Fourth -- and inches
For the Week of March 27, 2017
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Other Two Scoops for the week of March 27, 2017
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March 20, 2017
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April 3, 2017
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Addictions, repressed memories, heartbreaking betrayals, and a contentious custody battle were just a few of the hot-button issues tackled this week, but are the writers doing these relevant issues justice or are they missing some great opportunities for explosive payoffs?

Don't you hate it when you're really ready for the climax -- and it comes up short?

I sure do, and -- unfortunately -- it's happened quite a bit lately.

Part of the problem for me is a sense that the writers are making things up as they go along, then once they hit on an idea, they immediately make it obvious.

The big reveal about Nelle being Frank Benson's daughter who was bitter because Carly never shared her wealth with Frank and Nelle until Carly needed Nelle's kidney for Josslyn highlights exactly what I'm referring to. Nelle's confession, when we finally heard it, was about as shocking as a zap from a AAA battery. Most viewers had already figured out who Nelle was during that scene when Carly suddenly talked to her family about Frank Benson while Nelle skulked and seethed in the background.

Equally vexing are the convoluted storylines going on with Valentin. For years, Valentin's name was only uttered in hushed tones because he was the bogeyman incarnate -- the scariest of all scary Cassadines. Even the queen of all that is evil, Helena, shuddered with fear when she talked about him.

At first, Valentin appeared to be everything people claimed -- and more -- as he craftily wormed his way into the main house on Cassadine Island and then promptly took everyone hostage, killed Nikolas in cold blood, and shot Kevin when Kevin took a bullet for Laura.

Valentin was a ruthless bad guy played by a brilliant and charismatic actor. He was mesmerizing to watch as he popped up in Port Charles and quickly seduced Nina into bed before darting off to Spencer's camp to abscond with Spencer, whom he presumably intended to kill. Valentin vowed to return, and I was thrilled because he was interesting, mysterious, and ready to pick up where Helena had left off.

However, when Valentin returned, things had changed. Suddenly, we learned that his sperm was "stolen" and used to fertilize Lulu's egg in some twisted scheme to give Stavros a child with Lulu. Valentin snatched the frozen embryo from Helena and had it immediately implanted into that bastion of motherhood, Claudette, who gave birth to Charlotte. We also learned that he had a dark secret past with Anna during his WSB days when he was a stuttering Quasimodo.

The veneer of danger and mystery faded, and my interest in this promising character began to wane. It seemed somewhat juvenile to be brokenhearted because Anna had rejected a kiss, and learning that she'd put him on a WSB hit list shortly thereafter didn't garner much sympathy because I have a big problem with how Valentin refuses to acknowledge that he cheated Lulu out of an opportunity to have a relationship with her daughter.

I concede that Lulu is being a little over the top and unreasonable with her all-or-nothing attitude, but I'm a mother, and in her shoes, I can't honestly say that I wouldn't be equally stubborn and angry. Valentin murdered her beloved brother and -- as she sees it -- stole her daughter. I wouldn't want my child to be in the care of someone like that, either, so I can totally empathize with Lulu's desperation.

There's also Emme Rylan's real-life pregnancy that will send Lulu off-screen for a short time when Emme goes on maternity leave. The writers will need to explain her sudden absence. I just hope they don't do something predictable by having Lulu go off the deep end and kidnap her own child.

The storyline has been incredibly disappointing so far, mostly because it's so heavily slanted in Valentin's favor, and totally unrealistic to me. I strongly felt that the judge should have been more sympathetic to Lulu's plight and given her a far more generous visitation schedule. I get the decision to have it supervised, but it should be at Lulu's home because Charlotte needs to get to know her brother and stepfather. A family setting would be far less stressful for both children because there's also Rocco to consider.

It was ludicrous that the judge had absolutely zero concerns about a woman with Nina's extensive history of mental illness, obsession with children, and criminal activity. Even more bizarre was Diane not pointing that out to the judge during the hearing. To me, that was sloppy writing.

