Photo Credit: JPI Studios
This week on General Hospital, Roger Howarth was front and center in scenes where viewers and Franco got to the bottom of his horrific childhood past.
After Franco took Jim Harvey(Greg Evigan) out of the trunk of his car and into his art studio, it was showdown time for a story that had been building for months. Why did Franco push little Drew down the stairs? Harvey persists saying that Franco’s DNA makes him hurt people, but Franco says that is not it. He was protecting Drew from Jim. Then, Jim goes on to say that his mother, Betsy was weak and so she sent Drew away because of fear Franco would hurt him. But that is yet another web of lies spun by Harvey.
Franco flashes back to his past and the gifts that Harvey would bring him, and that he recalled he started bringing those for Drew, too. Franco finally says that Jim molested him time and time again, and he was going to start doing the same thing to Drew.
With a gun pointed at him and nowhere to turn, Franco is able to get Jim to write down all the names of the other children he abused over the years. Unfortunately, the statute of limitations has expired for Franco to have Harvey prosecuted for crimes agains him, but he promises now to kill Jim. As Jim begs for his life, saying the other victims deserve to hear him admit what he did, and then brings up Liz, it distracts Franco for a millisecond and Jim and Franco fight for the gun which slides across the floor. As Jim decides to silence Franco once and for all and chokes him, a shot is fired, and Harvey goes down. It is Drew (Billy Miller) to the rescue.
In a heart-tugging moment between Billy Miller and Roger Howarth, the two “brothers” hold on to each other as it has all became clear what happened in their past, and that Franco did do good, by protecting Drew from the horrors of a child molester. Later, after Franco is admitted to the hospital for observation overnight, he tells Liz (Rebecca Herbst) what happened, only the audience does not hear what he said.
When Franco meets with Kevin (Jon Lindstrom) at Kevin’s office in the hospital, he shares the details about Harvey, and admits that. “He came to my room night after night.” Kevin soon comes to the realization that Jim sexually molested Franco. Then. Franco says he knew it was wrong. Franco is in tears as Kevin says, “He’s to blame. Not you. Never you,” But now, Franco wonders if he’s a danger to Elizabeth’s young boys. Kevin does admit that it is true that some abusers go on to abuse, but most do not. Kevin makes a confession to Franco that he also had a traumatic childhood past with his mother.
Finally, Kevin asks Franco if he has ever looked at Elizabeth’s boys inappropriately. Franco says he has not. When talking about his past crimes, Kevin tells Franco that it was because of his brain tumor. Eventually, Liz and Franco go home together, as Franco now tries to move forward with his life.
Whether you like, or don’t like, how the story of Franco has played out in what appears to be part of redemption storyline, one thing was clear, Roger Howarth delivered a masterful performance as only he could throughout this week’s episodes of GH. That is why he is On-Air On-Soaps choice for the Power Performance of the Week! In addition, you have to give props to Greg Evigan who brought Jim Harvey to life in such a perfect way, and of course, to Billy Miller for his subtle and touching performance as Franco’s “brother” with whom, if it wasn’t for Franco, would have also been abused.
So, what did you think of Roger Howarth’s performance as Franco faces the truth that he was molested as a child by Harvey? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.