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For the Week of September 16, 2013
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Monica cleaned house, Britt gave birth, and Brad overheard a secret. Meanwhile, Ava paid Sonny a visit as he continued to spiral into the pit of depression. Liz Masters looks at all of the highs and lows and shares some exciting news in this week's Two Scoops.

I had intended to start my column with the paragraph further below, but then a story on the front page of soapcentral.com caught my eye, so I decided to share the fantastic news with all of our wonderful Two Scoops readers.

Folks, I'm excited to announce that the show's ratings are up...by a lot. After the roller-coaster ride that many of us have had with All My Children and especially One Life to Live, which is now on an indefinite hiatus, it's incredibly thrilling to learn that General Hospital is doing so well with viewers.

I wonder if the writers were given push presents each time they submitted the fruits of their labor. Perhaps an Emmy or two?

I recently heard about the practice of giving a mother a "push present" after the delivery of a child, and it made me laugh. It turns out my husband was a trend-setter because he gave me a set of earrings with our children's birthstone after each birth, starting with our eldest eighteen years ago. I'd tell him that they are now called push presents, but I suspect that he'd look at me like I had suddenly sprouted a third eye in the center of my forehead, so I'll pass.

There's nothing wrong with giving a mother a present before, during, and after the birth of a child. She absolutely deserves it, but as any mother can tell you, the real "push present" is the baby. There really is no greater gift than that.

Not that Maxie would know anything about that because this week she and Spinelli decided -- for reasons that I can't quite fathom -- to continue to lie to Dante and Lulu by allowing them to take the baby home to raise as their own. I'm not going to waste too much time worrying about it because I seriously doubt that the ruse is going to last long.

What struck me as odd about Maxie's push present was that it was a picture of her newborn daughter, dressed in a cute little outfit and smiling for the camera. Granted, Lulu could have decided to add the picture after the baby was born, but no way did the baby in the picture look like a newborn who had spent time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

I also questioned the wisdom of Lulu giving Maxie, who is struggling with attachment issues, a picture of the object of her desire. It's like handing me a box of chocolates to hold. Pointless. I'm going to eat it. It's not a matter of if, but rather when and how much.

Perhaps Lulu should have invested in a little trip to a spa resort where Maxie could have recuperated away from everyone, especially Brad who just so happened to overhear Maxie and Spinelli discuss their uber-private secret out in the open and loud enough for Brad to glean every scintillating detail.

I'm not sure what Brad is going to do with the scandalous information about little Georgie "Jackalyn" Connie Falconeri because Brad is currently sitting on a whole heap of secrets. He knows that Britt is lying through her teeth about the paternity of her baby, even though that has quickly become the worst-kept secret because anyone with a pinprick of eyesight, except for Nikolas, can see that Britt's newborn toddler doesn't have a drop of Asian blood in him.

By the way, I now know why Britt looked nine months pregnant when she was only two months along. She was incubating a baby giant!

Back to Brad. I was certain that Brad was going to the spill the beans to Dante that Britt had stolen one of Dante and Lulu's embryos and then implanted it in her own uterus, but then Dante started talking, and well, duty called and he left. I know that it's pure speculation that Britt's baby is not her biological child, but I'm really hoping that the writers give Dante and Lulu their baby when Spinelli and Maxie rip the one that they have fallen in love with out of their arms.

Riddle me this: why does Britt need someone to take care of her and the baby?

Nikolas is exhibiting classic signs of being on the rebound because he's developed this sudden and inexplicable attraction to Britt. Sure, she's pretty, but she's also devious, a liar, cruel, and often downright delusional, yet despite all of that, Nikolas is desperately playing her knight in shinning armor. He seems determined to see Britt as a homeless waif without any resources, even though she's actually a successful doctor, with a steady income, who is perfectly capable of renting a decent place to hold her over until she finds something more permanent for her and her stolen baby.

Isn't Bobbie's brownstone available?

Then again, it might be best that Nikolas step in to take care of Britt and his nephew until Britt's lie is exposed. At least that way the baby will have bonded with someone in his family. By the way, if the baby is Dante and Lulu's son, I'm fairly certain that Britt could be charged with kidnapping because she didn't legally adopt the baby from his biological parents. Developing a relationship with Nikolas might be the only way for her to avoid jail time because no matter how angry Nikolas gets, he'd still be gallant enough to go to bat for her. It's just who he is.

Too bad for A.J., though, because I'm sure that he would have appreciated the company in jail.

This week, Monica paid her wayward son, A.J., a visit and learned the harsh reality of his situation, along with every lurid detail up to that critical gap in his memory. Like everyone else, including A.J. himself, Monica is certain that A.J. is guilty. Further proof that he is not.

Did the police even do a gunshot residue test on A.J. to determine if he fired a gun? Not that I've heard. It was my understanding from what Anna had said that only A.J.'s fingerprints had been found on the gun, but then others have since mentioned that there had been a ballistic match to the bullet recovered from Connie, so the plot thickens. I still hold to my theory that Ava was the shooter because Ava truly is a deliciously bloodthirsty little vixen who had probably been driven by revenge for the story that Connie had written about Kiki and possibly self-preservation if Ava discovered that Connie had figured out that Derek was Julian Jerome.

I don't get why everyone is pissed that A.J. pleaded not guilty. Isn't that what most defendants do when they are charged with a serious crime? It's my understanding that a defendant will only plead guilty after they have worked out a plea bargain or it's a minor charge with no jail time.

Olivia called A.J. a "lying, cowardly son of a bitch" when she found out that he had pled not guilty. Does that mean that she thinks that Sonny is one too? I recall him pleading not guilty several times in court, even when he was responsible for the victim's death.

