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GH's EP Frank Valentini Chats On: Status of OLTL Crossovers With Prospect Park, Nurses' Ball, and Laura's Return!

Photo Credit: ABC

Photo Credit: ABC

With so many things happening fast and furious over the first two weeks of the New Year in soapland, TV Guide’s William Keck caught up with General Hospital’s executive producer Frank Valentini to get some more inside scoop on some very “hot” topics for soap fans as GH preps for its 50th Anniversary this April!

From the Nurses’ Ball resurrection, what is planned for the return of Genie Francis, and most importantly what is the status of Michael Easton, Kristen Alderson and Roger Howarth with the series, who came aboard as crossovers from One Life to Live, a lot of ground is covered. With Prospect Park readying the One Life reboot online, the legality of continuing the characters of John McBain, Todd Manning, and Starr Manning could be in question.  Here now are some excerpts from the interview, and Valentini’s responses and updates on the various situations.

Photo Credit: ABC/Getty Images

Valentini on if fans should be worried that GH may lose John, Todd and Starr now that they have been integrated into the GH canvas:  “Right now we’re trying to work it out. I can’t really say because the lawyers are doing their thing. Our hope is that we’ll be able to continue what we’re be doing.”

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Valentini on what is the extent of Genie Francis’ upcoming return, what kind of story will it be, and if any of the Spencer boys will follow suit and make appearances too: It’s open-ended (with Genie) and will be something really exciting that will affect the whole Spencer family.  We will explore where she’s been, what she’s been doing, why she’s been away and she’ll come back with a big secret. We’re working on bringing back some of the Spencer boys as well.  Nashville is part of the ABC family so it’s just a scheduling situation for Jonathan, who is just a lovely guy. And maybe Ethan. And I’ve met with Tyler Christopher (Nikolas) who is a strong possibility. I can’t say definite because we have to make deals.”

Valentini on what viewers can expect when the Nurses Ball happens:  “There will be some big story reveals over a few days. We’re now doing the sketches for the set and costume designs, which are going to be really exciting.  We’ll have the characters sing and dance. We’ll of course have Kelly Monaco ( Sam) dance.  We might even bring (her DWTS partner) Val Chermkovskiy back. The time has also come to reveal Sabrina’s beauty.  Maybe around the Nurses Ball.”

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Find out what other returns Valentini is trying to lock in for the shows rocking 50th Anniversary and the Nurses’ Ball including Jack Wagner, Jackie Zeman and Rachel Ames, when you read the full interview.

So soapers, what do you think of the chances that GH will be able to keep McBain and Todd and Starr Manning on the canvas?   Laura’s return to Port Charles?  And the Nurses’ Ball?  Let us know!

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Sandy
Sandy

It’s a hard situation. We love Starr, John and Todd on GH. If they return to OLTL, it will be a huge loss for GH. Are they obligated to go back to OLTL?

Patricia
Patricia

from what i hear the characters are obligated to go back if PP wants them back but not the actors.

tim
tim

If I remember correctly,both Howarth and Alderson turned down PP’s original offer to join the on line OLTL. Easton was going to be a part of it,but when it fell through he joined GH.

aria
aria

The characters belong to OLTL, but the actors playing them are not abligated to play the roles on the reboot shows. This explaing why there weren’t more oltl characters brought on full time, i’m sure FV and RC would of added Natalie, Blair on full time too, but i’m sure this PP deal was still looming in the background. I hope the characters get to stick around, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Angela
Angela

I would think that when PP made the announcement last year that they weren’t bringing the show online and then abc/GH signed the 3 actors they covered their asses. I think that abc’s legal dept. thought of the possibilty of PP coming back so they provided for that in the contracts.

Patricia
Patricia

Even though i have been watching ALL abc soaps for years i Loved OLTL the most. I WAS GLAD when these characters went to GH but soon became dismayed because i do not like how they are being written. Todd is not acting like Todd, Starr and michael are a BORE and Mcbain and sam are moving soooo slow its painful and boring already. I DONT LIKE that Kassie DePaiva as Blair is only on once in a while and todds other son jack is missing in action. After the snooze fest of TARLY these past few weeks i am HOPING ALL three characters go home to llanview where they interact with family and loved ones. I miss todd and blair and i miss natalie and john i especially miss todds talks with his sister vicki. PLEASE PP make it happen get us back Todd, John and Starr FREE THE OLTL THREE!!!

aria
aria

You might get your wish, but i doubt if you’ll get the same actors playing the role.

vik
vik

I agree Patricia, when we lost One Life I was glad to see some of them come to GH, made me watch more. But Stars part the last few months till Tods reveal came out the other day, has been NOTHING but a support character for Michael. STUPID. McBain has been gone since they went to Switzerland. So Tod has been the only one with a main story..to me. I’d really like to see ALL my characters back on OLTL and let GH go back to fending for itself. Sorry, its gotten better [i used to nap through it] but still love OLTL much much more!

Tali Smith
Tali Smith

I’m only watching GH some times for John & Star. My favorite soap couple is John & Natalie. Wherever John & Natalie go, I will watch-however, if PP takes the characters and recast, it won’t be the same and if John and Natalie aren’t together, it won’t be the same. So right now it’s a lose, lose situation.The way GH has destroyed the characters hasn’t been good, so i’ve lost interest. I do think tho’ RC/FV know how to write for John McBain/Natalie Buchanan the best. It’s a wait and see game!

Tali Smith
Tali Smith

Also that needs to be mentioned is the fact that so many of the actors/actresses have moved from the East Coast to the West Coast. The new OLTL is going to be filmed in Connecticut. I believe that is why Blair is on part-time because she would not relocate.

