Okay, you asked for it. I'm bringing back my "Ratings, Rants and Raves" column. I took a break because the networks and their advertisers appear to be much more concerned about quarterly and year-to-date ratings nowadays, than they are with week-to-week numbers. However, it's still fun and hopefully informative to dissect how each sudser did the previous week, so here goes!
All four daytime television sudsers were down in total viewers the week of June 17-21, according to Nielsen ratings obtained by Soap Opera Network. However, The Young and the Restless, The Bold and the Beautiful, Days of Our Lives and General Hospital were all up year-to-date.
Y&R dipped the most over the previous week, shedding a ginormous 308,000 total viewers! Even still, daytime's top soap was up year-to-date by 151,000 pairs of eyeballs.Y&R fell two-tenths of a point in households and one-tenth of a point among women 18-49. Among W18-34, the soap held steady.
In story, Adam (Michael Muhney) put Sharon (Sharon Case) on blast, over her jealousy of Chelsea (Melissa Claire Egan). Chelsea, meanwhile, grew closer to Dylan (Steve Burton) as "their" baby kicked and Granny Anita (Catherine Bach) schemed to reunite Chadam.
One thing that has bugged me since the new regime took over, is Adam's mistreatment of Sharon. This woman is without a doubt the love of his life — his gothic, Wuthering Heights-esque obsession. Yet now he treats her like some Video Vixen on the set of a "Gettin' Newman Money" video shoot.
Elsewhere in Genoa City, amoral, hypocritical fashionista Chloe (Elizabeth Hendrickson) called it quits with Kevin (Greg Rikaart), only to give him yet another chance to "prove himself" to her. Girl, bye.
It's okie dokey smokey for Chloe to scheme and connive with her BFF to steal a man's child, but Kevin being a bit of a klepto is a deal breaker? So over this pairing — yet I still have love for both characters and actors separately.
Speaking of Chloe, she was on the receiving end of Victoria's (Amelia Heinle) crazed paranoia. The tragically-confused Newman heiress accused Billy (Billy Miller) of cheating on her with his ex and baby mama.
Billy took the nitwit all over town to prove he'd been gambling, not stepping out on her, yet she refused to believe him. She's also refusing to comb her hair again, and that is the biggest problem of them all.
Another major issue I'm having with Victoria, is her latest, ridiculous career move. No one—I repeat, no one—wants to see Victoria Newman Abbott become a children's book novelist. Come on, Josh Griffith, you know doggone well fans want this girl to be the cut-from-the-same-cloth-as-her-daddy power maven Bill Bell always foretold she would be!
Is it really that difficult to write a sustained power struggle at Newman Enterprises for Victor's (Eric Braeden) myriad of offspring? Is it?
Soap fans barely want to watch children on soaps; they certainly don't want to watch someone write books for them. If Y&R is hell bent to revisit the publishing world, bring back Jaime Lyn Bauer as Lorie Brooks, Barbara Crampton as Leanna Love and/or recast Victoria's ex-husband, Cole Howard (Grayson McCouch, anyone?)
All three of these characters are iconic, popular novelists from the sudser's past. There is no need for Victoria to go this route. People would have tuned out of Gone With The Wind by the Second Act, if opening a tea room replaced Tara as Scarlett's driving passion. The Victoria Newman I know and love would be launching a fashion division at Newman to rival Jabot's line.
The mysterious blogger continued to torment the Winters and Michaelsons. I'm actually intrigued by this tale. It's one of the smarter stories told for Genoa City's mocha-hued set in a long, long time.
I wouldn't mind seeing Dr. Olivia Winters (Tonya Lee Williams) back in town and disapproving of Neil's (Kristoff St. John) relationship with Leslie (Angell Conwell), a much younger woman.
Williams always gave good snooty bitch. I think she'd be fun as meddling, 50-something Aunt Liv, always sticking her nose in Neil, Lily (Christel Khalil) and Devon's (Bryton James) lives. She could be the African-American version of All My Children's Phoebe, or Another World's Liz Matthews. Who knows, maybe Liv has taken on MS as a new specialty and could oversee a risky, experimental drug cocktail for a storyline-lacking Nikki (Melody Thomas Scott)?
I'd also cast a hunky, piece of chocolate cake as Liv's son, Dr. Nate Hastings, and reveal he shares a past with Devon's main squeeze, Roxanne (Tatyana Ali). Since we're talking Genoa City's black folks, Hilary (Mishael Morgan) is sho' nuff a keeper!
The best storyline on Y&R continues to be the Fall of the House of Baldwin. The week in question, Fenmore (the brilliant Max Ehrich) found out his mother had been humping his new mentor.