I found Olivia to be exceedingly annoying this week because she was such a weepy mess. Don't get me wrong; I understand her crying about Connie, and I appreciate that Olivia was scared because Sonny had been suicidal, but in almost every scene last week, Olivia wept. There were tears of sorrow, tears of trepidation, and even tears of joy. It was too much and made me want to give Olivia a little time out at the spa resort that Lulu and Dante should have sent Maxie to.

I'd like to clarify something for those who are new to GH. A.J. is not Monica's firstborn child, as Franco had suggested. Monica's firstborn was a young lady named Dawn Winthrop, who was brutally murdered by a guy named Eric Jackson a.k.a. Edge Jerome. Eric had impersonated Julian's nephew, Evan Jerome, for a while but then received his comeuppance when the Jeromes killed Edge and discarded his head in a dumpster. I remember watching that episode with my mom and being horrified at the idea of a decapitation.

I loved the scenes between Monica and Tracy when Tracy found out that Monica had lost her job. Tracy is one of those characters that I love to hate because of moments like the one in the library when she marched to the phone and threatened to pull the funding for the pediatric wing if Monica wasn't reinstated as chief of staff. I have to assume that Nikolas is going to have a similar reaction when he learns what the board of directors did to Emily's mother.

I have a feeling that all of Monica's displaced guests, except for Franco, are going to end up squatting at Greystone Manor in the very near future, especially Morgan and Kiki because both are apparently allergic to work. Ava already showed up there under the guise of offering Sonny her condolences and then promptly seizing the opportunity to mess with his head.

Remember when I said that I liked the idea of Sonny and Olivia? Well, I changed my mind. Sonny and Ava have far more interesting chemistry than Sonny and Olivia do.

I've been waiting for Sonny and Ava to meet because something told me that these two characters would sizzle on the screen, and I was right. Sonny's encounter with Ava was everything that I had hoped for and more. Ava is the perfect blend of Faith Roscoe and Helena Cassadine with a little Claudia Zacchara thrown in to spice things up. She's beautiful, deadly, and incredibly intelligent. A lethal combination that is sure to give Sonny a run for his money.

After Ava raided Connie's closet for a dress and smoothed her short blonde locks around a Bumpit like Connie used to do, she hightailed it over to Sonny's to wait for him with her back strategically facing the door, so Sonny would have a moment of hope that Connie was alive when he entered the room. Admittedly, not a difficult feat to pull off these days because, as Shawn so aptly put it, Sonny is "crazy with grief" and off of his meds.

I hate when Sonny gets like this, but I appreciate that it's good television. If Sonny was at the top of this game then Julian and Ava would not be able to get a foothold in Port Charles.

I watched GH off and on during the Jerome years because I was busy with school and being a kid in the 80s, but I do recall not liking any of the Jeromes. As an adult, that has changed because I'm a huge fan of William deVry and now Maura West. With the exception of Kiki, a character whose very name annoys me, I want the Jeromes to stick around. However, I know that it's not going to be easy because of what the Jeromes did to Duke and Anna. It was not only unconscionable but illegal.

Diane and Alexis are going to have their work cut out for them.

I love Duke and Anna, so my only complaint is that they are not on enough. The actors are sublime together, and their dialogue is always interesting. They remind me of the husband and wife team that Robert Wagner and Stephanie Powers played on Hart to Hart. I actually ended up watching Friday's episode twice because I had enjoyed Duke and Anna's scenes that much. I adore Julian and Ava, but I cannot wait for Duke and Anna to unmask them. If any two people deserve to be the ones to expose the Jeromes for who they are, it's Duke and Anna.

I'm also looking forward to seeing how the writers handle the quandary of keeping everyone on the canvas without them killing each other.

Our mystery for the week is trying to figure out who is skulking around Port Charles and spying on Jason's loved ones. I know that the writers want us to think that it's Jason because the person appeared on Jason's birthday and everyone was talking about Jason, but I highly doubt that it's him unless they've recast the role. To my knowledge, they have not.

A part of me had hoped that it might be Alan because Monica and Tracy had been talking about him, but chances are that it's the new guy who is supposed to stir up trouble for a certain young lady in town.

I'm looking forward to seeing what next week holds for us. If this past week is anything to go by, it's going to be a rocking week.

A few things that tickled my fancy

Britt doubts that Sabrina is capable of delivering the baby at Wyndemere
Sabrina: "I've seen it done."
Britt: "I've seen Nik Wallenda walk a tightrope. I'm not gonna cross the Grand Canyon."

Franco tosses Ava out of the Quartermaine mansion
Franco: "Ava, I think it's time for you to leave."
Ava: "Excuse me?"
Franco: "You heard me. Pack your bags and get your poser ass out of my house."

Monica orders Franco to leave the mansion, but Franco objects
Monica: "You are going. Now, do you want to do it by yourself or do you want me to call Alice?"
Franco: "Well, I have always been curious what it would be like to go man-to-man with Alice."

Franco claims that he will not stay where he isn't wanted
Monica: "Good luck on the moon."

Franco tells Carly that someone deliberately froze his bank accounts
Carly: "You think someone did this intentionally?"
Franco: "I absolutely smell a rat."
Carly: "Who?"
Franco: "The rodent is a blonde named Ava."

Thank you for taking the time to read this week's column. I love to read your thoughts, too, so click here to send me an email, or scroll down the page to leave comments.

Until next time, dear readers, take care.
Liz Masters

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 soapcentral.com or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen, what has happened, and to take a look at the logistics of it all. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same view point.

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