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43rd Daytime Emmys: Watch Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series Nominated Reels!

It’s the mostly hotly contested race at this year’s 43rd Annual Daytime Emmys, and now NATAS has released the five nominated performances in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.  Who will win the gold on May 1st? Nominated are: Tyler Christopher (Nikolas) General Hospital, Anthony Geary (Luke) General Hospital, Justin Hartley (Adam) The Young and the Restless, Christian LeBlanc (Michael) The Young and the Restless, and Kristoff St. John (Neil) The Young and the Restless.

Of the nominees: Geary has won 8 times.  If he wins this year in his final turn as Luke Spencer, he will take home his record 9th Emmy tying him all-time in Emmy acting categories with Cloris Leachman. For LeBlanc, he has won three times previously, and as for St. John he has won twice before, but never in Lead Actor. A win would make him the second performer in Daytime Emmy history to have won in all three acting categories: Younger, Supporting, and Lead.  That distinction is currently held by Heather Tom (Katie) of The Bold and the Beautiful. As for Tyler Christopher and Justin Harley, a win by either of them would be their first.

So who should take it? Christopher’s Nikolas, who is overcome with grief and concern when his son is badly burned in a fire at Wyndemere?  Geary’s dual roles as Luke and his father Tim Spencer in the 52nd anniversary episode of GH, where Luke remembers he accidently killed his mother and murdered his father?  LeBlanc’s Michael, who is dealing with his diagnosis of prostate cancer, and who hires a hooker to have sex with, but bares his soul instead? Hartley’s Adam, who finally had to let the cat out of the bag to his wife Chelsea, that even though he has had complete resconstructive surgery and has been posing as another man, he is her believed-to-be-dead who came back for her?  Or, St. John’s Neil who lets it rip on his family high above the skies for Hevon’s affair behind his back, which eventually turns him back to the bottle?

READ MORE
Billy Miller Pens "Goodbye" Letter On His Exit From General Hospital

Watch the nominated performances after the jump and then let us know your choice for this year’s Outstanding Lead Actor in the comment section below!

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Soaphound
Soaphound

This may be a close race to many, but for me it’s an easy call. First, I didn’t find anything extraordinary about Christian LeBlanc or Kristoff St. John’s work this year. LeBlanc is consistently excellent but that cancer story just didn’t hit me right. Mr. St. John is always competent, but, to me, he holds back and I find a certain coldness in his work. Maybe distance is a better word. And the same goes for Tyler Christopher, though I do think this reel represents some of his best work to date. That leaves Geary, who was truly great (again) and the brilliant work of Justin Hartley. So I’d vote for Justin, as he’s done what is so rare, especially on Y&R — he’s outdone his predecessor. I never thought I’d forget the equally sublime work of Michael Muhney but I nearly have. No small feat.

Patrick
Patrick

#1. I am THRILLED… absolutely LOL giddy… that the majority of posts…

Justin Hartley , here ye… for… THE WIN !

an accolade so deserved

“however”

out of sight out of mind… does not… lessen the equally sublime.. Michael Muhney

just had to throw that in

TRULY

I am torn… OUT THE DOOR… and from the get go… Justin Hartley tho not solely instrumental in giving Y&R all its worth… you’d never know… he STIRS

Tyler Christopher: in all of year 2015 … gave a whopping of a performance.. after performance.. and REELED like no get out… the best in Port Charles… the Man

there you have it… two man race… i’ll relent and cherish either or.

Anthony Geary… it’s best to leave well enough alone… you retired… and yes you worked … is your mind that much more stimulated with a 9th emmy ? is it that much a pivotal threshold to laud? this is in Soap Opera Land… where you will forever have an ( * ) asterisk in question

Christian LeBlanc and Kristoff St. John… two leading men… who are not revered or respected enough… by the behind the scenes… OK

they are worth much more meaty material… just strong delivery is all that’s needed… the younger generation are not ready… blech… the overdose on Victor

over the top… and no see through… see @Mateo… with regard to Michael Baldwin… in how the story was not fleshed out and fruition on the finale.

GIVE Michael and Kevin BACK THEIR MOTHER.. Gloria

Patrick
Patrick

ie: Michael with the cancer “scare”
ie: Neil with the temporary “blindness”

alive and well.. and ??? backburner… or not given their right… Lead scripts worth their REEL

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Difficult?…nope-Tony Geary of course but ive seen all and they all are outstanding here-however, i still have to go with Geary!!!

Mary SF
Mary SF

OMG they were all superb, all unique and outstanding in their own way. Again, I said this before I will say it again, we the viewers are the winners because we get to watch these moments every day on our soaps. I would love Christian to win, I thought that scene with the hooker was one of best I have seen on television ever. Tyler’s was great too, and I think it would be wonderful if he won, but I’m think TG will be hard to beat– it is his to lose– so maybe the Academy members will think 8 is enough and give it to someone else– it is the only way I think Tony will lose it.

