This year, ‘General Hospital’ took a creative step forward –
by getting rid of a lot of the debris that had been encumbering it for several
This was the best all-around year for GH in I can’t remember
Not only did we get a bevy of beloved vets back, but we also
got an infusion of strong characters from Llanview and a cut in the airtime of
certain longtime Port Charles players who have essentially ruined the show over
the past decade.
Saying that this year in Port Charles was perfect, would be
a lie. Still it was much better than anything that the sudser has put to screen
since the mid-1990s.
So, without further ado, 2012’s best and worst of GH:
Best Storyline – Robin’s death: Kimberly McCullough has been
with GH for years – since she (and I, frankly) were small children. Fans have
grown up with her. Fans have loved alongside her. And, this year, they mourned
her untimely passing. Viewers know that Robin isn’t really dead. That didn’t
make her onscreen demise any less heartbreaking for fans off-screen – and her
loved ones onscreen. Robin’s death has allowed Jason Thompson (Patrick) to do
some of his best work ever. Robin’s “death” reverberates today. Just last week,
in fact, her father found her alive and then was injected with a toxin and put
into a coma. Now resident bad boy Jerry Jacks has her and fans are still
clamoring for her return. If GH plays this right, Robin's return could be next year's best story.
Best Storyline (runner-up) – A.J. returns: For years, the
beloved Quartermaine family was decimated by death after death (after death, after death, after death). This year, the
rejuvenation began with the return of black sheep A.J. Quartermaine. A.J. was
still smarmy, snarky and untrustworthy. He was still suffering from a persecution complex that was bigger than his hair gel issues. His return
fired up his mother, his aunt, his son and his mortal enemies, though. Here’s
hoping A.J. is just the first in a long line of returning Quartermaines –
including Ned, Alan and Emily. Bring on the bickering.
Worst Storyline – Kate’s DID: Multiple personality storylines
are always a risk. ‘One Life to Live’ managed to pull it off (countless times)
thanks to the talent of Erika Slezak. The soap started overdoing things when
Bree Williams’ Jessica had the disease. Quite frankly, you can only go to that
well so many times – and OLTL did it about five too many times. I’m sure it
seemed like a good idea to do a DID storyline on GH. It wasn’t, though. First
off, to make a DID storyline work, the character afflicted has to be beloved.
Kate is not beloved. Second off, DID storylines are tricky. Williams and Slezak
are powerhouse actresses. Kelly Sullivan is not. Sure, it looks like she’s
having a ball as Connie. Her Kate isn’t root-worthy, though, so ultimately the
whole story fails. The fact that the beloved Johnny Zacchara is being
sacrificed on the altar of this storyline just makes things that much worse
Best reason to start drinking – Olivia’s visions: This is
another misstep by the writers this year. Olivia’s visions were hard enough to
swallow when they were about Heather and Faison. When she started dreaming of
Maxie giving birth to a puppy, though, things went from mildly irritating to rabidly
Best Actor – Jason Thompson: We always knew he was a solid
actor, but watching Thompson’s masterful performance as a man who has lost his
wife was truly something to behold over the past nine months. Not only was Thompson able to convey
Patrick’s heartbreak at losing Robin – but also his confusion when it came time
to raise his daughter, and his reluctance to even attempt to move on. Even months later, Patrick is still struggling to keep his head above water – and Thompson never lets fans forget where Patrick’s heart really belongs and what it will take to make him whole again.
Best Actress – Jane Eliot: Tracy Quartermaine is a hard
character to love a lot of the time. Still, in Eliot’s capable hands, I don’t
think there was a dry eye in the house when Tracy Quartermaine said goodbye to
her beloved father. Eliot was mesmerizing as a grown woman that couldn’t grasp
the loss of her “daddy.”
Mommy Dearest Award – Kate: Sure, Kate was traumatized by
being raped and giving birth, but that still doesn’t make up for her leaving a
newborn in a drawer in a dresser. I don’t care if it was Connie or Kate who
abandoned the kid, that’s not the way to make fans warm up to a character.
Best Death – Edward: In what could have been the best
send-off of a beloved character ever, Port Charles bid adieu to Edward
Quartermaine this fall. John Ingle, Edward’s portrayer, passed away in the
summer. His final scenes were of Edward giving the lone dose of a cure to young
Emma Drake Scorpio – rather than saving himself. When it came time to write
Edward off, GH went all out – even bringing back Ned and Skye for Edward’s
funeral. The best moment of the episode came when you saw Edward and Lila (body
doubles, of course) ride off into the great unknown together.
