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Michael Fairman TV Names The Best and Worst in Soaps 2021

Photos: ABC, NBC

In a year which saw the continuance of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021, saw your favorite soaps finding ways to work under safety and health protocols to bring you the stories you love the best they could, but it was not fraught with some problems along the way.

Now as the year comes to a close, we take a look back with our annual list of the Best and Worst in Soaps.  As it does every year, Michael Fairman TV,  takes this opportunity to pay tribute to the tremendous work of the talented men and women in front of the camera and behind the scenes, whose tireless efforts in the grind of producing and acting in this genre’s format is a feat in of itself.  In addition to naming the best moments and performances of the year, there were several not-so-stellar moments featuring characters, storylines, and more, that get the dubious honor of some of our “Worsts”.

While we know many of you have your own views, picks, and choices, and while you may disagree or agree with ours, we encourage you to let us know your thoughts as well.  Most of all, respect everyone’s opinions, as you wish them to respect yours.

 

Finally, we want to wish our wonderful community here at Michael Fairman TV and soap fans everywhere, a happy New Year.  It is all of you with your passion and devotion to the genre itself, which make this such a unique entertainment medium with an undeniable connection between the viewers, the performers, and the storylines.

So here we go … the Best and Worst in Soaps … and with that… 2021 out!

BEST SOAP

General Hospital  

Day to day, week to week, the soap that delivered the most through 2021 was General Hospital. It wasn’t by any means sheer perfection, and had its share of relationship and storyline issues, but whether you loved “Nixon Falls’ or not, or Britt with Jason, or Carly with Jason, Sonny and Nina, or were upset about Franco’s death, or Peter continuing to exist on this earth (more on this later), or loved the introduction of the SORAS’d Spencer Cassadine, the show retooled the Quartermaines, the Cassadines, and all along the way gave emotional payoffs and big cliffhangers.

MOST ENTERTAINING SOAP

Days of our Lives

The last six months of 2021, Days of our Lives seemed to find its groove, balancing the kitsch, with the drama, and it all really got cooking with the Marlena Possession storyline 2.0 harkening back to its brilliance some 27 years later.  DAYS was clearly the most entertaining soap with a plethora of wink-winks to the audience, snappy dialog and humor, an excellent use of history, and a cast and a writing team that trusted the material and it paid off.

MOST DISAPPOINTING SOAP

The Young and the Restless

The once mighty Y&R became the hardest show to sit through.  The storylines were boring, the pairings often felt like re-treads, the rooting factor was basically non-existent for anyone, and it gets our pick for the Most Disappointing Soap. When you have an A-list cast with some of the finest actors in the genre in one place, and the stories just aren’t there for them, and many scenes feel like they go nowhere, it’s a head-scratcher!  The show needs a boost of adrenaline.

Photo: JPI

BEST LIMITED SERIES

Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem

Truly, the most enjoyable, fun romp of the year in soaps.  It had to be a hoot and a half for head writer, Ron Carlivati, and his team to develop this five-episode story about the missing gems from the Alamainian Peacock.  There were the inside Lisa Rinna jokes including: integrating the infamous RHOBH ‘drink in face’ fight with Eileen Davidson recreated ‘Beyond Salem’ style, plus Sonny, Will, and Chad in drag, Leo saving the day, Charles Shaughnessy back as twins Drew and Shane, Peter Porte as an uptight spy who turns out to be a VonLeuschner, and it was all so kitschy, in a genius kind of way that it left us wanting more.

Photo: ABC

BEST OVERALL PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS

Laura Wright – Carly Corinthos – General Hospital

Scene after scene in 2021, Laura Wright did some of the finest work of her daytime career, and that is saying something, because she has already delivered so many memorable performances.  But this year, whether it was: a grieving Carly grappling with the loss of her beloved Sonny, stepping up and taking control of the mob, her complicated relationship with Jason, and falling back in love with him, and then the return of a very much alive Sonny and the volatile relationship with her nemesis, Nina Reeves, Laura had the material day after day, and gave us 110% as an actress through it all. Bravo!

Photos: JPI and ABC

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A STORYLINE

Melissa Claire Egan – Chelsea’s Stroke – The Young and the Restless

Cynthia Watros – Nina and Mike in Nixon Falls – General Hospital

Camryn Grimes – Mariah’s kidnapping and aftermath – The Young and the Restless

Lisa LoCicero – Olivia finds out Alexis and Ned had sex – General Hospital

These four actresses along with Laura Wright may just be vying for the Daytime Emmy in 2022 whether it be in Lead or Supporting.  Each one of these women delivered complex performances within their storylines … Melissa Claire Egan as stroke victim, Chelsea, who gets her revenge on Adam and Sharon that comes with consequences, Cynthia Watros for her brilliant work opposite Maurice Benard and the Tan-O gang and its aftermath in Port Charles, Camryn Grimes, whose scenes by herself in lock-up (in a storyline we hated), after being kidnapped while pregnant were well-done, and the hurt of longing for the baby she carried months later showed why she remains one of the strongest actresses on daytime, and there was Lisa LoCicero for the heartbreaking moments as Olivia finds out that Ned slept with Alexis and then the volatile showdown between the two women over the tryst. All deserved mentions in our year-end honors.

Photo: ABC

BEST SINGLE PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A STORYLINE 

Kirsten Storms – Maxie frames Peter and reveals she knows of his deception – General Hospital

While in the hospital, Maxie, pretending she lost her baby, in an effort to get Peter to admit to his crimes, was played by pure brilliance by Kirsten Storms.  Finally, taking control of the situation, Maxie records Peter’s confession of those he murdered on her phone which she sends to Mac. All along the way telling Peter how disgusted she is by him. Best line though, “I would say you’re as bad as your father, but you’re not. At least, Faison was an evil genius. You’re just some cheap imitation knockoff.” Got that right!

Photo: ABC

BEST OVERALL PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR

Maurice Benard – Sonny Corinthos – General Hospital

While the “Mike” in ‘Nixon Falls’ story went on too long, it provided Maurice Benard with an opportunity to show another side of a character then mob boss Sonny Corinthos, and pair him with another leading lady, Cynthia Watros, to form a potential new couple.  All of this on top of Benard’s scenes with Sonny’s wife, Carly (whose relationship has now hit the skids) provided this three-time Daytime Emmy winner a backdrop to do something different, and prove once again, that he is still the finest actor in the genre.

Photo: ABC

BEST OVERALL PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTOR

James Patrick Stuart – Valentin Cassadine – General Hospital

Whether it be romancing Anna, (and sharing scenes with the fabulous Finola Hughes,) or trying to take down Peter August, or his machinations with the Quartermaines, or being duped by Brook Lynn, and his devastation over finding out that ‘Bailey’ was not his biological daughter, we always enjoy all things JPS.  He delivers episode to episode and continues to make Valentin’s reactions and actions intriguing.

Photo: JPI

BEST SINGLE PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A STORYLINE

Ted King – Jack admits to Li his secret about Sheila and Finn – The Bold and the Beautiful

It has been great to see Ted King back on daytime.  The former GH and OLTL star always delivered in his scenes, and he had his moment to shine in 2021, when Jack admitted to his wife, Li that he lied all of these years about their son, Finn.  In actuality, Jack had a fling with the dangerous and psychotic, Sheila Carter and he is Finn’s true biological father.  The whole situation was made all the more heartbreaking because Li believed they adopted the little boy, when in truth, Jack covered-up his tryst for decades.  King played all the beats in these key scenes.  He was understated in his performance, and this went under the soap press radar, but you could see all the pain in Jack’s eyes, thanks to Ted King’s work.  Sometimes less is more in front of the camera.

Photo: JPI

BEST PERFORMANCE BY LONG-RUNNING VETERANS

Bill and Susan Seaforth Hayes – Doug and Julie Williams – Days of our Lives

Doug as the devil was delicious! Julie standing up to MarDevil was a moment! The Daytime Emmy Lifetime Achievement Award winners had the opportunity to act in great scenes about faith, strength and love, played to perfection by these two television treasures. Their work provided some of the most memorable moments during Satan’s return to Salem.

Photo: JPI

BEST OVERALL PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Kelly Thiebaud – Britt Westbourne – General Hospital

This year, Kelly Thiebaud truly got to show all the facets of Dr. Britt Westbourne. When she was afraid to know and then learned she had the marker for Huntington’s Disease, her struggle with the information and falling for Jason Morgan, then losing him, made this once Port Charles bad girl, someone we truly, truly cared about. In addition, Britt’s scenes of grief with Carly over Jason’s ‘death’ and more, made Kelly’s performances must-see daytime TV.

Courtesy/CBS

BEST PERFORMANCE IN AN ON-SCREEN BREAK-UP

Michelle Stafford – Phyllis Summers – The Young and the Restless

No one can deliver the kind of ‘balls-to-the-wall’ performance that Y&R’s Michelle Stafford can. She did it again, in a series of powerful and heartbreaking scenes, where Phyllis realizes she will always be Nick’s second choice to the Newman family. Combine that with Nick knowing that Phyllis’ feelings for her ex, Jack Abbott are back, it was combustion central for ‘Phick’ and they ended their relationship.  Stafford should remember this scene come Emmy submission time!

BEST ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCE

The cast of Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem

I mean, everyone was so much fun to watch! From Eileen Davidson, Rinna, Jackie Cox, Greg Rikaart, Shaughnessy, Zach Tinker, the list goes on, and it truly was the best ensemble performance of the year, and it looked like everyone had a great time being part of the limited series.

BEST FEUD

Nina Reeves and Carly Corinthos – General Hospital

When Carly went at Nina over Nelle’s ‘death’ on a phone call, just as Nina found Sonny alive and well in Nixon Falls, it set up a series of events that had now pitted these two powerhouse women against each other, and the feud is one of the best on daytime due to Cynthia Watros and Laura Wright’s performances.

Photo: JPI

BEST VILLAIN, FEMALE

Deidre Hall – MarDevil – Days of our Lives

When Satan comes to town and inhabits Marlena, the MarDevil comes out to play and terrorized everyone in Salem with delicious venom and we were here for it!

BEST VILLAIN, MALE

Mike Manning – Charlies Dale – Days of our Lives

Mike Manning made Charlie creepy and misunderstood, and someone everyone in town wanted dead, and eventually he met his maker in a solid “Whodunit?”

BEST SCENE-STEALER

Deidre Hall – MarDevil – Days of our Lives

Deidre Hall looked like she was having the time of her life, chewing the scenery as Satan and getting to take a pause from being the moral center of DAYS to be able to do and say things “Doc” would never utter out of her mouth: including calling her own daughter’s Belle and Sami “sluts’’. HA!

Photo: JPI

BEST UNEXPECTED SCENE

Susan and EJ in the hospital – Days of our Lives

After the devil made mince-meat out of Susan Banks, she recovered in the hospital where her son EJ sat by her side.  When Susan said she was willing to sacrifice herself to save her son from Satan, it brought with it an unexpected mother/son scene we never saw previously between the grown-up EJ and Susan, and played by two actors who were both successful recasts in their roles. Cheers to Stacy Haiduk and Dan Feuerriegel.

Photo: JPI

BEST COMEBACK

Cameron Mathison back to ABC Daytime

The All My Children fan favorite (Ex-Ryan Lavery), turned host, turned Hallmark and GAC Family star, returned to ABC Daytime decades later where it all started for him, this time as a recast Drew Cain on GH.  Now, while his story on General Hospital is just getting started, we think Mathison will fit in nicely with the cast that he has admired so much, and on the show, he has dreamt of appearing on. Welcome home, Cam!

Photo: JPI

WORST EXIT

Linsey Godfrey – Sarah Horton – Days of our Lives

To facilitate Linsey Godfrey’s exit from DAYS, the writers once again fell back into old tricks, or should we say, old prosthetic masks! This time, Kristen pretended to be Sarah to sleep with Rex, and break-up her relationship to Xander, even though Kristen and Sarah are nowhere near the same height. Then, Sarah is put in a steamer trunk and snuck her out of Salem. What???????

WORST EXIT HONORABLE MENTION

Kim Delaney – Jackie Templeton – General Hospital

We love Kim Delaney, and all of a sudden, her heralded return to soaps and GH, came to an abrupt end after the entire “Who is Harrison’s real bio-dad” story and apparently Jackie Templeton left Port Charles.  We guess to do some cracker-jack reporting?? Dunno.