Tony
Tony

Justin Hartley was consistently outstanding no matter how great or bad the material. he’s a natural like Dustin Hoffman or George Clooney. Bigger than a soap star. Geary was Geary; he overacted most of the year and if the writing hadn’t been so strong he may have come across as cloying. LeBlanc and St. John has bad material much of the year and couldn’t make it work. St. John was particularly painful to watch during the blindness story. Tyler is super solid but not out of this world like Justin. I say Justin!

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

NOT ANTHONY GEARY! He was so disrespectful of EVERYONE (writers, fans, Genie Francis) and so very unprofessional. And he singlehandedly destroyed the legacy and history of the most romantic love story of all time–Laura and Luke–as well as doing violence (pun intended) to the history of the Spencer family.

Paula Page
Paula Page

I completely agree. He was a complete a$$ to Genie Francis. Geary would not have risen to fame without her – and he hates that. I believe the writers, directors, & other actors, particularly young Luke, young Patricia, & Laura Wright, deserve the praise for those scenes. Not Geary. Playing an a$$ is second nature to him……I am afraid, though, that he will win. Tyler Christopher, however, worked extremely hard & deserves praise.

Judy
Judy

I personally think people are not understanding the history of Luke. I have watched the show since the beginning. Yes I am that old. To me the story has come full circle for Luke. The reason why he was the way he was and why even though he loved his family he could stick around for long periods of time feeling within that he was so much like his father and not wanting to bring it on to his family. I love Anthony I was not liking the way he acted but I fully understood the reason for the story line and the way they explained his and Bobbies up bringing to complete Lukes era before leaving the show. He has 8 awards because he is that good. He has the 8 because of his characters role which he played wonderfully. And I think he deserves the 9th for closing the chapter of Luke Spencer. Like him or hate him for the way he acted, he did the role so well for everyone to not like how he turned out, but that was the role he played and I think he deserves the award.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

I couldn’t disagree with you more, Judy. I, too, as I’ve posted many times, and in this thread, have also watched the character of Luke from the beginning–and he was NOT the same character in the end. (Yes, I, too, am that “old”). The way he explained the upbringing of him and his sister “Barbara Jean” is NOT the way he explained it later–most notably as portrayed in the highly-touted (not in MY book) 52nd anniversary show. Luke and Bobbie, in the beginning, were STRONG characters who survived, and overcame, a horrible childhood with an alcoholic father, NOT THE VICTIMS they were portrayed to be in the crazy 52nd anniv. episode. Luke was most of all sensitive and in love (“saved” by Laura’s love, if you will–it made him a better person). He was NOR a killer–and he DID NOT KILL his mother. Thus, unlike you, I do NOT understand the reason for the storyline–and, I fear, TG strongarmed and “bent” the writers and TPTB to write it “HIS WAY.” A wonderful character should NOT have been violated and sacrificed on the alter of an actor’s ego–nor should faithful viewers (like me) who loyally watched the character’s work and the great story Genie Francis and he (originally) created. I call it a slap in the face. Therefore, Geary does NOT deserve the award. Give it to an actor who is appreciative and who has “stayed hungry.” I do not “love him nor hate him”: I simply loathe his violation of a beloved character and his thumbing his nose at loyal fans. Take that, Mr. Geary–and smoke it! LOL!
PS To say Luke was “like his father” is the most limiting thing–repugnant to my ears and to me–who LOVED the character and TG’s sensitive portrayal those many exciting years that he was fully engaged in the passionate, exciting love story of Laura and Luke. Romeo and Juliet is a “timeless” story–and a great one; Laura and Luke was a timeless story and could/should have remained one. Sadly, one actor was allowed to change all that. Truly a crying shame.

Harry
Harry

I have to agree with Nancy and applaud her post.
Moreover, I have to go one step further and express what I imagine is an unpopular opinion. I thought Tony was engaging in major scene chewing. His acting was over-the-top, loud and so embarrassing that Talk Soup made fun of him not once, but twice.
The best actors show how their character is feeling and they do so with a whisper of nuance they don’t scream it from the rafters the way Tony Geary did during his exit story.
This opinion comes from someone who has greatly admired his body of work for well over thirty years.

su0000
su0000

Love him or hate him;
Anthony Geary (Luke) General Hospital
Is the winner, no doubt, and he deserves it !

