The keys to the kingdom, you fool

For the Week of April 3, 2017
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The keys to the kingdom, you fool
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The week of April 3, 2017
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Secrets were shared, marriage proposals were pondered, two heroines decided to go on an adventure, and a couple of mysteries began to unfold. Are there a few story details that need to be penciled in... or should things be erased and sent back to the drawing board?

The week kicked off as I had expected, with Jason threatening to take Jake away from Elizabeth because Jason is convinced that Franco is somehow behind Jake's buried memories of Helena bubbling to the surface. Jason's theory is that Franco is trying to get Jake to remember the years on Cassadine Island because he wants to play the hero by saving Jake from whatever meddling Helena did to Jake's mind.

It would be laughable if it wasn't about a child and the simple fact that Helena herself had pretty much confirmed to both Jason and Liz that she had indeed messed with Jake's head when she bequeathed Liz that creepy little storybook.

Helena was certainly capable of it and more. This was a woman who kept Jason on ice for a year after he was fished out of the water, near death; who had resurrected her son more times than a cat with nine lives; and who had used the Ice Princess to program Lucky to do all manner of dastardly deeds. That's just scratching the surface of a well-documented crime history that spanned decades.

Both Jason and Liz are fools to think that a few visits with a therapist would magically transform Jake into a happy, well-adjusted child. He was an innocent captive of a diabolical woman who would give Vlad the Impaler nightmares.

It's a good thing that Liz is getting a clue that Helena's influence on Jake extends beyond the grave, unlike Jason, who stubbornly clings to the belief that he, not a therapist and most certainly not Franco, can help his son.

I want to take a moment to clarify my remarks in my last column about Sam because I received feedback suggesting some might have gotten the wrong impression about where I stand with Sam.

I like Sam, and I like Liz. I mentioned Sam's past crimes and transgressions only to make a point, not to bash Sam. I was attempting to illustrate that there was a time when Sam's actions had been unforgivable acts -- at least to Liz. However, Liz kept an open mind and eventually forgave Sam and moved forward because Liz saw that Sam had changed and truly regretted the terrible things she'd done.

Now the roles are reversed, and Jason is in the position that Liz was in when Jason and Sam rekindled things all those years ago. All Liz is asking is for Jason to extend her the same courtesy that she did to him and allow her to make her own choices.

Jason doesn't have to like Franco or even trust him, but he should take a step back and let Liz figure things out for herself. Jason is perfectly free to keep an eye on Franco, but he shouldn't put Liz in a position where she has to choose between her son and the man she loves just because Jason doesn't like the guy.

Whether Jason wants to admit it or not, Jake has a strong bond with Franco and trusts him.

I've always said that children and dogs have a great sense about a person's true nature. If Jason doesn't want to trust Liz, then he should trust his son.

Jake needs all the support he can get, especially when his father is so opposed to therapy that even Sam had to urge Jason to give it a chance for Jake's sake.

Instead, for reasons I can't even begin to fathom, Jason decided to trust -- to a degree -- Valentin, the man who had held him and Sam hostage and threatened their lives. I was stunned that Jason went to Wyndemere to talk to Valentin about a scarecrow on Cassadine Island instead of seeking out Laura. She lived on the island for years and visited it countless times over the years because her son owned it until Valentin shot Nikolas point-blank in the chest and sent him tumbling to his death.

Valentin was barely on the island long enough to unpack, let alone learn every nook and cranny of an island filled with underground labs, catacombs, and caves. Plus, Laura still considers Jake her grandson and would do anything to help him, including answering any questions that Jason might have about a scarecrow.

Equally odd was Franco's sudden appearance at Wyndemere to talk to Nina about his troubles. I agree with Nina; it was completely insensitive of him to whine to her about Jake after Franco ended things with her because of his refusal to be a father -- to any child.

I like Franco, and I like Nina, but both are deeply flawed.

