Love connections

For the Week of February 15, 2016
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GH Two Scoops: Love connections
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Couples are pairing up, but are they good for each other or just good for now? As Kristina begins a journey of self-discovery, Jason and Sam are rediscovering their love. Love is in the air on Valentine's Day, but not everything is wine and roses.

Well, dear readers, it looks like Kristina is going through a sexual identity crisis.

I will admit that I was not a fan of how it was revealed that Kristina was romantically interested in a woman because I thought it was done more for shock value than to give us a gripping storyline. This was further reinforced after Kristina's little chat with her highly inappropriate professor because things went nowhere. Kristina continued to lie to her parents and sneak around, while Parker went back to school to presumably read more Internet postings about how unfair she is with grades. We learned absolutely nothing about what prompted Kristina to fall for her professor.

The only thing we learned was that the professor invited a student over to her home as a friend and served her alcohol. It doesn't matter that Kristina is old enough to drink; it was wrong because Parker is in a position of power and authority. Why was she not fired? Worse, Parker then showed up to badger Kristina about some postings that pretty much any of her students could have written after receiving a lower grade than they had anticipated -- or a homophobic student.

Boundaries were crossed with Kristina, but Parker seemingly answered for none of them.

My previous column elicited some negative feedback from a few who jumped to the erroneous conclusion that I'm homophobic because I dared to express my dissatisfaction with this plot twist, so I'd like to take an opportunity to clarify a couple of things.

First, I was only commenting on how Kristina's storyline had been written thus far, not the subject matter. I do not care if a person is straight, gay, bisexual, pansexual, or asexual. I judge people solely on their character and integrity.

Second, my issue with Kristina being gay is not that she's homosexual, but rather my fear that the writers wouldn't treat this story with respect and take the opportunity to educate ignorant people about what it means to be something other than heterosexual. Homosexuality is not something that you can catch from someone like a cold, but rather the way you are wired since birth. You can no more make a straight person gay than you can make a gay person straight.

That said, Friday's episode gave me hope that the writers just might get it right after all. We saw Molly confront Kristina about Parker, and Kristina's reaction to Molly's assumption that Kristina is gay. More importantly, we saw Kristina talk to Brad and Lucas about their own journey to self-discovery.

I loved how Lucas explained that sexuality was on a spectrum because it opened the door for a conversation about not just homosexuality, but also bisexuality and pansexuality. This was exactly what I was looking for because even though a soap opera might not be the best source of accurate information, it can offer enlightenment and start a dialogue.

I am now cautiously optimistic that Kristina's story -- and journey -- will be treated with sensitivity and that was all I had asked for.

I thought it was interesting that Kristina's comment about Molly not projecting her own issues onto Kristina propelled Molly to invite T.J. back to her dorm to make love for the first time. Could Molly's assumption about Kristina being gay be something that Molly herself has struggled with? Time will tell, but Molly was rather quick to jump to the conclusion that Kristina was gay rather than bisexual, and Molly did seem determined to prove to herself that Kristina wrong about why Molly hadn't had sex with T.J.

As a side note, I used to give T.J. a hard time back when he was getting mixed up in Shawn's business and all that nonsense that happened with Rafe. However, I love how they've turned T.J. around. It's nice to see a positive representation of young adults in their late teens and early twenties. My son is in college, too, and just recently switched his major from biology to psychology, so I understood Jordan's reaction when T.J. told her and Curtis that he'd suddenly shifted majors to pursue a degree in pre-med. It was a very real moment that resonated with me as a parent.

Okay, I have to be honest and admit that I really like the chemistry between Andre and Anna more than I do Andre and Jordan. The way Andre looks at Anna seems somehow more intense and passionate than how he looks at Jordan. And Jordan has a lot more sexual tension and spark with Curtis than she does with Andre. Don't get me wrong, Jordan and Andre are a nice couple and easy on the eyes, but they are a bit boring.

Plus, I still despise Valerie and don't have any interest in her getting involved with Curtis.

It's Valerie's refusal to forgive Lulu, or at least try, which irks me. Valerie expected immediate forgiveness from Lulu for sleeping with Dante but couldn't extend Lulu the same courtesy when the shoe was on the other foot. That makes Valerie a hypocrite, and I loathe hypocrites. Also, I still don't think Valerie has truly owned up for her role in the affair. She -- and Dante -- continue to cast some blame on Lulu, especially the second time around, when Lulu was reeling and, in her hurt, handed Dante separation papers. Lulu is definitely responsible her role in the lack of trust in her marriage, but she is in no way to blame for Dante forsaking his vows with her cousin just hours after erroneously assuming the worst about his wife.

I think Valerie, like Dante, deserves to be alone for a while.

It didn't escape my notice that Dante made a beeline to Valerie at the pool table when he saw her with Curtis but completely ignored Lulu at the bar. I also think Valerie is trying just a little too hard to move on, which tells me there are still some romantic feelings simmering between Dante and Valerie.

