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« Oh, Show. Why Are You This Way? | Main | Days of Our Lives Month and a Half in Review »

July 02, 2008

Is This That Optimism Thing I've Heard So Much About?

I know they, whoever "they" are, say that you should live with no regrets.  But sadly, I have regrets.  They include, but are not limited to:

  • going through a period circa Reality Bites and Before Sunrise during which I thought Ethan Hawke was a little bit attractive
  • that my high school yearbook photo dedication includes the phrase "UR Audi5K"
  • not discovering arugula salads until this year
  • thinking Katherine Heigl was charming and/or down-to-earth
  • my attitude from ages 13-19
  • some really bad dates, especially the one with Scabby Leg Guy (I still don't believe that could happen playing soccer)
  • owning acid-washed jeans
  • taking almost half a season to get into Gossip Girl
  • probably some truly meaningful things as well

But none of that compares to how much I regret giving many, many hours of my life last summer to a soul-sucking enterprise known as General Hospital: Night ShiftMallory and I not only watched every minute of the awfulness, we detailed them in recaps that almost drained us of the will to live.  If not for Jason Thompson appearing nearly naked in a shower on the first episode, we probably would have walked away from blogging forever.  That scene got us through a lot -- a lot -- of crappy ones that followed.

So why, then, am I optimistic for the new season of Night Shift that starts airing July 22nd?  Note: Your answer may not include "idiot," "drunk," or "your brain is more broken than Jason Morgan's."

Hear me out, you guys:  I really think there may be cause for positivity this time around!  My reasons include:

  1. Neither Jill Farren Phelps nor Bob Guza is involved!  I can only hope this is a harbinger of similar things to come.
  2. New blood from outside soapdom! Well, partially.  Let's quickly, in the name of positivity, move past the fact that the Executive Producer the former EP of Passions.  (I am not able to say anything positive about Passions because 1) it took Another World away, and 2) I have heard that it is so bad it can only be enjoyed in the "are you fucking kidding me with this?!" way.)  ANYWAY, the exciting part is Sri Rao, a head writer from -- prepared to be blown away -- totally outside the world of soaps!  He has some TV and play credits, apparently?  At this point I wouldn't care if the extent of his writing experience was limericks on bathroom stalls; the likelihood is he'll be better at seeing an arc through from start to finish and avoiding offensive and stupid dialogue than the last regime.  I'm always bitching about how daytime passes around the same 10 or so head writers regardless of their abilities, so I'm so glad to see someone cannonball into that otherwise apparently shallow talent pool.
  3. Tristan Rogers as Robert Scorpio!  Robert is back, and not in the almost-invisible, slandered-via-horrible-writing way that he was on the GH mother ship.  According to Tristan's interview on the red carpet at the Daytime Emmys -- in one of the only moments of the pre-show worth watching -- he said the new writers are completely ignoring the ridiculous Robert-as-deadbeat-dad arc from GH and having Robert and Robin be a close father-daughter team with Robert involved in Robin's pregnancy and her helping him as a doctor.  Can you believe you're even reading that paragraph about something associated with General Hospital?!  I almost can't breathe, I'm so simultaneously shocked and excited.
  4. Jagger!  Jagger Cates is back, and -- per Antonio Sabato, Jr. on the red carpet at the Emmys, in one of the only other moments worth watching -- is an FBI agent and HAS A SON NAMED STONE.  Mallory and I freaked out in stereo.  I should probably reveal that Jagger is, if my fading memory serves, the reason I started watching GH.  I was in the student union in college and walked past one of those giant TVs (remember the ones that were about five feet deep with picture clarity akin to a YouTube video made from a 1980s video tape that's been sitting in the sun?) and saw Antonio Sabato, Jr.'s face about a yard high.  I stopped and watched the rest of the episode.  If you're having trouble understanding this, you clearly didn't see Antonio circa 1993, or Janet Jackson's "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" video. Because the dude?  WAS SMOKING HOT.  And he's still gorgeous!  And his character is not in the mob!  And he named his son after Stone "I can see you Robin" Cates!  I have to stop typing about this or I'm liable to pass out.
  5. No hitman/janitor as the hero of the show! Much as I liked the Night Shift version of Jason (yeah, I said it; bring it on, haters), I am thrilled that the mob will not be front and center this season.  Sonny can still swing by in the last episode and give Jason the sex eye or something, because that was awesome in a horrendous way.  But mostly:  Yay, no mob!  Or at least, no mob that eats the show.
  6. Patrick and Robin [exclamation point redacted for fear of implying current incarnations of these characters are worthy of excitement]  They are the center of the second season as they allegedly were the first, and that means -- drumroll please! -- under a new head writer, they might actually have a different conversation from the one they've been having since early 2007!  Robin might go back to being only endearingly annoying on an occasional basis!  Patrick might be notable for something other than Jason Thompson's hotness and adorable ability to hold babies fake-awkwardly!  A girl can dream.
  7. No alternate reality!  Per that SOAPNet article linked earlier:  "What's also great is that you can expect "Night Shift" to totally synch with "General Hospital." Last season's breakneck production schedule meant that some events on "Night Shift" didn't synch up with what was happening on "General Hospital." (Y'know, like when Jason was in jail during the day but not on "Night Shift.") Now the continuity between the two shows will be seamless." I'll believe "seamless" when I see it, but I'm so thrilled they're not even going to try that awful idea this season.  I like it when people admit that they're terrible at stuff.  It's the reason I don't play team sports, or try to make people feel better about bad haircuts.

