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« The Recap to End All Recaps | Main | Showdown at the Buchanan Stables »

January 19, 2011

Another One Bites The Dust

If you've been reading this blog long enough, you know that bad news typically makes me get my shriek on. I'm sure you'd expect my reaction upon hearing the news that Rebecca Herbst was let go from General Hospital to include an absurdly long screed filled with, well, screed-length remarks in parentheses in the middle of a run-on sentence, and lots of ANGRY CAPS LOCK TYPING, and questions about Brian Frons and Bob Guza's job security that, if they were spoken aloud, would be verbalized in the form of a long, plaintive wail and a sneer (I'm not sure what the written equivalent of a sneer is, but roll with it) at ABC's somewhat terse statement about her exit:

"Storyline dictates the exit of Elizabeth Webber this spring. The next few months promise to be a 'not to miss' story for the character. We at ABC and GENERAL HOSPITAL wish Rebecca Herbst nothing but the best in all of her future endeavors."

(I am guessing that those are sarcastic airquotes, incidentally.)

But mostly? I am just really, really sad. I am sad that a daytime veteran (who plays a legacy character!) who was part of multiple (!) hugely successful pairings and some hugely memorable storylines is getting unceremoniously written off the show after spending years uncertain of whether she'd be dealing with the backburner or character assassination. I am sad to be losing a character that I have loved for years (I realize that this is not an opinion shared by many people; Liz seems to be one of the more polarizing characters on daytime)--I mean, she has not been written well in a REALLY long time, but, because I am an optimist and also a fool, I held out hope that the writers would realize how much story potential this character has in her.

And, selfishly, I am sad that my Things To Look Forward To On General Hospital list--which was crazy short to begin with. And, like, five of the things to look forward to are Carly-related. CARLY!--is going to become even shorter. I will no longer be able to swoon over Rebecca Herbst's shiny, shiny hair and...I hardly want to type this, because I am just speculating and jumping to the worst case scenario, but: we may no longer have Cameron. I know. I'm perishing the thought and biting my tongue and so on! Ugh, I hate everything.

Comments

I’m stunned and saddened to hear the news that General Hospital fired Rebecca Herbst. Elizabeth Webber is the last relatable female character on the show. A legacy character portrayed by a fine actress. Really Ms. Herbst’s firing should come as no surprise when this show has ousted many a fan favorite, like Stuart Damon with no remorse, and so shabbily treated Genie Francis. General Hospital does not value it’s own history, characters or audience and hasn’t for a VERY long time. Well, with Ms. Herbst’s departure, this viewer has finally turned GH off for good.

Awesome post & awesome comments from everyone. GH's viewers are well-spoken and intelligent. Why can't the writers respect the viewers they have left? They seem to take pleasure in crapping all over them.

If the writers claim there are no stories left for Elizabeth, that is lazy writing. Good writers should be able to come up with stories for characters. They never seem to run out of stories for Jason, Sonny or Carly. They manage to shoehorn Dante into every single scenario with no problem.

There are too many useless characters introduced lately with very little tie to anyone on the show, and yet they remain front and center. I can't imagine the affect on the actors who are discarded like yesterday's trash. I'm sure they have to deal with that as part of their profession, but when an actor has been on the show for years and been loyal and professional, I'm sure it is devastating (as it was for Stuart Damon).

Devastating as this news is, I think Frons/Phelps/Guza may have finally made the right mistake, if you know what I mean. I have not seen this much reaction, even when Alan was killed off senselessly. Most posts I'm reading on other sites say "Goodbye GH" because of Rebecca's firing.

Well, I'm not sad one bit that Liz is biting the dust. What used to be an awesome character has become a miserly version that has served no justifiable purpose for YEARS.

Sucks that RH lost a job, but hey, those are the breaks.

Elizabeth, and Becky Herbst's portrayal of her are the reason I started watching General Hospital, and ironically she is the reason I will finally give up the ghost and just let the big giant mess go. I am sure Becky will land on her feet; she is a class act all the way.

