Dear readers, I have a terrible confession to make. I really dig Cesar Faison. I know what you're going to say. He's an awful, awful man. He's evil. He's creepy. He's a full-on obsessed stalker. But over the years of following his sick obsession with Anna Devane on GH, I can never get enough of him.
Anders Hove is a magnificently talented actor, and he brings this character to life in a way that both repulses and intrigues. He's like The Phantom of the Opera -- you know he's creepy, dangerous, and scary, but in your heart, you kind of want Christine to love him back, just once, just for a minute, don't you?
Finola Hughes has been racking up Emmy-worthy scenes for weeks now, but this past week, in her scenes with Jason, Sonny, Finn, and Faison, I marveled again at her range of emotion. Anna Devane is a tough chick, a spy, a fighter, a woman who can kick your *ss. But when Faison enters her orbit, she momentarily dissolves into a helpless girl; he shakes her to her core, and all her bravado melts away. Every emotion was present in her eyes, and her internal struggle was evident. She's really magnificent and worthy of celebration for her work this week.
I got downright giddy when the flashbacks started coming on Friday's episode. Admit it, young Faison was a pretty handsome fellow, wasn't he? Oh, I hope that Anders and Finola have as much fun playing against each other as I have watching them. The cat and mouse dance between them is mesmerizing. They get in each other's head, and it's mesmerizing to watch. But Faison has been shot -- will he actually die this time, or will he emerge with another of his nine lives to spare to torment Anna again?
The whole Faison thing caught Finn off guard. And I'm not just talking about being held at gunpoint. Finn wasn't aware of this chapter in Anna's past. Frankly, it seemed to turn him on a little. Finn seems even more intrigued by Anna now that he knows about her supervillain, obsessed stalker. Anna clonked Finn in the head rather than let Faison shoot him. And then for some crazy reason, when Faison was wheeled into GH, they let Finn, the guy Faison had just held at gunpoint, treat Faison after Dr. Finn had just sustained a blow to the head. Yeah, that will go well...
The part of Faison I despise is his total disregard for Liesl. She worships him, she would do anything for him, and he has zero regard for her. As a woman, I have known men like this -- they only want what they can't have, and as soon as they have someone, they don't want them anymore. I think if Anna ever gave in to Faison, he'd be tying her up in a barn with poisonous gas in six months, just like he did Liesl. Why? Because he loathes himself, so anyone who loves him must be loathsome, too? I don't know, just my stab at Soap-Psychology.
As soon as the scene came on in the stables, my husband, who pretends he doesn't watch GH, said, "The last time I saw this stable was when Spencer was chasing the Chupacabra." So when Lulu found the "Beware of the Chupacabra" sign, Jeff was very pleased with himself. But he wondered why there were no horses in the stable... I'm guessing Nikolas' horse ran off like Wildfire.
So, did Lulu save Obrecht's life? Did she drag Liesl through the hole in the floor where Anna was hiding Faison? If so, maybe Liesl will thank Lulu by giving her an exclusive interview with Faison's baby mama.
We all predicted that Peter August was Faison's other son, and that turned out to be the case. We still don't know for sure if he's a good guy or a bad guy. One on hand, he kept Jason alive against Faison's wishes. On the other hand, he kept him prisoner for years and sent thugs to Port Charles to kill him. Why? What's the rest of the story? I'm anxious to find out.
But the part of this story I can't handle is Nathan getting shot. Rumor has it that Ryan Paevey might be on his way out, and that will break my heart. I was rooting for Maxie and Spinelli to reunite for so long, but when Nathan West entered the scene and showed up at Maxie's door, I made an exception. Nathan West is a rarity in the soap world. He's a nice guy. He's not a "criminal with a heart of gold" or a "Former serial killer who's been reformed" -- he's just a nice, decent, moral person.
Nathan's not perfect, but he's close. When he does bad things, like lie about being Ask Man Landers, it's always for a good reason, like helping a wounded veteran. He's a hero in a town full of criminals. I don't want him to die, but I'm afraid they're going to kill him off. On the upside, Hallmark has recognized how spectacular he is, so if he leaves GH, at least we will be able to see him next December in some Christmas movies.
I don't understand the powers that be at GH and ABC. In what can only be seen as a bonehead move, they took Genie Francis off contract. Laura is possibly the most popular character in Daytime history -- she's iconic, right along with the likes of Erica Kane, Victor Newman, and, of course, her former partner, Luke Spencer. Daytime royalty. I started watching GH in 1977 because all the girls at my high school were talking about Laura, and I wanted to be part of their club. It was Laura that drew me in to the GH family. When Tony Geary retired, we said, "That hurts, but at least we still have Laura."