By Andre's own account, Charlotte is a well-adjusted child without any of the issues he might have expected for someone who'd been through what Charlotte has. How much could Lulu have traumatized Charlotte if that is the case?

Besides, Lulu isn't the bogeyman. She's a wife and mother who devotes her time to her family.

As if Valentin isn't busy enough battling Lulu for custody and fighting off Anna's attempts to dig up his skeletons, it was revealed this week that he was secretly in cahoots with Olivia Jerome. This was after Jordan had vowed to find out who had helped Olivia disappear all those years ago when Olivia had been whisked off to China to convalesce and plot her return to Port Charles.

All signs pointed straight to Valentin as that accomplice when Nora assured him that she'd secured Olivia a nice little room at D'Archam Asylum, and Olivia would never see the light of day again.

Oh, to be a fly on the wall when Olivia arrives at the super-max facility and bumps into fellow inmate Heather Webber. I would love to see a scene between those two titans of insanity.

While we've had several storylines start with great promise only to fizzle out with anticlimactic reveals, others have dragged out at a dying snail's pace -- like the story of Valentin and Anna's past.

Although the writers did add a new wrinkle by having Olivia heavily suggest that Griffin's mother might not be who he thinks when Olivia told him that she didn't see a trace of his mother in him.

The fact that Griffin made a beeline to Anna's house to tell her about Olivia's cryptic remark suggests that perhaps Anna is Griffin's mother. The question is, who is the daddy?

Valentin's connection to Olivia makes him a contender because Olivia had no idea that Duke had had a son until she'd met Griffin. However, she might have been privy to Valentin having a son with Anna, but it's really hard to imagine that Anna and Valentin had an intimate affair and a child and that some woman in Scotland ended up raising their child. Also, if Griffin were Valentin's son, then I would think that Valentin would make an effort to get to know him, which he hasn't been making, which makes it seem unlikely he's Griffin's father.

But Valentin definitely knows something, so I dearly hope he finally tells Anna and stops having the same tiresome and repetitive conversations with her.

Anna knows something big is afoot because she's so desperate for answers that she's asked Liesl to reach out to Cesar Faison -- the man who's been obsessed with Anna for decades. Insanely obsessed.

Griffin's father has to be Duke because everyone sees the uncanny resemblance, including Olivia. It doesn't matter how far along Anna was when she lost her baby with Duke because all it takes is a stroke of the pen to make her far enough along for the baby to survive a premature birth. I really hope this turns out to be the case because Anna and Griffin as mother and son gives Griffin a real connection to Port Charles and someone for Anna to have around now that Robin and the grandchildren live in California.

The added bonus is that Griffin will have an actual storyline instead of being relegated to offering Sonny endless advice on forgiveness for his countless sins.

I had hoped that a romance would start simmering between Griffin and Liz, but she seems perfectly content with Franco these days -- enough that she asked him to move in because she feels that he's good for both her and the boys, and he's changed.

Too bad for Liz, Jason despises Franco and will no doubt threaten to take Jake away from her "for Jake's own safety."

Jason has every reason to hate Franco for what he's done to him and Sam, but it's obvious that Jake cares about Franco and feels a bond with him that allows Jake to feel safe enough to open up to him. Jason needs to remember that there was a time that Sam had been a real danger to Jake -- letting a kidnapper take him without saying anything and hiring armed thugs to frighten Liz and the boys in the park -- but Liz made peace with Sam because Sam had earned it and would always be a part of Jason's life and, by extension, Jake's.

I don't expect Jason or Sam to make peace with Franco, but they should trust Liz and respect her privacy. If Liz gets into trouble, I have no doubt she will go straight to Jason. Everyone does.

I think Jason should be more concerned right now about what is going on inside Jake's head because Helena definitely tampered with that poor child's memories.

