Shanks for the memories
For the Week of August 26, 2019
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Two Scoops is an opinion column and the opinions expressed are solely those of the author. The views expressed do not represent the opinions of Soap Central, its partners, or its advertisers.
Ava is working through some issues with Kiki, while Lulu has put her issues with Dante behind her. Elsewhere, Franco is hoping to kick off a new life as Drew, but others are working hard to restore what Shiloh has taken away. Oh, and Helena returned from the past to stir up a little trouble for Peter. It was a week of ups, downs, and very shady dealings.

Yay! Helena Cassadine was in the house and up to her old tricks. I love that woman!

You can always count on Helena to make a bad situation worse, and she never disappoints. Also, Constance Towers is as divine as ever. She truly is a timeless beauty, and even though I have issues with the storyline, I am absolutely thrilled that we got to see Helena in two flashbacks.

But first, let's talk about Franco -- who thinks he's Drew.

Ava pointed out to Scott that Franco has a good dozen killer reasons for wanting to embrace the new life as Drew that Franco has been given instead of chasing after a life that was filled with horrific and grisly images, vile violations, and tragedy after tragedy.

On the surface, Liz and the boys don't have much to offer except an average household with bills and growing boys. Franco conceded that she's beautiful, but is that enough to make a guy want to settle down to suburban life until things start clicking? Probably not.

The thing is, amnesia, memory transplant, or brain tumor, Franco is still the man that murdered those people. He is still Scott Baldwin and crazy Heather Webber's son. He's the guy that loved Kiki as his own and mourned her when she died. He might not connect with those memories, but his fingerprints and his DNA remain Franco Baldwin. He can't run from that.

Legally, Franco remains Franco Baldwin, and he cannot use Drew's identification because he is not that Andrew Cain. He would need to go to court and get everything changed, which means that he is going to have to acknowledge that he is actually Franco Baldwin, not Andrew Cain.

Beyond that, though, we learned with Drew and Jason that even with Jason's memories, Drew made different choices than Jason. Drew's Jason made the decision to cut ties with the mob for the sake of his wife and children because he appreciated the second chance that he had been given.

The real Jason Morgan made a different choice. Even when he was given a chance to walk away, he didn't think twice about declining it. A point driven firmly home toward the end of the week when Sonny instructed Jason to pay Barry the chump a visit to make clear that Barry's lips would remain shut in his new home on the West Coast.

All I kept thinking was that Barry was so lucky that Dev was around when Barry got busted for that stupid stunt. If you frame someone for stealing a big deposit, then you better make sure that you plant all of the missing money on that person. Barry deserved to get fitted with cement shoes right then and there, and he would have been, I'm sure, if Dev hadn't been standing there to witness it.

By the way, why are they not using forklifts to move those big bags of coffee beans? At least make it a two-man operation. No offense against Dev, but the kid looks like he barely weighs more than one of those sacks he was hefting around. I honestly can't blame him for dropping them.

I digress; back to Jason.

Jason, the real Jason Morgan, resumed his life -- even when he'd been given a chance to walk away -- because that is who Jason is.

Jason didn't want Jason Quartermaine's memories back because he was still -- at his very core -- Jason. He was okay with letting go of his old life and forging a new one because it was always his life, whether he was a Quartermaine or a Morgan.

Franco's situation is different. He's not the real Drew Cain. He's a keeper of Drew's memories, and even though he feels that they are his own, they are, in every sense, stolen. Those memories belong to another human being altogether.

Initially, I do think that Franco will fight returning to his old life, but the real Franco is still in there, just like the real Drew was still in Drew when he thought he was Jason. That's why Drew felt those "flashes" of his old life. I also recall that Andre mentioned that he had never spoken to Jason or Drew about the procedure before they gave Jason's memories to Drew. That was not the case with Franco. He was fully aware that he was about to undergo a procedure to overwrite his memories, and perhaps that might make a difference down the road. We will see.

I'd like to think so, because I do want to have hope that Franco will return. He worked hard to pull his life together, and while it might not seem glamorous to most, Franco was really happy with Liz and the boys. More importantly, they were happy with him. I loved their family dynamic, especially now that Franco made the ultimate sacrifice for Cam. Without hesitation.

