Friday, August 30, 2013

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Death and resurrection . . . and a few things in between

There are two things everyone seems to be talking about on the ‘General Hospital’ message boards these days.

The first (and most important, in my book) is the imminent return of Robin Scorpio-Drake. The second is the birth of baby Georgie Jones Spinelli. Coming in at a very faint third is the murder of Connie Falconeri.

Let’s start with that, shall we?

Connie’s death really didn’t generate a lot of buzz, as far as I can tell. She wrote the letters A and J in her own blood before dying – and the writers have been going out of their way to make it look like AJ killed her – but fans sagely figured out that could easily be Ava Jerome (or anybody else, for that matter) before Connie even died.

I know Kelly Sullivan had fans, but killing Connie off made a lot of sense. She didn’t really have any strong ties on the canvas anymore and the character practically lifted out. And the cast is still way too big.

As far as I can tell, the only people that actually believe AJ killed Connie are the ones that have never watched soaps before – so the story isn’t exactly lighting the message boards on fire. In other words: Most people just don’t care.

On the flip side, the birth of a baby did set tongues (err . . . fingers) wagging on message boards. This
story seems to have fired up fans on both sides of the debate.

Some people desperately want Maxie and Spinelli to reunite and get their baby. Others want Spinelli to get the baby alone – and Maxie to (finally) get in some sort of real trouble.

While many fans are lamenting poor Lulu and Dante’s imminent pain – others are complaining about the heavy-handed writing, which kind of painted the duo as villains in their treatment of Maxie. How anyone can fault Dante and Lulu in this scenario is beyond me – but I’m fairly certain that the baby Britt is carrying is their’s – so they’ll get a happily ever after at some point.

On a side note, I can’t tell you how offended I am that Britt is going to claim Brad as the father of her baby. We all knew it wasn’t Patrick, but do the writers really expect us to believe it’s Brad? He’s gay, for crying out loud. That’s not even a remotely feasible red herring.
That brings us to Robin’s return. Reports have Kimberly McCullough starting to film in mid-September, which means she should be on our screens a few weeks later. I would estimate that 75 percent of fans are thrilled by the announcement of her return.

The other 25 percent? Disgruntled Sabrina fans.

I have seen some theories about Patrick actually being torn between the two women – almost all of which were floated by Sabrina fans – but I can’t honestly see that happening. Patrick and Robin were together for years. Patrick was devastated by the loss of his wife and – a year and a half after her death – he still wears his wedding ring. The grieving process for Patrick has been remarkable for a soap – which usually has people moving on mere weeks later.

My Sabrina hate is legendary, so I know I’m biased, but I have never believed any aspect of this
relationship. I don’t think that Patrick is going to have a problem running (not walking) back to his wife. To me, his relationship with Sabrina has never seemed like anything but convenience. Everyone wanted him to be with Sabrina, she was good with his daughter, and she didn’t make him want to gag. That’s not love.

I still think Jason Thompson could be leaving and they’ll write Robin and Patrick off into the sunset together. Either way, though, I don’t think there’s any feasible way Patrick would even consider not reuniting with Robin.

Of course, this is a soap, so Sabrina will probably end up pregnant. She’s such a saint, though, she’ll probably willingly step aside to let Patrick be happy with his family. I hear someone has been cast with ties to her anyway which will (hopefully) spin her in another direction. I'm guessing she's being spun right towards the Jeromes.

I’m just glad my girl Robin is coming home.

What do you think? What were you most worked up about on GH this week?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

GENERAL HOSPITAL: It's official! Robin is (finally) returning home

The soap gods have seen fit to smile upon me. Finally.

Yes, that’s right ‘General Hospital’ fans – Kimberly McCullough is returning to Port Charles this fall.

Hallelujah! Robin Scorpio is returning home – and it’s not for a short stint.

It’s been confirmed by Soap Digest that McCullough has signed a contract and she will be reuniting with her onscreen husband, Patrick, and daughter Emma in the next few weeks.

Everyone can breathe a sigh of relief, because Sabrina will be out of Patrick’s life as soon as possible. Do I sound a little mean? My Sabrina hate is legendary, so get used to that.

I have been lamenting for months that I wanted Robin back on canvas and I was hopeful that it was in the works. Of course, that was when it was being rumored that Jason Thompson (Patrick) might be leaving the show.

Now, of course, I want Patrick to stay and fix his family. Yeah, I’m fickle that way.