Mia
Mia

I agree RC knew how to write John & Natalie. I can’t wait for them to reunite.

Bobby
Bobby

I would love to see Todd keep his business in Port Charles and let someone run it for him. Then have Vickie come get Todd and tell him that he never kill his brother Victor… Then he could go home and let him built his relationship with Jack. Natalie finds out that her father has been keeping John away. She comes to Port Charles to get him back.

Mia
Mia

McBain can go back! Starr & Todd I will MISS! I hope OLTL will be available in my country.

Gayle
Gayle

Love all the plans, but don’t want to lose Todd and John! Please give Laura a huge story line so she will stay, and give Liz one too! I’m tired of just seeing her chatting up the nurses!

TMJ
TMJ

There are realities to be considered. I’m guessing that the pay levels for an online series would be less than that for a broadcast series. As much as we might like to see Todd, Starr and John back on OLTL, is it fair to ask Roger, Kristen, and Michael to take severe pay cuts to make it happen?

su0000
su0000

..
I believe the 3 will be crossing-over, going back and forth between the 2 soaps..

but again; they have binding contracts with ABC/GH and may well remain with GH until their contracts end….

susan M.
susan M.

Good point…I don’t know what to expect with this PP deal..Will they be the same characters we soap lovers are grown to love and watched all these years. Will they
re-cast some characters with different actors? I really like seeing the three crossovers from OLTL on GH. Because I missed OLTL so much. I was happy when
they joined GH. I would hate to lose them but on the other hand to replace their
characters with different actors on the OLTL reboot Hmmmmm! I am not sure about
this whole situation..We will just have to wait and see what happens.

Christine
Christine

No, TMJ, its not fair to the actors. I have felt that all along that they have the right to be gainfully employed on TELEVISION.

Nothing against the online series, but it seems like small potatoes compared to a web series. As long as GH continues, and “continue” being the operative word, then the actors have more exposure and rightfully so.

su0000
su0000

I doubt the 3 will be going back to OLTL..
they are under contract with ABC to do GH ..
ABC/D still has their thumb in PP ..
OLTL and PP will have make do without the 3 at least until their contracts end with GH..

MK
MK

KA is entering year 2 of a 3 yr contract. RH has a long term (unspecified) contract. ME did have a contract with PP but it has expired. ME has been more recurring on GH then contract player (because ME was still under contract with PP) . John McB was not a core character of the original OLTL. He may go to finish the story with Nat. His character is better and likeable on GH. So I think he would stay long term.

Michael
Michael

I already think that Sabrina is gorgeous!

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

Me too Michael!

Caroline
Caroline

I don’t see why the PP version of OLTL couldn’t have Todd, Starr, and John played by other actors (or, even better, have those 3 stay in PC and work it into their storylines with, perhaps, visits to Llanview). It would be very unfair to the actors now on GH to force them to go online or be out of a job. OLTL was my favorite soap, by far, but I hope the two shows can amicably co-exist.

Jen
Jen

Hi Michael 🙂

This is a lot to take in. I am thrilled about the new home for AMC and OLTL! I will be there on day one! That being said, I like how the characters of Starr, Todd and John have fit into some existing story lines. They are the best of the best, and they have brought new life to GH. It is wonderful to have Todd’s brand of dysfunctional, Starr’s compassion and John’s not so perfect brooding cop! Dante needed a partner, and John is a great fit! I would hate to seem them have to leave GH.

On the other hand, I wish only the best for all of them. They have been jerked around as much, but probably more, than the fans. I wonder if it would be possible, if all the powers that be, could maybe play nice and let some crossovers continue only now between ABC and The Online Network? After all, we, the fans, are going to be watching both, so why not just try for a solution that doesn’t put anyone in the position of having to choose between the two.

Either way, I wish Roger, Kristen, and Michael all the very best! I will be tuning in wherever they are!

🙂

Debbie Hamilton
Debbie Hamilton

I also want to see Todd, Starr, John McBain back at OLTL But if it was me and there would be a paycut; I think I’d stay where the money was. But you need to look at it like this; how secure is the future of General Hospital??? Also how secure is the rejuvination of OLTL and AMC plus, they have a contract with GH. Alot of things to consider. I have truly mixed feelings,
on GH these actors are only a shadow of their former selves. Todd was more of action packed fella always in trouble one way or the other , John was so involved with his department and solving crimes and the love of his life and now finding he was a Daddy, how can he just leave little Liam and Natalie by the wayside??? Starr, poor Starr to have gone thr all that and her Mother only making few and far between visits; thats just too sad! Starr very much needed her Mother instead she’s left bearing all the terriable heartache of loosing her boyfriend and little girl.

Annie
Annie

Valentini needs to preserve the soaps, and have characters stay true to their character, with obvious growth and reaction to adversity. Cross over is fun and will help all soaps if it is not permanent. New actors can play these characters, and it will be an adjustment, but we viewers will quickly come to love them. It was a shame too many important players were left behind, as they could have helped Starr and McBain find storylines that are intriguing, particularly Blair and Jack, and Natalie would bring huge conflict to McBain. Right now, on GH, too many characters with the thrill wearing off of the major players from the 1980’s.

Lisa K
Lisa K

Ok, why cant the trio do cross over bits between the shows? They used to do it all the time.. Look at Sky Chandler… shes been on all three soaps as the same character. It would be great to lock the three together… keeping viewers glued to their seats for all three soaps…. continuing drama….all three with high ratings… Just my opinion…..

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

It wouldn’t be easy to do with GH, since they film on the West Coast, while the other two will be filming on the East Coast. But I think it’s a great idea!