Unfortunately, I can already see it in Kim's eyes that she sees a chance to have that happily-ever-after with Drew that she had always dreamed of. Well, not quite the same because Oscar is gone, and it's Franco's body. However, this is a very close second if Drew's memories don't fade away. I saw the hope glimmer in her eyes, which is why Kim rushed past Franco and Drew -- and why she is desperate to get out of town before she can succumb to temptation.

I feel bad for Kim, but I also feel bad for Julian because this only proves what I have always suspected -- Julian was a consolation prize.

Kim is still very much head over heels in love with Drew.

What makes me uncomfortable with this storyline is the matter of consent. The real Franco would not want to be with anyone except his wife, but this FranDrew very much wants to be with Kim. Kim is fully aware of how Franco feels about Liz -- whom he remains legally married to -- so if Kim does respond to FranDrew's overtures, isn't she, in effect, taking advantage of him? What happens when his memories return and he realizes what Kim did?

It's clear that's what Chelsea Lam meant when she advised Liz to hold on tight to the man she loves. Kim won't be pushing FranDrew away for long.

I anticipate Chelsea is going to be a busy lady in the coming weeks, especially with Ava desperately trying to work through her relationship issues with Kiki. Ava is not letting a little thing like death stand in the way of some mother-daughter therapy.

Actually, I really do like where this storyline is going. I like that Ava is taking this journey, and I especially enjoy that Kiki is along for the ride. I hope she keeps returning to drop truth bombs on Ava. They are much needed because I really do want Ava to be a better person for Avery's sake. It irks me to no end how Sonny prances around on his high horse like he doesn't go around killing people and making a living ruthlessly running a crime syndicate.

I'm rooting for Ava to work through her issues, for both Kiki and Ava to find peace, and for Ava to start working on a real relationship with Avery.

Speaking of mothers, Hayden has a lot to answer for, starting with why she didn't give Finn an opportunity to live on the run with her so that he could be a part of their child's life. It's not like Finn had family in Port Charles at the time, and I can't imagine anyone being more important to him than his own daughter. Hayden was the fugitive, not Finn, and what she did was selfish. She did to Finn what she was afraid would happen to her if she went to jail. She denied him an opportunity to be a parent.

It would serve Hayden right if Finn did take her to court for custody, but I don't think that Finn will. He's not the type to do that because he knows that, in the end, it would hurt their daughter more than it would punish Hayden for what she did. Hayden and her daughter have clearly bonded, and Finn is going to see that the first time that they are together. I think he will be angry, but it's not really in Finn's nature to be vindictive, and he obviously still cares about Hayden.

Will Finn's relationship with Anna survive the revelation that he has a daughter with Hayden, or will Finn feel compelled to try to make things work with Hayden for their child's sake? It's going to be interesting to see what happens when Anna returns, which should be soon. I suspect that Andre will be with her when she does. The question is, will Drew be with them (sporting a new face for viewers), or will he vanish into soap opera obscurity?

I love Billy Miller, and I hate that he's leaving, so I'm not sure how I would feel about a recast at this time. It seems wrong to move forward without Billy, but Drew is a wonderful character, and we've barely scratched the surface with him.

I think, in time, Drew needs to return. His story is not over.

Folks, did I miss something? I could have sworn that everyone was very much aware that Peter had been the one who had held Jason captive and that Peter had been giving Dr. Klein and Andre Maddox their orders. I recall Anna and Jason working together to lure "Henrik" out of hiding, and Jason wanting to kill Peter but Anna appealing to him to spare her son's life. I recall Maxie being fully aware of all of this, as well.

In fact, a few days after Peter was arrested for his crimes, he offered to give Drew the flash drive in exchange for help getting out of jail. Drew wasn't interested because he hoped that Andre could help him without the flash drive. Later, Peter had put the flash drive in an envelope addressed to Drew when Liesl had kidnapped Peter. He had dropped it in the struggle, and that was how it had ended up in the lost and found where Margaux had tracked it down.

Also, why is Peter suddenly afraid of Andre Maddox restoring Franco's memories? Andre had been working at GH until recent months when he had apparently taken off to Ethiopia to promote a mental health initiative as part of a humanitarian project. Wouldn't Peter prefer that Franco's memories be restored if there was something in Drew's past that could hurt Peter? And why wasn't Peter worried about any of this when he offered Drew the flash drive in the first place?

Lastly, back on January 30, 2018, Cesar explained to Jason how he had found Drew and why he had kidnapped him, so why would it be a big deal now if anyone were to learn that Peter had collected Drew's body? Peter worked for Helena and Cesar, and that is what grunts do.