I hope Y&R doesn't make the mistake of killing off Carmine (Marco Dapper) for some Sweeps week stunt. His delicious, sexually-charged villainy could drive story for Michael (Christian LeBlanc) and Lauren (Tracey Bregman) for years to come.
My dream arc would be for Carmine to happen upon Fen's journal, filled with musings on his sexual confusion and torment; then the dirty bartender would seduce Lauren's son, as a way to stick it to her for ending their torrid affair! Imagine how many of Dapper's Eating Out 2 fans would tune in for that.
I'm loving the saga of Summer's (Hunter King) true paternity. All of these years, we thought good-natured Nick Newman's (Joshua Morrow) only real character flaw was that he had a roving, perenially-hard pecker. Who knew he could be every bit as manipulative and self-serving as both Phyllis (Michelle Stafford) and Sharon (Sharon Case)?
The Bold and the Beautiful fell 203,000 total viewers over the previous week, but was up year-to-date by 246,000. B&B also dropped two-tenths of a point in households and one-tenth of a point among W18-49. Among W18-34, the half-hour soap held strong.
In story, Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) begged Eric (John McCook) and Donna (Jennifer Gareis) to keep her secret. Rick (Jacob Young) and Maya (Karla Mosley) presented a united front against Bill (Don Diamont) and Caroline (Linsey Godfrey); while Hope (Kimberly Matula) hoped for a future with Liam (Scott Clifton).
B&B is okay in my book these days. The show is tawdry, fun trash. Daytime's answer to Hester Prynne, Brooke Logan, continues to explore her sexuality in ways that everyone wishes they could, if society (and Taylor Hayes!) would allow it.
Mosley is luminous in every scene. Finally this soap has an aspirational, female character of color worth rooting for. I swooned when Maya and Rick made love for the very first time.
On the flip side, Godfrey has morphed into one of the best comic soap bitches in ages. I literally houl at each and every one of Caroline's bitchy barbs.
The Hope/Liam/Steffy triangle is being rested—praise Soap Jesus—but I have to point out that Hope owes Steffy (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood) absolutely no respect or consideration. This woman and her father-in-law/almost lover pulled every dirty trick in the book to keep Hope and Liam apart.
Why on Soap Earth should Hope and her mother feel sympathy for Steffy? They're sorry the brat died—at Steffy's own reckless hand—but there's no reason whatsoever Hope should wait to go after Liam. Steffy sure as hell wouldn't in the same situation.
Days of Our Lives fell 190,000 total viewers, but was up year-to-date by 78,000. The best soap opera currently airing in daytime, also fell one-tenth of a point in households. DAYS held steady in W18-49 and was up one-tenth of a point among W18-34.
I don't even know where to start, when it comes to discussing how awesome DAYSis right now. Oh wait, of course I do — Eileen-to-the-Davidison!
Kristen Blake DiMera is the sole, surviving bitch goddess in daytime soaps and Gary Tomlin and Chris Whitesell are writing her wackadoodle ass for everything she's worth!
As Brady (Eric Martsolf) and Nicole (Arianne Zucker) had some of the most graphic soap sex I've seen on daytime (A 1,001 thank-yous to the director!), Kristen received mysterious, vials of evil doer goo. Little did the sexing Salemites know, Lady DiMera planned to use her toxic toys on their beloved Father Eric (Greg Vaughan)!
Over at the Salem jail, someone tried to snuff out spunky antiheroine Sami Brady (Alison Sweeney). When are Salem, U.S.A.'s baddies gonna realize Sami is a cat with nine lives — and the litter to prove it?
Big Mama Marlena (Deidre Hall) told pearls-clutching Adrienne (Judi Evans) how the cow at the cabbage, after she heard Jo Johnson's girl talking greasy about Sami and Will (Chandler Massey). I have waited 20-odd years for Marlena to finally have Sami's back. Dee Hall didn't disappoint. Someone should remind Adrienne of her less-than-stellar family of origin!
Chad (Casey Deidrick), who is starting to look like a go-go dancer at a WeHo club, caused a whole mess of trouble for his big brother, EJ (James Scott), by letting that pesky Abigail (Kate Mansi) spy the video of Sami going upside the dead, dirty cop's head in the park. Abigail sure has a lot of time to be righteously indignant, in between stringing along two hunks!
One of my favorite, new soap teens, JJ Deveraux (Casey Moss), continued to raise unholy hell. The hunky brat's latest scam found him stealing drugs from Abigail's dopey boyfriend, Dr. Cameron (Nathan Owens). Is anyone else tickled by the "I-Just-Finished-Cunnilingus-And-I-Liiked-It" grin Moss is forever sporting? Let's get JJ a love interest, STAT!
