While it’s true that the soaps are on a year-to-year contract with the networks these days, we think that cancellation news is a bit premature. CBS daytime has a made a huge push this year with the promotion of a No.1 for 30 years celebration. They have been the top network in daytime and B&B is a huge part of their success.
The show was created by William J. Bell in 1987 as a companion piece for The Young and the Restless. His work in daytime is a major component of the CBS daytime legacy and his son, Bradley Bell, continues to work as an executive producer and head writer on the series.
While many articles are touting the end of B&B due to falling ratings in the United States, they aren’t thinking about the global appeal of the show.
At the Paley Center for Media panel last week in Beverly Hills, the younger Bell stated that the family had hoped to have a run of eight to 10 years with the show. “Thirty years later, it’s become the most-watched drama in the world,” he said.
Internationally, the show has close to 35 million views a day. The other three soaps can’t even compare to that level of popularity. Bell explained why the show is so popular internationally.
“The world was opening up in terms of globalization. Santa Barbara had just hit the air and it was big in Italy, Israel and Russia. It was an exciting time,” said Bell. “We wanted to give [the audience] visual appeal, that’s why it was set in the fashion industry. We also wanted a city that people could relate to. That’s why it was set in Los Angeles.”
If you compare the ratings with the other three soaps currently on the air, B&B is up and in much better shape than General Hospital and Days of Our Lives for the 2016 to 2017 TV season according to TV Series Finale. They also run second in the coveted 18 to 49 female demographic, which proves that the CBS daytime soaps portfolio is holding strong.
While the show has always been an underdog in the U.S. when it comes to critical acclaim, CBS knows its value worldwide and taking that away from fans would be a huge deal. That’s why we think all of this cancellation talk is a bit premature.
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