Photo: JPI

MOST HIGHLY-ANTICIPATED RETURNS

Kimberlin Brown and Sean Kanan – The Bold and the Beautiful

With two of daytime’s all-time baddies back on the canvas, you would think that B&B would have hit a homerun, but so far, it’s been a wait and see approach, as fans long for the days that Sheila and Deacon perpetrate bad deeds on people for their own gain.  However, we may be in luck! Looks like Sheila might be finally digging her psychotic heels into Brooke with the NYE booze switch, while Deacon seduced Brooke. Jury is out! B&B…  don’t botch this!

Photo: JPI

WORST RETURN

Sean Carrigan – Stitch – The Young and the Restless

This was so predictable …and so bad.  Former fan favorite, Sean Carrigan returns as Stitch and everyone had already figured out, (even before he set foot on the airshows), that he would be the culprit – the person who had kidnapped a pregnant Mariah. Then later, we get his twisted reasoning for holding a preggers woman captive, apparently, because of his love and past with Abby. All of this made no sense for this character.

Photo: JPI

WORST HIT AND RUN

Liam runs over Vinny in Bill’s car – The Bold and the Beautiful

This storyline, which went on for months, had Liam and Bill covering up their tracks after mowing down bad boy Vinny, who just happened to be walking out in the middle of the road at night at the exact time Bill’s car showed up.  Trouble is, it turned out to be a suicide storyline? Apparently, Vinny sacrificed himself for his buddy Thomas, so Thomas could get closer to Hope, and that’s after switching paternity results to make it look like Liam was Hayes’ father, not Finn! While we had liked Joe LoCicero as Vinny, this ending was a bad comeuppance, and even though Scott Clifton and Don Diamont acted their hearts out episode after episode, in the end the story came to a screeching halt and thud. Wasn’t there even a PSA for suicide prevention after the reveal???

MOST MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Elizabeth learns about Jason’s ‘death’ off-screen – General Hospital

Liz shares a son with the guy, and Rebecca Herbst does not get any screen-time to show Elizabeth’s reaction to Jason’s supposed death? C’mon now!!

Photo: JPI

BEST RECAST LIMITED SERIES

Zach Tinker – Sonny Kiriakis – Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem and Days of our Lives: A Very Salem Christmas

We were very impressed with Zach Tinker’s version of Sonny Kiriakis; and that right out of the gate he was dealt some very heavy emotional scenes in ‘Beyond Salem’ when Sonny believed Will was cheating on him. Zach replaced longtime fan favorite, Freddie Smith, and a new version of “WilSon” was born.

Photo: JPI

BEST RECAST 

Dan Feuerriegel  –  EJ DiMera – Days of our Lives

Dan has brought his A-game as the recast EJ DiMera; a role that was made so wildly popular when played by James Scott, but Feuerriegel is putting his own spin on the part and making it work.

Photo: JPI

BEST RETURN LIMITED-RUN

Blake Berris – Nick Fallon – DAYS Halloween episode/Days of our Lives: A Very Salem Christmas

Berris is a very fine actor and it was on display twice! First, in DAYS zombie-Halloween episode when the MarDevil awakens evil from their graves! It is then, Nick is back in action terrorizing Gabi, and then in the flip in the Peacock Holiday special, Nick is very much alive, playing the longing suitor for Gabi’s affections, Berris should come back to DAYS as Nick’s twin, Mick! Can we make that happen DAYS writing team?

Photo: JPI

BEST NEW CHARACTER

Paulina Price – (played by Jackée Harry) – Days of our Lives

Writing a role for Jackée, and playing to her strengths; while ramping up the Price family back-story was a triple win for Days.

Courtesy/ABC

BEST NEWCOMER

Nicholas Alexander Chavez – Spencer Cassadine – General Hospital

Fans took notice and instantly fell in love with Nicholas’ work as a SORAS’d Spencer Cassadine.  Spencer’s return was one of the best of 2021, which showed the emotional damage done to the young man who has a vengeful streak willing to go up against the likes of his father Nikolas, Ava, and Valentin while pining for Trina, and being shoe-horned into a relationship with evildoer, Esme.  Good stuff!

Photo: ABC

BEST TRIBUTE

John Reilly Tribute – General Hospital

When GH was able to get the one and only Sharon Wyatt (Ex-Tiffany Hill) to do a voice-over, and John Reilly’s daughter, Caitlin, acting and central to the story all the while paying homage to the spy stories of the past, it was a solid episode to honor one of the shows most beloved all-time cast members.

BIGGEST WASTE OF AIRTIME

Jesse Gaines – The Young and the Restless

Weeks of being held up in Italy in a room, threatening to expose Ashland’s past, but it was all a set up, and by the end of it, who cared! Anyone?

Photo: JPI

BEST GREAT-TO-SEE-YOU ON DAYTIME AGAIN

Linda Dano – Vivian Alamain – Days of our Lives

Although it was short-lived and Louise Sorel did not return to be part of the plot, we loved seeing Linda Dano back on daytime; even for a short blip, and this time taking on the role of Vivian Alamain.  She’s still one of the best of the best.

Courtesy/ABC

CHARACTER WHO DESERVED THE BIGGEST BITCH-SLAP

Peter August – General Hospital

Line -em-up! GH’s Peter August deserved a thousand of these! Where do we start???? Peter August has escaped the once-smartest spies, killed multiple key characters, held some captive, obsessed over Maxie and their baby, and everyone wants him dead-dead.  We can’t think of anyone who deserves to be bitched slapped by one person after the other in Port Charles than Peter AKA Henrik!

Photo: JPI

CHARACTER WHO DISHED OUT THE BEST BITCH-SLAPS

Steffy Forrester – The Bold and the Beautiful

Whenever she could, Steffy bitch-slapped Sheila to kingdom come, once the evil one showed up at Steffy’s wedding to Finn and the fallout. We assume, Sheila grabbed an icebag after those bops to the face?

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A PRIMETIME SOAP MALE

Adam Huber – Liam Ridley – Dynasty

Playing off scenes with his on-screen love interest, Elizabeth Gillies (Fallon) has let Huber show other facets to his character of Liam. Now we enjoy the guy!

Courtesy/CW

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A PRIMETIME SOAP FEMALE

Elizabeth Gillies – Fallon Carrington – Dynasty

Fallon makes CW’s Dynasty go-round, and whether it be drama, high camp or musical moments, Elizabeth Gillies is the star of the show and can be anywhere else she chooses to go!

Courtesy/CW

BEST PRIMETIME SOAP

Dynasty

Still the ‘soap on steroids’ with all the tropes including: bombshells and double-crossing of a double-crossing, you will need a scorecard each episode to follow along which character does the most despicable thing … but we are here for it!

MOST TORTURED COUPLE

Sonny and Carly – General Hospital

Nothing went right in 2021 for ‘CarSon’.  Sonny was presumed dead for a good portion of the year, believing he was a man named ‘Mike” and living a life in Nixon Falls and falling for a deceitful Nina Reeves.  Carly stepped up and in for Sonny to protect the Corinthos mob territory by originally having a marriage-arrangement with Jason.  However, Carly and Jason found themselves falling for each other again circa the 90’s, and on their wedding night, as they were about to have sex, Sonny shows up alive and well. Now, Sonny has been all confused for his feelings for Nina since regaining his memory, Jason is ‘dead, and the relationship has blown apart and it looks like the end of the line… for now for this storied duo.

Photo: JPI

WORST WEDDING

Kyle and Summer– The Young and the Restless

Not only did the popular duo of ‘Skyle’ exit the canvas, they got married off-camera, so no one saw the long-awaited nuptials … and the two actors, Michael Mealor and Hunter King … left the show after reports of contract negotiations falling through.

PhotoL ABC

BEST COUPLE IN THE MAKING

Sprina – General Hospital

Everyone is loving the on-screen chemistry played by Sydney Mikayla and Nicholas Alexander Chavez as Trina and Spencer.  Now will they be headed for a romance in 2022?

Photo: ABC

WORST COUPLE AND MOST BORING COUPLE

Michael and Willow – General Hospital

These two are double winners this year! Michael Corinthos and Willow Tait have become so boring that GH is now coming up with ways to instigate trouble between them that it is so apparent to the audience and you can see it coming a mile away.  Chad Duell and Katelyn MacMullen are very good actors, they just aren’t an exciting pairing as Michael and Willow. Break them up for good, already!

Photo: JPI

BEST COUPLE

Sami and Lucas – Days of our Lives

Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo have a long and enduring friendship, and an on-screen partnership that just works so well.  Many loved seeing ‘Lumi’ reconnect in 2021.  Sami, of course, despondent over EJ, sleeps with Lucas and thus starts the story, but it was all done with great flashbacks, comedy and more. What will happen in 2022 when Sami finds out Lucas was the one who kidnapped her? It probably will end any possibility of them ever becoming a bonafide couple, as it looks like EJami is the end game.

Courtesy/ABC

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A STANDALONE EPISODE

Nancy Lee Grahn – Alexis Davis – General Hospital

“I’m Alexis Davis, and I’m a Fighter, and an Idealist, and an Advocate!” True that! In a well-crafted story, Nancy Lee Grahn celebrated her 25th anniversary on GH with a special episode dedicated to Alexis. In a therapy session with Kevin, we come to the crux of the story.  Alexis looked over in the corner of the room at a vision of her younger self crying.  In that moment, Alexis embraced herself, forgave herself, so she could move on with her life after being guilt-ridden for the death of her mother and the cruelty of her father.  Beautiful work from La Grahn!

Courtesy/NBC

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A STANDALONE EPISODE

James Reynolds – Abe Carver – Days of our Lives

James Reynolds might be going for his second Lead Actor Emmy after this performance. In it, and to honor the actor’s 40th anniversary as Abe Carver on DAYS, the show had Abe shot and then flatlining which means … Abe was going to the light. While there, he meets up with his beloved ex-wife Lexie and while the audience is shown flashbacks of their life together, it’s Reynolds acting against an actress (who’s face is unseen, since Renee Jones was unavailable for the episode) that brought all the heart and the drama, which is why we in-turn are invested in the life of Abe Carver. And, don’t we all grab for the hankies when James brings the tears?

Photo: JPI

BEST STORYLINE

The Devil Returns to Salem – Days of our Lives

While for many they found this story ridiculous, we found ourselves wanting to fast-forward through episodes of DAYS just to get to all the moments of Marlena’s possession 2.0 and all that came with it! From the outlandish dialog, the special effects soap-style, how MarDevil served up revenge by morphing into OG Kristen, or taking looney-tunes Jan Spears and morphing her into Belle, plus having a “Rosemary’s Baby” angle to boot with a Cin baby on the way … and more, it was fun to see what happened next.  The best twist was letting the audience think that Doug had dementia when he actually had been possessed by the devil which then allowed Satan to take over Marlena.  And didn’t we all love the exorcism episode, too? Great use of history, camp, and it allowed for some solid performances from longtime vets that had to be having too much fun playing those scenes.

WORST STORYLINE MOMENT

Paris’ laxatives ruin her romantic evening with Zende – The Bold and the Beautiful

In an effort to thwart her sister’s budding romance with Zende Forrester, Zoe puts laxatives in the smoothie she gave to her sister, Paris, which gave her gas and an upset tummy during her date. Enough said.

Photo: JPI

WORST STORYLINE

Eric’s ED and giving permission for Quinn and Carter to have sex – The Bold and the Beautiful

The Bold and the Beautiful had the opportunity to truly tell a story about Erectile Dysfunction in older men, but instead made it ridiculous and tried to justify it. While we absolutely love Lawrence Saint-Victor and Rena Sofer as Carter and Quinn, and John McCook as Eric, are we expected to believe that Eric would give permission for his wife to carry on her affair with the stud that is Carter because he can’t please her anymore in the bedroom? But that’s actually nothing compared to the Donna “honey” scene, which got Eric all riled up and fixed his problem, complete with music bed crescendo.

MOST PREPOSTEROUS PLOT TWIST and CHARACTER WHO NEEDS TO GET HIS COMEUPPANCE

Characters sacrificed to keep Peter August’s reign of terror continuing – General Hospital

Franco, Drew, Jason, and more have all at one time or another been killed or supposedly killed due to the machinations of Peter August.  Even after setting fire to The Tan-0 in Nixon Falls and jumping off a cliff or something, Peter escapes all the time, every time, every moment of every day.  Even the smartest all-time WSB agents including super spy, Anna Devane, can’t stay a step ahead of him. How can one evildoer have so much power? Don’t the good guys get a win, evah? Are we ready for the murder mystery of who permanently snuffed this guy out???

