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RATINGS: Y&R, B&B, GH & DAYS All Up In Total Viewers!

Courtesy/CBS

Courtesy/CBS

The ratings are out for the week of August 29th through September 2nd, which featured a pivotal week for The Young and the Restless, in which it aired its 11,000th episode and ended the run of series star, Justin Hartley (Adam Newman), who departed in a explosive series of events.

Going around the horn with the four network daytime soaps, each saw an uptick in total viewers.  Led by Y&R, which showed the highest increase of +91,000 and featured a Monday episode that landed an average of over 5 million viewers, the number one-rated soap fared the best for the ratings period.  However, it should be noted it did not do as well in key demos showing minuses in total viewers in the 18-49 and 25-54 female categories.

ABC’s General Hospital showed the second highest total audience gains for the week adding +64,000.  GH began its JaSam wedding, revealed who is the hospital killer and more, during the ratings week.  Additionally, GH was the only daytime drama to add viewers all three key demos: 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54.

Courtesy/ABC

As for CBS’ The Bold and the Beautiful they also added +40,000 total viewers, but on the converse, the show lost viewers in all key demo categories. The series continues to tie lows in the 18-34 and 18-49 ratings share.

Days of our Lives, which aired its final week of airshows under the old head writing regime led by Josh Griffith, added some eyeballs with a plus +9,000, while remaining in the loss column of adding viewers in key demos.  It will be interesting to see how the new episodes under new co-head writers, Dena Higley and Ryan Quan will track with the viewers once the ratings come in from September 6th airshows and beyond.  View the entire current ratings picture courtesy of SON here.

Numbers are based on Live+Same Day ratings

(Compared to Last Week/Compared to Last Year)

Total Viewers
1. Y&R 4,760,000 (+91,000/-17,000)
2. B&B 3,758,000 (+40,000/+190,000)
3. GH 2,588,000 (+64,000/-47,000)
4. DAYS 2,158,000 (+9,000/-157,000)

So, which soap opera do you think aired the best episodes during the ratings period? Which show is performing worse or better in the ratings than you expected? Which show is piquing your interest right now each week?  Which, is not? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

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Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Ratings will always go up and down but as long as they dont stay down and keep going down there shouldnt be much to worry unless we get a frons type in charge of things…

Soaphound
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Soaphound

Yes, jimh, you’re right. I’ve never cared much about ratings, that is until they use them to cancel shows I like (AS THE WORLD TURNS, NASHVILLE, MURDER ONE, RED BAND SOCIETY). Hopefully our treasured shows will carry on for many years to come!

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

i miss ATWTs…

davlestev1
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davlestev1

Days already had one…Ted “and I am tellin’ you I’m not goin” Corday

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

I really think he could care less if the show was cancelled…someone else needs to takeover…if the show doesnt improve and looses ratings causing cancelation i will not watch anything connected to him.

Celia
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Celia

Yes, Jimmy……I can see Sam with Morticia’s ensemble…..Especially with her hair down.

su0000
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su0000

Seems the ”Nielsen Families” tuned into the soaps and were counted last week..
It would be kewl if when we watch we were counted, but we are not ..
I wonder how many viewers there ”actually” are, we are just an estimate of the Nielsen people/watchers…LOL
heh if I watch or not it makes no difference because I am not counted, I’m just an estimate 🙁

Y&R is really good! it has actual stories/plots ((GH does not it just has boring junk ahaa))

Long live our soaps!!!

Mark
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Mark

Y&R is getting good now, next week Jack finds out that Phyllis and Billy boy are sleeping together. GH is really boring right now, but it will get better in time. Days better get their ratings up, or kiss goodbye too Days next year. Alison Sweeney needs to come back to Days, I miss her so much.

Celia
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Celia

Yes…and it should not be such a big surprise for Jack! He’s already been through this ” my wife cheated on me with my brother” thing.
Jack lost his pants….doesn’t look too good with his wife’s skirt on. And, Billy needs to be run through.
I’m with you, Mark. I wish Alison would come back with Will and EJ.
As I said on another thread, the trio is together, somewhere in Switzerland. Well, it could happen that way.

Mark
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Mark

Celia you might be right, you should be a writer for Days. The show needs a good writer right now. I hope Days gets better, and stays on the air. Lol to funny Jack sure lost his pants all right. He is a wimp and better get his act together. Alison Sweeney is a wonderful actress, I hope she comes back to Days, I know it was her decision to leave but she is missed.

jaybird369
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jaybird369

Celia, my dear…as far as I’m concerned, those Y&R PINHEADS have WATERED DOWN both Jack and Billy…and to the point of DROWNING THEM BOTH!!!!! BEYOND BLAH!!!!!

Later, my friend.

