Can the Internet Save Soap Operas?

As production begins for web versions of 'One Life to Live' and 'All My Children,' fans say the answer is "yes"

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Michael Nouri and Bobbie Eakes in 'All My Children,' the week of Sept. 27, 2010.

It seemed, at first, like a love that would last forever. After so many years together, what could go wrong? But, as does often happen, the thrill began to wane. A last attempt at rekindling that romance ended in tears. Until, a year later, they tried again—and found that love as strong as ever.

Sound like a soap opera? It is. Two of them, actually. For nearly four decades, sudser staples All My Children and One Life to Live were afternoon television constants. When—after years of sliding ratings and high costs—they finally went off into the Great Cheesy Set in the sky (in September 2011 and January 2012, respectively), longtime fans were devastated.

But there was a mysterious stranger waiting in the shadows. A few months before the shows left the air, the L.A.-based production company Prospect Park had struck a deal with their network, ABC, getting a license to both shows and promising they would continue “with the same quality and in the same format and length,” but on a new platform: the Internet.

Of course, the road to love is treacherous and bumpy. After months of will-they-or-won’t-they and a year during which it seemed sure that the shows would never actually make the move online, Deadline broke the news in December that Prospect Park was trying again. This time it was for real. Starting this spring, new episodes will be available via iTunes, Hulu and Prospect Park’s website The OnLine Network.

Production on the revamped shows—they’ll still have new episodes every weekday, but each will last 30 minutes rather than an hour—begins this month. And, despite the year-long vacuum and the perils of the platform transition, soap-opera experts are cautiously optimistic that this plot line will have a happy ending.

(MORESoap Operas: The Old and the Desperate)

It’s All About the Fans

It wouldn’t work without fan excitement—and that excitement is justified, says Carolyn Hinsey, a soap-opera blogger and veteran columnist for Soap Opera Digest. “How can you not be positive? If you could bring someone back from the dead and they might be a little sick for a while, wouldn’t you still rather have them back?” Hinsey told TIME, likening the experience to visiting an old friend. “And then they’ll get better and better, and hopefully they’ll be totally healthy and you’ll get to go hang out with them again.”

Hinsey believes that the concerns expressed by some fans in the comments sections of soap-opera fan sites—Will the casual fans have found something else to fill their free time? How will fans with slow internet connections watch the show now? What about fans with no internet access?—should not hinder the shows’ success. Many of the cast and crew from both shows (and One Life in particular) are returning for the new incarnations, after all, and prime-time soap Dallas succeeded in coming back (albeit to TV) after a hiatus lasting more than two decades.

As for the logistics of online viewing, she believes that truly devoted fans will always figure out a way to watch. “A lot of viewers didn’t have cable either, and when TV started going in the direction where you needed a cable box, they got cable. My grandmother had the antenna with the Reynolds Wrap on the end of it but if she was alive when you needed cable to watch soaps, she would have gotten cable. So I think a lot of older people will figure out a way to watch it online,” Hinsey says. “And they don’t need 3 million viewers to be possible, as a half-hour internet soap. If you get a million viewers you’re one of the biggest internet hits around.”

(MOREGreed, Melodrama and the Unexpected: What Made Dallas TV’s Greatest Happy Accident)

And the much-trumpeted end of the soap opera, she believes, was just a self-fulfilling prophecy perpetuated by network brass, who hastened to make real the demise of the genre by failing to promote or embrace shows that still had strong ties to their viewers. Her evidence? Over Christmas week this past year, the remaining ABC soap, General Hospital, reached a two-year high for viewership.

Settling Scores?

Another potential reason for fan-engagement, as befitting the genre, is revenge. Hinsey says many soap fans felt insulted by ABC’s decision to replace soap operas with lifestyle shows like The Chew and The Revolution. That resentment is on full display online: soap-opera activists like Y.B., better known as “Screw the Chew” (a 34-year-old from California who has been a soap fan since age 7, and wishes to remain anonymous), took to Twitter and Facebook to lash out at the network, organize boycotts of ABC and its sponsors, and plan live protests at events like ABC’s May 2011 showcase. The outcry was strong enough to influence Hoover to pull its vacuum ads from the network and—although both ABC and Propsect Park would not comment on the matter for this article—the fans believe their activism is at least partially responsible for the show’s return.

So a successful online version will be a poke at the network they feel abandoned them, although it’s not as much of a win as a return to television would have been. “We’re definitely going to watch online. Even if it’s not exactly the way we wanted it, we’re still going to support it and watch,” says Y.B. “We proved to everyone else that we wanted them back and they came back. It does feel good to prove them wrong.”

