Katie Couric Signs Deal With ABC for Daytime Talker - Is GH Headed for the Morgue?

Good news for Katie Couric could turn out to be not-so-good news for fans of General Hospital.

Following much speculation, the Disney/ABC Television Group announced on Monday that the former CBS Evening News anchor, “award-winning journalist, best-selling author and popular TV personality” has inked a multi-year, multi-platform agreement to host and produce her own nationally syndicated talk show and to join the ABC News team.

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Couric’s involvement with ABC News will start this summer, while her daytime talker isn’t set to premiere until September 2012 — giving ABC some time to assess its increasingly in-flux daytime lineup.

How grim is the prognosis for GH? As of right now, the ABC-owned stations in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston, Raleigh/Durham and Fresno — representing nearly a quarter of the nation’s TV households — have cleared Couric’s show to air in the 3 pm time slot aka General Hospital territory for many of us.

Although ABC is set to return the final hour of its daytime network block to affiliates no earlier than September 2012, the company says in its press release that it “continues to support General Hospital” as well as its recently announced plans to launch The Chew (in September) and The Revolution (in January 2012) — the two lifestyle shows that will displace ABC’s other two soaps, All My Children and One Life to Live.

General Hospital Nabs New Headwriter: Mob Ties Severed?

What’s your diagnosis, GH fans? Are you prepared to call time of death for “summer 2012″?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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88 Comments
  1. Danielle H. says:

    Yeah, don’t be naive for a second anyone. This means the death of another soap.. I’m guessing all soaps on network TV will be gone within the next couple years. I don’t necessarily watch soaps, but I’d rather there be a platform like them instead of talk shows where people who think they are better then everyone can blather on about nothing.

    • Margaret says:

      I agree. ABC said they fully supported AMC and OLTL just last year. And we know how that ended up. Why should they announce right now what their plans are for GH? If they did, the audience would revolt and start campaigning. It would cause a lot of ill will since the other two cancelled soaps haven’t left the air yet. I’m fully prepared to hear ABC to make a statement around spring next year that they have cancelled GH. It will give them a period of time away from the AMC and OLTL cancellations. Who do they think they’re fooling? They have no confidence in scripted television anymore. GH is dead already -it will be announced next year.

      • John Berggren says:

        While I’m not a soap fan, I wonder why there isn’t more interest on the part of any of the networks to retain the “last soap standing”. While I wouldn’t expect loyal viewers of one soap or another to automatically tune in to the sole remaining outlet – you’d surely see some sort of viewership boost if you were the only game in town.

        It would seem to me that either General Hospital or Days of Our Lives would fit this bill.

      • Captain says:

        Yeah, they wont announce it until next year but that’s definitely where its headed. Plus it would look bad since the head of ABC daytime said just last month that GH would “be on the air for a very long time.” I expect GH’s series finale to air in September of 2012, one year short of their 50th anniversary. For shame.

      • Robin says:

        i totaly agree GH is doomend. i’m sooooo upset love my abc soaps. ABC is such abunch of liars

    • megslin says:

      I don’t think Y&R is going anywhere…it’s still CBS’s big moneymaker for afternoon tv. sad though

      • Todd says:

        For the time being. I believe the remaining soaps are barely operating in the black. The big names on the shows have taken pay cuts to help the shows continue.

        I will be very surprised if there are any daytime soaps left on the air 10 years from now.

        • Mia says:

          gh and days are going before y&r which still manages to pull in 5 million(I think). Not to mention if you look it up you see Sony keeps the shows goings by selling y&r and b&b internationally.b&b does particularly well in the international market. But yea your right within 2 yrs dool will be gone. Y&R has probably another 3-4 yrs.

  2. Snickleboom says:

    I hope not. I’d much rather watche GH than Katie Couric.

    • Marcie says:

      I live in the Los Angeles area. GH is on ABC at 2:00, Oprah was at 3:00. Maybe they’re just filling in for Oprah.

      • Lupelu says:

        I live in Los Angeles also and they already announced that Dr. Oz will be taking over Oprahs spot, so that only leaves GHs time slot. : (

        • maggie says:

          Couric isn’t slated to start until Sept 2012. Just because Dr. Oz is in that timeslot this upcoming season doesn’t mean he’ll be there the year after. They do need something to fill the timeslot until Couric starts.

