Jump to content

OLTL and GH Expand to 45 Minutes!

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 30
  • Created
  • Last Reply
  • Members

Yep- some decisions made during the Lemay/Rauch eras would hurt AW in the longer run. But as recently as the 77-78 ratings season, AW tied with ATWT for first place. It then fell to 8th the next season but was still NBC's highest-rating soap. Because AW (and other NBC soaps) ratings were declining already, it is something of a myth that the 90-minute expansion caused the fall since AW was still NBC's top-rating soap and they were still competitive throughout the time. It was only when Beverlee McKinsey left for Texas, which meant AW went back to 60 minutes, that the bottom completely fell out. In the latter half of 1980, all three of NBC's big hitters- AW, Days and The Doctors- tanked and in The Doctors' case it was fatal.

And it wasn't just AW itself. The catastrophic collapse of NBC Daytime ratings in 1980 was triggered off by Days, since there was a big backlash to the wholesale gutting of established cast members and replacement with new characters nobody cared for (only Gloria Loring as Liz Chandler had any staying power). But also consider that the Supertrain failure and Olympics boycott pushed NBC to the brink of ruin at the time.

Rauch didn't leave AW until 1983, and it was only by then that NBCD was slowly beginning to get it together. The 1983-85 period was really something of a miraculous recovery for both Days and AW.

All My Children was the only ABC soap to have consistently decent ratings before the rise of GH. The rise of GH had an electrifying effect on the entire ABCD lineup- AMC and OLTL rode high on the back of it, although AMC had risen to #1 for a year. Ryan's Hope was doing well and even The Edge of Night managed to buy a stay of execution (it would most likely have been cancelled were it not for ABCD's rise, but after 1982 it was only a matter of time).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

How much did the ratings go up for AW from 83-85? There's often talk of how the show was waiting around to die for many years but I guess they must have had some ratings growth in the 80s in order to survive as long as they did.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

According to Wikipedia ratings, AW jumped from a 4.8 in 1982-83 to a 5.6 in 1983-84, and stayed above a 5.0 through 1988-89, before the bottom dropped out again. The jump in the 80s was due to the refocusing of the show on Sally and the child she had and gave up for adoption, the return of Jackie Courtney, and the introduction of the Loves. I believe Allen Potter was EP at the time. I was watching pretty regularly, and there was definitely a renewed energy to the show. BTW, The Doctors had a 1.6 rating when it was cancelled. That's pitiful now...imagine how ghastly that number seemed back in the ratings-bloated early 80s!


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members


1. General Hospital 9.8

2. All My Children 9.4

3. One Life To Live 8.1

4. The Young And The Restless 8.0

5. As The World Turns 7.6

6. Guiding Light 7.4

7. Capitol 6.0

8. Days Of Our Lives 5.7

9. Ryan's Hope 5.6

10. Another World 4.8

11. The Edge Of Night 3.8

12. Texas 2.7

14. Search for Tomorrow 2.7

15. The Doctors 1.6


1. General Hospital 10.0

2. All My Children 9.1

3. The Young And The Restless 8.8

4. One Life To Live 8.2

5. Guiding Light 8.1

6. As The World Turns 7.9

7. Days Of Our Lives 7.1

8. Capitol 6.4

9. Another World 5.6

10. Ryan's Hope 5.0

11. Loving 3.9

12. The Edge Of Night 3.5

13. Search for Tomorrow 3.2


1. General Hospital 9.1

2. All My Children 8.2

3. The Young And The Restless 8.1

4. Guiding Light 7.5

5. One Life To Live 7.3

6. Days Of Our Lives 7.1

6. As The World Turns 7.1

8. Capitol 5.8

9. Another World 5.5

10. Loving 4.1

11. Ryan's Hope 3.4

11. Santa Barbara 3.4

13. Search for Tomorrow 3.3

14. The Edge Of Night 2.6


1. General Hospital 9.2

2. The Young And The Restless 8.3

3. All My Children 8.0

4. One Life To Live 7.8

5. Days Of Our Lives 7.2

6. Guiding Light 6.8

7. As The World Turns 6.7

8. Capitol 5.1

8. Another World 5.1

10. Loving 4.2

11. Santa Barbara 4.2

12. Ryan's Hope 3.2

13. Search for Tomorrow 2.9


1. General Hospital 8.3

2. The Young And The Restless 8.0

3. One Life To Live 7.2

4. All My Children 7.0

4. Days Of Our Lives 7.0

4. As The World Turns 7.0

7. Guiding Light 6.3

8. The Bold And The Beautiful 5.6

9. Capitol 5.2

10. Another World 5.1

11. Santa Barbara 4.2

12. Loving 3.9

13. Ryan's Hope 2.7

14. Search for Tomorrow 2.5

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

You can see that by the mid-80s, NBC had the three-hour soap block of Days, AW and Santa Barbara, which was its strongest soap lineup since the glory days of the early to mid 70s. With that block of Days/AW/SB, NBC actually looked like getting it right. But typically NBC, they squandered it. Both Days and Another World aped General Hospital's "supercouple" formula with quite some success, particularly Days with Bo and Hope.

When I say "miraculous", it's because NBC Daytime and NBC generally was able to recover from a critical state of affairs in the 1980-82 period. If you look at the ratings for the week of Luke & Laura's wedding and you see how magnified it was- the entire ABC daytime lineup was on fire to the extent that even the ailing EON beat the entire NBC lineup for the week!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Where is that week's ratings posted? I have only seen the ratings AMC/OLTL/GH got for the week.

I find it crazy how TEON had GH as a lead-in, yet still was horrible in the ratings. I know it was scheduled at 4pm, had ABC given up that slot then tried to put TEON in it afterwards? Dark Shadows was scheduled at 4 wasn't it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

Yeah, many affiliates in the 80s aired syndicated shows in the post-GH slot, and if they aired Edge, it was at some random timeslot in the middle of the night. Which, honestly, a mystery/crime soap at midnight sounds like a fantastic idea. I guess it wasn't fantastic when the show had already been in daytime for 25 years and built its audience there.

Would if ABC moved Dark Shadows to late night in '71? I know they had a talk show or two in their late night schedule then, Dick Cavett or somebody, but still, that could have kicked ass.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

ABC had programmed 4.00 after Dark Shadows was cancelled. Password(71), Love American Style reruns (71-74), $10,000 Pyramid (74), The Money Maze (74-75)and You Don't say (75).

Obviously, they weren't having much success in that slot and took on Edge.So,in addition to trying to attract viewers to a slot that was low rated for them,they had to also entice CBS Edge viewers and deal with the weak lead in of GH. By the time GH took off Edge had already been at 4.00 for a number of years and probably on fewer affiliates than GH.

I remember reading that on a city by city basis Edge was very strong in some markets at 4.00

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Members

In fact, EON usually ran #1 or close #2 nearly all markets that aired it at 4. The problem was clearance. In St. Louis, where I lived, the show aired after Nightline or later! The reason it was cancelled was clearance -- according to wiki and others it was only on 62% of stations during the Fall 84 and another dozen were going to drop it at beginning of 85, so P&G shut it down.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy