News - Soap Buzz

40 January 8th, 2012 NY POST: NYC’s Soap Bubble Bursts – End of an Era following OLTL’s Finale!

Courtesy/NY Post

We always thought of Gotham, the Big Apple, as Soap City!  After all, it was where all the big soaps originated from, and now as we prepare to say farewell to One Life to Live this Friday, it means that there are no longer any network television soap operas being produced in this once thriving metropolis of this iconic and rare storytelling genre!

Today’s New York Post takes a look at the decline of the New York City soap opera production with interviews from several of the actors from One Life to Live, All My Children and Guiding Light.  Here are some of the commentary excerpts below from the piece, and then some of the quotes from some notables in the soap world.

NY POST: “When ABC’s One Life To Live airs its final, inevitably tearful episode on Friday, an era will end for NYC-based TV soaps, which date all the way back to 1950’s The First Hundred Years, CBS’s first ongoing serial daytime drama about two couples who were next door neighbors.  Sixty-two years later, following the recent cancellations of its local brethren — All My Children,  Guiding Light and As the World Turns —OLTL is the last show standing in what used to be one of the city’s most thriving entertainment industries. On 66th Street between Central Park West and the Hudson River, ABC’s OLTL and All My Children were shot, while CBS’s Guiding Light and As the World Turns were filmed on 57th Street near the Hudson. (Another World was shot in Brooklyn until its cancellation in 1999, and the soap Loving taped in Manhattan from 1983-1995.)”

Kassie DePaiva (Blair, OLTL) on the unique brand of storytelling only told in soaps:  “I’ve had babies stolen, I’ve been shot, I’ve shot people, and I’ve had about eight marriages and three miscarriages. We had a public execution of my fake husband — stopped at the last minute. And, obviously, I’ve slept with tons of really good-looking men… The beauty of soaps is that it takes a village to make it work, and you get to work with really hardworking people.” 

Ron Carlivati (Head writer, OLTL) on how to write for a soap no matter how outrageous the storylines might get:  “It’s not all evil twins and separated at birth. At the same time as we have evil twins, we also try to tell stories that are relatable to our audience. For example, the show recently ran a story line about bullying, a topic ripped from the headlines.  As long as you write the characters true to who they are, you can send Viki to Mars, as long as she has the appropriate reaction.”

Several of the actors commented on the ending of the New York soap scene saying they never thought they would see the day:  Jordan Clarke (Ex-Billy, GL, now The Colonel, Venice)  “I saw a chart showing the revenue, and it looked like a plane diving to the ground”  Bob Woods ( Bo, OLTL) “I never thought it would happen. To think that there wouldn’t be soap operas produced in New York! I always thought there would be the serial format on ABC, as long as there was an ABC.” Erika Slezak (Viki, OLTL) “It leaves a huge hole in daytime TV and in the days of our fans. ABC tells us the audience doesn’t want entertainment anymore; that they only want information. I don’t buy that. I want something that will make me laugh, make me cry.”

Let us know your thoughts on this on seeing the once thriving Mecca of soaps gone and with it, all the talented performers and crew members who are now out of jobs! All we can say, it’s a terrible and tragic loss for everyone:  fans, performers, creative’s, and the city of New York!

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  1. Beverly Salhany says:

    ABC YOUR CRAZY !!!!!!!!
    We DO want entertainment …I dont know what you are thinking infop is good BUT TO MUCH ON THE ALL THE SAME THING S EVERY HOUR OF THE DAY PLEASE !!!

    Reply

  2. Cathy Starr says:

    I agree with ES, people want programs that they can cry or laugh along with. I will miss being able to follow along with the show, taking a hour break from reality to watch a program that I was continually in sync with and at times felt like I was watching family or situations I was facing in my life, OLTL had moments that dealt with raw, real life situations. Sure there was a lot of marriages ending, crazy stalking psychos, people escaping jail, but then there was the couples that had real life situations. Moments that the fans and viewers could relate to. Cancer story lines, losing someone, complicated real material that these actors, writers, producers brought into our homes everyday. Watching a soap opera is SO much different than a regular primetime series because a soap continues on in the summer, its a 5 day a week program to enjoy and take time out of a hectic day for many of us fans. A primetime series is something that occurs once a week, that just isn’t the same to me. I’ll forever miss One LIfe To Live, and it will indeed leave a huge hole in many of our hearts without the show. I’ve watched the show as long as I have been old enough to remember. I remember sharing my afternoons as a child with my Mom watching along. I grew up watching and continued on watching. I don’t plan on viewing the programs replacing my soap and I think its a shame to lose this show. A huge mistake in my thoughts. Best of luck to all those from OLTL and lots of gratitude and heartfelt thanks for the handwork they did to bring something so special to our homes to view 5 days a week!

