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Holy Cassadine! Thaao Penghlis Set To Return To General Hospital!

Courtesy/NBC

Courtesy/NBC

We have set it before, and we will say it again, the hits keeps coming from General Hospital! 

This time, they step back into the heyday with the news today from Soap Opera Digest that none other than Thaao Penghlis is set to reprise his role as Victor Cassadine!

For those who recall, it was back in 1981 in the Gloria Monty days and the Ice Princess storyline, that we were first introduced to Victor.

After the entire Ice Princess plot was foiled by none other than Luke Spencer, apparently Victor was sent to prison! According to a tweet from Penghlis today when fans were commenting that this could be another back-from-the-dead storyline, Thaao related about Victor C:  “If you knew the history he was the only one that survived and went to prison.”

Thaao will be back on set early next year at General Hospital and his first air date is tentatively set for January 30, 2014!

Days of our Lives fans know Penghlis very well for his portrayal of Tony (and Andre) DiMera over decades on the NBC soap, too!

So, what do you think about the news of the character of Victor Cassadine coming back to GH? How do you think he will figure into story? Comment below!

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Sandra Norcross
Sandra Norcross

YaY! Terrific news!

Charlotte
Charlotte

between Robert and Luke. be great exit for Robert. and wouldn’t it be great to see Helena to come back from the dead and go up against her brother-in-law. and Victor to end up teaming with Luke to bring down the Dragon Lady?

Charlotte
Charlotte

i really hope he comes back as a good guy. that Robert Scorpio knew about his whereabouts, like he’s been undercover for the WSB all these years as a plea deal. and it would be so cool if Sean and Tiffany would come back too. what a great love triangle that would make! like Sean knew all about this too right along with Robert. putting a rift between Sean and Tiff and between Robert and Luke. be great exit for Robert. and wouldn’t it be great to see Helena to come back from the dead and go up against her brother-in-law. and Victor to end up teaming with Luke to bring down the Dragon Lady?

kara anderson
kara anderson

yes that is a great news

KatieK
KatieK

I love him, but lets get an actual story for AJ who is on trial! Bring his family to supppurt him. Monica, at least!!

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

I agree.

Charday
Charday

I second that motion—missing those Quartermaines!!!

Omar
Omar

I also agree..More Monica and AJ..The cast is very large, so focus on the fan favorites more..Very tired of the same old Cassadine vs Spencer plot..Why not focus on a new Cassadine Vs Sonny Corinthos story..I think that should be a blast to watch.

kara anderson
kara anderson

me too that will be interesting

I Love GH
I Love GH

I agree!!! What was the point of getting us to like him only to drop him????

kara anderson
kara anderson

I don’t know

kara anderson
kara anderson

I will me kara anderson i will gave him my support

Goldbreeze
Goldbreeze

I am a part of his fan group. I have enjoyed his performances in many shows. He recently did a couple of Christian films, ‘The Book of Esther’ and ‘Redeemed’. He is a marvelous actor and a great cook. Its a true blessing to have him back in his element. I look forward to seeing him back in his office. Full throttle Thaao!

kara anderson
kara anderson

your right I ‘am very happy he is back

MC
MC

No offense to the actor, but I am over the returns from the dead of over the top villains. We just got done with the Faison/Dr. O/Jerry Jacks nuttiness. We know who is going to win from the outset. Is Luke Spencer really going to die? Doubtful. When will we get back to the GH that told stories that mean something? ENOUGH!

Nk3play2
Nk3play2

Actually, it is a known fact that Victor NEVER died, he was only sent to prison. Also, Penghlis himself confirmed this on Twitter earlier today, his character was never killed off.

ethel
ethel

just shows how much these so called soap fans know………….

