September 8, 2015 at 5:08 pm #429679
How popular is The Chew? If GH gets cancelled, will there be a new soap that is made or will ABC be entirely without soaps? Having four soaps on the air seems pretty thin and yet thats also why ratings are up because of all the cancellations.
The last three new soaps, one was a spinoff with more boring characters, and the vampire stuff ended it. Another was based on a bunch of rediculous stuff(we all know what I’m talking about) aimed at teenagers, and the other was so over the top with too many outside shots and most of it being about a bunch of 20 somethings lifestyles. Two of those three soaps lacked a strong core family, unless it was the Deschannel family. And another lacked realistic storytelling.
B&B did it right, bringing on a core family. Santa Barbara won emmys and it should have never been cancelled(I never watched this show). But something to think about. Two of the last three newer soaps were on NBC. NBC recklessly cancelled Santa Barbara and then cancelled long running Another World over a show that got cancelled months later. How rediculous does that get? It goes to show NBC’s front office was not that good. ABC’s Port Charles lasted 7 years but the vampire stuff and lack of strong actors hurt the show. If they had stronger actors it could have survived. Also, killing off Eve was probably the death nail as she was clearly the show’s best character.
But ABC could do wonders if they allow a new soap to be created should GH, The Chew, or The View get cancelled. It would also allow for some actors out of work to return to soaps. And with so many good ones out there it would be a perfect time to have a new one.September 8, 2015 at 10:18 pm #429681
These are all great points, in theory, but the biggest thing, I would think, is the budgets. It’s so significantly harder to be profitable with a soap compared to a talk show, or even a courtroom show. My guess is, that for that reason alone, any new programming will be some version of the latter two.September 9, 2015 at 5:50 am #429682
Or a game show as CBS has done with Let’s Make a Deal. I’m sure ABC would gladly do that if they had the right property. Also, it’s overly simplistic to blame those factors on Port Charles’ demise when actually a bigger part of it was (like The City and Loving before it) it wasn’t shown until the wee hours of the morning in several markets where the affiliates were using that time to show their local news. If people can’t see it in the first place, the overall quality doesn’t matter.September 9, 2015 at 8:42 am #429683
I was also going to mention that, while NBC was kind of a mess in terms of their soap decisions in the 90s, I think P&G being the owners of Another World was probably a big factor in that show being cancelled when it was. It probably didn’t matter much, though. It’s hard to guess what NBC was thinking. AW, once so popular that it was airing for 90 minutes per day (kind of mind-boggling), wasn’t performing as well as some of the most-watched soaps, but DAYS had been up and down over the years and got lucky in the 90s with Jim Reilly’s brand of crazy. I could see the network thinking that was the wave of the future and starting up Passions, figuring that the show would either prove a hit for the same reasons DAYS got huge under Reilly or be a bust. Sunset Beach probably seemed like a good gamble because if was Aaron Spelling and they had only half as many soaps as ABC and CBS at the time. But the network had cancelled Generations in 1991 and Santa Barbara in 1994, so it didn’t seem like they were actually interested in having more than a couple of hours of soap programming in the long term.
But I’d say now NBC almost seems the most likely to have a new soap start airing. Maybe that’s just because they cancelled all their other soaps the earliest and so are the least recent network to make any cancellations? CBS seems very happy going to the game show/talk show well, they’ve got a few successful ones to draw around. Their daytime programming block is doing the best in terms of ratings overall, and they’re probably happy with things as they are. ABC ditched AMC and combined the things they thought were worth saving about OLTL into GH, then tried to produce another show that would allow them to cancel GH and fill its slot. NBC is affiliated with some of the networks airing Spanish telenovelas, and Ken Corday was involved in some venture where something was being developed along those lines. It’s the least hard to imagine that that could somehow lead to trying a new daytime soap on NBC eventually.
That said, it seems unlikely there will be another soap opera soon, if ever.September 10, 2015 at 3:30 pm #429684
The late 70s to early 80s is known for being a period of excess. The shift in the soaps during this era exemplifies this “excess” mentality.
Prior to 1975, soaps were 30 minutes. The actors were relatively unknown and the sets were basic. Soaps were relatively inexpensive to produce.
During the late 70s, many soaps expanded to an hour. Sets became more elaborate. Publicity increased. Soap stars, superstars, and super couples emerged. The stakes were raised. In an effort to compete, soap budgets increased dramatically.
Unfortunately, these changes took place while America was undergoing social and technological shifts that would gradually erode soap viewership. It took decades, but in the 21st century, the shifts set in place during the late 70s and 80s eventually caught up with the soaps, resulting in the cancellation of juggernauts GL, ATWT, AMC, and OLTL in quick succession.
If the networks were to start over following the inexpensive model of the 70s, I think a new show could be successful. But everyone in the soap industry seems locked in to the 80s model for soaps and that seems unlikely to change.September 14, 2015 at 11:13 am #429685
I don’t think the numbers that the American broadcast networks currently have—four—will expand.
That would take a reascendence of the genre. And it would take network television having a renewed interest.
Any new daytime soaps—on ABC, CBS, and NBC—would likely manifest after the cancellation of an existing series.September 15, 2015 at 11:17 am #429686
I doubt any new network soap will ever be made.
ABC will not cancel GH to start up a new soap….GH is lucky THE REVOLUTION failed miserably, otherwise it would be cancelled right now. ABC was fully going to cancel GH to make way for KATIE….however what they didn’t anticipate was THE REVOLUTION tanking so hard…so instead that show got the boot and ABC saved GH.
When NBC pulled the plug on PASSIONS in 2008 and then basically stated DAYS would not survive their contract ending in 2009, everyone believed fully NBC was leaving daytime for goodd…but DAYS is still airing 6 years after their own network president said they would pull the plug. Who really knows where the future goes, but NBC has seemed very content on having a 1 soap lineup and DAYS has been making good money for NBC and Sony. Furthermore, if NBC cancels DAYS…that would be surrendering their final afternoon hour back to the affliates…this would mean NBC would have no network programming control after 11AM and before 8PM (outside of Nightly News).
CBS is strong with Y&R/B&B…they won’t be going anywhere, but I don’t see CBS bringing on another soap…their lineup is basically unstoppable, so why mess with a good thing.October 2, 2015 at 8:54 pm #429687
In the near future, no, probably not. However, it is possible some 10-15 or 20 years down the line that things could change and soaps could suddenly make a comeback, resulting in some new series being ordered. But that is probably unlikely.