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NY POST: NYC's Soap Bubble Bursts – End of an Era following OLTL's Finale!

Courtesy/NY Post

Courtesy/NY Post

We always thought of Gotham, the Big Apple, as Soap City!  After all, it was where all the big soaps originated from, and now as we prepare to say farewell to One Life to Live this Friday, it means that there are no longer any network television soap operas being produced in this once thriving metropolis of this iconic and rare storytelling genre!

Today’s New York Post takes a look at the decline of the New York City soap opera production with interviews from several of the actors from One Life to Live, All My Children and Guiding Light.  Here are some of the commentary excerpts below from the piece, and then some of the quotes from some notables in the soap world.

NY POST: “When ABC’s One Life To Live airs its final, inevitably tearful episode on Friday, an era will end for NYC-based TV soaps, which date all the way back to 1950’s The First Hundred Years, CBS’s first ongoing serial daytime drama about two couples who were next door neighbors.  Sixty-two years later, following the recent cancellations of its local brethren — All My Children,  Guiding Light and As the World Turns —OLTL is the last show standing in what used to be one of the city’s most thriving entertainment industries. On 66th Street between Central Park West and the Hudson River, ABC’s OLTL and All My Children were shot, while CBS’s Guiding Light and As the World Turns were filmed on 57th Street near the Hudson. (Another World was shot in Brooklyn until its cancellation in 1999, and the soap Loving taped in Manhattan from 1983-1995.)”

Kassie DePaiva (Blair, OLTL) on the unique brand of storytelling only told in soaps:  “I’ve had babies stolen, I’ve been shot, I’ve shot people, and I’ve had about eight marriages and three miscarriages. We had a public execution of my fake husband — stopped at the last minute. And, obviously, I’ve slept with tons of really good-looking men… The beauty of soaps is that it takes a village to make it work, and you get to work with really hardworking people.” 

Ron Carlivati (Head writer, OLTL) on how to write for a soap no matter how outrageous the storylines might get:  “It’s not all evil twins and separated at birth. At the same time as we have evil twins, we also try to tell stories that are relatable to our audience. For example, the show recently ran a story line about bullying, a topic ripped from the headlines.  As long as you write the characters true to who they are, you can send Viki to Mars, as long as she has the appropriate reaction.”

Several of the actors commented on the ending of the New York soap scene saying they never thought they would see the day:  Jordan Clarke (Ex-Billy, GL, now The Colonel, Venice)  “I saw a chart showing the revenue, and it looked like a plane diving to the ground”  Bob Woods ( Bo, OLTL) “I never thought it would happen. To think that there wouldn’t be soap operas produced in New York! I always thought there would be the serial format on ABC, as long as there was an ABC.” Erika Slezak (Viki, OLTL) “It leaves a huge hole in daytime TV and in the days of our fans. ABC tells us the audience doesn’t want entertainment anymore; that they only want information. I don’t buy that. I want something that will make me laugh, make me cry.”

Let us know your thoughts on this on seeing the once thriving Mecca of soaps gone and with it, all the talented performers and crew members who are now out of jobs! All we can say, it’s a terrible and tragic loss for everyone:  fans, performers, creative’s, and the city of New York!

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Beverly Salhany
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Beverly Salhany

ABC YOUR CRAZY !!!!!!!!
We DO want entertainment …I dont know what you are thinking infop is good BUT TO MUCH ON THE ALL THE SAME THING S EVERY HOUR OF THE DAY PLEASE !!!

Cathy Starr
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Cathy Starr

I agree with ES, people want programs that they can cry or laugh along with. I will miss being able to follow along with the show, taking a hour break from reality to watch a program that I was continually in sync with and at times felt like I was watching family or situations I was facing in my life, OLTL had moments that dealt with raw, real life situations. Sure there was a lot of marriages ending, crazy stalking psychos, people escaping jail, but then there was the couples that had real life situations. Moments that the fans and… Read more »

Michele OShell
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Michele OShell

Well said Cathy!!

1loveabcsoaps
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1loveabcsoaps

Nicely stated and agreed. It’s that time U can just take a momemt for yourself with the soaps to escape your reality. It’s a good clean escape on top of it. Ur not hurting anyone, causing any problems, or doing drugs. U can have a good cry with the soap, or you can BASK in the Glow of love with the couples with the dynanmite chemistry, or U can have yourself a good laugh at the rediculous and crazy plots they come up with. But whatever one you do, you are safe in your home, hurting no one taking a… Read more »

ethel
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ethel

excellent post!!

Heather
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Heather

Now that all the NY soaps are gone, I hope that this trend of cancelling soap operas stop as of today and doesn’t spray itself on the L.A soaps.

Carri
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Carri

AMC was taped in LA and GH is getting the ax too…

Heather
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Heather

AMC was taped in LA for a mere year out of its 41 years. AMC is a NY soap, not a LA soap.

And GH hasn’t been canceled.