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

No way, su00-Tony USED to work hard and really put his heart into the role of Luke–he was funny, quirky, inventive, energetic/frenetic–then he just got jaded and sloppy. I believe that each performance is a NEW one–one does not get a pass simply on his name or past honors. Let another “hungry” actor win this time.
(TG was eager and hungry when Gloria Monty brought him on–he had been kicking around a while playing bit parts on Quinn Martin productions and had played a rapist–curiously enough–on Y and R for about 6 mo. or so,). Curiously enough–again–I have never, ever heard him complain about that role or about the “fans” yelling, “Rape me!” when he played that role. Then again, he did NOT have a huge fan base pre-GH.) And I loved the character the played on the short-lived soap “Bright Promise,” where he also worked with Gloria Monty and other players that came on GH. I would respect TG more if he had follow the dictum my parents taught me: “Always be grateful for what you have–and, always, always, treat everyone the way you wish to be treated–with kindness and sensitivity.
My sister and I, as I have posted before, followed TG’s career BEFORE he ever appeared on GH as Luke–we saw that spark, that “hunger” in his performances. Too bad he “stayed too long at the fair,” lost that hunger and his objectivity, and became a disgruntled actor who ridiculed fans whenever he could–the very ones, ironically, who supported him for all those many years. Inflated ego has destroyed many a person–and it got to TG, obviously. More’s the pity! He could have gone out with greatness; as it stands, HE has become an object of ridicule–brought on by himself and his deplorable actions.

Harry
Harry

Now Nancy, be fair. Geary has reason to be bitter–he is paid well over six figures and the man was forced to take over three month long paid vacations every year. Poor baby! No other actor in daytime history has been paid that much for working basically part time.
He has reason to be bitter–he’s been spoiled rotten.

Patrick
Patrick

argh! I was hoping to add venom

LOL… he took a “cut” in pay for well written scripts to pedestal far away from… it’s Laura Webber husband

Nikki
Nikki

I have to say I have watched them again & again and although my two favorites are Justin Hartley & Anthony Geary. What I think should happen and what I feel will happen are two totally different things. 1st. I believe the best acting out of all of them is Justin Hartley followed closely by Anthony Geary but I think because he retired from the show and it’s his last trip up on stage for G.H. Anthony Geary is going to get it which in my opinion is very wrong because I would like to see people watch the reel with Justin and watch his eyes when he realizes that he has to tell the truth or face losing Chelsea. OMD If that isn’t acting at it’s best I dont know what is anymore.

Paula Page
Paula Page

Geary probably won’t even attend.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

A great thing, for all the others attending, I’ll bet–LOL! But, despite his protestations, I believe that TG hungers for that spotlight–he pursued it with such tenacity in the very beginning.

Harry
Harry

Yep–and Nancy, rumor has it Geary has been seen on the set filming for the Nurse’s Ball

Rose
Rose

I’m going with Justin Hartley, not just for his admitting to Chelsea (who was also very good) that he was really Adam. But for me he came from roles like Oliver Queen ( Green Arrow) Smallville, to Revenge, to have to take over an important role on Y&R that also had a lot of baggage associated with it. And he did convincingly, and without skipping a beat.

Next Tyler. He’s come a long way as Nicholas. And when he’s finally given a storyline line where he gets to show how he’s grown, he should get a lot of credit for it. They don’t come around that often, and currently we are seeing a Nik of a different stripes.

Have to mention Tony. Not saying he wasn’t very good in his final GH scenes, but in many ways he’s been playing variations of the same role for years. And gotten Emmy’s for it. Plus in the tape submitted he had a great supporting cast and concept. Without them, it wouldn’t have been nearly as effective.

I have really grown to like Christian since I’m a relatively new viewer to Y&R. And Kristoff a bit, and he had a tough role, but it got tedious after a while. But in both cases I didn’t really like their stories, and I guess it affects how I feel about their winning an Emmy this year.

Ashland Cripton (a.k.a. Connor)
Ashland Cripton (a.k.a. Connor)

Agreed. Laura Wright, who portrayed Luke’s mother Lena, did such an amazing job in that one scene that I can clearly remember… And will always be near and dear to me, myself, and my heart. Great and wonderful and fantastic supportive / supporting acting, does help to breed other actors in scene do good. Everybody carries each other, in their own ways.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

She got robbed!

Paula Page
Paula Page

I agree. The writers, director , and “supporting” actors (Laura Wright, young Luke, & young Patricia) were the real stars. Honestly I didn’t recognize Laura Wright at first, she was that effective transforming herself.
Geary strong armed TPTB to write a story for him and they responded with a great April 1st 2015 story – though I have to say I didn’t appreciate the rewriting of history. When Luke came on the scene in the late 70’s he was an introspective young man trying to better himself @ Port Charles University. Sure, he had an alcoholic father. But he also had a fantastic Aunt Ruby who looked after him and Bobbie & provided the emotional stability they needed. Neither Luke nor Bobbie suffered fools lightly or easily fit into the rich, waspy Port Charles community. But they weren’t shattered, confused siblings. Luke ran the campus disco & was smitten with the recently married Laura Baldwin…..And the rest is history.
In the early years TG gave sensitive performances that were often laced with ad-libbed funny lines and energetic dancing. Later I found his performances uneven, self-indulgent, & arrogant. His scenes with Genie Francis the last few years were down-right rude – sometime barely looking at her. He was over-wrought & inconsistent in 2015. He does not deserve the emmy.
Though I love Tyler Christopher’s performance, I have to say I was very impressed with Justin when I watched his clip this afternoon. He gave a very intelligent, engaging performance. I never watch Y&R, but his performance intrigues me enough to want to start watching.