TRW
TRW

Yeah, if only someone would invent a machine that could carry people across the counrty in a matter of mere hours…

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

It’s called scheduling TRW, logistics. Exactly why Steve Burton went to Y&R instead of sticking with GH – even though they have airplanes.

heidi
heidi

I am more excited about hearing about Genie coming back with a great story and the hope that Jonathan, Tyler, and Nathan might be coming back too! Oh… and Jack Wagner, Rachel Ames, and Jackie Zeman too…woo hoo! Whatever happens with Todd, John and Starr will hopefully be best for OLTL and GH.

bc
bc

As w/ majority of primetime and daytime soap operas: racial diversity is never a pressing issue for the showrunners when they are interviewed. No one can read their minds but racial diversity was not mentioned from this interview and thus it doesn’t appear to be a priority for soaps. ABC daytime soaps and primetime soaps are horrid when it comes to racial diversity. It’s great that a black actress like Kerry is the lead on Scandal but of course she has to be paired w/ a white actor. Same w/ Sandra Oh’s char on grey’s anatomy as she’s paired w/ a white actor. Yeah she was paired w/ Isaiah Washington before he was fired for the slur. BTW: typical of hollywood that they kill his career for his gay slur but kramer on seinfeld can say a slur against black people and he can still bounce back and have a career. It’s worse w/ sarah silverman bec her career wasn’t even hurt by her slur against chinese people. Typical hollywood bias. The new doctors on grey’s are majority white. Couldn’t they have cast Asian americans? Have they reached their “quota” w/ 1 Asian american char? Typical horrid casting from hollywood for racial diveristy. Practically every storyline must be told w/ white characters.

pink
pink

I could care less about Todd,John & Starr because they don’t add to GH,they takew away from it.GH should be focused on GH ONLY characters so i hope they go.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

That is a very small view.

Christina
Christina

I’m really excited with the show right now LOVE the Spencers hope they bring back all the boys. Also I really LOVE STARR & MICHAEL so I hope they stay at GH. GH ROCKS & I really love DANTE & LULU love story I hope its will always last with problems (since its a soap) BUT always love eachother.

mike
mike

Prospect Park is destined to fail. How can you structure a show based on the availability of certain actors instead of developing a story bible and casting out from that? I loved OLTL but I am afraid to see what it will become.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

Ummm…why do you think they are structuring these shows around who can return? I’ve heard no such thing.

MK
MK

ITA, Mike. The characters are important then the actors. You can’t have AMC with Erica, Tad, and Adam or OLTL with Viki, Dorian and Bo. First you get the story and characters and then you see if the actors are available and if not recast or created new similar characters to take the place of the characters not on the canvas. Or then can skip a generation and have show about Miranda and Erica. With Bianca making visits. We want to go back to the simple small town of Pine Valley.

Stephanie
Stephanie

I will be happy no matter where they end up. My only concern is that if they go back to PP with the online version then we will have to pay to see them on the internet. That ?? still has yet to be answered. If I have to pay for cable, and get GH, they would I want to pay an additional fee for internet to see the same characters when they are already on a soap I get with TV.

Starr is my favorite and I love her with Michael but I would also love to see the interaction she has with Blair!

I guess time will tell.

Lynn
Lynn

I want them to go back to OLTL I can’t stand them on GH I suffer through GH just to see them and this forced Sam stuff with John not fun to watch it has changes his character so much. I was so naive when they came to GH I was excited to keep something from OLTL but not at the expense of the Happy ending to OLTL and the changing of their characters. If there is soap gods out there please let them go home where they belong. OLTL won’t be the same without them

Mia
Mia

ITA Sam & McBain were too forced. I’m glad he is going back.

JustSaying
JustSaying

Jackie Zeman and Rachel Ames? Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat! They wait for an anniversary to bring them back?

Fair enough.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

As a fan of the entire genre…I will wait and see what happens with the OLTL actors/characters. I will watch them on either show and be happy about it.
Looking forward to the Nurse’s Ball!
Really loving General Hospital these days. 🙂

Christine
Christine

WOW! What a refreshing perspective you have, CTwildheart. Finally someone that is not complaining. What a novel concept. 🙂

I agree with you 100%.

Nancy
Nancy

I need McBain and do not want him going anywhere along with the other OLTL characters. I will be watching OLTL (fav), AMC online. GH has become the best show I have ever seen and I know it is because of Ron and Frank, my 2 favorite people. I love the stories and everything else about GH right now. Please save these people on GH.

Angie
Angie

GH needs to keep Michael Easton & Roger H I love their characters even more on GH than I did on OLTL. Just need to give Michael E more screen time which I’m sure is coming with McBam. Hope they bring Nathan P back as Ethan.

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

I miss Ethan too! He is on Bunheads, which is owned by ABCFamily (I think) so they should be able to work in at least one visit…

Jamie
Jamie

Everyday I feel like my life gets a little bit brighter with every story I read about GH! I am so loving it!!!!!

Christine
Christine

It’s hard to believe it has been a year already since Valentini took the reigns. I think that part about how they have turned the show around really needs to be emphasized.

I don’t agree with everything they are doing – killing Trey on one hand seems pointless and unfair to the poor guy, but on the other hand, it gives some story to Connie to show that she is human after all and giving Connie a reason to stick around if she can find a way to love Sonny. Speaking of Sonny, they are doing an awesome job of integrating him into the show and supporting the cast instead of being on every day and in everyone’s story.

A lot of the things the TV Guide interviewer said is right in line with what most fans think. I can see Maxie being pregnant with Spinelli’s child only to find out that Lulu’s test results got mixed up and she CAN carry a baby to term.

Unlike some, the new characters are fitting in and actually showing they can be long-term. I really like the turn they have taken with Ellie and Sabrina. Dr. Britt can exit stage left at any moment, as far as I am concerned, but I like the rest.

