Connect with us

General Hospital

42

GH's Mutual Admiration Society: Maura West, Michelle Stafford & Finola Hughes Talk Girl Power In The Cast Of The ABC Daytime Drama!

Courtesy/NATAS

Courtesy/NATAS

Daytime drama fans know that the female cast of General Hospital rocks the house day after day, and episode after episode!

On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman spoke to three of the series prominent leading ladies, Daytime Emmy winners all, who bring it to their scenes and deliver the drama to its viewers: Maura West (Ava Jerome), Michelle Stafford (Nina), and Finola Hughes (Anna) for this very special feature.

This piece entitled: GH’s Mutual Admiration Society was first published and presented exclusively inside the 42nd Annual Daytime Creative Arts Emmy program/almanac that was handed out to all those attending the awards ceremonies. Through the courtesy of the National Academy of Television Arts Sciences (NATAS), On-Air On-Soaps is posting it exclusively online.

General Hospital’s Mutual Admiration Society 

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Leading ladies and dynamic actresses are a cornerstone of the daytime drama genre.  For it’s the actress and their characters that, more often than not, propel the stories. Whether it be through love and romance, danger and intrigue, revenge and murder, a health crisis, or an unspeakable tragedy, it’s watching the resiliency of determined women come through the toughest obstacles and persevere that hooks the audience for days on end.

On ABC’s General Hospital, the cast has an embarrassment of riches in the female cast department; many Daytime Emmy winners, who have either been the center of dramatic story over the last year, or supported their female counterparts.  In a daytime coup, GH’s executive producer, Frank Valentini, brought Maura West (Ava) and Michelle Stafford (Nina) to the 52-year-old series, and immediately built a harrowing story between them.  Maura and Michelle joined the ranks of such GH notables as: Laura Wright (Carly), Jane Elliot (Tracy), Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis), and Finola Hughes (Anna), building a tough act to follow for anyone in the medium.

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

West, Stafford, and Hughes discussed being part of this wildly talented girl group, and if there is ever a feeling of competition for airtime, and more, between these titans.  Michelle relates: “You want to be in a group of people who lift you up, and that inspire you to work harder.  There’s no bitchiness with anyone here.”   Maura concurred: “The women are unbelievable on this show.  I’m a human being, so you’ve got to sift things out, and check it out.  For instance, look at Laura Wright.  She works on her scenes, never tries to undermine me as a woman, or an artist, and that’s why GH is such a great place for a women, and that’s why all these women are there!”  Finola Hughes says egos are checked at the door at the studio, “I don’t feel that, or see egos.  Michelle coming in to the show was amazing.  Maura is a powerhouse, and that bubbling under the surface thing she does scares the you-know-what out of me.  Then, I get to work with Vinessa Antoine (Jordan) all the time, and I adore her.  Then there is Jane Elliot, who is just so superior and strong, and then Nancy Lee Grahn.  She is one of the great listeners in this profession.  On GH, Nancy and my paths do cross, because we are on the same side of the law.  All of the other women I can’t really talk to, unless my character is arresting them!” (Laughs)

Courtesy/ABC

2014, saw one of the biggest water cooler moments of the year, when a disturbed Nina Clay drugged her arch nemesis, Ava Jerome, with two syringes – one to paralyze her and then another to induce labor – in her plot to kidnap Ava’s newborn baby and make it her own.  The scenes between Maura West and Michelle Stafford were can’t miss TV, and put these women in some very emotionally draining, and dark scenes.  Michelle discussed how she and Maura were able to create the scenes:  “When you have a rival female character to play off of you, there has to be a lot of affinity between the two people, or some sort of understanding between them, to make it work.  It’s as important as a love story.  Maura really sold it.  When she had the heavy lifting, she really needed me to be there in the scene with her, and vice versa.  Your partner is so important, and Maura is the best partner…the best!”  Maura echoed: “This is like a mutual admiration society!  I feel the same for her, and I will say this: there’s always this idea that women actors are vying for something, they’re fighting for something, and they must not like each other, and that there’s always that sort of edge to it.  It’s just not the truth.  When I worked with Michelle in all those scenes, I trusted her.  An actor will come into the scene wanting to lift you up as a scene partner – or suck you down – and Michelle lifts you up.  On General Hospital, there are so many actors that are the same.  They lift you up.  They want it to be good.  I’m so grateful for Michelle for those scenes.  I was so concerned about it.  I remember leaving the studio in tears going, ‘What am I doing?’ Then I saw them on the screen, and I was like, ‘Thank God.  I love them!’”  Finola Hughes weighed-in on the scenes between the dynamic duo: “It was very intense.  It was extraordinary, and they made it work.  Maura playing the devastation was phenomenal, and Michelle making that insanity work.  There was a very light touch Michelle had on certain speeches, which was sort of unnerving, because she was almost removed from the situation, and in her own head, which I thought was a key.  There was a lot of spookiness on how she delivered those.”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

While widely lauded and praised for their work, Finola, Maura, and Michelle still are appreciative and thrilled to have won Daytime Emmys for their work, as voted on by their peers.  Hughes has won once, while Stafford and West have won twice each.  The ladies agreed that their initial victory was quite memorable, but for different reasons.  Finola took the Lead Actress prize in 1991, but she could not attend. “I had to go back to England to get a green card,” she recalled, “And it just so happened to coincide with the Emmys, and I had to do it, or I couldn’t stay in the country.”  But Hughes did have a celebration of sorts upon hearing her name was called, “I was in London at the time, and probably at my interview at the British Consulate.  I had been out with my brother, and I got back to my hotel, and I had forgotten about it.  When I came back, there was a telegram, saying ‘Congratulations!’  When I got back to LA, my dressing room was decorated like crazy.  It was really sweet.  A couple of my friends had ballooned it out and I could barely open the door!”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