Celia
Guest
Celia

@jaybird.
Hey, Jay,
You know, I am so used to Jack blowing in the wind, as it were, that I can pretty much tolerate him…..regardless his stupidity….as I said he lost his pants ( could say he lost something else….but, ….LOL).
Billy? From day one, Jason T did not jive with me. Later.

soapqueenforever
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soapqueenforever

Things are starting to get interesting now. What I don’t understand is how a man as smart as Jack hasn’t seen the writing on the wall before now. He has walked in Billy’s house a couple of time at least, and they were the only two there. One time Phyllis was nly wearing Billy’s shirt. If that wasn’t a clue, I don’t know what he is waiting for. I really hoping the Sully situation comes out soon. That will really affect alot of people. Especially if it comes to light that Adam and not Nick is the father, which Chelsea… Read more »

Celia
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Celia

Agreed, Mark. DOOL is in BIG need of damage control. I will probably be ‘kicked in the arse’ by Hope fans, but, am I the only one who feels Hope and Rafe do not stir any emotion as lovers? Rafe has lost his ‘cool’ factor….reminds me of Jack Abbott. What’s up with these guys? Or, should I say LITTLE WOMEN?? I could never be with a guy who fawned all over me the way these guys do. Respect is a must; showing affection is a plus, but, this is ridiculous. I loved him with Sami. I actually looked forward to… Read more »

Harry
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Harry

The writing on Y&R has indeed gotten a lot better. Celia, I could not agree with you more about Jack. If I have to watch him grovel one more time at Phyllis’s feet apologizing for having the audacity to breath while in her presence, I am going to kick my air filter. And what gives with Billy? Billy has always been a deeply flawed character with a big heart. He suddenly seems so cold. He doesn’t seem to care that he is betraying his brother and he doesn’t seem to give a damn about his mother. The only person he… Read more »

Mark
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Mark

Lol Celia venting is good for the soul. Good to let it out. Agree Rafe and Hope bore me to death. Love Rafe, but he belongs with Kate Roberts. They had terrific chemistry. I hope the new Abby can act, she debuts in November. Poor Maggie please let her walk again. Probably will walk again by Christmas, you know how Days drags there storylines.

Celia
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Celia

@Harry. Great way of describing Billy, Harry. Jason is not working, as Billy. Not even the original Billy ( David Tom) could play Billy as Billy M. It is what it is. Naughty Billy, as portrayed by BM was realistic…..we forgave him. I don’t know why, but I did; as I think many did, too. The present Billy obfuscates the character…..too nebulous, without definition. His composure, his looks, his gestures, his comportment speak of nothing. There is no ‘bad boy’ characteristic ( so effortlessly displayed by BM) that Jason’s Billy offers that draws me in. But, I do know the… Read more »

Rebecca1
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Rebecca1

Harry…I really doubt that ANY actotr on any show, or film, has the liberty to interpret a character the way he/she wants to the extent that they play them angrier, colder, sillier, more emotional, etc than the writer (s) intended. Jason can’t just play Billy cold to distant himself from Patrick, but can take a role that’s different to show his versatility. I think whenever these characters seem “out of character” it’s because they’re just written differently. Of course each actor has his/ her own style but can’t deviate too much from who the character is written to be….

jaybird369
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jaybird369

Celia…as always, you are SO RIGHT ON!!!!! I am so damn tired of watching poor Maggie being stuck in that wheelchair!!!!! To me, it’s like ‘GET OUT OF THAT WHEELCHAIR AND WALK ALREADY’!!!!! BEYOND DUMB!!!!!

Later, friend.

Celia
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Celia

@jaybird369.
Hey, jay,
Right? Poor Maggie wasting away in that wheelchair. It seems, though, that she’s on her way to using her legs again. She stood up today.
Later, jayjay.

Celia
Guest
Celia

absolutely, Mark. If not Sami, the Kate. I have always loved Kate. This is one time where I don’t even think of Kate as being in her sixties. She is that hot and sexy. Kate has chemistry with any man….that’s something that is innate. It’s unfortunate why TPTB can’t keep this powerhouse grounded. They have a gem, but do not give her the credit she deserves. I am soooo waiting for Abby. As yourself, I hope her acting isn’t as languid as the fare we’ve been getting lately with the younger group. Abby and Chad must mesh, in all ways….physically,… Read more »

Dave
Guest
Dave

I’m very worried about the future of DOOL. GH, YR & BB consistently hold steady or show improvements. DOOL has had a writing revolving door for several years now and can’t seem to find worthy or fresh stories to tell. I hope this is not the swan song for this daytime legend!!! I will stay with it for as long as it takes to bring up those ratings. Come on Days of our Lives. We need you!!!!!

