How Would You Have Saved The Final Season?

Discussion in 'Falcon Crest' started by Angela Christmas, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. Angela Christmas

    Angela Christmas Soap Chat Warrior

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    The final season of Falcon Crest divides fans on whether they liked or hated it. Personally, I thought it was OK but it wasn't Falcon Crest. If you were the Falcon Crest showrunner, what would you have done to make the final season more memorable so the much loved series could have gone out on a high?

    I would have had Angela go to Europe to live with Peter Stavros while she recovered from an illness and while she is away she gives power of attorney to run her affairs jointly to Peter and her 2 grandsons: Lance and Father Christopher. The final series would then be a power struggle between the three men with Peter trying to preserve Falcon Crest for Angela's eventual return, Chris trying to prove himself to be a valid heir and Lance trying to manipulate the other 2 to get full control for himself.

    Richard would feel snubbed by not being made part of Falcon Crest by his mother and would try to destroy the company in revenge, tricking Emma to join forces with him to do so. The series could then continue to concentrate on Angela's family and the Falcon Crest business instead of bringing in Michael Sharpe and his family who nobody really was that bothered about.

    The series would end with Richard bringing Falcon Crest to the brink of bankruptcy, forcing Angela to return to the Tuscany Valley to stop him. The family eventually reconcile and they all get together to celebrate their uneasy truce. During the celebration, Angela leaves the room to delivery the farewell soliloquy that we all know so well.
     
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  2. Jock Og

    Jock Og Soap Chat Fan

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    Angela, if only what you described had actually happened then the ninth and final season of the show would have pleased stalwart fans, instead of what was served up. Saying that there were elements of the new FALCON CREST I enjoyed but like DALLAS without the majority of the core cast there the show became too different. The 'Powers That Be' for 1989 - '90 should have got Abby Dalton back as the leading woman, in the absence of Jane Wyman and beefed up Chao-Li's side of the family, at the expense of twisted secondary characters, such as Charley and Ian.


    Lauren and Walker Daniels have fostered Richard's children, after Maggie's demise. Walker is behaving erratically, (a scene from season 9, 1989 - '90):

    Richard speaks to Walker, who is about to completely flip: "If you're gonna shoot me, shoot but don't talk me to death."
     
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  3. Angela Christmas

    Angela Christmas Soap Chat Warrior

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    This was the main problem I had with the final season. I understand that actors leave long running series and new ones have to come in to replace them but I think they should have used it as an opportunity to bring back characters who we were already familiar with.

    I like your idea of introducing more of Chao-Li's family or they could have just given him a strong storyline, maybe a love interest who turned out to be on Richard's payroll to try and get some information on the secrets of Falcon Crest.

    Without Jane Wyman, Falcon Crest was always going to be a different show but I felt it strayed too far from what the original concept was. Ultimately, it should be a show about Angela's family and Angela's business, with or without Angela herself. Instead we got served up The Michael Sharpe Show with a subplot involving Richard pursuing a woman he had zero chemistry with.
     
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  4. Arlene Halloran

    Arlene Halloran Soap Chat Active Member

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    The overhaul for FC's final year was away too much. Granted you could get new viewers but this wouldn't compensate for the loss of the people who have watched a show, in the better quality years. More often than not the new doesn't exceed the old. Sharpe could still have been there, as another villain but no Lauren and Pilar should have been axed. Familiar faces should have returned two or three would have been enough; Ana Alicia perhaps, even Abby Dalton and yeah they could have revisited Fr. Christopher's storyline, as a sensible option.
     
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  5. Willie O! Tannenbaum

    Willie O! Tannenbaum drilling for soap

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    Excellent idea, eventhough they'd probably had to recast Father Christopher (apparently, Ken Olin wasn't very fond of the show)
     
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  6. TJames03

    TJames03 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    I don't believe KO even lists FC as a previous job.
     
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  7. Chloe-Fusco

    Chloe-Fusco Soap Chat Active Member

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    It is a pity though becauseI thought he was very good as Father Chris, for the sort of Cain versus Abel storyline he became involved in with Lance. Other than almost throwing away the dog collar due to Melissa he was one of the goodies, over all the seasons. Bringing the character into season nine could have been a breath of fresh air.
     
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  8. Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas

    Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    First of all, I would have given Gregory Harrison his own show and banned him from stepping on the FC set. And good riddance!

