Ratings, Rants and Raves: Soaps Spike; Laura Wright is GH's TRUE Superstar

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Now that I'm finally coming out of the egg nog induced coma I've been in since circa Nov. 28, it's time to catch up on some soap ratings. While these numbers for the week before Christmas came out a while ago, I figured we could still have a bit of fun trying to make sense of them before the latest ratings come out. Whaddya think?




The week of December 13-17, 2010 provided a nice bit of pre-Yuletide cheer for all six soaps on the air. (Source: Soap Opera Network). Who knows if it was all the kids off school, or the 'rents taking some time off from work, but whatever the cause, these numbers were a nice change from the norm.

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CBS Daytime's The Young and the Restless did bofo for the week. Y&R went up 192,000 total viewers and was up year-to-date a whopping 430,000, proving some "client soaps" can still deliver. Y&R also went up one-tenth of a point in households. The head scratching part is the sudser fell one-tenth of a point among the coveted women 18-49 demo, however the Maria Arena Bell-helmed sudser went up two-tenths of a point among women 18-34.

You know what my New Year's wish is? I want Madison Avenue to finally realize that Baby Boomers are the ones at home during the day watching soaps, and stop putting so much pressure on these shows to deliver viewers who haven't gone through menopause.

Y&R was on FIYA the week in question. From Lauren and Michael (Tracey Bregman and Christian LeBlanc) catching Jill (Jess Walton) walking Colin (Tristan Rogers) like a Dingo at Fenmore's, to Nick (Joshua Morrow) attacking his big sis Victoria (Amelia Heinle) and Billy (Billy Miller) about the Restless Style article on that hot mess Sharon (Sharon Case), then bedding his ex-stepmama Diane (Maura West), the soap had it going on for a change. My only gripe was the snoretastic, plotty "Ronan is dying" saga. Uber talents Eden Riegel and Jeff Branson deserve so much better. Come on, Maria!

Y&R's baby sis, The Bold and the Beautiful went up 174,000 total viewers. B&B went up two-tenths of a point in households, but held steady among women 18-49. B&B continued to impress the week before Santa squeezed down our collective chimney, or was that Santo? 

The increasingly-villainous Whip (Rick Hearst) arranged for B&B's hottest pairing Brooke Logan (Katherine Kelly Lang) and her stepson Thomas (Adam Gregory) to be photographed in a compromising position that week. Then, you had Liam (Scott Clifton in his breakout role) struggling to come to terms with his new distinction as Son of the Pimp aka Bill Spencer, Jr. (Don Diamont).

Now for what I'm not liking. Can someone please explain to me why Amber Moore (Adrienne Frantz) has regressed 10 years in terms of character development? I understand B&B's top dude Brad Bell created the character and no doubt knows her better than anyone, but it's really hard to forget everything Amber went through in Genoa City that humanized her, in order to buy her as the same old blonde bimbette from yesteryear.



What about Little D? She left GC to protect the kid, now she isn't giving him a second thought as she tramps around causing trouble among B&B's Noxema set. Frantz definitely still looks young enough to play the spoiler in YA stories, but seriously, Amber's gotta be pushing 35! It's time for her to grow the eff up and get a big girl story.

Despite my displeasure with Amber's story, B&B is the perfect, bite-size soapy treat these days. If you are a lapsed viewer, or someone mourning the loss of one of the P&G soaps, you should give the sordid, campy-yet-heartfelt saga of the Forresters, Logans, Marones and Joneses a chance in 2011.

Days of Our Lives went up 21,000 total viewers the week of Dec. 13-17. The soap held steady in households and among women 18-49. I have to admit DAYS has me feeling all magenta again, which I suppose is appropriate since that's the color of the majority of the sets. 

I am so sick and tired of the Perils of EJ and Samantha I don't know what to do. The week in question, it was discovered that Little Johnny had something gravely wrong with his eye, which of course provides EJ an even greater opportunity to rip Sami's heart out episode after episode, until they ultimately have angry sex and she gets knocked up again. Then, they can terrorize each other over another child. So. Over. This.

James Scott and Alison Sweeney have enough chemistry between them to be spokespersons for eHarmony (I smell a tie-in), but I can no longer suspend my disbelief that two people who obviously still want to jump one another's bones, would continue to do such unholy things to each other. There has to be a way to move this forward.

It was nice to see Abe and Lexie (James Reynolds and Renee Jones) get a bit of story love this week.  I would love to see Lexie cheat on Abe with Ben (Ty Treadway), resulting in a nasty custody battle for Theo. Bring back Celeste (Tanya Boyd) and pair her with Abe (Think: Julie fighting her mama Addie over Doug) and we'd have a ball game!

