While responding to regular Daytime Confidential reader Erica's Evil Twin in the First Impressions post regarding the returns of Kelly (Gina Tognoni) and Adrianna "Bitchy Bangs" Cramer (Melissa Fumero) to One Life to Live, a thought hit me. No, I didn't hit it back, but that's beside the point. Wouldn't it be gnarly if OLTL snagged Jon Hensley and Michael Park— the two biggest male leads on soon-to-be defunct CBS sudser and OLTL timeslot competitor As The World Turns— to re-create the roles of Kevin and Joey Buchanan, respectively when ATWT ends this coming September?
ATWT's ratings have spiked since just before the cancellation announcement was dropped. Come September, some 2.5 million displaced Oakdale lovers are going to be needing a soap home. Now while I sincerely doubt they would all flock to Llanview simply on the strength of the two actors who portray the Snyder cousins heading over to ABC, a sizeable chunk just might decide to sample OLTL if it meant being able to keep seeing Hensley and Park. Call it the Crystal Chappell Benchmark.
Now granted, Chappell was returning to Days of Our Lives (a soap on which she was wildly popular during her first stint in the early 90's) following Guiding Light's end, so it could be argued that lapsed Carly Manning fans, who had never even watched GL, did as much for the soap's ratings as fans of Chappell's GL character Olivia, but let's face it—we know it was mostly the Otalia fans who tuned into DAYS for Chappell!
Bringing on popular stars from other soap operas in hopes of luring audiences to other shows is always a risky proposition. Sometimes it works, i.e. the Passions gang joining DAYS and Chappell returning. Sometimes it doesn't, i.e. Beth Ehlers on All My Children, but with OLTL's ratings in the basement, it couldn't hurt. Now it goes without saying that the Crystal Chappell Benchmark could be readily applied in luring Roger Howarth back to OLTL, but I think even Chuck Pratt would realize that would be a good idea, so there is really no need to make a separate blog post pointing out the obvious.
Wishful Storytelling: A vengeful Kevin, portrayed by Hensley, hires Tea Delgado (Florenzia Lozano) to help him get custody of Zane when his marriage to Kelly emplodes. Sparks fly between the ex-politico and the Latina legal eagle, much to Kevin's arch nemesis Todd's (Trevor St. John) chargrin. What irks Todd even more, is how quickly his estranged daughter Danielle (Kelley Missil) warms up to to the new man in her madre's life.
Meanwhile, Joey, as played by Park, returns to support Kelly against his brother, picking up with Kelly where they left off before she cheated on him with his big bro. Joey is rocked to his core when he meets his dad Clint's (Jerry Ver Dorn) new fiance, Kimberly Andrews, (Amanda Setton) flashing back to one helluva raunchy night he shared with Kim and some girl named Stacy, following the duo's burlesque performance at a buddy's bachelor party a few years before Joey found Jesus! Kim and Joey agree to keep their clandestine past a secret from Clint, realizing that learning of yet another of his lady friends having bedded a relation might be more than the old cowpoke's ticker can take. Too bad David (Tuc Watkins) is eavesdropping...
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