Mateo
Mateo

For sentimental value I am going with Tyler Christopher as Nik Cassadine on GH. Those scenes were top notch. He hasn’t been that vulnerable or real in a long time. He sometimes doesn’t hit the mark but in these scenes he consistently hit all the marks he needed to. He deserves the win. Anthony Geary was very good, if not excellent, in the scenes submitted but I have to say after his attacks on Ron Carlivati as writer I have a lot less respect for his work. Ron made Anthony Geary’s exit from the show a priority and we had to deal with this story for a long time, even putting off the Jason Morgan reveal so he could get a proper send off. Anthony Geary has won plenty and I think he should enjoy his “retirement” and not be rewarded for being so harsh on the show that brought him his good life. Christian LeBlanc is a stellar actor but the cancer story was a rip off. The writers made us feel like we were going to lose Michael Baldwin and then all of sudden he was just miraculously cured. No discussion of his healing. No doctor visits for follow up. Nothing. Just a healed person. Kristoff St. John is another good actor but the Hilary storyline was just not a good one. I don’t like “make em blind” for the sheer heck of it type of story. He is great but he deserves more. If Tyler Christopher goes without then Justin Hartley does deserve kudos for taking on a hard role and filling big shoes. He has won me over daily with his solid and realistic performances on a daily basis. He makes even silly story development with finesse. So first and foremost Tyler Christopher and then Justin Hartley. Congrats to all the others for their noms but let’s give the boys who deserve it their prize.

Nanci
Nanci

Definitely Justin.

Dan
Dan

With all due respect to some of the comments here, these aren’t Emmys for being a good person, they’re Emmys for great acting, so what kind of person Tony Geary is, or the way people feel about how he left the show should have no bearing whatsoever on whether he deserves the award or not.

Regardless of any of that, and regardless of how many Emmys he’s won in the past, when I watch these submissions, everyone was very good, but I feel Geary was on a totally different level from everyone else. I thought it the day I watched the 52nd Anniversary last year, and I think it now seeing the scenes lined up against the other nominees. This is Tony Geary’s award to lose, in my humble opinion.

If GH was smart and submitted this episode in the Best Show category, I think they’ll be walking away with their 12th Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series, as well. It was that good.

Rose
Rose

Hi Dan…Just a thought….I think you’re right about the b/w 52nd as an outstanding Best Show, regardless how viewers felt about Fluke and Ron. But it was an ensemble of incredible young actors, Laura, Bobbie, and the b/w concept that pulled it off…not just Tony’s acting. He wasn’t just a stand alone like the other nominees. That’s why I want to seem them get their chance when they finally had something to work with.

Dan
Dan

I agree with you, it was a great job by everyone. The actor that played young Luke in particular did a phenomenal job, in my opinion. The Outstanding Drama Series nomination is a reflection of everyone’s effort that went into putting that show together, the actors, writers, production team, everyone. Tony’s nomination is a reflection of his individual effort, and one that I think he is very deserving of. Hopefully he gets his award that night, and everyone else that participated in that show gets theirs in the form of a win for Best Show. I think all are very deserving.

su0000
su0000

Hi Dan..
Anthony Geary/Luke Spencer General Hospital is the King.
None better than Tony..
He will take home his 9th emmy ..

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

No way! The only King I know of was the King of England–lol!

Dan
Dan

Right on Su!

jaybird369
jaybird369

Justin Hartley and Kristoff St. John.

Anthony
Anthony

Well it looks like Anthony Geary again – and deservedly so, BUT if he has any class at all he will most definitely thank Ron Carlivati for the story arc and for the writing. A wonderful piece of GH history for years to come.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

I wouldn’t hold my breath on that on, Anthony (ANTHONY????) Not Anthony Geary???? LOL!

Paula Page
Paula Page

If he does, he’ll thank Ron begrudgingly.

Ces
Ces

I vote for Jason Thompson! OH wait, he was robbed again — okay, I think Tyler Christopher’s reel was good and it would be kind of cool to see him win vs. Tony Geary. While I do love TG’s work and he is deserving of another Emmy, honestly, this story wasn’t exactly my favorite that he has played so … I wouldn’t give him the statue for this one.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

Yes, both Jason Thompson and Kimberly M.
Jason Thompson was robbed also. HE, unlike Tony Geary, is “still hungry” and gave his all–WITHOUT any grandstanding.