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History on Their Side

There’s also cause for hope based on the history of the soap opera. That’s even if the decline of the genre isn’t just in TV executives’ collective imaginations. C. Lee Harrington, an editor of the 2012 book The Survival of Soap Opera: Transformations for a New Media Era, says that the drop in interest has been real—General Hospital‘s recent viewership numbers notwithstanding. After reaching a high point in the 1960s, there was a steady decline in ratings that continued until a sharp drop in the late ’90s. “When Guiding Light was cancelled [in 2009, after 57 years on television and another 15 on radio], it seemed like ‘anything can be cancelled,’” she says, “just because of its longevity.”

Fewer women were spending their days at home, and cable television and internet provided alternatives for those who still did. Then, in 1995, the trial of O.J. Simpson dominated daytimes airwaves and disrupted long-established viewing habits. Reality television came along, offering a cheaper-to-make alternative for networks looking for content. And soap operas, as a concept, didn’t seem to make so much sense anymore. “As the pace of life got quicker and quicker,” Harrington says, “the idea of investing in something that you needed to watch every single day just became less and less relevant to how people are living their daily lives.”

The New Model

But that doesn’t mean soap operas are done. To the contrary: Soaps once made the transition from radio to television, why can’t they make the transition to internet? They already have, in some cases: Harrington cites Venicewhich stars soap vet Crystal Chappell and won a 2011 Daytime Emmy in the “special class format” category—as a successful early version of an online soap model. “There’s an audience out there looking for a different way to consume soaps. In some ways, this could be going back to the early days of radio, when you had 15-minute installments,” she says. And even compared to five years ago, the Internet is very accessible to soap fans, who already populate and contribute to a wide array of message boards and forums.

“The merging of television and the internet isn’t far away, whatever that might look like,” she says—but whatever it does look like, it will include soap operas. “This is a really ancient form of storytelling, the serial narrative. At the end of one installment, you want to know what happens next. We’re seeing it less on daytime television, but that form of storytelling will absolutely continue.”

(MORE: Netflix Series House of Cards Sinks Its Sharp Teeth into Washington)

And she’s got a point, because there’s another reason viewers will have an incentive to tune in, especially with All My Children. They need to find out what happens. The show’s finale ended—naturally—with a cliff-hanger.

82 comments
kurzie
kurzie

It really makes me angry that many people stereotype soap fans as old ladies, the unemployed, fat, stupid, and lazy.  Yet these same people eagerly tune in to watch primetime soaps like Revenge, Desperate Housewives, and Downton Abbey.  I was a young child in 1968.  I was playing at a friend's house when her Mom mentioned that new story was starting that day.  So the three of us sat down and watched the first episode of One Life to Live.  I've been an avid fan ever since.  I watched them through college and when I was a stay at home Mom.  When I went back to work, I had to stop watching.  Then I bought my first VHS recorder and began to record my story.  I've been recording and watching it ever since.  

I was devastated when ABC cancelled the program because I'd been following the adventures and misadventures of the people in Llanview, PA for 44 years.  I've lived up to my boycott of all ABC/Disney programming.  Guess what?  I don't miss it at all.

There is very little to watch on tv, much less take the time to record,  so I don't watch much tv anymore at all.  Since canceling the soaps, ABC has seen its daytime ratings tank, and I am glad.  Viewers are sick to death of talk shows telling them how to improve their lives.  What viewers want is an escape from reality.

I'm delighted that my story is coming back.  I won't miss another episode!


Nic980
Nic980

As a viewer from Germany its the only way for me to watch soap operas and of course 'Venicetheseries' and 'The Grove' via world wide web, thru the web I discovered Crystal Chappel and all the beautiful acting she had done over the years. I´ll support her in whichever way I can. She is a pioneer in this catagory and I´m grateful for evrything she does for us fans.

swansong40
swansong40 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

I'm a grateful member of the 80% of returning internet viewing fans who wait with great anticipation for season four of Venice The Series.  Crystal Chappell is a long-time veteran of the soap opera genre who has brought fresh energy and a creative format, pulling in not only loyal soap viewers, but new fans as well, drawn to the flexibility and creativity of the new medium, the internet.

bubblequeen25
bubblequeen25 like.author.displayName 1 Like

The answer to your question, simply put, is yes. If there is any doubt as to whether or not the internet can save soaps, take a look at "Venice". As important as you feel that soap operas get a mention in your magazine, it's as important to give credit where credit is due. And that person is Crystal Chappell. With the soap genre fading out on tv, Crystal knew there were tons of heart broken fans out here and she gave us what we wanted. And I thank her for that. Let it be known that Venice still has 80% viewership since season 1. Season 4 is shooting shortly and I can't wait to see it. I honestly believe that the next place for soaps is the web and I also believe that Crystal Chappell is the woman who jump started the process. Check Venice out. You will not be disappointed.