I only wish poor Elizabeth would get a real story and some real airtime. I feel bad that the character seems to only be part of the hospital background. I guess if they pair her with AJ then she will have a story so I am patiently waiting.

As for the OLTL characters possibly leaving. I don’t see it as a big deal. If the actors want to stay, and they have every right to, then they could just come up with new names and backstory for them one day. Stranger things have happened on TV. They would just have to be extremely careful to make sure that none of the backstory resembled Agnes Nixon’s characters or they could get sued.

How come he didn’t answer the question about Tristan Rogers’ status? 🙂 I am still hoping Tristan can go back to Y&R as well as work on GH, but there are legalities and he is a busy man with other projects.

I am glad I gave up reading the spoilers and inside stuff so that I can watch it unfold before my eyes each week. I am also very happy that I decided to start watching again after GH was on life support because the current regime has definitely made it worth my while.

My only hope is that ABC finally gets its act together and recognizes that there are still some of us who want our soap operas (and NOT reality soaps filmed at a real hospital) to continue on our TELEVISION screens. Please, ABC, renew GH … and do it soon to set our minds at ease.

Mercedes
Mercedes

I will admit I was originally thrilled by the idea of some OLTL characters coming to PC. But I have been left absolutely devastated, especially by the absolute destruction of everything that has defined the character of Todd Manning. He and Starr need to get back to Llanview ASAP so they can become recognizable again.

su0000
su0000

I love the newer Todd and John!!
They are GH now and I hope they stay that way 🙂

Tali Smith
Tali Smith

I identify with you!

S. Bowers
S. Bowers

I hope both GH & OLTL will be successful. My very favorite is OLTL but I watched GH longer since I was 4 and OLTL from 17 until it was taken away. I want hem both to be on for a very long time. GH is so much better with the new writers etc. much better than it used to be, almost like the good old days.

Lisa
Lisa

As for oltl, why cant they use the other Tod (Victor) who is also great. As for John McBain we need him on Gh now. Starr can go back and forth because her storyline is boring.

Asia
Asia

Even though I didn’t watch OLTL when it was on, hearing about the crossovers back in February is what got me watching GH again. It’s been a breath of fresh air to have characters on the show that are not only new but they already have their own background and history. I hope that Starr, Todd, and John can stay. The actors all have contracts with ABC/GH and RH and KA never signed with Prospect Park the first go around. I would hate to see any of these actors forced out of a job. And if none of them are interested in working for Prospect Park, they’ll end up recast. That doesn’t seem fair at all.

melanie
melanie

Many of the actors from OLTL had already siad they would not do the online show. So how many original characters does that leave us with? Not many… Some of the ones who are willing to go onlne are not the most interesting of the group. I have also been watching ABC soaps for about 30 years and over the years AMC/GH were lacking and OLTL stayed my favorite. Todd being one of my favorite people. Although I was disheartened to see him leave years ago…Vitor was a decent replacement. I also agree iwth other posters…the real Todd is not acting ike himself on GH. I question how well the show will go if they ave to recast a bunch of new people to play the parts of many characters online. If Natalie is not there…Jon really has no reason to return to Lanview.

christy
christy

as much as i’ve wanted OLTL to come back, I don’t want to lose Roger/Todd and Kristen/Star on GH. I’m able to watch GH and it’s been so good since last Jan/Feb and the OLTL people have been added in. I don’t want it to go back to the drool it was before – the sonny mobster show. There’s much more to the story now.

It’s going to cost me to watch the online soap and not sure if it will be a pay for watching show, on top of having to get hi speed internet! arg! I can get GH – even with rabbit ears! and it doesn’t cost me. There’s a lot to be said for free broadcast tv!

dani
dani

GH doesn’t need out characters. You have so many of your own. OL PP is going to need all the help it can get and John and Todd our are 2 main characters. You get to keep our EP ,writers and time slot we should really get our characters back. You can keep Star though…..

Kelly Ryan
Kelly Ryan

There really isn’t anything we can do except wait and see how it plays out &it hope for the best for the actors’ sakes and the sakes of the SOAPS.
WE ALL WANT WHAT IS BEST FOR OUR BELOVED ACTORS, CHARACTERS, & OUR SOAPS; THE ONE WE STILL HAVE (GH) & THE ONES WE ARE GETTING BACK (AMC &I OLTL).

kelly irons
kelly irons

You know there used to be a lot of crossing over of characters on OLTL and AMC, perhaps to build momentum they should think about combining the two for a better show. This way since I do not expect near the return of the old cast that people might wish for; we can maybe get that as a compromise. This is just a thought and I am sure it might even have been tossed around. It’s been almost two years now, I don’t think that the fans care as long as there is some sort of return for the faith we never lost. Anyone else think this idea could fly or is it a flop. I can take it. Am excited no matter how it goes, just hate to settle for one or two original cast members and already hear the rumbling from GH about Howarth, but then no shock there, the man can easily hold his own against anyone including the great Tony Geary. Would love feedback. What do you think?