Ted Martin
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Ted Martin

Geez I was thinking the same thing – for a while there, DAYS OF OUR LIVES was really interesting and innovative, between Will and Sonny having problems and of course EJ and Sami going at it – but now, to be honest, I force myself to watch it, if Belle leaves for Japan and takes what’s his name with her, I will be happy to say Sayonara – and take Claire too so we don’t have to listen to her whiney vocalizing which I could happily live without. I watch the show at night on the NBC app and unfortunately… Read more »

Timmm
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Timmm

Yeah, I always think, if the ratings go up, chances are we get to keep our shows! Y&R had a big week with their anniversary and Adams “Death.” I hear next week Billy’s secret affair is out for everyone to know and Sharon is exposed! Sounds like another ratings win next week for Y&R! GH: Jason and Sam’s wedding was a snooze fest! Franco is EVERYWHERE! Give us a break! So, Lulu cannot even raise ONE child and she wants to hunt down Starvos’s Popsicle! I was thinking while Robert drank a coffee at Perks, why would he spend two… Read more »

Celia
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Celia

Oh, my Timmmy. You are too funny….but, soooo on the mark!! I missed talking to you. Spent the day in the city (Freedom Tower)……our yearly excursion to honor those poor souls who lost their lives this day, 15 years ago. ….sad, sad, sad!!!!! Rest in peace!! What I will say next will completely negate my above solemn words, I know…but, here it goes, Timmmy….. I hope Jack kills Billy, (LOL) when he catches the cheaters. Best way of getting Billy off the show. Sooo not liking him…. Sorry, Jason T. This is not your role….not doing Billy Abbott justice. In… Read more »

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Im surprised Sam wasn’t married in Morticia’s Addams black dress…or su’s-lol

Timmm
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Timmm

I miss talking to you, as well my little online sister! Freedom Tower, have to go there, for sure. I saw a special on Flight 93 and even FIFTEEN years later they interviewed one of the fireman who responded to that tragedy and STILL was brought to tears recounting that dreadful day! Yes, switching gears to soaps, Jack NEEDS to show his manhood, so to speak and disown Billy. UNFORGETTABLE, hands down! Billy would be dead to me if he were my brother! Sam looked old to me. She looked tired. I do agree on black. NEVER a bad choice… Read more »

GH1980
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GH1980

Timmm, I always enjoy reading your take on things. I personally didn’t mind Jason and Sam’s wedding, however. I thought it was refreshing to see a wedding that was just a wedding for a change, two people got married, and that was it. No one got shot, stabbed, kidnapped, held hostage, no one’s ex-husband or ex-wife came back from the dead to interrupt the wedding, no one got left at the altar, no one got into a fight, no evil twins returned, no one got arrested, no one died. Did I hit enough soap opera wedding cliches, lol?

Timmm
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Timmm

Thanks GH1980. Yeah, you are right, there are not many weddings, especially on GH where it doesnt end in gun fire! I love your cliches, all spot on!

Patrick
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Patrick

@GH respectfully.. must the reason thee wedding was without resonance… as I’ve always posted… everything about the Corinthos’ pie… entourage… with the kingpin… is dullard I thought it was that much blah… because of ALL the cheers going on.. between Sam / Jason / Carly / Sonny / Spinelli… who does not add much any more on the comedic The Corinthos’ bunch of malaise Sonny / Carly / Jason / Sam / Michael / Spinelli / Alexis / Molly / Kristina and those adorable brats Jake and Daniel… okey dokey argh ! right ? since Sonny and Carly shout from… Read more »

Celia
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Celia

He, Timmmy, Awwww, thank you. I like the idea of being your online sister. I do not know where you live, but, yes, everyone, given the opportunity should visit FREEDOM TOWER. You become one with the ‘lost’ and their spirit. I felt it!!!! Just as I said months ago, that everyone should visit a childre’s hospital in whatever State, he/she may reside. When confronted with these sick, helpless chilfren, one reslizes just how short and fragile life is….in the grand scheme of things? Stupid ‘fistifights’ mesn nothing. I was a teen at the time….at boarding school in Connecticut. Let me… Read more »

Timmm
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Timmm

Cee Cee, I visited a childrens hospital when I was a youth with the church. I NEVER forgot the sadness and desperation in some of those patients eyes. We are all so lucky. My god how horrific it had to be to be out of touch with your parents on 911. Glad they survived. I watched a special on Sunday where it was reported that Cantor Fitzgerald lost 658 of its 960 New York employees in the World Trade Center attacks. Its unfathomable and sad! Soaps: Jason needs to be with someone totally new and exciting. I like Sam BUT… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

Hello, Timmmy, Witnessing children who suffer from illness, hunger, abuse etc. and the tragedy of terrorism, war, guns, etc break my heart. I felt humbled seeing the completed Freedom Tower. I still ask why.???? Why the massacre of human life?? Then again, what do I know!!!!! I am one of the deplorables; categorized and haphazardly placed into a basket in the company of more deplorables. I love everyone. I love my family. I love my neighbors, and yours, Timmmy. I love my fellow women/men. We are one. I believe in God. I believe in the truth. I cherish life and… Read more »

Timmm
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Timmm

Liz is no angel. On another site, IF you even think about criticizing her for ANYTHING, your ass is theirs! Why wouldnt she hold onto those diamonds until Nick resurfaces? I guess because she thinks he is dead? Its silly. I was never a big Liz fan. Carly gets a lot of heat but sweet little Lizzy isnt so sweet! She did look awesome in a hospital bed for falling down the stairs. By love!