I know I sound like a crazy fangirl.  Truly I do.  I even like the promo!  I need help.

But seriously, y'all, don't you think there's reason to believe the second time might be a charm?  Or at least, not the really sucky antithesis of charm?

You people better all have voted yes, because Mal and I are going to recap every episode of this damned thing and we need moral support.  So stay positive!  Or whine and complain like crazy, but send us chocolate.  (And maybe photos of Jason Thompson, Greg Vaughn, James Scott, and Peter Bergman.)


I am also optimistic against my will, mainly because Guza is not writing this. I am also hoping that if Night Shift does well, they will replace Guza. I am putting waaaay to much pressure on poor Night Shift.

Damn. I was all ready to laugh at you and ask if you realized that despite the absence of BG and JFP (thank you GOD!!!), that Brian Frons is still involved in this. But THEN, I read the gush about Tristan returning and about Jagger naming his son after Stone "I see you, Robin" Cates and...DAMN IT!!! They are so going to suck me back in!!! If I need a 12 step program to detoxify after THIS season, can I sue someone for it?

Ehhh, I voted yes because the signs look good. But I hope they don't screw me over again because I'm a Scrubbie all the way.

Though you shouldn't look at the bios as much to go on because if you notice they are practically the same as last year except the put in 'she's pregnant' but that is all, its the same crap.

Okay. I hate to be dense, but.....

How are they going to "synch" the shows when:

a. Robert will be both around, and not a loser who allowed his daughter to think he was dead for 15 years on NS? How are they going to synch with GH while simultaneously pretending that the last two years on GH didn't happen as they did?

b. a new writer on NS will presumably write at least one new conversation for Robin and Patrick to have, while the chances of that happening on GH with Guza and company in charge is, well, that of a snowball's in hell. Unless they are going to get rid of Guza... Oh, my god, I can't even think about that, the possibility is making me so giddy, I'm going to faint.

c. Clearly, the writing on GH is not miraculously going to improve unless Guza... (see previous paragraph, light-headedness ensuing...). So how are the shows going to synch if there is awesome (or let's face it, even mediocre) dialog on NS and the same old recycled shit and totally inconsistent/annoying dialogue on GH? Seriously, it will be like the 80's anti-drug ads: "This is your show. (Insert promo for NS) This is your show on Guza. (Insert promo for GH)"

Sorry, gals. I want so badly to be optimistic. Or even less pessimistic. But if I let myself hope, I may end up having a stroke from the rage when this show and it's barely recognizable twin live down to my expectations.