Worst Death – Jason: The best thing to ever happen to GH was
getting rid of Jason Morgan. However, the show did it in a really sloppy way. I’m
not talking about the death itself, of course. Jason Morgan getting shot and
kicked into the water on the docks was a fitting end to a rampant thug.
However, the aftermath has left a lot to be desired. Sonny, Carly, Michael and
Monica mourned him for exactly five minutes before moving on. Wife Sam has
lived in denial for the past few months. Now that Steve Burton has signed on
with another soap, let’s put Jason to rest and let Sam move on with a worthy
love interest. Jason Quartermaine was not a hero. Let's bury him and move on.
Best Couple – Lulu and Dante: There actually wasn’t a lot of
choice in this area. I mean, practically no choice. Think about it. How many couples are actually on this show? It's not a pretty number. Still, Lulu and Dante are one of the few couples the show can boast -- and respectfully at that. The sometimes tortured couple have a lot of love for each other, a lot of patience, a lot of loyalty and they’re always there for each other.
Plus, the two ooze chemistry.
Worst Couple – Jason and Sam: I like strong heroines. I can’t
help it. Sam is supposed to be a strong heroine. However, when she’s paired
with Jason she becomes a walking doormat. Sam was “raped,” and yet her husband
was the one that moped. Sam lost her baby, and yet Jason was the one who really
felt the pain. Sam is a much better character when she is free of Jason. Let’s
hope she gets to show that again soon.
Best Return – Anna Devane: There were a lot of returns this
year. Anna was only one of them. Like I said above, though, I like strong
heroines (and Anna is one of my all-time favorites). Anna managed to come to town and take over an inept police
department. She immediately warned Jason that his antics would no longer be
tolerated (I wanted to stand and cheer). She embarked on a mature love story with Luke. Oh, and she banters
with the best of them when she’s in a room with her beloved Robert. Anna commands respect -- and I love a heroine like that.
Worst Return – Helena Cassidine: In some really brief scenes,
Robert and Helena faced off about Faison’s identity. They were fun and full of
history. They were over in a few minutes, though, and we haven’t had a glimpse
of Helena again. She’s too good of a character to waste, GH. Give her a real story.
Best One Life to Live import -- Todd: I was on the fence when I heard which OLTL characters would be migrating to GH. Months into the experiment, though, I have to say they picked the right ones. All three of the imports have established a strong chemistry with their GH counterparts. Todd, however, has instilled a sense of comedy and charm to the show that it was severely lacking. Unlike Sonny and Jason, Todd is a villain that owns the crap he does. He's not portrayed as a saint or an angel despite the bad things he does. Todd is a walking one-liner -- and no one does comedy better than Roger Howarth.
Best Villain – Jerry Jacks: Jerry is often portrayed as an
inept cartoon. Still, the water toxin story was gripping in a lot of respects.
Jerry is always out for number one – and it made sense that he would try and
protect Alexis and Josslyn. In a surprise that even I didn’t see coming, it
appears Jerry is now in charge of our beloved Robin’s fate. I can’t wait to see
what he has up his sleeves next.
Worst Hero – Jason: GH’s biggest problem over the years was
elevating two thugs to hero status and pretending we were supposed to revere
criminals as heroes. Half of that equation was solved this year when Saint
Jason of the Docks met his maker. Here’s hoping that the Godfather of Thrown
Glass will follow him down that road sooner – rather than later.
Who Cares Award -- Sabrina and Britt: I cannot fathom why I'm supposed to like either of these characters. The writers have went out of their way to make Sabrina pathetic. They have went out of their way to make Britt a bully and unlikeable. Guess what? I can't stand either of them. Propping one as a helpless sap and the other as a heartless harlot doesn't make me like either of them. Get them on the first train out of Port Charles -- and let Jerry blow it up if the mood strikes.
Best reveal -- Duke is Faison: Everyone knew there was something "not quite right" about Duke when he returned. He wasn't the dashing lothario we all remembered. We all started to suspect that Duke was really someone else. The question was who. While no one was surprised that Duke turned out to be Faison, I think fans were tickled with the hilariously eighties reveal of Faison pulling off a latex mask to a dumfounded Robin and revealing his plan. Kudos for finding the fun, GH. There were a lot of holes in the story, but it was so fun most fans didn't really care.
What do you think? What did GH do right this year? What did
they do wrong?