Jay Trotter
Jay Trotter

Love him or hate him but Tony has the best reel out of the five with Tyler coming a close second.

nancy dillingham
nancy dillingham

For Harry re Tony Geary: Do you think he’ll sing “My Way” again at the Nurses’ Ball? LOL!! And I love that comment: “He has reason to be bitter–he’s been spoiled rotten.”
🙂

Michele
Michele

Range, versatility, depth, consistency – Anthony Geary
My sentimental favorite who has grown exponentially into a riveting actor – Tyler Christopher

General Hospital

GH’s Roger Howarth Chats On Shifting From Franco To Drew & The Stunning Story Twist

In one of the most intriguing plots of 2019, General Hospital’s Franco Baldwin was morphed into Navy SEAL Andrew Cain following a harrowing mind-mapping procedure. In all went down thanks to Shiloh (Coby Ryan McLaughlin) and Dr, Cabot (Time Winters), taking the life and memories of Drew (Billy Miller) from his flash drive and transferring them into Franco’s brain, wiping out his past and his present.  That followed the tearjerker moment, when Franco sacrificed himself to free his kidnapped stepson, Cameron (William Lipton) from the twisted procedure; that could have left the teenager with Drew’s memories or even in a vegetative state.

The recipient of this storyline – and who would be taking on another persona in his storied daytime drama career – is none other than Roger Howarth.  The Daytime Emmy- winning actor is no stranger to changing fictional identities on GH.  Howarth, played OLTL’s Todd Manning over in Port Charles, later switching to Franco (previously played by James Franco) following the legal dispute between ABC and Prospect Park.

Last week, viewers got their first glimpse of Howarth taking on the traits of Drew circa 2012, and in short order, it has caused emotional upheaval for Franco’s wife, Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst), Drew himself, Jason (Steve Burton), and Kim (Tamara Braun)… and that’s just for starters.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Roger as he started his journey transforming his work from playing Franco to Drew and the challenges it presents, plus the ripple effect the change will have on the canvas for many of the characters.  In addition for One Life to Live fans, Roger chats about his appreciation for his time on that iconic series in a candid, self-effacing, and special conversation.  Here’s what Howarth shared:

Courtesy/ABC

When you were told that they were going to put Drew’s memories into Franco, what was your initial reaction to learning that news?  Did you think it was a great twist?

ROGER:  Yeah, I think it’s a great idea.  I really do.  Good story needs a lot of things, and this checks a lot of the boxes.  It brings people together; it provides obstacles.  There are a lot of places this could lead to.  I just think it’s really smart and interesting.  I look forward to it a lot, and I can already tell by what I have shot thus far that it’s going to be fun.

If this story is written well, what has happened to Franco will be life-altering and crucial to so many people’s lives in Port Charles.

ROGER:  What I like about it, and this isn’t lip service, is that it’s a great story because it affects a lot of people.  Those are the good stories.  Elizabeth has got to deal with this, the boys have to deal with this, Scotty’s (Kin Shriner) got to deal with it, Jason is confused by this information, and now this person in interacting with Drew, and Kim, and Shiloh.  All of the sudden, the canvas is interacting completely differently.  So, I think the writers are having fun with this as well.

Photo: ABC

Then, there is also the character of Kim played by Tamara Braun, who Drew shares a past with.  It will be interesting to see how that relationship plays out, we already witnessed Franco’s Drew instantly smitten and attracted to her.

ROGER:  Yes, the person in this body is running under a certain set of assumptions that no one else shares.  So, yes, it’s confusing to everybody, I am sure, including Kim.

Do you see Franco eventually flipping back and forth, and having personality traits of both he and Drew?

ROGER:  No.  One hundred percent, no, and that provides a real obstacle with a couple like Franco and Elizabeth.  They are always looking for obstacles to prove to the audience that these two people really do care about one another, and that’s the purpose of a story like this.  I’m guessing and hoping that it will provide the character of Elizabeth with a particular objective because it would be nice to see Becky be able to play all of those beats.

Right, and to have to fight for something…

ROGER:  Yes, it’s very tragic.  This is a character that is accustomed to tragedy, and to see Becky play the role of Elizabeth dusting herself off, trying to get what she wants is going to be really cool.

Courtesy/ABC

The tragic twist had Franco saving Cameron from winding up with Drew’s memories and being the vessel for Shiloh to use.  What did you think about how Franco sacrificed himself in order to protect Elizabeth’s son?  It was quite heroic.

ROGER:  I think the other beautiful part of this is that this was motivated by love.  I don’t see it as heroic.  I think as an actor, you’re always looking for the heart of the story, and the writers made it really simple.  He does this because he loves this kid.  Yeah, they’ve had their ups and downs, and they are struggling to figure out how they can get along, and they have a lot of things that they feel about one another, but push actually did come to shove, and I think that the character of Cameron is going to be deeply affected by that.

Courtesy/ABC

This now puts Franco deep within Shiloh’s storyline and past with Drew, because Shiloh desperately wants a key piece of information locked in Drew’s memories.  So, in theory, this kind of ranks among one of the better stories you’ve probably ever gotten to tell in your daytime career.  Everyone is hoping that it lives up to its expectations in the execution of it on-air.