    Reply

    Michele OShell replied

    Well said Cathy!!

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    1loveabcsoaps replied

    Nicely stated and agreed. It’s that time U can just take a momemt for yourself with the soaps to escape your reality. It’s a good clean escape on top of it. Ur not hurting anyone, causing any problems, or doing drugs. U can have a good cry with the soap, or you can BASK in the Glow of love with the couples with the dynanmite chemistry, or U can have yourself a good laugh at the rediculous and crazy plots they come up with. But whatever one you do, you are safe in your home, hurting no one taking a moment. Soaps lighten the heart in many ways. And for some people sick, shut in, old, handicape, they provide the PERFECT escape into another life unknown to these people.
    Join us sending bar’s of soap to the ABC studio’s. Let them see our fustration, having to deal with soap arriving across the United States and Canada. One woman said she is canceling her cable and getting a Dish, so that Disney can’t profit from any channels they own on cable. Also, there is a petiton going around on Facebook, which is seeking 10, 000 signatures. Send your soap to the Abc studio’s and PASS THIS ALONG AND POST ON THIS AND OTHER SOAP OPERA SITES INCLUDING ABC.COM

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    ethel replied

    excellent post!!

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  3. Heather says:

    Now that all the NY soaps are gone, I hope that this trend of cancelling soap operas stop as of today and doesn’t spray itself on the L.A soaps.

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    Carri replied

    AMC was taped in LA and GH is getting the ax too…

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    Heather replied

    AMC was taped in LA for a mere year out of its 41 years. AMC is a NY soap, not a LA soap.

    And GH hasn’t been canceled.

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    Laura replied

    I wouldn’t hold your breath, Heather. ABC Daytime is the Cooking to get FAT, then, we will show you how to LOSE WEIGHT channel.

    Heather replied

    I’m not saying that GH won’t be cancelled. I’m just saying that we shouldn’t be speculating stuff until they happen.

    Because if we’re gonna speculate about things, I could go on and say that the four remaining soaps will all be gone in the next 5 years.

  4. Patti says:

    I hate to see, or not see, Slezak on my TV. Although I love Jeanne Cooper, if she ever needs replacing, please consider Ms Slezak as the new Katherine Chancellor.

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  5. Michele OShell says:

    I think it is a travesty to cancel the soaps!!!This is an American institution!! There are women out here who have been following soaps since they started as 15 minute segments on the radio!!! I DO NOT WANT TO SEE ANOTHER TALK SHOW!!! If I want to watch another cooking show I will watch the Food Channel or Bravo!!! I will not watch ANY of the replacement shows!! And I am limiting my ABC viewing!! Also, although I have 5 granddaughters, there will be NO Disney Channel on in my home!!! I sincerely hope that one of the other stations will be smart enough to pick up the soaps and their many millions of viewers!!!

    Reply

    1loveabcsoaps replied

    You go Michele. Let me start by suggesting this that I read from one of the Fans yesterday. She is CANCELING CABLE and getting a DISH (pass and POST this around, along with your idea, No Disney Channels-they FIT together VERY well with your idea) If you get a dish, no money goes to Disney for any of their channels. Canceling Cable all together fits your idea perfectly. Disney gets no money. Second, JOIN US in sending BARS OF SOAP to the abc studio in nyc, so the executives and the new shos will be BOMBARDED by soap coming in from people across the United States and Canada. There is some petition going around on Facebook, I’m not on Facebook and the Fan didn’t make it clear what was to be done.

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    barbara t replied

    yes ,and I am one of them, watched gh since the beginning ,thats almost 49 years ,Ive watched all the abc soaps ,changed alot of diapers ,made alot meals,and clean the house ,happy ,sad ,sick ,the soaps were always there for me.these next 5 days will be so hard ,knowing every minute that goes by,we come closer to the end of one life to live ,Even today ,hell since the soaps have been canceled I feel like Im going to a funeral .that someone so close to me died,or is dying and I cant do a thing about it ,and I have done everything you can think of to save these soaps ,today I read ,I cant remember where but the writer said what I have been saying abc is going for the younger people the dont care about the over 49 group and we were not counted in the ratings ,I dont watch much tv ,but I did watch the soaps and they are leaving the daytime hours,and that makes no sense ,why abc couldnt keep soapnet ,Its the only place you can see soaps,out of 5 million other channels ,It goes back to the same thing ,Im beginning to sound like a broken record,greed abc has more money in the pockets ,and good programing gets thrown out the window with common sense.abc has me for general hospital ,but thats all the time they will get from me,ever.

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  6. Torrey says:

    Just goes to show you how out of touch ABC is with its fans…. I’m not sure they recognize the gravity of their decision. Soon, it will all come to light. Talk shows have always come and gone, over the years, but it has been the soap operas that have withheld the test of time. Now, Executives are telling us that the Soaps’ time has come….and we all know this is so they can line their pockets with more cash. If ABC/Disney was really standing behind their soaps, they would have figured out better ways to cut cost, so that they could continue to produce these shows. I curse the day that Disney ever got involved with ABC.