SusHe12
SusHe12 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

If there's any doubt whether this social medium called the Internet can have a future with Soap Operas, look no further than to the pioneer of web series soaps, creator, actor, director, author, entrepreneur and mother, Crystal Chappell.

I am a proud subscriber of "Venicetheseries" and a sponsor to her recently released web movie called "TheGrove". I've been a fan of Crystal's since GL and watched it since High School. So when GL closed its doors in September 2009, after a 72 year of broadcasting on radio and television, I wondered if I would ever see those actors again. The answer to that question was short lived when through YT I learnt that Crystal was starting a web series called "Venicetheseries " Not only was she starting a soap web series but was also bringing along most of my favourite GL actors on board with her. Thank you Crystal, for having the 'balls' to go the distance and can't wait for season 4 of 'VTS' to begin. I will continue to support you and happy to be part of the 80% viewership that is gaining more fans and viewers daily. So YES, I agree that the Internet CAN save Soap Operas!

TammyF
TammyF like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Crystal Chappell has shown with Venice that the internet is a great place for soaps.Venice is in preproduction for it's 4th season and has retained 80% of its viewers since the start.Crystal has Venice in production,as well as The Grove .Crystal is an amazing actress,writer,producer,director,and entrepreneur.She interacts with her fans and has a huge fan base. Crystal is very loyal to her fans.She gives us what we want to see in a soap.I can't wait to see future seasons ofVenice the Series and The Grove. Also,I am always thrilled when Crystal has a new project because I know it will be well done.I have been a fan of her for many years,and she has never disappointed me.Crystal's devotion to  her fans speaks volumes and thd that is why I and many others stick around to support her. She has a good solid fanbase.I can't wait for more from her.I have watched soaps since I was a child and,I love the direction Crystal has gone with Venice.I could go on and on singing Crystal's praises because she is a remarkable woman with a tremendous talent.She is a pioneer in soaps.I can't wait for more to come.

enigmatic1toyou
enigmatic1toyou like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

I began watching soaps back in the 80's. It didn't begin with me watching on purpose, I just kinda found myself watching along with everyone else. Over time, I found myself planning my lunch break to be at the same time as AMC aired, so I could keep up with the folks in Pine Valley. Year after year, these people's lives unfolded as I watched. Sometimes the stories were just ridiculous, sometimes, they hit home so hard it was painful, but the stories always kept me wondering what would happen to these people, and where would things end up? 

Soaps had become such a normal part of my everyday life, I never thought they wouldn't a part of my day to day someday. I had become a die hard soap fan without even knowing. Why do I enjoy this genre so much? There's an exploration of characters which can only happen with the dailyness of soaps. What other character have you seen on screen for nearly as many hours as we get to see soap characters? We get to know each character so well, they become a part of our lives. 

I was heartened by the idea that Prospect Park wanted to move AMC and OLTL to the web, but was skeptical of it's ability to do so. Why? Money. PP's initial proposal to just move to the web at the blink of an eye with the same cast, quality, etc seemed like an idealistic dream. I wondered where they would get the substantial funding for a venture like that and how they would generate enough revenue to keep it alive. My doubts were the same reasons the networks were dumping the soaps on air! It's my belief if you want to save serialized drama - soaps, you can't keep trying to do things the same way. Innovation is necessary to survive. I'm a little more hopeful about PP's ability to make things happen this time, as they seem to be trying a different approach. I will be watching and I am hopeful they succeed.

I have been a subscriber to Crystal Chappell's Venice since season one. I agree, Venice is the example of how to successfully bring a soap to the web. See, this show is self supporting. Rather than selling a lot of advertising, or selling episodes to a cable channel like HBO (which charges viewers to watch), Venice sells it's show directly to it's viewers. This allows the show to continue to stay in production without having to answer to, or pay the salary of a bunch of corporate executives, who are more concerned with profit than product. 

I have had the pleasure of watching Venice mature and get better each season. The proof of it's success is it's continued existence. The fact it has an 80% retention in it's viewership is really remarkable. I haven't done the research, but I would guess no other web series can boast that kind of retention. No, it hasn't reached the viewership broadcast soaps have, yet, but the web for TV and film is in it's infancy. So far, though, Venice is proving it can attract and keep an audience. I think it is only a matter of time for the numbers to grow to the point where they rival the numbers we see for broadcast shows. In the meantime, I'm glad I can sit back, pay my seasonal subscription fee and enjoy the show!

beckalders
beckalders like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

I think using the internet to keep soaps alive is a fantastic idea.