    • sagvalmom says:

      We don’t need another food show or one with Tim Gunn. I would never watch Katie Couric, regardless of when she is on. Disney is getting rid of SoapNet too, for a kid’s nework. Do we really need another one, and how many kids are watching after 9:00 p.m.????

    • Phyllis Darnall says:

      ABC please do not cancel GH to be replaced by Couric. She sisn’t do the nightime news so why do you think she will have a talk show that will be watched? Definitely not by myself. I have watched GH for years and I much prefer it to Ms. Couric. If she takes the place of GH. I will never watch her talk show. I am only one person here pleading with you not to make this switch but I know many people who feel the very same. Anyone who reads this and feels the same please post your thoughts to ABC.

    • Jenn says:

      I agree with you!!! I have no interest watching watching anything involving Katie Couric! Why does she have to take away the last soap? Damm you Katie & ABC. I really hope this blows up in their faces!

    • Sharyl says:

      I agree, GH over Katie Couric anyday!!!!!!!!

  3. Haley says:

    Really ABC? That’s ridiculous. More talk shows that no one really cares about. I’ve been watching GH for years. They really need to start taking DVR/internet viewing into account for the ratings issues. I work during hte day and watch GH at night when I get home.

    • Amanda says:

      I think there needs to be a real Soap Channel now. Soapnet was never a real soap channel as it only had what, one or two “original” shows. Everything else was repeats of other shows. A network catered solely to DAYTIME soap fans would be great. Put all of the remaining shows on this new network. Then they could create one or two brand new soaps that might spark a whole new generation of soap fans. It’s hard to get into the current soaps if you are not already a long time viewer.

      Also didn’t another article mention that there are rumors Disney is going to be selling ABC soon? It would be nice if someone else who cares about soaps and not reality tv would buy it.

  4. Marisa says:

    I’m sorry, what year is this: 1992? Why are there so many talk shows propagating the airwaves and why do the networks feel this is what America wants? Unreal!

  5. Linda says:

    Sadly I agree with you Danielle. I don’t watch the soaps much anymore but I would rather see them then another boring talk show.

  6. Tavis says:

    This is no surprise. The new head writer was supposedly hired to send off GH. At least its fans will get another year with their show. Hopefully Genie Francis leaves Y&R when her 6-month contract expires in November and returns to GH so soap’s ultimate supercouple, Luke and Laura, can reunite.

  7. Mlisa says:

    Ugh. First we get two reality shows (The Chew?) and now Katie Couric!? I’m already mourning the loss of One Life to Live but I’ve been watching General Hospital for at least 20 years and will be very sad to see it go.

  8. Denise says:

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

  9. SoapFan says:

    I wish I could believe abc but the said the same thing about amc and oltl a few months before cancelling them. Congrats to Ms Couric but I’d rather have my soap (GH) then another talk show that I won’t be watching.

  10. Joey says:

    I’m in Los Angeles and GH airs at 2PM, so I dont see how airing Couric’s new show at 3 PM, which was Oprahs hour, will impact GH.

    • Kris says:

      It runs at 3pm EST on the east coast so it will affect us.

    • Abe Froman says:

      Joey,

      It differs city to city. ABC is giving back its last hour of programming to affiliates for Couric’s show. That last hour in LA is 2pm, which means GH is toast.

  11. Maureen says:

    ABC should take some time to see how the network does replacing AMC & OLTL with talk shows before even considering adding another to its lineup. Longtime ABC daytime viewers are already irate about the cancellation of the soaps and losing Oprah. Trying to revamp an entire daytime lineup in a matter of months seems like a move that could backfire in a huge way. That being said, if GH goes, I no longer have a reason to watch ABC.

  12. DryedMangoez says:

    Well, technically in San Francisco as well, GH airs at 2PM. KGO, the ABC affiliate here airs a local show at 3pm and replaced Oprah with an hour-long 4pm newscast.

    • Buddy says:

      In SF, that’s not a big deal. “7 Live” I heard is doing really bad in ratings. The time slot did better with “A View From The Bay.” “7 Live” is pretty much cancelled.

      Now, ABC could make their lifestyles shows 30 minutes each and give the remaining hour to GH. Of course, this won’t happen.

      The only hope for GH, one of their new lifestyles shows bombs in the ratings and ABC gives it to GH.

      Still sucks about the other soaps.

  13. jrs says:

    Folks may as well start writing the General Hosptial obituary now. The writing is pretty clearly on the wall. Not trying to be mean…this is coming from a die-hard All My Children fan who is still in mourning.