MC
MC

Dear Ethel – I apologize that the information I stated was wrong. I was only sighting info from soap central, and GH itself. Soap Central said that the character was presumed dead. And Nikolas, Helena and others have all stated that Nikolas was the last of the Cassadines. I believe that Nikolas even said that he was alone in the world not so long ago. So for now I’ll just genuflect to your superior soap knowledge despite the fact that I’ve been watching the show for close to 30 years.

Elizabeth
Elizabeth

I would LOVE to see Victor Cassadine back (hopefully NOT from the dead)…. but I agree with MC in that I don’t respect RC’s writing ability enough to presume that he can do justice to the storyline. I don’t want to see campiness here. Have to also say MC, I think you’ll be disappointed from now until the day GH is cancelled if you expect to see stories that mean something from this head writer. He doesn’t have talent, he doesn’t have the depth, he doesn’t have the humility to understand what used to make GH great, indeed, iconic. That show is sadly long gone, even if we all DO love seeing the vets onscreen again.

k/kay
k/kay

So is he here to pick up Sabrina’s wedding dress? is he going to be on for one episode and say about ten words? Inquireing minds would like to know! Just what is RC doing over there?

Breck
Breck

Elizabeth, I totally respect that RC’s writing isn’t your cup of tea. But I would argue that GH *is* in a “great” era right now. The actors are happy, the fans are (mostly) happy, it’s using history like never before, and it recently got SIX YEAR high ratings in the demo after steadily improving ratings over the more than a year RC has been writing the show. Does he have faults? Absolutely. I think his canvas is too big (too many characters). Other things (like resting characters for 2-3 weeks at a time) I now like, but just needed time to get used to. The humor I LOVE, so while I get it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, it’s one of the primary reasons (the show has lightened up considerably) that I’m a daily viewer again instead of a 2-3 times a month viewer who watches clips on YouTube. The show is great and iconic again, and is the daytime show with the most mainstream news coverage and buzz and has been for over a year now. When people talk about soaps coming back from the dead, they keep pointing to GH because it has had the same kind of creative resurgence that DAYS has had, but actually has the ratings to back it up as well (it helps that it’s not up against the #1 show in any markets, like DAYS is). So it’s okay that you don’t love it and the days of GH having a more traditional or at least different tone than it does now. But to say GH is meanningless or that the writer is talentless is too far, IMO. It’s just very different–moves faster, mixes a higher ratio of shallower stories with one heavy one at a time, and splits time among a huge canvas of cast members–but that also means we see more vets who were previously fired and we see a lot more history being played. To just write all of that off, including the ratings success, as not worth anything, while only focusing on what RC does poorly, doesn’t seem fair. If we really went back and looked at Monty, or Marland, or Nixon, or Bell, or Reilly, all considered greats now, there was a lot onscreen at the time that no one remembers because it wasn’t that great, and there were plenty of characters and stories that didn’t work. We remember one or two great stories from each few years and great performances and that’s what a writer is defined for for history, not the day to day. We forget that stuff looking back.

Elizabeth
Elizabeth

Well Breck, you are certainly more trusting than I am. I attribute much of the ratings success to the return of the vets and I am guessing that when the 50th year of celebration is over we won’t see them any more, at least in major roles. I also differentiate between humor, which is funny and enjoyable as compared with camp, which is unfortunately stupid and cartoon-like. There is plenty of opportunity to be faster moving without skipping over half the story (most recent example we have learned is that there have been NO scenes taped between Patrick and Robin where he even asks her what she endured in captivity. Most viewers I would bet would be interested in that scene despite it slowing down the pace.) I guess my biggest issue is that I was never a fan of One Life to Live, thus am not interested in an amalgamation of both shows.

kara anderson
kara anderson

luke spencer will not die i know he is sick he will survive it

Carrie
Carrie

Love Thaao. He’s the best. GH has a new fan!

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

Love Thaao Phenglis no matter what role he plays. I’m happy he’s returning to GH, but I’ve been waiting for him to return to DOOL for years.

