ABC cancels “Revolution”; “General Hospital” to stay open

No, it never really was.

It looks like The Revolution will no longer be televised.

ABC announced the cancellation of the hour-long network strip on Wednesday after just three months on the air due to low ratings, and renewed long-running soap opera General Hospital for another year. GH will now be able to reach its 50th anniversary next April 1; the series premiered on this date in 1963.

The news first broke Wednesday at Deadline Hollywood.

On September 10, ABC is giving the 3 p.m. ET time slot back to affiliates and most stations are expected to fill it with Katie Couric’s new syndicated talk show. But due to a mandated 3 p.m. clearance in all time zones for Katie in all time zones for ABC’s owned-and-operated stations, Chicago’s WLS-TV will likely fill the vacated GH slot at 2 p.m. local time with Inside Edition and Jeopardy!, the two shows being displaced by Katie.

The Revolution was a health and lifestyle talk show hosted by former Extreme Makeover: Home Edition host Ty Pennington and produced by former Fun House host J.D. Roth. The series never was able to find its footing creatively or in the ratings – for one, the premise was confusing and did nothing but alienated potential viewers from the start. Second, ratings for the show were abysmal – averaging just 1.3 million viewers per week, and showed steep time period declines in key female demos from last year’s occupant. the long-running One Life To Live, which it and All My Children – two soaps that premiered in 1968 and 1970 respectively, were canceled to make room for Revolution and The Chew. The decision generated tons of backlash from soap fans.

Even though WLS is dominant in daytime, locally Revolution faced strong competition from Maury, NBC’s Days Of Our Lives, and CBS’ The Talk.

ABC plans on honoring its 26-week commitment to Revolution, with the show ending July 6. On July 9, ABC plans to temporally fill the 1 p.m. CT slot with GMA in the Afternoon, an expansion of the Good Morning America franchise (in the afternoon, no less) until General Hospital takes over the time period on September 10, though no plans have been finalized yet on where GH would actually land.

Back in January, yours truly boldly and angrily predicted ABC would kill General Hospital and keep Revolution, because I believed network execs were really this stupid and willing to further piss off soap fans, claiming the genre is too expensive. But sanity has prevailed, and yours truly has never been more happier to be wrong.

In fact, you can credit soap opera fans in having a hand in saving General Hospital after the outrage over the cancellations of All My Children and One Life to Live.

Power to the people, man.