I think it’s time to bring back my monthly ‘If I were
writing General Hospital
There’s no denying that watching the show has become a chore
(like a break-me-off-a-switch-
someone-is-going-to-get-a-whooping chore). It’s
The ratings are starting to show a progressive slide, too.
When Ron Carlivati first took over head writing duties on
GH, he raised ratings. How did he do it? It was a combination of things. The
biggest being the return of our beloved vets. Fans wanted to see Anna, Felicia,
Frisco, and Robert. The vet returns, in conjunction with the One Life to Live
transplants was enough to inflate ratings.
That’s not the case anymore.
RC has gone off on some wild tangents, and completely
alienated fans. Yes, appealing to new fans is important to keep the genre
alive, but you have to do it without turning off longtime fans. All RC is doing
right now is turning off dedicated fans.
So, let’s play the game. How would I write GH if I was in
* Once Sonny’s culpability in AJ’s murder is revealed, Sonny
goes after Franco. There’s a shootout on the docks, and Franco is wounded and
killed (I love Roger Howarth, but Franco is a dud of a character). Sabrina
witnesses the shooting and goes to the police. In an attempt to avoid jail
time, Sonny has to flee the country. He reunites with Brenda and they move to
some non-extradition country. As long as Sabrina is alive, Sonny cannot return.
As long as Sonny is out there, Sabrina’s life is in danger. She has to go into
Witness Protection and is (thankfully) off of our screens.
* When “Jake’s” memories return, it’s Jason Quartermaine,
not Jason Morgan that awakens. Jason
Quartermaine reunites with Monica and
wants to make amends for his past deeds. He also wants to cut ties with certain
factions – including Carly. While he’ll always be there for Morgan and Michael –
Jason Q is not pro-mob. Since it has become obvious that Liz and “Jake” are
going to fall in love before Jason regains his memory, I would like Jason Q to
move away from both Liz and Sam when he comes around. Everyone knows that Jason
Q wouldn’t touch Sam with a 10-foot pole, and I’ve never believed the Liz and
Jason “love” story. Let’s give Monica some time with her son, and fans the
chance to get used to the new Jason.
* When Robin returns to town, I want her to smack the crap
out of Patrick. This is not a stupid man. So, why, given all that he knows
about the Cassidines and Jerry Jacks, isn’t he suspicious about Robin
voluntarily abandoning her family? Jerry Jacks was one of the individuals
responsible for kidnapping her in the first place – and he just shows up again?
Really? I want Robin to take a step back from Patrick. He’s proven to be
fickle (and apparently stupid) when it fits his needs. How about the romance I’ve
always wanted to see? How about Nikolas and Robin get a chance? Put Sam in a
triangle with Patrick and Silas and see who comes out standing – and no “back-from-the-dead”
women to conveniently muck things up.
* It’s time to kill Ava off in a murder-mystery. I love
Maura West beyond reason, but Ava cannot be redeemed. She shot Connie in cold
blood. She tried to kill AJ in cold blood. She watched Sonny murder AJ, all the
while knowing that he was innocent. She slept with her daughter’s husband. She
tried to poison her daughter’s boyfriend. She framed Carlos and sent him to
jail for her misdeeds. How, exactly, can anyone root for this woman? She’s not
even fun to hate because there’s nothing to like about her. There are plenty of
people who want her dead.
* Have Nina revealed as Ava’s killer. I’m sorry. I know
Michelle Stafford has fans. I cannot watch her, though. All Nina needs is a
mustache to twirl and some rope so she can tie Kiki to the train tracks. The
Nina character was completely unnecessary from the beginning – and then to make
her obviously crazy and evil without giving fans enough time to even try to
like her? Who thought of that braniac idea? Nina is another character without
rooting value because she’s just unlikeable. Reveal her as Ava’s killer and
send her to prison. She’s a huge time suck – and she has no redeeming
qualities. She’s not even funny evil like Heather and Dr. Obrecht.
* Bring Robert back and let him and Anna clean up the mob.
This show is called General Hospital
.The mob should have never been the focal
point. The focus on Sonny, Carly, and Jason is what put GH in constant danger
of cancellation in the first place. Anna’s reunion with Duke has fallen flat
(is he even still in town?) and Robert and Anna are the team to beat when it
comes to bringing down the bad guys. Let them round up the usual suspects –
including Julian – and be done with them.
* Give Alexis and Ned an actual romance. These two sparkle
together – and you can tell the actor and actress like each other. Alexis’
constant need for a “bad boy” often makes me dislike the character. Ned and
Alexis were always fun. Put Alexis back in the ELQ orbit and let her spar with
Tracy, and let Robert and Anna roust Julian Jerome.
* Oust Kiki and Rosalie. Neither are acceptable love
interests for Michael and Morgan. Bring in
Scott, Lucy, and Kevin’s kids and
let the old crash into the new. Those are pairings with history that give the
adults something to do.
* Put Milo in the gay storyline. I’m still not sure what the
writers were thinking by trying to put
Epiphany and Milo together. There’s no
chemistry (even if you could get past the obvious problem with the
relationship). The story isn’t believable because the characters have nothing
in common. I’ve often thought Milo was underutilized. What not make him realize
he’s gay and pair him up with Lucas for an actual love story? Go ahead and keep
Brad in the mix, but send Felix out of town with his BFF and call it a day. As
it is being written now, the all-male love triangle is tacky and full of clichés.
* Have Bobbie run the Brownstone. This gives Bobbie
something to do, and all those shiftless 20-somethings somewhere to live.
Morgan, Michael, Dante, Lulu, Britt, Lucas, Brad, Milo, Nathan, Maxie and TJ
all need a home. Lulu and Dante’s one-room apartment is too small for them –
let alone a baby. Putting everyone under one roof allows for fun and mayhem.
* Bring Jacks back for Carly. He's the only love interest that's ever worked for her. This Franco thing has been a complete dud -- and trying to wedge Carly and Sonny back together has disaster (and ratings upheaval) written all over it. Laura Wright and Maurice Benard have no sexual chemistry. Roger Howarth and Wright do have chemistry -- but Franco is a horrible character. And, say whatever you want about Carly, she would not date the man who kidnapped her child and had her son raped. She's a horrible person. She wouldn't do that, though.
* Send Luke and Laura off into the sunset. The fact that
Tracy can’t tell the difference between Fluke and Luke is telling. As much as I
like Luke and Tracy – and I do – Luke and Laura pretty much have to end up
together. Have her come to town to visit Lulu and realize right away that Fluke
isn’t Luke. Have her stay for the adventure storyline, and then have her and
Luke ride off into the sunset. If Geary doesn’t want to work a full year
anymore, then let him retire. All of Luke’s comings and goings (and, yes, I
know this time he had to have surgery and do not fault him for that – I’m
talking about all of the other times) wear on the story and the viewers.
What do you think? How would you write GH if you could?