Courtesy/ABC

BEST TEARJERKER

Baby Liam’s Death – General Hospital

It was controversial to have a little baby being taken off life-support over the holidays, but General Hospital went there. Within it, Liam’s parents struggled over what they had to do, and found themselves in inconsolable grief.  As young parents and a young couple trying to deal with the cards they were dealt, both Sofia Mattsson (Sasha) and Johnny Wactor (Brando) stepped up to the plate and gave us a 10-hankie moment culminating in  a visit from the late Mike Corbin (Max Gail), who takes baby Liam back to heaven with him.

Photos: ABC

BIGGEST HEADLINE

Ingo Rademacher and Steve Burton get fired from GH after not adhering to vaccine mandate

Both actors were willing to lose their jobs over their anti-vaxx stance during the Covid-19 pandemic.  Disney/ABC mandates all employees to be vaccinated.  While Burton shared one message on his reasons for not following the mandate, Rademacher has taken his stance to the media including to Tucker Carlson, and continued to rev up his social media with his views.

Photo: JPI

SOCIAL MEDIA FIRESTORM

Cassandra James fires back at Ingo Rademacher for transphobic repost on social media

Trans actress, Cassandra James (Terry of General Hospital) took to social media in utter disappointment and disgust at one of her then co-stars, Ingo Rademacher, for a post he shared on his Instagram story from conservative author, Allie Beth Stuckley, which said, “Welcome to ClownTown, where the dude on the left is an empowering woman, and the woman on the right is a white supremacist.”  The picture on the left was that of Assistant Secretary of Health, Rachel Levine, a transgender female who was sworn in as a four-star admiral. The picture on the right showed Virginia Lieutenant Governor-Elect Winsome Sears, a black woman, who is seen brandishing a weapon in her hands as part of campaign paraphernalia.

In a tweet on the matter, James shared: “Shame on you. You have some serious unlearning and education to do. I feel deeply disappointed that such a public display of ignorance could come from our ‘GH’ family. Misgendering trans folks is violence and if you come for one of us, you come for all of us. The cis world doesn’t get to decide which of us is valuable. I am so proud of the fans for always holding us to a high standard, for calling out transphobia and violence.”   Mainstream media picked-up the story and many of Cassandra’s GH castmates took to Twitter to stand in solidarity with her.

Later, Rademacher took to his Instagram and apologized to James stating that he should have crossed out the word “dude” from the original post. He added, “Cassandra, I apologize to you sincerely. I think you’re an absolute talent and you’re very beautiful as well. I don’t think a transphobic man would say that. I think you’re absolutely gorgeous, I really do.”

Photo: JPI

BIGGEST DOOFUS 

Finn – The Bold and the Beautiful

Sooo, a woman claiming to be your mother steps out of the shadows and shows up at your wedding.  Without really investigating her claims, you literally bring her to the Forrester mansion front door and introduce her as this ‘amazing thing that just happened’ not knowing that the woman, Sheila Carter, shot your bride’s mother and other people along the way.  Finn wins our doofus award for this scene alone!

Photo: JPI

FIZZLE TO SIZZLE

Greg Rikaart – Kevin’s return on Y&R to Leo Stark’s re-emergence on DAYS 

On Y&R, Kevin was teaming up with Phyllis again and we thought that would go somewhere, but his returns to Genoa City have been written as lackluster, HOWEVER, Greg Rikaart really got to strut his stuff and have a field day playing Leo Stark on DAYS, Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem and Days of our Lives: A Very Salem Christmas.  Leo is the gift we never know we needed and Rikaart plays him to the hilt!

Photo: JPI

MOST DISAPPOINTING CHARACTER

Phillip Kiriakis – Jay Johnson – Days of our Lives

This was one of the most disappointing returns making Phillip a sniveling dishrag dirtbag with no redeeming qualities at all, or did we miss something?

WORST CASE Of SOAP ABUSE

Overuse of special episodes – The Young and the Restless

Call the intervention squad! How many special episodes highlighting individual characters in a crisis of conscious can one soap fan sit-through?

BEST PROP

“Mike’s” Cowboy Hat – General Hospital

Sonny’s Nixon Falls amnesiac character “Mike” and his special buddy … his hat, were shown and mentioned in many a scene for months on end!

So, what did you think of our picks for the Best and Worst in Soaps 2021? Let us know in the comment section below if you agreed, or have you own choices for the categories above.

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Wake Up CBS, and get rid of Josh Griffith Y&R, he’s has ruined the show big time and ya’ll still let him run it into the ground. GH is rolling and rolling. Gina should be on Y/R bigtime. The show needs fire, excitement, it has a great cast too bad they are getting the material that GH dishes out day after day.

CAN JOSH GRIFFTH, HE’S AWFUL!

Griffith’s exit would be a dream come true. I watch for no more than five minutes a day because Y&R is such a bore.

I think it’s time for a petition to fire Josh ! This show has sunk to an all time low .

Totally agree! 100%

I could not agree with you any Mr Fairman enough on this. When they keep devoting an entire episode to a character engaging in boring and endless naval gazing, you know the writers’ well has gone dry.

Excellent job summing up General Hospital.

Far be it from me to vehemently disagree with our illustrious host and tireless soap promoter/reporter/interviewer extraordinaire, but…

-It is great each year to read Mr. Fairman’s recap and spin with the big picture. All of it was entertaining and logical (though I beg to disagree on much of the conclusions, aka winners).

-It is also clear that the bulk of the posters are not well aligned with Mr. Fairman in many of the areas of so-called “best.” See the following:

—To continue to tout GH, Maurice Benard, and Laura Wright, at this point, at every turn, is overkill. The two lead characters of GH are polarizing to say the least, and I would estimate that half the audience would prefer them not to be the lead characters of said show.

—DOOL has been summarily scrutinized and pilloried the past few months because of its Satan storyline. And after watching the Dec 31st episode, this storyline continues. Please don’t encourage this show, or others, to go down this path again.

—DOOL’s Sami and Lucas as best couple? With her being gone half the year? With him kidnapping her and her not (yet) knowing he did so? I do beg to disagree…

Happy New Year!

I would definitely tune in more often if Wright & Bernard weren’t the constant leads of GH.

Thank you, Joel. I agree with you.

“thank you” it truly is tearful… aghast.. that yeah 4 decades plus viewers KNOW what’s going on… watching so much Sonny and Carly… has sickened the passion of what a whole cast, 365 days a year, could be… @GH ruined this, it is because it’s owned by ABC…. that they have parameter yet the writers are not challenged.. and @Frank Valentini, who is heralded for bringing in the show on budget ????? huh???? this show is in total ruination
BANG

Joel
Exactly. He just walks through his lines and admitted to Carolyn Hennessy, on his State Of Mind show that he only stays on the show because ” it’s so easy”. Laura thunders her way through, I bet she’s worn out at days end and yet most people don’t like her. What does that tell you, time for a big change.
Speaking of Carolyn, why isn’t this lovely person and great actor given a bigger role? She hasn’t even seen her biggest client since he’s been back from the “dead”.

Are you saying Laura’s worn out at the day “and yet people don’t like her”. Are you talking them not liking Laura as a person or as an actor, or the character of Carly?

moors60
I don’t think what I said was that hard to understand. I meant that Laura works so hard putting forth such energy that she must be worn out at the end of the day, but still most of us don’t care for her character as Carly. I have no idea or thoughts of her as Laura, I do not know her. I hope this explanation was sufficient.

Amen!!

Exactly. What is it with the soap press and these two horrible characters? Do they really not know how despicable their characters are? Laura Wright sometimes gives really good performances when she isn’t shouting, shrill, and doing that whole self-righteous Carly shtick. In other words when she is quieter.

Maurice Benard’s ego gets in his way as an actor. So while he gives occasional really good performances that can be assembled for effective Emmy reels he is too inconsistent overall. There are much better actors this year.

Thank you, Richard. See below, with your other comment.

Richard, I couldn’t agree with you and Janes more. Thank you!

Oh, man, Richard!!—-I could hug you and kiss you, right now—“self-righteous, Carly”—- This character is the most wicked, pretentious, entitled, in your-face elitist.—- the greatest holier-than-thou piece of uncultured, uneducated nonentity EVER!! Carly is a Shrew!! There’s no taming her. Ha!!
And, it is hard to picture her as a soft and cuddly bed mate. What is the attraction? No femme fatale, she. When she enters a room, everything and everyone else seem to disappear—-which is ordinarily a good thing, but Carly overwhelms the senses in a negative way.
I am sure Laura Wright is a very nice person—-I just wish some viewers would separate the character from the actress, and not get so intimately “touchy” when some of us do not share the same simpatia ( Italian) for a character of their liking.

Jamesj75, happy 2022! And I agree. The foregoing is fun to read and I appreciate the oasis of fun. So, thanks to Michael. But really, GH? I am SO sick of Carly, Sonny, and especially Michael. The show is barely watchable for me. And naming Nicholas Chavez as best ANYTHING is shocking. Rory Gibson as nuNoah on Y&R is so much more subtle and effective and fit in right away to his show. Glad that Michelle Stafford, Zach Tinker, Kirsten Storms (what a powerhouse episode), and sexy, sly Greg Rikaart were acknowledged but I can’t get past all this Corinthos Crime Hour hype. I must be watching a different show.

I know we are in agreement over the “oasis of fun” provided by Mr. Fairman. But also, I revel in the knowledge that there are so many soap fans who feel as we do about the, as you put it, “Corinthos Crime Hour hype.” As you point out, there are so many other worthwhile, proficient actors who deserve the accolades. Happy 2020, Soaphound!

Jamesj75, I forgot.. how could Cameron Mathison’s return be applauded? Not as Drew, it can’t. I wince when I remember Billy M. created the role and now it’s in the hands of a typical, wooden soap actor we had to put up with in the 60s.

Ahh, Soaphound: Billy—a luscious fruit unreachable for the picking. Mathison? He is squeezing the nectar out of our devine Drew, little by little.

I agree, James. At least Sonny has toned it down a bit but Carly continues to be The Creature Who Ate Port Charles. She’s in every scene, sticking her nose in every storyline. Just give us a break from Carly. You know the old saying, familiarity breeds contempt? Well, it’s true. Let us miss Carly but how can we miss her when she won’t go away? Meanwhile, her odd bond with Michael is getting kind of creepy. He’s modeling Willow into an archetype of his mother’s. Moreover, he runs to monster mama every time he gets upset. I swear , with all his crying and whining, he’s making Carly lactate again.

Thank you, Harry. You make great points — and funny ones at that! “The Creature Who Ate Port Charles” and “making Carly lactate again” are colorful, yet spot on! Happy New Year!

James, as usual, you and I agree on a lot. After being over exposed for a full year, Carly needs a trip to the back burner.

Thank you, Steve. I enjoy our typical agreement. Is it possible for your proposed “trip to the back burner” to be a final destination? Happy New Year!

OH GOD, how I thank You : “…—To continue to tout GH, Maurice Benard, and Laura Wright, at this point, at every turn, is overkill. ” which is truly why i’m over this… yet my perseverance, walks, till this show demise.. and / or Sonny and Carly are pink slipped. this show is capable.. and worth so much more to drive… legion of fan… Speak your need.. yes, it’s palpable.. think Tyler Christopher, NEED IT

the cast is lauded as best of; so feature it! do something, christ! the disparity is obvious. for a 50 year old show to continue to feature , laura Wright and Maurice Benard.. who are over 50 plus years old.. !!!!! FEATURE NEW

your best and worst of… no matter the cumulative data… that you consider Laura Wright and maurice Benard best of… you’ve got to be kidding… I’ll continue to talk and vocalize how inward and poetic that @GH , which is owned… wouldn’t not full tilt recognize and exercise writing spilled over… @GH

Thank you, Patrick. I am over all this, too, and I think we’ve both been over it for decades. Your reaction sums it up perfectly: “you’ve got to be kidding….” What I wouldn’t give to hear news about the “pink slips” you suggest. Happy New Year!

“The cast is lauded as best of, so feature it”…but you complain that the show features Sonny and Carly and they’re 50+ years old. So what? Are you saying you want a whole new, younger cast? Yes, there’s way too much Sonny and Carly, but the vast majority of this cast is over the age of 45 as are most of the current (and popular) romantic partners: Curtis/Portia, Anna/Valentin, Finn/Elizabeth, Scotty/Leisl, Ava/Nicolas. I applaud these pairings and characters as realistic remembrances that love is not for only those under 30! Be free to not like characters, but don’t be a proponent of ageism! It’s the older actors and characters on GH that have made it the best cast in daytime, not the newbies.

