As ABC Kills Off Soaps, Fans Stir the Dirt

img00324 20110620 1852 As ABC Kills Off Soaps, Fans Stir the Dirt Though Disney brought you Lion King, Cinderella and Bambi, a group of New York protesters today labeled the company as a “serial killer.”

“Do not kill my family!” read Debra Davidson’s sign, as she stood with a small group of enraged members of Fans United against ABC (cleverly named with the acronym F. U. ABC) outside of ABC’s Times Square studio earlier this afternoon.

Protests occurred today in 21 other cities, including Chicago and Miami, in attempts to call attention to the cuts of One Life to Live and All My Children, both of which have been on the air for over 40 years.

Davidson, now 47, has watched another ABC soap potentially on the chopping block, General Hospital, for the past 34.

“I had fallen in love with Luke and the rest was history,” recalled Davidson, who now has a framed poster of the General Hospital family tree in her house. She says she is “scared to death” about the potential cancellation of her “favorite show in the world” and doesn’t know what her mental state will be if it is canceled.

Tessa McKenzie, a 34-year-old who has been watching soaps since she was a little girl, was the first to arrive at 3:30 for the protest, and the only one present for about the first half an hour (during which the Naked Cowboy continued to draw more attention) before ten or so more soap supporters would arrive.  Sporting a General Hospital­-inspired Luke and Laura t-shirt while toting a trash bag full of neon signs for the afternoon, she was undeterred by the lack of attendance early on and explained to The Observer how her life had changed since ABC announced “the murder” of her soaps on April 14th.

“Those soaps are such a part of our lives,” she said. “All my focus is on saving them…. I don’t sleep at night. I have anxiety all the time. You can’t even breathe [or] even relax while watching them.”

Her message for Disney? “We won’t let our soaps die… It’s not just a show. It becomes part of the family.”

McKenzie watches One Life to Live, All My Children, General Hospital and The Young and the Restless every night from 7 to 11, and says she is willing to do whatever it takes – including producing a documentary – to make Disney’s stock crash.

Cheneise Carey began watching soaps with her now deceased great-grandmother and great-aunt when she was younger, and continues to watch them Monday through Friday from 1 to 4. Suffering from MS, she arrived at the protest with a walker and explained the benefit the soaps have offered her by allowing her to “disappear into another world.”

“It’s like this little world that you have,” Phoebe Abraham, a student at USC, agreed of the Soap bubble.

Estimating that she has gained 15 pounds since hearing the news of the cancellations, Carey continued, “They touch on so many things in real life that aren’t touched on in regular programs.”

Cole Bell, who spearheaded the nationwide rallies, watched One Life to Live beginning at 8 years old and said similarly that watching Ryan come out as gay character on the show helped him in his own life.

“The story lines and plot lines have kind of followed my own life,” Bell said.

If only they foretold their own futures.


  1. muesquees says:

    THANK YOU to all of you for standing up for me since i am in montana!!!! i am so proud of all of you!! we ARE saving our soaps!! keep the faith.

  2. Susan English says:

    Great p.r. New York protest!!!!!

    From a Chicago Protester who Braved the Rain


  3. Sally Moran says:

    We will not go quietly. We will not lie down.  Hear us ROAR. We want our Soaps.

  4. Susan says:

    Thank you all for representing the millions of ABC soap fans!    

  5. Bonbonn62 says:

    Good going guys!! But what happened to the 60 RSVPers?

    1. CTwildheart says:

      Unfortunately quite a few people didn’t quite understand what it meant by clicking “attending”.  They assumed it would show their support….but we were actually trying to use that as a count of who would be there.  :(

  6. And R D says:

    Good job guys! Save our soaps!

  7. Carrie Trask says:

    P.S. Last nights’ “Daytime Emmy” presentation on CBS showed me that the Networks want nothing to do with Soaps.  That has just made those of who are trying to save the soaps MORE ENERGETIC….

  8. Sondra321 says:

    Thank you for standing in unison representing soap fans across America. Although we couldn’t all be physically at the protest, we continue to protest on twitter, facebook, blogs, coupons and every other way we can think of.

  9. Thank you – would have been there if I could, that’s why I dvr!



  12. Razz Amatazz says:

    Thank you so much to everyone. I can’t express how much I appreciate all of your efforts. I might not be there in person but know I am with you all in spirit.  If I could afford it please know I would be standing right beside you.

  13. Swissmiss624 says:

    We are United in Saving Our Soaps. This is the American way…. Thanks for all the people that is helping us save our soaps. We are also trying to save thousands of jobs. This is suppost to be the time to save jobs, not destroy them. I have stopped buying Hershey and all the sponsers of ABC, we will not buy from. Hoover is the best for supporting the fans. Thanks to everyone that is helping Support Our Shows…

  14. nick price says:

    maybe CBS/NBC will love soaps enough to pick up AMC and OLTL..we can only hope and pray

  15. Dee Duran says:

    We will continue to voice our opinion, SAVE OUR SOAPS, No More dumb Talk Shows like Oprah, or The View. I will cut off my cable/satalite provider if I loose my soaps, Why have television, I am wasting my bucks on dumb networks with dumb talk shows, I don’t want someone to tell me I am unhealthly or depress me.

