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Soap Opera Digest Names: GH – Best Show, Y&R Most Disappointing Show, OLTL – Best Good-Bye!

Courtesy/ABC

We are now at that time in the calendar year when all of the major entertainment publications begins to roll-out their Best & Worst Of 2012, something we always look forward to and to see who got top honors!

In soapland, it is Soap Opera Digest that for decades has honored the achievements or lack of achievements in the soap genre for the year.  And while, On-Air On-Soaps does not release it’s official Best and Worst List till the final week of December leading into New Year’s Eve, here were Soap Opera Digest picks in a few of the major categories! (To see them all, run don’t walk to your newsstands and pick up the latest issue on sale now!)

SOD names General Hospital as the Best Show Of 2012 citing, “GH consistently charmed churned out episodes rich with humor, heart, surprise after surprise, that checked off items on viewers wish list one by one!”

On the flip side SOD named The Young and the Restless, Most Disappointing Show of 2012 commenting,  “Stories predicated on the trouble-making of an unhinged psycho are tried-and-true soap fare, but you’d think Y&R would have learned a lesson from 2011. We got more Patty (in a cartoonish reprisal), Daisy screeching that she just wanted to be loved and Ricky suddenly unspooling into a homicidal maniac, with his own dad, Paul, being charged with his death!”

One Life to Live was given the honor of Best Goodbye for it’s send0ff, with SOD reminding us all, “The build to the final of episodes was enriched by fan-fave returns as OLTL’s writer delicately interwove heartfelt themes of love and family incorporating the entire cast, punctuated by reunions, new beginnings, satisfying resolutions and a stunning surprise. As much as we hated to say farewell, it was a hankie-worthy joy to see it go out on top.”

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Ok soapers, do you agree with SOD’s picks for Best Show, Most Disappointing Show, Best Good-Bye?  Let us know your thoughts!

 

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Dinah
Dinah

I so disagree about GH being the best Show

Evan
Evan

Really? Surprise after surprise? The use of the older characters and past history to make great story lines for today? The use of EVERYBODY in the cast, not just Sonny, Carly, Sam, etc.? The fact that everybody has a story going on right now and its all very diverse? The fact that the story lines aren’t dragging and are more fast-paced and suspenseful?

Rodd
Rodd

I totally agree with you Evan.

susan M.
susan M.

I agree with Evan also!!!!! I agree the story lines aren’t dragging .. Like years ago you could tune in months later & you didn’t miss much.. GH ie definetely
keeping my attention Mon.-Fri. Can’t wait to see what happens next….

The_HugoBoss
The_HugoBoss

2nd that! I said the same thing a week ago!

Jules
Jules

Well I agree with you Dinah. It draws me in less today than when Guza was in charge….and that’s saying A LOT.

A. LOT.

dg
dg

GH is the most improved but def not the best show. Despite its derailment this year I still say YR is the best show. They have the most consistent , well drawn characters and usually the stories have much more substance.
Cartini have turned GH into a sensational cartoon, much like they did OLTL. Their silly stories get ratings, but for those of us who want substance there is always Y&R.

susan M.
susan M.

Well I enjoy GH each day and have no complaints about the story line. And I also liked OLTL a lot & still miss it. Again I can’t wait to watch GH each day….I find it interesting and suspenseful…I have alway’s watched this soap & I will stay with GH..

The_HugoBoss
The_HugoBoss

Substance? Like Nick choosing Phyllis? Then Sharon? Then Phyllis again? Then Sharon again? Then back to Phyllis? Then his dad marrying Sharon. After his brother dated her. Ummm….should we mention Angeline? lol.
Granted, I do watch Y&R, and like some of the stories that don’t drag out for two years, but saying GH has no substance when you have stories a out surrogatcy, and events to raise awareness for AIDS research, family dealing with the death of the father/grandfather/gg……saying that there’s NO substance may be pushing it a bit. lol.

Phil
Phil

Y&R is by far the most overrated soap on TV…GH deserves top nods. I say that there is much substance in both shows, but GH executes it with far more emotion and ease!

Ronphy
Ronphy

Hi Michael for me YR miss some
Passion and some happyness they have the most incredible couple with Ronan and Phyllis and they brake it Phonan have so much chemistry we feel the connection look real yes its desapointed and hope they give us romance

Ryan
Ryan

I would agree with most, except, I would name Days as the worst. While it has one good storyline, the show overall, is incredibly week. Y&R has not yet got moving again at full speed but they have made huge changes behind the scenes to address its weaknesses. The stories are slow at this point but at least the nightmare does appear to be over. The changes at Days have done nothing to improve the overall show.

Mandy
Mandy

The nightmare for Y&R does not appear to be over. Quite the contrary. Only the same few are on every day. Unlike GH who uses EVERYBODY!

SAM MOON
SAM MOON

B&B is the best

debra meadows
debra meadows

are you kidding……this whole year it has been steffy always there to interfear with hope and liam, hope and liam get back together, than steffy again breaking them up….and of course brooke and ridge, we had to watch all that crap in italy, just for them to remarry, go on a honeymoon, then ridge leaves. they did not stay true to the characters…,im going to miss stephanie…

Annie
Annie

Completely agree about Y&R. I had watched the show since the 70’s, but started to not enjoy it as much when it became clear that Adam would never pay for his crimes and they killed Colleen so that idiot Victor could live, and finally stopped altogether with the Sharon/Victor fiasco. I only read the recaps now and am about to quit on that also, they have just destroyed that show. I followed Eileen Davidson over to Days and love it, so at least I still have a soap to follow, but I miss the old Y&R.

Monica
Monica

So agree about how they killed off Colleen! It was also heartbreaking the way they killed off Brad too. Devastating!

west vorgina fan
west vorgina fan

have faith–I only read recaps for the worst of the mob years on gh but watch it on youtube every night now

LINDA
LINDA

I Agree GH has Been AWESOME and has put out very good Soap having to do with Love ,Family and every thing else that makes for a good show
Y&R had been SO BAD FOR SO LONG and it keeps being that way the Stories are so Lame we the fans can tell where the story line will go b4 it even gets there and they use the same people on the show over and over this is Y&R not the NEWMAN HOUR. there are OTHER Families on the show we fans want to see on the show Y&R need Balance and good Story telling they still do not have that
OLTL Gave a Great sent off and it had the fans wanting More I hope one day we will see OLTL back on air

susan M.
susan M.

OLTL send off made me want more stories..It left a lot of those stories up in the air
foe me…The stories weren’t an ending but a beginning to new stories for OLTL..

Tracy
Tracy

They nailed OLTL’s goodbye. It was poignant and downright perfect. GH has been getting better and better. Way to go RC & FV!

D Hewitt
D Hewitt

I agree with you, Tracy. How about that weird plot twist right now where Alcazar and Tomas (OLTL) are the same person? I don’t recall that EVER happening on a Soap, Which is a surprise when you think about how many actors have moved from show to show,

Don H

Rodd
Rodd

Totally agree with you, Tracy.

susan M.
susan M.

I agree with Tracy …OLTL’s goodbye was great but it left me wanting more !!!