I can't understand why any woman would want to take a man back who lied, cheated, and treated her horribly the way Dante did Lulu. It's also inconceivable to me that Lulu's loved ones would encourage her to fight for an unfaithful husband and grovel at his feet for a second chance. What Dante did cut Lulu to the core and rocked the very foundation of her life. Lulu was certainly wrong to go after Valerie, but it was Johnny who put Valerie in that cabin, and it was a series of unfortunate errors that led to the fire. No one meant to physically harm Valerie, and Lulu certainly didn't condone Johnny kidnapping her cousin and leaving Valerie bound in a cabin.

An extramarital affair is the worst kind of betrayal because you know that you are going to deeply hurt someone if you are caught -- especially when the innocent party is completely in love and devoted to one of the cheaters. Dante and Valerie covered up their affair because they knew it would shatter Lulu and leave her heartbroken. Until they stop punishing Lulu for their lies and affair -- which was the catalyst for everything that happened -- I just can't root for Dante or Valerie.

I hate that Nathan and Maxie spent Valentine's Day meddling in Dante and Lulu's lives. I would have preferred that the writers focused their energies on Nathan and Maxie because they are one of the few truly happy couples who are deeply in love and have a healthy relationship -- Alexis and Julian being the other couple.

If Sonny wasn't actively keeping Carly in the dark about the extent of his recovery, I'd have included them on the list, but Sonny is lying and breaking yet another promise to Carly, so it's rinse and repeat for them.

Luckily, the writers did give us a boon by having Jason and Sam finally return to the penthouse with their son, where Jason miraculously spent time playing with Danny and even tucked his son into bed after Danny fell asleep in his father's arms for the first time. Jason and Sam capped off their perfect evening with a steamy romantic kiss, which is sure to jumpstart their journey to happily ever after. I have to agree with Molly, Sam looks happier than ever -- bruises and all.

I'm also thrilled that things worked out with Jake and that he turned out not to be the diabolical monster that I saw people on message boards suggest he was when this storyline first unfolded. I love that Jake was genuinely remorseful and that Sam quickly clarified that Jake was in no way responsible for her fall, and I especially loved the scenes between Liz and Carly.

I've been hard on the writers lately because I've had very high expectations after they promised a return to romance and a focus on relationships. Until this week, I hadn't seen much of that. Kudos for showing women in a compassionate and positive light. Forgiveness is a powerful thing, and it was refreshing to see women being supportive rather than tearing each other down by acting catty and mean-spirited. I know it won't last forever -- Carly was quick to dispel us of that notion -- but it was nice to see it, even if only for a short while.

Speaking of Liz, could Griffin be her new love interest? I certainly hope so, especially if it entices Rebecca Herbst to stay. I'm a huge Liz fan and would hate see her go at this juncture in her life. Liz is a great antagonist for characters like Sam and Carly and she's needed to shake things up. Plus, Liz and her children are unique legacy characters as Steve Hardy's granddaughter and great-grandsons. Dr. Hardy was the very heartbeat of General Hospital for decades and an original character that appeared on the very first episode. That link should always be preserved, so I would be utterly crushed if Becky left.

A recast wouldn't work for me -- at least not right away.

So, who is Dr. Griffin Munro? I suspect he's related to Stone and Jagger Cates -- possibly their half-brother or nephew, since he has a different last name. Gina, Stone and Jagger's sister, was an AIDS activist, so it would explain why Griffin had the St. Aloysius medal and the instant connection Sonny felt to Griffin when he met him in the chapel. It would also explain why Griffin looks so gosh darn much like Stone.

I like the spark that I saw between Liz and Griffin and definitely would prefer her with him over Nikolas because Liz needs to end up in the middle of Nikolas and Hayden's messy marriage like she needs a hole in the head.

In other news, it appears that Michael Easton is on his way back. If you haven't watched the video of the announcement, I urge you to. It's cute.

I was talking to a friend about Michael's new role, which in and of itself is very cool. Isn't that some kind of record? Michael would have played John McBain, Silas, and Stephen Clay, Stephen's alter ego Caleb Morely, and now a new character. If you've lost count, that's six different characters on a single soap opera.

My hope is that Michael turns out to be the infamous and most dreaded Cassadine of them all, Mikkos' illegitimate, criminal mastermind son Valentin Cassadine. Even Helena had a tinge of fear in her voice when she spoke of him to Nikolas a few years back.

It seems somewhat fitting that Valentin appear in Port Charles around Valentine's Day, which also happens to coincide with the reading of Helena's will. I sensed some definite foreshadowing when Nikolas confidently bragged that there was nothing to be worried about because he knew what was in Helena's will, since he had a copy of it stashed in the safe. Anytime someone is that certain of something, red flags immediately go up for me.

Random observations and things that tickled my fancy
Don't blink. I noticed on Tuesday's episode that Sam had on a black top in the trauma bay as Jason, clad in a leather jacket, talked about finding Sam until Liz appeared in the doorway. When we returned to the scene, it picked up exactly where it had left off except Sam was wearing a hospital gown and Jason had shed his leather jacket.

What's going on with Tracy? Something tells me there was more to Lord Ashton's appearance in Mexico than the scenery and herbal delights with Tracy on the balcony.

Oh, how I love a good zinger
: [clears throat] "Hi. I see you two are enjoying your first Valentine's Day as husband and wife."
: "Nikolas just took me on the most romantic horseback ride through the snow."
: "I thought I smelled manure."

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Liz Masters
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