Thursday, January 9, 2014

GENERAL HOSPITAL: New year, same old pacing problems

It may be a new year in Port Charles, but I’ve got the same old complaint: Pacing.

Ron Carlivati takes a lot of heat (and then freaks out about it on Twitter) for being a bad writer. I don’t actually think he’s a bad writer. I do think, however, that Carlivati has seriously dropped the ball on a few things.

Carlivati has done some really great things for General Hospital, including bringing back Anna and putting her front and center, giving the vets actual screen time and launching a great umbrella story with the Jeromes.

That doesn’t mean I’m drinking the Kool-Aid, because Carlivati has done some incredibly stupid stuff, as well.

I’m still waiting for Patrick to ask Robin about her time away. Instead, he’s asked her to have a baby and is pressuring her to return to work a mere five weeks after he found out she was alive. Really? How does that make any sense? This is in between him running around and worrying about Sabrina, a woman that wasn’t held hostage and subjected to electro-shock therapy for two years.

Carlivati is so obsessed with propping Sabrina that he took all the momentum he had gained out of
Robin’s return and completely fumbled it. Fans that tuned back in because they loved Robin are quickly tuning back out because Carlivati has made the entire story about Sabrina.

And now we have to deal with a Sabrina pregnancy? Really? Who didn’t see that coming? It was about as obvious as the fact that Britt was carrying Lulu and Dante’s child from the minute she showed up at the Nurse’s Ball pregnant.

If Carlivati wants fans to stop hating Sabrina, this isn’t the way to do it. Fans hate Sabrina because she was shoved down our throats. This story isn’t remedying that situation – it’s just trying to force her further down our throats and lodging her in our stomachs.

As furious as I am about the Robin situation, though, I’m even angrier about the A.J. situation.
A.J.’s return was touted as the revitalization of the Quartermaines. He had entertaining snipefests with Carly and Sonny and a ridiculously cute romance with Liz brewing. Then he was off our screens for months. And now? A.J. is walking around drinking again, with no one in his orbit. How is that entertaining?

Is this the great Q-Revitalization of 2013 that we were promised? And where is Liz is all this? She’s just dusted off to snipe at Britt or prop Sabrina (both Carlivati creations) on a bi-weekly basis, quite frankly. We see her more than Alexis, though, so I guess we should be thankful.

On the flip side, we (finally) are getting some traction in the Silas and Sam story after it languished
on the back burner for months (and months and months). I have a feeling that new cop Nathan (who is ridiculously hot) is somehow tied to Silas’ wife (perhaps a brother?) and we’re going to get some in-depth history on Silas. That’s been a long time coming, though.

Unfortunately, that’s been intermixed with crazy Heather holding someone (this time Carly) hostage again (because that’s a new story), another mob shootout and the world’s most boring teen scene.

I don’t like pushing for people to lose their jobs, but GH has got to cut the cast down if they want to have any sort of sustained momentum in any story. There are easy cuts that can be made at the onset. Ellie and Spinelli are already gone, which is one easy cut. Now Taylor, Rafe and TJ can follow. After that, we can add Olivia, Felix and Sabrina. The cast is still too big, even with those cuts, but that at least kicks things off.

The big cut, though, can come with Franco.

I’m sorry. I adore Roger Howarth. Why they decided to bring him back as Franco is beyond me. Most fans are never going to get behind this character. Ever. Period.

I will never understand why they didn’t bring Howarth back as a Cassidine - -especially in light of Victor’s upcoming return. That was just a huge error in judgment.

What do you think? Are you as annoyed with the pacing issues as I am?


Blogger Fan1972 said...

