Is General Hospital’s Vampire Story Too Much? Do The Bold and the Beautiful’s Taylor and Eric Deserve a Little Romance? Is Days of Our Lives Tops?

By Marlena De Lacroix a.k.a. Connie Passalacqua Hayman

General Hospital:  So what do you think of GH’s vampire story that features characters from that soap canceled a decade ago, Port Charles?  Because it’s not over yet, I’m not going to conclusively  judge the storyline that already involves one murder (Allison Barrington’s)  and has “mad”  Lucy as seeing John McBain and Sam McCall Morgan really being vampires Caleb and Livvie, the characters Michael Easton and Kelly Monaco  played on Port Charles. I surmise the story is a means to an as yet unspecified end, providing suspenseful sweeps month mystery and excitement and introduction of a new character, Rafe (played by Jimmy Deshler), the teenage son of murdered Allison. He seems to be a future love interest for Molly.

Michael Easton and Kelly Monaco
as Caleb and Livvie

But the story so far seems a whole lot more than a nod to Port Charles, as promised in a magazine interview with GH executive producer Frank Valentini. So far all I will simply opine  that it seems to misuse the talents of veteran guest star Lynn Herring, whose Lucy Coe is supposed to be smart, funny and feisty rather than the screaming and insane Ferncliff resident they’ve currently made her out to be this time around.  Plus, I find the entire story very confusing.  Is McBain really the vampire and an alien murderer, as Rafe contends he is?  Oy!  Marlena is just too old for vampires, no matter how popular the Twilight movies were. And it really breaks the reality of General Hospital, which has been rolling along with purely great (and more linear) stories all this past year.

But what will happen now?  Will anyone else be killed on GH? Will this crazy mystery really bring murder investigator Sam and detective McBain (Caleb?) closer romantically?  Or will the whole fanciful vampire story turn out to be a waste of time?  We’ll just have to see.  

The Bold and Beautiful:   I’d like to give a thumbs up to the renewed romance of Dr. Taylor and Eric Forrester on The Bold and the Beautiful. Of course, Eric’s wife Stephanie has only been dead two months — but this is soap opera!  And of course, Eric is a lot older than Taylor — but this is soap opera! Of course, the story bomb of last year was much, much older Victor marrying younger Sharon on The Young and the Restless.  But that was so unpalatable because Victor is a disgusting scheming villain, but Eric is a wise paterfamilias, and always a good guy.  Unlike Victor, Eric is still suave and has charm.  Anyway, B&B already tried to put Taylor and Eric together at least a decade ago, but that was pulled because he was still married to Steph, who was Taylor’s friend.  And as you know, Taylor hasn’t had a love interest or a lover in ages.  She deserves something more than just angsting over the romance of her daughter Steffy with that mindless jerk Liam.

Days of Our Lives:  The suddenly rising ratings are saying it.  And Marlena’s two best soap buddies are saying it independently. Days of Our Lives is getting great. ”It’s our only classic soap opera. It’s all about real relationships,” says one friend who is mesmerized by all the storylines on the show.  “It’s really soapy and it has all these great bitches, and Kristen (Eileen Davidson) is terrific,” says another.  So what do out there think of Days of Our Lives?   Is it the best of the four soaps left?  Marlena and your fellow Thinking Fans want to know. 

Comments

  1. Marc says:

    Hi, Marlena! As a fan of Dark Shadows and Port Charles (during its vampire years), I am now watching General Hospital for the first time ever. The Sonny/mob storyline has always kept me far away from the show, but now I’m curious to see how this vampire story plays out. Perhaps it’s a way for Michael Easton to remain on the series if John McBain has to return to the new One Life to Live. Having read many comments online, I know that fans of GH are very split over the possibility of vampires in Port Charles – but count me in as one of those who is hoping that Caleb reappears after all these years.

    Meanwhile, I’m also loving Days, which I think is the best soap currently on TV. Eileen Davidson is a fabulous bitch, Greg Vaughan is one hot priest, and the Will/Sonny/Gabi/Nick storyline is a sudsy addiction. Thank God for my DVR, which makes taping both Days and GH a piece of cake.\

    Marlena says: Hi Marc! Love your blog! Everyone does have different opinions on the vampire stories. I actually was a fan of Dark Shadows, but always used to laugh when Barnabas showed his fangs! Same for Johnny Depp in the recent movie. I missed the period of Port Charles history with the vampires. but I’d like to see Easton as Caleb just to see what all the commotion is about. I’m also trying to watch more Days, since so many of my friends (like you) are raving about it!

  2. tess says:

    I think DAYS is absolutely marvelous these days. And I cannot believe that I am saying this. Years ago, when I was a young collegian, I followed the trials and tribulations of the denizens of Salem and I loved doing so. Anyone remember Brooke Hamilton and her hatred for Bob Anderson, the father who abandoned her when she was a little girl? Brooke’s mother, Adele was a dipsomaniac. Brooke worked for Bob’s company and did a little industrial espionage.