West recalled her first win in 2007: “I said to my kids before I left to come to LA for the ceremony, ‘What should I do if I win?’  And my son Joe knew what I was wearing of course, which was this gown, and you know I don’t dress like that every day!  He said, ‘You should curtsy.’  I said, ‘Well that’s it!  I’ve gotta curtsy!’  The win meant so much to my husband, to my family, to the people who love me, and people who watch my work every day, and my parents, too.  I always wanted an Emmy for other people.  I never wanted it for myself.  I wanted it, because I wanted my children to see their mom.  I so wanted it for my grandma, before she passed, to see her granddaughter do this.”  Michelle Stafford’s first win was a mixed bag: “It was not the most fun night of my life, until Drake Hogestyn (John, DAYS) said, ‘Michelle Stafford’ when he opened the envelope.  I was absolutely stunned.  I didn’t even know what to say!  I used the word ‘dynamite’ in my speech, like have you ever heard me say ‘dynamite’?   Where does that come from?  It’s like from my freaking twin soul sister!  It was so funny!” (Laughs)

Courtesy/ABC

Hughes, Stafford, and West play three very complex women on GH:  One is a federal agent trying to uphold the law, one is trying to put the pieces of her life together after losing 20 years being in a coma, and the other is gangster who has murdered and manipulated people to get what she wants, desperate to be a mother to her newborn daughter, and surviving cancer!  “Ava’s gone through so much and is still kicking, that’s me, and that’s her,” Maura says passionately.  “It’s a pleasure as an actress to have a complete rainbow of a character to play.”  As for Nina, Michelle Stafford says she wants her character to still be teetering on the edge: “I really don’t want her stabilized.  I think that’s boring.  I think it’s very real that she’s unstable.  There are many people in life like that.  I want her to have that element, where she is fabulous, but underneath she is completely unhinged, where she could lose it at anytime.”  As for agent Anna Devane, it looks like she may have a new love interest in her rival Agent Sloane (Grayson McCouch) Finola noted it’s nice to have some sexually-charged scenes as a veteran actress on a soap: “We are not dead yet! (Laughs) It’s fun.

READ MORE
'Beacon Hill' Prepping Its Long-Awaited Season Two Featuring Soap Notables

As for the array of girl power in Port Charles, and the TV landscape, Hughes summed it up best: “It’s very cool to be a woman working on GH.  I think it’s cool to be a woman working on television.  It’s a good time right now for all of us.”

What did you think of what Maura, Michelle, and Finola had to share about working with each other, and the powerful ensemble female cast they are a part of on General Hospital? Comment below!

Leave a comment | 42 Comments
Advertisement

42
Leave a Reply

avatar
15 Comment threads
27 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
25 Comment authors
PatrickediebaileyRoseShayCeeCee Recent comment authors
newest oldest
me
me

Unfortunately, what these women don’t seem to realize (or don’t want to admit publicly) is that the lives of their characters STILL revolve exclusively around men. What they do, what they want, what they say, why they do what they do – it’s still driven around getting a man. And that means that nothing has changed since the 70s.

Even the great Tracy Quartermaine has been reduced to a giggling school girl, picking out her jewelry for her engagement party to a man.

Harry
Harry

Yep, Me is right. (That sounds grammatically incorrect).
Me doth not protest too much.
Tracy does disappoint the way she fawns over Luke no matter how abusive he is. And while this article does not feature Nancy Lee Grahn, Alexis is even a bigger disappointment with her propensity to believe and follow every pretty, lying bad boy, with a pretty waxed chest, who comes her way.

CeeCee
CeeCee

Since the 70’s, me? Getting a man is age-old. Why should the 21st Century be any different?…LOL.
I think the writers should know better…..women do not need men to survive…that includes sex…

And, Harry….me, in this context, does not sound grammatically correct….but, that is just what me chooses to use…..so, it is forgiven. Look to whom I am talking…!! The grammar whiz.
However( and I will get blasted by some), Nancy Dillingham, writer; poet; English teacher extraordinaire, makes continuous, egregious grammar mistakes….and, I do not mean typos.
(Sorry, Nancy…..alack, ’tis true, young lady!!!!!)

Timmm
Timmm

Women should never be underestimated or under appreciated! My best friend is a women and she holds her marriage together by being strong, smart and optimistic. Her mothering skills are next to none! Women can and should be powerful BUT they need to understand that men still want them to be feminine and vulnerable. Please do not define vulnerable as being weak. No, men still like to be strong and protective. [Masculine]

CeeCee
CeeCee

Hi, Timmm.
Long time no talk.
I ken what you are saying, albeit a smidgen archaic. But, we are talking about apples and oranges here. I am saying that women today can make a living and taking care of business without depending on a man to put food on the table. You are talking about emotional dependence….something we all need.
Furthermore, why do men need to feel masculine? If a man is confident and sure of himself as a man, then he does not need a pacifier (binky). The instinct to protect their women comes naturally for men. I would hope that, as women, we revel in knowing our guys are there for us. I do agree with you there. Yet, Timmm, no modern, intelligent and assertive woman wants a he-man. And, being self-assured does not take away from a woman’s femininity. One thing has nothing to do with the other. I like all-things-girly-with -frills-and-lace, but , I will not feed any guy’s ego to make him feel more masculine. He either is or isn’t. By the same token, Timmm, I bet there are plenty of women who appreciate a man with a bit of a feminine side….right, ladies?…LOL.
I don’t know, maybe some do. I can only speak for myself, I guess.
My husband and I love each other very much and we rely on each other….but, we could live independently, if it were necessary.
I for one, would never grovel.