One of those flaws is Franco and Nina's perception of reality when it comes to Jake and Charlotte. Franco is under the illusion that he's a father figure to Jake, and Nina seems to think that being a stepmother gives her legal rights to Charlotte. It doesn't. Valentin is Charlotte's legal parent, and Nina only has whatever rights he gives her. Legally, she has no say in Charlotte's upbringing. Also, Lulu was granted visitation, which means that the court has recognized Lulu as Charlotte's legal mother. Even if Valentin wanted Nina to adopt Charlotte, that would be impossible without Lulu's consent or another court battle.

As for Franco, while I don't think he's dangerous, I do think he has some boundary issues. Jake doesn't see Franco as a father figure; he sees him as a kindred spirit. Jake loves Jason, and Franco should respect that.

It was quite an eventful week for Valentin because he also paid his sister Alexis a visit to offer her keys to Wyndemere. It seemed very strange until she called him out for trying to get a slew of family members to testify to what a great dad he was. She was right, and I loved her response to his suggestion that Charlotte and Danny have a play date. Valentin's expression of fury when Alexis suggested that he let Charlotte spend time with Rocco -- Charlotte's brother -- was priceless.

I'm not sure what that visit was all about, but it made me wonder if perhaps Valentin might have something to do with Julian's disappearance. Valentin's association with Olivia Jerome makes that a great possibility. But more on Alexis later.

The most interesting and shocking revelation this week was Valentin's claim that he and Anna were lovers once.

I realized the minute Anna insisted that she had no memory of seducing Valentin where the storyline was headed, but that's because I was an avid All My Children fan and knew about Anna's identical twin, Alexandra "Alex" Devane-Merrick.

Despite the predictability of the whole "my twin seduced you" plot, I give the writers props if that is indeed the direction they are going. Plucking a storyline from AMC and using it to add a twist to a current storyline on GH is clever. In this case, there really was an identical sister in the wings, so this wasn't a case of lazy writing but rather a nod to Anna's history on another soap opera.

If Alex was the one who seduced Valentin, then there's a possibility a child was born of that union.

It would be interesting to see what would happen if Valentin were to learn that he had another child in the world that he'd known nothing about. Talk about karma.

Back on the mainland, Sonny foolishly gave Carly an ultimatum -- accept him for who his is and forgive him or head back to divorce court for the sixth time. Carly chose Option B and all but marched out the door whistling These Boots Are Made for Walkin'. Once the door slammed shut, the barware went flying. It was a classic Sonny/Carly breakup.

I got some slack for rooting for Julian and Alexis while not doing the same for Sonny and Carly, but for me, there are several big differences between the two couples and their situations.

Julian was coerced into doing what he did by a demented sister who returned from the dead and gleefully threatened the lives of everyone he loved. Olivia has absolutely zero qualms about murder and mayhem because she's a bloodthirsty little minx who thrives on chaos. Yes, Julian lied, and yes, he threatened to kill Alexis, but he claims that he would never have gone through with it. I believe him because he genuinely loves Alexis above all others.

Sonny, on the other hand, is Pinocchio. He lies for his own self-interest then tries to wrap it up in the guise of protecting his family.

Sonny was unfaithful -- as far as he knows -- and he opted to lie to Carly about it time and again, even though he insisted he was a free agent, since Carly had walked out on him. He compounded things by allowing Nelle to remain a part of Carly's life, knowing that she'd begun to undermine his relationship with Carly by planting a bra in his bed. It was at that point that Sonny knew beyond a shadow of doubt that Nelle did not have Carly's best interest at heart, yet he still remained silent.

To be honest, I never believed that Nelle actually slept with Sonny. She merely made it appear that way. Not only had Sonny passed out before she crawled into his bed -- and likely wouldn't have been able to rise to the occasion -- but if she had gone through with having sex with him, then it would have been rape because Nelle had drugged Sonny. I just can't see Nelle taking things that far when the illusion would suffice.

It doesn't negate the lies that Sonny told, but I suspect that the writers intend to use that as the catalyst to Carly seeing Sonny as a victim rather than a lying bastard.

Plus, if the writers hope to pursue a romance with Michael and Nelle, it would be best not to have Michael fall in love with a rapist, since he is a rape survivor.

