'General Hospital' Moves to 2PM Eastern, 1PM Pacific/Central Beginning September 10

Categories: 1-Featured,Daytime and Soap Opera TV Ratings,Network TV Press Releases

Written By

June 26th, 2012

via press release:





There’s never been a better time to “check-in” to ABC’s “General Hospital” and beginning MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10 the popular daytime drama moves to its new time period of 2:00 p.m. ET /1:00 p.m. PT/CT, on the ABC Television Network. Fans can now catch all the intrigue and excitement of Port Charles one hour earlier.


“General Hospital,” the most honored show of the 2012 Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards, celebrates its golden anniversary on April 1, 2013. Approaching 50 historic years on ABC, “General Hospital” is the longest running American soap opera currently in production and the third longest-running drama in American television history.


“General Hospital” was created by Frank and Doris Hursley. Frank Valentini is the executive producer. Ron Carlivati is the head writer.


Full episodes of “General Hospital” are available on ABC.com immediately following the network broadcast. Follow us at: www.facebook.com/GeneralHospital, Twitter  @generalhospital (#generahospital).

  • TJ

    This is all most likely just postponing the inevitable. Networks normally don’t reveal what their true intentions are in a lot of these press releases. ABC is probably just biding their time to get all their ducks in order before they drop the axe on GH. I’m sure they want to see for sure how GAA performs and get Katie Couric’s show calmly going before making any decision. I too agree with Kevin’s prediction-I could now see ABC cancelling it in November or December and making next April 1-5 (50th anniv.) GH’s final week on the air. This whole saga is like a mini-soap opera itself.

  • Alex


  • Lisa

    When GH is cancelled (and let’s face it-at this point it’s just a matter of when, not if) I think the widespread feeling among the mass population of baby boomers will be nostalgic sadness to lose a show that was such a phenomenon for most of the ’80s and a question of “What took ABC so long to put it out of its misery given what it deteriorated into during the last decade?”

    Yes, there will be a rabid cult group of loyalists that’ll be angry at ABC and think they represent the masses, but I think those people will be in the significant minority.

  • Rob R

    Generally, for probably 85 percent of the affiliates, “Days of Our Lives” will air at 1 pm in every time zone in the country, because NBC urges that arrangement, but cannot require it (except for the six or seven stations it actually owns.) “General Hospital” will likely air at 2 pm in the Eastern time zone, and 1 pm in every other time zone, placing it in direct competition with DAYS west of the Mississippi River in most cities. That said, for years DAYS used to compete head-to-head with “All My Children” in the Eastern time zone and “One Life to Live” in the Central, Mountain, and Pacific time zones. But DAYS and GH have never competed head-to-head before, unless in an unusual city where the NBC affiliate delayed DAYS to 3 pm Eastern (like Fort Myers, Florida used to do years ago).

    I think it is highly unlikely that ABC will cancel GH before its anniversary….not when it can get so much promotional material out of that anniversary. If “Good Afternoon America” is a smash hit (unlikely), then either “The Chew” or “GH” could be vulnerable.

  • Hohy

    Good decision by ABC as I think the new timeslot will definitely help GH as it’ll have a better lead-in now.

  • MikeRand

    I’m surprised no one posted this unless there’s no actors on this site but unfortunately ABC has been producing cooking show, medical show, talk show pilots for months. It’s posted on all the casting sites. “New ABC daytime show pilot.” Really? Pilot to replace what? Obviously it’s “General Hospital.” Ashame because my mom watches and loves this show but ABC is constantly producing pilots to replace it. “Good Morning America in the Afternoon” is just a filler, it will never be picked up despite ratings. ABC has its plan. Just read the casting sites. If you’re a cooking expert or medical expert, ABC daytime wants you now to replace “General Hospital.” Sad.

  • Dave.A


    The thing is that if GH had good ratings, ABC wouldn’t need to search a replacement for it. GH wasn’t renewed for its good ratings. GH was renewed because The Revolution was doing too miserably for ABC to even cancel GH. GH’s ratings are just plain awful. Yes they’re better than when Garin Wolf was in charge. But they’re still not acceptable ratings for a daytime soap opera that airs 5 days a week, 52 times a year. And we’re talking here about GH , a show with lots of high paid actors.

    Who knows. Maybe if GH gets ratings at least like those it had in early 2011, maybe ABC will leave GH alone. But I personally don’t think GH’s ratings will ever go up on a consistent basis. At one time, B&B was in the same situation that GH currently is. But B&B had a desire to change. GH does not.

  • David

    So ABC issues a press release and there are still so many people being negative on this. To me this is a good sign, first time ABC has said anything. Yet you still have people being so negative on it, unreal!

  • Patrick

    Well said David..

  • Chris

    Folks, ABC does not “renew” GH because the network owns the show outright. The show has merely been “extended”. (ABC also owned AMC and OLTL.) Thus, ABC could technically decide at any time to cease production on the show. It’s different than CBS’s agreement to air Y&R/B&B and NBC’s with Days.(The late P&G soaps worked the same way.) Those other 3 current soaps are each owned by an outside production company (Sony) that their networks pay and have a fixed contract with to broadcast the show, with possibly an option attached. Just wanted to clear that up.

