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Claire Labine, Co-Creator Of Ryan's Hope & General Hospital's Most Heartbreaking Stories, Dies At 82

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: WGA East

Seems like we have lost several creative geniuses over the last several months in the daytime soap community, and Friday night the soap world is once again in mourning learning of the passing of another giant of the genre, Claire Labine.  Her cause of death is unknown as this time, but she was 82-years-old.

The news broke from current The Bold and the Beautiful and The Bay writer, Michele Val Jean who worked with Labine at GH when she took to her facebook page with the news.  Michele wrote:  “As if this week couldn’t get any worse, just found out Claire Labine died.  I’m heartbroken. She was a genius and a warm, loving person. It was my honor to write with her and learn from her. Rest in power, dear Claire. I will always carry what you gave me.”

Labine created magic with the Daytime Emmy winning Ryan’s Hope, a half-hour soap opera on ABC that told the story of a large Irish  family which featured the likes of Kate Mulgrew, Michael Levin, Ilene Kristen, and the incomparable Helen Gallagher.  Claire served as the co-creator of the series with Paul Avila Mayer.  She won multiple WGA Awards for Ryan’s Hope, as well.   But pre-Ryan’s Hope, Labine got her start as a script writer on CBS soaps, Where the Heart Is, and Love of Life.

But it was in 1993, when Labine was brought on to General Hospital where she teamed with former EP Wendy Riche for some of the greatest hankie-inducing, beautiful and most heartbreaking storylines in the annals of soapsThe Robin and Stone love story and the HIV/AIDS storyline, the B. J, heart transplant storyline, and Monica’s breast cancer were some of her finest storyline moments.  Claire also created the character of Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) and the iconic Brenda and Sonny romance.  While at GH, Labine wrote a spinoff soap featuring the characters of Ned and Lois to be set in Brooklyn called Heart and Soul, only the network decided to go with Port Charles instead.  Eventually in the late 90’s and early 200o’s, Labine spent time at both One Life to Live and Guiding Light as the series head writer.

Colleagues of Labine’s and actors have taken to social media tonight to pay tribute to this talented woman:

Wendy Riche expressed:  “I am one of the very fortunate people who had the privilege of working with the great Claire Labine. Her extraordinary talent and joy of writing was exhilarating and illuminating. I learned something in every conversation we had, every day. She is loved and respected not only by me, but by an entire community of writers, actors producers and crew .  Rest in Peace, Claire.”

Maurice Benard posted: “Claire LaBine you will be missed you gave me a chance to play a character that had so many levels when no one else would so grateful to you.”

Vanessa Marcil shared: “Claire LaBine healed my soul & millions of others hearts through her art. She always stepped away if things became inauthentic” #BadassChicks

Kassie DePaiva tweeted: “Soap Headwriter Claire Labine was one of the best! Rest In Peace dear gifted lady.

Wally Kurth posted via facebook:  “What a gift it was to tell her stories. The best of my career.”

On-Air On-Soaps will have more on this developing story and more condolences and remembrances as they are shared on social media in the hours and over the weekend.  Now, take a look below at some of the most memorable scenes from Claire Labine’s GH stories, the first episode of Ryan’s Hope, and then share your thoughts on the passing of this brilliant writer in the comment section below.

 

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Soapluv2010PatrickkevinPennySoapLew S. Recent comment authors
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Sad…one of soapdoms greatest soap writers of all time-you just cant get these types of writers for soaps anymore!!!…like Bill Bell, Agnes Nixon,Harding Lemay. Henry Slezar and Doug Marland plus several others-they were at the best!!!

soapqueenforever
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soapqueenforever

I hear you a Jim. I was watching a few episodes of Ryan’s Hope, and as the saying goes, they don’t make them like they use to. Today’s soaps (what’s left of them) can’t even hold a candle to soaps of the mid sixties to the early eighties. I never watched Ryan’s Hope when it originally aired, but a few years back I got hooked when it aired on Soap Net. That was soap opera at its best in my opinion. All the good writers and shows are gone. I hope an end of an era isn’t slowly approaching. I… Read more »

vinman
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vinman

So right Jimh!!

kevin
Guest
kevin

Jimh, so totally agree 100%…Oh I so miss the good days of the soaps/daytime dramas…I am looking forward to Sally and Kay to return to Y&R for something to look forward too… Claire stories were among the best for GH…

Chris
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Chris

Michael, Claire Labine did not create the character of Sonny Corinthos! The character was actually created by writer Bill Levinson, who was the head writer of GH from January to August 1993 (Sonny debuted on August 13, 1993). The characters that Claire Labine created on GH were Kevin Collins, Serena Baldwin (Scotty Baldwin’s daughter with his late wife Dominique), Katherine Bell (played by “Days of our Lives” cast member mary Beth Evans), Jasper “Jax” Jacks, Stone Cates, Mike Corbin (Sonny’s biological father), Lily Rivera (Sonny’s late first wife), Lois Cerullo, and the Ward family.