Shay
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Shay

Dearest CeeCee….You have the most beautiful knack for putting things in the proper perspective….I thought of you on 9/11 and wondered if I happened to see you without knowing it whilst watching the memorial services at the former Ground Zero….but I digress. I’ve not been watching GH on a regular basis in an age….too busy and not at all motivated due to the utter mess it has become—save for an occasional peek with certain characters—but I always check in here to read what my favorites like Timmmm, Harry, jimh, k/kay, etc. and, of course, you, have to say, and none… Read more »

Celia
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Celia

@Shay. Oh, my sweet, sweet, Shaybelle, It is so good to hear from you. I did not know what to think? I assumed you went on a ‘world excursion’. LOL. We did not go abroad ( except for Canada) this year. I don’t want to put my kids at risk, albeit terror does exist in our own backyards. We did catch a couple of weeks on the Vineyard…..I do not like going when the White House is there. This is a close kept secret, LOL….. Rarely does one find a Vineyarder whose ‘welcoming’. The place becomes a madhouse. My mother… Read more »

Shay
Guest
Shay

Hey there, CeeCeeGirl!!!! Thanks for missing me….I’ve missed you, too! It was just a very weird summer…much too hot and humid for me, so I crawled into my AC-cooled cocoon and didn’t emerge much. I think I’m genetically-incapable of handling those weather conditions….my people came from the cooler climes of Europe…LOL. Anyway, the approach of fall always invigorates and excites me….both in terms of life and programming. I am feeling somewhat more hopeful about GH now….a real housecleaning has been in order for an age, and finally it is happening. More please! I did notice today that Alexis was a… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

@Shay. Hey, Shay, I have been so out of touch, except for my soaps, LOL., with shows this summer….as most summers. I think Archie has popped in and out of Primetime shows, here and there. BLINDSPOT is one of them. Other than that, I don’t know. I am looking forward to POLDARK2, though. LOL. I always manage to watch my soaps…..and, I am still reeling by Sabrina’s death. I know this is what you were waiting for ….lon-time-awaiting…LOL. But, I will miss her. I do not want Alexis to go off the deep end. She’s suffered enough from her stupid… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

@Shay. Oh, Shay, Lest you, or others get the wrong impression….I was merely being sarcastic about being enlightened by Robert Byrd. His comments are lurid, brutal, bigoted and offensive. Sometimes, we do not know what goes on behind closed doors with these politicians until someone runs for the highest office. If we are to vilify one candidate, we must open the can of worms of the other. Keep it at an even keel. The same could be said about our beloved soaps….politics!!!! Why do characters get killed off while others remain? It’s one thing if one leaves by his/her own… Read more »

kevin
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kevin

I don’t think Day’s will make…to far gone and I don’t see it getting back to where it use to be.

davlestev1
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davlestev1

Not too far gone for one last shot with good writers..When you tell people there’s ANOTHER baby story on the horizon someone higher up than Corday needs to realize HE’S the problem..sadly the show MOST likely is in it’s last and final reset/reboot and year.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

NBC will be the first network in decades to ruin a soapless afternoon..it will be interesting to see how they handle it..our not.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

Run not ruin

PF
Guest
PF

GH hardly has anything to crow about. It’s absolutely awful right now under the sloppy, lazy and insipid writing of Jelly. Then there’s the oblivious Mr. Valentini, who I’ve lost so much respect for over the past year or so. If anyone is watching this mess, it’s only out of habit and/or morbid curiosity.

GH1980
Guest
GH1980

Or maybe people are watching GH because not everyone has the same opinion as you, and they actually enjoy the show.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

Amen GH1980! We watch GH because WE are fans! Yes, the writing is getting really bad AND there are too many characters BUT Anna will be back soon and I hear Paul will be wiping the show soon of one of its least favorite characters!

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

Yes we’re watching and the writing is NOT bad. If it was…wouldn’t be watching.

Penny
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Penny

I love your description of Jelly’s writing!

cooks7570
Guest
cooks7570

I agree with you about how awful GH is right now. Not one storyline or couple I care about tight now. Shouldn’t storylines connect also.

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

I’m not watching GH for any reason other than I’m enjoying it. Kudos GH!