    I personally think that lead-in programs in this day and age with remotes, DVRs, etc. are overrated especially in the daytime. Honestly, how many viewers of The Chew at 1 pm are really going to stay tuned to watch GH at 2 pm? I doubt there are too many people who watch both shows. It’s two entirely different audiences-IMO. Likewise, on ABC stations is Katie Couric really going to get a large chunk of viewers who just watched GH? I just don’t see too much flow. I think Katie only made those comments about wanting GH to air before her show as a way to get on soap fans’ good side so that she won’t be labeled a villain if/when GH goes. The truth is that this won’t be GH circa 1986-92 leading into Oprah. The landscape has changed too much.

    Also, this has been said many times- You can’t blame GH’s recent ratings struggles on The Revolution’s failure as a lead-in. That’s no excuse. Would a more successful talk show have helped GH a little? Maybe, but remember GH was doing poorly last year when OLTL was still around preceding it. Before the upcoming time slot move, GH will have aired on ABC at 3 pm for almost its entire run. I somehow don’t think that most people suddenly forgot when and where GH airs. They’d watch if the show still interested them, but it clearly doesn’t anymore.

  • Lynne

    I’ll watch GH and then switch to Dr. Phil or go back to work. Never cared for Katie.

  • TJ


    Yes, it’s a good sign for those GH fans who like the show that it’ll be around for at least a little while longer. Hey, enjoy it while you can, right? We’re just being realistic here. I’ve learned that you can’t be delusional when reading anything from ABC given what their long-term motives seem to be.

    If you notice, this press release from ABC does not give an exact guaranteed time frame that GH has been extended for and how long it will air at 2 pm past September for sure. Also, while it notes that 4/1/13 will be the date of GH’s 50th anniversary, it doesn’t spell out for certain that the show will still be on the air by then.

    Yes, GH is “approaching 50 historic years on ABC”, but will it definitely see the anniversary date? That’s the $50 million question. I personally think it will because of the promotional mileage and ratings that ABC could squeeze out of that rare, historic milestone alone. And ABC probably recognizes how it’ll look in the almanacs years from now. To get this close and not reach next April probably wouldn’t look right. They’ll probably do everything possible to milk at least one last load out of GH, but unless the ratings go up dramatically soon I personally think that they could very well make the anniversary week the end-JMO.

  • Chrisann D

    I can’t tell you how many people on here were saying they were “realistic” aout GH when the Revolution was going to run and “take” General Hospitals place. So for me I will wait and see. I hate to try and speculate what ABC or any network will do…expecially for the all mighty dollar. I know thats what they are in business for is profits. But when you think about it grocery stores will practically give away a product and take a small loss to get customers coming in. While its not the same it is the same premise. Make the customer happy.

  • JayTN

    Mike Rand…I don’t know if I would say that ABC is not going to bring back “Good Afternoon America” regardless of its ratings. Everyone knows, whether they admit it or not, that the object of ABC Daytime is to provide low cost programming, and soaps are not exactly low cost. News programs are notoriously cheap to produce and if GAA gets ratings equal to or greater than “The Chew”, then the network may be tempted to bring it back or even keep it on the air and give the affiliates the option of airing either GH or GAA at 2:00 p.m. (with GH presumably being aired elsewhere at the affiliates discretion).

    While I believe that “The Chew” is safe, for at least the 2012-13 season, if ABC is developing pilots for “cooking shows, medical shows, and talk shows”, that tells me that “The Chew” is also on the chopping block (pardon the pun). Would ABC really want two cooking themed shows airing back-to-back in daytime (assuming that the new show replaces GH)? I don’t think anyone (at ABC) really expected “The Chew” to last as long as AMC lasted, or even five years. The network was looking for low cost programming and “The Chew” just happened to be first in the pipeline.

  • cc

    I see the soap haters showed up.

    The only place GH is going is to an earlier hour Most likely waiting out the fail of Couric. And it will. The sooner the better.

    Hopefully, Abc has learned not to mess with soap viewers. And if cheaper was their excuse then that doesn’t explain the outrageous salary paid to the network killer, Couric.

  • cc

    “Make the customer happy.”

    The number one rule in any business. Without customers there is no business, it’s that simple.

  • John

    …..and here we go with all the negativity. I’ve never before seen such a group of naysayers.

  • HT

    Does anybody work?

  • TJ

    @ cc

    If you can’t take any negative/pessimistic viewpoints about GH or any other soap, then you should go somewhere else. Go to an all pro-GH/soap rah-rah shill board. We’re just being realistic about what we think about this situation. Everyone is entitled to express his/her opinion without being called names if theirs doesn’t agree with yours. It speaks volumes about you if you feel anyone being the slightest bit negative about a soap opera is a “hater”.

    And if Katie Couric wasn’t available, ABC/Disney would have hired some other personality to helm a talk show. It’s not Katie’s fault that daytime soaps are an antiquated, dying genre. It’s not just ABC that’s looking for a long-term way out of the soap business. And even if Katie’s show fails, stations will most likely never give the ABC network back that hour of programming. That will not save GH or have any impact on its future. Once a network gives a daytime slot back to affiliates, very rarely if ever do the affiliates ever give it back. Some other syndicated program will take Katie’s place until something clicks.

  • Melanie

    @TJ, Very well said and applause, applause!! :)

    Wow, I cannot believe everytime someone states the obvious facts about how networks go, regarding soaps, they are labeled “haters” or “naysayers”. It is just the truth folks, take it or leave it, but it is so silly and pointless to assume people are hating. Nope, just being realistic. The only thing anyone can do from this point on is to still enjoy the show if you want to keep watching it.

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