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"General Hospital" and "The Revolution" are both fighting for a spot on the fall 2012-2013 schedule on ABC Daytime, although neither appear to be making a solid case for themselves.
Prior to our posting the press release from the Disney/ABC Television Stations Group which revealed the premiere date of "Katie," Soap Opera Network learned via its sources that ABC had quietly been informing their affiliates of the pending cancellation of "The Revolution," which has greatly underperformed in key demographics and viewership compared to the series it replaced ("One Life to Live") back in January.
Call it the case of a pissed off audience or call it a fluke, but whatever it is the mystery of where "General Hospital's" audience went by its Friday, March 2, 2012 episode is up in the air.
On June 6, 2011, ABC finally announced (after months of rumors) that it had signed a deal with former "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric to host a new daily syndicated talk show, and that said show would replace veteran soap opera "General Hospital" in the 3:00 PM ET/2:00 PM PT/CT timeslot. While initially the decision brought fear to soap opera fans, who only two months prior learned that ABC Daytime's two other veteran soaps ("All My Children" and "One Life to Live") would be replaced by two new food and lifestyle centered talk shows ("The Chew" and "The Revolution"). Now nearly a year since the announcement, it looks like Katie Couric may just be the lifesaver "General Hospital" desperately needs.
"General Hospital" is the only soap opera left on the ABC Daytime schedule and is also the longest running dramatic series in the networks history. Unfortunately, the soap is facing the same cancellation danger that its former network counterparts ("All My Children" and "One Life to Live") faced just over a year ago before ABC officially announced the two would go off the air in a press release. Before any decision on the future of "GH" is ultimately made, the drama series is showing an uptick in key demos and viewership.
As in previous weeks, ratings for soaps are unavailable at press time but the numbers are out for talk shows including "The Chew," "The Talk" and "The View."
As previously reported, ABC soap opera "General Hospital" will lose its coveted 3:00 PM ET/2:00 PM CT/PT timeslot beginning in September 2012 when the network hands the hour back to its local affiliates. The move will leave ABC's daytime lineup with just three hours left to program with "The View" already secured in the 11:00 AM ET/10:00 AM CT/PT slot. New talk shows "The Chew" and "The Revolution" will go head-to-head with "General Hospital" when it comes to the almighty dollar (ie. which show brings in enough income relative to cost) in a battle for the remaining two hours (1:00 PM ET/12:00 PM CT/PT; 2:00 PM ET/1:00 PM CT/PT). In place of "GH" beginning in September 2012 will be the new Disney/ABC Domestic Television syndicated series "Katie," hosted by journalist Katie Couric, which was just cleared in over 60% of the country just six weeks after the sales period began.
With the cancellations of "All My Children" and "One Life to Live" back in April it was unclear at the time as to where their replacement shows "The Chew" and "The Revolution" would film their daily episodes. Now with "Chew" filming in New York and soon "The Revolution" set to begin filming in New York as well, Soap Opera Network has learned that ABC Daytime is shifting much of its operations to New York City including talent management and media relations.
You may be asking yourself why in the world would we be doing a ratings reflection that highlights ABC's canceled "All My Children" as ranking second in households (amongst all soaps) for the season when the show has already gone off the air with its last episode airing on Friday, September 23 and talk show "The Chew" already replacing the soap in its old timeslot. If I were to tell you that because ABC scheduled the series finale of "AMC" during the first week of the 2011-2012 television season that the soap would remain in the season-to-date rankings until September 2012, would you believe it? You better!
Ratings for the week of October 3-7, 2011 have not come out for soap operas as of this writing, but ratings for "The Chew" are! The talk show that replaced "All My Children" in the ABC Daytime lineup is now down to an average of just 1.78 million viewers tuning in for cooking advice according to Marc Berman of TV Media Insights.