    Then, I´d have stolen from the "Dallas" writers the idea of the battle for the Channing empire, and reunited as many family members as possible: aside from Lance, Julia and Chris (who would not be a priest anymore and would appear shirtless as often as possible!), also Richard, Francesca, Cole, Vickie, Tony, Skylar and who knows, maybe Chase too in an amazing turn of events! They would be divided into two sides and have a lot of arguments and fights and betrayals, spicing it up with black humor, accidents and revelations until the very end, when Angela returns with Peter and the property is given to...

    upload_2018-10-18_12-43-25.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
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  9. Angela Christmas

    Angela Christmas Soap Chat Warrior

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    I like it especially the twist of giving Falcon Crest to Chao-Li after all the family spent the whole season fighting for control of it.

    There were so many characters they could have brought back and if the original actors were not available they could have recast some of them. For example, Gregory Harrison could have played the role of Father Chris. Robin could have been brought back (possibly with a recast) to assume a role similar to that of Melissa's being a constant thorn in the side of Falcon Crest and seeking to get control of it herself. Maggie's father could have been brought back to blame Richard for his daughter's death and to seek revenge.

    I think it was totally misguided to bring in so many characters that had little connection to the Channings, Giobertis and Agrettis when there were so many other credible alternative options that would have worked so much better.
     
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  10. Willie O! Tannenbaum

    Willie O! Tannenbaum drilling for soap

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    Hopefully!
     
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  11. Snarky's Ghost

    Snarky's Ghost Soap Chat Oracle

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    Ken Olin was right. S5 was drab and cluttered and his character was wasted. He did indeed take FC off of his own resume and publicly stated that he just wasn't proud of the work.

    Regarding S9, I still don't think I've ever seen all of it. Should Maggie have run Falcon Crest for a few episodes before drowning?
     
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  12. Jock Og

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    Maggie complete with her image could have been interesting as the season 9 main boss, of the wine company. Angela made her the editor of the 'New Globe' in season 4 so she did admire Maggie's business sense. Of all the characters in FALCON CREST Maggie certainly got more than her fair share of varied storyline/plots, so making her the boss of the show's pith IMHO would've been fitting. It is too bad we never got to see this, in the time scale as season 9 panned out.


    Garth and Richard's other employee Lawrence Mishima are meeting with Maggie, at the 'New Globe' office. She is now in control of her husband's holdings, since he is incognito. However as far as Maggie and Angela are concerned Richard died and was buried, (a scene from season 8, 1988 - '89):

    Maggie: "I want both of you to know that I am the one who is running Channing Enterprises, in fact as well as name. Anything I don't know I intend to learn it. I will come to you for advice first. However there will be no decisions made regarding Channing Enterprises, unless through me. Do you understand that gentlemen?"

    Lawrence: "But Mrs. Channing how can it be otherwise? Garth has assured me you have known and approved everything we've done."

    Maggie: "Well in the future unless you hear it from me you haven't heard it."
     
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  13. Julia's Gun

    Julia's Gun Soap Chat Member

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    There is an interesting interview with Lee Rich, a Lorimar executive out there somewhere, in which he mentions something about a 9 year contract with all these shows that kept them all on the air with CBS. Because of the huge success of Dallas, both Knots and Falcon Crest seem to have been given 9 season runs each to guarantee them on air with the network, if Lorimar kept producing them.

    This would explain why the dire trash of much of the later period of this show (particularly S7) still led to this show coming back each year, something which would never happen now. And it also explains why Michael Filerman was forced to actually work as an exec producer on Season 8, as he was still collecting a pay check each year since the first season. It looks like these shows had contracts to keep them on CBS, whatever the ratings for a min. of 9 years each, and which is why they all fell like a house of cards from 1989 onwards. (Could also explain why Knots, thankfully was renewed despite the low ratings it had during its Season 3).

    If that is the case with these shows - as Rich seems to imply in that interview I watched - then it explains why Season 9 feels like a sarcastic dance over the grave of a soap that should already have long been dropped by then. Warner had taken over Lorimar, staff members left or were made redundant, so nobody wanted this show but it looks like they were stuck with it for another year. The ratings were already awful, so Joel Surnow and writer Robert Cochran (later of '24') would probably have preferred to create their own show, using some of their ideas from Season 9, but without it being tied to Falcon Crest.