RC sure likes his back-from-the-dead storylines. I’m not complaining because I’m loving the returns, but it is getting a bit redundant.

su0000
su0000

ohhh my gawd!!
GH is bursting with excitement!!!

Jenny
Jenny

I love the idea of Thaao returning to GH after all these years! I got a suggestion-how about casting Leann Hunley as Tiffany who was Victor’s love interest back then? Then we can have a Victor/Tiffany/Sean triangle and bring Tiffany and Sean back home along with their daughter!

Patrick
Patrick

just to see Leann Hunley back on screen in any capacity… would be out of this world…

however: she belongs on DAYS… wishful thinking….

she should be back in Salem… to give some femininity and Womanly adversary… for the DiMera’s

Patrick
Patrick

P.S.

sorry to say this: what if… Leann Hunley dyed her hair… brown/red and TA-DA! is a recast for Bobbie Spencer?

would’nt this knock our socks off… as Carly’ mother… and Luke’s sister….

NICE!

I love Jaclyn Zeamon… don’t get me wrong….

Shay
Shay

@Patrick….Thaao and Leann made a fabulous supercouple….full of class and elegance, which is so sorely missing in today’s soap world! Would love to see them reunited in a new way on GH. That being said, I will happily welcome Victor back solo to Port Charles to wreak some dastardly deeds in his own dashing and debonair fashion! Just wish his old nemesis and romantic rival, Robert Scorpio would be there to greet him!!!!

lorenzo
lorenzo

Wow great news. who else is coming back for 2014, alan quartermaine and emily. You never know? Maybe there alive, locked in the room.

su0000
su0000

FV seems to be bringing back the great actors that made GH great!!
I am all for it.. to have these great actors back to enhance GH and bring us great stories preformed by the great actors, it doesn’t get ant better than that!!

GH has an abundance of excitement and having these great actors/characters back is wonderful!!

kaffe
kaffe

I love it!!!!!!!!

Nick
Alexis
Sam&Danny
Spencer
Molly
Chris

I am happy for the Cassidines, yeah!!!!

sarah
sarah

I agree 100%

su0000
su0000

I do not see it as back from the dead..
There were no bodies etc..
I see it as bringing the best back; great entertainment!!

FV and RC are bringing back the best of GH to give us the best stories possible!!

jimh(leave it to beaver)
jimh(leave it to beaver)

This is getting to be a lot like Dark Shadows where the dead rarely stayed dead!

ethel
ethel

victor cassidine never died – he survived & went to prison……….

jimh(leave it to beaver)
jimh(leave it to beaver)

Thanks 4 reply…i got him mixed up with another Cassidine…but with others back from the dead…Robin, Julian, Duke and maybe Lily its still a little Dark Shadowish!

Charday
Charday

Would rather see another Cassadine back, than Kiki, Sonny, Carly, or Franco!

Gh lover
Gh lover

Yeahh!!! Gh is the best!!

Johnny
Johnny

I question this. This show is already overun with villains, murderers, psychopaths, and mobsters.. So we really need this forgttable Cassadine who made nary an impact at all?? There are so many beloved characters to being back from he dead that were killed during the Guza regime…Alan…Georgie..Emily…etc…Could we not have the return of them instead of more villains?? So many vets are currently not being used….I wouldn’t even classify Thaao as a GH vet. DAYS vet for sure….but GH has mishandled so many vets recently…their treatment of Genie Francis has been terrible.Felicia and Mac put in a token appearance once a month. I just sincerely don’t get it. This Victor Cassadine will bring no shock or emotional impact or value. Why bother??

su0000
su0000

well,you can always tune out and read a book, no need to suffer through it..

I love it!! It will create great entertainment!! 🙂

Johnny
Johnny

Or I can keep watching and comment on it like you and everyone else. Without being instructed to go read a book

ethel
ethel

thank you for posting this………….gh is the best soap on right now – i know because i watch all four remaining soaps that are on the air!

