General Hospital and Days of Our Lives came roaring back from the bottom of the ratings barrel the week of July 11-15 (Source: Soap Opera Network). Since there's only one sudser to cover over at the Peacock, let's start with DAYS, shall we? The soap opera went up 161,000 total viewers over the previous week, and inched up one-tenth of a point in households. However, DAYS still has miles and Marlenas (Deidre Hall) to go before it sleeps. Even with the aforementioned gains, DAYS was still in last place in households. Among women 18-49, the story was much better for those wacky residents of Salem, USA, as DAYS went up one-tenth of a ratings point for a No. 2 finish in the coveted demo. Among women 18-34, the daytime drama did even better, landing at No.1!
In story, the jig was up for the dastardly DiMeras re: hiring some schmuck to get plastic surgery to look like Rafe (Galen Gering), only to rape Sami (Alison Sweeney), while the real Rafe was held captive. This story has to be one of the worst in soap history, so I am sure fans were just damn glad it is pretty much over and tuned in to see Sweeney do her thing, which she did. Seriously, Sweeney is about to make us rename the Kim Zimmer Award For Turning Shit to Sugar to the Alison Sweeney Award For Excellence In Performing Higley Scripts.
When Sami ripped into EJ (James Scott) she managed to to do the unthinkable; she made this ridiculous story human. Thank. God. It's. Over. Elswhere in Salem, Jackson "Sonny" Kiriakis (Freddie Smith) came out to his Grand Uncle Victor (John Aniston) in some fairly touching scenes. Okay, so the dialogue was a little heavy-handed, Sonny is still a refreshing gay character for daytime. He's secure, funny, confident and lacking all the existential angst that plagued previous gay soap teens. Talk about a great addition to the DAYS canvas.
General Hospital, the soap opera without a guaranteed timeslot, went up 173,000 total viewers over the previous week. GH also went up one-tenth of a point in households and among women 18-49. Among women 18-34, GH held steady. The sudser had a lot going on as the last few weeks of ousted head writer Bob Guza's stories began to play out. Sonny (Maurice Benard) found out Jax (Ingo Radamacher) had paid off the court-appointed mediator in the custody case for that little girl who got one of my sweet, baby Jake's organs. So, Sonny did what any good four-time ex-husband and mobster would do. He blackmailed the mediator into drugging Jax, planting coke and X in his suite and basically royally serviced the corporate raider sans lube. Loved it! Kudos to Radamacher for acting his Aussie bum off.
What I didn't love was my Brenda (Vanessa Marcil Giovinazzo) continuing to whine her way through the streets of Port Charles. How many years has Brenda known Sonny? She knows how he rolls! Why get back with him if all she wanted to do was whine and complain about his lifestyle? Sometimes you really can't go home again. Dante (Dominic Zamprogna) saved that idiot Lulu (Julie Marie Berman) from a customer at that tacky brothel which used to be the old Spencer house. I'm sorry, but no whore worth his or her salt would turn tricks in that Pepto Bismol nightmare. This was a pointless story on a gaudy set.
To end on a positive note about GH for the week in question, I LOVED Robin Scorpio (Kimberly McCullough) being named Chief of Staff as her cheating, egotistical hubby Patrick (Jason Thompson) had to grin and bear it. I love Scrubs and am glad they are back together, but Patrick needs to stay knocked down a peg for a little bit longer after boinking that crazy Lisa's (Brianna Brown) equally crazy va jay jay and almost getting the lot of them killed. Poor Spinelli (Bradford Anderson) may never be right in the head again, not that he was ever really right in the head, but I digress.
Even with all of General Hospital's gains ratings-wise, One Life to Live was still ABC's most watched soap for the week. The soap was No. 3 in total viewers and households, however GH did best them among women 18-49. Among women 18-34, One Life was tied with GH. Storywise, Spider Todd (Roger Howarth) infiltrated Sam's (Patrick Gibbons, Jr) birthday party, where he interracted with the women and children who could belong to him, all while Trevor Todd (Trevor St. John) looked on suspiciously. You could almost scratch and sniff your TV screen and smell the tension the set up caused. By the time Spider Todd kidnapped Sam, you just knew you had to tune in for the ultimate Todd vs. Todd showdown, but more on that and the amazetastic-ness that is Gibbons, next week.
Across town, Todd's trashy nieces were showing out something awful and I couldn't get enough of it! Bitch mad Jessica (Bree Williamson) is almost as much fun as Tess. When she slapped the taste out of Natalie's (Melissa Archer) mouth I yelped with glee. My neighbors are so gonna complain to management about me yelling out as I watch OLTL; not that it was all good in Llanview that week. I need that Deanna (Nafeesa Williams) to go search for her mother in the town of Corinth on Loving, or at the bar on Ryan's Hope, because neither of those soaps are on my TV anymore. That baby doesn't know she's on Earth. Not even Nate's (Lenny Platt) 3D abdomen or Austin Peck's sly sense of humor can save this porn pickle. This story would be so much better if it were say Sarah Roberts being forced to do something strange for a piece of change. How's about we wrap this story up so we can spend more time on those Buchanan twins bitch slappin' each other?