Venice the web series is a true example of a successful show on the internet. It's beautifully filmed and written and has retained 80% of its viewers and will continue to grow daily. It has the same concept as all soaps do and that wont change. I watch one episode and need/want to watch the next.

 Crystal Chappell is a fantastic actress and producer. She has done her self proud with Venice and The Grove and I can't wait for season 4 of Venice and future work from her.

gyrede
gyrede like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 3 Like

As a viewer from Germany the Internet is the only way to watch Soap Operas. Other than YT that is... I am a VENICE and Crystal Chappell fan from day 1 when she started to develop that (more or less) unheard idea of bringing a soap opera to the web in 2009. Some think it's not a success to retain 80% of it's original viewers, I think it is. And I'm sure when Internet soaps get more popular they'll gain more viewers because Crystal Chappell brought a brilliant idea to life AND her fans and viewers can be part of the origin. So, even tho I have to buy a subscription to watch every new season I think it's more than worth it. I love what she created, to watch the episodes with other fans worldwirde at the same time and chat about what happened. I hope to see Venice and the Grove for many more seasons to come.

ldawntoo
ldawntoo like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

This article has certainly spawned a great deal of passion an that is good to see. I dear say that there is no programming that has retained any viewership of 100% in any consistent fashion so I think in my opinion an what I have read here with all these passionate remarks clearly Venice has marked it's success. Also I want to point out that when networks decided to dropped daytime soaps they displaced a lot of gifted actors an actresses. Out of all of this I find this to be the saddest as this seems to be the commentary of our culture displaced workers. I appauld Crystal for taking the initiative to not remain a victim an be proactive not only for her self but for her fellow peers it was a courageous move. I am definately a fan not only of her acting but of her spirit which to me seems to transcend an prove to be a powerful example an I think if you were to ask her "avid followers you would find it is not blind with intention but rather each of us see the commitment an goodness she displays each an everyday with her fans her peers an her family. That speaks volumes an that is why in my opinion she will remain successful in all of her endeavors an she will have people around her that will support an protect her honor . This may seem a corny statement but I assure you what we lack in this world is honest an true intention toward each other.

MIZZJ08
MIZZJ08 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 3 Like

I have been a Crystal Chappell fan for as long I can remember. She is an amazing women. Following all of her accomplishments is beyond joyous. "Venicetheseries" is amazing, the fact that it has retained 80% of it viewers and gaining more daily speaks for itself. And now that she has given birth to her new baby "The Grove", Crystal Chappell is proving to everyone that, Yes, Internet Can Save Soap Operas!!

schofly
schofly like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

First off I do not feel that I am or any audience that likes a program whether on television or on the web to be "blind followers." or "exploited" as the so called  commetater  below seems to think.  I enjoy watching great programming no matter where it comes from. Some of the shows that audience members watch are on satellite , cable or online web series and with watching programming from these outlets EVERYONE PAYS some sort rate whether to the cable /satellite companies or to online web outlets to view favorite web series or any television programming that is online, ie ( Hulu Plus, NetFlix   ..etc)

I am in total agreement and total support for bringing all soap operas whether NEW like VENICE, THE GROVE  GOTHAM  etc..or OLD like One Life to Live,  All My Children or even one day rebooting Guiding Light & Another World to the Web.  

Crystal Chappell has a brillant business mind SHE alone took action and created a model for Online Web Series.   These models are new, and  are unique. This new way to watch programming  can be and is proving to be  successful,  These models (web series) show that with some interaction its key to keeping soaps of all kinds. It's a great way to continue to being successful as Crystal has shown us with VENICE. 

VENICE  is PROOF that the WEB IS SAVING SOAPS! Not only has Venice retained 80% of its viewers since it's debut and it gains more fans, viewers daily.




StephaniePcolinsky
StephaniePcolinsky like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

Judging by what Crystal Chappell has done with Venice I would have to say the internet is definitely saving the soap genre. Since Venice premiered it has retained 80% of its viewers which in this day and age is not an easy thing to accomplish. Her latest effort The Grove is an instant success and continues to gain viewers. Crystal's forward thinking has set her apart and now others are starting to take notice and catch up to her forward thinking. I will always support soaps on the internet. I really do think that soaps will prosper and grow on the internet and always have a home there.