Kelly
Kelly

To Frank Valentini who I’m sure will never see this comment;
Thank you so much for coming to GH & making such a huge positive difference. You haven’t stopped since your feet hit the floor. You’ve made some brilliant business decisions such as combining the established fanbases of OLTL characters with GH’s characters. You’ve boosted morale. Maurice Benard is happy! The show is more balanced & has your trademark humor that I truly appreciate (and need) You’ve brought favorites back, Anna, FAISON, Lucy, Laura, Scotty &I more. You’ve named dropped, you’ve blended storylines from OLTL &GH PORT CHARLES, you’re a creative genius, & GH hasn’t been this good in a very long time! ….Every single word is sincere. BELIEVE me. People will tell you. So I kind of feel a teeny bit nervous about asking you for just a little tiny favor 🙂 I know you have a really good sense of humor, thank goodness….I was just wondering if maybe you might give some serious thought to bringing back TAMARA BRAUN as CARLY? She had alot of redeeming qualities & had a softness that went with her tough & savvy side, & she was true to her fellow actors. I really don’t expect you to even read this, that’s the probably why I could even ask. But in any case, I don’t mean any disrespect. I just wrote it on an impulse ….I can only imagine the replies this comment might get. 🙂

Soap Critic
Soap Critic

Before coming to GH Frank Valentini worked for Prospect Park briefly until they put their online network on hold while they worked out the funding. They let him go to GH in an amicable agreement but he proceeded to badmouth the owners of PP even after PP had agreed to loan certain characters to GH for a short time. Valentini went ahead and changed story lines and killed off characters which was all in bad faith according to the agreement between PP and ABC. PP had the best interest of the actors in mind by negotiating a deal where they could work and get paid in the interim of getting the funding for the relaunch of OLTL and AMC. Some say, Valentini proceeded to tell lies about PP and manipulate actors into signing long term deals preventing them from going back to OLTL to play their original characters. This is a complete disservice to the OLTL fans to have watched for years. Good luck Valentini, can’t wait to see this one play out in court.

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Lucas Gives Wiley To Michael; While Willow Learns the Devastating Truth

Friday’s episode of General Hospital, brought the highly-emotional moments viewers had been waiting for all-week long; following the year and a half reveal that Nelle (Chloe Lanier) and Brad (Parry Shen) engineered a baby switch with Willow’s (Katelyn MacMullen) dead baby, Wiley being passed off as Michael (Chad Duell) and Nelle’s newborn, Jonah, and Jonah being raised by Brad and Lucas (Ryan Carnes) as Wiley.  Now with the truth out, it was time for two of the heaviest beats of the story to be played out.

When Willow comes to at the hospital with Chase (Josh Swickard) by her side, needless to say she is dazed and freaking out that Nelle took Wiley.  Chase tells her he has some things to tell her and it’s not going to be easy to hear. Willow braces herself and then Chase tells her the story of the baby switch and how her baby died a SIDS death while at Brad and Lucas’ and then how the babies were switched.

Photo: ABC

In a heartbreaking and powerful performance from Katelyn MacMullen (yes, she is our pick for “Power Performance of the Week”), Willow struggles to come to grips with the truth and starts to realize all of Brad’s machinations, as she thinks back to herself how could she do that to her son … to trust him with Brad, only to have the little infant die.  The devastation played by MacMullen, whose Willow, now must realize her baby never lived the full and happy young life she thought, was gut-wrenching.

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Meanwhile, in yet another top-notch performance, William deVry (Julian) showed the pain and the need to unburden himself as Julian talks to his sister. Ava (Maura West) and spills what happened.   He goes so far to admit to Ava that he knew what Brad had done. Ava cannot believe he did not go to Sonny (Maurice Benard) right away with this Intel, but Julian just could not do this to his son, Lucas and rip the baby from his arms.  Julian says he will face-off with Sonny and not leave town, if it comes to that.   Ava says they have to come up with a way to silence Brad … before Brad gives up Julian’s part in the whole baby cover-up.

Photo: JPI

And in yet another masterful performance, we have to give it up to Chloe Lanier.  Who can play Nelle and spin stories and the tears so well, that if you did not know this pathological liar you would think she is telling the truth. When in opposing holding cells at the PCPD, Nelle lays it on about Brad so that the guard can hear them. She blames Brad for being the instigator in the baby switch and taking advantage of her – a distraught new mother, confused and dazed on the route where the baby switch happened.  It works! Brad is moved to a different cell and thinks look very grim for him.  Nelle smiles through her crocodile tears!

Photo: JPI

Then, in what we all knew had to happen, and even so, was still as heartbreaking as ever; Lucas spends his final moments with Wiley as his father in the kitchen at the Corinthos’ along with Bobbie (Jackie Zeman) and Carly (Laura Wright).  Lucas starts to tell his mother and sister, all the things Wiley needs and likes, such as having a story read to him.  All of this brings the tears as they know Lucas has to give the child back to Michael; who has been robbed of a year and half as the baby’s rightful father.

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Michael tells Lucas they will work this out, so Lucas remains a constant in Wiley’s life. He also tells Sonny and Sasha (Sofia Matteson) he feels so badly for Lucas, but they tell him to be happy for this chance to have the son he grieved for.   In the end, a tear-filled Lucas hands Wiley to Michael as everyone watches on in sadness for one father … and joy for the other.  Ryan Carnes was poignant in the scenes; as was Chad Duell.

Courtesy/ABC

So, what did you think of the performances from Friday’s GH featuring Katelyn, Ryan, Chad, William, Chloe and Parry? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Michael Blasts Brad As The Truth About Wiley Comes Out

FINALLY! On Wednesday’s episode of General Hospital, Lucas (Ryan Carnes) memory is jogged just enough that he clearly remembers Brad’s (Parry Shen) shocking words before their car crash; where Brad confessed that Wiley was Nelle (Chloe Lanier) and Michael’s (Chad Duell) biological son.

At the Corinthos home, Lucas stands up and announces to Michael that Wiley is actually his believed to be dead son, Jonah. Carly’s (Laura Wright) mouth drops and then she takes over getting to the root of the truth of the baby switch.

Brad is cornered and left with no choice but to fess up. He explains how Wiley died when he was no longer breathing, and how he was driving with him, when he ended up on the route where Nelle left Michael to die in the car he was driving (Michael recalls this bit of Intel in a flashback).

