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Wendy Riche on "If the AIDS story on GH originally was told through A.J. Quartermaine!

What if the character of A.J. Quartermaine would have been the main character that  drove the thrust of  the AIDS story that ended up being told through the love story of Robin and Stone on General Hospital back in the early 90’s? That is something that is discussed in part two of Wendy Riche’s interview at We Love Soaps.

Riche, the former executive producer of General Hospital, who was at the epicenter of many of the fantastic socially relevant stories in GH’s deep history, admitted that their originally was a bit of a dispute between then GH, head writer, Claire Labine, and Riche, as to what character would lead the AIDS story.   Here are some compelling excerpts!

Riche: “I wanted to do a story about AIDS when I first got to GH.  AIDS was on the rise, a non-discriminating disease that didn’t care who it attacked.  I felt it was an issue of great importance and wanted to find a way to interface many of the characters of Port Charles with the hospital.  At first, I thought it could be a story for A.J. Quartermaine.  I thought, what would happen if A.J. had another drunken night in college, one of many, and explore what would happen when a friend, a male friend, from college shows up at the Quartermaine mansion wanting A.J.’s help since his family threw him out because he had AIDS.  And A.J. doesn’t remember who had sex with who, and what he did during so many drunken orgies.  They could have both had sex with a woman who was a drug addict. The intention was not to make them gay, but the implication might have stirred up a lot.  We could have asked, “Why does everyone care so much if he was gay? Why does he care? How would Edward Quatermaine react and what would Lila do to bring the family back together?”  We could have looked at it all.  But it wasn’t about being gay, I didn’t want to be, “Oh those gay people, of course they screw around so much…” of some B.S. like that.   AIDS is a non-discriminating disease, it doesn’t care who you are are or what your sexuality is.  If you do stupid things, have unprotected sex, you risk getting it.  If we had done it with a gay character we would not have gotten the message of urgency across.  So the intention was to have a smart person who was not gay but made stupid choices get AIDS.  I didn’t have Claire at the time, and I don’t know if Claire would have even wanted to do it that way, but the network did not want to do that story. They didn’t want A.J. to be in question of having AIDS, or maybe not being 100% heterosexual, they just didn’t want to go there because he was a Quartermaine, which of course, is exactly why I wanted to go there.

I talked to Claire about this, and she came up with Robin and Stone.  She was not ready to do this story at the beginning of her run on GH.  But one day, a year later, we were at a company retreat dinner and she looked at me with that twinkle in her eye, learned over, and whispered, “I think I’ve got it.”  She told me the story in two lines and I loved it.  It was everything I hoped for.  We were so excited, we told Pat [Fili-Krushel] right then and there and she said to go with it.  Claire and I had driven up to Connecticut together for the retreat and what was wonderful is that we had the long trip to talk about it.”

So what do you think if the story had gone to A.J. instead of Robin and Stone?

General Hospital

TONIGHT: Kelly Kruger and Ryan Paevey In Hallmark Channel’s ‘From Friend to Fiancé’

When Ted gets engaged to the high school mean girl and asks Jess, his childhood best friend, to plan their wedding, things get complicated. Her true feelings for Ted keep getting in the way … and that’s the set-up for tonight’s premiere of From Friend to Fiancé  which stars Jocelyn Hudon along with daytime drama favorites: Kelly Kruger (Mackenzie, Y&R) and Ryan Paevey (Ex-Nathan, General Hospital).

From Friend to Fiancé bows tonight on the Hallmark Channel beginning at 9PM ET and 8PM CT.  In the story, Paevey plays the man at the epicenter of all the attention, Ted, while Kruger takes on the role of Kimberly Kentwood.

This movie is part of Hallmark’s ‘Countdown to Summer’ promotion of stories that always centers around love and romance and how people come together, or break apart, and them come back together again.

The cable network sent this tweet out in anticipation of tonight’s premiere: “The wait is almost over! What will Jess do when she finds out her best friend Ted is marrying her sworn high school rival Kimberly ?”

Meanwhile, Kelly Kruger announced that she will be live-tweeting with fans at 9PM during the debut of the movie.

So, looking forward to seeing Ryan and Kelly together on-screen? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GH Poll: What Was Your Favorite Musical Performance At The Nurses’ Ball?

This week saw the conclusion of the four-part GH Nurses’ Ball 2019. Throughout the episodes, several of the cast members of the ABC daytime drama series took to the stage to perform musical numbers through the lens of their characters.

Now it’s time for you to weigh-in and let us know what was your favorite musical performance? Is it sultry Ava’s (Maura West), “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You”, Cameron Webber’s (Wiliam Lipton) original song, “North Star”, the GH Nurses rendition of “Best of My Love”, Josslyn Jacks’ (Eden McCoy) emotional “A List Of Things To Do”, Chase’s (Josh Swickard) rousing “Something Just Like This”, Liesl Obrecht and her buddy, Franco’s take on “Guilty”, Ned (Wally Kurth) and Olivia Falconeri’s (Lisa LoCicero) “Get Closer”, or Valentin Cassadine’s (James Patrick Stuart) version of “Nothing Without You”?