This week, I applauded Carly for not settling for the one-sided marriage Sonny offered her. I want Carly to stand strong. Sonny needs to remember that he wronged her, not the other way around.

In other news, Ned decided to propose to Olivia -- again -- when she asked him to adopt Leo.

Like Ned, I was puzzled why Olivia trusted Ned to be a father to her son, but not to be her husband. It turned out Olivia was afraid their relationship was doomed to fail because everyone she knew who fell in love and got married ended up divorced -- like Sonny and Carly as well as Julian and Alexis.

Olivia didn't trust marriage and was afraid of being hurt.

I was disappointed that Olivia had such a jaded view of marriage when her own son's marriage is proof that a couple could weather hardships and, with hard work, lots of love, and a deep commitment to each other, come out on the other side, stronger than ever.

Olivia did make a valid point, though, when she pointed to Ned's failed marriages and questioned why his marriage to her would be any different. It's a good question, and while I thought it was sweet how Ned described what marriage meant to him, he didn't really address why their marriage would be different.

That's why I liked that in the end, Olivia realized that marriage was a leap of faith -- either you took it or you didn't.

Watching two masked gunmen storm into a bar and threaten to shoot people made me uncomfortable. It was not entertaining, and it infuriated me that in the end, it was just a plot device to get Olivia to see the light about marriage and for Morgan's prescription bottle to end up in police custody.

I'm not in law enforcement, but I've never heard of police running into a building where there are armed gunmen holding hostages and then firing off a shot without warning -- to injure rather than kill -- an armed suspect with a gun pointed at one of the hostages. It seemed very reckless.

The storyline that took an interesting turn and piqued my interest was Tracy's decision to go after the valuable portrait that Edward had bought during his years on the run from legal troubles. Apparently, Edward had bought a rare Renaissance painting worth millions that somehow ended up in the hands of Turkish monks.

Larry Ashton offered to help Tracy retrieve the multi-million-dollar painting, for a finder's fee, but she laughed in his face and walked out without looking back because Tracy is nothing if not resourceful.

Luck was on Tracy's side because she ran into Ava, paid a hefty fee, and quickly tracked down the auction house where the painting had been. Next, Tracy bumped into Laura, who just so happened to be fluent in Turkish because she and Luke had lived in Kas for a year during their years on the run from Frank Smith.

I'm thrilled that Tracy enlisted Laura's help and that these two ladies get to have an adventure together before Jane Elliott exits the show.

Random observations

What in tarnation was the point of the scenes with Amy this week, and why isn't she walking around with two black eyes for not going along with her fellow nurses when they staged a sick-out?

Favorite reaction:
Nathan tells Dante that Maxie took a job in Portland before adding that it's just for three months because she's filling in for someone going on maternity leave.
Dante: "Why didn't you lead with that?"

Reader feedback

I also find this GH trend of self-detox disturbing. First Alexis from alcohol which apparently only took her about 12 hours or so and now Finn from a powerful drug he has been on for years. Perhaps Curtis is going to talk some sense into them but the show should never offer this as an option. It is very irresponsible. -- Lisa Echerd

I must disagree with the writer regarding the point made about Sonny and Carly. I think Sonny was right to challenge Carly. They married each other 5 times and the last time Carly declared her undying love for him and claimed this would be their final and forever marriage. It just seems to me she is always so ready to hit the road when things don't go her way. The writers need to quit teasing the fans with this relationship and stop playing she/he loves me she/he loves me not. Couples can have drama and still work through it without cutting and running for the hills at the first sign of trouble. -- Toni Idowu

The funniest scene last week was when the judge was reading off of Liv many charges and the expression on Nora's face was priceless. -- Marie Miles

There's so much to dislike about the writing at GH right now, but one of the aspects I most dislike is that it's taken away the fun of guessing what happens next. The snail's pace of plotting, the lack of logic in story and character, the rewrites of history and the dependence on characters who are all-caps CRAAAAZY means that anything is possible. And yet the climaxes always seem so half-hearted. -- redboy70

Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts about the show. I love hearing from readers, so please feel free to email me or leave a comment below.

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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