Agree with you James, especially the Dool Sami and Lucas being best couple. Best couple of hypocritical idiots, that is. Sami is Sami as usual but Lucas I thought had more integrity and heart. He’s turned into a slimy little snake in the grass.

Thank you, Violet. You’re right on point with “hypocritical idiots.” I don’t know how they can explain away Lucas’ actions. It’s easy to root for EJ, which I was doing anyway, as I think Dan Feuerriegel is doing a terrific job. Happy New Year!

I did wonder what happened with Jackie Templeton on GH… maybe if Chase and Brooklyn get together she may surface (?)

Enjoyed the entire article.

I love Michael and Willow. They are the reason I started watching GH again after 25 years and the reason I keep watching. I know there are many that don’t agree with me but I also know there are plenty that do. To each their own.

i don’t understand how people say they’re boring, i think they’re sweet and i love them together.

To each his own, but Michael is about as sweet as arsenic and he’s turning Willow into a copy of his vindictive mother. I guess Chase is better off without her; he deserves better.

Soaphound, you KNOW I agree with both you and Michael Fairman. Weeping Willow and Little Lord Fauntleroy are insufferable!! They walk around clutching pearls while engaging in hypocritical moral posturing. Their backs must hurt from dancing the superior dance 24/7. I don’t even think they have sex anymore since the thrill of betraying Chase is off the table.

Can we really name one of Michael’s romantic pairings that wasn’t snooze worthy? At this point, there’s hardly anything likable about the character. There comes a time when someone has to realize it’s not necessarily the writing – but the performer.

Willow was kind of interesting with Chase, but didn’t have the potential sizzle that a Chase/BLQ pairing offers. Can’t really kill her off, as that would add to the carnage of Michael’s exes (see Sabrina and Abby). There’s not currently someone else on the canvas to pair her with and she’s never leave town without Wiley. Now, that’s a predicament for the writers.

I thought Abby had “potential” with Mikey, but sadly she was the first casualty of the Frank & ReRon regime when they took over in 2012. They threw her under the bus (or actually, dropped a steel beam on her head) so they could pair Mikey up with their untalented little Disney bubblegum princess.

Abby helped Mikey heal from the whole Franco prison rape thing, so that was a little different from the typical soap couple pairing. Seems like they tried to create a variation of that with Willow… this time bonding over the whole grief involved with the baby switch thing. But of course that all got convoluted with Chase & Sasha, the Dawn of the Dead cult, Psycho Nelle & her mommy Psycho Nina, etc.

If they pulled the typical soap card and brought Abby back from the dead, who knows? Mikey might go back to her. She’s not in Hell though, so unfortunately, that decision is out of my hands.

Steve
Maybe she’ll get into trouble with Brad. Oh, Michael would surly have a coronary. I think she was more interesting as Charlotte’s teacher going toe to toe with Nina about what a little bully her own step-daughter was.

You already know how I feel about Michael and Willow as a couple, Soaphound. No point belaboring the point.
My problem is the change in Willow—-even her attire (of simple schoolmarm) has changed. She is unrecognizable, in her behavior, as well. There is a definite change there—as if she is struggling between two personalities; stretched hither and yon, as whom or what should she be.
Michael is now supposedly the mean, unscrupulous Corinthos (which he is not, if truth be told!!) This mafioso transformation will never pan out. Might as well ask Mickey Mouse to play a member of La Cosa Nostra ( Our Thing–literally).
Our beautiful Chase does deserve better ( yet, I’m not sure if Brook-Lynn is it, either). The prospect of looking at Willow’s weepy, unsmiling face day after day will gives me hives–I’ll–I’ll—I don’t know what I’ll do. LOL. Fixing these two characters is a Mission Impossible.
Michael has as much sex appeal as a raw potato.

Celia, how about Michael’s veiled threat toward Harmony about his “generosity” in letting her visit the Holy Grail that is Wiley. So pretentious! And that new hybrid hairdo is just as bad as the greasy mop. I dread when he and Willow 2.0 are on.

Right? I guess none of the lowly people who cometh beforeth Michael is worthy—-He forgets from whence his grandmaman Bobbi hails!! Willow’s background “ain’t” so “Harmonious” either. Michael IS pretentious—-just like his mother. But, you know, Soaphound—“what goes up must come down”. Wait for it….
Michael does not have the wherewithal to command respect, authority or the brainy mechanics to lead a flock of sheep—-imagine being “il Capo” of any organization—
His hair? It is forever changing. Impulsive.

I love them too, they’re my favorite couple on all the soaps.

I personally love Michael & Willow together. They actually have a large fan base. You can have your opinion but on a lot of social media platforms except Twitter which has an obnoxious group of haters that think their opinions are important. I can’t wait to see Michael & Willow have a long relationship going forward.

The only time Willow and Michael had a spark of excitement was when they got turned on by Wiley’s birthday presents and they cheated on Chase upstairs in the boat house. Now that there’s no sneaking around, these two have nothing to do but stare blankly at each other as if to say,” What do we do now?” Willow used to be feisty, intelligent and an independent thinker. Now she’s replaced The Dawn of Day Cult with The Dawn of Corinthos Cult. Willow’s identity has been submerged by Michael and Carly. She was so much better paired up with Chase, who let her be herself.

Amen Harry. I miss pre-Michael Willow. But then, he drains the life out of all his paramours– one way or another (the late Abby, Kiki, Sabrina, and Nelle). Once Chase and Brook Lynn become a couple, maybe she’ll realize what a bad choice she’s made. Or maybe she’s just sold her soul, like Carly.

Soaphound…I’m not so sure Willow has sold out. I think I saw confusion on her face over the backlash she took for telling the truth at the trial. Maybe double guessing herself. But you don’t lie. Because it’s not right, and it would eventually catch up to her and then she would be in deep trouble. So let’s hope she gets back to Chase.

Chase & Brook Lynn are the better couple. I prefer Michael & Willow together. It was being set up from the start. Chase doesn’t need to be their angst. Glad he has his own storyline separate from theirs

P
Hopefully Chase will help Brooklynn get her sexual frustrations in check and they will be much happier except for Maxi constantly hovering in the wings for her baby, who will be a toddler by the time they are reunited.

for Willow we’ll give her that.. away from Michael.. back to Chase

Yes, yes, yes, Souphound—-if I weren’t so sure earlier, I am positive now. Willow is putting her soul on the line!! –so shallow ( Shallow Willow)—
Today’s scene with Nina proves how far out Quartermaine-ish she has gone, gone, gone.
To approach Nina and ask her to denounce any right to her grandchild truly floored me. I didn’t think she had such a deceitful , conniving brain. Who would have “thunk”. She’s worse than I thought.
Who would ask such a cruel thing of anyone’s grandmother unless the outcome would benefit her? For this very reason I hope the REAL Nelle is alive. The other was the evil twin. LOL.
I don’t know if Willow should even be redeemed. I’ve lost all sympathy for her. She’s been bitten by the Power, which can make a body lose all sense of goodness and integrity. She probably won’t be such an in-your-face Banshee as Carly—she will work “undercover” . It’s the quiet ones whose bite stings the most.
If Chase falls for Brook Lynn, I pray she doesn’t break his beautiful heart.

Harry…Hope Willow gets back with Chase. Sure don’t like the idea of him with Brook Lynn who is always a stirring up things, even if for the right reasons in her mind. Way preferred Willow when she was a teacher and stood her her ground against Valentin, Nina, and Charlotte.

I prefer Chase with Brook Lynn. With Willow he always had to pretend to be perfect and non messy. Chase is a man that fell hard for Nelle and almost ruined his career over her. Willow & Michael were going to happen from the start. I’m glad they freed Chase from their storyline and are letting him be interesting and a little messy again.

Chase is a good guy but he always thought he knew what was best for Willow, particularly when it came to her relationship with Wiley (pre and post the Jonah/Wiley reveal), discouraging it when it was what she wanted. Another example: Willow telling Chase she didn’t want to have an MOC with Michael to save Wiley – and Chase deciding the opposite was best for her. So I will never be convinced that Chase always let Willow “be herself” and respected her independence.
Since Willow has been with Michael she has stood up to Carly, to Nina, and to Michael himself – still just a feisty and independent as she ever was. She acknowledged how Michael honors who she is and her independence when she told him that she loved that he “didn’t try to fix me but you [Michael] made it possible to fix myself.” Most of us Michael and Willow fans find their love story romantic and that makes them exciting to us, and a much-needed balance to other pairings on the show.
Boring is in the eye of the beholder and obviously this author has a right to express his opinion, but he could have made the internet a little bit more positive place if all the “worsts” had been left off this list. My major issue with the article is calling out the actors that portray these characters. They are reading the lines and following the direction they have been given, if it doesn’t work for an individual viewer then maybe the criticism should be pointed at the writers or the directors – to include the actors names was unnecessary and verges on hypocritical when just a few paragraphs before the author is giving praise to soap opera actors’ “tireless efforts in the grind of producing and acting in this genre’s format.”

Chase wasn’t his true messy self when with Willow. With Brook Lynn he’s alive and fun again. He can be himself and not constantly pretend to be perfect. Chase finally has his own storyline, I’m glad he’s out of the Michael & Willow story.

Does anyone care about big brother Finn? I did not like him and Anna together and now Iam liking him less with Elizabeth. I like him and think he’s cute, quirky and needs someone like Hayden. Where the heck is she, probably show up just as Finn and Liz get together.

As predicted the haters showed up. Sounds to me like you’re all upset the “hot guy” lost. Willow loves Michael & his family. They were the story from the beginning. Chase was an obstacle to them being together. I like Chase as well & am glad they finally gave him his own interesting storyline with a legacy family character like Brook. Chase is the one who wasn’t himself with Willow but he can be with Brook.

Oh don’t be silly. We’re “haters” because we find Marsh Millow to be as bland as a mayonnaise sandwich made with Wonder Bread? We’re simply bored by this lackluster couple; doesn’t make us “ haters- just makes us apathetic.

Harry,
AMEN! P.S, it’s Mallow not Millow. Ha,ha

Michael and Willow = Millow. 😉

Harry and Rebecca 1,
Duh! My stupid.

You’re not stupid, Violet. Momentary brain freeze; it happens… 😉

Rebecca1
Thanks anyway but I still feel stupid correcting Harry of all people.

It’s okay, Violet. Sometimes I manage to even confuse myself. And Rebecca! So good to see you. It’s been a long time.

I LOVE mayo on wonder bread!!!! (in the,”I Can’t Believe People Actually Eat This” museum.)

I have mixed feelings about “Marshmillow.” (That was PERFECT, Harry! I laughed my way through this page; comments were hilarious.) But I digress…

I adored Chase & Willow. They were fast becoming my fav couple. So right off the bat Marshmillow didn’t work for me.

Moreso than that, it tied Willow to Sonny, Carly, and Joss. REVOLTING! Every character I like winds up related to them or adoring them:

Cam. I don’t want sweet, innocent, good-hearted Cam a part of that family.

Laura Collins (she’ll always be a Spencer to me)? She just adores the thug & thinks nothing of Carly’s despicable “values.”

Drew? Monica? Sasha? Now Britt!!!!???? Portia, who practically tackled Ava to the ground when she first met her, warning her to stay away from her daughter, conversely couldn’t have been happier if Sonny and Carly were a priest and a nun. She had no problems with an active crime boss/murderer and his broom-riding wife, but AVA was the threat. Ya…

Willow, who made the condition that Brad & Lucas could only adopt her son IF they kept Julian out of his life, was just fine with Sonny & Carly being in his life, and now is the proud soon-to-be-daughter-in-law of “Is it safe to come out yet,” Sonny, and, “I wanted to be a mob boss so bad,” Carly.

So. IF Michael wasn’t a Corinthos? If he was who he was supposed to be, a Quartermaine? I would have accepted the fall of Chase & Willow at some point and probably would have been fine with Willow being the new “Lila” of the Qs. Unfortunately, looks like she’s heading toward being the first mob Stepford wife, unless she does what no one else, including Monica, mother of slain son and grandmother to stolen grandson, both at the hands of Carly and Sonny, finds some backbone and decency and gets the hell out of the fire before she becomes a s’more! Ahhhhhhh!!!! I couldn’t help myself, Harry!!!!

You’re not apathetic if you’re busy making up unfunny nicknames and posting about them .. do you post like this about truly boring couples like Portis, Fiz, Caoss and Tolly?