CeeCee
CeeCee

Awwww, harry…I was being sarcastic, too.
By the by….I enjoyed your Sesame Street reference…LOL. You are one of a kind, Harry. I love it!!!

Rebecca1
Rebecca1

I don’t necessarily agree, ME. While it is true that they want love…who doesn’t! It’s not like they’re portrayed as man hungry….

Tracy truly lives Luke. I think her loyalty and devotion is rare in soaps; instead of bailing at the first hint of trouble…Tracy has supported her Luke through illness. When she felt mistreated or taken advantage of…she dumped him. He had to win her back.

Anna is as independent as they come. She has lived a life of high risk and adventure…many times without a man. She, too, broke up with Duke when he didn’t meet HER standards, not the other way around. In the end, thigh too late, they both were ready to sacrifice for each other.

Ava? Since when has Maura’s life revolved around a man…

Nina? She could love a man or murder him…she’s not exactly revolved around any…

Alexis…sigh…my brilliant, sarcastic, witty, Alexis. She too is dynamic in her own right….but where Julian’s concerned she’s blind…willingly…because she wants so much to believe him…forgive him. I was sort of okay with that…until he ordered Duke’s hit.

All in all…strong women. Not one of them dependent on a man.

Harry
Harry

Rebecca, can you believe we actually agree about Alexis? And I cannot stand Julian–that pretty boy metrosexual! (not there is anything wrong with that).
Put on a shirt Julian!

Cee Cee, I was kidding with the Me reference.

When Anna is lined up with Ava, Nina, Tracy, Alexis and Kiki, all I can think of is that Sesame Street song,”One of These things is not Like the Other.”

Timmm
Timmm

Good synopsis Rebecca.

rebecca1
rebecca1

Harry…it was obvious you were kidding with the ME thing (it was rather witty…as was your joke that went “thud” to Su…) …and…we agree on more than you realize. Alexis, Ethan, AJ, agism…just because I don’t join in on or like the Alexis “boob” bashing or the incredibly irritating “Sappy” “sparkle pony” comments…shudder…blech!!! doesn’t mean we dont’ see more eye to eye than not. Love your posts! 🙂

rebecca1
rebecca1

Timmm. Thanks! And glad you could actually discern what I was saying through my ever-present auto correct word mistakes! Soooooooo annoying. I’m still clamoring for an edit or cancel option so we can have redo’s if need be! lol…

Rose
Rose

I think we all have valid observations on this thread. For me women and men all start from a basis DNA model, albeit archaic in today’s society, but still overpowering. It’s a broad brush, and certainly doesn’t apply to 100% of either…that of women as nesters and daily nurturers…men providers and protectors. But both men and women want to be appreciated and loved. Even when you look at nature the males and females appearances can be different…I’m saying this as the red male Cardinal and more muted female are at my bird feeder.

GENERALLY, some of this also comes from noting they like different toys…most little boys like wheels, and girls softer things. And as boys get older, they seem to tend towards shoot-em-up games, and girls on how they look and fashion.

Lego has been seen to be behind the eight-ball because their only models targeted for girls had tended to be pink and girlie. If any of you can find it on youtube the little girl rant about “why does everything for girls have to be pink” is funny and revealing. Some young women want to become Marines, or lawyers, doctors, geeks, etc.

As a personal disclaimer I was a tomboy, who also wanted a pretty prom dress, and side with the anti-everything-pink little girl.

So while things have been changing re:stereotypes and “nature,” I still think the soaps I watch all tend to have young/older women who come from money, or sure don’t seem to worry about it. Even then, as Rebecca’s list indicates, when it comes to men in their lives, the things we can base their strengths and independence seem to unravel. And vice-versa.

Rose
Rose

Sorry if I got a little carried away on my comment. Maybe a little too philosophical for MF. But also maybe why I have some room on my right-brain side not to be too critical of affairs of the heart. Impatient maybe, but we’ve all got baggage and needs that can be our Achilles heel.

Melissa
Melissa

Excellent read. Maura, Finola, and Michelle, along with Laura, Jane, and Nancy are the best of the best!

CeeCee
CeeCee

Yes, Melissa….most of these women make the screen shake, rattle and roll……first-rate acting.
I must adhere to what I most wish for Michelle; that is, I would like to see Nina in true-Michelle-form. Lose the waif-like demeanor.

su0000
su0000

wow!

No other soap has a power cast of woman as GH..
It is unbelievable the greatness of these woman/actors.

Maura West (Ava Jerome)
Michelle Stafford (Nina)
Finola Hughes (Anna)
Laura Wright (Carly)
Jane Elliot (Tracy)
Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis)
Donna Mills and on goes the list..
——- A true Dream Cast… Magical.

cooks7570
cooks7570

I think Nina should have more scenes with other characaters. I like Anna and Sloane together. I think the show is getting a little better these days.

Patrick
Patrick

Nina and Rosalie : the showdown with the “Q” stock…. Rosalie tells Michael the sale didn’t go thru…. MIchael goes home… and Rosalie congratulates Nikolas and hands him the shares of stock.

Wednesday’ “ep” : Nina was pulled together …. and finally… looked as hot as all get out! stop with the ??? gangly physical slump and awkward … sit up straight, statuesque, a woman in charge NOW

what are the writers doing to Nina? it took so long for MS’ Nina to get this far…. as you’ve said…. “I think Nina should have more scenes with other characaters” I am loving… Ric and Madeleine scenes together…. I think they are hot!