  16. I know alot of people love soap shows, but lets face it people, they cant run forever. Theres an ending for every tv series out there. Personally im watching The Walking Dead ( damn its great ), season 2 is coming up this fall. I know it wont go on forever, but thats ok, some shows arent meant to last 50 years on a network, life goes on anyway. Changes can be a good thing.

    1. CTwildheart says:

      When you have watched the Walking Dead for 35-40 years…THEN you can talk to me

  17. Ukgirl says:

    My favorite soap was As the World Turns! CBS killed off soaps too, noone wants them because of the money…its always the money. I wacth Y&R now and One life to live now. I am very upset with Oprah who says she is a huge soap fan, but wont take on the shows for her network. Its not that people have stopped watching them its the money that they dont want to put out…its ABC  CBS and soonit will be NBC. Some one needs to start a network of Soap Opera (now that the Soap channel is going off the air)…..come on Hollywood People…….you all have the money to fund this!!!!

  18. I hope General Hospital does not get cancelled I would pissed behind belief.

  19. Aschmitt29 says:

    I don’t watch many tv shows but I watch General Hospital everyday, I even tape it. I hope they will not get rid or the one show I enjoy watching. I think that is crap and I will boycott whatever I have too to keep my soap on.

  20. CTwildheart says:

    I was in Boston…thank you to everyone who was able to come out to their “local” rally!  :)

  21. Joycestewartfenner says:

    I want my Soaps will not stop boycotting till I get them Back.

  22. Jreese7 says:

    Well at least you tried.  Maybe the actors and actresses and some tech and production can pool some money and get their own network. It looks like an end of a television era begins in September!

  23. stacy mirkovich says:


  24. Jbiebas says:

    Thanks for standing up for us!! Were in Texas so we obviously couldn’t make it! Love One Life To Live. ABC shouldn’t cancel a show with such a following and I won’t be tapeing the new shows as I go off to work!! 

  25. Nanci Akemon says:

    We won’t back down!

  26. Brandi_22_07 says:

    We all need our soaps!!! Its part of us part of our history I been watching AMC,OLTL, &GH. Since I can remember I watched them with my mom and grand mother my daughter is 1 and since she was born we have watched them together she hears the music as the show comes on stops in her tracks. She loves Sonny!!!! I hope to carry in the tradition of watching soaps with her. Please don’t take our shows from us

  27. Watts73 says:

    We want our daytime dramas. The reality shows will not be watched. It is time for ABC/Disney and the powers that be to put on their big boy and big girl panties and do what the viewers, all seven million PLUS of us, want them to do: we want All My Children and One Life to Live to continue on. It is plain and simple and at the end of the day, profit is better than losing money. We will never give up. We will never stop until we get what we want.

  28. Thank you to all who went out and protested for these historical shows. Thank you for the article as well. Soap viewers across the country stand behind the ones that went out to protest.

  29. Cindy says:

    Thank you for this article.  We will not give up with fighting for our soaps.  ABC should sell our soaps!

  30. Cindy says:

    Thank you for this article.  We will not give up with fighting for our soaps.  ABC should sell our soaps!

  31. Cindy says:

    Thank you for this article.  We will not give up with fighting for our soaps.  ABC should sell our soaps!

  32. Ruby says:

    PLEASE don’t cut our soaps—been a viewer since I was a teen.  Don’t let them be cancelled,save our soaps!!!!!!

  33. Excellent job, you guys!!!!  Keep the fight going…. WE WON’T GIVE UP!!!!  Support and Love from WA!

  34. Connie Strickland says:

    If ABC puts on another talk show  I will cancel my contract with Dish.   Katie Curic or whatever her name is could not last on NBC or CBS  why would ABC  hire her ??  I have watched MY SOAPS ever since they have been on TV.  When I worked, I would tape them, now that I am retired, that is my favorite time of the day to sit and watch GENERAL HOSPITAL.  Nobody is allowed to call me or come over when my Soap is on.  ABC  I warn you  DO NOT CANCEL  ANOTHER SOAP. For another STUPID  talk show.

  35. Connie Strickland says:

    If ABC puts on another talk show  I will cancel my contract with Dish.   Katie Curic or whatever her name is could not last on NBC or CBS  why would ABC  hire her ??  I have watched MY SOAPS ever since they have been on TV.  When I worked, I would tape them, now that I am retired, that is my favorite time of the day to sit and watch GENERAL HOSPITAL.  Nobody is allowed to call me or come over when my Soap is on.  ABC  I warn you  DO NOT CANCEL  ANOTHER SOAP. For another STUPID  talk show.

