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« Exclamation Points Abound | Main | A Pile of New Favorites »

December 06, 2012

Varieties of Camp (I Wish It Were Sleepaway)

Soaps are campy. No question. Sometimes they're too campy, sometimes they're not campy enough. But there's so many different possibilities. General Hospital is in the middle of an old-school camp renaissance right now, so it's giving us the full spectrum. A campy buffet, one might say!

So let's take a tour through the varying qualities of this form of storytelling...

There's the best kind of camp. The kind that is outlandish, absurd, completely implausible, but that elicits hoots of joy and happiness because the very implausibilities that define it? Well, they happen to bring back beloved vets, not-so-beloved love-to-hate villains, and tie a crap-ton of unlikely people into stories together. And it becomes a special kind of genius.




This is the very best kind of camp. This is the kind that gives us weather machines, the fact that Robin is alive, the return of Robert Scorpio, hilarious latex masks, the Tale of Two Todds, and Victoria Lord having out-of-body experiences. This best kind doesn't just give us outrageous fun, it gives us those elements that (however unbelievable) lay down the elements necessary for stories that sincerely resonate and that give us tremendous payoff after decades of commitment and viewership.

There's also the lousy kind. The kind where we're meant to believe a middle-school student has written an AMAZING 400-page novel about love that people enjoy so much that they find the time to read it three times in one day, and they get immediately considered for publication. And said novel, a debut novel from a teenager, can look like a get-out-jail-free-and-live-the-easy-life-forever card to a not-real-person who exists to protect a rape victim but does little to do so.



If they release this book as a promotional tie-in like they did with that whole Diane/Spinelli thing, my head will explode. Also... Connie "Falceri?" Does the nympho alter always forget how to spell her own last name? I worry that, since this hard copy is the only extant copy of this PHENOMENAL novel, Connie will give herself carpal tunnel re-typing it as her own. I suppose she could just scan it to text and convert it to Word? Are these the things I'm supposed to get hung up on in this story? I doubt it. But it's where I am. Because I don't care. 

And then there's the kind of camp that falls somewhere in between, the kind that works best when you're sick or ridiculously sleepy or, say, have had more than one glass of delicious wine. It's the kind that's just as silly and really doesn't lead to anything good in real time and just makes you shake your head, but at the same time?



IT INVOLVES AN ADORABLE PUPPY. A fuzzy, cute puppy. And people actually reacting to it with HORROR.




Did y'all see that puppy? And hear the doom-and-gloom music? And then see the puppy again?

Everything is awesome.


Maybe RC is tossing Sabrina and Britt at Patrick so that later on he can move the man on with Liz the lesser of two evils! KMc chose to leave the show, and there is no reason that JT or RH have to languish on the back burner without a love interest. Now, I am NOT suggesting a Liz/Patrick hookup, but it would be so soapy if they became close since Robin gave her blessing to Liz last year, and wham! Robin comes home to find that her wishes are coming true and she's now fighting for her family.

^^ Somehow, TPTB seem as interested as the previous two regimes in writing Liz actual story. She's been a prop for lesser characters for years now and frankly, it's frustrating to this longtime viewer. I didn't love the a for that played Ewen but there was no development of that romance between him and Liz before he went off he deep-end and died.

Liz is my favorite character and I'd love to see her get a front burner storyline, but she's hardly disappeared off the canvas under the new regime, and has gotten much more of a PoV than she's had for years. If rumors are to be believed, SBu's departure through a monkey wrench into part of their plans for her; I can't blame then for that.

In the meantime, I love that she's a part of the Nurses' Ball an stepping up into more of a mentor role at the hospital. I'm desperately curious to see her interact with Sean Kanan.

As the for mask, there is nothing about it that doesn't fill me with joy.

I extra love you whenever you post a cap of Finola Hughes. She is beyond gorgeous. Also, JMB is looking fantastic.

Can someone tell me what is the deal with that puppy? Why is everyone so shocked??

Elizabeth,,,, SBu gave a 90 day notice back in June, which was plenty of time for RC/FV to come up with another story for Liz and they did NOT have to turn Ewen, evil! I've read a lot of posts from other sites that think the nurses ball story should have been a way to bring back the Hardy/Webber family for that event and the 50th anniversary. Remove Serena, Britt, Felix and replace them with Webber/Hardy family members!