As long as Patrick isn’t with Sabrina – I don’t really care how the reunion works. Okay, that’s not exactly true. Here’s how I see it:

Someone is obviously working on a cure for Jerry Jax and Luke is going to be searching for that cure.
Since we know Jerry has Robin, I’m guessing that either Holly (in her pursuit of Jerry and Dr. Obrecht) or Luke in his pursuit of Jerry will stumble upon a very alive Robin – who will be working on a cure for Jerry. She’ll be (conveniently) able to save Luke, too.

In an ideal world, I would like Robert to wake up and go find his daughter – killing Faison, Jerry and Dr. Obrecht in the process. On the flip side, though, I would kind of like to see individual emotional reunions with Anna, Robert, Sean Donnelly, Patrick and Emma.

It’s a tough call. I’m not 100 percent sure how I want her to be discovered – just that it better happen sooner (rather than later). Each minute that Patrick is tied up with the insipid Disney princess I want to smack somebody – mainly Sabrina.

Now, since this is a soap, I wouldn’t be surprised if Sabrina either goes psycho, like Lisa Niles, or we find out she’s got a hidden past, like Britt. I don’t really care either way – but I’m hoping they give the girl an edge.

Either way, I’m just happy my girl is coming home.

What do you think? Are you happy Robin is coming home?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

When does your favorite CW show premiere?

 The CW is one of those networks that I used to love – but now grow tired of pretty quickly.

When looking at their fall lineup, it’s hard to see any rhyme or reason.

For example, I have no idea why they didn’t pair ‘The Vampire Diaries’ spin-off with the original. Pairing it with ‘Supernatural’ – the little show that could – isn’t completely out of left field, but it does seem weird to me.

The CW is never going to get huge ratings – but the network does take huge risks. That, at least, is something.

So, when does your favorite CW show premiere?

Thursday, Oct. 3
8 p.m. – The Vampire Diaries
9 p.m. – The Originals

Monday, Oct. 7
8 p.m. – Hart of Dixie
9 p.m. – Beauty and the Beast

Tuesday, Oct. 8
8 p.m. – The Originals (regular timeslot)
9 p.m. – Supernatural

Wednesday, Oct. 9
8 p.m. – Arrow
9 p.m. – The Tomorrow People

Thursday, Oct. 10
8 p.m. – The Vampire Diaries (regular timeslot)
9 p.m. – Reign

Friday, Oct. 25
8 p.m. – The Carrie Diaries

Thursday, August 15, 2013

When do your favorite cable television series premiere?

It's fair to say that, in general, cable television shows are more popular than network television shows
these days.

I know a lot more people that are excited about the returns of 'The Walking Dead,' 'American Horror Story' and 'Boardwalk Empire' than are excited about the return of 'Grey's Anatomy.'

Between the quality -- and the fact that most cable television seasons are much shorter (and don't boast huge breaks in the middle of the action) -- the cable television market is blowing up.

So, when does your favorite cable show premiere?
Wednesday, Sept. 4
10 p.m. – It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, FX
10:30 p.m. – The League, FX

Friday, Sept. 6
9 p.m. – Boardwalk Empire, HBO

Friday, Sept. 13
9 p.m. – Haven, SyFy

Wednesday, Sept. 25
10 p.m. – South Park, Comedy Central

Sunday, Sept. 29
10 p.m. – Masters of Sex, Showtime
10 p.m. – Eastbound and Down, HBO
10:30 p.m. – Hello Ladies, HBO

Sunday, Oct. 6
10 p.m. – Witches of East End, Lifetime

Wednesday, Oct. 9
10 p.m. – American Horror Story, FX

Sunday, Oct. 13
9 p.m. – The Walking Dead, AMC
10 p.m. – The Talking Dead, AMC

Thursday, Oct. 17
9 p.m. – White Collar, USA
10 p.m. – Covert Affairs, USA

Sunday, Nov. 3
9 p.m. – It Takes a Choir, USA

Saturday, Nov. 23
10 p.m. -- Atlantis , BBCA

Sunday, Dec. 1
10 p.m. – Ripper Street, BBCA

Sunday, Dec. 15
9 p.m. – Psych: The Musical, USA

Saturday, August 10, 2013

GENERAL HOSPITAL: The mob returns – and it’s okay

For years, ‘General Hospital’ has been ruled by the mob. 

For years and years and years and years.

It got really old.

What’s interesting about ‘General Hospital’ is that you can actually trace to history of the show and pinpoint where the ratings started to plummet. It happened to coincide with Sonny, Carly and Jason – and their mom shenanigans – and the hostile takeover they purported on Port Charles.