  36. Jeana_29 says:

    I have been so faithful to ABC…Now I hate them, they are putting out more and more trash. Example Wipe Out….I even hate the commercials. Have to go in the next room when they come on during soaps.  I will not watch any more of there programing. Why get invested in a show they will most likely cancel. They   have no loyalty to anything. There is a need for profit but not greed.  I hope they end up bankrupt.

  37. Tinafg says:

    Thank you, Observer, for supporting our cause!

  38. Vivacious_dan says:

    Thank you so much to the soap fans who have been able to attend these rallies in person. I’m a customer service rep in a call center & it is difficult to get time off. We are NOT going to accept ABC cancelling these shows with a disrespectful, cavalier attitude to boot. The genre is not dead. There are still millions of fans, many of whom are not even being counted with the antiquated Nielsen system. One life to live comes in consistently UNDER budget..just not as cheap to produce as The Chew. But you get what you pay for. These quality soaps that have engendered undying fan loyalty over the years will never be reproduced in cheapy cooking, news and talk shows and ABC is going to find that out the hard way. Soap operas are not anachronistic, despite what the powers that be would like people to believe. They are dramatic, powerful, deal with real life issues, passionate and everything a compelling story should be. They are a part of our lives, families, hearts and us after all these years. And we will not just shut up and accept the cancellations and let Frons tell us what HE thinks WE should like. Let’s all continue fighting the good fight.

  39. Flo DiBona says:

    Thank you NY protesters for standing up for the millions of us behind you!

  40. Has any one suggested a nationwide boycott of any sponsor of ANY new show that replaces both soaps.  I don’t know about all of you but I’m sick of especially this network for non cast programing.  They are making a bundle off them and not paying actors and those it takes to put on any television show. 

  41. PChardt says:

    Please don’t cancel my soaps! I have been watching them since before kindergarden. We don’t need another talk show or cooking show!

  42. ryno says:

    Thanks so much New York for representing all of us who have to work and couldn’t  come out to protest ABC’s cancellation of our beloved soaps… who do they think they are!  The CHEW??? what the heck is that????? give us viewers a break already we are so over stupid shows like that. 

  43. Sarah StJohn says:

    Soap fans everywhere are appalled at the actions of the networks.  In addition, they are insulted and outraged by the total disregard of the feelings of fans who have followed their favourite soaps for years, sometimes through several generations of families. To force feed them yet another mindless and demeaning “reality show”, game show, or nonsensical “cooking” show is contemptible.  We, and they, know how to cook.  We consider our opinions on politics, current events, etc to be equal or better than the talking head, or “newsperson” spouting their beliefs for all to hear.  Give it up!  We are consumers, voters, citizens and intelligent people.  Listen to us, or we tune you out forever, as we can surely do.

    1. stacy mirkovich says:


      1. Bdwoskin2007 says:

        stacey mirkovitch—-
        dear stacey ,
        i could not have said it any better.–short , sweet and right to the point.   way to go!!!!

  44. Anna says:


  45. Anna says:

    Not sure what and where the survey was taken  or what time of day to determine that these two soaps are NOT being watched enough??  I have watched for years and am very angry that this is being done!  I am tired of all the talk shows, reality shows and doctor shows!   We don’t need more.  They are vulgar and language is horrible.   The soaps are really getting more interesting than ever–writers are doing a good job.  The actors and actresses are great and I love them all.  How about listening to ALL OF US  who watch them and give them another chance?!!!!!   If you have to,  change the time they come on, BUT, PLEASE KEEP THE SOAPS!!!!!

  46. Stacy31c says:


  47. Now that Fons has ruined our lives he leaves ABC as President.  The new president needs to hear our pleas and cries and bring back our beloved All MY Children and One Life to Live.  I am 56 and I have been watching these two shows sine I was 15. So that tells you that I have been watching since day 1 as many of us have.  They are a part of our family.  When AMC played the last week I sat and cried through every show. You have caused all of us who feel this way to have a premature death in the family and it is very hard waking up knowing that they will no longer be there for us.  The only difference is that we will not be all together again when we are gone.  ABC needs to smarten back up and bring back our shows.  I do not watch the “Chew” and I don’t think very many do.  We have all swore we would not watch the show that took the place of our beloved AMC.  No one will watch ABC daytime in the afternoon any more so why even try to replace our shows????  Bring them back and keep them where they belong.  This is a very big injustice that is being done to all ABC soap fans.  Please bring back and keep our shows.  You may not know it but they have become a big part of our lives and are a part of the family that comes into our homes M-F to visit and share their days and lives with us.

  48. Manuella says:

    I have been watching soaps since I was a teenager .. this real life crap is not real…so get over it and get back to soaps.