SashaMote
SashaMote like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 6 Like

The great thing about this country is that everyone has the right to post about anything they like. :). Some may call it "flooding," while others may call it showing up to weigh in too. I do not consider supporters of Venice to be "blind followers." The commenter below has used words like "exploit" or "blind following". Who is being tricked, forced, or duped? if you want to watch and support, do. If you don't, then dont. It is as simple as that. Show me a show that retains every single follower it had from day one. That expectation is unrealistic in my opinion. Venice and other webseries continue to reach out to new audiences and gain new viewers. I also respect everyone's opinion. I also urge anyone to make a show themselves and become a pioneer in trailblazing a path for others in this new medium. And id like to see it done with a cast I would like to see and shot in a beautiful way, with pretty locations, and with quality writing. Until then, I will continue to support Crystal Chappell and Venice the Series and wish the best of luck to all the other webseries. I do agree with this article that the model for Venice is the standard for shows that want to continue in this medium.

3amfright
3amfright like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

@CaseyYour points and concerns are valid, but I think your model comparative is wrong. Remove the notion that any show aired on the web is a "tv series" and instead look at them as the independent projects that they are and it is clear that any time a series is fully capable of financially covering their production costs they are in fact a success. Viewership fluctuates, that is the natural course of not only our economy ( a large factor for both tv & web) but entertainment progression as well. Still, a show that is dependent, not just on its fans, but its advertising supporters or sponsors as well, and is still going shows that the model, which will forever be in progress, is a strong one.

If soaps going to the web are to survive, they have to be given the open supportive attention they deserve. You cannot compare the models of Venice the Series, or Grove the Series, or any other currently running web series (like Out with Dad or Anyone But Me) with the "tv land" adage because the day tv shows started adding their episodes to itunes and amazon and other media platforms they killed it. This is what has to be expressed. These models are new, they are unique, they can be and are successful, but they are not tv series nor should they be treated as such. They are web series, with financial support, success & strong viewership that extends beyond just sitting down and watching them. Like any great model, interaction is key and soaps that wish to continue should look to the ones that are still going and see what they are missing out on.

SunshineSharon
SunshineSharon like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

@casey Everyone is entitled to their opinion. If one was to make a new product which still sees 80% of viewership after three plus years & that is their hope to retain at least 80%, then if that meets their criteria for success then it is success in my books.

SunshineSharon
SunshineSharon like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 5 Like

When Guiding Light was cancelled, Crystal Chappell took her passion for the Otalia storyline & the fact these two women were not allowed to kiss on daytime television & created Venice. She gave the fans what they wanted & within the first minutes we, the fans, got to see the two actresses kiss. Crystal & her cast & crew found a forum to be more free & creative. I do believe Crystal's Venice is very successful with 80% of original viewers. Most shows on tv today are not given a chance to be successful. Using subscriptions for Venice was a risk but it paid of. I might add that Crystal & her co-creators kept the audience informed & asked for their opinions. I for one felt like I was part of the Venice team. Success is the achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted. Add an Emmy to that for your effort adds up to success to me. Congratulations to Crystal Chappell. Where would our hearts be without you. You create webseries that would stand up to any shows on television & in a lot of cases, much better.

Casey
Casey

@SunshineSharon You are correct in saying shows on TV today aren't given the chance to be successful. But, and please correct me if I'm wrong, I believe Venice started in 2009, we are now into 2013. That is more than enough time to be successful. I'm not saying the show is bad or the content, I applaud her for making a show that included a scene in the very first minutes that Guiding Light never had the guts to do. But at the end of the day if after several years you can still only claim to have 80% of original viewership numbers then in terms of television, ratings and the like, that is not success. By now viewers should have increased. That was my point. 

Kellilleslie
Kellilleslie like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 5 Like

Venice is proof that the web IS saving soaps! Not only has Venice retained 80% of its viewers but it's gaining more fans daily, especially since we can now purchase previous seasons on DVD to share with our friends & family

Casey
Casey

I must apologize to readers, I had no idea stating a fact of lost viewership would cause Ms Chappell's camp to flood the comments section. For those of you who said I was wrong, if you are telling me that she has 80% of the original viewership heading into season 4, does that not mean she has lost viewers? That was my point. I take all of yours on board and respect everyone's opinion. I was not bullying, targeting or smearing Crystal Chappell, I was merely pointing out that Venice has lost viewers, a fact you all confirmed. I wish only the best for all webseries and success for Ms Chappell, however spinning things and blind following will not change facts. Venice does indeed have former and current soap stars acting in it, it is indeed going into pre production for a fourth season and apparently has retained 80% of viewers after three seasons. In TV land this would be called a failure and it's something that no webseries has been able to do and that is increase viewers from the very first episode. It is something that needs to be fixed and perhaps energies are better spent trying to promote webseries as a viable medium then flooding comment sections when someone says something that you may not like, but that is in essence correct. Good luck to Ms Chappell. I wish her every success.