Over at ABC, General Hospital went up 186,000 total viewers over the previous week and was up 57,000 year-to-date. GH held steady in households—tied in last place with its ABC sibs—but went up two-tenths of a point among women 18-49. Looks like fans turned in to see the return of Jerry Jacks (Sebastian Roche) and the reveal of The Whovillian, er The Balkan.

Laura Wright (Carly) owned my girl Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo in the scenes where Carly confronted Brenda about what she did to make The Balkan and Jerry descend upon them. I don't know if it's the way Bob Guza is writing her, or if it's an acting choice, but this is not Brenda Barrett!



I am fed up with all of those fragile, tragic glances and all the eye-watering. I want Bitch Nasty Brenda who would call Carly out for being trailer trash, and although she loved Sonny (Maurice Benard) to distraction, she never let him off the hook when he was doing dirty. Whatever self help book Bren-Bren read in Gay Paree, she needs to throw that ish out, PRONTO!

One Life to Live went up 168,000 total viewers over the previous week and was up year-to-date 103,000. OLTL stayed the same in households, but managed to edge up a tenth of a point among women 18-49.

OLTL was jam-packed, soapgasmic goodness the week of Dec. 13-17. Eddie Ford's (John Wesley Shipp) dead body was discovered. Rex (John-Paul Lavoisier) rescued Nora (Hillary B. Smith) and Inez (Jessica Leccia) bored Bo into a coma. Okay, she actually drugged him, but what evs.

OLTL's Number One Stunner for the week was that doggone Eddie Alderson (Matthew). That kid can ACT, do y'all hear me? Matthew's rage-filled, scenic drive through the Llanview night was FIYA, FIYA, FIYA! Forget Matthew being the next Clint, he's the next Todd Manning (Trevor St. John)! 

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Last but not least, let's dig into what Uncle Nielsen had to reveal about All My Chirren for the week of Dec. 13-17. The sudser went up 143,000 total viewers over the previous week. AMC held steady in households and among women 18-49, tying it's all-time low in that demo for the third straight week. Okay, there's no easy way to say this. All My Children is damn unwatchable.

I'm trying y'all, I really am, but this show is as disjointed as a video vixen, after she decides to make a little extra change by stripping at a rapper's birthday party. I was explaining to my cohort Jillian Bowe last night that AMC is like when you have a big puzzle of The Alamo and lose half of the pieces. You're able to put certain sections of The Alamo together, like the door and one of the windows with Davey Crockett sticking out of it, but you can't find the roof, because your Big Mama vacuumed up all the other pieces you left on the floor to run into the other room and watch Jem and the Holograms.



There isn't one, single, fully-engaging story on this soap opera. Sure, there are moments of brilliance, Alicia Minshew's performances as a grieving Kendall, the chemistry between Jacob Young (JR) and Melissa Claire Egan (Annie), anytime Chrishell Stause, Debbi Morgan, Ricky Paull Goldin, or Jordi Vilasuso (Griffin) are on screen, but as for the show as a whole, it feels almost irrevocably broken.

The week in question we leared Cara (smart addition Lindsay Harley) wasn't really Griffin's lover, she was his sister. Blind Angie (Debbi Morgan) ultimately offered her a job, which will no doubt lead to angst and drama for Jake and Amanda, which is good, but not enough to get me to make AMC Must See Soap Opera for me.



It is blatantly obvious that David Kreizman and Donna Swajeski don't have a clue as to what makes AMC tick. The first thing that struck me about this soap when I first started watching in 1989 was the tremendous amount of heart it had, not to mention the sense of community, both of which are sorely absent from Pine Valley today.

As I said on Twitter the other day, I am over new characters on soaps. Even though I like Cara and Griffin, I would have probably liked them a lot more if they were Anita and Mateo Santos. The castings of Hartley and Vilasuso could have served the exact same purposes, but with historical signifcance for long term fans.



Mateo (as played by Vilasuso) could have returned to Pine Valley after a nasty bust up with Hayley. Green-Me (Rebecca Budig) could have hired him to manage Confusion and turn it into a franchise, without consulting Kendall, causing Mateo and Kendall to butt heads before eventually bumping pretties. 

Mateo's nurse sister Anita (as played by Hartley) could have returned to Pine Valley on the heels of another busted attempt at reconciling with bad seed Bobby Warner, and set her sights on Jake, much to Amanda's dismay. Same result, but with characters we already care about.



I feel the same about Madison (Stephanie Gatschet), Randi (Denise Vasi) et al. While Gatschet is more tolerable as Ryan's (Cameron Mathison) latest incubator, I'd much rather see stories about say Kelsey Jefferson or Laura English than this girl. Maybe I'm alone in this, but AMC seems like an episode of Saved by The Bell: The New Class. Sure, Screech and Mr. Belding are still roaming the halls, but I don't recognize, nor give a good kitty, about anyone else.