Jessy
Jessy

Hi Michael im a Big fan Of you and Of YR
Since 30 years i was anxious to see what the writer Will do and im little bit desapointed too they CAN explore new things like Ronan and Phyllis this couple bring something new to this show and we all love it they become my favorite and love to see more Of shadam they bring passion too the fan need that just heard that Jeff branson is leaving what a Big lost for this show
Thank you to read me
Jessy xx

Jennifer
Jennifer

SOAP OPERA DIGEST IS RIGHT ABOUT THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS IT IS THE MOST DISAPPOINTED SHOW OF 2012 BECAUSE THEY HAVE PHYLLIS HUSBAND MESS WITH PHYLLIS LITTLE SISTER WHO IS FAMILY I AM NOT INTEREST IN WATCHING THAT IT IS NASTY THEY DON’T HAVE CHEMISTRY AT ALL.

Lisa
Lisa

I agree 100%

Toni
Toni

I think Y&R should get Most Improved Show! I really don’t think it was the most disappointing show before, either.

Manon
Manon

Hi ! Michael
Love your writing !
Im a Big fan too Of YR and yes the show is Boring sorry but true
Like the other people who write here i see a major couple in Phonan they have it their chemistry is Phenominal they deserve a major love story not Navery JB and MS are great together the BEST in longtime love to see more Billy and Victoria YR miss what is the most important for people LOVE go take Back JB and write them something that would blow in our face something beautiful and magic like Never before sure YR Will regain more audience
Thank you !
ManonR

ethel
ethel

well we are not going to get anything now from phyllis & ronan because jeff branson is leaving the show again…………

Sal Piscioneri
Sal Piscioneri

Agree 100%….

Jules
Jules

GH best show? PU-LEEZE. ConnieKate? A tired baby switch storyline? Robin’s horribly conceived and executed funeral? Lack of storyline for so many? More useless newbies than I can keep track of? This GH worship is working my last nerve. Haven’t watched in months and you couldn’t pay me to.

I think for the 2 weeks it aired this year, OLTL was probably the Best Soap. Heartfelt, entertaining, engaging, surprising, traditional but still creative, beautiful.

B&B focused way, waaaay, WAAAAAAAY too heavily on 3 obnoxious characters.
YR was a hot mess I stopped following that one too.

And my beloved DAYS had its ups (Alzheimer’s story, Kristen’s return, EJ/Sami, Will’s coming out, Abby’s lie, Lexie’s passing) and downs (Nicole’s obsession with Daniel, Gabi’s pregnancy, Ian’s manipulations, Alamania *shudders*, Rafe/Carrie, Jack “dying” again) so it rightly goes somewhere in between.

Matt
Matt

You haven’t watched in months but you thunk GH is the worst? Not a fair opinion.

Jules
Jules

So says you. I’ll also never put crocs on my feet but I still maintain they are one of the ugliest pairs of shoes ever created.

Just because I refuse to watch does not mean I can’t have an opinion. I know enough without having to spend a single solitary second of my day watching.

Matt
Matt

This is why I don’t normally make comments. People who don’t watch the show who are sure that it sucks should keep their uneducated opinions to themselves. And liking the work of a writer doesn’t make me a butt kisser.

Jules
Jules

“Uneducated” is an interesting choice of word to associate with watching a daytime soap opera. Just saying…..

And I don’t believe I ever said “butt kisser”.

Hey, you have your opinion of the show, for which you are entitled to. As am I. I left my opinion. It was your choice to comment on it.

dg
dg

I agree Jules. All of the Cartini butt kisser are way off base. There is so much wrong with GH still. Like you mentioned, Kate/Connie, the lame Jasam baby switch, the Krstina Trey newbie casting and lackluster romance, the ridiculous latex masquerade with Faison pretending to be Duke, the lack luster Luke and Anna Romance, Britt, Sabrina, Patrick, Elli Spinelli and that name game nerd romance.
I could go on. AJ’s return is about the only story that doesnt bastardize history and has the potential to be a multilayered, intelligent engaging tale. The rest of it is a saturday morning cartoon, lol.

susan M.
susan M.

I a enjoying GH.. And I am a die-hard fan of OLTL !!!!! And I like GH too and like the
storylines .Much better from years ago. They are definetely on the right track now…
That’s my opinion….

Mark Schreier
Mark Schreier

I’m really worried about Y & R. Nobody seems to realize what Sony did by putting JFP in charge. I don’t have any personal feelings about her one way or the other, but I know her track record and am starting to see Y & R get even more disappointing under her leadership. The Bells deserve such a better legacy for their work than what her leadership will provide. It’s just sad. From changing a sweet boy Kyle into a skirt-chasing young adult who doesn’t even fit in with the Abbott family (speech patterns and all) is just the beginning of the show’s issues…. having Daisy disappear with her “mother”, Danny apparently moving with Lucy to Chicago (I must have missed that episode), Genevieve’s character becoming totally unredeamable with such a fine actress, all of the nepatism at the two main companies, the unresolved ending of Phyllis’ 20-year-old storyline… this is all just the beginning of what I’m afraid will lead to a severe loss of viewership. I hope I’m wrong. But for some reason, soap leaders only turn to insiders for help with solving issues instead of realizing there are plenty of educated viewers who have invested years in following a show who just may have some good FRESH ideas to breathe new life into them. The game of Exec. Prod. roulette (except for GH) has proven to be the demise of almost every soap. When will someone at Sony see the light? I just don’t get it. I know all I am is a viewer who created and wrote a college soap with more engaging characters than Y & R has now ….with original storylines (not recycled ones) that later turned up on GL and AMC 10 years later.. but it’s sad. The Bell family is who I feel the saddest for… they deserve so much better. Plus the viewers, like myself, who have watched this show since the beginning in 1973. Everyone, especially the actors, deserve so much better. But here we go again — recycled storylines of drug addiction, family business squabbles, Phyllis’ continual self-destructive behavior (apparently soon to be with Kyle, no less), it’s all just old recycled stuff that will lead to boring shows, loss of respect for long-time chacters, and loss of viewership. Like I said at the beginning, nobody seems to worry about JFP’s leadership except me.

Troy Turner
Troy Turner

You have a right to your opinion, and I can’t/won’t dispute it since I’m not a regular viewer of YR, but don’t insult our intelligence trying to get yourself over. It’s sickening

dg
dg

From what many insiders have said JFP doesnt have autonomy at YR. Sony is ruling the show with an iron fist. She has to clear all her major decisions with them. So far Josh Griffith’s writing is going well in my opinion. None of the major vets have been killed off her backburnered so things are so far so good. I enjoy the show alot more. YR is bouncing back and they were in no where near the bad shape that plagued GH. And yes I was very worried when I heard JFP was coming to YR.
But again she is a figure head. The real power belongs to Sony.

Mark Schreier
Mark Schreier

I hope so … the show has so much potential such so much history and longtime actors/characters….we’ll see what happens!

aria
aria

well, Dinah, to bad, because Gh was the best show, it delivered all all fronts, and it had buzz all year round, cant say the same for the other shows.

Rodd
Rodd

So true, Aria.

gslam
gslam

I so AGREE with all three decisions! Perfect!