Laura
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Laura

I wouldn’t hold your breath, Heather. ABC Daytime is the Cooking to get FAT, then, we will show you how to LOSE WEIGHT channel.

Heather
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Heather

I’m not saying that GH won’t be cancelled. I’m just saying that we shouldn’t be speculating stuff until they happen.

Because if we’re gonna speculate about things, I could go on and say that the four remaining soaps will all be gone in the next 5 years.

Patti
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Patti

I hate to see, or not see, Slezak on my TV. Although I love Jeanne Cooper, if she ever needs replacing, please consider Ms Slezak as the new Katherine Chancellor.

Michele OShell
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Michele OShell

I think it is a travesty to cancel the soaps!!!This is an American institution!! There are women out here who have been following soaps since they started as 15 minute segments on the radio!!! I DO NOT WANT TO SEE ANOTHER TALK SHOW!!! If I want to watch another cooking show I will watch the Food Channel or Bravo!!! I will not watch ANY of the replacement shows!! And I am limiting my ABC viewing!! Also, although I have 5 granddaughters, there will be NO Disney Channel on in my home!!! I sincerely hope that one of the other stations… Read more »

1loveabcsoaps
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1loveabcsoaps

You go Michele. Let me start by suggesting this that I read from one of the Fans yesterday. She is CANCELING CABLE and getting a DISH (pass and POST this around, along with your idea, No Disney Channels-they FIT together VERY well with your idea) If you get a dish, no money goes to Disney for any of their channels. Canceling Cable all together fits your idea perfectly. Disney gets no money. Second, JOIN US in sending BARS OF SOAP to the abc studio in nyc, so the executives and the new shos will be BOMBARDED by soap coming in… Read more »

barbara t
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barbara t

yes ,and I am one of them, watched gh since the beginning ,thats almost 49 years ,Ive watched all the abc soaps ,changed alot of diapers ,made alot meals,and clean the house ,happy ,sad ,sick ,the soaps were always there for me.these next 5 days will be so hard ,knowing every minute that goes by,we come closer to the end of one life to live ,Even today ,hell since the soaps have been canceled I feel like Im going to a funeral .that someone so close to me died,or is dying and I cant do a thing about it ,and… Read more »

Torrey
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Torrey

Just goes to show you how out of touch ABC is with its fans…. I’m not sure they recognize the gravity of their decision. Soon, it will all come to light. Talk shows have always come and gone, over the years, but it has been the soap operas that have withheld the test of time. Now, Executives are telling us that the Soaps’ time has come….and we all know this is so they can line their pockets with more cash. If ABC/Disney was really standing behind their soaps, they would have figured out better ways to cut cost, so that… Read more »

barbara t
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barbara t

I remember when that happened and I said to several people who watched the abc soaps like me ,What will disney do about the soaps?will they keep them ? and slowly through the years the soaps were getting cheep except one life to live they took big cuts and the cast and crew still put out quality shows ,I hope what mickey mouse did to there afternoon lineup comes back big time and chews them in the ass ,the have some stupid people working there ,hey abc ,did you ever hear this saying?you dont fix something that isnt broken ,abc… Read more »

david
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david

Torrey, I don’t disagree with you, but the concept of being in touch with fans is simply feel-good public relations. Corporations are more focused on the interests of shareholders and investors. What fans want is irrelevant; they will get what maximizes revenue. The killing of OLTL lifted a veil for me. Most of television is an insipid, banal wasteland. Its celebrities are embarrassing caricatures incapable of offering anything genuine or entertaining. Information is often biased and juvenile. Generally, it’s a mind-numbing, manipulative enterprise to make money for others at the viewer’s expense. OLTL was the real deal, but in the… Read more »

Gloria
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Gloria

WOW-you said it David.

Torrey
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Torrey

Totally agree with you, David.

Linda
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Linda

I will mIss one life to live so much. Will not be watching the revolution don’t need anymore of these shows. Abc is making a mistake. Haven’t watches the. Chew either.

Gerardo Ramirez
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Gerardo Ramirez

having the wonderful world of soaps in NYC,afforded a symbiotic relationship between the soaps & theatre.Talented actors could work in both mediums,even at the same time.This is part of the success of the long running soaps in London.This is now a great loss to the NYC scene.

1loveabcsoaps
Guest
1loveabcsoaps

The actors that do soaps in London, is the threater nearby? ( This is part of the success of the long running soaps in London.)

Gerardo Ramirez
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Gerardo Ramirez

Yes.they even have radio dramas,& now since the cancellation of GL,the world’s longest radio soap THE ARCHERS.I have attended the taping of radio shows in BBC studios in the West END of London.EASTENDERS is filmed in suburban London,and concurrently seen actors in theater and TV.Unlike the USA,British TV & film & theater is centered in London.Now in the USA,TV & film is West Coast based & theater is NYC based-3,000 miles apart.

