TVLINE is reporting that former GH writer and creator of Ryan’s Hope Claire Labine has died at 82 years old. No known cause of her death has been released.
Labaine is a nine-time Emmy winner, winning eight times for her work on RH and another time for her work on GH. Labine’s legacy includes creating “Ryan’s Hope” and her work at GH includes creating the character of Sonny Corinthos, BJ’s death/Maxie’s heart transplant, the Brenda/Sonny romance and introducing the Robin/Stone romance and the HIV storyline.
2016 is the worst.
Claire Labine is one of my all-time favorite soap writers. In the 70s, she wrote Love of Life, which was one of the first serials I watched as a kid. From there, she created and wrote the wonderful Ryan’s Hope. In the mid-90s, she wrote General Hospital; that era of GH was amazing as she spun one great story after another. Later, she briefly wrote for OLTL and GL; in both cases, her work was promising, but TPTB did not give her long enough to really make an impact. I thank her for enormous contribution to the genre, for the hours and hours of entertainment. She, along with the late Doug Marland, helped me to define what I consider to be effective and meaningful in a serial.
Michael Fairman on Soaps posted two great GH videos that exemplify her writing. Many have attempted to imitate her stories, but she was the real deal.
Another clip from GH is called Lucy Learns about BJ:
Labine’s writing shows how long-term storytelling works; a casual viewer may not even discern the incredible payoff in this scene. It also shows how she wrote material that gave her actors a chance to give great performances. Brad Maule, Stuart Damon, and Jacklyn Zeman were incredibly talented actors that Guza threw away. And Lynn Herring is just stunning in this clip. Compare this to the nonsense she has been given for the last few years. Labine had a knack for making good use of her characters and writing for the actors.
Very sad news, a cap on a fairly mad week. I can’t believe we lost Labine and Agnes Nixon so close to one another. Man, if there’s an afterlife, the soaps they’ve got there must be unbelievably awesome.
Claire Labine is up there with my all-time favorites, along with Douglas Marland and Agnes Nixon (:
As is usually the case, I so completely agree with robbalto’s post. Ryan’s Hope was great when she was co-headwriter (with Paul Avila Mayer, who co-created the show with her) and fell apart once ABC replaced her. So many great storylines. (Her only misstep: she inflicted Sonny Corinthos on us).
So many great memories. She wrote a great storyline for Robin Strasser’s Dorian during her brief time with OLTL. She knew how to write to bring out the best in the actors on the shows she wrote. Just loved her.