Dear Maddie. I make humorous nicknames up to jolt myself out of my state of somnolent apathy. I don’t think you quite understand.Moreover, why be personally offended just because most of us don’t like Marshmillow? It’s an opinion about a fictional soap couple for goodness sake! Finally, I’m sorry you are unsatisfied with my comment and found it to be “ unfunny.” But really, I don’t recall charging admission.

Really, Marie. Not liking a story hardly makes one a hater. Besides, I may not like Michael as a character but he’s not exactly chopped liver in the looks department. I’m sure as many folks find him as “hot” as Chase.

I don’t want Chase with Willow, I want him with Maxie. No, I just can’t stand Michael anymore and Willow is dull dull dull. Chase deserves way better than Willow!

You definitely do NOT want Chase with Maxie. Not unless you really hate the guy. Maxie’s had two boyfriends and one husband die on her. All three of them were cops. She’s like a death sentence for cops.

Hey wait a minute…. maybe if the PCPD gave Whiny Heiny a badge, he would be dead already??

Marie
I only speak for myself but I don’t hate anyone except for Peter but you can grow to hate something if it’s rammed down your throat enough. Or you might really get to hate something if you had to eat it, day in, day out, especially when you get so sick of it you want to barf. Hope this makes a little sense to you.

Don’t you find the word “haters” sort of infantile? And, harsh? Are we in eighth grade? Personally, I have no Twitter or Facebook account—-too bad you follow gossip.
It’s a friggin soap where Michael Fairman gives us the opportunity to express an opinion. Like it or not, thar’s the point. Looks to me you are the hater—-hater of those who don’t agree with you. Just have fun—-enough gloom and doom to go around in the real world.

Yes, Celia. On that, we agree. Hope you’re doing okay. Times are really tough on both parents and teachers right now.

Thank you, Harry. Fortunately, it’s the Private School System—-therefore, mandates don’t necessarily apply ( within reason, that is). Many precautions are taken, where both parents and teachers come together to discuss the pros and cons concerning all our well-being. No politics!!

Willow is that deer in the ice. like Ava;Kiki;now Nina.. that have imagination pull… Max Gail did it… when you support the Corinthos’ it’s 50 / 50 on how expendable you are. Michael is dulled to the senses… let that be his story line I like her… but talking about her and letting this ongoing story of excrement go on and on… i’ll take the stink on shit… this show SUCKS some.. THIS show NEEDS CAST’

it will never matter what happens to Willow and Michael… “Michael” revolted me. the acting … never happened so you wait and let it be.. get sick of it.. end of story ???? he’s the worst actor on daytime

Joss: who is REELED as Carly Jr. who cares… the actor shined with @Oscar. as a younger actor she’s shielded… do not on talking about your take on this show…. please just don’t.

I don’t care that @GH may win best show… details matter.. facts build, face shown, you party

OUR World’ NEEDS turn… Peace and knowledge that our earth keeps it’s innard at peace… a backbone NEAT w/advance peaking for the short rung’ you give.. I dive

I like them too. She’s like a NuLila

ICAM Marie, Millow is the main reason I watch GH

I only watch GH & Y&R so I can’t comment on any other show. I agree that GH was more compelling this year and I agree that talent is going to waste on the Y&R. The only current couple who is interesting is Billy & Lily. The new Chance might be a good actor, but he doesn’t have chemistry with Abby. I adore the new Noah. Great actor & very genuine. I miss Kevin doing something interesting! He should be scheming with Phyllis. I also miss Summer, but they stripped her of everything that made her fun to watch. Sally is always entertaining, but has no chemistry with Billy. The Jack/Sally pairing was hard to watch. Not because of the acting, but because it was just too big an age difference. (I was embarrassed on Jacks behalf) I’ll stick with the show for now, but it really needs some characters who truly have a connection & spark.
Back to GH. While better than Y&R, the Sonny/Mike story was horrendous and way too long. Peter needs to go, enough is enough. Chase & Brooklyn might be good together and she is so much fun to watch. (As opposed to Willow & Michael, who are painfully boring.) I preferred Anna with Finn. Chemistry is lacking with Finn & Elizabeth, but Anna & Valentin might be ok, if he doesn’t become too needy. Joslyn is consistently good, but I wish she had more of a connection with Cameron. He seems too young for her despite the shared age. The current Curtis storyline is a yawn. I don’t care about the Dad mystery. Curtis was so more fun when he worked with Drew. I was happy to see Dante return, but not with Sam. Either bring one of the LuLus back or give him something compelling to do. It would be more of a dilemma for his character if he was getting involved with Maxie before LuLu resurfaces, even if I can’t picture him with Maxie. And give Kristina something to do, she can be so interesting when given a story.

Oh Rachel, I love Rory Gibson as nuNoah as well and miss Greg Rikaart’s Kevin every day. But, alas, I don’t think nuChance is very good at all and doesn’t mesh with Abby. Pretty eyes and hair, that’s about it.

Love the new Noah with his sleepy and pretty bedroom eyes. I just don’t want him to pine after Tessa. I fear he will end up being the baby Daddy of Mariah and Tessa’s baby and he will join the baby fever madness which has already inflicted half of Genoa City. No more baby hungry stories! Bring Lola back and she and Noah can have an exiting, passionate, and more importantly, NEW, romance. No more recycled romances. It’s becoming evidently clear that the writers don’t know what to do with Jack, Phyllis, Nicholas and Chelsea so they all keep orbiting around their past relationships and it’s boring and redundant.

Great idea, Harry. Lola & Noah! I wish I’d thought of that. And Noah being the baby daddy of his half-sister and ex-lover is wayyy too creepy. No doubt they’ll take another trip to the Bank of Devon. Then he can betray them, too, and be daddy/GODFATHER to yet another child. He really needs to get a life. No wonder Noah chose to work for Adam since Devon is apparently a micro-manager as well.

I’d love to see the return of Chance’s older brother, Ronan. He and Phyllis were on fire, though I very much miss Gina in that role. The combo of Ronan, Phyllis, Kevin, and Chance working together in some fun and fantastic storyline would be a lot of fun. Y&R is no longer the Young and the Restless but instead the Old and the Boring.

I have been praying for the return of Ronan for years—-we are in sync about him and Phyllis, Margherita—but, not Gina. He and Stanford sizzled. Tognoni has never struck me as the sexy, come-hither-type.
i guess we all have our favorite couple(s)…..The same goes for Sharon and Nick—-I must have been no more than eleven or so, but the young lovers were IT for me.

Well, Celia, Nick is certainly putting out signals to Sharon these days. I’d forgotten how refreshing it could be watching a couple with history that really care for each other. Unlike shallow, infantile Billy with silly Lily or false friend Devon and trouble-maker Amanda. Why can’t she mind her own business? If Devon needs a baby that bad, let him hire his own surrogate!

I try to erase Devon and Amanda from memory.
I love Sharon and Nick together—-he’s not such a d!€k when around her. Never a dull moment—I don’t care how mych of a good guy Ray is—so boring. I like a little bit of a “bad” boy!!

He is so pretty!

I disagree with most of your picks. Anything Nina & Sonny bad. Fans complained insestly about the Nixonfalls storyline & the forced love for Sonny.
The devil taking over Marlena was hated the first time around & was not received any better in the current rewrite.
To give Cynthia & Maurice kudos for acting a stretch. Vallentin should be up for best actor not supporting.
Your picks show you were clearly team Nina & Sonny. Justmy opinion like yours

Nicon Falls is one of my all-time favorite GH storylines. I can’t stand Sonny and it was such a nice respite having “Mike” instead.

Cynthia Watros is THE best actress on daytime in 2021!

I hate the possession storyline and was so happy that it was finally over – only to find that it isn’t ):

I agree. Cynthia Watros is an excellent actress who understands the art of subtlety. She brought out the best in Maurice Bernard.

richard…I really liked the Nixon Falls story, too. Kinda makes you wonder what it would be like to “drop out” for a while. Liked the almost innocence of Sonny and Nina getting to know each other. And Phylis and hubby as supportive friends. But, yes, it was a fairy tail bound to see daylight. While Nina could have told Mike/Sonny and Phyllis the truth, I really don’t care that much because Carly was such a bi*ch to her on the phone and her general feelings about her seeing Wiley. Nina has apologized enough. Those GH characters (and other soaps) that don’t accept it should look in the mirror for all the times they have crossed the line.

Rose, I think you might be a classic movie fan. Nina and Sonny reminded me of the couple from The Enchanted Cottage starring Robert Young and Dorothy McQuire. Like the enchanted cottage, Nixon Falls provided Mike and Nina with a magical refuge from the outside world. I know a lot of folks hated the Nixon Falls storyline but for me, it worked because it was character driven.

Harry…Yes The Enchanted Cottage is one of my favorites with Herbert Marshall and Mrs, Minnett taking the place of Phyllis and Lenny.

Nina’s anger with Carly in the first place was based on the completely false assumption that Carly was responsible for Psycho Nelle’s death, when in fact, Carly actually tried to save her life. Of course, Psycho Nelle isn’t even actually dead, but that’s beside the point. My guess is that … if Joss & her friends ever actually make it up to Sonny’s cabin in the woods, they’ll probably find Nelle hiding there. That is where she was last seen before she went off that cliff, if a Devil remembers correctly.

So while Carly is obviously no angel (as a former angel myself, I would know) her battles with Nina are largely of Nina’s own creation.

Satan…But I sensed a few seconds hesitancy on the part of Carly when trying to save Nelle’s life. And then a slow reveal between Carly and Jax about what really happened that day. So let’s call slow-life/death-reveals a draw between the two ladies. Still think Nina, though flawed, has apologized enough. Certainly when compared to others in Port Charles.

Yes, Rose! Herbert Marshall and Mrs Minnett are definitely Lenny and Phyllis. I also agree with your point about Carly’s hesitancy about saving Nelle’s life. I think it was the cover-up of the truth which was what was so hard for Nina to overcome. And I’m tired of Nina constantly apologizing for things which aren’t her fault. She apologized for the disappearance of Maxie’s baby despite the timeline contradicting her culpability. At this rate, Nina will apologize for climate change.

There was a momentary hesitancy on Carly’s part. After all, Nelle ran after trying to kill Carly. But Carly did try to pull her up but gravity pulled Nelle down. It was not remotely intensional. And Nelle’s parentage, found out after her death, was withheld out of genuine concern for Nina’s mental health as her testimony sealed the deal for Michael and Willow’s custody. I just wish she would see Nina would see Nelle as she was, Not as she might have been when playing “what if”. And Carly had every reason go off on Nina when she called, since Nina told an already confused 2-yr old boy that the only mother that he loves and whose always been there, that she was NOT his mother. Causing the boy great distress and confusion. Nina’s not stupid, but that made no sense. Carly and Michael were justifiably livid because it had the appearance of Nina doing it purposely to undermine Willow, the “step”mom. But she wound hurting Wiley as well.

THANK YOU!!

WOW!! Hey, Satan, what an idea! I love it—I agree that Nelle is not dead, but I am hoping she’s the real Nelle with amnesia, and not the imposter we knew.
Oh, I just want to say that I’ve had it up to my nose with the smell of Carly. Such a hypocrite. I can’t help but wonder—- if Jason were “alive”, would Carly be such a biatch? What hurts more?–her pride, her not-so-real-love for Sonny, her hate for Nina or the loss of her crown? Go away, strega!!
Another thing? That bottle of Lithium, so carelessly and nonchalantly left on the kitchen counter in the Corinthos mansion ( small kitchen for a mansion) is a tragedy to happen. Will one of the little girls get her hands on that thing? Oh, my!!

One of my nitpicks about the Nixon Falls storyline was that it took place in Llantano County and we did not have even one cameo from an OLTL character!

While the Tan-O never seemed to have customers, one of the few that dropped in could’ve been a Llanview resident the audience would recognize.

Yes!! I am no Sonny fan; but, Mike is an entirely new phenomenon. Very likable. Who knew this “persona” was so deeply buried in Sonny? Maybe Mike was just lurking in the shadows–waiting—-
It simply took the right woman to draw him out. Kudos Nina—
I also agree about Cynthia. I wasn’t too happy when she replaced Michelle ( love her), but Cynthia did convince us that this is, indeed, her role. She took Nina and molded her into a very loving and lovable character. So much so that all her past indiscretions become insignificant.

I agree with you completely. Hope the writers are taking notes! Hope to see All My Children/ Pine Valley in the New Year!

