Fast Facts on General Hospital That You Will Love
American daytime television medical drama General Hospital is clocking 57 years this year.
It is listed in Guinness World Records as the longest-running American soap opera in production and the second longest-running drama in television in American history after Guiding Light.
The popular series has kept viewers enthralled for over half a century.
The show debuted on April Fools Day of 1963, but by 1978, ratings for the show had dipped so low that the network considered canceling it.
Producer Gloria Monty came aboard, made the show the number one show on daytime television, and saved it.
The show is the brain-child of husband-and-wife soap writers Frank and Doris Hursley. The brilliant minds originally set it in a general hospital in an unnamed fictional city.
The show which was originally going to be called “Emergency Hospital” has 13 Emmy Awards.
The Unnamed City
The show was set in an unnamed city for a mighty long time. When it premiered, the city was unnamed and stayed that way. It wasn’t until the episodes were extended from the original 30 minutes to 45 minutes that the fictional city was named.
For nearly 13 years, no one knew it was Port Charles, New York. Can you imagine that? Watching a show and not knowing where the characters are supposed to be.
Just the occasional vague use of ‘going to town’ or ‘going home’. Insane is what it is. And somehow it still survived all those years.
The Time Evolution
The show originally used to air 30-minute episodes.
They started shooting 45-minute episodes in 1976. Two years later they made them into one-hour episodes. there have been more than 14,000 episodes since
The characters live in a city called Port Charles and there is a family called the Quartermaines who loom over everyone as they have a lot of money and also tend to have a lot of drama.
The story revolves mostly around this family and The Spencers. When the hospital burned to the ground in the year 2009, it was the Quartermaine money that rebuilt the place.
That’s probably why this family has so much said over how things go, what happens here, and what is going on when there are issues with the hospital.
They’ve had some drama of their own since rebuilding, but it’s a centerpiece.
Friends and Foes
According to Live About, it sounds like most of the actors on General Hospital get along with one another.
Many TV fans are probably surprised to hear about actors who are friendly or even the best pals on set because you often hear about lots of conflict or tension between cast members.
Rumour has it that two of the main actors, Billy Miller and Steve Burton, don’t get along.
According to Celeb Dirty Laundry, “We should also point out that there’s been a buzz all along about Steve Burton (Jason) and Billy Miller (Drew). From the moment Burton returned, gossip erupted about friction with Miller.”
The clothes stay on set
It seems like a big perk of being on a TV show would be keeping some of your character’s clothing. Well, that doesn’t happen on the set of General Hospital. ABC 13 says, “None of the actors can take the clothes home because every piece is cataloged and may be used again.”
The Record-breaking wedding
General Hospital rose to the top of the ratings in the early 1980s thanks to the momentous wedding between “super couple” Luke and Laura. The 1981 wedding brought in views that many could only dream about.
Approximately 30 million viewers had their eyes fixed on the screen for that episode and remains the highest-rated hour in American soap opera history.