Madison
Madison

I so agree with GH being the best show & only b/c of them adding the OLTL characters on. I so miss OLTL!!

Bruce
Bruce

Couldn’t have said it better myself!!

susan M.
susan M.

DITTO!!!

Madison
Madison

Oh & Sam of course I just wish they would find a way to bring Jason back..

Debbie Hamilton
Debbie Hamilton

Yes GH is the best! No soap keeps me as rivited as General Hospital. The intermingling of OLTL actors with GH was superp and only brought more enjoyment to the program.
May the show last another 50 years. The writers deserve an award for showing the powers that be they know what they’re doing! Keep it up guys 🙂

Rodd
Rodd

Hear! Hear!

susan M.
susan M.

I agree with Debbie 100%…………..

John
John

GH is the best show on daytime right now !!!

susan M.
susan M.

I agree…..

debikra
debikra

If Y&R is so disapointing, why are they number 1??
GH has breathed life back into the show. I LOVE what the writers have done I congragulate them, and imo anyone who doesn’t enjoy GH shouldn’t be watching it.

aria
aria

because people watch crap, duh, thats why Y&R is #1 and thats why jersey shore was mtv highest rated show.

debikra
debikra

duh?? With a vocabulary like that its easier to understand your way of thinking.

Jersey Shore?? Really?? hahahahahaha

Aria
Aria

You wanna now talk about ” vocabulary ” debrika??? Hahahahahaha. Okay!

Mary SF
Mary SF

I would hardly compare y&r to the jersey shore, but everyone is entitled to their opinion.

dg
dg

YR is number one because they never lost as much of their core audience as GH and the ABC soaps did over the last ten yrs. YR continues to average near 5 million viewers. Over the last few yrs GH struggle for 2 million.
And since 2000 ABC and Frons destroyed GH’s core families and gutted the show, handing it over to Sonny. They have never recovered from those mistakes fully. Ive been watching since 1969 and despite all of Cartini’s sensational, cartoonish stories the show hasnt been the same for me.
The only real story that truly interests me is the return of AJ because it was returned the Qs to the front burner. But I fear that wont last long.

ethel
ethel

i have been watching gh since the beginning & right now this is the best i have seen gh in the last 8 to 10 years & the new regime has done an excellent job in getting gh back to being an enjoyable soap – it is perfect no but is is much better than it was……….

susan M.
susan M.

I watch GH everday. It’s habit forming. And you want to watch it everyday…

susan M.
susan M.

What do you mean cartoonish stories? I don’t understand….

Chris
Chris

I have not read the issue, but sadly, I agree with their choice of Y&R as disappointing show. IT seems everyone but Maria Bell was on the same page about this once stellar drama. She was the most in denial about how bad it gotten. Never was it more evident than when she took to Facebook after her firing to defend her poor choices. As far as the new regime goes, six weeks into their run, I’m 50/50 with them. I think the acting is much better with JFP there. Actors formerly sleep walking through their scenes have come alive again. Show looks more polished at least visually. I’m not a fan of how she has all but abandoned the old Y&R music and replaced it with what sounds like low end production music that adds little if nothing to scenes. I feel a little like I’m watching LML’s Y&R all over again…at least from a producing standpoint. Also I really wish the show would go back to the style of directing we saw in last Friday’s 2002 encore episode. I miss the tighter shots on the actors faces Y&R was know for. Everything is so wide. No intimacy what-so-ever. Even the best prime-time dramas still get the camera in tight on the actors faces. The constant wide shots make the soap viewing experience feel less intimate. Also please put the furniture back the way it was in Katherine’s house!! There was a scene yesterday with Jill, Chole and Lauren that merely highlighted the flaws in this layout. You could only see the back of Lauren’s head and her profile while she sat on the sofa with Chloe. What advantage is there in only seeing the back of your actors heads when they speak? It was poorly done and not an on par with a show that has been decorated with as many directing Emmy’s as Y&R has. From a writing stand-point I do like the Phyllis storyline. I think having everyone turn on her, especially Nick, is compelling drama. The romance between Nick and Avery has also been pleasant to watch and made this former pointless character interesting. Avery in the kitchen is more interesting than Avery in the courtroom. Maybe I’m just tired of court related stories on this show as we over-dosed on them during the MAB years. The early indications that Kevin could be returning to his older self is also exciting. Greg Rikkart’s character had become so bland I could barely muster the interest to watch him on screen anymore. Unhinged Kevin is way more interesting that well to do Kevin. Let’s not forget this guy lit himself on fire to avoid going to jail. A do-gooder he is not. What I’m not digging is the speed at which some of these tales are being told. I think its such a mistake for soaps, who are on 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year, to speed through stories the way prime-time does. Soaps have… Read more »

Mary SF
Mary SF

You made some excellent observations Chris. The key to successful soap opera writing is all in the timing. If you rush a story line viewers are left not feeling emotionally connected to it like love stories that happen over night. On the other hand go too slow and it will drive viewers crazy waiting for the pay off. I admit Y&R has lost its rhythm- story lines for the last while have either been too fast or too slow, but times have changed from the seventies when this show was conceived. Back then everyone had the luxury of time. No one was trying to watch on the go or through recaps. There were only three networks so no one was breathing down any EP’s neck desperately trying to cling to ever shrinking audience. I think even if Bill Bell Sr. was still alive and writing this soap it would be a challenge given the reality of today’s television landscape. But I am hoping this soap will find its groove again, because nothing is as entertaining as soap that has timing down right.

Troy Turner
Troy Turner

Don’t listen to Chris-he’s just upset because he can’t run down GH anymore to promote his anti-soap agenda

Chris
Chris

Thanks Mary for your feedback! I agree with your points as well. There is definitely no rhythm to Y&R anymore. Just a series of stories that don’t always connect to the bigger picture. I’m not hating Y&R as I did when MAB wrote it but I’m just ok with it right now.

Troy you have me mistaken for another Chris. I don’t watch GH. Keep it classy dude!

Troy Turner
Troy Turner

If you are indeed another Chris-then I stand corrected

Mandy
Mandy

Y&R sucks because it is still the Newman Hour. Hate it! When will it become Y&R again?

moshane58
moshane58

AMC will always be my favorite but glad to see ABC soaps are the best.You’d think ABC would get the hint and Neilsen.

dg
dg

I completely disagree. The ABC soaps were the best a decade to 15 yrs ago. Since 2000 the ABC soaps hit rock bottom. Until recently YR and BB were always the best quality the highest rated.
Frons, Phelps, ABC and Cartini decimated their soap line up. Cartini turned agnes nixon’s groundbreaking, socially relevant One Life into a ridiculous campy cartoon. And despite YR’s recent derailment they continue to crush GH in ratings. They still range around 5 million viewers. GH is still under 3.

susan M.
susan M.

I disagree…

susan M.
susan M.