amiejayne is right

the synching is impossible because Guza will never allow anything that isn't his on GH

that and he can't even synch his own damn show, the characters and storylines are dropped or flipped 180 degrees on his whim for no reason at all times... GH is a mess....

there can be no synching sadly with TIIC

Sorry, but I have no faith. Guza, Jill and Brian Frons have killed it. If there is a way to mess up a soap, they will find it. ABC has virtually destroyed GH. Why are they investing so much in this cable spin-off when the mother ship is heading for the rocks? I saw only a few episodes last year, and I thought the whole concept was flawed. Characters were in totally different storylines that did not sync with each other. I couldn't figure out why they just didn't create a new soap. I don't blame Tristan for going on it. Work is work, but I don't think this show will be any better than GH, and I personally don't want to invest in something that might have no future at all.

Well, I can remember getting all excited the LAST time that I heard that Tristan Rogers was returning as Robert Scorpio. Last time I looked - I was STILL waiting for the REAL Robert to return.

You know what they used to say on Star Trek?

Fooled me once - shame on you.

Fooled me twice - shame on me.

I AM sorry - but I see the Robin and Patrick and 'hospital' fans all rushing out to put Night Shift over the top where ratings are concerned - only to discover that Night Shift Part Two STILL has ALL of the problems which made Night Shift Part One truly awful.

Sincerely, Deborah

I voted yes. And the continuity will not be a problem for me because I've tossed the suckfest mothership and will only be watching NS2, which is where Robert and Jagger will be playing. It's the easy way to make sure that Bob Guza's tendencies to be a petty fuckwad don't affect me in the slightest. It's also about the only way I'll be able to even attempt to enjoy Robin and Patrick, by refusing to acknowledge their shitty Guza-written doppelgangers that I used to love and would now rather chew a cyanide capsule than watch, and would in fact, resort to a cyanide capsule if forced to watch. So please NS2, one favor that you owe me after watching your craptastic Part 1 that apparently is still going on OG GH - no two-parters that finish on the mothership, and if all goes well, I'll even see y'all for Season 3.

#4 I can relate to, I started watching GH back in 1992 because I fell in fangurl love w/ Jagger Cates. ASJ is a HOT ASS piece of man meat and when I heard that ASJ was actually reprising the role, I was already a fan of NS2. I also am looking forward to TR returning as Robert and believe the man would NOT be returning to a show that portrays him as comedic relief in a boyscout uniform (see November 2006).

I watched ALL and I mean ALL of Night Shit I, every disgusting, vile, OTT, piece of shit moment for Robin and Patrick because I am a fangurl of their's and their portrayers Kimberly McCullough and Jason Thompson.

THIS year I am 110% optimistic that Sri and Lisa can KICK Guza and Phelp's ass in the ratings. I hope everyone gives this show a chance to shine and if it fucks us over as SHIT I did then I will simply turn it off and write Frons some hate letters. The new regime has rejuvenated my HOPE for season II.

So I will be watching for Robert, Jagger, Robin, and Patrick and HOPING that suckage cannot strike twice, especially with new faces at the helm. And episode I of NSII already has Jagger in a towel, so yeah, it is already a WINNER in my book!


Just happy to see a different writers take on this...Guza's writing is very lackluster so it will be a great comparison.

There were moments last year in NS1 but for the most part it was shoot em up bang bang. A lot of good stuff started but as usual no end of story just an endless vignette of plot points, anvils. I enjoyed just seeing Jason away from Carly.

That alone made him worth watching for me. You'll never see that on General Hospital.

You say Anthony Sabbato and its automatic.... I'm in!

Top 3 reasons to give Night Shift Season 2 a very undeserving chance: Antonio Sabato Jr., Tristan Rogers, and Jason Thompson...if it sucks just refer to the General Hospital section of your remote control, which includes the Fast Forward, Mute, and the Just Make It STOP!! buttons.

One more reason NO ShrewLu!!

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