Then, Brad explains how Nelle appeared with her newborn baby and claimed the whole thing was engineered by Nelle …  and how he was so upset and panicked, that he went along with her plan.

Michael lets Brad have it for all of his lies and machinations, and the pain it has inflicted on so many people for over a year and half.  How on earth could he do that? Carly also lays into him.

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Meanwhile, Sasha (Sofia Matteson) has urgently called Chase (Josh Swickard), who leaves “Wiley” and Willow (Katelyn MacMullen) behind, and heads to the Corinthos’ where he hears the whole sad truth about the baby switch.

With Chase gone, Nelle goes looking for “Wiley” who is with Willow, and the two get into a major throwdown catfight.  Nelle comes out the victor and goes to get her baby ready to leave town with her son.

So, what did you think of how the truth finally came out?  What did you think of Michael’s tirade on Brad? What do you think will happen next? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GH’s James Patrick Stuart Talks on Valentin’s Downfall and Potential Rise to Power

After all his bravado, machinations and lies to keep the woman he loves, and believing he was the rightful heir to the Cassadine fortune, suddenly it all came crashing down for Valentin Cassadine (James Patrick Stuart) on recent episodes of General Hospital.

Payback can be a bitch, but for Valentin; who’s past has been fraught with numerous physical and emotional tribulations since his childhood, he now finds himself at the lowest point in his life; losing Nina (Cynthia Watros) who’s now taken up with Jax (Ingo Rademacher), realizing he is the biological son of the evil Helena Cassadine (Constance Towers), and not Mikkos, and having all his best laid plans and misdeeds backfire.  (Remember, he shot and “killed” Nikolas, and set up the ruse that led Sasha to pretend she was Nina’s bio-daughter.)  Now, enter Nelle Benson (Chloe Lanier), who could very well hold the ticket, to Valentin’s rise to wealth and power all over again.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with James Patrick Stuart to get the lowdown on: those heavy and emotional scenes opposite Constance Towers, working with Cynthia Watros as his newest Nina, if Valentin might really kill Jax the next time he thinks about it, and what about a potential relationship between Anna (Finola Hughes) and Valentin?

Not many can play bad as good as James in this industry.  He does it so effortlessly and still brings out the humanity in the guy that has t-r-o-u-b-l-e written all over him.  Here’s what James had to share about all of Valentin’s recent dramatic moments, a tease of what’s to come, and much more.

Photo: JPI

Valentin’s world has imploded at the moment.  When did you initially find out that he was going to turn out to not be a true Cassadine heir?

JAMES:  Well, there were some clues dropped by Frank Valentini (executive producer, GH) back when we did the gallery auction where Helena’s portrait went up in flames.  Frank looked at me and goes, “Hey, Jack Nicholson it up.  Have some fun!  You’re not going to be feeling pretty good for a while.”  (Laughs)  I’m like, “Oh … what are the plans?”  He pulled me aside and goes, “Yeah, you’re going to lose Nina, but you’re going to try to take over ELQ.  That’s when I started to go, “Wait a minute!  That sounds to me like Valentin’s losing his money.”  (Laughs)  With the character of Nikolas (Marcus Coloma) coming back; it’s pretty great.  I think the writing was on the wall there.  I put it out on twitter the other day.  I said, “Look what they’ve done to my boy.”  Somebody chimed in, “They gave him a storyline!” (Laughs)

Who doesn’t love to see you, James Patrick Stuart, play tortured soul?  They audience loves to see you get the opportunity to go to those depths in your performances.

JAMES:  It’s been really interesting for me.  I’ve had a lifetime of playing bad guys because the line was always shorter. (Laughs)  Everybody wants to be Tom Cruise, but the Alan Rickman’s of it all, to me, were what was so interesting.  Early on, you play one dimensional kind of twisting of the mustache, tying a woman to the train tracks.  After a while, you start to watch the truly great actors.  They start to take you on a ride.  If you’re paying attention, you start to feel what it would be like to be that damaged, and that’s why you do it.  Then you start to see the vulnerability. To me, I thought, “This is a great time in my life because I’m ready to do that.” A lot of people say, “I don’t understand.  I feel like that makes no sense. because why would I root for a person who behaves like this?” and that to me, I feel is the greatest compliment of all.

So much happened recently to Valentin in one fell swoop; he overhears Nina telling Ava (Maura West) she kissed Jax, then he envisions shooting Jax and then he is drinking himself into oblivion and he gets a “visit” from Helena!  But … the scenes between Valentin and Helena really summed up the bitter truth for him, wouldn’t you say?

JAMES:  Yes.  In the “Helena” scenes, it all basically is revealed.  It all comes down in a moment where he “sees” her.  I think he realizes with the DNA test; he’s not the person he thought he was, but he certainly had no idea that he had her blood in his veins.  The truly tragic moment of the evening is when it dawns on him that he has a daughter with Helena’s blood in her veins.  Now, he would kill her a thousand times over in that moment.  He can’t do it.  He’s fighting phantoms.  That’s the bottom below the bottom, and things got worse than he ever thought they would get.

Courtesy/ABC

Does Valentin have any idea then, who his biological father could be?

JAMES:  I don’t think so.  I don’t believe so.  I know I don’t.  I think once he realizes that Helena is in fact the mother, I think he’d rather just go into oblivion.  I think at that point, he’s out of answers.  Enter Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn) …which is wonderful because I think the world of Nancy, and she saves the day.   Alexis basically talks him out of hurting himself, telling him to count his blessings that he is not a Cassadine, etc, which was a really sweet moment.

I assume, when you have this kind of material to play, it must be exhausting, but exhilarating at the same time?