OLTL will alway’s be my favorite soap of all time…Never watched the soaps on those other channels..I watched the Soaps on ABC with my mom so many years ago & still am…

moshane58
moshane58

You know I never watch Y&R but I still wouldn’t condemn it.Want all soaps to suceed.to amny have been cancelled already.now GH is building a new audiences since new people have taken over and glad for it.Glad for your show.So just be glad for all of them instead of condemning them.remember your stuck with the one who help bring down Gh’s ratings.Good Luck on that one.Hopefully Y&R fans will stick by it no matter what.There are alot of ABC soap fans who do watch all of them.Its not like we are all stuck on one network.,We are just fighting Anne Sweeney who wants all soaps gone.So its nothing personnal against any soaps its just the idiot at ABC who thinks talk,new and cooking is all everyone wants now.

Jeff
Jeff

General Hospital is by far the best soap!!!

dg
dg

Yeah right with latex masks, split personality bimbos, an LSD induced psychic and a younger generation full of talentless performers like Chad Duell, ( Michael) Lindsey Morgan( Kristina), Eric Valdez ( Trey), Kris Alderson ( Star), Kelly Sullivan ( Kate) etc.
Ive watched GH since 1969. Cartini should write mindless Steven Sagal movies or saturday morning Cartoons. They wouldnt know intelligent, well crafted serialized drama if it bit them in their collected as+ses. Lol.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

I suppose you preferred the Guza era? Mob, mob and more mob?

susan M.
susan M.

I agree with Jeff !!!!!!!!

Lew S
Lew S

I would say GH and BB for best. Y&R is trying to reestablish ittself and Days for Chandler Massey and Eileen Davidson.

dg
dg

Its too bad that a once venerable soap like Days has to pander to the gay rights political agenda to be compelling. The rest of that show is a waste of air time. Poor Mac Carey and Francis Reid are no doubt turning over in their graves.

JustSaying
JustSaying

I’d say BB is the most disappointing show. Too many Brooke/Ridge storylines. Not enough of the underdog winning the day. Got tired of Hope. Just about every relationship involves different members of the same families. Almost too many cast members with not enough direction or motivation. This show would be fine if it was a one hour show.

At least YR uses different cast members from time to time. As bad as the writing was, there was some variety.

Susan M.
Susan M.

I am looking for opinions on the Steve Harvey Show.. I watched it last wk. when GH wasn’t on which was Thurs & Fri.(Thanksgiving). I watched it all of 10 mins. and I had enough . I found the topics to be silly Etc….. I like him on Family Fued Game Show…Not crazy about his talk show….I will pass on this one….. And loving GH more & more!!!!! Tomas isn’t Tomas but Alkazar….Hope Blair doesn’t marry him.. Blair ,Skye,& Todd got at Tea’s house in the nick of time to tell Blair the truth about him….

Mary SF
Mary SF

I have been watching soaps for about 40 years so I seen the good bad and ugly of most daytime serials. The one thing I know is there is no way to please everyone. If they write for one character someone will complain that they are not writing for a different character. If they change the sets, someone will complain the old sets were better. If they don’t change anything, someone will complain nothing changes. But complaining about them is part of the fun of watching of them.

I don’t know any other genre in television that can hold the attention of its audience even at its worse more than a daytime drama. Y&R had a weak year but most of us who love the show watched it, and suffered along with it. B&B got stuck in the Bermuda triangle of love triangles this year, but those who love the show watched it. Days was all over the map, like living under of cloud of darkness, but with the occasional sunny break to remind you why you watch the show in the first place. As for GH, their fans endured through many a lean year to finally be rewarded with some good old fashion story telling.

We all love these shows or we wouldn’t be watching them. We want them to continue so we get mad when we know they can do better. We complain because we care. In the end this genre is rare in television and getting rarer and I’m just glad these four soaps are still on the air, because when they go that is it. The daytime drama as we have known it will be gone. Maybe a newer a approach of the continuing drama will emerge out of the ashes, maybe it will never be seen again. But until it happens I will watch, the boring, the dull, the great and the super spectacular because even at worst most daytime dramas are still more entertaining than some nighttime stuff-

Jules
Jules

A lovely post Mary! Beautiful words, even if I couldn’t live by them.

Rodd
Rodd

That’s so true, Mary, for a lot of us long-time, die-hard soap fans; thick or thin, good or bad, we will continue to watch and hope things will improve ~ cheer when they do and gripe when they don’t. When I die, I’m sure they’ll have to tear the remote control out of my hand and turn off GH.

Mary SF
Mary SF

A die-hard soap fan is like a sports fan following their favorite team. They root for them even if they are losing, they root for them even if they don’t make the finals. They will complain on sports radio about the players, coaches and tell everyone who will listen what they would do if they were in charge, but come game time- they are in the stands or watching the television. Why? Loyalty and loyalty used to be the back bone of daytime drama. You watched because it was your soap.

dg
dg

Great insightful post. But I have to say that over the last yr or so Ive been turning to cable for their serials and I am far more impressed and satisfied. Shows like BoardWalk Empire, Homeland and Game of Thrones are all serials but they are so much more compelling and intelligent.
Ive watched daytime serials since 1969 and theyve seen better days. Though I treasured the legacy I find myself out growing the camp and silly plots. Like you said I complain about the genre because I want it to do better.

Mary SF
Mary SF

It is easier for nighttime dramas because they are only writing one show per week for so many weeks, while a soap is almost everyday, all year long, for years upon years. Nighttime shows such as one you mentioned will eventually end, while soaps go on for decades. Nothing wrong with those shows you mentioned but it is a bit unfair to compare them to daytime because is a different format.

Part of the problem is that we are now living in a world that is motivated by trends, whether it be vampires, s&m novels or the latest craze on Y Tube. The PTB know this and they pressure shows to come up with gimmicks to get the buzz going, but once that has aired, those viewers are gone. Back in the sixties a show would never release what day a beloved character was going to die, you would have to watch every day just in case that was the day it was going to happen. Back then, couples falling in love, their first kiss, their first lovemaking, their marriage, their break and divorce used to take a year or more to play out, nowadays those things can happen in a month on some soaps, because no one has the time and patience to wait for the pay off. It is a different time, and I’m afraid the daytime drama format that flourish in the sixties and seventies is dying out for that reason.

ethel
ethel

excellent post mary! i have been watching soaps for almost 50 years & i could not have said it better myself …………..

k/kay
k/kay

Oh for the days when you could have a cup of coffee like good old Nancy on ATWT and make it riveting!

Mary Fergen
Mary Fergen

I absolutely agree with these three choices! GH has been so entertaining, and Y&R has been so dull and boring for quite a while. OLTL did have the best goodbye, but I so wish it hadn’t been cancelled. I still miss OLTL and AMC more than I can say.

James
James

I agree with GH as best show. B&B could’ve been a contender if they didn’t focus on the same three characters ALL YEAR LONG!!!! Y&R was boring and DAYS just can’t seem to get its footing back after the reboot. Before the reboot it had some potential.

shar
shar

Absolutely agree that GH is best and OLTL had the best send-off! Kudos to Ron Carlivati and Frank Valentini for both! GH keeps getting better and better. Love it!