Rj
Guest
Rj

I watched a bit more of Days this week, but mostly on Xfinity after the show was aired. There are commercials on that, so it must generate revenue – does that count at keeping Days on the air? Any way, I digress, I watched to see if there were any improvements. Some of it was not too bad, I just notice that I like the parts that are not so dark, gloomy, etc. – I like the more upbeat positive aspects. Example, Sonny (whom I love and glad is back) had a nice conversation with Chad trying to uplift him.… Read more »

Stephen
Guest
Stephen

DAYS is DOWN in households, share, and all reported demos from last week and last year. They are down in total from all previous years. A very small increase from LAST WEEK puts them just 4,000 above the LOWEST-EVER total of Tomsell’s era (Aug 2012 to Aug 2015). Days has been down in unprecedented dumps since May! (And the catastrophic fall-off began in February!). This year so far has brought Days three record-breaking new lows in totals (in the space of seven weeks). Days has had four record-breaking lows in Women 18-49, at least two record-breaking lows in Women 18-34,… Read more »

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

DAYS of OUR Lives is officially an all new show….

Dena Higley and Ryan Quan… writing team… effective September 6, 2016

ALL I can say…

Thank the soap Gods… Billy Flynn is still “thee” show

it’s a blast just to see Laura Horton… LOL smile warmth cherish laud .. she’s divine

I finally got to see Adrienne and Steve together !

Sonny is so welcomed back

I missed Daniel Cosgrove

here comes Anna DiMera

I hope Kim and Shane Donovan are back forever

Andre DiMera is a hoot

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

PS: major coop just to see Kassie DePaiva ( for Theresa wedding) … for this short return… and WILL BE WAITING Patiently for this Ladys BLAST

YES

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

“watching” wink wink… Sonny and Chad as bff… oh it’s so smoky sultry tantalizing

and they’re still bff. what dream

I’ve decided I like Claire… as her parents move to Hong Kong… our little starlet , whos in love, with Theo… moves in with grandma.

i’m actually looking forward to the three convicts…. take me Xander

Celia
Guest
Celia

Patrick….you naughty boy, you!! LOL.
Can’t say I blame you.
But, seriously? How convenient is the jail-break? So, Theresa will be swept away, not to be heard of again?
Yes, seeing Kassie was a gift.

Jane
Guest
Jane

Can’t let TMZ beat GH in rating now that they are both on at three PM.
I am happy the soaps are hanging tuff.

Rhonda
Guest
Rhonda

Why does it seem likes the episode is getting shorter and shorter what happened to 25 min

Rhonda
Guest
Rhonda

Addicted to BandB wish it was longer

Jessi
Guest
Jessi

I DVR #YR daily…Are DVR recordings included in the ratings? That’s how many of my working friends watch too.. If not I guess ill turn my tele on and leave it lol

Celia
Guest
Celia

That’s not how it works, Jessi. I believe a box is installed in selected homes which records what shows are being watched. The box is then retrieved….and, that’s how they arrive at the numbers’.

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Alison Sweeney on Working with Bryan Dattilo: “28 Years Later, Some Things Never Change. Still Laughing Between Takes and Grateful to Have Such a Talented Supportive Co-Star”

This week, Days of our Lives viewers have witnessed that Sami Brady DiMera (Alison Sweeney) and Lucas Horton (Bryan Dattilo) hit the sheets, and Lumi fans everywhere rejoiced!

On and off, for almost three decades. Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo have played the relationship between these two exes who share children together to the hilt, because Sami and Lucas’ history is well … complicated.

But, what will happen if and when EJ finds out that Sami had sex with her ex? Stay tuned.

In the meantime, Alison took to her Instagram and shared her thoughts alongside photos of her and Bryan, then and now.

Over the years, Bryan had remained one of Alison’s good friends.

Sweeney expressed: “I have always had such fun working with @bryan.dattilo !! 28 years later, some things never change. Still laughing between takes and grateful to have such a talented, supportive costar. Thanks @nbc for this great archive photo! And so grateful to @nbcdays for the incredible opportunity to play Sami.”

What did you think of the scenes where Sami and Lucas slept together and its aftermath thus far? Comment below.

 

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A post shared by Ali Sweeney (@alisweeney)

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Days Of Our Lives

Kevin Spirtas Talks ‘After Forever’s’ Digital Special ‘Riley’s Unforgettable School Project’, The Loss of Michael Slade, and a Chance to Reprise DAYS Craig Wesley

The coronavirus pandemic has put to the test many content creators on just how they would keep their projects moving forward in ways they never dreamed of. However, out of that situation has come some of the most compelling, unique series, specials, and features currently streaming for viewers. One of which is Riley’s Unforgettable School Project, brought to you by the team from the six-time Daytime Emmy Award-winning series, After Forever.