I am dumbfounded. Seriously, shocked. Instead of removing any (or all) of half dozen new characters that have no fan base to speak of/no one really cares about (Siobhan, Olivia, Steve Webber, Ronny Domestico, Lisa Niles, Prosecutor Claire Who's Last Name I Can't Remember--and oh my gosh, I really could name half a dozen characters that no one cares about, right off the bat. I thought I was speaking in hyperbole. Silly me!), they get rid of one of the few actors whose fan loyalty sweeps across multiple pairings. Because that makes so much sense.

I'm mad as a fan because Rebecca Herbst and Jonathan Jackson got me watching this show way back in the 90s as a teen. JJ was gone for all those years, and when he finally came back I returned to watching GH with hopes for an LL2 reunion. But their story line was in tatters and that she's leaving, now no LL2 ever again. No mature, adult love for 2 cherished characters played by actors that at least a portion of the audience has waited years to reunite. As someone else mentioned, *what* was the point of bringing Aidan into the plotline? It makes me feel cheated. (I imagine the Liason fans must feel reeeally cheated too. You have my sympathies).

I'm mad because they summarily canned an actress who's devoted her WHOLE career to this show. It's not like she went off and did tv movies or lifetime movies or the occasional episode of CSI or *anything* else. This is her whole resume. GH. As a human being with empathy and also as a fan of her work, I hope she can find other roles with relative ease but I worry that it will be difficult for her because she's not at that 'starlet' age anymore and from the sound of it work for actors is hard to come by. Even JJ's resume is sparse in the last few years, and he had all that momentum leaving GH to springboard him (the movie with Michelle Pfieffer, the Star Wars talk, the emmys).

I'm mad because of some serious character assasination: they took a beloved fan character and have given her the maturity of a 14 year old, bouncing from crush to crush and neglecting her kids from 3 (!) different men, frittering away their inheritance. I'm sad because people don't even like this character anymore, it's not RH's fault, and there won't be time enough to redeem her.

And I'm REALLY mad because I feel like they waited 90 days after her maturnity leave or whatever CA law dictates in terms of the window you can't fire someone, and then once that was up they canned her. Because clearly no one can come up with a story for the pregnant girl and then when she came back there was nothing to do with her and she was 'expensive' and so they dropped her. I'm mad because from what I can tell she hasn't gotten the recognition or the writing she deserved for years and YEARS and yet she still showed up at every GH event and press junket with nothing but grace and gratitude and joy for working with people she trusted and liked. Seriously, of all the people to fire I can't think of a more polarizing person to let go.

Whew! I think I've said all I have to say. Maybe a fan campaign can keep her on the show.

I would also like to add that I agree with another commentor's remark: I most definitely think Robert Guza or Fronz (or whoever the driving force really is behind this show is) definitely has issues with women. I've noticed for months now that the women on this show don't even get their own plot lines anymore. Ever. It's always the men that do the detective work, the men that do the rescuing, the men that have the more complicated emotional story arcs or solve the problems. The poor female actors are just side players (Maxie), background girlfriends (Sam), victims (Robin), or instigators of trouble in the lives of the male protagnoists (Carly and Brenda). I love the boys on this show, believe me. But it makes me wish for the days when Robin, Brenda, Elizabeth, Carly got to have their own plots and express more compelling emotions.

Aaaaand the quest to kill GH without a fight continues...I am sure they will murder Liz in the most violent and unnecessary way. Scrubs is the only once great thing that hasn't been completely destroyed beyond repair. I can only assume they are next.

I think the only reason Scrubs are surviving is because Brian Frons has repeatedly said he is a fan of this couple. If not for that I'm sure they would have been obliterated by now.

Fleur..thank you, thank you, thank YOU for putting into words what I could not legibly get out. I typed a few rage induced rants yesterday but didn't post.

A day later, I've calmed down just a bit, and now I don't want to sign a campaign to keep her on this horrid show. I hope this is her blessing in disguise, and I pray that she gets snatched up quickly elsewhere, preferably Y&R or OLTL.

She deserves to get paid double for having to endure this demeaning crap from GH.