  14. chevjuls says:

    I love Katie Couric, but I love general hospital more i rather have my soap opera than another talk show.

  15. Tina says:

    Take off GH and see how many more millions of fans you lose ABC. Stupid Katie Couric. She is an idiot and say what you want to me I am not changing my mind. Brian Frons has just issued the death penalty to ABC. Anne Sweeney, well she is a idiot as well. I will continue to email advertisers to let them know I will not buy their products if GH goes off the air too.

  16. val says:

    ABC thinks All My Children, One Life to Live and General Hospital can be replaced with Katie Couric and some lame infomercials. Katie’s 39-week/year show costs more than a full year of One Life to Live. This is the death of network TV. All that’s left to dismantle and destroy is late night.

  17. mes says:

    @Joey 3pm is when GH comes on for the East coast, from what I’ve heard Oprah’s old spot will be filled with local stuff

    If the new shows don’t do that well, which they won’t but they have to get just high enough in the ratings to pay the few people that work on and for the shows, if they do well enough then GH is a goner and will be replaced with Couric, if not Couric will take one of the new show’s place and GH is safe….for now

  18. CindyB says:

    ABC is nothing but a losing network with a bunch of liars. I will not be watching Katie or any of ABC’s new shows. ABC can continue to lose viewers and I know these new shows will FAIL and I will make sure everyone I know does not watch them!

  19. Ray says:

    I don’t watch soaps but I really think this is crap. If people want to watch a show about style, they would watch the Style network. Why would someone watch Chew when there are already three food based networks that struggle for viewers. Now, Katie (who FAILED on CBS) is coming back! Golly Gee!!! I guarantee this is going to flop. If I’m wrong, I will have Katie Couric’s face tattooed on mine.

  20. CrochetOwl says:

    Would not be surprised if the last ABC soap goes adios. Soaps had their heyday back in the 80s where there was actual cross-pollination between daytime and nighttime shows. Nowadays there is a lot of double talk and daytime tv has had poor support from the bigwigs (especially Brian Frons who more damaged than helped). If I recall correctly the decline began around the time of the Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill hearings as well as the OJ trial with live coverage (the soaps were preempted more than on at the time).

    As for the influx of talk shows, they can keep them. They are as bad as reality shows. Don’t watch and don’t plan on to. There should be sufficient alternatives on cable to stick it to ABC one way or another.

    • Todd says:

      Add to the fact that the majority of primetime dramas, comedies, animation and reality shows have story arcs that run through the season and from season to season, the daytime soaps are no longer special. Throw in the fact that you can buy/rent previous seasons of a primetime show to get caught up, soaps have been staring at the end of the road for awhile now.

  21. C.C. says:

    This is such a lie! ABC is killing the soaps with a smile on their face. It doesn’t matter how many people they are putting out of work (all staff, magazines, etc) all for shows that no one will watch. They’ve said that the ratings are down, well most people that watch have to do show with recorded episodes. Yes, times have changed, there aren’t many people able to stay at home all day and watch the original airing, but it doesn’t mean they don’t watch at night, or on the weekend, etc. I do watch GH and have since I was a little girl watching with my Grandma and I’m 36 (I have to watch the TiVo). ABC will not get the displaced viewers to watch OR RECORD their new shows. In fact, if the actors that lose their jobs go to another soap, there’s more viewership on another station. I can honestly say that in all the years Oprah was on, I probably watched 10 episodes at the most. Not a talk show kind of person.

    • Teri says:

      i agree. the only time i will watch (or go out of my way to record) a daytime talk show is if i know a head of time that there is an actor i like on it. (that is an oddity to.)

  22. C.C. says:

    Also, if they hate soaps so much, why do they continue to air “night-time soaps.” Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Desperate Housewives, etc are all SOAPS.

  23. Teri says:

    i heard that abc will replace opra with dr. oz & then have there 2 new shows on in place of oltl & amc. i’m on the east coast where gh comes on at 3. that means both new shows will come on at 1 & 2, perhaps dr. oz at 4 & katie’s show in replacement for gh at 3. if this the case i will not be watching the abc daytime line up.

  24. slipperyslope says:

    As a huge fan of GH, this saddens me. I’m hearing that GH will remain in it’s current time slot until September 2012. If one of their new talk shows (The Chew? seriously?) gets canned, GH will fill in that time slot. I’ll be the first to admit that GH has slipped in recent months, especially. They botched the big return of Brenda, ruined the rehabilitation of Luke, made Lisa’s crazy unbelieveable even by soap opera standards, and now are missing a huge opportunity with a PTSD story and Shawn. I don’t watch much ABD prime time, but will cease all together if they cancel GH in favor of Katie Couric. Ugh.