I don’t like that Nina is treating Franco in this manner… she had better share that money with Franco!

if she doesnt ! Franco doesn’t deserve this… get this POWER COUPLE up and running…. together ! take over Port Charles

there’s so much potential…. with power hitters here…. Ric , Madeleine, Nina, Franco…

stop with the Shadybrook … move on!

this was why I was so disappointed that Britta was let go… throw in Britta and Dr. O… powerful stuff to REEL

Jenn
Jenn

I love Nina and Franco but their current story line not so much. I want them to be the fun scheming power couple a la Keith and Gina from Santa Barbara. GH already has it tumultuous pairing with Sonny and Carly.

ediebailey
ediebailey

Patrick, I agree totally with everything you wrote.
Roger Howarth is the actor who drew me to GH and is why I keep watching. Seeing him betrayed by Carly and Nina in less than a year is way too much to take. I loved the uniquely magical love story of Franco & Nina, first when they fled to Canada and then at Shadybrook. When they were free, I was so looking forward to them taking Port Charles by storm especially after Franco managed to get Ned’s ELQ shares; only to be devastated now by Nina’s horrible treatment of Franco. Sure, he might have hurt her feelings by suspecting of kidnapping baby A.J. (Avery) a second time, but why of why did she have to resort to such drastic measures as marrying Ric??!! I gather that RC is intent of establishing Franco as GH’s “romantic hero,” but it certainly seems next to impossible at this point for him to ever reunite with Nina.
Also, I enjoy Franco rapport with Dr. O. and it would be great if her daughter Britt (Britta) would come back full time and get involved with Franco. Just imagine Franco becoming Dr. O’s son-in-law.
Let’s all root for brighter days ahead for Franco because he doesn’t deserve all the terrible abuse Nina is heaping upon him. Get this POWER COUPLE up and running asap or allow Franco to move on with someone else who will appreciate him!!!

Patrick
Patrick

@Edie : first…. what a beautiful post

people : have to echo : “…Seeing him betrayed by Carly and Nina in less than a year is way too much to take. I loved the uniquely magical love story of Franco & Nina, first when they fled to Canada and then at Shadybrook. When they were free, I was so looking forward to them taking Port Charles by storm especially after Franco managed to get Ned’s ELQ shares; ”

Monday’ ep : I was so livid with the writers…. frustrated that Nina was at the floating rib… telling Silas everything… it was as if we were watching the Carly / Franco scenes all over again…. only this time… it was Nina talking down Franco.

(Roger Howarth is a dream)

stay married to Ric Lansing… who is in cahoots with Madeleine to get your monies any way….

i don’t know… when I see Michelle Stafford… I am not thinking, ex-Phyllis… I really do think she’s Nina… but that doesn’t lessen the angst that the writing is ruining her with no direction… that love story that you posted… WAS ALL THEIR for the taking !!!!

people post about how emotionless the writing is… but I was in tears… with Nina and Franco… last time… was at Shadybrook

everything that’s going on with Ava… has me in tears…

Nina and Franco should be on equal footing… being fun… in love… cohabitating… conspiring together … kinda like Bonnie and Clyde… Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty

I too would love… love love… if Britta returned…. Britta and Dr. O need to intercede with Nina…. pronto ! like your idea even better… Franco becomes Dr. O son-in-law

Harry
Harry

Nina is a colossal flop! The writing afforded her has been God awful and she has shrunken to the occasion.
Nina has become fast forward material and all the mugging, posturing, lip chewing, scene chewing antics which got her through her Y&R days is not enough to make Nin a viable, believable character anyone remotely cares about.
The writing given to AVA is also just dreadful but at least West is a decent actress.

Timmm
Timmm

They are both good actresses. Ava gets the better material. Sadly, this has not been a good ride for Michelle.

Nick D.
Nick D.

Great piece of writing and amazing interviews!

Rodd
Rodd

Love them all. GH rocks!

Patrick
Patrick

Denise / Ava and Silas : flashback scenes and concurrent

@MarySF

this is it…. Wednesday Ep: as the show ends… with Silas telling Ava… he gave her Avery’ bone marrow

I was crying

???? the bigger mystery; did Ava take off from the hosp and assume this new identity ?

I am loving the mystery with Ava and Silas
can’t wait to see how Denise reacts to Avery

Silas has some work to do… as he silently keeps all he knows to himself

a part of me doesn’t want Morgan to move on with Kiki… as this is going on… ” A / D ” will have no choice but to realize “her” daughter IS in love… and ??? will let Morgan go… ? seems that way to me… so “ava” can also move on…

i am intrigued!

Mary SF
Mary SF

Yes, I was very happy with the flashbacks– had to wait a long time to see those scenes but I’m just glad we got to see them and they were as good as I imagined them being.

I think it was implied Silas released Ava from the hospital on the condition she would disappear, but instead she headed to Delia’s and with her mother’s help they invented Denise and everything she would have to do, to become her.

I certainly hope “Denise” doesn’t try to get Morgan away from Kiki- I liking the vibe between her and Silas, but that seems too obvious– perhaps now that Hayden is in a coma, Prince Nikolas might be a good match for “Denise”– a Jerome and a Cassadine teaming up to take down Michael- Nikolas for ELQ and Denise for Avery, that might be fun. Of maybe she will seduce Michael get him to marry her, so she can be step mother, to her own daughter.

My only disappointment– I was really hoping Denise was a real twin so we could see MW playing duel roles– but we can’t have everything right?

CeeCee
CeeCee

The real question is, Patrick…how will Avery react to Ava? We have already had a peek of how Ava reacted to the baby. The eyes tell all.
Normally, babies to react to their true parents…it’s instinctual. Obviously this tiny, gorgeous little cherub will not react as she would to her bio mother, but, I am sure Maura will be able to coax her, and pull it off.
This is what separates Maura from the rest….did you notice the softening of her face when her eyes rested on the baby. These little nuances about the actress always take me aback. What a performer!!!!