The only consolation in any of this is if Shank makes it out of jail, he won't be sticking around Port Charles for long. The question is, will Nelle tell Shiloh the truth about Wiley? I can't imagine that she would let a cult leader accused of sexual assault vanish with her son, which means that she would have to tell Shiloh the truth or find another way to safeguard Jonah. Would she be desperate enough to tell Michael that Wiley is Jonah?

We know it's not going to be Brad. However, there is a wild card -- Liesl and her new conscience.

I hate that Peter is being thrown under the bus for a completely bogus reason just to give Shiloh an "escape" hatch and that this is probably going to set Maxie and Lulu up for a little triangle with Dustin. I hope that I'm wrong, but I can't imagine why the writers would go down this road if it's not to test Maxie and Peter -- and perhaps throw a little competition Lulu's way.

Lulu needs a little sunshine in her life, not more strife. She was pretty much abandoned by her husband when he ditched her for a mission that no one asked him to go on then he returned home a broken man in need of deprogramming and lots of space from his family. Months later, she gets served divorce papers at her nephew's birthday party, and to add insult to injury, she gets demoted to the lifestyles section at work.

Okay, that last part wouldn't be too bad, especially if sipping wine in a park with a hot ride-share guy waiting on me hand and foot was one of the perks. I can think of worse ways to earn a paycheck.

I was surprised, though, that Lulu decided to go back to her maiden name. I get why she would feel like it was silly to hang onto a name when she hadn't been able to hold onto anything else, but she's wrong. Rocco came out of that marriage, and he's the very best of Dante and Lulu. She might not have Dante, but she will always have their son.

I think she should have discussed it with Rocco before she made her decision. She even acknowledged to Maxie that Rocco might prefer that they have the same last name, so I'm not sure why she didn't.

I know, from personal experience, what that's like, and I'm grateful that my mom discussed it with us beforehand because it made the transition a lot easier.

Finally, news broke a few days ago that Michael E. Knight has joined the cast. *Squeals with excitement*

I loved All My Children, so I'm very familiar with MEK and "Tad the cad." He was a fun character that was always dear to my heart, but I can't see Thaddeus Martin making his way to Port Charles without Dixie. Not that it couldn't happen, because Jon Lindstrom (Kevin Collins/Ryan Chamberlain) is married to Cady McClain, but as far as I know, Cady hasn't even been spotted dropping off paper bag lunches to her hubby at the studio, much less signing contracts or filming.

My hope is that MEK will reprise another role -- Dr. Jeff Webber.

It's time. It's actually long past time for Jeff to return to Port Charles and explain himself. His one daughter is in crisis, the other daughter is on the verge of it, and his youngest grandson doesn't feel safe. Plus, Cameron could use the wisdom of a grandfather to help guide him until Franco returns home.

Random observations

Did Stella quit her job at GH? I ask because last I checked, it's not that easy to take off from work for an indefinite time at the drop of a hat, and Stella's return date was very open-ended.

Pentonville goes into lockdown, so they lock a female prisoner in a room with a male prisoner who has been accused of rape?!? What could possibly go wrong?

Speaking of prison, I'm almost certain that those phone conversations between inmates and visitors are recorded. Only conversations between inmates and their attorneys are privileged. Robert should have just asked for the recording of Peter's chat with Shiloh -- or perhaps he did. Hmm.

Reader feedback

No Sam, you're NOT okay. What mother of two young children would carelessly risk her life for no good reason (once again, Sam accomplished NOTHING, because the flash drive she found was a decoy) without stopping to consider what she has to lose FIRST? -- Scrimmage

I was positively enthralled by William Lipton this week. He is a real talent and won't be long for the soap world. It was also refreshing to see someone else to the rescue besides Jason. Curtis should have been with Drew as a partner all this time instead of being saddled with Sam. -- Eileen

Am I the only one who giggled when Drew said into his phone "721 DeWitt, between Ritter and Lindley"? Looks like someone in the PC Public Works department - or whoever was responsible for naming streets in this sketchy warehouse district of Port Charles - is a fan of a certain 70s sitcom. -- Gloria

The mystery is why did Valentin force Nik to sign over the rights to the Cassadine fortune if he had the legitimate paperwork (which he presented to Alexis) to prove Mikkos left everything to him? -- JDF

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

Take care and happy viewing,
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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