Former Days of our Lives star, Kevin Spirtas (Ex-Craig Wesley) has starred in and created the first two seasons of what has become the most honored Emmy-awarded LGBTQ-themed drama series on any platform.  Along with his ‘After Forever’ writing/producing partner, the late Michael Slade (DAYS, OLTL, Passions, Another World), the two also conceptualized and delivered this latest documentary-style offering now on Amazon Prime Video.

What makes Riley’s Unforgettable School Project so noteworthy is not just how they were able to execute the series based on fictional 11-year-old Riley’s virtual school project and utilize its cast, which includes: Spirtas, Cady Huffman, Jamison Stern, Lenny Wolpe, Erin Cherry, Anita Gillette, Christopher J. Hanke, and Finn Douglas, but that it was made while Slade was succumbing to his battle with cancer, and that this special marks the final script from this talented writer.

 

Michael Fairman TV spoke with Spirtas about making the special during Covid-19, how the death of Michael Slade has made a lasting impact on his life, what After Forever has personally meant to him, and how an official third season is still in the works, and … if he would consider a return to Salem and Days of our Lives, should they come a-calling.  Here’s what Kevin had to say about it all.

Photo: AfterForever

I think the entire story of this digital special has become even more meaningful with Michael Slade’s passing. What was the genesis of the concept? You wanted to continue the telling of the story of After Forever … but we are all in the middle of a pandemic?

KEVIN:  Yes and… when we filmed season 2, we had the scripts for season 3 already completed. It was our hope and desire to film them at the same time, back-to-back, so that we would have had all of our cast and crew together, and we could have gotten through it because we’ve always imagined this story being told in a trilogy so to speak – a beginning, middle, and end to Brian (Spirtas) and Jason, (Mitchell Anderson) and Brian’s healing or his steps towards healing through grief.  Schedules turned out that they couldn’t really work out for us to hold all the people and hold all of the sets for that amount of time.  So, we thought, “We’ve got the scripts for season 3 ready.  We’ll come back to it in the following year,” and that was always the intention, and then the pandemic hit.  So, it was shut down immediately that we weren’t going to do anything, but we wanted to stay current, and instead of going back in and telling the third installment of After Forever as a Covid-19 story as well, Michael and I sat down and looked at a way of staying relevant and current with a story within COVID, and there was born the idea to do this documentary style story/special about the characters of After Forever told through the lens of the character of Riley, the 11-year-old boy, who is now being homeschooled during the pandemic. He gets an assignment to do a project about the most unforgettable person he has ever met, and he, of course, chooses his best friend, the late Jason Adams, and he enlists all of Jason’s friends and family to join in.  Michael actually said, “What if we tell a story about Riley being homeschooled?” And, not only is Riley a technical genius at 11-years-old in the story, but Finn Douglas, who plays Riley, is a technical genius.

And didn’t Finn perform and write the song “Forever There” contained within the special?

KEVIN. Yes. He is this incredible musician.  Michael thought, “What would it be like if we asked to have the character of Finn sing a song for Jason?”  I said, “Well, what kind of song would we have him sing?”  Finn could play anything, I’m sure, because he’s self-taught, he plays by ear – guitar, piano, and drums.  Michael said, “What if we ask him to see if he could write a song?” and when we heard this song, we all called each other and we all got on Zoom and went, “Can you believe this song?  Can you believe this came out of this 11-year-old?”  It’s pretty incredible.  Michael did a gorgeous job of weaving the stories in and out and how they just sort of dove-tailed into each other, and then it was framed by Riley opening the project and ending the project.  During the Zoom reading we wanted to hear the song out loud.  We said to Finn, “Would you want to sing the song?”  We all just watched everybody on that Zoom call just fall apart.  It was just so beautiful. He’s an amazing talent.

Where is your character within this?

KEVIN:  I still stand in the center of the story of Jason because my character, Brian, was married to Jason, and it sort of connects us all, and through Riley’s understanding of how we all connect to Jason, is how we are all sort of spread out throughout the story.  Michael jokingly said, “You know, you’re not going to be the star of this special,” and I said, “I don’t think it’s about being the star.  It’s really about the storytelling.”  The beauty of Riley’s Unforgettable School Project is that we get to see moments of each person’s relationship with Jason, which Riley sets out to say, “Answer these three questions: What did you like most about Jason?  What did you like least about Jason? And what’s your favorite memory?”  Those three things, cut back and forth is where we all kind of fit in.  Nobody has more of a story than the next person, and it’s all telling honest portrayals of how they’re dealing with their loss of their good friend, or their child, or partner.

It’s a very inventive idea during Covid-19 to continue it in a way where you weren’t having to go shoot a full season of episodes.