LaniAllen-Arens
LaniAllen-Arens like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

I completely agree that the web is saving Soaps. I watch Venice, The Grove and WILL watch AMC and OLTL as I grew up watching them and knowing they are on the web, I am so excited to see that!!! After three seasons of Venice, they have attained 80% of their viewers. Making Soaps on the web is alot less expensive, there is more freedom for the cast and crew, for the kind of stories that want and need to be told by the writers. Times are changing on network television. Its being over taken with game shows and Judge shows and talk shows. There is no longer companies who want to pay the big budgets to make Daytime Dramas anymore when the other shows are much cheaper to make. Hopefully this will be realized and get these incredible daytime actors back to work!!!!

Lhlisadawn
Lhlisadawn like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

I agree with a lot of the comments already posted. Crystal Chappell has created 2 phenomenal web series. Venice has retained 80% of its viewers since season1 and is gearing up for season 4. Cable soaps could learn a lot from her. She knows what the fans want and know how to get it done.

ldawntoo
ldawntoo like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

There certainly is a demand for a return of the soaps to daytime tv an the evidence is clear with Venice the series an open book production created by Crystal Chappell. In the soon to be 4 seasons of Venice it popularity remains high with at least 80% retention of its audience . This proves without a doubt that not only is there a fan base that are passionate regarding these stories but if TV networks are not interested the Internet is a viable source of media an veteran actress Crystal Chappell is proof .

grobles23
grobles23 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

Thank you Times for acknowledging the remarkable Crystal Chappell. She created an Emmy winning series Venice The Series and also created The Grove The Series. Let me clarify that the poster below is wrong. Venice The Series has retained 80% of its audience since season 1 and its increasing each seasons. Now Venice is gearing up for season 4th. Crystal Chappell is a true pioneer of the web series.

DocGiani
DocGiani like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 6 Like

Just briefly want to say that Venice is a tremendous success...despite being a subscription series, it's viewership has maintained at least 80% of its viewers over 3 years so far, and counting. The 4th season will be filming starting in only a couple of weeks and will be available to its eager fans soon after. I for one can't wait! I've been a sponsor as well as a subscriber from the beginning and will support it financially and emotionally, on into the future as far as Ms Chappell wants to take it.

NamedSamba
NamedSamba like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 5 Like

I echo a lot of your comments about the soaps and them being an online success. We all have witnessed Crystal do it and she has remained with more than 80% of her viewers who are also committed fans through the three seasons she has had Venice on the web. I for one have been a paying subscriber for those 3 season and do not mind paying at all. The content is more than worth the sub fee I pay for so I'm happy to pay the fee every coming season. I will add this I was never a soap watcher till i found the GL Jess and Crystal clips on youtube and was converted from that day on. 

Alicatcuz
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There will always be soap operas in one form or the other. People are just drawn to them. How they are delivered has evolved because everything evolves. It's so great that AMC/OLTL will have their stories continued. They have so much history that there can be much good to come from them but I expect they will be different and that's ok. Just like what Crystal has done with her productions these shows will make their way and hopefully just like with Venice they will have many seasons and keep on going. I've contributed to Crystal's productions. Putting these shows on can't be easy to do and require fan support to continue. In essence it does make for a much closer relationship with the people that watch the shows. I wish AMC/OLTL well and hope they find their way. So could someone work on getting P&G to let Guiding Light back on? ;)  

junebuggnc
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I am a proud paying viewer of both of Crystal Chappell's web series, Venice and The Grove.  I bought sponsorships for both and am a subscriber to Venice.  Since the first season of Venice over 80% of the viewers have remained....why????  Because Crystal Chappell is giving the fans what we are losing in daytime.  And one of the things that makes it so special in my opinion is these actors are getting paid very little compared to their daytime salaries.  They want to work and if the part or show is that good they'll work for next to nothing.  Crystal and Open Book Productions were awarded an Emmy for season 2 of Venice and season 4 will begin shooting in less than two weeks.  Those of us who want good stories, great acting and the powers that be who listen to the fans and give us what we want do not mind paying for it. 