    It was great stuff, and what they are doing today is great stuff too. Like your friends said, it’s classic soap opera and I completely concur. And I do admire the femme fatales–Nicole, Chloe, Kristen, Kate. And I appreciate the bravery the show is demonstrating by sustaining the Will story and allowing their gay characters to smooch and pant for one another like their straight counterparts. I expected NBC to mandate that Will and Sonny ride off into the sunset months ago, but that hasn’t happened. Which is wonderful.

    I’m so happy that the show is eschewing cartoon villainy and dumb adventure stories. This viewer did not care about any of that. I want plausible soap opera fare. And DAYS is delivering in spades.

    Next subject.. I’m worried that bringing vampires to Port Charles may chip away at the ratings success that GENERAL HOSPITAL has so far achieved. Viewers may see it, roll their eyes and tune out. Or people who have heard positive things about GH and decided to check it out may say, “Forget it” when they see people ranting about vampires and fangs and bloodsucking. The Caleb story and Alison Barrington popping up in town and getting murdered must have left viewers who didn’t watch Port Charles bewildered. I didn’t watch it and I found Lucy’s ranting and raving about Caleb Morley dreary to say the least. Also, this DARK SHADOWS craziness happened on PORT CHARLES a decade ago and evidently, viewers didn’t clamor to it when it aired because after all, PORT CHARLES did get cancelled. So why resurrect it now? I wouldn’t be surprised if people tuned out because of it. We’ll have to wait and see.

    I find THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL disagreeable. I hate Liam, Steffi and Hope. I don’t like Brooke kissing her brother-in-law or Taylor making goo goo eyes at Eric. Come on now. She has been sexually involved with two of his sons and she called Stephanie her dearest friend. I swear I don’t watch entire episodes of this stuff, but scenes here and there, which keeps me in the loop. The show is LOATHSOME. I am intrigued by Dayzee’s secret and the arrival of Marcus’ foster brother. Knowing the show’s fondness for incestuous themes, I guess Marcus’ brother and they do resemble, btw, will end up doing X-rated things with Dayzee.

    Time will tell.

    Marlena says; Very interesting comments, Tess. You know your soaps. Port Charles had vampires years before the Twilight craze and still failed as you say. But perhaps today’s writers are trying to make up for that with this current vampire GH storyline. The only problem is, as I’m told by pop culture expert Moose, that in publishing and movies, vampires are now considered out and zombies are in. “The Walking Dead” on TV and the new movie “Warm Bodies” are about zombies. GH brings back dead people so often it would be probably all too easy for them to do zombies! Instead,I too worry about GH ruining the good thing they’ve had the past year with this confusing vampire story.

    • JODY says:

      i AM SICK THINKING GENERAL HOSPITAL IS DOING A VAMPIRE STORYLINE,TALK ABOUT GOING OFF THE GRID…I HAVE BEEN A FAN FOR YEARS…BUT VAMPIRES COME ON, YOU JUST RUINED THE BEST SOAP OPERA THERE WAS…IT WAS BAD ENOUGH TAKING JASON AND KILLING HIM OFF, RIGHT WHEN THAT POOR GUY WAS GOING TO GET SOME HAPPINESS ONCE AND FOR ALL THEN YOU TAKE HIS CHACATER OFF, AN REPLACE IT WITH VAMPIRES, GEEZ WILL HAVE TO START LOOKING FOR REPLACEMENT…HATE LEAVING SONNY, LUKE, CARLY, CONNE, DONT WANT 2 C THEM BECOMMING VAMPIRES..STUPID IDEA

  3. horselover says:

    Count me in as a GH viewer who is okay with the Vampire story. I want to resent them coming to GH and taking away valuable airtime from the GH characters, but I learned my lesson with the OLTL characters. I resented when the OLTL characters came onto this show, but now I’m not minding them as much. The same goes for the Vampire storyline. The rest of the show is good enough for me to take or leave the Vampire Storyline so I’m going to sit back and enjoy what I can.

    If I could have GH any way I wanted to, I would just focus on the great 80s characters. But I know I am not the only person watching GH. I know there are Sonny, Carly and Jason fans. I know there are 90s fans. I know there are now OLTL fans watching GH. And now there are probably some PC fans watching the show as well. I think TPTB are trying to widen their pool of potential viewers who will tune into GH. Good for them. Overall, I am finding the whole show enjoyable and I can’t remember the last time I said that. I’m going with the flow on the Vampire Storyline. And if I have to fast-forward some of it, so be it. I know this show is just starting to heat up with the arrival of Frisco on Monday, the arrival of Laura the following Monday and the big anniversary in April. If you don’t like the Vampire Storyline, there are many other things to look forward to watching.

