Charlotte's web

For the Week of December 12, 2016
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Charlotte's web
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A little girl made a special holiday wish, but will she receive her miracle or will her sugarplum dream of having a mother turn into nightmare before Christmas? It may be the season for giving, but it's all about the lies, blackmail, and explosive secrets in Port Charles.

Folks, I've come to the conclusion that Valentin is really Lord Voldemort -- Harry Potter's arch nemesis.

I reached that stunning conclusion as Valentin recounted the tragic story of his childhood to Nina when he -- as a wee lad of five or six -- was dumped by his cold and unfeeling parents in a remote English boarding school to grow up alone and forgotten. Nina lapped up every heartbreaking word of his tale of woe as he told her how he'd been shunned by his classmates and had spent holidays alone at the school with no presents or friends.

The only thing missing from his story was a headmaster with a long flowing beard and a pet snake named Nagini.

Nina's heart melted when Valentin admitted that he'd once received a present from the school's cook, who'd knitted him a scarf that he'd cherished until he'd lost it during his travels years later. The confession pulled at Nina's heartstrings and completely won her over. Judging by Valentin's smirk, he was fully aware of the effect his words had on her.

Clearly, Nina has never read J.K. Rowling.

Valentin also revealed a juicy little nugget about his love life when he confided that he'd once had his heart broken by a woman who hadn't seen a future with him.

Was this a reference to Anna? Is that why Valentin keeps a picture of her tucked in a box on his desk?

More on that in a bit.

Initially, I liked Valentin and Nina as a couple, but not so much anymore. Valentin has been shown to repeatedly manipulate her by exploiting her greatest weakness -- her desire to be a mother -- which has tainted whatever might have developed between them. I think Valentin likes Nina and finds her refreshing, but ultimately, she's just a temporary diversion because his eyes are firmly set on another prize -- Anna.

Everything Valentin does is calculated, so my gut tells me that Valentin is hiding a far deeper secret in the charred ruins of Bedlington Academy than an unhappy childhood.

Ever since Anna mentioned there was something familiar about Valentin and he quoted the WSB's motto in Latin to her, I've wondered if perhaps the key to unlocking the mystery of Valentin was as simple as opening our eyes -- and our minds.

Has Valentin perhaps undergone facial reconstruction surgery like Jason did, except in Valentin's case, it was elective?

If that's the case, then an altered appearance means that Valentin could be anyone.

Anna's discovery that there was no record of Valentin prior to 2011 seems to be a clue in itself, especially considering that the school he grew up in was burned to the ground. It suggests an attempt to bury a secret rather than destroy evidence. The fact that Valentin claims to be a Cassadine doesn't prove that he is one. And if he is one, then there's no proof that he's actually Valentin.

Valentin's confession on Friday that he and Lulu were Charlotte's parents threw me at first because it didn't make a lick of sense. Lulu had only had a finite number of eggs harvested and fertilized. The first set was at the hospital with Dante and the second was at the clinic with Stavros.

That's when it hit me. Could Valentin be Stavros? Is it possible that Stavros survived his last brush with death and assumed his bastard half-brother's identity to hide in plain sight?

That would certain explain why Valentin was a DNA match for Charlotte.

Additionally, the timeline has been tweaked, and it now appears that Stavros died sometime in 2010 (assuming Charlotte is five years old), which would explain why there's no record of Valentin prior to 2011.

I'm sure Valentin will spin a perfectly logical and believable story about how he ended up being the sperm donor used to fertilize Lulu's egg, but he's already been shown to be an accomplished prevaricator, so everything that he says tends to be a lie wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.

Meanwhile, Jason and Curtis are the new dynamic duo of Port Chuck, and their mission is to clear Sonny's good name of his son's murder. Within a couple of weeks, Jason and Curtis have made more headway in getting to the bottom of who planted the bomb in Julian's car than the police department has since the case was first opened. Heck, Curtis even gleaned critical information from the police without them even realizing that they were sitting on it.

It's downright embarrassing to hear people praise Jordan as an effective police commissioner when Jason and Curtis are shown to repeatedly run circles around her and her detectives.

Jason and Curtis easily tracked down the van that was used to block security cameras from recording who had planted the bomb in Julian's car. Luckily, the van still sported the fake decal from the night of the tragedy, so it made identifying the van easy-peasy for the boys.

I was not the least bit surprised that the temporary decal hid a Derek Wells Media logo because the discovery of the van screamed planted evidence and setup. What astonished me was how easily both Jason and Curtis accepted things as they were without at least considering the possibility that Julian had been framed. I realized then that Jason and Curtis were looking to prove that Julian is guilty rather than searching for the truth.

