Dear readers, this is a really great week to be a soap columnist. Twists and turns galore! Surprise visits from long-lost characters! Secrets revealed! Car crashes! I was riveted. I actually watched live instead of waiting until it was on Hulu in the evening sans commercials, which is what I typically do... Every moment was action packed.
Daytime has to fill up a story for 52 weeks a year, so some weeks are mainly plot-building. Nothing momentous really happens. It's all whispered conversations in hallways where you silently pray someone will overhear. Other weeks, the months of buildup *finally* have their payoff, and all of the slow-burning fires suddenly ignite. This week was ablaze with excitement...I couldn't look away!
Every minute of every episode was shocking or surprising. Some moments were heartbreaking, some were nerve-racking, and some made me want to throw things at the TV.
Where do I even begin?
Readers, I have to start with Maura West. Damn, that woman can act. I think about how many people disparage daytime or mock actors on soaps, but I would put Maura West up with any actor in any movie in Hollywood. She can emote like the best of them. Ava is cast as a villain, but we can't help rooting for her in spite of her dastardly actions. Maura shows us the humanity and vulnerability behind Ava's typically brave and brash fašade. She's phenomenal. Give her all the awards. Give her a lead role in some big Hollywood film and watch her rake in Oscars. She's remarkable. Ava this week exhibited every emotion known to man, mostly at the hands of "Ghost Nik."
Thus, I decided I hate Nu-Nikolas. He drugged Ava, posed as a ghost, and fake haunted her. I don't care how much he wants his house back; that was a truly despicable thing to do. Her sanity is hanging by a thread. Since his mother, Laura, battled mental health issues and was in a mental institution for years, you'd think he'd be more sensitive to someone struggling that way.
But alas, he was not. Can you imagine what Nikolas would have done if Stefan or Helena did to Laura what he just did to Ava? That gunshot must have killed his soul. When Valentine and Not-Tad nearly unmasked him, I found myself rooting for Valentin to win. I want Valentin to find the painting and the codicil and for Nikolas and Spencer to go and rent a place by the docks and live amongst the townies.
Readers, were you as happy as I was to have the happy surprise of Matt Cohen's beautiful face walking into GH yesterday? It's the perfect time for him to come back. Lucas may need his medical expertise. Sonny needs his support and help with Mike's advancing Alzheimer's. Anna will need Griffin's support once she finds out that Robert is right, and her beloved Peter is up to his old shenanigans.
And Ava. Dear Ava. She needs him like never before, and I suspect he might need her, too, or at least need to be needed. Can you imagine the glorious moment when Griffin hears of Ava's plight and stops by to see her? Bliss! I hear his stay is only for a short time, but I am crossing my fingers for a brief reunion.
Why? God help my heart, but I love tortured love affairs -- maybe because I've had so many of them in my life. But seriously, the conflicted priest falling for the murdering mob lady was brilliant. The dangerously thin line between wanting to save someone and instead being sucked down by them, falling for someone who is so wrong for you and yet you're drawn to them like a magnet to steel. Damn, I love those types of stories.
I could get lost in that thought for pages, but I will push on! Let's get our own Orange Is the New Black update... Did Sam's find it curious that her new cellmate Nelle was extremely interested in the details of Lucas and Brad's accident? Will P.I. Sam pick up on that and dig a little to uncover the truth about Wiley? Sure, Brad told Lucas the truth right before the accident, but Lucas is in a coma now; will he remember what Brad confessed when he wakes up?
Willow is consistently moony-eyed over Wiley and circling around him now that Brad and Lucas are in the hospital -- but we all know that Wiley is not really her son. Her pregnancy scare forced a discussion on parenthood with Chase, which was very sweet. Chase and Willow have grown on me, and they are pretty adorable together. But we all know that sort of soap happiness rarely lasts long. What do you think will blow up their blissful union?
I like Michael with Sasha, too, especially now that Michael knows the truth about Sasha's shady scheme with Valentin and there is not some huge secret waiting to implode their relationship. But here's an important question -- does Sasha want to be a mom? When the truth of Wiley's parentage comes out, will Sasha want to be stepmom to Nelle's child? Let me just predict right now, Sasha will be in danger. Nelle is probably plotting how to get rid of Sasha already, especially since Sam used Sasha and Michael's relationship to taunt her. I know Sam is a badass, but she doesn't seem to understand just how unhinged Nelle actually is.
So, the speculation is that Nelle married Shiloh before he died, which would leave her as the holder of the shares of stocks Oscar gave to Shiloh, meaning Nelle would have a voice on the board of ELQ, and they'd be forced to deal with her. Sure, Ned would sue her to hell and back, but would he win? I actually think that could be a fun storyline. People who don't belong at ELQ are always fun. Think Lucy Coe.