    Marlena says: I agree, horse! Carlivati has so many good (or almost good) stories up in the air going on at one time, he reminds me of the plate spinners one used to see on the Ed Sullivan Show. There’s an entree for every taste!

  4. Hi Marlena,

    I did watch PC occasionally during the Vampire/Angels/Werewolf days. I have to applaud Ron and Frank for not avoiding what happened on PC when bringing Kevin and Lucy back on, plus having John and Sam, it probably seemed like the perfect opportunity. If Olivia can have psychic visions because Heather gave her an overdose of LSD, then I’m willing to see where Ron and Frank are going with this. I do think that this was part of their contingency plan just in case they had to give up the character of John McBain to OLTL. Frankly I find it more plausible than Guza and company turning Rick Webber into some kind of sleazy serial philanderer who murdered a woman and then covered it up with Scotty’s help, which then turned Laura catatonic when she then murdered Rick. I’d like for that whole storyline to just have been another LSD plot that Heather pulled to get Laura out of the way so she could have Luke.

    As for B&B, I would prefer it if they brought on another love interest for Taylor, perhaps a Forrester cousin or brother, but since the cast is already so large, I’m willing to go for a Taylor/Eric storyline particularly if Pam gets wind of it and decides to try and get rid of Taylor with Donna’s help!

    Marlena says: Thanks as always, Elizabeth!

  5. Eric Henwood-Greer says:

    Great article–as usual. I’ve only ever been, at best, a casual DAYS viewer. It’s just never really been my style of soap (I suspect if I could see more episodes from the Bell years in the early 70s I would love it, when it was moody but deep in sexopsychology–but I’ve only seen a few on youtube). I do think it’s been very watchable for a while now. I’m biased, but I give credit to the team of Tomlin/Whitesell with the brilliant Lorraine Broderick as an associate HW for all of that–the team were good (albeit a bit too campy) at OLTL in the early 2000s. I still feel, however, that the pacing is really off. It has the stories of classic soap–but the beats are oddly paced. Great climaxes, but the in-between stuff is either repetitive or nonsensical.

    And while it is a classic soap story, I feel a bit like saddling Will with a baby so soon reeks of the “we don’t know what to do with a gay story on a soap” thing that has gone on at least since All My Children had Bianca becoming a mother before she could barely establish having a true romance. His breakup with Sonny is laughable, especially since it’s been directed so that, from nearly the start, Sonny has spent his time mooning after Will when he should be genuinely mad.

    The show is watchable, I repeat, and I also should repeat that, never being a long term fan, a lot of the DAYS elements simply don’t appeal too much to me–so I’m not a fair judge. But I think it’s better than it’s been for a long time, for what it’s worth.

    I’m completely on the fence about the GH Vampire story. My one real issue is the show has a travesty of riches on the canvas–and they apparently are adding even more vets–and it has so many stories that *are* playing out (but we only see on one or two episodes a week), or *could* play out, that I would have waited to tell an over the top story like this till after the planned anniversary in March. But there are so many other things that puzzle me–and I admit, I am curious to see how it will be all explained, so I guess they have me interested. I was not a big fan of PC during the Esenten/Brown “story arc” years (as much as I think their work on The City and Loving is underated), and the show became a mess of angels and vampires when it ended–although the initial vampire storyline that GH is mainly referencing was pretty decent.

    I know fans of PC were upset that the show had no conclusion, because of the way it was canceled, so I appreciate if this gives them some sense of closure. And, while GH was at its best during the largely “realistic” Labine years, it’s a show that at its ratings peak thrived on comic book stories of Luke as a superhero saving the city from freezing, and even in lesser rating years of stories like Casey the alien coming to Port Charles. So in a way this is yet another homage to the past from writer Ron Carlivati–and something that, if it had happened on One Life to Live or AMC, I would have been much more upset, but isn’t out of the realm of GH’s history. But, again, I just ask… Why now? The show is slowly climbing up the rating ladder, and a gimmicky story like this seems like something that would have been best saved for when there were not many other stories left to play out.

    Marlena says: Why now is a great question, Eric!

  6. Jacyee says:

    Kelly Monaco continues to eat General Hospital. Her ‘up front’ has brought in the lowest ratings in their history. Who she is paying to stay there I have no idea.

    As long as they continue to push her failed pairings, Sonny, Jason, and now this RIDICULOUS vampire BS, I will not watch.