I'm at a loss for words...or at least intelligent words. I worry that if I really let myself think about what a travesty this is, I'll go into CAPS LOCK RAGE and quite possibly never stop. I would like to thank Guza & Co. for giving me the final reason to NEVER return to GH, not that the destruction of Scrubs or the tacky way they got rid of the real Lucky weren't reason enough. I stopped watching after the Lisa needle "storyline" and after this I'll never go back.

What did RH EVER DO to Guza besides show up everyday and say whatever foul thing her script required her to? She puts her all into every pairing she's ever had. It's not HER fault that TC is dumber than a box of rocks and therefore can't have chemistry with a chalkboard.

The worst part? I doubt ANYONE, besides maybe Cameron, will even mourn her...that is if they don't kill of Cameron at the same time. I've never been able to picture one without the other...but then, of course, there's always super-dad JJ--I'll never think of him as Lucky after GV--and super-blink-dad Jason. They'll finally get their kids away from their BAD SEED of a mother and, as mentioned above, Sam and Siobhan will take care of those boys...eww, does that mean Brooke will take care of Aidan...oh wait, of course not because that's when the paternity SECRET will come out.

I can only hope, even though it is probably never going to happen, that this decision/pathetic excuse will be the final push ABC needs to shove Guza right out the door. Or that the other actors--not that I believe they have any loyalty to each other--will become so enraged that they decide not to show up and it really becomes the Jason/Carly/Sonny/Brenda/Sam show because that will surely--SURELY--destroy what little remains of the audience. As pretty as VM is, and as much potential as she once had, she's made it clear that she isn't capable of holding the viewer's interest and therefore might be going down with the ship.

The hell with Guza and Co! If there is any justice in the world, by the time Liz Webber is viciously killed off, they won't even be able to get jobs dropping off phone books.

Preach, Leanne! I love all of your "sacrifice" substitutions! I would take the Balkan in place of Alan Quartermaine or the return of Robert and Anna or Laura Spencer too.

I really dread what's going to happen with the kids...We've gotten all these "Look how awesome Siobhan is with kids" scenes that make me gag. And nothing against Erin Chambers, she was fine on Veronica Mars, but 1) she's not Rebecca Herbst and 2) I really don't think she has chemistry with JJ. It just stings so much that she's given a contract when Becky is fired days later. This all sucks so much.

What an undignified firing of the stellar actress who hooked me with her devastating portrayal of a teenage rape victim so many years ago. She was riveting then and has continued to be one of the best soap actresses ever since. I am sure that any director/producer with an ounce of sense will snap her up in no time - talent like hers will never go to waste.

Brian Frons and Bob Guza are certifiable.

The legacy of Dr. Steve Hardy is about to be butchered at the hands of Guza/Frons. Ugh. I'm old enough to vaguely remember watching Dr. Steve Hardy, Jessie Brewer and Audrey March Hardy on TV. I don't remember Lucille March.

Guza/Frons are about to hack their way to getting rid of GH's only full time nurse, since Ephiphany only gets two minutes of air time every six months.

To quote Ingo Rademacher: "Bad Decision." And since GH has chosen to let Becky I have chosen to let GH go.

still can't figure it out...I have a long list of other characters that they should have shaved off: Brook Lynn, Claire, Siobhan (and now her sister!), Spinelli, Olivia heck even Sam, instead of a Webber. There really are IIC.

Wow. I don't... Why is this... It's just... I am... really kind of sad. And just when I was really starting to love her hair again. TPTB really know how to eff with me. Bastards.

lOVED LOVED LOVED the sacrifice substitutions!!!

TPTB have no clue...and that's fine because this WILL come crashing down around them! Sad for BH, but you know, someone will snatch her up...she's a great actress...will miss the bitchface...her bitchface puts all other PC women to shame!!! And if Jason gets that child, i will personally drive a stake through Robert Guza's heart...

I haven't watched a lot since they brought back Brenda. It's Brenda all the time and I just dont' find her to be that interesting as a character.

I think the other young women of GH need to take note - once you have too many pregnancies or hit a "certain age" you will be a foot note.

I saw a youtube video of Genie Francis from last year where she said she doesn't watch any more. I'm with her.

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