Ratings, Rants and Raves: General Hospital Continues to Spiral in The Nielsens

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ABC Daytime's General Hospital continues to net alarmingly low numbers in the Nielsen ratings. GH was tied at its all-time low in women 18-49 for the 10th straight week for the June 22-26 cycle, according to Soap Opera Network. The soap opera also hit a new low in female viewers 18-49.

Almost 2.7 million people tuned in the week in question. The show was down 68,000 for the week and negative 256,000 over the same time frame last year. GH held steady in households and even managed to inch up among W18-34. Among W25-54, the sudser slid.

GH is in need of a complete creative reboot. That being said, I firmly believe Frank Valentini and Ron Carlivati are the creators for the job. Together, these guys saved GH from cancellation a few years ago. I am confident, if they put their heads together, face what isn't working and embrace constructive criticism, they can turn this ship around again.

For starters, they need to scrap the asinine Denise DeMuccio farce. Maura West is a multiple Daytime Emmy winner. She deserves better than a Carol Burnett sketch and so do fans of delicious mob princess Ava Jerome. This storyline causes much of the canvas to appear as if they've had lobotomies. 

Speaking of lobotomies, Nina (Michelle Stafford) and Franco (Roger Howarth) have to be streamlined and toned down if they're going to work on the canvas long-term.  It's embarrassing to watch veteran GH characters like Carly (Laura Wright) serve as Greek Chorus to their MetroCourt shenanigans. 

I love Ric (Rick Hearst) teaming up with Madeline (Donna Mills) to snatch Nina's inheritance. I wish that aspect of the story would become central, while some of the broad comedy and hi-jinks were left on the cutting room floor. Morph Nina into a lethal, rich bitch and ditch the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt stuff. We get it. She was in a coma for a long time. Move on.

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Sonny (Maurice Benard) needs a hot storyline. He's the star of the show. He can't remain on the sidelines, hanging out at his boxing gym and/or giving advice to his dimwitted sons.

Jake/Jason (Billy Miller) needs a story with bigger stakes. He's essentially serving as a Spinelli fill-in, running around trying to solve capers for other characters. It's obvious TPTB are building to something huge for Jake, Liz (Rebecca Herbst) and Sam (Kelly Monaco), but affixing them to the ELQ stuff feels painfully plot driven.

Some fans hate the shift in personalities for Nikolas (Tyler Christopher) and Liz. I actually dig them as former goody-goodies who've decided to say eff it and go for what they want.

I'm also enjoying Luke's (Anthony Geary) endgame and realize it has to be front and center in order to give the character and actor the respect they're due. However, now that the Previously-Permed One has exited stage left, I'd like to see more balanced stories rooted in some semblance of reality. 

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Y&R was up in every demo save for W18-34. The No. 1 soap was up 2,000 viewers over the previous week and a whopping 479,000 over the same cycle last year. I'd give anything to see the fine print on the deal Chuck Pratt made with the Devil.  Love him or loathe him, Pratt is proving good for Y&R in the Nielsens.

RELATED: Do Y&R's Killer Ratings Prove Chuck Pratt is Good For Daytime's No. 1 Soap?

The Bold and the Beautiful was down 125,000 over the previous week. The half-hour program was up 323,000 over the same week last year.  B&B fell in households and among W25-54, but was up among W18-49 and W18-34.

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I wouldn't be surprised if B&B's shift in focus from Maya (Karla Mosley) and Rick (Jacob Young) to the Ivy/Liam/Steffy/Wyatt quad helped destabilize the soap a bit in the Nielsens. It's hard for viewers to shift on a dime from powerful, topical storytelling about transgender supermodels, to tepid arcs about green card marriages.

Days of Our Lives went up across the board the week in question. The White Elephant caper reached its climax, leading to an excuse for Eric (Greg Vaughan) and Nicole (Arianne Zucker) to once again get naked while trapped by an evil doer.  I hope the new (old) writers realize how hot these two are together.

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DAYS balanced all the action, adventure and (almost) sex with more marital melodrama for Salem's resident gays. Will Horton (Guy Wilson) is shaping into quite the hot mess of a desperate househusband!

 There's something decidedly retro about watching Sonny (Freddie Smith) catch Will in lie after life. It reminds me of those old clips of Bob (Don Hastings) confronting a scheming Lisa (Eileen Fulton) from As The World Turns, or ones of Erica Kane's (Susan Lucci) husbands ripping into her about birth control pills and/or abortions on All My Children.  I also think fans are starting to really get excited due to all the buzz #DAYS50 is generating. If DAYS stays this entertaining, Ken Corday can stop having to plan to save it every few years. See you next Ratings!