Shay
Shay

Well, I guess we have our answer now, CeeCee!!!! What a beautiful scene between mother and child….sweet yet bittersweet, heart-warming but heart-breaking, all at the same time! MW pulled off one powerful performance….Ava MUST reclaim her child, and soon!!! Even if it means that she will need to flee with her daughter, this is a reunion that just has to happen. I simply cannot abide another day of that idiot Mikey and his sub-par servant of a nanny, Sappy, having physical custody of that adorable munchkin!!!! It’s too sickening to witness…..

JUDY
JUDY

REAL TALENT……REAL GIRL POWER ON GH!!!!!!

Lucerne
Lucerne

Great interview. I concur with Finola on finally getting a love interest she has chemistry with.

B
B

I’m so thankful for this cast. After OLTL I needed something good, and this is the only other daytime show I will watch. It’s got a power house cast and I love them!!

Double Z
Double Z

When will the time come when your headline will read…” Women power”?

Cathy
Cathy

This was GH not OLTL the first mistake FV made. Or was it a mistake? FV lost OLTL and tried to make GH into OLTL. If I wanted to watch OLTL I would have. There was a reason OLTL got cancelled. So,why try and ruin GH.

CeeCee
CeeCee

With all due respect, Cathy. I beg your pardon???????!!!!!!!!!!
There are many of us who DID choose to watch OLTL.

Timmm
Timmm

I agree CeeCee, OLTL and AMC had their fans and ratings. ABC didnt want to carry the financial burden any longer, fronting the money for three soaps. Its cheaper to televise a cooking show and show someone the 330th time how to gut a watermelon and use it as a bowl!

CeeCee
CeeCee

@Timmm.
You’re so right, Timmm. I do not watch cooking shows….actually, I am so sick of all the time dedicated to culinary entertainment.Everywhere I turn; there they are!!

And, I will always bemoan the loss of OLTL and AMC……I will always defend these shows as having some of the best actors/actresses/characters on daytime.

Dan
Dan

Great article! This is the most talented cast from top to bottom on GH since I’ve been watching the show. It’s a pleasure to watch every week. Even when the writing isn’t necessarily up to par, the acting is always on point, in my view.

Finola has been in a class by herself for 30 years now, and I think Maura and Michelle have been great additions to the show. We can all have our opinions on the material they’re given to work with, personally I think they’ve been given mostly good stuff, a few misses, but the point is, these ladies are always compelling to watch, whatever the story happens to be.

The interview highlighted these three exceptional ladies, but as they also mentioned, you have Laura Wright, Jane Elliot, Nancy Lee Grahn, going even deeper down the cast some underrated girls like Kelly Monaco and Kirsten Storms, and of course the male side of the cast is loaded with talent. Anthony Geary, Maurice Benard, Jason Thompson, Tyler Christopher, Billy Miller, Roger Howarth, Chad Duell, and so on.

Michael said it right in the article, what an embarrassment of riches. And we the fans are the ultimate winners. We get to sit back and watch all of these talented men and women put on an acting master class every day.

Timmm
Timmm

You said it Dan and I dont know how they afford all this talent but we the viewers are spoiled!

trisha
trisha

There is a clear and wide disparity between the stories these actresses are getting.

All wonderful actresses to be sure but until they are ALL given equally explosive writing that identifies them as leads I will continue to feel that there is a distinct bias toward those actors who have been brought to GH more recently by the current regime.

The constant singling out of MW, And MS by giving them days and days of screen time along with integral story dialogue while others actresses get a few,lines here and there without writing that truly focuses on their character only adds more fuel to the fire of belief that these writers are NOT putting equal effort into writing for each of these actresses.

So while calling attention to these great actresses is fine, perhaps facing the truth about what is really happening to GH would be a better way to garner support for a show that deserves to continue because of those actors and fans who have remained with it for up to 50 yrs.

KansasGuest
KansasGuest

Well, not everyone has A stories at the same time. There have been down times for Finola Hughes, namely when all the Maxie-Lulu-Britt-Sabrina baby stuff was going on. It’s cyclical. And, ironically, it was the maternity leaves of the actresses playing Sabrina & Maxie that initiated shifts to different actresses & storylines. Sometimes situations come up and the results take on a life of their own. Sam has had plenty of meaty stuff to play in the past 2 years. Ditto Tracy, Bobbie, and Carly. My gosh, Carly has had a gold mine of stuff opposite Franco, Sonny, her sons, and Luke. If you think about it, GH really does spread the wealth around. Luke, Sonny, Nikolas, Michael, Franco, Silas, & Morgan have had plenty of equally juicy stories in the past year. I love watching GH.

Jenn
Jenn

GH has the best female cast of all the four soaps IMO I don’t feel like GH has been utilizing these ladies enough lately unfortunately. Things have been very male driven – or I should say Sonny and Luke driven. I truly believe that has hurt the rating a little. The Denise story line is bizarre but I was happy to see Ava back and reconnecting to Morgan. (Bye Silas) Nina is still the nut I adore but I don’t feel she is as in control and smart as she used to be. The Ric marriage would be better if she was using him to her money back and Franco was in on the scheme. (and Bye Silas again) I’m actually really loving Anna story line right now. Love her downward spiral and am surprisingly rooting for her new pairing with Sloane.

General Hospital

Kelly Clarkson and Tamron Hall Talkers Debut With Strong Ratings; Hall On GH Friday

The newest talk shows in the daytime arena premiered on Monday and their initial ratings were quite strong. First up was the premiere of Grammy-winner, Kelly Clarkson and her new series The Kelly Clarkson Show.

According to Variety: the NBCUniversal new daytime series scored a 1.9 household metered market rating and a 6 share in the 56 metered markets. That is the highest debut for a new syndicated show since 2012.

Elsewhere, Disney’s Tamron Hall posted a 1.4 household rating and a 5 share, and with that Tamron scored the highest other debut other than Clarkson in the past five years.