I agree that the devil’s return was the best story on Days. Things were getting boring beforehand. Y&R is cringe-worthy; especially compared to the masterpiece it was in the 80’s. Thanks for using your platform to hopefully bring the most disappointing show title to Y&R’s attention.

Days/Deidre Hall Rock!

Deidre Hall owns the Best Overall Performance by an actress category. She took on a very challenging role physically and mentally. She is one of the last grand dames of the genre that everyone can identify by her name. She is iconic but has never gotten the recognition she deserves. Give the woman her due.

They won’t! Hung on stupid screaming slinging your hands on and on it’s tiresomr

You are absolutely correct. For decades Hall was overlooked by the emmys; probably because of a lot of jealousy that Days had the most loyal and vocal fan base in the 80’s and 90’s. She deserves Emmy recognition already!

I agree! She gets overlooked for Emmy awards time and time again and it’s ridiculous!! Definitely deserves one in 2022 for MarDevil 2.0!

Stephanie J
I agree, she deserves not only an Emmy but a medal too. I enjoyed the show for a while but will not watch the next go round. First of all I don’t think the boy in the little red suit can act nor can he sing worth a darn. This seems to be the main feature, again and the other SLs are just secondary. I’ll wait until they get back to the previous programming.

The Young and the Restless really needs a major shakeup and fast. CBS needs to step in, fire Anthony Morina & Josh Griffith and hire a power team. For executive production, do one of the following: hire Wendy Riche, return David Shaughnessy and/or Edward J. Scott, or hire Ginger Smith. I believe any of these names, Riche especially, since refocus this soap back to its former glory. As for head writers, do one of the following: hire Lorraine Broderick, promote Susan Banks & Susan Dansby, or hire Marlene McPherson & Elizabeth Snyder for the positions. This soap is in shambles. And something needs to happen to bring this soap back to its former glory.

The re-visiting of the possession storyline on Days of Our Lives has to not only be one of the worst written stories in a long time, but, also a horribly produced and acted production, as well. 2021 was boring for this soap, and something needs to drastically change for this soap to gain another renewal in my eyes.

General Hospital continues to be the only American soap worth watching. The writing is on-point and the production value is high. Frank Valentini, Chris Van Etten & Dan O’Connor work incredibly well together, and I couldn’t be happier for them. 2022 looks promising for this soap, and cannot wait to see what the future holds.

The Bold and the Beautiful continues to be an unwatchable. Shame on Bradley Bell for continuing to ruin what was once a rich, sophisticated soap.

The Cassandra James social media firestorm was so sad to see; shame on her former, ignorant co-star for their attempts to belittle and target her. Good riddance to his firing, and Steve Burton’s firing, as well. They won’t be missed one bit. The canvas is already richer without them on it.

Dynasty is primetime soap gold. Elizabeth Gillies is magic as Fallon Carrington; the entire cast is golden, from Michael Michele to Elaine Hendrix to Grant Show. The entire cast works so well together. Hope we get a sixth season this upcoming fall.

Pretty much agree with all your takes on Days & GH, Michael. The CBS soaps don’t air down here in Hell, so I wouldn’t know about that.

By the time y’all read this, the cat will be out of the proverbial bag that I have NOT in fact, left Salem just yet (though I did return to Hell for my annual New Years Evil party)

A Most Unholy 2022 to all of you. Hell knows a Devil doesn’t often get too optimistic these days, but let’s hope there’s an improvement over the last two years.

Thanks for your long write-up, Michael. I have to disagree, Imo Lucas and Sami were not the best couple. I find Alison’s and Bryan’s chemistry is limited to that of well siblings and that of bad comedy gone wrong, what once was no longer works.
I was surprised how much I liked Dan (even though I will forever miss James) with limited scenes between himself and Alison they brought me back into the EJami web, I so wish Alison stuck around longer so they could be their connection it showed thru #AVeryMerryChristmas. I was like please Days give me more of this.

I love Michael and Willow, they were why I came back to watching GH and soaps after 20 years away- precisely because they were “different”, it was refreshing to see a loyal friendship develop into so much more without the normal soap troupes (no drunken hookup, etc) But the writing since they finally admitted their feelings is atrocious, the angst is so drawn out!! The dumb triangle made all of them, including Chase, look weak and needy and was hard to fathom, it was quite a stretch. Also, what soap makes a couple wait three years to develop then stomps all over the story? Michael and Willow finally free and together and we never got to see them move into the gatehouse together or have a minute of happiness- (or lovemaking as a happy couple?) they were together at Carly and Jason’s wedding but then it was right to Sonny’s return.
Let’s see Michael Corinthos romance Willow and turn this around. I secretly liked they she turned down his proposal (in the breakfast nook???) because she was finally able to speak her mind, it was showing growth, but let’s see Michael pour on the charm. He won her by default, and their long history of being each other’s touchstone/anchor, but they seem to skip the long history of them turning to each other for drama, now I want to see him work for her, roses at the gatehouse, a dream trip where they’re happy?
I’m ready for a real proposal next time, and Nina doesn’t get to mess this couple up again.

ITA Elsie, Millow are an old-fashioned romance and I’ve loved every minute of watching their relationship develop. Was never invested in Chillow because it was obvious from the very start that if Michael had had the chance to ask her out first, she would have fallen for him. They were so connected and close, and then we found out they were even MORE connected through Wylie .. can’t believe how long it took for that reveal, but it was deliciously soapy! And the forced marriage of convenience was, yes, contrived .. but the love that grew out of it was NOT, Chad and Katey sold it for me, and it was quite obvious there was no going back to Chillow from that. Sorry to those who wanted a different outcome, but they just weren’t paying attention to the story.

O.K. I simply can’t stand Carly and I knew people would say Laura Wright is the Best Actress of the year (sigh). It is really Cynthia Watros and Kirsten Storms (hoping the latter submits in Supporting Actress for the Emmys). Carly is by far my least favorite character and while Laura is a good actress I am so sick of the sight of her. Carly is self-righteous, totally obnoxious, a horrible friend, a terrible mother, and I truly despise her. Cynthia Watros has been the best this year, just incredible! Emmy #2 please!

Maurice Benard has an enormous ego and please don’t give him yet another Emmy ): Michael Easton and Josh Swickard did amazing work in both the paternity and the poisoning storylines. For the first time ever I could tolerate Maurice Benard but only as “Mike”, not as that despicable Sonny. Michael and Josh deserve Emmy consideration and possible wins (although I would prefer Mike Manning for Supporting Actor).

I hate the possession storyline on Days. Just hate it! I do not want sci-fi stories on my soaps. Period. and Days is way too messy – the overall storyline arcs aren’t so great but individual scenes and episodes are often really quite good.

Glad you cited the amazing Mike Manning as Charlie Dale.

Most of your citations were really good. and yes, Y&R has become a snoozefest ): Do they really not know? Faith’s bullying/transplant, and Rey’s poisoning were excellent but that was just about it for Y&R in 2021.

Richard, again we meet with fierce agreement. I always enjoy reading your posts! I like that you have gone into more detail here: the exquisite acting skills of Cynthia Watros (and Kirsten Storms) in particular. The ego of Benard: is he still mumbling his lines and touching his ear in most episodes? I refuse to watch any of his scenes as “despicable Sonny.” Like you, I also despise the character of “Carly” — I refuse to watch her scenes as well.

On to DOOL: Mike Manning was terrific, as you say. And we are so sympatico on that interminable Satan storyline.

Happy New Year, Richard!

I struggle with Storms submitting in “supporting” this year as Maxie drove story throughout 2021. GH typically has 2-3 actresses vie for lead. Despite what some might think, Laura Wright is a given this year. Either Storms or Cynthia Watros could grab a spot here. I’d be surprised if Maura West gets a nod as Ava’s stalker storyline wasn’t her most powerful.

Young and the Restless needs many changes in order for it to be revived . Please use the original background music , dim the lights a bit everything looks so fake . They need a good villain or two that will stir the pot . Nobody wants to see Abby , Rey, Devon, Mariah , Tessa or Jason Thompson as Billy .
We want Victor , Nikki’ , Sharon , Phyliss. Things got a little interesting when Tara showed her true Color’s and then it went back to being the most boring show on daytime television . I won’t watch until they get better more qualified writers . Give Maria Arena Bell back the exec title or maybe try Laura Lee Bell.

George,

The show is in a shambles, and so boring, I can’t agree more, BUT I am tired of old Victor playing his tiresome referee act with his family, the hauty Nicki, interfering in everyone’s business. Why can’t she just be a loving grandmother once in awhile? Maybe to a man Phyllis is sexy but to me the way she dresses, the skirts cut up to there and the tops are only half there. Guess old fashioned but it’s about time she acted her age. If they reunite her and Jack, Iam through. Iam sick of Sharon also, analyzing everyone and speaking of dressing, she looks like she should be in the Grand Phoenix not a little coffee shop. Sorry George, this is all your fault, you got me started.oh, and Abby, Chance, Devon, Amanda to name a few are snore worthy. The baby is the best, causing so much trouble that poor Chance may have to see a psychologist to help him hold a bottle right or change his diaper. They say it takes a village but they act like this guy can’t do anything with out a manual. It’s not brain surgery, just,stuff all new fathers go through.

Y&R is definitely most disappointing,their no drama and hopefully in 2022 we finally get a new writer

Agree. The continued corporate feuding relates to almost nobody. The rich fighting the rich. We know they are rich but there is simply NO drama between fighting corporations. The true drama happens with the personal relationships and family relations with some intrigue and mystery and adventure. I was hoping we would see Victoria and Ashland in Peru (if even from a set in the CBS studio). With the pandemic, we need some excitement and the opportunity to escape. YAWN!

Bring back the teens. WHere is Charlie and Mattie and Reed? What is the purpose of Moses and Faith?

If you watch the show you’ll know that they have been away at college for years.

And good riddance, eh Violet? Now if we can send Moses and Faith to the same “college”, I’m in heaven.

Lily barely looks to be out of her teens herself, so it’s hard to believe she has twenty- something children. Her twins used to play with Billy’s kids and yet, his kids are still little. I don’t care for nu-Faith. Does Y&R go out of their way to find sulky looking blondes with resting bitch faces? Abby, Summer, Faith- they’re all the same type.

I agree, Harry. Lily looks so young still. But this Faith? Not the right casting. She’s not believable as either Nick or Sharon’s child. She’s sullen, smirky, and devoid of charm. She reminds me of Cybill Shepherd in her MOONLIGHTING days. Just not likable. And Moses seems rather upbeat, so another mismatch.

Harry
Yes, but by the time Billy’s kids get back from Boarding School, they will be able to cause trouble along with the others. I would like to see Christian, Nick/Adam’s son. I would think getting him involved could bring a good SL with the fathers and Victor who has to insert himself in any scenario, also Connor being half brother to Johnny and Christian. The possibilities are endless.

A lot of best and worst categories I was waiting for best and worst gum chewer, (just kidding Michael) and while I don’t watch the 3 other soaps, you were right on with GH, Michael and willow boring as hell for sure, the lack of airtime for Rebecca Herbts still puzzling, and why is this ding dong villain Peter outplaying everyone? And yes GH is the best soap, it’s not great everyday and it has a bunch of holes in their storyline it’s still more often fun to watch. Loving the reemergence of the Q S AND CASSADINES, but can someone explain killing off Franco,? Actually I want the GH writers to explain that one .

Franco’s death, and the decision not to bring back Todd, was supposedly driven by the network – not Frank or the writers.

I always enjoy these Michael thank you! Laura Wright deserves an Emmy this year, her all around performances have been so outstanding. She consistently puts out great work, sadly I think writers have done a disservice to the character by overuse. Carly and Sonny will always be my favorite couple because the chemistry and acting chops between the two never disappoint. Duke the Bear from Days should have been listed as the most annoying prop. GH is definitely the best DRAMA on daytime and has brought in a good mix of humor.

Lincolnlog,

I liked Duke the Bear, also his diologue. I also think Michael on GH was the best prop, just stand him in a corner, or hang him up , would make a great Pinata.

I so agree, Michael and Willow are boring. We need less of them in 2022. The Carly and Jason storyline was not believable. The writers rushed them into a romantic state when they have been best friends for many years. I am glad to see Cameron Mathison back on screen, but I do want Steve Burton back as Jason. Also, I would love to see Rebecca Budig back and paired with CM.