JAMES:  I think that’s exactly right.  As an actor, I think you want to do this stuff.  Maura West and I compare notes all the time.  I think it can be kind of emotionally draining.  You do feel it, and I felt it when I had spent a lot of time with Nina and Valentin, and when the actresses changed, and we brought Cynthia Watros in.  I worked twice as hard to make sure that Cynthia’s landing was as easy as possible, and I really grew attached to the Nina and Valentin connection.  So, when Jax steps in, Cynthia’s love life means nothing to me, I don’t care about that, but Nina’s love life means a lot to me!  And it bums me out, and I don’t know that I’ll actually be watching any future love scenes between them as much as I love them both!  I have a deep attachment to the Valentin connection to Nina.  So, the lines get burred because we just play these characters so long.

Photo: JPI

What was it like sharing those tough scenes with Constance? No one can play icy, evil villainess like her … and yet in real life, she is such a gracious and kind-hearted woman.

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JAMES:  In real life, Constance is such a sweetheart, and she’s so grateful to be there.  She was so ready to work, and rehearse, and play, and find the stuff, and she was great.  I’d been in scenes with her before.  Last time, we didn’t really talk to each other.  I was with the hump.  I was being Valentin pre-surgery.  It was some sort of moment in a graveyard, but this time we actually got to interact with each other.

You look at Valentin, and he’s not had the greatest life.  Do you bring his entire back-story into your performance; such as when he was deformed with the hump and how he had to literally reconstruct his life both in the physical and in emotional ways for many years?

JAMES:  Absolutely.  It’s the brokenness that he’s making choices from.  He was never truly and authentic person to begin with which is why his love fell apart.  He’s always been faking.  He’s always been putting on a show.  That’s not sustainable in matters of the heart.  It was unbelievably easy for Jax to swoop in, because it was inevitable that things were going to fall apart.  Of course, that anger and that brokenness were what lead him to want to kill Jax.  There’s no question.  He was prepared to do that.  If you look in the eyes in the fantasy sequence in the shooting, he just wanted to watch him die.  He wanted to watch the light go out in Jax’s eyes.  He was so furious … and even more tragic is … that was all he could think of, and somehow, he realized in that moment that wouldn’t work, because he’d lose his daughter.

Photo: JPI

Anna and Finn (Michael Easton) just kind of busted up.  Do you think Anna and Valentin will hookup? There is a connection and a history between the two of them whenever they seem to be in proximity of one another.

JAMES:  Personally, I’m waiting for that.  I hope so!  There is a finesse and elegance to that woman, and not only that, there is an effortless to the connection between Valentin and Anna, if one can say that about one’s own coupling.  I love to look at it!  I think we go together like a wink and a smile.  I just find that chemistry really great.  I think that’s mostly Finola, though.  She can probably have chemistry with most anything.

Valentin was going to leave Port Charles with Charlotte (Scarlett Fernandez), after Nikolas revealed all and the fallout began.  Interestingly enough, it was Anna who came to Valentin’s side and tried to talk him down from fleeing with his daughter and showed such compassion for him!

JAMES:  Wasn’t that great?  She was the one who got him.  She was the one who was able to calm the beast.  There was no one else he would have listened to.  In the moment in the police station, after Charlotte had been kidnapped, and there is that moment where Anna has that bruise, I thought it was such a tender moment.  I just said, “If I kiss my finger and touch your wound?” and she’s like, “Do it.”  It was just this moment where we had been bitter rivals and enemies for so long, but he just adores her so much it’s undeniable that he sees her wounded and wants to make it better.  It’s floating out there waiting to be done.  I know that everybody knows it.  It’s just a matter of what the right away to go about in the writing would be.

Photo: JPI

So, you’ve worked opposite two acting dynamos in the role of Nina – Michelle Stafford and now, Cynthia Watros.  Was the transition difficult for you when Cynthia came to GH?

JAMES:  It wasn’t.  It was scary because Michelle Stafford wasn’t just one in a million, I mean, she is one of a kind.  The last thing in the world that I would ever want to consider doing myself was recast that actress.  So, my deal was (and I’ve said this to Cynthia) I said, “I have no control over this.  All I can do is make the landing as easy as possible for Cynthia.”  We did a lot of photoshoots together, and I had flowers waiting for her, and I did everything possible to make sure that she knew that she had a friend and that she had somebody that was going to make it as easy as possible.  It was rough because a lot of the trolls on social media were just awful to her… just brutal, and she goes, “I have thick skin.  I can take it,” and then a week later, she goes, “I’ve closed all my social media accounts!”  (Laughs)  It’s been fun to watch those guys turn around and go, “You have a really special person.”  That wedding stuff was just incredible!  She came so prepared and she knocked it out of the park.  Cynthia has been wonderful.  I love them both.  I love her the reddest, and I love Michelle the bluest, and together I love them the purplest.  (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

It’s interesting that all the women in his life such as Anna and Nina, all have a soft-spot for Valentin; even though they don’t necessarily want to be with him.  These ladies are just drawn to this dysfunctional guy.

JAMES:  Don’t you think?  Is it that you want to help him, you want to fix him, you see the potential, you want to help him despite himself?  I think that’s what it is.

Courtesy/ABC

Do you think Valentin’s still going to try to win Nina back, or is that done? 

JAMES:  I don’t know.  I do know that the Valentin I know will never shake Nina, and when he loves, he loves forever.  He can be simultaneously in love with Anna whenever she’s near.  I don’t believe he ever truly got over Nina hearing his story and his brokenness and still loving him twice as hard.  Years ago, there was a moment where he said to her the stuff that he’s never said, and Michelle beautifully kissed my tears away and said, “You’re beautiful” to me.   I think in that moment his fate was sealed.  I think he knew that this was his woman forever.  So, I just don’t think that that goes away.  I think he will always carry a torch for Nina, for sure.

