frank and Ron are so intent on creating their idea of a soap that they've lost track of what makes GH a soap. I don't understand why every story is so badly botched. Is it really so hard to have some quick stories, some medium-length stories, and some long-term stories all happening at the same time? I guess it is, since all we get are long-term stories that are very poorly developed. Too much happens off-screen, and when Ron has to go on Twitter to explain that, he's doing something wrong and should know it. But no, instead he gets into childish Twitter fights and blocks people. He should spend that time developing the stories.

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I think FrankenRon's problem is they have no idea how to write a continuation of the stories. They go off on tangents and expect people to care. Like Guza, they have their favorites, and they are always on .It doesn't matter if they are the fans favorites .They have the power and they don't care if we care. When something isn't working they just go off the wall. Guza  had the unholy three, frankenRon have the OLTL three. Plus any other actor they can use from another soap. AVA ,  Nina  comes to mind. They think they know it all, they are very soon going to be in for a big surprise. To much killing was what  made me shut the show off last time. Plus the shirtless men are certainly not for the female viewers. Between the soap press kissing their butts ,and Ron's trips on twitter, Guza was bad but FrankenRons not really any better , just different. Same church, different pews. As for the shows that were put on in place of my soaps ATWTS, and GL never watch .No matter who is on will not watch what they put on in place of GH if and when they cancel it. The view is a joke, the chew needs to chew up the view and be done with it. I am at the point, even being home all day, I DO NOT PUT THE TV ON BEFORE Jeopardy.

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So GH was on Chelsea Lately last night, and she pretty much sums up what Ron's writing style seems to have come down to in the last year or so (nsfw)

 

Edited by ulkis.
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**Dead**

Ulkis, you are going to get me fired! That endinding had me laughing so hard I started to wheeze. I watched the end twice. Perect. I wish I were I fly on the wall when Ron saw this.

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I wish I were I fly on the wall when Ron saw this.

 

Unfortunately I think Ron would be thrilled at the attention.  Just like how he loves seeing clips of the show on The Soup.

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The gay shit is written so pandering it is actually incredibly insulting. I love The Golden Girls, but no one talks like that. No one does that shit. It's almost as though str8 people were behind it (and I know there's plenty of gays on this team instead, so that's not so) trying so hard to be as gay and plugged-in to its idea of the gay zeitgeist as possible, but unlike the GLBT storyline this team wrote on OLTL there is no substance behind any of it. And that's not even getting into the actual Felix/Lucas/Brad storyline, which is a complete clusterfuck. Not to mention that every time we "look in" on it, it has dramatically changed. There is not supposed to be this much "in media res" on a daily soap opera. I have no idea how Parry Shen gets through these whiplash scenes for his character.

Edited by jsbt.
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I'm an old white straight lady, and I could do a better job writing "plugged-in gay."

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A campy trainwreck is still better than the wall-to-wall talk shows and re-runs that otherwise comprise daytime tv.

 

 

I don't understand why every story is so badly botched. Is it really so hard to have some quick stories, some medium-length stories, and some long-term stories all happening at the same time? I guess it is, since all we get are long-term stories that are very poorly developed.

 

We're still watching, so I guess that's all they care about. But with so many soap cancellations, why wouldn't they work as hard as possible to put the finest possible product out there to protect their jobs? The very best soap writers and actors should be available since there are fewer places for them to go. 

 

ETA - that Chelsea Lately clip is awesome!

Edited by Cassiopeia.
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Is the bit at the start of the Chelsea Lately clip actually from TFGH?   I've been on the Barge so long that I have no idea who those two characters are - and I am unsure if that's actors making fun of GH or actual actors on GH.   If it's the latter, I am so embarrassed for those poor guys - that dialogue was not only dumb and pointless, but a mouthful to try and spit out for the one describing Golden Girls

 

But the end of it - I am dying laughing now at the parody:

 

"I. Am. Gay!   Gay, gay, gay!  Penis, penis, gay, penis!!!"   

Edited by SlovakPrincess.
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Sadly SlovakPrincess, the clip was from GH. It was between Parry Shen/Brad & Marc Samuals/Felix. The ending skit with "I am gay" was, Ross Mathews who isn't on the show. I took it as Chelsea making fun of the person writing the lackluster crap on the show.

The skit was the icing on the cake.

Edited by BestestAuntEver.
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I did recognize Ross Matthews (thank you for reminding me of this name), and he never fails to crack me up.

 

Which character is the shirtless one, out of curiosity?

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The sad thing is that Parry Shen (Brad) has had worse dialogue on this show than that, and most of it has been featured on Chelsea Lately.

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All of these characters are embarrassing so at least Ron is equal opportunity with it.

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When did Keeks cry over there Rafe?  I havent seen KA crank out a single tear.  She didnt when coleandhope died, and she didnt when Rafe died. 

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Interesting quote from WdV:

 

Cambias [his character on AMC who, for those who don't know, raped Bianca] was made irredeemable which, back then, was death. It's not that way on soaps anymore — certainly not on GH.

 

Super true.  Characters associated with rape on Ron's shows (VicTodd, Ford, Franco) head straight to the frontburner!

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I share NLG's relief that Alexis's menopause story was dropped. GH is no longer the soap for those kinds of stories.

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Interesting quote from WdV:

 

 

 

 

Super true.  Characters associated with rape on Ron's shows (VicTodd, Ford, Franco) head straight to the frontburner!

 

Luke Spencer predates Ron working on GH.

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Luke Spencer predates Ron working on GH.

 

I of course knew that, but my larger point is that, in this era of brain tumors and "See, I didn't really mean it!" DVD's, characters who do awful, seemingly irredeemable things can survive and Ron's treatment of Franco is a big honking example of that.

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I am happy for Nancy, and despite my mocking of the very eccentric William deVry I do think the couple has a lot of chemistry and could really go somewhere. I am interested when they're on. I just wish the writing was there and it mostly isn't IMO, especially in regards to Alexis's intellect or Julian's instant relationships with his children.

 

I do think Frank and Ron are reeling NLG in. I think in their eyes Julian is the tragic heavy and sooner or later he will buy it, regardless of any social media fanbase. And I do have to laugh at deVry still insisting Michael Cambias was a huge hit.

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Okay I'm confused here. Nancy is RELIEVED that the menopause story is over? she's the one who pushed for it! I remember her saying that Frank had reservations about it but she wanted to show that menopause doesn't have to be the end of a woman's sex drive and she wanted to make it funny.

But the rest of the interview is terrific. I liked the extended online version because the print version was about half that length.

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Wasn't the menopause story Guza or Wolff?  I was under the impression that a) it was before the Dynamic Duo made landfall, b) that it was what she won her Emmy for and c) she only got it because she did something to piss off LW who went to the brass to whine.

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