With Tracy coming back on canvas soon, perhaps saving ELQ is the catalyst that would make her leave Luke in Europe and come home. Or, perhaps it's related to whatever trouble Brook Lynne is in, since everyone keeps saying how much Brook reminds them of Tracy.
It was great to have a Kristina sighting this week as she realizes in horror that her lie to Shiloh about Alexis and Kiefer nearly got her mom killed. Lexi Ainsworth is such a powerhouse performer -- I hope that in 2020, the powers that be find a meaty storyline for her.
Julian was instrumental in finding Alexis, he and Neil made a good team. I think this current storyline has the potential to bring Julian and Alexis together for a minute -- she will want to comfort him while Lucas is in the hospital, but then, when the news comes out that he is the one who cut Brad's brake lines, it will all blow up again.
Readers, I'm so disappointed in Julian. I guess it's a "once a mobster, always a mobster" sort of thing. Cutting Brad's brake lines was Julian's best idea? Say, here's an idea for next time, Julian -- just tell the truth. This whole storyline has driven me nuts. I doubt Brad and Lucas can recover from this one. Is there any possible way that Lucas will ever be able to trust Brad or his dad again? I'm hoping that we find out Lucas is sexually fluid, and he has a fling with Brook Lynne, which would drive Brad mad.
But my real complaint isn't with the character but with the writers. This year, they have made our beloved characters do some exceptionally heinous things. I want to expound on that, but my Best and Worst of GH column is coming up soon, and I have to save my rants for that one. Stay tuned!
Readers, something I will rant about more in my Best and Worst column is underused actors. Why is Hayden gone again? Rebecca Budig, as noted by many of you on Twitter, has chemistry with everyone she works with. The slow build of Hayden and Finn reconnecting was great; the pacing of him finding out about Violet was sweet. Then Anna returned, and right when things were about to get interesting, they sent Hayden off canvas again. C'mon, guys, bring her back. You killed off Kendra, so now you have her salary to work with, and you wrote badly for Tamara Braun and lost her, too -- so two salaries to work with. That should give you some loot to pay Ms. Budig.
It's good to see Anna back in town. I like the chemistry Robert and Anna have with Violet. They would be great godparents once Hayden comes back and reunites with Finn. Yeah, I'm dreaming, but isn't that a fine idea?
Anna will be too busy to pursue a relationship once Peter's attempt to murder Franco and Andre comes to light. I still don't understand why he doesn't want Franco to get his memories back. Drew was the one who knew about his past evil dealings, so you'd think he would want Franco's memories restored because it would virtually guarantee no one would ever find out his part in Jason's five-year imprisonment. Am I missing something? Tell me.
Okay, readers, let's get to Jax. My mom used to tell me the reason I was unhappy in every relationship was because I watched too many soap operas and had unrealistic ideas about love. I blame characters like Jax. He's a romantic hero. He whisks in and flies his lovers to New Orleans for breakfast. He shows up when your fiancÚ leaves you at the altar, and he takes you home and cares for you. He's mega rich but not a dick. He's handsome to the point that I doubt I could make eye contact with him and not pass out.
So, GH writers, why is the dreamiest man in Daytime without a love interest? Do you want to pair him with Nina? You're going too slolwy. Do you want him to break up Carly and Sonny? C'mon. That never works. Carly has the aforementioned illness of being drawn to a criminal. Can we get this man a love interest pronto? I need a daydream. I need a new unrealistic expectation so real men can continue to disappoint me. (That one's for you, Mama. Can you see GH in heaven?)
Readers, when the Thanksgiving episode of GH didn't air until Monday, I was all mad that they didn't sing "We Gather Together" and lose their turkey and whatnot. So, when Monday rolled around and all of that happened, I settled down. I know how silly that is, but GH's Thanksgiving traditions have become mine. My Mama and I used to watch it together every year, and she's gone now -- but seeing it makes me feel close to her. Is that kooky? Truthfully, I don't care if I am kooky. I figure God made me this way to amuse the universe.
What will happen tomorrow, dear readers? Will Not-Tad get a storyline of his own? Will the teens be able to keep Dev's secret? Will Trina be Nikolas and Gia's long-lost love child? Will Sasha and Willow get pedicures together? Will Nina give Valentin Nikolas' ring, or will she use it in her potential revenge against him? Will Ava and Nina's new unholy alliance bring down the Cassadine men? Will Spencer come home for Christmas and still be Nicholas J Bechtel? Will Tony Jones come back and do ghost surgery on all the undead in Port Charles?
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.