‘All My Children’ Gets A Five Star Send Off

by | September 9, 2011 at 3:33 PM | Deep Soap

“All My Children” Commemorated With Book & TV Special

This is going to be a tough two weeks for “All My Children” fans. With reports that production company Prospect Park may be putting its plans to continue the show on the internet on hold, there is a possibility that the show’s September 23rd ABC finale could turn out to be its last episode. If it is truly the final episode of AMC, the planned cliffhanger ending could drive viewers insane. Fortunately, there are two ways for fans to get some closure. Sunday, September 11th, the TV Guide channel will air the special “All My Children: the Stars, Stories and Secrets” at 8PM EST. It will be rerun numerous times. Hosted by Cameron Mathison, it features new interviews with current and former AMC stars including Susan Lucci, Josh Duhamel, Eva LaRue, Debbi Morgan, and Kim Delaney. There will also be classic clips, including cameos by what the TV Guide network deems some of the show’s “most famous fans.” I hope Warren Buffet’s spectacularly awkward appearance with Opal makes the cut.

People magazine has published PEOPLE Celebrates All My Children. It is available in softcover on news stands September 9th and in hardcover in bookstores on September 27th. The special edition includes the obligatory interview with Susan Lucci, exclusive photos, and retrospectives on the show’s weddings, sex symbols and notable alumni.

AMC is garnering far more attention than “As the World Turns” or “Guiding Light” got when they aired their finales, though GL was the subject of a story on “60 Minutes.”  In part it’s because of the Lucci factor. In part it’s because the show is watched by more journalists, thanks to its popularity in the New York market. In part it’s because all the drama surrounding the show’s cancellation and possible resurrection — and the resulting pageviews for articles about it — have proven that this show still generates a lot of interest. I wonder if the higher-rated yet less publicized “One Life to Live” will get as much of a send off in January.

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Is it the summer doldrums or is it me? For the past week, soaps have collectively functioned as a great sleeping aid for me. There have been some nice moments — Carol Burnett was funny on “All My Children“, as was Dixie (Cady McClain) who dressed up like a chicken for Tad (Michael Knight), the cameo by the original actress who played Jessica, Erin Torpey, on “One Life to Live“  –  but I find myself not emotionally invested in anything.  It seems like nothing has happened on “General Hospital” since Jason (Steve Burton) woke up from his brain surgery, without any side effects. I know that Kristina (Lexi Ainsworth) has developed a spinal problem that will require surgery, that Lulu (Julie Berman) and Dante (Dominic Zamprogna) are semi-broken up for no apparent reason. But each episode just seems lacking in energy and momentum. It seems like an hour of people rehashing conversations.

The Young & the Restless” has two long-lost relatives storylines, two ongoing murder investigations, and a toddler with leukemia but I have found each recent episode to be excruciatingly dull. I just don’t care about anything that’s happening. Sharon’s (Sharon Case) lawyer Avery (Jessica Collins) whose sole personality trait so far seems to be “great lawyer” is Phyllis’s sister. The two of them don’t get along because Phyllis did not stay in touch after she moved out of their parents’ house. Phyllis does not want anyone to know they are sisters because, well, I guess it’s shameful to be related to a renowned attorney. That is not much of a story. I can tell by the music cues that Avery is up to no good, but so what? If she turns out to be yet another Y&R psycho woman, her antics better be as entertaining — and non-violent –as Leanna Love’s for me to love her. Sharon’s eventual exoneration is a foregone conclusion, so it’s hard to get worked up about any of the twists in the trial. Victor (Eric Braeden) is finally going to testify to the fact that he destroyed evidence that could have exonerated Sharon in the first place? Am I supposed to be impressed that he’s no longer willing to let the mother of his grandchildren rot in prison for something she didn’t do or concerned that he is going to be prosecuted when I know that he never, ever suffers significant consequences for anything that he does?

I am the biggest OLTL fan girl, but Victor’s (Trevor St. John) death seems to have sucked the air out of the show. The emotional, intriguing beats of the Lord and Manning families grappling with the discovery that the man they believed was Todd was actually an imposter have been replaced with standard issue soap whodunnit scenes of characters accusing each other of murder. Learning that Kim (Amanda Setton) is actually Cutter’s (Josh Kelly) sister just made me disappointed that Cutter was being anchored in Llanview while Christian (David Fumero) is getting written out months before the show’s ABC finale.

AMC is still going out with a bang. But after last week’s powerful scenes of Jesse (Darnell Williams) coming clean to Angie (Debbi Morgan) about the baby switch, everything else seems anti-climactic. Perhaps I’m just grumpy because I know my least favorite character of all time, Babe (Alexa Havins) is the character that David (Vincent Irizarry) managed to resurrect. Why couldn’t it have been Leo (Josh Duhamel)?

It seems like every show except AMC is treading water until September 26th, the designated post-AMC soap big day which will feature the beginning of the “Days of Our Lives” reboot, Sam (Kelly Monaco) and Jason’s (Steve Burton) wedding on GH, and Jacob Young’s return to “The Bold & the Beautiful.” Until then, I’ll probably be doing a lot of fast-forwarding.

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