Nashville was the most successful and predicted market for Clarkson, the show scored a 5.97 household rating on its premiere day which climbed 7% to a 6.41 on Tuesday.

Hall will be promoting her show with a cameo appearance on this Friday’s episode of General Hospital where she appears in scenes with Ingo Rademacher (Jax).

In a tweet Tamron also promised that on Friday’s episode of her talker she will talk about her “longgggggg #GH love and history.”

So, have you checked out the new Kelly Clarkson or Tamron Hall Shows? What do you think of them? Comment below.

READ MORE
DARK SHADOWS Sequel In Development By CW
Continue Reading

General Hospital

The General Hospital 16-Episode Collection: ‘All Sonny’s Children’ Debuts

General Hospital fans know that Sonny Corinthos  (Maurice Benard) has fathered a lot of children in Port Charles and then some, and there is even another Corinthos baby on the way.

Now, available on ABC.com and the ABC app (no sign in required) comes a new collection of past GH episodes entitled, ‘All Sonny’s Children’ featuring life-changing moments in the mobster’s life.  The collection is available for viewing today September 9th through December 1st.

Courtesy/ABC

Included in the the 16-episode collection is: Sonny learning the truth about Dante, Michael’s devastating confession, Morgan’s heartbreaking struggles with mental health, Sonny’s unconditional love and support of daughter Kristina, as well as the hesitation and joy that comes with knowing a new baby is on the way.

So, check out the collection and let us know which episodes are your favorites? And, who is your favorite kid of Sonny’s of all-time? Weigh-in below.  But first watch the just released promo for the collection.

READ MORE
OLTL Favorite Eddie Alderson Reveals He Is Cancer-Free After Long Battle
Continue Reading

General Hospital

GH’s Michael Easton Talks On Finn’s Hayden-Less Story, Finola Hughes & Favorite Soap Roles

It was a pretty wonky summer for General Hospital’s Dr. Hamilton Finn (Michael Easton), especially concerning the women in his life.  After proposing to Anna Devane (Finola Hughes) she exits to go deal with her twin sister, Alex, thus facilitating Hughes’ summer break from the series.

Meanwhile, another great love of Finn’s life, Hayden (Rebecca Budig) re-emerges on the canvas during Liz (Rebecca Herbst) and Franco’s (Roger Howarth) wedding reception, and is now clearly involved in some story with Jasper Jacks (Ingo Rademacher).  But what about the unresolved feelings and story with Hayden and Finn? After all, she left him and Port Charles and had his child (who is apparently alive) but is not letting her ex know that little fact.

Meanwhile as a doctor, Finn has had to deal with numerous medical infectious disease crisis’, with the latest being what happened to Sasha (Sofia Matteson) at the hands of the evil Cassandra Pierce (Jessica Tuck), who Finn would love to put behind bars for all of her nefarious drug-related crimes and for what she previously perpetrated on him.

Michael Fairman TV recently caught up with one of our favorite gents in daytime, Michael Easton, to get his thoughts on the on-screen developments in Port Charles, what he hopes is ahead this fall, a look back at some of his favorite soap roles (from One Life’s John McBain to Port Charles’ Caleb Morley), why One Life to Live was such a gem of a soap and a special time for him and his enduring soap career, and much more.  So, here’s what Michael shared in our irreverent entertaining, and candid chat.

Photo: ABC

Hayden has been back.  But you and Rebecca Budig have not thus far shared many scenes together.  Do you think we will eventually circle back to their story?

MICHAEL:  First of all, it is amazing having Rebecca back.  I’d like to say that I had forgotten how beautiful and talented she is, but I didn’t.  She stays with you, and her performances resonate.  So, coming back to work with her is like falling back into it.  For selfish reasons, I am somewhat disappointed that I thought when Hayden came back; she would completely turn Finn’s life upside down.  So, to be honest with you, I don’t know much more than what you are seeing is going on.

I don’t understand why the show is keeping that apart.  That’s what people wanted to see when Hayden came back, because many fans loved them together.

MICHAEL:  I’ve taken a hit anytime I’ve run into fans because I think (any fans that follow that couple), when they left, are a little disappointed in what they are seeing in that the girl who left is not the girl who has come back.  I think that has been the difficult thing for Finn.  It’s almost like she has reverted back to a character she was a few years prior to that.  In terms of having his life upturned, it hasn’t been upturned because she has been rather cold to him.  So, it probably isn’t the way I would have told the story, but maybe they have some great stuff up their sleeve.  I think the stuff that we have had together has shown promise.  Hopefully there will be more, because I enjoy working with her so much.

So, there’s a baby.  Does Finn ever think the baby Hayden said died, could be alive?

MICHAEL:  I don’t think he does.  I think he (just from Finn’s nature) would believe that she would never to that to him.  I imagine his thought would be, “What did I ever do to you?  You would do this to me,” because he was clearly in love with her, and she broke his heart.  I don’t think he ever sees that coming.  I know it’s hard because the audience all knows that, and it’s hard to play the person who is not in the loop when everybody else knows the truth, but you have to play that.  You have to play that you don’t watch the show.  I think Finn has to come from that place that she would never do that, and I think that will probably take it to a place (if that is the case) that will just make the fall that much grander, but again it is incredible having Rebecca back.

Photo: ABV

Has Rebecca said anything to you like, “What’s going on?  I’m barely talking to you on the show?” (Laughs)

MICHAEL:  Yes.  I don’t want to speak for her, but I think she probably thought it was going to be more the character that left who was coming back.  I think we’ve all been a little surprised, but maybe the writers have some great surprises up their sleeves, and this will play out.  It’s just different than I thought it would play out.

Finola Hughes had gone off on her summer vacation for awhile which put a pause in what’s next for the Anna and Finn romance, as well.