Carolyn1202a
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The internet IS saving soap operas , and has been  for at least 3 years  .  so the answer is yes. I have been watching Venice the Series produced by Crystal Chappell, for 3 years now .The fun thing about that I like about soaps now on the web is that the internet is a place fans can easily gather and discuss their favorite soap. I have been watching Venice with pretty much the same fan group  the whole time, and that has been nice. I've made some new friends.  For me, half the fun of watching is watching with your friends. So yes sometimes models have to change with the times, but they bring new good things as well. I like not having to watch a soap on a large network, there is more room for creativity when there is not a large company and it's advertisers involved in the content. That doesn't mean I don't watch the soaps still on TV, I still do .  I think having more venues and models is the future. I remind myself that it was just one model that changed, American soaps that were afternoon based. US night time drama/soaps are still around and other countries who have soaps in the evenings are still around, so its just this one model.

I am really grateful for people like Crystal who had a vision of the future for soaps and went ahead and did it. The future of soaps is here and its great. Like soaps, ! can't wait to see the next chapter .


sporty191
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Emmy winner for Venice The Series, Crystal Chappell has successfully brought soaps to the web!!  She is a true pioneer and is proving that soaps can be saved!! Crystal Chappell is a very talented actress and producer with a vision that meets the needs of the viewers. She is telling great stories with some of our favorite and talented daytime actors!! The fact that Venice has retained 80% of its viewers and is in pre-production for its 4th season is outstanding! I will continue supporting Venice and The Grove because I believe in her vision and I enjoy the characters and good stories that are being told!! Her web series are well worth the money I am investing!! In fact Venice and The Grove have been more enjoyable and entertaining than some cable shows.

Medasst28
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Venice has retained at least three quarters of its viewing audience since it's beginning. They are about to shoot season 4 and I am on board with that. What Crystal Chappell started and others have continued is why this medium works. Prospect Park may have gotten the attention for doing what they are doing with AMC and One Life...but Crystal does deserve credit for making that medium more accessible by having a great fan base. The Grove is yet another creation of hers and she is starring in another Web Series The INN. It's not how you invent the wheel but its how you shape and change it to make it functional and work that counts. Crystal Chappel has shaped and worked the internet medium to make it do just that...work and be successful.

Nnn2u
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I'm glad to see that you brought up Venice as a successful soap model. Not just an early version, a current version that is thriving, retaining 80% of its viewers and just about to start shooting season 4. Not only has Crystal Chappell been a pioneer in the transition to taking soaps to the web, she is bringing major soap stars with her, in front of and behind the camera. And while you're at it, check at her latest creation, another break through The Grove on youtube. She has developed a successful business model bringing soaps to the web. Perhaps Prospect Park should think about bringing her in as a soap and tech savy executive to help make OLTL and AMC the successes we all want them to be on the web.

allison6071
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I think Venice is very successfully holding on to it's viewership and adding more viewers per season, both domestic and international. What Cystal Chappell has started with Venice is what I believe is the reason people like Prospect Park want to bring drama to the web. Series such as Netflix's House of Cards is so successful because of Venice the series. Cystal didnt just create a Webseries she created a future for us all, a new way to enjoy classic drama. I'm excited and looking forward to what season 4 of Venice the series, AMC and OLTL will bring to us via our computers. 

68ANDIOU1
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Crystal Chappell's web series "Venice the series" is amazing, the fact that it has retained 80% of it viewers and gaining more daily speak to that fact. With those numbers this series is destined to have longetivity on the internet.Crystal has Venice heading into its 4th season and a new series "The Grove which already has a large viewership, with that i'd say she definitely knows and has what it takes to be internet successful. Being a subscription viewer of Venice, this is truly one of those times where I get More for my Money! Crystal Chappell is showng that Soaps can be Saved!!!!

anothercc
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"Can the Internet Save Soap Operas?" ABSOLUTELY !!! Crystal Chappell has been and continues to be a true pioneer in bringing our beloved soaps to the internet.  Her Emmy winning "VENICE THE SERIES" is currently in pre-production of the 4th season. The sponsorships and subscriptions are ways for the fans to support and become invested in the beloved webseries. Venice has maintained 80% of the original fanbase and continues to grow in popularity worldwide.  Ms Chappell's 2nd series "THE GROVE THE SERIES"  was released New Year's Day and is also extremely popular with soap fans all over the world. Thank You for recognizing Crystal Chappell and her contributions to the world-wide-web of soaps. She is an amazing talent both in front of the camera and behind it.  LONG LIVE SOAPS !!!

GLCCJL
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I have been a subscriber to Crystal Chappell's business model Venice the Series since it starter and will continue to support it by subscribing! If I can't see the actors I love on a Television soap opera I will pay to see them. It would be sad if people like Crystal didn't take a chance to keep soaps alive with another avenue such as the Internet! I would also pay for other shows with actors that I love! Give us more soaps on the Internet please! Thank you Crystal for keeping the stories and actors I want to see on my TV screen via the Internet.