KEVIN:  Well, we couldn’t. I have to say, Allison Vanore, who not only produced this special, but she also stepped up saying, “I’d love to direct this,” and I said, “Yes, please!”  She knows the characters.  She understands the story because she’s been a part of it for the last two seasons.  Allison also has this extraordinary amount of knowledge and expertise with the camera and what was needed for a remote shoot, and to also be able to organize filming 13 people in 2 different countries and 5 different cities… that’s just the technical side of it, but having that in our back pocket, knowing that it was a remote shoot, we had to send the camera, the computer, the ring light, and the microphone to each person’s house.  We had to location scout over Zoom.  We had to do wardrobe over Zoom.  It was all this big puzzle putting it together, and once you look at that board of storytelling and how we were going to do it, it kind of fell into place.  I feel blessed that a) we still had Michael with us, at that point, and b) Allison had the know-how to do this.  We all feel that at least this pandemic didn’t keep us from doing what we love.

Photo: AfterForever

In terms of the contribution of Michael Slade in this special, was it the construction of the story, and how was he able to work and write this during his illness?

KEVIN:  Michael’s contribution to the special was no less than the contribution to season 1 and season 2, and the future of season 3, because the scripts are written.  We did everything on Zoom, and we worked around his schedule of treatment.  We scheduled 2 people per day, and we spread them out over two weeks.  He was very present, and when there would be a day where he would say, “I’m going to be an hour late, let’s just push that call time,” I would ask, “Is this too much right now?  We can shelve it; we can stop it.” He’d then say, “Absolutely not, otherwise cancer will win.”  He was determined to stay focused and to stay active because it took his mind off of what was happening to him.

Photo: AfterForever

It would be lovely moment if you both were to win a Daytime Emmy for this project. 

KEVIN:  It’s our last collaboration together as a team, as I said, season 3 has been scripted, and it is on the calendar to get made.  We are just waiting for the COVID restrictions to lift a little bit and everyone to get vaccinated.  Michael was really hit hard with cancer – to stay healthy was so challenging for him.  Sadly, he didn’t make it to see the final edit of the special, and he died four days before we launched, but he had seen the cuts before that and was very approving of it, and had made some decisions, and offered some suggestions, and if God gives him an Emmy for this, it’s not because he died.  It’s because it’s great work.  It just happens to be that the work that was involved in this particular special was very tricky.  It brought up everything, like life itself to have to deal with.  Here we are dealing with the loss of a colleague, the loss of a friend, someone’s brother, someone’s son, this is life imitating art, imitating art imitating life. I can’t tell you the darkness that I went through just experiencing the need to stay focused on getting everything edited, and everything ready, and everything aligned for a release of this project that we had put into motion.  On top of it, our editor lost his mother just before Michael passed, and Allison’s mom was sick at the time, as well.  It took a lot of heavy deep breaths with Michael’s death, and the pandemic, and the loss has, for me, on a personal level, sent me back to really questioning my spiritual muscle and to help remind me that we have to come out of this better than we went into this.  I had many dark nights of the soul this last year, and December was probably the darkest.  I feel like I’m just kind of coming out of it now with the spring revealing itself.

Photo: AfterForever

It must have been extraordinarily difficult for you to also go to New York during a pandemic and also knowing Michael did not have much time left.

KEVIN:  I will say this: I am grateful that I was able to stay in touch with my heart and my instinct and go out to New York to let that be my remote location.  Yes, maybe there was some risk involved.  I wore my mask; I was Covid-19 negative, and I was determined to be fine.  Once I got to New York, I would visit him very protectively with our masks and our gloves, and I’d sit across the room, and then I’d go back to the house I was at.  It was a gift that I was able to see him at that time.  We had some good talks then about how he was feeling, and I think he was still being optimistic, and then once we got the project in the can there was maybe this psychic letting go. That’s when everything really started to reveal itself as this could be the end.  I did go back to see him when he was in hospice.  I think I was there the last two days that he really was able to really stay coherent.  He would close his eyes and be at peace and quiet for a minute, and he would finish a conversation and sort of close his eyes, not to sleep and not to go away, but I remember watching him going, “Look how peaceful he is,” and then he’d open his eyes and he’d remember that he is in this body that has been given a time limit of life, and he’s on his way out.  I’d watch the fear go back in his eyes.  At one point, he did say, “I’m so scared,” and I just held his hand, and I said, “I’m scared too.  Let’s be scared through this together.”  I don’t know how to navigate grief like that.  We are all going to be in a position at some point where we are going to be on the other side of the hand holding.  The wonderful thing is that we were able to have honest communication about our feelings.  I thanked him for everything that he has done for me and how he believed in my talent and creativity and our partnership.  I will always take that with me.  I waved my finger at him, and I said, “Listen.  Now, we wrote a series about a man talking to his deceased husband.  You’d better talk to me!”  So, we laughed about that.

