To refer to the ABC soap opera General Hospital as "long-running" is a massive understatement. On April 1 of this new year, the venerable serial will mark its 60th anniversary. Think about that for a moment. GH is a daily scripted broadcast drama -- once one of many, now one of only three -- that has since it began been in continuous production despite all manner of obstacles (from uncaring executives to extended preemptions for news programming to industry strikes), first at an episode length of 30 minutes, then 45, and finally, beginning in January 1978, an hour. That was the time when, under the auspices of executive producer Gloria Monty, the show began to soar from near cancellation to a ratings-juggernaut the likes of which daytime television (in any form) has not seen since.
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