I'm with you Amanda. I'm very frustrated with most of the storylines and the pacing of them.
1. Heather - for gosh sakes - kill her off already -- her constant escaping from Shadybrook and coming back from the dead (what?!?) and terrorizing people is quite stale. Her 1st return was good but now I just get angry because her storyline is taking from other stories I would rather spend my short but valuable time watching!
2. I'm sick of Sabrina - I understand they "HAD" to write in Castillo's actual pregnancy but it could've been handled different...... better yet - why drag this Patrick-Robin-Sabrina triangle out -- Sabrina and Patrick were actually married (albeit by Lucy Coe) - they had already exchanged the rings and said their I Do's so in the real world, wouldn't that make Patrick a bigamist? No one has addressed that... regardless, end this stupid Patrick and Sabrina thing or have Robin get sick of it and hook up with the hot new detective that transferred in from NYC. I know that there is a kid involved but I am not a big Patrick fan anyways.
3. I'm sick of Felix and his lip pouting around and pushing Sabrina -- this character is no longer necessary.... bye
4. Morgan .... still not a fan - his part of the mob storyline was good for a minute or two - now I'm bored.
5. A.J. -- I agree with you - they way they have written him stumbling around is a waste of a veteran actor. Have him find Carly, kill Heather and get his depressive self a big huge ray of sunshine
6.I'm sad that Tristan Rogers is leaving - again - I love, love, love him but hopefully he doesn't get killed off (which I doubt they will do that- he'll get pulled to a new WSB assistance mission or go visit Sean). That being said, I do love Anna and Duke and their stories right now.
7. Damn it Britt - just tell them it's their baby and move on... I'm tired of NuLu boo-hooing practically every time she's on the scene -- bring Julie back as LuLu and then give her baby!
8. I'm intrigued with the developing Silas story -- Sam and Silas are smoking and I hope it works out - which it should since Sam was married to a mobster who killed people anyways.
9. Ava - bye... can't stand her -- maybe if she was played by someone else, I might invest in her character.
10. I'm ok with the mob war right now but bringing the sniffling little teens into the mix was not in good taste -- I can live without Molly, Raef and T.J. on the scene... none are and will never be worthy like the Quartermaine boys, Robin, Stone, etc. were back in the 80's.
*Jackie Zeman..... please stop getting plastic surgery and fillers!!
*Lucy, just pick Scotty ... you guys were always the better pair!
*Robin , leave Patrick and kick Britt's ass and hook up with Nicholas or just get with the new detective.
*Bye-bye -- Sabrina, Carrrrlllooosss, Ava, Morgan, the teens, Patrick, Felix and Heather.
*Bring Sean Donnelly back
*Kirsten Storms returns from maternity leave and Maxie gets her daughter and Spinelli back.
*Julie Berman comes back as LuLu -- kicks Britts ass and gets her baby back

January 10, 2014 at 3:41 PM 
Blogger tori said...

RH should of stayed on OLTL and taken Kiki with him. Genie Francis a huge fan favorite and vet and is tossed aside for other people from other soaps is just plain disgusting to me!

January 13, 2014 at 7:23 PM 
Blogger Shawna Hay said...

I have been saying for almost a year that the cast is too large. I was excited about Sam and Silas and now I don't care, they took too long getting there. That is the problem with all their stories, they hook you then they stop and by the time they start up again, I just don't care at all.
I found Robin's return exciting until the reveal that centered around Sabrina and Patrick. Patrick had only started dating Sabrina in April and because they wanted drama surrounding Robin's reveal, they rushed Patrick to the altar with her and I didn't believe it for a minute. I didn't believe that Patrick wouldn't take Robin in his arms and never let her go, the minute he saw her. The entire drawn out thing came off as not believable.

I too am terribly disappointed that Ron took the time to show us Robin over the last 2 years fighting to come back to her family, going through electroshock therapy, being locked up in a hospital, nearly killed, attempt to escape...literally fight for her life and to come home and Patrick wasn't concerned about her mental well being enough to ask her where the hell she has been? Who kidnapped her? Did they hurt her? Now, they have Patrick wanting her to return to work and if he knew that she had spent the last 2 years locked in a hospital or locked in a lab working on a cure then maybe he wouldn't be so anxious for her to return to her work as a doctor at the hospital or in the lab.

I don't like Sabrina and I don't like Felix. He doesn't just come off as a Diva but he comes off as judgmental and he spouts off at the mouth about people and things he knows nothing about. If I was cutting characters, they would both be at the top of my list.

Sabrina being pregnant was another bad decision to write the actress's pregnancy into the show. They could have gone without writing it in. Patrick just went through a pregnancy story last year, this is almost a text book don't write it in but RC does it anyway.

Laura Wright also had fantastic chemistry with Sean Kanan. I would have loved to see them pursue AJ and Carly, they were hot and fun. There was also great history to draw on for a Carly and AJ relationship, it could have been awesome to watch.