The writers had given her a brilliant storyline that reached into GH history and resurrected Mary Mae Ward and Charles Street -- the run for mayor against Ned was shaping up to be a real David vs. Goliath storyline. I was so excited to watch it play out. Then suddenly "Spencer broke both of his legs," and Laura was shipped off to nurse him back to health in Paris.
I'm terribly unhappy about this turn of events. Have the people at ABC not been paying attention to what's happening in Hollywood? Have they missed all the discussions about women being treated as second-class citizens and forced to accept lower pay coming to an end? Did they hear the speeches about women of 40 still being valuable in the entertainment industry and not being sidelined when they turn 30? ABC's response to that movement was to fire the most high-profile female lead actor they have... or maybe it's just my generation of viewers who worship Genie? Hey, readers under 40, do you love Laura, too? I need to know. Hit me up on Twitter @tamilu40
As the news spread like wildfire across social media, the outrage was loud and furious. People named many other characters GH should have cut if they needed to trim their budget. I will be kind enough not to list them, but let's be honest; you probably have a list in your head of characters you'd rather lose than Laura. The hashtag #GenieisGH went viral. After you finish reading my column, go to Twitter, click on it and read through the passionate posts. It will inspire you, amuse you, rile you up, and make you love the loyalty of the soap community more than you already do.
I'm hoping ABC rethinks this choice because General Hospital without any hope of seeing Laura again is unfathomable.
And now, a fun fact: Luke and Laura's wedding on November 17, 1981, brought in 30 million viewers. It is still the highest-rated soap opera episode in American daytime television history.
We had another wedding in Port Charles this week, the wedding of Drew and Sam. I thought Spinelli was making headway with Jason and that he'd bust in at the last minute and beg her not to do it, but he's too respectful of her feelings to bust up her wedding. I don't think the wedding of Drew and Sam is the end of Jason and Sam; I think it's a detour. At some point, I believe that Drew's memory will come back, and maybe he will remember how in love he was with Kim. Maybe not, but it's a possibility.
Or, Jason will fall for Kim (a.k.a. old Carly, so we already know they have chemistry). All I really want is for Jason to not be alone. Give him a love interest pronto.
Kim has already had a few flirty scenes with Julian, but I'm still rooting for a Julexis reunion -- and sooner rather than later. Even Molly was civil to Julian this week, so we are making progress. Alexis is set to take Laura's place against Ned in the mayoral race. Yeah, that should work great. Anyone remember Eddie Maine's romance with Alexis and the infamous leather pants? Or Alexis killing Luis Alcazar? Or running over Kiefer Bauer with her car? Running down Julian with her car? Ned is no choirboy, but at least he's never murdered anyone. It will be a tabloid field day in this campaign.
Things I liked this week: friendships. I like that Ava and Franco understand one another. As baddies trying to go good, they each understand and have empathy with the other's attempts to become better people. Their scenes together this week were sweet. When Liz dumps Franco, and Griffin dumps Ava for Kiki (c'mon, you know it's coming, right?), maybe Ava and Franco can give their romance another go.
I also like the A.A.-based friendship of Alexis and Finn. I hope this stays in the friend zone because I think that's a solid foundation to build upon -- both of them have wrestled with addiction. Alexis' last sponsor ended up being crazy Olivia Jerome, so she might be a little gun-shy about letting a stranger support her. I like the two of them helping each other through recovery.
What will happen tomorrow, dear readers? Will Kevin study Franco's brain and find out he's still kind of psycho? (Can anyone say dog cage?) Will Michael soften toward Nelle with each new ultrasound photo? Will the PCPD hire Jason Morgan to teach them marksmanship? Will Felicia feel guilty for convincing Finn to march over to Anna's to confess his feelings when she realizes she nearly got him killed? (It's so much better to bottle up your feelings.) Will Nathan ever know about the Ask Man Landers trust fund for his baby? Will someone tell me about the fast track to medical school where you can skip college and be accepted into med school in a few months?
Will Maxie ever learn to control her mouth and not taunt lunatics? Will Lucas' family ever be honest with him and say, "You will be a great dad, but your husband, Brad, is a total weasel!"? Will Henrik (a.k.a. Peter) keep creepily peering through the bushes at Anna like his old man? Will anyone explain to me why the cops and paramedics who showed up at the Metro Court all hovered around in the lobby while Nathan was upstairs, bleeding out?
Will Liesl and Lulu look back on their time in the stables and realize they should have done less bickering and more escaping before the poisonous gas was released? Will the denizens of Port Charles ever realize that the Metro Court is cursed and that you should never, under any circumstances, go there? Will Alexis yell "Fake News!" when the press mentions her pushing Alcazar over a balcony?
Only tomorrow knows, dear readers, and I will tune in tomorrow as long as there are tomorrows.
What are your thoughts on General Hospital? What did you think of this week's Two Scoops? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.