Oliviaand24
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Venice has retained 80% of its viewers btw :)..I'm proud of Crystal and all she's done in her career. Venice and The Grove keep gaining viewers and they keep getting great reviews. I hope AMC and OLTL can be huge on the internet. I will support Crystal and soaps on the net as i did and do on tv.

SashaMote
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I also feel that Crystal Chappell's business model is a smart one for keeping Venice viable. Just as I am willing to buy a DVD of a movie I want to see, or renting one on demand, I am also willing to subscribe to watch. I also feel there is value in sponsorships for this webseries because my sponsorship comes with things from the show or cast that I could not normally get. I do not feel this is exploitation, but rather a way for me to support a show I love and be a part of it in some small way. I'd love to be able to do this with a lot of shows I enjoy on TV such as Dallas. And since A tv network isn't bringing me Venice the Series for free, Crystal is. And I want to see Crystal, Jessica, Nadia, Hillary, Shawn, Michael, Dot, Liz, Tina, Judi, Eric, etc on my screen.

eGolf63
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Glad they mentioned there are already successful web soaps on the internet. Venice is one of the success stories, it has retained its viewership and that's especially interesting as its a subscription sustained show. What I like about the show its not populated by 20 somethings like broadcast networks. It us the 30, 40, 50 & 60 somethings that have the buying power. We show it by supported Crystal Chappell's web shows. The acting & show is well done. 

karlayvette
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So glad that Crystal Chappell is getting the recognition she deserves for spear heading American Soaps into the New Web Media. Crystal is continuing to be a force to be reckon with in producing, directing, writing web designed shows and is now working on 4th season of Venice that has retained 80 percent of its audience since it's premiere.

sparcharge
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Crystal Chappell has been way ahead of the crowd by creating Venice the Series in 2009.She is about to begin filming season 4 and has retained 80% of viewers.She not only created the series, but stars in it as well. Venice is a well told story and that's is what people respond to.

rkroepke
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I have been a fan of Crystal Chappell's for a long time and she does a fantastic job with all her web projects.

Venice is a wonderful story and I see it having a bright future ahead with lots of people watching.

aw4268
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I am a fan of crystals from the UK and i follow Crystal on twitter and the tweets i have read and the people i chat to on there are so into venice the series and i would have to say they have retained 80% of viewers , you only have to look at the viewing figures on you tube to know how many people watch this program and i for 1 am happy i get to watch it living in the UK i don't think we would be able to watch it if it wasn't on the internet and i am sure a big percentage of these are from other countries that wouldn't get to see it otherwise.

Julieluvsotalia
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The poster below is incorrect, Venice has retained 80% of its audience from season to season and season four will be filming in February and March. 

Crystal Chappell has also had success with the launch of another web series called "The Grove", which, to this date, has over 115 thousand views on youtube. 

doodldoo
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I am such a big fan of Crystal Chappell and her webseries Venice and for her to still retain 80% of her original viewers going into VS4 is amazing. Venice is a brilliant show hope it continues forever so thankful to Crystal Chappell for VENICE.

DAxilla
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I love Venice! Crystal Chappell is amazing!!! Not only do we get a great program, we also get to see her every time I click a link! She is an amazing director/producer/actress and Venice would be great without her, but it is sooo much better with her!!! Her fans know this!!! They tune in anytime there is anything 'Crystal Chappell' anywhere!!

LB24JG
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What Crystal Chappell has brought to us on the internet has been amazing. Venice the Series is on it's 4th season with 80% of it original viewers. It is viewed all around the world from many fans. The actors on the show are amazing and story lines rock. I am a die hard soap fan and am so thankful that Crystal brought Venice the Series to us fans. 

mdavishoward7
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I love that Crystal Chappell has taken a genre of tv and revolutionized the viewing of it bringing it on to the web with Venice and The Grove. She has started a new era of Soap opera shows and new avenues of watching for fans world wide. One of the amazing things she has been able to accomplish is the fact that she has retained 80% of the viewership of Venice with more viewers coming each season from all types of backgrounds and countries  She uses her vast talent, intelligence and business savvy skills to give the viewers what they want as well as giving the actors and others that work with her the freedom and opportunity to express and use their talent in new and exciting ways that help them expand their art. Venice is a beautifully written and acted tale of beautiful, imperfect people whose relationships are messy, lovely and dynamic everything that makes a soap addictive and cliffhangers that keep you coming back for more. Venice is an amazing show that deserves all the awards and media exposure it gets and Crystal has opened a new frontier to Soaps and to actors who deserve to have their art and talent showcased in a forum where more people can experience and appreciate it.