Libby
Libby

Superb news for #GH. Thaao Penghlis is talented, approachable and ever so professional. Big win for viewers and fans.

sarah
sarah

I agree with you 100%

heidi
heidi

I think it’s great!!! Nikolas needs some of his crazy family back! Had hopd it would be Steven Nichols as Stephan… this is still great!!!

ethel
ethel

yeah i wants stefan back too but i’ll take victor…………

Ces
Ces

would love Stephen Nichols to return!!! Then all my dreams would be complete 🙂

Charles E.
Charles E.

LONG OVERDUE!!! The return of an original Cassadine from ’81- I wonder if he will go after Tiffany for betraying him all those years ago. Of course, that depends on Sharon Wyatt’s health.

Charday
Charday

It would be awesome to see Tiffany and Sean back together again.

Brian
Brian

Such great news !!!

D
D

YEAH….he is such a great actor, GH has rocked it this year and I can’t wait to see what is coming in 2014.
Thank you GH

Mk
Mk

This must be the sl that TR had to be wrote out of. I was hoping for a roiniesbert and victor they were eminies before the ice story. Been ating for his return s TP left Days. Stephan sad that Victor ws dead . but never believed it.

sean
sean

Alan is dead let him rip……the original actor is retired. Blind items clearly stated he had issues reading the teleprompter.

Tim
Tim

I’d love to see Victor, Stephan, Starvos, and Nicholas ALL take up residency at Spoon Island. We need a core family on the show since they seem to be going away from the Quartermaines again. Yeah the Cassidines are evil but most people with money and or power are. Can you imagine those four guys in one mansion. Who would take out the garbabe?

Ces
Ces

I’m game!

Randi
Randi

Love it can’t wait till he’s back

Ces
Ces

BEST news ever!!!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Thaao!!!! Days blew it when they let Tony DiMera go so I’m thrilled Victor Cassadine is back!!!! Doing the happy dance!!!! 😀

sarah
sarah

I agree with you thaao will be great as usual on GH or Days

bella figura
bella figura

Days loss is GH’s gain…looking forward to more campy fun!!

Ces
Ces

Agreed Bella! I started watching Thaao as Victor long before Tony DiMera but I love both characters .. Thaao is just sexy & dashing no matter who he plays!! Can’t wait for his first airdate 🙂

Laurie Baker
Laurie Baker

DAYS’ loss is GH’s gain. Thaao always plays powerful villain characters; and never “phones it in”. Hoping for a long run for Victor Cassadine on GH!

su0000
su0000

yes!
The Cassadine’s belong back on GH!!!

Ali W
Ali W

I LOVED LOVED LOVED LOVED LOVED. Thaao on days of our lives. Then that means that I will LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE him, on GH twice as much. I know of his character, and his history but I never watched his character before. So watching him as Victor is new for me. Thaao is one iconic daytime actors that ever lived. It’s like it has come full circle for him. First he started on GH, then onto DOOL, and now back to GH. That’s what makes him iconic.

Jo
Jo

What’s with all of these people coming back from the dead? When they say they are dead……they NEVER show them dead, just so that they can bring them back at some point.

General Hospital

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

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

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

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

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

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

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

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

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

Right, and to have to fight for something…

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

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

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

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

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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

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

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo” ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

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

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

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

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

Photo: ABC

The evil-eye necklace!

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

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

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

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

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

Photo: JPI

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

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

Photo: JPI

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

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

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

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

Photo: JPI

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

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

Photo/ABC

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

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

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

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General Hospital

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

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

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

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

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GENERAL HOSPITAL: Franco To Cameron, "Tell Your Mom I Love Her ... And Tell Her I'll Be Back"

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

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

Courtesy/ABC

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

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How to Get Away With Murder To End After Its Upcoming Sixth Season

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

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Breaking News

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Billy Miller Pens "Goodbye" Letter On His Exit From General Hospital
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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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