ROGER:  It is certainly a high concept story.  It’s asking a lot of the audience.  So far, we’re all in.  It’s a good cast.  I work with really good actors, so I’m not worried.  It is asking the audience to suspend disbelief for sure.  The good stories do.  I think Erika Slezak (Viki) on One Life to Live, getting to play Dissociative Identity Disorder as Niki and Viki that was a large ask.  She never blinked.  She did everything that was asked.  I’m trying to follow her example.

Exactly, and she played more characters.  She had more alters after that.

ROGER:  (Laughs)  Yeah!  She’s better at this than I am.  I’m having trouble with the one. (Laughs)

Photo: ABC

What do you think about how Scott and Franco’s relationship will be affected, now that he is in essence “Drew”?

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ROGER:  There’s no part of that relationship that hasn’t changed because there is no Franco.  Franco is not around … Franco has left the building.

He is a completely new person for all intent and purposes.

ROGER:  For sure.  This soldier doesn’t appreciate being called by somebody else’s name.  He is not compassionate to the people who mistake him for this somewhat tortured art therapist that he no longer is.

Photo: ABC

What is also interesting is that this should put you right into conflict and scenes with Steve Burton, because now you are essentially playing Jason’s twin.

ROGER:  Yes.  For me, as an actor, to get a chance to work with Steve, and to play a like-minded person, is intimidating frankly, but it’s exciting.

Also, the audience knows how Franco and Jason are such enemies, and now, he is really in his mind his twin.  

ROGER:  Yeah, Franco sees in many shades of gray and other colors, and from what I can tell, Franco as Drew sees the world much simpler.  He thinks more clearly, he finishes his sentences, he thinks before he speaks, he knows what he is going to say.  His point of view does not waiver.  He is determined.

Courtesy/ABC

That’s got to be so exciting for you to get to play after all of Franco’s psychological baggage and issues.

ROGER:  I’ve got to say, it’s been a bit of a challenge for me to play someone with a different set of speech patterns and who stands differently.  Because Drew thinks and feels differently about everything; his body is the same, but his body is behaving differently, and it speaks differently, and he thinks at a different tempo.  They’ve been very patient on set giving me chances to do it badly, so far. (Laughs)  It’s not uncommon for me to get halfway through a scene and to have to start over.   I am essentially figuring it out as we go along.   I am very appreciative of the fact that they have been giving me a few extra takes to try and figure out how this guy stands.  He relates to people with a different set of space and time.  It’s cool.  It’s a cool set of puzzles.  It’s been really fun.  I’m a lucky guy.

When I first learned of the story twist, I was like, “Oh! Roger will be great in this.”  

ROGER:  I don’t know, man.  I could be stinking it up pretty badly. (Laughs)  I think there’s a trap as an actor who has been asked to play twins, and the trap is that this guy is only acting the way that he acts.  The trap is frankly to act too much because the audience is being told that he is a different person.  If I go too far to try to demonstrate that he is a different person, then it slips into parody or overacting.  Over the years, I have definitely been guilty of overacting, so, I’m a little frightened of it. (Laughs)  I don’t like the way it feels.  I know how it feels to go too far.  I have been getting notes like, “You could pull it back a little bit.”  (Laughs)  It’s pretty funny.

Courtesy/ABC

In the past, I have heard you say you’d rather go to work and feel unsettled about what you are asked to play.  Does that still hold true?

ROGER:  For sure!  I’d rather go to work and leave my job knowing that it was terrible and that I get to come back the next day and make it a little better.  The best thing about daytime is how much it will stretch you and pull you and ask as much of it as you are willing to put in.

Now speaking of Franco, what did you think about the wedding reception on the yacht with Elizabeth?  Did you think that was a nice payoff for Friz fans? 

ROGER:  Yes, for sure.  I thought it was a really sweet culmination to a sweet story about these two people finding one another.  I’m glad they incorporated a large part of the cast.  It was a really good idea.

Photo: ABC

What did you think of how all of Elizabeth’s boys (Cameron, Aiden and Jake) performed a song for Franco and their mom at the reception, and how Franco relates to all of them?

ROGER:  I think it was a really important story point, and it was nice, and it was easy to play.  They’re really good kids, and they’re also terrific people.

Franco really stepped up as a stepdad to Aiden, who had been bullied at school.  I loved the cooking scene, where Franco was baking with Aiden.  What do you think about their relationship?  I love that Franco is being very understanding.

ROGER:  I think he’s trying to be understanding.  I don’t think he’s really great at it.   I think he’s a human being just trying to figure out how to make the best use of his time here, just like the rest of us.

Photo” ABC

General Hospital needed a big jolt with an umbrella story like this that turns the canvas a bit upside down.  How does it feel to be at the epicenter of it?

ROGER:   I really don’t think I’m the center of the story.  I’m not even kidding.  The story is that this piece of information is worn on the shoulders of Franco, but the people who are most effected by that piece of information are Kim and Elizabeth.

It will be interesting to see what the reaction is like from the GH audience.  You’re not on social media.  Will you check out what they are saying … or the feedback?