The problem wasn’t necessarily the mob. The problem was that the mob was everything.

Soaps are meant to be over-the-top. You have grand galas with murder mysteries and mysterious virus infections. You have switched babies and hot love triangles.

For a good decade, all those things revolved around the mob, and that was totally unbelievable.

The moment that most sticks out to me was when Jason took a speedboat out to Spoon Island to save the day. Yeah, Jason, the mob enforcer.

Sonny and Jason were made out to be these huge heroes – when the real heroes like Jax, Ned and Mac were shoved to the side.

It got old.

When Ron Carlivati took over, the mob took a backseat right away. It was a breath of fresh air.

I’m not pretending for a second that all of Carlivati’s stories were good. He went to his ‘One Life to Live’ well far too often. We had Connie and her multiple personalities, the nonstop propping of Sabrina (the new Natalie) and the introduction of the lost Ford brother (new Morgan).

What Carlivati has done right, though, is bring back the vets. Sure, they’re not getting enough airtime, but that’s because the cast is far too big. That’s a whole other argument, though, and I’ve lamented it so many times I’m even bored with it.

Carlivati’s newest endeavor, though, the reintroduction of the Jeromes does something that none of the other mob stories have done before: Mine GH’s rich history.

New fans probably don’t realize that the mob in GH hasn’t always revolved around Sonny. Decades ago, the Jeromes ran the mob – and Frank Smith ran the mob – and Luke was involved with the mob. By reintroducing the Jeromes, Carlivati is launching a mob story that can easily involve more than half of the cast.

I know there’s some Kiki fatigue on the message boards, but I’m liking her more than I ever had. Kiki
being a mob child and being involved with the offspring of two mob children is the stuff great soap stories are made of.

Bringing back Julian Jerome – and making him Sam’s father – was a genius move. Fans have been complaining for years that they didn’t know who Sam’s father was. And, while I was sick to death of Sam fans trying to tie the character to legacy characters like Robert, Sean and Duke, this is a legacy character that drives story without ruining the history of a beloved character.

This umbrella storyline anchors Kiki, Ava and Silas to the canvas – in a good way. Silas is Kiki’s father and his romance with Sam will now be interesting because the uncle of his daughter is also the father of his soon-to-be girlfriend.

Kiki has a new father figure to bond with, an uncle to get to know, and two fighting mob offspring to choose between.

Sonny has a new enemy, one that has ties to Duke and Anna. This also opens the door for the reintroduction of Lucas – Julian’s biological son and Carly’s adopted brother. Lucas is also a gay character that might be able to revitalize the lagging gay story between Felix and Brad right now.

That’s good storytelling, in my book.

That brings us to our other big story: Luke’s search for a cure.

On Friday, longtime fans were blessed by the return of Sean Donnelly. Sure, he’s in a wheelchair, but
I have a feeling he’s suffering from the same ailment as Luke and that’s why he has the cure Luke needs.

Sean Donnelly has a rich history with a number of the characters on the GH canvas right now, including Luke, Anna, Duke, Holly and Mac. All we need is Robert to wake up from his coma and I’d be in 1980s heaven.

I know I could be wasting my wishes, but I am desperate to believe that Luke and Sean are going to join forces to find Jerry – and stumble over Robin in the process. For the love of all that’s holy, bring Robin home.
I am more than happy to watch Sean and Luke rescue my girl and bring her home to her family. Robin adds a whole other aspect to Port Charles and, if the rumors are true and Jason Thompson is leaving the show, I want Robin and Patrick to get their happily ever after.

Also, if you resurrect Robert and bring him and Sean back to Port Charles, they also have ties to the Jeromes. Do you see how that works?

Of course, the big problem with all of this is the bloated cast. I know I said I wasn’t going to discuss it, but it is a problem. This cast has got to be cut. Period.

There are a lot of unnecessary characters floating around Port Charles right now. We know Connie is
going, which will heat up the mob war between Sonny and the Jeromes, but we need quite a few more characters to get out of town.

I nominate Britt, Sabrina, Spinelli, Ellie, Maxie, Olivia, Sean and T.J. I know some of those characters have fans – but there are more important characters out there and some hard cuts have to be made. In addition, I would cut Franco. I love Roger Howarth, but his return has been a dud. Why didn’t they make him a Cassidine? Why bring him back as such a loathsome character? A brain tumor didn’t make me love Jonathan on ‘All My Children’ and it’s not going to make me love Franco.

The good thing is, GH is “must watch” television for me again. That’s a definite step in the right direction.

What do you think? Are you looking forward to the new mob war?