    If they were given Falcon Crest to work on but told to do what they liked with it, then they never had any real interest in 'saving the show' but instead did a kind of autopsy/deconstruction on the main cast. This in itself helps explain why much of S9 is so original and intriguing from a neutral soap fan point of view, but was way too much for the few original viewers that still remained and actually watched it. Parts of it I loved and found hilarious - the way Charly takes the p..ss out of Lance's masculinity, the antics of debased characters like Genele, and parts of it I detested - Maggie's death, the strangling of Angela, but I don't think the show could have been saved at this point anyway. It was already a corpse by Season 7, I literally could not sit through an episode after the first 2 or 3 of that year, it was so diabolically bad, making it up as it went along, and clearly should have been taken off air there and then.

    So, in my view Season 9 was unsaveable, yet at the same time, in Cochran's words, its one of the best 'unwatched seasons in television history' - to the neutral viewer, of course.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2018
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  14. Julia's Gun

    Julia's Gun Soap Chat Member

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  15. Angela Christmas

    Angela Christmas Soap Chat Warrior

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    I completely understand this point of view. Season 9 wasn't bad, it just wasn't Falcon Crest.
     
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  16. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    I dunno
    I've never heard of such a thing as nine season (!) contracts, but I'm sure there were clauses and such. I imagine their license fee they would pay to Lorimar would be dictated by what they could earn on ad revenue, which is probably why they had to keep cutting corners as the ratings dropped. There are still shows that get multiple season renewals - such as This Is Us getting a two season renewal in season one and Will & Grace getting a three season renewal before it barely went on air. Of course, there's also disaster examples of these multi-season renewals, such as Glee limping towards the end but Fox being unable to get rid of it (but able to at least negotiating down the last season to 13 episodes) and the infamous example of Drew Carey getting a three season renewal, only for the ratings to take a sharp down turn and ultimately they were forced to mostly burn off the last 37 episodes (!) in low priority summer slots.

    This happened recently with Nashville - the writers of thirty-something, My So-Called Life and Once And Again, clearly talented and acclaimed writers in their own right, took over the show in season five as it moved networks and the results were... less-than-satisfying. It was obvious they weren't writing Nashville, but for something else and was put in that position because they had signed a deal with the production company to develop their future projects.


    It's a good sentiment actually. If you entirely ignore that it's Falcon Crest and just watch it as an entirely different soap it's not bad. Narratively it's cohesive, the scripting itself is decent and from those perspectives there's not really much to complain about.
     
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  17. ChrisSumner

    ChrisSumner Soap Chat Active Member

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    I understand they had severe budget issues which is probably what led to Maggie being written off, but more familiarity would’ve helped. Emma was an absolute star that season and I wish she’d have stayed until the end. Melissa or a better written Vicky could’ve been good to tie it into the core of what Falcon Crest was about. Of course Melissa wasn’t a true option. An appearance or two from Julia wouldn’t have hurt either, but given what they had to work with I think they did a great job. It was easily one of the best written seasons and not nearly as plot driven as the show was, even in its glory years.
     
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  18. ArchieLucasCarringtonEwing1989

    ArchieLucasCarringtonEwing1989 Soap Chat Addict

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    If Susan Sullivan wanted to leave then I would simply write Maggie out as she is going to stay in New York for a while with the kids, Angela would’ve had a health scare and would recuperate in Switzerland and she leaves power of attorney to Cole and Vicky, leaving Richard and Lance out, Emma would be recurring and would find herself pregnant after a one night stand with Michael Sharpe was who would manipulate Emma into getting FC for herself with Julia’s help, all three sides would fight and battle each other all the while Michael Sharpe has been buying up FC stock, but he has fallen in Love with Emma and is now reluctant to hurt her or her family however he is working for a conglomeration that wants to destroy Falcon Crest.

    At the end of the season high Angela and Maggie with the kids return, Angela saves Falcon Crest, Michael and Emma marry, Richard and Maggie reconcile, Cole and Vickie decide to stay in Tuscany Valley, Lance and Pilar welcome their first child.
     
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  19. Michael Yule Torrance

    Michael Yule Torrance Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    I did not watch all of Falcon Crest (I gave up somewhere in the middle of it) but somehow I caught season 9 because it was rerun somewhere while serving in the military. I remember thinking I had no clue who/what many characters were, but I loved the remade theme, much as I loved the original as well. So I'd definitely keep that.
     
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  20. Matthew Blaisdel

    Matthew Blaisdel Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    That's how it really should have been! Although i did enjoy some of the dark vibe of S9, especially the scenes with Genele and Frank at that "vampire" cemetery! :lol:
    But i would have kept Samantha Ross as well as a friend for Lance, Emma and Frank, as i was really missing Ana Alicia big time in that final year!
     
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