ROGER:  I’m not on social media.  But, I believe there is a guy whose job it is to track that initial criticism/support.  I think it is kind of cool that we will get real-time reviews, you know what I mean?  I actually thought about that because with the character of Franco, it took us a while to figure out who the guy was.  There was a lot of blonde hair and some missed cues, and we weren’t sure which relationship would be featured, whether it would be Franco and Ava (Maura West), or whether he would wind up in Carly’s (Laura Wright) arena again.  It took a while to figure out the best way to put that guy in the canvas, and I imagine that it will happen again.  I didn’t dye my hair for this, but I did cut it. (Laughs)

Photo: ABC

How was working with Billy Miller in this storyline twist?  Were you there on his last day on set?

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ROGER:  Yes, I worked with Billy not on his last day, but on his last show.  He was remarkable with dignity and with class, and I wish him all the best.  He did a great job.  He is a good actor.  I’m sure he will find somewhere to go be an actor.

Throughout your soap career, has there been a story that you initially pooh-poohed, but when you did it, you thought, “Oh, this is great!”

ROGER:   There was a story when Carly and Franco were together, and they wrote a story where Franco gave Carly a gift that wound up being a camera…

Photo: ABC

The evil-eye necklace!

ROGER:  Yes, this small seeing rye.  I just thought, every time Franco would come in and say something like, “Oh, you’re wearing the necklace.  It’s so beautiful,” while we were doing it, I was like, “Wow.  The audience is really going to hate this.” (Laughs)  However, my real-time Twitter is the subway, and while it was airing, I got on the train and sat next to this really amazing fan, who just told me how much she loved that story, and I was honestly surprised and pleased.  I am often wrong, and it doesn’t surprise me now when I am wrong  … because I was really wrong then.

You mentioned Franco with Ava which was a potential pairing. I think you and Maura West have always had great chemistry together on screen.

ROGER:  Yes, she’s a pretty great actor.  She’s great with everybody.

She is.  You knew Maura’s work first when she was at As the World Turns, while you were there, also?

ROGER:  I didn’t know her well at As the World Turns, but I knew who she was.  She’s a hard worker, and Jack (Michael Park) and Carly always had a lot to do.  She was pretty focused when she was there, but I spoke to her.  I didn’t feel like I got to know her until I got to work with her on GH.

Photo: JPI

Last month on July 15th would have been the 51st anniversary of One Life to Live. I saw a lot of people commenting and remembering the show on social media that day. I put together four photos on a post I made about that show featuring some of the remarkable actors who were a part of it.  From there, I received hundreds of comments of how people were just missing the series, the characters, and actors they loved in it, including you.  When you look at the list of people from yourself to Judith Light, to Robin Strasser, Bob Woods, and of course Erika Slezak – it’s such an unbelievably talented group who spent time in Llanview.  Do you ever think about what an incredible experience that was, and how the fans still miss that show so much?

ROGER:  All the time.  I mean, I’m a lucky guy.  I think it really was a special building to work in, and the people who we are talking about: Erika (Viki), Bob (Bo), Robin (Dorian), and Phil Carey (Asa), and Clint Richie (Clint), and John Loprieno (Cord), the people who made it possible for me to work there set an environment and a tone that made it a really special place.  It was a really good cast, like you said, and there was a lot of opportunity for them to write a really cool story.  I wasn’t a part of the AIDS quilt storyline, but to realize that they told a story like that and incorporated that into our show was wonderful.

Photo: JPI

Such an amazing story and One Life was telling socially relevant and important issues of our time, always.

ROGER:  I can’t say for certain, but I do believe that the original concept of the Todd, Marty (Susan Haskell), and Powell (Sean Moynihan) storyline was kind of supposed to be initially an effort to bring awareness to a horrible, violent crime.  That was a long time before the #MeToo movement.  I think it was a show where the writers had a social conscious as well and really brought awareness to a lot of different things.  That’s a great legacy and something that show should be very proud of.

Once the character of  Todd Manning took off on One Life, and how they found ways to redeem him, and how it spoke to how much the network, the show, and the audience responded to your performances, did you ever feel you had a bit of a safety net as an actor, or were you like, “I’m going to be fired tomorrow?”

ROGER:  This is truth: I am so grateful to have a job, and I don’t take anything for granted.  I don’t think anybody is safe in this business.  I just don’t.  I just don’t think anybody gets to say that they’ve arrived.  I just did a roundtable, and I shared this with people who have a lot more clout and opportunity than I do – that actors are by nature, the good ones, are aware that every day that you get to go to work is a privilege, and don’t waste it.

Photo: JPI

In soaps, for the most part, when someone is stepping into someone else’s role as a recast, or actor who played one role is changing to another, there seems to be this reactionary period of adjustment, and then, there is acceptance from the audience over time … unless you really stink it up  … as you say. (Laughs)

ROGER:  Here’s the thing, and this is why I think this is such a great idea, it’s not about me playing this part, it’s about how Elizabeth, who has been on this show for twenty-something years gets to react to it, and giving her the ball.  It’s flashy that Franco is Drew, but it is really and Elizabeth/Kim story.  I may be the one overacting and stinking it up, but it’s theirs. Do you know what I mean?  It’s not my story.