  7. Alva says:

    Hate this, this is not GH. I don’t mine something different but this giving a shout out to PC can’t Ron think of something new. I was ok with the OLTL characters but this vamp stuff is not impressive. I watched PC for Lucy/ Kevin and I think the vamp crap is one thing that kill the show,JMO and he is bring it to GH.Thank the soap God for the Q’s story, Patrick/ Emma and hospital and every ones in a blue moon Eliazbeth webber is on, Anna keeps me coming back. Thought I was going to love the LuLu/Danta/Maxie story but it was ruin by the miscarriage and pregnancy in the same night. What woman would have sex after a miscarriage, yeah Ron you aren’t a woman and should have as one for advice. Will I’m going to close and I sure I’m alone but I feel Ron needs to step up and use some of the great people that are on the show stop with all the new character. Stop changing GH history.

  8. joy keasler says:

    I dislike bickering. Most people will badmouth a show but still watch relentlessly with guilty pleasure. I am a true diehard GH and Days fan. have always both been my favs as I liked more characters on these 2 shows than other soaps where I just tuned in if the 1 or 2 characters I liked were on. such as Guiding Light…never watched it until the Tammy/Jonathan storyline…and i became obxessed. Racing home everyday to see if they were on. I am a millenial viewer and have been watching Gh since Sonny/Brenda 1996 or 1997 and havent missed an episode!Keeps getting better and better. Loved the mob era with Sonny…writing Steve Burton as this unstoppable badass hitman was amazing. Never been disappointed… Jason/Sam/Liz/Lucky…

    I am the biggest Kelly Monaco fan and she can do no wrong by me…started watching Port Charles FOR HER charatcer when she was paired with Jack….loved the vampire story.As much as I liked her with Jack she and Caleb were just too hot together! On the edge of my seat since Allison’s murder mystery began. I do wish Easton could stay as McBaine as I think it better suits GH…but if theyre having him play Caleb to stay on…lets get it cause I want him on GH! (as well as Tood and Starr)Want to see him and Kelly together again!

    Sonny is my least favorite storyline right now as I hate the Connie character. She punks Sonny down and gets away with everything. If she would give Molly back the book I’d be happy.

    Days is amazing right now. Love Kristen’s vixen and Brady the best looking man in daytime 100%! Love Gabby and was really rooting for her to be happy with Nick but oh well and I am enjoyimg his bad guy nonetheless will follow til it ends with his demise. sammi/Rafe/E.J. simply entertaining! wanted Sammi with Rafe until she showed her meaness again with how she treated Gabi 2 weeks ago. Jennifer Horton makes me yawn… glad Chloe is back.

    I only tune into B&B twice a week or so…very boring. only like Taylor and Bill’s character so yes Taylor should get a lover. Watched it more when Ridge/Deacon/Amber was on. Good storylines.

    Watch Y&R everyday-good good good. Please have Lily get with the new guy and Kane with Chelsea so that Kane and Lily can get back together again someday. On a side note I will follow Steve Burton wherever he goes! Lets go Nick/Mac/Avery love it!

  9. SZima says:

    I’m hating the vampire crap on GH. They have ruined the character of Lucy…for this?? It’s horrible. And yes, Caleb licking the blood is gross. I’m back to FFing way too much of this show. I vote for the vampire story being a complete waste of time. I’m also bored with the “teeny bopper” storyline happening at the hospital thanks to Britt. I’m extremely upset that that actor has been put on contract. She’s so one-note.

    I just took B&B off my DVR this morning. I can no longer watch anything Hope/Liam/Steffy, Taylor/Brooke and especially Dayzee. And, now that Susan/Stephanie is gone, I have no reasonable reason to watch any more. Taylor and Eric coming on to each other? This storyline is just as sick as Y&R’s with Victor and Sharon hitting the sheets. I love when the soaps do mature love stories, but NOT when said love stories involve old men making it with their daughters-in-law…the mothers of their grandchildren. It’s just too incestuous for me.

    DOOL is the only show right now that I’m not FFing TOO much of. All “Daniel scenes” are about the only things I can’t stand on the show these days.

  10. janet says:

    I am a G H fan again.I was grossed out by the licking the arrow? and the blood on the guys neck,I can get over it ,if its going to end. I love the big smile on Michael Easton’s face. Caleb has a great smile. I like McBain but he doesn’t smile as often as his doppelganger. I like what FrankenRon have done with the show. I think they have improved it immensely.I stopped watching all the mob,so Y&R can have Jason,black t-shirt,and all. They can have all mob if they like. . I love that Laura is back,but what I really want to see is Robert and Anna. I love all the vets returning.keep them at least some of them.
    I watched PC until the vampires came on then I wasn’t interested.
    I will not watch DOOL. I think Sami back with Ej is disgusting.All the rotten garbage he did to her and to her kids No thanks.Makes no sense to me.I did watch Days for years No more. .Why do all those people think EJ and Sami should be together? When I read she was back with him it made the decision I will not turn the show on No way.

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