I also thought Jason sounded like an idiot when he told Curtis and Sam that the police didn't want to clear Sonny's name because they'd been trying to put him behind bars for years. Did Jason forget that Sonny's eldest son is a lead detective for the Port Charles Police Department? If anyone has a vested interest in clearing Sonny's name and finding Morgan's killer, it's Dante.

However, Sonny's got bigger problems at the moment because Nelle is stepping up her game and recording all her little secret chats with him as he goes into damage control mode and tries to justify keeping Carly in the dark about his night of passion with Nelle. Sonny truly is his own worst enemy.

I don't for a second believe that Nelle and Sonny actually slept together because Sonny was too drugged to do more than snore through the night. If she did have sex with him, then I would consider it rape because it's no different than slipping someone a date rape drug.

Nelle is clearly not a good girl, but I don't think she's quite that bad.

I think that's why I'm able to enjoy watching Nelle play Sonny like a fiddle. I cracked up when he tried to pay her off and send her packing, but she easily turned things around and had him fetching her tea by the end of their little visit.

I don't know what Nelle's endgame is, but I am enjoying watching her mess with Sonny.

What I'm not enjoying -- at all -- is the storyline with Tom. I don't know if the writers intend to use Tom as a means to end things between Franco and Liz or if they are attempting to give Liz some kind of closure, but nothing about this storyline is working for me. I find it disrespectful to revisit such a sensitive and brilliantly written storyline and make it all about Franco's angst rather than Liz's.

It's becoming clear that Franco and Liz are stuck in a rut. I don't know if the writers lost interest or if they are afraid to explore the relationship, but these days, Franco and Liz seem to be off more than they are on, which is usually a death knell for a relationship on soap opera.

I am curious, though, who Liz called at the end of Thursday's show when she left a voicemail for someone that Hayden was terminally ill and needed a parent.

The writers seemed to want us to think that it might have been her father, Jeff Webber, but I really hope that was just a red herring because I will be very upset if Jeff shows up for a long-lost daughter that he knew nothing about, while for decades ignoring the daughter he raised as she endured tragedy after tragedy without any support from her parents.

I want Jeff to come to Port Charles, but I want him to do it for Liz, not Hayden. Therefore, I hope that Liz called Hayden's mother, and Naomi will rush to Hayden's beside as Finn works furiously to find a cure.

Finally, Alexis agreed to nurse Julian back to health once he gets out of the hospital -- provided no one finds out. By no one, Alexis means her daughters, her friends, and anyone else who would challenge her choices and her very sanity.

I'm disappointed that Julian didn't take the opportunity to force Alexis into rehab, but I haven't given up hope that he will do the right thing because I do believe that he truly loves her. I don't know what happened to make him temporarily lose his mind, but I'm hoping that we will eventually be given a real explanation for what happened.

Despite everything, I am still rooting for Julian and Alexis to find some happiness together.

Random thoughts and observations
Just when I thought it was safe, Amy Driscoll rears her annoying gossipy head. Ugh, why can't we have more Felix and Epiphany instead of a useless character that no one cares about?

Was anyone else a bit confused when Dante told Lulu that her missing embryo might have been destroyed in the blast at Crichton-Clark? Did he forget about Lulu's chat with Daphne when Daphne confirmed that Helena had spirited the embryo in question to Cassadine Island, where she promptly launched a search for a surrogate to carry her grand-embryo to term?

Why has Finn suddenly been reduced to always asking Tracy where Hayden is, and why exactly is Hayden always on the run from him? It's childish and silly, so please let's move on.

Reader feedback
For everyone who is feeling confused about WTH is going on, I'm sure we'll be the first to know what Nelle, Valentin, and Jessup are up to just as soon as Jelly and TPTB figure it out, themselves. -- Scrimmage

Something that's been bothering me since the Morgan bi-polar storyline began and it came up again when Nelle spiked Sonny's drink -- Everyone was up in arms each time Morgan had a sip of alcohol because of the interaction with his bi-polar medication...yet, Sonny, who has been medicated for years, continuously drinks like a fish and no one seems concerned? What's the difference? -- MandyLV

I liked the tradition of the Quartermaine Thanksgiving (especially showing the pic of Edward and Lila!), but it felt like there was nobody at the Q's house this year. I always kind of love the [chaos] of the Q's felt very quiet. -- lk

Now, I turn the spotlight over to you. Please share your thoughts about the show in the comments section below. I love reading what everyone has to say.

Until next time, take care.
Liz Masters

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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