Look for another Ratings, Rants an Raves this week!

Numbers are based on Live+Same Day ratings

Ratings for the week December 13-17, 2010

(Compared to Last Week/Compared to Last Year)


Total Viewers

1. Y&R 5,126,000 (+192,000/+430,000)

2. B&B 3,170,000 (+174,000/-67,000)

3. DAYS 2,628,000 (+21,000/-275,000)

4. GH 2,557,000 (+186,000/+57,000)

5. OLTL 2,489,000 (+168,000/+103,000)

6. AMC 2,433,000 (+143,000/-178,000)


HH

1. Y&R 3.6/12 (+.1/+.1)

2. B&B 2.3/7 (+.2/same)

3. DAYS 1.9/6 (same/-.2)

4. AMC 1.8/6 (same/-.2)

4. OLTL 1.8/6 (same/same)

4. GH 1.8/5 (same/-.1)


Women 18-49 Viewers

1. Y&R 1,058,000 (-38,000/-44,000)

2. GH 804,000 (+116,000/-2,000)

3. DAYS 750,000 (+8,000/-145,000)

4. OLTL 629,000 (+57,000/-2,000)

4. B&B 629,000 (-22,000/-150,000)

6. AMC 560,000 (+16,000/-65,000)


Women 18-49 Rating

1. Y&R 1.6/10 (-.1/-.1)

2. GH 1.2/7 (+.2/same)

3. DAYS 1.1/7 (same/-.3)

4. OLTL 1.0/6 (+.1/same)

4. B&B 1.0/6 (same/-.2)

6. AMC 0.8/5 (same/-.1) <- ties low rating (3rd straight week)


Girls 12-17 Viewers

1. GH 32,000 (+11,000/-18,000)

2. Y&R 30,000 (+1,000/-6,000)

3. B&B 22,000 (+7,000/-4,000)

4. DAYS 21,000 (+2,000/-12,000)

5. OLTL 19,000 (+7,000/-11,000)

6. AMC 15,000 (-2,000/+2,000)


Women 18-34 Rating

1. Y&R 1.1/7 (+.2/+.1)

2. DAYS 0.8/5 (+.1/-.3)

3. GH 0.7/4 (same/-.3)

4. B&B 0.6/4 (same/-.1)

4. OLTL 0.6/4 (same/-.1)

6. AMC 0.5/3 (-.1/-.3) <- ties low rating


Men 18+ Viewers

1. Y&R 1,293,000 (+51,000/+149,000)

2. B&B 751,000 (+66,000/+6,000)

3. DAYS 594,000 (-27,000/+27,000)

4. GH 495,000 (+63,000/+1,000)

5. AMC 486,000 (+55,000/-90,000)

6. OLTL 480,000 (+45,000/-14,000)

-------------------------------------

Day-To-Day Ratings - HH/Total Viewers

AMC

Monday: 2.0/2,614,000

Tuesday: 1.7/2,355,000

Wednesday: 1.8/2,374,000

Thursday: 1.9/2,507,000

Friday: 1.8/2,318,000

B&B

Monday: 2.4/3,410,000

Tuesday: 2.3/3,248,000

Wednesday: 2.2/2,999,000

Thursday: 2.4/3,303,000

Friday: 2.1/2,889,000

DAYS

Monday: 2.2/2,973,000

Tuesday: 1.8/2,456,000

Wednesday: 1.9/2,448,000

Thursday: 2.0/2,686,000

Friday: 1.8/2,577,000

GH

Monday: 1.9/2,652,000

Tuesday: 1.8/2,540,000

Wednesday: 1.9/2,449,000

Thursday: 1.9/2,626,000

Friday: 1.7/2,517,000

OLTL

Monday: 2.0/2,755,000

Tuesday: 1.8/2,397,000

Wednesday: 1.8/2,377,000

Thursday: 1.9/2,492,000

Friday: 1.7/2,425,000

Y&R

Monday: 3.8/5,480,000

Tuesday: 3.6/5,084,000

Wednesday: 3.7/5,198,000

Thursday: 3.6/5,123,000

Friday: 3.4/4,743,000

----------------------

For the SEASON September 20, 2010 through December 19, 2010

HH

1. Y&R 3.6

2. B&B 2.3

3. DAYS 2.0

3. GH 2.0

5. AMC 1.8

5. OLTL 1.8

Women 18-49 Rating

1. Y&R 1.7

2. GH 1.4

3. DAYS 1.2

4. B&B 1.0

4. OLTL 1.0

6. AMC 0.9