In the 1980s, General Hospital was known for its flights of fancy stories, including a weather machine to freeze the globe and an alien who befriended a lonely child… this time without Reese’s Pieces.
Nowadays, however, their tales tend to skew more cutting edge, touching upon cults, teen emancipation, public breast feeding, transgender characters, bullying, gentrification, election interference, the opioid crisis, and the #MeToo movement.
(We can forget about the memories stored on flash drives that can be used to overwrite entire personalities. That one’s ahead of its time.)
Is it too much real-life? Do you prefer your soaps to traffic in fantasy? Here’s what almost 13,000 voters told us.
Escape the Room
Soaps should be about escape, 54% hope The Powers That Be are listening. You want romance, true love, sweeping adventure, gothic tragedy, and miracle returns from the dead (preferably on a major holiday).
Mobsters and serial killers may be a factor of real-life (though in numbers much lower than television would lead you to believe), but that doesn’t mean you want any of it on your screens.
Oscar (Garren Stitt) dying is a downer, and his – and Kristina’s (Lexi Ainsworth) – potential ensnarement in a cult is of no interest to you.
It’s important to hear Terry’s story about her transition, 46% of the audience counters. It’s important to address the effects of gentrification on low-income communities, and bullying, and the right to die.
Viewers might be facing similar situations in their own lives and they embrace the sense of not being alone, as well as crave tips on how they should respond.
In the 1990s, GH brought viewers stories of Monica’s (Leslie Charleson) breast cancer, Robin’s (Kimberly McCullough) HIV diagnosis, Karen’s childhood abuse, and revisited Luke’s rape of Laura in a more realistic light. It has a long tradition of topical stories!
General Hospital (GH) airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes.