Ban James Franco from Daytime!

James Franco

By Marlena De Lacroix 

Publicity whores! Marlena hates them! I’m so sorry that my otherwise carefree, wonderful summer was interrupted by my rants to friends visiting our summer cabin about how James Franco has taken over the daytime world this year. Not just with his repeated visits to General Hospital as Franco, but his egotistical appearances on soap covers, every blog on earth and every TV magazine show. He’d give an interview to my left (newly healed) broken left elbow!

It’s not so much Franco’s sheer audacity as a publicity whore I detest as his story on GH. Honey, Marlena lives in Manhattan, and I don’t need I need a lesson in what “performance art” is. All art is supposed to make you think, and Franco’s mission on GH was supposed to make you think about Jason, and that he doesn’t realize how evil his life has become.

Whatever your value system, GH doesn’t need a character like Franco to TELL you that Jason is a bad boy, and has committed numerous crimes over the years. Jill, Bob, Frons, we are thinking fans and we already know Jason is no good. We don’t need innumerable magazine interviews with TV execs, writers and producers to tell us what this storyline means. Please, old pals, Marlena and company know how to think and we don’t need to be talked down to.

It’s interesting that Guza brought Franco (in his ever present “I’ll get you” black leather jacket) on in weird ways. The only interactions he had outside of Jason were with the women he slept with (Maxie, Sam , etc). He even brought his mother to the Port Charles circus. As always misogyny and male myth rule on this show. I don’t care if Franco is good-looking. That’s what soap opera stars are for, n’est-ce pas?

So join me, fellow daytimers. Purge daytime of Franco! Enough with his returns after falling off museum balconies and the like. I’m sick of the Franco music. Just say no to Jill and Bob. Tell them there must be more to your show than sticking your tongues out at other soap producers that you’ve got Franco and they don’t. Just think, the time you spend publicizing yourself and Franco may be the time you could be producing good, heart-felt soap opera, filling it with love, not preening publicity whoring.


  1. Marlena, I totally agree on you on the overexposure of James “Freako” Franco!!! Even though James Franco is a talented actor who starred in such memorable movies such as the Spiderman trilogy, Pineapple Express, and Milk, ( the latter film for which he earned an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor) who also started his acting carrer for playing one of the “freaks” on “Freaks and Geeks”, and earned a Golden Globe nod for playing James Dean in the tv movie biopic “The James Dean Story”, his character was completely RIDICULOUS on GH!!!!!!!

    When they brought him on the show late last year, they teased us saying that he had a “secret connection” to another character on the show! When he was obssesing over Jason “Quartermain No More” Morgan, we thought as viewers that either he was a long lost Q relative, or he was responsible for killing one of Franco’s friends in the car accident he was involved in with his brother A.J.

    It turned out that he was nothing more than a weirdo psycho killing nutjob who had a “mancrush” on Jason!!!! The storyline even became more bizzare when he brought on a drag queen companion who recited a spoken word version of Franco’s theme song “Mad World” and the art crowd folks were mesmerized by Franco’s sick and twisted art work of his past evil deeds outside the MOCA museum in L.A. Then he faked his own suicide when some sort of stunt double fell off the roof just when “Stone Cold” was about to shoot the guy that was suppose to be Franco.

    It turns out that he turned up alive, and arrived with Lucky and Liz’s kidnapped newborn baby on the doorsteps of his kooky mother’s house in Portand, Oregon! Thank God that Lucky eventually rescued the baby!!!! (even though he doesn’t know it’s really HIS baby and not Nik’s child!!!!)

    I just hope to god that this Franco s/l will be officially over pretty sooner than later!!!!!

    (BTW, what do you think about Vanessa Marcil Giovinnazzo returning to GH for a third time this summer? Do you think that all of this promotion for Brenda Barrett’s return to Port Charles is over-hyped overkill? Because it seems to me that the PR people at ABC Daytime are treating this like the second coming(or in Brenda’s case, the THIRD coming!!!!) At least it was nice to see classic episodes of VMG back in her glory days on GH!!!!! With all of this mega hype publicity, the TPTB better not screw up Brenda’s return to GH, or they will really let down millions of viewers for a much ballyhooed comeback for VMG’s return to daytime tv!!!!!!

    Marlena says: First., CLB, thanks for giving us lots more details of the character of Franco’s stay so far on GH and according the respect to James Franco the actor he richly deserves for his work OTHER than on GH. He has had a tremendous movie career, and makes amazing choices. Too bad he had to hook up with Guza and Frons and Jill, however, who didn’t know how to use him and let him run amok with their egos! Franco will be with us foreve,r I am afraid.