Photo: AfterForever

You’ve done a lot of things in your career from Broadway to television, and of course, daytime fans know you best as Dr. Craig Wesley on DAYS.  How does the entire After Forever project stack up to you within all that you have done?

KEVIN:  Former DAYS casting director Fran Bascom, sought me out and offered me this 2-day role on Days of Our Lives, and those 2 days turned into 8 years, and unbeknownst to me at the time, the final 3 months of that contract of those 8 years, Michael Slade was brought in to write.  We didn’t cross paths at that point, but years later, when we did cross paths in New York, and then After Forever was born, that was that universal crossing point.  I am most proud of the fact that we were able create something fresh, and real, and personal to ourselves that we didn’t have to cater to any “powers that be” that had their vision and their tinkering, that they thought that it could be better in this way or that way.  Then for After Forever to gain such recognition, within the film festivals, and the Emmys, and then, just after Michael died, we won the GLAAD award for Special Recognition this year.  We don’t even fit into one of their categories!  They found a way to acknowledge this project.  If another Emmy happens again, that might be another one to put up on the shelf for After Forever that would be beautiful, and I couldn’t have done it without Michael.

For the Daytime Emmys this year, what category have you entered Riley’s Unforgettable School Project?

KEVIN:  We are not a series this year, we are a daytime fiction special, and the “Daytime Fiction Special” category is a special class.  It’s anything that’s digital in the construct of less than 40 minutes.  NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is being bombarded with so much content, they’re trying to find ways to put categories together.

Photo: JPI

So, now, when we last saw Days of Lives’ Dr. Craig Wesley, where was he? (Laughs)

KEVIN: (Laughs) He was in a flash from the past or something in the DOOL app’s Last Blast Reunion series. I had a fun time working with Patrika Darbo (Nancy) and Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe), once again.

So, if they were to want Craig to come back to DAYS, would you be all for it?

KEVIN:  Hell yes!

Photo: JPI

Now, what story would you want to be told involving Craig? 

KEVIN:  When Craig was first on the canvas in Salem, there was a lot of mustache twirling and a lot of hand wringing.  He was always plotting; most of the time with Nancy.  It was kind of this high drama, evil villain storyline being told, but when the writers created an opportunity for us to be on after those first three months by bringing on Chloe without a father, there was something real about it.  It may have been told under the construct of soap opera storytelling, but there was a reality-based story about, “You have a daughter, and we are just now finding out about it?”  Then, finding a cure to her health was another realistic story, and finding out that Craig was her real father.  Anything that’s reality based is what I’m getting to.  I would welcome any job that brings me back and gives me an opportunity to dive into something real.

Photo: JPI

Would you welcome the opportunity to play a gay character on daytime; in a medium where there are very few represented in storylines?

KEVIN:  I’d have no problem with that.  Do you know anybody who is starting that?  Let’s do it!  (Laughs) First of all, there’s nothing to hide anymore.  There’s nothing to pretend you’re not anymore.  I would think that bringing in a storyline that deals with anything outside the norm that we are used to seeing would be interesting.  How many times can you retell a story?  How many times can you set the same story up with another couple?  So, why not be diverse and have a stylized story being told through the lens of a gay person.

Photo: AfterForever

In closing, so many go through life without acknowledging people who had an impact them.  We don’t give pats on the back, often enough, and especially in Hollywood, where people can be very self-involved.  You have already paid tribute to Michael Slade in our discussion, but what gift from him is your personal takeaway?

KEVIN:  The gift that Michael really gave to me is to remember to be kind to myself and to others, and to acknowledge and salute the person who is in front of us, because we don’t know when we will have, or if we will have, another moment to do that.

Now below, check out the trailer for Riley’s Unforgettable School Project.  Then let us know, what do you think of its concept? Kevin’s thoughts on the passing of his collaborator on the project, Michael Slade? And, do you hope DAYS brings back Dr. Craig Wesley? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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Breaking News

REPORT: Dan Feuerriegel is DAYS New EJ DiMera

Could Days of our Lives finally found their new EJ? Rumors have been circulating on the internet for weeks that the character of EJ DiMera may finally have a new face and a new actor portraying and heading back to Salem, especially since Sami (Alison Sweeney) is back on the canvas.

The role was previously played by longtime fan favorite James Scott, who had made it very clear he would never return to Days of our Lives.

Photo: DFeuerriegelIG

Now according to Daytime Confidential and their report from setside sources, the new EJ will actually be played by former Spartacus actor Dan Feuerriegel.

The Australian-born actor has been seen in Starz’ Spartacus franchise in the role of Agron.

According to the report, look for the new EJ to make his debut sometime this summer.

DAYS fans know that in story, EJ was brought back form the dead, from the serum from Dr. Rolf, but then was injured in an explosion and had reunited with Sami and had been recovery in Europe.

So, if this reports turns out to be true, what do you think of the new EJ? Comment below.

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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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