All My Children, which saw a nice ratings jump the previous cycle, lost most of those eyeballs to the tune of 103,000. AMC was once again dead last in total viewers, households, women 18-49 and women 18-34. Storywise, the Jane/Erica (Susan Lucci) junk was still just as bad as the Two Rafes on DAYS that same week. Speaking of DAYS, what is the point of turning David (Vincent Irizarry) into Stefano DiMera? There has to be a more creative ways to explain us suddenly seeing dead people in Pine Valley, than David basically having stashed every faux corpse from Dixie to Grandma Kate away somewhere. Also, who had the bright idea to give poor Amanda (Chrishell Stause) a case of the crotch crickets as one of AMC's last storylines on ABC?! Yeah, because that's so what fans want to see one of the show's best couples contend with as it races to the TV finish line.
Jake: Sweetie, it's time to apply the cream the doctor prescribed.
Amanda: You're so good to me (Leans in for a kiss).
Jake (recoils): Let's wait 'til that clears up, okay babe?
I'm enjoying Bianca (Christina Bennett Lind) helping yet another woman realize her inner Sappho. I tell you what, that Bianca Montgomery is the Lesbian Whisperer! Women think they like stick until they're in the presence of Binks and her magic, mystical good-good starts a' calling them like the Sirens of Greek myth.
Sarah Glendening, who I hated on As The World Turns, and balked about being cast on AMC, has grown into quite the decent actress and she and Lind have chemistry. I also love this story being a catalyst for JR (Jacob Young) falling off the wagon and being a jackass to everyone. Young will earn an Emmy nod for his last TV season on AMC; mark my posts. I also love Tad (Michael E. Knight) and Cara's (Lindsay Hartley) warm, familial dynamic. No, I don't want them to play connect the freckles, but they have great friend chemistry. I wouldn't mind Cara ending up with Tad's soon-to-be returning son Jamie (Justin Bruening), but of course that's just more of my Wishful Storytelling. Wow, this is a long Ratings, Rants and Raves, and I haven't even gotten to the CBS soaps! Sheesh.
The Young and the Restless lost a bit of ground in the demos for the week of July 11-15. The sudser tied its all-time low in women 18-49 and women 18-34. I have to blame this on the continued character assassination of what was once one of Genoa City's most beloved residents, Sharon Newman (Sharon Case). While Share Bear's family continued to grieve her, the brunette beauty was having herself a big ol' time at a country hoedown. I mean, and why the hell shouldn't she? So what her children, her paraplegic mama and her brother-husbands all think she died in a car crash? Sharon deserves a good barn bash just as much as the next modern gal!
After being arrested before she could go bobbing for apples or pet another farm animal, Sharon was promptly arrested and escorted back to Genoa City to face the law and her brother-husbands. Adam (Michael Muhney) was so mad when he learned Sharon had shared homemade pie with another, that he threw the memory card that proved she didn't push whatsherface into a live volcano into the roaring, Genoa City river. I just burst into giggles typing that. I wonder does that happen to Maria Arena Bell?
Okay, okay, I will say this, I loved my Villy being ripped apart. The pathos Billy Miller (Billy) and yes Amelia Heinle (Victoria) are conveying further cements my assertion that Villy is the only thing even resembling a supercouple left on soaps.
The Bold and the Beautiful was No. 2 in total viewers and households for the week, but continued to struggle in the demos. B&B was dead last among women 18-34, tied with AMC. Wouldn't it be nice if Madison Avenue didn't stubbornly assume they can't entice viewers over 50 with their advertising, consider most diehard soap viewers are Baby Boomers? Okay, let's talk B&B's stories for that week, since you can't fight city hall or advertising agencies. I really enjoyed the soap this week! As tiring as Ridge (Ron Moss) ping-ponging his ding dong back and forth between Betty and Veronica, er Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) and Taylor (Hunter Tylo) can be, this most recent time felt fresh and new.
I have to say, I am so glad Brad Bell didn't listen to me and have Brooke give into her Taboo chemistry with Thomas (Adam Gregory), even under the influence of a bad batch of Cap'n Crunch Berries (Missed product placement opportunity). I am loving seeing Brooke wield moral superiority over Stephanie (Susan Flannery) for a change. Also, I am enjoying Tylo for the first time since Taylor was briefly paired with Thorne (Winsor Harmon) years ago. Don't eff with Taylor Hayes' kids, Mama Steph! Alright, that's enough typing for now. I am hungry and need to figure out what I'm gonna wear today. See you next Ratings!