With the majority of the country stuck at home, daytime’s four soap operas are seeing their ratings skyrocket.
For the week of March 23, which is when much of the U.S. went into quarantine, CBS’ The Bold and the Beautiful and ABC’s General Hospital posted their best numbers in two years. NBC’s Days of Our Lives, meanwhile, drew their strongest ratings in more than a year. And daytime’s top-rated soap, The Young and the Restless, surged to an 11-month high.
B&B, which celebrated its 33rd anniversary last week, averaged 3.66 million viewers, its best week since March 23, 2018. GH drew 2.57 million viewers, representing its strongest week since March 19, 2018. With 2.24 million viewers, Days enjoyed its highest-rated week since Feb. 18. 2019. Y&R drew 4.21 viewers, its best number since April 26, 2019. (Primetime TV has also experienced a ratings uptick in recent weeks; more details on that here.)
As we recently reported, Days — which just months ago was dodging cancellation buzz — is in perhaps the best position of any TV series to weather the not-so-secret pandemic storm. The venerable NBC sudser, which earlier this month suspended production indefinitely, shoots a staggering eight months in advance. As a result, the soap has enough original episodes banked to last well until fall.
Y&R and B&B were four to six weeks ahead when production was suspended, which means their respective wells will run dry in early May. GH, meanwhile, had roughly two months worth of episodes banked when production was shut down, which takes the soap through the end of May.
The four daytime sudsers have not set a specific timetable for a resumption of production, although CBS will reportedly reevaluate Y&R and B&B‘s taping status in early April.