Photo/ABC

What do you want to say to the fans about this new “role” you are taking on at General Hospital?

ROGER:  I want to say that I really do appreciate the fans.  Here is the thing, they’re down for everything.  I hope they’re down for this.  It’s a big ask, but I really hope that they like it.

So, what do you think of Roger as Andrew Cain thus far and how the storyline is beginning to take shape?  Are you excited to see how Franco becoming Drew (through the mind-mapping procedure) shakes up the canvas? Do you hope Drew returns to be Franco sooner than later? Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Franco Looks In The Mirror … And Believing He Is Drew Kisses Kim

This week on General Hospital, viewers have seen that when Franco (Roger Howarth) awoke from his mind-mapping implantation  (thanks to Shiloh and Dr Cabot) he woke up saying that he is “Drew Cain”.  Thus, as far we know, Franco now carries the life and memories of Drew from 2012 and back, and as of now, has no trace of Franco’s memories.

When Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst) and Drew (Billy Miller) try to make Franco understand in his confusion what transpired,  Liz brings a mirror to Franco to see his face, which makes this all the more terrifying for him.  Liz insists to him that she is wife, but he tells her that he is sorry but he does not recognize her.  Franco insists he is going to leave town and Drew asks him to please stay put, as Liz promises that they can reverse what happened to him.  But can Liz really promise that?

Later, Scorpio (Tristan Rogers) fills Sam (Kelly Monaco) and Jason (Steve Burton) in on what happened and how Franco now was implanted with Drew’s memories, which leaves them stunned.  That means Franco, who is one of the people Jason loathes most in the world – now believes he is Jason’t twin brother.

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Meanwhile, as Kim (Tamara Braun) and Julian (William deVry) prepare to leave Port Charles for Manhattan and start live anew, (so Kim can not be haunted by her life in Port Charles from the recent death of her son, Oscar) things are about to make a shocking turn … for her.

Back at GH, Liz is upset when Franco decides he must get out of his hospital room.  Liz is scared he will just skip town knowing he feels he has no ties there.  Drew reassures her that because he is a version of him, the pull will be way too strong for him to exit Port Charles.

Courtesy/ABC

Kim is now at the hospital getting ready to turn in her resignation letter and runs into Franco.  He recognizes her and calls her “Kim!” You can tell he is quite smitten with her.  Kim is not sure why Franco is acting that way.  She announces she is leaving Port Charles to which he says he is going to come with her. She sees he has a hospital ID bracelet on, so she thinks something has happened.  Just then, Franco tells her about the first time Drew Cain and her met up! This shocks Kim  … and the next thing you know … he moves in for a major kiss and lip-lock as Drew and Liz look on.

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So, what do you think of the story turn thus far that has Franco now with Drew’s memories and with no trace of Franco? Share your thoughts on the twist via the comment section below!

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Breaking News

Constance Towers Returns To GH As Helena Cassadine … But Just How Does She Appear?

Now, any General Hospital fan knows that if there is skullduggery and evil going down, Helena Cassadine (whether dead or alive) is usually somehow involved when it comes to the lives of certain people in Port Charles.

And … some major storyline news from TV Line reveals that on next Monday’s August 19th episode of the ABC soap opera, Constance Towers reprises her role as the evil one herself … Helena!

Apparently, look for Helena to appear in a flashback with none other than Shiloh (Coby Ryan McLaughlin) and about Drew Cain’s time in Afghanistan.  That scene might hold a key to just what Shiloh wants now that he has implanted Drew’s memories into Franco (Roget Howath), thanks to Dr. Cabot’s work.  But could what is revealed also relate to the story that will see Billy Miller (Drew) exit the canvas later this month? Stay tuned.

Viewers last saw Helena alive in story until November of 2016, but then she was part of Jake’s hallucinations that were a part of the chimera storyline that climaxed at the Nurses’ Ball back in May of 2017.

So what do you think Helena’s presence in a flashback will reveal? And, who is ultimately having that flashback? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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Recent Comments

  • Not too crazy about the storyline but I’ll keep wa: “Not too crazy about the storyline I think it’s kind of silly. I liked Franco’s character and that he and…
  • Lynda: “Waiting anxiously for storyline unfolding. Have loved Roger's acting since becoming familiar with him on General Hospital.…
  • Tam Taylor: “JI completely agree. Roger is Franco and Drew is Billy Miller. I also truly wish that Billy Miller weren't leaving…
  • Eileen: “I hope the Drew and Franco bit is just temporary although it is fun for a change. I myself I'm…
  • Becky: “I hate it because I’m afraid there will be as many Drew’s as there are Sonny and Carly weddings. And…
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