General Hospital is the sole surviving ABC soap. Daytime television for the network used to consist of three one-hour soaps, and a half-hour show prior to the others. When ABC cut All My Children and One Life to Live, General Hospital fans were worried. The show has been successful thus far, but with a change in power at the network, there is no telling what will happen in the future.
Each season brings new cancellation rumors for General Hospital. A few months ago, there were reports that the show was set to be canceled. That was proven to be false when network executives spoke up about a false report that sent fans reeling. According to Soap Central, General Hospital is likely safe with the changing of hands at the network. Since All My Children and One Life to Live have been canceled, three replacements have also failed. They were not soaps like General Hospital, but talk shows that failed to connect with the audience. While the goal of the new team is to improve the network, they will also be trying to reinforce the shows that bring in the revenue and viewership.
Since General Hospital replaced Ron Carlivati as the head writer, things have been taking off for the show. The overall fan response has been positive, and the new writers are exploring story lines that have not been recycled over and over again. This is incredibly important for General Hospital. It will show the network that the show can sustain viewership, and remain an important moneymaker. Jean Passanante and Shelly Altman have improved the ratings, and they keep climbing every week. With February sweeps in play, this is their chance to shine and show ABC what they are made of. General Hospital was headed down the wrong path just a year ago, and the new writers have managed to turn things around slowly. If that isn’t a sign to the head executives, nothing is.
With the Daytime Emmys coming up, General Hospital has a lot to prove. Several of the story lines used to submit tapes were written by Ron Carlivati. If they can win big, ABC will have no choice but to acknowledge General Hospital is positive for the network. According to Television Week, General Hospital was pre-nominated in several categories. If the show can snag at least a few wins, ABC won’t be able to overlook the soap’s contribution to the successful network.
Right now, the focus is going to be on phasing out programming that isn’t contributing good ratings and bringing in viewership. The new head boss at ABC helped to launch some prime-time dramas, and that may work out in General Hospital’s favor. Channing Dungey made headlines for being the first African-American network president, but she is no stranger to how things work in the television industry.
Fans no longer have to wait on pins and needles to find out if General Hospital will be canceled. As of now, the show is safe. Rumors will swirl around every year, but ABC and the General Hospital executives have gotten better at announcing things to fans ahead of the rumor mill blowing it out of proportion. The changes at the network has had fans a bit uneasy, but it looks like Channing Dungey may be a good thing for soap fans.
While All My Children and One Life to Live will never return, keeping General Hospital on the air is at least a real possibility. With the way the show is going and the amount of interaction from fans, the show is in a good place. May sweeps is the next big event, and it looks like ABC is holding on to see how things fall into place with ratings for General Hospital.
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