Nancy
Nancy

GH is the best show and Y&R has sunk to an all time low. It is now the most boring of all the shows. Funny GH had that category until Frank and Ron came along. Now Y&R has the worst producer and writers of all the shows and eventually the public will see it. JFP from General Hospital fame is seriously terrible and soon the loyal Y&R fans will see what I am talking about. Now there is not a day that goes by that I can hardly wait to see what happens on GH. Best show I have ever seen.

heidi
heidi

Totally agree with their best soap! GH has always been my fave and most of the time the best overall! Way to go GH!!! Kow if ABC will just keep it on for another 50…

Saundra
Saundra

I agree with the opinion Y&R was very disappointing this year. They have destroyed core characters and couples and continue to bury them (Sharon, Phick). They brought old stories up for B/s reasons. They have not taken advantage of good actors /families like the Winters. And it seems to be getting worst. The blood bath and hate thrown on characters are insulting to the fans. Where are the families that fight yet stay together because they are family versus making pious judgements on loved ones. Abbotts, Chancelors, Newmans , Winters, Baldwins. where are the friends ? And the new writers have biasely invested in and lifted up less prominent characters like Avery to top billing. Saint like characters are just as stupid as the crazy Patty/Ricky/Daisy/Sharon of the past year. Ratings have dropped and long term fans are dropping like flies . If Sony, CBS and the writers don’t wake up soon and stop smelling themselves next year they may not be around to talk about.

Peaches
Peaches

I agree that Y&R has gone down even with the new writers. Every where you look, television is talking against and trying to stop cyberbulling, but Y&R entertains cyberbulling.

Kyle is the worst actor the Y&R has. His acting is so fake.
Why is Chelsea still in Y&R and with Adam. It is not a strong story plot. Im tired of looking at them in that dark dull living room.

I have gotten to the point that I tape Y&R because it is not interesting anymore, but there are some people I still like to see. Since I tape it, I skip the scenes that i do not want to see like: Lily, Neil, Devon, Ester, Chelsea’s mother and father, and Cane roles are very boring. They have no interesting plot. Their role always be a sentence or two and go to the next take. I always skip them.

Now Victoria is getting ready to leave Billy because Nick left Phyllis. What a weak storyline.

Kevins mother Gloria, she looks scary.

I really thought the new writer(s) was going to makeY&R a more interesting show, but it has gotten duller. I skip more of the show than what I look at.

Y&R NEEDS HELP!!!!!! SOMEBODY HELP THEM!!!!!

Mary SF
Mary SF

Back before the PVR or VHS a soap fan would have to watch every day and everything in order to get to the stuff they like. Part of the fun back them was watching the soap in a group and while the filler stuff was on we would do what we do now on this posts. We made fun of the ugly furniture or how lame the new guy’s hair cut was or during commercials guess what the next scene would be and what they would say. It was all apart of the soap experience. Not every episode can be a blockbuster or each week be like Sweeps week. Fortunately or unfortunately depending on your view most soap fans have the option now of tuning in only for the stories they like and tuning out the rest. It may be helpful for the viewer, but overall I think it is that type of viewing that change how the format is presented and contribute to the poorer quality product.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

I for one really wish we would stop pitting the remaining four soaps against each other. Like MarySF said we all love these shows and this genre. I for one could care less which soap did better in the ratings against another soap – tell me how the soap did against the other daytime shows! I have been watching for 40 years myself and am saddened at how the daytime serial drama has been gutted. I may not like some of the plot points or characters on a show – but I haven’t stopped watching.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

And DG do you have any comment of your own – or can you only comment on others?

susan M.
susan M.

GH is the best in my book!!!!! Love Tracy, Anna, Robert,Luke,John,Blair, even Todd ETC…………..

Ces
Ces

I could never understand Y&R’s popularity. I have tried on several occasions in the past 25 years to watch this show and it bores me silly no matter who is at the helm. Peter Bergman bored me on AMC and he annoyed me the few times I watched him on Y&R.
Being a fan of both GH & DAYS since the late 70’s and early 80’s – GH right now, is by far the best show in Daytime (not like there are many to choose from, but if I had to pick!) If they get rid of Kate/Connie, Christina, Britt and Sabrina then it will be damn near perfect!

robert
robert

This was why Maria Bell was fired. Agree with GH being the best soap right now.

moshane58
moshane58

We all are soap fans not enemies here.We all have our picks.What is everyone’s problem..The ratings change all the time.I may only watch GH but hope all of them succeed.Lot to many already for cheap talk and cooking shows.My favorite is still AMC but I am baking the genre no matter what network its on.Everyone plese just back soaps and no replacement shows.Another one goes more will follow.

jp
jp

With airing only 9 episodes in 2012, OLTL should be named best soap. What they did in those two weeks can’t hold a candle to the rest. But I am loving GH right now. It is definitely the most improved show. I don’t always agree with Frank and Ron’s vision all the time, but they know how to use the history of the show and deliver a compelling story where all characters are involved in a fast moving pace.

ABC just bring back ONE LIFE TO LIVE.

ashlee
ashlee

I agree. But to be fair and honest, GH had no competition. B and B told one story all year until Stephanies death took prominence. Young and the Restless was a complete mess until the new regime took over. And DAYS seemed to forget how to tell stories. After a very disappointing start, Cartini has made GH must see tv again. It kind of reminds me of the final months of AMC when so many dead characters were brought back. Im not complaining. Fans will accept any outrageous stories that undo the destructive rampage that Phelps and Guza inflicted on the show for the past decade. It just goes to show that soaps have not created enough characters that the audience cares about since the 80‘s and 90‘s, and they have to bring them back. GH currently has an embarrassment of riches in the veteran department, and the audience responds to characters they know and love. Its a shame so many soaps had to die to make the powers that be decided to give the audience what they want!

Gamblerchick
Gamblerchick

The most buzzing show, on the Internet is the BEST SHOW. IN DAYTIME and that show is GENERAL HOSPITAL. And there are a little few, things they need to improve on. 1.) KATE/CONNIE 2.) BRINGING ON MORE VETS 3.) MAKING THE RELATIONSHIPS ENEW, AND FRESH ( SABRINA AND PATRICK, LIZ WITH SOMEONE NEW PROBABLY THE NEW GUY. OR BRINGING LUCKY BACK. 4.) GET RID OF THE LESS TALENTED (BRITT, TREY, FAISON) People who’s talent is a waste. 5.) LESS OF SONNY, AND MORE OF THE CORE FAMALIES. ( THE QUATERMAINE’s and THE SPENCER’S) They need more focus on the core FAMALIES that they have done, with the QUATERMAINE’s so far. These points are lacking on the soap. And the least buzzing show, is the least and the disappointing show. IN DAYTIME WHICH IS: BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL. This soap is just a mess: with Liam and Hope and Steffy triangle. And Brooke going after, every men that Taylor ever had, (Ridge) and Stephanie had (ERIC,THORNE) and now she’s going after her own sister’s husband (BILL). WHY CAN’T SHE EVER SETTLE. WITH JUST ONE MAN. And I wonder where Hope has picked this from. With the same man that she and steffy, ever had first OLIVER and now LIAM. AND SHE HAD STEFFY’s brother THOMAS. I think these two need HELP. There is one thing that, was SPECTACULAR WAS STEPHANIE’S DEATH ON MONDAY. May be they could 1.) ERIC AND BROOKE AGAIN. Instead of making a mess,for her sister . Like she has for, Taylor with Ridge. Katie doesn’t deserve that. She has been through too much with her depression.