Chris
Guest
Chris

She also created the character of Carly Corinthos, too!

Dylan
Guest
Dylan

Mostly right. But Serena was created well before Claire arrived.

Soapluv2010
Guest
Soapluv2010

Bill Levinson only introduced him. Claire Labine gave Sonny his complexity and layers through the Sonny & Brenda/Carly romances and the groundbreaking story of Stone and Robin. Her stories represented great periods for every soap she wrote for. She was at the top of the soap writer game, IMO.

Dan
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Dan

Very sad, Claire Labine was such a brilliant writer. She was the head writer for GH when I started watching, and I was immediately drawn in by the drama and human emotion that her stories portrayed. Some of the best storylines in soap opera history. The Robin/Stone story, oh my god, I still get emotional just thinking about it all these years later. That touched me like no other storyline I’ve ever seen. The BJ heart transplant story is right up there. That scene when Tony puts his ear to Maxie’s chest and hears BJ’s heart beating, they just don’t… Read more »

PennySoap
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PennySoap

Ditto from me, Dan!

Mark Y
Guest
Mark Y

My experience with RH comes from SoapNet and now You Tube. That first episode was so perfectly written – idenifying the characters and their relationships. They told real stories and such incredible acting. I could not take my eyes off Delia when she was on screen. What a show!

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

R.I.P. Claire Labine many an afternoon spent soaking up your gripping brilliant stories.

Llanviewer717
Guest
Llanviewer717

Such sad news. I most definitely remember her wonderful stories on General Hospital and One Life to Live. May she rest in peace.

Dylan
Guest
Dylan

Now this is sad!! I was too young to appreciate Ryan’s Hope but Claire Labine’s reign at GH was utter perfection!! It was THE hallmark of what soaps should be and could be. No soap in history can match the 2.5 years of brilliance she laid out. I also have a personal connection to her. When she was at One Life to Live, I sent her a writing sample and expressed a desire to break into soap writing. As an aspiring writer…..those types of things do not usually garner a response unless you have an agent or are an established… Read more »

mark
Guest
mark

She was so great on so many shows I read once that the idea for ryans hope came from a sequence she wrote at love of life. I wish love of life was on YouTube I need to check on that.

Lew S.
Guest
Lew S.

Lost another one of the greats. Rest in peace.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

Claire Labine – ( taken from Wiki )

Positions held[edit]

Where the Heart Is
Co-head writer: 1971–1973
Script writer: 1970–1971

Love of Life
Co-head writer 1973–1975

Ryan’s Hope
Co-Creator
Executive Producer: July 1975 – June 1982
Head writer: July 1975 – June 1982, January 1983 – November 1983, February 1987 – January 1989

General Hospital
Head writer: September 1993 – March 1996

One Life to Live
Head writer: December 1996 – April 1998

Guiding Light
Head writer: August 2000 – July 2001
Awards[edit]

Daytime Emmy[edit]
9 Wins
(1995; Outstanding Writing; General Hospital)
(1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983 & 1984, Outstanding Writing, Ryan’s Hope)
(1977, 1979 Outstanding Drama Series, Ryan’s Hope)
12 nominations
(1978, 1981 & 1982, Outstanding Drama Series, Ryan’s Hope)

General Hospital

GH’s Nancy Lee Grahn Shares Excerpt From Her Upcoming Memoir

In celebration of beginning her 27th year as Alexis Davis on General Hospital, two-time Daytime Emmy-winner, Nancy Lee Grahn, decided to mark the occasion by revealing to her longtime fans an excerpt from her upcoming memoir due out in 2023.

Taking to her official Facebook page, Nancy shared the excerpt starting with contained some of the back-history of her soap opera alter-ego : “I play the role of Alexis Davis. I am a public defender, prosecutor, personnel injury, civil, malpractice, tax and family attorney. I am the bastard child of Mikos Cassadine who died after being thrown into his own weather machine which he designed to freeze the world. My mother, Kristen Bergman was a famous opera singer whose throat was slit by my father’s wife, Helena. Unhappy with the turn of events, I hurled my frail 75 year old stepmother off a five hundred foot parapet slamming her onto jagged rock only for her to walk away unscathed. Even more determined, I shoved her off a thousand foot cliff into the frigid subzero ocean, Helena not only survived unscathed, she apparently scaled 1000 feet up the cliff and continued to wreak havoc on Port Charles.”

Nancy closed the excerpt with some special acknowledgements: “Always so grateful to have an ongoing contract, my own parking space and people I’ve never met who come up to me regularly and tell me how much younger I look in person. It’s a gift that I have been able to and still get to do what I love to do for such a gloriously long time. I love my job the most because it is the job that gave me the security I needed to greenlight Kate as a single mother, raise her while being able to give her the things I dreamed of giving her, put her through school all the way through college, and will hopefully allow me to spoil my grandchildren. The enormous love & gratitude I have for ABC and Disney for allowing me the privilege of working for them is immeasurable. But the real truth is without the support from all of you, this day would not be what it is. As always, I see you and thank you”

Make sure to read the entire excerpt.  Noe let us know, are you looking forward to what Nancy will share in her upcoming memoir? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Diane Poised to Be Attacked by the ‘Hook’; Elizabeth Knew Finn’s Late Wife, Reiko?