MICHAEL:  Well, you work with me long enough, and then you need some time off, right?  It’s like PTSD, right?  You need a three-month treatment plan to make it back.  So, I don’t blame her for taking some time off. (Laughs)

Finn proposed to Anna with this impromptu-at-her feet-moment at the Nurses’ Ball.  Did you like the proposal?

MICHAEL:  The only thing that I would have done differently is that I originally thought she said no, just because I love playing uncomfortable, embarrassing moments.  I would have had a lot of fun with that because being embarrassed in front of groups of people is something that I would like to play.  I do that quite often in my own life. (Laughs)  I didn’t watch it back, but in the moment, it felt really nice.  She’s lovely.  Who wouldn’t propose to her?  So, there wasn’t a great deal of difficulty in doing that.

Photo: ABC

Do you sense the on-screen magic between Finn and Anna?  

MICHAEL:  I hope we both bring each other out of our comfort zones a little bit.   I think Finola embraces that, and I embrace that.  I think we both sort of pull each other a little bit.  When the writers write it that way, especially early on, there was a lot of great dialogue and banter, it was like a very adult-type of movie for a while, and I really enjoy that.  It is like Sullivan’s Travels or something like that.  That’s a really dated reference.  Who else do you know that is going to pull out a reference to Preston Sturges movies?  (Laughs) How about Moonlighting?  Even that might be dated now, but it’s closer.  (Laughs)  I think that’s it.  She’ll go with it.  Sometimes just in the flow of it, stuff comes out, and nothing goes by Finola.  There is no ad-lib or gesture that you can make where she won’t go with you on it.  She’s such a pro, and she is so good at that.

Photo: JPI

You’re both smart actors, in a way.  

READ MORE
GH's Maurice Benard To Release Memoir Coming Spring of 2020

MICHAEL:  She’s smart.  She’s really smart.   She’s extra smart, and I’m a little bit under, (laughs) and she balances us out.

Do you think Finn will finally help apprehend Cassandra?  How is it when you get to work with Jessica Tuck?

MICHAEL:  Yeah.  I would imagine.  I love Jessica.  I think she is fantastic, and I always like when the “bad guy” doesn’t know they’re the bad guy.  I know when I played Caleb on Port Charles; one of the things I liked about him was that he never thought he was the bad guy.  I think that is always the right way to play a bad guy, and Jessica certainly doesn’t play it that way.  She plays it like she is just really devious.  She is lovely. I sort of look at it like a team, and anytime you lose good players, your team is not as good.  So, anytime someone says something about someone coming back who is a really good actor, it’s great when they come back.

Photo: JPI

How does Finn feel now about his brother, Chase (Josh Swickard)?  He just can’t seem to get himself to show his affection towards his younger brother.

MICHAEL:  He does love him, and that’s right.  That’s the conflict, but it’s hard to be mad at Josh because he is the sweetest kid.  He looks at you with those big brown eyes, and you go, “Why am I being such a jerk to this guy?  He’s just too nice, but it’s good.  I think we’ve slowly developed a rapport, and it’s just one of those things that I think every so often, daytime gets right where you can almost tell something in real time.  It wasn’t rushed.  It’s taken a year, and they are sort of coming around to one another, but there are still a lot of secrets.  That’s coming up.

Photo: ABC

Where would you rate Finn in the scope of your characters?  I mean, for me, McBain will always be #1.

MICHAEL:  Is McBain 1?  (Laughs)  You and Steve Burton (Jason, GH).  I’ve never sat and ranked them. Obviously, I played McBain the longest, and it was probably the character who was the most like me I did ride-alongs with cops in New York City for like a month.  So, I was able to ground him in some reality for myself, and I was able to stick to that.  We had a great adviser on the show for over a year who was a former New York City detective, gold shield guy.  Someone once asked why the police department was so good at One Life, and that was it.  They really embraced it.  We didn’t have people sneaking out of the jail-cell with a bobby pin picking the lock. (Laughs)

It was a bit grittier on One Life.

MICHAEL:  I enjoyed that.  McBain not saying “I love you” for 10 years, being on daytime and being able to do that – now that is quite the accomplishment!

Photo: JPI

I remember when McBain FINALLY told Natalie (Melissa Archer) “I love you.” I lost it, but then again, I am sucker for soapy goodness like that. It was a big moment.

MICHAEL:  It was.  Then, he had to kind of retract it and said, “I was drugged.”

Yeah right, he had that “What did I do?” moment.

MICHAEL:  “What did I do?”  That’s right.  So, that was a challenge, and that was really interesting.  Port Charles’ Caleb was probably the most fun to play because that was just an incredible amount of freedom.  There was no grounding it in anything.  It was the biggest sandbox I’d ever played in.  If you wanted to walk over to the couch, you walked over to the couch.  You did whatever you wanted to, and obviously, getting to work with the lovely Kelly Monaco (Ex-Livvie, Port Charles, now Sam, GH) every day… it was just nice.  Caleb only had one intention.  He was in love with this girl, and he just wanted to be with her, and anytime you get one specific need as an actor, it makes it so easy. You’ll stop at nothing to be with this girl, and that’s so fun to play.

Photo: ABC

Right, and Kelly Monaco and you have amazing chemistry when you have been paired romantically together in story.

MICHAEL:  Yeah, I think those things exist in a special place, and they probably belong in that special place.  Although, I thought it was an interesting dynamic for a period of time, it would have been interesting to see where that would have gone on GH with McBain, and Jason, and Sam, because there was something there that they could have built on very slowly.  I don’t know what would have happened, but I think that dynamic was the only dynamic that could have worked for a period of time.   I don’t think Fin would work, but that one dynamic would have been interesting when you have the cop, the outlaw, and the girl who comes between them.