Jan
Jan

I can’t say OLTL was the great good bye because it should have stayed.

Donna Schreck
Donna Schreck

GH ,especially the anniversary and the Nurses Ball were the best ever. Very rewarding for all the fans. Kate/Connie has got to go she just doesn’t fit in. BandB could tie with Y and R for most disappointing. OLTL may have had a good farewell but nothing can beat GL. And that’s the show that should come back.

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Lucas Gives Wiley To Michael; While Willow Learns the Devastating Truth

Friday’s episode of General Hospital, brought the highly-emotional moments viewers had been waiting for all-week long; following the year and a half reveal that Nelle (Chloe Lanier) and Brad (Parry Shen) engineered a baby switch with Willow’s (Katelyn MacMullen) dead baby, Wiley being passed off as Michael (Chad Duell) and Nelle’s newborn, Jonah, and Jonah being raised by Brad and Lucas (Ryan Carnes) as Wiley.  Now with the truth out, it was time for two of the heaviest beats of the story to be played out.

When Willow comes to at the hospital with Chase (Josh Swickard) by her side, needless to say she is dazed and freaking out that Nelle took Wiley.  Chase tells her he has some things to tell her and it’s not going to be easy to hear. Willow braces herself and then Chase tells her the story of the baby switch and how her baby died a SIDS death while at Brad and Lucas’ and then how the babies were switched.

Photo: ABC

In a heartbreaking and powerful performance from Katelyn MacMullen (yes, she is our pick for “Power Performance of the Week”), Willow struggles to come to grips with the truth and starts to realize all of Brad’s machinations, as she thinks back to herself how could she do that to her son … to trust him with Brad, only to have the little infant die.  The devastation played by MacMullen, whose Willow, now must realize her baby never lived the full and happy young life she thought, was gut-wrenching.

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Meanwhile, in yet another top-notch performance, William deVry (Julian) showed the pain and the need to unburden himself as Julian talks to his sister. Ava (Maura West) and spills what happened.   He goes so far to admit to Ava that he knew what Brad had done. Ava cannot believe he did not go to Sonny (Maurice Benard) right away with this Intel, but Julian just could not do this to his son, Lucas and rip the baby from his arms.  Julian says he will face-off with Sonny and not leave town, if it comes to that.   Ava says they have to come up with a way to silence Brad … before Brad gives up Julian’s part in the whole baby cover-up.

Photo: JPI

And in yet another masterful performance, we have to give it up to Chloe Lanier.  Who can play Nelle and spin stories and the tears so well, that if you did not know this pathological liar you would think she is telling the truth. When in opposing holding cells at the PCPD, Nelle lays it on about Brad so that the guard can hear them. She blames Brad for being the instigator in the baby switch and taking advantage of her – a distraught new mother, confused and dazed on the route where the baby switch happened.  It works! Brad is moved to a different cell and thinks look very grim for him.  Nelle smiles through her crocodile tears!

Photo: JPI

Then, in what we all knew had to happen, and even so, was still as heartbreaking as ever; Lucas spends his final moments with Wiley as his father in the kitchen at the Corinthos’ along with Bobbie (Jackie Zeman) and Carly (Laura Wright).  Lucas starts to tell his mother and sister, all the things Wiley needs and likes, such as having a story read to him.  All of this brings the tears as they know Lucas has to give the child back to Michael; who has been robbed of a year and half as the baby’s rightful father.

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Michael tells Lucas they will work this out, so Lucas remains a constant in Wiley’s life. He also tells Sonny and Sasha (Sofia Matteson) he feels so badly for Lucas, but they tell him to be happy for this chance to have the son he grieved for.   In the end, a tear-filled Lucas hands Wiley to Michael as everyone watches on in sadness for one father … and joy for the other.  Ryan Carnes was poignant in the scenes; as was Chad Duell.

Courtesy/ABC

So, what did you think of the performances from Friday’s GH featuring Katelyn, Ryan, Chad, William, Chloe and Parry? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Michael Blasts Brad As The Truth About Wiley Comes Out

FINALLY! On Wednesday’s episode of General Hospital, Lucas (Ryan Carnes) memory is jogged just enough that he clearly remembers Brad’s (Parry Shen) shocking words before their car crash; where Brad confessed that Wiley was Nelle (Chloe Lanier) and Michael’s (Chad Duell) biological son.

At the Corinthos home, Lucas stands up and announces to Michael that Wiley is actually his believed to be dead son, Jonah. Carly’s (Laura Wright) mouth drops and then she takes over getting to the root of the truth of the baby switch.

Brad is cornered and left with no choice but to fess up. He explains how Wiley died when he was no longer breathing, and how he was driving with him, when he ended up on the route where Nelle left Michael to die in the car he was driving (Michael recalls this bit of Intel in a flashback).

Then, Brad explains how Nelle appeared with her newborn baby and claimed the whole thing was engineered by Nelle …  and how he was so upset and panicked, that he went along with her plan.

Michael lets Brad have it for all of his lies and machinations, and the pain it has inflicted on so many people for over a year and half.  How on earth could he do that? Carly also lays into him.

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Meanwhile, Sasha (Sofia Matteson) has urgently called Chase (Josh Swickard), who leaves “Wiley” and Willow (Katelyn MacMullen) behind, and heads to the Corinthos’ where he hears the whole sad truth about the baby switch.

With Chase gone, Nelle goes looking for “Wiley” who is with Willow, and the two get into a major throwdown catfight.  Nelle comes out the victor and goes to get her baby ready to leave town with her son.

So, what did you think of how the truth finally came out?  What did you think of Michael’s tirade on Brad? What do you think will happen next? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GH’s James Patrick Stuart Talks on Valentin’s Downfall and Potential Rise to Power

After all his bravado, machinations and lies to keep the woman he loves, and believing he was the rightful heir to the Cassadine fortune, suddenly it all came crashing down for Valentin Cassadine (James Patrick Stuart) on recent episodes of General Hospital.

Payback can be a bitch, but for Valentin; who’s past has been fraught with numerous physical and emotional tribulations since his childhood, he now finds himself at the lowest point in his life; losing Nina (Cynthia Watros) who’s now taken up with Jax (Ingo Rademacher), realizing he is the biological son of the evil Helena Cassadine (Constance Towers), and not Mikkos, and having all his best laid plans and misdeeds backfire.  (Remember, he shot and “killed” Nikolas, and set up the ruse that led Sasha to pretend she was Nina’s bio-daughter.)  Now, enter Nelle Benson (Chloe Lanier), who could very well hold the ticket, to Valentin’s rise to wealth and power all over again.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with James Patrick Stuart to get the lowdown on: those heavy and emotional scenes opposite Constance Towers, working with Cynthia Watros as his newest Nina, if Valentin might really kill Jax the next time he thinks about it, and what about a potential relationship between Anna (Finola Hughes) and Valentin?

Not many can play bad as good as James in this industry.  He does it so effortlessly and still brings out the humanity in the guy that has t-r-o-u-b-l-e written all over him.  Here’s what James had to share about all of Valentin’s recent dramatic moments, a tease of what’s to come, and much more.