Cast your vote below in our poll, but before you do, you may want to check the performances again at the bottom of the post before you make your selection.

Then let us know in the comment section your thoughts on the best performance.

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General Hospital

GH Nurses’ Ball 2019 Part Four: Joss Sings For Oscar, Valentin Takes The Stage, Kevin In Dire ‘Straits’, Ava Waits For Ryan

The conclusion of the GH Nurses’ Ball 2019 episodes brought with it emotional moments and performances from the stage, and major drama with yet to come ramifications for several people of Port Charles.

After Ryan (Jon Lindstrom) knocked out Kevin and switched places with him, yet again, the serial killer is on the loose at the ball. Later, when Scott (Kin Shriner) is backstage and is upset about Ava’s (Maura West) relationship with Kevin, Scott comes face-to-face with “Kevin” and having enough, tries to grab Scott’s hand to stop him from leaving. But, lo and behold, off comes his prosthetic hand.  Next, Ryan clubs Scott over the head, who now is the only person that saw Ryan at the ball.

Elsewhere, Shiloh (Coby Ryan McLaughlin) confronts Willow (Katelyn MacMullan), after overhearing her conversation with Diane that she has a child, and he asks here if she was pregnant when she left “Dawn of Day”.  She claims she miscarried their child, but he refuses to believe a word out of her mouth and becomes irate.

Courtesy/ABC

Michael (Chad Duell) saves Willow and warns Shiloh to stay away from her and his family. An out-of-sorts Shiloh heads back to his table where Sam (Kelly Monaco), Lucas (Ryan Carnes) and Brad (Parry Shen) are.  Shiloh informs Sam that he just found out someone had his baby and deceived him.  Lucas and Brad are both alarmed.

The first musical performance of the episode was Ned (Wally Kurth) and Olivia’s (Lisa LoCicero) rendition of Seals & Crofts classic, “Get Closer”.  Wally Kurth and Lisa LoCicero remain one of the endearing duos on the show.

Meanwhile, the question. and of course. the big musical finale hinged on Josslyn Jacks (Eden McCoy), and if she would perform the song she wrote with Oscar (Garren Stitt) at his request and in his honor.  In the best scene of all the ball episodes this year, Sonny (Maurice Benard) finds a conflicted Joss outside the ballroom.  She says she thought she was stronger and could do this, but she isn’t.  An emotional Sonny shares with her how Oscar will always be with her, and be OK with whatever choice she makes. Sonny relates it back to Stone and his relationship with him while the young man was living and while he has been deceased.  Maurice Benard and Eden McCoy delivered in this tender scene.

Courtesy/ABC

In the next musical number, Valentin Cassasdine (James Patrick Stuart) attempts to calm down a drunken Nina (Michelle Stafford), who is all out of sorts due to her hatred of Willow.(and perhaps her lust for Jax?), by taking to the stage to perform his number.  This time, Stuart plays the piano and sings “Nothing without You” by Vienna Tang.  And once again, Valentin wowed the audience, and James sang beautifully, as he has each year at the ball.

Still undecided if she can perform, Josslyn worries she’s letting everyone down. Jax (Ingo Rademacher) comes to see her and reassures her, saying she doesn’t have to prove anything to anyone, she just needs to follow her heart.

Finally, Josslyn makes the decision to perform, and that she does in the emotional high point of the episode.  As she performs this song about the list of things she and Oscar were planning to do together before the young man died, and how she will carry it with her, she sees Oscar in the back of the ballroom in his tux singing with her and rooting her on.  Kudos to Eden McCoy for being the heartbeat of this year’s ball, along with Lynn Herring, who the ‘ball’ would not be the ball without Lucy Coe,

Courtesy/ABC

As the Nurses’ Ball winds down, Shiloh is becoming unglued, and as Sam tries to calm him down, he tells her she needs to finish her initiation tonight.  He says he needs her to be in the ‘trust’ and he needs her strength.  Oh-oh!  Will Sam go through with this to trap the guy, or are we going to witness a major backfire?

A massive light bulb has gone off in Lucas’ head and he tells Brad he believes Willow and Shiloh are Wylie’s birth parents. Brad doesn’t know what to say, and we all know why!

As Lucy is instructing the clean up crew to take everything down on the stage, the curtains open and Kevin is suspended in midair hoisted up, knocked out, and trapped in a straight-jacket!  Everyone is horrified.  Cut to Ava who is at her safe house preparing to kill Ryan all by herself.  She gets everything in place, while she sips on some booze and waits for Ryan to arrive, and sure enough, we come to the cliffhanger.   Ryan sees Ava from outside the widow.  What will happen next?

So, what did you think of the final installment of this year’s Nurses Ball? What did you think of the performances from Joss, Valentin, and Ned and Olivia? Will Ava kill Ryan, or will someone else do it? Share your thoughts via the comment section below. But first,check out Josslyn’s AKA Eden McCoy’s performance below.

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

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Power Performance

Kin Shriner as Scott

General Hospital

Airdate: 4-2-2019

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