    Reply

    barbara t replied

    I remember when that happened and I said to several people who watched the abc soaps like me ,What will disney do about the soaps?will they keep them ? and slowly through the years the soaps were getting cheep except one life to live they took big cuts and the cast and crew still put out quality shows ,I hope what mickey mouse did to there afternoon lineup comes back big time and chews them in the ass ,the have some stupid people working there ,hey abc ,did you ever hear this saying?you dont fix something that isnt broken ,abc is broken now.

    Reply

    david replied

    Torrey, I don’t disagree with you, but the concept of being in touch with fans is simply feel-good public relations. Corporations are more focused on the interests of shareholders and investors. What fans want is irrelevant; they will get what maximizes revenue.

    The killing of OLTL lifted a veil for me. Most of television is an insipid, banal wasteland. Its celebrities are embarrassing caricatures incapable of offering anything genuine or entertaining. Information is often biased and juvenile. Generally, it’s a mind-numbing, manipulative enterprise to make money for others at the viewer’s expense. OLTL was the real deal, but in the absence of quality entertainment, I won’t waste my time on the garbage being substituted.

    Reply

    Gloria replied

    WOW-you said it David.

    Torrey replied

    Totally agree with you, David.

  7. Linda says:

    I will mIss one life to live so much. Will not be watching the revolution don’t need anymore of these shows. Abc is making a mistake. Haven’t watches the. Chew either.

    Reply

  8. Gerardo Ramirez says:

    having the wonderful world of soaps in NYC,afforded a symbiotic relationship between the soaps & theatre.Talented actors could work in both mediums,even at the same time.This is part of the success of the long running soaps in London.This is now a great loss to the NYC scene.

    Reply

    1loveabcsoaps replied

    The actors that do soaps in London, is the threater nearby? ( This is part of the success of the long running soaps in London.)

    Reply

    Gerardo Ramirez replied

    Yes.they even have radio dramas,& now since the cancellation of GL,the world’s longest radio soap THE ARCHERS.I have attended the taping of radio shows in BBC studios in the West END of London.EASTENDERS is filmed in suburban London,and concurrently seen actors in theater and TV.Unlike the USA,British TV & film & theater is centered in London.Now in the USA,TV & film is West Coast based & theater is NYC based-3,000 miles apart.

  9. Munga says:

    I will miss OLTL So Much!
    Thank you to all of the actors for the best 40years of television, you made me laugh, tou made me cry, you helped me raise my children, God Bless

    Reply

  10. lew says:

    I will continue to watch GH, because of FV and RC. The View, The CHOMP and The Make-Over mess will not be watched by me. The ABC heads along with that pompous ass Frons,, will see viewership for their network erode!

    Reply

    gloria replied

    Agree 100%

    Reply

  11. Michele OShell says:

    I cannot fathom how Disney, with all the money from their theme parks, shows, and child related products,etc., cannot afford to keep this time-honored tradition in television history on the air!! I think Walt Disney must be spinning in his grave!!!! Many immigrants have learned English from watching these shows , a trivia fact I came across in reading some celeb bios. Also, we woman are not alone!! It is a published fact that many NFL players TIVO some of the soaps, especially All My Children because of La Lucci!! LOL!!! And, Brian Frons, who made the decision, Resigned ,quit or got fired, not sure which, but either way… whats up with that?? You make a MAJOR decision like cancelling a genre that has been in existence for at least the 58 years that I have been alive and then you leave the network?? Something smells in Denmark!! (No offense to Denmark,just an old saying! LOL!) WE WANT ANSWERS!!!!

    Reply

    Gloria replied

    I heard last night that the Disney family is looking into buying the L.A. Dodgers baseball team. So no money for soaps, huh?

    Reply

    barbara t replied

    seriously a baseball club? and michele you are right ,walt disney has to be spinning in his grave ,look at all the trash they have on now ,and frons he didnt cancel the soaps alone ,abc is using him to make them look good ,hey people ,we didnt know he was going to cancel the soaps ,do they really think were all that stupid.Its greed.and they should get rid of some 0f there primetime shows ,theres room for one live to life.

  12. Samiyo says:

    If the NETWORKS would look at the numbers of hits the daytime drama’s have been getting ever since ABC and other networks chose to make daytime and primetime programing available via the Internet (ON DEMAND). They will see that the FANS have never stopped watching. Many of us have been recording and really looked forward to an escape from reality (even if just for a few hours.)