Munga
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Munga

I will miss OLTL So Much!
Thank you to all of the actors for the best 40years of television, you made me laugh, tou made me cry, you helped me raise my children, God Bless

lew
Guest
lew

I will continue to watch GH, because of FV and RC. The View, The CHOMP and The Make-Over mess will not be watched by me. The ABC heads along with that pompous ass Frons,, will see viewership for their network erode!

gloria
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gloria

Agree 100%

Michele OShell
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Michele OShell

I cannot fathom how Disney, with all the money from their theme parks, shows, and child related products,etc., cannot afford to keep this time-honored tradition in television history on the air!! I think Walt Disney must be spinning in his grave!!!! Many immigrants have learned English from watching these shows , a trivia fact I came across in reading some celeb bios. Also, we woman are not alone!! It is a published fact that many NFL players TIVO some of the soaps, especially All My Children because of La Lucci!! LOL!!! And, Brian Frons, who made the decision, Resigned ,quit… Read more »

Gloria
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Gloria

I heard last night that the Disney family is looking into buying the L.A. Dodgers baseball team. So no money for soaps, huh?

barbara t
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barbara t

seriously a baseball club? and michele you are right ,walt disney has to be spinning in his grave ,look at all the trash they have on now ,and frons he didnt cancel the soaps alone ,abc is using him to make them look good ,hey people ,we didnt know he was going to cancel the soaps ,do they really think were all that stupid.Its greed.and they should get rid of some 0f there primetime shows ,theres room for one live to life.

Samiyo
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Samiyo

If the NETWORKS would look at the numbers of hits the daytime drama’s have been getting ever since ABC and other networks chose to make daytime and primetime programing available via the Internet (ON DEMAND). They will see that the FANS have never stopped watching. Many of us have been recording and really looked forward to an escape from reality (even if just for a few hours.) I work in the medical field, and many of us Surgery Staff members MALE and FEMALE all would unwind during our break and for some of us who would miss any of the… Read more »

Kimberly B
Guest
Kimberly B

I must agree that on visits to different doctor’s offices and hospitals I have been able to watch my soaps while I am waiting in the waiting room. Usually the soaps become a brief bonding experience between, me, other patients, and the receptionists and/or medical staff. At work it is the same way. Co-workers and I can’t wait to see each other at work to talk about the storyline and what we might have missed. We try to figure out what is going to come next. We the fans want the escapism and fantasy that soaps have to offer. It… Read more »

Gloria
Guest
Gloria

You are so right. If OLTL was “dying a natural death” that would be one thing-you always hate to lose a soap but sometimes they run their course. But good grief, OLTL is & has been for months & months, the very best show there is! That fact & the way this whole thing has been handled, not to mention the awful “replacement shows”-this just all adds up to a disgusting mess. It hurts bad.

Kymba
Guest
Kymba

It is a disgrace to all of the people who worked these shows, who watched these shows, who loved these shows! They have been a part of our lives for 40+ years, we have laughed, cried, screamed and cheered with these guys. The bonehead move of ABC daytime will ruin them! have a heart Iger..make that call, reverse your decision!!

Brian Greene
Guest
Brian Greene

I totally agree with all my fellow posters on this board. I, a life-long Illinois citizen, have also dearly loved the NYC-based soaps in my TV viewing lifetime very much!

su0000
Guest
su0000

Disney fails to realize that soap operas are not fad or a trend of tastes/lifestyle. Soaps are an institution. From radio to TV soaps have had a loyal viewership every Mon-Friday for 43 years.
Soap Opera’s are like Rock & Roll; they will never die.

Soap Operas will be noted in history and ABC/D will hold its’ shame in the archives.

TrixNix
Guest
TrixNix

Well with OLTL gone, ABC will only be getting 1 hour of my daily viewing time, GH. I can’t believe this day has come.

Gloria
Guest
Gloria

Me too. That one hour & that’s it. I have been watching my local news on the ABC affiliate all my life but am dropping that too. I can’t believe this is happening. Keep thinking somehow something will save this show for us.

Kimberly B
Guest
Kimberly B

I don’t care what ABC says. If I want information I will look it up online. They think that young people don’t like soaps, well I am young and I love soaps! I have been saying this from the time I heard they were cancelling these 2 iconic shows: I have been watching ABC Soaps ever since I was a little girl. My grandfather was a huge fan, and I would sit on the floor and watch these shows while he sat in his special chair. No one could get him to run an errand until 4pm. After he passed… Read more »

Mary
Guest
Mary

I so agree with you! I will not watch anything that replaces my shows. I’m so sick of food shows and makeover shows. We have talk shows running out of our wazoo’s as it is! If ABC had ever asked us loyal viewers what WE wanted, they would’ve found out that we DON’T want more informational shows, we DO WANT our soaps! OLTL is my favorite show, day or night, of all time. I cannot believe this is happening. I’ve been a faithful viewer and fan of ABC for over 35 years. Well, not anymore! ABC lost millions of us… Read more »

LUMIly
Guest
LUMIly

I will miss all the soaps as one by one they are gone,but we still have 4 left.
Days Of Our Lives is the one I have been watching sence Nov.1965

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