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The General Hospital Articles Pages

2002 General Hospital Opinion Articles and Essays!

What they should do on soaps this year by Suzanne
January 2002

Here is what I would like to see soaps do in the future (especially GH, my long-time fave).

Bring in more non-soap writers. Don't just copy other soaps. If you must copy, then do it from a totally original perspective. Port Charles: Tainted Love was not just successful because of the vampire. They didn't just say, "OK, let's jump on the bandwagon ŕ la Passions and do weird stuff". They molded established characters with extremely charismatic guest-stars in a story that hasn't been done before (or at least since "Dark Shadows" went off the air). And unlike Passions, the show was done fairly seriously and not tongue-in-cheek.

Take a little more time to tell your story, the way soaps used to. When a new character comes on the show, take time to let us get to know them and show them interacting with the established characters. Don't force them down our throats every episode and then have them fall in love with someone in two weeks.

Let the characters be friends/partners/neighbors/whatever long before they jump into bed. Otherwise, why should we care when/if they break up or have other crises in their relationships? I like One Life to Live, but I don't care about Keri/Antonio or Al/Jen/Cristian or Sam/Nora or Lindsay/Troy/Nora nearly as much as I'd like to. I like Antonio but he had barely been back when they forced him into a relationship with his brother's ex-girlfriend and then brought in Sofia. Everyone vanished after a while, but I didn't care….and then they bring Antonio back again and right away he's in love with Keri, whom he (and we) just met. Jen and Cristian are horribly boring, mostly because the actress who plays Jen is a blank model-type who can't act. Why should I care if she sleeps with Al, who should be about 9 as far as I can remember…I just barely got used to Al being a grown-up when they switched him with another actor. Who cares about any of them and about who slept with whom? I miss the old Sam and they seem to be forcing the new one into a relationship with Nora just so they can have a triangle with Troy or quadrangle with Lindsay. Put Nora and Bo back together! I loved Colin and the actor is great, and I might like Troy, given some time…I can't see him with Nora, though, since he looks young enough to be her son. Didn't we already do this story with Joey and Dorian? On the positive side, kudos for finally giving Hank and R.J. a story!! Now bring back Viki and Ben, and get rid of Gabrielle (and maybe Max, who seems to switch personalities as often as he does bed mates).

Now, back to GH. The cast is huge and they seem to be trying to pare it down. But they're doing it the wrong way. Instead of getting rid of the talented Jensen Buchanan, how about writing a story for her? At the very least, have a Melissa/Roy/Bobbie triangle because we never really got to see that. One day Roy was with Bobbie, the next day he was with Melissa. So much for true love! Bring Jerry back and make it even more interesting! We don't want to see Bobbie with Scotty again, although Tony might be okay.

Here is how the rest of the story should go: Carly finds Sonny and Alexis in bed (or any compromising position that leads her to think they're having sex) and reneges on her promise to let him adopt Michael. Robin dies (offscreen!) of AIDS, having not told anyone that her HIV turned into AIDS. This starts Mac on a tailspin. Robin's death, Anna's distance, and the breakup with Felicia have taken their toll. Mac starts to lose it and either abuses his authority or just plain starts going mental/hitting the bottle. Even Taggert thinks Mac is going too far. Mac loses his job and starts really hitting bottom (and btw, put John J. York back on contract!). Anna even comes to town at one point to try to help him. Carly, learning that Robin is dead, leaves town to try to work things out with Jason. It is revealed that Courtney is Sonny's long lost sister. Janine leaves town or at least is seldom seen after that. Mike Corbin and Lesley Webber date. Laura worries about her mother dating the mobster's father (who also has gambling problems and a daughter he just learned about!). Later, Rick Webber and his grown son Mike return to town. Rick and Lesley were never divorced, since they thought she was dead. We suddenly have a Rick/Lesley/Mike triangle with lots of flashbacks or mentions of the past with Rick and Lesley. Zander and Kristina hook up, leaving Alexis and Sonny to argue about her little sister dating the mobster-in-training. Ned gets interested in Alexis again and they grow closer. Now there is a Ned/Alexis/Sonny triangle. Jax and Skye get together; he helps her to become less neurotic, but Jax has trouble dealing with her scheming. They get married and he becomes a member of the Quartermaine family, with all that entails. A.J. stops trying to get custody of Michael and works with Jax, Ned, and Skye against Sonny. Monica and Skye come to an uneasy but realistic truce. Felicia falls in love with Taggert and we see his mother around a lot more, and this also adds to Mac's problems. Stavros is discovered to be alive after all. Nikolas and Stefan force Helena to program Stavros the way she did Lucky, so that he is no longer evil. Nikolas and Stavros try to forge a relationship but have to try to negotiate Stavros' freedom (since he killed Chloe). Stavros works out a deal in exchange for putting Helena away and gets probation and community service. This causes problems between Nikolas and Gia, as well as with Alexis and Stefan, who want nothing to do with Stavros, even though he's seemingly reformed. Luke and Laura have problems with Stavros being alive and free, too. Kristina is the only other Cassadine who accepts Stavros so this causes more problems between her and Alexis. I thought of all this in a few hours, so surely the professional writers can give us something just as intriguing, or more!

And for the soap magazines….please stop bashing GH, especially the Cassadines! I love Robert Kelker Kelly and he did an excellent job as Stavros. The writers had a lot of hurtles to overcome, not the least of which was trying to please an over-sensitive public after the 9/11 disaster and subsequent anthrax attacks. They should have given us more credit; we know the difference between real life and a soap opera!

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

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