    I was never a big Vanessa fan, but at least she was VERY much a part of GH, and millions and millions of GH fans loved her, and still do. So her royal welcome is overkill, but I think a sign of 1) desperation on the network’s part and 2) the second act of the “watch me” Franco saga. You know they have to be linked somehow. What makes me laugh is that I saw Vanessa on a talk show in which she justified her return to the show because big stars like Franco are on daytime now. Ha! I’m not going to put down the Brenda phenom. It’s bigger than both of us (but not Lucci!) and I’m enjoying the sturm und drang Ms. Barrett silently always brings back to Port Charles. To me, she’s a silent film actress — all look and mood. People love her.

  2. Thank you Marlena! Couldn’t agree more. The whole storyline (storyline? that might be giving way too much praise) was pointless, senselessly violent, and I was embarrassed for the show.

    P.S. Did you happen to catch the Brenda Marathon? It was painful to see 90’s GH. I’m shocked ABC allowed it knowing it will remind viewers of how fantastic the show used to be. GH has fallen so far.

    Gee, I forgot the word “violent.” So much of the show is, we’ve taken that element for granted. Wow, is Brenda going to hide out in Port Charles, after being shot at as a charity ambassadress? Northing like hiding out in plain sight for our gal.

  3. Dear C.L.B.,

    A correction (with due respect): Actor James Franco has yet to receive an Academy Award nomination. Sean Penn won his second best-actor Oscar, as the late activist-turned-elected politician Harvey Milk in 2008’s “Milk,” but Franco was not among the supporting-actor contenders in a category posthumously won by Heath Ledger (“The Dark Knight). Franco was among 2001–02 lead-actor Emmy nominees, in the miniseries/television movie field, for TNT’s “James Dean” (and lost the prize to Albert Finney — himself a five-time Oscar nominee — for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in HBO’s “The Gathering Storm”).

    Dear Connie/Marlena,

    I haven’t watched any of James Franco’s appearances on ABC’s “General Hospital.” It is one soap I have turned my back on because of its mafia domination in the overall theme of the series. (Enough years elapsed that I had reached my breaking point.) So I am sorry you’ve been suffering as you’ve expressed, but hopefully the time will come sooner than later when this “GH”–James Franco gimmick comes to an end.

    Marlena says: DSO xxxooo you are toujours mon ami. What a lucky gal I am to have such wonderful readers!

  4. Thanks DS0816 for correcting my mistakes! (D’OH!!!!)

  5. Marlena, when Vanessa was being interviewed on ‘The View”, she said that she was always contacting TPTB at ABC Daytime about coming back to the show, and trying to work out when and how. TIIC actually wanted her comeback to the show to coincide with Franco, but she refused that offer, She said that she would only come back to the show if she could have a reunion with the peeps in Port Chuck like Sonny, Jason. Jax, Robin, and the Quartermaine family (which the latter part of her comeback deal was what she said in an interview with TV Guide magazine).
    I recently watched a “Best of Brenda and Sonny’ marathon on Soapnet, and boy was GH a lot more better of a show back then! (I’ve been watching GH everyday for only a few years now, and I’m only recently learning more about Brenda’s and the show’s history on the show thanks to all the clips Soapnet’s website provided, and of course on YouTube, but at least I knew about Luke and Laura’s history before I became a regular viewer of the show!!!). The only thing that seem horrible about the show was that Ricky Martin was involved in that Puerto Rico s/l!!! The man is a great and talented singer, but he was such a TERRIBLE actor on the show!!!! YIKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Marlena says: Oh no, I interviewed Ricky in those prehistoric days and he was a doll, baby. Loved him!!!! Wish him and his family all the best always!

  6. Cyberologist says:

    Well funny you should mention it but I was in Walgreens (our neighborhood drugstore here in Chicago) and who is on the cover of Esquire this month

    yep, James Franco and his art…

    I like Franco and I’ve read his articles in WSJ and all that but I think GH shot themselves in the foot early on…

    Guza flat out said “he would be interacting with the “major characters” before the man can air he’s dividing the audience and that is GH problem they have alienated ( a portion of the ) audience to the point they are no longer interested and aren’t buying the bait and switch tactics its just more divisive polarized storytelling

    HuH? “major characters”?”

    I thought I saw him interact with Milo/Max/ along with Luke then of course /Jason/ Sonny and the rest of the pets. Frons had its “IT” characters lined up to interact with Franco the movie star for their buzz… to market them as the face of GH.