I know I said earlier that Kristen was the only bitch goddess left in soaps. I lied. The fabulous Kate Roberts DiMera (Lauren Koslow) fired her chemist, Nick (Blake Berris), with a NASTY-hot, sideways ponytail atop her head. Did I mention I am flat-out loving this show right now?
General Hospital managed to shed the least total viewers of all four daytime soaps, over the previous week. However, the ABC Daytime soap was in last place in total viewers, households, and W18-49.
GH went down 102,000 total viewers, but was up 8,000 year-to-date. The sudser fell one-tenth of a point in all key demos, and was tied with its all-time low in the coveted W18-49 demo.I guess some of the 50th Anniversary magic dust is starting to wear off.
The Quartermaine mansion was the place to be in Port Charles, the week in question. Kiki (Kristen Alderson), Michael (Chad Duell) and Morgan (Bryan Craig) all realized how Michael and Morgan's new galpal are connected — they're kissing cousins!
Tracy (Jane Elliot) and AJ (Sean Kanan) both jockeyed for Franco's (Roger Howarth) ELQ support. Wouldn't it be smarter for these two to contact Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn) or Scotty Baldwin (Kin Shriner) about contesting Franco's inheritance, I dunno, since he's a bat shit crazy serial killer? I know AJ wants ELQ, but its hard to buy him being nice to a guy who inadvertedly orchestrated his son being raped in prison.
Scotty particularly would be a fun addition to this madness, since he once tried to worm his way into the Q fortune via his dalliance with the late Susan Moore. Speaking of Susan Moore, are we sure she's really dead-dead?
Am I the only one getting all warm and sudsy at the thought of Colleen Zenk storming into Monica's (Leslie Charleson) house, gloating about being the mother of not one, but two of Alan's heirs? Y'all know I had to throw in a little Wishful Casting.
Alexis might be too busy to help the Family Q out of any legal pickles, since she's sucking up all of the oxygen in Port Charles with her blowhardy hypocrisy. How can Lexie D. fix her face to condemn Shawn (Sean Butler) for being a hitman, when she killed Alcazar 1.0 (Ted King) and that boy from Pretty Little Liars, who beat up Kristina?
She and Luke (Anthony Geary) also conspired to kill Helena (Constance Towers). How is Shawn "taking the law into his own hands" any different than what she's done or attempted to do on numerous occasions?
Hey Alexis, it's a bad economy. If Shawn wants to help Sonny protect his supply of vanilla bean latte mix, who are you to judge?
Just in time for summer, the Port Charles teen scene saw their hormones on full blast the week in question. Distraught over seeing Molly (Haley Pullos) spreading Mono with the Vampire Prince (Jimmy Deshler), TJ (Tequan Richmond) ripped open a condom with his teeth and proceeded to penetrate newcomer, Taylor Dubois (Samantha Logan). I love me some Logan. She's teen Brenda to Pullos' teen Karen Wexler.
Patrick (Jason Thompson) agreed to take part in Sabrina (Teresa Castillo) and Felix's (Marc Samuel) scheme to find out the paternity of Britt's (Kelly Thiebaud) baby. Patrick is a grown ass man. Why should he have to participate in Scooby Doo capers? If he has questions about the child's paternity, he should confront Britt head on.
Ellie Trout (Emily Wilson) shouldn't be able to get work selling DNA kits at the CVS. This woman has to be the most unscrupulous employee to ever fill out a 1040 form to work at General Hospital!
Ellie is always preaching at people, but then has no qualms about stealing medical information for the "right reasons". I can't wait for Maxie (Kristen Storms) and/or Britt to hatch those eggs, so they can whup Ellie's ass, good and proper.
I will tolerate the loopy shenanigans at the hospital, however, because they mean I get to see more of pervy Brad (Parry Shen). What is Felix's problem? Brad is fantastic! Get up on dat, son.
Now that Michael Easton's long, flowing locks have been set free, I don't hate Silas as much. GH is gonna have to work damn hard to rebuild the momentum Easton and Kelly Monaco shared as John and Sam, though. Right now I'm not seeing any spark. Kemo is doing everything in her power to create a connection, but something is off with Silas.
Part of me wants to see Kemo and Sam freed from this nonsense and injected into the battle for ELQ. Why hasn't Tracy or AJ considered hiring Sam to dig up dirt on Franco and Ava (the magnificent Maura West)? Sam's kid is a Q. She has a vested interest in this fight. Who wants to watch a sick baby story for summer? See you next Ratings!