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Do you see Valentin becoming darker and darker now that he had found out he is Helena’s offspring?

JAMES:  Well, yes and no.  I remember watching these scenes and we’ve done a lot of this stuff, and you know how easy it is to sort of go, “Let’s go dark, let’s go dark, let’s go more dark,” and after a while, I go, “You know, maybe he does learn something.  Maybe there’s hope for this guy after all.”  Of course, more bad stuff will happen to him, and he will do more bad stuff, because that’s just who he is.  A leopard can’t change his spots, and those are his survival instincts, but there are some new colors, and it’s all a direct result of all of just these horrible things that have happened to him… mostly learning that he is part Helena and he can’t undo that.

Photo: JPI

We saw that Nelle (Chloe Lanier) called and then goes to see Valentin, because she wants to sell her shares of ELQ.  So, obviously he has the potential to become really rich here which is what would give him his power back.  How do you think that will go over with the rest of the Quartermaines? (Laughs)

JAMES:  (Laughs) A lot of the Quartermaine actors have been asking me that in the hallways of General Hospital!  Isn’t that interesting how he’ll just sort of switch families? (Laughs)

Of all the people, just as Valentin’s life is in the gutter and he is at his lowest, who should show up with a sort of lifeline, Nelle! How will he go about attempting to gain control of ELQ?

JAMES:  Valentin knows he has to get the majority shares to gain a control of the company, and he has to do it fast before people see that he’s doing it.  So, that’s where Michael E. Knight (Martin Gray) has been.  He’s gallivanting the states rapidly accumulating shares.  (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

It’s been so fun seeing you and Michael Knight on-screen and on a daytime soap together again, as so many remember you as Tad Martin and Will Cortlandt on All My Children.  How has it been getting the chance to work with Michael?

JAMES:  My God, are you kidding me?  He taught me!  He’s the guy who taught me.  I didn’t know how to do this.  Nobody instinctively knows… this is a very unique art form.  It’s more Jazz than anything else, and he showed me how to do it!  Walt Willey (Ex-Jack, AMC) showed me how to do my hair, and Michael Knight taught me how to break down a script!  And, what’s so funny is he is still doing it.  In a scene on GH, when he threw in that line, “From now on, you pay in advance,” I just about fell on the floor!  I thought, “There he is!  That’s the Michael I’ve always known and loved.”

Photo: JPI

Who would have thought that you guys would get to share scenes like that again on soaps?  You just never know in this life who may be wind up back in your orbit.

JAMES:  It’s incredible.  That’s what we say all of the time… “Who would have thought?”  You could never plan something like this and that we’d still be doing it at this point.

Now with Lulu (Emme Rylan) learning that Valentin is not a Cassadine, and Nina apparently moving on to a relationship with Jax, what do you think it will mean for their relationship in raising their daughter, Charlotte?

JAMES:  I think in the short-term, Valentin’s shelved any ideas of getting her out of Charlotte’s life.  He’s sort of putting out the fires in his own personal life.  Charlotte needs a mother in her life, and he’s quite willing to share custody as they always have been.  She seems to be looking at this as an opportunity to paint him as an unfit father, and she wants full-time custody.  So, we’re back to that again.  It looks to me like Lulu is kicking Valentin while he’s down.

Photo: JPI

It was so nice to see you, and some of your GH co-stars such as: Steve Burton (Jason) and Maurice Benard (Sonny) show up for Y&R’s Eric Braeden’s (Victor Newman) 40th anniversary on set celebration at CBS.  It was quite the event; speakers galore, and so many from our industry and beyond in attendance.

JAMES:  It was pretty profound.  Eric has always been kind to me.  I only worked with him on one movie, a western, called The Man Who Came Back, and that was probably 12 years ago.  He has been so complimentary of me in interviews and in his book.  So, if he does that with me, I can only imagine how many dear, dear friendships he has.  So, the fact that everybody showed up like that from the president of CBS Entertainment to local councilmen, and that they were willing to do be there for 2 hours was really proof of how much they love him.  Peter Bergman (Jack, Y&R), who I don’t even think was working that day, came in for it and spoke at the event. There was so much respect shown for Eric and what he has meant to this medium.

Photo: JPI

Your album The Apple Tree was so well-received, and everyone always loves seeing you get the opportunity to sing on General Hospital as well.  Will you continue to put out more music in 2020?

JAMES:  Yeah, that’s the plan.  I have another one that I’m working on.  I have a bunch of songs.  I’m in no rush to get it out.  Unfortunately, I lost Glen Roven, who wrote the cello part for Book of Love, passed away right after the Nurses’ Ball where I played Book of Love, which is really heartbreaking, and then, Michael Sherwood, who helped me with a number of songs on the record passed away right after The Apple Tree came out.  So, I’m a little gun-shy.  But, I’m planning on having something out by December for Christmas.

In closing, what would you say the fans should look forward to in the weeks ahead from Valentin?

JAMES: Look forward to that moment where Valentin is so low that there’s nowhere to go but up!  The comeback is going to be one for the books.

So, what do you think of how Valentin’s life hit rock bottom?  Do you think he will ever win Nina back? Do you think he will takeover ELQ? Share your thoughts on James’ recent performances and his thoughts contained in this interview via the comment section below.

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DAYS Eric Martsolf and Stacy Haiduk chat with Michael Fairman at Day of Days 2019; during their conversation the on-screen dup talk about the latest developments of Brady and Kristen within the series time-jump and more. Leave A Comment

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Katelyn MacMullen as Willow

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