Photo: JPI

Valentin’s world has imploded at the moment.  When did you initially find out that he was going to turn out to not be a true Cassadine heir?

JAMES:  Well, there were some clues dropped by Frank Valentini (executive producer, GH) back when we did the gallery auction where Helena’s portrait went up in flames.  Frank looked at me and goes, “Hey, Jack Nicholson it up.  Have some fun!  You’re not going to be feeling pretty good for a while.”  (Laughs)  I’m like, “Oh … what are the plans?”  He pulled me aside and goes, “Yeah, you’re going to lose Nina, but you’re going to try to take over ELQ.  That’s when I started to go, “Wait a minute!  That sounds to me like Valentin’s losing his money.”  (Laughs)  With the character of Nikolas (Marcus Coloma) coming back; it’s pretty great.  I think the writing was on the wall there.  I put it out on twitter the other day.  I said, “Look what they’ve done to my boy.”  Somebody chimed in, “They gave him a storyline!” (Laughs)

Who doesn’t love to see you, James Patrick Stuart, play tortured soul?  They audience loves to see you get the opportunity to go to those depths in your performances.

JAMES:  It’s been really interesting for me.  I’ve had a lifetime of playing bad guys because the line was always shorter. (Laughs)  Everybody wants to be Tom Cruise, but the Alan Rickman’s of it all, to me, were what was so interesting.  Early on, you play one dimensional kind of twisting of the mustache, tying a woman to the train tracks.  After a while, you start to watch the truly great actors.  They start to take you on a ride.  If you’re paying attention, you start to feel what it would be like to be that damaged, and that’s why you do it.  Then you start to see the vulnerability. To me, I thought, “This is a great time in my life because I’m ready to do that.” A lot of people say, “I don’t understand.  I feel like that makes no sense. because why would I root for a person who behaves like this?” and that to me, I feel is the greatest compliment of all.

So much happened recently to Valentin in one fell swoop; he overhears Nina telling Ava (Maura West) she kissed Jax, then he envisions shooting Jax and then he is drinking himself into oblivion and he gets a “visit” from Helena!  But … the scenes between Valentin and Helena really summed up the bitter truth for him, wouldn’t you say?

JAMES:  Yes.  In the “Helena” scenes, it all basically is revealed.  It all comes down in a moment where he “sees” her.  I think he realizes with the DNA test; he’s not the person he thought he was, but he certainly had no idea that he had her blood in his veins.  The truly tragic moment of the evening is when it dawns on him that he has a daughter with Helena’s blood in her veins.  Now, he would kill her a thousand times over in that moment.  He can’t do it.  He’s fighting phantoms.  That’s the bottom below the bottom, and things got worse than he ever thought they would get.

Courtesy/ABC

Does Valentin have any idea then, who his biological father could be?

JAMES:  I don’t think so.  I don’t believe so.  I know I don’t.  I think once he realizes that Helena is in fact the mother, I think he’d rather just go into oblivion.  I think at that point, he’s out of answers.  Enter Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn) …which is wonderful because I think the world of Nancy, and she saves the day.   Alexis basically talks him out of hurting himself, telling him to count his blessings that he is not a Cassadine, etc, which was a really sweet moment.

I assume, when you have this kind of material to play, it must be exhausting, but exhilarating at the same time?

JAMES:  I think that’s exactly right.  As an actor, I think you want to do this stuff.  Maura West and I compare notes all the time.  I think it can be kind of emotionally draining.  You do feel it, and I felt it when I had spent a lot of time with Nina and Valentin, and when the actresses changed, and we brought Cynthia Watros in.  I worked twice as hard to make sure that Cynthia’s landing was as easy as possible, and I really grew attached to the Nina and Valentin connection.  So, when Jax steps in, Cynthia’s love life means nothing to me, I don’t care about that, but Nina’s love life means a lot to me!  And it bums me out, and I don’t know that I’ll actually be watching any future love scenes between them as much as I love them both!  I have a deep attachment to the Valentin connection to Nina.  So, the lines get burred because we just play these characters so long.

Photo: JPI

What was it like sharing those tough scenes with Constance? No one can play icy, evil villainess like her … and yet in real life, she is such a gracious and kind-hearted woman.

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JAMES:  In real life, Constance is such a sweetheart, and she’s so grateful to be there.  She was so ready to work, and rehearse, and play, and find the stuff, and she was great.  I’d been in scenes with her before.  Last time, we didn’t really talk to each other.  I was with the hump.  I was being Valentin pre-surgery.  It was some sort of moment in a graveyard, but this time we actually got to interact with each other.

You look at Valentin, and he’s not had the greatest life.  Do you bring his entire back-story into your performance; such as when he was deformed with the hump and how he had to literally reconstruct his life both in the physical and in emotional ways for many years?

JAMES:  Absolutely.  It’s the brokenness that he’s making choices from.  He was never truly and authentic person to begin with which is why his love fell apart.  He’s always been faking.  He’s always been putting on a show.  That’s not sustainable in matters of the heart.  It was unbelievably easy for Jax to swoop in, because it was inevitable that things were going to fall apart.  Of course, that anger and that brokenness were what lead him to want to kill Jax.  There’s no question.  He was prepared to do that.  If you look in the eyes in the fantasy sequence in the shooting, he just wanted to watch him die.  He wanted to watch the light go out in Jax’s eyes.  He was so furious … and even more tragic is … that was all he could think of, and somehow, he realized in that moment that wouldn’t work, because he’d lose his daughter.

Photo: JPI

Anna and Finn (Michael Easton) just kind of busted up.  Do you think Anna and Valentin will hookup? There is a connection and a history between the two of them whenever they seem to be in proximity of one another.

JAMES:  Personally, I’m waiting for that.  I hope so!  There is a finesse and elegance to that woman, and not only that, there is an effortless to the connection between Valentin and Anna, if one can say that about one’s own coupling.  I love to look at it!  I think we go together like a wink and a smile.  I just find that chemistry really great.  I think that’s mostly Finola, though.  She can probably have chemistry with most anything.

Valentin was going to leave Port Charles with Charlotte (Scarlett Fernandez), after Nikolas revealed all and the fallout began.  Interestingly enough, it was Anna who came to Valentin’s side and tried to talk him down from fleeing with his daughter and showed such compassion for him!

JAMES:  Wasn’t that great?  She was the one who got him.  She was the one who was able to calm the beast.  There was no one else he would have listened to.  In the moment in the police station, after Charlotte had been kidnapped, and there is that moment where Anna has that bruise, I thought it was such a tender moment.  I just said, “If I kiss my finger and touch your wound?” and she’s like, “Do it.”  It was just this moment where we had been bitter rivals and enemies for so long, but he just adores her so much it’s undeniable that he sees her wounded and wants to make it better.  It’s floating out there waiting to be done.  I know that everybody knows it.  It’s just a matter of what the right away to go about in the writing would be.

Photo: JPI

So, you’ve worked opposite two acting dynamos in the role of Nina – Michelle Stafford and now, Cynthia Watros.  Was the transition difficult for you when Cynthia came to GH?