Jason and Liz might have known sooner if they'd kept sending their son to therapy, but apparently they decided at some point it was no longer necessary and went about their lives as if Helena hadn't been the wicked witch living in the candy-covered house deep in the woods, waiting for hapless children to cross her path.

Jason should be thankful that Franco realized something was off with Jake and started art therapy because there's no telling what Helena programmed Jake to do. Liz has every right to be concerned about her son because there was no line that Helena wouldn't cross, including killing her own young -- remember Cassandra/Irina?

Meanwhile, Sonny and Carly are continuing to deal with the fallout of Sonny sleeping with Nelle and lying to "spare" Carly any further pain. I loved it when Carly told him too bad -- she was in pain.

The truth is that Sonny didn't tell Carly the truth about Nelle because he was rightfully afraid that Carly would dump him. He did it for his own selfish reasons, thinking he could keep his secret buried despite having never successfully kept a secret -- much less an illicit sexual encounter -- from Carly. Ever.

My jaw dropped at Sonny's gall when he dared to suggest that Carly should ask for his forgiveness, too, because she hadn't stood by him when everyone -- including Sonny -- thought he'd been responsible for Morgan's death. Oh, and she kissed Jax too.

Never mind that there had been overwhelming circumstantial evidence against Sonny or that Carly had had a moment of weakness with a man she'd once loved, married, and had a child with while Sonny slept with the first warm body that landed in his drunken arms. Carly also came clean about the kiss with Jax and made no effort to hide that she'd been tempted to rekindle things with him while Sonny lied, lied, and lied some more. In Sonny's mind, Carly's betrayal equaled his, and therefore, she should forgive him and live happily ever after with him.

I would have slapped Sonny. He refuses to acknowledge in any way that the true betrayal was his lies after promising that he'd never, ever break Carly's trust again. Cross his heart.

It's a joke, and Carly will look like an idiot if she takes Sonny back because, at some point, enough has to be enough. I'm disappointed that so many people seem to be cheering the reunion on, because Carly deserves better than someone who continues to betray her time and again.

The most powerful moment of the week occurred when Hayden agreed to duct tape Finn to a chair as he battled the withdrawal from Zekenestrol.

Michael Easton is a great actor, and the scenes were gripping and gut-wrenching to watch because -- sadly -- there's a serious heroin epidemic going on where I live. There have been so many overdoses that a nearby county was forced to rent freezers to accommodate those who couldn't be saved. Tragically, the heroin epidemic is not just isolated to my area -- it's spreading across the country and hitting all socioeconomic levels, including those you'd never suspect. I read a story a few weeks ago about a well-to-do airline pilot and his wife who had overdosed and were found dead in their bed the next morning by their young children. The story broke my heart.

That's why I thought the writers made a grave mistake by showing Finn refusing to go to rehab and deciding to take his sobriety into his own hands to deal with a powerful opiate addiction. I was also disappointed that the show didn't bother to do a PSA about addiction and provide a number for people to call if they needed help.

The writers made up for it -- a bit -- by having Molly and Kristina check in on their mother to urge her to attend an A.A. meeting and to find a new sponsor. They should have known something was up, though, when Alexis readily agreed and rushed out the door as if the hounds of hell were nipping at her heels. I wasn't at all surprised when she returned home a short time later with a bottle of booze shoved into her purse.

Did Molly and Kristina learn nothing from Alexis' duplicitous Thanksgiving night when she'd spun enough tales to rival the Grimm brothers? The very fact that Alexis was trying to talk to her daughters about the feelings she had for Julian and how conflicted she felt should have raised red flags for the girls that Alexis was in crisis and floundering. They should have driven her to a meeting rather than trusting her to go on her own this early into recovery.

As much as Kristina's harsh words annoyed me, I get that she, too, is hurting because it was her brother who died from a bomb meant for Julian, so I get why she dismisses Julian's letter as more lies. However, she was a little harsh to Alexis, especially when Alexis admitted that she'd still loved Julian when he'd died.