  25. metejt says:

    I will NEVER watch Katie Couric on a talk show. I need to stay awake in the afternoon. She is an active participant in killing off the soaps and I will not support her anymore than I’ll watch the Chew or any other crap ABC wants to shove down our throats. I’ve always taped the soaps to watch at night or on the weekend. I sure won’t be taping these replacements. ABC has had it good for over 40 years with a built in audience of soap viewers, who followed the evening programming as well. Nobody will be watching their daytime now so I predict their night time shows will drop in ratings as well. There is no regard for their viewers, their audience, essentially their CUSTOMERS. Without good customer relations a company fails. Good bye ABC and Katie Couric.

  26. Jen says:

    I will be so upset if they cancel GH. My grandmother watched the show as did my mother and now myself. I always TiVo GH and love coming home after work and watching while I make dinner. I will never watch a Katie Couric talk show and really hope ABC allows GH to stay on.

  27. Bummed says:

    GH is the last soap standing IMO. I think ABC will see the error of their ways but probably not until the final numbers come back. No one wants to watch Couric in a talk format and that is what is clogging up the other stations at the same time of day now. It really would be great to have ABC count in the DVR numbers because I think that would make a difference. Oh well, guess they’ll learn the hard way. The only person winning here is Katie’s paycheck!

    • Mimi says:

      They do count DVR viewing but only if you are one of the 25,000 homes with a nielsen box and if you don’t skip over the commercials.

  28. Kim says:

    CBS lost me as a viewer when Katie took over the evening news…flipped the channel every night. As someone who workd during the day and dvrs…I guess ABC will now lose me totally until the evening shows start at 8pm. This sucks.

  29. dawn says:

    I haven’t watched ABC for more than 3 years, and will never watch abc again.

    They have no loyalty to me so I have no loyalty to them! I will start watching the Young and the Restless.

  30. Laurel says:

    I don’t watch the soaps BUT we don’t need ANOTHER TALK SHOW !
    The only reason the networks are doing this is because it’s cheaper for them.
    They could care less about the viewers.
    No actors to pay, no writers to pay just a few talking heads.And the guests are just there to promote crap.

    I will NOT watch the CHEW even thought I like Tim Gunn. Sorry Tim….
    And I would NEVER watch Katie Couric.
    And people should boycott if the cancel GH. Enough already.

  31. Gwen says:

    Though I am not a big GH fan (only been watching on and off for the last 15 years), I can’t say I’m shocked GH will probably be the next soap out. Let’s face it Disney/ABC wants out of soaps! Over the past 11 years they have gotten rid of Port Charles, OLTL, and AMC. ABC can spin it anyway they want to and use Brian Frons as their puppet in telling the fans what they want but it is clear the future for GH is grim! I would have never expected with all of it’s popularity and critically acclaim that follows GH it would be the last ABC soap standing but also the last soap overall to be standing.

  32. Matt R says:

    Soap are a revenue losing format. Goodbye General Hospital.

    • BearDogg-X says:

      There are ways make back that revenue. I believe it’s called a DVD set.

      Doesn’t have to be full episodes, just put The Best of Luke & Laura or The Best of Robert & Anna or The Best of Frisco & Felicia and you have a license to print money, if ABC/Disney has the testicular/ovacular fortitude to do it.

  33. Amy says:

    Soaps are escapism. Precisely what some of us need. The last thing I want to watch is another talk show telling me how I should feel, what I should look like and what I should/should not spend my money on. I for one will not tune in to ABC during the day after they kill off GH. Very sad for actors and their fans.

  34. Jessica says:

    I read elsewhere that they would consider shortening the other 2 new shows to 30 min and/or one of the new shows and GH to 30 min, to accomodate Couric. But I think that if their new shows succeed they will cancel GH. If one of the new shows fails, they’ll cancel it and move GH. But since there’s a big question mark in the air for what will happen with the new shows, that’s why they’re not saying anything right now. Plus they don’t want to piss off soap fans even more right now, even though it’s obvious what their plans are.

  35. WJames says:

    As another that DVR’s GH for evening viewing, if it is taken off the air, I will not only boycott ABC’s daytime TV but will block it from the evening schedule too. I refuse to continue to be a slave to Network TV.