Looks good but…no love for the pairing of Liesl & Scott on GH? Kathleen Gati and Kin Shriner have the veteran chops to play things just enough to allow the over 60’s fans to feel sexy & fun. Yet, they add enough humor to stay true to their characters. The pairing is a stroke of genius.

Liesl & Scotty were brilliant. Also inspired by the year end pairing of Martin & Lucy (although I’m not certain he’s needed on the canvas).

Sometimes, it’s nice to just have some levity in our soaps. I’m not sure how Martin fits into the overall scope of things either but he and Lucy sure were fun to watch.

Steve…I love both of those couples. You always know there will be some off the humour that only these characters can supply. Plus who knows what kind of schemes they could get into.

The young and restless and bold and beautiful are not worth wasting you eyesight on.
No good storyline, just musical couples, back and forth. Hard to even keep your attention.
Must improve or stop wasting the time of long time fans!

Excellent job, Mr. Fairman. I agree with almost every point pertaining to GH and Y&R. I appreciate how you make a declarative statement and back it up with facts. Well done.

Best Soap: General Hospital
Most Entertaining Soap: General Hospital
Most disappointing Soap: The Young and the Restless
Best Limited Series: Beyond Salem
Best Overall Performance by an Actress: Cynthia Watros, General Hospital
Best Performances by an Actress in a Storyline: Kirsten Storms, GH; Lisa LoCicero, GH; Sharon Case, Y&R; Sofia Mattson, GH; and Alison Sweeney, Days
Best Single Performance by an Actress in a Storyline: Kirsten Storms, GH
Best Overall Supporting Actress in a Soap: Kelly Thiebaud, General Hospital
Best Supporting Actresses in a Storyline: Genie Francis, GH; Jasmine Guy, GH; Kathleen Gati, GH; Rebecca Herbst, GH
Best Overall Performance by an Actor: Michael Easton and Josh Swickard, General Hospital
Best Performances by an Actor in a Storyline: Mike Manning, Days; Paul Telfer, Days; Mark Grossman, Y&R; and Bryan Datillo, Days
Best Single Performance by an Actor in a Storyline: James Patrick Stuart, General Hospital
Best Overall Performance by a Supporting Actor: Mike Manning, Days Of Our Lives
Best Performances by Long-Running Veterans: John Aniston and Suzanne Rogers, Days Of Our Lives
Best Performances in an Onscreen Breakup: Greg Vaughan and Arianne Zucker, Days Of Our Lives
Best Ensemble Performance by a Cast: General Hospital
Best Single Episode of a Soap: Beyond Salem, Episode 4 – special citations: Chandler Massey, Zack Tinker, Greg Rikaart, and Billy Flynn
Best Feud: Nina and Carly – TEAM NINA 100%!
Best Villainess: Alison Sweeney as Hurricane Sami Brady DiMera, Days Of Our Lives
Best Villain: Mike Manning as Charlie Dale, Days Of Our Lives
Best Scene-Stealer: Heather Lindell as Jan Spears, Days Of Our Lives
Best Unexpected Scene: Jan kills Charlie (hated the plot twist of Jan being the murderer, but the scene itself was brilliant)
Best Comeback: Kimberlin Brown as Sheila on B&B
Worst Exit: Mike Manning as Charlie Dale on Days
Most Highly Anticipated Returns: Will and Sonny on Beyond Salem
Worst Return: Sonny Corinthos on General Hospital – should have stayed Mike forever!
Most Missed Opportunity: Carly and Jason should have been caught by Sonny having sex on their wedding night on GH
Best New Character: Phyllis on General Hospital
Best Recast: Zack Tinker as Sonny on Beyond Salem
Worst Recast: Dan Feuerriegel as E.J. – I miss James Scott too much.
Best Newcomer: Nicholas Alexander Chavez as Spencer on GH
Best Younger Performer: Sydney Mikayla as Trina on GH
Worst Character: Peter August on GH; and Philip Kiriakis on Days
Worst Waste of Screen Time: Carly Corinthos’s continued self-righteousness, shrill, shouty, obnoxious behavior day after dreary day on GH; Peter August still being on GH
Best Couple in the Making: Spencer and Trina on GH
Most Unexpected Scene: Jan is the killer on Days
Worst Exit: Charlie Dale on Days
Most Highly Anticipated Return: Hurricane Sami on Days
Worst and Most Boring Couple: Michael and Willow on GH
Best Couple: Will and Sonny on Beyond Salem
Best Tearjerker: Liam’s death on GH; and Leo’s autism story on GH
Best Overall Storylines: Nixon Falls with Mike, Nina, Phyllis and Lenny on GH; and the poisoning of Rey on Y&R
Worst Storyline: Devil Possession 2.0 on Days
Most Preposterous Plot Twists: Jan Killed Charlie on Days; Peter is still alive on GH; and Lucas kidnapped Sami on Days
Most Disappointing Character: Philip Kiriakis on Days

GH killing Franco deserved a worst—“overall worst decision,” perhaps.

Actually, the worst decision was NOT leaving Franco dead the first time. Followed by attaching that dead man’s name to a serial rapist who could no longer use the name of the serial rapist (who didn’t belong on GH in the first place) because of legal red tape between ABC and some fly-by-night online streaming scheme which ultimately failed anyway.

Then there was the horrible decision to absolve this person of all of his crimes, using the excuse of a “brain tumor”, so they could pair him up with Steve Hardy’s granddaughter.

The only bad part about killing him off again was that Whiny Heiny (an even worse piece of crap) gets the credit for it.

amen

Satan,

Actually, I wrote the above comment to Rebecca before this one. I think I have asked you this before but I do suffer from C.R.S so forgive me. I just don’t remember if it was Roger Howarth or the character Franco you hate so much. I liked R.H from ATWT so loved watching him on G.H . I did not like Franco as played by James Franco, great actor that he is, but he played it too well. I respectfully agree to disagree on this one . As you know, I usually go along with everything from your fiery tongue. By the way, did you have to get into Johnny, I thought we were through with all that?

If they had introduced Roger Howarth as Austin in 2012, that would have been the best thing possible for him. I don’t object to GH hiring actors from other soaps… for example, they seem to trade back and forth with Days all the time.

But what happened in 2012 was not that. You had Frank & ReRon bring their entire crew over from OLTL, as well as several of the actors, playing their OLTL characters, and taking away storylines & screen time from GH characters as these castaways were given top priority. Todd Manning never belonged on General Hospital, and his autotuned bubblegum singing twit of a daughter, even less so. And then there was his crazy ex wife who stole poor little baby Danny away from Sam because her kid died, and they threw Jason under the bus for damn near a year before they killed him the first time, so they could shove McBain into Sam’s life.

It was all horrible. and what they did renaming those characters after the legal hassles with Prospect Park was even worse. Todd becomes Frodd and is redeemed of all of his crimes through magic DVDs & a brain tumor?? The untalented twit is still around, but now she’s with Morgan and not Mikey. And suddenly McBain er… Silas?? (he’s had so many names I forgot some of them) is her father, not Frodd.

It would have been so much simpler if they had just come up with Austin & Finn the first time around. They didn’t need the little ditz at all, nor any of the other OLTL castaways who came and went, and they didn’t need to throw them into front burner storylines at the expense of the GH cast members who had paid their dues (so to speak)

Now as for my continuing adventures in Salem as Johnny…. hey you have to admit I rocked that red suit, right?

Rebecca
I am a big Franco and Roger Howarth fan. I know a lot of people don’t like him especially Satan but I liked every role he’s had played by Roger Howarth that is. I like his new doctor role and expect he and Britt will get together eventually, unless Jason returns. If he’d only cut off the dawn mini-ponytail I’d be happy.

Tptb at ABC were responsible for Franco’s demise not tptb at General Hospital! I also believe Roger Howarth was interested in moving on from the character and going in a different direction as an actor?

Completely disagree with your take on Michael & Willow. Their chemistry and connection has kept me interested in GH.

S
If that’s all it takes to keep you interested, well what can I say?

Same. I watch for the love stories and Millow was the only good one for the better part of two years.

Y&R has been my favorite show since I was 14. The last 2-3 years have been tedious, at best. This past year I finally called it a day. I keep up by reading recaps on websites but haven’t tuned in because I know NOTHING ever happens. What a waste of a GREAT cast.

The most wasted story line of the year is the “mystery” of the death of Amanda’s father on Y and R. They create a family for her and Hilary and they are never seen. There is a murder of an unseen character, and then a trial for a grandfather we met three times. And that court scene, wow that was a dud. Will we see Nates house? NO, Why does Rich Phyllis live in a one room hotel room and not the penthouse? It’s time for Noah to remember he is not 15 year old…

Well, Matt, you’re right about Amanda’s “back story”. Back Street is more appropriate to that tawdry tale. And the amateurish acting of the mother and grandfather! It was like watching a local play house production. But I do feel bad for broken-hearted Noah and I get why being home for a while could be comforting. For a while…

Soaphound, Hi, Happy New Year! I have been reading your Posts of how much you are liking Noah. Well, don’t hate me, but I just read somewhere that he and Chelsea may get together over Conner’s Hockey lessons. Let’s hear a resounding “Oh,hell no” as Carly would say.

Violet, I was afraid of this when I saw Conner bonding with Noah. Can you imagine taking up with the ex of your uncle AND your father! There oughta be a law. I’m with Harry, bring back Lola for Noah.

Matt, sure was a wasted S.L as is the romance between Devon and Amanda.
They have zero chemistry. I think Nate still lives in the P.H across from Devon, who I think got his from Neil when he died. You’ve brought up the big Penthouse mystery of a lot of fans trying to remember who lived in which P.H originally owned by Victor Newman, given to Nick and Chelsea, Adam and Chelsea, Sage in one where she and Adam had sex and conceived Christian. Anyone care to jump in here?
Poor Matt only wanted to know where Nate lived.

Nate sold the penthouse back to Adam, and Nate bought Lily and Cane’s crib! In fact, during Nate’s brief dalliance with Abby, there were a couple of scenes in Lily/Cane’s old kitchen where Nate was cooking Abby dinner!

Mostly agree, but I am one of thousands that disagree and really like Michael and Willow together

Where was Rogers return as Austin?

Carolyn…Roger’s return as Austin started when he was hiking in the woods, discovered Maxie in labor there after she had escaped from the cabin where Peter was holding her prisoner. Then Austin helped her deliver her baby. Later he has become a doctor at GH.

I like reading your Best and Worst article each year. I mostly agree with your selections…with the exception that Michael and Willow are boring and need to break up. Michael has been more volatile of late and that has me concerned for their relationship. But one thing I was glad to see was his understanding of what happened with Williow at Neena’s trial. That showed me there was hope for them to continue on. Other than that, I agreed with your choices, Mr. Fairman.

Great write-up! I love KT (Britta) on GH and can only shake my head that Days didn’t fight to keep her. The acting on Days is beyond horrible at times (to include DH’s) and many of their couples (Tripp/Allie, Rafe/Ava) are as bland as Michael and Willow on GH. I stopped watching Days because of the plot written mess and exit stories (Kristen, Sami, etc) make absolutely no sense. Writers at GH have been doing a great job the last couple of years. My wish for both GH and Days though, is both writers drop concentration on their favorites (Corinthos and John/Marlena family) and focus on other families.

Her character on Days was a short timer anyway. I think her replacement was only on for a week or so.

Familiar territory though… she played the daughter of a psychotic supervillain. Only she was a lawyer there rather than a doctor.

Angela Y and Satan
Please tell me who KT/ Britta was on Days, it’s driving me crazy!
Just saw Satan you said daughter of a super villain. Still can’t place her.

She was Orpheus’s daughter… though she didn’t admit that at first. She did her “duty” as a lawyer to get her brother’s kid away from Rafe, who was his foster daddy. Her brother was in prison for killing the child’s mother, who was Ben’s psycho sister, Jordan.

Satan, Thanks, I remember now.

Mr fairman thanks for this forum. It is good that people can express there feelings and remember it is a persons opinion everyone is entitled to one For me days is the entertainment always on the move is it over the top at many times yes ! But I love it. Restless is a a very stale point no stories whatsoever Kyle and summer left and it left a big void the departure of the Rosales family was a bad job too and they kept Rey the most boring of all bold is wash rinse and repeat and gh I just do not get all the love for Sonny and the mob it it the only of the 4 I do not watch tried so many times and it just doesn’t do it for me to me it was always Bo and Hope over Luke and Laura so like I said it’s days for me love the introduction of Paulina love the use of vets marlena Doug and Julie et all one also special thing about days to me is I can’t really find a character I can’t stand I don’t think you can say that about the other 3. Remember. It’s only my opinion

Mob is still a presence and a factor but it isn’t the predominant factor anymore….I think it’s been much more balanced over the last year with more focus on the Cassidine’s and Quartermaine’s? Could be worth checking out again ?