The big question is if Julian is really dead. I'm with Tamilu on this one -- no body, no die-y.

The search was suspended too quickly, and everyone seemed far too accepting that Julian was dead -- despite Ava having survived the same fall as Julian had after she, too, had been shot. Alexis claimed that the difference was that Julian had been shot at close range, but that doesn't necessarily mean that Olivia hit a vital organ.

I don't want William deVry to be gone because I love Julian, and I believe he's gotten a bum rap from both the writers and the characters. Now that Alexis admitted that she still loves Julian, I want them to find their way back together. Her daughters are grown, so she's free to do what makes her happy -- and if that is Julian, then her daughters will have to accept their mother's choices just the way she had to accept theirs.

Speaking of choices, Nina decided to hire Nelle -- mainly out of spite when Bobbie told her that Lulu wouldn't approve of Nelle being Charlotte's nanny. Nina then informed everyone who would listen that it wasn't any of Lulu's business who Nina and Valentin hired to care for Charlotte.

Nina clearly doesn't have a clear understanding of the definition of mother/parent.

I like Nina, but I see so much hurt headed her way when it's revealed that Charlotte is Dante and Lulu's child.

Yes, I'm still holding out hope that Helena switched out frozen embryos at GH. That makes so much more sense than the cockamamie story Valentin told.

The most poignant scene of the week was when Sam told Jason how blessed she felt to be able to bring a baby home from the hospital and experience all of their daughter's firsts because she and Jason hadn't had that with Danny.

It never occurred to me that Sam would feel that way, and I appreciate the reminder and nod to history. It explained why Sam was floating on cloud nine rather than passed out in bed like most new mothers after such a grueling birth.

Random observations

Thursday's episode would have made a great drinking game -- take a shot of your favorite alcohol beverage whenever someone says "D'Archam."

Favorite line: "I'm a mother, I sleep like a ninja." (Liz to Franco when he suggested Jake slipped downstairs in the middle of the night)

Warning: I will never believe that Tracy would leave everything behind for some cockamamie scheme Lord Larry Ashton is involved in, especially if he invokes Edward's name. Only Luke Spencer can get Tracy to hit the road for adventure and love.

I loved the nod to One Life to Live when Olivia told Nora to say hello to that cowboy of hers. I'm just surprised Nora never mentioned how much Olivia looks like Alexis Olanov.

Reader feedback

I just can't find myself to having any sympathy for Lulu. All I can think of is when Valentin offered Lulu the opportunity to share custody of Charlotte, she sneered at him and promised she would get sole custody of this confused child. No matter how Lulu might feel about Valentin, he's the one Charlotte loves and is the one constant in her young life. I have yet to see the vapid and immature Lulu considering Charlotte's feelings. -- miztake

Am I forgetting someone or are Danny & Emily Scout the first set of full [biological] siblings since Maxie & Georgie? The only other (alive if not present) sets on GH I can think of are Luke & Bobbie, Lucky & Lulu, and Elizabeth & Sarah. I know it's a soap opera but doesn't anyone in Port Charles ever find it odd that the town is just crawling with half-siblings? -- Kelly mach

I'm just sick to death of GH's sexist and idiotic writing. Give me a few months focused on what's right about GH and I'll watch again. I want to watch this cast and the great production quality, but sexist idiocy, no thanks. -- ctshar

So let me get this straight. After spending months trying to buy the hospital, OJ's "Plan A" was to buy GH so she could have access to Helena's secret lab, where she intended to revive Duke using a lock of his perfect hair, but when the deal fell through, she simply made her way to the lab anyway, with Robin in tow, whom she "just happened to" kidnap along the way. When they got to the lab, Robin explained to OJ that even if the old machines there still worked, they couldn't do for Duke what they did for Stavros, mainly because Stavvy was neither dead NOR cremated! DUH! -- Scrimmage

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 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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