JAMES:  It wasn’t.  It was scary because Michelle Stafford wasn’t just one in a million, I mean, she is one of a kind.  The last thing in the world that I would ever want to consider doing myself was recast that actress.  So, my deal was (and I’ve said this to Cynthia) I said, “I have no control over this.  All I can do is make the landing as easy as possible for Cynthia.”  We did a lot of photoshoots together, and I had flowers waiting for her, and I did everything possible to make sure that she knew that she had a friend and that she had somebody that was going to make it as easy as possible.  It was rough because a lot of the trolls on social media were just awful to her… just brutal, and she goes, “I have thick skin.  I can take it,” and then a week later, she goes, “I’ve closed all my social media accounts!”  (Laughs)  It’s been fun to watch those guys turn around and go, “You have a really special person.”  That wedding stuff was just incredible!  She came so prepared and she knocked it out of the park.  Cynthia has been wonderful.  I love them both.  I love her the reddest, and I love Michelle the bluest, and together I love them the purplest.  (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

It’s interesting that all the women in his life such as Anna and Nina, all have a soft-spot for Valentin; even though they don’t necessarily want to be with him.  These ladies are just drawn to this dysfunctional guy.

JAMES:  Don’t you think?  Is it that you want to help him, you want to fix him, you see the potential, you want to help him despite himself?  I think that’s what it is.

Courtesy/ABC

Do you think Valentin’s still going to try to win Nina back, or is that done? 

JAMES:  I don’t know.  I do know that the Valentin I know will never shake Nina, and when he loves, he loves forever.  He can be simultaneously in love with Anna whenever she’s near.  I don’t believe he ever truly got over Nina hearing his story and his brokenness and still loving him twice as hard.  Years ago, there was a moment where he said to her the stuff that he’s never said, and Michelle beautifully kissed my tears away and said, “You’re beautiful” to me.   I think in that moment his fate was sealed.  I think he knew that this was his woman forever.  So, I just don’t think that that goes away.  I think he will always carry a torch for Nina, for sure.

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Do you see Valentin becoming darker and darker now that he had found out he is Helena’s offspring?

JAMES:  Well, yes and no.  I remember watching these scenes and we’ve done a lot of this stuff, and you know how easy it is to sort of go, “Let’s go dark, let’s go dark, let’s go more dark,” and after a while, I go, “You know, maybe he does learn something.  Maybe there’s hope for this guy after all.”  Of course, more bad stuff will happen to him, and he will do more bad stuff, because that’s just who he is.  A leopard can’t change his spots, and those are his survival instincts, but there are some new colors, and it’s all a direct result of all of just these horrible things that have happened to him… mostly learning that he is part Helena and he can’t undo that.

Photo: JPI

We saw that Nelle (Chloe Lanier) called and then goes to see Valentin, because she wants to sell her shares of ELQ.  So, obviously he has the potential to become really rich here which is what would give him his power back.  How do you think that will go over with the rest of the Quartermaines? (Laughs)

JAMES:  (Laughs) A lot of the Quartermaine actors have been asking me that in the hallways of General Hospital!  Isn’t that interesting how he’ll just sort of switch families? (Laughs)

Of all the people, just as Valentin’s life is in the gutter and he is at his lowest, who should show up with a sort of lifeline, Nelle! How will he go about attempting to gain control of ELQ?

JAMES:  Valentin knows he has to get the majority shares to gain a control of the company, and he has to do it fast before people see that he’s doing it.  So, that’s where Michael E. Knight (Martin Gray) has been.  He’s gallivanting the states rapidly accumulating shares.  (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

It’s been so fun seeing you and Michael Knight on-screen and on a daytime soap together again, as so many remember you as Tad Martin and Will Cortlandt on All My Children.  How has it been getting the chance to work with Michael?

JAMES:  My God, are you kidding me?  He taught me!  He’s the guy who taught me.  I didn’t know how to do this.  Nobody instinctively knows… this is a very unique art form.  It’s more Jazz than anything else, and he showed me how to do it!  Walt Willey (Ex-Jack, AMC) showed me how to do my hair, and Michael Knight taught me how to break down a script!  And, what’s so funny is he is still doing it.  In a scene on GH, when he threw in that line, “From now on, you pay in advance,” I just about fell on the floor!  I thought, “There he is!  That’s the Michael I’ve always known and loved.”

Photo: JPI

Who would have thought that you guys would get to share scenes like that again on soaps?  You just never know in this life who may be wind up back in your orbit.

JAMES:  It’s incredible.  That’s what we say all of the time… “Who would have thought?”  You could never plan something like this and that we’d still be doing it at this point.

Now with Lulu (Emme Rylan) learning that Valentin is not a Cassadine, and Nina apparently moving on to a relationship with Jax, what do you think it will mean for their relationship in raising their daughter, Charlotte?

JAMES:  I think in the short-term, Valentin’s shelved any ideas of getting her out of Charlotte’s life.  He’s sort of putting out the fires in his own personal life.  Charlotte needs a mother in her life, and he’s quite willing to share custody as they always have been.  She seems to be looking at this as an opportunity to paint him as an unfit father, and she wants full-time custody.  So, we’re back to that again.  It looks to me like Lulu is kicking Valentin while he’s down.

Photo: JPI

It was so nice to see you, and some of your GH co-stars such as: Steve Burton (Jason) and Maurice Benard (Sonny) show up for Y&R’s Eric Braeden’s (Victor Newman) 40th anniversary on set celebration at CBS.  It was quite the event; speakers galore, and so many from our industry and beyond in attendance.

JAMES:  It was pretty profound.  Eric has always been kind to me.  I only worked with him on one movie, a western, called The Man Who Came Back, and that was probably 12 years ago.  He has been so complimentary of me in interviews and in his book.  So, if he does that with me, I can only imagine how many dear, dear friendships he has.  So, the fact that everybody showed up like that from the president of CBS Entertainment to local councilmen, and that they were willing to do be there for 2 hours was really proof of how much they love him.  Peter Bergman (Jack, Y&R), who I don’t even think was working that day, came in for it and spoke at the event. There was so much respect shown for Eric and what he has meant to this medium.

Photo: JPI

Your album The Apple Tree was so well-received, and everyone always loves seeing you get the opportunity to sing on General Hospital as well.  Will you continue to put out more music in 2020?

JAMES:  Yeah, that’s the plan.  I have another one that I’m working on.  I have a bunch of songs.  I’m in no rush to get it out.  Unfortunately, I lost Glen Roven, who wrote the cello part for Book of Love, passed away right after the Nurses’ Ball where I played Book of Love, which is really heartbreaking, and then, Michael Sherwood, who helped me with a number of songs on the record passed away right after The Apple Tree came out.  So, I’m a little gun-shy.  But, I’m planning on having something out by December for Christmas.

In closing, what would you say the fans should look forward to in the weeks ahead from Valentin?

JAMES: Look forward to that moment where Valentin is so low that there’s nowhere to go but up!  The comeback is going to be one for the books.

So, what do you think of how Valentin’s life hit rock bottom?  Do you think he will ever win Nina back? Do you think he will takeover ELQ? Share your thoughts on James’ recent performances and his thoughts contained in this interview via the comment section below.

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