    They were in the publicity stills while many characters were left out…just like Franco’s 2nd run. He’s at Jakes mingling with the everday people (including Jax) LoL. Its pretty easy for me to see what was going down here…

    Frons has the characters he markets its the same ones so its no need to go through naming them..all you have to do is look at the line up of characters every day in the opening to see who he deems important. I am done with ABC soaps as a loyal viewer (I still record them because I just don’t want soaps to die)

    but I don’t waste my time and I’m totally free of FronsTV via GuZa vision and it feels damn good honestly. I was being tortured watching that show.

    Re: Brenda
    I thought they were going for the warm and fuzzy with of old school GH with the old footage the marathon and all that…and I’ve since learned there was a promo with Robin not just the “mens” I missed it though. Very little mentioned in spoilers about Robin.

    IMO, its about ratings e.g. Michael Sutton’s return as Stone..sorry to be rambling here but what I’m trying to say is…here is a regime that has systematically trashed GH history (esp the Labine years? I think I’m correct)….if not set me straight…

    They repeatedly say rating don’t matter just demos, yet still they return to the history they have trashed for a stunt ratings grabber.

    #1 pet peeve what irks me the most …

    GH has too many characters and they are steady adding more just endless characters…I asked the question why? Why so many characters? and a writer answered,

    “I think mainly it’s because Guza doesn’t really know how to tell a story anymore and so newbies are a really easy way to add conflict without having to actually having to work a story through the characters to make it more heart felt story. He uses the newbies as plot devices instead of telling character driven stories.”

    OK my incoherent rant is over
    Thanks I needed that even if it doesn’t make a lick of sense LoL…

    I’m doing a James Brown here
    “I feel good.”

    Marlena says: Hey, I like James Brown too. That Guza continures to trash Claire Labine is a crime. He knows how much we worship her (I know Claire, an amazing and wonderful gentlewoman!) and cannot seem to get over it. How dare he cast aspersions on her work and her genius. Claire is a woman of heart and mind; Guza hates women and demonstrates it just about eveyday on the show. I deplore him. Long live Claire and her legacy. The glowing evaluation of her work will long outlive any of Guza’s misogyny and utter lack of class.

  7. I have found the only thing you will find on GH is Something Guza and Gang have copied from others. Franco did nothing for me. I didn’t even find him hot. I just thought of him as another Jason. This show has enough killers and scum one more was just overkill.I had never seen him in any of his movies ,I have seen some of Pineapple express.Some it was not my kind of movie..
    A little Franco means less of Sonny so !

  8. Nicholas Ryan says:

    I just heard that Leslie Charlson was bumped to oblivion recurring status….so GH is officially the Sonny, Jason, Franco show! Mark my word, Guza and crew will try to get Franco back again! Just as the Quartermaines are dead to Guza and crew…GH is dead to me now!

  9. Stephanie says:

    Hype, publicity, exposure (over or otherwise), I could handle any of the above…if there were actually a payoff for me as a viewer. I had absolutely no interest in the Franco storyline (except where it interacted with the Nik/Elizabeth/Lucky story) because I already knew it would come to nothing in thte end.

    This is just one of a seemingly endless succession of storylines that tease the fans with the possibility of what we really want… for GH to focus on something other than the mob. Since Steve Burton is the golden boy, the writers keep teasing us with the idea that he will finally see the light and we can at last move on to a new stage. (I can’t even count the number of sorylines that offered hope for just that only to turn right back to where they started.)

    It’s not like there isn’t any potential for a great storyline based on getting Jason out of the mob, and reintegrating with the Q’s…

    The REALLY sad part is that there are actually some decent storylines going on GH this summer, but the stupid hype about France and Vanessa are overshadowing the stuff that fans might actually want to watch.

  10. Preacher'swife says:

    Amen sister Preach it! Bring back the Quartermains & Laura. The show is General HOSPITAL not general gangsters!

  11. The unfortunate part is all these big names won’t provide a boost for daytime. When I see the ratings (no matter how big the star), they do not increase. Plus, all the soap hopping really doesn’t help daytime either. With just 6 soaps left now, I can see actors going like nomads from place to place. There are some casting lately that is left scratching my head. Execs should go with the saying, “Focus on what you have, instead of what you don’t have.”

  12. Indydavid says:

    I agree that Franco on GH is a bust. And I’m also thinking (although it may be premature to comment) that Brenda back on GH may be a bust, as well.

    Is it just me or is Vanessa’s acting not up to par this time around? Brad Rowe as Murphy is acting circles around her. She appears to be having trouble remembering and saying her lines. And that laugh is grating!

    Anyone else have thoughts on Brenda back on GH?

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