Photo: ABC

One Life to Live recently would have celebrated its 51st anniversary if it was still on the air.  Back in July, I posted these photos of major characters through the years.  I received so many “likes” and so many comments on social media such as, “I miss it so much. Bring it back!”  What can you say about those enduring One Life fans and being part of that one-of-a-kind show?

READ MORE
Suspense Thriller 'Perception' Starring GH's Wes Ramsey Now Available

MICHAEL:  They’re the most beautiful fans.  All of the daytime fans are beautiful, but I think it was a really nice connection with the One Life to Live fans, and we got to know so many of them working in New York on the streets, you came out of the studio, and people were right there.  So, you really got to know them.  You got to engage with people.  I love that show, and I miss it.  Otherwise, I still stay in touch with a lot of them.  I think that speaks to it.  I have lifelong friends who I met on that show, which never happens.  Usually, you walk out of a show on your last day, and you’ll never see anybody again.  You’ll all say, “Yeah, let’s exchange numbers.”  I walk out of there and I go, “Thank you, and I’ll never see you again.”  I don’t even lie to people.  Like, I know I’ll never see you again, and I never have except for that show, and I am still in touch with so many of those people.  So, I think that spoke to how close we were.

Photo: JPI

Were you and Roger Howarth (Franco/Drew) always close on One Life, or are you closer now because you do all of the personal appearance events you do together?

MICHAEL:  Well, Roger and I have known each other; it must be going on… 25-30 years now.  So, it was pre-One Life.  I think at some point we both had long hair, and both had done daytime, so we were pretty interchangeable.  I think one time they called him about a part I did, and one time, they called me about a part when he left.  I actually know Roger because I did a series called 413 Hope St., and Jesse Martin was the lead in it.  It was a Damon Wayans series for Fox.  So, I had known of Roger, but I really got to know him at a New Year’s Eve party in like 1995/96.  Obviously, I’ve become really close to him now because we never did appearances or that sort of thing, but I think we have both sort of gotten over ourselves a little bit now. (Laughs)

Because you weren’t very visible before.  That goes for both of you!

MICHAEL:  No, and that’s by default.  I don’t think we ever discussed it.

Photo: ABC

It wasn’t a conscious decision?

MICHAEL:  No, I just thought (especially when I came back to daytime to do Caleb) it was just more interesting if people didn’t know a lot about me because the character was that.  So, it took me a while to ease into it, and also, I just had to get over myself.  I had a fear of engaging with large groups of people for a while.  In a strange way, Roger and I have kind of gravitated to each other.  I think we are both similar types.  Between the two of us, we make up one real man, you know?  Each of us is like half a man. (Laughs)

Together you can conquer.

MICHAEL:  We are a good crutch for each other!  He picks up my half, I pick up his.  That’s the solution.

So what do you think GH viewers can look forward to coming up with Finn?

MICHAEL:  I’m assuming at some point he is going to get his world turned upside down when he finds out about Hayden and the baby, and how he is going to react to that will probably be interesting.  I hope that’s going to happen.

Photo: ABC

If he became an addict again, how would you feel about that?

MICHAEL:  I think him struggling and getting over that would be interesting.  I would hope that wouldn’t be his reaction, but I guess that always hangs over your head.  Certainly, him falling apart would be interesting.  I think your faith in the universe would be crushed in that moment.  I don’t know how he would react.  I’m just really curious to see how that would shake out and to play that.  I think it would be a challenge.  I think you’re always looking for some way to turn everything … and I invite that.  I always think that sometimes in daytime we play the gimmick, but you should always play to the heart of the story.  What’s going to make you feel something?  If you feel something as the character, as the actor, I think the audience will feel something with you.  I think it is maybe one of the things that we have gotten away from a little bit is that emotional attachment.  When I watch shows that really move me, it’s still that emotional attachment between two people, and at the end of the day it should still be a love story … no matter what it is.   I think that is the heart of what we should be doing.  I think every poem should be a love poem of some sort.  I know they have to weave the other stuff, the science fiction, and the memories, and the missing babies, and the twins, but at the heart of it, it should really be about two people finding themselves in love.

Are you working on graphic novels, movies?

MICHAEL:  I’m always doing something, Michael.  It keeps me balanced, and it keeps me from losing my mind.

Photo: JPI

Will you be producing and directing any new short films?

MICHAEL: Trevor St. John (Ex-Todd/Victor Lord Jr. OLTL) and I are always talking about doing a short film.  Every time we drink too much beer, next thing you know, we are going to be doing a movie.  We have many beers, and then we shoot a film.  Then, we call our friends like Kamar de los Reyes (Ex-Antonio, OLTL), and Sherri Saum (Ex-Keri, OLTL), and Dan Gauthier (Ex-Kevin OLTL), and we go, “Now you guys, drink many beers, and you will join us on this film.”

See, now I get how movies are made!  

So, are you hoping that GH tells more of the story between Finn and Hayden?  Are you hoping that Anna and Finn make it to their “I do’s? What would you like to see happen to Finn? And finally, of all Michael’s soap roles which has been your favorite? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement

Video du Jour

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

The Michael Channel

Recent Comments

  • Kit: “I never quite got over Meredith's death either. Very dramatic--and drawn out because it was in the middle of the…
  • MysteriousMan: “I agree, but in my opinion, Jerry Jacks is one of the best villains GH has ever had, played by…
  • Soph: “Que the applause!
  • Mrs Rosemary Nicholas: “Don't allow Hope to entertain Bill again, she and her sister , Bill, and Hope needs to fight Thomasfor…
  • Nan: “Here here. Very well said.
Advertisement

Power Performance

Stacy Haiduk as Kristen and Susan

Days of our Lives

Airdates: 8-22/23-2019

Advertisement

Popular