    I work in the medical field, and many of us Surgery Staff members MALE and FEMALE all would unwind during our break and for some of us who would miss any of the soaps got an ear full(update) from our colleges. It kept a lot of peace in the work place because we would gossip about the characters rather then each other. I am still hopeful that Prospect Park may find some kind of way to revive our programs. Perhaps a network can just change the format.

    Primetime soaps would always come on once a week… Daytime can do the same thing.(Maybe seasonal) And, I bet you they would be the highest rated programs on daytime. There is no entertainment that has the same energy as the daytime drama’s have been doing for decades.

    Reply

    Kimberly B replied

    I must agree that on visits to different doctor’s offices and hospitals I have been able to watch my soaps while I am waiting in the waiting room. Usually the soaps become a brief bonding experience between, me, other patients, and the receptionists and/or medical staff. At work it is the same way. Co-workers and I can’t wait to see each other at work to talk about the storyline and what we might have missed. We try to figure out what is going to come next. We the fans want the escapism and fantasy that soaps have to offer. It gives us something to get away from our everyday troubles. If I miss my shows during the day, I watch it online. Many people do! I am so upset that they didn’t choose to back down from making this mistake instead of just admitting that they were wrong. OLTL has been on fire lately, which makes this hurt even more!

    Reply

    Gloria replied

    You are so right. If OLTL was “dying a natural death” that would be one thing-you always hate to lose a soap but sometimes they run their course. But good grief, OLTL is & has been for months & months, the very best show there is! That fact & the way this whole thing has been handled, not to mention the awful “replacement shows”-this just all adds up to a disgusting mess. It hurts bad.

  13. Kymba says:

    It is a disgrace to all of the people who worked these shows, who watched these shows, who loved these shows! They have been a part of our lives for 40+ years, we have laughed, cried, screamed and cheered with these guys. The bonehead move of ABC daytime will ruin them! have a heart Iger..make that call, reverse your decision!!

    Reply

  14. Brian Greene says:

    I totally agree with all my fellow posters on this board. I, a life-long Illinois citizen, have also dearly loved the NYC-based soaps in my TV viewing lifetime very much!

    Reply

  15. su0000 says:

    Disney fails to realize that soap operas are not fad or a trend of tastes/lifestyle. Soaps are an institution. From radio to TV soaps have had a loyal viewership every Mon-Friday for 43 years.
    Soap Opera’s are like Rock & Roll; they will never die.

    Soap Operas will be noted in history and ABC/D will hold its’ shame in the archives.

    Reply

  16. TrixNix says:

    Well with OLTL gone, ABC will only be getting 1 hour of my daily viewing time, GH. I can’t believe this day has come.

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    Gloria replied

    Me too. That one hour & that’s it. I have been watching my local news on the ABC affiliate all my life but am dropping that too. I can’t believe this is happening. Keep thinking somehow something will save this show for us.

    Reply

  17. Kimberly B says:

    I don’t care what ABC says. If I want information I will look it up online. They think that young people don’t like soaps, well I am young and I love soaps! I have been saying this from the time I heard they were cancelling these 2 iconic shows: I have been watching ABC Soaps ever since I was a little girl. My grandfather was a huge fan, and I would sit on the floor and watch these shows while he sat in his special chair. No one could get him to run an errand until 4pm. After he passed away in 1997, I have felt like I am still sharing something with him while I watch “our” stories. ABC is now ripping out a piece of my heart. There are millions of fans who feel this way about our soaps. ABC is going to cause a deep bitterness amongst their fans. Many fans along with myself have already vowed to never watch the shows that they are replacing them with. Sorry ABC I will turn to another channel during that timeslot once my show is officially gone. The fans cry, laugh, and grieve alongside their favorite characters. We yell at the screen at the hated characters. We have invested our hearts into these shows. ABC is out of touch. Of course we want entertainment. Why else would they still turn around and make a primetime show like “Revenge”. Obviously they know that the fans want to see salacious, passionate, backstabbing, romantic, ENTERTAINING storylines! Thanks alot ABC for betraying all of us! I guess they’ve been producing soaps for so long that they mastered the art of backstabbing!

    Reply

    Mary replied

    I so agree with you! I will not watch anything that replaces my shows. I’m so sick of food shows and makeover shows. We have talk shows running out of our wazoo’s as it is! If ABC had ever asked us loyal viewers what WE wanted, they would’ve found out that we DON’T want more informational shows, we DO WANT our soaps! OLTL is my favorite show, day or night, of all time. I cannot believe this is happening. I’ve been a faithful viewer and fan of ABC for over 35 years. Well, not anymore! ABC lost millions of us when they made this horrible decision and cast us fans aside as if we were garbage. I hope they rot. Just sayin…..

    Reply

  18. LUMIly says:

    I will miss all the soaps as one by one they are gone,but we still have 4 left.
    Days Of Our Lives is the one I have been watching sence Nov.1965

    Reply

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