I don't have a problem with new characters as long as they are written and acted well. I don't like the writing for Britt, but I think the actress has promise; I didn't like the initial writing for Sabrina or Ellie, but both have improved and I think all three actresses are good additions to the show. That whole "young professional" set needed building up, and I think it's promising that RC has brought on so many new characters who work at the hospital. Plus, the Nurse's Ball! So many longstanding wish list items are coming through with this new regime, they've clearly paid attention to what the audience has been missing. No, I don't love every story. I have NEVER loved every story on any soap, ever. But I love most of it, and even the stuff I don't like has some redeeming qualities. For crying out loud, we're getting Lucy Coe on top of a Duke Lavery mask! it really is the good ol' days all over again.

Ladybug, to be honest I would much rather see new blood at the hospital than the return of Tom Hardy or Sarah Webber. And I think using a beloved institution like the Nurses' Ball to help integrate the newbies onto the canvas is a great way to do it. I have no complaints.

Elizabeth,,my complaint is GH is moving toward their 50th anniversary,so how about honoring one of the original families which is the Hardy family (Liz, Steven, Sarah, Tom Hardy Jr., Tommy Hardy Sr, and Grams) with the nurses ball story line.

I love this site- honest, intelligent discussion without insults. Why can't every site be like this. Thank you SD!

They very well may pay tribute to the Hardys, but I do think that the "death" of Robin is the perfect catalyst for the return of the Nurses Ball, and the character it makes the most sense to honor. So Liz is backburnered at the moment, everyone gets their turn. I'd rather that than round one million and two of the tedious Liz/Sam wars. She'll have her turn again, I'm sure.

Ziyal, I have no idea where they're going with the puppy, but I'm fascinated.

And the Duke mask? I love that so much I want it for Christmas. And I don't celebrate Christmas.

FYI for anyone interested: I just read that GH's ratings have gone up 19% since this time last year. Let's hope the trend keeps up.

I can't get worked up about the Hardys, to be honest, and I started watching in...1979? somewhere around there, and I never watched for the Hardys. I watched for Luke and Laura, and the Quartermaines, basically, and then for Robert and Holly and Sean and Tiffany, et al. I remember Gail and Lee Baldwin more vividly than I remember the Hardys. I don't even register Elizabeth as a Hardy. She matters to me as a character in her own right; the ties that keep Elizabeth relevant aren't really her offscreen family but her relationships with characters on the show right now. I'd be rather baffled if the Nurse's Ball was suddenly all about the Hardys.

Again, I agree with Anne. The Nurses' Ball has never really been about the Hardy/Webbers. I associate it much more with Robin, Lucy, and the Q's. I feel quite certain that whatever RC has planned for the 50th will not ignore the importance of the Hardys to the show's history, but of all the many people on my wishlist to see return to prominence, I have to admit: they're not really on it.

Steve Burton gave notice in late August. His last day taping was Sept 27. On any calendar, that is not 90 days. Even a Mayan calendar.

I totally agree that the emphasis on this year's Nurse's Ball (wow, there is a this year's Nurse's Ball) should not be on the Hardy family. The Ball is a great way to bring back Lucy and incorporate the new characters into the show. Who knows-there may be some real singing talent out there.

This show is SO GOOD right now, I can't even believe it. No, I mean, I LITERALLY cannot believe it. I actually look forward to queueing it up on my DVR now. I get excited to know a new episode is coming on. What the hell?? Who knew I would ever think that again??

Maybe I missed them but has anyone commented on Todd's question: "Nurses have balls?." Priceless!

Lynne, that HAS to be a Roger ad-lib! I'm surprised it got past the censors.

Finola Hughes and Anders Hove were absolutely BRILLIANT today. THIS is the show that I love.

Now, most of the stories. It is all over, how much it happen, you can't let headsa and tail things. Closure is good. For all the historical relationship, some are good but forward, history is history today is today, tomorrow is the future. Tired of Connie, its good to see old people, but a lot of people are young, don't know history/or nursing. Anna is good, but if she is tie-in a young people would be better. Either recasting Jason or to find the body. A lot of fans are quilt cover, because you drag the Jason and Sam. I love you brought John, Tod, starr in the hope that you can bring more than Natalie.

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