I disagree with Young and Restless as worst soap. That distinction belongs to Bold and Beautiful, hands down. I would argue with the heavy handed GH bias, but that would be pointless, considering…

I have to agree! They have to get a new head writer, the storylines are Logan family oriented, ignoring history and completely sidelining the Forrester family.

Wow, so many awesome comments from many. Okay, I don’t watch GH, but they have a great cast and Cynthia Watros and Laura Wright both ex Guiding Light rocked back then and still are on GH, now 3-time Emmy winner Gina T needs to be either on GH or back at Y&R, she didn’t win 3 Emmys for anything, she’s damn good, She missed badly.

Bring her back!

To all that agreed with me that Y&R with great talent is just not getting great material. The show is boring as hell day in and out. No excitement, no murder mysteries, no nothing. Damn, Bold / Beautiful is more exciting!

I think that Mr. Fairman is mostly right-on but The Bold and Beautiful, for me, is the worst. Completely ridiculous and embarrassing for the actors. I quit watching when Sheila returned.

I have to agree!

I thought Deidre Hall’s portrayal of Satan for the second time was definitely worth being named Best Overall Performance by an Actress. Deidre definitely brought superb acting and a little humor every now and then to the role. Two thumbs up from this fan!

Greg is fabulous as Leo. I wish Y&R would use him more. Bring Gloria back!

Love MarDevil. I think Days is the best soap. I don’t watch GH.

I’m still trying to get used to the new EJ.

So many things I agree with.

Jackee has been fabulous on Days. Great addition and it allows other actors to have story.

I really enjoyed the Salem Story on Peacock. Have not seen the Christmas one since I am not going to pay. When they make it free, I’ll watch it.

Please bring Gloria back !

Agreed! Gloria is fun and likes to stir things up — exactly what we need right now. I am SO sick of the Abby/Devon show and Billy’s psychotic delusions that he should run Newman Media. Run into the ground is more like it! All these sourpuss characters are beginning to wear on me.

Laura Wright is exactly the same day after day, scene after scene. Get her off the screen NOW. And take he-who-shall-not-be-named with her.

Maybe it’s me, due to poor production quality, etc, but when I attempt to watch Days, it’s like watching a bunch on over the top cartoon characters. The acting is as bad as the writing and the show never lets characters hold grudges. The worst story or return is Ava (Days) and how everyone is buddy with her and forgets everything she did in the past such as kidnapping Kayla and being responsible for Shawn Brady’s death. Yet, she goes to pub routinely and is friendly Brady family. Just stupid. The Bonnie story arc is as bad as Jake the mechanic playing CEO..

“ Bunch of Over the top cartoon characters ?” Sounds spot on like Ron C is clearly still the shows HW, I thank the soap Gods every day he no longer writes for GH.

Michael, this is pretty darn spot-on. I dont know why so many people huff and puff about Sonny and Carly? Maurice and Laura are fantastic actors! GH has so much talent. The leads are all so good, the teen scene is good. The Nu-Spencer is a major find! Then you have supporting actors, Brando and Sasha who stepped up and knocked it out of the park! I guess Y&R still gets major love because of Sony and better lead-ins? That show is horrible! I think the Nu-Chance is pretty good but when I see Devon, Nate, Elena, Chelsea, Chloe, Noah, and Rey, I cannot FF quick enough! Its sad. And the Victoria and Ashland pairing is horrible. Jack is a rich man. He must know available women his age looking for love? I thought him and Eva LaRue could have been good together. Yes she is younger but they seemed to have chemistry and Eva is a talent! Everybody mentions writing, yes it is a problem but the talent needs to be rethought. Keep the history and write them stories but try and bring new talent and different stories into the show.

Too late for Character most disappointed in.
Lucas Horton, what the hell? First of all, why would anyone go to such lengths to hold on to someone in that way and say he did it out of love? How could he sleep at night knowing he had his beloved Sami salted away as scared and miserable as he knew she must be.
I liked him though I never could figure out what he was about. Did he ever have a job, where did he get his money, etc.,from Mommy Dearest?

Lucas was running the “Countess Wilhelmina” company at one point. The company was founded by his sister Billie Reed, and Kate had acquired it when Billie left town. My aging Devil memory is fuzzy as to whether Kate was working for Titan or DiMera industries at that point in time, but CW has been affiliated with both at different times.

At one point, I believe Lucas was running the company from overseas during one of his long absences from the show. Probably Hong Kong, since that was the go-to place for exiled Salemites for a while, before they started moving to South Africa.

I’m honestly not sure what he’s doing for a living for the last couple of years that he’s been back in Salem. If Bill Horton left him some sort of inheritance, I don’t think they ever mentioned it.

Thanks for info, now do you remember Madison James played by Sarah Brown in 2011-12 fell in love with Brady died when the town practically caved in. Just testing your memory. I loved that SL

Yeah, I remember that whole era. I actually thought she was a good match for Brady. And during that same time, Kate was paired up with some guy named Ian McAllister (think that was his name) who looked and sounded exactly like Duke Lavery.

Both Madison & Ian died in some massive explosion…. but that’s not a dealbreaker, because Jack Deveraux also died in the same event, when he got caught in a falling elevator, after pulling his daughter Abigail out of it. Jack managed to return from that, so it’s not out of the question that Ian or Madison might have also found a way back. Probably as Rolf zombies, like half the other people currently walking around Salem.

Could you imagine 2 of the 3 Carlys from GH being on Days at the same time?? (yeah I know there were technically four of them, but I don’t count that temp hire who came between Tamara Braun & Laura Wright, who was (literally) a trainwreck)

Pretty spot on with this but I have to say if Days had the budget of Y&R or GH it would be the best soap airing right now

Only watch one Soap: Y&R. I see all these comments and recognize names of those writing that I used to read on Y&R when away. The names aren’t there anymore. Can’t compare with the other programs but know Y&R hasn’t seemed to evolve with a comfortable flow. A silly example is the writers finding that if one stands behind an open door and hears the next plot “great,” no reason to develop it. Even the hair and fashion dwindles.

This has been and is my program. These are complicated times. There is time to relax and bring back this program.

Rebecca Herbst should have been the best supporting actress on GH… Unfortunately, all the dramatic material was given to LW so Carly could grieve a very alive Sonny every damn week, and to KT so Britt could mourn her ONS on a bridge she didn’t know existed and meant nothing to her. Shame on you GH.

Breaking News

CBS Orders Michele Van Jean Soap Opera ‘The Gates’ to Series; Set to Debut January 2025

Great news! Soap fans are getting the first new daytime drama in 25 years with the news today that CBS has moved Michele Van Jean’s The Gates to a series order.

In addition, the show is set to bow in January 0f 2025, which means that it appears that the new soap will replace The Talk, which was just canceled and will end after its upcoming 15th season in December of 2024.  No specific time period, or exact premiere date has been set as of yet.

In the premise of the The Gates it follows lives of a wealthy Black family who live in a luxurious gated community.

Photo: CBS

The Gates has Val Jean as its writer, showrunner and one of its executive producers. Soap fans know Val Jean’s work best for her work on the writing teams of General Hospital and The Bold and the Beautiful.  Taking to X, Michele shared: “It’s go time” citing the news on the show coming to CBS in 2025 via Deadline.

Sheila Ducksworth, Leon Russell, Derrick Johnson and Kimberly Doebereiner will serve as executive producers on The Gates production team. The soap has been in development through a the joint venture between CBS Studios and the NAACP, which was established to help elevate a diverse range of voices and increase the visibility of Black artists.

The series will be produced by the CBS Studios/NAACP venture in partnership with P&G Studios, which is a division of Procter & Gamble, who used to be very big in the soap opera game.

Are you excited to know that we are truly getting the first new soap opera in over two and a half decades added to a network TV line-up? Comment below.

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Breaking News

‘The Talk’ Renewed For 15th and Final Season to End in December; Does Its Cancellation Make Room for ‘The Gates’?

Things just got very interesting over at CBS daytime with the announcement today that The Talk is going to end its run on the network after its 15th season, and that season looks to be shortened as the series will come to its conclusion in December of 2024.

In a joint statement, Amy Reisenbach, President, CBS Entertainment and David Stapf, President, CBS Studio, shared, “The Talk broke new ground when it launched 14 years ago by returning daytime talk to CBS with a refreshing and award-winning format. Throughout the years, it has been a key program on CBS’ top rated daytime line-up as it brought timely, important and entertaining topics and discussions into living rooms around the globe.”

Reisenback and Stapf added, “It goes without saying that hosting and producing a year-round talk show is no easy task, and we express our sincere gratitude to our amazing hosts Akbar Gbajabiamila, Amanda Kloots, Natalie Morales, Jerry O’Connell and Sheryl Underwood, our Executive Producer/Showrunner Rob Crabbe and the hardworking producing team and crew.

Photo: CBS

Giving props to those who co-hosted or worked on the show through the years including: Sara Gilbert, Julie Chen Moonves, Carrie Ann Inaba Leah Ramimi, Marissa Janet Winokur, Holly Robinson Peete, Eve, Aisha Tyler, and Sharon Osbourne, the joint statement added, “We also want to acknowledge our former show hosts and colleagues who contributed throughout the seasons. We truly appreciate the skill, creativity, and dedication everyone involved brought to the show every day.  And of course, we thank the numerous guests who appeared, and the millions of viewers who tuned in daily. For the final season, we plan to celebrate the show and give it the proper sendoff it deserves when it concludes in December 2024.”

While no firm decision or announcement has been given at this time, it seems most likely that The Talk’s time slot could be given to the new soap opera in development The Gates from CBS Studio Ventures and from longtime soap opera writer. Michele Val Jean.  As previously reported, The Gates features the lives of a wealthy Black family who reside in a posh, gated community.

Photo: JPI

The Talk was originally the brainchild of Sara Gilbert, who had developed the show when it launched back 2010 and it replaced the beloved As the World Turns which went off the air after 54 years when CBS canceled it.

So, what do you think of The Talk being canceled? Will this make room for The Gates to begin to air in its spot beginning in 2025? Share your reactions to the news via the comment section.

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Breaking News

O. J. Simpson Dead at 76: Real-Life Murder Trial in Which He Was Acquitted, Changed the Trajectory of Soap Operas

Former Pro Football superstar, O. J. Simpson, who became infamous for being on trial for the murders of his former wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman, has passed away at the age of 76 of cancer.

Simpson’s family put out a statement sharing, “Our father, Orenthal James Simpson, succumbed to his battle with cancer. He was surrounded by his children and grandchildren. During this time of transition, his family asks that you please respect their wishes for privacy and grace.”

It was the murder trial that overtook the airwaves back in late 1994 and through most of 1995 that changed the landscape of daytime television forever, and in particular soap operas that many will recall.

Photo: AP

On June 12, 1994, Nicole Simpson, O.J.’s former wife, and her friend, Ron Goldman, were brutally murdered. When O.J. became the prime suspect, a wild pursuant of him by the police while in his white Ford Bronco was viewed on every network by some 95 million viewers. This June marks 30-years since the incident.

Ultimately, Simpson was charged with Brown Simpson and Goldman’s murders, though he was acquitted in what was dubbed The Trial of the Century.

The trial permeated the airwaves of every network and any time of day. Networks consistently interrupted soap operas while covering the day in and day out of the spectacle that was this star athlete and TV and film star’s trial.

With many of the soaps pre-empted on a regular basis, the public fascination of Simpson’s trial was to many better than a soap opera as it has all the ingredients. Writer Dominic Dunne noted the themes via an article in Vanity Fair of “interracial marriage, love, lust, lies, hate, fame, wealth, beauty, obsession, spousal abuse, stalking, brokenhearted children, the bloodiest of bloody knife-slashing homicides, and all the justice that money can buy.”

Because of the trial, soap operas lost a significant amount of their audiences. The murder trial went on for 11 months from November 9, 1994, to October 3, 1995.  They never were able to fully rebound as reality television became the next big thing.

O.J. Simpson is survived by four children: Arnelle and Jason, from his first marriage, and Sydney and Justin, from his marriage to Nicole Brown Simpson.

So, do you remember being frustrated that your favorite soaps could not air during the O.J. trial, or did you find the murder trial more intriuing than the soaps themselves? Comment below.

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