    • Lisa says:

      I agree with you whole heartedly. I am 50yrs.old and have watched General Hospital every day since I was a little girl. Back then it was only on for 30 minutes. If it is cancelled I will never watch ABC again

  36. Wanda says:

    I really hope they don’t cancel GH. I DVR it so I can watch it when I get home. I would really hate to boycott ABC since I watch Good Morning America everyday but that’s what I would do. Come on ABC don’t make this mistake.

  37. JC says:

    The Chicago area airs GH at 2pm, I’m assuming this is the slot Katie’s show will air and not 3pm.

  38. Steph says:

    What I don’t understand is you cancel a show like GH because it is expensive to produce and yet ABC is probably offering Katie Couric about 15/20 Million to do yet ANOTHER talk show. She killed CBS news but let’s give her a boatload to do a show… Brilliant! All talk shows are alike… same cr*p on a daily basis. The only daytime TV I watch is GH (and I watch it at home on youtube at night).

    Oprah was replaced by a live local show that is terrible and now GH is leaving…. I remember the days when I was little and I would come home and watch AMC/OLTL/GH with my mom…. Memories, so sad!

  39. Cherish says:

    If they are looking to attract a younger Demo, they sure won’t do it with the aging Couric. Soaps are much more interesting to the younger folks than talk shows hosted by 50plus somethings.

    I also have my doubts that either The Chew or The Revolution have a prayer. We see that same stuff on Dr. Oz, and the Food Network and Style Network. GH will simply move into their timeslots when they’ve proven to be disasters- come fall of 2012.

    TMZ has a poll up and 70% are predicting a BUST for Courics new show.

  40. JIm says:

    The perky girl lost her perk about 20 years ago.

    GH actors, rev up your resumes. ABC Daytime is made up of a bunch of lying liars who lie about lying.

  41. Trey says:

    This stinks. We all know how much ABC Daytime vowed to support OLTL and AMC and, less than a year later, cancelled both. This can only mean the cancellation of GH too. I won’t be watching ABC daytime any more.

  42. Kate says:

    I am already sick of talk shows and daytime reality shows. It’s just the same thing over and over. ABC got rid of the three soap operas for three talk/realith shows but I won’t be watching any of them.

  43. Kathy says:

    Who watches talk show anyway? No one I know or would care to know! I will never watch Katie Couric, so if ABC cancels GH, I am done!

  44. Tina Gray says:

    I don’t believe a word that ABC/Disney says. Interesting though. They’re sticking it to Barbara Walters as well.

  45. Paul says:

    I believe they stood by AMC and OLTL as well. Until they cancelled them both and stabbed all their fans in the backs. Just saying, watch your backs GH fans.

  46. Theresa says:

    This is terrible. I have watched GH since I was a kid, and I am 55 now. I watched AMC and OLTL off and on as well. I will never watch these replacement shows. And would someone tell me how the network is saving money by paying Couric $40 million?!? Math was never my strongest subject, but this makes no sense at all!

  47. AngieD says:

    THis is bad news. As someone else mentioned, ABC supported AMC and OLTL right up til they cancelled. Steve Burton (aka Jason Morgan) just signed a new 1 yr contract. So, I think the writing’s on the wall – GH will be done by Sept 2012. As someone who works 9-5, I have no intention of trying out new daytime programming. I’ve been watching GH since 1979, AMC since 1982 and OLTL since 2009. I started GH because my bus friends were into Laura and Scotty, AMC because our dorm was rooting for Jenny and Greg. Started OLTL just because it was in between the 2 and I had time to add to my DVR during the summer. Anyway, I’ve never been a regular daytime talk show viewer; so, my TiVo will be getting a rest in the afternoon’s.

  48. Crittle says:

    I give GH two years.

  49. Buddy says:

    Katie…Katie…Katie. Bad move. A syndicated talk show is wrong for you. The chances are for it to succeed isn’t strong. Look at all the failures (the list is huge), including one by newswoman and former “Today” co-host Jane Pauley. The only way it will do well is having Oprah as executive producer or call it: “Oprah presents Katie Couric.” Just joking, since all of Oprah’s spinoffs have done well. Seriously, good luck with it. This sucks for GH and the all the soap fans.

  50. Kira J says:

    I wonder how much money they invested in this before they realize that Katie Couric will never be Oprah.