On Friday’s cliffhanger of General Hospital, Diane Miller (Carolyn Hennesy) looks to be the next victim of the mysterious ‘hook’.  We won’t know till Monday how it plays out, but things are not looking good for the legal eagle in a preview for the airshow.

In story, Diane dropped by the garage that Brando worked at, looking for Sasha (Sofia Mattson).  At first, she bumps into Sonny (Maurice Benard) who is not pleased with Diane for trying to take him down on the witness stand during Nina’s hearing.  She shares she was helping her clients Michael and Willow as best she could.  Sonny says it was personal for him and he can’t forget what happened.

Next, Diane tells Sasha that she’s serving as her interim lawyer since Martin is unavailable and is there to discuss her guardianship. Sasha is scared that she’ll wind up behind bars now that Brando is gone.  Diane assures Sasha she will file a continuance to keep the process going to keep her out of jail. Diane asks where the guardianship papers may be, and Sasha tells her to check Brando’s office.

Dex (Evan Hofer), who is looking suspicious (but it has to be a red-herring, right?) is going to take Sasha home per Sonny’s orders, but Sonny also tells Dex to lock up when Diane is finished with her business.

Later, Diane in the dark, goes to Brando’s office to find the guardianship papers. Next, a figure appears in the doorway with the hook.  This time the ‘Hook’ looks to be of smaller stature leading many on social media that the person behind the violence could be Esme.

In other developments, Elizabeth Webber’s (Rebecca Herbst) convoluted storyline, just got even more convoluted.  Liz looks at the photo she’s drawn and suddenly has a flashback revealing the woman’s face at the bottom of the stairwell.  She then tells Finn (Michael Easton) that after her recent session with Kevin, she recalls seeing the woman’s face. Conveniently, Finn was just talking about his late wife, Reiko with Gregory (Gregory Harrison).  So, when Liz talks to Finn, she sees a woman’s face on Finn’s phone.

Courtesy/ABC

Finn explains that the picture is of his late wife, Reiko.  He tells Liz he is working on a case that reminded him of Reiko, and he mentions being in the Mariana Islands with her. That makes Liz frantic and she decides to leave. Next, she heads home, where she locates a photo of her and her sister, Sarah. The photo is titled, “Elizabeth and Sarah, Mariana Islands, 1997.”

So, do you think Diane will perish or survive the attack by the ‘Hook’? Who is the ‘Hook”? What on earth is going on with Liz’s storyline? Share your thoughts and theories in the comment section below.  But first, vote in our latest ‘Michael’s Poll’ below by voting on which character is the culprit behind all of the bloodshed?

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General Hospital

Johnny Wactor on Brando’s GH Demise: “I Have Been Blown Away By The Reaction From The Fans, I Had No Idea That You Guys Cared So Much About My Character”

It’s been an emotional week for General Hospital viewers following the death of Brando Corbin; which meant that actor Johnny Wactor has wrapped his run on the ABC daytime drama series.

On Thursday, Wactor shared his ‘thanks’ to all the loyal GH fans who took the journey with him and his on-screen alter-ego via a video post on his Instagram account.

Johnny expressed: “It’s been a couple days since the demise of Brando Corbin in Port Charles as we know it.  And I have to tell ya, I have been so blown away by the reaction from the fans.  I had no idea that you guys cared so much about my character. I’m so grateful for the outpour of questions and support. I’ve always said, that the fans of General Hospital are the greatest fans in the world and I truly believe that and this is just further evidence of that.”

Social media was abuzz when Brando suddenly died following successful surgery after being attacked by the ‘hook’.  Some fans felt Wactor’s presence will be sorely missed; while others shared that they felt Brando was not a necessary character.

Wactor took all of the comments like a champ and in his video message added: “Whether you were excited to see Brando Corbin killed off, or outraged and have questions, man, I’m just so lucky to have been on this show, truly.”

As he concluded his ‘thank you’s’, Johnny let GH viewers know he does have some other projects that you will see him in very soon, sharing: “Thank you so much for letting me bring Brando Corbin to life.  Thank you for caring, and thank you for all the support and the well-wishes for my future endeavors, whether that’s back in Port Charles at some point, or another show, or other films … which there’s some coming.”

Lastly, Johnny added, “I’ll miss ya, and you enjoy the rest of the week.”

Watch Wactor’s heartfelt message below.

So, where do you stand with the decision to kill off Brando? Glad the character is off the canvas, or sad to see him go? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Johnny Wactor (@johnnywactor)

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