My apologies if this has already been posted.
I've been looking at odds and ends scenes on and off today and I just stumbled onto this.
I didn't even realize they had ever acted together.
Woulda, coulda, shoulda...
Seeing more material from Mary Ryan Munisteri's period as headwriter remains my holy grail as an RH fan. As has already been noted, of the Labine/Mayer replacements, her writing seems easily the most aligned with the show's original identity. I'd love to see the Kirkland story play out, and how it may have shifted over time given that Hollis and Amanda were both Labine creations (I believe). At least during those early months, they appear to have been relatively well-integrated with the show's core characters, so the moniker Kirkland's Hope seems misdirected - I believe that originates with Ron Hale, which makes some sense since Roger was on the backburner for a while after the EJ story ended.
Those early weeks of Pat Falken Smith's run that are available on YouTube are fascinating in that they retain some of L&M's scriptwriters and maintain the overall look and feel of the show, though you can feel the show's center of gravity beginning to shift. Beyond the backburnering of the Ryans and the ascendency of the Dubujaks and the gang at Greenberg's Deli, 1984 presented such an extreme makeover for the show - the music changed, the types of actors changed, and of course the sets changed, most notably the bar. In retrospect it's hard to see how anyone could have thought something that extreme could work without alienating the core viewership.
The Dubujaks were awful, particularly Jacqueline. I guess I can understand Daniel Pilon's appeal as a debonair man in the Dynasty vein, but Max wasn't much of a character. King/Taggart's decision to make him the sudden romantic lead of the show for the latter half of 1985 was such a head-scratcher considering how much time the show devoted to portraying him as the big bad up to that point.
Interestingly enough, Joe's cousin Laslo did end up becoming a threat to Siobhan during the period in which Joe was presumed dead, though it played out as a way to further justify Max and Siobhan's romance. Laslo was responsible for reporter Sydney Price's accidental death, though everyone assumed Max was responsible since Sydney had been his escort at some point in the distant past. Siobhan eventually figured out Sydney had died during a scuffle with Laslo, and Laslo kidnapped Siobhan and whisked her away to Canada. Max rescued Siobhan, which is partially how the other Ryans came to accept him despite the fact that he was widely acknowledged as an international crime lord (ugh).
The Gabrielle Dubujak/Chessy Blake doppelgänger storyline was one of the worst stories the show ever told... if not the worst. From what I remember watching on YouTube, the story largely kept Gabrielle and Jacqueline apart until right before Quealy and Scannell were written out, which was wise - Scannell being all of 2 years older than Quealy.
Cesare Danova as Silvio was still a contract cast member when the show ended, though I imagine they would have written him out had the show continued. By November 1988 he'd completely disentangled himself from the mob and attempted a reconciliation with Sister Mary Joel, but she'd made it clear she intended to stay committed to the church. Danova and Rosemary Prinz make few appearances in the last two months'' worth of episodes that are available on YouTube.
Unlike the 1981 Writer's Strike, I believe the scab writers in 1988 aligned very closely with what Labine had outlined in her story projections for the year. SOD or another publication at the time had writers comment on the work of the scabs, and her only complaint was that they'd overly emphasized Ryan in the Jack/Mary Joel storyline. Compared to the creative resurgence the show experienced in 1987, 1988 an odd year in terms of how many long-term characters left the canvas: Jill, Maggie, Pat, Dakota, and finally Joe. As much as I've enjoyed what's available of Roscoe Born's return that fall, moving Siobhan out of Joe's orbit strikes me as a wise choice.
Beyond what's been said, I seem to recall Leigh not having a good relationship with either of her parents. I did enjoy the fact that the show brought back the Kirkland butler, Mendenhall (played by RH stage manager Dick Briggs), in the weeks leading up to the finale. (He'd also been the butler for the Kirklands' predecessor in their penthouse, Spencer Smith, during the Egyptian storyline.)