There is also the issue of Elizabeth, the forgotten character no matter who writes and produces this show. The only people who never forget about Becky are the fans who love Elizabeth and Becky come rain or come shine. They need to find a way to utilize this extremely popular lady.

I could go on and on about all the things wrong with GH at this point but I think I touched on some of my big issues with it and will leave it at that for now. Great Post though, I completely agree with your sentiments.

January 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM 
Blogger Shawna Hay said...

Really quickly...I want to elaborate on, the Franco point....

Another great point you made, Roger Howarth is an amazing actor and he has chemistry with Laura Wright and Todd and Carly were awesome but Franco and her are disgusting. Carly has never forgiven Robin for telling AJ that he was Michael's father back in 1999 and tumor or no tumor there is no way I believe she would forgive Franco. There is no way that a character like Carly who holds grudges and never forgives and forgets would ever be able to white wash Franco's sins and love him. I will never be behind Franco ever and they should cut their losses and let Roger go. I love Roger and wish they had brought him back as someone else.

January 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM 
Blogger Shawna Hay said...

I must have been over the character limit because this was left out of my original post and I think it's important to mention:

I think what GH has truly done is shift the focus of Robin's return off of Robin and onto Patrick. When Scrubs were a couple before Kimberly's exit in 2012, Robin was always the primary in the relationship, she had the history and connections in the canvas. Now, that has been shifted by the writing team and they are telling story for Scrubs based on Patrick's history and connections while Robin was gone. He is now the primary character in the Scrubs relationship. It is such a mistake and even caused fans to sit back and ask over and over when is Sonny going to see Robin. Why has Duke not mentioned it to him and why has he not flown over to her house or the Metro Court to see his oldest and dearest friend who is like a little sister to him. By the time, Robin and Sonny were face to face, the words were all wrong, the scenes weren't nearly enough and the whole moment was lost and felt like a drive by. I was completely taken aback at the lack of care for such an important relationship as Robin and Sonny's. The truth be told, I cared so little about Patrick while Robin was gone. She is the one who I care about. I watched her grow up on the show not Patrick, not Sabrina and not Felix. Robin is where the story should be focused, she is the heart of the story.

January 14, 2014 at 9:38 PM 
Blogger Fan1972 said...

Shawna, you have made fantastic points!
I, too, am more invested in Robin than any of the trivial characters involved in her storyline. She should be the focus, as she always had been. Good point on AJ and Carly, they did have good chemistry and as I said before, have AJ find and rescue Carly and re-build a story from there. RH has been dealt the short straw with both characters. I'm not a fan of Franco but I think there is a place for RH -- like you stated, Laura and Roger have real chemistry, not faked, just as Kelly and Michael do ... they all steam up the screen .. which it has been a long time since GH has had steaminess like that.
I haven't had the chance to watch much this week but one thing I did catch was a possible attraction between NuLu and whats-his-face -the NYPD now PCPD detective -- it was brief and if you didn't pay attention, you would miss it. Hope that's not going to be something to play out.

January 16, 2014 at 3:30 PM 
Blogger Dee Dee Richards said...

I love Sabrina I think the writers made a big mistake not letting Patrina be together. I think scrubs is boring and I never found the charcter of Patrick interesting until he got with Sabrina.Everyone keeps saying how they feel that Sabrina is forced on them thats how I feel about Robin.Can't wait for this baby story to play out. I hope the writers put A.J and Liz back together love them. I also like the new detective. Excited to see what other storylines the writers have in store for us fans.

January 17, 2014 at 8:35 AM 
Blogger Amanda Lee said...

Whether you like Robin or not, she is a legacy character that has ties to more than half the cast and a rich history. She was involved in two of the show's best stories ever. And Robin has paid her dues. She's earned her spot as a top GH heroine. Sabrina was brought on and immediately started eating up airtime -- even though she didn't deserve it. We were told, as fans, that we had to like Sabrina because she was an angel and hate Britt because she was the devil and that backfired. Big time. Sabrina has her fans. I wouldn't say she doesn't. She's also the most hated character on the canvas right now -- and on a cast that boasts Franco and Kiki, that is fairly miraculous.

January 17, 2014 at 1:15 PM 

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